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SwiftyDS 9th September 2018 08:40

A while since I posted an update but as is always the case events take over and progress has been slow.

I’ve hit a milestone in my build in so far as I look to have successfully made the registration changes with the DVLA. A big thanks to Nostromo for sharing with me how he went through the process. The paperwork only went in the post on Wednesday but looking today online it seems to have been processed both the make change (I requested model change!) and the colour change to white. I’m sure the paperwork will be fine when it eventually arrives.

Lots more work to do until it’s actually ready for MOTing but the V5 changes have spurred me on to get moving. Since the last set of updates the rear screen is fitted with DZUS fasteners, the petrol flap and filler plastics fitted and all the spacers fitted to the hubs.

Will keep the updates a bit more frequent hopefully from now on but here’s a couple of pics with it out in the sun to show progress....

Nostromo 9th September 2018 09:14

Looking good mate! Having the proper rear lights on the back really looks good. I'm still toying with modifying mine to take them rather than the sapphire ones. Also the windscreen extension is very well done. Wheels set it off nicely. Keep it up!

SwiftyDS 9th September 2018 13:39

Yes I’m glad I managed to find a used pair of the lights at a decent price. They do come up every now and then on eBay. I still have to fill the light recesses properly on each side of the clam and the rear plinth needs filling either side of the lenses as well.

As you can probably see from the pics I still need to bond the roof panel and pillars (doors as well which still need fettling particularly adding support/strength pieces to the bottoms where the MR2 skins were trimmed back). When I do the roof and pillars I need to try and tidy up the windscreen edge such that the rubber can be fitted and removed (rather than glued/bonded into place) as I’m trying to make it so that the MR2 windscreen glass can be removed/replaced without having to hack the GRP about.

On the wheels, I still think it’s sitting too high. I haven’t got any lowered springs on the MR2 as yet, plus I think when I fit the inner wing panels (a combo of the original MR2 inner wings/splash guards extended with off cuts from black plastic eave protectors, thanks to Retro200 for that tip) the gaps will not look quite so big. Anyway, it won’t look too bad if I ended up with rally stickers/wrap but if I go with just a white paint job it might look a bit naff. That’s the least of my worries for now and can easily be sorted later.

SwiftyDS 13th September 2018 14:38

V5 arrived in the post today form the DVLA. As it appeared when I looked online last weekend the Make has been changed to Tribute MRS200 (no longer any mention of Toyota). I’m fine with this and I guess it’s all down to who makes the updates at the DVLA as to what you end up with. Body type changed to coupe and I’ve also made the colour change to white.

I need to pull my finger out now and get on with finishing it!

SwiftyDS 20th September 2018 13:33

For those following Nostromo’s build thread you will know that I have started to wire up the lights, indicators etc on my MRS 200 build.

Everything went smoothly until I came to the headlights which I expected to be an issue given I am basing my build on a facelift MR2 Roadster with separate lights for low and main beam. The issue is that the kit is based on using Golf Mk2 headlights which use the H4 connector/bulb which has a single earth for both circuits. Short and long of it was that both low and high beam circuits were active when low beam was on if you used either of the earths on the H4 block.

A bit of circuit designing with relays finally got to a solution whereby a standard 4 pin relay was used to switch the main beam +ve connection to the H4 plug/connector. For anyone else still working out how to do this on their MRS200 build here’s a rough (and I mean very rough) circuit diagram, but please note that when I drew this the H4 connector is wrong in that the top lug should be low and the side lug main beam.

Everything is wired up now and I just need to go back and tidy up with some further soldering and heat shrink insulation. The only other challenge with the wiring was cleaning up the original rear lights I’d managed to source (RS Cosworth 3 door) which when I finally got to look at the connectors and wiring strips for the bulb holders were very corroded. Here’s a wiring/pin out diagram for rear lights if anyone is still looking for this.

Another impulse purchase to share with other builders....and probably one of the cheapest. I was trying to replicate the original RS200 sill jacking point covers and for the life of me couldn’t find any reference online as to what the originals were made from (rubber or plastic). Mike Noy helped me out (he’s the guy who built the MR2 MK2 RS200 replica which to me looks like one of the most original as a replica) in looking on eBay for plastic plug hole covers ! They are 50mm and come threaded with a backing plate. There’s enough space on the inside of the MRS200 sill cover to attach them and as a bit of light relief from wiring that’s next on the list. Here’s a couple of pics and let me know if you want the eBay link .. easy enough to find if you just search for white plastic plug hole cover.

SwiftyDS 28th September 2018 19:04

A couple of other MRS200 builders have asked for the 4 pin relay pin outs for the headlight wiring. Here’s a better wiring diagram with the pin outs labelled - note that you need to split the main beam positive/12v feed into pins 86 and 87 on the relay.

Just shout if it’s not clear or you need any further help on this.


Nostromo 30th September 2018 20:52

That makes life easier. Thanks for sorting this Dave.

SwiftyDS 14th October 2018 15:04

Steady progress over the last couple of weeks - as you will have seen from previous posts I decided to line all of the bodywork up and bolt on to the various front/rear support bars plus various fashioned brackets along the way before going back around the car and bonding everything on. This gave me chance to line things up first.

I’ve now started with bonding panels on - headlamp surrounds are done with the brackets holding the Golf MK2 lights glassed in on the inner side of the surrounds.

Bonnet hinges adjusted and to get a better fit and alignment where the bonnet joins the sill each side I’ve made a couple of supports out of 8mm Perspex that also serve as a mounting point for the front edge of each sill. They basically push the outer edge of the bonnet out each side just behind where the locking pin is. They still need to be painted Matt black to match the rest of the under bonnet area.

Next was bonding this sills on. They were already lined up with the new Perspex supports and I’d used the MR2 rear wing mounting point and door jam points so this was just a case of unbolting, drilling the holes for the dummy jacking point covers, bonding and then bolting it back on each side. Whilst off I also drilled holes and glassed in a couple of 3mm thick 200mm spreader bars that I’m using each side to bolt the clam to the top of the sill just in front of the rear wheels.

In the picture above the clam is only loosely bolted to the sill area. When fully tightened up it pulls the clam down nicely to the top edge of the sill.

I’ve also gone back round the rear of clam and added a couple more 3mm thick right angle brackets, glassed these all in and these now bolt the back of the clam down to the rear support bar. I will eventually go back and hinge the clam but for now I’m happy to have it bolted in and it’s not too long a process to unbolt it and lift it off. I need to that to paint the inside area Matt black.

All the wiring of the lights is now completed. I decided to wire the Hellas in as the front fog lights which works fine with H2 55W bulbs.


Next things on the to do list are to tidy up the filling around the rear lights and then put aside a couple of free days to bond the door skins and roof panel. I’ve got original Sierra MK1 door mirrors which seem to line up OK but obviously follow the MR2 door profile so are angled up more than the original. I also need to strengthen the window area of the door skin before bolting in the perspex side windows.

I’ve decided to fit an inter cooler and piping into the roof area - one day I’ll get a turbo on it, plus it fills the void quite nicely. I also want to remake the door handle rods before I bond the skins on and use thicker stainless bar as I’m not happy with the action on the handle right now.

That should hopefully take me to mid-November when I’m trying to get it to the point where I can MOT it, and then finish off all the little jobs like painting the inside of the bonnet/clam, fashion and fit under arch plastics and finally do something about lowering the suspension and ride height. My MR2 was on standard springs and original shocks so I’m toying with fitting BC BR Coilovers which I believe can get me 50mm+ lowering on the front and the rear which is really needed to avoid the Baja Bug styling I currently seem to have!\

I’ve decided to focus on getting it ready for MOT and use it a bit on the road before thinking about paint. Nostrommo has done a fantastic job of painting his so I’m toying with giving it a go myself. I’ve already got a quote for 80s themed Ford RS stripes but it needs a base gloss white coat before the wrapping company will do it.

I keep watching videos on YouTube of camper van owners roller painting their campers using Rustoleum. Even found a nice Davrian painted using the same technique in bright white. Just not sure roller painting a car will even look good from 10 feet away! Anyway, that’s for another day.

molleur 14th October 2018 20:12

Super! Love that livery.

kon 15th October 2018 09:37

Car's looking great, Swifty :)


Originally Posted by SwiftyDS (Post 97116)
not sure roller painting a car will even look good from 10 feet away!

Have you seen the thread on here for the Jag XKSS (the one which uses an old WW1 helmet as an exhaust shield)? He painted that, outside in his garden, using rollers, and then wet-sanded it down to a gloss finish. He covered how he did one of the panels in quite a bit of detail (boot lid, IIRC), and from the photos it looks great. Takes a bit of effort to sand it down afters, but for the money, it definately seems worth it, and is what I'm planning to do.

SwiftyDS 15th October 2018 10:03

Thanks for that - not seen that yet but will take a look now. It does seem like you can get a good finish with rollering if you do 3-4 coats, sanding back each coat. Mixing Rustoleum with thinners seems to be the trick although it can then take quite a while for each coat to dry. Probably a couple of weeks work but may give it a go on some off cuts of GRP from the kit to see what finish I can get.

Paint, thinners and rollers to do the whole car is £100 so less about wasting the money but more having to then get it all off if it looks pants at the end and needs a professional spray job!

IanA 15th October 2018 11:13


Originally Posted by SwiftyDS (Post 97123)
... if it looks pants...

If it looks pants but there is a good depth of paint, it can usually be sanded and polished back to give a good appearance.

My attempts at spraying cars have always relied on that.

Mick O'Malley 16th October 2018 08:26


Originally Posted by SwiftyDS (Post 97123)
Thanks for that - not seen that yet but will take a look now.

Regards, Mick

SwiftyDS 16th October 2018 09:14

Thanks Mick

IanA - I think if I lay on 3-4 coats rubbing down in between I should be able to get a decent finish. Just not sure about the bonnet and clam panels being such odd shapes I may get runs more with the roller but will give it a go.

SwiftyDS 19th October 2018 17:34

A bit slower progress this week. Tidied up the filling around the rear lights and valance where I’ve used MK1 Sierra lights and started to work on the doors and roof.

I’m making a rear piece for the roof where it was cut off from the clam so it can be bonded at the back as well as the windscreen edge and the door sides.

I bit the bullet on lowering the MR2 and ordered a set of BC BR coilovers. I got some good feedback from a couple of folks on the MR2 Roadster Owners Club forum about how low you can go with these. To my surprise they arrived today when I wasn’t expecting them for another week!

Went for slightly softer springs at 4kg front and 6kg rear.

Need to order some new drop links now and a set of hub to strut bolts / nuts then I can get round to fitting them.

Nostromo 19th October 2018 18:12

Very jealous! The BC coilies are really nice! Look forward to seeing what the drop is like if you can go for the full 75mm... or more? Think i'll only be able to afford some new springs and a 30mm drop for now. Are your current shocks any good? Mine are quite sad looking.

SwiftyDS 19th October 2018 19:07

Thanks Nick. Going for 50mm first all round and mocked that up for what it will look like and looks a lot better. Not sure I will get the rear of the car down to 70mm lower.

My shocks look to be originals and there was an advisory for misting on one of the rears. You’re welcome to them when I get them off if you want to see if they are any better than yours.

SwiftyDS 21st October 2018 16:06

Only managed an hour over the weekend so decided to paint under the front bonnet in satin black.

I’m still not happy with the filling around the rear lights which I tidied up earlier in the week. UPol GRP filler first then fine filler. Got to the point where it looked great, felt really smooth then I put a couple of layers of white primer on and it looks like the dog has sunk his teeth into large parts of it.

Will have to come back to it and tidy up before final prep for painting later.

Onwards and upwards

SwiftyDS 23rd October 2018 13:16

Went back and spent a couple more hours on the filling around the rear lights. Happier with these now and will do until final prep and paint which is some way off yet.

Whilst I had the lights out I gave the insides of the lenses a good clean. The outsides I had already cleaned and polished up. Oh and I couldn’t resist putting on the RS200 decal and Ford Badge - I know I’ve wasted the decal as it will need to come off for painting but feels worth it looking at the back end. It also fooled a delivery driver at the house opposite who thought it was the genuine article apart from the 06 reg plate. He spent 1/2 hour talking to me about what it was after I disappointed him by telling him it was a replica.

I also primed the petrol filler flap and the Sierra mirror caps whilst I had the rattle can out.

Back to bonding the roof, screen pillars and doors now which will be a good few days but hopefully after that it’s just the coilovers to fit and few odds and sods before I can get it MOT’d.

Removing the flash lines from the panels, filling in the rough areas and cracked edges can happen once I’ve got it back on the road.

wozzy 25th October 2018 18:33

That's looking good Dave,
Like the rear lights, i managed to get a pair of brand new ones for mine but not sure which i am putting them on.
keep the updates coming

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