dollraves New Reader
5/28/08 6:38 p.m.

My '95 Miata is losing compression in the #4 cylinder. On one hand, a bummer; on the other, I have a new project car! I was thinking about scavenging for a Rover engine for it (v8 Miatae sound so fun!!), but instead, I'm going to let the boyfriend walk me through an engine rebuild. I figure any guy who rearranges his garage to fit in my Miata is a guy worth keeping. :grin: Anyway, anyone bored out their Miata engine and upgraded the pistons? Recommendations for rebuild kits and such? Mostly, I want a little more oomph, enough to be fun. I'm not serious enough about anything to put out the $4k for a Flyin' Miata stroker kit.

For my daily drive, I bought my best friend's '01 Protege MP3 (laser blue, 43k miles) last month, and last week, in a moment of woman-driverness, I managed to scrape the rear right door against a concrete pillar as I turned right around it (what can I say, used to driving that wee little Miata!). Ripples in the door and deep gouges... $2300 worth of body work, according to the bodyshop. Guess I'll be taking that body repair/refinishing class this fall and working on that next year. ;) And, if anyone in NorCal spots a '01 Protege sedan in a pick-and-pull with a good rear right door, let me know!

The '88 GTX is sitting in Florida at my brother's house; I'm leaving it there until the next Challenge in the hopes I can make it out to the right coast. Other things, like two geriatric 17 year old cats, keep sucking down my Challenge budget for another car. Ah, well, my beloved little beasts can only live so long...

Type Q
Type Q Reader
5/29/08 12:39 p.m.


Give PR Motorsports in Hayward a call. 510-786-0851. They have built some very fast Miatas and can give you good information about what works and where to find it locally. They can also help you find a used door.

dollraves New Reader
5/29/08 7:51 p.m.

Sweet, thanks for the number!

Keith SuperDork
5/29/08 10:13 p.m.

Rick at PR Motorsports is good people. Of course, I have to say that otherwise I'll have to find somewhere else to sleep when I visit the Bay area :) I think he's out of town for the next couple of weeks so you might end up talking to someone else in the meantime.

As for the Miata engine - it may not be anything more than a head gasket, although Miata head gaskets are damn near unburstable. You'll find that a set of forged pistons with good ring will actually cost you about the same as new Mazda pistons and rings. Flyin' Miata does offer a complete rebuild kit with quality parts in it. It's the same collection of parts and seals that go into our $10,000+ built engines.

The best way to get "a little more oomph" when the head is off is to shave it a bit. I had a 0.030" shave on my 1.6, and it was a fun little engine. It's cheap to have done, too.

dollraves New Reader
5/30/08 7:58 p.m.

Definitely not the head gasket, had Paul at Rotorsport in Santa Clara confirm that one for me. Definitely needs a piston job. The #4 sparkplug was fouled the last two times I changed it, and she's eating oil like I do chocolate. :)

At least she's drivable... going to pretty much mod/upgrade everything I can and save the engine for last, just keep babying it on.

Xceler8x Reader
6/2/08 1:33 p.m.

Why not replace the motor with a used replacement? That might be your least expensive option. Also, these motors run into 200k well cared for. If you find one with a 100k on it you'll still have plenty of motoring left.

dollraves New Reader
6/2/08 6:07 p.m.

If I'm farming out the work, yeah, a used or even new motor's an option. But the boyfriend is a mechanic by trade, and figures this would be a good time to show me how to bore out and rebuild an engine if this one's a good candidate. If not, I have fun tearing down the engine, at least.

You'll need to log in to post.

Our Preferred Partners