Woody MegaDork
3/13/14 10:46 a.m.

You heard me...

SlickDizzy PowerDork
3/13/14 11:33 a.m.

I've had a couple. It is easy to make them very fast for little money; the stock carb on 12a cars (all but GSL-SE) sucks, and is best replaced or thoroughly modified. The smog equipment on all SA/FBs is ridiculously complicated and saps a ton of power; deleting the "rats nest" is a popular first mod. The fuel-injected 13b GSL-SE is the one to have for many reasons, mostly the bigger engine and more common 4x114.3 bolt pattern, though if you have to settle for a 12a look for a GSL as they also had 4-wheel discs and LSD. The stock recirculating ball steering kind of sucks, though there was a kit out there to convert it to a Fox body manual rack. They rust pretty obviously, but the secret spot to look is in the rear wheel wells/behind the storage boxes in the hatch. I've seen otherwise clean-looking cars with holes there...which is bad, because it's near the axle mounts. Oh, and your fuel mileage will pretty much always suck, I was ecstatic to get 15 out of either of mine.

1988RedT2 PowerDork
3/13/14 11:41 a.m.

Nowhere near as common (or cheap) as they once were. Most of the ones I see around here have V8 swaps of varying competence. The GSL-SE is definitely the ultimate first gen RX-7, although they are actually FB's. I believe the SA describes only the very early cars before 1980.

JtspellS Dork
3/13/14 12:03 p.m.

Do NOT break the tail lights, they are not only hard to find but they are quite expensive from what I've been told.

Also IIRC 12a parts from Mazda are non existent now so the hoarding is in full effect.

Woody MegaDork
3/13/14 1:17 p.m.

Specifically, early ones...

DaveEstey UberDork
3/13/14 1:23 p.m.

12a parts are becoming gold.

Woody MegaDork
3/13/14 1:32 p.m.
SlickDizzy wrote: They rust pretty obviously, but the secret spot to look is in the rear wheel wells/behind the storage boxes in tirculating bahe hatch. I've seen otherwise clean-looking cars with holes there...which is bad, because it's near the axle mounts.

Where exactly is this (photos?) and how bad is considered bad?

EvanB PowerDork
3/13/14 1:35 p.m.



SlickDizzy PowerDork
3/13/14 1:37 p.m.

This pic should give you an idea even though a repair is in progress. A little surface rust is okay, and to be expected. But if it feels "soft" in this area or there are any holes...now, they DO make patch panels for this, FYI, so if you feel like doing the work you could bargain down heavily.

fidelity101 Dork
3/13/14 1:47 p.m.

the 79-80 are the better looking more 70s Japanese sports car. I used to hate this body style but it really grew on me. 4x110 is odd for wheels too.

If the engine doesn't start well do a compression test.

If the engine runs, add seafoam to the tank drive it like you stole it for 4 months straight. lots of WOT and heavy load. If you baby it you will break it.

Woody MegaDork
3/13/14 2:05 p.m.

Thanks for the photos. Do the storage boxes need to be removed to see the rust or can you just open them and pull back the carpet?

I haven't even been inside one of these cars in 25 years.

Rupert Reader
3/13/14 2:09 p.m.

In reply to Woody: Pictures Please!

SlickDizzy PowerDork
3/13/14 2:29 p.m.

In reply to Woody:

You need to pull the bins and look inside the cavity, but it's a matter of four Philips screws. Seeing past the rear wheels isn't too hard either.

Woody MegaDork
3/14/14 1:18 p.m.

Here it is:

I loaded up my trailer and drove an hour with cash in my pocket. Not as nice as it would seem. I eventually offered $2400. They eventually came down to $2600. This took a long time and I walked away. More details later if you need them.


This is a 79 Mazda Rx7, somewhat rare, all original. It's hard to find something like this just as it was bought. I am the 2nd owner of this vehicle, the odometer reads 86,924. I have all the paperwork of everything that was done to this car since it was purchased by a family friend in 1979. Car is in pretty nice shape, runs excellent, starts right up. Has a decent set of tires on it, it is good to go. There are few scratches on it, and little/no rust. There is a very small spot of surface rust around the wheelwell on the front, but very little. This vehicle was taken off the road & garaged every winter since it was purchased. I originally planned in pulling the motor and tranny out of this car, but seeing as I got it running without a problem and it's all original, I figured I'd see if someone else would enjoy it. I need the money for school so this needs to go asap. Call/Text if interested eight six oh 402 17six7. Can send pics upon request. I am not interested in any trades whatsoever unless that would be a zero turn commercial lawn mower. Thanks.

SlickDizzy PowerDork
3/14/14 1:24 p.m.

That sucks. I'm always leery of one pic ads; was it a rust issue, cosmetic, or a mechanical one? If you shop aggressively sub-$2k for a decent one is doable.

Woody MegaDork
3/14/14 2:22 p.m.

Here's the whole story:

There was one female registered owner since new. This kid got it from her about eight months ago. He said he had planned to swap in a Kubota diesel(!).

The engine sounded very good and didn't smoke. It was a five speed with no sunroof, manufactured 04/1979. There were no storage bins, so this car must have predated them. The wheel wells looked very good. The wheels were straight but pretty crusty.

Unfortunately, he body wasn't that great. There was no rust, but every panel had at least one ding or dent. The entire passenger side had been repainted poorly when the car was six months old. You could see the overspray and tape lines. The lower front fender didn't even come close to lining up with the rocker panel. I saw the receipt for the work. That may not have been a deal breaker, but it was clear that a tree branch or something had fallen on it. The roof was really lumpy and the front cowl was beyond repair. The hood was probably replaced with an original silver one from the junkyard because the underside was much crustier than the rest of the car. The seats were okay but every other interior panel had at least one small split or crack in it. There was also evidence of mice in the glove box and spare tire well.

If I were looking for a track day beater, I might have offered a little more, but it wasn't the kind of car that you could drive and enjoy for six months and then throw on BAT like you might think from the ad. My initial offer was $2k and I think that's all that it was worth at best.

Woody MegaDork
3/14/14 2:24 p.m.

I'm getting better at walking away from cars like this.

Mazdax605 SuperDork
3/14/14 3:23 p.m.
Woody wrote: Specifically, early ones...

Early ones are the best in my opinion. I have a 5/78 build date car that I bought from the original owner. PM me if you want I can tell you all you need to know. We can even chat on the phone or via PM's if you want.

Woody MegaDork
3/14/14 3:32 p.m.

^See above. I haven't been searching for one so much as this one just kind of jumped out at me.

Woody MegaDork
3/14/14 8:55 p.m.

Do second generation cars have those motorized seat belts or are they mounted to the door?

turbojunker HalfDork
3/14/14 9:10 p.m.
Woody wrote: Do second generation cars have those motorized seat belts or are they mounted to the door?

89-91 have the motorized belts.

Woody MegaDork
3/14/14 10:39 p.m.

Thanks. Are the 86-88 belts mounted to the door or the B-pillar?

1988RedT2 PowerDork
3/15/14 12:14 a.m.
Woody wrote: Thanks. Are the 86-88 belts mounted to the door or the B-pillar?

My '88 Turbo II has them on the B-pillar, and I believe that is typical for those years.

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