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Good news on the Jag!
I know you're in Australia but I'm slightly surprised you found a yard with a Corolla in stock so easily. Are they still quite common there?

They are still quite common, but they are rapidly disappearing. There are 2 breakers yards near me, one had no Corollas older than 1996 in stock and the other had the AWD Estate (1991) which was the oldest one they had. I remember 5 years ago these were everywhere and yards would have dozens in stock, that being said the yard I went to had lots of parts on the shelf from previous breakers.

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Well, things have happened.

Jaguar News: New solenoid has been fitted and seems to have resolved the fuel issue, car has responded by running like absolute shit. I suspect the issue is (surprise, surprise) fuel related in that not enough is being supplied. I am truly fed up with its nonsense so it is off the the Jag specialist to be fixed.

Toyota News: The new radiator I ordered has arrived, so it will need fitting. I also need to fit the anti-roll bar because I am already sick of tripping over it in the garage.

Hyundai News: A tree branch fell on it and slightly dented the bonnet, oh well.

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Gee, I’ve been slack on the updates.


The Corolla had the new radiator, front anti-roll bar and a hell of allot of swearing thrown at it which have resulted in the following:

- No steam at traffic lights and in car parks causing onlookers to yell “Fire, Fire!”

- Corners can be rounded without fear of ending up in a tree

- Multiple bruises from rolling around on coarse gravel for hours


The Jag is still in the naughty corner awaiting its triumphant return to the road.


I pulled the tree branch off the Hyundai.


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Well, enough waiting, the breakers yard visit has been very productive!




The yard in question, Dapto Pick-a-part, had three ae92 Corollas in stock. A stripped out 4wd Estate, a low spec hatch and most importantly a high spec lift back which yielded my parts (annoyingly the yard has a strict no photography rule).


In the end I got:

- 5x CSX Alloys (plus nuts and spare brace)

- CSX gauge cluster with tachometer

- CSX rear speakers with grilles

- JVC Tape player (with correct brackets and plugs)

- Unbroken gear shifter trim

- Genuine Toyota weather shield


A good haul if I don’t say so myself.


The gear shifter trim was a simple matter of removal and replacement, plus fitting the new bushings I got from the main stealer (the old ones had completely disappeared). This has transformed the action of gear selection, no more flop!


The gauge cluster should have been a fairly straight forward swap, but I made life far more difficult for myself by deciding to retain my odometer. Cue a faf:




The result:




And installed:




Much better! This calls for an updated dash-at-night photo.




This concludes my weekend of Corolla modifications, the rest of the parts haul will have to wait.


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Parts Haul Install Part 2:


This session started off with the rear speakers, first off was the grilles.




The grilles from the black trim were installed into my brown trim and the lot was screwed into the boot.




And yes, that is a giffer blanket on the back seat.




The other job was the wind deflector, a simple matter of trim tape and swearing.




Genuine Toyota you know.




And Seca specific (for some reason).




All this leaves to do is the stereo, which needs new belts, and the wheels, which need new tyres. Looks like those damn black rubber rings are going to be my downfall.

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Also, this happened:




This marks 6000 Kilometres since I bought it!


Now up to 8000 Kilometres of ownership! (Note dial face change with the new binnacle)




It is also time for this years registration inspection, so it will be going in on Monday for new tyres (on the new wheels!) and its pink slip inspection. The only item of concern is the tyres, but as they are being replaced prior it really should not* fail.


*Famous last words.

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I may have just splurged a bit on the old eBay for a couple of accessories for the Corolla. I think they are the first brand new things I have bought for it, tyres excluded but I see these as consumables even if they are long term.

The horn has also been replaced after it was noted in the rego inspection that it was quite soft and not up to scratch (it was passed on my word that I would fix it ASAP). The original “buzzer” type was swapped out with a Hella “snail” type I had in stock from some previous farm hack that ended its days with me. It has a much nicer, old fashioned BRAP, rather than the usual modern BZZZ you get these days.

Lastly, the new tyres have made a world of difference to the noise and handling. The old ones were rock hard and quite worn but probably could have lasted a bit longer if I swapped the fronts with the rears, but new rubber meant I could get the alloys on (and don’t they look fab). I can really make use of the anti-roll bar I fitted by chucking it into corners, even in the wet which was never going to end well with the old tyres, plus the road noise has been greatly reduced.

Lesson of the day: Don’t put up with rubbish tyres.

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Part 1 of my eBay splurge has arrived.


But what could they be?


Headlamp protectors for many giffer points!


Thank god for big retailers selling off old stock for pennies, these have probably been on the shelf for years (the dust backs this theory up).

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Anyone who has been in the Corolla can vouch for the quality* of the speakers, more crackle and hiss than a hot pan of bacon, so when I saw there was a sale at the local automotive audio shop I decided to pop in


Behold the cheapest 4 inch speakers in stock at a whopping $25 for the pair (down from $69) compared with a standard unit (surprisingly these are Pioneers). A simple plug and play job, lovely, now bass is expressed as sound rather than white noise.

In other news, my friend gifted me this:


Guaranteed to add 10 BHP and 75% more brackets.

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Those wheels look the same as UK Ae92 GTi-16s. I kinda liked the trims.


I think you’re right, I thought these wheels were specific to Australian production, every day is a school day.


I liked the trims too, but there was only 3 and they were in poor condition. Don’t worry, I still have them in the shed with the old wheels.

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They were always machine/polish finished and would be knackered after a couple of years. 
Manufacturers still produce wheels and they're always fucked, usually while still under warranty. 

Two of mine are in really good shape, the other three are showing their age with gutter rash and corrosion. They are diamond etched and would cost a bomb to refurb them, if I ever decide to fix the bodywork and paint it then I’ll get them refurbished, but that is a long term plan.

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A little something arrived in the post this morning, eBay splurge part 3.




An original 1990s NRMA membership sticker (the New South Wales equivalent of the AA or RAC), positioned in the recommended location of the bottom, passenger side of the windscreen. This car definitely had one in the past as the backing paper was in the dealer wallet, this dealer wallet for that matter.




I need to track down a dealer sticker to get remade.


In other news, the headlight protectors needed a spot of modification. The raised section for the indicator bulge was rubbing on the indicator and generally flapping about in the breeze, so it got the chop.




I’m quite pleased with my efforts with the hacksaw and sandpaper, I even had some little rubber dots like the originals. A seamless repair.


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My wind deflector made a bid for freedom on the highway, the tape on the bottom edge gave way and I had to hold it the rest of the way home so it didn’t fly away. Time to break out the drill and the stainless screws.



I have a spare piece of trim for this door I picked up at the breakers visit for this exact reason, a rare example of forward thinking on my part. I celebrated by washing it for the first time in about 5 months, I was busy, I swear!

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A simple job for today, new dizzy cap and rotor.


Old cap is quite worn, if the 89 is year of manufacture than it is probably original.


And I even had an assistant in the form of Stumpy the Blue Tongue Lizard who lives in the stone wall by the driveway.


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Today we celebrate the 10,000 kilometre anniversary of Corolla ownership as it rolls over to 170,000km. So to celebrate it’s time for some bodywork repairs in my usual style, half-arsed.

The local motor factors wanted $45 and 2 weeks to get a thimble of touch up paint made to the correct code or $65 for a rattle can, sod that! Alternatively, the office supplies shop wanted $6 for this.


This can only go well. After the little chips and scratches were attended to it was time to bring forward the main culprit.


The black paint was my previous attempt at protecting the bare metal, but it was never an elegant solution. So, WCPGW?


Well, it certainly looks different.

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My 80s/90s NRMA grill badge didn’t come with the hardware to fit it, so instead of buying a couple of bolts I just bought another badge, this time from the 60s/70s.


I need help, serious help, but at least it matches the Jag.


The badge on the Jag is an older one made of cast metal, where as the one on the Corolla is a newer plastic item.

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A minor calamity occurred today, some loose tat in the boot slid around and busted 2 of the child seat restraint blanking plugs.


Disaster! The blanking plugs in question are rather unusual in size and colour, as can be seen with the remaining centre plug.


So, faced with the search for these unobtainium blanking plugs, I opted for plan B.


Fitting child seat restraints, which will be very useful for someone with no children, but they can be used as tie-down points which can prevent the tat flying around in the boot that broke the blanking plugs in the first place.

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