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@hurddawg so out of idle curiosity is the recommended atf for the Ford trans still T-IV like ours or is it Mercon like most fords?


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

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Discussion Starter #102
It has the same dipstick that says t-iv
 

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What a great resource for other owners @hurddawg . Thanks so much for adding all this knowledge to the forum. Does this mean you're now going to make it to the PacNW meetup?
 

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Discussion Starter #104 (Edited)
Since I was on a time crunch, I didn't take many photos, just some early on.

This is the amount of ATF dripped out in about 5 seconds. It was pretty bad....there is quite a bit more under that cardboard as well.


This time around I figured that I would try to other way to remove the engine/trans, which is by removing the front end.





It's really not as much work as you would expect. It might save a bit of time going this way and it certainly has some advantages going this way. Namely a larger working space. This is #1 with a star next to it. Certainly made it easier to work on the header! By taking the engine out of the bottom, I had a hard time aligning the subframe and getting it on the studs. It also saves you headaches such as removing the control arm ball joints and unbolting the P/S line from the pump and subframe.

Installing the oil cooler, starts with the removal of the header.


Here are the parts required. Oil cooler itself (below), oil cooler coolant lines (top) and the center bolt/oil filter stud (torque to 44ft/lbs, you can use a 1/2" allen, but the metric size is 12mm iirc fits better).


Oil cooler installed. I added some Earl's 3/4" 'flameproof' hose covering (orange sleeves) I had laying around from a previous project. I put some there as it was pretty close to the header collector. Safer than sorry....The rest of the lines hug the block really close to provide maximum clearance. As you see in this photo and the next, this also effectively deletes the TB coolant T as well. I used a piece of 90* rubber hose to bridge the gap between the coolant tubes.






Oil filter installed with header

@DrFeelGood asked about what may have caused the issue. It was certainly from the input shaft section as the torque converter and bellhousing was soaked. The input shaft seal seemed fine, although I did have a problem installing it and it was an aftermarket piece. But other than the complete mess, there was no real evidence of what failed. My best guess is that upon installation originally I damaged the front pump gear (probably cracked) and it finally failed completely causing it to leak profusely past the input shaft seal. The torque converter was seated all the way. Whenever I have some time I'll dig into the unit and take a look more closely.

Other things I forgot to mention, I took the time to replace the A/C lines as they were right there.

Tips on removing the TCM. THe nut on the top isn't hard to remove, but if you really need to take the nut off without the lever moving. Ask me how I know! If you go too far you have to remove the trans valvebody "pan" and reset the detent lever on the gear selector shaft. After the nut is removed, otherwise take your time and wiggle off the lever and then gently pry/wiggle up the TCM from the shaft and its connector.

Tips on the installing a trans cooler....On the AW6A-EL/AWF21/TF-81SC trans the ATF cooler pipes are marked with a blue dot and a red dot. The Red Dot is the hot fluid (going out), and the blue dot is the cooled fluid (fluid return). I piped mine inline with the in-radiator cooler and have the fluid go through the new one first.
 

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Nice!! I've planned on removing the front end and trying that vs the bottom when I go to do my engine overhaul. I did an engine in my CRX that had to go in from the bottom and without a lift, it was a pain. I couldn't imagine how much harder the V6 would be to get it out like that lol. Nice score on the oil cooler too. Nice little factory upgrade!!
 

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Discussion Starter #107
They are the ones from Nautilus/MSDS. I painted them silver with high temp paint from the auto store.
 

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Discussion Starter #108
Nice!! I've planned on removing the front end and trying that vs the bottom when I go to do my engine overhaul. I did an engine in my CRX that had to go in from the bottom and without a lift, it was a pain. I couldn't imagine how much harder the V6 would be to get it out like that lol. Nice score on the oil cooler too. Nice little factory upgrade!!
Yeah I think if I did it again, I'd definitely go out the front again. I felt it was less stressful getting the engine bolted back up.
I decided on the oil cooler just for a bit of piece of mind and to lessen the stress on the oil from the extended intervals I plan to do.
 

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Discussion Starter #109
So after some consideration, I've decided to sell the wagon. I'm going to pull off some of the items I've installed over the last couple of months and sell them separately. It was a nice run while it lasted. More details later on.
 

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So after some consideration, I've decided to sell the wagon. I'm going to pull off some of the items I've installed over the last couple of months and sell them separately. It was a nice run while it lasted. More details later on.
Aw man!!! No way. Can you wait long enough to sell till we have the meet up this month?
 

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Discussion Starter #111

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Discussion Starter #113
There will be legitimate update coming soon :)
 

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Discussion Starter #114
3-30-2019 ~ 4-7-2019

The last weekend had a pretty major upgrade. The Fortune Auto coilovers finally showed up so I commenced installing those and the rear suspension components that I had planned.

Parts the were replaced in the rear were

- Toe control links (Moog)
- Upper arms (Moog)
- Lower control arm (OEM)
- Springs & shocks

Out of the main bushings the 2 subframes' bushings and the lateral arm bushing are left original.

My rear suspension bushings were pretty shot, imo, as I had a problem with dry rot. Here is the toe links that were the worst off visually.




Cracks and small bits of the bushings were missing (not the cut outs)...I was able to remove some more with my fingers. More surprising than those were the shocks and lower control arms. The shock and control arm bushing sleeves had separated themselves from the rubber and they rotated freely. The upper arms looked like they faired the best with the least amount of dry rotting and cracks. I probably could have forgone the replacement but 1) I had them already and 2) I was replacing the shock so in they went.

New LCA next to the old and the FA shock in the shock mount. The shock mount is awkward to access as everyone says, but I was prepared and it went smoothly


FA Spring set up installed. The rear spring is 6KG (approx 330lbs) and about 1/2 the length of the stocker. When I installed the spring, I decided to cut the 1st rung of the bump stop



Took the opportunity to install the Autoexe lower rear bar.




Front suspension was a breeze. I installed the Megan UCAs (sorry no pics) and here is a pic of the front coilovers. If anyone ends up getting the FA coilovers, just FYI yours will be green/black/silver. The G20/Sentra crowd had a group buy going on the FAs and I was able to hop on that. They had custom colors made so don't freak out if yours is different.


The height settings on the coilovers are at its highest setting and as with all springs designed for sedans, the rear is lower than the front. As you can see in the pic, the tire is tucking a bit in the rear. I have about 2 finger widths on the front.




With @DrFeelGood help, I ordered some spring spacers so I will try that out and see where I am at.

This weekend I did not do a whole lot, but got a few odds and ends done.

- Installed oem battery sleeve
- Installed LED lights into the dome/map lights
- Did some masking on a grille I plan on painting
- Adjusted the front coilover damping
- Installed a Homelink/compass/auto dimming mirror from a Hyundai
- Adjusted the exhaust position
- Replaced the hatch shocks....I should have done this months ago! What a difference!
- Installed redlinegoods center console arm rest cover.

Today I parked the front passenger wheel on a hump. Probably your average speed bump size. Never mind why I parked as I did, but it was my first experience in how flexible the car is. The hatch would open easy enough, but it certainly did not want to close and I noticed the hatch plastic had various rub marks on the periphery of it. A few weeks back I noticed the hatch plastic was popped off on one side as well...but didnt think much of it then...and perhaps its related. So after reading @DrFeelGood thread on bracing had me thinking a lot of this stuff and what happened with his Corolla. I hope this year to make some more under-chassis bracing help combat this with the wagon. As far as the autoexe lower brace, I'm not sure how much of a difference it has made. Part of the problem is the suspension is completely replaced in the rear and the coilovers. However, with that in mind, ride is very good despite the 12kg springs (672lbs vs 272) in front and there are no 'extra' NVH noises, such as rattles despite the heavier springs. Having that said in the corners the car does roll a bit more than I expected and I suspect its more because of it being a wagon than anything else (One of the G20s has 8k/6k FA coilovers and pretty much no roll). It feels like the front has it handled but once the rear starts to come around it is overpowering it and causing it to roll/twist. Wonder if that makes sense. I imagine the under chassis autoexe x-brace would work well here. I wonder if the roof rack rails would help rigidity? Probably wouldn't help torsional rigidity too much, but maybe bending? Wonder if its worth it. Looks wise I go back and worth about it. Sometimes I like the smooth other times I want the rails.

Next up...troubleshooting the A/C...painting the 'new' grille....getting the speakers to work

 

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Discussion Starter #115
Been looking at some math for the rear springs.

Based on info here the wagon has about 680kg over the rear axle. Based on that, the spring formula I found on the internet...

K=L/T

K is spring rate
L is Load
T is travel of spring

6kg = 680kg/T

T = 680kg/6kg
T is approx 111mm = 4.3 inches of compression with the weight

BC racing has a 8kg spring for the rear on their coilover set.

T = 680/8kg
T is approx 85mm = 3.3" of compression.

I might try this out ...it would give me an addition adjustment of 1" albeit at expense of stiffer ride. FA touts that their dampers can handle a +/- 2kg rate change so this might be the ticket.

*the assumption is that the BC springs is the same length as the FA one and that the springs are not progressive
 

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Great update!! Springs are on my "to do" list so I'll be going through this as well lol. I'll let you work out the kinks and apply it to mine hehehe. I'm sure once I redo the audio system I'll almost weigh as much as the wagon. I'll have to look at the weight difference and then do some math and guessaments to see about how much extra I'll be adding.

On my Eclipse I a C pillar bar that helped a little with rear roll. I'm wondering if one couldn't make a x bar to run from the c pillars to the rear hatch pillars. Maybe high enough to where it sits right under the long top. This in theory should brace the top some to reduce the amount of flex.

Either way I'm sure you'll figure it out!! It's looking great!!
 

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Discussion Starter #118
So burned some of the midnight oil yesterday and after work today.

Summary
- Painted the A pillar on the passenger side, 'new' grille and mirror covers. Applied some touch up on a couple bad paint damage on the rear bumper and rear fender arch.
- Installed the grille
- Did the "Brake light mod"
- Tried using the Ford TCM on the trans.

Following @waughoo 's foot steps, I got my hands on a set of speed6 heated side mirrors. I took them apart and prepped and painted the covers. Original speed6 color was Platinum Silver Metallic. Part of the reason for the upgrade is that I don't have heated mirrors and since I park outside, I dearly miss that feature which all my other cars have.


I started this a while back, but finally got enough parts together so I wouldn't waste Clear. A month or so back I masked off the chrome part and painted the grille black as it was fading. Last week? I taped off the grille portion in preparation of the painting and roughed up the chrome


Masked off the car. The Inside of the A-pillar was peeling so I wanted to paint it.


I evidently forgot to take photos of the primer stage, but I made my life a bit more difficult by using black primer. I was too lazy to go out and buy gray so black it was!

Color coat....only pics the A-pillar...didn't take pics of the other parts


Where I blended it.


Mirror covers and the grille color coated and cleared


I wanted to use my car's original emblem in the grille, but the clips (bottom) in the back were slightly different so I couldn't use it. Otherwise it was exactly the same....bummer as mine was much better shape




Grille installed! I like this grille better than the Sport one. The 03-05 has a cooler looking Sport grille then the 1.5 Gen, IMO.


Ford vs Mazda TCM



As far as if you can use the Ford TCM....No bueno, instant CEL and "AT" light. So its the Mazda TCM or none at all. Not even reduced functionality, just doesn't work. I thought there was a shot.

For those looking to remove the TCM here is what I recommend on how to do it. Use a wrench to keep the arm from swinging back....go too far and you'll be opening the trans side cover to fix it.


Brake light mod...before


After...


Curious thing about this mod is that it's like Mazda forgot to finish it. The bulbs in the inner tail lights are already dual filament, the connector has 1 empty slot for the brake light...the bulb holder has the male pin in it already...it just doesn't have the brake power lead. Literally just the wire for the light is missing.


I pilfered some pins from the old dash harness that work in the tail light connector


Hatch panelling removed. I tapped the power from the spoiler...green/red strip wire IIRC. The spoiler connector is the small one near the actual top of the hatch. Just ran one lead from there to the tail lights. Easy work.




So I went on a little trip to enjoy myself and on the way home I got a CEL. I'll have to check that out ASAP
 

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Cool work!!! Now there are two of us with the folding speed mirrors. I just got my mirror covers painted and installed about a month ago. I was running with some natty black mica ones. They looked better than a complete mismatch though till I could get them painted up nice.


That grill looks really sharp painted up that way. I cant wait to see it in person.
 

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Discussion Starter #120
Cool work!!! Now there are two of us with the folding speed mirrors. I just got my mirror covers painted and installed about a month ago. I was running with some natty black mica ones. They looked better than a complete mismatch though till I could get them painted up nice.


That grill looks really sharp painted up that way. I cant wait to see it in person.
Thanks!

I'm not quite there yet, I need to install them still, hopefully this coming weekend.
 
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