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Losh's VR Ute build thread

Discussion in 'VR - VS Holden Commodore (1993 - 1997)' started by losh1971, Nov 11, 2017.

  1. losh1971

    losh1971 Well-Known Member

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    Early this year I bought a VR ute for $2400, thinking that was an reasonable deal. Turns out after I had a KTAS safety inspection the previous owner may have had another reason for selling it. It had quite a few problems that really were hard to identify with wacking it up on the hoist and having a mech go over it.

    So far I have pressure washed the entire body I got in to every nook and cranny and cleaned out the mud and dirt. A few weeks of owning it I had a crank pulley fail. I was leaving work and started the ute up and it was making a hell of a racket. Had a mech and the RACT inspect it and got two different opinions on what the issue was. RACT said he thought it was the PS pump. When the owner and mech of the tow Co listened he said $3k, something has let go inside the engine.
    That night I got on the forum and someone said it could be the crank pulley. Sure enough it was. the centre had let go and had a tiny wobble but enough to cause a racket. Took over a week to get the parts. In the end I changed the belt, pulley and CAS because I wanted to do the job once. More to come. ute.jpg
     
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  2. losh1971

    losh1971 Well-Known Member

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    20171111_174819.jpg Since that I bought a ute box from SCA, so I can carry tools and gear and keep it secure without having it inside the cab.
     
  3. Deuce

    Deuce Super Stock

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    Good work mate.
    Keep the updates coming
     
  4. losh1971

    losh1971 Well-Known Member

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    KTAS identified a number of things wrong with the ute. And over the last few months i have been slowly getting on top of them. I picked up some rebushed control arms and along with some new parts fitted to the struts i had them fitted over the last week.
     
  5. afstruct

    afstruct Well-Known Member

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    Nice, I've got a checka plate box which I made when I had my HQ 1 tonner . Just lock it in with cables when we go away in the ute, that way feel more secure leaving stuff in ute and someone has to put some effort and time into stealing things
     
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  6. losh1971

    losh1971 Well-Known Member

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    Pretty much in the first week of buying the ute i had the seats and carpet out. Ended up soaping them up with CT18 and used the Karcher to hose it out. Wasn't the best way to dp the seats as they took 4 days to dry. Mind you that was the middle of winter. But it wss free to do them that way. Around the same time i fitted my Pioneer head unit and amp and some 250w Pioneer speakers. I have another two to fit but need to work out making a speaker box for them and mount them behind the seats.
     
  7. losh1971

    losh1971 Well-Known Member

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    Few weeks ago i overhauled the front brakes. Replaced the rotors and fitted some HPX pads. Also stripped down the calipers and cleaned the Pistons and fitted new seals. I found te new dust seals wouldn't fit they were just a mm too big and i couldn't get them to seat around the back of the caliper. Ended up fitting the old dust seals as they were still in really good condition. I also fitted some braided brake lines, which coupled with the new pads and rotors have give me a a fair improvement on what I had. Plan is to do the rears at some point and do the same as i did on the front. Should give me pretty good braking without going into major modding like a VT upgrade.
     
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  8. afstruct

    afstruct Well-Known Member

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    Not much room behind seats, the curse of commodore utes until ve . My vs spac had the wall behind passenger seat cut and sub mounted to it , crappy way of doing but sounded alright. That's how I got the ute. You could get a sub, make box, mount under tray beside fuel tank and port into cabin. That's what I've done, got splits up front in normal spot in doors and tweeters are mounted to mirror covers. The best thing I did was go to a car stereo place and speak to them got everything except head unit off them, which I already had, love it great crisp clear sound .
    Don't know how you'll go mounting one behind drivers seat or are they only around 6inch diameter
     
  9. losh1971

    losh1971 Well-Known Member

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    I won't be mounting a sub. Im thinking i will make a box thin enough to sit on the ledge above the Centre half seat. Im thinking i might be able to slip it in behind the seats a tad if i lean them forward a tad. Won't have a lot of air for the speakers but plan is to fade the speakers to have more volume on the doors.
     
  10. losh1971

    losh1971 Well-Known Member

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    Over the last 4 or 5 weeks i had some problems with the cooling system. Started out by what we thought was a loose hose clamp on the front of the manifold. Clamp was replaced when the local mech fitted new engine mounts. But a couple of days later i noticed it was still leaking. I had a play with it and ended up snapping the S pipe adapter. It was due to break anyway. Trouble is that when they snap a little peice of pipe stays in the manifold. I was at my fianc├ęs house. I usually only carry a small blow mould tool kit and some screw drivers. Ended up finding a wire coat hanger and bent it into into a little hook and managed to yank it out. I posted my repair in the forum and tben im told there is one the same on the back of the engine. Ended up making a second trip to repco to by an extra adapter. Got a pretty good price for them from repco that was cheaper than i could get them from eBay. Was a couple of weeks before I got to the bsck one as i needed time at home whereci have everything i needed to do the job. That rear one is really tricky. I hoped i was able to get it out in one peice. But careful as i was it still broke off and a bit stayed inside the manifold. Oring pick going at it for 20 mins and i couldn't get it to come out. Had a bit bit of a think about it and i ended snapping a hacksaw blade in half. I then ground it down thin enough to fit it inside the manifold hole and make it so i could cut a groove in it. Ended up working a treat and i was then able to hook it out. Once I fitted the new adapter it started to leak. That in the end was solved by snipping the hose back enough to get a fresh surface for the clamp to sit on. I reckon the squished hose must have meant the clamp wouldn't pull in. Couple of weeks went by and i end3d up finding the water pump started leaking. I guess getting proper pressure in the system showed up every week point. So i fitted the pump i had bought a while before. All was good until about a week or two later when the radiator cap started leaking. Replaced the cap th the other day and it seems to have no leaks at all. And i am no longer using any coolant.
     
  11. losh1971

    losh1971 Well-Known Member

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    I think i have now pretty much nearly everything has been fixed since I took it into KTAS around six months or more ago now. I have replaced rocker cover gaskets, fixed a leaking PS pump and leaking crank seal. I had an issue with trans not shifting properly and that ended up being the TPS. I am getting the trans serviced in abot 10 days and i have two solenoids to have him fit while he is at it. Solenoids have not failed yet but they do fail when the mileage gets up and according to the trans tech it will pretty much be a flatbed if they do go.
     
  12. losh1971

    losh1971 Well-Known Member

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    Late yesterday i got the ute over the pit in my shed and used three cans of degreaser and a kero gun of CT 18 and soaked up the underneath of the body and diff housing. I then hit the lot with the Karcher and blasted 20 years worth of oil and mud. Looks really good underneath now. It will also be great for when I need to work on the underside of the ute. Means i won't have dirt dropping on my face when i adust the handbrake.
     
  13. losh1971

    losh1971 Well-Known Member

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    Also had the aircond fixed last week. That That turned out to be a major job in the end. Once Once he was into it we discovered a crushed pipe up front. The when he went to fit the pipe he discovered the condenser threads had been stripped off. So he made some calls as did i and i priced up at condenser at repco. First pricr they gave me was 180. I left it and checked eBay, 127 bucks. I call back repco and ask for a best price. what do know they can do it for 130. Mech does some ringing around ans ends up tellinfg me he can match the 130. So 6.30 Thursday evening i get my ute back with working aircond. And i also get a 610 dollar bill to get it working. It still may need a TX valve as the high pressure is not cutting off as much as it should be unless the engine revs are around 1500 to 2k. That's pretty much it until i take it in for the trans service in 10 days time.
     
  14. VPRob

    VPRob Member

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    good on you for sticking with it. The fun of having an older car comes when everything works and they feel really nice on the road. Class.
     
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  15. VS_Pete

    VS_Pete Donating Member

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    How do u empty the pit?
     
  16. losh1971

    losh1971 Well-Known Member

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    The pit drains away by itself as it's not 100% water tight. There is a bit of a sludgy mess in the bottom now though. Thinking kitty litter and a shovel will sort that out.
     
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  17. losh1971

    losh1971 Well-Known Member

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    Bought this for 27 bucks. Way easier than messing with the old one which who knows why its not working. 20171115_082500.jpg
     
  18. VS 5.0

    VS 5.0 Well-Known Member

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    So where does the contaminated water go to ?

    Through a separator or just the general environment ?
     
  19. losh1971

    losh1971 Well-Known Member

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    Very little contamination except for the occasional oil spill that happens if the drain plug flow misses the container. Most of the oil and gear sits on the bottom of the pit where I chuck saw dust on it and I guess a small amount would seep out through the any gaps in the mortar. Then has rock and clay to seep into 6' under the ground. Sludgy mess I have at the moment is mostly dirt but it's too wet to scrape up yet as the water (10mm) is still sitting on the bottom of the pit right near the centre where it slopes in a tad.
     
  20. losh1971

    losh1971 Well-Known Member

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    On another note I was left stranded gain today with no mob service. I was fortunate a couple of blokes stopped and drove me to a spot where I could call the RACT. Ended up having to get a flat bed back home. Tail shaft bearing damper had completely gone. I heard a noise and then clunk, clunk, clunk. Nursed it up the road 5-7km until I found a safe place to pull off and where a flatbed could hook me up without blocking the road. Just looked underneath and she is completely shot. I can get the shaft off but I'm not hopeful of getting the TS to a mech to press off the old bearing and press on the new one as they probably can't get me in. I have a press just no bearing separator so I can rig it up to get the old one off. Anyone got any tips on what I can do? I have no steel to even make a tool and I'm a long way from any tool place.
     

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