Finished up a batch of clusters recently.  Business seems to be picking up with the release of my new website, Facebook page and the sponsorship I was offering for a short spell.

 

Nissan S14 cluster utilizing a Stack Cluster flanked by 2-1/16″ Speedhut Revolution series gauges with optional 7-step OEM lens polishing:

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Nissan S13 cluster housing an array of Defi BF gauges with OEM lens delete:

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1998 Honda Civic cluster utilizing a 4″ Speedhut Revolution series GPS speedo dual gauge flanked by 2-5/8″ Speedhut Revolution series gauges with optional 7-step lens polising:

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Mazda FC RX-7 cluster housing (2) 4″ Speedhut gauges and AEM boost gauge:

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Nissan S14 cluster using an array of Speedhut gauges… (2) 3-3/8″ and (2) 2-1/16″, also 7-step OEM lens polishing:

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Nissan S13 cluster utilizing an assortment of Speedhut gauges, optional LED turn signal indicators and optional 7-step OEM lens polishing:

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Nissan S14 cluster using (2) 3-3/8″ Speedhut gauges and (2) 52mm AEM gauges:

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Overall Update

Posted: October 26, 2013 in Non Car Related
Tags:

First off I am still alive… and yes, I still have the S13. I will be posting various updates in the next few days covering customer projects, my car and whatever else I feel is important enough to talk about. I haven’t really touched the car this year because I’ve been trying to heavily promote my Broadfield Customs business. I released my first website a couple of months ago. It’s my first attempt at a website… and while pretty basic so far, I’m fairly pleased with it. One of the main reasons for the site was to better explain the process of the work I do. I kept getting the same questions over-and-over and/or there was a lot of confusion on the process of having me fabricate a custom interior piece. So the website gives me a place to direct potential customers and also hopefully gain new customers through searches engines etc. Please take a look around and see what you think:

Broadfield Customs Website

Likewise, what is social media without a Facebook account!?! So I have also been trying to get the word out on Broadfield Customs Facebook. Please take a gander and like my page. You can also friend me on my personal Facebook at Toby Broadfield’s Facebook.

Stay tuned!

I have had some interest lately on how I did the refinishing on the brake setup for the S13… specifically the plating of all the bolts/hardware. I tackled this project before the birth of this blog, so I’m going to revisit the process so it will now be in writing for others to reference.

I have Stoptech 4-piston BBK on the front and Z32 rears. The Stoptechs were the original black color and the Z32’s were the OEM dark cast iron color…virtually a flat black. Back in 2009 I decided that I wanted something a little more flashy. So I set my heart on white… not over the top but would still “pop” behind the wheels. I contemplated between painting the calipers and powder coating the calipers. After seeing how the paint on the OEM STi Brembos would discolor from high heat and the clear coat would come off the OEM EVO Brembos, powder coating was an easy choice. So the first thing was to disassemble everything:

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I used compressed air to easily pop out the pistons:

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I decided to keep everything organized the way it was removed… that way each piston etc. would be in the same exact spot as when it came out:

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Back from the powder coater… I also had the hats on the front rotors done in black and taped off the rear rotors to do those. I went ahead and also had them coat the front caps for the hubs:

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Next was all the hardware. Since I couldn’t powder coat those items, I did some research and decided I would zinc plate them myself. I stumbled upon Caswellplating.com… I was in heaven. I put together a kit to zinc plate my hardware and ordered it up. I wanted to try a couple different things, so I also ordered black chromate and gold chromate to “tint” the hardware. This is my at home setup:

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All of the hardware had to be completely stripped of all paint, corrosion etc. down to bare steel before plating. Here is what it looks like right before plating:

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This is a rough listing of the steps involved in plating:

  • Wire brush hardware to remove all paint and loose rust
  • Acid bath hardware to remove all corrosion
  • Bath hardware in distilled water
  • Bath hardware in a heated degreaser solution
  • Bath hardware in distilled water
  • Insert hardware in plating bath
  • Bath hardware in distilled water
  • Insert hardware in chromate bath if you so choose
  • Bath hardware in distilled water
  • Let dry
  • I did all the top hat hardware in a gold chromate:

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    I also coated some of the other pieces in a gold chromate. For some reason the 4 bolts and 4 pins in the picture ended up in the batch. So I had to strip those back down and do them in black chromate:

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    I did the crossover lines and all the main bolts that would be visible in a black chromate. If you are wondering why they look “wet” in the pictures, it’s because I sprayed them with WD-40 as a final step. This is suggested after they are taken out of the black chromate bath and they are dry:

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    Here are some pictures of the rears right after assembly. I also sanded the powder coat off the top of the raised “NISSAN” lettering and hand painted those with some Duplicolor gloss black:

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    Here are some pictures of the fronts right after assembly. I had a sticker place make me some high-temp die cut Stoptech stickers since the original “STOPTECH” lettering from the factory is painted on. The stickers are still perfect today!

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    Finalized the work on a pretty challenging piece…. I would venture to say the most tedious work I have done with no margin for error. I removed the small vents that sit high on the shroud above the lower buttons on each side. That area is highly contoured, so I had to recess the gauges back in to clear the curve on the top edge. I first bonded in some 1/4″ thick ABS to fill the rectangular openings where the vents were. I sanded the ABS down to duplicate the OEM contour. I then filled the backside with Norton Speedgrip. I made a form on the backside and filled it about an inch deep. I then used a hole saw and made a precision opening just above the lower button openings. Anyone that has ever used a hole saw knows that the thing kind of wobbles around a little to make the hole. And as you can see in the pictures, I didn’t have much room for error above the lower button openings. Unfortunately the opening had to be big enough to flush a 52mm gauge in, which meant the contour at the top of the panel rounded over to fast and the hole saw opening had a weird cutout to it. So I molded in some visors on the top portion to take care of the issue. I think the final outcome looks very natural. Like most of my work, the final product looks simple, but the work involved to get said simple look is mind-boggling.

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    Just completed some more S14 interior work last night. A customer of mine bought a complete set of Speedhut Revolution gauges from me and had me retrofit four of them into the cluster and the other three flushed mounted into the vent area on the HVAC panel.

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    Last week I finished some fabrication work for a S14 customer. I angle mounted his AEM gauges into the vent area on the HVAC panel. I also made a spot to fit his Greddy boost controller. I did this in the area below the HVAC controller where four buttons/panels typically reside. He didn’t mind getting rid of the security light panel and the blank panel… which sit on the outside corners. So I moved the rear defogger button and hazard button to the outside locations. I had to modify them since they needed to have a rounded outside corner to mount in the corner locations properly. I then bonded in ABS material and shaped it to form a housing for the boost controller. I have talked about this exact process on another customer’s project in the past… so I’m not going to go in-depth about it again. You can simply search for my Custom Interior Fabrication off to the left if you want to see step-by-step process.

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    I also fit his Greddy turbo timer into the cluster shroud on the right side. There use to be a couple of OEM buttons located in that area that were no longer of use to the customer. So I removed those, plastic bonded the area closed then opened an area back up to fit the turbo timer.

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    I have been at a stand still with the S13 lately. I have been really busy with custom work for other 240sx enthusiast and spending my late nights playing the Arma III alpha on PC… well, my new iMac 🙂 I have been trying to save up for a new tool for my home garage that will help me tremendously. Like test fitting the TR6060 and hopefully test fitting Sikky’s prototype TR6060 mount. That tool would be the MaxJax which is manufactured by Danmar. I’m pretty pumped about getting it…. I should have it within the next few weeks. I highly recommend checking this thing out. It’s way over engineered, thus being really safe. It has a 443% safety factor for those wondering. You can check out a video below… and I’ll be sure to have a full write-up on it once it arrives and I get it installed. It is designed for residential garages with average ceiling heights. It is portable and can be set up in 10-15 minutes…. just stow it away in the corner when not in use. I have seen guys that even install another set of inserts out in their flat driveway so they can use the lift out in the sun!