The Greek mythology of Sisyphus is starting to play a disheartening relevance with this build. With the To-Do list provided in the previous post, it is evident to see that the front bumper needs to be removed and repainted for the 4th time, a 3rd roll bar needs to be installed, and the seats needs to be reupholstered for the 2nd time.
So what’s going on? The triumph of finishing the AiM Dashlogger’s install was a fleeting experience as it would soon be overshadowed by the discovery of unforeseen problems. While taking the car out on a sunny afternoon, a quick walk-around in the parking lot showed how mismatched the front bumper’s color was. This wasn’t as apparent before in the garage since it’s harder to tell in lighting other than direct sunlight. Apparently there are 2 different sub-shades of the Mazda Brilliant Black color code, one with a red/brown hue and another that’s more grey/blue. The former is what the rest of the car is painted with and the latter is what the bumper looks like. I already went through this same mismatch debacle with the hood and a headlight cover… Either way, I’m not willing to let the efforts of the previous bumpers go to waste by stopping short now.
Back onto jack stands, a familiar setting:
While I was in the hatch area working on the strut replacements, I remember looking up towards the roll bar and spotting a peculiar patch of brown. Upon closer inspection, that patch of brown was indeed rust underneath the clear coat. I had a sinking feeling in my stomach as I examined the roll bar all over and spotted more areas where rust was starting to appear and spread in a cancerous nature.
This meant that the hefty investment I paid to achieve this hand brushed and raw clear coated finish just went into the dumps. This also meant that the roll bar needed to be uninstalled and replaced.
Disemboweled the seats from the interior and carefully extracted the roll bar:
While the seats were out of the car, I figured this would be the perfect time to action a change in direction I had in mind. When I originally had the Recaros reupholstered, they were done in a more generic synthetic suede material. They certainly looked the part and did the job, but I always knew I wanted the big daddy Alcantara to match the rest of the interior. And although the seat covers barely had any mileage on them, they endured plenty by way of ingress and egress during the V8 swap and other shop work. This eventually blew out the stitches on the driver side bolster prematurely.
After all these years with this RX-7, I’ve encountered a state of ambivalence. A possible outcome when a build takes too long to complete is that you might change your tastes part-way through, which means having to revert and adjust accordingly. Initially I chose to cover the seats in red to match the Spirit-R look and be a bright accent. Since that time, I’ve apparently grown so old that my color palette has matured to only appreciating the monochromatic spectrum. I no longer find the red seats to be as appealing and they appear too “JDM Tuner” like, which is a look I desperately want to separate and disassociate myself from. Back to black we go.
To keep the momentum moving, I wasted no time with the logistics on my end:
- Front bumper has been dropped off to William’s Autobody for correction
- Roll Bar returned to Samberg Performance, awaiting new replacement
- New Black Alcantara seat covers already commissioned and ordered