Despite the car currently throwing a grump and being stuck in the garage, there was still work to be done.
One of the main things I needed to do before driving the car more was to replace the tires. All four tires, based on the date code, were the original ones that came with the car new. Unsurprisingly, they were all down to their wear markers, and not that safe to be driving on.
I ordered some new Yokohama ES32 Bluearth in 175/55R15. This is one size wider than the standard fitment 165/55 tires because 165 isn’t a very common size here in NZ.
I can order some awesome tires like the AD09R in the correct size from Japan, but would mean if I blew or damaged a tire I would potentially be months away from having a replacement, and that’s no good. 175s are on the shelf, ready to go, albeit not in some of the best semi-slick tread patterns.
I’ve been running the ES32s on the daily Honda for years, and I like the compromise between comfort, wear and grip. Even in the wet I have confidence in them.
After work, I fit them to the Alto. I had originally planned to run some nice new red (to match the calipers) open-ended wheel nuts, but they’re just too long and stick out past the face of the wheel
The reason I wanted open-ended nuts is because the owner in Japan had been running spacers at one point and had replaced all the studs with slightly longer ones, which poke out the end of the stock nuts. Not to mention the lock nut is unsightly.
I’ve found Aeroflow does some short, open-ended black wheels nuts, so will grab some of those at some point, but for now, whats on it will have to do.
The new tires look good, very purposeful and slightly chunkier than the old ones. Hopefully they aren’t too soft in the sidewall from being that little bit fatter, but we will see.
While in the garage I took the chance to fit some more bits that arrived from Japan.
I have a real hatred for cars that don’t have rear wipers, especially with tinted rear glass, as once it’s dirty the glass is impossible to see through.
In Japan, the previous owner had removed the wiper and fitted an R’s Racing Parts wiper blank
Removal is easy. Remove all the clips on the tailgate trim and remove the trim. This is the cheapest, lightest and most “cost-effective” trim I have seen. No effort to hide the clips or anything.
With that removed, you can see where the motor should be, and the back of the blank. The previous owner had kindly ziptied the plug I needed up and put the bolts back in their holes so I could reuse them.
Using a spanner, I removed the blank. It has the inner and out parts, both with a rubber seal to seal against the tailgate
These are the parts from Japan. A motor, with seal, wiper arm and blade. The motor came with some harness but wasn’t needed.
I fit the grommet to the tailgate, put some silicone grease on the motor shaft and fit the motor into place. The arm just slides onto the spline and is held with a nut. It took a couple of tries to get the arm in the right place, so it sat horizontal when parked.
Tested and working well. Probably needs a new blade at some point, but it’s fine for now
You can see here the difference it makes in clearing the glass
Very happy with that.
Now I’m just waiting on spark plugs, to see if it cures the misfire, if not, I’ll need to wait until the coils arrive from Japan and cross everything they fix it.