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Previous Telstar

1984 2 Litre Normally Aspirated TX5

Click on the images above for a larger picture.

This is my old car. It was my first car, and by all accounts it was great! I had many great experiences in this car. It drove great, handled OK, and looked good for a car of that year. It was nicer inside than my friend's Holden VL that was years newer, so I couldn't complain.

I don't have too many photos of it, I should have taken more, but there are some good ones. The only thing that I did to the car was buy some new wheels (5 spoke alloys as you can see in the pictures), and some new tyres, which made a HUGE difference in handling! They were Dunlop Le Mans A4's. Mags and tyres cost me $1240.

Current Telstar

1988 2.2 Litre TX5

My current car, the 2.2 Litre Intercooled Turbocharged 12 Valve Telstar TX5. Smooth lines, fully optioned with ABS, cruise control, A/C, power steering/windows/sunroof. I bought it while I owned my first TX5 (a Blue 1984). I didn't really look around that much. It was the most expensive 'impulse purchase' I have yet to make, but I don't regret it! Purchasing the car was the easy part. Insurance was another matter altogether.. Anyway, here are a few pictures of it. I will update this page with photos when I do more to the car, as there is still a lot more that I would like to do, given the appropriate amount of time, and enough funds.

The Turbo TX5 had a different rear strip than the standard TX5. The standard TX5 did not have a red reflective strip between the rear light assemblies. The rear badge was also colour matched on the Turbo model, and grey on the standard TX5.

Click on the images above for a larger picture.

The only badge to signify the hairdryer under the bonnet is the badge on each side of the car, just behind the front guard, above the side striping, which can be seen above in the 'side view' picture. These pictures were taken in the front yard of my house, not a very classy place to take pictures, I know. It was before I had my windows tinted, and before the exhaust was done. It was definitely summer though!

Modifications Diary

Feel free to read about my experiences (oldest at the bottom, most recent at the top). When I first bought my car, I didn't know a lot, and to some degree by my first mechanic, was treated like a mushroom (kept in the dark and fed bull$&%T). Anyway, you can see how my knowledge has improved with some experience, and a trustworthy mechanic. Read on!

• February, 2000:

Hello, and happy new year to everyone who happens to read this... mostly TX5 and MX6 owners.. Hello to each of you. I have to apologise for not updating the site in a while. I have been flat out. It's hard maintaining a 9-5 (and often longer) job, a car importing business (Edge Imports), and a new business venture.... stay tuned!

I am still thinking of SELLING MY TX5! So if you are interested, just click on the wording to send me an email. I am still receiving mails and enquiries from people, and its great to hear from so many people about their cars. Thanks for the compliments about putting a site together for these cars. Its a pity that I'm not as mechanically competent that I might be able to help more... but, well, I'm happy to mostly pay for that sort of stuff to be done!

So, what has been happening?? Well, my car is running well... I have been using some new fuel, Shell Optimax for a while. 98 Octane apparently. My fuel consumption has dropped to 11.8L/100km. Quite good compared to what I sued to get (13 - 13.5L/100km). I think due to this Optimax, and also my driving, which has been a little more conservative... :)

I am not planning on getting any more modifications done to my car. I am thinking of purchasing an imported Skyline turbo as a demonstration vehicle. I do need to get a few things fixed, and get some new tyres, so I will keep people informed. Until then, stay tuned! I have added some more bits and pieces around the place.

• November, 1999:

11/11 Business is up and running, and I've take a few orders for cars even! I have also been answering a lot of emails from TX5 owners. In line with the email answering, I am thinking of SELLING MY TX5!!! Not quite sure yet, but it seems a new car may be coming along for me with a price too good to refuse. With the possible purchase of a new car, I am left with a dilemma...

So, November may turn out to be an interesting month yet. As far as my TX5 goes, I have had a service this month, and the car has been running very well, possibly partly due to my use of that new Optimax fuel from Shell. I think it does make a difference!


• October, 1999: A New Business!

4/10 Well, It's time to start something new, and Importing it is. Funny, when you spend lot's of time with a hobby or something, you can end up finding a way to make a little side profit here and there. Advertising on your web site doesn't get you much at all. But, when you spend a lot of time hanging about with car enthusiasts like myself, you meet a lot of good people, and make a lot of genuinely good contacts. It is with these contacts that a friend of mine and myself are IMPORTING CARS FROM JAPAN. A web site will be produced soon, so if you are interested in importing a performance car from Japan, such as Supra Twin Turbo, 300zx Twin Turbo, Nissan GTR, Nissan GTS-25T,
Nissan 180sx and Silvia for excellent prices, then please contact me for some more information. As we are doing this as a part time business, and on demand only, we can save on overhead costs, such as building, storage, rent etc. for a showroom. We have professional auction buyers at Japan, who are former Australian residents, speak fluent Japanese, and understand and operate in the hectic Japanese car auction environment. They currently export hundreds of cars per month to UK, US, and Australia. All cars delivered to you are fully complianced to ADR's, have new tyres, and 12 months registration if you desires to organise it. We have excellent contacts for servicing and parts (various organisations, who have performed all the excellent modifications, servicing and repairs to my Telstar, and my friend's cars).

• September, 1999: WOO HOO!!!

21/9 Boy, have I missed the RUSH of a turbo spooling, and forcing you back in the seat, as you hang on to the wheel to try and stop 'lane change' torque steer! It was so good to get back into my car and drive it. I drove my girlfriends Mazda 121 back from Sorrento, and while it was good to drive a car again... well, you might be able to see where I am going. Driving MY car was much better! Tomorrow the car goes in for regular service, plus a front disc machine, and wheel alignment. I don't think I'll be able to get the boost cut done tomorrow in time for Winton practice on Friday. I really meant to, but haven't had time. Hopefully next week, and it will be done, with some results to boot! Also, my page featured in the reader's cars section of Autospeed E-Zine! It was a nice surprise to see my site up in lights. Not bad for a hobby site.. :) Looks like I won't be doing a lot more to my car. I need to save some money. I have other responsibilities too, so I'll have to have a long think about the dump pipe and high-flow cat, and whether it's worth it or not. New tyres will be needed after this Friday at Winton as well. I am going to get Falkens, unless I hear some better advice otherwise.

• August, 1999: A quiet month. Won't be driving for a while.

Read my July post below if you want to know why my car will be garaged for a month. A good chance to get it cleaned up, and give it some attention that it deserves, and has been lacking for a little while. I went to Brisbane this last week, for a conference. Microsoft Tech-Ed 99 to be exact. It wasn't bad, but not as good as I had hoped. In Brisbane, I noticed a lot of performance imports, mainly 180sx's and Silvias. The car I am currently interested in is the Nissan GTS-25T (close relative of the Nissan GTR).

To find out about this great car, check out this month's Autospeed online issue. This is the car I would buy were I to (ahem) sell the TX5 (just waiting for the backlash from that statement!). No drags this month. I have been driving very carefully since my incident last month. If anyone lives near me, they won't be seeing a white TX5 turbo on the road for another 4 weeks.... oh it will be heaven when I can drive her again..

• July, 1999: Uh Oh! Read on to learn something...

Don't speed. You'll get caught eventually. I did. Although I did drive well for the last few months or so. Snr Constable from the Traffic Operations Group nabbed me with laser. Anyway, I will be without the priviledge of driving for a month. And it IS a privilege. I think people often forget that. It has certainly made me think a little more when on the road.

Anyway, I joined the NISSAN CAR CLUB this month, and my first sprint at Sandown is this weekend! Tried out some octane booster on the dyno. How does a 8 HP at the wheels sound?? I was pretty impressed. It's good stuff. I got some prices on the new suspension I am looking at. Koni adjustable shocks all round, and progressive rate King springs. I might put it off though, because I have a $220 fine to pay... The dump pipe and cat might have to wait a bit as well. It was a little outlay to join the car club, so I'm taking it easy for a little while. Also, I have noticed some oil in my intake pipes, but after posting to the Technical Forum at the AUTOSPEED web site, I discovered that it was normal for a turbo car with higher boost to get some blow by, forcing some
oil back into the intake.

• June, 1999: Same Old, Same Old

This month was a little uneventful, if not for the fact I went to Vanuatu of 10 days of sun, snorkelling, and local kava bars... I did get rather tired of driving around in a diesel ute, so my car when I came home was a nice change. My alternator died. Guess what. As is the case with most turbo models, some parts are more specialised, and the alternator is a Mitsubishi design. $540 new, I got mine reconditioned for $250. A small service saw the replacement of 8 bushes on and around the front stabiliser bar. This resulted in much firmer steering, with a lot less of the 'play' that I had been experiencing! Also, I got new leads, new rocker cover gasket, and new driver's side door handle fitted (which had broken - cheap plastic part).

Oh, and those new MGF's with Variable Valve Timing.... the poor guy must have been embarrassed.. :)

• May, 1999: Dyno Time!

Well, I got the dyno done. Was interesting actually. Because of my torque steer and the front end feeling decidedly loose (worn steering rack I think), Lambros had to use chain to hold my car down on the dyno. While I was there, he showed my how much torque steer it has. He started loading it up, and let go his grip on the steering wheel, the car shot sideways, and snapped the chain holding it down!! With that, I asked Lambros to HOLD THE WHEEL. We tried some different plugs, and ended up going for some colder race type plugs he uses in some of the hot VL Turbos he works on. Power was nearly 130HP at the wheels, and 350Nm of torque! I was concerned, as I thought there would be more power at the wheels, but to put it into perspective, he has dyno'd some VL Turbos with 10psi boost, that put out 115HP at the wheels... It's all relative, and you really can't compare different dyno's. Lambros' Dynamometer is brand new, therefore still calibrated, and a bit harsh compared to others out there. I know some people actually set them to read high figures....

G-TECH. Well, isn't this an interesting little piece of technology! It can measure HP, acceleration (0-100km/h), and quarter mile times. My friend Geordie from www.fullboost.com.au invested in one, (check out www.g-tech.com.au) and I tried it out the other night. Only had 2 quick goes, and did not do very well. WAY too much wheelspin in 1st gear, and big wheelspin into second. Got an 8.1. I must say, Front wheel drives are REALLY hard to get off to a good start... Plenty of time to practice though.

Had a drag with a brand new Prelude 2.2 Vti (147kw) from some lights, up to about 130km/h. Needless to say, I won. They go quite fast actually!. He was only a few metres behind...

• April, 1999: What To Do Next???

It Sounds like I need a new steering rack, as my steering is not very good. I am finally getting sick of always having to adjust the steering while driving along just to keep the car straight. There is some noticeable slack in the rack. A friend of mine (used to be a mechanic at Ford) took it for a spin. He thinks that a new rack might be worth the money, it would decrease torque steer a little as well. Still haven't had the time to organise a Dyno. Should be able to this weekend with any luck, or else next week sometime. Getting about 12.6 L/100km. Work that out in miles per gallon yourselves!!!

• March, 1999: Dyno coming this month!

The Telstar is due for a service this week. Hoping to get a dyno. Have been speaking to a few people via email, and it seems there are some of you out there with 626's, MX6's and Telstars that are pretty keen to modify you cars. With my little holiday to Vanuatu coming up in late May, there are not a lot of funds for the car. After trip, I have 3 things I can do.

1) Do dump pipe in 2.5", and get 2.5" high-flow Catalytic converter fitted
2) Get custom chip, probably from Chiptorque, and/or
3) SUSPENSION, as at the moment, the TX5 isn't handling the best.

Stay tuned, and keep sending me mail!. I love getting memo's from other enthusiasts.

• February, 1999: Busy couple of months for the car! Reconditioned head, more boost.

Well, it's been an interesting couple of months. I was very angry, after finding out that the work that AUTOKRAFT in Mitcham, now known as DESIGNER VEHICLE SPECIALISTS did some VERY ordinary work on my car. After finding quit about this, I decided to warn people about going to this workshop. It's hard enough to find a good mechanic for you car, that will do good work, charge the right amount, and is trustworthy. It is hard when you place you trust, spend large amounts of money, and they rip you off. I had to get the head reconditioned again (Lambros did it himself, and did it properly this time), as all the valves were leaking. The leaking valves would have undoubtedly caused the FUEL CUT, which was what happened. It was NOT the boost limiter, more likely the fuel cut which beeped, then stopped fuel delivery to the engine. After the head was reconditioned, the car drove much more smoothly. I had the boost upped a few pounds. It is about 10 psi now. The car is going well. I had a drag against a VT Commodore Clubsport (195 Kw) 5 spd manual. I chirped into second gear, HE chirped into second. At the top of third gear, his nose was nicely positioned around about my rear bumper. Got the air conditioning fixed, the driver's side rear door strip reapplied, and general service.

• October, 1998: HIGHFLOW, EXHAUST and BOOST Mods done

Well, I had to get my turbo seals fixed, because they were leaking, so after so discussion from Lambros at LA, I decided to get my turbo reconditioned, and highflowed properly at the same time, since it had only been highflowed about 4-5 mm from standard before (not a lot really). Impeller size was machined from around 29 mm standard, to 42 mm! I also opted for a custom, mandrel bent 2.5" exhaust, to get more flow, and produce a great note! Boost was also lifted to 8-9 psi.

Everything went well, the car sounds great, it goes REALLY hard now, but I discovered the 9psi Boost Limit in the factory computer... DOH! When accelerating in third gear, just as I hit about 4500 rpm, and the power was really coming on strong, I heard a 1/2 second beep from the instrument panel, and the computer then immediately cuts power to the engine for a few seconds.... hmmm... not that good for drags, or impressive overtaking manoeuvres...

So at the moment, the car is going well, Lambros estimates power output to be about 150 kW at the flywheel, quite a lot for a front wheel drive. Torque steer is very bad though, so next on the agenda is a good wheel alignment.

• September, 1998: TX5 Serviced

WOW! After a service, I have a new car. Its faster, more powerful, smoother, sounds better, revs right out to 6 grand, has better torque, and pulls like a train. I had to thank Lambros for what he did, but it was as simple as adjusting the timing and the fuel mixtures in the cars computer. What a difference... Nearly a full second faster 0-100 km/h. That is my estimate anyway... It is great to drive now.

• August, 1998: To Boost or Not To Boost? That is the question!

Decisions decisions... Dues to my increase in the area of motorsport, a I have acquired a 1982 Subaru Leone 1600 Front Wheel Drive, to use in club autocross and interclub rally events. I also have the opportunity, and rather large urge to purchase a friends race bred Bridge Ported RX3 13B rotary to use in club sprints, hill climbs and the like.. OR, I get a new 2 1/2" mandrel bent exhaust system (2 1/2" was decided upon after MUCH consultation and deliberation with various performance car workshops and exhaust places).

• July, 1998:

I haven't had the chance to really do anything to her recently. Still driving well, but not quite as fast as I would like, but that is undoubtedly due to the muffler on the back. After a visit to an exhaust shop, while viewing the exhaust of the car on a hoist, I was told that the muffler had been replaced for the previous owners, but it was in fact a STANDARD Telstar muffler.... hmmm.. That would explain the straight exhaust tip, and the weld seam marks on the muffler entry and exit. Seems that the diameter pipe entering and exiting the muffler is less than 2"... and a 2" tip was soldered on the back to make it look OK. Well, its not OK for me. You should hear the hissing my exhaust system makes under boost, just trying to force all that gas through that restrictive muffler...

• January, 1998: The BIG Service!

Well, I knew that there was a few things wrong with the car when I bought it, and since I wanted to be able to modify it, and it was standard at present, I thought it best to get a major service and check on components, before I did something that was going to place a great deal more stress on the car. (Exhaust, boost, cam, etc. etc.)

Hmmmm... Little was I to know that I would need a new turbo! I took the car to Autokraft, located in Thornton Crescent, Mitcham Victoria. Autokraft have a good reputation for servicing and modifying performance cars. I tried not to expect the worse, but soon found out that the seals had gone in my turbo, which was the reason why I was losing so much oil. My intercooler was half full of oil! It turned out I needed a new turbo, so I got larger capacity internals (larger compressor etc.) in the same size housing for insurance purposes :)

So now I have a TO3 size turbo, which can produce higher boost more easily. It is set to 9psi of boost, but in actual fact, the car is no quicker than before, most likely due to the restrictive standard exhaust. Soon, I am looking at getting a 3" system possibly, and upping boost to around 11-12psi. Along with the new turbo, I also got all my discs machined, cracks in the head welded (it was in worse condition than I thought!), new inners and reconditioned outers for the front wheels, and other minor things. All up, it came to twice as much as I expected to spend.

• November 1997: The Saga Begins!

I have taken out a small loan to purchase a 1988 TX5! I sense this could be the beginning of a beautiful relationship!