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Thread: MA61 - RA65 Struts & Powersteering Arms conversion

  1. #1
    Kamber King Conversion King Negative Boost's Avatar
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    Default MA61 - RA65 Struts & Powersteering Arms conversion

    MA61 - RA65 Struts & Powersteering Arms conversion.

    This is based on the conversion that SupraFiend did in the US.

    Parts:
    1 pair of RA65 XT (power steering model) Struts
    1 pair of RA65 XT steering arms.

    Thereís not many Celicaís being wrecked in Tassie, but luckily I knew of one out Brighton way, so gave them a buzz and they had what I want. The next day the parts were in my boot for a small fortune.

    You have to take your MA61 struts out and swap your rotors, hubs, shocks, springs, top spring perch and camber top over onto your RA65 struts. You also have to modify the brake line support on the RA65 strut so you can put your brake lines through. Saves you having to take apart the brake lines and putting them back together again. More information in SupraFiends pictures.

    ------------------------------------
    The RA65 strut and steering arms after picking them up from wreckers. -------- The RA65 struts after being painted & with all the supra gear transferred over.

    I kept the oil filled RA65 shocks in the struts but changed the oil to a heavier 25w/50. I did this because I wanted to see what the harder shocks would be like in the supra compared to my current ones.



    This is also a good time to re-pack your wheel bearings and if needs be change your rotors/pads and get new ball joints. I did this and also bought a new brake master cylinder. The old one wasnít delivering much pressure to the rear brakes, which made the car a bit scary to drive. I got a Landcruiser brake master cylinder which only cost $90, you just have to use your original cap for the reservoir because the Landcruiser item does not have an electronic sender on it.

    Youíll need to have your RA65 steering arms reamed out to fit the Supra ball joint. Any automotive engineering shop should be able to do this. Shop around, it only cost me $40. They will need a Supra ball joint and possibly an MA61 steering arm along with your RA65 steering arms of course.



    After re-assembling everything back together again. Its time to put the RA65 struts and steering arms into the supra. When doing up the lower strut bolts, which go through the steering arms, be careful not to damage the threads on the bolts or in the struts. Just a simple job of doing up all the necessary bolts and what-not, good idea to check and double check every bolt. You donít want something to fall off when driving!



    Youíll need to adjust the tie-rods (I think thatís what they are called) to correct the toe-out that the new steering arms create. Otherwise she wonít be very nice to drive on the road. Also make sure you adjust the bump stops on the steering arms to get maximum turn. Final step is to get a wheel alignment to make sure everythingís A-Okay. And thatís it, simple hey. Mind you this took me 3 weeks and 2 days to complete. Most of that was waiting for parts. So plan it out and get all the necessary parts before starting otherwise itíll take as long as it took me.



    So whatís it like? Itís amazing the difference is brilliant. I can now throw the car into corners with much greater confidence, knowing that the front end will stay stuck to the ground and the car feels like it tracks around corners much better. The overall grip of the car is increased and along with the heavier weight oil Iíve put in the RA65 shocks the car stays a lot flatter. The turning circle is tighter and the steering is a lot more responsive. Also an added bonus with the RA65 struts is a few degress negative camber! I recommend this to everyone, the car is alot more fun to drive now. If anyoneís ever ridden in an AW11, youíll know how much of an awesome handler they are, well this conversion is one step closer to that. Step-up with some decent springs and shocks, I would say the MA61 would go very close to that of an AW11.

    The only downside is a very slightly heavier steering which doesnít bother me at all. And also due to this conversion I can now feel my rear-end floating/moving a lot more than before, which makes me think I need new bushes, dammitÖ Itís one thing after the next.

    Any questions or comments, fire away

    Sam
    Last edited by Negative Boost; 03-01-2007 at 09:24 PM.

  2. #2
    Boobs!!! Automotive Encyclopaedia Stefan's Avatar
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    Default Re: MA61 - RA65 Struts & Powersteering Arms conversion

    I thought you said the RA65 inserts were too soft and that your car had more body roll @ the front now

  3. #3
    doctor ed Conversion King ed's Avatar
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    Default Re: MA61 - RA65 Struts & Powersteering Arms conversion

    camber????

    looks like the mounts are different offsets....
    ../delete/ban
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  4. #4
    Today Im a Domestic Engineer Enchanter's Avatar
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    Default Re: MA61 - RA65 Struts & Powersteering Arms conversion

    So what does the conversion actually do, how are the struts different ?
    I can see the steering arms are a bit shorter so I guess the steering would be a bit quicker, anything else ?
    Im keen on performance mods but only if I understand what it will do

    Cheers, Tim

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    Kamber King Conversion King Negative Boost's Avatar
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    Default Re: MA61 - RA65 Struts & Powersteering Arms conversion

    Stefan, Yeh i said that but i took the car down the channel run later that night and the car stayed heaps flatter than it did before.

    Ed, Yes they are different offsets but the camber works the same way as putting RA60 struts in our car. The angle of the stub axel in relation to the strut is smaller creating negative camber.

    Enchanter, The struts have to be used for the steering arms to work due to the different bases that the arms use. But you also get a few extra degrees negative camber that the struts give you due to the smaller angle between the stub axel and strut as said before. And yes you get a quicker and more repsonive steering.

  6. #6
    Forum Member Grease Monkey bbaacchhyy's Avatar
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    Default Re: MA61 - RA65 Struts & Powersteering Arms conversion

    How rare are RA65's with power steering ?

    I probably won't worry about it as I already have the RA60 struts in and without P/S now as well, it may make it too heavy.

    I'll have to have a good look later.

    Cheers

    Michael B
    '84 MA61 with 7M-GTE
    Now 5sp, 5 stud,17x8" Ray's, big assed brakes and decent IC
    Better turbo in the wings as well as MAFT !!!!

  7. #7
    Boobs!!! Automotive Encyclopaedia Stefan's Avatar
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    Default Re: MA61 - RA65 Struts & Powersteering Arms conversion

    Quote Originally Posted by bbaacchhyy
    How rare are RA65's with power steering ?
    I think you'll find that it is xA6x Celcias without power steering that are rarer.

  8. #8
    Junior Member Too Much Toyota RONA's Avatar
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    Default Re: MA61 - RA65 Struts & Powersteering Arms conversion

    Quote Originally Posted by bbaacchhyy
    How rare are RA65's with power steering ?
    Just a thought, but wouldn't the Struts of an RT142 Avante or CSI that had IRS with power steering be the same as the RA65 ones.

  9. #9
    Toymods Pimp Chief Engine Builder Norbie's Avatar
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    Default Re: MA61 - RA65 Struts & Powersteering Arms conversion

    Quote Originally Posted by bbaacchhyy
    I probably won't worry about it as I already have the RA60 struts in and without P/S now as well, it may make it too heavy.
    It probably will. I have shorter MX83 steering arms in my Supra, along with 235 tyres and plenty of camber, and my car is nearly impossible to steer without P/S. Note that before my front end conversion I drove around with no P/S for over a year with no problems, but it's a totally different story now!

  10. #10
    Forum Member Grease Monkey bbaacchhyy's Avatar
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    Default Re: MA61 - RA65 Struts & Powersteering Arms conversion

    Quote Originally Posted by Norbie
    It probably will. I have shorter MX83 steering arms in my Supra, along with 235 tyres and plenty of camber, and my car is nearly impossible to steer without P/S. Note that before my front end conversion I drove around with no P/S for over a year with no problems, but it's a totally different story now!
    Do you notice whether the steering loads up in corners with speed ?
    '84 MA61 with 7M-GTE
    Now 5sp, 5 stud,17x8" Ray's, big assed brakes and decent IC
    Better turbo in the wings as well as MAFT !!!!

  11. #11
    Toymods Pimp Chief Engine Builder Norbie's Avatar
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    Default Re: MA61 - RA65 Struts & Powersteering Arms conversion

    Oh hell yes! The difference in steering feel was dramatic when I did this. I'm not sure how much is a result of the steering arms and how much is a result of the suspension geometry changes, because I did both at the same time.

  12. #12
    Rest in Peace Conversion King ViPeR_NiPPleX's Avatar
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    Default Re: MA61 - RA65 Struts & Powersteering Arms conversion

    Great writeup!

    I'll have to try this out on the new beast.... good thing i still have my rustbucket sa63 parts car

  13. #13
    Junior Member Backyard Mechanic MOOKIE's Avatar
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    Default Re: MA61 - RA65 Struts & Powersteering Arms conversion

    careful on those bonnet hill runs

    looks good i hope it was worth it !

  14. #14
    Kamber King Conversion King Negative Boost's Avatar
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    Default Re: MA61 - RA65 Struts & Powersteering Arms conversion

    Baaachy, I have no idea how rare RA65's are with powersteering. I didn't have powersteering in mine but my mates did. I think it may be that the ST's didn't have powersteering but the up-model XT's did have powersteering. Also SupraFirend notes in his write up that he compared alot of steering arms from the 70's up untill the RA65, and found the RA65 arms to be shortest and also have the bump stops in the correct places. So i'd recommend getting RA65 arms not RA60. Don't know about SA63 steering arms, they could work, or might not.


    Norbie, What modifications did you do to the MX83 arms to fit them in the supra? Do you have any dimensions on how long they are? Short/longer than the RA65 arms? And what struts are you using?
    Last edited by Negative Boost; 01-11-2005 at 09:05 PM.

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    Toymods Pimp Chief Engine Builder Norbie's Avatar
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    Default Re: MA61 - RA65 Struts & Powersteering Arms conversion


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