This 78 Brat came to me a few years ago and I have slowly been getting it back on the road. Here is the story behind my new car.
Sometime in 2013 my grandma was willed this car from a cousin of hers. It was bought off of the showroom floor in Denver Colorado in 1977. She drove it every day until she bought her 92 Legacy and garaged the Brat. My grandma gave the Brat to my cousin and he put about $400 into it to try and get it running. He had the carb rebuilt, new water pump, new alternator, new fuel pump. He couldn't get it running right so he sold it to me for the $400 he had into it.
I put a clutch in and drove it for about two weeks when the head gaskets blew. My dad called an old friend in Brook Forest near Evergreen CO who has a ton of Subarus and parts looking for a new engine. Turns out that Bob had an EA71 he was willing to part with so we drove up there and got the engine. The good news is that the engine only cost the fuel it took to drive up there and get it. The bad new is that the engine was the wrong EA71.
I took the engine and called Roo's Only to see if they would do the swap and they referred me to S Wing's. The guy at S Wings is an interesting fellow. After a year or so of talking with him I decided to rebuild the original engine and go from there.
I took the car to Colorado Component Rebuilder last June. It was one of the last engines they did before closing their doors. In fact they closed the doors while they still had my car. After CCR did the rebuild I took it to the family mechanic. He did the rear end, fixed the linkage, some electrical, new gas pedal, new gas cap, brakes, and quite a few other odds and ends. He could not get the carb tuned right so we decided to go with a Webber. The Webber went in, tuned it up, and it passed emissions and I got the 5 year collector plates.
So after all of this I finally drove the Brat back to my place in Gig Harbor WA. I left Colorado the day before yesterday and I got home last night. Along the way I discovered that I am losing quite a bit of oil from the transmission and the carburetor started acting up. I was stopping about every 100 miles and checking fluids. It seemed that I was losing the most fluid after hill climbs or long stretches of highway speeds. City driving and slower (55-65) highway speeds seemed to have lost little to no oil. I believe this to be the input shaft seal.
I planned on re jetting the carb after moving it to sea level but what is happening now is the throttle is sticking. I believe it to be the electronic choke sticking on. Once i reach a high enough RPM it backs down, so if it starts running away pressing the clutch lets it rev and then drop.
Well that is the story of my Brat. I have been lurking on this site for a few years now and I have done quite a bit of research on the 78 Brat. I know that there is not much you can do to "supe" up the car/engine and I love the original look and feel of the car. My plan is to do a complete restore to stock. Stock parts that is. I want to change the paint and interior colors. I am also planning on modernizing the car as much as I can to make it as comfortable of a ride as possible, Suspension, electrical, brakes. I have all of the original parts that came with the car and I will be keeping anything that gets changed (carb for example). I will be sharing pictures as I progress but I plan on getting the work done as soon as possible as this will be my daily driver around Tacoma/Seattle.
If anyone can offer some advice to the issues that I am having as well as a good shop to get in touch with that could do some of the work for me.