For this evening’s post we’re taking a look at the rest of Sriracha’s 2018 updates, to follow up the flare install seen last time. If you haven’t yet read that, please head back one entry to see the full process of fitting SS Tuning’s front flares to the Fiesta ST, and if you have, then let’s carry on with the other revisions and updates – staring with one that was first mentioned a few months ago.
Rewinding the clock a bit, unfortunately Mario discovered an issue with his new rear diffuser which meant that the install wouldn’t be as straight-forward as we’d hoped. This wasn’t the most motivating discovery, given that it was the first of the new parts to arrive and should’ve been the easiest install of the bunch. The basics were that the diffuser, from the UK, wouldn’t fit a North American Fiesta ST bumper due to Ford having reversed the mounting method between it and the OE diffuser. The diffuser was meant to clip into the bumper, whereas our bumpers clip into the diffusers.
In the end the fix was relatively straight-forward thankfully but it still took a lot of care and skill to cleanly carry out. It was worth it though, I’d say, because the new diffuser has definitely made a noticeable change to the back end of the little hatch.
Fortunately the new diffuser was slightly larger in area than the opening left by the North American diffuser, and this overlap meant that slots could be – and thus, were – cut into the bumper around the perimeter of said opening for the new piece to clip in to. It does mean that Mario can’t run a stock North American diffuser again, but as his factory piece had been damaged anyway that wasn’t really a concern. Besides, it wasn’t like he was afraid of cutting into the ST; after all, along with the flares he also had those hood vents to fit…
Anyone who’s been following the site for a while will know of our habit/tradition of swapping parts between cars either as a way to help builds progress, or to let pieces from a previous project vehicle live on (or both). Ketchup is the obvious example as nearly all of our vehicles have at least one part from it, and even Brian’s original Mk3 lives on in Dom’s S sedan via a few small pieces. Keeping with that theme, Sriracha has a couple of pieces from Tabasco now as well; specifically its hood vents.
This is the one case in where the parts in question are not OEM, original-to-the vehicle components, but they did come from the sedan regardless and so it counts in our books.
As quickly mentioned in the flare install post, while vacationing in California earlier this year Mario and Derrick met up with José to hang out and pick up the vents, which were then painted alongside the flares as Mario opted to be a bit more subtle with them instead of leaving them black as José had. They have proven to be extremely effective at lowering underhood temperatures, and have definitely added to the visual aggression of the car! Vented hoods are cooler (no pun intended) than non-vented. Fact.
Mario wanted to go one step further still though, and before Garage Box sliced the hood to accept the vents he took a precautionary step to protect the battery and other components in the engine bay as he knew that the driver’s side vent would sit directly over them. This was important not just for rain and washing the car, but also because Sriracha is winter driven and snow would inevitably get through. A quick call to my neighbour Doug (Doug to the rescue again!) to ask if he had any scrap aluminum we could use turned into us taking the mini ST across the street to his house and fabricating a custom cover that same afternoon. The design itself was fairly straight-forward; a rectangular piece of aluminum had one corner cut off – to clear the washer neck – and two more angled down, while a pair of threaded spacers were machined to secure it in place. The spacers screw onto the OE battery box posts, the cover is placed on (with the Mountune battery tie-down as the cherry on top), and two bolts then thread into the top of the spacers to hold everything in place. As the final touch, I then wrapped the plate with some leftover purple sparkle vinyl to tie into a few small wrapped accents in the car’s interior. In the right light and at the right angle, yes you can see the purple through the hood vent!
The battery cover wasn’t the only product of Doug’s help however; he also kindly machined some new spacers for Mario’s Vega Modified front splitter which fit perfectly; of course. Thank you again Doug!
Last but not least is a small piece which wasn’t new for Sunday School this year but is one that I don’t believe had been seen on the site before; Sriracha has had a backup camera retrofitted, discreetly peeking out below the hatch’s trim panel as a nice little OEM+ piece of tech. Honda fans may also notice the Mugen plate bolts here, and if you recognize the quote on his plate frame, you’ll know why I’m okay with it replacing the officialTHREETWENTY frame the car had before (the Mazda rocks that now. Haha).
And so, that brings us up-to-date on the revisions that Sriracha saw for Sunday School this year. We’ve seen and heard a ton of great feedback and Sriracha definitely stands out in the world of Molten Orange Fiesta STs with its unique combo of exterior modifications (and wheel setup).
The little hatch is looking meaner than it ever has and its bark now definitely matches its ~300hp/300lb-ft bite.
That said, Mario may not be quite finished with the exterior yet as another couple of pieces just arrived, though frankly whether or not they get fitted is still up for debate. Either way, being winter now the car is back into winter mode (complete with the fifteen52 Cups and Vega splitter being swapped out for the old Mountune lip) so the only “work” that the exterior will receive for the next little while will be regular washes.
Before we close this one out today there is one final item to share, for anyone who hasn’t seen it yet, and that would be the above video of Sriracha’s flare install. We hadn’t really focused on video when tackling the install – photos were our priority – but I still managed to get enough clips to assemble a logical and “complete” recap of the process. As noted in the video however, the article is still the main how-to and the video is merely to serve more as a summarized version of the process.
Despite some headaches along the way due to parts being delayed, not fitting, or so forth (par for the course with a project car), the end result definitely proved to be worth the effort. Doug’s machined parts were great complements to the other work, and each new piece fitted to the exterior had a noticeable improvement in aesthetics and/or function. And in the case of the flares specifically, it was definitely a good learning experience to finally tackle an install of our own after seeing it done so many times before. We’re still very pleased with the results, and it’ll surely be even easier the next time we fit flares…
…which will be to Mustard.
They were ordered a few days ago.