Sunday, 27 July 2014

SSR EX-C Fin Restoration - Pt.3

Continuing again from previous parts here, and here... is part three of my SSR EX-C Fin restoration. wouldn't think you'd be able to break it up into so many sections of unnecessary detail, but you'd be wrong!

Closeup of the 80's EX-C catalogue, showing again (in the top right) what I'm aiming for.

Back to the centre-cap plates, where I left off last time:
..after a little sanding.

really, really, badly painted black..

Each word masked off, then the paint carefully sanded down to reveal the text. Finish in coarse paper in the direction of the text, to emulate the original machined finish..

The rest of the woeful black paint sanded a little smoother, then a bit of clear over the lot.
This took time. Simple yet frustratingly fiddly!

The full-flange 15x6.5 barrels went off to the polishers for a tidy up. Very happy.

While the faces went to a powdercoater, where they got a fresh coat of gloss white.

And together?

Have been waiting over 2months now for a heap of bits from the electroplaters; including the fasteners for these wheels, and the centre cap bodies. Ah well, no rush..

Only one more update on these, I promise!

Saturday, 19 July 2014

Early M.

Interestingy, lightly-modified, early 5-series.

1986 E28 BMW M535i.
Top of the line for the second generation of 5-series - the E28 series produced from 1981 to 1988. This being an M-model with the 3.5Litre straight 6, was introduced halfway through that production run, in 1985.

I dont know enough about these to pick out the subtle differences; but It looks to have had some pretty-extensive colour-coding - whether that is original or not - and lowered nicely on some step-lip BBS mesh..

Inside completes the classic 80's white-on-blue scheme, save for a pair of grey Recaro LX-C's.
Modern bits like the ETC/toll machine and motorized LCD headunit cant help but look ridiculously out of place; but It just shows that this was likely someones daily drive - and that's more than cool enough in itself.

Early days for one of the worlds best sports sedans. I love the E28, but have more than a little time for the E34 and E39 that followed!
Simple, solid, luxury sports sedans. Although gaining complexity with every new model, it is still in essence built on the same basic formula today. 

Sunday, 13 July 2014

The tall-cap tidy-up..

One of a pair of very tired SSR Hasemi Sport S'5 caps I cleaned up recently.
I was re-keying them to match another pair of caps I had anyway, so take the opportunity to clean away 25 years of grime while I'm at it. Really needs the cap body and lock re-plated, but ehh.. good enough from afar. I don't plan on running these wheels ANY time soon..

As I wrote about here, these are the Tall S'5/BangVec bodied version of the Electron locking caps. Shown above in original condition...

..and hilariously; in gold, Bang-Vec form.

But back to the rough caps at hand.
The pair, with the locking mechanism completely disassembled. I love the look of all the small parts involved..

So intricate..

The key beside the magnet-springs just to show scale. They are so, so small...

Cleaning, then polish..

Have to be so careful not to lose any of the parts - its not hard for one of the mm-diameter ball-bearings to roll off the bench, literally never to be found again...

..and done! back together again..
Far from perfect, but looks so much better than it did. Importantly they now work smoothly, and with the correct key.

I've covered the assembly of the lock detail in more detail here.


Another absolutely-classic example of a modified X7 Cressida/Cresta/Chaser/MarkII..

This one a pillared 1987 GX71 Cresta sedan.. the closest of the trio to the aussie (and world market in general) similarly-pillared Cressida sedans.

Seeing these always makes it hard not to start hunting a Cressida sedan to modify myself..! Lets face it though, it would just end up looking like this; and I can get my fix of seeing these just browsing goo/carsensor/auctions/yahoo... so feckit.. live vicariously.

Despite the large SSR sticker on the front lip, the wheels look to be a Heroes Racing or Volk mesh of some sort. Very low offset over a possibly 7 or 8" width.. creates a bit of an inner-wheel gap, but looks tough regardless!

Hako-style boot spoiler with Bridgestone decal (Ignore the fact its on a set of Nankangs..)..
shotgun straight pipes..
Pioneer TS-X* speakers on the parcel shelf...


...and back at the front; the classic front mounted oil cooler and an extremely agressive front spoiler.

Its not re-inventing the wheel, but I just don't care! Any of these X7-chassis cars are so cool just like this.

Would drive.

Friday, 4 July 2014

Levin the dream..


Really liking this..

Its a 1986 AE86 Toyota Corolla Levin GTV...

..sitting almost cartoonishly well over some wide 15" (or maybe 16"?) Rays/Volk Racing TE37V's.

Classic panda two-tone, and subtle flares. The wheels and tyres may be a little over-the-top, but cant ignore the visual statement it makes.
Interesting thing with the AE86 (or KP61, S12, Australian R31's, etc), these cars always look like they're running positive camber on the rear. My mind automatically thinks it knows what is normal - my mental +/-0 camber - so when I see something as upright as this, it just looks off!
Too many years of seeing WAY too many Japanese cars with excessive rear negative camber has taken its toll...!

Quality work on the exterior has spread into the engine-bay, with a neat high-mount turbo setup hanging off the standard 16V 4AGE..

..and then into the interior, where an otherwise very neat interior has been joined by a simple Momo, unmarked fixed-back Bride seat, and a half-cage that bolts through the floor and rear wheel arches.

Very cool, and really looks to be very well executed.

This Levin is just one of a couple dozen neat examples currently for sale in Japan; but if this thing is more up your alley than a stock car, well its at a price you'd be very hard-pressed replicating this for!