1 2 3 4 ... 20
Robbie GRM+ Memberand UltimaDork
1/5/19 11:10 a.m.

Ian just texted me the car is loaded and headed to it's new home. BTW, Ian was super impressed with the loading skillz.

Patrick GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
1/5/19 11:29 a.m.
Robbie said:

Ian just texted me the car is loaded and headed to it's new home. BTW, Ian was super impressed with the loading skillz.

Pics or ban

wheelsmithy GRM+ Memberand SuperDork
1/5/19 6:53 p.m.

Pics or ban

My special lady friend has some in process. Here's some stuff to tide you over.

Also, KonaBoss, and Ian, Robbie's buddies were strong as Oxen, and much friendlier. Really nice fellows. Young lads from the auto trade with mad skills. I would've surely ruptured myself without their help.


So, my truck is a POS. The tail light wiring is hacked (most recently by me), and I didn't have one of those converter boxes. I'll HAVE to fix that E36M3 before I tow again, seriously. Anyway, U-Haul didn't like my 10,000lbs. hitch, but since I had recently towed a U-Haul trailer, they let me slide. Then the guy wanted to check my lights. I had tail, and brake, just the blinkers looked more like caution lights on the trailer. I promised to fix them before disembarking, and again, he let me slide. My fingers were crossed.

Now, it is dark, and we made it as far as Georgetown Ky, but a tail light bulb burned out, and the trailer lights have gone even wonkier, so we're holed up in a Super8, and awaiting daylight. The weather was awesome the whole way down.

The loading crew.


From left, KonaBoss, Ian, and me. Thanks guys! My special lady friend was invaluable in moving the PVC, 4X4s, and of course, documentation. She's on the other side of the lens.


We weren't far down the road before Michigan's rough roads shook the X off one of its 4X4s. This rocker took a little damage, and the other side was floating free in space,

so, I reverted back to the original planB, which had 4X4s stacked perpendicularly, and re-rigged. Again, the GF's extra set of hands were invaluable.

It held fast the rest of the trip. 

Here's a couple of shots somewhere in Ohio. We both are extremely enamored with the thing. 


wheelsmithy GRM+ Memberand SuperDork
1/5/19 7:09 p.m.
Stampie said:

In reply to wheelsmithy :

That looks amazingly organised. We're normally looking at each other saying "is the come-long in your truck?"


Indy-Guy UltraDork
1/5/19 7:12 p.m.

Nice. Where's the build thread already wink


What's the plan for this hulk? The price was right yes

wheelsmithy GRM+ Memberand SuperDork
1/5/19 7:47 p.m.

In reply to Indy-Guy :

I feel this thread is the only way to start a build thread. 

Mods? Robbie? is everyone okay with a move to the Build Threads section?


First off, getting this was incredibly neurotic and irresponsible of me. After a few rough years, I really needed that. Progress will be slow, as I've just purchased a house with lots of problems. Shelter comes before a 5th(!!!) car gets any real attention.

Now, for the real answer. Challenge! Minimal street legality. Fun. Italian sexiness. Flares. Suspension. Paint.  

Everything is open for consideration. F2T? V-6? TDI? Something even weirder? Yep, I'd consider any and all. To make it to the challenge, I'd even consider an auto (to be changed when budget is no longer a concern, of course). I found out an old college buddy lives a few doors down from the house I just bought. He's an extremely crafty scrounger and Electrical Engineer. I floated the Challenge Idea, and he sounded game. Maybe we can get my brother in on some of the fun. I will say, 2019 looks incredibly improbable, but 2020 just sounds right. The house should be off the front burner by then.

For now, its yard art, and what beautiful yard art. I've loved these since I was a child.

Robbie GRM+ Memberand UltimaDork
1/6/19 11:34 a.m.

Yes, absolutely fine by me if you want to convert this to a build thread. I'm not a mod though so I can't move it myself.

So glad you are happy with your "purchase". Nice doing business with you sir. Can't wait to race you at the challenge!!

(And I'm still a bit pissed I didn't get to see that truck in person).

Robbie GRM+ Memberand UltimaDork
1/6/19 11:38 a.m.

I think you should go Honda for a new engine. But screw the tried and true k series. 

Do a v6 j series!

Actually, the Nissan v6 is one of the best sounding out there. And I heard that all maxima m/t from a certain year range also have LSD... 95-98 or something? That would be rad.

wheelsmithy GRM+ Memberand SuperDork
1/6/19 4:35 p.m.

In reply to Robbie :

Those are on the table for consideration. I must admit, I feel a Mini Dino vibe going. I'd love to do a V-6. I really like the Isuzu 3.5/3.2. and maybe a GM trans. Lots of scrounging, but largely unloved parts. The Isuzu is also a Honda built engine.

 Awesome Rodeo V6

wheelsmithy GRM+ Memberand SuperDork
1/6/19 4:37 p.m.

In reply to Robbie :

Also, I can't thank you, Ian, and KonaBoss enough. You guys make dreams come true. 

Loading/unloading pictures inbound.

wheelsmithy (Joe-with-an-L)
wheelsmithy (Joe-with-an-L) GRM+ Memberand PowerDork
1/6/19 5:30 p.m.

Right-O. My Special Lady Friend documented the loading process. Her camera was set to black and white, so that's the deal here. Also, any artsy, "we're so in love with Italian design" pictures will be B&W.

Ian had the car on furniture dollies, and I had about 1" on each side between his house and the gate, so we elected to roll it on down.

Leaving the rear dollie in place, we rolled the surprisingly heavy Italian beauty up some 4X4s.

Once past the breaking point, Ian held the back, while KonaBoss and I dragged 'er forward. My Special Lady friend moved PVC, 4X4s and whatnot as we inched forward. Ian held the rear on the PVC pivot, while we regrouped and assessed.

One 4X4 across the trailer in front of the axle, and one behind, and we had it at least in place. I have always heard people say X 1/9s were robust, but now, I believe it. The above pictures show our successful attempts. Before that, in my cockiness, the plan was to have one each of these big guys on the rear corners, and me carrying the front up on the trailer. I immediately said it was too heavy, and we tried the same thing with the hulking KonaBoss solo on the front. It was too heavy for him, also, and we were forced to get smarter. Hence the incline planes, wheels(PVC) and such.

The estimates these guys threw around of 750 lbs. without floors, bulkheads, and some cross-members seems accurate to me. They said it was light. For a tiny sports car, I thought it was darned heavy.

Despite the appearance, we loaded in broad daylight, on a balmy Michigan day. It was glorious!

NOTE: For some reason, all my Special Lady Friend's pictures have disappeared. Oh well.

noddaz GRM+ Memberand SuperDork
1/6/19 5:47 p.m.

Very nice!  And a beautiful little car.  It will be great to see what becomes of this. (VW 1.8t with 6 spd?)

wheelsmithy GRM+ Memberand SuperDork
1/6/19 6:06 p.m.

So, we got home, but as documented above, felt travel with poor lighting a bad move. We left at 1:30 EST Friday, and got back at 1:00 Est Sunday. 1024 miles round trip, and my old truck took it like a champ.

Now for the unloading, which I did by myself. I'm pretty good at going slow, and not hurting myself, but my confidence in not hurting others is lower. I took my time, and did this inches at a time.

As discussed while traveling, we now had a frame under hard points of the car, and it was screwed together fairly well. 

First thing, I unstrapped the car, cut 16" off the 4X4s that went across the trailer (in front of, as well as behind the wheels). This allowed the lot to fit between the trailer's fenders, as well as giving me some blocks, which through use of my trusty handy-man jack, and a 6' bar, I got the rear skids up 7" or so. Note: I firmly strapped the car at 4 corners to the transverse 4Xs. This gave me a sort of sled.

I then got the PVC under the runners, and removed the blocks. The sawdust from cutting helped it slide.

At all times, I had two tie downs attached to the front of the car(OK, maybe not in this picture). I'd attach one with a couple of feet of slack before releasing the other one to walk it down.

Once I got to the rear lip, I had to use 2 blocks as a fulcrum, along with the 6' bar as lever, and move the PVC down to the ramps.

And before long, I got to the tipping point.

After that, it was easy to shimmy it down, and, once in the right spot, kick the PVC under as I lifted the back up, pivoting on the tail of the trailer.

Then just drag it down until the desired result is attained.

It's so easy to move, I believe I'll leave it on its skid until work is ready to start in earnest. 

I hope this isn't all too obtuse, but I did hear some interest expressed in the loading process, so there you go. All unloading pictures were taken by me as I was unloading and contemplating, so if they are unclear, I apologize.

I also hope this all makes some kind of sense, and is, perhaps helpful to someone, someday. 



Indy-Guy UltraDork
1/6/19 6:12 p.m.

That "sled" idea is brilliant!

TurnerX19 New Reader
1/6/19 8:34 p.m.

I have had one of these cars for 14 years, and it still puts a big grin on my face every time I drive it. Make it streetable, so the fun can be any time. Even as heavy as it is, anything over 120 H P is enough. The worst feature is certainly the small size of the engine room.

RACEC4R New Reader
1/7/19 2:19 p.m.

Glad you got her home in 1 piece Joel!

Was wondering what happened for on the way back and unloading; not hearing from you was a good sign.  I was fully prepared to get a call that something went awry.

PVC = best idea ever.  100% archived in my memory on how to move E36 M3 that doesn't roll.

Hope to see it take shape over the next few years!


wheelsmithy GRM+ Memberand SuperDork
1/7/19 6:04 p.m.

All the positive responses are greatly appreciated. I like the VW 1.8T idea, as well as all other suggestions. The car will, indeed be (minimally) streetable. We just have to see what donor presents itself. I'm trying to keep an open mind, but to be even relatively competitive at challenges these days, you have to bring big power. I think I'll concentrate on handling and concourse, as getting this thing even in the 13s would be near the limits of even my most hopeful dreams.

Here's an artsy picture from my special Lady Friend:


Dusterbd13-michael MegaDork
1/7/19 6:17 p.m.

Gm 3400v6!!!!

wheelsmithy GRM+ Memberand SuperDork
1/7/19 6:42 p.m.

In reply to RACEC4R :

Welcome to the GRM community,(at least officially), Ian!

You guys would love the madness he's up to. He bought Duster and Dallas's old Challenge AMC, and is up to cool stuff, but I don't want to speak out of place. 

Duster/Michael, I am not ruling that out.

My buddy up the street suggested this:

Acura TL

This also intrigues me:



, but with the MX-3 Five speed, or maybe a Mazda 6/626?

Stefan GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
1/7/19 6:54 p.m.
Dusterbd13-michael said:

Gm 3400v6!!!!

Trying to share the misery, er, fun?  smiley

1/7/19 9:14 p.m.
TurnerX19 said:

I have had one of these cars for 14 years, and it still puts a big grin on my face every time I drive it. Make it streetable, so the fun can be any time. Even as heavy as it is, anything over 120 H P is enough. The worst feature is certainly the small size of the engine room.

How about the 2AR-FE then? They are super cheap toyota engines that came everything from Scion tC's to Highlanders and were front-wheel drive. They make ~180, but are all aluminum and have huge aftermarkets.

TurnerX19 New Reader
1/7/19 10:22 p.m.

In reply to GIRTHQUAKE :

I am not familiar with modern stuff, and the OP has only an empty shall to work with, so I am sure he can make something work. I have kept the Lampredi in mine with basic mods. It would be the easy button for wheelsmithy except that complete engines are becoming scarce.

BrianC72gt New Reader
1/7/19 11:30 p.m.

Finally, I now understand how they built the pyramids.  Nice job on the loading and unloading.  I can totally appreciate that kind of stuff.  I once moved a really really big old HEAVY safe by myself into a dumpster.  It drew a crowd, and there was welding involved.  

Could you mate this to a Honda Del Sol?  That would be Italian sexy with Honda engineering goodness, and they are roughly the same layout.  (Edit...no they're not, a quick peek on Copart for a salvage Del Sol says A) they are super cheap and B) the engine is in the front.)

Good luck with it whatever you do.  I yearn for one, but  even svelte at 6'4", I don't think I would fit although I drove a 90 miata for years.

Looking forward to your project.

Dusterbd13-michael MegaDork
1/8/19 6:33 a.m.
Stefan said:
Dusterbd13-michael said:

Gm 3400v6!!!!

Trying to share the misery, er, fun?  smiley

I love those engines . And a fwd drivetrain seems like a relatively simple swap in the back of an x19. However, i may be incredibly wrong .

TurnerX19 New Reader
1/8/19 8:08 a.m.

X1/9 is FWD drivetrain in the back from day one. Honda swaps have been done and work well, RSX with 6 speed in particular.

1 2 3 4 ... 20
Our Preferred Partners