alpinecoupe New Reader
6/14/18 4:21 p.m.

A bit of an intro... I am a high school physics teacher, my students also know that I am the resident car guy at school. Last year some time they approached me about starting a car club. I saw this as a great opportunity to start something at the school that might interest a diverse group of students, so I told them I was in! 

The first thing we needed was a place to actually work on cars. I knew that the school building had an extra garage that was being used for storage (aka garbage dump) so I approached the principal, turned on the charm, and proposed the idea for the new club and volunteered to clean out the dirty old storage space... And in return I wanted nothing more than to use the space to teach some young people the finer points of car maintenance and modification. She saw the importance, felt my own excitement about a new club at the school, and was happy to offer the space for club use. So we started with this:

Dark, dirty, garage door that didn't work but, it was usable space. Add 10-15 excited kids and we got it to looking pretty good in short order:

Not too shabby, IMHO. Rather lengthy first post I know, but I'm just trying to document everything so I can remember how far we've come.

Well, now that I've posted a picture of the car, I suppose the next post should explain where that came from...


jfryjfry HalfDork
6/14/18 9:25 p.m.

Oh yes!  Please, go on. 

AngryCorvair MegaDork
6/14/18 9:35 p.m.

In for updates...

Rodan HalfDork
6/14/18 10:42 p.m.

Looking forward to more! 

octavious Dork
6/15/18 6:45 a.m.

Good for you. 

Dusterbd13 MegaDork
6/15/18 6:47 a.m.

Im game. Where are you? We can probably help.....

classicJackets HalfDork
6/15/18 7:50 a.m.


alpinecoupe New Reader
6/15/18 8:13 a.m.

School is located on the northside of Chicago, and I'm sure I'll be posting more about part needs as we dig deeper into this thing.

Thanks for the interest so far, going to work on the next update after classes today. 

alpinecoupe New Reader
6/15/18 3:01 p.m.

We went through the first few months of the club randomly doing work on my Jeep that needed to be done but eventually I was all caught up on oil changes so I started to look for something of a project car. My wife (who is amazing) said that she thought it would be great for me to get a project car for the kids to learn on. So bring on the Craigslist/ GRM $201x searches. 

I wasn't finding much in Chicago that I could afford, I really wanted to keep the initial purchase price around $500. My wife's family is still in SE Michigan so we typically spend time there in the summer, cue more Craigslist searching. While searching I ran across a rather cryptic ad in Ann Arbor about multiple cars on a property with a handful of pictures of what was there. Among the old MG's, Scirocco's, and couple of 2002's, I counted 3 different Miata's. I wasn't necessarily searching for a Miata (truth be told I would have picked up the MG or 2002 had they been in better shape) but there were 3 and at least one of them seemed to be a 94-97. I called the number and spoke to a man named Ron that was enthusiastic about me coming to take a look at the cars, so I loaded my 3 year old into the oil burning wagon and took off. Here's what we found:

Not the actual car I bought, just one of the other Miata's there:


I actually posted about Ron and his property of cars here on the forum (Link). And it was picked up by Jalopnik and the author went out and got the full scoop from Ron about why he was moving so many of his cars (Story). The internet forum member who bought a Mazda Miata mentioned in the story is yours truly. 

My son and I had a great time exploring the front yard and decided that the 95 Miata was worth coming back for the next day. Unfortunately, I didn't have the Jeep so I had to go rent a tow dolly and an F150. But on the bright side my wife's cousin lived 3 blocks away and said I could store the car there until it made it's journey to Chicago!

So there she sat for about 3 weeks until my brother (another automobile fanatic) and I were able to load up our truck and trailer to make the trek back and forth. 

I have to look for the pictures of that journey so Ill make that the next post. 

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