Archive | 7:05 PM

Carefully Planned

20 Sep

So while browsing around Barnes and Noble today, I came across the latest issue of Japanese Performance. At least it’s the latest one on our shelves…we always get the foreign magazines late here. On the cover was a nice, clean red 350Z with Chargespeed body kit and Varis hood. I picked up a copy and headed for the checkout. I get into my car, and thub through it quick and come across the article. In the very first sentence I see “Craig Mudd” and think…hey, I know that guy!

Craig and I share something in common when it comes to modding tastes. Both of us it seem believe less really is more. A huge mod list doesn’t necessarily impress me. Instead, I like a car that is tastefully done, cleanly built and prepared, and that retains enough utility to still have it be a fun car to drive.

All too often in this ‘scene’, you see guys who mod without purpose. They have no plan of attack, and they often aren’t willing to learn even the basics of modding a particular platform. So they end up just buying random stuff, and at the end of the day, they end up with a car that has no balance. Instead of it being a cohesive unit, it just becomes a mish mosh of stuff. While best intentions are certainly a good start, it really takes careful planning to successfully modify a car. To really pull off a quality show winning build, it takes the right mix of planning and execution.

Craig purchased the car Fall of 2008, and by Spring 2009 it was essentially complete. All summer he’s been taking it to shows, taking home trophy after trophy. I think what I like about this car is it represents a real world build. It represents what alot of customers hope to build. Nothing is over the top, and the parts range from common to rare, yet they all just work with one another in unison. The net result has been lots of trophies and several magazine features.

We happily supplied the Invidia exhaust to Craig, as well as his red Bride seats. What I love best on the interior isn’t the stuff we supplied, but rather the flocking that the nearly all the panels were treated too. Not too often that you see such a process on a road car.

I’ve loved working with our Z customers all over the world and helping them put together their dream cars. You can read all about Craigs build on his own site – just click!

Adam’s Project Z33: Cool(er) Runnings

20 Sep

Now that I’ve driven the car around for the past 3 weeks with the new plenum/throttle body, I’ve started to become accustomed to the “quirks” of the setup. It still hasn’t been dyno tuned, and the street tuning we did was with the car at full temperature. Since we no longer use the drive by wire, there is no cold start setup, which is something we’ll have to tackle soon, especially with the colder months coming up. What I did notice though, was that the car doesn’t like to do a dead cold start, but hot starts are fine. However, once started, it is more willing to idle nicely before the cooling fans have kicked on, telling me that we should be able to play with the Haltech software and make things cooperate nicely. It also idles quite well with the a/c on, which is a welcomed surprise. I also noticed that when things are up to temperature, and the both cooling fans kick on, the idle freaks out a bit, with some minor surging. So, I started looking into what I could do to keep the intake from ingesting the fans air, and also keep the intake temps as low as possible. My previous setup consisted of the Gruppe-M carbon intake, but I sold it when I didn’t think I’d have any use for it during the “I’m doing ITB’s” phase. Of course, that turned out to be just a phase (nightmarish, as I’ve eluded to previously).

The first thing I did was install a heatshield. It is supposed to be used on a 3 inch conical filter, but I took a chance and it turns out to fit perfectly on my 4 inch HKS (which has a 3 inch inlet). Came in a nice polished finish. I think I’ll grab some of the nice silver heat reflective tape from Coast Fabrication just as a bit of extra prevention too.

When Kwame and I were BS’ing the other night, he suggested I also install the NISMO V2 duct that I’ve had sitting here at the shop since forever. It originally came with the bumper I was going to run, but ended up swapping for something else. So today I set about installing the duct. It did require some trimming since it was not designed with my front bumper in mind, but it ended up coming out great. I’ll do some logging with the Haltech over the next few days and hopefully it made a difference!