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No Regrets


Sorry for the somewhat sporadic post consistency of late. There’s so much going on in the summer that it makes sitting down in front of the computer hard. Add in the fact that I’ve ramped up my freelance work to help cover the expenses of Project Why Wait, SIE gets the shorter end of the stick.

But, if you can come to rely on me for anything its a lot of original content waiting in the wings. I’ve been going to a lot of cruise ins this summer –for as long as Ash will permit– and I’m going to start rolling out a few of those photos when I can.

Cruise Ins are great because they are little commitment and I can stay as short or as long as I wish without feeling the need to cover the whole event as a whole because no one really tracks what shows up to what cruise in week after week.

I’m a sucker for a bagged and bodied first gen so I had to give this truck a once and twice over.

It is a tidy looking truck representing No Regrets, a world wide and fairly well known car and truck club.

The truck as a whole is incredibly clean and I really like the green color. It suits the vehicle very well and helps it from being period locked like some other builds.

Inside, I quite like the updated interior. If there’s one part of first generation s10s that really back dates them it’s the dash. It’s pretty boxy, plastic looking and unbecoming considering what is around today. Wrapping it in leather really cleans brings it closer today without swapping out the entire thing.

The No Regrets steering wheel is also pretty crazy and shows a level of dedication to a car club that isn’t often seen these days. Though I sure wouldn’t want to get into an accident with it.

Look for more Cruise In coverage to creep onto the site here and there.

Theme Tuesdays: Second Generation Lexus GS


I got hit up on Instagram by to do a Theme Tuesday on the Lexus GS, more specifically the S160, or second generation models. In 2012 I did a generic GS/Aristo Theme Tuesday but at the request of Mr. Blackout this one will focus on the second gen exclusively.

With the youngest of this generation being thirteen years old, they have reached a fairly accessible price point. Especially for a 1/3UZ or 2 JZ (N/A and turbo) powered Luxury RWD sedan.

I imagine these cars will start to get a lot crazier once a younger generation starts to get a hold of them and realizes that the future of Japanese RWD sedans looks a little bleak.

Going to take things back to pre-2012 when tucking Rays wheels was the thing to do
TEs work on everything.

I actually feel like one day I need to own a set of TEs one day, just because of how many I have photographed and posted over the years

Dan has kept his GS pretty clean over the years, if anyone can hook this guy up with a wood grain wheel he’d likely appreciate it

White and chrome make a bold statement – Photo:
I’ve always like the more subtle sport influenced VIP builds over the wild fins and vents that style gaining popularity today
Again similar sport influenced styling and utterly fantastic appearance overall
This black GS400 on Bronze lipped Work Gnosis still looks great today, something that can’t be said for all vehicles from SEMA 2012
At the 2012 Liberty Black event “Philly Rob” impressed many people being one of the first on wheels
Like all of the cars that have made it into the ranks of the exclusive Liberty VIP family the car is clean from front to rear
Paul Tolson’s GS400 is a popular one in the show scene, it wears Veliside bumpers all around and a custom metal widebody
The 1UZLE motor is now fed by two GT35R turbos
‘s Gray Schilling caught this car at an event last year, great looking GS
Best plate of this week’s Theme Tuesday goes to – Photo:
This car, at first glance, looks like a bagged GS400 on 20″ wheels
But then, ‘GO GO Gadget legs’ the lift on hydraulics is insane
Above and below is what happens when a minitrucker gets a hold of a Lexus – Photo:

LS motors make their way into everything so why not a Vertex kitted sinister looking GS400? – Photo:

If you prefer your Lexus’ to have a Japanese heart how about this nitrous fed, turbo, 3 rotor powered example? – Photo:
This car is was the subject of a  – Photo:
SH also had the feature on this drift spec GS built by – Photo:
It’s powered by a built single turbo 2JZ – Photo:
For those who like their drift cars with a little more classic street style flare, this BN sports equipped car fits the bill – Photo:
The owner doesn’t just have a car that looks the part either, he drives the thing. A full feature is – Photo:

Project Why Wait: Be Humble(d)


Hubris is defined as excessive self-pride or self-confidence and I while I’m not sure about the excessive self-pride, I certainly had a lot of confidence heading into this project.

Confidence isn’t necessarily a bad thing, and mine isn’t gone, but, the “Yeah I’ve got this, no big deal” mind-set I had certainly needed to be checked. When the chassis came back from I figured one or two garage sessions max and I should be plumbing the chassis by June no problem.

First night in the garage went fairly well, I rounded up all my parts, found nothing missing, put on the tunes, turned on baby monitor and got to work.

Though there are still people running around with bagged classic vehicles without shocks, shocks are something I’m not willing to go without.

Unfortunately the airbags –Slam Specialties RE7s in my case– sit where the coil and shock previously did, which means the shocks had to go elsewhere.

For relocation I took the typical, well documented, s10 route. Using this approach a new shock mount sits above the frame and the shock lays into a rounded frame notch. This allows for lock to lock turning at any ride height without obstruction.

The mount, mount angle, and notch locations were both calculated using a measuring tape and a bit of eyeballing.

I’m sure at the mention of ‘eyeballing’ a few of you have predicted where this is going. But, no the mounts were not completely off. Not cycling the suspension with the shock installed, at the time of affixing the mounts meant I had to mount the shocks a little further inboard on the lower control arm than I had originally planned.

With that slight adjustment to my approach the shocks just made it within acceptable ranges for the upper shock mount and the shocks themselves clear the frame by the smallest of margins at full lift and a more acceptable margin at ride height.

In the end it all worked and when everything else went together without a hitch and I considered myself lucky that I didn’t have to rework the mounts entirely.

With the upper control arm and spindle attached everything else checked out fine clearance wise and overall I’m very happy that I decided to get new parts where I could and the old ones reconditioned where I couldn’t.

Working with clean components versus greasy, corroded ones, is a much nicer experience.

The reason I started with the front of the truck was because my rear axle and differential needed more work than I’d hoped.

To roll things back a bit Jeff (the original chassis builder) got this rear axle from a friend, and that friend tinkered with it internally. , the shop that ended up fixing the rear end, said that unfortunately because the differential was now a mix of 9 bolt and 10 bolt parts the easiest way to get everything ship-shape was to get another 9 bolt rear end.

On this side of the planet 9 bolt rear end parts are not the most common (Australia where they were made is a different story) so I ended up having to buy a complete second rear end to make one good one.

Then I lucked into a third for spare parts as well. You can see both kicking around in the background of this update.

The issues inside the differential housing were fairly trivial compared to the hurdle I would face next. In order to get the truck around the yard at we welded a piece of steel from the bottom of the notch to the axle.

As you can see from the photo above we did this at a fairly low height, but certainly not a height reflective of 0 psi.

Upon cycling the suspension to its lowest point the upper rear shock mount and upper four-link mount fought fairly aggressively for the same bit of real estate. In a Hail Mary attempt I cut the dust shield off the shocks I had but alas things wouldn’t be that easy.

After taking some measurements, cycling the suspension, and even taping a socket to the frame to stand in as a shock mount, I was able to sort out where my shock mount should have been. Where they should have been is the circle above, which is quite a bit further forward from where they were.

Unlike the front end there was little I could do to bail myself out here, fresh paint be damned the angle grinder had to come out.

This hurt, it hurt a lot. There was no pretty way to cut the old mount off, and when it was cut out I was forced to do the weld, grind, weld grind dance to fill the hole left by the first mount.

Eventually I was able to get things well enough to start repairing the damage so I threw some filler over my shame.

The filler application above looks pretty crappy, and it was, the filler was old and not compliant so 98% of it was sanded right back off.

If there was a word of the month last month it would have been ‘sanding’ without question.

A trip to the store for new materials, and a lot of elbow grease, and things started to look better, still grim and disappointing, but better.

Bodywork helped pass the time while I was waiting for parts to arrive and when the new shorter KYB shocks arrived, and shock mounts, I was more than ready for a break from sanding.

At home I don’t have a tig welder, like we used for the original shock mounts, so I had to get a bit resourceful.

The are thankfully threaded at both ends which meant I was able to tap the frame and thread the shock mount in. After cranking the mount down as much as possible I was ready for the next step.

With the new mounts threaded into place I cycled the suspension repeatedly (as I should have months ago) to make sure that I wouldn’t be doing this a third time.

Everything checked out, and I decided it was time to make things permanent with some metal gluing.

I have no shame in admitting that I struggled here. I’m not really adequately set up to weld metal of this thickness in my garage and the resulting welds were not pretty and had minimal penetration.

However after repeating the grind, weld, grind, dance from before I was able to get the mounts to a point where no matter how hard I tried they wouldn’t back out.

From there bodywork was the name of the game. As anyone who has ever done any can tell you it takes a long time.

Paint work is only as good as the prep underneath and I didn’t want it to be obvious that I repaired a visible part of the frame myself so I took my time.

I don’t have a spray gun (yet) so I turned to, predominately, the Dupli-Color line up of spray can materials. Most of the product above is self-explanatory thanks to the labels.

I used the PlastiKote brand primer and black Dupli-Color somewhat interchangeably because I did end up sanding a lot of it off.

The fillers I used were house brand and the top coat was also from Carquest. Carquest uses the same paint () that my chassis is so they were able to put my color into a spray can with no issue.

One tip that helped me out a lot when blending in rattle can work was the folded masking tape technique.

For those unfamiliar you decide where you absolutely do not want paint to go and put masking tape there. Then, just ahead of that, you overlap it with another piece of masking tape folded, or rolled, in half.

This prevents a hard-line from one finish to another and the resulting line is one that can be easily sanded out and buffed with high grit (1500+) sand paper. Moving the masking tape line to a different spot between primer and color coat also helps with the final blend.

Between waiting on coats of paint or filer to dry I worked on getting the brakes bolted up and this is where I had a bit of luck.

The calipers that came with the chassis were missing a few bits, but thankfully both of the rear axles I picked up had brakes attached. Three eventually became one and I now have completely rebuilt rear calipers up to the task of stopping my truck.

Upfront I didn’t really have to do anything other than order some new slider pins to get the dual piston 98+ Blazer brakes fit to the Belltech spindles.

I’m still pretty pleased at this fairly inexpensive, oem parts based, upgrade to the traditional s10/gbody hub/brake assembly.

After a serious amount of prep I was ready to lay down some color and honestly it went very, very, well. The single stage paint sprayed out of the can nicely and the color match is quite good.

It all needs a bit of color sanding and polish to complete the transition from one paint job to another but overall I’m pretty happy with the repair.

The whole thing was a bit of an ordeal but a great early lesson in the art of taking your time and thoroughly testing things out before putting them into paint.

Figuring out how I am going to mount my air management is next on the and what I’ll be up to for the next week or so.

Here’s hoping the spray cans and sandpaper stay on the shelf this time around.

Event Coverage: Cars And Coffee July 2017


The first Cars and Coffee of 2017, while good, was one of the coldest events I’ve been to in recent memory. The second I had to miss because of a conflict with the Truck And Tuner Expo so I was glad to hear that the July event was happening despite the first Sunday of the month falling on a long weekend.

Last year, a long weekend would have bumped C&C to next month, but this year  (the C&C hosts) decided to go ahead and host an event anyway.

The weather was great, and thus the turn out was great. The variety of cars, and the crowd, were on par with what I’ve come to expect from this event.

Cars and Coffee is always a great way to spend a quick few hours on a weekend, and not having to go to work the next day just made it all the better.

One of the most talked about vehicles of this event was the silver Ford F-100 below formerly owned by comedian Tim Allen. The truck is a complete custom, with no panel untouched, and still looks pretty damn good considering it was finished (at least for the first time) over twelve years ago.

Previously super charged, the truck is now N/A with individual throttle bodies. The headers on this truck are some of the largest I’ve ever seen under the hood of, well, anything.

Hats off to whoever fabricated them and snaked them in there.

The XJ220 that stole the season opening event remains parked at Engineered Automotive. I’m not sure if this is the big cat’s permanent home but it was positioned in a better position for photos this time around.

I’m curious if the car is in running condition, perhaps at the next Cars And Coffee the EE crew will fire the car up for everyone to hear? One can only hope.

While the XJ220 sat inside, outside a few cats were on the prowl (sorry) including the stunning E-Type above.

Also positioned outside was this white on white XJS. Now, I know next to nothing about most classic Jaguars but I have a sneaking suspicion that this one isn’t anywhere near stock.

If it is indeed a TWR model this car could make at least 750 to the wheels. Mighty impressive for a car that most of the road going public would never expect to make anywhere near that much horsepower.

Speaking of cars most people would underestimate, this EP82 Starlet would certainly fall in said category.

It’s the only one I’ve seen in Ontario, which makes it stand out on that fact alone, but the owner has also done an considerable amount to the car in all areas.

The motor is where the bulk of the work has been focused and the car now puts down a dyno proven 240hp and 195tq to the wheels on a ‘break in’ tune of 16psi.

The rest of the modifications to the car center around being able to handle all that power and put it down more or less effectively.

It’s a rally styled car, which means it can blast over the worst of Toronto’s roads with no issue. The owner mentioned that this generation of Starlet is pretty popular overseas so I just might have to keep the EP82 in mind for a future Theme Tuesday.

I didn’t get the opportunity to get an idea of the modifications done to either of the Minis above but they both looked really fun to drive.

I’ve got to try and figure out a way to get behind the wheel of one of these some day.

Gill from the spotted this Porsche 951 at an event a few weeks ago and I remember it specifically because he posted it up with a pretty tongue in cheek comment about .

Gil recently swapped his Hartge bumper for an AC Schnitzer piece. Apparently the AC bumper is a bit lower to the ground and according to the ‘gram he’s got the matching rear on route.

It’s honestly been at least four years since I’ve seen the R32 above and it took me a few moments to put together exactly which car it was.

Seemingly eons ago (2011) John Fiddy used to compete in CSCS with this car.

Prior to its ‘disappearance’ the car looked like it ran well (as evidenced above) but the exterior was certainly showing the affects of years of hard-driving.

Completely redone at this point the car looks great, and it’s nice to see a memorable local car return to glory rather than fade into memory.

My absence at events in recent years means I have not been able to personally see people I used to see several times a year. One of those people is Spenser, the previous owner of an Orange EG that was the subject of one of my .

Now he owns the red Evo above that I’ll probably take photos of every time I see it as well.

Announcing that you can take down Vipers is something you need to be able to back up, and from what I’ve heard this C6 is capable of doing just that.

I think this car might just be wearing a Supervettes widebody kit, but I’m not enough of a C6 aficionado to know for sure. I do however know that those are super wide 345 section width tires in the rear.

This Cars and Coffee event marks the first time I’ve seen the “DiezelRat” C10 truck not at a truck specific show.

This big ‘ol truck is powered by a Cummins diesel that explains the blackened roof. The owner of the truck owns a landscaping company so there’s a good chance you might see this car rolling around pulling lawn mowers and the like.

For the Next Cars and Coffee Engineered Automotive is doing something a little different and hosting . Hopefully the crowd and maturity level remains the same, and if you want to check out the night time atmosphere of the event it takes place August 11th from 8pm to 11pm.

Here’s a few more photos from this months event until then.

See you at the next one.

Theme Tuesdays: Slammed Trucks


I’m not going to lie this Theme Tuesday is the direct result of / recently posting some outstanding progress photos of the International Loadstar he’s building between being a father and running a business.

Seeing photos truck rapidly sent me down a rabbit hole that contained not just International Loadstars, but International trucks of all types.

Davey Terry’s ’39 International Hot Rod is local, and I last saw it at Motorama in 2015
At that time it wasn’t quite yet ready for the road
Since these photos the truck has been made street legal, and I really need spend some time with it in front of my lens
Obviously I can’t do an International Theme Tuesday without a few photos of Rob’s International Loadstar
As cliche as it is to say this truck literally (well as literally as you can without physically hurting people) breaks necks wherever it goes.
Years later I am still trying to take a photo as cool as this one Steve Wharton took of Rob’s truck when it had a two door cab
Under the (literal) shadow of Loadstars and Internationals other large truck offerings Harvesters might not get the respect they deserve
They do however take well to being patina and an altered altitude
Their beds are similar to other trucks of that era, but the front ends are truly unique being darn near completely flat
Supremes and thin whites, I will forever be a sucker for that combination
The owner, Zach () , also hauls around a pretty cool teardrop trailer with the truck
This shortened ’49 9 International KB6 rides on a Chevy 1500 chassis
It also gets an astonishing 10″ of lift that makes it almost look like an ATV with a body. A full run down of the truck is
This Loadstar popped up in a Facebook group that I am a part of called , it’s small block Chevy 350 powered
Restored or modified vintage firetrucks are always cool and this R185 International was saved from the crusher via a Ford chassis and a few builders – Photo: 
The roof has been chopped and the bed is new to the truck as the original firetruck pumper is long gone – Photo:
This particular Loadstar was a family farm vehicle that the owner decided needed to have a proper retirement – Photo:
It’s pretty cool that the bed retains what I’ll assume is a grain spreader
It looks just plain awesome laid out – Photo:
built the Gangstar (You Know My Steez) for SEMA in 2015 – Photo:
The super single rear wheels on this truck really give it an interesting look, in addition to the white frame and bare metal colored cab of course – Photo:
I imagine this truck was the subject of the Mobsteel/Detroit Steel show (at least for a little bit) but sadly we don’t get it in Canada – Photo:
If you’re not following Jason Thorbecke’s International build I highly suggest you do
Should further convincing be necessary, take a look at the chassis! The only place (I know of) to follow it is via his Instagram

WTF Friday: A Datsun 720 With A Few Secrets


can always be counted on for a few gems and this one was brought to my attention by Detroit based contributor Jason Langley of .

The truck, that is clearly far from stock, is a bit of a hodge-podge of parts. The chassis is from a Nissan 300zx and the motor is a Chevrolet 350 small block. The body started as stock Datsun but has been heavily modified since.

It doesn’t really look it at first glance but the cab has been moved back six inches. To accommodate the repositioning of the drivers quarters the bed as also shortened six inches.

Considering the shuffle the proportions don’t look altered and that is probably because the huge box flares demand your attention.

Because the 300zx is significantly wider than the Datsun 720, flares of some sort were necessary to contain the Rocket Racing wheels.

If you ask me these box flares could have benefited from about 1000 less rivets to assist with their visual flow.

The motor has been stuffed back about as far as it can go, and the adjustable upper strut mounts suggest that , who built this car, had performance beyond a straight line in mind.

With the motor that far back the truck has a reported 52/48 weight distribution which means it is probably fairly nimble.

Execution wise it all looks to be done pretty competently, and the car is plated so you can row through the Tremec 5pseed on the streets if you so wish.

There are currently two bids on with the top one being $3000.

This seems like almost a deal at that price so it will be interesting to see what it actually goes for all said and done.

With a slight rework of the rivet placement and an altitude adjustment and this could be a pretty menacing looking truck.

Theme Tuesday: Recently Viewed – June 2017


Theme Tuesdays after the long weekend always catch me by surprise because the ever so slight schedule change drastically throws off my daily routine where I prepare Theme Tuesdays Sunday and Monday.

Thankfully long weekends often line up with the end of/start of the month which means a Recently Viewed Theme Tuesday can save me thanks to YouTube’s history feature.

Videos this month are varied from (hat tip the Anth from for the reminder to watch their videos again), , , and more.

A post shared by (@mikegtcustom) on

WTF Friday: 4G63 Chevrolet Beretta


For this week’s WTF Friday I want you to read the title, and then read it once more. No there are not any typos in that title someone actually did put a 4GC3 (aka Mitsubishi Eclipse or Eagle Talon depending on your locale) into a Chevrolet Beretta.

The Beretta was a weird car, kind of like the Cavalier/Sunfires bigger brother whose glory days are long since passed, but every once and awhile still does something kind of neat.

Berettas are also a car I have not seen on the road in a long time, nor have I heard anyone really mention them. That’s what made me chuckle when I saw one come up on Kijiji.

But then I saw the inter-cooler piping and my interest was piqued.

There were a number of weird turbo cars in that era (mostly Mopars) but the Beretta was certainly not one of them. Intrigued I clicked through the gallery and saw the photo below.

Wait, what? I must admit at this point I was surprised and a little annoyed. Surprised by the swap, annoyed by how nonchalantly the owner mentioned it and how few pictures there were in the for sale ad. Was I being tricked? I needed to know more.

Enter, once again and for the second week in a row, Car Domain.

There I found photos of the car in its previous guise. Early 2000s by the looks of things, dead in the middle of The Fast and The Furious era.

Vinyl overload aside the Car Domain page did reveal a better shot of the engine bay.

Such a weird combination and yet, it looks to be done pretty well. It’s no shaved bay or anything but that can be overlooked considering its a turbo Mitsubishi motor in what was a naturally aspirated Chevrolet.

There was even a dyno sheet on the CD page. Considering that many swapped cars at shows today barley putt on and off trailers having a dyno sheet speaks volumes of the builders follow through.

After eleven years of storage the owner is now ready to let the car go for A bit of updating and this car could be a unique, yet very bizarre sleeper.

I genuinely mean it when I say I hope it goes to a good home.

Theme Tuesdays: BMW E21s


I was an e30 kid and I suppose still am to some degree. As an e30 kid I didn’t really pay much mind to its predecessor, the e21, until I was older, wiser, more open minded, and coincidentally no longer an e30 owner.

Today, I actually don’t mind the e21, in fact I wish I saw more of them. Sadly they are not the most common things around here. At any rate it is due time they got some focused love here on Grosirbajuanak and that’s what this Theme Tuesday aims to do.

Let us start local with a car I last saw at Fitted Lifestyle in 2015
Manolo Velasco has a way with air ride, BMWS, and BBS wheels
Rember the days when sites that ended in ‘.de’ had the coolest cars? Before Google Translate? I feel like this car came from one of those sites
On that note, there will be a lot of BBS wheels in this post
A bit of stop and stare witha heck of a lot of rear tuck
did this e21 for a female owner
Females seem to have a way with e28s as this one is also female owned – Photo:

Becky’s E28 was quite popular a few years ago thanks to this video:

This one is pretty cool as well, though far less cinimatic

Lots of BBS wheels, like I said, they just work on these cars. It helps in this instance they are under an extremely clean Alpina model
This one is apparently on hydraulics though I couldn’t find any photos of the set up – Photo:
How about a wide body e21?
This time capsule is powered by a 1990 525i motor, the . Hopefully someone kept this one around
5.8L Chevy powered Pro Street e21, pretty damn wild
Certainly a lot of blue but, pretty rad. A more robust feature on the car is here on
A great looking Alpina, with what look to be molded flares and of course M colors
M colors also appear here, on an e21 that is a little a typical
I actually really, really, want to go to a tractor pull so I am all about this – Photo:
campaigns this car in the Netherlands
Carline wheels look good under pretty well everything
M50 swaps are fairly common for e30s, but I’m not so sure if the same can be said for e21s, the
It’s always cool to see people take inspiration from the Porsche RS and twist it a bit
This car also has sports an S50, so it should go pretty well. – Via:

No European car based Theme Tuesday is quite complete without a 2JZ swapped drift machine is it?

I’d just like to close this out by saying yes, I am one of those weirdos that actually don’t find square headlight conversions in early 3 series revolting, especially when its a car fitted with an e30 m3 s14 motor -Photo:

WTF Friday: Charging Into The Future


Minitruckers love swapping front ends, that’s not news, but I did recently find a front end graft that is new to me; a first generation S10 with a sixth generation Charger front end grafted to it.

Like every font end swap the look certainly isn’t for everyone, but, the work does look to be done fairly well, at least judging from the available photos.

Not the effort of a shop, but rather an ambitious do it yourself enthusiast, this truck is (all things considered) a great effort at something few would attempt.

Besides both being automobiles the s10 and the Charger don’t share a lot in common so combining the two is no small feat and it’s not exactly like you can buy the conversion at your local Napa.

The hood is, according to the owner, 11 pieces merge into one and judging from the difference between the gaps in the photo above and the final product, I am going to assume more than few man hours were spent getting the gaps dialed in.

Out back a Cadillac SRX donates its tales and, typical s10 its bagged and bodied sitting on chrome.

Sadly the owners  –yes Cardomain is still up– page doesn’t have much in the way of completed photos so the postage stamp up top is all we get.