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Theme Tuesdays: Classic Minis – Pt. 2


If you’ve been reading this site since damn near the beginning then you know the last Classic Mini Theme Tuesday was done all the way back in 2012. Six years is far to long for me to revisit such an iconic car.

No disrespect to BMW, and the models they are currently producing under the Mini marquee, but I’ll take an old model over a new one any day of the week.

So with that said, here’s classic Minis part two.

Classic striped and British racing green, its hard to find a more iconic mini look to kick things off with.. however there’s one thing missing
Of course the “missing” thing, depending on your taste preference, are the quintessential fog lights


Super clean example from an Engineered Automotive’s Cars & Coffee
I’ve never seen this particular combination again, I wonder if it is still around and for that matter, who built the pint-sized trailer?
Despite their small stature people have managed to stuff all manner of motor inside a classic Mini engine compartment
One of the most common swaps is of course the 4 cylinder Honda B series motor
This little mini built by Jeff and shot by Chris Johnston was the subject of a 2012 feature
This little B series Honda gives away its secret on the quarter panel
I think there was a B under the hood of this track prepared Mini if my memory rings true…
The sign basically says all you need to know about this particular mini, it’s a K swapped all wheel drive beast
Sadly I’ve never seen this car again it was super clean however
Stepping away from the Honda motors, this is a car that I’ve spotted all over Ontario
A small block Chevy 350 motor sits in the rear
The car has recently started to appear more often, and recently saw a turbo fitted.
This monster Mini has a Porsche 944 motor under hood, if there was a hood of course
It was the subject of a WTF Friday years back

How about a Hayabusa powered Mini?

Not sure where I picked up this photo, as it’s been on my computer so long, but it’s an absolutely killer looking little car, I love the side exhaust too
This Mini is a “Mini” in name and body but not chassis. It’s an MX-5 underneath and you can find the build thread over on of course – Photo: Slam: Media

A blend of mini styling and hot rod attitude? I can dig it
Going to close things out with the Critter, a 1/4 mile mini that looks to have a serious V8 under hood via –

Event Coverage: The 2018 Jalopy Jam Up


Since its inception the has been unique. It is, to the best of my knowledge, the only traditional hot rod and custom show in Canada.

Prior to 2018 the show took place at a fairly unique venue, a re-purposed dude ranch on the outskirts of Ontario. That venue while extremely different and very photogenic, wasn’t without its flaws.

The most significant of those flaws was perhaps distance. It was a haul to get to the ghost town it was always worth it for those who went the distance, but, everyone knew it was far.

It’s said, if there’s one thing that’s constant in life it’s change and after four successful years it was time for the Jam Up to change.

The new home for the Jalopy Jam up is now the . A venue with fair history itself and lots of space for the show to grow.

Unfortunately with the venue change the Jam Up lost its original date, moving to the same day as another favorite show of mine, . I mention this, not to cause controversy or anything like that, but to mention that these photos are actually from Friday, the quieter of the two-day event.

When two shows I support are on the same weekend, I do my best to make both.

For the smaller of the two days the turnout was still extremely impressive and kept me more than busy the few hours I was there.

It was a mix of old friends and old cars, and new friends, with new cars. Throw in a vintage bike show, mini-bikes, and the smell of BBQ and you’ve got a great afternoon. My only regret is I’ve yet to stay and enjoy the Jam Up night life.

I don’t know the exact numbers, but I am pretty sure this year’s Jalopy Jam up was largest yet, which considering a venue switch and a slightly worrisome weather forecast is a great thing.

As always there was quite the variety of vehicles strewn about the event. Traditional builds took precedence, but if it’s cool, and if it’s classic it’s generally welcome somewhere in the grounds.

Making the most of my time I was sure to do a few laps of the venue looking for anything cool.

There were plenty of cars I liked, in fact I really don’t think I saw a car I didn’t like but I really enjoyed the two cars above.

They were both fairly simple, cleaned up, but not restored, a bit of pinstriping on the Buick and a lot of low on each.

Classic metal stuffed in the weeds works well doesn’t it? And with each having more than enough room for a full family they’re ideal summer cruisers.

When it comes to favorites, this green/teal/ Ford was another one of my mine. Fords with fenders usually don’t do it for me but there was something about this one.

The wheels, the color, the stance, it all just came together and I couldn’t help but stare at it.

It wasn’t extremely elaborate, but it was clear a large amount of attention was paid putting it together. The treatment was also so timeless that it was impossible (at least for me) to tell when it was built.

Keith, the man at the helm of Binbrook Speed And Custom not only had a booth this year, but he was also chopping a top live in one of the venues pavilions.

Unfortunately for me the bulk of that work happened on Saturday, so I’ll have to catch him do it again next year. From what I hear it was a hit.

As my time to be at the Jam Up wound down I did a few extra laps in order to get photos of the variety at the show before the sun slipped behind the horizon for the night.

Though this year just finished I am eagerly looking toward next year and the year’s to follow.

Congrats to Jeff, Brandon, and Jay for another great year and here’s to many more. One day I’ll have something cool to bring, I swear.

Not Your Average Blobeye


Imagine you were out on an urban exploration mission, popped open a barn, and inside found a road worthy, former competition, WRC car hiding inside. Sounds too good to be true right?

Well, that’s because it is, but that didn’t stop Mike Pateras and project partners and from telling that story when they released the video below.

Mike dropped the “discovery” video on Youtube about a week ago and somehow I managed to completely overlook the fact that it was a Canadian car.

Worse still, I didn’t even realize it was an Ontario car until I saw it at Northern Showdown 2018.

A car as extensive as this doesn’t get built overnight and Mike has been plugging away with his Subaru for a few years. If I recal correctly it’s motor build number two and widebody conversion number one.

Before it’s current guise the car was already winning rally blue with green wheels, but the new aged livery really sets it apart from the pack.

Skepple Inc did a phenonomal job on the wrap design and from a few feet out the simulated wear and tear does a really great job of looking authentic.

The battle scars might currently be fake but I don’t imagine they will be forever.

While I spotted it at a show, this car is definetly not a show car. Mike drives the wheels off the thing as evident by the two videos below. The first being his first gymkhana effort.

Mike has plenty of information on the car, and more video of him thrashing it, on both his youtube channel and Instagram ( and respectively) so be sure to check those out for more information.

Theme Tuesdays: Car Art and The ELTA Summer Bash


As the years have rolled by the odometer my love for nostalgia and the way things ‘were’ has only increased. I’m not a pessimist who hates modern cars by any stretch, but older cars just have a certain presence that’s hard to replicate. They drive different, smell different, look different, they just plain are different.

Pedestrian safety hadn’t ruined designs, fuel mileage was an after thought and cars were for the most part fun. One of the things I like most about car tuning, from days gone by (and why I keep going to events like the ELTA Summer Bash and Big Go Drags) is the unique ways people personalized their cars.

Wraps and stickers are all the rage now, but in these circles, then and now, paint is still king.

Perhaps a dying art, my respect goes out to those who are still learning to sign paint an pinstripe. In my opinion having an artist add their touch to your car gives the work an extra layer of depth that just can’t quite be replicated by a machine. An extra bit of paint here, a small error there just brings the work to life.

Truth be told I’ve been meaning to do a Theme Tuesday like this for a while and with so many examples present at the ELTA Summer Bash I really couldn’t resist putting this one together.

If you like paint, and art like I do, enjoy this week’s Theme Tuesday.

Also sincerest apologies for the Theme Tuesday drought. I am going to try to hold myself to at least a bi-weekly schedule moving forward.

Motor Monday: Steeped In Nostaliga


I’m back! Well, really I never left, just hit another busy spell. Regardless I’ll have some new content hitting the site very soon. The Jalopy Jam Up and Northern Showdown are this weekend, and two weekends ago I was at the 2018 ELTA Summer Bash and Big Go Drags.

As I race to slice and dice those photos up before the weekend hits, here’s a cool project I saw for sale while cruising the pits at St. Thomas Raceway Park.

This ’69 Corvette funny car isn’t a car that is entirely unfamiliar to me. I’ve seen the car in the ELTA shop and they even dragged it out to the 2018 Detroit Autorama.

However until the 2018 ELTA Bash I wasn’t able to get the car’s full story. It was clear a survivor but I knew it had to have some sort of historical significance for the ELTA guys to hold onto it.

The abridged version of the car’s history is as follows; it was originally build in California by Drag Racing legend Lou Gasparelli. In its original guise it was a blown big block direct drive car.

Eventually the car was retired, for the first time, and later found in an outdoor storage compound. From there the car was given it’s new flares, new stance and recognizable paint job.

Both a show and go car the Corvette actually appeared briefly in a movie called “” in 1979.

Sometime after that the car dropped off the radar only to pop up on eBay then eventually in the ELTA shop.

Since it’s rediscovery the car has undergone a partial restoration and a 427 big block once again sits between the frame rails. The project is once again for sale at an asking price of 18k.

Can anyone lend me 17.5 k and some garage space? I feel a bad idea brewing.

Event Coverage: Drift Jam 2018 – Throwdown Round 1


Have you ever been part of a happening? I’m not talking about some weird and plot twists. I’m talking about being at the jump off point of something new and exciting.

Prior attending , when asked if I’ve ever been a part of a happening I would have said no. I’ve been to plenty of first time events sure, but never one that’s shown so much potential.

Drifting is a form of Motorsport and therefore isn’t cheap. Driving in any event requires some level of capital investment.

Tires are blown through in rapid succession, parts break, there are trailer fees, and so forth and so on. Competing in an event also comes with it the potential risk of destroying a car you spent untold hours building.

As a result driver’s are rightfully particular about the events they attend.

If you’re a new series you better prove that you know what you’re doing if you want to survive.

With their first event being a resounding success word obviously spread because Drift Jam had a very respectable field for their first competitive event.

From the gates open to gates closed it’s clear to see that the organizers, Devo and Jover, care about their series the drivers and the spectators. Heck they even care about us media folk as well.

Actions speak louder than words and the actions they took to make the day run better went a long way.

Here’s an example; initially the day started with one track layout. After running it for roughly an hour Devo and Jover modified the layout based on driver feedback. I absolutely cannot understate the importance of this.

If you’ve ever watched a competitive event (of any sort) where the course doesn’t work you know it isn’t fun. It’s much more enjoyable to watch driver’s go all out on a course they love versus cruise through course that doesn’t work.

The result of a quick layout change, along with utilizing the main track, the Fabi track, and the skid pad was a day of near constant action.

The main track was for the primary competition and Fabi and the skid pad were kept warm by those who wanted to drive without the pressure of judged runs.

As you can tell from the photos plenty of people took advantage of the copious amounts of track time and tire smoke filled the air all day.

The Drift Jam competitive events have two classes. Street and Pro. The street class is run more like a jam session. These car’s don’t run tandems and instead compete for awards like most aggressive entry, best car style, and best driving style.

Pro, is as the name describes, for professional drivers. The cars are a little more serious, and the competition a little more traditional, but there isn’t as strict a rule set as other competitions.

In the end this series is more about than it is rules and awards.

From the outside looking in the Drift Jam format appears to have worked really well. From am to pro the driving was exceptional and it looked like everyone was having a great time.

In terms of tandem battle’s the one’s at Drift Jam are some of the best I’ve seen in recent memory. The wide variety of driving styles and cars made each tandem battle quite different from the next.

It was controlled mayhem and quite frankly it was awesome.

There were a couple of offs, and minor break downs throughout the day, but every car managed to roll out mostly in one piece which is what you always want to see at a drifting event.

Nothing is more gutting than seeing someone’s hard work spread all over the track as a pile of unrecognizable debris.

The wildest battle of the day was between Josiah Fallaise and Pat Cyr. Neither driver wanted to give up so much as an inch and as a result they ran incredibly close.

In the end Pat Cyr would up on top followed by Josiah Fallaise (who I promise was more excited than the photos make him seem) and Franky Becerra.

As if that wasn’t enough immediately after the award ceremony local clothing company Screvvface held an event called King Of The Ring.

King of The Ring rules were simple, go out and get the crowd hyped. Do that, and you win a prize pack.

A true showman leaves people wanting more and that’s what Drift Jam did with King Of The Ring. Thankfully more in this case is just around the bend. Throwdown Round Two takes place August 12th 2018 at Toronto Motorsports Park Cayuga.

For more information on the next event and the entire series visit 

Another Saturday At Binbrook Speed & Custom


A few weeks ago Keith (the owner of Binbrook Speed & Custom) had one of his family and friends BBQs at his home shop in Binbrook. I rolled through (camera in hand obviously) for a good time and some good food.

Much like last year taking photos wasn’t my main goal but with so many awesome hot rods in attendance how can a guy resist?

Keith’s BBQs are always a great way for me to meet some noteable characters among the hot rod community and surprisngly I met two from my neck of the woods here in Durham.

The first rolled up in this super cool Pontiac, it’s a small block powered car that sounds mighty healthy. Apparently it had a bigger motor previously and the current is a compromise for the sake of drivability.

With slot mags in the rear, and factory wheels up front it’s got a bit of an understated presence I really dig.

Bart Smith, a local illustrator I’ve wanted to meet for awhile, showed up riding shot gun in the Pontiac to pick up his four banger powered Model A. It’s a simple little hot rod, but for what it lacks in size and power it makes up for in sheer fun.

The spartan Model A was at Keith’s shop for a little front end work. Keith addressed a few niggling issues in the front end and Bart drove the car the over 2 hour track back to Durham.

Can’t wait until the next BBQ, or my next chance to shoot a Binbrook build.

Motor Monday: V10 S2000


Full disclosure, I’ve been trying to track down Francis Gosselin’s s2000 for years. I’d seen photos of it before at events like Topp Drift, but I was never able to make it to an event that the car was present at.

Our game of Polkaroo finally ended at Throwdown event. There not only did I get to see the car, but I got to watch it turn tires into smoke.

The car is beat up, the motor is dirty, but such is the life of a drift car. The most important part is that the swap works, and it works well.

Surprisingly the v10 doesn’t even look all that uncomfortable in an engine bay that was originally designed to fit a small four cylinder.

I was in a desperate hunt for water when I caught the car in the pits, so I’ll have to do a better job of bringing you details and more photos the next time I see it.

There’s this year, so I feel pretty good that I will come across the car again.

Theme Tuesdays: Exploring The Details at the Majestics BBQ


I’ve been going to at least one lowrider BBQ a season for the past six years. If you think I’d get tired of the events you couldn’t be further from the truth.

I absolutely love them, still. The atmosphere, the music, I’ve gone over all of this before. If you’ve never been you ought to go. Because I’ve covered the event so many times this year I’ve decided to take a macro approach and post just detail shots here on SIE.

It’s a bit different than how I normal present every coverage, but detail shots work great in a lowrider space. It’s also a great way for me to package up some event coverage into a succinct little Theme Tuesday.


If you want to see my more traditional coverage of this event I did two posts over on . A , and one .

Theme Tuesdays: Ford Econolines


A few days ago, while I was watching  most recent Dagiban video, and it occurred to me that I have not done a van related Theme Tuesday in years. But, not wanting to directly steal from Noriyaro I’m going to go left and focus on Econlines instead of Dodge Vans.

Why Econolines? Well, why not? Early Econlines were designed in an era where it was incredibly common for axles to sit under occupants and the motor between the driver and passenger. This configuration created a unique look common between VW busses, Corvairs, Dodge A-100s and of course the star of today the Ford Econoline.

That drive-line positioning can make lowering thse vans a bit of a mission, but, where there’s a will there’s a way. Thankfully all of these owners found both the will and the way.

We’re going to start this one of tame and get crazier as we go. This one looks pretty good dropped over one of the most common wheels of the early 90s
Note sure if this local project was ever finished, but the Corvette wheels certainly made it an intriguing project
The “Tinman” from Vanfest 2018
I feel like I let all of you down but not realizing there was a wheel standing Econoline in Ontario while this site has been in operation

While, not technically a van, I couldn’t leave this one out, it looks sick
Steel wheel (widened in the rear), pinstriping, and some low and these vans look way better than they did from the factory
Judging the by the wheels and the watermark I’d wager a minitrucker had a part in this one
I absolutely love this Econoline shot by
The wide slot mags really make it Photo:
The darket accents around the bodylines work well on this van, gives it a cool kustom vibe
The added vintage lettering just puts the whole thing over the top
Pro Street Econolines scratch an itch I honestly didn’t know I had
Especially the 454 packing variety
spotted this very American wheel stander in 2013, sadly I can’t find video of it running
This is a later van, obviously, but the only of its kind I have seen this low
A little SEMA style thanks to Rob McJannett and
Perhaps the only traditionally styled lowrider econoline?
In the world of custom vans, Vango is unquestionably one of the best – Photo:

This video from Hoonigans breaks down the iconic van extremely well.