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Thread: wilch's Supercharged na6 MX5 - comic book build

  1. #1
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    wilch's Supercharged na6 MX5 - comic book build

    Present day:

    Supercharged MX5/Miata by wilch, on Flickr

    ****************

    Hey guys, thought I'd change it up and do my thread more like this (and create a new one in the process, hope the mods don't mind).

    n.b. throughout the posts' some names will be removed, and substituted with "seller" for ease of story telling.


    IMG_3269_1 by superchargedroadster5, on Flickr

    Thursday Night 11/11/2010
    So for quite a few months I’ve been on carsales.com searching for that perfect mx5. The one that I’ll have a look at and get all the right feelings from.

    I’m very particular about my cars. They have to be clean, and by clean I mean “new looking” inside and out. It is actually possible to have a 20+ year old car that looks new inside and out. I know, I own one, and have had a couple in my family.

    The last time I bought a car for myself was Friday, 23 April 2004. That day was an amazing day (I’ve typed up the story previously in my personal blog). Everything that day felt right. The car was perfect, interior and exterior clean, engine bay clean, the drive was perfect, the seller was genuine and honest.

    I was hopeful that if I looked at cars again, a similar thing would happen. It did, but it took a very long time. This time around, instead of having to only look at a handful of cars to find “the one”, I ended up looking at quite a significant amount more.

    This year I decided I might want something a little less modified, without a roof, something that allowed me to blend in but still have fun while driving. A car that allowed me to enjoy the winding roads like I once use to, without fear of repercussion from the law, or the disapproving looks of others.

    Prior to the interest rate hikes I was looking at Lotus Elise’s. My heart wanted to jump there, but my head wouldn’t let me.

    “So what else out there matches the same criteria met by the Elise but won’t break the bank,” is what I asked myself. The only answer that I could come up with was, “Mazda MX5”.

    I let my OCD run rampant. Not a single morning or night was without a few hours spent browsing carsales.com. This eventually turned into a ritual. The more car’s I found and looked at that disappointed me, or sold before I got the chance to look at, the more I wanted to find “the one”.

    For months my girlfriend and my weekends and some week nights were filled with anticipation and disappointment. I’d find a car, make a call, go to view the car, and either have my heart sink at the first sight of the exterior of the car, the interior of the car, or the engine bay.

    Or I’d fail to pull the trigger soon enough and have the car sold out from under me.

    That said, none of those really gave me the right feelings. None gave me that feeling I got when I found my car nearly 7 years ago. None really met all the criteria I look for in a car.

    After awhile I put together a list of questions that I either asked during the first phone call, or sent via an email. This helped save my time, and save me from some disappointment.

    That said, you would not believe how different people’s opinion of “excellent”, or “immaculate” can be. To me, covered in visible swirl marks is far from “immaculate”, and a ding in every panel is far from “excellent”. These owners were obviously not enthusiasts.

    I also found that I have one pet hate.

    Quite a few people, when confronted with questions about damage, or the few failings of the condition of their car’s (asked politely ofcourse), replied with,

    “Well, the car is over 10 years old, you’ve got to expect that.”

    This got on my nerves. If a car has been maintained correctly, it can still appear “new”. Deep gouges in the paint don’t just happen because the car’s ten years old.

    …Oh, and for the exorbitant amount they were asking for their cars, saying that just made me….ARGH! (/end rant)

    Anyway, I digress. By the end I had quite a few cars lined up to look at after emailing and calling, but the blue one that I bought was the first in that line.

    Prior to the week of Thursday 11 November 2010, I was adamant about the age of the car that I would allow myself to buy. I did not want to look at any below 1997. But then I read on a thread somewhere on jdmstyletuning.com (and I’m paraphrasing here), “…that the physical age of the car shouldn’t matter, because there are owners of older vehicles that look after their cars much more than many new car owners.”

    I’d been thinking this for quite some time. But I never allowed myself to believe it. This one post seemingly allowed me to give myself the green light to look at older vehicles.

    So I found the blue one on carsales. It had actually been advertised for most of the time that I had been looking for an MX5. It’s just that it was out of my price range before, plus it was older than I wanted.

    But with my new found vigor (or whatever) I looked up the number, made that phone call, and I was met with an automated answer! Not even voice mail! But I was asked by the pre-recorded voice if I wanted to send the recipient my number. So I did thinking nothing would come of it. At this point I thought that maybe the blue car wasn’t for me.

    Feeling rejected I put the phone down and walked away from the computer, and attempted to rid my brain of all thoughts about the blue car, or any MX5 for that matter. I was protecting myself from the possibility of more disappointment. I didn’t even want to try calling about one of the other car’s I had lined up in the list.

    Later that night, I got a phone call from a number I didn’t recognise. It was the owner of the blue MX5 that I had called earlier! I was quietly excited. I walked quickly to my study and brought up my list of questions. Nervously I went through them, and I think the owner could tell I was nervous. But he obliged. Answered every one of them, at one point I even think he questioned himself on the validity of this potential buyer he was speaking with (ie. me). I think he thought I was a tyre kicker at one stage.

    But we ended up talking for 20 minutes or more about his car, what work he’s done with the car, the history of the car, the reason’s for selling, his history with MX5’s, and even about my experiences looking at other used MX5’s.

    With more than suitable answers to my questions I organised a viewing of the car for the next day...
    Last edited by wilch; 19-05-13 at 02:27 PM.
  2. #2
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    IMG_3217_2 by superchargedroadster5, on Flickr


    Friday 12 November 2010
    The excitement was overwhelming. Again I had allowed myself to get excited over a car that, going on history, would more than likely disappoint me.

    It was Friday morning, my alarm started going off. Waking from a broken sleep I wanted to slap myself for being stupid. “Don’t think about it,” I had to remind myself.

    As I started my day I put cars out of my mind. But as the time to see the car came closer I couldn’t help but feel an anxious excitement, “Will I need to keep looking after this one? What if everything’s good, what then?”

    The time came to head out to the car. I seemed to be on autopilot. Emotionless, I went through the checklist that I had gone through many times before:

    * Print out of the car details, including rego, vin, engine number, seller’s name, address, asking price, kilometres…check.
    * Multiple print out’s of the Car-Buyer’s-Receipt pre-filled with most details…check.
    * Torch…check.
    * Copy of the Miata Buyer’s Guide…check. (Never really used this after the first few times, but kept bringing it along out of habit).
    * TomTom…check.

    …and off I went.

    Pulling up infront of the driveway that nervous excitement that I had grown familiar with returned. I wanted to be optimistic about it. “It’ll be all you wanted and more”, I said to myself. Followed by, “Don’t get your hopes up idiot!”

    Slowly I began my walk down a very long driveway. I could see a couple of cars in the distance, but not the MX5 I came for. It wasn’t until I rounded a slight bend that I could see something blue under a carport, parked behind another car, hiding…waiting for me.

    As I drew nearer, I recognised the shape of the front, followed by that headlight intake that I was set on changing with the stock item that was included in the sale, and then the wheels. It was shiny, sparkly, and clean. My heart rate must’ve doubled at that point, it actually looked good!

    This moment was only interrupted by the seller opening their front door, peering out, and asking, “Wil?”

    It’s at this point my memory blurs a little.

    The seller brought the car out into the light where it shimmered wearing it’s colour coded hardtop. I went through my checklist, all the while I struggled to suppress my eagerness. I went over every inch of the car, using my torch where needed. It was looking good. Cleaner than any of the previous MX5′s I had seen, including one’s that were ten years younger.

    Time for a test drive. It was during the drive that I had made up my mind. The whine of the supercharger was intoxicating. The first set of twisty corners I encountered the thing that came to my mind was, “Jinba Itai”. Something I had read along the way whilst researching MX5′s. It translates to, “Horse and Rider as one”. I wanted this car, and it wanted me.


    IMG_3234_c by superchargedroadster5, on Flickr

    As we made our way back to that long driveway I had a script playing in my head on how the sale was going to go down (I wonder if I was talking out aloud while running through it, I hope I wasn’t, how embarrassing).

    I stopped the car, and we got out. I asked if we could take the hard top off, and put the soft top up. We did, and I commenced going through an abbreviated version of my checklist again. But my mind was already made up.

    “So, how do I buy it?”, I blurted out without so much of a breath.

    “Did I really just say that?”, I thought to myself quietly.

    The seller looked shocked, “Really? You’ve decided!”

    I think he was as shocked as I was with the question I had just asked. So we danced with the how’s and how much’s, and came to an agreement, as long as a few RTA and REV’s checks turned out AOK ofcourse.

    …and that was it. I drove away about one and a half hours later that 12th of November 2010, in my new MX5.
    Last edited by wilch; 24-06-12 at 06:55 AM.
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    day 2 - let the mods begin

    There were three things that were on my “must-do” list after I bought the car. Mount the front number plate (it hadn’t been mounted), adjust the coilovers so the car isn’t sitting up high (they were adjusted to the top of their height for trailer clearance), and wash, polish, and wax/seal the paint.

    The first night of owning the car was a restless one. I hadn’t eaten since breakfast, nor could I bring myself to eat. I was hungry, but I couldn’t keep anything down. The lack of sleep from the night before had me exhausted, but I couldn’t relax. The adrenaline keeping me going had well and truly taken hold. All I wanted to do was drive, and do the three things I mentioned above.

    But there wasn’t enough time in the night to do it all.

    I also lost some time because my girlfriend and I had to go pick up her car from my work. That was a good opportunity for her though, I let her drive the mx5. It also happened to be the first time I had been in my car with the roof down whilst it was driving. But that’s ok, I love her :-P , and she loved driving the new car for that brief moment. That made me happy.

    It also happened to be her first time driving a convertible, and a supercharged car. At the first set of traffic lights she exclaimed, “I want one!”

    Finally she knew why I had wanted to own an MX5 for so long, and why I was getting so frustrated during the many months of searching.

    Anyway, after eating barely anything for dinner I grabbed my girlfriend and told her we were going for a drive. She too was excited and wanted to get going.

    The car was still riding high, with no front number plate so I decided to keep the drive local. It was so much fun. You couldn’t wipe the smile off my face if you tried….and all we did was go around in circles. I finally had a convertible sports car to call my own.

    The next day I was up at 4am googling, “How to adjust coilover height” finding out all the information I could, and watching all the youtube how-to video’s I could find. Unfortunately the coilover’s in my MX5 were rare in English speaking countries, so an exact how-to for me didn’t exist.

    By 4:30am I was in the garage with the car up in the air on jack stands. Measuring, and adjusting.

    By 5am the car was lowered. Seeing the car sitting properly (though, I would end up lowering the car again the next morning) made my smile grow even larger. It was time to drive it again….I drove to my parents to show them my handy work .


    IMG_3236 by superchargedroadster5, on Flickr

    Eventually it was time to tackle that front number plate. I didn’t want to drill into the front bar, so I decided to fabricate a number plate bracket out of some lengths of aluminum, and bolts that I had. I wanted an offset number plate.

    So I sat down infront of the car with numberplate in hand, and some lengths of cardboard and started visualising, and looking for mounting points.

    My original plan of mounting to the baby tooth (tow hook) was ruined because my car didn’t seem to have any :\.

    Eventually I figured out how, cut and bent the cardboard to size, then made the bracket out of aluminum. After a few hours it was mounted! HURRAY! “I could relax finally”, I thought. But no.


    IMG_3223_comic by superchargedroadster5, on Flickr

    I needed to wash, polish, and seal the car. All my energy was near depleted, and the adrenaline I had been running on was disappearing. I literally felt sick, but I was still smiling. I even went for a 2 hour drive after doing everything.

    That day I ended up completing all that I wanted to, except the photos.
    Last edited by wilch; 24-06-12 at 06:57 AM.
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    IMG_3272 by superchargedroadster5, on Flickr

    From the moment I had the car in my possession there was one thing I was that was more of a need than a want. A security upgrade. So I started searching for someone to do the work. I eventually found Daniel from Platinum Car Security and organised a day for him to perform some magic.

    Great work, clean, and efficient. The website he has is brilliant too, if you need to book him in for an install just click the appointment button on the right and follow the steps. Too easy.
    Last edited by wilch; 24-06-12 at 06:59 AM.
  5. #5
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    IMG_0584_2 by superchargedroadster5, on Flickr

    I started to notice some swirl marks on the MX5, and now that I had seen them I couldn't seem to un-see them. Everytime I looked at the car my eyes were drawn to the areas where I've seen swirls. Frustrating...

    So last Friday I went and bought some Prima Amigo from Dave at Reflect Effect. The results he had posted up of this stuff + Driven fixing swirls has been pretty good, and after using it I can vouch for it. One thing I don't like is how dusty the Driven is. Pain in the ass.

    I also finally received the Shin-Etsu grease I ordered for the window rubbers last week. Ordered for 1/4 of the retail price in Australia from America, however took nearly 4 weeks to get here. Bitter sweet victory there.


    IMG_32891 by superchargedroadster5, on Flickr

    Saturday was spent polishing the MX5. Satisfying, but painful with my back injury. The planned drive for the next day didn't go ahead because of it. d'oh.

    Shiny toys.


    IMG_3287 by superchargedroadster5, on Flickr

    Last week also saw me order quite a few parts from overseas. The waiting is killing me already!
    Last edited by wilch; 24-06-12 at 07:02 AM.
  6. #6
    Member G54B's Avatar
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    That sir, is a LARGE carport.
    MX5 needs more hardtop, Garage Vary front lip and Equip 01's. But it's still very, very cool
    Rail it & nail it.
    Hillbilly Deluxe Mk.II, '81 Mitsubishi Scorpion/'96 Nissan Navara 4x4/'81 Yamaha IT250/'83 Yamaha YZ125
  7. #7
    Member wilch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by spiderman2876 View Post
    That sir, is a LARGE carport.
    MX5 needs more hardtop, Garage Vary front lip and Equip 01's. But it's still very, very cool
    Thanks man. Hardtop's in the spare room.
  8. #8
    New Member Saito's Avatar
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    What a awesome way to post your car diary...comic style! Love it already!
  9. #9
    Member JDM-20L's Avatar
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    Cool write up, Cool car!

    I lol'd when I read the checking car sales like a daily ritual part.. I know that feeling well!
  10. #10
    Member byza's Avatar
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    Mate that's a refreshing build writeup.. Great to see someone with such patience to find what you wanted and it's shows by it's factory presentation
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