Where to even begin. Seems to be an on-going trend with this car, this project and life in general. Lots has went on since the last update. At the very least I’ve tried to keep the Instagram photos somewhat up to date. I’ll try to keep this short, but making up for nearly 4 months is going to be anything but brief, especially for me. Before we dive into it, I want to say I could have not have dreamed how wild this journey would have ever turned out to. A very special thank you to my dad who helped and worked along side me throughout this last year in getting the transformation to where it is today (Sorry to you and mom for coming over and destroying your garage every weekend!). Another thank you to one of my good friends, Rick at Synergy Motorsports for his relentless effort and unrivaled talents, without him I don’t think the exhaust could have come out half as great as it has. And of course, my friends, forum and group enthusiasts who’ve never let me steer from completing this challenge/goal, no matter how stacked the odds may have seemed, and always eager to see the results. Without further adieu…
(Be sure to click on the link for the video sample of the finished product)
————— Feel free to jump passed the wall preceding of words —————
November 2014, fresh off the heels of completing a respray and getting the car back together, the grille was not far behind. Once it was completed, it was on in no time. Fast forward to around New Years; I had come across a sale ad for front and rear GTi leather seats. A few bumps and bruises, but a deal I couldn’t pass up. I arranged a time to pick up. Turns out, it was the same shop whom I had purchased the grey leatherette seats from the summer prior. The owner quickly remembered who I was and a bit about my car. As he made his way out, he couldn’t believe the transformation that had went on with the car. He was familiar with most of the parts, but from other cars. I can tell he was taken back just a bit, which was a pretty cool feeling. He took my old seats and I installed the new (to me) GTi black leather seats. They now finish off the interior nicely so that it has a nice flow of dark/black with the red accents throughout.
Late January 2015, my buddy Rick hits me up and says “bring your car over next Saturday.” I clear my schedule and show up to his shop, Synergy Motorsports. While he usually specializes in GM performance, every now and then, he likes the change of pace with side projects (read: challenges), but I digress. We quickly get the car on the lift and start removing the old ‘exhaust’ system to make way for the bits… Fresh piping. A box full of v-band clamps. Sparks everywhere. A CNC machine. You’re typical male bonding for a mechanical Saturday afternoon. Some time later, when it was easing into the night time, we called it quits for the day. The exhaust sat at about 75% done. Quite a heap of progress for one day. Throughout the coming week, he was able to chip away at a few of the more time consuming bits, without my ‘aid’/banter. A few days later, it was complete! We gave it a test sound before we left the shop. I’ll just say this; my face hurt from laughing at how insane it sounded. Never would I have expected that sound to come from my car. Another night in the books and time for food. I pick it up the next day and for about the next week or so, I don’t think I ever heard my stereo once. At all RPM ranges it sang. It sounded so exotic but I still have yet to pin-point just what it sounds similar to. Needless to say, I left Rick’s shop being anything less than impressed and in awe.
Well now its February and with all the major parts completed, its time to take some pictures. Got it all washed and waxed and made my way out to a couple locations for some photos. Unfortunately, the best shooter I had was my phone (LG G3), which isn’t entirely bad. But it’s still a ways off. Albeit, the photos will suffice my need and let me showcase the ‘final’ project on here.
This past weekend, I had to finally buckle down and take off the Integrated Engineering intake manifold and ECU so that I can finally make my way for emissions testing, thats now been long overdue. I also had to swap out the high flow cat as well. Now that it sits in the most mechanically neutered states, I feel its lost its tone. Its bite. It’s voice! Its so timid and tame now. So once emissions is passed, it will be a short while before it gets back to being aggressive once again. The plan is to finally ‘fix’ the intake-charge pipe length for its mount point. Back story: when Integrated Engineering developed their manifold, they did it under the guise of building their own short-run intake, due to their manifold moving the throttle body. Being that I love the growl of the BSH intake, there was a bit of a work-around in trimming the charge pipe to fit. I went into it knowing that it didn’t have the correct fit and finish I wanted, so once I am ready to reinstall the manifold, I will tap on Rick to do some cutting and welding.
In the meantime, I get to babysit my buddies new Fiesta ST. That thing is highly entertaining, even more so with the COBB Tune and intercooler. Super compact and darty. Gobs of power and torque for its tiny package. Could definitely stand for some audible grunt though. Anyhow, another car, another time…