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Ten Four

Original Poster:

158 posts

35 months

[news] 
Tuesday 27th September 2011 quote quote all
Ello. Firstly, I'm 19 and I live in Australia. Half pom half Singaporean (I know right?) and do plan on going to the UK end of 2012 for a year or two simply to holiday/work/visit family and bring back a car with me at the end of it.

Secondly, cars are a rip off in Aus compared to the UK frown This being the main reason for the trip... plus I feel old and want to do something with my life after uni :P . Am currently in my second year, second semester of a 3 year course studying marketing and advertising.

ANYWAY, back to cars biggrin . I've had a fair few of them... 18 to be precise.. I will list each and every one though it may take me some time...

Firstly:
You obtain your learners permit at 16 here in Aus, meaning I pushed my parents into getting me a first car by the age of 12... only for them to actually do it 2 months before I turned 16..

I was scouting eBay and the likes for a first car, budget was under A$2k.
One day, I spied this absolutely beautiful, floral-seat-covered, fading maroon 1988 Audi 80 automatic on eBay. It had a mere 172k kms on it. Bidding was started at A$800 and a buy it now of $2000. I had to have a look.... Showed mum and dad, they were super reluctant but after some heavy pleading, begging, never-shutting-up-about-it, they agreed to take me to look at it.

Great! Where was it? Far south, about a 1.5hr drive. Dad wasn't too pleased...

Initial eBay advert pic:


We got there on a typical bright, sunny, warm Perth day. There it was, I was sold on first sight! It was owned by an old couple and was a retired spare car. Brilliant.
After organising a quick test drive, we were off! It drove great, changed smoothly, handled fine (according to my dad of course). It needed a few little things sorting but none of which was mechanical or major. No rust!

Dad pulled over, popped the bonnet to have a look at the heart. Not 20 seconds later, a bloke in a 4wd passes us and stops, reverses and jumps out. He proceeded to ask us if we required any help! Funny at the time, but this is why Perth is great biggrin .

Back to the seller's house, discussion ensued. I remember jumping back in our car, eagerly waiting the results...

Finally after what seemed like FOREVER, dad returned saying a deal couldn't be struck due to price... I was gutted!
Then he told me we pick it up tomorrow.
-insert childish screams of joy here-

Pics of it the first day home:





I was opening the car, sitting in it, locking it, going back into the house and repeating this all day for a while... Meanwhile, dad had sourced a wrecked one for $500 to replace parts. As such, the AC was now ice cold, zero leaks, basically everything worked.
Clean Audi:






Finally I was 16, I got to drive it! (With dad alongside).

HOWEVER, for some reason, I fell out of love with it. It just didn't do anything for me anymore. I know it was a gift from my folks and I did feel bad, but they agreed to help sell it.

Two weeks later, it was sold for $2500.

At this point, I began saving big time whilst at high school, aiming for something more modern, something cooler than a pinky audi 80...

Finally, I began to start the hunt for car number 2. (Still on learner plates!)
This time, I found a 1994 Nissan Skyline R33 GTS auto. (Non turbo, might've made 130-140BHP).
Obviously, dad intervened and said NO to any form of sports car (fair enough).


....so I put on the pleading voice.. "Its non-turbo, insurance is cheap! Its slow, automatic. It'll be my project car!"

Agreeing to have a LOOK-ONLY, we called up, arranged a viewing and went!
Upon arrival, it appeared to be in a pretty sorry state, but the mechanicals seemed good. It looked like someone had attempted to go through a gap too small and well, the result was a big dent between the door and fender, cracked headlight, broken grill and a definitely-not-straight front bumper... Paint was also faded on the rear right quarter, roof and boot. Bonnet alignment was perfect-ly out. Tyres knackered. Again though, no rust. This time, 200k kms and unsure if timing belt had been changed.

The vendor said the reason for sale was to advance his painting apprenticeship. It was up at A$4900, outside of my budget. (At this point I had $4500 total.)

Dad took another quick test drive and was amazed at how slow it was but was equally amazed at the handling and brakes compared to the audi previously.
After a quick discussion, dad agreed to help fund me but up to $1000 only including transfer fees and insurance (third party).

Got it home for $4300 - pics below biggrin






To my great benefit, my dad had a mate who owned a panel shop. So for a mere $500, the roof, rear quarter, driver's door and wing were all repaired and resprayed!
I also managed to score a driver's headlight for $60 and a set of "used" (they looked spankers) Goodyear ventura tyres for $200. They were a trade in on standard wheels for an upgrade so they went cheap!
For my 16th birthday present, I was given a custom plate of choice!
TEN FOUR stemmed from watching an episode of Murphy's Law where there was a red Ferrari 360 Modena on display.. I thought it was cool as it meant "roger that" or "affirmative" in radio chatter, so that stuck!




^If you look close in the last pic, you can see the rear quarter and the door have a crease. It was barely noticeable in person and I wasn't really ever bothered by it that much so it didn't get fixed.

Now, after a while, the bent front bumper really started getting to me. I joined up on the local forum and found someone selling a cracked fibreglass front bumper. Grabbed this for $80. It was cracked in 3 places but was no match for dad's panel beater mate! I also managed to grab another grill someone was THROWING OUT in perfect condition.

At this point, I got into music... bad.. Managed to get a top of the range Alpine sub in its own ported box coupled with a V12 amplifier for $400 (essentially new) and installed them along with dads pioneer deck he removed from his 300E Merc due to sale.

Updated pics:






Funnily enough, I have a recorded video of me and dad driving to this place, not really worth uploading though..
I do look back now and ponder, what was I thinking!? That front bumper doesn't really belong there...

One day I was sitting at the lights next to a toyota hilux. It was a dual entry onto a highway (100kmh speed limit). Dad in passenger seat, I asked if I could floor it, he said fine but only to the speed limit. Not only did I do that, but the hilux beat me there...

Thats the end of that, chucked it up for sale at a super optimistic 9k, within 2 weeks I got a call. The car was to be a present from mum to son for making university. I got lucky here cause it had to be auto so mum could drive, but non turbo as it was also a first car.. Sold it for $8500 biggrin

Typing that was longer than expected but reading seems so short.. Still, if you made it through, well done, for I only just passed English in my final year exams :P

If there is still interest, I'll write up the following cars in days to come.

James out!

Edited by Ten Four on Thursday 29th September 15:51

carreauchompeur

12,570 posts

88 months

[news] 
Tuesday 27th September 2011 quote quote all
I like it!

Nice to hear of someone buying "Fixer-uppers" and doing them up to progress to the next one rather than a spoilt brat caning their new Corsa VXR that mummy bought him!

Ten Four

Original Poster:

158 posts

35 months

[news] 
Tuesday 27th September 2011 quote quote all
carreauchompeur said:
I like it!

Nice to hear of someone buying "Fixer-uppers" and doing them up to progress to the next one rather than a spoilt brat caning their new Corsa VXR that mummy bought him!
Haha cheers. I love doing up neglected cars for some reason..


After selling the skyline and paying dad back for what I owed (bar the 1800 received for the Audi), I was left with around 6k. The hunt for car number 3 began...

I should mention that I've done a fair bit of go-karting and my best lap with controlled cars was approx 0.6secs off a top 10 of all time list which included some professional racers biggrin . I haven't been for a while now though due to the costs involved frown

Anyway, I found a potential car on the car forum I was on. However, this particular car was advertised in the national section, rather than the West Australian part. This was great for me... The ad was without pictures, advertised as not having started for over a year but was cheap, very cheap and ultimately I got dad to bring me out to have a look at it.

It was a 1989 Nissan Skyline R32 GTS4 auto, basically a single turbo 2L straight six with the GTR 4WD system. From memory and what it felt, I'd have said 200-220BHP but it was a bit of a slug due to weighing in at around 1450kg and an autobox. Advertised at $2300, it was an absolute steal!

When we got there, the owner (female!) explained to us that she bought it in the eastern states, freshly imported as a fun car for herself but then had to move over to WA for her job, so she brought it with her but forgot about it after a while and sat at a friend's place out in the desert... Now that she had some time and was about to go on holiday, she wanted it gone.

The car wasn't registered and was un-roadworthy (would've failed a MOT miserably) but complete and fired first go after being jumped with god-knows-how-old fuel, oil etc.
Conditon wise, there was a fair bit of rust (to me) in the petrol filler cap and some minor signs under and in the sills, arches and windows. The passenger door and front bumper were together a different shade of white but the rest of it was really tidy. It was showing 127k kms which based on the interior, and general condition outside, I did believe.

However, she had already received an offer of 2500 which was more than asking price, so basically I said I'd match it and take it off her hands the next day.

Deal done! After organising a temporary movement permit, with barely ANY brakes (pedal to the floor to stop and hold it..), it was home!







The drain pipe actually was extremely silent and could barely be heard, comparable to stock sound levels.

Straight away, I wanted it on the road so I could drive it. (..As you do)
Gave it a full service, all oils etc. The brakes were the biggest issue here, new pads, skimmed rotors, new fluid.. made absolutely zero difference to the brake pedal. (Bled properly).
After hours of head scratching, we tried another brake master cylinder and hey presto, that worked! Bewildered as to why this was the case, the old one was dismantled for examination.... to find the piston was from a different car and far, far too big! After sorting numerous other little things, it was time to go over the pits (similar to MOT).

It failed and came back with: front right strut leaking, engine number dirty - unable to be read (come on..!) and window tint on the rear and rear quarter windows being too dark.
Now because it was an old car, finding replacement suspension would've been difficult in standard form. A local importer/wrecker had a set not in great condition, but absolutely roadworthy. These however were unoriginal and branded bilstein! THEY WERE SOLID!! Zero give which made for an... interesting ride.. Got these for $400, height but not damper adjustable.

Popped these on and returned to the pits. The inspector was about to say it was too hard and thus unsafe for road use when the previous inspector walked up, remembering us from last time. He had a quick look, said we were fine and let us pass! biggrin

Now I wanted to tart it up. I had about 2.5k leftover after spending money fixing stuff and buying the car. This meant wheels!
Faithfully returning to eBay, like a fat dog to the kitchen, I found these 2nd hand Racing Hart CP-F wheels. Apparently forged in manufacture and extremely rare and lightweight, I had to have them.. After some googling, I discovered that they once cost someone $4000!!
So, $1300 later, they were delivered to my door!





The front tyres were Falkens with good tread, the rears however, weren't legal so I replaced them with some matching falkens - 265/35/18. (Fronts 235/35/18)

The big orange corner indicators weren't doing it for me either, so I visited eBay again and found some clear ones. IMO these made the car look much better!

Updated pics:






I was happy with the car now for a good while. The only other additions were a Nismo strut brace and a turbosmart blow off valve. (Made a simple pshht noise, none of those high pitched or multiple noise nuisances.)

BOV is half installed in the picture.


During all this, I still was on learner plates but got to drive the car frequently with dad in passenger seat. After I passed my test (auto license, we didn't have a manual car), I still wasn't allowed on my own as you have to be 17 years old to drive on your own. Basically I was just waiting now. However, I fancied myself at a manual so I put this up for sale.

Again there was a quick response and despite the rust I pointed out, the first person to come view it bought it smile I advertised it at 8500 or 7000 without the wheels. He bought it for 7000 and I kept my wheels which I then sold on for 1500 with good falkens all round. This was really regretful as I LOVED those wheels! Oh er, I loved the car too :-P .

Again after paying dad back for misc things, I was left with about 8k to hunt for a manual car to learn on (hopefully something fun!)

Will update tomorrow, fairly tired and its really late here.



Edited by Ten Four on Tuesday 27th September 20:13

cheesyblob

370 posts

59 months

[news] 
Tuesday 27th September 2011 quote quote all
Wow! You say how cars are overpriced in Australia then you say how you own a Skyline at 19!

carreauchompeur

12,570 posts

88 months

[news] 
Tuesday 27th September 2011 quote quote all
Cracking trading up, too- I never manage to make a profit on cars!
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Synchromesh

2,115 posts

50 months

[news] 
Wednesday 28th September 2011 quote quote all
Good write up. Looking forward to the next instalment.

RevYob

3,300 posts

58 months

[news] 
Wednesday 28th September 2011 quote quote all
Welcome to PH OP thumbup good read



PSBuckshot

4,868 posts

43 months

[news] 
Wednesday 28th September 2011 quote quote all
I couldn't settle then I bought a Mini.

Mark_Karting

895 posts

66 months

[news] 
Wednesday 28th September 2011 quote quote all
You've had a few nice cars already, interested to see where this goes next.



cheesyblob said:
Wow! You say how cars are overpriced in Australia then you say how you own a Skyline at 19!
I'm sure that was 2 at the age of 16! yikes

jp7152

132 posts

107 months

[news] 
Wednesday 28th September 2011 quote quote all
Looking forward to hearing more smile

soad

18,358 posts

60 months

[news] 
Wednesday 28th September 2011 quote quote all
Next addition will be a Skyline number 3! biggrin
Good read, cheers

Silver940

2,993 posts

111 months

[news] 
Wednesday 28th September 2011 quote quote all
Lived in Warwick in the early 80's when I was about 10. Perth was a lovelly place as I recall. Just been streetviewing my old houses! There are now a lot of houses where there used to be bush too!

Last car looked very cool!

Dr G

10,992 posts

126 months

[news] 
Wednesday 28th September 2011 quote quote all
Crikey, you've been through your share! Looking forward to the next update smile

Downton Mini

1,026 posts

48 months

[news] 
Wednesday 28th September 2011 quote quote all
PSBuckshot said:
I couldn't settle then I bought a Mini.
lol I broguht a Mini as my first car then another then another lol

As James May said a true petrol head must own a Mini at some point

bob1179

13,725 posts

93 months

[news] 
Wednesday 28th September 2011 quote quote all
Some great first cars, looking forward to reading what you moved onto!

smile

carreauchompeur

12,570 posts

88 months

[news] 
Wednesday 28th September 2011 quote quote all
Downton Mini said:
lol I broguht a Mini as my first car then another then another lol

As James May said a true petrol head must own a Mini at some point
redcard

Downton Mini

1,026 posts

48 months

[news] 
Wednesday 28th September 2011 quote quote all
carreauchompeur said:
redcard
???

TonyRPH

6,220 posts

52 months

[news] 
Wednesday 28th September 2011 quote quote all
Downton Mini said:
carreauchompeur said:
redcard
???
lol?

DanielJames

5,276 posts

52 months

[news] 
Wednesday 28th September 2011 quote quote all
Great write ups smile

carreauchompeur

12,570 posts

88 months

[news] 
Wednesday 28th September 2011 quote quote all
TonyRPH said:
Downton Mini said:
carreauchompeur said:
redcard
???
lol?
TWICE! This is Pistonheads, you know! wink
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