FB Update: Ray’s Evo X

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Ray's Evo X with new Esprit wing, Work wheels, custom graphics

Ray’s Evo X is looking fresher than ever with the new Esprit wing, Work wheels, fresh custom graphics and an overall great choice of mods.

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3pc Wheels – One Topic

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I wanted to discuss an often overlooked topic about 3pc wheels. Wheel companies have interesting ways to increase the diameter of rims without increasing the actual centers of the wheels. This NSX is a perfect example because it runs staggered rim sizes of 19″ up front and 20″ on the rear. If you notice the lips, the rears have an extra inch of height built into the lips to accept smaller centers. As a result a larger wheel can be used without engineering a larger center. From a distance the visual downside is that it does not look any bigger because the size perception of wheels often rests with the spoke length. However on a car like the NSX rarely do 20″ wheels look appropriate, this is a great way to pull off 20″s while still making the car look sporty and not ridiculous.

Its one of the many tricks of 3pc wheel making which can ultimately make your wheels appear to be bigger or smaller. The opposite technique of this is using a reverse drop on wheels which gives a flat lip instead of a more traditional step lip design. The result in that case is a center face that is an inch larger looking than if you had a traditional step lip. As a result for most custom 3pc wheel companies you can order a 19″ wheel with 19″ center forgings with a reverse drop or the same 19″ wheel with 18″ center forgings with a step lip. In this case we essentially have a 20″ wheel with 18″ center forgings and a mega step lip to cover the difference.

End result, Work is able to sell a 20″ Work Meister S1 3pc wheel without needing to engineer a larger center disc.  This is a very cool picture that Matt posted on his blog because I’ve seen the 20″ Meister S1 3pc in catalogs for years but I’ve never actually noticed one used before. You can spot it quickly as I have by looking at the the lips/outer halves.


This car was recently featured on our guest blogger FarmofMinds blog. The original post is : http://minds-farm.blogspot.com/2010/07/apex-blue-pearl-nsx.html

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A Favorite Of Mine – Rocky Auto S31Z Fairlady Z

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rocky auto 240z RB26DETT S30 Fairlady Z

Tokyo Auto Salon brought the goods as expected, but some things were not in the same packages as traditionally expected. One of the topics I’ll continue to talk about when thinking of what went well at TAS is the resurgence of old school JDM tuning and styling. Rays wheels predicted it early with their release a couple months back of a retro sized and styled TE37 wheel. However it was not until TAS started that the world saw the resurgence of vintage JDM!

As much as I love modern cars and especially the latest R35 GT-R, this Rocky Auto S31Z Fairlady Z does everything that the modern cars can’t.

Yet it does it with modern technology in an old school package. Let me explain…

The car blends the best of all eras, starting with the legendary and timeless S31 Fairlady as a basis. Then it takes one of the most legendary engines out of Japan, the RB26DETT from a R34 GT-R and tunes it to 589 wheel horsepower. The true power of the car is actually unknown because when I talked to Mukaida-san of Rocky Auto he told me that the car kept trying to jump off of the dyno. I have a feeling that the T04Z turbocharged engine has even greater potential. The suspension has been also set up with a modern set of Aragosta coilovers which were custom modified to fit the car. The brakes were also upgraded to Brembo Ferrari OEM units.

Even the finish of the car is ultra modern, using the Nissan GT-R Spec V limited color, Ultimate Black Opal (essentially the R35’s version of Midnight Purple). You can also notice the R35 GT-R OEM bonnet ducts fitted to the carbon hood which is a nice touch of blending old and new. Another piece of modern function are the craftsquare mirrors. The interior was finished flawlessly as well with a pristine and perfectly integrated roll cage. Massive Work S1 3pc wheels fill the custom molded blister fenders.

Mukaida-san said that the car drives wonderfully, and I don’t doubt that one bit. I didn’t write down the weight he told me but I know it was in the 1200kg range. Weight distribution on this car after the swap is 60/40 front to rear.

Speaking purely for myself, a car like this is one of the ultimate examples of a greatly enjoyable driver’s car. Most modern cars can be built to be faster, but in terms of feeling, connection to the car and rawness an example like this is irreplaceable and incomparable to modern cars. Sure modern cars can be faster, easier to drive fast and more comfortable, but if you drive something like this then you’re really driving rather than modern cars with their technology that drive us more than we drive them.

My feelings continue to grow stronger towards cars like this, the Hakosuka GT-R and also even the E30 M3. I don’t know if this segment of tuning will ever get popular enough to support an industry in the US for it, but I hope so because I feel like someday everyone will want to drive modern engine swapped old school lightweight rides like these. Somehow I feel like this is the future, even though its the furthest thing from it.

rocky auto 240z RB26DETT S30 Fairlady Zrocky auto 240z RB26DETT S30 Fairlady Zrocky auto 240z RB26DETT S30 Fairlady Zrocky auto 240z RB26DETT S30 Fairlady Z

For the record, Rocky Auto is one of the best in the game at builds like this. For how much exposure the blog world has given RWB’s Porsches last year, I hope Rocky Auto gets he same love for their old school Fairlady and GT-R builds which all seem to be flawless!


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VIP Crown by Matt Rus

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Remember mysterious cat that we met in earlier post? Here we meet it again but we don’t know what he is up to now.

In all seriousness, this Toyota Crown caught my eye for three reasons. First is the rear burnt titanium exhaust tip which isn’t in the usual location on the back. Instead, it’s just after the rear Work Meister S1 wheel. The second reason is the Trust intercooler mounted behind the Car Sense bumper. It is relatively hidden, but still noticeable if you are paying attention. The third reason I like this Crown is the insane camber!



Here you can look closer to the side exhaust and also our mysterious cat wearing different camouflage.


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Rim Fitment

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Minivan with S1 3pc Work Rims

I took this picture back in 2003. Years later, I still love how they managed to cram those S1 3pc rims onto this Minivan. The mega stretched tire look isnt for everyone…but it cant be denied that a step lip rim with a stretched tire looks hard as hell! Even on a minivan.

A word to those not familiar with this technique:Stretching the tire over a much wider rim allows not only reduced worry about rubbing against the fender but also, it exposes more of the rim which makes the rims look much larger than if they were more covered with tire sidewall. Its a very dramatic effect which works great for show cars, street cars and even drift cars. On my own personal cars I compromise a little on this subject. I don’t like having too much tire on a street car since its less fun to drive (a whole different conversation to save for later), but I also don’t want to overexpose my rims to damage for street use. So on my S2000 for example, I run 265/3518 tires on 10.5 width rims. That gives it a little stretch, but not too much. An example of too much stretch would be like this car shown, which I’m guessing is running a 225-235 with tire on a 10-10.5 width rim.

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