The last twelve months has absolutely blown by, but for us Midnight Mechanics it has been a year of unforgettable drift events. Our 2012 saw more track time together than any other year, and as such we have been getting quite the collection of footage from each of our events. I thought it would be suitable to do a compilation of all of our events from this year into one video. I’m looking forward to bringing you guys even more footage for the 2013 season. With both Jasons now running high strung 4agte setups, Cass’s ae86 coupe build and his current 20v Ae86 hatch along with my Sr20 ae71 build, we are really looking forward to ripping up the track even more so this year! E!CM
What do you desire most in a car? Performance? Style? Pedigree? Perhaps, like many automotive enthusiasts, the want for a reliable and comfortable car throws the possibility for these options out the window. For my good friend Cassian Finnerty, and many other passionate AE86 owners like himself, the chance for all of this and more has become a reality with the arrival of the new Toyota 86.
It’s not something that many of us get to experience as car enthusiasts, but there really is nothing like owning a brand new car. The new car smell, the texture of everything new and the feeling that you get from knowing that no one else has driven this car. One of our good friends, Cassian of the Midnight Mechanics, gained this experience this week when his brand new Toyota 86 arrived. We have been spending the afternoon taking photos of this beautiful thing to grace your computer screens, so there will be plenty of photos coming up in the next few days! E!CM
I love Morning Sessions. I’ve said it plenty of times before, and I will happily say it again. Honestly some of the best cars and drifting action can be seen at these laid back events. What started out as overcast and potentially rainy November 28th, quickly turned into a scorcher that would remind us all that summer is here. Normally for an event like this I would be out amongst the action with my own car, however being knee deep in turning my Corolla into the Nissan powered abomination it will soon become I had no choice but to sit back and watch. For something Different I decided it would be interesting to leave the Digital SLR at home and come to the track armed with nothing but my EOS-1 film SLR and a couple of rolls of color slide film.
After two years of building and countless struggles to get the tune right, this Wednesday past Jason Murray finally justified all his hard work with a full day of drifting his beige 4agte Ae86 dubbed ‘Latte Lasis’ at the November Queensland Raceway Morning Session.
Many of you may be thinking that Matsuri is purely about drifting. Well, you would be wrong.
The Queensland Raceway Matsuri, for many, is an escape from every day reality. It is about the struggle between that boring life you live week in week out and the one thing that rips you away from it all. It is about the culture that we all live in, and most of all it is about spending time with your closest of friends.
For myself, and my close friends and fellow members of the Midnight Mechanics Jason Murray and Cassian Finnerty Matsuri was all of these things and more. Across both the 6th and 7th of October, 2012 there was no one thing that concerned us more than the smooth bitumen that we call Queensland Raceway. E!CM
For 200 drifters in South-East Queensland the next two weeks will possibly be the busiest two weeks of their entire year. For the Midnight Mechanics drift team, there is no exception, and the roll will be called for all four of us on Saturday the 6th of October. Each and every one of us have a list of things we need to check, build and ready before this event as there will be no other track day this year that will put as much strain on our cars.
The World Time Attack Challenge is an event filled to the brim with a variety of car culture that could please any fanatic. With drift car, trade stands, show cars and of course the time attack cars themselves it is amazing that it all fits into only two days. What many overlook during WTAC, however, is the sea of equally impressive cars owned by the spectators of this very event. During our very busy weekend in Sydney, Cooper and I took some time to check out some of your cars, so here they are!
Each year, the Tectaloy International Drift Challenge is held alongside World Time Attack . Without fail, it brings the best of the best from all over Australia and New Zealand. This year, an absolute bombshell was dropped with the announcement of Japan’s legendary Team Orange drivers, Nobushige Kumakubo and Naoto Suenaga, confirming entries to take a shot at the prestigious title.
A week or so back I got a call from Josh Dobrik to say he was coming down to the Gold Coast to hit up GC compound for some good old fashioned RC drifting. Not being one to shy away from anything drift related I thought I would come down and check it out, camera in hand of course.
It’s been pretty rare for all of us Midnight Mechanics to make it to a drifting event at the same time, but even if we can’t bring our own cars we do come up to support our fellow team mates. A few Friday nights ago, after a two year hiatus, Jason Sherring brought his 4agte Ae86 up to Queensland Raceway to get some much needed wet weather practice in.
I couldn’t resist getting the GoPro inside the car for a couple of laps to help boost his ego for next time.
Make sure you hit the HD button for maximum awesome.
You might remember this Ae86 from a few months back which was picked up by my friend Aaron. Long story short the Ae86 build was not to be and was passed on to one of our other friends, Beau, who probably has more experience than both Aaron and myself put together with building Corollas.
We had a small rendezvous this week with fellow Midnight Mechanic; Cass. His blacktop 20v ae86 that you see here on the right hasn’t been running for some time now but after finally fixing it he dusted it off and came down to see us. Considering Jason’s Ae86 is nearing completion with its new body work and paint it seemed perfect timing to get some quick photos of the two cars.
Jason has been hard at work panel beating his Ae86 and is almost at the point where the car is ready for paint. A serious amount of effort has gone into the body work and it has been just recently primed up!
Every so often things in life work out to bite me in the arse. A few weeks ago I was covering the car build of a very good friend of mine, Aaron Squires and his Ae86 Build. Despite only starting from only a shell this car was looking very promising, and while it still is, Aaron no longer owns it. Luckily for myself and especially for you guys, the ae86 is now owned by another good friend of mine; Beau Best, who swapped his 20v ke70 for the Ae86 shell. The ke70 you see before you however barely resembled itself only weeks ago. Both Aaron and Beau have been very busy over the past week sanding and prepping this ke70 in order to cover the previously army-green panels in a fresh white.
All the best car builds start from very humble beginnings. A rolling shell, a rusty old socket set and big dreams. For my good friend Aaron Squires, that is exactly where his Ae86 is starting.
Last week I went for a bit of a drive with my good friend Aaron who has just made a very exciting purchase; an Ae86 rolling shell. As you will find further on, Aaron is no stranger to the Ae Chassis world.
Last week I caught up with Josh Dobrik to check out the RC drift cars he has been playing with. There has been plenty of talk about these things lately which I think is great. Yes, they are money down the drain that could be better spent on our cars, but we all need something to occupy ourselves for those times when our cars are not working. If you silently thought in your head while reading this “my car doesn’t break”, you aren’t pushing it hard enough. That or you own a Toyota.
It’s very easy to become attached to certain cars on an emotional level when you spend as much time and effort on them as we all do. However, on rare and often painful occasions there comes a time where a re-shell is needed. For Jason, this has become the reality with his R31. The old Fanta R31, as you would have seen at the QR Matsuri, has had enough money spent on it and the time to upgrade has come.
I recently caught up with Sam Futcher who is the owner of this rather cool little Ae86. Sam has been building this Ae86 a fair bit over 2011 and has brought it to its current state of appearance. Typically you might expect to find a 4age, an Sr20, maybe even a Ca18 (God forbid) under the bonnet of something like this… That would be the wrong expectation.
It’s a good feeling being near the good end of an engine conversion, isn’t it? I have been showing you guys a lot of the work Jason has been up to recently with his 4agze, but today I thought it might be good to show you where he has come from. As many of you would know; the 4age series of motors are getting quite old now with some of them getting around the 25 year mark. The 4agze that was sitting in Jason’s car when he bought it was quite tired and never really ran too well. Eventually it just gave up. These are some of the photos I took on the day we took it apart.
My name is Walaki from Hungary, and I have been a huge fan of the AE86 since I first saw them in Gran Turismo 3 back in 2001. Ever since then, I wanted to have one. When a friend of mine bought one, I was helping him a lot with the car. Then in January 2008 he moved back to the USA so I bought the Hachi from him.
After I bought the car I attended some minor drift and track days, meanwhile I repaired the smaller problems with friends. A panel beater repaired some rust and the rear arches on the body. I changed the OEM suspension to Tokico HTS shocks, Tanabe 8kg/mm springs on the front, TRD 5.7kg/mm to the rear. Over this time I did two 16v 4age swaps with small steps of performance increase before I installed the current 20V blacktop setup.
There has been a lot of talk about the FT86 being released and of course the Subaru BRZ, particularly over the last week or so. I have been just as eager to see a new version of the beloved Ae86 as every other hot blooded Ae Corolla fan, but up until now it really has not made my jaw drop. This however has; the Subaru BRZ GT300.
Jason has been very hard at work on his Ae86 in order to bring it back sporting his new 4agte setup. The car has had some very serious modifications since it was last on the track. The motor aside, Jason has been busy sorting out a w55 gearbox conversion as well as an F series rear end with 4.6 crown gears to make the car fourth gear friendly. The car has recently come back from a workshop where a large amount of fabrication work has been completed.