<![CDATA[f l ü s s i g m a g a z i n e - der höhepunkt]]>Fri, 29 Dec 2017 01:27:53 -0500Weebly<![CDATA[skye trip]]>Sat, 04 Mar 2017 15:44:56 GMThttp://flussigmagazine.com/der-houmlhepunkt/skye-tripJack Ledingham
My 1986 944 was my daily driver as well as being a part time van, part time Sunday car and part time project. I can’t really afford the luxury of having umpteen different things to drive whenever it suits but I feel it's quite rewarding as I've developed a bit of a bond (as sad as that may be) between it and I.
Me and a group of friends had recently completed the 'North Coast 500', which is apparently Scotland's answer to 'Route 66'. Naturally I took my jack of all trades 944 and it performed admirably for all 800 miles through the miserable weather and tatty roads on a blown suspension. 

The short of it is that there were three downsides to this trip. First; the roads absolutely peppered the front of my car with stone chips (although the bumper to bumper racing didn’t help). Second; the group was huge and trying to arrange stopping points was a nightmare. Third...me and my mates all immediately wanted to do another one.

That’s when my technology-apt mate Craig started a group chat and got the ball rolling by building a route. We tried to figure out places that we'd all never been before but have always wanted to go. The Isle of Skye was top of the list. 

It's a small Isle on the West coast of Scotland which is accessible by bridge or ferry (weather dependent) and the roads were said to be incredible for driving. This expanded into a trip that involved 3 ferries and included the Isle of Mull, an even smaller Isle further South of Skye. What first seemed like a bit of a pipe dream turned into reality when dates were set. I'd booked the dates off work and immediately realised I was under-equipped for the journey.
My car at that point in time had blown suspension, spongey brakes, door cards that were so soaked that you could properly wring them out, some electrical gremlins which I'd need to sort and finally it needed a service after the previous 1000 or so miles of pure abuse! 

The weather in Scotland was fantastic so I did the service and bled the brakes in a day. I attacked the door cards and made some RS style ones with tartan fabric door pulls which I am still amazed I managed to do. I fixed all of the electrickery and put life back into the electric seats — at last a comfortable seating position. Finally I fitted some GAZ fully adjustable coilovers to replace the abysmally soft suspension along with thicker ARBs and stiffener brackets. These were really the cherry on top of my now excellent 944. 

All the work had let the trip date draw closer and the next thing I knew it was the night before and I was frantically packing away. In a last ditch attempt at some hilarity, I removed the rear seats and rear carpets. The gearbox noise resulting from this is absolutely comical and I advise any enthusiastic 944 owner to try the same.

We all met in Banchory, about 15 miles out of Aberdeen, and headed from there. All of us had, with varying degrees of skill, fitted CB Radios to our cars; essential when travelling in a group and handy for me who was driving alone when I wanted some company! 

Craig had a MK3 VR6 Golf, and Pete had a MK2 VR6 Converted Golf. Rather roarty engines but the 944 kept up without a hitch. The first day was a long haul to Portree, the main town in Skye. To get there was about 250 miles and we didn’t take an easy route. From Banchory we headed through the Cairngorms and over the Lecht. In retrospect its actually an incredible mix of tight, steep and technical corners with huge sweeping straights thrown in, all with picturesque scenery to match. These were roads that we have all driven many times before however so we were more concerned about who could get to the next way point on the sat-nav first than the views outside. 

We stopped at a few picture points on the way and eventually landed ourselves as far West on the mainland we could go. From here we took the bridge onto Skye and followed the epic winding road towards Portree. We were booked to camp and despite the grumpy campsite owner putting us off when we turned up, it was actually a great night.
The next day we woke up to a downpour of heavy rain. 

Packing away tents in the rain is not one of my favourite pass times, but we scurried everything into the cars and quickly set off. This day ended with a Ferry. We didn’t see a problem with this when we got going, but as the day went on we quickly realised that we would be very tight for time! The plan for this day was to drive completely around Skye and visit a series of waterfalls and pools that come down from a mountain called Fairy Pools — they have turned into quite a tourist attraction. The day would end at the very South East of Skye for the Ferry to Mallaig, back on the Mainland.

Due to the poor weather this day, we didn't make as many stops for scenery as we'd liked. The roads were like a roller coaster but billiard table smooth. The steep roads were draped in clouds which occasionally opened up for a glimpse of landscape. Up to this point in my life I'd never driven on anything like it. The mega scenery that kept opening up around every bend was enough to put a smile on anyone's face. Did I mention I got to do this in my 30 year old Porsche? 

We stopped at a pub for lunch and made haste for the Fairly Pools. Thankfully as we neared the attraction the sun peaked out from behind the clouds and gave us all a bit of a break. The Fairy Pools are a postcard; pretty much as you'd imagine anything called the 'Fairy Pools' would be to be honest. We took the time to walk up and see what all the fuss was about. A decision I'd later regret as my wet shoes and sore feet resulted in an impromptu Croc purchase...pretty worthy heel-toe shoes actually. In fact I'd only just recently removed my soaking wet socks from the depths of the boot of my car, and yes that was as horrible as it sounds.

Looking at our watches as we sat at the Fairy Pools we realised we had 50 minutes to make it to the ferry port; the sat-nav, however, was telling us just over an hour. 

Craig and I put our feet down (In my new racing crocs) once we had left the small road leaving the Fairy Pools. The sun was out and the roads were dry. This was the first real chance we could stretch the cars legs and good God did we stretch them. Pete's girlfriend was driving his Golf at this point and didn’t have the driving experience to keep up with us. Some would probably call it stupidity, but if I pass it off as experience it makes me look much better for it. 

The road to the Ferry Port was the highlight of the trip for me. Beautifully smooth flowing roads that allowed the Porsche and the MK3 to really show their true colours. The coilovers on my 944 were coming into their own here, letting me knuckle down into corners harder than I'd ever done before. The car was performing amazingly and it could have stayed up at 4-6500 rpm all day. The roads were sunken in between two low hills and as we edged closer on the sat-nav, we had already shaved 5 minutes from the time. 

"People that are interested in cars know that there will eventually be a car that they just 'click' with and this is mine."

A sign saying 'Road Closed at 18:00' was displayed a few times and we knew if we didn't make it at this point we were going to completely miss the ferries for the day. We both flew round a corner and passed two police cars at the side of the road. Thinking we'd just been caught going far too quick we slowed down but they didn’t bother us at all. It turns out that they were filming a movie along this road at 18:00, made more so apparent by the cameramen atop every hill and huge boom jigs. 

We made it to the ferry port with minutes to spare. We could both breathe a sigh of relief and revel to each other about how good we both drove the road and how lucky we were. The ferry called and as we were boarding Pete's MK2 turned up. It was very close. Luckily this ferry only lasted an hour or so and we were soon dropped off in Mallaig.
The campsite in Mallaig was owned by quite an eclectic campsite owner who didn’t mind a bit of a drink. In fact he was completely up for us staying up late drinking into the early morning! As far as campsites go it was pretty epic and even had its own beach. We spent most of the night sitting on the beach drinking beer. Unfortunately as nice as the photos look, it was absolutely freezing. After fixing the seemingly endless amount of holes on my air mattress with duct tape we finally got to sleep.
After getting up the next day and packing up shop, I decided it might be a good idea to do the token oil and water check to make sure the old Porker was running tip top. 

I had to get to flat ground so drove out of the campsite and reversed back onto the road. It was at this point a huge white boulder stepped out behind my car. I heard quite an unsatisfying crunch, which happened to be the offending white boulder poking a hole in my rear valance. Luckily it was an aftermarket fibreglass job so I wasn't too miffed. It did however set me up for a day of abuse from my mates. (In fact they still make comments about it). 

After the toast rack destruction comedy had worn off a bit, we all set off on another leg. This day was quite interesting as we were getting 2 ferries in one day. The first ferry left from Kilchoan which was a short drive from Mallaig through exceptionally paved twisty roads. The roads were beautifully smooth in fact and it was a welcoming break due to having the coilovers set fairly stiff. We took a detour to visit the Glenfinnan Viaduct. This is the bridge you'll see in Harry Potter. There was hardly a cloud in the sky and it made for an excellent pitstop. We carried on to Kilchoan however and all boarded the ferry towards the Isle of Mull and more importantly, Tobermory.
I don't suppose anyone from anywhere other than Britain will appreciate the significance of Tobermory, or as its better known "Balamory". 

Balamory was a very popular kids TV programme that was set in Tobermory and was predominantly known for its multicoloured buildings. We took a tour around to see if we could recognise some of the buildings and we were pleasantly surprised to find that everything looked the same as it did in the show. 

We ate lunch in a small café at the harbour and after buying some souvenir tat we took a drive across Mull to the next ferry. The roads on Mull were different to the roads we'd all gotten used to the last couple of days. There were a lot of blind corners and deceptively tight bends but it made for an interesting drive. We stopped for a snack at the only shop we'd seen in at least 40 miles. 

For some reason this small news agents stocked the best pies I've ever had and we all had about three each. The remaining drive from here was very much single track road with minimal traffic. We cruised towards the ferry port as we had plenty time to spare. 
This ferry would take us back to the mainland once more to Oban. We had all booked hotels in Oban to give ourselves a welcome camping break. We decided to make the most of our last night with a slap up meal and drinks, followed by accidentally crashing a pub quiz. It was actually refreshing to have a proper bed too because I don’t think I've ever spent a night on an air mattress and ended up still 'on air' in the morning. 
The last day of our trip was long — VERY long. 

We left Oban at around  7:30 in the morning and we had all estimated to arrive home in Aberdeen at 9:00pm. Just because this was our last day didn’t mean we were taking it easy however. The route Craig had masterfully put together took us through more mad highlands with equally mad roads. Another day and another change of driving style. 

The roads on this day involved long straight in wide open expanses. This meant that even though the volume of traffic was higher we had no issue zipping passed for a more enjoyable drive. The day was so nice in fact that I even took the roof out of the 944; something I never bother doing because of the hassle. Plus it's sods law that as soon as I take the roof out it will chuck it down with rain. Luckily for me the rain stayed off and having the open roof made me really realise how versatile the 944 is. 
The first stop of the day was at Glencoe, another television diversion! We took a narrow road off of the main road through Glencoe and followed it for a couple of miles. Where we ended up was the scene from Skyfall where Bond and M stood with the DB5. It would be silly for us all not to recreate the photo wouldn’t it?
The road took us south and we followed the perimeter of Loch Lomond. Again, the sun glaring through the massive hole in my roof. The tourist traffic had died down and we found ourselves again with a bit of extra time. Once again Craig and I utilised the limitless visibility that the road gave and really got stuck in. 

We raced with gritted teeth, keeping eachother on our toes. The road felt like a sort of huge go-kart track with lots of camber and altitude changes and we were both utilising the imaginary apex in the grass before the verge. The 944 was once again in it's element, with the open roof only accentuating the exhaust note of the 2.5 lump in front. 

The tyres were holding on exceptionally well actually when aggressively transferring the 944s weight through the bends. An hour of so of this proved tiring and with no A/C I was sweating like a pig. We stopped at a waterfall to cool off and laugh at my expense once again for falling in and looking like a total berk. 

After some calmer driving, we finished the sight seeing for the day by hiring a paddle boat and drifting into Lock Lomond. There's something about 3 blokes in a paddle boat that just doesn't work. Craig kept trying to get out to get a photo and just about capsizing us in the process.

The return drive was rather underwhelming after the experience we'd all just had. Everyone wanted to just get home and have some rest and despite being a couple of hours drive on main roads it felt like the longest drive of the trip. I had furthest to go and as we drew closer to home Pete dropped off, followed by Craig. It is always a bummer when you are calling on the CB radio and nobody responds. It more or less signaled the end of our little holiday and what had turned into an incredibly worthwhile experience. By the time we had gotten home I had done about 850 miles, in 4 days. I was exhausted as was the car I'm sure.
Not only did the trip bring us closer together as friends, but it brought me an my little 944 closer together too.

I'd never put so much faith in it before and it paid me back by begging for more. I've never really felt this 'relationship' build between a car and I because I never keep them for long enough, but I've had the Porsche almost 2 years now and I don’t think I could sell it. I've taken it everywhere with me and its done whatever I've needed it to do. It's huge boot has made it handy when I need to carry sets of wheels or huge bits of wood or rubbish to the tip. It is a comfortable cruiser when I need to do a couple of hundred miles in one go and is quick enough to be fun but not too quick that I am afraid to touch the throttle. It handles excellently but can also be softened for a daily drive. People that are interested in cars know that there will eventually be a car that they just 'click' with and this is mine.

Thankfully, the trips aren't stopping. Not only is Craig planning another trip this year to Ireland, I'm also planning my own trip to Germany. Hopefully 2017 will be just as good, if not, better than 2016.

<![CDATA[template]]>Sun, 20 Nov 2016 01:13:55 GMThttp://flussigmagazine.com/der-houmlhepunkt/the-templateEdward Aldridge
29th of September.

The BMW 1 series coupe was on the verge of massive depreciation — it had to go. This is how I started courting 944s.

My father showed me a 944 2.7 in guards red on eBay which was going for cheap; four hours later it was sold. Anyone into reading tea leaves would've taken the hint — not me. 

The search continued. 
A white 944 catches my eye whilst skimming through Ebay. 

The shots captured a tired looking thing, as if feeling sorry for itself with a description written out of pity; not many punters'll line up when the words "failed" and "MOT" trail each other in a sentence. Yes, it had rotted sills, but it was cheap. It was also 5 miles away from my house.

A few hours later, I phoned the owner and asked him flat out.

"How bad's the rot on that 944? Can it be patched up, or are we talking a 'snip, grind, weld a new sill on' sort of thing?"

"Look, mate...come have a look at it." he replied.

I hung up, took a drag, and punched out the cigarette. I was off to see this thing for myself.
I didn't go with the intention of buying the car. I went to have a close-up look at a 944 in real life to see if I actually liked the car and its proportions. It went like this; if I liked it enough, I'd go and find another 944 in better condition.

Upon arriving and looking at the car, it looked so much better than it did in the pictures; it was straight, had no dents, the engine sounded strong, and the interior was mint. Sure, it had a questionable repaint where they didn't remove the number plates or any part of the car for a proper job, but on the whole, the car looked very good for the price. 

Two days later, it was brought and driven back to the workshop.
Two months into ownership and nothing much happened to it — I was waiting for the sill to be replaced. 

Once the outer sill was cut off, we found the rot creeping in on the inner sill; well, that had to be repaired. This led to the lower part of the front wing being sorted, too. After all was said and done, the car had the complete driver's side repainted. The plan was to spray the car in parts so it wouldn't be off the road too long since it was going to be my daily driver. 

With the body work complete, the car was taxed and MOT'd; that meant it'd be road ready on December the 23rd. It was while the important bits were being sorted that the urge to make the thing my own hit. The car looked lovely and all, but it was missing a bit of character. This is the part of new ownership that consumes the most time; scouring the internet for parts and modifications.
By 20th of January, the new genuine 17" Fuchs arrived. Then the coilover suspension  was built and delivered to me. While I had to put off fitting the coilovers for a week while waiting for some replacement suspension parts to arrive, the wheels went on. That's was the moment the car became completely transformed. Gone were the Teledials with the wrong offset making the poor thing look like its wheels were sunk deep in the fenders; this 944 looked the business.

A new full custom exhaust had been built for the car, too. It was decided to keep the rear silencer the same size as the original along with the factory looking tip. The purpose was to swing an OEM look, only louder with a bellow of an exhaust note air-cooled 911 owners would envy. See, even the purists are duped into thinking this 944 has the stock exhaust...until it's throttled.
Four months later, the car is in pieces again.

The rear end needed to be repainted before the trip to GTI Treffen also known as Worthersee. Running tight on schedule with two weeks left until the gig, I was just starting the re-trim of the 944 with custom door panels, seats, fire extinguisher and gear leaver...the heat was on. 

The seats were inspired by the Singer 911. A few design cues were borrowed like using genuine Porsche centre cloth inserts from early 911s and Napa leather; this combination of materials are an homage to Porsche's early days for an interior that looks as if done by the factory. When the interior trim was done, my good friends over at Cobra Seats finished and fitted the front buckets the day I had to shuffle off to the ferry. 

The 944 took me to Stuttgart with a midpoint stop off into Austria without  an ounce of drama. After a week or so in Austria, I took the car to Maranello, Italy to check out the Ferrari factory; of course I parked the 944 right outside the front door, because, well,  Porsches love antagonizing Ferraris whenever the chance presents itself. 
After arriving back from the Euro tour, the car did a few shows around the UK...few believed it's a daily driver. It was around this time that the torsion bars were indexed by a friend I met at a car show. With a bagged VW Beetle and has a Porsche 924 daily that he's building it into a Outlaw 924, we share a common the lust for German metal. 

With the winter months ahead, a project with some complexity is needed —what better time to retrofit a more modern complete S2 front end to shed the 944's VeeDub roots? A proper paint job and a half cage for the back trimmed in leather to finish off the interior comes next. Each mod nudges this 944 closer to a level of perfection and purpose far beyond what was imagined.

Resurrection, restoration, or rejuvenation. None of these words seem to fit into this equation — it's re-imagination, and that trumps them all.
<![CDATA[frenzy 20]]>Sat, 29 Oct 2016 20:57:34 GMThttp://flussigmagazine.com/der-houmlhepunkt/frenzy-20Shawn Stanford
Saturday afternoon, rural Virginia...

            You never want to be that guy at Frenzy, the one whose car is the center of attention. It seems like an annual occurrence, though: someone makes it, but the effort to get there proves too much for their Shark, and the result is a gathering of, frankly, some of the most brilliant and experienced 928 mechanics in the world, working by flashlight in the parking lot of a hotel to get someone back on the road.

            Heck, some years that’s the best part.
            And this year it was my turn. Fifteen minutes into the Saturday afternoon fun run, my car lost all power and I was sitting silently on the verge of a Virginia country road, with five other cars pulled over to help me out.

            As I said: you never want to be that guy.

            At least I didn’t need my fire extinguisher.

Thursday afternoon, Sterling, Virginia...

            Nearly two days earlier, on Thursday, my daughter Trinity and I landed in Sterling at the head of a convoy of Sharks. Two 928s coming from Canada and three coming from Allentown had linked in southern Pennsylvania for the last stretch. Unfortunately, Alex-from-PA’s Shark was limping in on partial power. An hour spent diagnosing alongside the road hadn’t helped, but we did make it to the hotel. Arriving at the Holiday Inn, we joined the handful of other early arrivals, and we shook hands with old friends and made introductions with new ones. 
"That guy..." photo: Patrick Viau
Saturday afternoon, rural Virginia...

            After my car coasted to a stop on the Fun Run, I emptied the cargo area, pulled out my multimeter and tested the battery: less than 8 volts. 

            “Alternator,” Pete said immediately. He was correct, but that didn’t solve the problem of getting the car back to the hotel. Chris volunteered to drive me to the nearest auto parts store to pick up a battery to power the car back to the hotel, and Trinity jumped into Bertrand’s car to continue the Fun Run.

            “How was Bertrand’s car?” I asked her the next day on the drive home. 

            “It’s very nice,” she said. “So smooth. It’s also very blue, it has a blue interior. You can tell Bertrand is from Canada, because he had the air conditioner down to about ten degrees and still thought it was hot.”

“No, Carrera, you can’t sit with us”, “Not for you, Cayman.”

            Chris mentioned that he’d done the AC Delco alternator conversion several times. While I drove his car to the nearest auto parts store, he looked up the Rennlist post and confirmed that what I needed was the 105 amp alternator out of an 88 V-6 Camaro. There were none at the store and the soonest they could get one was Monday, but I got the battery. We drove back and put it in and Google-plotted the fastest route back to the hotel. I texted GroupMe that I was down and needed a new alternator, and almost immediately someone posted that Gary had an alternator on his sale table.

            I drove back to the hotel on battery with Chris trailing. Greg called to let me know that they’d make sure Trinity had as good a time as possible at the Octoberfest, and got a ride back. When we made it back to the hotel, two volts were gone from the new battery, and Gary’s alternator turned out to be a late-model, which would not fit my ‘82 OB.
Gathering of the faithful. photo: J.P. Thal-Larsen
Friday, Sterling, Virginia...

            Friday morning was ‘do what you want’, and Friday afternoon was ‘wash and shine’ at Odds ‘n Ends, where several previous Frenzies had been held. O’n’E made us welcome and gave us full use of their facilities and free use of a lot of their products. It probably worked out okay for them, because I know I bought a bag full of stuff, and I think other folks did as well.

            Back at the hotel, the parking lot was filling nicely and we were already discussing what to do with Alex’s car. There were a lot of new faces, including James and his ‘Monster’, a well-patinated blue OB; and Randy and his wife Nancy and their grandson Bentley in a maroon ‘S’. Randy was from my neck of the woods and was giving Frenzy a try based mostly on my enthusiasm. 
            After the reception dinner, the action returned to the parking lot where Alex-from-PA’s car became a hub of activity, with sometimes with as many as ten people near the nose or under the hood. At one point, Sean and Roger decided that the Green Wire was a likely culprit, and one appeared nearly immediately, donated by Greg. He’d replaced the Green Wire in his amazing early ‘78 (No sunroof, no rub strips, no passenger-side mirror!), only to find that this wasn’t the problem, and he kept the old wire as a spare. Although Roger and Sean were the ringleaders of the repair effort, they were plenty of eager assistants. I held a light and at one point I even managed to get my hands in there. Unfortunately, the new Green Wire didn’t do the trick, and Alex’s car was still dead when the last of the holdouts went to bed around 2am Saturday morning
And they kept on rolling in. photo: Adam Henderson
Saturday afternoon, Sterling, Virginia...

            Back at the hotel Saturday afternoon, Fraggle suggested checking an auto parts store nearby for the alternator I needed, and volunteered to help me swap it at his place. Kary, who had skipped the fun run because his car wasn’t charging, had finally fixed the problem by cleaning a corroded bulb socket in the dash pod. He’d recently done this exact alternator swap, and began calling around to find one. After calling several stores to check, we could only find the 85 amp version, not the 105 amp. We concluded that the right part just wasn’t available that night. That’s when Kary said he only lived fifteen miles away, and offered to swap his alternator into my car the next morning. I gratefully accepted.

            As cars started coming back from the Octoberfest, I spent a few anxious minutes pinging GroupMe and Trinity to make sure she linked up with someone for a ride back. She ended up stuffed into the back of Alex-from-Rochester’s car. She told me later that just as they’d started to leave Lovettesville, they spotted someone with no passenger and asked if she wanted to ride back in that car. She told me, “I really did, but I was already in his car, so I said ‘no’ because I didn’t want to seem ungrateful.”
photo: Rick Sobek
Saturday morning, Sterling & Purcellville, Virginia...

            Saturday morning was cool and beautiful, and the hotel parking lot was gloriously full of Sharks. And Friday night’s empties. And a small stack of pizza boxes. Which Pete assured me had been ordered, not hijacked.

            Trinity and I got to the park near the front of the pack, and we hung out and watched the cars roll in singly and in groups. Trinity quoted ‘Mean Girls’ every time something other than a 928 would pull into the lot: “No, Carrera, you can’t sit with us”, “Not for you, Cayman.”

            When the lot filled, there were a few 911s, a 951, and a Cayman; but the Sharks carried the day. The array of 928s was simply incredible. More than 60 cars from 1978 all the way up to 1993, and representing almost every conceivable variation, including a cabriolet. There was a nice choice of rare colors - Coral Red and Kiln Red, Stan’s Elfenbein Perlglanz, a dark blue Paint-To-Sample - and a handful of repaints that were never sanctioned by Porsche.

One of the most dramatic moments was when Stan pulled the distributor out in the dark."

            Stan ran three tech sessions: Adjusting the hood, adjusting the hatch latch and remote release, and installing a silicone oil pan gasket without dropping the cross member. Stan didn’t just talk though, he demonstrated as he went, and one lucky car got a new silicone oil pan gasket! Just kidding, but Stan did adjust a hood, and he helped someone get his remote hatch release working for the first time in 20 years of ownership.

            Rob Budd and Gary Knox ran the sale tables, with Rob selling a nice assortment of custom Shark Wear, and Gary driving hard bargains to clear his table of spares (“How about $15 for this, Gary?” “How about $10?”). I threw a few odds-and-ends on the ‘FREE’ table, and they quickly disappeared.

            Immediately after lunch were the door prize drawings. I was happy to offer the first prize of the day: a Seiko 928 watch from our run of a couple years ago. The winner was Logan, who came up with his Dad, Steven. Logan strapped it on immediately, another convert. 

            While I went back to the car to mount up my GoPro, Trinity won a ‘928 Car of the Year’ key ring. Now she wants a Shark. But I told her if she’s going to own a Porsche, she’s going to have to learn to wrench it herself. So, I don’t know if a 928 is a good place to start. Maybe a nice little Boxster?

            And then it was off for the Fun Run (or 20% of the Fun Run, in my case).
No shark left behind. photo: Adam Henderson
Saturday evening, Sterling, Virginia...

            I spent the remainder of Saturday evening trying to have a good time in the parking lot, but I was anxious about the car and I ended up going back to the room early. I lost track of the number of times people pointed out that they’d seen an alternator on the sale table. (“Yeah, that was for a late model, I have an ‘82.”), and no less than a dozen people checked to make sure I had a plan to get the car running. My last resort would be to leave it behind and rent a car to get home, but I didn’t want to do that.

            Even though I was fixated on my car, the real drama was happening with Alex-from-PA’s car. The troubleshooting had boiled down to the distributor (which Pete had been blaming for a while), and Stan discovered the reluctor wheel could spin freely on the shaft. He pulled the distributor out and found the roll pin had fallen out of the shaft and stuck to the magnet. He fixed it by pounding the pin back in with a rock in the lobby of the hotel.

            And then something truly clever and amazing happened. As Jon recounted in a Rennlist post: 

            “One of the most dramatic moments was when Stan pulled the distributor out in the dark. Stan responds to those in disbelief ‘I can put it back’. After cleaning plastic bits out of the inside of the distributor Stan had the owner put the car in gear and folks slowly rolled the car forward, others with flashlights in hand, while Roger observed for TDC on the right cam gear and Stan on the crank. Then took the car out of gear and pushed the car back into its parking space.

            At this point, Stan and Sean remounted the distributor and the car fired up immediately!
You have to go at least once in your lifetime. photo: Shawn Stanford
Sunday morning, Sterling, Virginia

            Sunday was another beautiful fall day. After breakfast and bidding everyone goodbye, I followed Kary back to his house, still anxious about the repair working. I’d been reading up on the alternator and I wasn’t absolutely certain that I’d put the resistor for the exciter circuit back in the instrument pod when I rebuilt it. Kary assured me that I must have, since I’d gone over 1,000 miles after reinstalling the pod and cluster before the alternator stopped charging.

            We arrived at Kary’s house with no problems and he introduced me to his neighbor, Jason, who volunteered his garage, lift, tools, and expertise. While Kary pulled his alternator, my car went up on the lift and we pulled my alternator. We swapped my serpentine-type pulley for Kary’s V-type, mounted it, and fired up the car. There was a horrible screeching as the fan blades rubbed against the case, so I went up on the lift in the car and bumped the motor with the starter while Jason nudged the fan blades away from the case with a screwdriver. After a few bumps, he gave me the go ahead and I fired it up.

            And the voltmeter immediately went to 14 volts! Success!

            I thanked Jason profusely, then moved back to Kary’s driveway where we topped off my transmission, which had been getting low. After that bit of crawling around on the ground, it was nearly one in the afternoon and the car was as ready as it was going to get. I thanked Kary just as profusely, promised to mail him an alternator to replace the one he’d given me, and Trinity and I rolled north.

            While we had my car up in the air and then headed north, a group of Frenzy cars, including Alex-from-PA’s newly-repaired Shark, had a great time running a few laps at VIR. I had been looking forward to the VIR run, but it just wasn’t in the cards this year.

            But, four hours after leaving Kary’s we arrived home without a single hiccup!
The swim back home. photo: Alanah Emmanuelli
Sunday evening, the Poconos...

            Is it over already?

            I realized after I got home and got a chance to catch my breath that I hardly spent any time looking at the cars, and that’s because I was spending far too much time talking to the people. But, that’s how it’s supposed to be, right? It really isn’t about the cars. Sure, the cars are fun and beautiful. But except for a few exceptional examples, one Shark is pretty much the same as the next.

            It’s the people that are amazing. Their dedication to keeping an aging supercar on the road, their appreciation for every running Shark (no matter how rough!), their willingness to help, even at the cost of their own fun, their decency and steadfast support of other 928 owners. I doubt there is a more closely-knit family of Porsche owners anywhere.

            I got a lot of compliments about the progress on my car since last Frenzy, and on the stripe. That was an attempt to set my car a little apart from the other red Sharks, and only went on the week before. Either everyone liked it or those that didn’t were kind enough not to say anything. Not that it matters! I’ve decided that I like it, and it’s staying.

            As I said at the beginning of this piece, you never want to be that guy. But, if you are, there’s no better place for it to happen, and no better group of people to have around you when it does. 

            The Rennlist 928 community is a credit to the forum, the 928, and Porsche as a marque. And what happened at Frenzy 20 - not just the repairs, but the whole shebang - is exactly why I would not own a 928 if the 928 Forum didn’t exist.

            I love my 928, but I really love these people!

            See you next year!

<![CDATA[stopover in Vancouver]]>Sat, 22 Oct 2016 21:28:28 GMThttp://flussigmagazine.com/der-houmlhepunkt/stopover-in-vancouverGlenn Barron
There are road trips…and there are soul filling journeys.  

We love the automobile for the freedom it affords us: freedom to come and go as we wish, freedom to get away from everyday life, and freedom to roam faraway places.  We have all taken road trips, some begrudgingly, some enthusiastically.  We also dream of getting away to exotic places or interesting locales in our cars.  Some of us have even planned and completed said trips.  But just how many of us have completed an epic journey we always dreamed about?  Meet Philippe Delaporte and his sons Thibault & Baudouin.
Philippe and his two sons before departing Paris
Philippe is what you would call a bit of a nomad.  

In his early years, Philippe converted a Renault 4 for touring duty and set off from his native France to Iran.  He was a mere 19 years old and undertook the adventure solely on his own.  Philippe completed 3 more extended road trips in the Renault 4, partially alone, partially with his then girlfriend/now wife before he settled down into a career & married life. 

2010. Philippe’s sons who had grown up hearing all about their dad’s outlandish adventures proposed a redo, but this time in something more comfortable than a Renault 4.  Being an avid car nut, Philippe allowed his sons to pick from either the family Jaguar, Land Rover, or his beloved and pristine 1989 Porsche 928 GT.  

The answer was obvious.
Touring through Russia
Philippe and his sons set about modifying the car for duty.  Most of the modifications were structural and for comfort.  The rear seats were removed and storage compartments installed in their place.  In keeping the factory staggered wheel set-up, the front spare would ride in the hatch, the rear spare would have to ride on the roof.  Front seats were replaced with more comfortable Recaros for the long days of driving.  A few extra gauges for monitoring necessities, increased ride height for clearance, skid plates for protection, a roll bar for safety, and custom stone guards for all the lamps.  

Six months later, the car was deemed fit.  

As the 928 is realistically a 2-adult car at the best of times, Philippe’s sons would split the journey between them.  The first test for the 928 came in 2011 when they traversed 24,000 kilometers through 27 countries with the final destination again being Iran.  The replay of Philippe’s journey many years before was a complete success.
Stopover for the night in Mongolia
The 2011 trip garnered interest from the President of Porsche France.  How the car held up over the varied roads and terrain encountered without any support vehicles whatsoever was intriguing.  Talks of another trip started to circle; murmurs of an even bigger undertaking began to surface.  Why not use the already modified 928 for the ultimate durability test?  

Eventually, plans were cemented to completely circle the Northern Hemisphere.  Paris to Tokyo, Anchorage to New York.  It was set.  With the help of Porsche France, the car received a thorough check-up and all wear items were refreshed.  Maps were drawn, bookings made, and shipping containers reserved.  Philippe and his son Thibault set off from Paris on May 28th, 2016.  

The road trip of a lifetime had begun.
Travelling the Alaska Highway
I had the good fortune to meet with Philippe and his son Baudouin (who took over from Thibault upon commencing the North American leg) on their way through Vancouver, BC Canada.  

The local 928 owners in the area arranged a day of touring around the city then an evening get-together to share stories.  Upon meeting Philippe, it is readily apparent he is passionate about the journey and life in general.  He fielded multiple questions about the trip and was more than enthusiastic about sharing the details.  The car was amazing to see in person, and the fact that they were confidently driving a 27 year old Porsche around the world was inspiring. 
Arrival in Iran, 2011
The 928 has a bad reputation for reliability and when asked about it, Philippe replied “nonsense, this is a very strong car!”  

So strong in fact, that in the 22,000 kilometers since leaving Paris in May, they have only had to replace the electric fuel pump…twice.  Otherwise, the car has performed flawlessly.  He explained how poor maintenance has led to the reliability myths.  In his opinion, the 928 was the toughest Porsche ever built, and he is setting about to prove that.  Porsche Germany has shown interest in their latest journey and possibly using the car for some promotional material. 

“nonsense, this is a very strong car!” 

Upon returning to Europe, Porsche France has plans to display the car at the Porsche Experience Center Le Mans for a special event.  They want to convey the message of longevity and durability within the Porsche brand, and Philippe’s 928 will fit the bill nicely.  As well, Philippe spoke of plans for next year’s 40th anniversary of the 928 event being held in France where the car will be proudly displayed alongside himself and his 2 sons.
Navigating the Trans-Siberian Highway
The 928 owner’s community is a passionate lot, and after spending a few hours with Philippe it is easy to see why.  

When asked about another trip in the future, Philippe was coy on details but did share one of his dreams, namely the Pan-American Highway.  From Prudhoe Bay on the Arctic Ocean to Ushuai at the very most southern tip of South America, this would be another amazing adventure, and certainly soul filling.  He is an inspiration to all of us car aficionado’s, and in the words of Philippe,

“don’t put off anything you can accomplish today, we never know what the future holds for us.” 
The pictures I have used in this article only scratch the surface of Philippe’s extensive collection.  You can see more photos and all the details about their first trip in 2011 here:


You can follow along on the current trip here:


…and here on Facebook:


*images by Philippe Delaporte
<![CDATA[Rennwerks 2016]]>Fri, 26 Aug 2016 00:44:37 GMThttp://flussigmagazine.com/der-houmlhepunkt/rennwerks-2016Seth Ruden

Recognition in the Value of Diversity

Rennwerks Reunion 2016, held in Carmel, California on August 19, featured the “water-cooled cars that started a revolution”. Wait, what? Porsche Club of America’s signature West Coast Summer event is focused on transaxles? 
Nah, there’s no way that PCA has finally and fully detached itself from the stereotype of the air-cooled-or-die, dotcom  CEOs who run dildo empires vibe… or has it? Some still suggest the transaxle cars “offer the opportunity to enjoy the Porsche experience at a lower price point”, as was suggested to me more than once at the event (um, hello 996). Could the greater forces in and around the P-car community at large finally have shifted the core demographic away from homogeneous purity of air-cooled ideology to embracing the wider and richer assortment of models with a more diverse heritage?

1989 Turbo, unrestored; multiple concours Winner:
Let’s first talk about the current cars pushed by Zuffenhausen. If you look at the present models the marque is pushing, you find the most diversified product line up in Porsche’s history, ever. Two distinct SUVs, rebooted entry-level models, turbochargers everywhere and 16 distinct flavors of the 911.  Presently, the most wide-ranging powertrain options ever: diesels, hybrids, 4,6,8 cylinders… all of course are water-cooled.  It’s hard to hate on any one car, with this many options on the table. None are beyond reproach; all have their place. You can now have a fleet of these cars in your garage, each serving a different purpose and all with a unique and capable dignity for their respective use case.

So, are all of the side-glances, judgments and disparagement now a thing of the past? Well, yes and no… The water-cooled models are mainstream for the alternative crowd now. You have to be a bit avant-garde to want a 928S, a bit of an eccentric to maintain a 931, something of a bohemian to run a 951. These qualities are now a part of the official Porsche DNA and it’s something celebrated and recognized, that these cars actually saved the company during dark days when the 911 wasn’t holding sales up (again). At the respective 40th anniversary of the 924, the car that kicked off the water cooled revolution, the Porsche Club of America did it right, borrowing from the factory’s lead, by embracing the transaxles this year. However, here in no particular order are some notable featured cars at Rennwerks 2016:

944 Turbo Cup: Holy shit, this is the car I came to see (750 miles one way), and there are two of them! This car made Porsche single model racing popular!

Canadian Spec (See #11 in the background? More on it later)

American Counterpart

1981 924 Carrera GT: seeing this car in person was like one of those moments when you are unexpectedly looking at a celebrity and you say to yourself, so obviously… “That’s Danny Fucking Devito”: 

924 Turbo GTS Club Sport: an evolution of the Carrera GT, now pumping 280hp in a limited series — this is a rainbow farting unicorn.

928 “RWB inspired” S4 wide-body cabrio sport lightweight and other adjective-producing machine. This is how you make $350,000 into 700 horsepower of Gulf liveried, 944-fendered, calculus-equational and Michael Jackson lyric’d “Celebration of Originality”. You can hate it if you’d like, but this was really a show-stopper, and only recently completed.

’84 928S in Chrome: This car is a tribute to the only 928 that was factory race prepared and actually ran the 24 hours of Daytona, finishing 4th in class! Driven by the legendary Vic Elford, requested by Bob Snodgrass of Brumos, this car was built to commemorate the 30th anniversary of the historic event. 

Sweet Jesus, the 924 GTS #4: Customer built racer with a driver pedigree of every big name out there. 

Then there was this… a 1986 944 Turbo GTR, a Trans-Am racer, one of the rarest Porsche race cars. Perhaps you’ve seen this FACTORY poster?  Feast your eyes: 
This car is for sale too… asking $1MM — porsche944gtr.com
The transaxle models are now widely credited to have rescued the firm when 911 sales faltered and there is clearly a space for them in the echelon of the company. The factory is now celebrating the transaxle at the factory museum this year… and considering the wide market mix of present models offered, air-cooled purists are now on uneven footing; not accepting Porsche means many things to many enthusiasts. This includes those who believe the pedigree of Porsche is most legitimately earned through competition.

Unfortunately for this bunch, it’s now impossible to fail to recognize the value of diversity in the ownership base; we custodians of the once lesser-appreciated models are now an integral part of the brand's legacy. At this point, the integration of all characters in the heritage of the marque is core to the identity of the brand… so fuck off, halfhearted pocketbook purists. In this modern era, there isn’t room left for you to sell your wares; every model from 1948 to 2016 is every bit a Porsche as ever was a Porsche. 924 to Panamera.

You can have a Cayenne, a vintage air-cooled 911 and a 968 turbo tribute, and all have a very respectable place in the strata, as recognized by the Porsche Club of America (alright, so that’s my present fleet).  We don’t accept any slights from anyone on these models any longer… at this point, if you are an enthusiast, there is more value in your appreciation of the models than in your ability to buy the latest and greatest one. 

You are a custodian of the legacy of the brand and it’s about time we got our priorities straight. Thanks for the recognition, PCA!


Below are a few random shots...including my 968 
with the collection of 1500 miles of dead arthropods. 

<![CDATA[shotgun wedding - you made me love you]]>Sun, 01 May 2016 00:39:56 GMThttp://flussigmagazine.com/der-houmlhepunkt/shotgun-wedding-you-made-me-love-youJason Lee
If you think about all the times you have fallen in love, it always happens when you least expect it — crashing you head on.

This time, it nearly did me in. 
I was drunk and cruising eBay when I came across her; a 91 928 GT being under sold. It was supposed to be a quick flirtation, guess the reserve, steal the car and sell her on at profit, the automotive equivalent of a Saturday one-night stand, bore all of her holes and move her on before the sun comes up.

I guessed the reserve was £15K, bidding was at £13.5, I set the snipping software at £15.5 and went to bed.

Guess what happened next? 

Well, you’re wrong — someone out bid me and the car was gone…or at least so I thought.

The seller got in touch with me two days later and told me the winner of the auction had stiffed him, he offered it to me for my high bid of £15.5. I sent the money immediately. A couple of days later she arrived on the back of a transporter, all fat arse and full of promise.

I had never driven a 928 before so as soon as she was off the transporter I was behind the wheel and on the road expecting a smoke show; fuck, was I wrong…it was terrible. 

Changing gears was like trying to stick your fingers in a virgin hole; every attempt met with fierce resistance, when I did get it in to first it took off like a scalded dog only to die at the next corner and limp along like a grandmother rocking a Zimmer frame.

What the fuck? Had I been sold a mutt?

I spoke to a local garage owner would claimed to have a knowledge of 928’s. Yeah you know how this goes, two and half thousand of the queen’s best beer tokens later and I got the same pile of shit back.

I am stuck at this point, the catholic in me won’t let me sell this lemon onto to someone else and I don’t want to waste any more money on it, but I am now £18K in the hole on a car I didn’t really want in the first place.

"It’s the point at which she is hot and wet and begging to give you more. You could take her there, but why?"

I spoke to a couple of friends of at my home Tipec branch (The Independent Porsche Enthusiast Club) who correctly diagnosed an air flow issue was the cause of the performance issues.

As much I didn’t want to spend anymore more money on the old girl; I stuck her in OCD Porsche, Wirral and explained the problem. Two weeks later they gave me this monster back; this beast that roars up to 90 mph and sits there waiting for you to get serious with it — now we’re talking.

It still had the gearing issue on which there were many theories; none stacked up.

I played my ace at this point. I have an old Aussie buddy who lives in Canada named Jay Lloyds; if Porsche made it, this geezer has worked on it. A desperate email was sent…

“…dude, I know your 3500 miles away and I am asking the impossible but…” I explained the symptoms. 
It shouldn’t have surprised me, but it did. Within 24 hours I received a set of instructions back,

“Start the car, run it for 3 minutes, turn It off, engage the clutch and the brake together and then select first and turn it back on and let me know what happens...”

Fuck me…it worked. It slipped through the gears beautifully; I got back in touch with Jay, what was that???

“it’s got a new clutch buddy, remember what I taught you about fast clean gear changes, forget it, ride the clutch for a couple of hundred miles and it will be right...”

The next two or three hundred miles were spent going through this weird start up ritual. Each time, the gearing became smoother. I started to relax…slowly the car started to suck me in. I found myself changing. No longer did I dread having to use the car. I started to long for it looking for any reason to get out on the motorway and open her up. I kept staring out the window looking at her. 
Where to?

What excuse can I use to get her out on the road?

A Sunday morning car meet 75 miles away?

An hour on the motorway network first thing Sunday when it was otherwise empty — fuck yeah!

Summer came and went all too quickly. Winter was coming and everyone around me was talking about parking their babies up for the season. I couldn’t do it. The thought of months without this car was too much to bear. Winters here are wet rather than cold. This car could handle it. It had to because five or six months without her was unthinkable.

You could read this and think this was a conscious process, it wasn’t.

Like all great seductions I didn’t see it happening, it slowly enveloped me. Not over or month or two, this took more than year. Slowly, causally, day by day, drive by drive.
The bomb finally dropped on me in February. A couple of the members of my Porsche crew were going to a car show local to them, but two hours away from me. That’s four hours return of me and my baby cruising alone.

I was there.

I stayed for about an hour, it was good to see the guys after the winter but the whole time I was desperate to get back behind that wheel. This trip was just an excuse to have four hours on my own with her — no stereo, no conversation just that beautiful V8 rumble, all that power, and me.

I left, turned onto a dual carriageway and opened her up to about 80 mph. It’s the point at which she is hot and wet and begging to give you more. You could take her there, but why? There is a certain pleasure in feeling her desire and holding her off, making her wait…feeling her want it.
Out of nowhere, rice rocket appeared in the rear view mirror. All cheap body kit and shiny wheels, looking like a suck and fuck stripper and clearly trying to take me on. Really? I had a moment, drop the hammer or…

The truth of my relationship with this car really hit me at this point, I could abuse her to put this upstart in its place, I could push her hard, out run this fucker and show him what real acceleration was like, risk her a little and for what? 

You’re in love with a beautiful woman who gives as good as she gets and some rent a ride in clear heels waves her skinny arse in your face…what do you do? 

You ignore her of course. I causally moved over without dropping my pace and let him drag his arse passed me—I didn’t even give him the satisfaction of looking in his direction. 

I arrived home—changed. I had felt it happening but now I knew and it was undeniable. This was a love like no other I had ever felt for a car; complete, unrestrained—she owned my soul completely. 

You want the happy ending now? 

Fuck you, life isn’t like that. 

I have the opportunity of a life time, a one shot deal, but there is a catch; I have to relocate 3500 miles to Toronto. I could take her with me but it wouldn’t be the same, I know deep down it wouldn’t. I don’t want to drive her on the wrong side of the road, it would be awkward and require a level of effort that currently doesn’t exist between us. 

She’s got to go. 

At the moment when I should be happiest I am conflicted. To fulfil a dream I have to give up the car. If I give up the car I may never find another like it. Like all great love stories, this one ends with a shitty twist…

Jason Lee is the founder and Editor in Chief at Pomopar, a magazine about the passion for Porsche.

photography by Lukasz Dulski
<![CDATA[flüssig's guide to chassis detailing]]>Mon, 25 Apr 2016 13:14:03 GMThttp://flussigmagazine.com/der-houmlhepunkt/flssigs-guide-to-chassis-detalingcap'n clean
One of the more arcane tasks in the detailing world is wheel well and chassis cleaning.  I’m going make an attempt at simplifying the process, and making it specifically applicable to our aqueous-cooled German purebreds.  Before you start, your undercarriage probably looks something like this...
The horror!  I know.  Fortunately, this can all be fixed with a few products and by following some basic steps. 

Disclaimer:  flüssig isn’t liable if you manage to botch this job.    

Let’s get right into the thick of it. 

  • Floor jack and jack stands or lift. 
  • Iron Cleaner
  • Stoner’s Xenit (dozen case)
  • Stoner’s Tarminator (dozen case)
  • Big scrub brush
  • Small scrub brush
  • Tiny scrub brush
  • Pressure Washer (or, if you’re lucky, a steamer)
  • Socket set (for wheel well liner screws)
  • Lug nut wrench
  • Torque wrench
  • Buffer (if you don’t have one, then a Microfiber towel should work)
  • Clay bar and lubricant (spray detailer will work)
  • Paint polish
  • High heat grey primer (or silver paint, depending on your personal preference)
  • Meguiar’s Paint Protect (or a protective sealant/wax of your choice)
  • Hammer (Sledge will suffice.  The hammer will serve as a tool of last resort, in the event that all else fails)
  • Beer(s)
Car – lift up.  Wheels – off.  Belly pans – drop. Pressure washer – on.  Beer – cold.  
After the car is lifted, with the wheels and belly pans removed, it’s time to begin cleaning.  In this guide, we will go straight to the underside of the car.  Before you pressure wash the undercarriage, go ahead and saturate everything with an iron reactive cleaner.  There’s a wide variety of options here, among which include CarPro Iron X, Optimum Ferrex, Sonax Fallout Cleaner, Sonax Full Effect Wheel Cleaner, and 3D BDX Brake Dust Remover.  There are others, but this is a fairly comprehensive list. 

"I guarantee you that there are tons of such deposits built up on the chassis of your car, most of which have become embedded in the cosmoline."

Whichever cleaner you choose, the main purpose of an iron reactive cleaner is to react with brake dust deposits.  I guarantee you that there are tons of such deposits built up on the chassis of your car, most of which have become embedded in the cosmoline.  Typically, the solution will go on one color, like, I don’t know, lime green and then suddenly change to purple once the reaction has occurred.  The reaction time is about five minutes.  Once the color change has materialized, go ahead and scrub everything with the big brush.  Then, you’ll want to rinse the cleaner off with the pressure washer.  If you still see brake dust deposits, go ahead and reapply the cleaner, wait for it to react, and then scrub and rinse again.  
After the brake dust has been removed, go ahead and take the Stoner’s Tarminator and apply pretty much everywhere.  Tarminator will remove any road grime or tar that has built up underneath your car.  Feel free to be liberal with your application, as Tarminator is safe to use on coated metal, rubber, painted surfaces, undercoating, plastic, and pretty much every other type of surface you’ll find under there.  Once the Tarminator has been applied, you will begin to see any stains begin to ooze and sort of dissolve.  Take the big brush and scrub everything.  Rinse.  Reapply Tarminator.  Take the small scrub brush and go at any areas that you missed.  Rinse. 

"Now, if you feel compelled to really get esoteric, go ahead and polish your calipers."

Now we get to the miserable (I mean pleasurable) part… duh duh duh… cosmoline removal!  Now, if you are a total purist and you somehow believe that removing the cosmoline will result in point deductions at a concours, you can move straight on to the wheel wells.  Skip down to paragraph 7 (the next one).  For the rest of us, it’s time to break out the Xenit.  Xenit is a citrus cleaner, and is the cleaner with which I have had the most success at removing cosmoline. Go ahead and apply a thick coating of Xenit to all of the cosmoline-treated areas.  There’s not need to let Xenit sit, so go right ahead with your small brush and get scrubbing.  Cosmoline is tenacious, so it will require some persistence to actually remove the stuff.  If you’re having luck, go ahead and try your larger brush to see if you have success covering more surface area in less time.  You may need to apply several coatings of Xenit to each area before you begin to see success.  I guarantee that you will go through at least 8 cans of Xenit.  Once you have removed the bulk of it, go ahead and spray yet more Xenit on any cosmoline remnants, and try to remove them with your tiny brush (a toothbrush will do).  Rinse the undercarriage and have a sip of your beer.  If you don’t drink alcohol, have a sip of some Goya Non-Alcoholic Malt Beverage.  Yummy. 

Now get back to work!  With the wheels removed, go ahead and spray the inner barrels with your iron cleaner.  Wait 5 minutes (1…. 2…. 3…. 4…. 5….) and then scrub and rinse.  Repeat if any brake dust remains.  Go ahead and take your socket set and remove all of the bolts keeping the wheel-well liners in place, and then remove the liners themselves.  Be careful, as they are often very brittle.  Go ahead and coat the liners with your iron cleaner, wait for the reaction (1… 2… 3… 4… 5…), scrub, and rinse.  Coat with tarminator, scrub, and rinse.  Coat with Xenit, scrub, remove any cosmoline, and rinse.  Yippee!  Liners are done! 

Wheel wells.  Go ahead and spray with the iron cleaner, wait for the reaction (you know the drill), scrub with the brush of your choice (I’d choose the small one), and scrub a dub dub.  Rinse.  Tarminator, scrub a dub dub, rinse.  Xenit, scrub a dub dub, rinse.  Hopefully you got all of the brake dust, road grime, and cosmoline off of everything.  It can take a while.  Be sure to get the suspension components and brake dust guards with your tiny brush.  Repeat for all of your wheel wells.  Wait for everything to dry.  
Now, if your rotor hats are a little rusty, or discolored, or the wrong color, or no color, or hot pink, or invisible, then go ahead and repaint them.  Be sure to cover your calipers, suspension, and any nearby painted surfaces with some type of plastic before you paint the hats.  Most Porsches come from the factory with grey primer on the rotor hats, but many people prefer to paint them silver (to match their wheels).  Don’t worry too much about getting some excess paint on the rotor itself, as your pads will remove it after you brake a few times. 

Now, if you feel compelled to really get esoteric, go ahead and polish your calipers.  Use a clay bar and some lube to remove any microscopic contaminants from their surfaces before you polish them.  I prefer to use a buffer because… idk… convenience, but if you don’t have one then no worries.  You can hand polish them with a microfiber and some paint polish (I’d stay away from compound, as that is probably a little too abrasive for this job).  If you have a buffer, you probably already know how to use it. Good.  Now polish your calipers.  If you are using the microfiber method, go ahead and apply a bit of polish to your towel and begin to vigorously polish the calipers by hand.  You’ll probably notice a pretty substantial difference once you’re done.
Now that your calipers are polished, apply some type of heat resistant protectant (like 22PLE VM1 Extreme Rim and Metal Coating).  This will give the rims some added gloss, if you desire.  You can also apply this coating to the rims to give them added glossiness and protection.  Once done, go ahead and coat the painted parts of the wheel wells (Meguiar’s Paint Protect works great for this). 

Hooray!  You’re done!  Now go chug the rest of your beer(s).    

the cap'n
<![CDATA[birth of the 928 integrated bumper]]>Sun, 27 Mar 2016 16:35:50 GMThttp://flussigmagazine.com/der-houmlhepunkt/birth-of-the-928-integrated-bumperel jefe
he wouldn’t give it up.

“That 911’s a ’72…the external oil filler flap right behind the passenger side door gives it away. Did you know that? You can’t call yourself a Porschephile if you didn’t! It was the only year a production 911 would employ a feature Piëch developed for the 911R. So technically, you…”

I was trying to shake this motherfucker off me. like a tick, he latched on trying to bury his head into my skin while pounding my ear with condescension. I had enough of this guy’s bullshit; I barked...
“GODDAMNIT! who are you? what the HELL do you want?”

cutting him off in mid-sentence, he just stood there staring at me. he looked me over; oil stained boots, soiled threadbare dungarees, moth eaten wife beater, and pronged dog collar. he sniffed, thrust his hands in his pockets and aimed his eyes at mine.

“are you trying to impress me or something? well, you’ve failed because the shit you’ve been reciting is FUCKING amateur. you know what? I FORGOT more than you know.” I blurted out.

I wasn’t finished with this smug cocksucker yet…I went for the throat.

“what’s your name?”


“OK, Artie, see that 928?” nodding my head at the Moccabraun ’78, “in September of ’72, the 26th to be precise, engineers in Zuffenhausen set up an integrated bumper project group to create the polyurethane bumper covers on that thing. now, had you said that to me, I would’ve been MILDLY impressed.” I turned my head back to him and walked away.

I’m amazed at what I recall from random memory during fits of lunacy…let me share it with you while it’s still warm.
Bayer's 1967 K-67 launched at the 1967 International Trade Fair for Plastics in Düsseldorf, Germany
they shook their heads.

the initial sketches of the 928 followed Porsche’s trademark of integrating the bumpers into the body. the 356 had them painted in the car’s color, and despite America’s pendulum test, 911s wore them too…although designers had struggled a bit to pull it off. so why the hell were clan behind the 928’s creation seeing new sketches with the 928 wearing partially integrated bumpers that looked like an afterthought?

well here were the goddamned engineers, the stiffs, ruining the party with typical right-brained worries.

“Impossible, they won’t be sturdy enough…”

“Never mind that Reiner, the paint will turn a different shade than the rest of the car over time…and more importantly, the paint can’t flex as much the bumper.”

“No…you know what the real problem is Dieter? Those Arschlochs draw shit without any goddamned idea of how it’ll be made!”

“Balls! Give the engineering department back the original goddamned sketches and tell them to figure it out."

the Project Fathers didn’t want to hear it.

“Balls! Give the engineering department back the original goddamned sketches and tell them to figure it out. The original design had integrated bumpers, it was unanimously approved, so we must go forward.”

they had to put the hammer down. production of the 928, a completely new car, was a few years away and there wasn’t even a full working prototype made yet…the bumpers were just one of the headaches; the fuel tank, rear suspension, engine, needed some hard thinking and prototyping.

the Feds in America were another problem. they were cracking the whip on European and Japanese imports wearing bumpers sculpted in tin foil. word in the industry was that any car manufacturer wanting to sell their wheels on our soil in 1973 must have rear bumpers able to absorb a 2.5mph shunt, and front ones to absorb a 5mph shove.

creating fully integrated bumpers in Polyurethane wasn’t some mystery formula scribbled on scrolls, it was doable. If Chevrolet were introducing them on their 1973 Corvette, and Pontiac had them on their ’73 Firebird — pfff. in four weeks, engineers rang up 17 firms that had the answers they were looking for regarding specifics in manufacturing, materials, and processes.

the fist hit the table and a decision was made. the bumpers were to be made of Polyurethane as either a molded skin with an aluminum beam hiding underneath to provide the protection, or an injection molded Polyurethane unit using and internal air chamber system for impact absorption. 
the process of manufacturing, more specifically injection molding, Polyurethane components for the auto industry was pretty young…but polyurethane wasn’t. Otto Bayer, no relation to Bayer AG, and his co-workers at the German chemical company IG Farben (who in 1925 merged with Bayer AG), created polyurethane in 1937. by 1952, the polymers used in creating polyurethane became commercially available, and by 1954, Polyurethane foam became one of the derivatives. in ’56, Dupont stepped in to further refine these polymers making them safer, cheaper, more water resistant, and ultimately, more popular with the help of BASF and Dow.

the introduction of other chemicals and reactionary agents spawned more hypothesizing, experimenting, and concoctions of all sorts came to a head during the early-mid 1960s. in 1967, a revolution that’d be both praised and cursed began…Bayer exhibited a car made entirely of plastic (save for the engine, gears, and wheels) at International Plastics Fair in Düsseldorf, Germany — the K67.

lots of hands were clapped together and vigorously rubbed after that little show because Bayer AG had created the manufacturing process that produced the panels on that car; Reaction Injection Molding, or RIM.

here's how the process works. a couple of reactants (chemicals and polymers) are stored separately. at the ready is this industrial phallus aimed directly into a mold where the two chemicals are shot at 2000psi into the hot pocket where the streams mixed, reacted, and formed the molding. the result is ejected in a few minutes; depending on the size and complexity of the part, of course.
the reaction part of the process is the variable, if the part being made required extra strength, flexibility, elemental resistance, thermal expansion and stability, fibers, milled glass (mica), or fillers could be added to one of the reactants. this now becomes a new process called RRIM; Reinforced Reaction Injection Molding.

oftentimes, there’ll be an abbreviation of PUR hitched to RIM or RRIM; that’s PolyURethane. now, the specifics of this process are found in thick bindings at your local library if you’re boring enough to want more insight. for the purposes of this paper, it’s more than enough information; let’s move on.

Porsche swooned over this process the moment it wafted into their ears. anything to ease manufacturing, allows exponential creative liberties (styling), be corrosion resistant, and most of all, reduce weight, tickles their Stuttgarter Wurst. they bear hugged it.

Poly was a wide-hipped woman in bloom, oozing fertility winking and blowing kisses from the second floor balcony seducing Porsche’s designers and engineers...they saw potential. further investigation drew out more conclusions like dimensional stabilities in extreme temperatures, resistance to abrasions, and forgiving to insignificant damage. Porsches using components made of PUR would yield increased fuel economy, increased service life, allow for scratch and gravel resistance finishes, smoother body surfaces for reduced aerodynamic drag and improved pedestrian protection.

so in 1969, they began using RIM parts in production cars…the 914 was first. if you imagined fenders, hoods, and doors…stop. they decided on producing a trim panel with tight curves that forming a transition between the bumper and the body for MY1970. they were offered in black only because there were no feasible paint options available yet; a fine grain on the visible surface was the best they could do. the covers and the upper edges of the door trays were also made of RIM; not a very exciting start, but they got more adventurous with each model year. in all, about 20.4 kg of RIM components went into the 914.
1970 914 displaying Porsche's first stab at using PUR-RIM on its front bumper
1975 911 Turbo Carrera flashing the 911's use of PUR-RIM bits
in 1972, the 911 was the second dog to lick the spoon. PUR-RIM pieces were used for bumper trim pieces and energy absorbing elements. then front and rear spoilers were developed using urethane. when the Turbo blasted in, black PUR-RIM graced its bumpers, chin, and massive rear spoiler where a careless pedestrian would be spared stitches if they knocked into the thing. steering wheels, horn pads, shift knobs, and flag mirrors surrounds were also made with PUR-RIM. still, no paint solutions were available…so they stayed black.

Piëch’s 911R missed the technology by a couple of years. the hood, fenders, door skins, and decklid would’ve been perfect candidates for PUR-RRIM rather than the expensive process of hand-laid fibreglass Karroseriefirma Baur had to do, nevermind sparing Rolf Wütherich from drilling holes by hand. even though the R's problem was more about marketing than cost, Huschke von Hanstein might’ve had more leverage from a monetary perspective when pitching the idea to marketing.

the 928’s integrated bumper group was stalled with the challenge of finding suitable paints and primers for the proposed PUR bumpers. sure, they could be manufactured, but if they couldn’t paint the things, they were wasting their time…leaving them black certainly wasn’t an option. 

engineers weren’t fucking around here; they went deep into studying every possible paint variation to yield the performance they demanded. one of the issues was variance in paint shades as it aged under the nastiness of the elements, ultra-violet rays, and leaching of the PUR chemicals through the finish. the body required one type of paint while the PUR bumper skins needed another because of the elasticity requirements, so there had to be consistency.

they worked, and worked, and worked with the paint industry until they finally found a brew that met every demand, especially the aging one. the metal would be sprayed with alkyd-melamine resin while the PUR (polyurethane) parts got a two-component, polyurethane-based paint. the elasticity of the PUR paint had to have the same flexibility as the polyurethane material of the bumper skin…period. the test results induced much back slapping, ass grabbing, and beaming smiles. the swatch of material they painted was cooled down to 0°F and bent 180° with a sadistic bend of around 7/8” without a single crack in the paint. further tests including abrasion, being splashed with chemicals, adhesion, and weathering further convinced engineers that yes, this was their paint.

with the paint cloud gone, the modelers got the nod to proceed with a 1:1 plasticine model with integrated bumpers for approval—it was blessed November 19th of ’73. the partially integrated hunks of shit hanging on her Rubenesque frame were rubbed out. now the decision was whether to go with the impact beam behind a Polyurethane skin, or to omit the beam and create a polyurethane bumper with air chambers molded in which promised lower weight and cost. but after a few impact (pendulum) tests in cold conditions, the air chamber design proved to be less flexible than the skin/beam version and allowed for some damage to the built in lights.

by 1975’s end, they were ready to rock and roll. satisfying results with testing meant finalizing designs, approvals, and test molds made to pull pattern shots for final approval to proceed with tooling. Porsche would use Bayflex 101, a PUR-RIM system by Bayer. the PUR-RIM parts would then be painted separately because their drying temperatures of around 90°C were lower than the baking temperatures of the body paint.
artwork for Porsche's patent application 4231600
the 928 was the first Porsche to have painted PUR body components, this was an important development that revolutionized Porsche’s design and engineering process. by the time the Carrera GT was being designed, engineers and designers were well seasoned on what this new technology could offer, how it could be applied, and manufactured. using PUR-(R)RIM meant small production runs, evolutionary design changes, and future designs could be executed with more flexibility.

a patent application titled Automobile Bumper was filed on October 17th, 1978 and granted as patent number 4,231,600 on November 4th, 1980. Walter Braun, Hermann Burst, and Dietmar Peter were listed as the inventors…these guys along with the rest of the Integrated Bumper project group are the reason that your 928’s nose and ass still look PERFECT after nearly 40 years. next time you blast by a modern car, think about this little untold moment in history.

put that in your goddamned pipe and smoke it, Artie.


*image sources: www.markanto.dewww.design-is-fine.orgwww.autoevolution.com
<![CDATA[A Flat 6 Love Affair — Bart Kuykens]]>Sun, 07 Feb 2016 14:05:12 GMThttp://flussigmagazine.com/der-houmlhepunkt/a-flat-6-love-affair-bart-kuykensel jefe
and then it came…

crude, dry, and beaten — perfect.

the crooked red sticker demanded “handle with care.” scars and tattoos collected from Hemiksem to Plainfield never revealed the contents hugged in naked cardboard — but to hell with any preconceptions when that perforated flap was ripped open.
an artist, some old Leicas, and rolls of black and white film were the tools used to re-ignite anyone’s passion caught in a slack tide. 911 noises and static from different tongues around the globe hushed. a baritone whisper from unshaven lips captured the attention from attention seekers. hear the voice in your head and let the eyes translate what words will always fail to describe. the book, unprotected and heavy with emotion, is pulled out from its kraft paper gabardine. this is Bart Kuykens.

a slight crush of the corner beat the finger’s oils in making it personalized; nothing screams presence more than road bruises. the book is reduced to the essentials; no dust jacket, no unnecessary bullshit. A Flat 6 Love Affair, and a serial number, WP0ZZZ91ZGS102241 embossed in gold begged the fingertip’s caress. if the 1986 chassis number didn’t pull the eyebrows together, the faint backslash feigning imperfection between them would. the cover opens to reveal night framed in paper…
how could something so simple clothed in polar opposite shades quicken the pulse with anticipation? the creator’s rollerball signature opens the door unlike so many other books. somehow, the ritual of a time forgot when reading was a physical affair becomes a new experience all over again. Magnus’ tired words, Johnny’s syllabic adjectives, and Bob’s quartered thoughts mean nothing, do nothing. flipping three pages shoos the mosquitoes away; something far more important lies ahead. this will be a journey into an intimate corner of the soul. Luys de Navaez’s guitar plucks chords of Passeavase el Rey Moro -- the mood is set, the page turns, the trip begins.

"...the shape, the legend, and that goddamned mechanical sextet rock and roll howl coming from behind."

the Leica’s mechanical blink is heard with each page rolled to the left; this is how the spell is cast. the white space surrounding the photographs deepens the trance reserving enough consciousness to absorb the VIN, name, city, country, the 911’s particulars…and a few words. that’s enough to tell the story leaving the rest to the imagination. any more condemns the mind to laziness and ruins the spell. but it’s the back slash gapping the serial numbers from the rest that keeps a secret; maybe it’ll remain so.

there’s something about this tribe bound by machines that bellow a language in 1-6-2-4-3-5 rhythm. each of them are worlds apart in personality yet share one mutation of DNA that draws them to the shape, the legend, and that goddamned mechanical sextet rock and roll howl coming from behind. the realization hits; this isn’t a book at all, it’s a motley family photo album.
papa Albert hunched over Dr. Fuhrmann’s opus Typ 547 in four cams. cousin Achim squat down stretching the rubber quick-release straps over the catches to lock his ’80 SC’s decklid. brother Ronald, love smacked by a signal orange ’74 2,7 Targa, two-fingers a smoke while staring at his beloved. momma Kine brings a romantic tear to the eye waxing lyrical of her husband’s 30th wedding anniversary gift in 1978. uncle Peter, looking every bit a debonair movie star, gets dimples from his Weinrot ’87 Carrera. and who could forget how sister Kristel, buckled by seduction, let a 964 C2 Cabriolet steal her Coeur.

everyone of Bart’s subjects surrendered that day. he caught them at their most vulnerable immortalizing them in black and white. was it the romance of being documented by a method discarded in favor of technology that makes this album riveting? maybe the celebration of simpler times that birthed these machines, those who drove them, and those who rushed childhood to fulfill a vow of owning the first one they ever saw, the first one they ever heard?
before the last page faded to black, a thought occurred when one shot on page 77 had seared itself to memory. Bart and his old girl; he, a step or two ahead, leading her as if a Sioux warrior would a wild Mustang mare from pasture. she’s drawn to him, his silent command with a turn of the head leading her away. “Come girl, come…” fold the page over…he’s tamed her. she’s become inseparably his until death. that’s what this love affair is all about. only fools with empty souls fail to see how a bond between man and machine is possible.

through the art of photography stacked and bound, Bart’s telling us something poignant…these aren’t cars, nor are they simply 911s, these are mares. thought, emotion, touch, bond; the photos drag  you deeper into the owner’s odyssey. their 911 has become a part of them; they’ve become part of their 911. each has a personality, a scent, which belongs to no other. this is about your odyssey, your devotion to a machine that transcends into the realm of personification. 
the eyes begin to lose focus on the pages. sounds of that fan whining, sucking air and forcing it through alloy fins can be heard in the back of the head; 3000, 3600, 4200, 5800 revs…the howl of the flat 6 turns into a banshee scream; oil squirts under pistons, six timed explosions urge conrods to gallop in fluid rhythm. then, the pulsating der der dum der der dum of a horse’s hooves pounding the earth blends in, drawing heavy breaths, air rushing through her mane. the memory’s super 8 spins spliced reels of a 911 and a mare at full bore; 911, mare, 911, mare, 911…machine and beast are one in the same.

there’ll be times when familiarity derails the senses, it’s human nature. if there’s a way to re-ignite the sensation when the experience was fresh, when everything was a mystery waiting to be revealed…when fear, uncertainty, excitement, and virility were reasons for feeling alive, it’s within these pages. Bart’s journey did more than show us a good eye; it turned the switch from love and passion back to lust and infatuation. 


the book can be purchased here:
<![CDATA[Glückwunsch zum dreißigsten Geburtstag Porsche 944 Turbo!]]>Sat, 09 Jan 2016 13:55:25 GMThttp://flussigmagazine.com/der-houmlhepunkt/glckwunsch-zum-dreiigsten-geburtstag-porsche-944-turboSeth Ruden
What is there left to say about this cult-car that hasn’t been said? That it isn’t competitive in racing 30 years later? That its look and aesthetic hasn’t stood the test of time? That it’s technology wasn’t cutting edge and doesn’t hold up compared to the drivability of new cars? Or have you already written off every single question, and now expect a puff piece about how the 951 still measures up, three decades later. It became a feel good anthem to the merits of an overachiever, punching above its weight from a humble origin, that had finally come of age during the time of West End Girls by the Pet Shop Boys. 
Thirty years ago, in a move completely expected, the 944 Turbo (or as we prefer to call it behind garage doors, the 951), was released to a market of frothy-mouthed yuppie executives who immediately knew the car would be an instant hit. Critically, the machine was hailed as the vindication of the existential 924 concerns, addressing every weak point (absent price) to make this the saner and safer alternative to the sometimes homicidal 911 turbo. As an evolution to the 924, and it’s later 924 turbo variant, this model was a bit different than many other Porsche turbo predecessors and set a new standard for performance and efficiency through technology. 

The 1985 Geneva Auto Show had this display for the cars introduction, a bit different from the typical engine cutaways, illustrating the ideologically-pure Stuttgart platform:
Porsche’s design philosophy of model evolution was far more transformational in the 944 than it was in the 911. The 951, as exemplified the above famous factory advertisement, was far more than the addition of a k26/6 turbocharger and it shepherded in a significant model enhancement in the platform, including a new aluminum suspension, interior design, HVAC, and numerous body changes. In all, this was the car that the 944 was born to be. And while it was already great, having earned repeat mentions in the annual Car and Driver’s 10 best list, the 944 became spectacular in this one stroke. 

"These cars can go a quarter million miles under the right maintenance regimen."

Looking back through the evolution, the genesis of the model as a rebooted development project with VW… a partsbin special with a rabbit front suspension and Type 1 variant rear suspension, transformed to a technological tour de force, and as usual, the evolution comes from racing. The 1981 924 GTP Le Mans car (more on that here), was a proof of concept for the performance and durability of the new 2479cc engine that would power the transaxle model for more than a decade after that race’s checkered flag was waved. While the GTP car had a 16 valve head, and 400 horsepower, two elements the street cars wouldn’t have from the factory, the performance potential of this car was revealed (resulting in its own racing series, the Turbo Cup and a hot Sabine Schmitz at :11).

The car that is the spiritual successor for the 951, before the wolf in 924 clothing/GTP, may actually be the stellar Carrera GT, where 924 got some sexy hips (oh, you’re interested in hearing more on that? Got you covered there too) and some flashy aero bits. Now all it needed was real world drivability and compliance.

Let’s start with the best part, the engine: Electronic boost regulation with knock control kept cool by an after-run coolant pump, Ceramic exhaust ports, cast directly in the head and sodium filled exhaust valves. Alusil cylinder liners, for the forged rotating mass with a VERY stout crank. Partnering this all with one of the first modern electronic engine management systems that combined boost with ignition and fuel delivery, its arguable that this is one of the few designs from the era that legitimized and solidified the concept that turbocharging could be both reliable and explosively entertaining. These cars can go a quarter million miles under the right maintenance regimen.
But that’s not nearly the end of it, and the laundry list of enhancements over the base model reads like a supermodel’s measurements. Four-piston Brembo brakes all-around, mounted on a highly revised and lightened, firm yet somehow still comfortable suspension, yielded the most nimble and reliably controllable Porsche yet. Attach that to the most slippery automotive body the world had seen at that point, routing air through no less than six heat exchangers (water, oil, a/c condenser, transmission oil, power steering fluid and turbo-intercooler).

In 1986, the carryover-from-the-924 interior was retired, and transformed into a more modern (for the time), intuitive and efficient spread, with hugely improved ventilation and amenities. Elements like automatic climate control, revised Recaro seats (with improvements to the seating position) all laid out for business. It is a comfortable place, quite durable and tends to cleans up well.
So after digesting those seats, it’s easier to accept that these cars were a technological tour of force at the time. The 951 exists where real-world drivers and the “numbers cars” (where the car is great on paper, but notsomuch when you have to live with it) are one in the same. They make stellar touring cars, eating up large stretches of mileage easily and without discomposure to the driver. They will sit in traffic, idle and manage to keep themselves and you cool at the same time for hours in desert summers. It will do 150mph without complaint in conjunction with these previous two scenarios. It met global emissions and still is pretty clean by todays standards. Last month, my 951 engine passed fewer emissions in a sniffer test (17 HC) than a dog fart, and blows the 2015 VW TDI lineup out of the water. I don’t particularly care that I can challenge myself to get 30mpg out of it, if I drive it like James May, but it’s a good thing. 

Pretty stellar, right? The best value of nearly any performance car you could want, dead sexy, frenetically fun and a real world daily driver... all from 1986. Then it dawns on you: This might be the blueprint for the worlds first true real-world supercar. This couldn’t have happened with anything Italian, British or other classic exotic car maker of the era, this is the secret sauce…

Alright, reality check… a 2016 Toyota Camry with a V6 can pretty much put down the same skidpad, 0-60 and other such benchmarks as our storied hero… 30 years later. The true test of any car, however, is those who choose to take up it’s cause. How many people would independently pour their lives into a design. That is the legacy of the 951, the number of businesses and careers it launched, the amateur, club and historic races it continues to win in it’s class, and the people who have created a lifestyle around these cars. 30 years have aged the car gracefully, it holds up as a design: a competitive platform, a basic mode of transportation, a collector’s item and museum piece. It remains a magnet and a benchmark, and despite the fact (yes, it’s a fact) that the performance that was once blistering in a street car is now the same as a beige Japanese econobox/appliance, it took 30 years for that to happen. In the meanwhile, us flussigers have taken up the task; modified, maintained and upgraded the model to keep this one of the most respectable members of the Porsche transaxle family. 

Supercars leaving the factory in 1986

So, the verdict: Does anyone have any doubts about this car’s sustainability and that its present appreciation is warranted?  That the 951 is not just nostalgia for the era of new-wave synthpop and excessive turbo lag?  That there is no plausible deniability for the existence of volumes of recent praise from Jalopnik, Top Gear and pretty much any respectable automotive journalist? Right there is the reason we need a dirty-30 party for a proper modern classic, and it is deserving a victory lap. The residual is that after three decades, the 951 remains a scrappy and practical example of how to supercar without going over the top.

Happy Birthday to the Porsche 944 Turbo, here’s to three decades of greatness: PROST! 


*image sources from author's collection and Jerry Forthofer. all photos remain copyrights of their owners.