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 Posted: Mar 25, 2017 06:00AM
Total posts: 3311
Last post: Apr 18, 2017
Member since:Oct 8, 2011
US
BC, I will call you later in the day when you may be up. I have the info about the kit and extras offered with it. Also I'm out of 1275 engine cores as much as I'd like to have some more. I'm deep into the build of 5 engines now and have request for a couple more. The one I picked up from machine shop yesterday is the nicest mini engine and tranny I have been involved with since the vintage race market dried up for me. Balanced, blue printed, Omega pistons, Swiftune head, cam kit, 1.5 roller rockers, Steel light verto flywheel and upgraded pressure plate with machined center. DAM 5626 tranny , wide ratio gear set, 2.76 CWP, two O/D drop gears for finial drive ratio of 2.56. all gears REM polished and cryo treated. If that weren't enough a Quaife posi . Before pulling the power unit I was the nicest running handling classic mini I have had the pleasure to drive and work on. Excited to see how much improvement we have made. Steve (CTR) 

 Posted: Mar 24, 2017 07:03AM
Total posts: 9889
Last post: Apr 22, 2017
Member since:Dec 3, 2002
US
I'll continue to stay out of this discussion. Most of you know where I fit, anyway, but regarding Spank's information, keep in mind that he once put an 848cc Mini engine in a Honda.

 Posted: Mar 23, 2017 07:31PM
 Edited:  Mar 23, 2017 07:32PM
Total posts: 1436
Last post: Apr 22, 2017
Member since:Oct 4, 2013
CTR. ( steve) I might have buyer for the vtec kit. locally.....call me  later bc

 Posted: Mar 23, 2017 04:47PM
 Edited:  Mar 24, 2017 02:32PM
Total posts: 277
Last post: Mar 23, 2017
Member since:Oct 22, 2004

 Posted: Mar 17, 2017 05:36AM
Total posts: 3311
Last post: Apr 18, 2017
Member since:Oct 8, 2011
US
Would anyone be interested in a VTEC kit? Steve (CTR)

 Posted: Mar 13, 2017 11:40AM
Total posts: 637
Last post: Apr 7, 2017
Member since:Aug 9, 2016
if i were to turn back time, and if i have enough $$$, i would have bought a fiberglass classic mini shell and start from scratch, get a decent Honda engine and wire harness and everything else needed, window ,gauges,wheels etc.(not necessarily spanking brand new).  at the end of the project, at least i got what i like, a solid rust proof shell and a powerful engine that i will own,drive and  treasure till i die.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 Posted: Mar 13, 2017 04:41AM
Total posts: 3768
Last post: Mar 29, 2017
Member since:Apr 26, 2005
While the mini is the originator of cool compact, modded up and made your own, I think we will see more and more returned to their original glory. Prices for untouched cars are soaring while you can find chopped up and abandoned cars all day long. I'd love one of each in my garage just so I could feed Jeckly AND Mr. Hyde's obsessions.

Mark Looman, Ada Michigan 1967 Austin Cooper S
 Posted: Mar 9, 2017 12:17AM
Total posts: 501
Last post: Apr 3, 2017
Member since:Apr 21, 2012
US
Armycook

- I kept an eye out for a running driving honda for cheap/crashed/or could be parted out.Had to be a D16 vtec for me.Bought a car for 500..sold suspension and a few aftermarket things off of it and scrapped the car and got 500 in return and an ECU/Harness/engine/trans/linkage etc for free. -Bought the MTD kit from Minitec for 2400? Found cheaper ways to complete the rest.. -poly engine mounts on eBay for 100 bucks I think it was -radiator and fan for $50 and relocated the lower port over a little -Found the shocks on here from a member,was going to measure and source cheaper then Minitec though elsewhere.

There are a lot of ways to save money on this swap but it still is expensive in some ways but a lot can be saved.You can message me at anytime if I could help or if you are trying to figure out prices or what is needed to do certain things.Also,think about it before you pay someone to do the swap.If imagine it sucks having a car that you can't google or ask around how to fix an issue because its a crossbred car and fully custom lol really is nice to know the car inside and out.

 Posted: Mar 8, 2017 04:10PM
 Edited:  Mar 8, 2017 04:15PM
Total posts: 600
Last post: Apr 19, 2017
Member since:Apr 26, 2011
Thanks Mike, I know when you own an old car it will not perform like  those with today's technology. Still shopping around according to my budget that I know I can maintain at least. But definitely a classic mini still.

edit/ just sent you an email.

 

 Posted: Mar 8, 2017 03:45PM
 Edited:  Mar 8, 2017 03:48PM
Total posts: 5773
Last post: Apr 19, 2017
Member since:Mar 9, 1999
made some clarity edits to my post. 

I should also add. My wife paid $3,600 for the awesome 05 MINI S and the 94 miata that I referred to I just sold with full smog, 2 years of registration paid for $1500. For what you sold your rally replica for, you could buy 6 MINIs plus 1 miata and drive a different one every day.

 Posted: Mar 8, 2017 10:44AM
Total posts: 600
Last post: Apr 19, 2017
Member since:Apr 26, 2011
Quote:
Originally Posted by Spank
Armycook, based on your description and my experience with classic minis, you want a Jap Spec SPI. That's the "Easy Button".

I think the SPI mini is the best compromise for a 20+ year old car and modern functionality, sound deadening, daily driver and distance practicality, but still a unique hobby car you can make improvements to handling and suspension and has the classic mini ride. It also has the benefit of being able to convert over to carbureted and points driven ignition if something goes t!ts up and replacement injection parts are not available.

Unfortunately, we cannot get one here in CA without an engine swap into an older car. If you are going to go the engine swap route of putting an SPI drivetrain into a classic (which I am considering doing with a Riley Elf I have), it will probably be not a whole lot more work to do a D-series swap with a kit that someone else has already properly developed.

That said, I'm not convinced that some of the mass-marketers of the honda mini kits properly developed them. They make it sound easy, they put together a nice kit and tell you there's lots of help and experience out there, but there is still a LOT of fabrication work involved. To test my theory, find out what the "All-inclusive Kit" price is, then ask them the "fully installed, turn-key pick it up in XYZ and drive home 1500mi away" price is. Take that price difference and divide it by 100. That's roughly how many hours it will take this EXPERIENCED shop to do the swap and stand behind their work. 

Lately, I've had my own prior biases against some cars be softened and I have been presently surprised. While we've had some MINIs before (05 cvt vert, 02 S with lots of mods, 05 JustaCooper, 12 Countryman S), my wife's current daily, an 05 S w/ 160K mi on it is by far the most fun MINI I've ever driven and enlivens the little bubble of giddiness I get with I drive well-sorted classic minis. I've always said it isn't fair to compare the mini to the MINI, but with this 05 car, I get why people do it. Hopping in this thing, you'd NEVER believe it were 10-11 years old and at 160K miles.

The other car that also gave me pause and new found respect: an NA miata (in my case, a 1994 base model w/ 135K on the clock). Nimble, slightly underpowered in the seat-of-the-pants department, but seems to react about like a high powered 998 of warmed over 1275 would respond.

My advice: Go to a new or used car dealership on a nice day and go test drive some MINIs just to give yourself a baseline. I know, it's not a classic. But go for the drive a bunch of cars for free and then question what you want and why you want it. Having a classic car that is a reliable daily driver is along the lines of a high schooler wanting to be a professional athlete. Pretty common. Not out-of-the-question. Lots of crushed dreams along the way. A very select few ever achieve their dream. And those who succeed are always very gifted/skilled in the area of their want, very dedicated and perhaps singularly focused, and often times have connections to get their foot in the door. 

Congrats on your sale and good luck achieving your dream.
I spoke to a lot of people already both vtec mini owners and. A few fabricators, local and outside California. After doing all the research and math, I'm still not convince I can pull it off comfortably. I wouldn't want to start something I'm not capable of finishing. Every car is a different one-off project. it might or might not work. I don't want to end up having a money pit project because I'm constantly trying to improve something which in this case it might be. But I'll still do the pros and cons. thanks Spank!

 

 Posted: Mar 8, 2017 09:05AM
 Edited:  Mar 8, 2017 03:43PM
Total posts: 5773
Last post: Apr 19, 2017
Member since:Mar 9, 1999
Armycook, based on your description and my experience with classic minis, you want a Jap Spec SPI. That's the "Easy Button".

I think the SPI mini is the best compromise for a 20+ year old car and modern functionality, sound deadening, daily driver and distance practicality, but still a unique hobby car you can make improvements to handling and suspension and has the classic mini ride. It also has the benefit of being able to convert over to carbureted and points driven ignition if something goes t!ts up and replacement injection parts are not available.

Unfortunately, we cannot get one here in CA without an engine swap into an older car. If you are going to go the engine swap route of putting an SPI drivetrain into a classic (which I am considering doing with a Riley Elf I have), it will probably be not a whole lot more work to do a D-series swap with a kit that someone else has already properly developed.

That said, I'm not convinced that some of the mass-marketers of the honda mini kits properly developed them. They make it sound easy, they put together a nice kit and tell you there's lots of help and experience out there, but there is still a LOT of fabrication work involved. To test my theory, find out what the "All-inclusive Kit" price is, then ask them the "fully installed, turn-key pick it up in XYZ and drive home 1500mi away" price is. Take that price difference and divide it by 100. That's roughly how many hours it will take this EXPERIENCED shop to do the swap and stand behind their work. 

Lately, I've had my own prior biases against some cars be softened and I have been presently surprised. While we've had some MINIs before (05 cvt vert, 02 S with lots of mods, 05 JustaCooper, 12 Countryman S), my wife's current daily, an 05 S w/ 160K mi on it is by far the most fun MINI I've ever driven and enlivens the little bubble of giddiness I get when I drive well-sorted classic minis. I've always said it isn't fair to compare the mini to the MINI, but with this 05 car, I get why people do it. Hopping in this thing, you'd NEVER believe it were 10-11 years old and at 160K miles.

The other car that also gave me pause and new found respect: an NA miata (in my case, a 1994 base model w/ 135K on the clock). Nimble, slightly underpowered in the seat-of-the-pants department, but seems to react about like a high powered 998 of warmed over 1275 would respond.

My advice: Go to a new or used car dealership on a nice day and go test drive some MINIs just to give yourself a baseline. I know, it's not a classic. But go for the "drive a bunch of cars for free" and then question what you want and why you want it. Having a classic car that is a reliable daily driver is along the lines of a high schooler wanting to be a professional athlete. Pretty common. Not out-of-the-question. Lots of crushed dreams along the way. A very select few ever achieve their dream. And those who succeed are always very gifted/skilled in the area of their want, very dedicated and perhaps singularly focused, and often times have connections to get their foot in the door. 

Congrats on your sale and good luck achieving your dream.

 Posted: Mar 8, 2017 05:45AM
Total posts: 600
Last post: Apr 19, 2017
Member since:Apr 26, 2011
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ratrodmini
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jemal
Quote:
Originally Posted by jimfai
maybe this is the way of the future?  kinda like the tattoo shop down the block from my office,  they moved a couple blocks away last year and more than doubled their space. why?  they needed it for tattoo removal which is now their biggest money maker.
Good point!  So Many VTEC projects get abandoned when the owner realizes all that is involved, it does become viable to "undo" them as the value of Classic Minis keeps rising!  A bit like undoing the tattoo when the hangover wears off!

I've got nothing against HONDA power, but many people wishfully think it's as easy as assembling a Lego kit! It's not!  You may have a new niche Steve!!
curious how much Armycook sold his. 
I got my asking price minus fees. I'm very happy I came up and did very well I think. And now looking at a vehicle to start another project better than what I had. But with the budget in hand, I'm in a position where I can have a widened option for power. I drive the mini a lot on the freeway (maybe 2-3 times a week), I want something that picks up fast and doesn't scream on the I-15 and I-5 but not looking to race it, just want longevity/ reliability, starts no matter what the climate/ time of the day is and not worrying too much like how I step in my wife's Accord and just go to LA and back to San Diego or even further. 

Looking into investing in something safe and well thought strong power plant that is also fun to work on. Not fully convinced with going Honda vtec yet and still doing my research on maybe a 5 speed A series. But not looking to spend ridiculous $10k.

 

 Posted: Mar 7, 2017 07:42PM
Total posts: 183
Last post: Apr 14, 2017
Member since:Sep 15, 2015
It is situations like this where this community needs to come together and help newbs.  You know I am reminded of the world's most expensive Lotus Europa.  (Don't remember the year.)  It went to a local HotRod/Muscle Car builder with a generous original budget.  (Hearsay at this point.)  The shop worked on the car a little bit and asked for more money.  I was told the shop got 40k to "tune" the car.  At the time I was in the presence of this abomination, the owner had also spent a large sum of cash on lawyers to get the car back.  The shop had mangled the chassis and ruined the running gear.  If you know someone who is going through the thoughts on converting to H power, help them get in touch with someone who knows?  There are so many on this forum as of late that might be willing to consult and help whether converting, repairing or upgrading all types of power.  I am sure everyone can agree our hosts are in business to make money, but I don't think I have ever seen a post about not taking questions.  
I am on my high horse I know, but it is hard to watch bashing people because they do something to their own car.  Now personally I have considered doing something pretty brash to "Barb."  The person that I went to for advice/help was adamant there is nothing that can be done.  I in turn privately ripped them a new one.  I am sorry to that person, for being a douche.  Because I am a newb, I hope that person cuts me some slack.  
Mike, it stinks you had a "world's most expensive Europa," experience.  Glad everything is sorted out and maybe we can see you at the MME in Columbus, OH.  Either way happy trails in this community.  

 Posted: Mar 6, 2017 11:13PM
Total posts: 501
Last post: Apr 3, 2017
Member since:Apr 21, 2012
US
I would NEVER backtrack from my vtec to another 998/1275.

Hell I would never drive it without the turbo now lol

Really is NO point.My turbo D is amazing all around cruising highway with the 3.72 final drive and 10" wheels smoother and quieter then it ever was with the raspy mini exhaust.Do it right and put attention to where its needed and you will be happy with it.If you slap a B series from a car intended for tires 6 inches taller or w.e and a stupid muffler you'll be miserable .

 Posted: Mar 5, 2017 09:52AM
Total posts: 1436
Last post: Apr 22, 2017
Member since:Oct 4, 2013
CTR and mikeinNC..  btw you know legally you can NOT do an NON OEM engine swap in NC . unless it it 35 years and older now..  this came to light when dr aaron got his 78 land rover defenders SEIZED by CBP . DHS for having NON OEM engine. and do RHD to LHD swap..  ( you have to move brake booster and vin plate in on top.. so considered vin tampering..  by CBP./ DHS.. later bc

 Posted: Mar 5, 2017 07:50AM
Total posts: 31
Last post: Mar 5, 2017
Member since:Jul 4, 2015
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jemal
Quote:
Originally Posted by jimfai
maybe this is the way of the future?  kinda like the tattoo shop down the block from my office,  they moved a couple blocks away last year and more than doubled their space. why?  they needed it for tattoo removal which is now their biggest money maker.
Good point!  So Many VTEC projects get abandoned when the owner realizes all that is involved, it does become viable to "undo" them as the value of Classic Minis keeps rising!  A bit like undoing the tattoo when the hangover wears off!

I've got nothing against HONDA power, but many people wishfully think it's as easy as assembling a Lego kit! It's not!  You may have a new niche Steve!!
curious how much Armycook sold his. 

hec.

 Posted: Mar 5, 2017 07:48AM
Total posts: 31
Last post: Mar 5, 2017
Member since:Jul 4, 2015
Just face the fact that this is where it's going. Few more years or even months from now and someone out there will perfect this way easier enough for a Highschool kid to afford and accomplish. I know 9/10 people wanting to go Vtec just scared to either get stuck or think that they can't afford them. But ask most of them and they will tell you they'd rather have the reliability and power than anything else... that's not rocket science.

hec.

 Posted: Mar 5, 2017 06:31AM
Total posts: 3311
Last post: Apr 18, 2017
Member since:Oct 8, 2011
US
As mentioned Mike posted a thread here awhile back. I find it funny as that was the first day back on the board for me in maybe two or three weeks. A lot like it is now the board had little to offer and why bother? With Gary and Mike in NC I offered to help them if I could. Gary had picked up a very nice mini. Problem began when he met a group of racing ricers. They knowing nothing about minis and only seeing articles about Honda powered minis they sold Gary on the idea. Seems the job drug on for years and I know it was not Gary's fault. Once I got involved it was clear Gary was once burned and in no mood to hear he would have to wait for anything. Seems his front sub frame was lost in the swap. His A+ 1275 was a little weak and had a normal second gear crunch. These are the factors that lead to the Honda idea to begin with. I just happened to have a new late front sub frame freshly back from the powder coater. Gary also lost his S racer front blues. John Coo is always so much fun to talk with. Fully adjustable on car front suspension with new hubs, 8.4s even a new rack they had cut the ends off the mini one. The A+ 1275 got a compression and leak down test. Knowing the tranny would be getting rebuilt made getting into the engine a no brainer. A quick call to Nick and we had a SW5-07 and asso. parts on the way. New oil pump and timing set complete. We sent the head out to my porting  guy followed by hard seats and big intake valves and springs to match. I forget the details but Gary ask for 30 days from shaking hands to delivery and we were face to face in something like 45 days. He allowed a little grace when he added the porting and cyl. head work. The tranny is another one of my attempts to give a man/ woman a tranny that works for them. Gary has a vacation home a nice drive though some very nice NC/VA back roads. He, like so many of us is finished burning rubber and scratching off as we called it as kids. New clutch and linkage as well as master and slave. Selecting ratios and working with as many new parts as can be found we have a good balance. The car should pull away nicely and with 2.76 and single over drive drop he is pulling 2.65 and 65/67 mph at 3000 rpm. The cyl head and cam combo take care of the bottom end issues and 3000 is a nice rpm with these engines. I know a lot of people put up with 4/45 hundred to keep up with traffic. Mike did the heavy pulling on the job. He faced a mess that had to be repaired. I was just replacing and rebuilding. I kept sending down sheet metal parts.

BTW the engine and tranny ( Honda ) was a burned out racing engine the rice boys just wanted to get rid of. It has been a pleasure working with my brothers from NC and Va. Steve (CTR) 

 Posted: Mar 3, 2017 01:20PM
Total posts: 991
Last post: Apr 21, 2017
Member since:Nov 3, 2011
Quote:
Originally Posted by jimfai
maybe this is the way of the future?  kinda like the tattoo shop down the block from my office,  they moved a couple blocks away last year and more than doubled their space. why?  they needed it for tattoo removal which is now their biggest money maker.
Good point!  So Many VTEC projects get abandoned when the owner realizes all that is involved, it does become viable to "undo" them as the value of Classic Minis keeps rising!  A bit like undoing the tattoo when the hangover wears off!

I've got nothing against HONDA power, but many people wishfully think it's as easy as assembling a Lego kit! It's not!  You may have a new niche Steve!!

Jemal

Sales & Technical Support at MiniMania

Follow progress on all my projects at CooperRoadMini.com

 

Found 26 Messages

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