Sad story with an ongoing Happy Ending!!!

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knight_rx7
Posts: 82
Joined: Fri Feb 06, 2015 1:14 am

Sad story with an ongoing Happy Ending!!!

Post by knight_rx7 » Thu Feb 19, 2015 9:26 pm

Hi lads!!!

Here's the extremely sad horror story not for people wearing pacemakers or with heart problems!!! I know it's sad and hard to see a car deteriorating (I'm a car lover) and some would like to kick me in my rear, but I promise you, it will have a happy ending. It's not done yet, but it will have one.

It all started back in 2001 I got my first well paid job and needed a car to move around. At the same time I started my aviation school and flying hours are not cheap. A couple of friends from work had were selling their cars. A Honda Civic 86 and a Mazda Rx7 82. Well, I guess that the choice for a 19 year old boy was obvious. I went for the FB.

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Turns out that the car had a funny history. It was a donation from the US government to some institution in Costa Rica and at the same time they auction the car. Apparently the engine was damaged and someone replace it for a 1.2 Datsun engine. Now here's where all starts to fall. At the time the guy I bought the car from tried to register the car in the Government Property department but he was having problems since the Datsun engine was still registered in another car. That's where I picked up. Did a lot of research and found out the owner of this already scrapped Datsun car. I asked him to please hand me a bill of sale of the engine, that's all I needed. And he said no....

At that point nothing legal could be done. I was using the car still but since I was driving with an ilegal car I could not go anywhere and I had a big chance of getting the car confiscated by the Traffic Police Department.

So, I left the car in a garage and after a while I bought another car. One day this guy shows in my doorstep asking me if I would sell the FB. I said yes... And told him all the story in detail and that the car could not be registered legal. He said it was ok, it was his dream car and he wanted it. And so I sold the car. We agreed in instalments however he only paid a few ones and like after a year I went back and picked the car back. I then parked the car in a friends shop. One day I went to back and this guy with a neat SA parked outside the bank and so I asked him who was his mechanic. He pointed me to this Rx7 guru and so I went to see him...

I told him the whole story about the car and that if there was anything he could do to help me out. At that moment he told me that precisely he was going to take apart one 82 FB in a few weeks, so he could sell me the car "papers". I was aware that this is completely illegal, however I knew that I bought the car honestly and the government was giving no other choice than do it this way. Believe me I tried all possible ways to register the car legally.

Anyways, a few moths later I had my car legally registered but now I had no engine since I removed and sold the one in the car. I was still going under my aviation hours and money was not enough. Later I bought a Toyota 2.2l 3S-FE engine and a AWD gearbox thinking about the idea of installing it in the car. Of course I couldn't continue with my project because of the money. At that time I was traveling to Argentina to finish my aviation hours so I left Costa Rica for a couple of months. Time went by, I had finished my aviation training, still working in the call center and looking for an aviation job. A while after I was able to start my first job as a pilot with a very low income and of course my FB was left forgotten. It was left out in the shop, no roof, no protection whatsoever. A huge mango fall into the windshield, passenger window broken, plants growing inside the car and rust at it's best.

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At that moment my economic situation started to improve so I took the car back home and started to clean it out. My beloved RIP mother help me out and she look happy!

I then took it to a friends workshop and they took all the rust out of the car, and re did the floor.

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When I asked them how much would they charge me to bring back the car to life the guy told me around $15K USD. So I say no... I honestly think he told me that incredibly stupid amount just because he didn't wanted to work on it. It would've taken a lot time for the workshop to fix so it was not a profitable deal for them.

So again I took the car to another place and kinda forget about the idea of restoring the car....

One day a very good friend of mine called me and told me that there was an another FB for sale so we went to see it and it was in descent shape. Same story, problems with papers so all I got was a bill of sale. Anyway the other car already had a pedigree. My idea then was to restore the first FB with parts from this other FB. Time went by, things coming and going, no time, no money, changing jobs, high income, then changed jobs for better but with a low income, anyway, left both cars on standby. Then I always wanted a Jeep CJ5 and bought a 56 one and since it was an easy job, I decided to start restoring this one first. It took me a while to bring it back to the state I wanted it, and still I'm short by 30% to finish the car, but now I'm in no rush.

At some point I thought about the idea of restoring this second FB however it was not my first car and it didn't have a special place in my heart.

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Now, 14 years later, I'm working for an airline in the middle east and pay is good. After a year in the ME, I went back to Costa Rica and finally took care of my FB. Unfortunately many many parts are lost and I have to start from scratch. I will not take any parts from the other FB for the moment since I have a couple of ideas for it. That will have to wait anyhow, but I'll keep it for the time being.

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For some years now, I know a guy who works in one of the most prestigious bodyshops in Costa Rica and he help me with my CJ5, so I told him about the FB and he agreed on helping me with this project. Since he has a full time job, he woks during the weekends on the car. Process is going slow but it's headed the right direction.

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I'm extremely happy and thrilled about restoring my first car. Extremely happy about this huge community as well as the US one. There are more FB lovers other there than I thought.

Now, present day. I'm fully restoring the exterior of the car, getting mostly new parts so it will look mint!!!! After a long thinking regarding the color, I narrowed the options to Black as it originally was or Red. I chose red color just because the car has so many black details like the mirrors, handles, surrounding body and windshield trim that makes it look nicer than going for back, all these details will be lost.

After that, I will go for the interior. I have already bought a brand new discontinued console, ash tray, panel centre pocket switches and knobs. I have already been giving an unexpected gift from a member. A beautiful analog clock in excellent condition. Can't wait to have it in my hands.

I'm also planning on getting a newer (not new) Mazda rotary engine, but that will take a while now. I still need to do a lot of research and need some time to finish the exterior and interior.
------------------------------
38 Chevy Truck
56 Cj5
82 Rx7 -> http://rx7fb.com/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=2750
91 E34 525i
94 W124 E420
13 W212 E300
14 Toyota Fortuner

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User avatar
ian65
Posts: 5587
Joined: Wed Mar 30, 2011 12:11 am

Re: Sad story with an ongoing Happy Ending!!!

Post by ian65 » Thu Feb 19, 2015 9:46 pm

Amazing story Luis, if ever a car deserved to get restored, it's this one after everything it's been through. Shout up if you get stuck for parts, many of the members of this forum usually have a few spares lying around they may pass on to you.

Lucky
Posts: 2686
Joined: Mon Nov 07, 2011 8:30 pm
Location: Worthing, UK

Re: Sad story with an ongoing Happy Ending!!!

Post by Lucky » Thu Feb 19, 2015 10:21 pm

Wow, that's a real labour of love! Can't be many cars being resurrected after so long, but sometimes it just really isn't about making economic sense, but what it means to you. Much kudos to you 8-)

User avatar
MelloYello
Posts: 1077
Joined: Wed Jun 01, 2011 8:42 pm
Location: London, England.

Re: Sad story with an ongoing Happy Ending!!!

Post by MelloYello » Fri Feb 20, 2015 8:40 am

Great story. And good luck with the project.

knight_rx7
Posts: 82
Joined: Fri Feb 06, 2015 1:14 am

Re: Sad story with an ongoing Happy Ending!!!

Post by knight_rx7 » Sat Feb 21, 2015 7:38 pm

Thank you for the support guys!!!

I just spoke with the guy who's working the car and he sent me a couple of updates... These are fresh from today!

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------------------------------
38 Chevy Truck
56 Cj5
82 Rx7 -> http://rx7fb.com/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=2750
91 E34 525i
94 W124 E420
13 W212 E300
14 Toyota Fortuner

Image

User avatar
Hobbawobba
Posts: 1238
Joined: Tue Nov 01, 2011 9:44 pm
Location: Worcester - UK

Re: Sad story with an ongoing Happy Ending!!!

Post by Hobbawobba » Sun Feb 22, 2015 11:28 am

This is going to be awesome, Luis! I can't wait to see more progress aye h:

knight_rx7
Posts: 82
Joined: Fri Feb 06, 2015 1:14 am

Re: Sad story with an ongoing Happy Ending!!!

Post by knight_rx7 » Tue Feb 24, 2015 3:42 pm

My first gift of new things to my car!!!!

-Panel Center Pocket
-Ashtray
-Door lock trim

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Petrolhead96
Posts: 38
Joined: Fri Oct 24, 2014 10:14 pm
Location: West Cork, Ireland
Contact:

Re: Sad story with an ongoing Happy Ending!!!

Post by Petrolhead96 » Wed Feb 25, 2015 10:20 pm

Looking great my friend! :D Thats what I like about old cars, theres always a story behind each one. I'm still trying to piece together the story behind mine! Best of luck with the restoration, it'll be worth in in the end ;) new cars just are not as charming and memorable, sure they are faster, safer, more economical etc... but these days they are missing something. Your car will look gorgeous when its done!

knight_rx7
Posts: 82
Joined: Fri Feb 06, 2015 1:14 am

Re: Sad story with an ongoing Happy Ending!!!

Post by knight_rx7 » Thu Feb 26, 2015 2:15 pm

Petrolhead96 wrote:Looking great my friend! :D Thats what I like about old cars, theres always a story behind each one. I'm still trying to piece together the story behind mine! Best of luck with the restoration, it'll be worth in in the end ;) new cars just are not as charming and memorable, sure they are faster, safer, more economical etc... but these days they are missing something. Your car will look gorgeous when its done!
Thanks Petrolhead!!!! Yeah you are entirely right!!! All cars have different stories and destinies. Some are neat, some are sad and some have a happy endings. Old cars were built to last, and our FBs reflect that!!! That's what I hope!!! This is what I'm aiming....

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Just got a gift from a friend!!!! Thanks so much pal!!!!!! You have no idea how much I like it!!!!

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TOOL
Posts: 2503
Joined: Thu Sep 01, 2011 10:30 am
Location: Var, France (ex NZ, ex UK)

Re: Sad story with an ongoing Happy Ending!!!

Post by TOOL » Thu Feb 26, 2015 2:50 pm

Chido
Back in sunny France

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