New Video, driving feedback!


Here’s the first video of the Van at the track.

It was suuuper sketchy! I had tires way too big and grippy (at 30psi) for the van’s low power, so you can see the van catching grip right away and bogging out mid drift.

Next thing would be to get skinnier tires, up the pressure to 45-50psi and try again until I can afford the engine swap!

In the meanwhile, have a ride into the danger zone!!

 

 

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The Tofu Drift Van is back!

The Tofu Drift Van is back!


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After exactly two years since the day I started chopping the van to swap into independent rear suspension, the Van is finally back o the track!
It’s been too long, too expensive and sometimes too complicated to the point of making me rethink if I should keep going with the van or just focus on my 1JZ-280Z. But after finally driving it again this past weekend I realize how much it was worth it.

The Suspension

It all started with a sawsall, I decided I wanted to have a full independent rear suspension but I didn’t want to use the JDM Previa (Estima) IRS because it was too expensive to ship and if I bent something it was going to be impossible to keep sourcing parts from Japan, also wanted to be able to use aftermarket products already available, so I decided to swap an entire S14 rear end so I could use 240SX coilovers and control arms, axles, differential, etc. So one day I grabbed my saw and cut a big hole on the back of the van in order to make room to the S14 chassis/subframe, eventually we decided to ditch the chassis and just fabricate everything to make the subframe fit.

I also wanted to add a rollcage so it made sense to fabricate everything all together and Insane Innovations did a great job.
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Specs:
S14 Rear subframe.
S13 KSport Kontrol Pro coilovers.
Maverick Motorsports dual brake caliper bracket.
Four Z32 rear brake calipers.
Mustang Cobra Rotora brake rotors.
KSport hydraulic e-brake.
Isis Performance 5 lug hubs.
S14 welded differential.

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After a little bit of paint (since the cage was getting all rusty) I got everything together, hooked all the hoses and pipes, made a seat bracket, installed a cheap-o-seat, and I was ready to try sliding for the first time in 2 years!!

The first thing I noticed is that the hydro ebrake just wasn’t working properly, but after some extra bleeding it “kinda” worked enough to allow me to initiate and after that it was all about sliding on 2nd gear all day long! Of course I spun a couple times… well more like many many times, but once I got it all figured out I managed to link the entire track which to me was a huge success!!!

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The balance felt perfect, the rear suspension was smooth and it would break loose fairly easy, the front had tons of grip, didn’t experienced any understeering at all. The only things I could think of changing was adding more steering angle (having such a long wheel base) and of course adding more power!

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In order to get more power I was going to use a 1UZ (Toyota V8) but after realizing that moving the engine towards the back was going to cause a lot of bad weight distribution for drifting, I decided to use an EG33 (Subaru Flat 6) which in stock form already puts 3 times more HP and Torque than my weak and tired 2TZ 4 banger. and I found a guy who makes a bellhousing that allows a W58 manual to bolt into a subaru engine and it would fit exactly on the same place than the original engine (under the driver’s seat) So that is going to be the next modification in line!

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Wish me luck!

 

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News and updates!

News and updates!


Well, it’s been a long time since I decided to start modifying the van’s suspension which was taking too long and got to the point where I couldn’t do it by myself anymore so I took the van to Insane Innovations where they are working on it and will make the S14 rear end and subframe work with the van and also will fabricate a full roll cage!! It’s not cheap work but it is going to be awesome!!!

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I’ll upload photos as soon as I get an update from the shop.

On the other hand, I just could wait more until the van was ready to start driving, so I got me a 1978 Datsun 280Z which was already modified and prepared to take a 1JZ/2JZ engine, so I got a 1JZ VVTi turbo from Suspicious Garage, an R154 transmission from my buddy Bryan (driver of the 8-Bit Miata) and I’ve been putting everything together to get this car on the track as soon as possible.

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I already started cleaning and painting the engine bay and doing some lightweight modifications to the doors

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The engine came with a pretty nice set of Greddy pulleys, but I still got a bunch of new parts, rear oil sump, rear main seal, a Driftmotion’s crank pulley, new clutch bearings and slave cylinder, some gaskets and new engine mounts. So I decided to get rid of everything I won’t need, cleaned up the engine and painte some parts to make it look nicer and cleaner.

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So, there’s a progress update for you guys. I should be getting some photos of the van’s progress this weekend as well.

Oh and also WE ARE GOING TO FORMULA DRIFT LONG BEACH!!! See you there in a couple weeks!!!

Thanks!!

We made it to Formula Drift Long Beach 2013

Drift Idiot and I headed to Long Beach, CA for Formula Drift Round 1, so we hopped on our black chariot and after a 6 hour drive from Phoenix, AZ we were partying it up at The Pike with Drift Alliance’s Vaughn Gittin Jr, Ryan Tuerck, Chris Forsberg and Tony Angelo.

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We met Matt Farah who happens to be a super cool dude and said he was excited about go shoot a video with the van once the V8 swap is done.

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Next day we went to the track to check on the drivers and their pit setups, and since the track was open I decided to check out what is it like to be a pro drifter on the streets of Long Beach!

 

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On Friday we went to see the practice and qualifying sessions, which was greatsince there wasn’t a lot of people around and taking photos was so much easier. So here’s some cool stuff I found around.

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Didn’t really took any photos on Saturday because it was too crowded, but Dai Yoshihara got 1st, Vaughn Gittin Jr 2nd and Chris Forsberg got 3rd

Almost done with the 240SX rear clip


Well, today I restarted working on the 240SX rear clip, pretty much cutting everything that is not going to be needed out of the way to be able to get better measures and be able to clean up the parts that will stay.

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On the side you can see my 240SX differential and pieces of a W58 transmission that I’m using to have an idea of how the engine and transmission will be mounted. I’m still not sure if I will use my W58 or an R154 transmission.

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So pretty much the differential will bolt directly to the transmission with a custom “driveshaft” that will be as short as possible. I’m going to make a hybrid mini driveshaft that bolts into the 240SX differential and slides into a Toyota’s transmission.

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Next step: Fully clean up of the 240SX rear clip and start tearing the Previa down…. Wish me luck!!!

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BTW, My garage looks like a mess, but after removing all that sheet metal I also threw away a lot of stuff and the garage is starting to get cleaner, lol.

Watch “Harlem Shake – Tofu Drift Idiot Version” on YouTube

Tofu-Kyu everywhere.


I have been bombing random places with Tofu-Kyu stickers. We’ll see how long they stay around.

If you go to any of this places and find them, snap a pic and post it up!!

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At The Peppersauce Cafe in Phoenix

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At El Hefe in Scottsdale

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At Baiz Market in Phoenix.

7Tune steps in!

I got contacted by 7Tune.com since they wanted to endorse the Tofu Drift Van and feature the build and drift events and the overall progress of the Van.

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For me this is a great opportunity to really show what this van is capable of. I appreciate everybody’s support and motivation to make this project a reality.

I won’t dissapoint you guys.

Thanks 7Tune.com and thanks to everybody who’s been following this project.

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First blog

Hi guys, here I’m going to be blogging about the Van’s build, events, news and everything related to Drifting.
Stay in touch.

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