Replica Max

Time for a well overdue update. Well documented through pictures so beware!

Mid last year I bought a S14 K’s manual(Nose to tail accident, written off) without too much thought, plans were to strip it to a light weight version and use it for gymkhana’s etc. Not having a place to store it turned out to be the big issue and before long it ended up at my yard getting stripped! Then finally I bought a house with an empty garage and the rest is history.

After having Max off the road for over 3 months and no return date set any time soon Owen and I decided it was time to build battle car #3.

On the 14th of December we loaded it up and lifted it up my drive

Before the car even arrived I started repairing the front bumper being the plastic welding wizard I am.

Then over the period of about 2 weeks, a lot of late nights/annoyed neighbors and elbow grease I managed to remove all the sound deadening by hand

Nick did our first relocated rack to try out and got the front sub-frame installed

There is a blank of photo’s while I went away for New Years, but during this time the rear subframe/fuel tank/hubs/brakes/coil overs and a few other pieces were installed. Once back the engine was installed. A bit of a throw back as its the same engine that STUFIT had!

Engine/Box in and on the ground

Full custom pedal box!(S13 to S14 conversion!)

We booked it in for a tune on Saturday the 10th of January so that we had a deadline to work to. 2am Saturday morning and it was running, with a final tickle up in the morning we were ready for the first tune(so we thought!)

After dropping it into ST Hitec to let Soichi work his majic, he found that the circuit sports fuel rail was leaking so I went in and swapped it out for the OEM item

It ended up making 280KW on high boost(22psi) but as it still had the factory radiator and a few other issues he wasn’t very happy with the tune. Sheet below is the boost settings we have been running it on(8-14psi)

By now the project had snowballed a bit. We decided that it was a step above a battle car and as we were going to be using it at the track it would be boring if we couldn’t take passengers. Tim/TTT auto did an awesome job on Max’s cage, without any thought the car was dropped into his shop for his basic 6 point cage

While it was getting the cage done I started prepping the panels

Originally I thought it would be done in time for a DMNZ day at Manfield so I had planned to go down and enter that, unfortunately it was still a way off so ended up dropping it off at old mate Neals to get the glass done and went and flagged at Manfield.

Once I got home from Manfield the push was on to get it ready for the next track day!

Complimentary driveway lock!

Ready to load up

Pickets day was awesome, loads of track time to bed the car in

The foam in the mushroom filter let go and started causing issues and then on the last session of the day the exhaust welds cracked off!

Nick was on the job again and re-welded the exhaust and also plumbed the wastegate back in.

Took it out at Ardmore but it was super boring with only a couple of cones to aim for!

Only issues were that is kept heating up I removed the Redline fan shroud and mounted the fans directly to the radiator, which made a huge difference in keeping the temps down

Then it came time to start sorting the interior. A dash was kindly gifted to the project

Prepping the interior

And the final product

Re-fitted the interior

Then we took it out to a gymkhana on the Hampton Downs Skidpan which I ended up winning, free oil and filter!

Next list

Finally got the cage homologated

By now the car had become alot more serious than what we first imagined and the call was made to start getting it road legal! To start with we took it to get assessed by the repair certified for the frontal damage. He was a super GC and said to take it through compliance incase they flagged it on the rolled rear guards or damage to the chassis rails from being low. Before long I had more paper work on my table than when I was at school!

There was a week of rest after seeing how much work needed to be done, and ended up going down to D-comp for the practice day

While Nick made up some new Stainless wiper linkage studs

After having a nightmare dealing with certifiers who didn’t want to help it was decided to put factory springs/wheels etc on to get it through.

Then it was off to get a new front slam panel installed

All installed

Then to get it through compliance I needed to get an authority card which covers off the roll cage, seats, harnesses, airbag removal and braided brake lines. While in the process of that it also covers hydraulic handbrakes so I thought it was time to try out Nicks latest product a bolt on twin rear caliper conversion!

Painting the radiator support


Buffing it up

To pass compliance we had to have glazing in the front doors(non-moving was fine) so Nick made up these linkages which allowed the windows to bolt on in the up position(height will be adjustable at a later stage)

I then took it back to compliance and they passed the mechanical side of things(huge relief!). All I had to do was come back with the authority card and they gave me the sticker

All road legal

Unfortunately one of the splines on the clutch plates has stripped which I cannot even explain! But the car is back on axle stands in the garage while we sort that out. Many more updates to follow!

R1 re-spray

For a change of pace we decided to change the paint or the R1

R1 Paint

A Sky Blue Marble was the colour of choice


Our latest project is a Nissan Skyline GTR. The goal is to turn it into a nice street/weekend track car.

WP_000803Since picking it up and stripping it down, we have found alot of rust that needs to be repaired. Once all the rust is repaired then the fun part begins, where we start building it back up!

WP_000872As it sits one side of the outer sill has been cut open to see the damage. Luckily we have a donor shell which will supply the parts needed to fix!

WP_000871It will run 17×9 Blitz type 01’s all round.

The paint colour is still undecided, but it will have a complete re-spray from the ground up!



A31 Cefiro Project

Our next project that we are starting on is an A31 Cefiro. We have had it stored to the side for a while.


Time to get cracking!

Owens S13

One of the next projects that we will be working on is Owens S13. We have been hunting down parts for it for the last little while, the engine is built to put out around 280kw and the whole package is designed to be a perfect competition level drift car, while still being 100% Street legal!

We have also made up a marque/Tent so that Owen can start doing more custom paint jobs. Any cars that are part of the core “Team Garage H” team will have marble paintjobs! If anyone out there has contacts in the paint industry we would love to hear from you,


Well I thought it was about time everyone knew the faces of Garage H. We have been around since 2004, and are continuing to grow. I will be updating the blog more often now, but first up I will explain who is in our team and the assets they bring to the team!


From Left:

Nick Bourke. Nick is one of the founders of Garage H. From back in 2004 when we were building my R32 GTST in our garage, right through to this day, he has had alot of very good ideas. Nick is a qualified engineer, he does all the fabrication for Garage H, as well as some mechanical aspects. He is a perfectonist and it always shows through his work. I will be showcasing some of the products he has made for Garage H through the coming months, he now wants to work on some of our products and start selling them to the public.  Some of the parts he has made from scratch include the Garage H Wheelie Rack, Garage H Deluxe Hubs, De-actuator and others which will be posted up in the future.

Theresa Knight. Theresa came on board December 2010. She proved herself by helping us build the Green Battle Car early in 2011. She is very good on the tools, but also helps out behind the scenes whether it be organising to get a whole lot of tyres changed for an up-coming trackday/comp/demo, updating the facebook page, registering us into demos/competitions and other stuff like sorting out schedules so we can get everything into place before an event.

Owen Newman. Owen came on board October 2010. He started off as our pitcrew when we were drfiting MAX in the 2010-2011 D1NZ series. He showed us that he was keen to get behind Garage H by showing up on time and helping out time after time.  Owen is a Qualified Automotive painter and has completed courses in custom designed paintjobs, he is the brains behind MAX’s Marble Maroon paint and he continues to bring new idea’s to the table.

Simon Bourke(The one that writes the blog posts!!!). I have also been behind Garage H from Day 1. I generally handle most of the mechanical side of things, doing up the nuts and bolts after Nick has created the part to install. I have alot of input into the parts that Nick creates. I am the man behind the wheel of Max 80% of the time, have completed a season of D1NZ Pro-am 2010-2011, placing 9th overall at the end of the season. I have had alot of experience behind the wheel of a drift car, I have driven at over 50 trackdays in the 8 years I have followed drifting. I am a qualified builder and have spent a very long period of time working on cars, so I know Nissans very well. I also run the Garage H wrecking yard.

If you see any of us out and about we are always happy to stop and chat. Theresa and I will be found at Hampton Downs most weekends as we run Corporate Drift Days, Track days and Skidpan/Gymkhana days out there.

Team Garage H

Simon, Nick, Owen and Theresa. Check out to see what we have been up to this week!

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