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The Next 10 Worst Things To Do To Your Car - The Sequel

Rob Choo
Oct 12, 2005
Photographer: Jasper Chan
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Turp_0510_01_z+10_worst_mods_ever+scion_tc Photo 1/1   |   The Next 10 Worst Things To Do To Your Car - The Sequel

1. Painted brake calipers: Want that big brake look but can't afford it? A very wrong solution is to paint your calipers. All that does is draw attention to your puny stock brakes.

2. Japanese and Chinese text stickers that you have no idea what they mean: Are you one of those people who thinks kanji just looks cool so you stick some on your rear window? Always get a reliable translator (read: not the store clerk where you bought it) because it probably: a) doesn't mean anything, b) is just nonsense, or c) was written by a sadistic calligrapher who takes offense to you appropriating his culture so he wrote "I have a small penis." Wear that badge with pride, young warrior.

3. While I am on the sticker bent, it's a crime to put any "Powered by ..." sticker on your car. Powered by Honda? Really? You're kidding. I had no idea what type of car you were driving. Now I understand. "Powered by Deez Nuts"? I won't even get into the compensation issues there, nor how that will so not attract the ladies, oh smooth one.

4. Rolling with one black-eye wheel or donut: So you busted a tire or bent a rim and you replace it with a Darth Vader or worst yet a tiny spare from your trunk. That is acceptable only for the ride home which is where you should promptly swap back to your stock wheels and tires. With how often I see people driving with a mismatched set I know this rule is not being followed.

Always keep your stock wheels for this very occasion and don't be cheap and sell them because you end up looking cheap when you are driving around with three Racing Harts and a spare tire. Stock wheels would be an improvement, so listen up.

5. Hood scoops: Most hood scoops aren't going to do crap for you because contrary to your belief you are not a rally racer and rarely go fast enough for a scoop to make a significant difference. While improving airflow is important, please leave the hood scoops to the WRXs out there who have earned their rally roots. A Honda Civic is not a rally car so when you are mismatching genres with a hood scoop, you might as well throw on a "The South Will Rise Again" sticker because we all know how much confederate flag bearers buy Japanese.

6. Bad paint jobs: I empathize with the ridiculously high cost of paint jobs but that doesn't justify skimping on it. If you pop your hood and the engine bay is a different color from the outside, you have committed a faux pas felony. Your car cannot speak of the utter the embarrassment it feels from an low-end paint job. Respect your car and take the more costly and labor-intensive route of getting through paint job. By the way, no drips or uneven color allowed either.

7. Wrong offset wheels: Sometimes it is a personal style issue (such as those little mini wheels sticking four or more inches out from the wheel well with chrome fender flares) or an ill-informed error (big gaps between wheel well and tire, tire sticking out from rim, wheels protruding from wheel well, etc.). Nothing is worse than having people notice your ill-fitting offset wheel first after your have dropped $2,000 on them. Make sure you ask around and do your research on proper offset before you order your tires.

8. Spray-painted wheels: A cheap alternative, yes. But ugly as hell. This should only be reserved for AE86s with old Supra wheels spray painted black. I need not explain further.

9. Cut springs: You want to lower your car but can't afford proper suspension pieces? What do you do? Cut the springs and forever have a bouncy ride that you can spot from 50 yards. This broadcasts to the world that you didn't care enough to spend money on your suspension.

10. Finally, neglecting to purchase a turbo timer: an often overlooked issue but yet something bad to do to your car. People who drive hard, pretending they are in a Formula One race on the way to the grocery store and then abruptly shut off the engine when they get there. No cool down period, nothing. You gotta baby your turbo or you don't deserve to have one.

What did we learn today kids? Most of these situations could be avoiding by just saving up the money for the real deal and not being cheap. Low-cost alternatives just make you look like a cheapskate. As tempting as it is for instant gratification, just wait until you can do things properly.

If you want some real trick JDM ideas maybe you should be attending our annual Tokyo Auto Salon tour. For reservations give our travel agent Kintetsu a call at (562) 924-2400.

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By Rob Choo
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