Wandering Leopard and BC Infintiti dealership Challenge

I’ll explain Wandering Leopard in another post. Understand that Wandering Leopard is a metaphorical projection. There is meaning to it and it represents something.


Additionally, this is part of the Infiniti Dealership challenge.

 

In 2005, I drove my black M30 to Vancouver BC to hang out. With in the realm of F31club’s community, I was the first to have an M30 to go there, documented. Obviously, I can’t say for certain there never has been an M30 in Canada, because the probability is high since:

  1. Canada is next and above the US, relatively easy to cross the border.
  2. Before I crossed in 2005, there has been 15yrs since the M30 was debuted in 1990.
  3. The likelihood that an M30 has crossed before 2005 is a no brainer.

However, I did not visit any Infiniti dealerships. I will now. Typically, I would like to have my M30 to show, but unfortunately, driving the M30 16hrs as of right now isn’t worth it.

So how do I visit these dealerships and make it similar to having it visually interesting? How can I show I was at the dealership, yet represent that in this challenge without an M30?

What I did in Paris. I brought a 1/43 scale F31 Leopard to help me visualize my imagination.

In the small, narrow view, picture, it is a toy car at the life size dealership. In context, it was about being present at the dealerships (I’m gonna visit as many Infiniti dealerships as possible) and looking back at how many I have visited through a photojournalistic view.


I mapped out the dealerships. I wanted to go at night that way there is less people and just take pictures. None of these dealerships will have any invaluable M30 information (as these came way past the original dealerships and were established after 2012). I did check the used car section to see if there was an M30 for sale, that would have been interesting to see!

Anyways here is what I got:

  • Infiniti of North Vancouver
  • Infiniti of Downtown Vancouver
  • Infiniti of Richmond
  • Morrey Infiniti
  • Openroad Infiniti (Langley)
  • Campus Infiniti (Victoria/Vancouver Island)

I was able to reach 4 out of the 6 available. While I did these at night, during the day, I had a busy schedule. I skipped out on going to Langley and taking pictures there. Campus Infiniti is in Victoria, which is Vancouver Island.

I first went to Richmond to snap shots.

 

Then I headed to Downtown… hit some inner city traffic, but not to bad… Noticed a ton of people around.

Infiniti Downtown Vancouver:

 

Headed to North Vancouver, but since it was holiday weekend for BC day and Pride… Downtown was horrible!!!

Finally got to North Vancouver’s Auto Mall, where Infiniti North Vancouver is located.

 

The headed back to Burnaby, where Morrey Infiniti is close by.


When I go back at the end of the month, the plan is to go to Victoria. Campus Infiniti will be hit up. Langley will also be taken cared of and F31club has hit a the BC dealerships.

Digital Climate Control issue

One of the main issues M30 coupes face is the digital climate control (Convertibles have analog controls). The digital climate control has a variety of issues with most being:

  • No display, but function.
  • Display, but limited function
  • Sudden on/off fan and display
  • Digital unit randomly comes on or turns off

My first M30 I got in 2005 had a dead unit. I contacted Infiniti in Fife/Tacoma, then Lynwood and then Bellevue and everyone told me they don’t have a unit available and if they did have a unit available, it would be $1000. I couldn’t believe it.

NICOclub’s Q45 group had the same issue, but NICOclub and the Q45 owners were very organized and had many resources. Many of the owners sent their units to a person named Jerry Tucker. He charged I believe $80 to $100. Jerry Tucker had an exchange program as well.

 

I contacted him and he said while the M30 unit is different, he would figure it out. I never sent it out to him because I had been waiting for an M30 to hit the junkyard and that took a long time. Shortly after, I started to save units. I always tested my spares and swapped out my old unit with a good one.

At the time, I sent money overseas for JDM parts, so I decided to test my soldering skills to save money. I took apart my old unit and hit up Q45 guys and of course my brothers here on F31club. One of the Q45 guys had taken it upon himself to fix his unit and sent me info on what he did.

 

While I noticed the vacuum tube display had “smoke marks”, a Certified Nissan mechanic that was on NICOclub named Nistech told me it is like that from the factory.

 

I noted where I saw cracked solder and also noticed some “burnt” connections. I also seen some components were broken.

So I went to Fry’s electronics and matched the parts I needed. After some LONG hours of soldering and re-soldering components and connections, trial and error and frustration… it finally worked. It worked so well that I’ve been using it in my current M30.


Renny (Onevia) has been putting in some REAL research and has been testing Mark’s spare dead unit with much success. Renny cautions that he wants to see how well it does long term.

Renny uploaded a video of him cycling through the buttons. I tried to download it, but I wasn’t able too. So here is a screen shot of the video.

I chalk my fixed unit up to change and replace strategy, which is inefficient. While Renny has TRULY tried to narrow down the problem —-and does a proper/professional approach to solving this issue.


What’s the conclusion? I didn’t make a write up when I was younger as I didn’t fully grasp what I was doing and I feel that I was lucky to get it done right.

Renny is currently working on these units and troubleshooting the various issues (he has multiple units). Hopefully the M30 community will be able to hit a new milestone by having working units again.

2 RB25DET M30s for sale on CL

Mark M. (MMokM30) posted these on FB. So credit goes to him for posting them.

When I was younger, one goal was to swap an RB into the M30. I passed up an RB20DET that Chris P was going to give me because I didn’t have a place to do it.  While I have been swayed by the Japanese brothers and M30 enthusiasts about keeping the F31 with VG, I always give props to people who do think outside of the box. The other part of this is I don’t know if I would buy these. Unless I was there to be part of the process, I wouldn’t be willing to get them.

In the past, I’ve bought and even been given, project cars. I’ve always had bad luck of spending more time, money and effort to fixing remaining issues and shortcuts. Most of these swaps are done hastily and are more likely someone doing them in their garage without proper equipment and experience. Wiring and other small details are done minimally “just to get the car going”. There are many loose ends, incompletely and unprofessionally done swaps.

On top of that, I know the issues of M30 and what are the most common problems.  I know MANY people don’t care about some of those common issues. So when people do these swaps, it’s really for scene points and drifting. So the climate control and interior are not well taken cared of or have been neglected.


As it pertains to these posts? The owners didn’t give any pictures of their interiors, just of the exterior and engine bays. Everything I mentioned above isn’t always the case. There are people out there who swap in a motor and actually take care of the car.

And these owners might have done just that.

Let’s get to it!

This post is from Denver:


This one is from Texas:

 


I posts these because it shows that people are swapping the M30s. Making these posts also documents some cars in certain areas. I like to document these swapped cars.

Wandering leopard in Vancouver BC

I’ll be going to Vancouver BC for a few days in August.

While there, I’ve gotta meet up with my VK brothers, check some JDM shops, do tourist and family stuff, eat some good BC food..


but to embody the spirit of The Wandering Leopard, Gold WL will be taking pictures. Just like in France.

 

But there is an added twist.. maybe 2…

 

To be announced….

Spotted M30s – Brewster240

While I keep track of M30s I see, I never really thought about posting them. This case is special.

Any of the OG F31club members get my respect as we built F31club. While our numbers have dwindled, I still keep in contact with a few of them.

Brewster240 (Mikey) I have been able to track down after years of no contact. We often chat about stuff.  While he has moved on passed the M30s, he sends me pictures of M30s he has spotted.

Location is in Florida


 

 

 

 

Japanese Nostalgic Car and RADwood

You’ve probably read my posts on RADwood:

RADwood! and I showed my M30

On a RADwood high

 

There’s been tons of videos and posts by many people, bloggers, youtubers and car enthusiasts on the various media platforms…

I didn’t even realized that JNC (Japanese Nostalgic Car) was there!

Then they posted their first article: Events:Radwood NorCal 2018

 

I didn’t see my car in this post, so I was sad! Again, the show was awesome with some pretty awesome cars… I mean on the Japanese end, A31 Cefiro, Autozam AZ-1, Figaros, Honda ACTY, Cappuccino, SKYLINES… not to mention the Celicas and Sun chaser, 86 corollas, RX7s…. A normal M30 pails in comparison to those cars. Those are well known platforms and goals for many people (including myself)… so it is easy for a normal car to be overshadowed. I didn’t expect my car to a be show stopper  or anything and I always feel that the M30 is only enjoyed by those that know of it.

On another note, JNC has taken many pictures of M30s in Southern California! Such as Bill P., Roger V. and Mike M. ‘s all well done M30s.

Roger V.

 

Earlier this year, they also wrote an article about the M30:

Consider the following: Infiniti M30

In which many of the info was from F31club.


I left a comment on the JNC RADwood coverage and Ben Hsu said they are not done yet.

Then my friend Alex shared the 2nd article saying my M30 was in there! WHAT!!!!

RADwood NorCal 2018 Greatest Hits

bruh… I can’t believe I have my own JNC stamped pictures!!!

 

 

While others think it’s not a big deal to have their cars taken a picture of all the time or have that recognition, I’ve never had the honor and these small victories for the M30 and F31club are always relished!

Thanks!!!

RADwood

Japanese Nostalgic Car

REDstart Racing

Carshop Friend

The build wouldn’t be possible for my Japanese brothers!!

私の兄弟に、私は私の車の座席に私たちの写真を表示します。 ご協力ありがとうございます!!!

 

Revisiting the BBS Wheel mystery

I while back, I made a post about BBS wheels.

BBS Wheel Mystery

In which I wrote:

 BBS wheels were seen on many of the Zenki (1st generation) F31 Leopards and so many of us thought it was an OEM option.

 

As I was doing some more looking around I came up on the  yellow Leopard manual. I have the kouki version, but not the zenki version.

 

As I am looking at some of the snippets.. I see something that I haven’t seen on the other option brochures:

 

Wait… what is that top wheel?

Another post I made a few months back.

F31 OEM Wheels

 

Which I have updated now!!!


Somethings are just interesting (maybe not for anyone else, but to OG F31club members, these things were thrown out ideas).

Y31 Cima/Gloria/Cedric and F31 31st Meeting 2018

Last year was the F31’s 31st “birthday” and this year it is the Y31. Yamashima-san posted this a meeting in Sendai region.

Itabashi-san sent me these pictures. Credit to my brother!

 

 

Wekfest, San Jose 2018

Wekfest was held in San Jose this past weekend. It was the 10th year anniversary of the show’s inception.

It was held in the convention center in down town, just like last year.

I went under the VANKulture banner and met with many of the brothers. We also had 3 VK fam from Canada come down!!!

I arrived an hour after it opened. I was given my pass by Norwin. As I got in, I checked out the VK Chyrsler Pacifica Hybrid. This was a VANKulture build. I then met with VK family and then started to go around and take pictures.

I also meet with Rob P, someone whom I met in So Cal in 2000 when I picked up some Acura Legend side skirts for my friend Zol’s Legend.

anyways, here are pix. It was super crowded at time and getting clean shots isn’t always happening. Especially when you are regular person.