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Hello all. Let's start from the very beginning.

So I bought my Lupo GTI just under 3 years ago now - 28th June 2014 to be precise. I originally bought the car with every intention of making it a road going show car, after attending various local/nationwide shows with a select group of friends. The level of attention to detail of some of these cars was second to none and it was really quite inspiring to see first hand for myself.

Growing up in the North West of England (Wigan) I was lucky to be exposed to a large variety of different automotive cultures. Be it everything from Japanese, German, VAG to Classic, High Performance and Concourse show cars. I started driving early 2012 and despite much controversy my first car was a 1.2 Vauxhall Corsa D (Unlimited Edition) :lol:. However after 2 years of ownership in 2014 I decided it was time for a change. I had recently gained employment at Jaguar Land Rover - Halewood and my insurance started to dip a little. It was then I set out on the hunt for a car to tick a few boxes. I wanted something fun, nimble, fast but at the same time something that wasn't going to break the bank insurance/fuel wise. After weeks of what seemed like endless searching I fell in love with a Black Lupo GTI I had found on AutoTrader. The owner, a 56 year old lady from Rugby, Warwickshire. The car itself was absolutely perfect (Black, 6 Speed, Low mileage 64K, FSH, Completely standard and unmolested). It was everything I was looking for. 

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Edited by gtige0rge

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Although first time around I didn't even think to make a build thread, let alone have the time during my various un-social shifts at work to write one. Whilst I now have the time to do so, I thought it would be a good idea. I like the idea that in years to come I will be able to look back and say "I did that", I invested my own time, money and patience into building something that I love and most importantly of all something that would come to make incredibly happy and blessed. Anyway let's get back into it...

Initially my first mods list was very basic and consisted of:

  • JOM Coilover Suspension
  • Aftermarket Wheels
  • Heko Wind Deflectors
  • Rear De-wiper plug
  • BMC CDA Induction Kit
  • Drilled & Grooved Disc Brakes

After ordering everything except some wheels, I was lucky enough to win a Demon Tweeks competition. My prize - A brand new set of Rota Grid V's (15x7) fully wrapped in 195/45/15 Toyo Proxes T1R's. Lucky or what?

 

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Edited by gtige0rge

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The Rota Grid V's were perfect for the look I was going for, the colour was even more of a bonus. At first there were some minor fitment issues which were soon rectified. The first problem being Front Brake Caliper clearance, this was solved with a little grinding of the carrier on both sides. The second problem rubbing on the front and rear wheel arches due to the wide offset of the new wheels. Both of these problems were sorted out whilst fitting my coilovers.

Here are the results Before/After some subtle lowering B)

 

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Edited by gtige0rge

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Here is how I managed to get her sitting after having the car tracked/setup and some more tinkering of the coilovers, adjusting the ride height to suit my needs.

The small edition of Cambridge rear lights made a bigger difference than expected and really set the car off well, I thought.

 

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The next thing on the list was to fix the low hanging exhaust, which is a common fault on the Lupo's mostly down to age and general wear/tear. Luckily a good friend of mine, The Notorious @Adam R4 can weld and fixed the problem for me no issue. In fact there came a point were we would spent countless hours in his garage fettling around and cleaning our cars.

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All in all the only thing the car was missing now was some noise. Now a lot of people usually go for the Oval tipped catback exhaust from Scorpion, however due to personal preference and with aims to keep the cars original characteristics I went with a Janspeed Stainless Steel Catback system and BMC CDA bought from @Kam Racing. At the time I didn't have enough money for both the Catback and Decat Manifold as much as I would of liked to get hold of both. Upon ordering the Janspeed exhaust I realised that the system I had ordered came standard with a rather large centre silencer and worried it would be a little too quiet for my liking I rang through to the factory and requested it come un-resonated. 

Here were the results :P

 

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Comparison against the standard centre section :blink:

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https://www.youtube.com/channel/UClvmwEQAs3o-X8NsMB0AA2w - Link for my YouTube Channel.

To save time we cut the old exhaust off using a grinder. The factory system is a solid all in one piece, fitted over the rear axle... Therefore proper removal would require you to drop the rear axle. As I wasn't planning on ever putting the standard system back on it wasn't worth the time or effort trying to save it.

Edited by gtige0rge

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Sadly just a month after fitting my exhaust and getting the car up-to a standard that I was relatively happy with I lost my job and started to hit some financial difficulties. My insurance/tax renewals were becoming seemingly closer and closer and I was forced to sell my Rota's and put the car up for sale. Eventually after listing the car on multiple sites and having no luck finding any real interest and getting bothered by multiple messers, 3 months went by and I managed to find myself a new job. This could only mean one thing... I could keep the car :D Result!

Although the car was starting to look and feel a little neglected due to financial circumstances, nothing much changed with the car for a good while. However I continued to drive and love it just as I always had done. Fast forward a year or so and I had finally got myself straight money wise, managing to pay off multiple debts and it was one of the greatest feelings ever, let me tell you. Give or take a few months, that pretty much brings me to where I am today (24th April 2017). Here's where things start to change for the better and the fun really starts to begin... And I can stop switching between different tenses haha :lol:

Now my plans and ideas for the car have changed progressively over the past year or two and it was just a case of saving up enough to put these into motion. Like I mentioned earlier on in the thread, I originally bought the car with the intention of making it a clean, road going show car - Let's all look back, point and laugh.

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No... Okay so maybe I'm being a little harsh, each to their own and all that. How does the old cliche saying go again? "The world would be a boring place if we were all the same". Now as much as I like attending shows and admiring people's hard work and dedication, there is just one itch it cannot seem to scratch. That adrenaline rush from driving on the very limit. After being in multiple well renowned and well setup cars such as the Honda Integra DC2, my views on what a makes a real driving experience have changed forever. Where is the line of making a car not really a car anymore? I'll let you answer that for yourselves. However I have a lot of friends with LOW cars but personally I don't see the fun in dragging your arse down the road and barely being able to get off your own driveway. That's just my opinion, everyone is entitled to their own after all :ph34r:

Edited by gtige0rge

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Quick parts update: 

I have been busy saving since October and have finally reached my target, after what seems like a lifetime. So here's what I have gone ahead and bought:

  • Raceland 4-2-1 Decat Manifold
  • Yokohama AD08R 195/50/15 tyres
  • BC Racing Fully Adjustable Coilovers
  • Compomotive MO's (15x7) - Soon to be powder coated
  • Weighted Short shifter and aluminium shifter bushings
  • Personal Neo Grinta 330mm suede steering wheel
  • OMP steering wheel boss/adapter
  • OMP front strut brace
  • HEL braided brake hoses
  • Whiteline rear anti-roll bar 
  • Billet Oil catch can
  • Full Powerflex polybush kit
  • New BMC CDA Induction kit to replace the old unit

There's still a few things I want but I'll be posting updates as and when I get hold of them. Also more importantly of the side of maintenance I have ordered all fresh fluids/oils/filters etc. I'd also like to get the Cambelt/waterpump and clutch changed soon. Other than that, little bits of paintwork here and there, some nice bucket seats and harnesses are definitely up there on the list and maybe a Quaife LSD and big brake kit at some point in the near future. Almost time to get some track days booked and maybe even the Nurburgring Nordschleife this summer if I'm lucky enough, we'll see though!

 

Edited by gtige0rge

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Looks a lovely car mate. You have gone down the exact same route as me, I started out doing all the stance rubbish! Then realise how good these cars do handle! The BC coilovers are amazing??

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Awesome thread, top work there! With you being based in Manchester (not too far from myself), which tracks are you planning on going to? Blyton is about 2 hours away from you, but is a good track for relative novices (like myself), as it's a fairly low risk track with plenty of run-off areas and a minimal amount of barriers! ;)

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On 25 April 2017 at 7:38 AM, CLAYTONJONES said:

Looks a lovely car mate. You have gone down the exact same route as me, I started out doing all the stance rubbish! Then realise how good these cars do handle! The BC coilovers are amazing??

Cheers Clayton! I love your car, I've been following it for a while on Youtube etc. As a matter of fact yours was the reason I went with the Janspeed Exhaust in the first place :thumbsup:

On 25 April 2017 at 0:25 PM, T3LLIOTT said:

Awesome thread, top work there! With you being based in Manchester (not too far from myself), which tracks are you planning on going to? Blyton is about 2 hours away from you, but is a good track for relative novices (like myself), as it's a fairly low risk track with plenty of run-off areas and a minimal amount of barriers! ;)

Thanks a lot mate! Much appreciated :lol:

I've been thinking Oulton Park mainly for now but I'd love to give Blyton and Cadwell a go at some point! Hopefully planning a Ring trip this summer too, if all goes to plan haha!

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On 4/26/2017 at 9:42 PM, gtige0rge said:

Thanks a lot mate! Much appreciated :lol:

I've been thinking Oulton Park mainly for now but I'd love to give Blyton and Cadwell a go at some point! Hopefully planning a Ring trip this summer too, if all goes to plan haha!

Last time I went to Oulton Park it didn't end well! I had a nice repair bill after binning my MX5 into one of the barriers. :doh: The track had dried out during the morning sessions, however the rumble strips were still wet which spun me around (no excuses however, was totally my fault).

Javelin are doing a Blyton track day on the 22nd June. I'm pretty sure me and a few mates are going, so it would be good to see you there if you can make it. :thumbsup:

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10 hours ago, T3LLIOTT said:

Last time I went to Oulton Park it didn't end well! I had a nice repair bill after binning my MX5 into one of the barriers. :doh: The track had dried out during the morning sessions, however the rumble strips were still wet which spun me around (no excuses however, was totally my fault).

Javelin are doing a Blyton track day on the 22nd June. I'm pretty sure me and a few mates are going, so it would be good to see you there if you can make it. :thumbsup:

**** dude! You live and learn, it's all part of the fun man. In the famous words of Alfred (Batman) "Why do we fall Bruce? So we can learn to pick ourselves back up". I'll have to have a look into that, all depends on noise restrictions too :wacko: May have to get a bolt in Cat or Silencer for Track Day use haha :ph34r:

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Finally got time to drop my new wheels off for Powder Coating after picking up my tyres the other night... Can't wait to get them back! Nice to see my plans are finally starting to unfold. I've gone for Compomotive MO's 15x7 wrapped in nothing but the best Yokohama ADO8R's! However I'm gonna leave the colour a secret for now B)

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On 3 May 2017 at 11:39 AM, CLAYTONJONES said:

Always liked these wheels, should look awesome! Where did you get the tyres from if you don't mind me asking?

Thanks dude! I can't wait until they're all finished. Managed to get an absolute steal on them, set of 6 for £300 from a lad on Ebay!

Edited by gtige0rge

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12 hours ago, gtige0rge said:

Thanks dude! I can't wait until they're all finished. Managed to get an absolute steal on them, set of 6 for £300 from a lad on Ebay!

Bloody hell, bargain that is! Cheapest i can see them for is like £110 each?

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I feel the need to mention you're a dick for chopping the original exhaust off and you should give me the remains. :)

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15 hours ago, CLAYTONJONES said:

Bloody hell, bargain that is! Cheapest i can see them for is like £110 each?

I snapped them up soon as I saw them haha :P I've got two spares for track now!

12 hours ago, Rich said:

I feel the need to mention you're a dick for chopping the original exhaust off and you should give me the remains. :)

Already been claimed buddy @Rich else you could have had it by all means :ph34r:

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Car looks great man!

When did you order the janspeed? Desperate for one for mine but cant seem to find them new anymore or any used ones either! 

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On 13 May 2017 at 10:00 AM, Mattymdm said:

Car looks great man!

When did you order the janspeed? Desperate for one for mine but cant seem to find them new anymore or any used ones either! 

Cheers buddy!

Ordered it well over two years ago now but I'm sure Janspeed discontinued them :unsure:

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Quick update: Wheels are back from powder coating, they were also acid dipped and blasted before hand. Let's just say I'm more than happy with the outcome! Tyre size is perfect, not only do they look sickkkkk but they are now 100% function over form. So here they are with the edition of brand new genuine centre caps... 

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On 5/18/2017 at 8:37 PM, gtige0rge said:

Cheers buddy!

Ordered it well over two years ago now but I'm sure Janspeed discontinued them :unsure:

Such a shame its the only exhaust i fancy on my GTi. Becuase i know what it sounds like. Was going to go custom but never know what it'll sound like until its done and on.

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On going progress report - Well overdue, so here it is:

Since getting my wheels back the other month, I have been making use of having the front end stripped down and have been mainly concentrating on updating the mechanical and electrical side of things. The car itself being an 04 plate is now touching 13 years old and as expected there were slight bits of tidying up to do.

First jobs on the list were deleting the air con, power steering and charcoal filter... I didn't really read up on anything and decided to approach it myself, this would allow me to learn from any mistakes along the way and give me a better understanding of the car. I replaced the standard alternator bracket with a smaller one from the early 1L E model and remounted the alternator with the air con and power steering pumps now drained/removed. The only real problem I encountered was finding a correctly sized belt which would fit only the crank and alternator pulleys. Again I tried a 1L E model belt with no success (Too short) and with that being the smallest belt size available for the Lupo/Polo (Approx. 28 inches in length) I started to flap it a little :wacko::doh: I then cut my original belt and wrapped it around to size (30.5 inches for anybody interested) Next issue finding a supplier for a belt this size with 6 ribs to match the pulleys. After some research I found out a friend of mine's dad owns a company called Simply Bearings - Magically the only place I could find that made this size belt. Here are the results... Obviously I plan on replacing the power steering rack with a manual one but so far I'm happy with it! :thumbup:

For me benefits of this will be weight saving, more room in the engine bay for breathing mods and improved cornering control, feel and response during track use and hoooooning in Mexico and on private roads of course :ph34r:;)

Link for the belt (https://simplybearings.co.uk/shop/p650107/775PK/305K-Major-Brand-Poly-V-Multiple-Ribbed-Belt-775mm/30.5-inch-Length/product_info.html).

 

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Edited by gtige0rge

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