iMODIFY R34: Hot4s Editorial P2

By: iMODIFY  18-Feb-2012

Hot4s Magazine Past Build Coverage (Re-Exposed online - Leading Up To The All New Monthly Magazine Editorial):



As with any major body modifications we undertake, legality and safety are always foremost in our minds. iMODIFY’s project Skyline called for full ADR compliance.

Our main man for engineering certification is Robert Elliott from VMC Engineering (0403 328 574). Robert is a specialist in the area of modified production vehicles and ICV’s (individually constructed vehicles). His preliminary inspection of the Skyline in April gave the green light to the installation of airbags and front and rear tubs.  His further full inspection a month later highlighted some additional areas of concern.

As with most amateur attempts at front-mount intercooler installation, the roughly cut piping hole cut under the battery tray requires a re-enforcing ring welded to its circumference to comply with ADR’s. Furthermore, the fitting of the intercooler itself required a large amount of material to be removed from the rear of the front bumper bar support.

This mod has a significant effect on the frontal impact integrity of the bar and therefore would require the area to be re-enforced with SHS steel across its length, top and bottom. Neither of these concerns are uncommon or an issue for a half-decent fabricator.

Another typical modifiers’ area is the air filter. Project Skylines’ existing aftermarket pod filter, which also happened to be non-compliant, would require a custom enclosure or replacement with the OEM item. This one wasn’t even fixed to the bodywork! Who’s car is this again?

While inside the cabin outlining my intentions with the rear wheel tubs, Robert also indicated the area above the new wheel arch adjacent to the inner C pillar panel would require gusseting to maintain torsional strength. The material needing to be removed from the area to allow for the tubs had the potential to weaken the upper shock tower mount. The additional gusseting would solve this problem.

Underneath the rear, the tubs themselves could only go inboard as far as the chassis rails for compliance. Robert specified a rim width of no more than 8 1/2” at the front with the 24’s but surprisingly we could go as wide as 10” at the rear! Apparently the GTR Skylines have been specified with this size so GTS-T’s will also comply.

With visions of a set of filthy 305 wide tyres we immediately began measuring for a wider rim but unfortunately the chassis rail is the controlling factor. We can’t go in far enough to get a 10” in there. We could go out but the guards would need to be pumped to maintain a compliant wheel offset, so we’re restricted to a 9” wide rim at max. Still, the rubber we can get on a 9” rim will fill out those wheel wells nicely and with the 24’s on bags, they’ll tuck up way inside the guards for total sickness.

Lastly, Robert checked the quality of the Easy Street air bag system, the actual bags being used, the strut columns, mounting points and the system’s valve assemblies. Easy Street is American made high quality system which is immediately apparent when inspecting the components. He also specified we set a minimum ride height and rubber bump stops when setting the strut length. No problems there either.

Conclusion: The engineering requirements on Project Skyline are minimal and easily achievable. Most car modifiers have the illusion that RTA engineers are all the same. Fifty year old fuddy duds who revel in making it hard for all modified car owners. Robert however, is one of the new wave of certifiers with petrol in their veins who’d rather see a sick legal car on the road than an unsafe potential threat to all road users. The times have changed, kids.

Special thank you to:

- Certified Engineer: VMC ENGINEERING (0403 328 574)

- The Metalsmith (0417997908)

Don't miss the ALL NEW build story!

iMODIFY R34 Partners and Sponsors List:

  • - Hot4s Magazine
  • - The Metalsmith
  • - Taleb Tyres
  • - Heasman Steering
  • - Envy Imports/Envy Dyno
  • - Turbosmart
  • - Platinum Racing Products
  • - EmpireAero
  • - Concept Garage
  • - Top End Interiors
  • - JL Audio
  • - Sounds Good - Sounds and Security
  • - VMC Engineering
  • - House Of Kolor
  • - Meguiar's
  • - Kinetic Imagery
  • - And More..

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