Reader Submission

Reader Submission: 1960 Austin Seven Mk 1 Mini Restoration/Yamaha Engine Swap

February 6, 2017 in Build In Progress / Engine Swap / English / Home Garage Build / Reader Submission / Restoration / Video

This 1960 Austin Seven Mk1 project is brought to us today by reader Joe, who wanted to share with fellow viewers his epic build that includes an engine and transmission swap from a 2003 Yamaha YZF-R1 motorcycle. The 11,000 rpm, 998 cc motor is said to produce in the range of 164 horsepower and weigh merely a scant 150 pounds. At 200 pounds less than the stock one it replaces and in excess of 30 more horsepower than a fully built 1275cc Series A engine, that’s a win/win formula which you will never find us arguing with. The project started almost 6 years ago and it is currently in it’s final stages of completion, so come take a closer look at it with us on the following page and then be sure not to miss his linked site that details his build in full.

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1969 BMW 2800 FIA Gruppe 2 CSL Barn Find Restoration

November 29, 2016 in Barn Find / German / Race Car / Reader Submission / Video

UPDATE: Motoporter has a great new website that can be seen here at: 
Our original feature from December 15th, 2013:
This 1969 BMW 2800 FIA Gruppe 2 CSL (chassis number 22000093) was the subject of a restoration by Arthur W. Porter, known worldwide as the leading authority on BMW’s CSL competition cars. He originally came across the orange painted race car in a Stockholm, Sweden storage facility in 1990, and then wisely kept in touch with it’s owner until he was finally able to put a deal together to purchase it in 2007. After, he had it shipped to his shop in Denver, Colorado where he took it upon himself to complete an impressively quick full rotisserie restoration just in time for that year’s Monterey Historics.
This is just the type of story that we thrive here at CarBuildIndex, as it checks all of the right boxes for us. Barn find? Well, technically a storage facility, but yeah, we can roll with that. Check. Vintage competition car with race history resurrected to race once again on some of the world’s finest circuits? Check. Track down one of the car’s past driver’s? Check. Shall we continue? As you wish, so follow along with us on the next page as we delve deeper into this particular car’s literally colorful history…

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1965 Alfa Romeo Sprint GT with 2 Liter Engine Upgrade

September 21, 2016 in Italian / Reader Submission / Sleeper / Video

This 1965 Alfa Romeo Sprint GT feature is brought to us by reader, Phil Knudsen. He purchased this tastefully upgraded ’65 earlier this year with’s “Fast Road Suspension Kit”, their 14″ alloys, bigger brakes and hydraulic clutch. Regarding the engine, he tells us, “What lies beneath is a wonderful 2L conversion with high compression heads and bigger cams and Alfaholic’s exhaust. This one is for keeps.” We would have to agree.

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A Report on the 2016 Arizona Concours d’ Elegance, by Richard Bartholomew

February 1, 2016 in Car Show / Concours Show / guest contributor / Reader Submission

Photo by Ken Bryant
The Arizona Biltmore Hotel in Phoenix Arizona was an excellent venue for the third year of the Concours d’ Elegance of the sunshine state. The weather was perfect, the organizers very competent and the turnout for this charity event benefiting Make a Wish Arizona was quite large, as far as concourses go.

A lot of times when I attend these events…

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Share Your Car Restoration Story

January 31, 2016 in General Discussion / guest contributor / Reader Submission


Do you have a car or car related story that you would like to share with fellow viewers, whether it be a build-in-progress, already complete or an untouched masterpiece as-is? If you feel it would be a good fit here, submit it to me at [email protected] I am also always looking for interesting build threads, so if you have one or know of a good one, send it on over. In the meantime for some inspiration on your own project, check out a previous reader submission story of a 1967 Lotus Europa S1 restoration, as seen in the picture above.

THE PORSCHE HUNTER: CBI contributor Wallace Wyss changes theme of mystery novel from Ferraris

January 30, 2016 in guest contributor / Reader Submission / Wallace Wyss

The Porsche Hunter

Wallace Wyss, a frequent CBI contributor, reported to us that his research on 356 Porsches has convinced him that his novel The Ferrari Hunters needs to be changed to the German marque.

“I wrote that Ferrari novel a few years back when you could still buy ratty Ferraris. Now all old pre-1970 V12 Ferraris, regardless of condition, are worth $100,000. My novel’s protagonist was buying rough cars, but you can’t make any money with that buying price so now that I discovered there were over 70,000  356 cars made, I think the story makes more sense if I make the hero a Porsche hunter.”

The most desirable 356 cars, he says, are Abarth Carreras (20 made) or Speedsters (over 4,000 made). A Carrera Speedster with matching numbers (Porsche Kardex shows engine is original to the car) is worth one million.”

The book is an action thriller, part of a series Wyss is planning featuring a two-fisted private eye who buys and sells exotic cars between solving murders.

Wyss is hoping to hear from a Porsche-friendly producer through their literary agent. He previously optioned his book on Carroll Shelby to Hollywood.

Wyss can be reached at [email protected]

Share- CarBuildIndex Wants Your Stories!

January 30, 2016 in guest contributor / Reader Submission


CarBuildIndex is expanding and we are looking for fellow vintage car enthusiasts who would like to contribute stories. Don’t worry if you are not a professional writer or have never had anything published before…in fact, not unlike an original unrestored car, an amateur story often reads more personable and inviting than one polished up beyond perfection by a pro. But if you’re just an absolute gorilla with a pen we understand, we have a couple guys around here with degrees in English that can whip your story into presentable shape (we don’t really).

Click HERE to find out about the “Period Look Inside the Walls at Autodelta with Robert Little” reader submission story behind the picture shown above.

VIDEO: Wallace and Carlos get out there in the field with a look inside FIBERSTEEL and their 550 Porsche Speedster Replicas

January 6, 2016 in General Discussion / guest contributor / Reader Submission / Replica / Replica/Tribute Build / Tribute / Video / Wallace Wyss

“Future Car and Past, an episodic documentary format TV show about what’s going on with cars out in the west coast, and beyond. The talent includes Wallace Wyss, author of more than fifteen car histories, and Carlos R’, a up and coming auto journalist. Each episode investigates a different aspect of California’s diverse Car Culture, from classic cars to modern cars, and even explores such tributaries as rat rods, and custom cars. Every episode will include current auto news from all over the world. So, please join us, and fasten your seat belts, it’s gonna be some ride ride!”

The Unique Ferrari Shooting Brake

January 5, 2016 in guest contributor / History / Italian / Reader Submission / Wallace Wyss

3Feature Story by Wallace Wyss

Now I knew Gene Garfinkle, a quiet, modest car designer who had once worked for Ford in Dearborn but preferred working on the coast even if it meant assignments were few and far between.
One of his most unique assignments was doing a Ferrari Daytona “shooting brake” for Lou Chinetti Jr. back when Chinetti was modifiying one Ferrari after another to create a unique series of speciales.
The one-off Daytona, SN 15275, had a long rear cargo area with two glass windows all along the sides, and a sort of concave rear with sharp edges on the metal surrounding the back. The nose was modified slightly but still looks Daytona-ish from the doors forward. Continue reading →

THE TOP 15 POSTS OF 2015: #9- The 1971 Firebird-Ferrari: Yes GM Built It, But Only Reluctantly…by Wallace Wyss

December 31, 2015 in American / Concept Car / Engine Swap / guest contributor / Italian / prototype / Reader Submission / Wallace Wyss

11Imagine you are a car guy. And you have, oh, on a good day, 1000 designers working for you. And a workshop to make whatever the hell your little heart desires. The only trouble was Bill Mitchell was VP in charge of styling at GM where he had to supervise the design of station wagons and all the boring stuff. He couldn’t just do performance cars. But he would do these little back door projects. You could usually tell when it was one of those because it would be candy apple red instead of the usual silver of an approved factory prototype. And it would have gold trim, maybe not real gold but it looked gold. Yards of it. And gold pin striping. It was boy-racer all the way on toys for himself. Such a car was the Pontiac Firebird he had redone. The Firebird, on a design by Jerry Palmer for the Camaro, was already very European looking, on a par with some Ferraris. The Pontiac engine wasn’t so good, though. In fact when they went Trans Am racing, they used Chevy engines. Mitchell had the nose made into an oval with foglamps in the edges, the grille reminiscent of OSCA, an obscure brand made by the Maserati brothers after WWII (they had sold the Maserati brand before the war). It was called the Pontiac Pegasus, maybe in a nod to the Texaco insignia of a winged horse that was common in racing in the Fifties. But the cool thing about the car is when it starts up, it not only sounds like a lusty 4 cam V12 six carburetor Ferrari but damn, you lift the hood and there she be—a Daytona 365GTB/4 engine. Who woulda thunk—seeing the candy-apple-red paint and gold-tone pinstriping and gold-colored chrome? This is kind of like a hip-hop break dancer singing Verdi…
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The Top 5 Wallace Wyss Feature Stories of 2015

December 31, 2015 in guest contributor / History / Reader Submission / Wallace Wyss

As some of you who frequent CarBuildIndex may have realized, the results of the Top 15 Stories of 2015 (↑) may have been skewed in favor of build threads as a result of having been reposted throughout the year with updates, garnering them more views than normal as a result. It should be noted that our favorite guest contributor, Wallace Wyss has had some memorable stories that otherwise would have made more of them into the running, therefore we would like to present to you on the following page:

The Top 5 Wallace Wyss Feature Stories of 2015

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Harley’s Last Hauler:A Bubble Top Caddy that was already old when it was new…

December 30, 2015 in American / Concept Car / guest contributor / Reader Submission / Wallace Wyss

4Feature Story by Wallace Wyss 

If any car feature you can put on a car says “dream car” more than any other it is the bubble top, like a fighter plane. The 1959 Cyclone XP-74  Concept of the late ‘50s was one of GM’s last bubble top cars (though the Corvette Shark and XP700 had twin bubble tops).

Harley Earl had started the bubble top binge and his successor Bill Mitchell kept it going. Over at Ford they had bubble tops as well. Never mind that in the hot August of a Michigan summer you’d fry in such a car.

And yet, in the early to mid-‘50s, at the styling departments of The Big Three… Continue reading →

The Maserati Boomerang: OK, so it’s from the Folded Paper School of Car Design but you have to admit is one of the best examples of that genre…

December 29, 2015 in Concept Car / guest contributor / Italian / Reader Submission / Wallace Wyss

18Feature Story by Wallace Wyss

Timing is everything. Just ask the recently retired Giorgetto Giugiaro, Italy’s most famous car designer. When he left Ghia to start up his own firm, Ital Design, there was some worry that with Bertone, Pininfarina, etc. already well established, how could a new guy come along and expect any assignments? Especially if he didn’t have a factory behind his design studio?

Well, not to worry. As we now know, he has achieved many things, from production cars made by the millions, to one off prototypes like this car. Continue reading →

The Cadillac Allante: American power, Italian styling, what was not to like? Well…

December 28, 2015 in American / guest contributor / Italian / Reader Submission / Wallace Wyss

At PininfarinaFeature Story by Wallace Wyss

When I remember the Cadillac Allante, which is to be truthful, seldom, it is with mixed feelings.
Cadillac introduced the Allante in 1987 as an American competitor in the ultra luxury roadster market—to counter Jaguar’s XJS and Mercedes’ SL.

On first hearing it would have Pininfarina styling I was excited—wow, the same people who did the Ferrari Daytona and suchlike. But then I heard the engine was rather lame one, under 200 hp, and that it would only have an automatic and be front wheel drive. Two downers for a lad raised within the engine sound of Woodward Avenue.

The project was doomed from the beginning… Continue reading →

Reader Submission- Home Garage Build Replica of a 1955 Belond Miracle Special that ran at Indianapolis

December 28, 2015 in American / Build In Progress / Home Garage Build / Reader Submission


We love the home garage project spirit around here, so when CBI reader Randy Robinette recently commented that he was building his own replica of a 1955 Belond Miracle Special that ran at Indianapolis, we followed up and asked for photos! Find out all about it on the following page…

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A Wallace Wyss Book Review of “Mille Miglia 2015 -The Official Book”

December 27, 2015 in Book Review / guest contributor / Race Car / Rally / Reader Submission / Wallace Wyss



Title: Mille Miglia 2015 -The Official Book

Publisher: Giorgio Nada Editore

Size: 240 x 330 mm

Length: 288 pages

Photographs:  Hundreds of photographs in color and  black and white

Language:  Italian /English

Binding:  Hardback with dust cover

Paper: 170 gr. coated paper

USD: 98.00
CND: 119.00
Euro: 68.00


I remember going to the re-creation of the Mille Miglia sometime in the ‘80s. It was sort of like going to a party where part of the party was hopping in your vintage sports car and tearing across Italy full tilt boogie for 1,000 miles, stopping only for refueling and more partying along the way. The book says 438 vintage cars participated in the 2015 event plus 61 Ferraris and 34 Mercedes that were tribute entries of more recent vintage.

I don’t think a rally could be held with such zest in the U.S., too many laws to break but in Italy they have a police escort and it’s fairly safe, or as safe as you can be with 60-year old cars and some drivers who are older than the cars!

This book is… Continue reading →

FAST APPRECIATORS: The Porsche 356A Convertible D. Hey, I know, it’s not a Speedster, but it’s half the price….

December 26, 2015 in German / guest contributor / Reader Submission / Wallace Wyss

1Feature Story by Wallace Wyss

Now you would think for all the publicity it gets, the Speedster is the be-all end-all Fifties street Porsche.

It is, especially with a 4 cam Carrera engine. If the Kardex file at Porsche says it has the Carrera engine it was built with, you can count on a $500,000 selling price.

But little known is the fact that there was another Porsche that used the same body, and that was the Convertible D.  Only 1,331 Convertible Ds are believed to have been built  between August 1958 and September 1959 so ironically they are more rare than Speedsters. Continue reading →

A Wallace Wyss Book Review of “Art of the Corvette”, by author Randy Leffingwell

December 26, 2015 in American / Book Review / guest contributor / Reader Submission / Wallace Wyss


BOOK REVIEW, by Wallace Wyss

Title: “Art of the Corvette”, by author Randy Leffingwell

  • Hardcover: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Motorbooks (December 1, 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0760346402
  • ISBN-13: 978-0760346402
  • Product Dimensions: 10.2 x 1 x 12.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4 pounds
  • Price: $33.80

Let’s face it—back in the Fifties and Sixties, American cars were, uh, how can the son of a UAW worker say this tactfully—somewhat thrown together. In fact the old joke was that at the end of the assembly line was a big hulk whose job it was to make that door fit, god damn it, by slamming his body against it.

So that’s one reason there hasn’t been a book like this on too many American cars, a book devoted to photographing perfect specimens- because there really weren’t that many. This book has many Corvettes that are so beyond perfect, it’s hard to believe they came out of the factory that way but I guess to please the NCRS, you have to be able to do your car the ideal way it would have been built, so somewhere out there are perfect examples of each generation.

And Randy Leffingwell, one time LA Times photographer, is the guy to do it because he really tries hard to capture a car on film (well, digital images now). Usually Randy shoots outdoors but this book was done with Tom Loeser, a co-photographer as it were, and marks Randy’s entrance into studio shooting which is more about indoor studio lighting, a whole different art.

And if you like Corvettes, it’s a happy result—you see the beauty of some designs as you have never seen them before—you can appreciate them more than you ever have.

One mis-direction, though, is that… Continue reading →

A Wallace Wyss Book Review of “All the Cars: MASERATI” by author Giorgio Cancelleri

December 24, 2015 in Book Review / guest contributor / History / Italian / Reader Submission / Wallace Wyss

Title: All the Cars: MASERATI

Author: Giorgio Cancelleri

Publisher: Giorgio Nada

Length: 351 pages

Format: vertical

Binding: Hardbound 


Giorgio Nada Editore, an Italian book publisher who do car books in English, is doing a great service with these hardbound one-marque guides. I previously reviewed the Ferrari one by Gianni Cancellieri and have to say I enjoyed this one even more.

The format is to give each model of car two pages—then to have a painting on the right hand page and a photo on the left. I was happy with most of the illustrations as being fair representations of the cars that section is about except for the 1961 mid-engine Maserati 63—can’t make out the shape — just looks like a blob. The usual photo he has on the opposite page is no help because on that page is an X-ray view.

The book is mostly about production cars so I was surprised to see… Continue reading →


December 20, 2015 in English / guest contributor / Reader Submission / Wallace Wyss

One would imagine Rolls Royce owners to be among the snobbiest of the snobs, being that their cars are often the most expensive luxury cars. Actually in reality they are not that snobby and seem to have a sense of humor. I don’t recall any of them getting their noses bent too far out of joint when John Lennon had his Rolls Royce Phantom V repainted by a gypsy caravanner in a surrealistic design.

Well, flash forward several decades to John and Robin Gray who live near San Antonio. Mrs. Gray had started in 2001 sellilng  tote bags. Pretty soon she began to manufacture them. Eventually she teamed up with some friends and started in vintage clothing sales, at first just confining their venue to the Marburger Farm Antique show in Round Top.

But then the open road beckoned… Continue reading →

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