MMXII: The Year That Was…Part 2 of 2…

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Coming right back at you with the rest of the most memorable moments/posts of 2012 here on The Chronicles… If you missed part 1, simply click on the link below and get to reading… Thanks for looking and thank you all for a great 2012…

Click the link to take you back to Part 1…. MMXII: The Year That Was…Part 1 of 2…

14. Wekfest Returns To Long Beach…

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Original Post(s):

Wekfest LA 2012 Coverage…Part 2: The Morning…
Wekfest LA 2012 Coverage…Part 3: The People, The Cars, The Afternoon…
Wekfest LA 2012 Coverage…Part 4: The Late Afternoon, from an alternate perspective…
Wekfest LA 2012 Coverage…Part 5: More From The Late Afternoon…
Wekfest LA 2012 Coverage…Part 6 of 6: The Finale…

Wekfest LA made a huge return to Socal in 2012 and like the SF event, was right up there as one of the premier events to attend. It is one of my favorites for the year because we were able to get a very solid group of our friends together to show. I even managed to bring my Q45 out and displayed at the Super Street booth. Wekfest LA was also the first time I got to meet Kazuhiro Furakawa from OsakaJDM/Car Craft Boon. He flew out from Japan just to check out the event and it was cool to see how he and his friends embraced the U.S. import community. He is a big fan of the U.S. style and you see it often represented in his own cars in Japan. Being able to meet him was definitely a landmark event for 2012. I also got to mess around with ATS Anh’s new Nikon camera as well and saw the benefits of shooting full-frame for the first time. Later in the year, I upgraded to a newer camera body because I just couldn’t go back to my old camera after shooting with Anh’s….

15. The One And Only Eibach Honda Meet…

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Original Post(s):

Eibach Honda Meet 2012 Coverage…Part 1…
Eibach Honda Meet 2012 Coverage…Part 2…
Eibach Honda Meet 2012 Coverage…Part 3…
Eibach Honda Meet 2012 Coverage…Part 4 of 4…

The annual Eibach Honda Meet in 2012 shocked a lot of enthusiasts nationwide. After so many successful years of calling the Eibach Springs facility in Corona, CA home, the decision was made to move the event away from Corona into a larger facility. A bigger plot of land was necessary because the event had grown so much during the years. It didn’t sound like a popular choice at first but enthusiasts understood that change was necessary to help the expansion of the event. As always, the Eibach Honda Meet delivered and brought out a ton of great Honda builds. People poured in from all over to check out the meet and were greeted with many builds that hadn’t been previously seen before. There’s no bigger event in the West that caters solely to Hondas and that’s why it is a monumental event every year.

16. Love From The 808 State…

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Original Post: Surprise Chronicles Meet in Maui…

When I try to think of all the great things that happened in 2013, if I had to just pinpoint one moment that I could really say was a “favorite” moment for me, it would have to be our trip to Hawaii. Originally, we had set off to Hawaii for just a vacation and nothing car-related, but of course, knowing us, it would become so much more than that. Our main purpose for flying out to Maui in 2012 was to attend the wedding of DPK David and his then-fiancee Jacky. David had proposed a year before and the two of them decided that it would be a cool idea to do a destination in Hawaii. May wanted to go to Hawaii anyway so being a part of our friends’ wedding and being able to get away for a bit for a vacation sounded amazing.

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Here’s a photo I hadn’t posted before on the site from DPK David’s wedding…

From the start of our trip, I and the others were constantly posting photos of our trip and a couple locals from Hawaii starting hitting us up to see if we wanted to hang out. I wasn’t hesitant at first because I didn’t really want to do anything car-related, since it was our vacation after all and I wanted to just kind of escape from everything back at home for a week. That and the locals that were hitting me up were from different parts of the island. I didn’t want to go meet up with some people and not see anyone else. The thought of meeting random strangers was kind of weird anyway so we just kinda stuck to doing our own thing. I get a message on The Chronicles from a guy named Sheldon maybe two days into our trip. He said he worked at a local restaurant in Maui and all the guys there were fans of the site. He invited us to go check out the spot and grab some food. I looked up the restaurant and it was actually just a couple of miles away from our hotel so I talked to the rest of the group and they said they were down to go try it. The girls were especially supportive which was amazing. We then decided to just try to invite the people who had hit us up to go meet up at the restaurant. I guess you could call it a meet, but for me, it was just easier to have a central meeting spot so nobody was left out, you know what I mean? Well, I’ll leave it up to you guys to read the original post to see what happened but let’s just say that it turned into quite a shocking event…

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Anyways, the guy that originally invited us to the restaurant turned out to be quite the well-known chef in Hawaii. Sheldon was one of the top up-and-coming chefs on the island and it was an honor to meet him. He was incredibly kind and made some amazing food for us. It was a pleasure meeting him and the rest of the guys in Hawaii. Months later, we found out that Sheldon made it onto the cast of the new season of Top Chef, which is still currently airing on Bravo…

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Pretty awesome to see him take such a huge step in his culinary career and every time I see him on TV now, it reminds me of our trip to Maui and meeting him at his restaurant. If you guys get a chance, you should definitely check out the show. He’s a car guy just like all of us so show him some support. I wish him the best of luck in all of his endeavors. He made our trip just that much more memorable and I think I can speak for all of the homies when we say that it was an amazing experience meeting all the car guys/gals we met out there…

17. The FF Battle Saga Continues…

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Original Post(s):

FF Battle 4 Coverage…Part 1: Dyno Day…
FF Battle 4 Coverage…Part 2: Race Day…
FF Battle 4 Coverage…Part 3: Random Track Findings…
FF Battle 4 Coverage…Part 4 of 4: The Conclusion…

You probably have seen me to quite a bit of promotion for the Super Street FF Battle series these last couple of years. I’ll never get any credit for creating the fliers and pushing the event, but I can’t say that “recognition” really matters to me. I do it because I feel that it is an important event for our community. It’s sort of the bridge that connects that average car guy with the more experienced racecar/time attack crowd. You invite Honda FF guys to come out to an event and compete in a time trial-based race against other Honda FF guys. The event still has its flaws but it is steadily improving. Everyone that has been a part of the event has worked hard to make improvements and I think FFB4 was a great success this year. It is still very much in its infancy but I think it took a couple steps in the right direction this year. The entire event was moved from the California Speedway to Willow Springs and more rules were enforced this time around to ensure that the competition was on a more even playing field. The four part coverage linked above shows all that went down and it was a highlight in my 2012 because I finally got to see John’s E-AT Civic in action after it’s lengthy build the months leading up to FFB4. I also got a chance to hang out with friends and just enjoying car life and who doesn’t love that?…

18. The Blox Open House…

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Original Post(s):

Blox Open House 2012 Coverage…Part 1…
Blox Open House 2012 Coverage…Part 2…
Blox Open House 2012 Coverage…Part 3…
Blox Open House 2012 Coverage…Part 4 of 4…

The Blox event in 2012 was big for the site because I had never attended the previous meets the two years before. It was one of the bigger events that occurred in Norcal so the idea of seeing it for myself intrigued me. It wasn’t until I got a personal invitation via email did I finally decide to go and looking back now, I don’t regret making the trip, even though I ended up driving to Northern California on my own. It was one of those weekends when everyone down here was just a little too busy to pick up and leave town so I rented a car and made the trek myself. Upon arrival I was greeted by a lot of Norcal friends so it really wasn’t that big of a deal. The event was pretty large with a nice variety of cars. It was probably the second biggest Norcal import event this year, with Wekfest still holding the top position but I see why it’s a big deal for the guys up north. Since I was there the entire day, I had a great opportunity to get a variety of shots and I really liked how the coverage of the meet turned out. It makes this list as an important moment because it helped me and a lot of others get some insight as to what this meet is really like…

19. A Once-In-A-Lifetime Line-up…

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Original Post(s):

Nisei Showoff 2012: GENERATIONS coverage…Part 1…
Nisei Showoff 2012: GENERATIONS coverage…Part 2…
Nisei Showoff 2012: GENERATIONS coverage…Part 3…
Nisei Showoff 2012: GENERATIONS coverage…Part 4…
Nisei Showoff 2012: GENERATIONS coverage…Part 5…
Nisei Showoff 2012: GENERATIONS coverage…Part 6 of 6…The Finale…

If you’re a follower of this site, then there should be no real explanation needed as to why the Nisei coverage was important in 2012. It was an idea that I came up with to help push the Nisei Showoff event by putting together a one-time-only line-up consisting of Honda builds from the past and present, as well as a glimpse into the future of the Honda community. In the beginning it was just a simple idea so I didn’t go into it with very high expectations. I had done a similar line-up the year before and had a pretty solid group of about 19-20 Hondas. In 2012, when it was all said and done, we were able to assemble a line-up of over 75 Hondas. All of them were hand-selected by me, and with the help of some friends, we were able to get a bunch of Honda heads together from different generations, hence the grouping’s name “GENERATIONS”. It was a great honor for me to have many of these guys come out because some don’t even do car show stuff anymore and there were cars from the past that some hadn’t even seen before other than in old photos. Two Hondas that really made the entire line-up for me was the late Jon Tanji’s Civic hatchback, brought out by his friend John, and Junko Le’s Top Fuel turbo Integra, which was a build that hadn’t left the garage to see sunlight in 8 years! With the help of her husband Hugh Le and some old friends, they were able to get the car up and running in time to appear at Nisei Showoff complete with original motor, boost set-up, wheels, and rare Top Fuel aero. There was a moment during the show in the morning when I kind of just stood there by myself, staring at her Integra, just in awe that I was seeing it in person again. Seeing it was just one of many great memories for me that day and I think everyone that was there that day to experience it left with great memories as well. The overall attendance of the show may have been disappointing to some but I don’t think I would have changed a thing. It was a rare, very genuine moment that I’ll cherish for the rest of my life…If you hadn’t had a chance to see the coverage or read about it, I think you guys have done yourself a disservice…

20. The East Coast Takeover…

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Original Post(s):

Tuner Evolution 2012 Coverage…
WEKEAST 2012 Coverage…Part 1…
WEKEAST 2012 Coverage…Part 2…
WEKEAST 2012 Coverage…Part 3…A Chi-Town Perspective…
WEKEAST 2012 Coverage…Part 4…More From A Chi-Town Perspective…

There was one major regret for me in 2012…missing the WEKEAST weekend. It was all bad planning on my part of course but I really wish I had been there. I had no idea that the Tuner Evolution show was even going on the same weekend or I would have flown out there to check it out. It just so happened that both events happened the same weekend so it totally would have been a worthwhile trip to get out to the East. Luckily I had some friends over there that could cover both events for me but still, it doesn’t compare to actually being there in person. WEKEAST I think helped a lot of people outside of the East open their eyes to the caliber of vehicles being built out there. I myself was very impressed with what the East had to offer and hope to get out there one day to see it for myself. The Tuner Evolution event was a new one for me as I hadn’t heard of it prior to this but it was very-well timed. I don’t know if they planned ahead to be on the same weekend as WEKEAST or not but it definitely worked out for both parties. Enthusiasts exhibited their cars at Tuner Evolution and then immediately drove to New Jersey to set up for WEKEAST the day after. Being that they weren’t very far apart distance-wise, the Tuner Evolution show almost served as a primer to the Wekfest show that followed…

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I enjoyed seeing a lot of new builds from the East coast as well as some favorites that I had come to be pretty familiar with. Eric Badis took the reigns and documented both shows for me and his efforts and shots are always appreciated. As a bonus, I even got some photos from Raymond Leung of JDMChicago. He was able to capture his entire trip and even some footage from a meet that happened the night before WEKEAST took place. Pretty great stuff that I’m confident in saying that everybody enjoyed…

21. The Debut Of 5Fifteen Autobody…

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Original Post: 5Fifteen Autobody Grand Opening Coverage…

I’m a big proponent of giving back to the people that support me and The Chronicles that most and one of those guys has to be Sunny Wong, formerly of Franklin Autobody. Before there is any confusion, Sunny didn’t leave Franklin Autobody, he merely relocated and expanded to the city of Burlingame, CA. He felt that the new location needed a new start and a new name, and thus, 5Fifteen Autobody came to life. When he came down to Socal to personally invite me to the grand opening of his business, I couldn’t possibly say no. Sunny is a great dude and we all wanted to show him support so many of us made the drive up to Northern California for his grand opening shindig. When we arrived, we were greeted with a very traditional Chinese party and ribbon cutting ceremony with the mayor of Burlingame at the helm. Though it was totally car-related, it didn’t really feel like it as we all just hung out, ate, and chatted with friends. It serves as an important piece of 2012 because it is one of the rare times where we could get everyone together and also because you’ll probably be hearing a lot more from 5Fifteen Autobody in 2013…

22. Hello Texas…

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Original Post(s):

Wekfest TX 2012 Coverage…Part 1…
Wekfest TX 2012 Coverage…Part 2…
Wekfest TX 2012 Coverage…Part 3…
Wekfest TX 2012 Coverage…Part 4 of 4…

After missing out on the huge WEKEAST event in New Jersey, there was no way I was going to miss the Wekfest show in Texas. Fortunately for me, the Wekfest guys had invited me to go along with them so that I could be one of their guest car show judges. This worked out for me because I could go out there and do coverage, all the while getting a really close look at a lot of the cars during the judging process. When I first agreed to go, I was a little weary of the idea because I wasn’t sure if I was going to be able to cover the entire event since I knew a lot of my time would be dedicated to judging the cars. It all worked out through and I ended up with more than enough coverage. Texas was a good event for me because I got the chance to chat with a lot of really nice people and there were a ton of builds that could be award winners at shows throughout the country. It’s an event I’ll never forget because I got to experience both the Wekfest show as well as a little bit of the Texas life outside of the car industry. The people of Texas were great and I’m excited about the possibility of returning their in 2013 for the next Wekfest TX show. Thanks to Junior, Adam, and Ken from Wekfest for taking such good care of me while we were in Texas. It wouldn’t have been possible without those guys. After experiencing the Texas show, the state is most certainly on my list of annual destinations…

23. Japan Continues To Bring The Heat…

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Original Post(s):

Slammed Society Japan 2012 Coverage…Part 1…
Slammed Society Japan 2012 Coverage…Part 2…
Slammed Society Japan 2012 Coverage…Part 3 of 3…

I’ll be the first one to tell you that I think this whole “stance movement” has gone a little overboard but one of the cool things about Mark Arcenal and his global success is that he throws events in Japan. This allots us with the ability to see more footage of cars in Japan and I’m certainly not going to complain about that. You guys already know I am deeply in love with Japanese car culture so Slammed Society photos from overseas is right up my alley. Even though it is catered to the low offset/stance crowd, the Japan Slammed Society event also manages to bring out a variety of different cars that were created with all different types of styles. Anytime I get the chance to post up coverage from Japan for you guys, it’s a highlight for me…

24. Type_K Does It Better…

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Original Post(s):

“Kday!!” Season 2 Japan Coverage…Part 1…
“Kday!!” Season 2 Japan Coverage…Part 2…
“Kday!!” Season 2 Japan Coverage…Part 3 of 3…From Alternate Perspectives…

If I had to some day put together a page that consisted of the people who I would deem “regulars” on The Chronicles, our buddy Takeshi Kobayashi would be a lock for the list. Takeshi has become good friends with us over the last couple years and it’s wild to think that I met him because of this site. He used to buy merchandise from me to sell over in Japan and he was one of the guys that helped get the site known overseas. He flies out here a couple times per year to do business and I remember the first time I met him was in front of a Safeway supermarket. It was during one of the old Wekfest SF events when it was still held in the parking structure in J-Town. I was waiting for my friend Tony to come out of the market outside and Takeshi came up to me to introduce himself. After that we relayed messages back and forth over various social media outlets and now he is honestly one of my good friends. I look forward to hanging out with him whenever he is in the U.S. and when he’s not around, it almost seems like he’s missing from the group. He has a life in Japan of course, with wife and kids, and a successful business. He started doing the “Kday” car meet last year and it was met with great acclaim. For the 2012 Kday, I made sure to have Takeshi find someone who could cover the entire event for me so I could show all of you guys after. He called on the services of famed Japanese enthusiast Shota Mori, and I’ve been using his photos here on the site ever since. Shota is always at an event so he constantly has content for me. Again, I’m a big fan of the car scene over there so of course I’ll toss up his photos on the site. He’s a great photographer so the quality of the site only gets better when his content ends up here…

25. Happy Anniversary…

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Original Post(s):

Year.IV Anniversary Meet Coverage…Part 1…
Year.IV Anniversary Meet Coverage…Part 2…
Year.IV Anniversary Meet Coverage…Part 3 of 3…

This should be a no-brainer. Of course I would put my Year.IV anniversary meet as a highlight of my 2012. It is by far one of my most memorable events in 2012. I was celebrating the fourth year anniversary of this site and the guys from Tactical Art even flew out to hang out. They stayed the entire day, making sure to check out nearly every car in attendance, and offering stickers and merchandise for people that were in attendance. How great is that? Hiro Ueda and Takeshi also made the trip out from Japan, and I’m overwhelmed by how much support I get from the enthusiasts from Japan. Year.IV was mildly different than the previous years’ anniversary meets because I moved it to the weekend before the 2012 SEMA Show. The weekend I would have normally put on the event I had already made plans for so the weekend before SEMA was the best possible time. It worked out in the end though because all the Japanese friends could be at both Year.IV and SEMA….

26. SEMA With A Side Of VIP…

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Original Post(s):

SEMA 2012 Coverage…Part 1…
SEMA 2012 Coverage…Part 2…
SEMA 2012 Coverage…Part 3…
SEMA 2012 Coverage…Part 4…
SEMA 2012 Coverage…Part 5…
SEMA 2012 Coverage…Part 6…
SEMA 2012 Coverage…Part 7…

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VIP Festival 2012 Coverage…Part 1…
VIP Festival 2012 Coverage…Part 2 of 2…

The ’12 season was more grueling than the previous years and by the end of SEMA, it was a stark realization that I was more than burnt-out. After so many shows, meets, shoots, and working all the while, it was time to take a break. Before I could do that though, I had to end my SEMA week like I did in 2011 by attending Autofashion USA’s annual VIP Festival. Freddie has been a big supporter of mine over the years and so I always try to give back and show him and the shop some love. I am also one of those guys that is immersed in the Japanese VIP scene so I the VIP Festival is a must. I’ll spare you the details of SEMA but make sure you take a look at it if you haven’t before. There is all kinds of shit to look at. If you’re into luxury VIP builds like me, make sure to also click on the link to the VIP Festival coverage. SEMA is an annual trip for me and has been for a couple years now so there is no doubt why it is a significant part of my 2012…

That was a ton of reading but that wraps up my 2012. In the end, every post and every word is pretty momentous, otherwise I wouldn’t waste your time by posting it up on the site. I wouldn’t change a thing about this year and I’m very excited about what’s to come. 2013 is just a couple hours away for me so I guess the next time you hear from me it will be a completely new year. Happy New Years all and have a great one! Here’s to you and your’s and I wish all of you the best in the new year…

Oh before I forget, below is the collage of the year that I made that you see above in the header of both MMXII posts. If you care, I’ve attached a link to a larger version if you guys want to look at it in more detail…

High-Res Version (1800×1064)…

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