Carchella 2019 Coverage…

Like most random ass ideas I come up with, Carchella somehow worked-out and became pretty successful. It started as a bit of an inside joke among my friends who I share a parking lot with that none of us really took all that seriously. It is that time of year when Coachella is all that we see on our social media feeds. Some love it and are more than willing to go out to the fiery deserts that is Coachella Valley annually for the musical event while some just go about their normal every day lives, unaware of what Coachella is, was, or ever will be. For car guys like us (who aren’t into music festivals), it’s business as usual. Around this time, there isn’t a whole lot going on in our community. The car show season is set to begin in a few weeks with more than enough events to attend out here in California but for the past month or so, there hasn’t been anything to do car-wise. Formula Drift Long Beach happened and that was fun, but it isn’t an event that most would attend, especially if they aren’t into drifting. We who are tied into the industry go just to see friends and to catch-up with other acquaintances…

While I was at Formula D a few weeks ago, I had a couple of my car friends ask me when I was planning on hosting another meet. I don’t know if they actually enjoy the meets or if they just want something to do because they’re bored. I’d venture to say it had more to do with them just wanting to get out of the house because the weather has been so nice lately. Around that same time, my friend Takeshi Kobayashi flew over to the States to handle some business and would be staying for about two weeks. He stays pretty busy but I wanted him to have some fun while he was out here as well, being that he doesn’t visit nearly as often as he used to. He didn’t even know Formula D was happening when he got here so I thought it’d be cool if we just had a little gathering at the shop while he was here. It wouldn’t be anything special, just the average ‘Cars and Coffee’ style of meet that we’ve had a couple of times here at our complex. I joked with the guys that we could call it “Carchella” since it was on the same weekend. The guys laughed and then we didn’t talk about it for a few days after that. Duane from RCompound USA is usually down for pretty much anything if there isn’t a VTEC Club event happening on the same weekend so he was all for it. We share a complex that has a nice-sized parking lot so it wouldn’t even require that much work to get a meet going…

I don’t ever want the meets to get too big because I generally don’t want to deal with a hoard of people I don’t know and all that ridiculous ‘takeover’ bullshit has been happening so much lately. It’s literally gotten to the point where there is a police task-force that has been created to stop anything car-related because us car enthusiasts are automatically lumped-in with anything that has to do with cars. It’s stupid, there’s nothing we can really do about it until things cool down, so it’s best to just stay lowkey. Having a meet here is perfect because it’s a secure lot with a gate that we control so if there are people there that we don’t want to be there, we can just kick them the fuck out or not even open the gate for them to come in. So…Carchella it was. To keep it small, I literally announced it to the general public a day and a half before the meet would happen. Only those in the know would come because they would know where our facility is and those who aren’t tuned into our social media outlets would miss out. That’s why I think it is so important to subscribe to updates or keep up-to-date if you can. Like, if you don’t have time for social media, you literally can just subscribe to updates and you’ll never miss an important announcement. Technology is set up for you to be lazy enough and still manage to not miss things that are important to you…but I digress. Anyways, Duane invited his VTEC Club people and some RCompound USA customers, and I just blasted it on my Instagram…

No expectations or anything…

If people came, then they came…

If not…we’d just go back inside and watch TV, go about our day, grab lunch, whatever…

It usually helps to not have expectations when hosting these types of events. What ended-up happening was we had a very nice, chill, meet with a pretty decently-sized crowd. Our lot was pretty much full and everybody had a good time for a few hours. Those who couldn’t attend and wanted to asked if we were gonna have anymore meets in the future. I was like ‘Yeah sure, next weekend’, lol. Same time, same place. Coachella is a two-weekend event so let’s just keep going with the theme. We’ll do ‘Carchella Weekend 2’. That of course, was also a joke. Why would people come to a meet two weeks in a row? Especially at the same place. A few days after that, Yuta sent me a text and said he was coming back to California for the weekend and wanted to hang out. I couldn’t really think of anything else to do but to just host another car meet. And that’s how we ended-up doing Weekend 2 of Carchella. Same premise on the same premises, same roll-out, and no expectations. The second meet started-off a little bit slower but I felt like it ended-up being even bigger than the first gathering with a bunch of new cars and people that we didn’t see the weekend before that. It made for some good video content but I didn’t really shoot that many photos on both weekends. I wanted to just hang out with friends and not worry about collecting content, especially with me leaving for Japan again soon…

Below are the photos that I captured from both weekends. There isn’t a whole lot. Just some photos of some of the cars that really caught my eye at the two Carchella meets or shots that I envisioned while I was just hanging out. If I saw something that I wanted to take a photo of I just ran inside my office to grab my camera to shoot it. Enjoy and thanks to all those who came out for the first-ever Carchella events. I don’t know if we’ll do them again but meets at the shop are always pretty nice. Maybe we’ll do some gatherings on summer evenings or something. Special thanks to those who came from far away or made the trek out for both weekends. I appreciate the support always…

309A5352-Edit

Abel’s Integra Type R with JDM ITR front face, which is also currently for sale. It has a nicely done K-swap, Spoon goodies, Volk TE37 wheels, a Mugen Gen. 2 rear wing, and Ganador mirrors…

309A5355-Edit

The guys from JUST4FFUN made the drive up all the way from San Diego for the event which was pretty surprising considering it was such a small gathering. I didn’t expect them to come the second weekend but sure enough, they came back…

309A5358-Edit

Tommy La’s Civic running his recently-acquired Volk Racing CE28 Club Racer wheels in 4-lug format. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a set of these in the Club Racer colorway and they don’t look that bad at all…

309A5359-Edit

Juan’s Midori Green EK with the ever-popular combination of JDM EK4 SiR bumpers paired with Spoon/Desmond wheels. Such a classic look that every Honda enthusiast can appreciate…

309A5376-Edit

Inside on display at RCompound USA was Kristian Wong’s Hybrid Racing-sponsored Civic track car build, which is coming together day-by-day. Yuta did a majority of the work in the months prior to him leaving for his new job at HKS USA and Kristian will be putting the final touches on it to get it on the road…

And that was all the photos I took on Weekend 1. I was more in the shooting mood when it came to Weekend 2 so there are way more photos from the second Carchella meet…

309A5401-Edit

Another guy that made the drive all the way from San Diego was our buddy Sang Pham in his turbocharged J’s Racing GT widebody S2000. His car is running great now and he made the trip worthwhile as he stuck around after to grab lunch…

309A5420-Edit

A car that I totally did not expect to see was Dave Chik’s Civic, which I hadn’t seen a whole lot of since Wekfest LA last year. He recently did a B18C swap but also had surgery not too long ago and wasn’t even able to drive for Carchella Weekend 1. He was still in recovery but felt good enough to bring his Civic out to show us his fancy engine bay set-up…

309A5405-Edit

If you know Dave, you’ll know he is an incredibly detailed-oriented car builder with a great eye for parts and execution. He wanted to do a B-series swap and keep it looking mostly stock, but went a completely unique route and started zinc-plating a bulk of the engine accessories to give it a new ‘OEM+’ look that we weren’t all accustomed to…

309A5414-Edit

He event kept the air conditioning and everything intact, without any crazy engine bay shaving or custom engine bay harness. Dave just cleaned everything up to make the B18C swap look brand new while adding some of his own unique touches. The valve cover and battery bracket has been Cerokoted for a sleek, subtle contrast to the bright zinc-plated bits…

309A5425-Edit

The interior of Dave’s Civic featuring a MOMO steering wheel and Individual Racing Parts short-throw shifter…

309A5429-Edit

The back half of his Civic interior is gutted, with even the passenger seat removed….

309A5423-Edit

The exterior remains as clean as can be, as we would expect from Dave, with the only major additions being a Mode Parfume/Exceed front lip, Top Fuel rear wing, First Molding hood, EC Works mirrors, and Volk TEs which are paired with Spoon Sports front brakes…

309A5434-Edit

Since Yuta was back, he went to the back of the shop to pull out his white Civic sedan which is a long-term work-in-progress build. He eventually plans to use this as a daily cruiser with a turbocharged B-series engine. If you’re wondering what the wheels are they are actually a set of wheels from a BTCC race car which he purchased used before re-drilling and powdercoating them specifically for this Civic…

309A5435-Edit

The exterior will stay Taffeta White, which is his preferred color choice for all of his Civics, but the engine bay has been extensively modified and painted gray. Immediately you should notice the custom wheel tubs, and stitch-welds…

309A5437-Edit

The shock towers have also been extended and this section of the wheel tubs has been altered to make space for the engine mount. Here you can also see the welds and sections of the bay which have been cut down and repainted…

309A5441-Edit

A pretty successful gathering I’d say…

309A5449-Edit

I always enjoy seeing Carlos super clean Civic CX hatchback, with a completely stock exterior just sitting nice and low on black Desmond wheels…

309A5445-Edit

His engine bay also looks pretty stock but at the core powering the Civic is a B18C Type R swap…

309A5489-Edit

With the hood closed you probably wouldn’t think much of it other than the wheels and suspension. It’s almost a throwback to Honda builds of the ’90s back when car guys didn’t have access to the Internet and couldn’t just order a shit ton of parts. The cars were just clean, lowkey, and well…timeless…

309A5471-Edit

Just these two cars alone were worth it enough to have a car meet. I was super stoked to see Dave’s EK and I can just stare at Carlos’ hatchback for hours…

309A5473-Edit

John Cruz rolled-up to Carchella Weekend 1 in a F20C-powered AE86 he just recently acquired but for Weeknd 2, he came by in his J-spec RPS13 Sil80 on SSR Longchamps…

309A5485-Edit

Tommy also switched things up for Weekend 2, cruising out on Racing Green Volk TEs and a Spoon Sports carbon lip. If you scroll back to the top, you’ll remember he had a Mugen front lip and CE Club Racers a week before…

309A5496-Edit

Not sure who owned this Kouki DC5 but it looked great just slammed on bronze Mugen MF10 wheels…

309A5513-Edit

Juan and Lee made the trip once again from San Diego for Carchella…

309A5502-Edit

I still remember Lee for having a really nice CL9 TSX years ago and still think it’s weird to see him in an Integra. This gray Integra is now his project of choice running a JDM SI VTEC front bumper and lip…

309A5500-Edit

I had a chance to chat with him a bit and he told me that his engine is actually the same B-series set-up that used to be in Gilbert Corona’s EF hatchback, a car you may remember from years ago that was featured in Honda Tuning and always cruised with the guys from Circuit Hero….

309A5511-Edit

No changes to Juan’s Civic, other than maybe a new tank of gas, but who knows since he’s got a single-cam under the hood that’s probably pretty good on gas…

309A5525-Edit

Jeremy Allgier’s beautiful Prelude showed-up an hour or so after the meet started, looking good like usual. You can always expect for this car to look great with a collection of goodies throughout…

309A5516-Edit

The interior hosts a KEY!S Racing wheel, blue Recaro seats, a host of gauges mounted on each end of the dashboard as well as the A-pillar. I always thought that this generation Prelude had the weirdest looking dash but I appreciate it now in 2019 with all its ’90s quirkiness…

309A5518-Edit

The engine bay, as I’ve long said, is one of the best prelude engine bays ever, probably one of the better Honda bays to be honest, spotlighted by the array of rare ARC goodies and a Jackson Racing blower…

309A5523-Edit

As good as it gets right here…

309A5531-Edit

Nick’s right-hand drive BB2 Prelude with Hiro eyelids and Aero Magic front lip, sitting on Enkei RPF1 wheels…

309A5537-Edit

If you enjoy 96-00 Civics, Carchella was the meet(s) to go to…

309A5546-Edit

Teddy Timoteo showed-up at the very end to come hang out with his K-powered Civic. The guys gathered around Dave while he told them what the car scene was like back in the ’90s before car meets were themed mockingly after music festivals…

309A5556-Edit

Kristian Wong from Battlecraft snapping some photos for himself, being that he is also an Civic-aficionado…

309A5580-Edit

Even though the meet cleared-out by noon, some of us just hung out to chat and enjoy cars…

309A5613-Edit

309A5611-Edit

Teddy’s engine bay with his Jenvey individual throttle bodies and one-off cooling system/swirl pot set-up…

309A5588-Edit

Dave showing Teddy his newly finished engine bay for the first-time. Most haven’t seen this set-up until that weekend because it was literally the first time he had driven the car since he finished not too long ago…

309A5598-Edit

Quite the collection of parts between these two builds…

309A5608-Edit

And that’s all for Carchella 2019, a completely different type of ‘Sunday Service’ than what Coachella saw from Kanye West…

Thanks for looking…

Leave a Reply