By way of an introduction and rather than telling you how I enjoy reading and long walks in the country or whatever else people put in bio’s I though i’d just post up my car history. If you’re a died-in-the-wool car guy you’ll probably get a much better idea of who I am that way anyway!
Like a lot of petrolheads of meager means my car history is interspersed with some gems is but largely made up of cheap, mediocre turds – usually a necessity whilst waiting to buy the next cool thing… or while paying the price of the last cool thing!
998 Austin Mini (field car)
My first ever car, bought from the scrap yard for £50. Bolted on a loud exhaust and blasted round the field behind my house all summer. Despite 10 acres to play with I Still managed to crash it into the wall of the field!
998 Austin Mini
My first road car. It only cost £350 and looked like it only cost £350 too! Still I thought it was the best thing ever. It got some 10” minilite alloys and straight-through exhaust
Ford Escort Diesel estate
1.8 Non turbo – possibly the slowest thing I’ve driven!
1 litre. Second slowest car I’ve driven, but First car that would do over 100mph! Only downhill though
1300 Austin Mini
This thing was my first modified car. It had wide arches, 13” revolutions, adjustable camber arms and rear trailing arms, Full Janspeed exhaust and alloy inlet manifold. I ported & polished the head myself which worked really well except for the fact that it used to chew through head gaskets. Must have changed it at least 10 times – learned loads with this car.
Peugeot 205 gti 1.9
Loved the way this car looked but was disappointed in every other way. It was rattly, flimsy, not that quick and it didn’t even sound that good. Still thought I was the dogs danglies driving it round at 19 or 20 or whatever age I was at the time
Ford Escort Saloon
Blew up on the way home from the dealer – no oil. Got my money back and bought the Rover
Proper old mans car but actually had decent performance
First bike, little 2 stroke screamer. Great fun. Smokey as F**k
One of the best looking bikes out there. Single sided swing arm, proper race replica. Sounded awesome too and was properly quick compared to all the cars I’d owned to date. Sadly the VFR got knicked and that was the end of my biking career.
Audi S2 Quattro Avant
This has to be one of my favourite cars I’ve owned. The S2 is the quick version of the Audi 80. It has 4 wheel drive and the awesome 2.2 litre 5 cylinder Turbo motor out of the original ur Quattro. Mine was remapped to about 280bhp and lowered. It was really quick and sounded incredible! Wish I’d kept it, they’re worth a fortune now!
Mk 4 Golf
Used more oil than petrol.
Deadly car. Bog standard 1.6 diesel, non turbo. Never have I had so many people offer to buy a car off me as this Jetta
Audi A4 Avant
Remapped 1.8 turbo, had this one for quite a while. Quick enough not to be too boring a very practical
Nice, modern, but ultimately Forgettable
Westfield Hayabusa Turbo
Insane. Quickest thing I’ve driven. 350bhp at the wheels and a shade under 500kg’s Started life as my daily driver with a 1.8 Ford Zetec motor which I rebuilt with Dunnell stage 2 head, cams and twin Weber 45’s. Did a few track days and hillclimbs and gradually ended up as a track-only car with the bike engine conversion, 10” slicks and no windscreen, roof or doors
Standard mk1 road car. Should have hung on to this one
Davrian Solo Stiletto
This is a race car from the 70’s/80’s modsports/silhouette era. It was based on the Hilman Imp/Sunbeam Stiletto but had a fibreglass and aluminium honeycomb monocoque built by Davrian cars. Rear engine and super light weight at 450kg’s!
BMW E39 525
Meh. Nice engine
Peugeot 206 GTI
Big engine, 180bhp, small car, great seats. Shite everything else
2 litre tdi bluemotion with the DSG box – you couldn’t find a more perfect family wagon.
EK Civic Race Car
Current Trackdays.ie Hire car. Loud. loads of grip. Great car to learn in. Good craic!
I know everyone is on Youtube nowadays but I just wanted to let you guys know Freshfix are too! Not everything I do will be uploaded to the site so if you do want to keep updated you can subscribe to the channel here . If you are on youtube or have your own personal channel comment below so we can check it out and subscribe.
The channel is a bit like a homemade soup…there is a bit of everything in it. I used the youtube page as a personal page along with using it while I ran the JustForFun motorsport page .
Here are some of the most popular videos on the channel to date.
1.John Mc Govern ITCC EP3 Civic
2.Motorsport is BullShit
3. Car Blows Up In Mondello
4. Hitting Vtec! ( Forgot to put lock the bonnet pins )
5.Bumps & Bangs
If I had a euro for every time someone asked me about buying a go pro or similar camera I would be a millionaire. The market is flooded with all types ranging from €50-€350 euro. I’ve owned a few at this point over the last few years and at present I find myself with a Go-Pro hero 3+ and Hero Session 5 which I use for every video we do. I also had the contour +2 roam for a few years but found myself going back to the go pro all the time.
The main question is to ask yourself why do I want to buy a camera and what will I use it for. The truth is these cameras are not just for recording your track days but are also very handy for holidays and taken photos, so consider that when looking into them. People would often get caught up in the megapixels and it does this and that. For me, these are some of the main things to look out of when buying an action camera.
1. How wide does the lens shoot? – This is important because I use it in-car a lot. Some cameras cannot shoot as wide as others. An example of this is go pros super wide which is impressive. Again depending on what you are going to be using the camera for this doesn’t matter.
2.Does it have a screen? – Some top end cameras now come with a screen or the adaptor to add one in but the majority of actions cameras don’t have a screen. Chances are that if the lens is very wide your going to catch the shot you need.Having the screen just ensures you are getting exactly what you expect,
3. The shooting quality of the camera? – I could safely say that 8/10 people who have an action camera don’t upload it to Youtube or make a video from it. Most probably don’t even take it off the memory card after an event. Some cameras shoot 4k which is all well and good if you are shooting the next big blockbuster but 720p or 1080p is more than enough for Youtube or online. Remember the higher the quality the longer it takes the edit and process afterward.
4.Frames per second – Fps is what you can normally see in the description of any given action camera. Why does this matter if its video? Well, let’s say you would like to shoot a slo-mo shot. You can get that shot to really slow down if shooting at 120fps compared to 30fps. It’s also good if you are trying to capture an action photo. The go-pro is able to take a burst of photos and you are simply able to delete them until to get the best one.
5.Does it have an app?- Again the majority of new action cameras have an app which allows you to use your phone and a preview screen and adjust settings etc. This is also useful for looking back on images and videos and downloading them to your phone through the Bluetooth or wifi.
6.Ease of use?– I know this may sound silly but make sure the camera is easy to use. A lot of people are afraid to use a go pro because they don’t know how, Sure there are only two fecking buttons on the thing. The contour, for example, has a simple button to slide one way for on and the other for off. It’s pretty straight forward.
7. Can I buy a cheap knock off camera from eBay? – yeah sure fire ahead! The only issue I have with these are they don’t always record.When you come back from an event or race after something amazing has happened to realize DAM! The camera crashed or fudged up! These cameras go for roughly €50 euro on eBay and amazon. Spend that bit more and get a better-known brand like Sony,Garmin,Go-pro or Contour.
8. Memory Cards – At the end of the day this is what records all your video and information. If you slack out on buying a good card the chances are it won’t record the footage correctly. Along with getting a good brand of memory card, think of the size aswell. The bigger the GB of the card the more it can hold for you.
Bear all this in mind next time you want to buy an action camera. If you have any questions or queries don’t hesitate to contact us on our facebook page or email us at Hello@freshfix.ie
Welcome to the first of our reader’s ride. If you want to showcase your car you can email us at Hello@Freshfix.ie or you can drop us a message on our Facebook page.
Here we have this cadbury purple Mazda Rx8 which belongs to John Panda Mc Guinness. When I first asked for people to send in some cars this bright purple rx8 stood out in our inbox. Along with the photos, I got a link to his project thread – which you can also check out. This car started off silver with the standard wheels sprayed black and slowly but surely he really got stuck in to making changes.
All the bodywork has been carried out by John himself. If the finish was not done perfect the first time the paint was peeled- yes peeled back and prep started again. You see the thing is that John’s car is not spray painted, its plasti dipped.
One of the best modifications for the RX8 is to change the exhaust and John done just that replacing the original with a Toyosports cat back. Choice of alloys was the XXR 526 man, front are 9j et20 and rear’s are 10.5j et20.
Aggressive aero has been added by John which includes front and rear diffusers and the massive wing you can see sitting on the rear boot lid. John has the option of two boot lids running two separate spoilers depending on what style he wants to run with.
We looking forward to seeing what will be next for John and his Rx8.
The popularity of track days is on the rise again which is great to see. We’re all for people getting the most out of their cars and using them to their potential and the best place to do that is on a race track. With that in mind we’ve put together a very quick track day do’s & don’ts to get you started:
Check your nuts:
Check your wheel nuts/studs are tight periodically throughout the day and use a torque wrench if possible. You might think that’s overkill but with the extreme heat cycles, additional forces and vibrations from driving hard on track they can and do come loose
At a track day your engine will be at the top end of its rev range for most of the day. Even if your engine doesn’t normally burn oil it’s worth checking the levels once or twice throughout the day. Oil starvation is the last thing you want!
I’ve never been at a track day where I didn’t need tools of some sort. Now you probably won’t need the whole tool chest but a socket set, torque wrench, cable ties, duct tape, oil, fuel and a funnel would on my list of essentials
Use your mirrors
There’s always someone faster than you at a track day and it’s vitally important to keep a close eye on your mirrors and get out of the way of faster cars. If you have a car behind you for 3 or 4 corners you need to move over and let them past. Remember a track day isn’t a race!
Don’t be a dick!
A track day is a compromise and has to cater for a broad range of car and driver performance levels. In Motorsport terms it’s the best value for money that you’ll get in terms of seat-time and track time by miles, but you need to remember that everybody has an equal right to be there and drive accordingly. Whether you’re a championship winning racing driver testing a new car or are bringing your daily driver on track for the very first time. Accept that if you’re an experienced driver in a fast car, you’re going to get held up a bit and if you’re a newbie in a slower car you’re going to have to move over and let the faster stuff past.
In short, share the track, enjoy it and don’t drive like a dick!
Respect my authoritaah!
Track days don’t have many rules but the ones they do have need to be followed for everyone’s safety.
- Only overtake on the left
- Only overtake on the straights
- Never overtake in the corners
- No drifting
- No racing
Break the rules and you’ll find yourself being summoned to the control tower for a telling off. Break the rules a second time and you could be asked to leave.
Getting on-track tuition is one of the best things you can do. Some track days offer tuition for free and some charge for it. Even if you’ve been doing track days for years, you can always learn something new from an experienced instructor, so if they’re there we’d urge you to take advantage and get yourself some tuition
Images with thanks to brianwalshphotos.com and Trackdays.ie
Am I right in saying I saw Freshfix before?
Yes, you are correct, Freshfix did live before way back in 2010 but let me fill you in what happened and why we went off the map for a short time.
Back in 2010 while in college the likes of Juiceboxforyou was the only real Irish blog showcasing the Irish scene. I was fascinated and wanted to start my own blog but try to focus on the VAG scene. At the time I was a member on Vagdrivers.net,I pitched my idea’s to its members and the name Freshfix was created. For a start, I didn’t have a clue how to create a blog,Thankfully my cousin came to the rescue and a basic site was built and created. A few weeks went by and I received an email from Paul Gallagher who was a graphic designer from Donegal and the “real” Freshfix was born.
Looking back now I didn’t have a clue what to do and what to post. We had a number of people who helped contribute to the site from the beginning to the….well eh resting period. We were trying to keep with the times of what was cool and also start some merchandise the facebook page was starting to grow and people started to talk about the site. Of course not everything said was positive but you have to take that when starting to voice your opinion on the interwebs.
I will happily admit now that when I was writing about an event or subject it was just me trying to be the next Juiceboxforyou or Paddy McGrath from Speedhunters, or say what the cool kids wanted to hear. It was a lesson learned and going forward I plan to make the adjustments required to improve the content. Another thing I also learned is that I cannot write for S**T ( you may have already noticed already from this post) but again it’s time to learn and improve.
I received a message from David Egan asking would we do something with his new drift team ( DealtWidth) along with WKD Imports. He liked the style of photography and we both had the same image in our head of where it was going to go. We did some work together but trying to cover a weekend for Freshfix along with a video for WKD & Dealtwidth was tough to do, with the work of the team we got it done but maybe not to the best of our ability. Sadly this didn’t continue on but was an experience nonetheless.
So how did it die?
College was finished and a career was pursued in the motor trade. The issue with that is I had to work 6 days a week along with wanting to start racing at Mondello Park. The exchange for racing was to sell off all of my camera equipment to fund the car,racing suit and trailer. At this point, all my focus went to racing.
Conor & Adam kept updating our facebook page but the domain expired and basically, everything was gone, all that was left was our 4000 likes on the facebook page. Hats off to the guys who helped out because no one received a penny from Freshfix, without them it simply would not be what it was or is going to be again.
Cool,so what can we look forward to?
Motorsport is still a massive focus of mine but along with the racing, I started to do some vlogs with a friend. It started off as a facebook page called JustForFun Motorsport and we documented the build of the cars and some weekends. Again this didn’t really work out but I thought of how can I combine this and Freshfix back together.Rob King advised me I should start it again and when I turned to the guys who helped me before they all agreed. With the help of Rob, I also designed parts of the website which is all new to me.
What’s going to be on the site?
The site will have 4 main compartments-Blog Posts,Vlogs,Image Gallery,Shop.The blog posts will be a combination or random ramblings along with features and event reviews. The vlog will mainly consist of motorsport diaries and possibly some car reviews. The image gallery can be your one stop shop if you were at a recent event and looking for a photo of your car. The shop will allow you buy the most recent Freshfix merchandise
I do hope you will tune back in and give us some feedback where possible. To celebrate our comeback we are giving away free lanyards. All you need to do is subscribe to us here