Porsche Progress


This is a post I’ve spent six months contemplating. I still don’t really want to write it, but I feel the need to chronicle parts of my car’s resurrection. Let’ start at the beginning (I’ll make this quick)…

Back in September of 2019 I crashed my Porsche Turbo S. It wasn’t a bad crash- I was driving in on unfamiliar county roads, didn’t realize the road turned, hit a sign and rolled off a small hill. No one was injured. The police decided to get involved and my car was impounded. I was charged with several crash-related crimes. Not my best month.

Eventually I got my car back. It was taken to Alpine Auto Renovations, in SLC, to assess and repair the body damage.

I hired a lawyer, Stephen Fraizer, and worked to get get my charges sorted out.

On 12/12/2019 I got word that that my car would be fixed. The total damages came in around $70,000. Ouch. That’s quite a bill for hitting a sign (although rolling off the hill didn’t help).

In January of 2019 Stephen let me know that the court had agreed to drop the reckless driving charge if I agreed to plead guilty to leaving the scene, pay the fine and take an online traffic course. I made the plea in abeyance; So long as I’m not found guilty of  additional crimes in 2019, the charge will be dismissed. I took what ended up being a six hour online course (admittedly, one that I needed). With the legal troubles out of the way my focus returned to the car.

Time passed. Parts were ordered, installed and painted. And in between each step it felt like an eternity. Even now, looking forward, all I can see is an endless tunnel.

The car is now up at Lehi Porsche for airbag replacement, suspension component replacement and some power-related goodies. However, I don’t even know when we’ll be able to start on the rest of the work. Currently there is a raging COVID-19 pandemic. One of the companies I’m working with, ByDesign, is in California and they are dealing with a lion’s share of the corona virus difficulties. The state is under a “shelter in place” order, businesses are closed, things feel bleak.

Here at home I just got word that my mechanic, Dagan, will be out of commission for six weeks following back surgery. No one else can touch my car though so that will have to wait. People over projects and parts.

I’m hoping to start work on my YouTube “Resurrection” series next month (really in just a few days at this point). I don’t know if there will be a happy ending in time for the Limitless event, but hopefully it will make for some good entertainment. (7/11/2020- I’ve had zero time to work on my YouTube channel)

Maybe I’ll email my insurance company and see if there’s any kind of relief from this situation. Knowing what I know right now,  I might have opted to total the car instead of pushing for a repair. Hindsight. On the other hand, waiting won’t kill me, and good things come to those who wait, right?

Update 4-25-2020: We’re working our way through the crisis here in Utah pretty well. I think, overall, we’ve managed the corona virus appropriately. There is nothing my insurance can do for me at this point; My only option is to move forward. Dagan is recovering well and parts for the car’s next transformation have finally arrived. Let’s see if we can bust this out before Limitless in June. If there is a Limitless…

Update: 5/22/2020 – Dagan can come back to work on June 10th (he actually wasn’t able to come back until the end of June). I don’t think there’s any way to get the build done before the event. It doesn’t help that there’s really no Limitless audience this year- it’s not worth it to push hard to run a car that no one will get to enjoy. So… I’m okay to wait on the build and do it right. She’s nestled safely at Lehi Porsche for the time being. I miss this girl… but she’ll be back, better than ever.

She’s very patient.

July 15, 2020: We had a little scare / hiccup. Dagan was able to start working on the car last Wednesday and discovered we’re missing some parts to get it put back together (some not bid out, some not ordered and some returned by mistake). Some of the missing items were interior pieces (i.e. dash) so there was some concern that they might not be immediately available. In the worst case we were worried that insurance wouldn’t cover additional costs and the car could still be totaled.

However, it sounds like the insurance authorized the missing pieces and labor costs and the repairs are moving forward 😅

Ten months in… don’t I get a break at some point? And look at all these awesome parts… they’ve been waiting around for three months to get installed (finally got them unboxed when I thought they were going to get put in). Not a fun year for cars. Grrr.

Antigravity Lithium Battery Install – Porsche 991 Turbo S

Freak, Cam. Is every post on your blog about some car crap! Hey, thanks for noticing. But it’s not just about cars- it’s about health. Many of you know I’m big into weight loss. I think this video may help people lose weight quickly and safely. It’s not a diet, it’s a lifestyle change.

So you want to lose a bit of weight, eh? A lithium battery might be just what you need! They’re not cheap, but the weight reduction is legitimate. Spoiler: I knocked off forty three pounds by switching from a lead-acid to a lithium battery. Forty three pounds!  This video also demonstrates the removal & installation process of the battery in a Porsche 991 Turbo (as always it was more difficult than I thought it would be):

If you watched the video then you’ll know I had to do a bit of cosmetic surgery, but I’d call the operation a success. So far the battery works as advertised- weighs less, starts right up and the car drives great. I have negated he additional weight added by with methanol kit (& actual methanol) and my fire extinguisher. As I mentioned before, they are pricey, but a lithium battery is a pretty easy win!

7/13/2019: I decided to remove the battery when there’s no current concern about weight reduction. A couple of times in the last month I’ve had the PCM cut out followed by multiple dash errors (i.e. steering fault, PDCC fault, etc). I think this may be related to the battery but I’m not certain (seems like some type of power surge / drop). I removed it today and reinstalled my tune so we’ll see how things play out.

Antigravity H7 Lithium Battery
Guardian Tactical OTF

Rennline Fire Extinguisher Mount Install – Porsche 991

Safety first! I have never kept a fire extinguisher in any car I’ve owned. Even though I’ve never had a car fire I’ve often considered installing in some type of fire suppression device. With the addition of methanol into my car I figure I’d better not push my luck too and so…

I picked up a Rennline fire extinguisher mount for my 991 along w/ a 2.5 lb H&R Performance extinguisher w/ Halguard (if you’re interested you can get your own here). I opted for a Halguard model – this shoots out a fire suppression gas as opposed to a fine powder (not big on powders after I had a fire extinguisher blow up at work once).

The install was a bit more complicated than I imagined but I’m pleased with the results:

Helpful Hint: If you install a similar setup in your car I’d recommend a bit of practice. You’ll need to be able to release the holding clips and remove the extinguisher from its cradle quickly all while sitting in an adjacent seat. When fighting a fire, remember the P.A.S.S. acronym. Pull the pin. Aim at base (closer proximity is better). Squeeze the trigger. Sweep side to side. Hopefully you don’t have a fire in your car (or anywhere you don’t want one) but it never hurts to be prepared.

MACarbon Seat Belt Buckle Repair

These MACarbon seat belt buckles have been a bit of a headache for me. I had to modify the covers for the two rear buckles before they would fit. A recurring warning light forced me to replace the front passenger side buckle altogether. And then the new buckle promptly “broke” apart (the two parts of the housing separated and it’s much worse where the belt is attached and there’s tension). I’m not sure if I’d buy / install these parts again.

Regardless, I’m a guy that looks for solutions. The first thing I tried was epoxy. I glued the halves back together but they came apart again shortly after transporting a  passenger. I considered a number of different options before settling on some 3M adhesive- the same stuff you might cover the exterior of your car with. I cut out a couple of sections and did some test fitting.

Originally I had just intended the fitting to be temporary but the 3M seemed to be exceptionally strong and the installation went fairly well (you can see the lines in the pictures but in real life it’s very hard to see where the film is at all).

One of the back seat belt buckles also had a case that was coming apart so I applied the 3M there as well. I suppose my next step will be to see how well the film works over the coming months (I’m worried about its ability to stick and the potential of stretching). In the meantime this appears to be a quick and elegant solution for anyone with a similar problem (and not just limited to seatbelts folks– you can wrap this clear 3M film around pretty much anything).

Something Goes Bump in the Night (and Day). Porsche Repair

It’s been awhile since I made this adjustment, but I wanted to a second and memorialize just what I’d done. It’s probably been a year since I first noticed the bumping noise coming from behind me. It was a rapid and systematically occurring thumping sound aggravated by uneven roads. I accused the seats, seatbelts, various tools stored in the back of the car and even my imagination before I finally found the real culprit. I wedged myself into the back seat and tapped on everything until I finally discovered a piece of interior trim knocking against the car’s frame.

For context: You’re looking at the A-pillar that holds the rear right seat belt (the belt is still attached to the frame). The back window of the car is visible in the top-right.

Removing the interior trim along the right A-pillar was unpleasant. Even after I found the parts that were hitting each other I wasn’t able to determine what parts of the parts were making contact. I tried various sound deadening fixes like felt, molding tape and strong language. Eventually I hit the sweet spot and the noise was radically reduced. Zipping things back up was even more work than taking them apart but I got it done (and it was done right). One less noise in the cabin – easily the largest offender – has been eradicated! This makes me want to revisit my efforts to cap off the engine noise being pumped into the car. One day.

991 Leather Gauge Trim Upgrade (Maybe?)

This may be the best upgrade that I’ve done yet! Okay, fine… maybe it’s the silliest upgrade yet. I’m running out of ideas for little tweaks. I’ve got some ideas for big ones, but I’m just not sure I want to commit the funds or emotional pain to them.

It turns out the trim surrounding the gauges on the 991 is actually plastic. I watched a YouTube video a guy putting in a gauge trim piece covered in leather. I actually went out and checked my car. Plastic! I was shocked and immediately ordered the part to remedy this horrific oversight.

The summary version is that is looks the same. I will never get my money, time or dignity back. Viva la leather!

Porsche 991 Washer Nozzle Replacement

Legend has it that in order to replace the 991 headlight washer nozzles the entire front bumper of the car needs to be removed. Not so! With just a few simple tools anyone can swap their washer nozzles in about 10 minutes. You can pull them out and repaint them yourself or pop in a ready to go set. Below is a quick video showing you how:

I ordered a carbon fiber set from eBay but the weave wasn’t quite right and the quality didn’t impress me. I bought a second pair from BumperPlugs.com and had them painted metallic white (that must be an impossible color to match). This is the set that I ultimately put in but I’m not sure if it’s the look I’m going for. You know you’re pretty desperate to do projects when you’re replacing your headlight washers. #modlife

Porsche 2018 Photo & Video Shoot

I do a lot of cosmetic stuff to my car and so periodically it makes sense (to me) to grab a few pictures of these changes. Since I fancy myself an budding car photographer I took on this mission personally (and no… this is not my iPhone camera). I figure posting six pictures of my car should be plenty since I also cobbled together a video montage. I’m certain this kind of obsessiveness will delight whoever ends up with my car someday. In the meantime I’m slightly less sure it will delight the Internet.

Plain in many ways, but beautiful…

That backside. Nothing better.

She waits patiently. But when we get underway she’s a monster.

When something is this pure the gossip is hard to come by. [Huh? What does this stuff even mean – Ed]

Some say no one “needs” a car like this. They are exactly right.

Black wasn’t my first choice when I got the car. But it’s my first choice now.

I can’t help but sing the praises of this car just a bit. In many ways it’s a nondescript monster. The handling, power and precision are unmatched. It’s the only car I’ve owned that hasn’t left me disappointed (yet). I think it’s okay to splurge on one thing. This is my thing and it’s worth every penny.

Want to hire me to take pictures of your car or put together a fun little video? That would surprise me. That being said, feel free to drop me a line if you’re in Utah.