My Cars–The RX7 Phase

Alright, so I’ve owned a bunch of cars, and this series of blogs will show some of the most notable ones…I’ve covered that before, but it’s been a while since I’ve contributed to this series. For some reason I’ve always been into weird cars, so I’ve always had a hankering for a Henry J or a Chevy Vega. Growing up, what I didn’t know is that I’d go through a phase in my post-high school years that would involve Mazda RX7’s. I owned three at one point, but when I sold them off, I had finished my RX7 phase and moved onto other stuff. No more RX7’s for me…unless it’s cheap and really cool. And it has turbos.

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First paint job...sprayed it in a buddy's garage.

Anyway, I bought my first RX7 on Ebay of all places. The dude lived in Chattanooga, so that was a big plus in terms of being able to check out the car out before I handed over the cash. It was an ’82, which is a first generation car. It was almost completely gutted–one seat, no carpet, no dash, no inner door structure, the list goes on. The car was insanely cool in my opinion because it had a very mild 302ci small block Ford, but it was surprisingly quick. Weighing in at 2,000 pounds I can see why.

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Check out those great slicks! YES!

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Mostly stock truck 302...100 shot of nitrous.

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Gutted interior...very gutted.

So, I buy the car and it’s fairly rough around the edges–spray paint here and there, missing marker lights, etc. I welded up all of the marker light holes, gas filler lid, door lock holes, antenna hole and emblem holes before giving the areas a nice coating of “mud”. I painted the car with leftover paint scraps from my dad’s shop, then sanded and buffed it. I drove the car down the road and back countless times, but never drove it to town because of the lack of registration or insurance. I did, however, make a few blasts up the highway by our house. The car had reportedly run 7.99 in the eighth, despite the stock engine, stock C4 transmission and stock torque converter. A good transmission and converter would’ve put the car much further into the 7’s.

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Second paint job...the huge cowl scoop and paint blisters would be traded for a gaudy paint scheme. Did this paint job under my mom and dad's carport.

I would end up painting the car again, after a few blisters popped up on the doors, where I had used the stupid lacquer-based putty…I knew better than that, but it was cheap so I took a chance. My next paint job was a bit more gaudy, but hey, I was still in my teens so I’ll blame it on that. I eventually sold the car because I really didn’t have a use for gutted-out “racecar”.

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Base model parts had light stuff. Aluminum hood, manual windows, etc.

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The GXL...

The other two RX7’s I had were second generation cars. Bought ’em both on the cheap, but had to sell ’em on the cheap too because they were basically junkers. I had big plans for a small block Chevy swap in the GXL car, and I piddled around on it for a few evenings before getting burned out. I even went to the effort of swapping the doors and fenders from the base model car, because it had manual windows instead of power. I sold both cars, and moved on with my life.


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