Get­ting down to it with a duo of mod­i­fied 993s, both start­ing from Car­rera 2 un­der­pin­nings and rock­ing a colour­ful out­look

911 Porsche World - - This Month -

Fash­ion is an odd thing. Ac­cord­ing to the Ox­ford English Dic­tio­nary, it is de­fined as ‘a pop­u­lar or the lat­est style of cloth­ing, hair, dec­o­ra­tion, or be­hav­iour…’ There’s no men­tion of the colour of cars but we’re all aware of how some hues seem to dip in and out of fash­ion through­out the years. Henry Ford im­mor­talised black, of course, but that was cho­sen for rea­sons of ef­fi­ciency – black paint dried quicker than other colours, thus speeding up the Model T’s build process.

In the 1960s and ’70s, we went through a spell of both drab hues and wild ’n’ crazy ‘safety’ colours. Porsche got in on the act with the Viper Greens and Blood Oranges in stark con­trast to the more stately hues we’d been used to see­ing in the past. They were in­tended to make a splash, to make your speeding ve­hi­cle vis­i­ble from a dis­tance. To get you no­ticed.

And then along came sil­ver, black, an­thracite greys, white… Ex­cuse me while I sti­fle a yawn. These are to­day’s ‘safe’ colours – not ‘safety’ colours, note – cho­sen by own­ers and fleet man­agers alike as they are good safe bets when it comes time to sell. But they show so lit­tle imag­i­na­tion, don’t you agree?

How­ever, the same can­not be said of our two he­roes, the Home Coun­ties’ own Jake and El­wood, Paul Mad­den and Mike Moore. For them, the very prospect of own­ing an anony­mous Porsche wasn’t on the cards. Af­ter all, their re­spec­tive back­grounds clearly in­di­cate that bor­ing is not an op­tion…

Let’s start with Jake, I mean, Paul Mad­den. Paul cur­rently also owns a cou­ple of rather de­sir­able Pork­ers in the form of a Mid­night Blue 993 RS and a very spe­cial 1974 Car­rera 2.7. He’s also pre­vi­ously owned a very nice 911ST replica which achieved a lot of no­to­ri­ety among the mod­i­fied Porsche fra­ter­nity thanks to the level of de­tail­ing and its vi­brant turquoise. The ’74 Car­rera? That’s Lime Green.

The ST went to a new owner some time ago, mak­ing way for the Car­rera project, but there was a gap in Paul’s garage that needed to be filled by some­thing mod­ern yet more us­able than the 993 RS. Some­thing his wife Lyn could en­joy, in fact. The search be­gan for a ‘reg­u­lar’ 993 – but even a nonRS or non-turbo ex­am­ple had to be some­thing spe­cial to meet his de­mands.

Paul takes up the tale: ‘You may de­cide you want a 993, yet the spread of prices seems wildly wide. You can find them for sale for £35K or so, but then if you de­cide – as I did – you must have a Uk-de­liv­ered, RHD coupé (no con­vert­ible, no Targa, thank you) with man­ual gear­box, and prefer­ably a C2 rather than a C4, things start to change. I also wanted a car with less than 100K on the clock, and most def­i­nitely not a Cat C or D write off. A de­tailed ser­vice his­tory would be a bonus, too.’

Not sur­pris­ingly, Paul also had views on his ideal colour: ‘Aven­tura Green is a bit dull, and the dark greys don’t re­ally do it for me. Ideally I wanted a black in­te­rior, too.

Hard­back seats would be nice, and maybe air-con­di­tion­ing…’

The car Paul ended up buy­ing was a man­ual C2 coupé with what he de­scribes as quite low mileage for a 23-year-old car, but what the mar­ket con­sid­ers to be un­ac­cept­able high mileage (120,000). He bought it a cou­ple of years ago now, and paid just £29K for it. The colour? Sil­ver with grey in­te­rior…

Break­ing the news to his fel­low DDK sub­scribers, he ad­mit­ted that he was plan­ning to give the car a colour change. ‘Now if you ask around on the fo­rums, ev­ery­one will tell you not to colour change a 993,’ says Paul. ‘For the most part, 993 own­ers are an un­usual crowd and orig­i­nal­ity is val­ued over every­thing else. You don’t “hot-rod” a 993…

‘Fans of the early cars are all fas­ci­nated by mod­i­fied 911s and no one minds stamp­ing their in­di­vid­u­al­ity on 911Ts, Es or even Ss. And as for 3.2s, SCS, even 964s, well, they be­come track-day toys, repli­cas of this and that, or sim­ply trans­formed with wide arches, light­weight in­te­ri­ors, etc. But not with a 993. It's just not done.

‘If I’d car­ried out a sur­vey, I’m sure that 98 per cent of those asked would have ad­vised “don’t colour change the car”. One per cent would prob­a­bly say “wrap it”. But, hope­fully, the last one per cent who might en­ter­tain a change of colour will say “well, if you’re go­ing to do it, then do it thor­oughly”. There­fore I chose to do it prop­erly,’ says Paul.

The car was built late in 1993 and for sale hav­ing been used as a daily driver for many years. It had also ev­i­dently seen ac­tion at track days and had un­der­gone one re­spray back in 2007. It now rolled on a set of 17in Boxster rims.

Paul laughs when he thinks about the day he went to see the car. ‘The seller had planned a 30-minute test drive, which in­cluded mi­nor roads, dual car­riage­way and city traf­fic. As it hap­pened, I drove out of his road, up to the next round­about and back be­fore telling him I’d have it! I could tell straight away that it was a good one.’

The plan was to strip the car as soon as it was home, but then Paul dis­cov­ered that he rather liked it as it was. And so did wife Lyn, who adopted it as ‘her’ car. In the mean­time, Paul be­gan for­mu­lat­ing plans for the project, start­ing un­sur­pris­ingly with the over­all look – and the colour.

‘I said from the off that this wasn’t go­ing to turn into an RS replica,’ says Paul, ‘as I wanted to re­tain the nar­row body­work. There’d be no wings and spoil­ers, no deep front bumper, no side skirts. I wanted to re­tain the full in­te­rior but also wanted to clean up the lines, by delet­ing such items as the head­lamp wash­ers, badg­ing and rear wiper. I also planned a change of wheels.’

But what about the colour? Paul quite liked blue and be­gan look­ing at the Porsche colour pal­ette for in­spi­ra­tion. Paul again: ‘A fac­tory blue for the 993 was Riviera, while an­other was Turquoise Blue. I’d al­ready dis­counted the re­cent Mi­ami Blue, which is nice but I con­sid­ered it a fash­ion colour that hadn’t yet proved it­self with longevity.

‘Turquoise Blue might look good in Cal­i­for­nia, but un­der our dreary skies I felt it looked too dark. Riviera Blue is won­der­ful, but paler, with plenty of white in the mix. But Mex­ico Blue is a fan­tas­tic Porsche colour, with his­tory in abun­dance! It works well on all gen­er­a­tions of Porsche. I de­cided to go with Mex­ico Blue…’

In the mean­time, Paul and Lyn had been en­joy­ing the car as it stood and be­gan to

ques­tion the wis­dom of tear­ing it apart. But every­thing changed in an in­stant when driv­ing along the M4 mo­tor­way the engine blew up with a re­sound­ing ‘Bang!’

Now ev­ery­one knows that 993 en­gines don’t go bang, ex­cept this one did. The RAC duly de­liv­ered the car back to the Mad­den drive­way, leav­ing Paul lit­tle op­tion but to get stuck in – and sort out the engine.

With the help of Nick Moss, the engine was pulled and sent off to Nick Full­james at Redtek. It didn’t take long to dis­cover the prob­lem: a bro­ken con-rod that had punched through the case! Close ex­am­i­na­tion of the of­fend­ing rod (or rather the two re­main­ing parts) sug­gested that there had been a cast­ing fault since day one, a sit­u­a­tion that Paul de­scribes as driv­ing around in a grenade with the pin pulled out. Amaz­ingly, the rod had lasted 120,000 miles be­fore let­ting go.

A donor engine was sourced as there was no way the orig­i­nal could be saved, and at this point Paul de­cided that it would be re­built to fac­tory-orig­i­nal spec­i­fi­ca­tion. Af­ter all, he had a 993 RS for oc­ca­sions when he felt the need for real speed. The gear­box, too, was treated to a stock re­build, both units re­turn­ing to Paul look­ing just as if they’d been col­lected from the fac­tory back in 1993.

And so the re­paint…or rather the com­plete strip down to a bare shell. This was not go­ing to be a quick mask every­thing up and blow it over colour change, but a full-on tear down, re­pair what needed to be re­paired, blast what needed to be blasted, re­place what needed to be re­placed colour change.

Re­mov­ing the bonded-in front and rear screens showed there had been some re­pair work car­ried out pre­vi­ously to the front screen sur­round, and there was some cor­ro­sion at the rear, which needed to be fixed.

Rear chas­sis legs are the big­gest cause for rust con­cerns on a 993 as it ap­pears that Porsche bolted the in­ner wing sup­port pan­els to the body be­fore it was painted, leav­ing the joint­ing sur­faces un­pro­tected. As Paul soon dis­cov­ered, ac­cess­ing these prob­lem ar­eas is dif­fi­cult and re­pair means a ma­jor strip down.

Paul takes up the story once again: ‘My reck­on­ing was that for a colour change I’d want it done thor­oughly. So, ob­vi­ously there could be no sign of the orig­i­nal colour in the door shuts or the engine com­part­ment, front trunk, un­der wheel arches, etc. That meant a lot of work – much more work than I re­alised. These cars are much more com­plex than an early 911.

‘My as­pi­ra­tion was to com­pletely re­store the car to as new, so each com­po­nent I re­moved was cleaned, re­painted, re­con­di­tioned or re­fur­bished. In some cases that meant re­plac­ing it with new.

‘As I dis­man­tled the car I took pho­tos. Af­ter

all, I needed to re­mem­ber how it went back to­gether. I ended up with over 1500 im­ages and I could have done with more. I also took care to bag and la­bel every­thing as I went, hav­ing bought 500 grip-seal bags on ebay and a load of cheap stor­age boxes from Ikea. Believe me, a 911 takes up a lot of room when it’s dis­man­tled.’

Porsche’s pric­ing pol­icy left Paul’s wal­let reel­ing dur­ing the build – he’d cho­sen to use OEM parts wher­ever pos­si­ble, and was pre­pared to pay the price. Even then, he was shocked at some bills at his lo­cal PC. ‘I nearly baulked at £320+VAT for a head­liner, plus an ex­tra £170+VAT for the lin­ing for the sun­roof panel. Porsche door seals were some­thing like £335 per side…’ But that was only the be­gin­ning as he waded into re­build­ing the elec­tri­cally-op­er­ated rear wing and other ar­eas of the car that many would be tempted to over­look dur­ing a re­paint.

With the strip down com­plete – don’t ask him about the plas­tic un­der­trays fit­ted to a 993. It seems like there are dozens of them – the bodyshell was al­most ready for paint, while Paul turned his at­ten­tion to the in­te­rior trim. If you re­mem­ber, it was grey, but he wanted black. He also wanted RS hard­back seats... The for­mer is rare, the lat­ter rare and ex­pen­sive, but he had to have them.

He tracked down a pair of seats from the owner of an RS who had opted to swap them for a pair Re­caro rac­ing buck­ets. They had re­put­edly only cov­ered 7000km and the con­di­tion backed that up. How­ever, like all such seats, they came with grey backs and Paul wanted them colour-coded, so they were stripped down and given a dose of Mex­ico Blue. The seat run­ners to in­stall them came direct from Porsche – at a price…

Most of the com­po­nents for the black in­te­rior came from a car that was be­ing parted out af­ter an ac­ci­dent, while other parts such as car­pets and rear seats came from ebay or Porsche break­ers. Re­mov­ing the orig­i­nal car­pet proved to be a chore as they had been glued in place so ef­fec­tively. The only way Paul could get them out was to re­sort to a highly po­tent chem­i­cal called Xy­lene... As Paul jokes, ‘It’s the sort of thing you’d ex­pect to find at Por­ton Down se­cret weapons fa­cil­ity, but it did the trick.’

One of his aims with the car, as we al­luded to ear­lier, was to ‘clean it up’, do­ing away with su­per­flu­ous de­tails such as the rear wiper. That of course meant a new rear screen – he could have sim­ply filled the hole in the glass

Porsche’s pric­ing pol­icy left Paul’s wal­let reel­ing dur­ing the build…

va­cated by the wiper with a bung but that would have been let­ting the side down. He also de­cided to in­stall clear lenses at the front – and change the side re­peaters for round ones that bet­ter suited the 993’s curves.

Wheels. They make or break any project, and there was no way the Boxster rims that came with the car would do. Paul tracked down some 18in Cup 2 wheels but de­cided it needed some­thing bet­ter. Some­thing like a set of Speed­lines. Iron­i­cally, he used to have a set, but sold them. He even tried to buy them back, but to no avail. In the end he shelled out some­thing in the re­gion of £5000 to ac­quire a new set as part of a deal with his PC. These were then shod with Pirelli P-zero Rosso N4s, 225/40s up front, 265/35s at the rear. And then there was the sus­pen­sion. Close ex­am­i­na­tion of the car showed that it had been fit­ted with an RS rear anti-roll bar that had been in­stalled with the wrong drop-links. That meant it had dam­aged the lower con­trol arms on both sides, ne­ces­si­tat­ing more un­planned ex­pense. But what of the dampers/springs them­selves? Af­ter look­ing into the nu­mer­ous op­tions avail­able, Paul ul­ti­mately opted for a set of Bil­stein PSS10S –

they’reThe to­tal even cost blue of to re­fur­bish­ing­match the body­work…the sus­pen­sion was around £6500, and that didn’t in­clude brakes as they had been largely re­placed by the pre­vi­ous owner at some ex­pense. Paul reck­ons that to go through the en­tire sus­pen­sion of a 993 that’s com­pletely shot, you’d need to spend close to £10,000. A sober­ingyou next con­tem­platethought worth that bear­ing bar­gainin min­don ebay…when And so, with every com­po­nent, every nook and cranny de­tailed, every­thing bolted back to­gether with more care than a pro­duc­tion-line worker could ever show, the Mex­ico Blue 993 was ready for the road. The to­tal cost was, shall we say, eye-wa­ter­ing. The re­sult, though, is what amounts to a brand new 993, one which has been per­son­alised to a stan­dard that would do Porsche’s spe­cial wishes depart­ment proud.

993 But on it’s the not block.the only En­ter taste­ful­lythe sec­ond modded Blue(s) blue Brother, not El­wood but Mike Moore. In the past, Mike had owned a pretty ac­cu­rate replica of a Car­rera RS, which was even­tu­ally sold to make way for one of the great­est tours de force on the UK Porsche scene: the recre­ation of the miss­ing sixth-placed 1973 Targa Flo­rio RSR. Ac­cu­rate down to the very last de­tail, it marked the end of a six-year jour­ney from in­cep­tion to com­ple­tion. It came as a bit of a shock to some when Mike an­nounced he had de­cided to buy a Ferrari. Of course, know­ing Mike it wouldn’t just be any old Ferrari, and in­deed it wasn’t. It

Paul ul­ti­mately opted for a set of Bil­stein PSS10S…

was the most per­fect ex­am­ple of a ’glass-bod­ied 308 GTB you could wish for. It looked great, and even bet­ter af­ter Mike worked his magic, but it wasn’t too long be­fore he made the an­nounce­ment that ‘The af­fair with the red­head is over. We shared won­der­ful times to­gether, mainly to and from the me­chanic, but the time has come to get back in a Porsche!’ Hoorah!

Once again, we knew it wouldn’t just be any old Porsche, but af­ter both RS and RSR reps, it came as a bit of sur­prise to some when he opted for a 993. Mike takes up the tale: ‘The over­whelm­ing point was that it had to be a driver, some­thing I could jump in and take to the south of France or the Porsche mu­seum in Stuttgart with­out a mo­ment’s thought, so some­thing com­pletely op­po­site to the Ferrari then...

‘I’d done my ’72 and ’73 cars and any­thing ear­lier didn’t re­ally ap­peal from a de­sign point of view, not that I could af­ford one any­way. A trip to Italy and back in a friend’s 964 was an eye opener – it’s a great car and ideal con­ti­nen­tal tourer. Sadly 964RSS are long gone price-wise but the other prob­lem is those big bumpers, which to me only work on the 964 Turbo, where the big arches draw the eye away from the bul­bous front and rear. It all sort of blends in and looks great, but again even crap Tur­bos are over £100K.’

Not­ing that Mike had neatly skirted round the ques­tion of im­pact-bumper cars, we ar­rived at his next an­nounce­ment: ‘So then we came to the 993. The prob­lem is it had to be RHD with black in­te­rior, and I’m pretty fussy about ex­te­rior colour, too – no red, yel­low or greens for in­stance, so now we’re re­ally nar­row­ing it down!

‘Ob­vi­ously some­one at Porsche in the early ’90s thought that light grey/beige/blue in­te­ri­ors were the way for­ward as black ones are like hen’s teeth! Then there’s the nar­row body or wide body de­bate. Per­son­ally, I love wide bodies on Tur­bos but wide bodies on stan­dard cars to me seem point­less, rather like on a Car­rera 3.2 Su­per Sport for in­stance… The two- or four-wheel drive de­ci­sion was made for me by Neil Bain­ had to be two-wheel drive!

‘So there we have it: had to be a nar­row­bod­ied 993 Car­rera, RHD, man­ual, blue or black – or at a push sil­ver – black in­te­rior, not rock­et­ship mileage, and well looked af­ter. That shouldn’t be dif­fi­cult to find, should it!’

Mike had been keep­ing a close eye on Paul Mad­den’s build thread on DDK, and al­though he found it in­spir­ing in one way, it also served as a re­minder of how quickly costs can es­ca­late. The so­lu­tion? Try to find a car that some­body else had al­ready done.

He’d seen a Riviera Blue C2 coupé for sale at Dick Lovett’s PC in Swin­don, and while the spec was pretty much every­thing he could wish for, the price was eye-wa­ter­ing. Friend and RS owner, Nigel Mitchell, sent Mike a bunch of pho­tos of the car. ‘Dick Lovett’s claimed it was the only orig­i­nal RHD Riviera C2 coupé in the UK, but I think there’s at least one more. Porsche in Stuttgart say they don’t keep records of how many cars in par­tic­u­lar colours go to which ter­ri­to­ries, while Porsche

in Read­ing main­tain they have no records of how many cars in par­tic­u­lar colours they bring in,’ he re­counts.

The colour was cer­tainly strik­ing but af­ter that the wheels are the next thing you no­tice. Mike again: ‘Sacri­lege I know but I’ve never been a great fan of the Cups, so these mod­ern Fuchs are great for me, and I love the black retro look it gives the car.

‘But it was the in­te­rior which re­ally clinched it for me. Orig­i­nally the car came with mar­ble grey leather, a strange com­bi­na­tion with the blue I have to say. For­tu­nately the dis­cern­ing owner had it all stripped out and re­done in black nappa, with a beau­ti­ful light blue stitch­ing de­tail, the hand­i­work of Dave Nunn at South­bound. It was gorgeous, brand new and com­plete with the hard­back Re­caros.’

The only trou­ble was, it turned out the car was now sold. Mike checked out an­other cou­ple of pos­si­bil­i­ties, but nei­ther met his cri­te­ria and set­tled in for the long slog search­ing for the right car. A black C2 with ex­cel­lent prove­nance looked promis­ing but was over­priced – and then serendip­ity came knock­ing at Mike’s door.

A few months later, while scan­ning through ads on the in­ter­net, much to his sur­prise up popped the same Riviera Blue C2. It was now for sale at a Mclaren deal­er­ship at what Mike de­scribes as a more sen­si­ble price. He turned up the very next morn­ing and gave the car the once over – it was in fact the first time he’d seen it in real life!

‘I said hello to the sales­man,’ re­calls Mike, ‘walked around the car to the pas­sen­ger door to pop the engine lid. I walked to the back and glanced in the engine bay, then looked in the driver’s door at the in­te­rior. It was at that point I handed my credit card to the guy and said I’d take it. It was go­ing to be the eas­i­est sale he’d had for a while!’

Fol­low­ing a lengthy PPI by the crew at BS Mo­tor­sport, the deal was done. The in­spec­tion showed that an enor­mous amount of time and money had been spent on the car, with new brakes, bushes and wish­bones, along with a very thor­ough engine out re­paint. The engine it­self had been de­tailed beau­ti­fully, too. It also came with the most amaz­ing port­fo­lio of pho­to­graphs and in­voices, de­tail­ing all the work that had been car­ried out over the years. It had def­i­nitely been worth wait­ing for.

Mike again: ‘The only part I wanted to re­place at this stage was the hor­ri­ble Par­rot ra­dio thing that was in there. I treated the car to one of the new Porsche Clas­sic ra­dio sat navs, more from a de­sign point of view than any­thing, and so far it’s bril­liant.

‘The other thing I had to do was change the blue seat belts, and al­though the GT2 had them it’s just a lit­tle too blingy for me. Then there was the steer­ing wheel, which I think was a 996 ver­sion. I’m guess­ing it was used as it was the only three-spoke wheel with an air-bag you can get. I wanted to try a Club­sport wheel I’d ac­quired and had Garry at Clas­sicfx re­cover it to match the rest of the in­te­rior.’

One of the main things that strikes you about this car, though, is the ex­haust note. ‘Af­ter the Ferrari it was a bit quiet and bor­ing,’ says Mike, ‘but with a nice bur­ble on start up turn­ing into that nor­mal air-cooled whine as you drive. Ob­vi­ously I didn’t want a dread­ful bass rum­ble through the car, but felt there must be a good halfway house. The Cup ex­haust, which loses the side boxes com­pletely had been sug­gested, but it may be too loud. Then there was the RSR op­tion but I wasn’t en­tirely sure what that sounded like.’

In the end, he opted for the sports cat: ‘I’d read all the bumpf on-line about the sports cats mod, so thought I’d give them a go. Have to say I couldn’t believe the dif­fer­ence, as I pulled away from the work­shop the car im­me­di­ately felt more re­spon­sive – never felt a trans­for­ma­tion like it. As for the noise, it was just what I wanted. A lit­tle deeper tone on idle, a lit­tle more rasp when blipped, but no real dif­fer­ence in the cabin at cruis­ing speed. It’s per­fect re­ally.’

So, how do the two cars com­pare out on the road? The first thing that struck me was how much more free-revving and ‘alive’ Mike Moore’s car felt, the ex­tra miles on the engine com­pared to Paul’s freshly-built unit mak­ing a huge dif­fer­ence. And then there was the han­dling – here the sit­u­a­tion was re­versed, with Paul’s Bil­stein-equipped coupé feel­ing sharper, more planted and beg­ging you to push it harder. Aside from that, the two cars were re­mark­ably well­matched. It would be a hard de­ci­sion to have to choose be­tween them.

See­ing the two cars out on the road, so sim­i­lar yet so in­di­vid­ual, you can’t help feel­ing that it would be great to make a break for the south of France. Or maybe that should be Chicago. Af­ter all, it’s only 106 miles away, and we have got that full tank of gas and a six pack of cig­a­rettes… PW

them…“It would be a hard de­ci­sion to have to choose be­tween

Above: Award­win­ning press pho­tog­ra­pher Mike Moore had firm views on what his ideal 993 should look like, start­ing with that black in­te­rior…

Be­low: Speed­lines give Paul’s car more of an ‘RS’ char­ac­ter, while mod­ern Fuchs add a touch of retro cool to Mike’s coupé. We love the Fuchs!

Be­low: Mike Moore’s car sounds (and looks) more ag­gres­sive, the sport cat con­ver­sion giv­ing it a throaty growl, while black-cen­tred Fuchs make for a pur­pose­ful look

Above: Both cars run ‘hard­back’ Re­caros and black in­te­rior trim – Mike Moore’s (left) was the hand­i­work of South­bound, while Paul Mad­den’s was tracked down the hard way through break­ers and ebay…

Above: Paul Mad­den is a glut­ton for pun­ish­ment when it comes to long-term, no holds barred re­builds. It’s a brave man who tack­les a full colour change on a 993…

Be­low: There’s not a lot to choose be­tween the two en­gines, but Mike Moore’s (left) feels more freerevving, prob­a­bly due to its higher mileage

Above: Mike Moore opted to re­tain the am­ber front turn sig­nals but couldn’t re­sist the temp­ta­tion to run a suit­able licence plate…

Be­low: Paul Mad­den’s 993 runs a Dansk ex­haust, which is a lit­tle boomier than stock, but not of­fen­sively so

Be­low left: Badge or no badge? That is the ques­tion. Paul went for the no badge, no wiper look, un­like Mike’s more stock­look­ing rear end Be­low: Stitch­ing de­tail on Mike’s car is sim­ply beau­ti­ful

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