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Old 01-20-2015, 07:37 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Sleeper Style; Grocery getter

This is actually the second Infiniti FX I have gone crazy modding. Why FX (everybody asks)? Because it's one of the first cars I bought with my own money brand new and I have a special place in my heart for her. LOVE this car for almost every reason except for all the reasons I love the Miata. Totally different - The Miata is a driving experience. The FX is a driving environment. About a year after paying it off, the modding began with intake, exhaust, plenum spacer and a tune. Then came the turbo project.

Lowered on BC coilovers, 20mm spacers, Stoptech BBK and billet upper and lower grills - the only exterior clues this SUV is not stock.



Inside is pretty stock as well except for the pillar gauges.



There is some DIY audio in the car too. Includes an AudioControl Epicenter - awesome gizmo.



But I don't lose the trunk space if I need it.



The 2003 Brillant Silver Infiniti FX35 started out with the touring and sport packages. RWD and 20" wheels are about the only things that survived the modding. The car responds well to mods since it is the engine and drivetrain from a 350Z/G35. Engine code VQ35DE.



The motor is fully built with forged internals, fed by a CJM stage 2 fuel system and a Garrett GT35R turbo. Engine management is a Haltech PnP 350Z platinum ECU. All intake and exhaust plumbing is completely custom.



Stainless steel tubular exhaust manifolds and a custom 3" turbo-back exhaust complete with a solenoid cut-out exhaust dump for when I want to be obnoxious.







Lightweight aluminum pulleys and a Carbon Fiber driveshaft along with a built 5AT (upgraded internals, valve body upgrade, shift kit, oil cooler and torque converter modded for higher stall) depend on the stock differential to put the power down - which it does to the tune of 442whp. Being an AT, she just pulls and pulls till I take my foot off the pedal. No shifting blow-off and very little lag.



From completely stock



To completely sexy



Video fresh off of tuning.



Plenty more details- just ask!

Last edited by jumbosrule; 01-21-2015 at 01:06 PM.
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Old 01-23-2015, 03:29 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Sleeper Style; Grocery getter

holy crap.
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Old 01-23-2015, 04:05 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Sleeper Style; Grocery getter

I LOVE out of the box projects, sweet! Brad you sure can polish my friend!
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Old 01-23-2015, 04:28 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Sleeper Style; Grocery getter

My goal is to have enough cash to build a luxury grocery getter. This thing is too baller.
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Old 01-23-2015, 05:00 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Sleeper Style; Grocery getter

This is not at all what I expected opening this thread. Thats badass. I don't think I've ever seen a modded FX. Actually, at least around where I live I'm not sure the last time I saw a FX.
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Old 01-23-2015, 07:14 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Sleeper Style; Grocery getter

I remember a long while back there was a TTfx35 making 600 awhp that had it's own magazine front page.
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Old 01-23-2015, 11:01 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Sleeper Style; Grocery getter

Quote:
Originally Posted by Glocken View Post
I remember a long while back there was a TTfx35 making 600 awhp that had it's own magazine front page.

True story. That's the FX the rest of us look up to. The build started as a Jim Wolf Technologies 350z TT kit, with a custom blue paint job, custom interior, a lot of shiny engine bay parts and a manual trans swap, but I don't think he was AWD. I haven't heard of a boosted FX AWD. I like that JWT TT kit but it's packaged for the small engine bay of the 350Z so to me it's not very visually appealing. I don't need straight performance, just some guts. I wanted to plan out the visual details myself. Like I said, this is my second boosted FX. I'm pretty sure I'm the only one in the world twisted enough to do it twice...

Last edited by jumbosrule; 01-27-2015 at 08:44 PM.
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Old 01-24-2015, 10:39 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Sleeper Style; Grocery getter

Didn't you used to own the red one? I remember you posted it on HI back in the day. I think Johnny built it right? Or was that someone else?

You definitely started a trend on that forum, as a ton of people bought them after your build/blow up thread, lol.
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Old 01-24-2015, 07:49 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Sleeper Style; Grocery getter

Man, I didn't realize these things were interesting. Not that much heavier than a 350z with a lot more practicality.
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Old 01-26-2015, 12:27 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Sleeper Style; Grocery getter

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Originally Posted by GreaseMonkey2000 View Post
I LOVE out of the box projects, sweet! Brad you sure can polish my friend!
I wish I could take credit - sent these parts to get chromed. The intake side is in chrome and the exhaust side in a performance ceramic coating. No exhaust wrap required!

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My goal is to have enough cash to build a luxury grocery getter. This thing is too baller.
Lol, thanks man - I turned 40 this year and that's a solid 20 years working full time. The secret to doing a build like this is spreading out the payments over time. I was without this car for a full 18 months but I planned it that way. It was like having a decent sized car payment for a year and a half (but I drove my Miata almost that whole time). At the end of the payments, I was free and clear. Don't owe anything on the car at all - except insurance payments on a declared value policy! But a custom build like this always has little quirks, bugs and possible upgrades... I still want a new dash, some custom tech, some new wheels...it really never ends.

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Originally Posted by calebbel View Post
This is not at all what I expected opening this thread. Thats badass. I don't think I've ever seen a modded FX. Actually, at least around where I live I'm not sure the last time I saw a FX.
You know, it's not the most common car for modding because let's face it - it is a "Luxury SUV/XUV/crossover. After one of my friends saw the car for the first time he said, "oh. it's a station wagon from hell". I guess I like that analogy.

Most guys I hung around with when I first got into cars didn't consider something in this price range new. But now - you can get them for under $10K, especially with higher mileage. Now that you've seen this one... I bet you'll start seeing them everywhere. The forum with the best FX (and now they are called QX) representation is Infiniti scene. Pretty much every boosted FX I have ever heard about is represented there. Only a few turbos and maybe a few more superchargers but they can be found. They are not without a couple of known issues with the early first gens- cheap interior upholstery, dashboards needing replacement, a high speed shimmy- all of which have examples and fixes posted on The FX forum, InfinitiScene, or IS for short.

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Didn't you used to own the red one? I remember you posted it on HI back in the day. I think Johnny built it right? Or was that someone else? You definitely started a trend on that forum, as a ton of people bought them after your build/blow up thread, lol.
Yeah man that was me but I wrecked "Big Red" at the end of 2011. Both that build and this new one were done by Powerfab Auto, right down the street from JTran (if he is still in the same place). Powerfab is telling me they are looking to move to a new building with 10,000 more square feet than they have now. Guess they are doing well although I'm seeing more and more modern American muscles out of that shop.



This was mostly custom but I started with a used custom made G35 setup I bought from a guy who was swapping in a boosted LS into his Infiniti G35. We used the OEM exhaust manifolds and the previously fabricated merge and up-pipe but had to create IC and intake pipes. We also modified a bolt on Stillen dual exhaust up to the merge. It was seriously glorious but several things bothered me about it that I changed this time around. Going through that build I made some compromises because I was trying to save fabrication time and material by using as much of the G35 setup as possible.



I had no idea others in Houston picked up on the FX, that's pretty cool! I left HI went I left Texas. Back in the day we had several FX meets where there were 3-4 of us all in one place and that was as many as I had ever seen together. SoCal always had huge FX meets. I was always jealous about that - which is one more reason I moved to SoCal. Now with two generations out there, I'm seeing bigger turnouts- 8-15 at import meets, Nissan/Infiniti meets, or straight up FX meets.

Houston FXs - from right to left: Jumbosrule, DodgeDanger and FireballFX, all with bolt on mods.



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Originally Posted by MOABmiata View Post

Man, I didn't realize these things were interesting. Not that much heavier than a 350z with a lot more practicality.
Perfect for modding and not drawing attention.

A true family car! Got car seats in the back for my kids. Have taken road trips with the back full of luggage for all four of us. It can take a 50 gallon trash can with a keg of beer + ice STANDING UP in the trunk. I tailgated 8 seasons of football in it, bringing a pop up, chairs and a cooler plus my wife and another couple.

I might have conceived my second kid in it but I'm not positive about that. Try that in a Z.

------------

Leaving for a sunrise canyon run this morning. Trick courtesy lights! Best eBay mod ever. Think I paid $30 for four of these and they were easy to install.







Today at supercar Sunday after the canyons.




Last edited by jumbosrule; 01-27-2015 at 09:02 PM.
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Old 02-09-2015, 01:17 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Default Re: Sleeper Style; Grocery getter

Supercar Sunday yesterday - any excuse to bring the Grocery getter...





Driving Topanga canyon on the way home



Wheels and a new dashboard are next on my list for the FX. I need two sets of rear GTR wheels to run a square setup with the right offset. Think I have to go to the dealership for a new dash though. And I'm sure they will give me a hard time because there is aftermarket wiring to deal with when removing and replacing the dash. Maybe it would be cheaper to have it upholstered? Need to look into that.
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Old 04-23-2015, 11:58 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Default Re: Sleeper Style; Grocery getter

New dashboard installed! Finally the interior is respectable again.



Did a wash today - shot of the tips/exhaust (Phee photobombing)



Found a set of 2011 GT-R wheels in Silver so I pulled the trigger. Had them fitted with Pirrelli P0 Rosso Assemetric 295/40R20 on all four corners although these are a staggered set wheels. I figured at the very least I can rotate the tires front to rear by having them re-mounted. I'll probably only do that once in the life of the tire but I'll take that rather than replacing the rears as often as they wear.









I think the thing I like most about the wheels is how stock they look. I mean seriously - sleeper status maintained but car guys might catch the mod. Stance is even better with these than the stock wheel/tire. I had to run 20mm spacers to get it to look right with the stock wheels but these have the right offset. Right offset meaning I need a light fender roll... scheduled for next week.

Last edited by jumbosrule; 04-24-2015 at 12:20 AM.
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Old 05-02-2015, 03:31 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Default Re: Sleeper Style; Grocery getter

GTSpec Lower rear subframe brace installed



Cars & Coffee Palos Verdes

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Old 04-07-2016, 02:29 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Default Re: Sleeper Style; Grocery getter

Made a trip out to SpecialtyZ in Chattsworth and the FX spent a couple months there. Rebuilt transmission, new AFM & oil pressure gauges, fixed a couple cracked welds, modified coolant pipe, new dyno tune... she's in top form these days. Represented at the Japanese cruise in at the Peterson this past weekend, along with a buddy.





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Old 04-07-2016, 08:16 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Default Re: Sleeper Style; Grocery getter

The FX is looking great Brad! Such a proper daily/people hauler!
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Old 04-07-2016, 10:20 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Default Re: Sleeper Style; Grocery getter

Gotta love Infiniti.....lookin good sir!
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Old 04-07-2016, 10:40 PM   #17 (permalink)
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Default Re: Sleeper Style; Grocery getter

Good god. I couldn't imagine getting gapped by this thing. Nice build.
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Old 04-08-2016, 01:28 AM   #18 (permalink)
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Default Re: Sleeper Style; Grocery getter

Man I wish we had these in Aus
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Old 04-08-2016, 01:52 PM   #19 (permalink)
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Default Re: Sleeper Style; Grocery getter

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Originally Posted by GreaseMonkey2000 View Post
The FX is looking great Brad! Such a proper daily/people hauler!
Thanks! Best daily ever. LOVE the sleeper status - it's my little secret...

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Good god. I couldn't imagine getting gapped by this thing. Nice build.
lol, right? And you would get gapped in your Miata. It's not even close. This thing did an 11.9 quarter mile.

NOBODY challenges. I have to initiate a green light pull or it won't go down. Only lost once to a modified EVO. Every other time after the pull the other guy rolls up next to me and asks what the hell I have in that thing. My favorite is taking out Gs and Zs - especially those with bolt-ons.

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Man I wish we had these in Aus
IMPORT - be the only one! I saw one in Bejing when I was there in 2007 and there are a couple guys from the Netherlands that are on the forums, so they do make it out into the rest of the world...
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Old 04-08-2016, 02:08 PM   #20 (permalink)
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Default Re: Sleeper Style; Grocery getter

Amazing build. Gotta love form and function in perfect harmony.

What's the torque split front to back? How does this beast handle? Looks like it would be a blast in low-grip conditions like rain/dirt/snow.
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Old 04-10-2016, 11:24 AM   #21 (permalink)
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Default Re: Sleeper Style; Grocery getter

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Amazing build. Gotta love form and function in perfect harmony.



What's the torque split front to back? How does this beast handle? Looks like it would be a blast in low-grip conditions like rain/dirt/snow.

This FX is RWD only. The BC coilovers make the ride more comfortable than stock when on the softer side. I've played around with turning off traction control and she understeers at the limit in turns. Not the best balance for sport but that's not really the point of the build.

The car handles much better than you would think for 4300+ lbs. Over the years I've learned to love the ABS and traction control; when it is active, it's very unobtrusive - I can't tell the systems are in use except for the obvious ABS pulse. I have a friend who tracks his FX and takes it to the canyons pretty often. I'm impressed with his skill because he has no problem leading or following the other cars more suited to this kind of driving.

Last edited by jumbosrule; 04-11-2016 at 05:12 PM.
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Old 05-09-2016, 11:24 AM   #22 (permalink)
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Default Re: Sleeper Style; Grocery getter

SuperCar Sunday at the Westfield Promenade; Nissan Marque day.

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Old 09-22-2016, 03:17 PM   #23 (permalink)
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Default Re: Sleeper Style; Grocery getter

Buttonwillow Raceway, 9/18. On the way to the track, my Miata fuel pressure went out, stranding me in the center lane of the 405. Had to get out and push her off onto the shoulder.



Called up AAA, got a tow home and dropped off the Miata. Picked up the FX and went right back out to the track.







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