The First CorkSport Branded Ride Mod + Vote For The CBR Graphics!


For those of you who have forgotten or who did not see the initial post we recently purchased a brand-new 2018 Mazda 3 Hatchback. Dubbed the CorkSport Branded Ride (CBR), we set out to start making it less like your mom’s car and more like something that suits the CorkSport name.

We turned to you all for suggestions and got some great feedback. We heard everything from wide bodykits, “slam it to the ground”, turbos and engine swaps, to easier mods like wheels, coil overs, and a new front lip.

We’re sure you’re anxious to find out where we’ve started: Intake? Exhaust? Springs? Our choice might surprise you.


But before we dig in to the first mod for the CBR, we first want to give you guys an opportunity to do something really fun:

Vote To Pick One of The 4 Graphic Concepts For The CorkSport Branded Ride!

Following up on our introduction to the CBR, our team here has decided to involve you guys in a whole new level of making this car look sick: Body Graphics!

Not only are we asking of your ideas and feedback for the mechanics of the CBR, we want you to decide on the aesthetics too. We want YOU to choose what this things actually looks like.

 
Our design team has developed 4 different concepts for the CBR graphics, and we must admit, they look pretty sweet. The concepts bring in a bunch of different styles, from racing to street, and are sure to make this baby an attention-grabber.

Here’s where you come in: We need you to cast a vote for your favorite concept for the CBR.

A few different ways you can vote:
  1. Repost a pic of your favorite concept with #CorkSport & #CorkSportCBR on social media so we can see your vote. Then, tag a friend and ask them to pick their favorite!
  2. Comment on one of our CBR social media posts for your vote with #CorkSport & #CorkSportCBR.
  3. Leave a comment on this blog post with your vote.
Here’s an example:
“So stoked to get to pick the design of the #CorkSport Branded Ride! My vote is on Concept #3 for sure. – @TagYourFriend, what’s your vote?? #CorksportCBR”

We will gather votes together and whatever concept the CorkSport Community chooses will ultimately be brought to life on the real CBR!


Now, on to the First CBR Mod:

 
We did not want to go crazy right off the bat, so we looked at where the average Mazda 3 owner might start. Maybe a license plate kit, short ram intake? Catback exhaust? Lowering springs? – All good guesses.

We decided to go for a reliability mod that many people may not consider right away: a CorkSport Oil Catch Can kit.

Now, why would we install this right away on a brand new car? It shouldn’t have any issues with engine health. – Well, that’s the exact reason we installed it.

If it doesn’t have any issues right now and the engine is clean and new, then why not keep it that way?
As an engine operates, oil mist, fuel vapor, water vapor, and other gases can pass from the crankcase to the intake using the stock PCV system. Over time, as these gases condense, they form gunk and carbon buildup on valves, piston tops, and other vital engine components. An oil catch can exists to catch all of the oil mist and other vapors before they get back to the intake and dirty all of the nice clean engine components. Additionally, these other gases do not do any favors to the combustion cycle. – Just ask anyone who has emptied one during an oil change; what an OCC collects is pretty nasty.

Now let’s get to the install.

Locating the can itself is a snap, and finds a home in the driver’s side fender well. Routing the hoses is the difficult part, surprisingly, as you have to gain access to some of the factory PCV hose. This means removing the air box, intake tube, and even the starter. Once the factory hose is removed, the new hoses are installed and routed to the OCC.

Finally, we added the ball valve to the bottom of the CorkSport Oil Catch Can, which means next time the CBR needs an oil change we have an easy way to drain the OCC as well.

So what’s next for the CBR? That’s completely up to you!

Help us decide by submitting ideas for what YOU would do if this was your car.
REMINDER: We will give you cred for submitting an idea that we use for the mods. In short: This means Your Name will actually be put on the CorkSport Branded Ride!
Stay Tuned, you’ll be seeing more of the CBR soon.

Remember to cast your vote for the CBR Graphics!

Again, here’s how to vote:
  1. Repost a pic of your favorite concept with #CorkSport & #CorkSportCBR on social media so we can see your vote. Then, tag a friend and ask them to pick their favorite!
  2. Comment on one of our CBR social media posts for your vote with #CorkSport & #CorkSportCBR.
  3. Leave a comment on this blog post with your vote.

We want YOU to help us design the next CorkSport Branded Ride!

As if it wasn’t obvious, we have a plethora of vehicles to work with around here. True to fashion of course, we at CorkSport have gone and done it again: We went and filled some of the last remaining shop space with ANOTHER CAR.

Not just any car. Say “Hello” to our newest addition: 2018 Mazda 3 Hatchback, touring 2.5L SKYACTIVE-G. Equipped with an automatic transmission and some of the nicer creature comforts.

We love the sparkle of the Eternal Blue Mica and of course her 18” gunmetal dancing shoes. However, as with all things good and standard in the world, we couldn’t help but think that the potential for upgrading is endless.

Do we strip it and go full race car? Perhaps something crazy and AWD swap of sorts? Or maybe we take it way out of left field and go rally-style with it?

With the opportunities being endless, it was starting to make our heads hurt, so we decided to take a step back and start with the basics. We asked ourselves:

“How would our average customer who just picked this car up dream of modifying it?”

And that is exactly what we are doing.

If you guys are anything like us, then you have several hobbies that extend beyond just cars. Some of our team’s personal favorite other hobbies include hiking, camping, traveling, water sports, chilling at the beach, and has recently included obstacle course racing. With all these interests taking up different aspects of our time, we would need a ride that can accommodate our lifestyle. While it would be awesome to have a 6-second drag car, we’d probably have to lose some creature comforts or find a pot of gold to cover the cost, and that’s just not what the average Mazda enthusiast is about.

This project, like we said, is for YOU. And if it’s for you, then we need your help in putting it together.

PIC: NWAPA – Vinnie Nguyen

This car, or as we are designating it: “Project CBR” (CorkSport branded ride), will be built by the people for the people.

We are going to take you with us on the full journey of this car; from the basic mods to the full on weekend task. From the daily driver to the long road hauler. From the car wash to the full service details. We are going to show you everything and anything on this car.

And through the whole process, everything is going to be built with your help.

Over the next several months as we put some miles on our test mule, we will want your guys’ feedback.

  • Do we put springs and shocks on it or full coilovers?
  • What type of wheels should we get?
  • Tint the windows, wrap it, get rid of the chrome?
  • The list goes on!

Every couple of weeks, we will keep you updated on where the car stands and what you think we should do next.

We will create a section on the CorkSport site so you can follow along, ask questions, provide suggestions, and fully immerse yourself into the car. Ever so often, we will also host a poll and you guys will vote on what happens next!

Think reverse sponsored: Instead of CorkSport’s name being the only one on this ride, we will be giving Sponsorship Cred to the Mazda Enthusiasts who give us the ideas for our mods. (first come, first credits).

We’ll put YOUR NAME on the CorkSport Branded Ride.

If you have a Dream Mod, and We pull it off on the CBR, you’ll get the credits… Remember: The CBR is By the People, For the People!

Stay Tuned, we’ll need your feedback soon!

CorkSport

What’s In Our Garage: Dustin’s Custom Projects

So you may not realize this, but most of us at CorkSport are actually car guys/girls. While I’m sure most of you are at least somewhat familiar with what we have here as far as company cars, I was thinking you may be curious what some of us are working on when we’re not “on the clock” so to speak. That being said, first I’ll give you a little bit of my background as it relates to cars.

When I first came to CS back in 2011, I was probably a bit of the odd man out when it comes to cars. While I’d owned and customized 40 to 50 (or more) cars, I’d never really been into the import scene. I was always more into lowriders, 4x4s, old school customs, minitrucks, and pretty much anything and everything that was not a tuner car. When I started, my daily driver was a fully airbagged 1976 Chevy stepside truck (see below), and I had two other old school projects at home: a 1955 Pontiac which was also bagged, and I was building a 1963 GMC big window shortbed.

This was my daily driver and that was more or less my normal ride height. Of course all of the tuner guys at CS thought it was pretty funny (which I get). A lot of people wonder “why would you build something to drag it down the street?” My answer is, “because I can and most people can’t.”

The Pontiac was a little bit classier and, while fully bagged, it didn’t “lay frame.” This car was more about the custom body work that you would never notice unless you know what a stock ’55 Pontiac is supposed to look like, specifically the rear end.

 

Those vehicles are long gone by now, so what have I been working on since then? Immediately after those, I bought an MS6, which you may have seen in the past. We used it at CS for product development and testing on various products, so I’m pretty sure some pics made it to the old interwebs at some point. That was my first taste of a tuner car and, while it was fun to drive, it just wasn’t my thing. So I sold it to another employee here.

 

Since then, I’ve played with a few 4×4 trucks, a diesel Silverado, and a ’97 F-150 which I still have and plan to build into a desert truck at some point (though that’s not yet in the project status). So what am I working on? I’m taking it back to the old school and building a minitruck — and yes, it is a Mazda but that’s just a coincidence.

 

A little backstory on this truck and how this project came to be: I’m probably older than most of you, but when I was a kid in the late ‘80s, minitrucks were the thing. 15” wheels were considered big wheels back then, and 195/50x15s were the standard low profile tires — quite a bit different than today. So when I was 12 in 1990, my mom went and bought this ’89 Mazda B2200 which was already lowered and had fancy red 15” wheels and a red tenneau cover. It was a pretty sweet truck by most peoples’ standards back then and IT WAS MY MOM’S! Seriously, whose mom drives a sweet minitruck?

I don’t really have many old pics of it, but this was when I borrowed it from her to haul a motor for my ’63 GMC project.

 

Even at 12, I loved cars. I would spend my time reading “Lowrider Magazine” or “Mini Truckin’” and drawing pictures of customized cars, so of course I was in love with the truck. I dreamt of my mom giving it to me when I turned 16 and got my license (which didn’t happen), and all of the cool stuff I would do to it. At some point when I was probably 14, the truck was stolen and wrecked which destroyed one of the wheels. You couldn’t get them anymore, so my mom put the ugly Moderns on it, which you can see in the pic above. Then later something happened to the tonneau (don’t remember what). Needless to say, time took its toll on the truck. It wasn’t the same truck anymore, but it didn’t change or take away all the time I spent daydreaming about all of the things I wanted to do to that truck as a teen.

 

So fast-forward 24 to 25 years. My mom was retiring and didn’t need the truck anymore. At this point, it was just a 25-year-old B2200, so it wasn’t worth much to anyone aside from me. She said if I wanted it, I could have it, so of course I jumped on it as I’d been thinking about this truck and what I would do to it for over half of my life. So what were my plans for it?

 

I wanted to mix keeping it how it was with doing some of the things I’d thought about over the years. So the first thing I had to do was put some red wheels on it again, as that’s how it was when I was young. However, I wanted to cross it with a bit of my preferred “old school” style, so I had to mix it up a bit. I picked up some 15” steelies with chrome center caps and had the wheels powder coated red. I also wanted wide white wall tires, but I couldn’t find the size I wanted, so I got other tires and added some Porta-walls for the wide white look. I then replaced all of the bushings and ball joints in the front end and added the new wheels and tires.

Anybody that knows me and my taste for vehicles would know that I wasn’t done at this point, so I continued to collect components for the next step. Full air ride was on its way. I got everything needed to bag it, including a complete 4-link kit for the rear. (Sorry for the blurry pic; it’s what I got.)

I then kind of lost motivation, so the truck largely just sat in my garage for the last couple of years. But a couple of months ago, I started working on it again. I started with notching the frame in the rear so when the suspension is aired out, the frame will sit on the ground (lay frame). I then welded in the 4-link rear suspension as seen below. I used the factory front leaf spring perch for the lower bars. (They’re there; you just can’t see them.)

Then I turned my attention to the front end. If you know anything about these trucks, you know they have a torsion bar front suspension. And if you know anything about bagging stuff, you know that isn’t the easiest starting point for airbags. Preferably you’d start with coil springs, because then you just have to remove the stock coil and put an airbag in its place (more or less). Since these are torsion bars, you have to remove most of the existing suspension and build everything you need in the front yourself. I recently finished putting the bags in the front, which is the hardest part of this project, and am now at the point where I can start making mounts and installing all of the hardware in the rear (a.k.a. the fun part).

The frame is, in fact, sitting on the ground in this pic.

 

If you’re curious what my end goal is with this truck, I’ll fill you in: I don’t want to go full custom show truck. I plan to leave the body, faded paint and all, just as it is. I’ll also leave the big ugly mirrors and stock rear bumper, which is the first thing most minitruckers remove. Really my plan was/is to leave everything outside stock, aside from the wheels/tires, and fully bagged. Then I’ll do a custom interior with a nice sound system. The point is not a show truck; I want the stock look of the truck my mom drove for years with the ability to drag the frame down the street and throw sparks. I also plan to see if I can get another red soft tonneau cover made, so it will be a bit closer to the truck I remember as a kid — just better.

 

Other things I’ve considered are an NA 20b swap with a turbo 2 trans, cuz why not? Or maybe a boosted 302 swap, although that may be a bit overkill for such a small truck. It does have an automatic trans, so I don’t love that, but it works fine for low and slow. Anyhow, thanks for reading, and I hope you’ve enjoyed getting a little look at what I play with when I’m not at CS. Maybe you’ll see some updates in the future, maybe not, or maybe you’ll get a look at some of the other guys’ projects around here. Let us know what you’d like to see and we’ll see if we can accommodate.

Love for the Skyactiv

We're going to take apart and upgrade a brand new Mazda 3 with a SkyActiv manual transmission.

We have gotten some great response back from our customers who have the SkyActiv Mazda 3, 6, and CX-5s over the past few years with product suggestions and questions about power, technology, and more.

We're going to take apart and upgrade a brand new Mazda 3 with a SkyActiv manual transmission.

We decided to have an in-house example of Mazda’s current sport model of the Mazda 3, a 2015 2.5 liter SkyActiv manual transmission. As everyone’s favorite television series host has put it in the past: There is no better way to test the breed than motorsports. So that is exactly what we are going to do with this brand new Mazda 3. Strip the interior, outfit it with CorkSport parts, install some safety gear, and go racing.

Want some new Mazda 3 parts? We'll be selling off just about everything.

Yes. We are really going to take apart a perfectly good car to race on the track with a bunch of other people who suffer from the same mental disorder. We will be posting regular updates on the car as we proceed through the build, which will include time on our dyno and results on the races.

This also means there will be a garage sale on brand new parts from this car, interior, wheels, etc. It has every option so if you want something shoot us an email.

Stay tuned for updates.

-Derrick

Meet Derrick from CorkSport. Loves racing, Mazdas, and his CS fam.

Top 10 New Years Resolutions for a Car Guy

Barett-Strecker-2014-12-11-P3

 

It’s about that time of the year where we tear out a piece of a paper and jot down all of our New Years resolutions. Most forget about these resolutions halfway through the year, but this year is your year. It’s time to grasp your resolution with your bare hands and get it done! Here are some New Years resolution ideas that you can incorporate into your own list:

1. Hit the local Autocross event this year.

We all love going in the straight line or hitting the racetrack, but there’s nothing like the accessibility of an Autocross. An autocross gives you more of a visual of your driving abilities and gives your car less of a beating than if you were on a full-length race course or a quarter-mile drag strip. Of course this depends on how smoothly you go through the course and whether or not you lodged any cones in your wheel-well.

2. Buy the Corksport Adjustable Struts & Shocks Combo you’ve always wanted.

We’ve all been here. Every session online you get distracted by visiting the Corksport web store and stop by the Corksport adjustable struts and shocks combo product page. You keep looking into the Mazda forums, doing research, and dreaming how that pesky wheel gap makes your car look like it’s a monster truck. Now is the year to save up and finally treat yourself. Try getting a jar and commit to saving a small percentage of your paycheck to work towards paying off the suspension kit (or any other awesome modification) with straight-up cash.

3. Attend a Mazda Meet.

Butch Bender

There’s nothing like attending a Mazda Meet and talking cars with other Mazda owners. This is where you can get inspiration, connect with other local Mazda owners/enthusiasts, and even local tuning shop owners. Have an issue with your Mazda? We bet you can find somebody at the meet who had the same problem and knows exactly how to fix it. Checking out the forums is a great step but there’s nothing like a Mazda enthusiast actually seeing what the issue is in person. Besides, who doesn’t want to make more Mazda friends?

4. Learn to Race.

We’ve all taken on-ramps at a faster than suggested speed, trying to establish a race-line. It’s fun to think of yourself as a race car driver. What if you can actually be one? There are a lot of opportunities at your local track to get instruction from professional race car drivers. A great place to start is the SCCA website. Maybe it’s time you actually became a race car driver?

5. Let somebody change the radio station or playlist.

Most people hate it when a passenger starts messing with the radio. Who wants to listen to a slow jam with four dudes in the car (maybe some of you do)? From the great words of the most played out song in 2014: let it go! Relax. One day just let a passenger do whatever they want to the radio. Only once of course.

6. Finish that project.

Everybody has that one project that sits untouched in the corner of their garage or shop for what seems like forever. It’s collecting dust, and you’re starting to pile stuff around it. Time to get it out and finish it up. Whether it be plasti-dipping the valve cover, finally getting an alignment after lowering your car, or actually installing that Corksport Transmission Motor Mount that’s been sitting in your garage for a few weeks. Maybe it’s time you set everything aside and just do it.

7. Take a noob out to the shop.

Shop Life

We all have a friend that is very eager to learn more about working on cars or just about cars in general. This person can be just one of your friends or even your 7-year old nephew (it’s never too early to learn how to turn that wrench). It’s time to pass on your knowledge, because, to be honest, everybody remembers that one person that taught them everything to help them get started in tuning and modding. It’s time for you to be THAT person.

8. Help a friend with their project.

We all have that friend who buys a ton of parts and pays for an auto shop to install it for them. It’s time to lend your services and give your friend a helping hand. If you think about it, you can technically complete resolution number 7 and 8 at the same time.

9. Give a friend a bluetooth device.

With all the laws being passed in every state regarding hands-off communication devices in the car, this can not only prevent your friend from receiving a ticket but also keep them safe on the road. Buy one for yourself if you haven’t already!

10. Participate in the next Mazda toy drive.

Mazda Toy Drive

It’s time to give and have fun doing it. Every year a local car club runs a toy drive to benefit needy kids in the area. It’s also a great time to meet other Mazda owners and just talk cars. Most car clubs will do a food drive in November and a toy drive in December. You’ll be doing a good deed and you get to see some awesome local Mazdas.

Don’t forget to put your New Years resolution somewhere that’s highly visible. To be honest it’s hard to complete all the resolutions you ever make but there’s nothing like that accomplished feeling you get when you do complete one.

Good luck this year and don’t forget to keep reminding yourself about your resolutions by posting notes EVERYWHERE!

 

– Corksport

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