The End of an Era – Taking Ketchup Apart

Back at the start of the month I posted an update which covered everything that had happened to Mario’s old ST, Ketchup. The summary is that it was hit by another car and damaged too severely to be saved, but we saw an opportunity. We bought it back from insurance and immediately started the preparations to swap its drive train into my car, so that we could build what should be Canada’s first ST-swapped Mk3 Focus sedan!

We are nowhere near ready to start tearing my car down for the swap, but a fair amount of progress has been made so I felt it was definitely time for an update on the status of the heart transplant.

Once the ST arrived at my shop I began picking away at it. Anything that wasn’t salvageable was removed and thrown out, with the remaining components being bagged and labeled before being sorted into either the ‘For Sale’ or ‘For Mustard’ pile. A few pieces had already been spoken for as well so they were removed and many have already been picked up by their new owners. For most of this I was working on the car by myself, outside, but for the removal of the drive train we of course would be using a hoist, so a date was set to being the car into the shop and put it in the air.

Ketchup engine pull 1

The day of the drive train removal, prior to heading over to the shop I had to stop by Balance Auto to meet up with Kanji – he was just about to leave on a road trip to Las Vegas and had ordered some decals for it. As I type this he has actually just returned, and since his return route took him near fifteen52 he stopped by and picked up some of Mario’s new parts from them! How he managed to fit them as well as his luggage in the BRZ, I don’t know. Haha

Ketchup engine pull 2

Anyway, I couldn’t stick around at Balance long but I made sure to take a peek at the shop’s ITR project and it was wearing some more new pieces! I think it’ll be time for an update soon!

Ketchup engine pull 3

I also couldn’t resist checking out Kasem’s Amuse S2K which was sitting outside – definitely one of the crazier builds in the city. As well, spy Punit’s Integra parked in front. It was nice to see it again.

Ketchup engine pull 4

With that quick stop taken care of I headed over to my shop and found the ST already up on the hoist upon my arrival. Most of the items which had to be removed in order to pull the engine were either ‘removed’ in the collision or had been taken off following, so there wasn’t too much to get out of the way before the drive train could be pulled.

Ketchup engine pull 5

This right here is the primary reason why Ketchup was written off. The other car struck it at an angle which tore off most of the nose and severely crumpled the driver’s side frame rail. Most of the driver’s side headlight was actually crushed within the metal as it crumpled too – you can see the clear turn signal lens sticking out here. Once I removed more of the damaged parts, numerous headlight pieces and even the ballast fell out!

Ketchup engine pull 6

The intercooler and radiator didn’t survive, and the latter even dented the oil filter when it got pushed back. Fortunately I already had Mario’s stock intercooler and charge pipes at my house so the loss of the aftermarket components doesn’t pose a problem. At this point I suspect I’ll use them to get the car up and running, and upgrade to aftermarket parts at a later date.

Ketchup engine pull 7

Before long everything that had to be disconnected was, and the engine hoist was brought in.

Ketchup engine pull 8

Annnnnnd it’s gone. You may also notice the grease all over the driver’s side of the sub frame; that axle was broken in the crash so it made a bit of a mess. Nothing some cleaning can’t fix! We knew from the start that it had been broken but as we checked through the rest of the drive train, we found that nothing important got damaged in the collision.

Ketchup engine pull 9

With the engine out of the way, looking at the frame rail from other angles did nothing to make it look better. Still though, considering the estimated speed at which the other car was travelling, the ST held up well.

Ketchup engine pull 10

Aside from the aforementioned components and a few other small pieces, the parts we had bought the ST back for were mostly untouched – I was mainly focused on the engine and transmission of course, and they survived. Pieces like pipes and the radiator are easy to replace; these were more important.

Ketchup engine pull 11

Following this the front subframe was also removed and the ST was then rolled back outside and is now sitting on blocks as it gets stripped down further. I need to extend a huge thank you (again) to Derrick and his brothers who came by the shop with two of their pickups so that we could cart the engine off – one truck took the engine and the second carried their engine hoist for unloading it later on.

Since all of this I have disconnected the engine’s harness and also tracked down a new engine bay harness and fuse box (Ketchup’s were pinched and smashed, respectively). All of these will be sent to Rebel Devil Customs so Mike can work his magic on them while we work on not only sourcing the other components that have to be replaced, but also selling off the remainder of Ketchup to recover the costs.

To say there is a lot to organize and look after is an understatement for sure, but each little step puts my sedan just that much closer to boost. The engine will probably be starting off its life in the sedan at a slightly lower power level than in the ST, but once the dust has settled from all of this it’ll be time to start extracting more.

-Bill

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