The Help Desk Part 1: Where To Go If You Need Assistance With Your R32 Skyline
As I've mentioned before, I started this blog because when I bought my R32 GT-R there wasn't a lot of info out there for owners of these cars in the USA. There weren't a lot of owners yet at the time, let alone anyone posting about their experience and sharing the knowledge they've gained. Since getting my Nismo I've learned a lot about these cars, sometimes simply out of curiosity and sometimes out of necessity – having your engine decide to be uncooperative kind of forces you to learn more. Some of that knowledge has been gained from books and magazines but I've also been lucky to have gotten in touch with some great people who are knowledgeable about these matters. I realize not all owners are so lucky to know anyone personally to provide such assistance so where can you turn to for help if you're left to your own devices? So that you aren't left in the dark like an import car owner whose eBay HID kit just decided to burn itself out at Oh Dark Thirty I've compiled this list of resources. I've titled this as Part 1 because later on I'll do a second post with resources for the R35 owner – the situation for the latest-generation GT-R is much better of course in terms of getting help but its still good to know where to go just in case.
The internet has been the single greatest blessing for the dedicated gearhead in modern times. It doesn't matter if you live in the middle of Los Angeles with millions of other car owners or in the deepest armpit of Buttcrack, USA, as long as you have an internet connection you can find other like-minded car nuts that can probably help you out. Hey, you wouldn't be reading this if not for the interwebs right?
Here in the US there may not be a large community of owners knowledgeable about the ins and outs of the Skyline yet but in other parts of the world there are groups of people who've been lucky to have these cars for years. Going to online forums is one of the best ways to get the info and assistance you need and I'm personally hugely thankful to these forums I've listed for the help and knowledge I've gotten from them. You may have already been to these forums before and that's how you've found this blog – I'm often on them under the handle of “GSX-R35” so if you want to get in touch with me that's another way to do so besides posting comments here. Not all the info on forums is legit of course so always have a critical eye and do a lot of homework so you learn as much as you can before doing anything with your car.
- Skyline Owners Australia or SAU – For specific questions about the R32 this is usually my first stop. There are a lot of long-time and very knowledgeable owners here and they have a lot of interesting build threads too. As I've mentioned in my rare R32 post the Australians have had the R32 since they first came out and were the only official export market for the san-ni so of course they have a large base of experience to draw from. They don't have many active American forum members (no Skyline forum really has many yet) but they're very welcoming to any that show up.
- Skylineowners.com – This is a British forum but it has its own USA owners subforum which is a bit more active than SAU's own US section. If you want to get in touch with fellow US owners this forum is better than SAU but I find SAU the better one for technical questions.
- GTRLife.com – this forum is R35-centric since it had its origins as NAGTROC or the North American GT-R Owners Club back when the R35 first came out. I was a member when it was still NAGROC and it always had a “Legacy GT-R” subforum but now that the R32 is legal for import and US owners are growing in number they've made that section more prominent by moving it to the main section instead of in the “Other Vehicles” area. Although the forum is mainly focused on the R35 there are a lot of fans here of the older GT-Rs like myself. Despite the dedication to the marque of most of the members GTRLife tends to be one of the most unbiased car forums online with a lot more objectivity and far less of the blatant fanboyism that most model-specific car forums have.
- NicoClub Forums – NICO stands for Nissan and Infiniti Car Owners so this is a more general Nissan forum rather than a Skyline or GT-R specific one. It has its own Skyline/GT-R subforum though with some very dedicated members.
- Japanese Nostalgic Car – there are a few R32 owners here but if you're a fan of the older Skylines like the C10, Kenmeris, or R31s then this is the place to go in the US. Even if you don't own or plan to own an older Skyline the build threads on here are fascinating including some truly awesome Hakosuka restorations.
Although my aim with this blog is to share with you as much well-researched and varied info about Nissan, GT-Rs, and Skylines as I can, one person can't possibly know or share everything there is to learn about such a storied company as Nissan and a historic badge like the GT-R. It's a good thing therefore that there are other blogs out there sharing information as well.
- GTRUSABlog – this is the longest-running blog on Skylines and GT-Rs in the US. It was started by Sean Morris who was a key member of Motorex when they first imported Skylines to the US and who later went on to petition for the Show or Display import of the Nismo R32s. He's very knowledgeable about these cars because of all his years of experience and he knows the technical side as well as the import side. He's worked on many GT-Rs personally and was the crew chief for the R34 Skyline that took on the Speed World Challenge years ago.
- The Skylife Blog – this is a Canadian blog but has a lot of great technical info on the R32 Skyline. The main contributor has owned two R32s and has done a lot of wrenching on them himself including removing and rebuilding the motor on his second R32. A great site for DIY information.
- R33GT-R.com – as you can tell from the title this blog is more about the R33. The author is an American but lives in Japan and has been posting about his R33 since 2007. It may be focused on the R33 and based in Japan but it still makes for a lot of interesting reading for the GT-R fan.
- Goodezilla.com – a pretty new blog like mine but worth looking at for another US owner's experiences owning an R32. He imported his car to the East Coast by using a Japanese exporter versus what I did where I bought mine here in the US from an importer so if you want more detailed info on that process you can read about that on his site.
I hope this list proves helpful to all of you Skyline owners out there or even if you don't own one yet then hopefully it provides you with some good reading. Feel free to post a comment if there's another site you think is worth adding to the list and I'll check it out for inclusion. Of course, if you need help you're also welcome to post a comment on my blog or contact me at 23gtblog(at)gmail.com and I'll try to lend as much assistance as I can.
@Oliver: do you know of any sites that I could run a VIN check for the GTR? I've been on quite a few sites and they all ask for a 17 digit VIN. The car I am looking at has a VIN of BNR32-100341 or BNR32-100342 (forgot to take a photo.. was too busy inspecting other areas of the car). If the VIN check turns out fine then I'm gonna close the deal. Thanks!ReplyDelete
I can't say I've used them myself but I know the guys at SAU use sites like these two because there are quite a few instances of odometer fraud in Australia with JDM cars:Delete
Of course, they can only check the history while the car was in Japan and not after it was exported so a thorough inspection is the biggest thing with these cars. Odometers get swapped all the time on Skylines as people go for fancier speedos - especially on the R32 because the stock speedo only went to 180kph - so having an odometer discrepancy isn't always due to any attempt to mislead.
Great resource Oliver, thanks! This blog is exactly what I've been looking for. I'm in the process of buying a GTR at auction, but no luck yet. Prices are crazy. Just trying to bid consistently and snag a good deal. I want to do a new engine build anyway so flexible on the vehicle. Thanks for creating this site and hope to get connected.ReplyDelete
You're very welcome. Best of luck with scoring a GT-R! Hope you'll post about it on one of the forums once you get it!Delete
Snagged one today at a good price. Should be to the states before Christmas. Single owner, lightly modified. But will need an engine rebuild. Like you I'm looking to improve the wrench turning skills. Thrilled! Will be on the forums for sure. Big plans.ReplyDelete
That's awesome! Congrats on joining the growing group of US R32 owners!Delete