I finally mounted my summer wheels. This is an annual process that usually happens in early to mid-May, but this year I ended up putting it off to June for the first time ever. My Quickjack makes the process quick and easy, but I inevitably spend hours detailing the winter wheels which involves prying each and every stone out of the treads. It is a painstaking process that leaves me with blisters every year, but it simply must be done.
Performance Parts & Service
There's some companies that I just love to support, and Tunerworks is one of them. My first experience dealing with Tunerworks was back in 2008. I ordered some chrome wheels off the Internet for my 2006 Cadillac STS-V. Yes, I know chrome is no longer cool, but this was 2008 and I was all about the bling! I didn't want to take a chance and have some hack at the local tire shop scuff the wheels so I decided to take them to Tunerworks thinking they must go to great lengths to avoid such disasters since they work on a variety of exotic cars. Having seen the Lambos and Porsches outside their shop, I prepared myself for the pretentiousness that would surely accompany an outfit that caters to the upper crust of car society. It turned out, I couldn't have been more wrong. The staff was completely down to earth and I have been dealing with them ever since. Here's a historical break down of the work I have had completed by Tunerworks:
2006 Cadillac STS-V
Here we are in the middle of November and I'm starting to see photos of people experiencing winter, but it needs to be known the winter began in my neck of the woods on the morning of October 2nd! It was complete bedlam that morning, but I was totally prepared since I had installed my winter wheels a few days prior. The massive dump of snow lasted a few weeks and then we returned to mild Fall temperatures up until Halloween. We had a light dusting of snow since with more in the forecast. I hope the weather is treating you well wherever you are!
I didn't take any chances this year and installed my winter wheels in September. We experienced a significant amount of snowfall later in the month so I did the swap just in time. I do enjoy driving the SQ5 in the winter with the meaty Nokians. The gallery of photos below demonstrates the process I follow when performing a seasonal wheel swap. It is pretty awesome being able to do the swap in the comfort of my own garage with the QuickJack.
A good friend of mine found himself in a desperate situation involving the tires on his BMW 435i. He returned from a business trip and noticed that the belts were showing through on his front tires. A quick call late on Friday afternoon and the new tires were ready to roll on Monday afternoon, which is amazing turnaround.
I think running a staggered 20" setup on this car isn't the most practical way to go, but they do look awesome. Anyway, here's some photos from the install. I would highly recommend giving Shaun a call at (403) 465-0771 or dropping him an email at firstname.lastname@example.org if you are in the market for new tires. His prices were highly competitive and the service he provided was top notch!
If you click, on "Automotive and Tires" on the main page of the Costco website, you will see a large advertisement for the QuickJack portable lift featuring a stunning photo of my old SQ5 in my garage. Over the years, I have been fortunate to have formed some wonderful relationships with some of my favorite retailers. The team at QuickJack and I have enjoyed a mutually beneficial relationship since I first added a QuickJack to my garage back in the Spring of 2016 and I am pleased to see these amazing shots getting some good press.
A concerned YouTube viewer raised some concerns over my wheel hub collar. From the video, it appeared my collar was cracked. I was pretty sure it was just the design, but the user went to the effort of capturing a screen shot from the video and highlighting the areas that raised his concerns, so I decided to pop the opposite wheel off to investigate. It appears that Audi has carved some notches into this specific part for some reason. Maybe it has to do with weight reduction, but who knows. I want to thank David for taking the time to reach out and share his concerns. It is very nice knowing that people are looking out for each other. Here are some photos that demonstrate the notched hub design I am referring to.
Hand washing a car in the garage may not be everyone's idea of an epic Saturday night, but I had been looking forward to this all week. The Flames were up against the Hawks and I had a dirty SQ5 that needed some love and attention. Here's a video that demonstrates how two or three hours in a garage can be quite enjoyable and productive. Enjoy.
I spent weeks obsessing over my winter wheel and tire setup, but I am happy to say that the obsessing paid off. I had the TSW's installed on Friday and I couldn't be happier. They look very aggressive and the red brake calipers just give it an extra touch of class. Here's a quick video I put together that showcases my new winter war wagon!
Since I opted for the 21" summer performance wheel and tire package (again!), I am once again in search of a winter wheel and tire setup. I have decided against going the replica wheel route. While I was happy with the performance and look of the two sets of Hartmann's I had on my previous SQ5, I want to go with something a bit more unique. I have been feverishly researching all kinds of after market wheel options, and I have ultimately decided to go with 20x8.5 TSW Sprint wheels in gloss gunmetal. I am moving away from Blizzaks and going for the Nokian Hakkapelliita R2's. I'm curious to see if these Nokians live up to all the hype. Since my SQ5 came equipped with the P-Zero Pirellis, I'm worried that they will wear out prematurely like the set that came on my previous one. Whatever the future holds in store for the P-Zero's, I'm hopeful the Nokians will prove to be an effective four-season tire like they claim to be. This will mean I shouldn't feel the need to source a third set up for the unseasonable weather we can experience in these parts.
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I am purchasing this wheel and tire package through Tunerworks. I am looking forward to how they look, but I am really looking forward to seeing how this setup works with the Quattro system once the snow starts flying!
My two weeks of holidays have come to an end. I really enjoy the vacation time we teachers get, and I was able to accomplish quite a bit in terms of the garage and SQ5. I performed an extensive detail on two friends' cars as well as a thorough detail on my own. I had the opportunity to experiment with almost all the products sent to me from Jay Leno's Garage and I have to admit, they are spectacular. I am still in the process of collecting my thoughts on their performance and I will be posting my review shortly, so stay tuned for that. I helped a friend swap over to his summer wheels using my QuickJack, and I also swapped over to my Spring/Fall setup.
The extra time allowed me to create videos that comprehensively demonstrate the extent I go to when maintaining my ride. Check them out if you have the time:
It is amazing how long it takes to prepare four wheels for storage. The entire process of putting my third wheel setup right was an onerous one, but they look great. I made a video that highlights the various stages of the process. I hope you enjoy.
If you follow my YouTube channel, you will have seen that I posted a video demonstrating my wheel swap process. The weather has been extraordinarily mild this year, but I don't like getting caught off guard, so I installed my winter setup which consists of Blizzak LM-60's on 20" Hartmann wheels. This was the first time I swapped wheels on the SQ5 without having to use my floor jack at each corner. My QuickJack BL-5000 SLX made quick work of lifting the SQ off the ground. If you want to see a guy having a lot of fun playing with his car, check out the video below:
A friend of mine purchased a pre-owned 435i X-Drive with the exclusive ZHP package. I say exclusive since only 100 were made. It's a beautiful car. He brought it over today to have some little details dealt with. There were a few rim rash spots on the passenger rear and driver's front wheel as well as some significant scuffs in the 3M clear on the hood. I used a propane torch to correct the scuffs, and used some semi-gloss paint to touch up the rim rash. I touched up some obvious blemishes in the paint with my Rupes Mini and iBrid, but I will do a full paint correction/polish in the Spring. If you want to learn a little about the ZHP, click here.
Since purchasing my BL-5000SLX QuickJack lift, I have been putting it to the test quite regularly. I have taken the wheels off a number of times to gain access to the wheel wells and I have been able to perform some touch ups on the paint around the rotor hats. It has been a helpful tool as well as a cool one. My friend, Geoff popped by a little while ago with his camera gear to snap some shots of the QuickJack in action and here's a little slideshow that demonstrates how it has helped me raise my detailing game. The photos give you an idea of how I have the system set up. Like I have said before, it works great for my needs and it is a purchase I am very happy with.
I bribed my photographer friend, Geoff to snap some more shots of my garage. This time, I wanted to focus on some of the work I perform in the garage (detailing, wheel swaps) as well as some of the main equipment I use. The QuickJack got quite a bit of camera time, and I'm very eager to see how the shots turned out. Geoff sent me this teaser pic, so I hope the rest are just as cool. Stay tuned.
We've owned the SQ5 for 2.5 years and it is still on the brakes it came with. The only issue we've had is with some corrosion around the rotor hats. So, with the help of my QuickJack, I put the car in the air today and hit each hat with a coat of high-heat paint. The job took two hours. Here's a slideshow that demonstrates the steps I went to.
I try to focus on a new detail every time I wash my SQ5. This time, I really focused on the door jambs. I was so inspired by the work I was doing, I decided to do a video and I titled it the Decadent Detail. The SQ was pretty bad due to an out-of-town jaunt up to Red Deer to see my Grandmother over the weekend. I think you'll like the video I threw together.
Sidenote: my YouTube channel eclipsed the 700-subscribers mark.
I had the opportunity this past weekend to perform a "wheel off" wash. Using my QuickJack lift, I was able to remove all four wheels and really concentrate on the wheels and wells. I put together a five-minute video to demonstrate how useful the lift is. Enjoy.
The QuickJack does what it says it does, and it lifted my SQ5 in fine fashion. I was very pleased that the even weight distribution of the QuickJack meant there were no divots or impressions in my RaceDeck Free Flow floor. Here's some shots, but you'll have to excuse the current state of the SQ5, it has been a busy and messy week. We actually had some snow on Thursday.
My new QuickJack portable lift system arrived this week. After hauling in home from the shipyard in my SQ5, it has been sitting in the middle of the garage. I was under the weather today, and spent all day in bed. I finally got up some energy so I decided to head out to the garage to assemble and test this puppy out. The detailed instructions made assembly a fairly painless process and it seems to be working well. I quickly ran out of gas, so I haven't had the opportunity to lift my vehicle with it. Once I feel a little better, I plan to put the SQ5 on it and see what happens. I'm hoping to find some time over the weekend to spruce up my rusty brake rotor hats, so stay tuned. I'm quite curious to see how things go with the RaceDeck floor. I think it should be fine, but I will keep you posted.
So, why QuickJack?
The main reason I went with the QuickJack lift was the portability factor. I will probably use it a dozen times per year, so I didn't want something that was going to permanently occupy valuable real estate in my double garage when not in use. Its low profile design enabled me to slide each section away so it won't get in the way of the other happenings in the garage.
The other reason I chose this over a scissor or two-post life is that it is tailored more towards my needs. I plan on using it primarily for wheel swaps and detailing, so I don't need my car way up in the air. At max height, it should provide me with a foot of body lift which will make a world of difference when polishing the lower portion of my SQ5 and detailing my wheels and wheel wells. I think it was the perfect solution for my needs.
Click here to learn more about the BL-5000SLX.
The order has gone in. Soon, I will be using one of these little beauties for various garage-related activities. Be sure to drop by in a few weeks when it is ready to show off. I can't wait.
Are they called hubs? Well, whatever they are called they are looking shabby. I picked up a can of high heat spray paint and I'm going to tackle them. Stay tuned for the result. I doubt a coat of spray paint will be a permanent fix, but I'll just keep reapplying it. If that doesn't work, I'll look for a more elaborate fix. This should do for now.
Spring has sprung, so it was time to take off the winter wheels and install my shoulder season setup. Here's some photos of the event. I am still putting the finishing touches on the winters before I sock them away. If you haven't had the chance to see what is involved with detailing my winter wheels prior to storage, you can see the process here. I have to go now. I have a lot of rocks to pick out of the treads.
Who is Rick?
I'm just a suburban dad who loves garages, Audis, and detailing so much he blogs about them.
Custom Decals YYC
Geoff Wilkings Photography
Thompson Graphics Ltd.
In addition to showcasing my own garage, I enjoy sharing other amazing garages. Here are some spaces that I have featured on my blog:
Tyson's Acura Museum
Larry's Charlotte Showroom
Chad's "Next" Makeover
Gully's Dream Garage
Orland Park Audi Oasis
Cory's Industrial Arts Studio
Brynjar's Icelandic Garage
Pat's Controlled Chaos
Greg & Nancy's Place
Brandon Burrell's Toy House