January 16, 2021

PROJECT LOG: Sapphire- The History

So let me give you all a little history lesson on my beloved Sapphire.

Back in 2013 I became DSMless, due to a bad break up and my ex-Mother-In-Law not allowing me to retrieve my 1992 Eagle Talon TSi from her property. She then scrapped it on me. It was shitty, but… This led me to my current and first AWD DSM.

R.I.P – Kim. 2011-2013.


So after months and months of searching Craigslist and Facebook, I came across a diamond in the rough. A 1994 Eagle Talon TSi AWD Shell for sale for $500 on Craigslist located in Old Forge, Pa. At the time, I was working Part Time at a Five Guys making barely enough to call an income. Still, I had to see the car…

I made my way to Old Forge with my longtime friend, Pat and his black 420a Talon (Becky). We pulled up to the house and immediately I saw several 1G DSMs but not the pretty blue one I saw on Craigslist. But I knew I had to be in the right place. The tallest DSMer I have ever seen in my life comes walking out toward the car. His name was Mike G. One of the coolest dudes Ive ever met. He brought me around to the back of his garage and there she was. My heart dropped and I knew I had to have this car.

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I got to talking with Mike about DSMs and then we got onto the subject of the sale. Unfortunately I couldn’t come up with $500 all at once so we agreed on payments. It took me about 4 months to pay this car off and I gotta say, Mike was extremely patient with me. He knew I was serious about the car and that it was going to a good home. AJ and I went to meet the tow truck driver in Old Forge to pick up the car and off we were back to Dunmore.

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Once back to Dunmore the car was unloaded and rolled into a single bay garage where it sat awaiting a power plant and some other odds and ends. Unfortunately the landlord I was renting the garage from decided to renovate the property and the car had to be moved. So I hooked a chain to her and pulled her a couple blocks up to the front of my house where she sat some more. Keep in mind this car was sitting 6 years before I bought her, but I was determined to get this car back to its former glory and that meant making sacrifices and taking chances. There was no way in hell I was going to lose another car. So there she was, an empty shell sitting in the middle of town.

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Eventually I ended up moving before I could acquire all the parts I needed to put the blue beauty back together. So, once more on the back of a flatbed she went and on her way to her new home on my Moms property in Factoryville, Pa where she would sit through the winter until spring.

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Before I knew it spring had came and I was getting super antsy. I was beginning to think Id never get the money to get the car together and she’d sit. Id all but given up thinking about it, but then something fantastic happened… TAX SEASON!! I quickly cashed my check and headed down to DSM Partout with $1200 and a 2011 Hyundai Sonata. I actually stuffed a full 6 bolt long block, and AWD transmission, full 3″ turbo back exhaust, a driveshaft, and tons and tons of other parts into this Sonata and I made my way back to Factoryville, Pa to unload the goods. But still I wasn’t completely ready, I needed small things like FMIC piping, and other odds and ends.

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The day finally came when I could start the process of piecing this puzzle back together and AJ, my friend Joe, and I all met up at the farm in Factoryville and we began to get things set up. We had to pull the car from a field at the bottom of the property up the long dirt road and push it up the driveway into the garage. We weren’t sure Mary could handle this but let me tell you, she pulled her sisters fat ass up that dirt road, and pushed her into the garage like nothing.

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AJ had The Virgin Mary, 1995 Blue Eagle Talon TSi AWD. I had the older sister, 1994 Blue Eagle Talon TSi AWD. Mary was a bone stock when AJ got her, hence the name. But her sister, well lets just say she was a little more experienced. So I gave her a slutty stripper name, Sapphire. A perfect fit.

Well back to the story, after weeks of working night shift and then spending every second I had off of work at the farm, I began to see the fruits of all of my hard labor. The blood. The sweat. The salty tears. All paid off finally. Sapphire came to life in just 3 weeks right before my eyes.

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I still had plenty of kinks to work out though. She was rough around the edges. I couldn’t get the car to boost properly, she would just build and build and build boost until I let off the gas. There was no fuel cut, I could bury the boost gauge. But there was also times when it would cut out as soon as it went into boost. I could not for the life of me figure this out and I wasn’t tuning so I had no idea what was going on. I changed multiple hotsides, wastegates, fixed boost leaks, vacuum leaks. I even put 550cc injectors in it to compensate for the 2G MAF and still nothing. To this day I still have no idea the cause of the issue. The head gasket had a small leak the entire time, but I didn’t notice it until it was too late and the gasket was toast. So I replaced the headgasket and timing tensioner and threw her back together. Same day I started her up and the tensioner pulley came loose on me and bent valves. Oh boy this car had me depressed. Since then shes been under the scalpel getting makeover and some new parts. Stay tuned for updates.