A budget rebuild; it’s a thing that either goes completely according to plan, or it doesn’t… So many things need taken care of, and only so much money to spend. Travis got a free car – it was a big plus that it was a very nice looking MKII Corona – and decided to go down the ‘budget rebuild’ road. He did a fine job and got the Corona back on the road after sitting in the woods for years.
You either love or hate the budget rebuild Travis has done to this Corona, but you’ve got to at least give him credit for making sure this fine example of a MKII Corona doesn’t rust away, lonely in the woods. If only there were more people like Travis, a lot less salvagable cars would end up at the scrap yard…
What’s your name? Where do you live?
My name is Travis McBride and I live in Star, North Carolina, USA.
What do you do for a living?
I am a Mechanical Engineer at Thermaco, Inc..
What kind of Toyota are you driving? How long have you owned it?
I drive a 1970 Toyota Corona MKII station wagon which I have owned since October of 2010.
A Toyota RT78 Corona Wagon isn’t exactly a car you come across everyday. How did you come to own it?
I came to own the car from my great grandmother Kennedy. It belonged to my great uncle, who died in the early 90s, and went to her. She knew my interest in cars and told me I could have it in the early 2000s before she died and I never pulled it out of the woods until 2010. I was planning on getting the car to crush so that I could paint my VW bug project that I started during college but as soon as I saw how cool it looked, I fell in love with it and decided to fix it.
You did a sort of ‘budget rebuild’ on the car. What was your thought behind that? Were you planning on getting the car back on the road with minimal costs, or were there other reasons?
The idea behind the “budget build” was that I wanted to create a really rad looking car while spending minimal money. It had to be low and have tons of character. My dad and I have looooaaadddss of old car parts(mostly American) around the shop and I wanted to integrate them in the build as well. The total cost of this build right now is still less than $2000 which I think is pretty cheap for what I have.
What was the biggest obstacle you’ve had to overcome, during the rebuild?
The biggest obstacle I had was getting a title for it. After lots of research and asking questions I figured out how you can pretty much title any car in North Carolina, though.
What have you already done to the car?
Things I have done include: welding floor patches, raising the driveshaft tunnel (rear), LOWERED IT, replaced the stock carb with a Weber, replaced the steering wheel with a “superior performance products” green metal flake wheel I found in the woods on a Chevelle, 88 Honda Prelude seats, air shocks in the rear for hauling, a set of 85-88 Cressida spare wheels with 53 Chevy trim rings, plus lots of other odds and ends.
What are your plans with the car?
I plan on tinting the windows, installing the portawall whitewall inserts I have purchased already, building a complete exhaust, wheel spacers for some “flush,” adding hotter cam, a 5-speed swap, and upgrading to electronic ignition.
What’s powering the Toyota? Some specs of the engine?
Engine is a 4-cylinder 8RC (stock internally)
– upgraded to Weber 32/36 DGV carb
– stock 4-speed with stock rear end
How easy is it to get parts for these Toyota’s?
Parts arent extremely easy to get for this car, but through many google searches and lots of time on JapaneseNostalgicCar.com, I have found that nearly anything can be sourced.
Share one of your favourite moments you’ve had with this car?
My favorite moment with this car was the first time it ran which can be seen here.
Are you a gearhead? What does that mean to you?
I have been a gearhead my entire life. It runs in the family. My grandpa Wayne McBride raced dirt modifieds in the 60s and 70s. My dad Ricky McBride raced asphalt late-models in central North Carolina since before I was born and I raced dirt oval go karts from age 8-16. I have seven cars of my own and my father has around 12 (mostly projects), so cars are just what we do. Cars are what got me interested in engineering and what has kept me out of trouble (most of the time) so far.
Where can people find & connect with you?
If people wanna contact me, my username on JNC is travmac79 or check out my blog at insufficientsuspension.blogspot.com.
- Have you ever done a ‘budget’ rebuild?’ If so, how did it turn out?
- What do you think of this particular project? Had you heard of these cars before?