Subaru touring ツーリング

Last month with a few friends we have visited Subaru's test course. A lot of 360s and a lot of fun.
Check out the green one. Probably the only one Subaru 360 Commercial still running and road-legal. 


Inspection time again また車検

I was pretty busy at the last few months, and just noticed, that the inspection on my first Subaru 360 has expired months ago... (In Japan, cars have to pass safety inspection every other year)
Quickly reserved a spot for inspection, and spent a night preparing for it. Next morning, off to "Shaken" (inspection)
A friend come along with a camera, the result is here.



Up and around Mt. Fuji 富士山の楽しい味方。

After the Numazu fun, I have decided to spend some time exploring the area around Japan highest mountain, Mount Fuji. At the Numazu entrance of the highway my friends headed for Tokyo and I, for the opposite direction to Fuji exit. I drove up to lake Motosu and spent the night in the very nice Villa Motosu guesthouse. Next morning took the Kouhoku scenic route and visited Shoji lake, Saiko lake, Kawaguchi lake and Yamanaka lake.
What is the best way to go up to Mt. Fuji? Of course, drive your Subaru on the Subaru line!
For the little 356ccm (0.356 liter) engine car it is quite a challenge to to climb above 2300m.
I was a nicely surprised how well she took the steep slopes. Other than a few hairpin bend, I was able to drive in third gear all the way up! I did stop at the parking areas to let my engine rest a 'bit, and she took me up without any trouble. I was very proud standing up there, with my little car.
I think, the engine has been brake in now :)


Numazu classic car and bike exhibition 沼津クラシックカー&バイク展示

On the 7th of July there is an exhibition for old cars and bikes at the arcades of Numazu city.
It is an easy 80km drive on the highway from Machida city, where were started with five cars from our club.
We were driving very nicely until one of the cars just broke down in the middle of a long tunnel...
The worst thing could happen to a driver with an old car (or any car for that matter) to break down on the highway in a tunnel. There is no escape spot closely, and the only thing we could do other to fix the car asap, is to pray that incoming cars will notice us in time and will not flatten out us. After some time, we were still working on the carburetor when the police come with flashing red and protected us. We have fixed the car to make it to the next parking area, where we could work on it in safety.
Another hour, and we were off to Numazu. We had great time, many interesting cars and bikes...

Family outing to Izu 伊豆の家族旅行

In early June we have visited a Yamazaki sensei the designer of Lamborghini Sogna on Izu peninsula. His page in Japanese is here.
Family of four, the highway, and the hills of Izu was quite a challenge for my little Subaru.
Going up, there were areas I had to switch back to first gear.
We made it up and down(!) in one piece. This was the fist outing with the family in the new Subaru. ( We had several trip with the first one).



Still planning, but... 夢をあきらめないです!!

It has been quite some time since my last posting.
There has been an unpleasant development of the planning of the trip, namely that I have to postpone it ☹
My vacation has been cancelled and I am not going to be able to get away from my work at all this summer. This is something I couldn’t see ahead and did not expected at all.
Instead of the “big trip”, this year I will try to do several trips within Japan. I think of it as my training for the real journey.
Last week I drove around the Chiba peninsula, 440km easy 12 hours with several breaks to enjoy the beautiful view. See the photos.
Tomorrow I will drive with the family (of four) to Izu peninsula this will be a good challenge for the car.
There are still many improvements that I can do on the car, and now I have the time to fine-tune her.
Next summer is far away and in my job I cannot plan so far ahead, just hoping that soon I will be able to fulfill my dream to return home across Siberia.
Please come back and check again this blog, I will post about my adventures with my Subaru 360 within Japan until I get the OK for the “real adventure”.



Finally street legal! 車検を取れました!

この間のクランクベーリングのトラブルの”おかげで” エンジンをすべて交換した車です。(クランクシャフトと全てのベアーリング、シリンダー、ピストン)色々なハプニング有りましたが、車検取れました!2年間OKです!

Today, we went for inspection again, to get the permit called "shaken" that every car have to pass in Japan. Last time I tried, I got only halfway...
Since my last post, I have replaced the crankshaft with all the bearings, cylinders and pistons... It was not an easy ride, but at the end I got the stamp on my paper, and my little yellow Subaru has got the permit for two years, yeah! we are street legal for two years :))))
Even had a little rehearsal for the Siberian road!
They are rebuilding the inspection station and the yard we had to drive trough was all dirt.

From now on, we have to fine tune the car (of course after brake-in my newly build engine) make it ready for the long, long, long road trough Siberia to Hungary.


The cause of my engine failure... エンジン故障の原因は。。。

My last post, I had the sad news that my engine has failed during the test drive.
Now, I know that the cause of this was the crankshaft bearing. See the pictures. We had to replace the crankshaft and crank case. I hope that we can have the car running this weekend.



テストドライブ (失敗) TEST drive (failed)




It was a beautiful day yesterday and I used my lunch brake to take out my car at the first time to the Tokyo traffic with the rebuild engine and transmission. Driving trough Akasaka, Toranomon area with my shiny car was really GREAT.
Today I had a day off from work and decided to take the car for inspection (shaken).
It is necessary to pass the inspection every other year in order to be able to drive in Japan.
With confidence, I was about half way driving my little Subaru to the inspection, when I hear a "garagara" noise from the engine... What could it be??? by the time I would be able to stop at the side the noise has gone.
BUT, after another 300m, a big shock did shake the car and the the noise was back.
Not just back but it become lauder. I did not liked it at all, I have decided to call the road service to carry home the car.
While waiting for the tow-truck, a friend drove by and stop to ask of what happened. He took the pictures (and more here )

I think of this as a great opportunity to learn more about my car. I hope that it will break down again, and I will learn more and more about why these things happen and how to fix them. Better now, when I have my friends around and parts are much easier to get, then somewhere at the Siberian highway...
(The last picture was taken last year by Lang Kidby who drove his Fiat 500 around the world)

It is one of the many great feeling about old cars...
The adrenalin rise every time, as one can never be sure that he/she will arrive to the destination or will break down somewhere on the way...


We are home... お帰りなさい。。。

今日は先生のガレージから車を持て帰りました。全部並べて良い気持ちです:)順番で:ラビット301b4(1968年)、パンのニアとデゥナサイドカー(1966年)、スバル360 2台(1968年)、パサート2007年。スバルとパサートのサイズを比べて見て:)

Today, we brought home my little Subaru from my friends garage. It is nice to have them all together. They are: Rabbit 301 B4 from 1968; Pannonia bike with Duna sidecar from 1966, 2 Subaru 360 both from 1968, and my 2007 Passat. Compare the size of Subaru to Passat :)


Route planning ルートの設定

The current plan is to leave Japan 2008. 08. 08. on the ferry RUS, arrive to Vladivostok on Sunday, the 10th of August. What I read from others arrived to Vladivostok the custom clearance could take some time. So I will start from Vlad. when I get my car...
The planned route is Vladivostok, Khabarovsk, Chita, Irkutsk, Novosibirsk, Yekaterinburg, Moskva, Kijev, Budapest, Bremerhaven. It is about 13,000km trip, that will be quite a challenge for both my little Subaru 360 and myself as well. I plan about six weeks for the trip.

現在の予定は2008年8月8日に富山県伏木からフェーリを乗って40時間かけてロシアの ウラジオストクまで行きます。税関通ってから次のルートを通る。ウラジオストクハバロフスク,チイータイルクーツクノボシビルスクモスクワキエフブダペスト、ブレーマーハーフェン。この13,000キロの旅はスバル360にも自分自身にも大きなチャレンジです。6週間かけてガンバって行きたいと思います。


The engine is in the car! エンジンがのせました!

Today, with the help of visiting friends we put the engine in in five minutes. It is great to see the car coming together.


Brake... ブレーキ。。。

Today we installed the new brake master cylinder. With this the car has new brake pipes, new master cylinder and of course all new brake hoses. A big thanks to the friends for the help.
Can't wait to drive the car...


Happy New Year 2008! あけましておめでとうございます!

Although I did not posted updates on the project bit by bit I am getting closer to put it on the road.
I wish a VERY HAPPY NEW YEAR for all Subaru fan.