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Stitch :: 2008 MINI Clubman
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Stitch :: 2008 MINI Clubman
Vehicle Name Stitch
Year 2008
Make MINI
Model Clubman
Color Lightning Blue
Packages Sports, Chromeline int/ext +mirror caps, folding mirrors, Cold Weather, sports seats & Pacific Blue accents, brushed aluminum trim, xenon headlights & white turn indicators
2008 MINI Clubman
History The main Garage image is my car as it is today at the beginning of 2017. The other pic is a concept photoshop I made as a goal of where I want to go with this car. Not way out, but tweaked.

I am the 5th owner of this poor, reCOOPERating R55s. It started its motoring life in Houston and was meticulously maintained by the first owner. It was traded in and the second owner took it to San Antonio for a couple of years and treated it well. The third owner took less good but still regular care of it until it was involved in an unspecified non-injury, non-airbag accident in Corpus Christi. The fourth owner was an independent dealer who claimed to me had gotten it in a trade with a BMW dealership in San Antonio and fixed it up. He was the one I bought it off of. I now refer to him as "The Shyster Dealer," because he'd basically used the car as his unlicensed daily driver for two years and had barely done any maintenance to it the whole time.

Being a new, naive and unwashed Mini owner, I didn't realize just how much work was needed to bring this car back to proper running status. It had all of the packages I wanted and was in a color I really loved (just like in the brochures and videos from the Clubman introduction). It was remarkably clean on the outside & inside and pretty inexpensive. It seemed to drive and ride well save for a Limp Mode check engine light that popped on and off. The Shyster Dealer assured me he'd fix that before delivery... (I'd forgotten that if a Dealer of ANY kind is talking, he's lying) After purchasing it, the Limp CEL popped right back on again! Having no choice and now worrying about the decision to buy it, I took it for a post delivery inspection at the Mini Dealer in Austin. They found so many things wrong with it mechanically that they wanted me to replace the whole engine... "It's leaking every fluid from every place it possibly can and probably has a bad valve train" they said. Of course, why not if they could charge me $8K for it? Instead I then took it to my local indy BMW mech next and they decided it still had lots of life in it, but needed $3.5K in work to bring it in line. The Shyster Dealer after stalling me for 2 months claiming there COULDN'T be anything wrong with the car that he sold me and that I'd probably broken it (I had driven it a total of 100 highway miles going from dealer to shop and back) and so he wouldn't take it back but would resell for me (how magnanimous of him...), decided that he'd pay for much of the costs if I took it to HIS mechanic who also found the same repairs needed but quoted $3.2K. I worked them down to $2.7K of work where I'd do the rest on my own. The Shyster Dealer then stalled the repairs for another month while telling ME he would get it done but telling HIS mech he wouldn't pay for the work! In talking to HIS mech, I found that THEY didn't like this guy either and weren't HIS shop or anything else. SO CONVOLUTED!

Suffice to say I got the work done and brought it back home after three months of fooling around with The Shyster Dealer. Since that time its been in and out of MY indy BMW/Mini mech's shop at least 10 more times chasing that Limp Mode CEL on and off for the past three months. It had further needed another $850 in pumps, pipes, tubes, seals, filters and coils as well as some reconnecting of wires left loose by The Shyster Dealer.

Right now it seems pretty content to just run, but that danged CEL may pop back on at ANY moment!

I ended up naming it "Stitch" after the anti-hero of the Disney movie Lilo & Stitch, the blue orphan alien experiment that was made to destroy everything it touched and only wanted a family... I promised it that if it treated me well and didn't ever strand me, I'd bring it back to health bit by bit, clean it up and treat it to an occasional Hill Country drive. So far we are still working at our ends of that bargain and neither of us has yet forsaken the agreement.

Please say a prayer for this little orphan alien. He is "broken, but still good." And he is now loved as we motor on as a Family - Ohana.
Exterior
2008 MINI Clubman Exterior 2008 MINI Clubman Exterior 2008 MINI Clubman Exterior
Replaced worn badge centers with blue "MINI" inserts. Replaced "COOPER" emblem with "R55" purchased from Outmotoring.com. Blacked out beltline trim.
Added Ecurie "mum" sticker to clubdoor window to give passengers someplace to close it.

Interior
2008 MINI Clubman Interior 2008 MINI Clubman Interior
FINALLY repainted the trim from the scuffed and weathered silver to a gloss blue. I like the playful aspect of the interior now. It was difficult finding just the right hue that would be harmonious with both the Pacific Blue seat and dash insert color an the exterior Lightning Blue. I feel like this is a good compromise and it brightens and cheers up the insides! It also gives my car a special custom look that I enjoy. More like a show car.
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Unread 01-15-2017, 03:06 PM #2
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Stitch :: 2008 MINI Clubman
Welcome to MA! I hope you get it all fixed.
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Unread 01-15-2017, 05:06 PM #3
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Nice MINI with a very interesting story.
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Unread 01-15-2017, 09:47 PM #4
wjosh45 wjosh45 is offline
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Agreed, very interesting story. Frankly I personally have a hard time buying from a used car dealer. That said, I do like the pic of where you want to go with the car. From the pic looks like you plan on changing the stripes from white to black (with white outlines) and the wheels to a black color. Anything else I'm missing?
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Unread 01-16-2017, 01:14 AM #5
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Stitch :: 2008 MINI Clubman
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Stitch :: 2008 MINI Clubman
Quote:
Originally Posted by wjosh45 View Post
Agreed, very interesting story. Frankly I personally have a hard time buying from a used car dealer. That said, I do like the pic of where you want to go with the car. From the pic looks like you plan on changing the stripes from white to black (with white outlines) and the wheels to a black color. Anything else I'm missing?
Thank you wjosh! Actually I'm hoping to make the wheels more like an Anthricite Grey. The bonnet stripes I want to strip away the existing ones and get it back to blue and put in silver outlines (Maybe 1/2" wide) to match the roof instead. What i don't know is whether the paint is damaged under the existing stripes. When you see them close up, it looks like The Shyster Dealer covered the worn originals with new ones right over the top, so there will be a lot of stripping and who knows what color the surface underneath will be?

Additionally, I'm thinking of dechroming the headlight rings and painting them body color to de-emphasize the "eyes" a little. I'm also going to move the front license plate to the tow hook (to mask some bumper damage and give it a little more custom look) as well as get some Plasti-Dip in a blue that's close to the Pacific Blue trim inside and recolor the big silver door and rear seat trim rings, the little silver sections on the steering wheel and possibly the Speedo binnacle. I've already replaced the "COOPERs" on the back with an R55s text on the rear door from Outmotoring.com. I also put an aluminum stubby antenna on.

I'll try to update this Garage as I go.
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Stitch- '08 Clubman S - Lightning Blue, Sports & Chrome packages. I call my Mini Stitch because that's its personality and it was an abused orphan that I am saving... apparently one-part-at-a-time! OHANA!
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Unread 01-17-2017, 02:47 PM #6
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Nice list of upgrades.. I think that will look real nice when complete. Can't wait to see the garage updates!

Josh


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Unread 07-10-2017, 04:55 PM #7
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Stitch :: 2008 MINI Clubman
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Stitch :: 2008 MINI Clubman
Just updated my wheels with custom colored Black Bullets with the centers painted to match the body.
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Stitch- '08 Clubman S - Lightning Blue, Sports & Chrome packages. I call my Mini Stitch because that's its personality and it was an abused orphan that I am saving... apparently one-part-at-a-time! OHANA!
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Unread 07-16-2017, 07:59 PM #8
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That will be good looking.. can't wait to see.
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Unread 07-16-2017, 08:14 PM #9
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Keep the mods coming !!
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Unread 12-06-2017, 12:54 AM #10
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Stitch :: 2008 MINI Clubman
Well, Stitch is currently in the condition shown up above. My next two changes will probably be to strip the bonnet stripes and replace them with another style, still in silver. I'm also seriously considering a Joey Mod on the headlights. I saw another Lightning Blue R56 online with the blacked out headlight buckets and I liked it a LOT. It seems like blacking out the headlights is the single biggest change that produces a "mean" look... Plus it'll be even more "Stitch" looking! LOL!
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Stitch- '08 Clubman S - Lightning Blue, Sports & Chrome packages. I call my Mini Stitch because that's its personality and it was an abused orphan that I am saving... apparently one-part-at-a-time! OHANA!
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