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ainadude
Jeff Nicolay
Indian Wells, Calif.
(19 posts)

Registered:
03/31/2012 11:23PM

Main British Car:
1976 Triumph Spitfire 1993 Mazda Miata (1.8 liter/5spd)

California emissions and late-model LBCs
Posted by: ainadude
Date: August 29, 2018 07:52PM

(With apologies, more or less copied from Triumph section)

Hi guys .... hope all's well. Have relocated to the Palm Springs, CA area from Honolulu and am wondering if perhaps it is time to hand the keys to my 1976 Miata-motor Spitfire to another enthusiast. Finally have her running smoothly and reliably, and would love to turn my attention to her cosmetic needs except for one problem: CALIFORNIA. I'm not sure if it's worth even trying to get her smogged and registered, given what folks are telling me. Apparently it wouldn't be as difficult if a) she was running an engine from a previously registered California car (the donor Miata was from Nevada); b) still had all the factory stickers on the engine and associated components (long gone); or c) was just a single model year older (alas, the Golden State imposes its will on everything 1976 and newer; '75 and earlier aren't subject to emissions testing and standards). Meanwhile, I get conflicting opinions with respect to "hot rods" or "custom" or "classic" cars.

So my question is: Anybody been through this with their LBC/modern engine project in California? My Hawaii registration is good through the end of September, so I need to decide now whether I should try to keep her (and ultimately re-restore her as a hobby vehicle) or cut my losses and find her a new owner in a more car-friendly environment.

Appreciate thoughts/opinions from those who've faced a similar decision ... thanks in advance.


rficalora
Rob Ficalora
Willis, TX
(2540 posts)

Registered:
10/24/2007 02:46PM

Main British Car:
'76 MGB w/CB front, Sebring rear, early metal dash Ford 302

authors avatar
Re: California emissions and late-model LBCs
Posted by: rficalora
Date: August 30, 2018 12:34AM

Actually, this is easy. You should move from CA to another state... Fast... You're still there?


pcmenten
Paul Menten

(242 posts)

Registered:
10/08/2009 10:40AM

Main British Car:


Re: California emissions and late-model LBCs
Posted by: pcmenten
Date: September 03, 2018 07:28PM

I haven't been through the process, and I've never lived in CA, but I have thought about it a few times. Old LBCs, especially MGBs and Sunbeams, are well suited to engine swaps. The Sunbeams are getting harder to find, so I'd suggest looking for an MGB from 73 to 75. I like roadsters but I'd lean toward a GT for the sake of road noise and comfort. I sometimes think about a Buick 300, stroked to 340, with a 200R4, Dana 44, with air conditioning in a GT. Simple, classic looking, comfortable, fast.

A Jensen Healey is another chassis well suited to engine swaps.

Since the hard work of installing and setting up that Mazda engine seems to be done, I wonder how hard it would be to find a suitable California-sourced equivalent engine and swap that in.


MGB SS
Joe Schafer
Central Michigan
(140 posts)

Registered:
10/23/2007 06:46AM

Main British Car:
1971 Mgb 1991 5.0 Ford

authors avatar
Re: California emissions and late-model LBCs
Posted by: MGB SS
Date: September 12, 2018 08:59PM

Can you re-register it in Honolulu for one more year while check further into the California requirements


BlownMGB-V8
Jim Blackwood
9406 Gunpowder Rd., Florence, KY 41042
(5648 posts)

Registered:
10/23/2007 12:59PM

Main British Car:
1971 MGB Blown,Injected,Intercooled Buick 340/AA80E/JagIRS

authors avatar
Re: California emissions and late-model LBCs
Posted by: BlownMGB-V8
Date: September 13, 2018 02:51PM

That'd be my suggestion too.

Jim


rficalora
Rob Ficalora
Willis, TX
(2540 posts)

Registered:
10/24/2007 02:46PM

Main British Car:
'76 MGB w/CB front, Sebring rear, early metal dash Ford 302

authors avatar
Re: California emissions and late-model LBCs
Posted by: rficalora
Date: September 13, 2018 08:17PM

Good suggestion. Also, maybe contact Bill Guzman (www.classicconversionseng.com). He'd likely know the ropes in CA.


ainadude
Jeff Nicolay
Indian Wells, Calif.
(19 posts)

Registered:
03/31/2012 11:23PM

Main British Car:
1976 Triumph Spitfire 1993 Mazda Miata (1.8 liter/5spd)

Re: California emissions and late-model LBCs
Posted by: ainadude
Date: September 14, 2018 09:38PM

"Can you re-register it in Honolulu for one more year while check further into the California requirements?"

That would have been easy to do several years ago before the Aloha State tightened its annual inspection regime. (In fact, I did just that for two or three years after I'd moved back to Hawaii while the car remained on the mainland in pieces.)

The old yearly Safety Check was just a visual inspection of the car and documents (past registration/safety check and up-to-date insurance docs). Now they do all that and then arrange the required paperwork on the trunk of the car (with plate visible) and take a digital image with a state-provided device that confirms and records latitude/longitude. It basically confirms the car is physically within Honolulu City & County.

There is a creative way around that regime I've done once before when the car was thousands of miles away but it would potentially put friends in jeopardy and I wouldn't think of asking them to do it a second time.



BlownMGB-V8
Jim Blackwood
9406 Gunpowder Rd., Florence, KY 41042
(5648 posts)

Registered:
10/23/2007 12:59PM

Main British Car:
1971 MGB Blown,Injected,Intercooled Buick 340/AA80E/JagIRS

authors avatar
Re: California emissions and late-model LBCs
Posted by: BlownMGB-V8
Date: September 15, 2018 11:40AM

By this point there is no adult in the States who is not a criminal.

(And don't even try to say you have never exceeded the speed limit anywhere, gone over in a school zone, rolled through a stop sign, etc.)

They can't throw everyone in jail.

Jim


ainadude
Jeff Nicolay
Indian Wells, Calif.
(19 posts)

Registered:
03/31/2012 11:23PM

Main British Car:
1976 Triumph Spitfire 1993 Mazda Miata (1.8 liter/5spd)

Re: California emissions and late-model LBCs
Posted by: ainadude
Date: September 15, 2018 12:19PM

I'm with you, Jim. Pass enough laws and you can put anyone in jail.


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