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Hey everyone I'm Ron, I just found out about this thing called ChumpCar and LeMons racing 2 days ago, at age 35 and loving to drive cars fast you would think I would have found this by now but you know... Anyways I am looking to get my first Chumper and start building her up in hopes to spin her tires around the track for the first time in 2018 (Is a year - year and a half reasonable for a first time build?) I am on here today asking for advice on what is a good car to start with, though I know many have their own personal preferences on make and models, or engine size and weight, I am looking to get a more overall picture of what cars are easy to work on and build. Honda civics are a dime a dozen with an endless about of parts and after market upgrades and they are pretty easy to work on, but is it better to go for one that runs good from the start with a higher liter engine staring me at a higher VPI like a Ford Mustang needing little to no upgrades, or a car that runs good but has a small liter engine starting me with a lower VPI, leaving room for more up grades like a Toyota Tercel? As far as the build itself goes, I went school for a general bumper to bumper exp. we worked on everything except transmissions (Though it was the biggest section in the 600+ page curriculum), I tore 4 cylinder/ V-6/ V-8 engines down as far as possible and put them completely back together every day for a good month (The engines never got started so I am a little nervous about timing belts/ chains) we studied and removed and replace everything (Non- Body) on the cars from tires to ball joints, drum and disk breaks, tie rods, shocks, struts, coil overs, you name it. After I graduated, I worked at a Midas in Santa Clarita, California for a couple years where again I did so much more than just oil changes, tires and alignments, I replaced more valve covers and oil pans than I can counts, I have spent more time upside down in the driver seat of a car chasing electrical issues and brake switches, I have dropped a number of transmissions (Midas shipped them to trans shops to be re-built) and I have continued to work on my cars and trucks even after I left Midas. so overall I feel confidant to build my first Chumper myself and with the help of my gear head friends, and the few things I can't do I will take to a shop if they need to be fixed like a transmission. ok enough rambling from me below are some questions I have after looking into this for only two days, I want to thank everyone for taking the time to read this, and for any help that is offered up, I look forward to this journey and am excited about taking the first steps today. I am budgeting $5000.00 for this build (Just the build, not racing fees or gear) is that a good amount or is that too low? Once I have a car, what upgrades are worth spending the extra points? (exhaust, headers, ecu...) What upgrades are not worth spending points on? (adjustable coil overs, sway bars...) Do any weight reductions cost point? (I didn't see anything in section 4 of the rules about weight reduction, but i only read through it once) What are good things to remove from a car to reduce the weight? Automatic or Manuel Transmission? everyone was a first time racer, or built their first car, or put their first team together, what were the things you found difficult your first few times out? what things were simple? What things caught you off guard? Any other advice a first timer should know or consider? p.s. sorry if this is hard to read, English and Grammar were not my strong suits in school...