After a year (and counting) of being in a pandemic, the dream of international travel is finally returning. With that, I’m noticing myself binging on content from overseas, specifically obscure museum and shop tours from Japan. Though Japan is renowned for its rich culture, I’m the idiot who wants to go to Nagoya and tour the Daihatsu factory. But this video about Spoon’s Type One workshop in Tokyo added another stop on my future trip. If you’re into Hondas too, you’re going to want to see this immediately.
JDM Masters on YouTube is one of the few channels that does Japan-exclusive car content and makes it work well, with a healthy 172,000 subscribers and a deep library of videos. The host K. Bradford (I still can’t find his first name!) has the enviable ability to speak Japanese, which helps him form a finer mesh with the culture of tuning and racing in Japan.
Spoon Sports needs no introduction to most. It’s a legendary Honda tuning shop that works on a near OEM level with Honda tuning, preferring to work with Honda’s actual tier one and tier two suppliers for their parts, specifically engine building stuff. Founded by a legend in equal rights, Tatsuru Ichishima, Spoon was born to build racing Hondas to compete in various touring and GT serieses in Japan and abroad.
We all know the iconic blue and yellow livery. It’s one of the world’s preeminent tuners with branches across the world, including one here in the United States that built a center-seat eight-generation turbo Civic to compete in time attack, as well as campaigning a CR-Z in the 25 Hours of Thunderhill. Oh, and it build that extremely cool Honda Accord Euro-R, known as an Acura TSX to us Americans.
Type One is actually Spoon’s workshop where you can get your own Honda serviced for similar rates to a dealership, with arguably greater expertise. It also acts as a pseudo-museum for the brand and offers hospitality to fans across the world. They even have a full wall where visitors can sign their name and take a polaroid to pin up on the wall, which is just fantastic. Anecdotally, I’ve heard stories of fans coming after hours and being let in by the staff, another sign of the dedication and passion that Spoon has for its fans and a true love for the cars.
Let Mr. Bradford guide you through the incredibly cool shop, and even catch a glimpse of Ichishima-san picking up parts on his moped, which is cool. It gets even cooler when you see that his helmet is an open-faced Arai that matches the paint scheme of his real Arai GP helmet that looks kind of inspired by Mika Häkkinen’s Formula One design. Catch that the 08:50 mark in the video above!