Chis bright it back in in good shape.  He kept us steady in about 56th place.  I had my turn from about 11:30 to 12:15.  I had great fun.  I stayed in sight of the EASY 914 for my whole stint.  I had one spectacular pass in 11 where I got past maybe 6 cars all at once.  No contact.  No flags.  Best lap was 2:13 and change.

Tedd is out there now he just set a 2:08 lap.  Daaaang!  Dennis is up next at about 2.  He’s going to go until he is tired then I’m going to bring it in for the checkered flag. 

59th at end of Satuday

We finished yesterday in 59th place. Between Ted and Chris this yesterday morning they the car got really neat up. It had about 2.5 inches of toe in and camber was only 1.5 degrees on the right front side.  Thank god for adjustable suspension parts.  Chris started this morning.  He got here barely on time.  I was already half suited up. Maybe I’m a wotry wart. Yesterday Tedd got a 2.10.9!  Dennis got a few 2:11s.  Mt fastest was 2:15 but that was with the bad alignment settings.   The breaks are much more balanced now.   I’m up next.

We were in 22nd

When I first check the standings about 30 minutes into the race we were in 24th we dropped down to about 26th Place. Then we moved up to 22nd. Tedd got a 2:10.9! Then somebody spun in turn 11 and Tedd tagged him so he went in to self-report and we’re in about 74th now.

All the other stuff we did

Well we got raybestos st43 pads for the rear, and I was short on funds so I got the Centric C-Tek disks.  That’s the economy rotor from Centric.  My main worry about the back brakes now is that they will get hot enough to be in the effective heat range for the pads we have.  Getting all of that installed was an epic fight.  Those rear upper ball joints were stubborn.  I bought a ball joint tool from harbor freight for about $9.  Using that I got them off but it was like a gunshot when they did. I did decide to get adjustable upper control arms.  The weekend after putting it all together Tedd brought his camber tool from wherever he keeps his Alfa.  I set the rears to about -2 degrees.

I picked up some more of our magic brake fluid from IO Port Racing.   It’s this store this guy runs out of his house in Lafayette.  He’s a talkative guy.  I got the full run down of ups and downs of each of the major types of fire suppression systems on the market.  So we bled the brakes which took a lot more fluid than normal since we needed to flush/fill the rear lines and calipers with the new stuff.

We obviously did the oil change and tranny oil change.  The oil definitely needs changing after one race.   It gets very black.  But the tranny oil looked brand new still.  I may do that every other race now.

The rear bumper fix was much more work that I expected.  I got the bumper cover off and found that the metal bumper frame was bent.  The car actually skipped to the right.  So I tightened them again and hit the mounts with a big sledge until it was about right.  Then I took a hammer to the inside of the trunk and popped the dents out.  There was one piece that I had to take off and bend and pry it until it fit right again.  I got the bumper cover back on.  It has a hole in it now.  So I put wood grain duct tape on the things inside the hole so it looks like the hole in the Minnow on the show.

Last weekend I had noticed that the camber on the front right looked wrong.  I measured it and it had one degree less negative camber than the left.  Maybe the frame got a little straightened when we got hit.  So I had to take out the right upper control arm and adjust it.  I manged to get the two sides to match each other within about 0.2 degrees.  So that’s taken care of too.

Today we bought and installed the new alternator.  Of course when putting it in the terminal on the cable broke so we had to go get another one.  I also patched up my ghetto intake hose where it enters the air box so it seals better.  Then we spent a few hours loading the van and packing up all our gear.  It takes a lot of work to keep an endurance race car going.

We are ready.  Knock on wood.





Race next weekend

I’ve done lots of work on the car and haven’t written about it at all.

Last weekend we started it up and ran it around the block.  The idle was surging and at wide open throttle it was bucking sputtering.  I got online and found a way to deal with the idle.  I adjusted the fast idle valve.  Thanks EricTheCarGuy.  I ordered a new cap, rotor, and plugs.

We also discovered a bit of a leak in the exhaust.  The exhaust had actually broken just behind the cat.  On Wednesday I towed it to a local muffler guy who also races in Lemons.  He’s on the EASY team.  I asked him to cut out the cat and patch it up with whatever scrap he had around.  We also had him reinforce the lower front frame bit that has out tow bar bolted into it.

Mitch, the muffler guy, did not do what we asked.  He did the reinforcement just like we asked.  But with the exhuast, he cut out the cat and gave us new 2″ pipe all the way back to the muffler (which is a glasspack).  He remounted the muffler straighter and moved it inboard a bit to minimize damage if we get rear-ended.  I’m not a believer in bigger exhuast = better.  I know that if you go, too big the exhaust can cool and slow down and flow worse.  But after the fact I looked it up and found that 2″ is not out of range for this motor.

It does sound good.

So my new cap, rotor, and plugs arrived Thursday night.  I put them all in and that seems to have been the source of the WOT issues.  The contacts in the cap did not look good at all.  The plugs were old.  I used the oem nkg copper plugs.  They are cheap, I’m just going to check them after two races then pick a reasonable replacement schedule based on my observations then.

Took it for a spin around the block and it runs fine again.  BUT the battery light was still on.  I noticed that earlier when the idle was acting up.  It definitely wasn’t on at our last race.  So I got out the multi-meter.  Voltage on the battery was 12.45.  That’s a bit low.  Running, voltage was still 12.45 at the battery and comming out of the alternator.  I put the leads on the battery and let it run for 15 minutes or so.  Voltage dropped to 12.38.  Revving it up did not cause the voltage to go up.  A new alternator is not in my budget, and it has to get fixed now.  Race is Saturday.  The alternator guys in Berkeley are closed on the weekend, so NAPA auto in San Rafael, here I come.  Gotta get this installed today and then pack up the gear for next weekend.  Lots to do still.