Archive for March, 2008

Dot dot dash

Old dash.

Old T-440 Dash

New dash being cut out of G10 fiberglass board.

New Dash - cutting

New dash installed. Mucho nicer!

New dash installed

And random picture of Don doing what he does best – drinking miller lite and revving the engine

Which is in prep for driving the car around our ‘test track’….

Clearly, a fantastic place to test drive a race carwhich, is clearly a fantastic place to test drive a race car

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Test drive, and all the fun that comes along with driving a car for the first time

We drove the car for the first time this weekend. It was a tad bit chilly out, but the car seemed to run ok. Shifting, was another story…

It seems the dog-rings (the thingies that engage a gear so you can move) in the transaxle were pretty worn in the Lola’s gearbox. The shifting was chatty, not smooth, and kinda scary overall.

It is good that dog rings are cheap. Considering they are a 3″ piece of steel with about 9 little bumps on them, $290 for two of them is a steal. In this picture, the old rings are at the far left bottom, and the new rings at the far left top. I clearly see $290 of difference. duh. (For those who feel the pain of dog rings – check out this awesome shirt by James Hakewill on ApexSpeed )

So we tackle disassembling the gearbox in order to find out what is in there. We find lots of parts. Luckily, Hewland is nice enough to put their manual in PDF format online.. And, luckily, we find a neighborhood kid who can read to us. Remember, we went to a public school in Florida for education, some of these big words are tough.

Don, smiling because he still thinks this might actually go back together

This would be easier with, ah, uhm, a broomstick handle.

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Over our heads

Sometime after purchasing the car and now, Don has realized two things:

A) The car is most likely not in race-ready shape.

and 2) Mike has horrible judgment when it comes to shiny/fast/tasty things

Long story short (or, I just can’t remember the story), I’ll fix up the Formula Ford and race it this season, while Don races his Formula First and Formula Vee.  At the time, its a wonderful idea – we can share on transport, hotels, we can crew for each other, and some other benefits like spending weekends in South Beloit, IL and stuff.

Here’s a picture of how the car looked… No, the roll-hoop isnt painted rust, that’s actually rust.  Rust, come to find out, is not good on race cars.

So the work begins.   Don makes a list, which quickly turns into an Excel file that has 83 rows and 12 weekends worth of work.. And, in the same email, he throws in a race schedule of 8 races from April to November.  A tad optimistic, I say.

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