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Discussion Starter #1
I had started a build thread several years ago but typically suck at them. However, since 2020 is the year of change I started a huge build thread on another forum so I decided to go ahead and start a new one here where it is more about building the car to do Autocross.

In October 2013 I found a killer deal on a 1982 Celica Supra P-type (factory fender flares, 4.3 rear gears and Limited Slip) about a 2-hour drive north of Topeka. The kid who owned it was in over his head and needed to just get rid of it. It had been sitting in a field for a few years before finally deciding to sell. I borrowed a truck and trailer and drove up to get the car for $300. The car wasn’t running when I bought it but I’ve been wanting a Supra like this for many years prior with a 1UZFE swap in it so having a car that doesn’t run was fine with me.



Upon bringing home I did try and figure out why it did not run and found the fuel pump was bad. I went ahead and put in the Walbro 255 that I was planning on putting in the car anyways and it fired up. Ran rough but still ran. Now that my curiosity was gone it came time to tear the car down. It was quite clear the car was in a field for a while as I probably removed 30lbs of dirt, grass, and most other things in a field (luckily no animals).









While I had the hood off to remove the 5MGE I gave it to my uncle who does a lot with composites. Not only did he make a hood out of Kevlar and fiberglass but gave me a mold. He also laid a couple of layers of the underbody of the hood to keep the hood strong. The new hood came out about 16lbs lighter.







While I am not a body man I decided that I needed to at least attempt to paint the car. I ended up doing enough prep so that I could rattle can it and it not look horrible. It is not the best job but good enough for a dedicated autox car. The main body in a flat red and the flares and hood in a satin black. It was at this time that the car developed the nickname of DedPewl due to my love of Deadpool (I have been a fan since New Mutants #98 came out in 1991) and the cars color scheme. I only have behind the car before and after of the paint job but will have plenty of the final product later in the build thread.



 

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In June 2014 we (SCCA) had a Match Tour in Colorado at PPIR which meant I had the truck and trailer for timing and scoring of the event. While out there I looked on craigslist and found a 1UZFE for sale for $325. Since I had the truck this made it much easier to get. Turns out it was an add from a junkyard that had properly unplugged the harness and that price included a full uncut harness! It came out of a 95 LS400 which I ended up converting to a 94 since the 95 was a weird year for Lexus engines since they were working on converting to OBD2 early.



For the most part the swap was straight forward. Motor mounts were technically made for a Cressida but it’s close enough. An adaptor kit made for the factory W58 5 speed made the trans part easy. Since the 1UZFE never came with a manual there is nothing on the bell housing to use a typical Toyota slave cylinder, so the kit allows for a T56 throwout bearing/slave cylinder. Of course, to accommodate that size of slave a bigger master cylinder was needed. One from a Toyota FJ60 Land Cruiser fits right in and is the perfect size. The flywheel used is a modified early 4Runner V6 which means any MR2 Turbo clutch and pressure plate will work. I put on a single disc ACT clutch and pressure plate rated to handle up to 500 hp (way more than this motor will ever see). One of the hard parts of the swap was the driveshaft was just slightly too short. Since it is a two-piece driveshaft I had to search and eventually found a truck shop locally that could take the front shaft and extend it the needed amount as well as put in a new carrier bearing.

















The hardest part about the swap is the driver’s side exhaust and the steering shaft. On the passenger side there is plenty of room for any kind of exhaust I want. There is talks that a certain model and year first gen Tundra manifold fits but the set I got did not. What I ended up doing was putting a passenger side manifold on the driver’s side and then routing exhaust 180 degrees to face towards the back of the car. Then the first exhaust setup went underneath the subframe and then both sides went into a two-inlet muffler. The ground clearance of this setup was tight and turns out when I finally got to drive the car, I had to be careful where I drove it otherwise it was scrap badly.







 

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Now that the car was running it was time for some wheels and tires. I went with some gunmetal grey Rota 15X9 wheels with a 0 offset and some Hankook RS4’s in a 245/45/15. Turns out I needed a little more offset so a 20mm spacer is on the car when these wheels are on. Of course, once I put the car on the ground the weight lost from going to an all-aluminum engine and the Kevlar/fiberglass hood raised the car’s front end giving it negative rake. That had to be fixed immediately so I ordered some TechnoToyTuning front coilovers, strut rods and camber plates. I also picked up a used Addco front sway bar from DonL. That quickly took away the rake and made the car sit much better and was finally ready to be driven as it was now April 2017, 2.5 years after purchasing the car.














After driving the car on the street for a few hundred miles I thought it was ready to be driven in anger. The first opportunity to drive it was a Track Night in America event in June 2017 at Heartland Park. In its first session the car hit coolant temps of 250 which ended my time at the event. In the video you can hear the phone connected to the OBD1 port beeping a warning of high temps. The beeping starts at 220 so it is going the entire video. The driving was not very aggressive since it was more of a shake down of the car than trying to push it. The overheating did not stop me from taking the car to a local Solo event the following weekend. I justified it because the car could be cooled down enough between runs and turns out the temp did not get over 225 for that event.



Right after the Solo event I did some research and found that a radiator from a 3rd gen Supra will fit with some slight modifications and you can get a 2-row aluminum from ebay rather inexpensive. I also called up my uncle and he had a mold for some vents that I could put on the hood to help with the temperatures. Bought the radiator and the only modifications needed to fit is how to mount it at the top. Cut out the two mounting tabs and built some brackets that bolt to the front end and hold the radiator down. To shape the brackets, I used a jack handle and hit the metal. Put some rivnuts on the car to hold it down and some extra silicone radiator hose cut up to act as a cushion between the radiator and brackets. My uncle made up the vents and I measured everything up and cut up the hood to take the vents. Rivets all around it and some new paint and it came out great. To test it out I took it to another TNiA in August of 2017. While there I ran into an issue with not being able to go full throttle all the time. If I would shut the key off and back on the car would be able to go full throttle for about a lap and a half and then only half throttle again. As you can see in the video on the first lap between turns 2 and 3, I had to shut off and back on again to be able to run the laps. Driving was not the best as I was focused on the engine temps and the throttle issue. I was happy to see that the temps never saw above 212.






















Even though I never figured out what the half throttle at times issue was I felt it was ready to take to Solo Nationals. I had purchased some cheap 15X10” steel wheels from Speedway Motors and some 275/35/15 Hoosier A7 take offs. I did a quick test fit and they cleared the tie rods. However, the idiot that I am did not check for turning. So up to Solo Nationals I went to work the event and get to drive DedPewl with the only goals being to drive it back onto the trailer and not finish DFL. While getting the car prepped for the test n tune course, I started to move the car with the 10” wheels and found that it would not clear the fenders while turning. Since I obviously have to work the event I didn’t have the time or resources to fix that problem before being able to drive so I swapped the Hankook’s off the 9” wide wheels and had the A7’s put on it so I could at least not be on street tires in SM. On the first day’s course I had an issue like the TNiA with the throttle. Again, I could only go half throttle and it was cutting out pretty bad if I tried to go more than that. Due to that issue I was sitting DFL after day one. It was a shame because the East side course looked to be a great course and I was sad I didn’t get a chance to drive it at full throttle. Not having much time to try and diagnose the issue I wiggled some wires but had no clue if I fixed anything. On day 2 (West course) I was able to go full throttle the whole time. Also due to some car breakage I was able to move out of DFL. After the 3 runs the second goal was also achieved and it drove onto the trailer by itself. On the Monday of Solo Nationals, we were able to gather most of the other 80’s Toyota’s running at Solo Nationals and thanks to Perry Bennett we got a nice group shot of the cars!







*Disclaimer the videos looks like there is enough body roll for a boat but its due to the camera being on the sunroof panel and the flex of the car giving that appearance. *


2017 SCCA Solo Nationals West 82 SM
 

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Now that Nationals was over it was time to get rid of the factory LS400 ECU and go Megasquirt. I had picked up a used Megasquirt 2 with the V3.57 board in it. All I needed to add was a veal board for the stupid 1UZFE cam and crank sensors. I also decided I was going to completely rewire the engine and put in new electrical plugs everywhere. I found this amazing pdf online that literally has every electrical plug Toyota has made and its part number. That really made finding all new plugs pretty easy. Wiring everything up was easy by taking the time to study the Megasquirt wiring and the needs of the Toyota sensors. Or at least I thought it was easy. When it came time to fire it up it would run and quit. Since I do not have an idle control valve, I thought it was just a tune issue. With some help from Peter Florance at PFTuning I got it to idle but not very good. Working back and forth with Peter for a few months we determined that I only needed to wire up one of the cam sensors and had to route the crank sensor a very specific way as well as add a resistor to it. Finally, after about 5 months of just hair pulling to get the car to run it was actually running on its own and decent enough to take it to Jesse Prather Motorsports for a dyno session. Jesse started tuning but once he started to get a good tune in it the clutch started slipping. Turns out that with the stock ECU I was not pulling enough power to notice that the clutch pedal wasn’t adjusted correctly. Made some adjustments on it and got back to tuning. After a bit more tuning Jesse ran into more problems. Turns out the fuel pressure was dropping as you gave it throttle. There was no more tuning Jesse could do until that problem was fixed. Took it home and found a bunch of issues. First, I hooked up the fuel pump to a switch so I could control it, then made a contraption of seafoam, vinegar and good 91 octane fuel and ran it through the fuel lines bypassing the fuel tank. As you can see some nasty crap came out of it. I then pulled the tank and found even more nasties. Sent it off to get cleaned since you can’t get a new tank for these cars anymore. I also decided to replace the Walbro fuel pump since I had read about crappy Chinese knockoffs. The company I bought the first one from assured me it wasn’t one of the crappy ones, but I always found it weird how loud it was when running even at first use. The new pump is a lot quieter so either the old pump got dirty immediately when fuel got into it or it wasn’t very good from the start. Either way doing all that fixed the fuel system and there was no longer pressure drop at higher RPM’s.











Now that the fuel system was fixed it was time to get back on the dyno and get it tuned. When the car got back on and Jesse started tuning some more the clutch started to slip again and before we realized the pedal wasn’t adjusted perfectly some smoke came out. Had to let the clutch cool down a little bit and ended up cutting part of the rod on the FJ60 master cylinder to allow enough pedal movement (more on this later). Once back up and running the final tuning was input and the results were a lot better than I expected. 253 hp and 257 ft/lbs. The torque curve giving me torque pretty much everywhere is awesome. We also set the rev limit at 6200. While the engine would have no problem going to 7K its not making any power above 6200 as its restricted by air at that point.



 

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Next event up after getting tuned was the 2018 Spring Nationals. Still on the 9” and not a lot of events run in the car I didn’t have the best setup or even know where to start. However, at this point I had talked with Lee Grimes at Koni and we found that a Porsche 911 shock would be perfect on the rear of the Supra. Only had to enlarge the eyelet on the bottom of mount. I also got some 8610 singles fitted for the fronts. I also upped the front spring rates to 450 lbs. Ran both the ProSolo and Champ Tour without any major issues. Only problem I really had was the factory diff was done working so I wasn’t getting any rear grip and had a one-wheel peel going on. Still had a good time. It wasn’t until I got back home and watching video’s that I realized the clutch was slipping when I shifted into second. Stupid me brushed it off though as there was a TNiA the Thursday after Spring Nats. Went to it and didn’t get one lap in and the clutch started slipping everywhere. Barely made it back to the pits as by the time I got there the clutch was so hot it wouldn’t do much. Let it cool for an hour or so and got myself home (luckily, I only live 5 miles from Heartland Park). I put the car up on jack stands, pulled the trans and saw a lot of hot spots on the flywheel and pressure plate and a lot of glazing on the clutch material. I put the car in time out for a little while. I started collecting parts but didn’t want to work on it for a little while.

(sorry the video’s aren’t synced as well as they should be)







 

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After RallyCross Nationals was over in October 2018, I finally decided I was ready to work on the car again but was taking my sweet time doing so. I figured I would go over most of the car and fix other issues. First thing I did was take the entire rear suspension off the car. I picked up all new SuperPro polyurethane bushings for all of the pickup points. I also picked up beefier sway bar tabs to weld on as they have a bad habit of breaking off the control arm and also picked up a set of Dobinson rear springs rated at 300lbs. The main reasons for pulling the rear suspension was to get the diff completely rebuilt with an Eaton helical limited slip and then modify the rear subframe to make it easier when I eventually convert to a 1-piece driveshaft. I cut the hoop part of the subframe and boxed in the open part. Then welded in some nuts and made a piece that bolts into the opening. That area of the subframe is like a c-channel so its plenty strong even without it and nothing is structural there, so it works out great. Now doing a driveshaft is much easier (even with a two piece).



















Next up came putting in a new clutch and putting the trans back in. However, before I did that, I converted the shift mechanism to a 3rd gen Supra. Doing this pushed the shifter back about half an inch which put it perfectly in the shifter hole. Before the shifter was slightly forward and had problems going into and staying in third. Had the flywheel resurfaced and then went with another ACT clutch. This time a little less aggressive than the first. I believe its rated at 350 hp which is still plenty for this engine, but the pedal effort is less.

With the rear suspension all back on and the transmission back on I decided to go with full headers instead of factory manifolds. I also wanted to give myself a little more ground clearance as well as have a full-length exhaust. I bought two pairs of ebay headers knowing the passenger side pieces were the only ones going to be used. Cut off both sides 3 bolt flanges and went to work piecing together 2.25” piping to get to a y pipe. Again, the passenger side proved to be quite simple. The driver’s side was a complete pain in the ass. This time instead of going underneath the subframe I wanted to snake it through the little bit of opening between the engine and the steering shaft. A lot of test fitting, tacking in place, cutting the tack to route it a little differently took place. The final product while not the prettiest, clears and gives me more clearance. The y-pipe was placed where the first exhaust muffler was and then out of the y-pipe is 3” exhaust to a muffler at the factory location. For some reason with this setup the car vibrates because the passenger side exhaust doesn’t have much movement to it. I have flex pipes on both sides and even moved the passenger side one upstream more and it still vibrates. I have concluded that I just need to deal with it and monitor the exhaust in case it wants to break after more use.













To help with the engine controls I found a 36-1 crank wheel. The factory crank wheel is a 12 tooth (no missing tooth) which seemed to make syncing more of an issue because it took longer of cranking before it would fire up since it was trying to figure out where it was more. With the 36-1 crank wheel the car fires up much easier and just seems more reliable now.

 

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Finally, on this sort of rebuild of the car I did a little bit of body work. A buddy of mine who works at a body shop gave me some sheet metal cut to the size I needed to plug the sunroof hole. I also found a hardtop headliner. Since I am not a body man my friend suggested I rivet the piece in as well as panelbond it. I followed his instructions on how to do so and it came out pretty good. I don’t have any picture of it after I installed and painted it yet. I also found a remake of the Toyota Celica Supra rear decal and decided to put one on because I was tired of people asking what it was.











 

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Now its October 2019 and the car was back together from the “rebuild” and I took it to the last regional Solo event at Heartland Park. I just ran on the Hankook’s as I was just looking for some time to play in the car. Car felt good and held together nicely. No issues were found during the event and drove it home afterwards.

- Data isn’t synced well on this video



During the offseason I decided I wouldn’t do anything to the car as I wanted to be able to race it and since it had no issues at the October 2019 event, I didn’t see any need to really mess with it. That and I had decided that I would be swapping to a LS in the car and that 2020 would be the last season with the 1UZFE in the car. I started looking for an LM4 or L33 (both 5.3L aluminum block gen 3 LS). I ended up finding one locally out of an Isuzu Ascender (LM4). The yard only wanted $400 and after tax and core it was $600. When I picked it the salesperson was asking why I was buying an Isuzu truck engine for a Supra and was surprised when I told him LS swap. They didn’t have a clue what they had. Got the engine home and started tearing it down and it was obvious the owners of the Isuzu didn’t know what an oil change was. I didn’t think much of it since I was planning on rebuilding the engine anyways. As you can see there was a little bit of scoring on the pistons, but the cylinder walls looked pretty good still and the cross hatches were still there. As I was trying to figure out what to do with the heads, I found a great series of videos on YouTube on how to port them so I decided instead of spending a lot of money on heads I would just port the ones I have. I am still currently working on the porting of the first head but as you can see there is a lot that can be removed to help move the air more appropriately. During this time, I had been keeping a close eye on junkyards in Topeka and Kansas City for transmission options. My top preference would be the 350Z CD009 but I would settle for a 300ZX 5 speed or a Toyota R154 if they popped up. I didn’t want to go the T56 route since they are expensive and most used ones need to be rebuilt. Plus, they are quite large, and I don’t know if it would fit in my trans tunnel. Well, in May of 2020 a 300ZX turbo hit a junkyard in KC. Went out to the yard as soon as I could and as I was walking to the car I noticed about 10 cars away a trans sitting on the ground that looked a lot like the 300ZX trans. I went to the car anyways and found that the engine and trans was not in it so I walked back to the trans I saw on the ground. Sure, enough it was the 300ZX Trans. I put it through all the gears, and they all went in and the input and output shafts spun in each gear. Put it in my “cart” and paid $150 for it! This trans is supposed to be good for way more horsepower than I ever plan to make out of the LS engine and it’s a little more compact which should fit nicely in the Supras trans tunnel.

Back to the LS engine I sent it to a machine shop in town that does a lot of work with LS engines. Plan was to clean it up and then check the bores and let me know so I could order some flat top pistons (goal is 10-11:1 compression) and then check the crank and bearings to see if factory replacements would be good or work needed to be done. After having it a few weeks they called me and told me they found a crack in it. They told me “it will probably still seal” as the crack was between the cylinder sleeves and nowhere near a water jacket. They have never seen a crack there before in an LS. Quickly I figured I could not spend more money on “probably” and told them it is theirs to do what they like with now as I will look for a new block.



















 

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Discussion Starter #9
Now we are at the end of June 2020. My kids got me a cool Deadpool shift knob for the car! I also put the car on a set of scales to see how much it actually weighed and to corner balance what I could. I only have coilovers in front since fitting them in the rear would require me to stich weld the wheels wells which I don’t think is legal in SM. With only the fronts adjustable I feel like I was able to balance the weights decently still. The weight in the picture below is with me in it. Was happy to see it below 3000 lbs with me in it. I also finally got the 10” wide wheels to fit properly. Amazing what happens when you set caster correctly…and cut part of the wheel well and fender flare. I also found a set of unknown brands 9.5” wide wheels. The 9.5” wheels being aluminum weigh in at 6lbs lighter per wheel than the steel 10” wides. I have a bunch of 275/15 A7 takes offs so at the Kansas Region test n tune the day before the Topeka ProSolo I had a main goal of seeing if the wider footprint was better or having less unsprung weight. I didn’t do the testing at full scientific measures, but I did 5 runs on the 9.5’s and then moved to the 10’s. Instantly the 10’s just gave me more confidence and were about 1.5 seconds consistently faster. I had planned to go back to the 9.5’s to see if it was just knowing the course better but I noticed a cord in one of the tires on them so stuck with the 10’s the rest of the day playing with tire pressure and shock settings. Got the car feeling pretty good by end of the day and ready for the Topeka Pro.








For the Pro I had a good time at Practice starts because I was able to do a decent burnout which is one of the reasons, I built the car. On the actual runs I didn’t do quite as good as I wanted but got 12 runs in and had fun which is the main goal. The Saturday morning runs the car got quite loose halfway through the first run and was loose the rest of the other runs. I figured since I did not have someone helping me bleed down the tire pressure that they had just built more pressure in them then I thought. However, as soon as I got back to paddock, I noticed a big fat line of cording on the left rear tire. I ended up having to put 10” wheels in back and run the 9.5” up front the rest of the weekend. Saturday afternoon runs went damn well. Was starting to feel confident in the car. I felt I had more time left in me though. Of course, the camera did not record during that session. Sunday morning runs were only ok. Off the pace from Saturday afternoon and just didn’t feel in it. I think I was just wiped by then. However, got the runs done and the car home under its own power.






[URL='https://youtu.be/Nrr9dH3lSJU[/url']https://youtu.be/Nrr9dH3lSJU[/url]
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Had a weekend in July with a Kansas region event on Saturday July 11 and Sunday July 12 at Heartland Park. On Saturday morning like most SM cars there was a little bit of mechanical drama. Not a lot but at least enough to keep the car in SM. Drove to the site just fine. As soon as the car got in line to sign the waiver (i.e. no airflow) the coolant temps moved up to around 210 (I have the fan set to turn on at 206). Thought that was weird and as I listened, I didn't hear the fan. I got through that and to a paddock spot. Got the car unloaded and opened the hood to look. I found some wires at a connector by the fan relay wasn't connected very well. I didn't bring all my tools since I only live 5 miles from the site. Of course, any tools I would need to fix this I didn't have with. I tried to think of some sort of Macgyver fix but anything I could think of didn't work. I thought about driving back home but figured if it was already running warm it wouldn't be nice to the motor to drive it home to fix it and then drive back. I decided I would just shut the car off as soon as I get back to Grid and not fire it up until I had to. The car usually only needs the fan on course when doing ProSolo events anyways. That ended up working just fine without any issue. After the event I had my wife pick me up (so I didn't have to change tires for an event out there the next day). Got some tools at home and then drove back to the site to fix the wiring. Also brought my laptop to double-check it works. Tested through the laptop from the Megasquirt that the wiring turns on the fan again. Decided to run the car up to temp to test that. While the car was warming up, I found a couple of tires with cords. I had brought a couple of my 9.5" wide wheels in case this happened. Since all these A7's I have are take off's I don't know if so many tires are being corded because of setup or old tires. Plus, Heartland is a cheese grader on tires too. As I was doing this, I noticed water dripping from the motor. Looked in and found a leak from one of the coolant nipples that originally went to the throttle body that I had plugged. Shut off the car so I didn't lose much more water. Finished getting the tire setup with none corded ones and went home without testing the motor getting up to temp. I knew I had more plugs at home so I decided to just bring one in the morning to fix that.



For the driving of the event, I felt I did pretty well. I definitely had a lot of fun as it was a fun course. It was challenging for sure but plenty of places to get on it. I can definitely feel myself getting more confident in the car and am slowly getting closer to the cones. Couldn't wait to drive again the next day.



https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=506u_eAy7Ig



The next had zero mechanical drama as the plug went in along with a little bit of water lost from leaking. The course was backwards from the day before. Holy crap was it fun in the backwards direction. The course was more open in the other direction which meant more places of getting on it. Always a plus with a car like this. To add to the fun it was a battle for the top spot in SM. An E36 M3 had two drivers and both were rather close with the faster of the two taking the lead on their third run (we got 6 runs). Both of them got runs in before I got one. Going into my last run neither improved so I found myself down by .175. Ended up finding 6 tenths of a second to take a half-second win. As you will see in the video I got a little excited to find the time. More importantly, is the car took 11 runs on the weekend and was able to drive home.



https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DQWQNHOXRHA&t=9s
 

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Now it is present day and well I have ditched the LS idea. Instead a friend of mine gave me an M122 supercharger from his GT500 Mustang. It needs the snout rebuilt but for getting the blower for free I am ok spending the $70 on a rebuild kit. Planning on getting all the parts to set this beauty on the 1UZ in the offseason. Still planning on putting the 300ZX trans in the car as the stock W58 probably can’t handle much more power from the 1UZ.



In the meanwhile, TechnoToyTuning (T3) had a "blemish" sale on some negative roll center adjusters for the front so I decided to go ahead and pick them up to replace my regular T3 RCA's. As you can see in the picture, they widen the track roughly 25mm and add about a degree of negative camber. I currently run a 25mm spacer on the street wheels I have (15X9) so this in theory should remove the need for them. While I was at in there, I decided to also change which hole the outer tie rod bolted into on the knuckle. Bolting it closer to the strut is supposed to make the steering quicker. Pretty simple to change everything out. Put in a little bit beefier sway bar end links as the ones on it were used when I picked up the sway bar used a few years ago. Have had these energy suspension links sitting around so figured what the hell. Still need to align it and drive it.









 

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Killer updates here, all very informative. Have you had a chance to test out that inner knuckle steering hole yet? I've been tempted to get those to quicken mine up a bit, this thing needs tons of steering input at autocross for sure.
 

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Killer updates here, all very informative. Have you had a chance to test out that inner knuckle steering hole yet? I've been tempted to get those to quicken mine up a bit, this thing needs tons of steering input at autocross for sure.
I haven't had the chance to test it out yet. Still trying to find time to align the car. I have events on October 3-4 so will definitely have it aligned and ready for that event. Will know and report then.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Had a Mid Div Solo event/Double Regional Solo at Heartland this weekend. The week before I finally got time to align and get the race wheels/tires on with the front end changes. Turns out the new RCA's gave me way more track than the rear. With no options to widen the rear track at the time I decided to put the old RCA's back on but still keep the tie rods on the closer hole for quicker steering. Got the car back together for that and found some rubbing with turn in which ended up breaking the front flares a little bit. Fenders/flares are on my offseason project list so I wasn't too worried about it but took all the flares off for the weekend. After doing that I went on another test drive and when I got back I noticed that steering wasn't consistent as I pulled it into the garage. As it turns out one of the spacers for my tie rods had split. I called TechnoToyTuning to get some sent out quickly so I could still make the event this past weekend. I was pretty sure I screwed it up and was ready to pay for them but they just gave them to me and ship them two day to make sure I got them in time. Luckily I had scheduled to have last Friday off which gave me plenty of time to get it together and tested along with getting a couple of sticker Hoosier's mounted up for the rear.


For the event I drew a run/work of Run 1 and Work 2. Great for getting out of there early but not so great for tire temps at it was mid 40's when first heat was running both days. For Saturday I got there in plenty of time but since this was going to be a rare occasion with my car running and my uncle being able to make it in his Z I wanted to wait for him before going to Grid or walking course. Due to him living in Kansas City and not always on time I only got a chance to walk course once. Not upset about it as I usually only walk twice and have the hardest time remembering courses from walks anymore and just rely on looking ahead. Kansas region courses typically are pretty easy to follow anyways. After the first run I wasn't a fan of the changes I had made with the tie rod positioning. The quicker steering didn't seem to give me anything different. It also had sounds like it was rubbing somewhere or binding up front but after every run I would look everything over and didn't see any signs of rubbing anywhere. I am almost wondering if the sound I am hearing is my power steering pump not able to keep up with the quicker steering setup. Got all 5 runs in and still had a good time. I am quite thankful that I am in a place in my life that even not driving well and not liking how the car is setup along with no tire temp's I had a blast and just enjoy driving and the continuous sounds of a V8 coming from the car.

Some of you probably recognize my uncle's car from Solo Nationals.
[video]

Onto day 2. I get there and since it was chilly I immediately start up the car to get it warming up and then just go about getting everything else ready and helping my uncle get his car ready for the day. After about 10 minutes of the car running, I walk over to it to see what the temps were and heard the fan on already. Thought that was weird and walk to the front and notice a big puddle underneath the car. Shut it off and pop the hood thinking it was going to be the same issue I had at the last event figuring that since I had planned on fixing that issue with a suggestion from Tim White this week. I had extra of those plugs and put one on and as I was doing that I look down and see the lower radiator hose had popped off the radiator. Mind you this is at 8:30 with a first car off at 9:15 and I hadn't walked course yet. I quickly loosen worm clamp and it was quite easy to loosen. Thinking that the vibrations at that area just slowly loosened that clamp a fraction of a turn each time it ran. To get the hose on I needed to loosen the upper radiator mounts so I can get the hose back on. Got that done and tightened the clamp a little extra tight. Of course, I lost enough water that it needed a lot to fill up. I always bring 3 or 4 big water bottles of drinking water to events so dumped all of those in but that wasn't enough. Luckily Heartland has the indoor plumbing so I ran to the bathrooms to fill up my bottles. Had to do this multiple times to get enough water in the system. Got it all back together and started and up to temp to make sure it wouldn't pop off again and once I knew it was good went off to Grid. Got there in time to get one course walk in before the driver's meeting. The weather while it showed was cooler than the first day it felt like there was just slightly a little more grip. Of course, anyone who has run at Heartland over the last few years knows how bumpy it is and how quickly you can lose grip there. I felt like I drove better although not as good as I know I can. Still had a blast and learned some things on driving and am still giving myself confidence in the car little by little.

[video]

There is a regional event scheduled for this coming Saturday and Sunday at Heartland again although the entries are low enough right now there is a chance it will be cancelled. I am planning on moving the tie rod back to the other hole since it is so fresh in my mind how it felt with the inner hole. I will also be adding checking all coolant clamps and hoses to my pre event checklist.

With that does anyone have any suggestions on how to widen the rear track? I currently have a 20mm spacer on it which makes my track about 1" total less than the front. I have extended studs but to see what the track would be I added some 3mm spacers until I had about 30mm of spacer there (did not drive like that) and it still wasn't enough and there was just enough threads on the lugs for me to feel comfortable. I am guessing I would need 35-40mm spacers to even get the track to be even with the front. Not sure I like having that much spacer on it. Thoughts?
 

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New wheels is your best bet for widening the track that much I think. Nice vid, great sound, and smooooth driving
 

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Discussion Starter #17
The final Solo events of the year were this past weekend. Back at Heartland Park with the Kansas Region again. Before these events, I put the tie rods back on the outer hole and realigned it. The car performed much better with that setup! It helped that the temperatures were in the mid 80's for these events and I drove better. The courses were tweaked from the week before. On a whim, I upped my rev limit 300 RPM to 6800 as I was topping it out the weekend before. Some searching showed I could really take the motor to 7500 and still be fine. I've had it at 6500 redline due to not really making more power above that and not seeing much point in risking it. However, having the top speed in 2nd at only 58 MPH I wanted little more and with it being the last events of the year there wasn't much negative to doing so. I hit the rev limiter only once which was just below 60 MPH on the Garmin.

I preferred the second day's course as it was more technical and I tend to be better at those types of courses.

For day 2 my oldest son came with me. We had planned on him coming out to most of the local events to ride along this year but we all know why that didn't happen. We decided for the last event of the year and the lower attendance we could have him come out. He's been to events and watched me run but never rode with. He turns 13 next month so a nice little early birthday present for him. Took a video of him on my first run of the day and after watching it I wondered if he didn't like it because he just didn't seem happy. However, he said he didn't expect to be moving around so much in the seat and also wanted to focus on where we were going so he could understand what was going on.


Saturday (Oct. 10)
[video]
My Son's Reaction to his first Run
[video]
Sunday (Octo. 11)
[video]

As soon as the event was over and I got home I got started on the off-season projects. First, up is removing the front fenders. Sending them off to my uncle to make some fiberglass ones with the flares permanently attached. When taking them off I did notice some frame damage that I might try and get fixed before moving onto other projects. I knew the car was in a wreck before I bought it but it is looking like it was harder than what the previous owner thought (was hit two owners ago). Have sent pictures to a body shop buddy to get his thoughts.


 

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This thread is EPIC.
 
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