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Race Car Repair and Upgrade

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eugene13

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My Son and Driver spun in turn two at Sheridan (Wyo) Speedway to avoid T-Boning the knothead who spun in front of him. We just clipped the turn 2 wall and were able to finish the race, 5th place, and the knothead didn't. It dosn't look too bad...until you get the sheet metal pulled off, the car was built as an experiment with an under slung rear clip, racing is about following the fads, now everyone is going to over rail rear clips, so we will cut it off and rebuild. If we had been running for points I would have just heated it up and straightened it out

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eugene13

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Here's the first upgrade, an easier adjustable J-bar mount, we had to move the 2" sq tubing it mounts on outboard about 2 1/2". Laying out and tack welding the first replacement parts, and a shot of the whiz-bang J-bar mount, lowering the J-bar raises the roll center and loosens up the car, raising it lowers the roll center and tightens it. One might lower it for a heat race with a heavy wet track, then raise it for the Main with a dry track.

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kvt

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looks like you are moving along on it nicely.
 

eugene13

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looks like you are moving along on it nicely.
Tthank you, the job is going quickly, considering we are only working on weekends, The over rail is now installed, it needs to be square plumb and level as it holds the top attachment points for the shock and spring slide as well as the fuel cell. A better view of the J-bar slider and it's attachment. The upper brace is now installed, the next pic shows how the over rail is tied in. The fuel cell cage on the bench for a straightening out. The car is actually finished and we have raced it, finishing 3rd, a personal best, We've been in this class since 2006 and have not won a race since, very steep learning curve and a very competitive class. I was just too busy last summer to post it.

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eugene13

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Once the upper braces are on the only things left to do are install the fuel cell cage and the body mounts, we used the laser level to to make sure the end of the body mount is flush with body, we could have used a string line, but the laser gives a better picture. Here's a pic of the finished product, we used the same sheet metal but had to build a new bumper, I suppose this should be the end of the thread but I am going to keep it going with a couple of projects that will use the amputated race car parts. I kept this old Pickup truck seat from another project with the intention of making it into a couch, I found some used 1 1/4" square tubing in my steel mess, this will give me a good solid foundation to start with. The X axis needed a spreader so I dragged the amputated parts out of my scrap trailer, and I had just enough 1 1/4 square tube for the legs. It's really confortable and all it needs is some better upholstry.

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eugene13

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Now the project is done, I even swept the floor.

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eugene13

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After finishing my couch and doing a thorough clean up I realized I had enough material in all the amputated race car structure to build an outdoor propane burner for canning and home brewing. I could have coped all the joints with "The Old Joint Jigger" , but opted for doing them on the milling machine instead, I run the hole saw on my lowest speed and slowest feed, the chips come off like powder and you get a really nice cope, I also drilled all the holes fore the grate. The green pieces are for the legs, they'll be coped on one end and mitered 4 degrees on the other. back in the day it was said that a green race car was bad luck,as you can see, I'm not superstitious. Here's the three legged version

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eugene13

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My burner showed up at the same time as I am figuring out the X brace for the legs. I love doing compound angles with my mill, this is actually a compound angle with an 8 degree roll, the part clamped on the tubing is used with a level to keep track of the plane of cut, or bend. I got the length and the angles right the first time, and ended up with a near perfect joint on both ends, notice the hose clamps holding it in place. I ended up using The O'l Joint Jigger for the second operation of the short sections, you can see how the plane of cut tool allows me to move the part from one machine to another and maintain proper orientation.

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eugene13

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Her'e's the burner mocked up for welding, I keep a lot of heavy steel pieces, 1" and thicker, around for this purpose, two of the mounts went straight down to the cross member and the other two went on an angle, but I got the burner centered up within 1/64 and as level as possible.

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FOMOGO

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Nice work on the car, seat, and burner setup. I did some hole saw work on the mill just yesterday. Makes for a nice solid setup. I just hand fed it at 60rpm on 2 3/8" drill pipe. I have an "Old joint jigger" also, but because of the size of the pipe I decided to do it on the mill. As you said, works really well. Mike
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eugene13

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Nice work on the car, seat, and burner setup.
Thanks for the compliment. I use hole saws quite a bit in my mill, I prefer the Lennox brand, they seem to last the longest. I've even built some special mandrels so I don't have to use a chuck, and I made them 7/8" so they cant be used in the drill press.

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Aukai

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Having the mill would have helped with the out of range cuts on my roll cage, but the joint jigger got it done. Great recycling projects.
 

eugene13

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Thank you, you can do some real precise stuff with a hole saw in the mill, I'll show you some door bars next time I post. Now that the burner is mounted it's time to roll the burner bucket with my birthday present, a 12" X 20ga Baileigh slip roll. My materiel is 22 ga X9" wide. I laid out the hole locations and marked them with a 1/16" hole, then I rolled it up. Not wanting to mash it out of shape with the hole saw I made a wooden block that fit the profile from some 2"X 8" and used hole saws with pilot drills, here it is installed, and last is the nearly finished product. The grates are made of some inconel I picked up years ago, It was shipping braces on flue gas re-heaters left over from construction of the power plants. Oddly, the diameter is the same as a W drill bit, .388. To keep them from coming out my son is going to plug weld them with the heliarc. I've still got a lot of tubing left over, time to start the next project, any ideas?

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eugene13

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Here's my finished burner setting on our chassis jig, in the background you can see a1968 to 1972 aftermarket Chevelle front end being leveled up and clamped together for assembly. It's the begenning of a new project, replacing the front end on a wrecked race race car. Are you folks tired of me or should I continue? The last two shots are of the door bars on one of our chassis, done on the mill it took only a day to fit them up.

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Boswell

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Not me, I love to watch other people work :).
 

extropic

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Not tired of you at all. I like to see competent peoples doing great projects. Keep it coming.
 

eugene13

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We received the car Monday, it looks pretty forlorn without it's front clip, the owner saved himself some money by removing it himself. Notice how he cut into the front end instead of cutting the tubing, you always cut into what you're going to replace. We rolled the car off the trailer like a wheelbarrow and under our gantry and my son began grinding, an hour and one grinding wheel later it's as good as it gets, and it's ready to be mounted on the jig. The next two shots are of the initial fit-up, and the last one is ready to weld./ The car is squared up to the jib using plumb bobs hanging from the frame rails and the front clip is squared to the jig also. Some builders turn the clip a little to the left, but I won't tell you what we do.

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eugene13

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Before the weld up we install the lower control arms, the brackets are both bolted and welded in, there is enough slop in the bolt holes that you can move them around a bit to get the freest movement, note the plumb bob hanging from the ball joint, we use it to confirm our earliest measurements and to make any final adjustments. I've never liked the way some builders "butt weld" the main frame rails to the clip, we always reinforce it with a tubing gusset. Where we cut out the left frame rail has been replaced from a piece from the kit. Here's the right frame rail clamped up for welding, it does nothing structural but both sides are required by the sanctioning body. I cant believe how fast this is going, the right side motor mount is welded in.

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eugene13

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My son spent part of the day slaving over a hot race car, he managed to finish the motor mounts and install the front weight jacks. Me, and my wife brewed a batch of beer in my driveway using my newly constructed burner,

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eugene13

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My son and welder had to go back to work and I was left with the task of building some bumper mounts, a simple piece of angle iron with two threaded slugs welded in, these will be welded onto the front frame horns. During a lull in the action on the front end Bryan began attacking the rear. The car was originally an under slung rear but in an attempt to get more lean out of the chassis the owner cut out the bar and capped it off, we are going to remove the unneeded material, and stiffen up the upper bars by adding two braces.

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eugene13

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Only a three link rear end is allowed in this class, but you can pretty much configure it any way you want, the first pic is looking right to left, you can see the top link and the attachment of the J bar. Next pic, examples of lower links top; a simple turnbuckle with spherical bearings, mid; an old style swing arm with spherical bearings, this type needs one end disconnected to make any adjustments, bottom; a swing arm with an adjustable end, we are converting this car from the top one to the bottom. Third pic, my son Bryan making final adjustments to the suspension using a plumb bob and tape to locate the rear axel, the devil is in the details, it took him all afternoon to set the axel where he wanted it, last pic is the finished suspension, swing arm lower with the spring in front of the axel and the shock behind, the device where the spring is supposed to be is a spring slider, a linear bearing that eliminates a shock absorber, and is adjustable for spring pre-load and ride highth. By using a longer swing arm on the right side and a shorter one on the left and letting the body lean over in the turn we are inducing rear steer, similar to an articulated loader or forklift. This is supposed to help you get through the turn faster, it's all about chasing the latest fad.

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eugene13

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A lot of parts and materiel came in last week so we can get back to the front. The bumper mounts, upper control arm mounts, radiator mounts, steering components and the new set of headers are installed, now we get to bend some tube and replace the front brace. A sleeve, made fron smaller diameter tubing is expanded and fit into the existing tube, and a butt weld completes the repair. It takes a lot of "Lets see how this is going to fit" to get it right, Bryan figuring out the upper shock mount. Work accomplished by quitting time. My job assignment: Build the cage for the new fuel cell.

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eugene13

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I got the parts for the fuel cell cage cut out but our main focus stayed on the front end. The devil is in the details, left upper shock mount, tab for header support, install the steering and assemble the linkage, set caster, camber and toe, build radiator mount, we're nearly finished, but all these small things take a lot of time.

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eugene13

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More details; finished radiator mount, body mount for fender and hood, tab for brake line, steering penetration into cockpit. here's Bryan measuring an angle for the nose support using a Starrett Pro Sight angle finder, one of the handiest tools I've ever bought. With the front end finished we move to the back, install the fuel cell and finish the suspension upgrades.

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eugene13

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Off the jig and on the saw horses, we had to remove the front suspension to finish some incomplete welds and we slapped a coat of paint on all the raw metal. Here's a shot of one of the front weight jacks, notice the ball swivel, one more way to reduce bind in the suspension. It looks pretty good pushed outside and loaded on the owners trailer, and it was outside only a short while when this one showed up needing the same treatment, looks like a busy winter ahead of me, thanks for watching everyone.

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