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KevinGale
KevinGale Reader
11/5/13 10:56 p.m.
TRoglodyte wrote: Welcome Kevin, Grew up watching the modifieds as a kid. Maynard Troyer is a legend of chassis design "Ride the Lightning"

I just fell in love with the style. Something about the low stance and huge tires just screams race car to me. The are kinda cartoon like. I've never claimed it is the ideal car to hillclimb but it's not that heavy, has plenty of power and big sticky tires so it goes pretty well.

This is actually the second modifed I've hillclimbed. The first one I didn't own. I started co-driving it with my then brother in-law Ray Gonthier. He was married to Karen my wife Kelly's twin. When they got divorced Karen got the car and then I co-drove it with her for a while. Karen went good in it but she crashed it really hard into a tree at Burke and that was the end of that car. No knock against Karen. I've hit trees hard twice and not so hard a couple more.

I bought this car in 2005. I found the car on ebay for $2300. It was down in NY so it was a bit of a drive from NH to get it.

I got home late at night and opted to just leave the car on the trailer. Of course it then snowed overnight. Here is the picture the morning after I got it home. So my first job on the car was clearing snow off it to get it into the garage.

mndsm
mndsm UltimaDork
11/5/13 10:57 p.m.
KevinGale wrote:
mndsm wrote: Pardon the ignorance, but why does it howl like that?

Most of the noise you hear is from the quick change rear end. The motor also has timing gears instead of a belt or chain so you also get some gear noise there. So it's lots of gear noise.

Ok, that makes sense. I didn't think it was S/C, and it sounded sorta like a Gilmer for a rotary, and it made me all manner of confused. I thought possibly dogbox, but that didn't make sense to me. It is all clear now.

KevinGale
KevinGale Reader
11/5/13 11:13 p.m.

In order to make it legal for NEHA rules I had to add bars to prevent engine and drivetrain intrusion into the driver's compartment. These got put to the test in my 2006 crash and they worked.

KevinGale
KevinGale Reader
11/5/13 11:19 p.m.

2006 crash at Ascutney

KevinGale
KevinGale Reader
11/5/13 11:23 p.m.

And here it is in 2007 with the new front clip. There a bunch of flash rust on it because it got rained on before I could get it inside. Had fun with a wire wheel to get it cleaned up for paint. The shock mount already had some paint. My friend John Reed found it at a swap meet. It is a taller mount which allows a 7 inch shock instead of the 5 inch which seems to be more common on these cars. I raced it with the 5 inch but a little more travel is good on our bumpy courses.

KevinGale
KevinGale Reader
11/5/13 11:26 p.m.

2007 is also when I changed the fuel cell mounting rails to move the fuel cell to the right side of the car instead of the left.

KevinGale
KevinGale Reader
11/5/13 11:44 p.m.

And finally here is another picture of the car when I bought it. It came with a "free" junk engine block. The owner said I had to take it if I bought the car.

The previous owner ran the car with a wet sump (normal oil pan). You can see the diagonal mounts going to the back of the block that were custom made and there were also custom mid motor mounts. The motor sits higher with a wet sump to keep the deeper oil pan from hitting the ground. Since I was going to use the correct setup for the car (dry sump) I had to cut these all off and change them. After the 2006 crash I changed to using the Troyer front and rear motor plates.

93EXCivic
93EXCivic MegaDork
11/6/13 7:54 a.m.

Did you have to do any work to make it turn both ways? Aren't those cars setup to turn one way only really?

Adrian_Thompson
Adrian_Thompson PowerDork
11/6/13 8:07 a.m.

Amazing vehicle. What's the weight to go with that 500hp and lb/ft?

Also what is the steering like. That is an epic amount of scrub radius. Any idea on roll center height, Virtual swing arm length etc?

JoeyM
JoeyM Mod Squad
11/6/13 8:08 a.m.

liking this thread.....lots of new stuff to learn

Conquest351
Conquest351 UltraDork
11/6/13 8:18 a.m.
JoeyM wrote: liking this thread.....lots of new stuff to learn

Yeah, what he said!

KevinGale
KevinGale Reader
11/6/13 8:20 a.m.
93EXCivic wrote: Did you have to do any work to make it turn both ways? Aren't those cars setup to turn one way only really?

Not really. It turned fine both ways as I got it. I raced it for a year that way. Even now all I've done is move some weight around to get more right side weight.

Change the alignment and make the cross weight equal and it is ready to race turning either way. Those can be done without physically moving anything on the car.

Now because of the fact that the car chassis is offset and it thus has more left side weight it will probably turn left a bit better than it will turn right but frankly you can't feel that when driving the car. And actually a lot of cars that people race are out of balance weight wise and no points fingers at those cars. Not too many cars are a perfect 50% side to side.

KevinGale
KevinGale New Reader
11/6/13 8:28 a.m.
Adrian_Thompson wrote: Amazing vehicle. What's the weight to go with that 500hp and lb/ft? Also what is the steering like. That is an epic amount of scrub radius. Any idea on roll center height, Virtual swing arm length etc?

It weights under 2300 lbs with me in it. So it isn't heavy but not a real light weight either. But it has a lot of steel and gives good protection when I leave the road.

Steering isn't a problem. I have a higher ratio rack that the original Pinto/Mustang II rack the car came with. Generally I don't have to move my hands on the wheel. It goes where you point it. The front end is seldom a problem.

No idea on the roll center height and virtual swing arm length. Initially I was going to buy some suspension software and see if I should make major changes to suspension mounting points but the car handles fine and I couldn't see the need.

There is also another major problem with changing things. Right now when I screw up and bang the front end I can just buy a new front clip. This has happened twice in the last seven years. If I keep the stock mounting points I can just bolt stuff back on. If I make major changes I will have a lot of fabricating to get the car back together. So I've decided to just leave it alone.

Conquest351
Conquest351 UltraDork
11/6/13 8:41 a.m.
KevinGale wrote: There is also another major problem with changing things. Right now when I screw up and bang the front end I can just buy a new front clip. This has happened twice in the last seven years. If I keep the stock mounting points I can just bolt stuff back on. If I make major changes I will have a lot of fabricating to get the car back together. So I've decided to just leave it alone.

VERY smart idea.

KevinGale
KevinGale New Reader
11/6/13 8:43 a.m.

The main thing I did to make it handle better for hillclimbing was soften the springs. The circle track springs were much too stiff and the car wanted to bounce over bumps. We have lots of bumps.

I'm running 3.5" of ride height and I use it all. The car touches down at a few hills but that is what I want. It it wasn't touching I'd lower it some more.

KevinGale
KevinGale Reader
11/6/13 8:50 a.m.

Here is a picture of the motor before it went in the car last. The motor mounts with front and rear motor plate. So the motor is effectively part of the chassis. You can see the front plate here. Because the motor sits so low as I mount it the dry sump oil system is a must. The pump is in the lower right.

KevinGale
KevinGale Reader
11/6/13 8:54 a.m.

And here is a side view showing the oil scavenge lines.

KevinGale
KevinGale Reader
11/6/13 8:55 a.m.

This is what the rear motor plate looks like in the car. On nice part about the rear motor place is that I can take out the motor but leave the bell-housing and transmission in the car.

Conquest351
Conquest351 UltraDork
11/6/13 9:22 a.m.

You don't need to duct those brakes do ya? LOL They're just hanging out there. That's awesome!

93EXCivic
93EXCivic MegaDork
11/6/13 9:27 a.m.
KevinGale wrote:
93EXCivic wrote: Did you have to do any work to make it turn both ways? Aren't those cars setup to turn one way only really?

Not really. It turned fine both ways as I got it. I raced it for a year that way. Even now all I've done is move some weight around to get more right side weight.

Change the alignment and make the cross weight equal and it is ready to race turning either way. Those can be done without physically moving anything on the car.

Now because of the fact that the car chassis is offset and it thus has more left side weight it will probably turn left a bit better than it will turn right but frankly you can't feel that when driving the car. And actually a lot of cars that people race are out of balance weight wise and no points at those cars. Not too many cars are a perfect 50% side to side.

So the A-arms aren't different lengths or offset then? It is just the weight and alignment

KevinGale
KevinGale New Reader
11/6/13 9:35 a.m.
Conquest351 wrote: You don't need to duct those brakes do ya? LOL They're just hanging out there. That's awesome!

Yeah brake cooling isn't a problem. Don't use a lot of brakes hillclimbing anyway. The car does stop very well. A friend drove it and said he liked the power but he would kill for the brakes.

KevinGale
KevinGale Reader
11/6/13 9:40 a.m.
93EXCivic wrote: So the A-arms aren't different lengths or offset then? It is just the weight and alignment

A-arms are the same but the whole chassis is offset. So all I really have done is set the alignment and adjust the cross weight to 50-50. Then I did move some components but that part had a fairly minor effect.

Here is a picture showing the front end. See how the left side is almost straight but the right side is offset.

KevinGale
KevinGale New Reader
11/6/13 9:48 a.m.
Conquest351 wrote:
KevinGale wrote: There is also another major problem with changing things. Right now when I screw up and bang the front end I can just buy a new front clip. This has happened twice in the last seven years. If I keep the stock mounting points I can just bolt stuff back on. If I make major changes I will have a lot of fabricating to get the car back together. So I've decided to just leave it alone.

VERY smart idea.

That's what I keep telling myself. I try to remind myself that I do this for fun. I'm not a professional and I don't need to make my life difficult to get some tiny last bit of speed. Really I just want to race several weekends a year and have fun.

Adrian_Thompson
Adrian_Thompson PowerDork
11/6/13 2:03 p.m.

Can you give us some rough dimensions to get an idea for how big/small this thing is? Track, wheel base, width, length, engine set back, height, whatever?

KevinGale
KevinGale Reader
11/6/13 3:07 p.m.
Adrian_Thompson wrote: Can you give us some rough dimensions to get an idea for how big/small this thing is? Track, wheel base, width, length, engine set back, height, whatever?

It's not tiny. For some scale in the racing pictures know that the wheels are 15" wide.

The wheelbase is 109" the track and width of the car is about 84" So it is about 7' wide. I can't get it on my trailer without changing to narrow tires that you see on it in the garage photos.

The engine sits pretty far back. The front edge of of the engine block is about 17" behind the center line of the front wheels. The radiator is mounted before the centerline of the front wheels. The driver sits way back. Basically if this was a standard 4 door the driver would be sitting almost in the rear seat. So all the weight is inside the wheelbase.

It is also very low. I'm only about 5'7" tall and on race tires the top of the roof is just about level with my belly button. It sits right on the ground.

Here is a picture to give you an idea of scale. Since you can compare it to the wrecker. (It was on the wrecker because the rear tire on the other side is flat.)

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