Jun 14, 2000 update to the Triumph Spitfire (Ro-Spit) project car

Ro-Spit on the Road (and Track) Again

Our Ro-Spit now features a coil-over rear suspension in place of the original leaf-spring setup.

After a very successful test day at Road Atlanta on April 21, we thought we were ready for the Beech Mountain Hill Climb. Our newly redesigned rear suspension (for complete details see the October 2000 issue of GRM) worked fantastically. We now have 4.5 inches of rear suspension travel, instead of the 1.5 inches we had before the redesign. We also have only a 1/2 degree increase in negative camber throughout the whole range of suspension movement. Bumpsteer at the rear is also now nil.

At Road Atlanta, we found that the suspension is now so good that the three-year-old 13x6-inch cantilever Hoosier slicks were totally inadequate. We put some eight-inch-wide Hoosier (http://www.hoosiertire.com) slicks on seven-inch wheels on the rear and left the six-inch slicks on six-inch wheels in the front.

At Beech Mountain, Steve Eckerich finished fourth overall out of nearly 100 cars! According to Steve, “The car just flat hooked up and was a dream to drive.” This early in the car’s development, we are just flabbergasted by its awesome performance.

Now that the car is finished, we can’t wait to start hunting for our first FTD trophy! As for the future, we plan on gradually increasing horsepower, lightening the car and fine tuning the chassis. We recently corner weighted the car again and found that we had lost roughly 35 pounds with our redesigned rear suspension. Our project now weighs 1703 pounds (LF 455, RF 456, LR 390, RR 402) with a full tank of gas. As can be seen from these weights, the car really balances out well. We have already gotten a fiberglass front end from [Japco] (http://www.piner.com/japco), which will remove more than 50 pounds from the front end. This will make all four corners close to ideal.

We have also started collecting turbo bits and pieces for our rotary engine. We feel we can easily add another 75 to 100 horsepower without tearing anything apart. Let the insanity begin!

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