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bluej (Forum Supporter)
bluej (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand PowerDork
3/26/21 9:40 a.m.
irish44j (Forum Supporter) said:
gszczyrbak said:

In reply to irish44j (Forum Supporter) :

That's a lotta MR cars!

and with rallycross nationals finally within reasonable driving/towing distance this year, good chance more than half of those will be heading out to Ohio for it. 

I'm in.

ojannen
ojannen Reader
3/26/21 10:01 a.m.

In reply to irish44j (Forum Supporter) :

If the Ohio site works out, I would love to have Nationals go East/West every other year instead of North/Norther.  I am sadly going to miss this year but getting to nationals in a one day tow really increases the fun:cost ratio.

irish44j (Forum Supporter)
irish44j (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
3/27/21 10:00 p.m.

Working on some interior projects with the car, but in the meantime I took Jason out to Frederick this morning to pick up a new rallycross ride.....

So, this will be Jason's second rallycross e30 (he ran a couple seasons with Pat Henry back 7-8 years ago). He also had a Miata that now belongs to Jim and Amanda, which we saw today when we swung by Jim's place (behind the Porsche)

So when he picked up the car, the exhaust was hanging on literally by some electrical wire twisted around holding it about 2" off the road. We swung by Jim's nearby to see if he had some better hanging materials, and noticed the exhaust was actually missing the exhaust hangers (rusted off). As luck would have it, Jim actually had the full race exhaust from the track e30 back when it was an ETA engine (it's a B25 now), sitting in the rafters of his garage. And Jason's new e30 is an ETA.  So instead of finding hangers, we took the entire exhaust off Jason's car up to the manifolds, and put the entire straight-through (with a Cherry Bomb and slightly larger pipe) exhaust onto the car. So Jason is officially in modified class after owning the car for 10 minutes lol.

 

irish44j (Forum Supporter)
irish44j (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
3/28/21 6:30 p.m.

Well, the rallycross opener today was postponed thanks to torrential downpour all day. So, I spent the day in the garage doing some stuff.

So ever since I reconfigured the spare tire setup, i've found it pretty annoying, frankly. I like the weight being in the backseat area, but the tire is a hassle to get in and out of there, especially with a helmet on, so after thinking about it for a bit, decided to put it back in the trunk. However, another thing that annoys me is the battery location, which is still kind of hard to access (and the wiring pretty haphazard). Time to just re-do everything.

First removed the spare and the associated tiedowns. Then after some mocking up I built a steel tray for the battery in front of the strut tower crossbar. Since the battery would overhang the rear seat by a couple inches, I used some steel plate with braces underneath to make a solid platform (probably a lot stronger than the sheet metal in the trunk, honestly).

Note the two holes next to it - those are access holes for the diff upper bolts, which is way more convenient than trying to tighten them from under the car. Then ran the hold-down studs through the floor with large plates under the car.

Then rerouted and cleaned up the wiring, and also put the main fusible link in a more accessible area (right above the battery) in the event we ever need to access it. Also moved the first aid kit next to it, since it hopefully won't need to be acessed often

So here's the (current) "final" layout (disregard the straps over in the corner, they're just stashed there). The spill kit is inside the spare, and the jack and jackplate are over that. The whole thing is held down with the same setup as before - a window net with a metal rod on one side (front) and a single-release ratchet strap at the back side, which works out pretty well.

While I was there I pulled the trunk off, since it's cosmetically always been kind of hoopdie. Cleaned it up and scuff-sanded...

And painted

Speaking of paint, went ahead and changed the lug nuts (I do it annually, since the repeated impact gun use starts to mess up the edges). I like to paint them a bright color so they're easy to find if I drop them in the gravel or dirt or whatever. So, leftover green it is...

 

irish44j (Forum Supporter)
irish44j (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
4/3/21 8:48 p.m.

Nothing much to report on the car. I did some cosmetic changes and "clean up" on the rear end since it was starting to look pretty ragged, but nothing all that interesting or worth posting photos of.

I am, however, pretty excited that an old friend came up from a couple hours away today to help me with some garage wiring (household electric is something I really, really don't like to mess with). I posted up on FB a few weeks ago looking for someone who knows electrical and he rogered up after not having seen each other for 30 years. So we had some beers and I mostly observed while he did some professional-level power upgrades to my garage, including a pair of 240 plugs on a 50A breaker and upgrading the wiring and breaker on my 4-gang main outlet to 30A (it was 20A). So with this stuff upgraded I can now pick up a large air compressor and also be able to run my plasma cutter without tripping breakers (and without having to unplug my garage fridge). So that should make life a lot easier when it comes to fabricating and stuff.

Need to do some post-upgrade drywall work now :)

irish44j (Forum Supporter)
irish44j (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
4/5/21 8:05 p.m.

Picked up another set of Mini Cooper/Clubman wheels for cheap today. I'm not short on wheels at the moment, but I really dislike the ugly 5-spoke Mini wheels I have a couple sets of rally tires on, and really like these "phone dial"-ish ones. So I try to keep my eyes open for them if they pop up cheap. 

There's a DC rallycross scheduled for this coming weekend. We'll see if the weather cooperates. So far over the past month it has been pretty much beautiful on weekdays, and then it rains on weekends, which is pretty annoying.

Pete. (l33t FS)
Pete. (l33t FS) MegaDork
4/5/21 8:15 p.m.

You painted your lug nuts grass color?  smiley

 

Who am I kidding, they run and hide if they fall onto grass anyway, no matter what color they are.

irish44j (Forum Supporter)
irish44j (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
4/5/21 9:50 p.m.
Pete. (l33t FS) said:

You painted your lug nuts grass color?  smiley

 

Who am I kidding, they run and hide if they fall onto grass anyway, no matter what color they are.

we don't do grass-o-cross (as JVAB would say) here in DC ;) Our venues are mostly clay and gravel.

That said, I'm not doing on-stage tire changes at rallycross (usually my gravels are on when I load the car on the trailer, and they stay on until I get home), and when we have to change a tire on stage, we don't park it in the grass to do it. 

 

irish44j (Forum Supporter)
irish44j (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
4/6/21 4:55 p.m.

Was recently thinking about upgrading my air compressor to better run the plasma cutter and other stuff. For all these years I've just had an 8-gallon Harbor Freight one, which works fine but basically has to constantly run to do anything. I was looking around at the ~$500 ones here and there new, and then this thing popped up on local FB marketplace. It's an older model (probably pre-2008 based on the Coleman branding), but the P/O bought it new old stock a few years ago and used it like twice, so it's practically brand new (side note: made in the USA, for whatever that's worth). He also gave me 100 feet of air hose and a like-new HF reel (which I already re-sold, since I already have one). Total price: $140

I was a bit worried it would be really loud, since it's a non-oil motor, but while it's not "quiet" it's not any louder than the little one (and with a 27=gallon tank it won't have to run as much). All in all, pretty good specs in terms of CFM, and no leaks...builds up to 155psi in a few minutes and has held it all day. Need to get an inline water seperator for it, but otherwise, good to go, so pretty happy with it, especially for the price. Most importantly, it fits perfectly in the space I've always left "free" for a compressor.

irish44j (Forum Supporter)
irish44j (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
4/8/21 7:35 p.m.

Got bored today and painted the wheels white, because rally car...

Pete. (l33t FS)
Pete. (l33t FS) MegaDork
4/8/21 10:07 p.m.

Was just looking at the entry list for this weekend's event.  Someone has AWD swapped a C30?  Far out!

I've only seen that happen once, and it involved subframe surgery because apparently the C30 front subframe cannot accept a driveshaft but the S40/V50 subframe has different geometry.

irish44j (Forum Supporter)
irish44j (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
4/9/21 6:56 a.m.

In reply to Pete. (l33t FS) :

He's been running that car with us for a few years as front wheel drive. The only thing I remember notable about it is that at one event he broke the front suspension 10 ft from the finish line on his last run of the day and DNFd. Did not realize he had done an all-wheel drive swap over the winter. That's a super competitive MA class so it will be interesting to see how he does. I would not expect he will be anywhere near a podium The way he was running front wheel drive.

Also if you did not notice it that class also has a turbo civic wagon swapped to all-wheel drive (I think using crv stuff) which makes cool noises and always breaks. 

Pete. (l33t FS)
Pete. (l33t FS) MegaDork
4/9/21 10:03 a.m.

In reply to irish44j (Forum Supporter) :

Not a factory AWD Wagon?  They made those for a few years in the late 80s.

moxnix
moxnix Dork
4/9/21 10:26 a.m.
Pete. (l33t FS) said:

In reply to irish44j (Forum Supporter) :

Not a factory AWD Wagon?  They made those for a few years in the late 80s.

Nope 2003 civic hatch.

For the Volvo Mason has been talking about AWD swapping it for a while now. 

irish44j (Forum Supporter)
irish44j (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
4/9/21 8:43 p.m.
moxnix said:
Pete. (l33t FS) said:

In reply to irish44j (Forum Supporter) :

Not a factory AWD Wagon?  They made those for a few years in the late 80s.

Nope 2003 civic hatch.

For the Volvo Mason has been talking about AWD swapping it for a while now. 

Mason talks a lot in general :)

 

irish44j (Forum Supporter)
irish44j (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
4/9/21 8:53 p.m.

So......rallycross this weekend cancelled AGAIN. While Summit is a great venue, its red clay surface makes it very vulnerable to rainy days before or during events, since it doesn't soak in, and just becomes a muddy, slippery mess (not like mud in the farm field venues, more like ice-mud). That said, I still would have liked to run (since I tend to do better on the muddy days than most guys in my class for some reason), but such is life. It's rescheduled with another single event next month as a doubleheader now. On the upside, we have a doubleheader in 2 weeks so not THAT long of a wait (assuming the weather cooperates).

In the meantime, Jason just picked up an e30 for rallycross as mentioned above, and the other day picked up a full rear end (suspension, diff, axles, etc) from a parts car. He didnt' need the subframe so I took it off his hands and will give it the full reinforcement treatment (which I never did to the one on the car, and it's held up so far), and then swap in into the car when that's done. Nothing better to do today, so I pressed out the very-shot old main bushings...

In not-as-good news, I was under the Sequioa this evening trying to track down an exhaust vibration (when I redid the rear end, apparently I hung it a bit high and it barely touches the body and causes an annoying hum in the cabin), and while under there I looked up at the mid-rear frame crossmember....which looked a lot rustier than l remember. I poked at it with my flashlight and promply put a fist-sized hole in it.

So this is just one of (five?) frame crossbraces and the upper half of it feels solid. It's a poor design, with open ends so road salt can get in there and just hang out. I've always tried to spray it out whenever I was the truck, but to no avail. Seems like it has some odd double-wall construction (much like the part of the main frame I patched last year).....man, I really hate Dana (who made the frames for these and the other Toyota frame-rusters). Poor engineering and even worse weatherproofing. 

Anyhow, at some point I'll cut that out and patch in a big pipe. Luckily it's in the middle so I may be able to do it without dropping the muffler or gas tank...TBD. I don't think it's an urgent issue but will do it sooner rather than later. 

irish44j (Forum Supporter)
irish44j (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
4/11/21 8:39 p.m.

Carrying on with the Sequoia....with the rallycross cancelled today but the weather perfect, decided I'd try to install at least one of the two new headers. Took me the first hour to get the central exhaust off, which required cutting off ALL the bolts, basically (and shering one off the manifold).

Then it took me the next hour to get the stock manifold heat shield off (seriously, four bolts and it took an hour)

Then I spent 2-3 more hours trying to get the manifold itself off, which resulted in my removing a grand total of TWO of the nuts/studs and not the other six, which I either couldn't get to with any of the billion tools I have here, or couldn't break loose with the cobbled-together super-long extensions and universal joints, or stripped the nut on one. 

All of this done under this berkeleying rusty truck, noticing more questionable rust areas as I'm lying there and getting rust in my face. The skidplate is not long for this world....no matter how many times I've cleaned it up and repainted it, it's a lost cause. 

By mid-afternoon I just said berkeley it and put it back together, albeit missing one stud on the manifold (couldn't get to it to drill it out), which now may have MORE of a leak than the little crack I started with. Plus the heatshield is gone (was so hard to get off, didn't put it back on), whic h results in more audible noise in the cabin.

All in all, was a long day of bullE36 M3, and I didn't take any pics of the bullE36 M3. Now I'm left with a couple options:

1) keep wasting my time on this rusty truck, which I really do like otherwise and which runs perfectly with low (for a Toyota) miles at 130k. This will involve several more frame rust repair areas (and surely more in the future), plus a second attempt at the headers once I get a few additional appropriate tools that may make it more possible.

2) cut bait and sell this thing for probably not much since it's so cosmetically beat-up and has frame rust. I don't have much cash on hand for another vehicle, but I can't really do without a tow rig, but I don't want to buy another POS.

So, I'll probably do #1 for now and start thinking about what vehicle I want to replace it with (the thought of a newer 5.7 Sequoia is one....buying a similar-year NON-rusty Sequoia to mine is another option, since they're fairly cheap and I can swap over things like the brand-new ($$) tires, rack, and other stuff.

IDK, we'll see. I'm not going to look at the truck for a few days, as this is more discouraging than maybe it should be (I generally find a way to get things done, so accomplishing nothing whatsoever today is quite the downer). I'm generally not too worried about difficult issues with my project cars, but those cars aren't ones I *need* for things at any given time....this is, which makes it more pressing for me to figure out what the hell I'm going to do. 

¯\_(ツ)_/¯
¯\_(ツ)_/¯ PowerDork
4/12/21 5:39 a.m.

Something I'm a big fan of doing on rusty stuff like that is hitting the fasteners with PB blaster on a daily basis for a week or two prior to attempting to remove parts.  It might not help you here if everything is ultra crusty (sounds like it is) but can't hurt.

irish44j (Forum Supporter)
irish44j (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
4/12/21 9:12 a.m.

Yeah most of those fasteners we're hit multiple times over the last few weeks... At least the ones I could actually access. 

These are the times I am jealous of people with a lift because a lot of the stuff would probably be a lot easier if I could just stand underneath it and look at things rather than have to operate on my back lol. Also it's a lot harder to get leverage on my back.

95maxrider
95maxrider Reader
4/12/21 12:21 p.m.

Oh boy do I know your pain.  What sort of tools did you buy to help?  If you've already been soaking the nuts/bolts and they're still giving you trouble, this is going to suck.  I recently was gifted an old acetylene torch setup and it has helped me numerous times with rusty fasteners already.  It may be worth the expense to pick one up.  And if you don't have some Seafoam Deep Creep, get some.  It's da bomb.

irish44j (Forum Supporter)
irish44j (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
4/12/21 6:44 p.m.

I just picked up some long 1/2" drive extensions (I was cobbling together several, a couple of which have wobble joints that aren't ideal for getting direct torque on things) and a ball-style impact u-joint which should help keep the socket on the nuts at harder angles. Also got a nut extractor set for when I invariably strip a couple of these. 

And yeah, I'll probably pick up a MAP torch before trying this again. 

Also now that I have a big compressor, maybe it's worth giving my air ratchet a try and seeing if it has any significant power for stuff like this. 

Just to add insult to injury, I got under there again today to try to cut off/drill out the one broken stud on the stock manifold, and even though I was wearing my safety glasses, I managed to have something fall into my eye. I tried to rinse it out in my shop sink (which has a foutain-style verticale faucet like an eyewash) and couldn't seem to get it out. So...off to the urgent care a few miles away. They checked it out, confirmed the debris had come out, but I had a scratch on my cornea. It should heal in a couple days and be fine, but will be scratchy until then.

Situation Normal, AFU. 

I just want to do some berkeleying rallycross at this point. 

smokeysevin
smokeysevin New Reader
4/12/21 7:43 p.m.

On the manifold studs, a "medium" length deep socket helps. Basically cut a deep socket in half. A torch will probably help. Flex head wrenches and 6 points are just about all you can do to get the nuts loose. I was recommended a nut splitter but it didn't work at all.

 

As for the frame, I am in a similar situation on my Tundra. The sections where parts are riveted together are rusting between the plates and will eventually have to get replaced. The Tundra's don't have the tube crossmembers but are notorious for losing the spare tire crossmember which is u shaped. I am not planning to replace mine but I can completely see how the prospect of a crusty frame would have you considering it. Those kind of repairs are no fun.

 

Sean

irish44j (Forum Supporter)
irish44j (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
4/12/21 7:54 p.m.
smokeysevin said:

On the manifold studs, a "medium" length deep socket helps. Basically cut a deep socket in half. A torch will probably help. Flex head wrenches and 6 points are just about all you can do to get the nuts loose. I was recommended a nut splitter but it didn't work at all.

 

As for the frame, I am in a similar situation on my Tundra. The sections where parts are riveted together are rusting between the plates and will eventually have to get replaced. The Tundra's don't have the tube crossmembers but are notorious for losing the spare tire crossmember which is u shaped. I am not planning to replace mine but I can completely see how the prospect of a crusty frame would have you considering it. Those kind of repairs are no fun.

 

Sean

My spare tire crossmember has a few questionable spots and I check it regularly and have cleaned it up as much as possible. But yeah, there may come a time when I build a new one. 

Yeah, the worst rust areas on my frame (only driver's side, oddly) are where the different frame sections are joined. They designed them with a bracing tube inside for additional support, but didn't seal it up so those bracing tubes are what causes the rust. I cut out the areas and put new plating on the outside to reinforce. Those areas were a lot easier than the crossmember will be, since it's up between/behind the muffler and the fuel tank. Plan is to cut the piece out of an old frame if I can find one. 

irish44j (Forum Supporter)
irish44j (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
4/16/21 7:29 p.m.

RallySafe

So for ARA this year they're implementing Rallysafe. It's kind of a tracking system that has features like alerting cars behind you of a crash on course, sending emergency signal, and other stuff. Apparently it's all the rage. There's an in-car console with buttons and displays on it that they give you to use at the rally itself (since it costs like $2000 to buy), but you have to have the car pre-setup for it, including the SATCOM antenna/transmitter, a wi-fi antenna, power wires, and a mount. So $165 later, the kit arrived from Australia. 

Install isn't all that difficult other than figuring out how to run wires. I thought the 2-meter wire for the roof antenna would be sufficient, but it turned out to be a bit shorter than I wanted, so I ended up having to put the antenna off-center and a bit forward of where I'd ideally like it. The lack of symmetry will probably drive me crazy, but at least I can't see it from inside the car lol. And in case anyone is wondering, I cleared the position with Preston (the series boss) since the instructions say "centered" in the roof. Apparently the real thing is for it to be centered front-to back on the car, since that's how timing is done and they want everyone's to be in the same basic area (as opposed to sticking it on the front bumper to steal 1/10th of a second, I guess). 

The one issue some people have is the need to drill a hole in the roof. I guess if you have a new STi, maybe that's an issue. This is a 35-year-old car and the hole is in my sunroof delete panel anyhow, so whatever. 

kinda blends in up there...

cue someone on the road honking and pointing that I left my phone on the roof...

On the inside, there's a secondary wi-fi antenna (I guess for if the one on the roof gets knocked off in a big crash.

The mount up front is a standard RAM mount just like the one Jim uses for the timing tablet and/or his phone. I ran power direct to the battery as required, and routed the input cables so everything arrives at the plug-in spot together (it's wrapped in a plastic bag to keep the elements out). 

So....more stuff on the car in the name of safety. Such is racing....

irish44j (Forum Supporter)
irish44j (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
4/17/21 4:33 p.m.

Stillllll just sitting here waiting for some rally...

So after calming down about the tow pig and semi-frantically online car shopping for a new truck, now I've gotten that out of my system - because I'm a pragmatic person and unloading my Sequoia for basically nothing and then picking up payments on something newer is....not pragmatic. 

So, I spent some time cutting out some of the rotted crossmember section (no pics at the moment) and will try to figure out the best way to fix this issue. Also spent time with a hammer trying to find other rotted areas on the frame but didn't find much, so that's reassuring. For the time being holding off on doing the headers now, but I've been hitting that area repeatedly with PB blaster and other stuff and think I'll probably get it done eventually. 

In the meantime, the skidplate on this thing has ALWAYS been rusty. I've repainted and cleaned it many times, and it just rusts more. It's a double-wall plate and E36 M3 just gets inside and rusts it. It annoys me just to see it, so it's now in my junk pile.

Then busted out my plasma cutter and some 1/8" sheet I had leftover from the Raider skidplate build. Now that I have a good compressor and 240v, the plasma cutter rips right through 1/8" easily (though I need to improve my hand steadiness to get better straight lines without a straightege.

In any case, after some cutting and bending and welding, I ended up with this:

And some random paint, because who cares what color it is

And some strategically-placed bedliner on the side flaps and areas where I welded seams.

And a few holes, and it's bolted up.

 

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