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¯\_(ツ)_/¯
¯\_(ツ)_/¯ PowerDork
1/25/21 7:51 p.m.

This car had an annoying amount of glare from stuff in the interior reflecting off the inside of the windshield.  This is one step toward fixing that:

¯\_(ツ)_/¯
¯\_(ツ)_/¯ PowerDork
1/26/21 7:51 a.m.

rallysmurf
rallysmurf New Reader
1/26/21 6:28 p.m.

In reply to ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ :

great idea!

¯\_(ツ)_/¯
¯\_(ツ)_/¯ PowerDork
1/26/21 7:19 p.m.

Next step in the battle against windshield glare, flocking:

I got a kit from the awesomely named Flock-it company and I think it went OK.  Basically you paint adhesive onto the surface, then use a telescoping cardboard tube thingy to blast it with little fibers until it's all covered and looks like suede.

All things considered it was a less messy process than I thought it would be, since the fibers are pretty good about only sticking to the adhesive.  Hopefully I got good enough coverage, and the bits of dog fur that managed to land on it aren't too obvious.  I'm not planning to reinstall the dash just yet but wanted to get this done early so that it has plenty of time to dry.

¯\_(ツ)_/¯
¯\_(ツ)_/¯ PowerDork
1/29/21 5:10 p.m.

Today I decided to tackle the back seat area.  I wanted to make everything bolt on since there are lots of factory attachment points back there and welding stuff to the super thin metal above the gas tank doesn't seem like a recipe for success.

The surprisingly tiny mounts for the equally surprisingly gigantic Lifeline fire system bottle bolted up to the rear seat mounts with just one extra hole, and I made a bracket to pick up the other holes that runs back to a stud on the trunk floor:

Huge bottle installed:

I don't love the mounting arrangement, but it doesn't move if I yank on it and this is the bracketry that came with it so hopefully it's fine.  There's also still a good amount of room under it for the garbage that always winds up on the floor by the end of an event.

¯\_(ツ)_/¯
¯\_(ツ)_/¯ PowerDork
1/29/21 5:18 p.m.

On the other side, I modified a cheap Allstar battery tray to reach out and bolt to the seat mounts:

That front mount was just tacked at the time of the photo, I finished welding it and sprayed the whole thing with rustoleum after I took it out of the car.

It's going to be annoying to bolt the tray in, but it'll keep the weight of the battery nice and low and out of the way.

¯\_(ツ)_/¯
¯\_(ツ)_/¯ PowerDork
1/30/21 10:55 a.m.

We bought this car with a knocking engine, totally stock, 270 days ago.  Today this was in our mailbox:

 

 

¯\_(ツ)_/¯
¯\_(ツ)_/¯ PowerDork
1/30/21 7:08 p.m.

Wires, big ones.  First I made the ground back where the battery goes:

Then rejiggered the stuff in the original battery area to ground to the chassis:

Drilled some holes in the firewall, stuck some bulkhead connectors through, and made short wires to connect to the factory stuff.  I either need to put all this crap in some sort of insulated box or just remake the factory wires to the starter and alternator:

And some of the interior positive stuff is done, still need to bolt the battery tray back in and finish that part:

 

¯\_(ツ)_/¯
¯\_(ツ)_/¯ PowerDork
1/31/21 5:21 p.m.

Bolted a battery in- this Optima was in the Merkur for a while and wouldn't hold a charge, but it wouldn't surprise me if that was a car problem rather than a battery problem so I'll give it a second chance:

Then I cut up a perfectly good battery box- it's not required to be fully sealed so now the bottom of it can be the battery bracket instead of a piece of plastic:

It also gives me a place to put the giant fuse that will hopefully keep anything disastrous from happening if the cables get mangled somehow:

Then I did some fire system plumbing, which is annoying since Lifeline's instructions have lots of "use a solidly mounted bracket" and they include a whopping 5 zip ties with no brackets whatsoever so you're stuck coming up with stuff yourself or buying things.  I'm a decent amount of the way through (look for the blue nozzles) but will need to buy a little more line and some widgets to finish the job:

irish44j (Forum Supporter)
irish44j (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
1/31/21 7:31 p.m.

I ended up buying some nozzle brackets for the fire system from someone on etsy, lol. Nice little laser-cut ones that are formed to be mounted on roll cage tubing (weld-on). I haven't installed them yet, though. 

Looking good so far. So the fire system wouldn't fit on the floor behind the front seats? I managed to tuck my tank in there (granted, I can access it through back doors which makes it easier). 

Pete Gossett (Forum Supporter)
Pete Gossett (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
1/31/21 7:57 p.m.

In reply to ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ :

I think I'd want a circuit breaker instead of that fuse. Or if you do keep the fuse, make sure you keep a spare & wrench to change it in the car. 

¯\_(ツ)_/¯
¯\_(ツ)_/¯ PowerDork
1/31/21 8:18 p.m.

In reply to irish44j (Forum Supporter) :

Not enough room in the floor, unfortunately, car is small in that dimension.  I thought about putting it further forward but that would block the fuel pump access panel.

In reply to Pete Gossett (Forum Supporter):

Spares will be on board, honestly anything that manages to pop a 175a fuse probably sidelines us for a while anyway.  If we have to go full Mad Max on it for some reason, it's also very easy to bypass.

Pete. (l33t FS)
Pete. (l33t FS) MegaDork
1/31/21 8:55 p.m.

In reply to ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ :

Starter might draw over that.

Gaunt596
Gaunt596 Reader
1/31/21 9:35 p.m.
Pete. (l33t FS) said:

In reply to ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ :

Starter might draw over that.

starter will def draw over that, but depending on the overload rating, might be able to get away with it. worse case, not too hard to size it up if needed

¯\_(ツ)_/¯
¯\_(ツ)_/¯ PowerDork
2/1/21 6:15 a.m.

In reply to Gaunt596 :

Well now that's a thought.  I guess I'll order some larger fuses?  To be honest I really thought it was big time overkill but hadn't considered that the starter tends to be un-fused.

gumby (Forum Supporter)
gumby (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand Dork
2/1/21 6:39 a.m.

I have either 250a or 300a in the main feed which runs to the power distribution block and the starter.

Basically, enough to prevent fire in the case that something gets pinched or crossed, but a high enough threshold for starter in-rush.

¯\_(ツ)_/¯
¯\_(ツ)_/¯ PowerDork
2/1/21 6:43 a.m.

In reply to gumby (Forum Supporter) :

It appears 250a is common and cheap so I'll start there- and yeah, all I want is a cutoff that blows if the wire running through the interior gets shorted to something.  The Merkur didn't have one and it always freaked me out a little that there was a big, always hot, battery explode wire running right up the transmission tunnel.

Rotaryracer
Rotaryracer Reader
2/1/21 7:24 a.m.

In reply to ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ :

Do you happen to have a basic sketch/schematic of your wiring diagram with the cutoff switch?  I'm going to have to rewire my Honda stage car and I thought I read somewhere that the master kill switch can nuke an alternator when used if not wired correctly.  I have a relatively old school kill switch I was going to use from Speedway (without a diode) that I use on my far simpler SBC road race car, but am interested to see how you've got it setup.

¯\_(ツ)_/¯
¯\_(ツ)_/¯ PowerDork
2/1/21 7:54 a.m.

In reply to Rotaryracer :

So, my disclaimer here- I don't plan to use this switch the shut the car off outside of emergencies and proving it works in tech, since it still has the stock ignition cylinder for on/off/starting/etc.  Because of that, I kept it as stupid simple as possible with a 2 pole switch:

The thought is that the switch shuts off EVERYTHING (fuel, ECU, ignition, all body modules) except for the wire that runs from the battery to the alternator, and if that wire has a problem the big fuse blows and kills it too.  I am aware that this leaves the wire to the alternator in the engine bay hot when the switch is off, I'm thinking that's not a problem as long as the fuse works?

My understanding of the alternator problem is that, if you cut it off completely the power has nowhere to go.  In theory that will just charge the battery a little in this arrangement as it spins down.  If I'm wrong somebody please correct me.

gumby (Forum Supporter)
gumby (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand Dork
2/1/21 8:05 a.m.

Look into how the other wires on your alternator are set up. The way I understand things is that there is potential for a large voltage spike to make its way thru the wiring and damage the ECU or other sensitive modules as the charging field collapses when the main switch gets opened with the engine running.

¯\_(ツ)_/¯
¯\_(ツ)_/¯ PowerDork
2/1/21 8:09 a.m.

In reply to gumby (Forum Supporter) :

I was under the impression that was a problem when the alternator is separated from the battery and/or the field wire isn't switched off?  In my case that voltage spike goes into the battery, assuming it even happens since the field wire is shut off?  Field wire runs off the "everything else" side of the switch.

Looking at it another way, the stock setup had the battery wired straight to the alternator too- I can't wrap my head around how this is different with regard to what the battery and alternator do when shut down.  I'm not trying to argue, just trying to understand.

EDIT:  I was trying to remember where I saw an explanation of this that made sense to me, I think it was this Adaptronic page?

gumby (Forum Supporter)
gumby (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand Dork
2/1/21 8:33 a.m.

I am going from memory and it has been +5yrs since I wired my truck, so grains of salt....

As I recall, the potential spike will be looking for ground and can try to find it thru the smaller alternator wires creating haphazard paths as it dissipates. 
I would prefer to learn a safe way to wire the cutoff switch that is simpler than what I ended up with in the truck and will review your link later.

*edit: It may very well have been a requirement to break ALL +12v from the engine bay that drove the complexity of my setup. Leaving the hot wire to the alternator wasn't an option. I'll go back to my hole now. wink

DjGreggieP
DjGreggieP HalfDork
2/1/21 9:12 a.m.

Is the alternator's voltage regulated by the ECM?

On the Intrepid I ran as follows: 

Battery -> Fuse -> Switch -> Power distribution block. I ran a single wire directly from the alternator to the battery for charging purposes. 

(Battery was relocated to the trunk, NHRA rules stated it needed a cutoff switch)

The ecm regulates the voltage tho on the Intrepid. We did a test check with an expendable ecm in case it did horrible things, since there was no record of it being done, just vague forum posts of 'might/might not' work. Switch has worked fine, and functions as a shut off without issue. 

¯\_(ツ)_/¯
¯\_(ツ)_/¯ PowerDork
2/1/21 9:18 a.m.

In reply to DjGreggieP :

Yes, I believe there's a decent amount of "smart" stuff happening with the charging system- in fact, there's a current sensor that normally lives on the negative battery terminal that I need to work out what to do with too.  I'm hoping to avoid all of that by just keeping the battery and alternator together whether the switch is on or off, the way that you did on your car.

irish44j (Forum Supporter)
irish44j (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
2/1/21 8:05 p.m.

btw, are you running full 8 nozzles on the fire system? Or just two in the engine bay?

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