David S. Wallens
David S. Wallens Editorial Director
12/8/10 9:44 a.m.

Time to finish welding in the cage, and tonight we got some help: Geoff Thompson, setter-upper of many GRM project cars, came over to lend some assistance. Geoff has been involved in many race car builds, from local roundy-round machines to ones bound for the Rolex 24 At Daytona.

His first suggestion: Yank all of the glass for better access to the interior. Our Lincoln's doors had been welded shut (think "Dukes of Hazzard"), so we cut open the driver's-side one--also for better access. The hinges were still present, too.

We also made a few tweaks to our cage. We used our Eastwood tubing bender to open up the A-pillar bars. Since we don't have to clear a dashboard or any interior panels, we can take advantage of the open space and give our drivers a bit more room.

We used a hydraulic porta-power to spread the rear cage legs. That will cure the fact that our cage was a tiny bit too narrow for our mounting pads.

We also investigated tires. Right now we have some ancient 215/70R15 Kendas on some 15x7-inch steel wheels. Looks like a 225/60R15 Kumho Ecsta ASX may be the hot setup: only 4.5 percent shorter and slightly wider. We'd love to go with 16-inch wheels, but we don't really have the budget for that.

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