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motomoron
motomoron Dork
5/22/12 7:18 p.m.

Oh - I forgot to add:

Apexspeed Vee Forums

It's all there.

wlkelley3
wlkelley3 Dork
5/22/12 7:50 p.m.

In reply to 93EXCivic: I do know guys local to us that race these. One guy races a Formula Vee but he rarely comes to the autocrosses and only autocrosses it once a year. He is active in tracking FV and in the local SCCA chapter. I think he's the region rep or something like that for SCCA. There is also someone local that autocrosses an F500 regularly. He's getting pretty fast and beat the A-mod recently for FTD. Of course the guy with the A-mod just got it and is still sorting it and learning it. You ought to come out to an autocross. I'll give you a ride-along and so will others if you want. Of course, the next one is the same day as our EuroBrit Show so I won't be autocrossing. I can let you know when the next one after that is though, if you want.

93EXCivic
93EXCivic UltimaDork
5/23/12 7:15 a.m.

In reply to wlkelley3:

Cool. Let me know when that is. Hopefully by the end of the summer I will be coming regularly with something.

93EXCivic
93EXCivic UltimaDork
5/23/12 7:16 a.m.

In reply to bearmtnmartin:

Cause it is being built for $2012 Challenge.

TeamEvil
TeamEvil New Reader
5/23/12 1:16 p.m.

Hate to be one of those cautioning you against jjumping into FV, but before you commit to buying/building the car, you REALLY ought to hang around (closely) with someone or some shop that owns and races an FV, or the newer incarnation of the car/class.

It's a a complicated and very different car to set up correctly. Sort of like bumping up against every rule or restriction and finding a way partially around it for that little edge. Even reaming the spindles a bit for a loose pin fit in the front end will give you an advantage or disadvantage depending on what you do next.

I've worked at an Aircooled VW shop forever and have been involved with all manners of air cooled VW powered vehicles (we currently have a Beetle drag car, a single seat dragster, a rail/sand buggy, a dune buggy, and off-road Baja, and a VW powered Fiat 600) and would stress that you really need an education before jumping into anything early VW.

You MOST definitely want to BE "that guy," rather than have to GO TO "that guy' and pay his price. Even if you're surrounded by "those guys" you'll never know as much as them or be as competitive as they are without becoming their equal. It's gonna take time and patience to learn enough about the early VWs to really race one competitively. Driving talent is just the first step here., REALLY.

Luck,

TC

93EXCivic
93EXCivic UltimaDork
5/23/12 2:23 p.m.

Ok so if not Formula Vee what class is there that has a low buy in that is a purpose built race car? I guess F500 is the other option because I am seeing disadvantages to the F500 as well.

bearmtnmartin
bearmtnmartin GRM+ Memberand Reader
5/23/12 2:30 p.m.
93EXCivic wrote: Ok so if not Formula Vee what class is there that has a low buy in that is a purpose built race car? I guess F500 is the other option because I am seeing disadvantages to the F500 as well.

Purpose built means open wheel pretty much and there is no such thing as cheap open wheel racing. I have friends who put their kids into quarter midgets and I saw what they spent to run in the middle and said forget it.

Ian F
Ian F UberDork
5/23/12 2:47 p.m.

I'm not sure one can say any w2w racing will be "cheap". Even Lemons seems to be more expensive than first envisioned and seen a few of them move to Chumpcar for a slightly more serious competition and no risk of your car getting crushed.

And if you really want to be competitive you're going to spend money no matter what class of car you choose.

I only have my friend's experience to go by, but he had this same debate a number of years ago and that's how he ended up with F500. A couple of guys in our region run them in FMod for the same reason: cheapest way to go fast.

Argo1
Argo1 Reader
5/23/12 3:01 p.m.

To echo what racerfink said, the worst part about tracking FV - vintage or SCCA- is that you are grouped with much faster cars. It's just no fun being a moving chicane. I highly recommend open wheel racing. There is nothing like it. Fender cars just don't compare. A tight grouped rolling start with your wheels hanging out there is a real pucker factor.... I would suggest looking into Club Ford. It's more of a "real" race car than FV. You can learn a lot about tuning and racing in one. There are some good buys out there and many of them fit tall folks...like me.

93EXCivic
93EXCivic UltimaDork
5/23/12 3:36 p.m.
Ian F wrote: I'm not sure one can say any w2w racing will be "cheap". Even Lemons seems to be more expensive than first envisioned and seen a few of them move to Chumpcar for a slightly more serious competition and no risk of your car getting crushed.

Minus Lemons, I can't think of a form of racing that is going to be any "cheaper" then FV or F500. You are going to spend a lot of money regardless.

93EXCivic
93EXCivic UltimaDork
5/23/12 3:37 p.m.
Argo1 wrote: I would suggest looking into Club Ford. It's more of a "real" race car than FV. You can learn a lot about tuning and racing in one. There are some good buys out there and many of them fit tall folks...like me.

Does Club Ford= Formula Ford? I thought those cars run about $12-$20k for a used one.

Curmudgeon
Curmudgeon MegaDork
5/23/12 4:37 p.m.

Remember that the buy in for any race car is only the beginning!

I keep threatening to go W2W other than just LeMons and I have come up with a set of criteria:

1) Sorta cheap buy in.

2) Plentiful and cheap parts supply.

3) Has a roof and wipers. (Rain's a bitch.)

4) Puts some space between me and the guy who's sliding at me.

So all that narrows me down to some sort of IT car. The Honda fanbois have run the price of Civics out of sight and it's hard to find an unmolested example, so that's pretty much out. Corollas are 4 door and I do not want to race a 4 door, sorry. Celicas don't have all that big of a following so it's not likely I'll do one of those even though I like them.

So my short list: Nissan NX2000 or 2 door Sentra, Mazda MX3 (current favorite) or VW Golf. The Golf is at the bottom of the list for reliability reasons but the good part is they are cheap and plentiful. The MX3 is not as common but is pretty damn quick, it uses a Protege drivetrain so parts are everywhere.

Now, if I ever build another car for AX and hillclimb I may go in an entirely different direction. Like maybe an A Mod; the sky's the limit as long as it weighs 800 pounds and is deemed safe at tech inspection. That leaves lots of room for, er, interpretation.

F-Vees are neat and fun and cool and etc but man are they slow (comparatively speaking).

bearmtnmartin
bearmtnmartin GRM+ Memberand Reader
5/23/12 5:20 p.m.

I have said this before, and I am biased because I am heavily into it, but four cylinder stock oval racing is the cheapest wheel to wheel racing there is. You can buy a nice reliable Honda for $500.00, spend another $500.00 on safety gear and go racing. My track is a $180.00 membership for a year of racing(13 race dates) plus 40 dollars pit pass including transponder. We don't require full cages for the four cylinder stock class because you just don't go that fast. I hit 120k on the straights and I am one of the fastest cars. But it is serious racing with 25 or 30 evenly matched cars on a short track, and fast cars start at the back, so to win I have to pass them all. Not that I don't prefer road racing, and I do that as well, but the speedway is so cheap and accessible and bullE36 M3 free that I do that more.

93EXCivic
93EXCivic UltimaDork
5/23/12 5:24 p.m.

In reply to bearmtnmartin:

I won't disagree that oval track isn't the cheapest way to do racing. I just am not terribly interested in it.

friedgreencorrado
friedgreencorrado PowerDork
5/23/12 5:32 p.m.
93EXCivic wrote:
Argo1 wrote: I would suggest looking into Club Ford. It's more of a "real" race car than FV. You can learn a lot about tuning and racing in one. There are some good buys out there and many of them fit tall folks...like me.
Does Club Ford= Formula Ford? I thought those cars run about $12-$20k for a used one.

Club Ford is for older (usually meaning designed before the Swift DB-1 came out) Fords. It's a regional class. You still have to pay to maintain a Kent, though. Or upgrade to the Honda. Both are $$$$, although Ford's put the Kent back into production just because FF is so popular worldwide.

Here's the FF thread we had awhile back.
http://grassrootsmotorsports.com/forum/grm/honda-formula-ford/12654/page1/

turboswede
turboswede PowerDork
5/23/12 5:41 p.m.
friedgreencorrado wrote:
93EXCivic wrote:
Argo1 wrote: I would suggest looking into Club Ford. It's more of a "real" race car than FV. You can learn a lot about tuning and racing in one. There are some good buys out there and many of them fit tall folks...like me.
Does Club Ford= Formula Ford? I thought those cars run about $12-$20k for a used one.
Club Ford is for older (usually meaning designed before the Swift DB-1 came out) Fords. It's a regional class. You still have to pay to maintain a Kent, though. Or upgrade to the Honda. Both are $$$$, although Ford's put the Kent back into production just because FF is so popular worldwide. Here's the FF thread we had awhile back. http://grassrootsmotorsports.com/forum/grm/honda-formula-ford/12654/page1/

Correction, Ford reproduced the Kent because Vintage racing FF's are so popular. The UK went to Zetec motors long ago in their FF cars. The US stuck with the Kent's because of the SCCA.

friedgreencorrado
friedgreencorrado PowerDork
5/23/12 5:49 p.m.
turboswede wrote: Correction, Ford reproduced the Kent because Vintage racing FF's are so popular. The UK went to Zetec motors long ago in their FF cars. The US stuck with the Kent's because of the SCCA.

Thanks! (insert thumbs up icon here)

chaparral
chaparral Reader
5/23/12 6:07 p.m.

I think you need to go karting instead...

Apexcarver
Apexcarver UberDork
5/23/12 7:28 p.m.

The maintenance costs are what turns me off to the FF thing. Dont get me wrong, its a hell of a way to go. I just see maintaining an old motor ($$$), Hewland gearbox (god forbid having to replace, $$$), and other expenses.

That said, I do know a few people doing that or an old FC, F1000 conversion or something. The biggest thing to remember is that you only have to put in as much as you want to towards making it faster.

At the end of the day, you have to realize just what cars for different classes cost, then what the consumables cost, then the parts costs if you break stuff. (also, try to get a feel for how durable the thing will be)

How often does the motor need to be gone through? How long do tires last?

Before jumping into a class, find someone who is running one and see if they would be willing to have you come along to a race with them to see what is involved. Gives you a good feel for the class, gives you a "big brother" to learn from, so its just a win.

bearmtnmartin
bearmtnmartin GRM+ Memberand Reader
5/23/12 7:30 p.m.
93EXCivic wrote: In reply to bearmtnmartin: I won't disagree that oval track isn't the cheapest way to do racing. I just am not terribly interested in it.

I wasn't either until I tried it.

93EXCivic
93EXCivic UltimaDork
5/23/12 10:12 p.m.
bearmtnmartin wrote:
93EXCivic wrote: In reply to bearmtnmartin: I won't disagree that oval track isn't the cheapest way to do racing. I just am not terribly interested in it.
I wasn't either until I tried it.

I would like to do dirt track at some point in my life though.

motomoron
motomoron Dork
5/23/12 10:13 p.m.

Irrespective of the car - once one has done the race schools and is ready to go, after entry fees, gas to tow to the track and back, feeding yourself for the weekend, tires, Friday practice, and whatever all else the car costs to run - I'm not sure it's possible to have a $500 road race weekend. In my case, a Summit Point round is $270 for entry fee, $300 tires (1/3 of a set's life) about $80 in 110 octane leaded Sunoco, and $90 in pump gas (1-1/2 tanks of fuel in the Tacoma). I'll usually stop at Sheetz and get morning coffee and a sandwich for later + ice and drinks each day.

So assuming nothing breaks, throw in an oil change w/ the good stuff and a Suzuki filter, brake pad and consumable wear - your at about a grand.

And, as I said - I'm doing it about as cheaply as I can considering total long term costs. Like don't save $20 on oil but have to buy an engine, that sort of deal...

racerfink
racerfink Dork
5/23/12 11:45 p.m.

ITC cars are THE cheapest way to go racing, from my personal experience. You can run 93 octane pump gas if you want. Even lower if the compression ratio of your motor is low. Hell, I run 87 octane in my Spec Miata, and that's in the Florida heat.

fasted58
fasted58 UltraDork
5/24/12 7:16 a.m.
93EXCivic wrote: Ok so if not Formula Vee what class is there that has a low buy in that is a purpose built race car? I guess F500 is the other option because I am seeing disadvantages to the F500 as well.

F600

oughta be plenty of old (and cheaper) F500 chassis out there for conversion. Tow w/ a HF trailer, get yur track jollies cpl times/ month

turboswede
turboswede PowerDork
5/24/12 8:08 a.m.

The cheapest/easiest way to go racing?

Rent.

Arrive and drive.

Spend your time working on the other projects. Try different cars before buying into a specific class.

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