Moparman
Moparman New Reader
1/25/09 5:02 p.m.

I live in NE PA, a short distance from both the Weatherly and Giants Despair Hill Climbs. I also have an old FSP Charger 2.2 sitting in my garage with a 3-year-old, 3000 mile engine. I am considering going Hill climbing, but I have no idea how much a roll cage will cost me. Ok, I know what an Autopower will cost me, but not sure if that is the best route. Any suggestions?

mel_horn
mel_horn HalfDork
1/25/09 6:29 p.m.

I don't know exactly how that car would presently be classed. Best bet is to jump on the Pennsylvania Hillclimb Association forum at www.pahillclimb.org

I think there are a couple folks around your area or close by who would be able to help you.

Rob_Mopar
Rob_Mopar New Reader
1/25/09 6:35 p.m.

I'm down in SE PA. I'm looking at an S&W Race Cars cage for my RWD Duster. S&W is in Spring City PA, not too far from me. They do have a kit listed for a 2-door L-body.

I'm interested in learning a little more about hill climbing too. Not too sure how different the cage construction would need to be from the S&W kit, but it might still be a good starting point.

-Rob

Rob_Mopar
Rob_Mopar New Reader
1/25/09 8:27 p.m.

Yep. I find it easier to look at their PDF catalog though:

S&W Catalog Pg. 20

-Rob

ddavidv
ddavidv SuperDork
1/25/09 8:30 p.m.

Unless the rules have changed since I've done it, you can just use a roll bar, but I recommend the full cage for safety's sake. You also need the full head to toe fire gear and at least a bolt-in extinguisher. My best advice before doing anything is to go to an event and talk to the people there. They are usually very welcoming to new people and will be happy to help. Hill climbs are a lot of fun and at most any other than Duryea you'll get as many or more runs than at an autocross. Lots more stuff to hit though.

aeronca65t
aeronca65t Reader
1/26/09 8:56 a.m.

I have also been interested in running one of my cars in PA hillclimbs (I am presently running NASA and vintage with two different cars). You do not need a cage....I saw plenty of cars with just roll bars running at the Duryea. (though both of my cars have cages).

Since a picture may be worth a thousand words, you might wish to look at the pictures I took at the 2008 Duryea Hillclimb.

~Click Here~ to view them.

You may also wish to check out the excellent PA Hillclimb Web Forum ~Here~

Armitage
Armitage Reader
1/26/09 10:25 a.m.

I too am interested in trying hill climb. I don't have a cage, but do have a 4-pt rollbar w/6pt harnesses and full safety gear from LeMons. Besides a fire extinguisher mount, is there anything else I'm missing?

sector7
sector7 New Reader
1/26/09 10:31 a.m.

hillclimb.org

geowit
geowit Reader
1/26/09 1:33 p.m.

Please realize that the PHA runs under the auspices of SCCA Level 4 Time Trials. Check the GCR for requirements. Some classes DO require a cage. I run CSP and I'm only required to have a bar but the new car I'm building will have a full cage. Get on the PHA forum. There are a lot of people there to answer any questions you may have. Hill climbers are about the friendliest group you will ever encounter. Do come out and join us, even if only to watch.

mel_horn
mel_horn HalfDork
1/26/09 5:04 p.m.
ddavidv wrote: Unless the rules have changed since I've done it, you can just use a roll bar, but I recommend the full cage for safety's sake. You also need the full head to toe fire gear and at least a bolt-in extinguisher. My best advice before doing anything is to go to an event and talk to the people there. They are usually very welcoming to new people and will be happy to help. Hill climbs are a lot of fun and at most any other than Duryea you'll get as many or more runs than at an autocross. Lots more stuff to hit though.

I had the harrowing experience of seeing a 350Z off the road sideways at the finish line at Rose Valley, shredding the bodywork against the trees. The car did not HAVE to have a cage but he did. NO COCKPIT INTRUSION !He spent a night in the hospital (broken legs, bruised ribs IIRC )but was basically OK.

If I had my way every driver running a bar-only car would have to view our pictures of this and other results and then sign a release stating he was made aware of the hazards of our racing environment and strongly advised to run a cage.

I would strongly advise coming to one of our events perhaps observing tech and hanging out at a flag station (properly supervised,of course...)

Apexcarver
Apexcarver SuperDork
1/26/09 5:16 p.m.

I got to see this happen at my station at Polish in 2007. Thinking about what would have been if he had gone completely over the rail instead of only halfway gave me the jitters to say the least (BIGGG ravine over that guardrail.. BIG)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iZfEGvJbDW8

Moparman
Moparman New Reader
1/26/09 7:43 p.m.

I worked Weatherly about 6 years ago. I am an active autocrosser and have the name of one person who can do cages. I am just trying to guage an approximate cost because I do not want to waste this gentoemen's time if it is overall car budget for 2009. I work for Citi. Enough said.

Scott Lear
Scott Lear Club Editor
1/27/09 8:26 a.m.

Hillclimbs are a fantastic time, and they tend to be held in pretty scenic locations, so they're a great family/significant other destination. I can't speak of Eagle's Nest highly enough, I got to race on an amazing mountain road, and Ashley got to hang out in hammocks on the mountain reading, and she spent time in the outdoor jacuzzi and I got her a massage in a tepee. Surprisingly, she's eager to return.

Moparman
Moparman New Reader
1/27/09 7:10 p.m.

I agree. The scenery adds to the experience.

Jensenman
Jensenman SuperDork
1/27/09 7:49 p.m.

I did my first HC last year at Wolf Ridge, it was fantastic! Here's a video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EY6sMVd3rSY I will do more. The Abomination has a heavily braced no-sh!t 4 point bar with forward braces, honestly I would feel better in a full cage. Yes there is a lot more stuff you could hit. Like a buddy says: think of the rocks as cones except instead of 2 seconds off your time it'll ruin your weekend.

The car also has to have an SCCA logbook (at least at the ones I'll be driving) and that's what is so great about the Jensenator; it's already got a full cage and a logbook. I had to get a Time Trial license also.

FWIW, the pro built cage cost $1700.00. YMMV. Honestly, that's why I bought a bender, the first time I build a cage it will pay for itself. I had an Autopower bolt in cage in my RX7, it was okay and passed all the IT etc rules but I would feel better in a welded cage. Keep the intended future use of the car in mind too. For instance, there's no point in doing a non cross braced 4 point bar for AX just to find it's not legal for another race class meaning you now have to add more bars or worse start all over again. When doing a cage, it's better to do too much than not enough.

I ran afoul of one hillclimb rule I wasn't aware of: a race seat either has to have a back brace or meet the FIA ruling (I forget the number) which exempts it. I thought that was only required for W2W racing; wrong. I borrowed one, hillclimbers are nice people!

I want to do Eagle's Nest this year if at all possible.

Rob_Mopar
Rob_Mopar New Reader
1/27/09 8:43 p.m.

My cage plans/needs were for running with the ECTA, but I'm looking to do some other stuff with the car too. The car isn't capable of speeds requiring a full cage yet (to be honest I'll be happy of the car stays running this year), but I share the philosophy of going too much for the cage than coming up short.

I need to get more autocrossing under my belt, then I'll take a closer look at the PA hill climbs.

-Rob

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