Every man should own at least a basic set of tools. I probably take owning tools to the extreme, but I am never more frustrated than when I am trying to work on a project or my car at home and I don’t have access to my tools. I am sure not everyone cares to be so mechanically inclined. But don’t be the annoying guy that has to constantly borrow tools. (that means don’t ask me to borrow mine)
The first drift driver that I was a crew chief for was this guy. After trying to work with half ass teams, he has decided to shoot out on his own. Got to give the guy props for that. I felt so bad for him, I even pulled a couple all nighters with the guy. Hopefully he can put together a championship run this year.
After busting ass for 2 weeks on a shoe string budget, he pulled off a 2nd place finish at the first event. Should have took first but still not bad. But I would never tell him that. Tire companies out there, sponsor Quoc Ly. He is going to mop up the field this year once this car is dialed in.
As I mentioned before, I got contracted to prep a Lexus. Working with my buddy Keith Covey, we ended up gutting this guy and measuring it up for cage. Sounds easy enough, but the customer requested that the top still be able to fold up and down. This, added with the fact that the firewall on this car is stupid high, made figuring where to put the halo an issue. We wanted to ensure that the driver had the maximum amount of head space with out interference with any pipes.
The majority of the final welding was done by Keith. We would work together on fitting the pipes, I would come back and it would be welded together. Although the majority of the time was spent fitting the pipes, the car looks dramatically different with pipes welded in it. Keith ended up working past the point you see in the pictures; finishing up the cage to its entirety. Hopefully we’ll see this chassis win a couple carbon trophies.
I was watching my buddy working for a day and a half making this bracket. When he asked me what I thought, I told him “you have too much time on your hands.” He laughed. Must be nice to not have to build a new car in the off season.
Its no secret that I have been pretty jaded when it comes to cars in the last couple of years. Dumbass customers, whack margins, shitty trends have all but killed my love for something that I used to be so passionate about. If it wasn’t for finding new things to learn about and friends dragging me back in, I would probably not do anything with cars and be a bit happier. But every once in a while you find something to rev your engine back up. (no pun intended) Seeing this thing on the dyno and riding around in them has done that. You turn up the boost and it makes more power. Amazing! Lets see how long this lasts for…
I know I know, its been months since I have been posting on this thing. Just like all my other hobbies, keeping up with this thing comes in waves. But this time I have a decent excuse. The end of last year was pretty uneventful with me mostly concentrating on my studies. I guess at the tail end, they try to challenge you a little. This semester I kind of took it easy though so I think I should have a little more time to work at blogging and my billion other interests.
As for the month of January, I took on this project:
I have never directly built a cage for a chassis before and wanted to take on the project. This was a definitely no easy task. The chassis has to ad hear to the regulations of the series it was running in as well as retain the ability to retract the hard top. For the most part of the holidays and begining of January I locked myself in the workshop and worked on prepping the chassis for welding and fabricated the cage along side my buddy Keith. I will post more pictures of the finished cage later on.
This is the shock towers stitched together. I would have normally spotted in between the welds, but the customer just wanted to stitch at the edge. This was tough as the metal would run and the weld area would get contaminated due to the adhesive between the layers. Hopefully it will look a little better once the chassis is painted.
Our first attempt at setting the cam timing in on my motor ended up being a exercise in futility as every time we tried to set the dial indicator, the needle would walk. After about an hour of frustration, Naoto suggested that we figure out a valve angle for the head and make a tool. Honestly, I couldn’t really conceptualize what the hell he was talking about, but I just did what he asked me and called Japan for the data.
Since the guys over at Apexi have been nice enough to let me use their facility, I took advantage and helped myself to using the mill as well(well to be accurate, Naoto used the mill and I just helped him by cutting stuff). After a couple hours of measuring and cutting, we came up this tool. I moves in any position and keeps the shaft of the dial indicator in line with the retainer. This way we can maintain the proper angle and keep the end of the shaft from walking as the valve travels up and down.
Metal arts and crafts is getting funner and funner! Hmmm, maybe I should make that splitter for the Civic…