DaveEstey PowerDork
10/24/16 8:29 a.m.

Back in the saddle the Halloween Hooptie-Fest at NHMS with LeMons.

First time out for the Loose Dzus Racing RX7 - and it was a good one!

Morning of day one - a quick nut and bolt check.

Our two novices had a spin each in the rain, which cost us about an hour as we carved a pumpkin to atone for our sins. The car was unscathed though and soldiered on. Fast lap of the day was a 1:35.024 by yours truely. A good reliably fast pace.

After a successful day 1 with no mechanical issues we suited up for day 2!

Day 2 got a little more exciting. Lap 3 of our first novice resulted in two bent rims as he "got pushed over the curb by a BMW". We threw a set of all-seasons we already had mounted on the back and told him to be careful. 2 laps later has tapped the wall with the right rear corner. Not awful, but we'll need a new tail light. Meanwhile we ran over to the drifting event next door and used their tire machine to swap our good tires onto some straight rims. Next year we'll have several good spares mounted up and ready for the occasion.

The transmission was starting to get a little balky with 3rd gear giving us a light crunch every shift. Not enough to stop us, but enough to have us eyeing the two spare transmissions in the trailer. It didn't get any worse as the day wore on.

I ran the last leg and set the fast lap for the team of a 1:32 flat before running low on gas and slowing the pace to ensure we took the checked flag on the track rather than in the pits. 635 miles of racing later she drove onto the trailer - ready for next year.

Fantastic time. Everybody on the team got about 2.5 hours of drive time and the car didn't miss a beat. We used 60 gallons of gas, so we were getting just over 10mpg. I'm sure we can improve on that a little. We are also about 6 seconds slower than the "fast" cars in class, and I think we can close that gap as well.

golfduke HalfDork
10/24/16 8:36 a.m.

Good meeting you Dave! I was right behind one of your driver's rain spins on Saturday. It was freaking NASTY out there for a while. Fogging windshield + torrential rain + standing water deep enough to see waves out the side windows = entertaining for spectators, nerve wracking for drivers. Our garage spot had a birds eye view of T11, and my team counted 20 spins in that corner alone on Saturday, haha.

DaveEstey PowerDork
10/24/16 8:44 a.m.

DaveEstey PowerDork
10/24/16 8:46 a.m.

In reply to golfduke:

Good meeting you as well. Sorry we didn't get a chance to catch up more. Hope your first LeMons experience was a good one (and that you saw what you avoided being a part of as well).

MichaelYount HalfDork
10/24/16 8:15 p.m.

Fun, fun, fun!!!!

DaveEstey PowerDork
11/14/16 8:55 a.m.

More rotary action. Beetle Knievil the 73 Super Beetle powered by a 74 REPU engine is nearly ready for the road with its new exhaust.


Jeff is going to be snapping axles in this thing...

DaveEstey PowerDork
11/14/16 9:38 a.m.
DaveEstey PowerDork
11/29/16 12:58 p.m.

The Beetle needed a sound reduction to not be cop bait, so Jeff bought a weld-on Supertrap and I did the metal gluing. The result is quite nice with all 12 included plates in use.

In other news, the Hillclimb RX7 is getting a turbocharger and EFI conversion. Step one was sourcing the intake stuff, and I randomly came across a complete S5 TII intake setup - including everything that attaches to it - for the handsome price of $78 shipped from Ohio.

I'll be using VEMS for my EFI system and letting them do the tune as well since they have experience with turbo doritos.

Next up - turbo manifold and turbocharger. End goal is 300whp.

fidelity101 SuperDork
11/29/16 2:03 p.m.

when you upgrade to some other intake manifold let me know, I need to replace the intake manifolds on the 10AE.

DaveEstey PowerDork
2/8/17 10:35 a.m.

Been pretty quiet while I work on restoring an old Honda motorcycle. Getting back into RX7 gear though.

I've contracted ANZE Suspension to set me up with some new custom dampers, which will be the first time this car will have some real suspension under it.

Last night I started work on making a new rear hatch mold, which will turn into a carbon shell with scoops for the radiators.

I shot a Facebook live video of the entire process, which included me answering live questions. Facebook won't let me publish it though since I had music in the background. Womp.

That's 3 layers of 10oz fabric

I'll be popping it off tonight and judging how much finish work I'll need to do before the carbon work.

NoPermitNeeded Reader
2/8/17 10:46 a.m.

That beetle is exactly like what I dream of doing in the near future! it's so rad!

DaveEstey PowerDork
2/13/17 9:08 a.m.

In reply to NoPermitNeeded: Yeah we're itchy for Spring so we can break it out and start snapping axles. First step is new Porche brakes all around though.

DaveEstey PowerDork
2/13/17 10:44 a.m.

My hatch mold came out great so yesterday I prepped and applied the carbon fiber. Now the waiting game begins.

DaveEstey PowerDork
2/15/17 8:15 a.m.

I popped the piece out of the mold last night and I'm pretty happy with it. It still needs to be trimmed and a wet sand, but the fitment is already very nice and the finish is quite good.

java230 Dork
2/15/17 9:34 a.m.

That looks great!

DaveEstey PowerDork
2/20/17 7:38 a.m.

Happy with the CF hatch in terms of it being my first ever CF project. But not happy in that I think I can do better.

In that light, I'll be making a new revised mold and making another CF hatch with different fabric and some balsa laminate to make it stiffer with a minor weight penalty.

In other news, my new suspension is in progress and should be done in a couple weeks. The choice in the end was a set of JRZ RS Pro dampers, which is a massive improvement over the cobbled together garbage I've had in the past.

Onward and upward!

DaveEstey PowerDork
2/27/17 8:17 a.m.

Unhappy with the first mold and armed with a bunch of tips and tricks from the composite guys at Vermont SportsCar - here we go again with a fresh mold.

I did a live video stream while I was doing this. I'll be editing it and then posting it so everybody can watch my mistakes.

DaveEstey PowerDork
3/7/17 10:36 a.m.

New CF hatch is out of the mold and trimmed and I'm really happy with it.

Here's a little of what went into this new one:

1/16" balsa core at around 60 grams per sheet

Three types of CF cloth - the heavy 12k weave in the middle. So the laminate is 5k twill weave on the outside (visible) skin, 12k plain weave, balsa, 5k plain weave.

The end result is marginally heavier (still light enough to be a sail when the forced hot air system comes on) than the first attempt but far superior in terms of strength and rigidity. Also, extending my mold per tips from Vermont Sports Car made trimming things up WAY easier.

The piece does have some cosmetic blemishes that I'll be sanding out before posting final pics.

Next CF project is the scoops for the radiators, radiator inlet manifolds and the wing.

Side note - I got some dimple dies so I'll be playing with these in the near future as well.

DaveEstey PowerDork
3/7/17 10:37 a.m.

Also messing with my master cylinders so I can position the box a bit further away from me. After making this bench bleeding setup I decided I didn't want Girlings and ordered another set of Wilwood shorties - so I'll have to do this all over again.

java230 SuperDork
3/7/17 11:25 a.m.

Thats kinda a genius bleeding solution. So simple...

drivendaily Reader
3/7/17 11:39 a.m.

Needs moar carbon, bruh.

DaveEstey PowerDork
3/7/17 2:56 p.m.

In reply to drivendaily:

Working on it!

DaveEstey PowerDork
3/7/17 8:35 p.m.

Little sanding and a top coat and she's done - until I cut holes in it for air scoops. Sigh.

I wish I could easily convey how much stiffer this is than my first attempt.. WAY stiffer.

DaveEstey PowerDork
3/9/17 10:23 a.m.

Bought my new tow rig yesterday - and promptly blew a brake line. At least a full set of stainless lines was only $60.

java230 SuperDork
3/9/17 11:01 a.m.

Cant wait to see it with big ol scoops! Looks nice

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