Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Taking on Track Night in America



Last year the SCCA started a new program called Track Night in America.  It focuses on fun, non-competitive events at racetracks across the country and week nights.  The idea is you get off work a little early, get to the track, have some fun and then get home at a decent hour to get back to work the next day.

This month I decided to check out the event at Carolina Motorsports Park on a Thursday night. Several of the local SCR folks were out and we had a great time playing on track for three 20 minute sessions.  Generally it was much more relaxed than other track events, but for those of us just wanting to come out for a little bit of cheap track time, it was a great deal.
Image result for cmp map

Just about any car that's safe to drive on the road is allowed and it's a cool way to get a sense of what all this performance driving stuff is all about.  You can check out all of the Track Night events in your area here:

https://www.tracknightinamerica.com/


I had so much fun I forgot to take pictures, but Lemons/Coronet teammate, John had his camera rolling and got a few laps on track behind me in the red Miata:


The first weekend in May will see both the NMS North and South cars AND the Lemons Coronet out at CMP again with NASA. More on-track action to come!

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Lemons Coronet Update

The team was back at it today in Augusta, Georgia where the car currently resides.  The checklist to be ready for shakedown testing in early May at Carolina Motorsports Park is looming large.
Always more fun when there's more than 1 racecar around.

Big thanks to one of our newer teammates, Landon who is storing the car for now and let us use his shop space to work on the car alongside his own racecar. Up first we needed to service the rear axles and brakes, so I got to work removing the drum brakes and axles. 
With a bit of muscle and a ratchet, the rear axles pop right out.

We uncovered a little wear on the rear driver axle, so we'll investigate further next weekend but suspect a failed wheel bearing was allowing it to shift inboard too much and contacted the inside of the differential.  
On the left, you can see metal material that's been transferred onto the axle.  On the right, this one is like new. 

Up front, we refreshed the slightly larger calipers we sourced and got to work tearing down the front suspension.  Several bushings were completely torn up and the ball joints were looking questionable. We all voted to make the car safer to drive, so we'll be servicing all of those components. 
This pretty much sums up the overall state of a lot of suspension components.

While I was going through latex gloves at an unrivaled pace with the mix of axle grease, gear oil, and brake fluid, Landon was tackling the slick new hood pins up front.  While the factory hood latch was okay, the Coronet has one heavy duty hunk of steel covering the motor, so we wanted to really keep it in place.  We'll chalk that up to a safety improvement as well. 
New hood pin installed. Nice and flush mount unit to preserve that awesome 70s aerodynamic body.

Luke, our electrical guru was busy inside the car buried in copper, relays, and switches.  The car is getting very close to having full road-worthy lighting.  On Friday I transferred the title to myself from the previous owner in Texas, so we will have the option to street drive the car for testing or transportation to events or just bringing it out to cars and coffee if we want. 
Luke making spaghetti.

Today we also test fit a new routing for the brake ducts (because hauling down a heavy old car with drums in the back is going to need some serious cooling). We also managed to fix some failed valve spring retainers thanks to a good find at a local junkyard by Kyle.  

Old calipers get new gaskets and pistons.
Next weekend the full team will be back at it, possibly for a 2 day weekend to finalize the car for track time.  Everything is going to start coming together really quick and we're excited as ever. 

Shortly after this photo it exploded into a hundred pieces and a cloud of dust. More abused suspension components.

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Williamsburg British and European Show Highlights

MORGAN

Up near Williamsburg Virginia this morning, we visited the 18th annual British and European Car Show. I think there was some rain later in the morning, but for the time we were there it was nice weather. We last visited this show two years ago, and I remember seeing some French cars at that one, but this year, the focus was on British cars. Here's the British highlights from today, and we'll follow up with some nice Italian cars later this week too.

MG GT


MG GT


MORGAN PLUS 8



MODIFIED MG

MG SPOILER ALERT!
MORGAN WITH QUILT

TRIUMPH TR7

TRIUMPH TR6

AUSTIN HEALEY

LEYLAND MINI

LEYLAND BADGE
LEYLAND MINI

AUSTIN

AUSTIN

SUNBEAM ALPINE

SUNBEAM TIGER

TIGER


TRIUMPH

LOTUS ESPRIT

LOTUS ELAN

ASTON MARTIN DB7

MARCOS

MARCOS COSWORTH ENGINE
BENTLEY

BENTLEY

1949 DAIMLER DB18