Last updated 7/9/03
Another couple optispark failures (7/9/03) Wow, it's been quite awhile since the last update. I've been pretty busy and it's been raining a TON. I'll start back in late May. We got the car put together just a couple days before the Hot Rod Power Tour, it was a scramble, but we made it. I was waiting on some parts to come in so I could put exhaust on the car before the tour, so I was driving it around town some. I noticed a pretty significant part throttle miss. I talked to Bob Bailey about it, and I posted a question at Camaroz28.com. Nobody really knew what it was.. Well I went to put my exhaust on the night before the power tour and the car started running terribly bad. I was able to borrow an optispark from a buddy and we put that on just hours before the tour. It turns out the optispark was broken (I haven't taken it apart yet to see why), but the new opti fixed me up.
I went on the Power Tour and all went well, we logged around 3000 miles and the car ran great. I couldn't have been happier. We had a great time and we're already looking forward to next year.
After the Power Tour we went to Chevellabration in Memphis, and then the rain started. It rained for nearly a month straight, but last weekend it stopped, if just for one day. So we headed up to Hattiesburg, MS to Hub City Dragway for some test and tune.. The car was running better than ever on the new optispark and LTCC combo, so I wanted to see what it would do.
1st pass I left off idle because I didn't know how well the drag radials would hook.. I got like a 1.70 60', a 6.35 1/8th E.T. @ 117mph. Right near the 1/8th I got on the rev limiter in 3rd.... The converter is too loose. I was blowing through the converter. It's going back to Precision Industries ASAP. I coasted to a 10.20 @ 116mph.
2nd pass I just knew I could get a 9 second pass on drag radials so I left a little bit harder 1.60 60'.. Things were feeling better when WHAM! The car totally layed down and started popping.. Everytime I hit the gas it just popped. Eventually I just coasted to the return road where it died. Results from that pass were: 6.25 1/8th E.T. @ 111mph and 10.40 @ 107 for the 1/4.
The car was dead and wouldn't start so we winched it in the trailer and drug it home. I didn't get a chance to work on it again until today.. I found the optispark had literally exploded.. This is two optisparks in 6 weeks. The second one was almost brand new when it exploded. The LTCC sure is nice, but I wish someone would make an optispark replacement.
LS1 Coilpack Conversion ( LTCC ) thanks to Bob Bailey (5/24/03) I join the ranks of satisfied customers for the LTCC coil conversion. This "black box" takes the high voltage out of the vulnerable opti-spark. The high voltage in the optispark creates damaging ozone, and is a suspected culprit to the longevity issues asscociated with the opti-spark. The LTCC box costs about $400 and is virtually plug-and-play. I paid just over $100 for a set of LS1 coilpacks, and another $65 for a new set of Moroso Blue Max Univeral Fit plug wires with Optispark boots. (The LS1 coilpacks and Optispark use the same plug terminals.)
I've been driving the car for a couple days now and the LTCC works flawlessly so far, the car seems "crisper". I haven't really had a chance to go WOT (it just isn't safe on the street), but I expect my ignition problems to be solved with the LTCC.
Thanks again Bob!!!
Email bob for more info, or to purchase the LTCC.
LTCC installation pics.
Finally Finished, Hot Rod Power Tour; Here I come!! (5/23/03) Man it was alot of work but it's finally done. I didn't get my heads back until LAST week. GTP was supposed to have them done by April 1st.. Oh well. The interior is all back in, well except for one seat, but I'll put it in before the tour..
I fired the car up this morning, it lit right off and sounded real crisp. I drove around today and didn't even hook the laptop up, the tune seems to be right on. The only thing left to do before the tour is to get my dual 3" exhaust installed. Last year I ran the 4" mufflex, but I think it was too heavy so I'm going with something a little different this time, oh, the mufflex wouldn't work with the madman torque arm either.. Well it's Saturday night and I haven't had any sleep to speak of since Wednsday night, so I'm outta here. Don't forget to check out the latest pictures before you leave! I'm going to take some better pictures of the LTCC coil brackets I fabbed, and the LTCC install in general, just not today.. :)
A few random pics of the completed project.
Completed Roll Cage and 30" tires(4/28/03) It's already been a month since my last update.. Time is flying by. I'm really scrambling to get the car ready for the Hot Rod Power Tour. The car has gone through lots of changes since the last update. The MadMan torque arm is installed, the Wolfe Race Craft Roll Cage is installed and I switched to 30" tires. I've got enough clearance to run a 29.5 x 10.50W slick too.. Tomorrow I'm dropping the car off at the body shop to get a fresh coat of paint. Hopefully my heads will show up next week so I can put the motor back together, then when the car gets back from the paint shop, I can put the motor in and go. I've got a month before the tour starts and about 2 weeks of that will be spent at the paint shop.. Maybe I shouldn't have spent the month of April drinking beer.. naaahhh.
Roll Cage and 315/60/15 Drag Radials
Got the new brake system wrapped up! (3/24/03) It seems like this past weekend flew by and I didn't get much accomplished, but I think I did. I got the brake lines ran, the master cylinder installed, and I switched from a Meziere pump to a CSI pump and plugged the heater hose taps on the water pump. It was a pretty busy weekend with a lot of time spent chasing parts. The new brake lines turned out pretty good, I was able to re-use the "spring-thing" from the stock lines and that made things look better and it should be more durable too.. anyway, here's some pics of the progress:
My "bling-bling" new front brake line pics
Things are starting to move pretty well! (3/19/03) My Aerospace front Brakes and Strange master cylinder arrived yesterday, so I decided to take the day off work and install them. Billingsley Racing was nice enough to cut me a good deal on all my brakes/master cylinder/anti-roll bar. I have nothing but great things to say about Jay and Amber, they run a top notch business and keeping the customer happy is their first priority! The instructions provided with the Aerospace brakes were sketchy at best, but I was able to muddle through. The worst part of the whole day was trying to put the rolling k-member back under the car by_my_self! That thing about kicked my ass. I can't find my flare tool, so I'll run the brake lines this weekend.. Until then..
Aerospace front brakes and misc. pics
Last updated 3/16/03
Finally making some progress! (3/16/03) I ended up getting an anti-roll bar from Billingsley Racing. It's a very nice piece, I'm very pleased with the quality. While I was at it, I also got Aerospace brakes for all four corners, and a Strange Manual Master cylinder. This round of pics highlights the new rear suspension, legal battery box and the interior gutted for the cage upgrade. I'm shooting to have it all done in a month or so, It's also going to have a different "look" for this year. ;)
Latest pics of recent upgrades!
I found the next weakest link. (1/22/03) Since the car is down for the "rebuild", I sold my Spohn torque arm in favor of a MadMan torque arm. When I pulled the Spohn arm out, I found out why my rear wheels were about 1/2-3/4" further back than they were supposed to be.
I want to add that the Spohn torque arm is one tough bastard, not to bend or break. I'm very happy with it. I'm only selling it because I want to try some new things with the MadMan torque arm.
Mangled Moser torque arm bracket!
Rebuild 2003 is underway! (12/22/02)We dropped the motor/tranny out of the car this morning in our first step preparing for the 2003 race season! Plans include new valve springs, o-ringed heads, head studs, and an in cab boost controller. The rest of our efforts will be in weight reduction. The car weighed 3600# at the Thunder Shooutout, we need to get that down to 3300# for next year. We're looking for bottom 9's w/LT1 heads and 355 cubic inches. We would have had a 9 second pass last year if I wouldn't have lifted @ the 1000' mark and coasted to a 10.21 @ 120 mph.. Oh well, there's always next year.
Rebuild 2003 pictures!
We went to the Thunder Shootout!(11/02/02)We went to the Thunder Racing sponsored EFI shootout At No Problem Raceway on Nov, 2nd. It was great, big thanks to Thunder Racing for putting this event together! I thought the car was ready, but we had some serious problems while we were there. The car was "missing" at high rpms, it kept blowing the discharge pipes off the turbos, and I couldn't hook up for anything. I never did get to make a full pass, but somehow we lucked out and got runner-up in the Pro Outlaw division.
Here are some videos:
This is generally what I was battling. (1.1MB)
Me and Chris Sikora's car, he chucked a blower belt and I let off after the 1/8th mile mark. (1.1MB)
Me and MadMan going at it in the finals.. I let out around the 1000' mark. (2.2MB)
Another video of me and Sikora. (2.7MB)
Another view of me and Sikora. (3.2MB)
The new center section is installed! (10/02/02) I ordered it from Danny Miller's Rear Gears. I went with a Mark Williams nodular case, billet caps, billet pinion suport, billet yoke, Moser lightweight spool, and stayed with (new) 3.50:1 gears..
Pictures of the new 9" center section (10/02/02)
I broke my 9" rear :o( (9/05/02)
I don't know exactly when it happened, but I broke the carrier and the pinion gear. I can only guess I cracked it at the track, and then it just broke open when I was driving it on the street. I was taking my little boy to cub scouts and the rearend started making a HORRIBLE howling noise, I didn't know if I'd even make it home.. I guess it's time for a new one, you can bet the new one won't break.
Pictures of the broken 9" ford center section(09/05/02)
We're back from the Woodward Dream Cruise 08/20/02
It was a trip from Hell, click on the pictures to see the devastation. To keep this remotely technical, I'll just say my bro Jeff Taylor (HotRodHawk) got me a tuning session at FAST in Brighton, MI. Let me just say, there's nothing like having Lance and Craig tune your car. They are great guys, they opened up their shop and gave me an air temp sensor and parts/tools to install it.. I was stunned.
I think Craig even enjoyed riding in the car, I'd write what he said after he asked for some boost, but I don't think he want's it repeated. :o)
They spent about 3 hours on the car, and it's never ran better!
Best part? ALL FREE
Big thanks to Jeff Taylor and Mike Licht of Ramchargers, and Craig Smith and Lance Ward @ FAST. YOU GUYS ROCK!
Woodward Dream Cruise Details and some pics(08/20/02)
We're headed for the Woodward Dream Cruise 08/10/02
I've been cleaning the car, trying to get it presentable for the Woodward Dream Cruise in Pontiac Michigan! I wanted to go last year, but the car was in pieces and I was working out of town. This year I'm going! Big Thanks go out to Matt Swindle (SLONOMO) and Jeff Taylor (HotRodHawk) for putting up with us and helping out so we can come. It's a thousand mile tow (1 way), we're leaving on the 14th and should me home on the 20th. It's gonna ROCK
We went back to the track and WON! 08/03/02
We went to Mobile International Dragway on August 2nd for the Street Car Shootout. The weather was miserable and the track was pretty slick but not as bad as I thought it would be. I waited around for the car to cool down for a while then decided to make a pass. I launched easy knowing the track would be slick, I had a 1.68 60' and went sideways on the 1-2 shift, and then sideways again when the boost came on in 2nd.. It sucked. I ended up running a 7.30 @ 98mph. I was pretty disgusted and almost went home. I decided to try another pass because I knew if I could hook, I could run faster than anyone else at the track, we were running for $300 for the fastest car, heads up.
I go back to the lanes and make a pass by myself (no one wants to run me (shrug)). It hooked pretty good and I clicked off a 1.546 60' the car spun slightly but I never had to lift. Ended up running a 6.079 @ 107mph, easily quick enough for the #1 qualifying spot. I decided I wasn't going to run again unless I got bumped out of the #1 spot so we waited around for a while until they called the top 4 qualifiers. They ran #3 and #4 qualifiers for $50, then they ran us (#1 and #2 qualifiers) for $300. I was lined up against a black mustang that trailered in and didn't have mufflers (so much for "street car shootout"). I figured if I didn't spin too badly, I would have him covered. I launched easy-easy to the tune of a 1.576 60'. I don't know what his 60' was, but he was out 2 carlengths FAST, I thought Damn, I'm gonna get beat! Luckily I didn't spin, and when I shifted from 2nd to 3rd, I went around him like he broke. I ran a 6.054 @ 109mph to take the $300.. Turbos RULE
I made it to the track! 07/28/02
Big thanks to Jeff Bromberger for "loaning" me his FAST file, I ended up running his file untouched in my car. Jeff Has a 396" T-Trimmed bad-ass Camaro. I think that the fact that he's blown and I'm spooling really shows how much room I have for improvement with the tune.!
Here's the funky part, I ran at Mobile International Dragway, it's a 600' track (supposedly), they had to shorten it from a true 1/8th mile (660') because they didn't have enough shut down area and they had some pro mod type cars that were unable to get shut down in time and had to ditch it into the sand. Anyway, I ran at a 600' track and I was very pleasantly surprised with the outcome. See my Track Times page for all the details of the runs. J ! Here are a couple videos, one video shows my car, sort of, but you can hear the announcer get a little excited when he see's my street car run faster than most of the race cars at the track. The next video is almost worthless except for hearing my ET, I ran a 5.92 on a 5.90 dial in with a .525 light to take a win in the "quick 8" class (my first time drag racing in 2.5 years).. The car is "dead hooking" the 28x13.50 Hoosier QTP's and yanking the front tires a foot or so in the air. I'm leaving at 3000 rpm on the MSD 2-step, the car launches, then bogs, hence the VERY dismal 1.49-1.54 60' times. I'm need to work on the tuning to make it a little more responsive when launching. I think I'll also put a 3400 rpm pill in the 2-step and see if it leaves bit harder. All I know is: This is fun, I didn't have ANY problems with the car, everything held up just fine. I guess my diligence and attention to detail paid off.
Twin Turbo Pictures and Videos!
Grant Steering wheel and car with 28x13.50 Hoosier QTP's (08/10/02)
video My car simply setting by the trailer (Don't ask ME!)(7/28/02)(1.33M)
video 2nd pass of the day, the announcer was caught off guard.(7/28/02)(334K)
video 3rd pass of the day, horrible video but I ran a 5.92 on a 5.90 dial. (7/28/02)(1.33M)
Check out my beautiful red '98 B4C that's FOR SALE (07/07/02)
A few random pictures of the completed project (06/23/02)
video It's ALIVE 1.2M (04/27/02)
Complete fuel system pictures (04/16/02)
Here are some pictures of the motor installed (04/16/02)
A couple pictures of the motor before the final installation. (03/16/02)
Pictures of the front mount 6-core intercooler. (02/13/02)
Installation of motor/tranny, just a trial fit.(02/06/02)
Headers/Turbos bolted up w/k-member.(02/04/02)
Pictures of the corrected motor mount problem and K-member.(01/19/02)
Pictures of the welded oil pan, y-pipe, drainback tube, etc.(01/13/02)
More pictures of my twin turbo installation (01/12/02)
The first pictures of my twin turbo installation (01/12/02)
Prototype pictures of the twin turbo
Pictures of the teardown in preparation for the twin turbos
Pictures of the installation of the Turbo Action Cheetah shifter
Pictures Pertaining to the new TH400
Pictures of the new F.A.S.T.
There will be many, many updates. Keep an eye on this page for latest breaking news on the twin turbo LT1.