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PIR Volvo wagon--to clear a few things up.


Guest Jonathan
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Guest Jonathan

Apparently we've been catching some serious flack for how "fast" our car was on a number of forums.

We blatantly told the officials that we had and we showed documentation to show we dumped 90% of the $500 on the suspension.

We had a great suspension on the car, and as we all know exit speed = straightline speed.

Also the original 268k bottom end was original 268K miles and NOTHING was changed. We did take the head off and replace the headgasket, and our shop does own a head surfacing machine. We decked the head, put the largest stock Volvo cam we could find for $40 in it and slapped it back on.

It was stock management, stock everything but our suspension and our engine...except decking the head, a stock volvo cam and a baffled oilpan..oh and the welded diff.

I know many of you were just that shocked that a volvo station wagon could come within and hour of possibly taking 3rd...for those of you who are shocked come out to a conference race sometime and you'll see a car with 8K into it run 1.34's...at PIR.

I had a GREAT time as did my whole team and everyone was great to race against....but I don't like the idea of people saying we were cheating just because they cannot handle the fact that a talented group of guys who build volvo race cars for a living were able to throw a $140 craigslist car out onto the track and be soo quick.

We also had a driver that had 25 years of experience at PIR and used to run an IMSA b sedan volvo and won numerous events back in the day. Being a great driver ALWAYS helps.

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It was clear from the time I spent on the track with your team that you had some serious driving talent in that thing. Every time it passed me I was surprised at how much more the driver was able to get out of it and find lines that I didn't even know were there. I know erik looked over your car, if it was "cheating" you would have been given some kind of penalty. Thanks for the background though, it was interesting to hear how well this strategy worked out for you.

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Guest Jonathan

the suspension was awesome...and we did just enough to the engine for it to at least have a bit more power...based on driving real racing cars...I expect that car had ~125-130whp

We had 3 novice racers as drivers(IE they have raced at PIR and our working on their area license), 1 licensed ICSCC driver and 1 driver who is not currently licensed but very talented, and 1 driver who has run a few track days.

our crew did 3 radiator swaps, a power steering bracket, a rear-end swap, and a tranny speedo gear plug.

They ROCKED.

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Guest Jonathan

hehe...I had a guy in there that has raced a BUNCH in the last 5 years and knew the track REALLY really well. He kinda put it on autopilot and was running a easy 1.45s conserving the car and was 13 seconds faster than any other car out there.

When one of the Chumpcar folks came down and asked us (because we were running so fast during the fog) if we thought it was safe, we asked our driver...he felt fine but felt that it was unsafe because so many other drivers were not feeling good out there.

We were so sad that when we had to recommend that we take a break....even though it was the best thing to redflag the race...but we were catching people left and right.

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Guest TroubleOnWheels

Apparently we've been catching some serious flack for how "fast" our car was on a number of forums.

We blatantly told the officials that we had and we showed documentation to show we dumped 90% of the $500 on the suspension.

We had a great suspension on the car, and as we all know exit speed = straightline speed.

Also the original 268k bottom end was original 268K miles and NOTHING was changed. We did take the head off and replace the headgasket, and our shop does own a head surfacing machine. We decked the head, put the largest stock Volvo cam we could find for $40 in it and slapped it back on.

It was stock management, stock everything but our suspension and our engine...except decking the head, a stock volvo cam and a baffled oilpan..oh and the welded diff.

I had a GREAT time as did my whole team and everyone was great to race against....but I don't like the idea of people saying we were cheating just because they cannot handle the fact that a talented group of guys who build volvo race cars for a living were able to throw a $140 craigslist car out onto the track and be soo quick.

You guys made my list of 'should have penalized' on the other thread, but only because I realized in hind-sight that you guys did show 90% of your money going into the suspension and didn't account for the head work at all. Gaskets cost money! Still, in the end, I don't know if someone would pay more than $500 for it sitting in your front yard.... :o It certainly wasn't 'fast' but it was quick as all heck!

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Guest village idiot

There were people complaining about many of the cars out there. I know a few of the teams personally and cars were pulled out of blackberry bushes, completely wrecked former race cars, cars pulled from watery graves, etc. Once teams put a whole bunch of their own "free labor" into the car and weeks hunting down free or next to free parts to make it drivable, its hard to convince anyone it's really a $500 car. Our shark Miata was a former race car that was totaled this year with a motor we bought for $100 and rebuilt ourselves. RTV sealant was the gasket of choice. Every piece of metal in front of the shock mounts looked like chewed bubble gum before we started. We know a bunch of Miata racers including some of our drivers and scavanged any leftover parts that were somewhat serviceable from whoever. The junk yard GAVE us the shocks and springs for free. We removed the full race suspension that came with the car to be fair. It wasn't a cleverly disguised race car. It was a basket case.

My point is just that unless it's a bone stock Escort, some people will look at any car that winds up fast because people got a good deal and then lived in their garage for weeks to clean the bugs and sludge out of the cylinder head (plus have a team that knows the car inside out and races them regularly) and say that car must be a cheater.

Remember the wrecked shark though. We will be back. Oh yes...we will be back (with better lights). We have some old suspension parts under one drivers porch, scrap angle iron, a welder and more theme ideas. Many have said "stick a fork in it" but it will rise like the Phoenix from the flames!!! (insert sinister laughing here)

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Guest Jonathan

hehe...nice work on wanting to get the shark alive again..

I hear ya on the slaving part.

My wife and others are happy to have their husbands back...for a few more months :unsure:

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Guest schwank

No grudges here. Your car was great and a blast to watch from behind the wheel. We caught a lot of flack for having a Porsche... "there is no $500 Porsche" etc. The truth is there are a lot of really beat up cars out there, and many of them can be made quite drivable by competent folks with experience on a given platform. Our car was the same deal... sat in a field for years, with a history of accidents, sawzall holes in the rockers, and no title. We used cast-off old factory parts and never opened the top or bottom end. In fact our fuel pump likely failed while we were in the top 10 because of the rusty gas tank shedding crap once it had full fuel and was sloshed around. I know I could not make a junk Honda or anything else run for 24 hours so it is natural to go with what you know.

There are various ways to get a car done. Some used 'totaled' race cars. Some use cars that have sat forever in a non-running state. And some just use really crappy $500 running cars. The labor and knowledge can really make a difference.

I loved the variety! American muscle. Japanese wagon gone woody. A grassy SHO. A shark. And a fiat! Whatever... it made for some fun racing. Thanks to all!

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Guest timdeckert

I wouldn't feel to defensive about claims of cheating. racers who are competitive and then it doesn't go well have 5 stages of grief over the loss (or lack of winning). One of them includes accusations of cheating.

BTW, nice job on changing the rear end. The team worked as a team and thirty a couple minutes is fast for any rear end swap. That was impressive. My first shift of the weekend was 0200-0400 in the fog. Took me a while to get into any sort of rhythm, my apologies to the driver I help up. The first time I tried to get off line and point I went 2 wheels off. Didn't miss the chicane any, and after the track got slippery (I think we hit dew point?)it was everything you could ask for and more if you wanted entertainment. Like a you tube video of worlds greatest spin outs.

I would like to know which team recalibrated the db meter! We will be re-do the famous quad muffler exhaust. As a final note, no one has accused the P71 of cheating yet and I feel a little left out.

ok, I'm over it. See you on the track again soon I hope.

Tim

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Guest TroubleOnWheels

I would like to know which team recalibrated the db meter! We will be re-do the famous quad muffler exhaust. As a final note, no one has accused the P71 of cheating yet and I feel a little left out.

ok, I'm over it. See you on the track again soon I hope.

Tim

It's funny about the noise. They had it on for the whole race, and certain cars just kept getting louder and louder. I was in the tower some times and started to wonder 'which lap will car X fail noise on'.

I couldn't figure it out until my last stint in the car. Most of these car run like crap, and on decel/accell/shift they load the crappy turbo mufflers up with unburnt fuel then ignite it on the shift to a spectacular backfire. Every. Time. I know our car did it rhythmically, and was way louder at the end than the beginning. It's the old wives tale: we're literally blowing out our glass packs! By the end of the race we were hitting 92db often: time for a new muffler.

I think the P71 cheated by making me feel guilty for winning the 'ugliest car at the beginning of the race' award. I think you guys had that in the bag...maybe a little more effort on theme and you would have been a shoe-in :P

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Guest timdeckert

It's funny about the noise. They had it on for the whole race, and certain cars just kept getting louder and louder. I was in the tower some times and started to wonder 'which lap will car X fail noise on'.

I couldn't figure it out until my last stint in the car. Most of these car run like crap, and on decel/accell/shift they load the crappy turbo mufflers up with unburnt fuel then ignite it on the shift to a spectacular backfire. Every. Time. I know our car did it rhythmically, and was way louder at the end than the beginning. It's the old wives tale: we're literally blowing out our glass packs! By the end of the race we were hitting 92db often: time for a new muffler.

I think the P71 cheated by making me feel guilty for winning the 'ugliest car at the beginning of the race' award. I think you guys had that in the bag...maybe a little more effort on theme and you would have been a shoe-in :P

I would like to point out that all 4 of our mufflers stayed on the whole race. I put a hole in one by driving over a rumble strip backwards. When I played golf I always hoped for a hole in one...

And yes, if the P71 ever wins an award for ugliest car on the trailer I am sure I will finally be accused of cheating and be part of the in-crowd!

:)

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Guest TroubleOnWheels

thanks guys. BTW were there any printouts on the DB? I'd love to know what our car showed...just so I know.

Just a guy watching a digital read out with a radio, nothing permanent on record. Sorry :) In the inspection you can ask for a reading (we have it set up for suspicious cars) and any time during the race we should be able to tell you, if you ask.

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Guest posnova

Congratulations to all the teams out there. I was one of the novice first-time-in-a-car-with-a-cage guys out there. It was a blast. Our strategy was to give all us guys without any experience time in the car, when it was daylight. The extra pits early on kept us around 13th to 10th. Once we got some real skill behind the wheel, we got a printout of us all the way up to 4th, and then due to a pit of the 3rd place we were chasing, we knew we had 3rd in the bag. Unfortunately an incredibly talented driver encountered a recipe for disaster with all the ingredients necessary, and that was the end of that.

Stick a fork in it? After staring at it for 15 minutes discussing how toast it really was, we tore into it anyway and went so far as to replace a lower control arm (with much assistance from a pry-bar). Further inspection revealed that unless the whole field wanted to tolerate a 30mph moving obstacle for the remaining 13 hours on track, we'd best let it sit. Would it run? Yeah. Would it race? No. Remember the yellow firebird for the last hour? Yeah, that would have been us for 13. With the fog rolling in, it was a team decision to let it sleep. Never fear, though, Bruce. This thing is coming back, whether it's in Spokane in April, or in Portland in October, it's coming back.

Other notables for the race:

Does anyone know the team that was running the red '79 camaro, #6 car? No one or their grandma could complain about that thing's value. A clear acid-test pass for $500. I'd nominate that team's crew for 2nd best wrenchers out there, behind the squirrels of fury. How many times did #6 leave with serious trouble, and yet, still come back again.

Did anyone get a DB meter on #74 green camaro? Backpressure shifting down for turn 1, that thing was unreal. How many sets of brake pads did #81, the crown vic, get through? Whatever they did to the exhaust, that was a wicked sounding 4.6 (if that's what was still in it). And finally, thank you Dodge Colt #11 for not letting off throttle after buzzing the pit crews during the last lap on the wall. The smoke-screen you left at turn 1 every lap would make a dragon jealous.

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Guest wipeout

That #6 Camaro was being run by Russ from Racetech who built our (#00) cage. I think they were trying to finish it Saturday morning at 3AM...glad to see them make it for the event!

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Guest TroubleOnWheels

Other notables for the race:

Does anyone know the team that was running the red '79 camaro, #6 car? No one or their grandma could complain about that thing's value. A clear acid-test pass for $500. I'd nominate that team's crew for 2nd best wrenchers out there, behind the squirrels of fury. How many times did #6 leave with serious trouble, and yet, still come back again.

Did anyone get a DB meter on #74 green camaro? Backpressure shifting down for turn 1, that thing was unreal. How many sets of brake pads did #81, the crown vic, get through? Whatever they did to the exhaust, that was a wicked sounding 4.6 (if that's what was still in it). And finally, thank you Dodge Colt #11 for not letting off throttle after buzzing the pit crews during the last lap on the wall. The smoke-screen you left at turn 1 every lap would make a dragon jealous.

Those guys in the camaro were heros. Came late after a night in the ER with an ailing team member, replaced or tune about every damn part on that car. True competitors.

We did DB the camaro. Over and over and over again. they got pulled in, if I remember right, more than once to make changes. I think the 81 had four mufflers on it at the end!

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Guest timdeckert

Congratulations to all the teams out there. I was one of the novice first-time-in-a-car-with-a-cage guys out there. It was a blast. Our strategy was to give all us guys without any experience time in the car, when it was daylight. The extra pits early on kept us around 13th to 10th. Once we got some real skill behind the wheel, we got a printout of us all the way up to 4th, and then due to a pit of the 3rd place we were chasing, we knew we had 3rd in the bag. Unfortunately an incredibly talented driver encountered a recipe for disaster with all the ingredients necessary, and that was the end of that.

Stick a fork in it? After staring at it for 15 minutes discussing how toast it really was, we tore into it anyway and went so far as to replace a lower control arm (with much assistance from a pry-bar). Further inspection revealed that unless the whole field wanted to tolerate a 30mph moving obstacle for the remaining 13 hours on track, we'd best let it sit. Would it run? Yeah. Would it race? No. Remember the yellow firebird for the last hour? Yeah, that would have been us for 13. With the fog rolling in, it was a team decision to let it sleep. Never fear, though, Bruce. This thing is coming back, whether it's in Spokane in April, or in Portland in October, it's coming back.

Other notables for the race:

Does anyone know the team that was running the red '79 camaro, #6 car? No one or their grandma could complain about that thing's value. A clear acid-test pass for $500. I'd nominate that team's crew for 2nd best wrenchers out there, behind the squirrels of fury. How many times did #6 leave with serious trouble, and yet, still come back again.

Did anyone get a DB meter on #74 green camaro? Backpressure shifting down for turn 1, that thing was unreal. How many sets of brake pads did #81, the crown vic, get through? Whatever they did to the exhaust, that was a wicked sounding 4.6 (if that's what was still in it). And finally, thank you Dodge Colt #11 for not letting off throttle after buzzing the pit crews during the last lap on the wall. The smoke-screen you left at turn 1 every lap would make a dragon jealous.

81 car was in 4 times for noise Saturday. We tried several homemade sound reducers but ended up at Baxters for 2 more mufflers and that did the job. We call it the Friends of PIR quad muffler mocha half caf get bente exhaust. I'm not sure if the car was ever quiet but an exhaust redo is coming, not aimed at the sound meters. If we have to be quieter to race all night in Portland we will be quieter. Easy choice and there is no benefit to the extra noise. It's still the 4.6 that city of Salem pd used with only 110k. It was a PIT trainer at the academy before we got it. I bought a matching one for parts car but nothing has broken so I sold the parts car about a year ago. We changed front brake pads at about 2 AM. They were NAPA cop duty ceramic pads that served us well for 2 LeMons races, an HPDE at PIR and 12 or so chumptastic hours. We ran out of back brakes at about 245 Sunday at T10, our apologies to someone (#88 I think). We will run carbotech pads next and if any worries we will move up to newer P71 brakes. We may have to paint the airdam john deere green before the next race in honor of that agricultural experience. It was good racing and our crew guys did absolute wonderful work for the drivers. We had a ball racing along side you all.

Tim

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Guest wipeout

John,

As a neighbor of PIR myself, I just don't get it. Maybe it's because I love the track, but the guy outside RIGHT NOW with a leaf blower is more annoying than any track day activities. Hell, the trains and airplanes are louder inside my house maybe two miles from the track...and they run throughout the night ALL THE TIME.

Guess I need to do some e-mailing of the City officials myself!

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Guest stumptownchump

Other notables for the race:

Does anyone know the team that was running the red '79 camaro, #6 car? No one or their grandma could complain about that thing's value. A clear acid-test pass for $500. I'd nominate that team's crew for 2nd best wrenchers out there, behind the squirrels of fury. How many times did #6 leave with serious trouble, and yet, still come back again.

We didn't actually "finish" the car until 5 minutes before race time. Most of the crew worked through the night on Friday just to get it rolling. The first time that it ran under it's own power was actually driving down pit lane to start the race!!

What a BLAST!!

Our goal was to do everything in our power to finish the race, a goal that we almost accomplished until the #3 and #5 rods punched through the block about 15 minutes before the end.

During the race we changed the carb due to it being clogged with silicone from a dubious fuel cell, broke a total of three rocker arms at different times during the race, and grenaded a clutch. The car itself was plagued by the EBOLA virus as it was leaking fluids from every available orifice. Oil was blowing through the fire wall so badly that we had to put "kitty litter" down on the floor boards so our feet could stay on the pedals.

Have no fear, we are already planning to race down in Sonoma in January.

Thanks to all the drivers, crew and staff for making the event one to remember!

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Guest TroubleOnWheels

Oil was blowing through the fire wall so badly that we had to put "kitty litter" down on the floor boards so our feet could stay on the pedals.

Currently my favorite thing of all time!

We'll see you guys in just a few short weeks (ok, like 10 of em)

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Guest Stefan Mullikin

Huh, you weren't the only one. without the splash shield under the filler cap in the valve cover we lost enough oil to have it end up on the floorboard of our car. A little messy, but since it was also about 200degrees, well Kala didn't enjoy it very much and I can't blame her for that :)

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Guest Jonathan

when we blew the rear diff, my guys slid a metal drip pan underneath the diff as they undid the diff cover bolts. The 2-3 tablespoons of fluid that came out was so hot it melted through the drip pan....

the undercoating was melting underneath the car where the rear axle was..

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Folks:

While we're clearing the air I'd like to chime in.

What a great weekend of fun.

Our #33 Git Miata Here was rolled and totaled in Aug '07 on T5 at Pacific Raceway.

It was given to one of our guys w/o engine, brakes, hood, top, trunk lid, windshield or any race suspension parts. In short, a body shell. It sat waiting for the crusher until we heard about ChumpCar.

Our donor engine had 130K and was bone stock. We didn't open it up. We straightened the cage and added more suport. Suspension entirely stock. We had to bend the left front control arm to get negative camber.

We spent our money on brake pads and tires after calls to John. One of our guys had a free day and thought that he would help out by detailing the engine compartment. We didn't find out about that until after the pressure washer and Gunk engine cleaner had been liberally applied. TERRIBLE IDEA. (thanks,Phil)

That caused some raised eyebrows at inspection. Eric mentioned his concern about one of the Miatas but we were early in the process and were topless. Not the crew, the car!

Other teams must have put their best drivers out first in the rain. Ours didn't. They sent me.

I have 5 years of Vintage FV time in the Northwest and am used to rain in the face at PIR.

I thought I saw a couple of agressive drivers, then relized that they were just a whole lot better than me so I tried to follow them. NOT!

A bunch of cars were faster than we were. But, I doubt if any were luckier. Our drivers were all FV types and are used to steady speeds (read: no power) and carrying momentum through the turns (read:no power)

We had even tire wear and no changes. Brake pads had about 20% remaining and, again, no changes.

We won by 11 laps and the #2 car had two brake pad changes. How close was that???

ADDITIONALLY, on the way back to our pit after the victory celebration, we lost a valve. We could not have gone another lap.

Thanks to all for your track manners and great racing. It was such fun to be out there with all of you.

See you in Spokane.

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