Monday, May 23, 2016

The drawer of Jeremy

Today is all about finishing what you start. It's something I'm pretty big on. I'm not always quick, which is why a bachelor's degree took about nine years, and a race car that should have taken a summer took four years... But it's almost always worth it to finish. 

The first thing I finished was suspension adjustment. It's not fine tuned, that will come with time, but last week I told you about adjusting the rear coil overs. It made a huge difference in ride quality and this week I adjusted the front coil overs. I was also able to do this adjustment at work, where we have a vehicle scale which meant I was able to do a rough corner balance. I won't get too deep into what a corner balance is but if you are interested in learning more, Grassroots Motorsports has an excellent article on it. In the end I was able to achieve an almost perfect cross-weight without the driver.

Nonsense scribblings in an attempt to find the appropriate settings
Perfect Crossweight: FR+RL = FL + RR

This is also the post where Grace gets her final stitches and the surgery which started over two years ago is completed. Ever since I got her running, I've been cruising around in a Flintstonian motorcar. The floorpan was not entirely steel, and the last hole was covered by the saddest excuse for a floormat I've ever seen. It must have been taken from the clearance rack at The Family Dollar. It was in my Jeep when I bought it. I actually got a discount on the Jeep because these floormats were so bad they reduced the value of a $2000 Jeep. But enough about the floormats, let's talk about a metal cone! 

While I all too often show you my escapades in using the wrong tool or making my own, there really is something to be said for using the right tool. I made this half-cone out of a sheet of metal I got for $5 with a little assistance from a sheet metal brake. 

The whole process was pretty straightforward, as you'll see below. A bit of trimming here, some patching there, a visit to the drawer of Jeremy, and four hours later, I had a complete transmission tunnel. I also had a first time experience: I started myself on fire with a grinder. I've started myself on fire with a welder several times, but using a grinder to do the job was a first.

Finishing the suspension adjustment and tying up the floorpan modifications both made a huge difference in how Grace feels. She's starting to feel like an actual car, not just some janky middle school science fair project. The suspension is now compliant, and I'm not afraid for my life when I see a seam in the concrete, or a Taco Bell wrapper. Closing up the floorpan blocks out a significant amount of noise (don't worry she's still painfully loud inside the cabin at speed) and will allow me to slowly start inching towards having a real interior.

Until next time, stay safe and don't play in the street.

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