Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Test & Tune

We headed down to Spokane Raceway last Saturday for a little T&T with the altered. We did our best to keep it low key knowing that the day would be plagued with issues and we were right. From the get-go our new water pump was having interference issues and popping fuses causing our water temp to sky rocket. Our tach wasn't working so shifting was a guessing game, fortunately we do have a rev limiter. We breezed through tech which was a relief and we were whisked into the staging lanes and into the burnout box before I really had a chance to psyche myself out. The whole driving process is completely different than our black wagon which we can pretty much drive blindfolded. The line lock and push button controls are both on the left side which will take some getting used to. The car spun it's tires o.k. but had problems making tire speed which translates into less smoke and even less sticky. The launch was fairly unspectacular and it was clear that the 5.38 gears were way too much for this combo of tall tires and low output motor. Shifting went well considering I was just listening to the roar of the engine and the car tracked quite straight.
Our first pass was 14.9 and the car was running super hot due to water pump issues. We cooled it down and went again. We managed to drop to a 14.45 followed by a 14.30. A decision was made to fatten up the mixture which resulted in a sluggish black smoky pass in the low 15s. We cooled things down again and heard some curios sounds emanating from the heart of our old 440. With a little boost we made her fire up but a lack of oil pressure put us on the trailer.
I know it may sound like a discouraging day but we were really happy to see it go down the track at whatever speed. Building a race car of this magnitude from scratch in our home garages has a sharp learning curve. A unanimous decision was made to poach the race engine from our black car and stab it in El Chupacabra. By Early Sunday afternoon Chris had the motor from our black car on a stand with new bearings ordered. In my world I got the old "black-up" motor in the altered stripped and within four bolts of coming out of the hole. We will run the same low deck dual quad on "old reliable" so we can keep our Max Wedge scoop in place. This combo with some 4.10 gears that we'll install should put the car deep in the 11s. Our next race is in Osoyoos on May 6 for some 1/8 mile action.