July 14, 2016

Some additional photos from Imola.

Look at that body-roll! Needs to be addressed.

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I love seeing these sorts of cars at tracks, as for me the mid to late 90s Super 2000 touring cars are some of the best looking and coolest race cars that have been produced to this day. This ex-touring car is now living the time attack life and I’m sure it’s a fantastic platform for a street based time attack machine. Luckily it was parked up and had most of its body panels removed giving me a chance to have a peek at some of the details.

The front has been nicely simplified and its all function! Scoops and ducts for the intake, radiator and brakes, and then a few attachment points for the front splitter. The radiator has been relocated to be right at the front of the car and actually looks a little smaller than the stock one.

The engine bay really is spectacular. The engine is incredibly low and rearward in the engine bay and it’s great to see how tidy they are. No unnecessary crap, just pure performance.
Because the engines were NA and the competition was incredibly fierce between manufactures, a lot of development is put into intake and exhaust design, resulting in an overwhelmingly big intake and plenum.

Due to the extensive lowering and 19″ wheels a lot of changes have been made to the chassis too, which you can see by all the welds present. Larger tubs, reinforced strut mounts and engine mounts and seam welds in lots of places.
I also like the removable and lightened front brace; this is something I would like to do on the Nissan.

Beautiful 2-piece discs and AP Racing calipers. Single lug nut for maximum awesomeness.

On to the interior and it’s all business. The driver sits very far back in the vehicle, almost behind the B-pillar with an extended steering wheel and dash. Floor mounted pedal box and of course, a sequential gearbox.

Splitter Aftermath

June 25, 2016

I thought it would be interesting to show the results of the problems I encountered with the new splitter at Imola. As posted earlier I had some serious chattering of the front splitter above 200km/h which was a bit disconcerting at those speeds.

The chattering was caused by the low stiffness of the front mounts which when air passed over the splitter at 200km/h it excited some natural frequency of the assembly, is what I’m guessing. Due to no straight passage to the frame I decided to mount the front supports directly to the bumper, which is clearly not stiff enough.

Luckily the splitter simply skimmed off the tarmac and didn’t decide to catch on to something, otherwise I would have been a pretty big explosion. Some scrapes under the splitter.

The front supports got battered pretty hard; I should probably go up in thickness. What I was very surprised by is the rear mounts; they bent backwards despite them being made out of 2mm steel which I thought would be more that sufficient for the location. Most likely they rearward force of the splitter hitting the ground caused them to bend.

Another interesting one are the canards which have bent downwards. These were never a problem, even at Monza I didn’t have any issues, but most likely this is again caused by the chattering of the splitter causing the entire bumper to rock up and down. The rocking in addition to the downforce obviously was too much for the brackets.

So the next move, as soon as the fuelling issue is sorted, is to address these issues and beef-up the entire mounting strategy, but it has been a great learning experience.

After finally completing (sort of) the Great Danton I was finally able to attend a round of the Time Attack Italian Championship, my first one this year and round 3 of the championship. This was always going to be a shakedown event to actually make sure the car runs ok and to ensure that all the new components are fitted and working correctly.

The day before the event I had quite a few things to sort out, most importantly a large water leak from the left side of the engine which ended up being one of the water heater coolant lines. I also had to drive the car down from Bergamo all the way to Imola so I was quite careful as it was all unknown, and I stopped a couple of times during the 3 hour trip to check fluids and so on.

This first image sums up my day quite nicely; a lot of time waiting for a session after fixing the car. I had some sort of problem during every session which meant that my actual running time on track was very limited. I would usually go out for about 2-3 laps and then find out I needed to come back in to fix it, by which point it was too late to reenter the session.

The first session I went out for about 5 laps and came back in thinking everything was ok but I had lost a nut from the power-steering pump and the belt was slipping.
In the second session all the water that was available in the sky decided to fall and the session was quickly red flagged. We were able to redo the session after it cleared but I quickly found out that I had lost a bolt on the exhaust and it was dragging.
On the third and final session before the Superlap I decided to actually push the car a bit now as I hadn’t had any chance to actually test the limits of the car and get to know the track a bit better. But at the end of the main straight on my first full power pass the splitter simply couldn’t hold on :D. At around 230km/h it ripped through the bumper and hit the ground. Luckily it had only a few grazes and was able to secure it again to the bumper with an improved mounting strategy but this wasn’t to be enough.

During the superlap on the first lap it once again came loose and started chattering. So I had to take it very cautiously around the lap and then on the second lap my car decided to have a fuelling issue, and that was the end of the day. My pace during the day wasn’t too far off the pack but at not point during the weekend was I pushing the car (posted a similar time to last year); hopefully I can get these issues sorted and hit the track again to actually see the improvements over last year.

Overall I’m actually very pleased with the day because all the issues were fairly minor and can be worked upon and the engine really went without a hitch. An engine I built completely from the ground up actually went pretty well, so it has been a huge learning experience.

Twin external wastegate F20C. Look at the size of the turbo in comparison to the engine.

GD V2 – Part 23

May 18, 2016

It’s almost over, just a couple of things to finish up. Finally took the car out for a drive today after 6 months of working on it, and it was great to be back in this hard, uncomfortable and ridiculously loud car. The exhaust note has changed drastically from before; I’m not sure if it’s the cams or the tubular manifold or a bit of both but it’s high pitch and raspy, oh and so much louder. It’s almost embarrassingly loud when above 3000 rpm.

The splitter is on, but needs some additional mounting and refinement. I’ve already scraped it, and I haven’t got my scrape plates on it yet.

GD V2 – Part 21

May 14, 2016

I didn’t really think there would be so many parts to this, but it’s getting close. After running the engine for a bit I took it to a tuner to get it mapped properly. Luckily I found Preparazioni Soretti, which had worked with the SR20, the Apexi PowerFC and D-Jetro version before, despite being a Subaru specialist.

There were a couple of things he wanted to sort out before mapping the car; these were mainly vacuum and oil lines. With the new tubular manifold, it gets very close to the intake tube and vacuum lines so he recommended moving the rubber joint on the intake pipe and the vacuum line away. The intercooler piping was cut and welded to the turbo outlet and an additional joint added (in blue). Then the vacuum line on the turbo inlet was completely moved away and under the tube, meaning it clears the manifolds completely.

The final result from the mapping session was 343hp (at the crank) and 428 Nm at 1.3bar. I quite happy with the result considering that the pressure isn’t too high and it will be a big difference to my previous setup.