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svt_coupe
09-04-2002, 04:48 PM
Well... I can't stand it any longer. The Autopower cage is about to be removed from my car. I just don't feel safe running door-to-door with a bolt-in cage. While I think the Autopower unit makes a good Solo I and open track cage, it just isn't up to the level of a custom weld in cage. You simply can't compare a quality bolt-in cage to a quality fabricated, custom cage. The bolt in cage ties into weaker areas of the car (the floor pan and rear tire well) and does little to stiffen the chassis.

Tom Lewis and I were going to fabricate a "Tom Lewis Banana special" but since Tom isn't even working on his OWN car...... well, you know... :D

Sooo... Monday after this weekend's event, I will remove the bolt-in cage and prep the car for a custom road racing cage. The car is going to the Delta Group, owned by Walt Pucket. Walt will fabricate and install the cage - he is one of the best fabricators around and I can hardly wait to get his cage installed. He's had experience with many different types of road racing cars and his cages are among the best. Walt is an ex-Team Lotus factory mechanic, an ex-Speed Vision World Challenge driver, and is currently co-driving Phat-S' (Adam Richman) ITA CRX in SCCA enduros (they are currently 1st for the SEDiv, I believe). His accolades are many (too many to list) and I am excited to have Walt do his magic on my car!!

Not only will it be a competitve advantage (a good roll cage will stiffen the chassis dramatically and thus make the foundation for a good suspension), but I will finally feel safe diving into the corners with Hoover the Hillbilly and "Brakes are optional" Pantas right by my side. :D

I'll have to post pics of the final product. I will undoubtedly be very proud of it so I'll have to show off my latest saftey item. :D

98banana
09-04-2002, 06:17 PM
Sounds like a dang good plan! Sorry I can't help, but I'm sure you'll get one hell of a cage. One better than I could build. (But it'll cost you more! :D )

Thomas Moran sent me an e-mail the other day saying that he spoke with Chris Hall of Panoz a few weeks back and Chris was the lead instructor when I crunched into the wall. He said he had never seen anybody hit the inside wall that hard in a driving school and it worried him. He went on to say that whoever built that cage did an awesome job! :o :o :o I'm so proud. :o :o :o

But really, you will feel safer with it. When I put mine in, I noticed right away the stiffness, but the feeling of safety was just as dramatic of a change.

What type of door bars are you going with?

redsnake99
09-04-2002, 10:02 PM
I remember my first ride in Whistler after the mod package was done. The chassis was stiff and so was I (figuratively speaking).

svt_coupe
09-05-2002, 04:18 PM
Dave - LMAO!!!

Yeah, I wouldn't mind a Tom Lewis special. But, since you aren't even working on your own car...

Walt said he's got a stonger type of door bar than a NASCAR style door bar. It's supposedly much better for a road racing application. I have a feeling it involves triangulating the upper and lower bars via a "K-shape"... but I may be wrong. We're supposed to talk about it this weekend at Lowes (he'll be there on Saturday). I'll fill you in when I get more details.

By the way.... I want to give a VERY LARGE and VERY PUBLIC thank you to John Pearson. He helped me install my MM stuff. Also... thanks to Diane (his wife) for the scrumptious meals. Mmmm.... cheesburgers....

Jason - thanks for the company on the ride to John's last night.

I seem to be thanking a lot of people in this club all the time. Without some of our club members, there is NO WAY I'd be racing this year. Tom, John, Jason... I can't thank everyone enough. This sport attracts some truly first class people. I'm honored to have such good friends in this club and this sport. I don't know if there is a way to say thank you sufficiently.

98banana
09-05-2002, 04:55 PM
Originally posted by svt_coupe
...
I seem to be thanking a lot of people in this club all the time. Without some of our club members, there is NO WAY I'd be racing this year. Tom, John, Jason... I can't thank everyone enough. This sport attracts some truly first class people. I'm honored to have such good friends in this club and this sport. I don't know if there is a way to say thank you sufficiently.

sniffle...sniffle...

That's what this club, and this sport for that matter, is all about. It's really cool to get a helping hand without even asking for it. :thumbsup:

johnbasf
09-05-2002, 09:22 PM
[QUOTE]Originally posted by svt_coupe
Jason - thanks for the company on the ride to John's last night.






I would like to thank Jason also. Without him you would STILL be LOST.

:rotf: :rotf:

johnbasf
09-05-2002, 09:24 PM
Originally posted by 98banana
sniffle...sniffle...

That's what this club, and this sport for that matter, is all about. It's really cool to get a helping hand without even asking for it. :thumbsup:


What Tom said.:thumbsup: :thumbsup:

SIUNARA
09-05-2002, 09:47 PM
Glad to hear about the cage Bryan, sounds like you are getting it done right. It will be worth the piece of mind alone I'm sure...not to mention the safety and chassis stiffening benefits!! Definitely post pictures when it's done. :)

I agree with the above statements...you guys (and gals) are great people, and I feel very fortunate to have met you!! :)

johnbasf
09-05-2002, 10:07 PM
Group HUG, :bounce:

98banana
09-06-2002, 08:33 AM
Originally posted by johnbasf
Group HUG, :bounce:

:rotf: :rotf: Not sure if I want to go to Lowe's now!!! :rotf: :rotf:

98BlueVert
09-06-2002, 08:41 AM
You guys are getting mighty touchy feely in here. I'm getting kinda worried about you.

justagt
09-06-2002, 10:27 AM
Nothing like a group hug with John and then finding a little tobacco juice stain on you shoulder. :D

See you guys in a couple of days.

svt_coupe
09-06-2002, 01:57 PM
dayum... that was a funny string of quotes

johnbasf
09-06-2002, 04:46 PM
Originally posted by justagt
Nothing like a group hug with John and then finding a little tobacco juice stain on you shoulder. :D

See you guys in a couple of days.


Or on your chin!!!! ;) ;)

justagt
09-06-2002, 04:47 PM
OK, that's it, I am skipping out on this weekend.

94 White Snake
09-07-2002, 11:28 AM
With you guys installing cages in your cars I have a question.
Do you keep the backseat in?
If not does anybody have a back seat for a 1994 Cobra saddle in color?
White Snake (Steve)

svt_coupe
09-09-2002, 10:14 AM
My car is a race car so it doesn't have any interior pieces in it.

I have a back seat in mint condition for a 94-98 Cobra/Mustang. It's at my house and I'm willing to sell.

98banana
09-09-2002, 10:19 AM
Originally posted by svt_coupe
My car is a race car so it doesn't have any interior pieces in it.

I have a back seat in mint condition for a 94-98 Cobra/Mustang. It's at my house and I'm willing to sell.

Yeah, but you still have that heavy dash in there. You know that's like 20-25 lbs. right? :D

svt_coupe
09-09-2002, 10:22 AM
yeah I know it. As soon as I can swing it (new steering column, wheel, etc), out with the clunky dash and in with the lightweight version. :D

Mystic_Cobra
09-09-2002, 01:58 PM
Bryan,
I heard one of the guys say you were down to about 3000 lbs in your car. Have you done the math to determine how much more weight you can lose to keep within the AI power to weight limit?

I was thinking about building my track car, the more I looked at the cars this weekend. I have a 65 V8 hardtop lying around that weighed 2500 lbs from the factory that I'm considering. I also like the idea of doing a 94 or 95 Cobra. I think I want to race a 5.0 that I can rebuild myself instead of a DOHC that I have to pay someone 5 grand to do for me.

svt_coupe
09-09-2002, 02:14 PM
Yes, I've done the math. I still have a about 200lbs to go before I'm at the limit... or add 42 rwhp! My car is 3255 with me in it. Probably a bit more now actually with the MM stuffin the rear. I think I added about 50-70 lbs in hardware. But, that is good hardware to add and in the right place (down low and more rearward).

This week the car goes to Walt for the cage. He has scale so I will try to get the car corner-weighted while it's there.

98banana
09-09-2002, 02:23 PM
Originally posted by svt_coupe
Yes, I've done the math. I still have a about 200lbs to go before I'm at the limit... or add 42 rwhp! My car is 3255 with me in it. Probably a bit more now actually with the MM stuffin the rear. I think I added about 50-70 lbs in hardware. But, that is good hardware to add and in the right place (down low and more rearward).

This week the car goes to Walt for the cage. He has scale so I will try to get the car corner-weighted while it's there.

Did you ditch the uppers and quad-shocks? That hopefully offset some of the added weight of the MM stuff.

Don't forget to take lots of pics of the cage!:thumbsup:

svt_coupe
09-09-2002, 03:59 PM
Yup. That stuff be gone. Even the quadra shock mounts are gone. :D Can't wait to rip more junk out. Next up... smog pump.

I'll take lots of pics. Never fear!!

kevin
09-10-2002, 02:07 PM
bryan, glad to hear you're going with the full welded cage. i'll feel better now too;)


maybe one day they'll get an ai series going near me

svt_coupe
09-10-2002, 03:15 PM
Me too Kevin. Can't wait to get some real steel around me!!!!!!

redsnake99
09-10-2002, 04:34 PM
Brian, Lester Lesneski, the AIX Mustang racer is the one who applied the mods to my Cobra. I knew I recognized him from somewhere, just have put 2 and 2 together.

Next time you see him and have a chance to chat, relay my thanks for building me a good car. Also, let him know that replacing the master cylinder on my 99 Cobra fixed the problem with the brakes locking up.

Good to see you again, I really enjoyed the weekend at LMS.

:D

svt_coupe
09-10-2002, 05:43 PM
Will do Dave. I'll let him know.

It was good to see you again too. Lowes is an absolute blast, isn't it?!? It's a little intimidating at first, but an absolute riot once you get used to it...

Phat-S
09-11-2002, 01:48 PM
Ahh, a Delta Group cage . . . <wipes tear from corner of eye> t'is a beautiful sight. I remember when Walt just did the rollbar in my car I had guys grabbing other guys in the paddock to say "dude, check this out, this is what I want." Yeah, the door bars indeed are a very rigid design and I would love to have them on the race car myself (CRX has a cage by a different builder put in by its second owner) vs. my vertical bar design. Plus, I'd love to have the mount points moved out that extra 1/2" that I know Walt can do. I think when you are talking with the guy that's putting in your cage and he's walking you around to serveral desings pointing out what will make the car the most rigid, it kinda makes you think "I just ain't that damned smart now am I?" It probably exacerbates the "yep, I'm just not that smart" when he tells you that you can probably bump your springs up by x pounds if he could move that mount point over to <points> here.

Then again, the most telling thing for me had to come at CMP for the ECR about 3 months ago. An ITB GTI lost a left rear spindle going through the kink at full tilt boogie (and that's not that slow) and cartwheeled through the infield and barely missed the trees. To give you a mental image, after cartwheels and rolls, they were flagging this incident at TURN 14 and not at all at T11 or the Kink. When the SCCA scrutineers looked over the car (driver was unharmed and walked away), I heard throughout the weekend comments to Walt along the lines of "nice cage" and "good work" and such and the irony is that *this* cage in question was built on the old IT rules where it was far *less* rigid than his current work. The car's cockpit did not deform, the cage showed no bends or cracks. IMVHO, simply amazing.

Shuggs, in a word . . . SCORE! This is gonna be farking sweet.

johnbasf
09-23-2002, 07:17 PM
So, what's up with the cage??? B, you suck at keeping us informed. :D :D

svt_coupe
09-24-2002, 12:04 PM
Nothing to report!! Walt has been at the SCCA Runoffs for the last 1.5 weeks. Not sure if he's back yet. However, I can say that the cage will be a culmination of Walt's expertise with input from MM. :D