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51  General / Autos and Autosport / Re: Factory Five Cobra Build on: October 02, 2016, 04:46:16 PM
Alright, just got done cutting the grass with my newly-engine swapped mower Smiley  Got a chance to upload a couple videos from today's practice, which went really well.  I had only been able to tune the car for a few minutes while driving it around the block at very low RPM.  I took some guesses to get the rest of the VE table setup and was amazingly close.  No more breaking up from being way rich like at RIR.  The first run, AFRs stayed above 11.0.  I pulled some fuel out and got it pretty close by the end of the day.  Not sure there is too much more I can do right now.

Here is a video of my last run.

The car is well-balanced, but super sketchy on the 245/45/17 street tires.  I only went above 40% throttle once according to the data logs, and I know I was blowing the tires off the car.  We've got another set of wheels that will get 275s up front and 315s out back next year.  Should be a lot more stable.

Now I can start all the bodywork...
52  Pictures and Media / Pictures and Media from Events / Re: Media from VMP 10-2-16 on: October 02, 2016, 04:34:05 PM
Nice.  Here is my last run in the Cobra.  The new ECU is so much easier to deal with.  I think I've got it pretty close now.  Time for bodywork!
53  General / Autos and Autosport / Re: Factory Five Cobra Build on: September 25, 2016, 12:25:49 PM
Alright, well I'm back to working on the Cobra after a couple weeks of vacation and also starting to rebuild my mower.  Went to London, Barcelona and Germany on vacation.  Went back to the Nurburgring (we went 5yrs ago on our honeymoon).  Rented a Toyota GT86 and did 6 laps (video).  Also went to the Goodwood Revival.  Watched a few races, including a bunch of Cobras, XKEs and Ferraris sliding through the corners.  It was fun.

Anyways, I think I've finished up all of the major wiring on the Cobra!  I'll still need to wire up the 12v power outlet, heater, a couple minor switches, and eventually the ABS computer, but those aren't necessary right now.

Here is all the wiring I ended up cutting out of the engine harness.

And the ECU plugged in and wiring loomed to the fuse box.

We also installed the passenger seat.  Next Saturday we'll mount the dash and the car should be ready for the practice autocross at that point.  Hopefully we can get some more tuning done.

Then I've gotta finish putting my mower back together...

54  General / Open Forum / Re: My Garage Build - The Airboxer Garage on: September 25, 2016, 11:46:02 AM
Looking good!  Figured you might appreciate this Porsche 4 cylinder on an engine stand that I saw on vacation.

55  General / Autos and Autosport / Re: Factory Five Cobra Build on: August 28, 2016, 03:08:24 PM
More progress.  I spent a little bit of time and removed all the unnecessary wires from the ECU connector.  The pins slip into the back of the connector and lock into place.  You're supposed to be able to use a tool that slides around the wire to release the lock, but I didn't have much luck with those tools, I just kept breaking them.  I decided to just get a new connector and break apart the old one to get to all the pins.

Here is all the extra wiring.

I cut open the existing connector to access the pins and after removing the seal on the back, used the tool to get out the ones that I could and then just cut the plastic away from the rest of them.

Here's the pile of unused wiring, the cut up old connector, and the broken tools.  The plastic tools actually worked better than the metal one, but I still broke 4 of them.

All the loose wiring, labeled so I don't mess anything up.

And the new connector plugged into the ECU.  I've got one more wire to run and then I can loom all of this up.

56  General / Classifieds / Re: FS: Air Compressor on: August 28, 2016, 02:49:50 PM
oooh, what did you replace it with?
57  General / Classifieds / 17x7" 4x100 Kosei wheels and winter tires - Mini Cooper on: August 20, 2016, 02:24:18 PM
So, we sold Danielle's 2009 Mini Cooper and now I'm getting rid of some of our spare parts.  We got these wheels when we bought the car from David and put on some new 205/50/17 Michelin X-Ice winter tires (specs).  The tires are worn evenly and have between 8 and 8.75 32nds of tread still on them.

The wheels are 17x7" Kosei K1 TS (specs).  They have an offset of 42mm, have TPMS sensors in them, and include hubcentric rings for the Mini.  They are in great shape.

I'm selling the set for $600.  I am willing to separate the wheels and tires.  Shoot me an email at justin dot loehlein at gmail dot com if you are interested.

58  General / Autos and Autosport / Re: Factory Five Cobra Build on: August 20, 2016, 01:54:38 PM
Alright, I got the FAST Sportsman XFI ECU in the car today.  I can tune it!  I got the ECU because it uses the same wiring harness as the EZ EFI - and I had already spent all that time making sure the wiring was neat.  I bolted it in, fired the car up and drove it around the block.  It took me ~10 minutes of driving and tuning to get it running well.  The AFR is right and there is no more hesitation.  At least through the portion of the map that I was able to hit driving around the neighborhood Smiley

Now to finish cleaning up the wiring, then on to bodywork.
59  General / Autos and Autosport / Re: Caprice trans rebuild on: August 14, 2016, 04:57:49 PM
Man, progress has been slow over the past couple weekends, but I think it's finally done.  I got everything shimmed up last weekend and went to bolt the case back on, but snapped one of the guide bolts for the shift rails.  It's like a $2 part, but you can't find them anywhere.  So, I ordered them and waited until this weekend.  Yesterday, I finished putting the trans together, got it in the car and then realized the new rear seal had a split in it.  Got a new one this morning and threw the car back together with Jeff.  Started it and immediately knew something was wrong.

Turns out the clutch release fork was contacting the pressure plate before disengaging the clutch.  You can see where it wore the paint off and ground a portion of the pressure plate down.

Turns out this is a pretty common problem with LT1s and aftermarket clutches/flywheels.  They can be a bit thicker than factory and because the bellhousing is very shallow, tolerances are tight.  Jeff and I tore the exhaust and trans out one more time and I "milled" down the clutch pivot with the angle grinder and a file to move it away from the clutch.  We got it back together a couple hours later and fired it up.  Thankfully everything seems to clear now.

I had a small exhaust leak between the cats and x-pipe, so I used a bunch of copper RTV.  Haven't driven it since the RTV is drying, but it seems to shift more smoothly sitting still.  Keeping my fingers crossed!  At least everything is much cleaner than when I started.

60  General / Autos and Autosport / Re: Optima search for the ultimate street car 2016 on: August 09, 2016, 11:22:01 AM
Justin, I think a pair of k20 insights would go over well here Smiley

YES!!!  Your cars all seem to be (mostly) running now.  Seems like a good time to start another project Smiley  The rules also say the car has to be 95% or more of the factory weight.  That means you could build a 1785lb Insight.  With 200whp, it should be plenty fast.
61  General / Classifieds / Re: WTB: HS class Hyundai Elantra on: August 09, 2016, 11:16:13 AM
I assume you meant to post this as a separate thread, not in reply to the UTSC discussion.  I've split it and moved it to the correct section.
62  General / Autos and Autosport / Re: Optima search for the ultimate street car 2016 on: August 08, 2016, 04:43:04 AM
Nice.  As long as I'm done with the Cobra (I better be), this sounds like fun.  Unfortunately, it looks like they don't allow kit cars.

Paul - you need to put lights in the MkII and get it inspected Smiley
63  General / Autos and Autosport / Re: Optima search for the ultimate street car 2016 on: August 07, 2016, 07:14:05 PM
That looks like a lot of fun.  Sounds like you did pretty well, all things considered.  I skimmed through the rules real quick and saw GTL class.  What typically runs in there?  Are Civics allowed?
64  General / Autos and Autosport / Caprice trans rebuild on: July 30, 2016, 08:15:48 AM
So...I haven't been driving the Caprice much lately because the trans has been making some horrible noises.  Unfortunately, it's when I'm off the clutch, so I think it's the trans and not just a throwout bearing.  Not a big deal since I can tow with my truck...until I blew the head gasket on that.  The truck will sit until I can restore it (probably about a year).  So I decided to rebuild the trans on the wagon.  I had been putting it off for a while, but the other weekend one of the steel brake lines burst (rusty), so I decided to just dig into the car and take care of everything.

I don't have many pictures of the process, but I got the trans apart and found a few concerning things.

Here is the front cover - you can see the bearing race on the front of the countershaft has been spinning.  I believe this may be the noise I was hearing.  I'll get everything shimmed properly and then loctite it into place.

I also noticed that teeth that hold 5th/6th gear to the main shaft have a bunch of wear.  I ordered a new main shaft and 5th/6th driven gear.  Need to wait for that to get in this week before I can put everything back together.

Here are all the parts laid out.  I'm trying to keep them in order.

I also found a ton of play in the throwout bearing, cracks in the flywheel, and the pilot bearing had been wallowed out quite a bit (there's not supposed to be a lip there).  I guess this is what I get for taking the trans out of a 3500lb car, putting it in a 4500lb car, and then towing a 5-6k lb trailer.

65  General / Classifieds / Barn find '74 Triumph TR6 - ran when parked :) on: July 30, 2016, 07:39:00 AM
So, my uncle has had this '74 Triumph TR6 for about the past 25 years.  For the past ~20 years, it has sat in his shed in his back yard in CT.  He's getting ready to knock down the shed and build a real garage and has no time to work on the car, so it's gotta go.  It has a 4 speed with overdrive.  The interior and top are in good shape.  The car has been kept indoors for as long as he's owned it and there is almost no rust on the body.  The rear bumper is rusty and there are a couple of small bubbles on the rocker panels in front of the rear wheels.  I didn't clear everything off the car, but the paint looks like it's in good shape - though it clearly needs polishing.  I'm not sure what he wants price-wise, but if anyone is looking for a project car they could clean up, this might be a good opportunity.  Shoot me an email (justin dot loehlein at gmail) and I can put you in touch.

Sorry for the poor pictures, I only had my phone and the lighting was really bad.

Only visible rust spots on the body

And the rear bumper...

66  General / Autos and Autosport / Re: Dominion Raceway on: July 26, 2016, 02:43:03 PM
Well so much for DR, it looks like SCCA cancelled all "Track night in America" events. Sounds like there was a falling out, not just the schedule delay.

Bummer - I was all set to go up there Thursday.
67  General / Autos and Autosport / Re: Factory Five Cobra Build on: July 09, 2016, 06:09:35 PM
So the last few weekends were pretty productive.  Jeff helped me mount the coil next to the power steering pump.  It's on a simple bracket made out of a piece of steel plate.

I mounted the ECU and cleaned up the wiring.  All of the stuff hanging off to the right side is extra.  I'll remove it once I know it's working.

I also wired up the dash so that we could keep an eye on things.

After getting a replacement set of headers because the flange from the driver's side header to the sidepipe wasn't welded, I found that we had to grind the flange to the head a bit in order to access the spark plugs.

Once we got the headers mounted up again, we were able to fire it up (click the image for a video).


And here is one of the shakedown runs at the practice autocross.  Camera could have been aimed better...oh well.

So as of now, the car runs and drives.  The ECU is a FAST EZ EFI 2.0 that came with the motor.  It's self-learning, and only self-learning...which means I can't manually tune it.  Looking online, I don't think there is an aftermarket ECU that gets worse reviews.  The car runs rich and I can't manually tune it.  The self-learning is also very finicky - it doesn't self-learn below 2% throttle, and 2% throttle is quite a lot for the car.  You can hear the car breaking up towards the finish in the video.  I believe it's because of how rich it was running.  I tricked the ECU into pulling out fuel by telling it the motor was 351ci (supposedly, it's 408) and it had 65lb injectors (it has 50lb injectors).  That got rid of the hesitation, but it's still rich.  I'm going to pull the plugs out of it and make sure they look even.  Will also put a separate wideband into the other exhaust bank so that I can keep an eye on it.  I'm also going to buy an ECU I can actually tune.  FAST sells one that uses the same wiring harness, so I won't have to re-do everything.
68  General / Classifieds / Re: 1992 Miata project on: July 07, 2016, 06:03:16 PM
Buy it, Paul!  I'll sell you some fenders real cheap Smiley

Scott - what suspension is on it?
69  General / Open Forum / Re: My Garage Build - The Airboxer Garage on: June 28, 2016, 04:09:50 AM
nice!  how hot does the outer skin get when it's on?
70  General / Autos and Autosport / Re: Factory Five Cobra Build on: June 19, 2016, 02:27:10 PM
Well, made some good progress this weekend.  I have a few sensors left to mount, including the oxygen sensor, so Paul came over to give me a hand mounting the body and exhaust so we could mark where the sensor will go and make sure it doesn't hit anything.

With that done, I got back to wiring.  I needed to wire the ECU and ignition.  I decided to focus on the ignition first.  I was originally planning on mounting them both inside the car, but have read that the FAST ECUs are really sensitive to electrical interference - which the ignition creates a lot of.  Paul and I decided it would be better to mount the ignition box at the front of the engine compartment.  I designed a mount, 3D printed it and mounted everything up on Sunday.

I spent Sunday running the ignition wires.  This included cutting open the chassis harness so I could run the power wires back to the battery with the existing harness.  Kind of a pain, but it's coming out well.  I still need to mount the coil and supply a 12V switched source, but that's it.  Next weekend, I'm going to try to mount the ECU and finish wiring it.
71  General / Autos and Autosport / Re: Factory Five Cobra Build on: June 12, 2016, 06:46:46 PM
Well, I think I'm done with the engine bay wiring harness, and I have diagrammed out the rest of the harness in the car.  I need to pick a spot to mount the ECU and ignition so that I can make the rest of the harness.

I mounted the plate that I 3D printed and installed the flange-mount connectors.

I cut the extra wire from the harness and terminated them each into two connectors.  I'm going to wait to shrink the heat shrink until I know I didn't forget anything.

In addition to those, I separated out the wiring for the magnetic pickup and ran it in some shielded loom to prevent any electrical interference.  I put a separate firewall connector closer to the center of the car so it didn't need to travel along the battery cables.

Hopefully just a few more weekends and I can fire the car up.
72  General Category / Ask the Competition Committee / Re: Mini Countryman autocross? on: June 09, 2016, 06:26:55 PM
Our insurance company covers us as long as we follow SCCA vehicle eligibility and safety rules, nothing beyond that.  So unfortunately, you couldn't autocross your Countryman.  While it is rare, several club members have witnessed cars roll over at autocrosses while mid-turn.
73  General / Autos and Autosport / Re: Factory Five Cobra Build on: June 05, 2016, 05:18:28 PM
Well, I'm pretty sure I found the terminals for the distributor online.  Hopefully they come in this week.  I took the day to add the wires I forgot to run for the gauges and loomed it all the way to the firewall.

They will go through the firewall where the oval hole is, but I don't want to have to pull the dash to disconnect the ECU or remove all of the connectors from the engine in order to remove it.  I've got some flanged wiring connectors that I can use.

In order to leave room for body wiring and expansion in the future, I decided to use the two rectangular connectors and put a big grommet above them.  Rather than trying to cut a large circular hole, two rectangular holes, and drill a bunch of holes for the mounting bolts, I laid out a plate that I'll 3D print and use to mount all the wiring to.  Now I just need to enlarge the existing hole in the aluminum so everything runs through it.

I also drilled a hole in the thermostat housing and ordered a tap so I can mount the water temp sender.  Hopefully I can button that up plus the engine wiring next weekend and move onto wiring the rest of the car.
74  General / Autos and Autosport / Re: Factory Five Cobra Build on: June 04, 2016, 03:55:39 PM
Well, after getting Paul's VW running for Hyperfest, I'm back to working on the Cobra.  I told myself I was going to just hack the wiring together quick and dirty to get the car running, and then clean it up over the winter, but I can't help myself.  I pulled apart the harness that came with the motor and have started to re-route it and clean it up.

There was a bunch of extra wiring because the engine harness is generic.  There was an extra 10 feet of wiring on the fuel pressure sensor!  You can see it curled up on the ground in this pic.  The engine harness is the one with the grommet and all the loom on it.

Loom pulled off and everything spread out

One thing I didn't like was that there were adapter connectors between the harness and some components - MAP sensor, IAC valve, TPS (not shown).  That makes it difficult to bundle everything up, so I cut the adapter connectors out and re-terminated the ends.

Then I started bundling things together, looming the individual connectors, and looming the bundles.  It looks real clean.

Unfortunately, I forgot to run a few wires for the gauge senders, so I'm pulling everything back apart to run them.  Also, I noticed the connector on the distributor pickup was messed up.  Here is a picture of an assembled connector.

One of the terminals on the pickup connector was pushed in.  If anyone knows where I can get one of these terminals, let me know.  It's the one on the top in the picture below.  Compared to the Weather Pack terminal on the bottom, it's almost the same size - the length of the tip to the retaining tangs is only 10mm vs the Weather Pack's 15mm though.

75  General / Autos and Autosport / Re: Civic engine swap on: May 28, 2016, 03:30:06 AM
You could talk to J-Spec Auto for a motor and trans (you'll need a trans, too).  I assume you're looking for a B18C out of a GS-R?  The B18Bs only make like 140hp, so I'd skip them.

This swap is pretty simple and there is a ton of info/support online (like this guide).  I'd consider doing it yourself if you have somewhere to work on it.  If not, there may be a coupe folks at the autocrosses you could talk to.
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