Tuesday, December 31, 2013

4AGE 20v COP Distributor Cap Completed

A while ago I took on a quick project for a friend to make a new distributor cap for his AE86.  The cap was to be shorter and sealed since he was converting to coil on plug.  Doing this it makes room for the distributor to fit without the need of banging out his firewall and cutting a hole.

So I quickly sketched up a 3D drawing and went off to the local machine shop where I had it machined.  Here's how the final product turned out.

Compared to stock.

This one showing the height difference of 43mm (1.7 inches)

Last up, what it looks like on the distributor...minus the bolts since I didn't have them.

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Christmas Presents

Christmas time has come and gifts were given as well as received, and some great ones at that!  To start off the excitement lets take a look at what I got for Becca, some bitchin' camera lenses!

On the right we have an 8mm fish eye and on the right is the 50mm F/1.4.  For those of you that don't know f/1.4 means we'll have some bokehlicious picture capabilities!  Just to quick give you an example of what I mean take a look at this photo we took immediately after opening the box!

This should make for some rather exciting photos to come!

Of course she got many more things but I don't think anyone wants to read about all the different clothes and random gifts she had gotten, probably just care to see the interesting ones that will be seen again throughout the blog.  So on that note, lets move on to magnificent gifts she had given me.

Video Option DVDs!

Which now means I've officially started a collection of them.

I also had gotten some car parts.  This one might be my fave gift, Hello Kitty key cap to replace the old one I had lost at a bar and cried over for at least a week.

And lastly let's end this with a bang.  A DOC Race v band top mount which was made to order so hopefully it'll be arriving sometime next month!  I can't wait to have this in my hands!  With this and the purchase of a new turbo using v band housings I'll never have to worry about bolts backing out on me again!

Merry Christmas everyone!  I hope you all had an amazing one!

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

20v 4AGE Coil On Plug Distributor Cap

Just a quick shot of something I've been working on.  My friend Alec has an AE86 that he's swapping a 20v in.  One of the issues with the swap is the distributor on the back of the engine comes in contact with the firewall, to get around this you have the option of modifying the firewall (smashing it in a lot or cutting a portion of it out for the distributor and plug wires to fit) or doing a coil on plug conversion.  With the COP conversion it still retains the distributor, however the rotor is no longer needed so it can be cut down in size, and with a new shortened cap that doesn't have plug wires connecting to it the size is reduced enough to where the firewall doesn't need modified.

I had given the local machine shop the part file to have this made at the same time I had dropped off my custom steering arms.  Last Monday I had spoken with them and was told they would start machining them mid last week so they should be done this week...At least that's what I've been told, unfortunately things don't always go as planned especially since he has other larger customers that get the right of way to my small side projects.

Anyway I hope to have these parts in my hand by the end of the week and as soon as I do I'll make sure to post and update on it.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

JDM DVD Madness!

With winter now here and drift events being over for a while, I've decided that I've got a little extra cash I can put towards cool little things I've been wanting.  One of these things happens to be Video Option DVDs.  I'm a huge fan of D1 and watch it all the time on youtube, so why not get the DVD and be able to watch it all the time? After all it seams like the ones on youtube keep getting caught for copyright infringement and get removed.  I'm tired of this, plus I would really like to watch more up to date action.

So the other day I purchased my very first Video Option DVD.  I chose vol. 231 as it's the 2013 season opener of D1GP.

Right away I had the issue of it being a region 2 dvd since it's from Japan.  After striking out at the local stores trying to find a multi region dvd player I had a Facebook friend advise me to simply download VLC Player on my laptop and it would play without an issue.  So that's what I did, and it worked rather well.

Happy with it I sat down with the girlfriend and watched the whole thing that night.  This had me wanting more! So I set to looking at getting the remaining volumes along with the D1SL volumes.  I also started to look at Drift Tengoku DVDs and that's when I remembered Keiichi Tsuchiya's new serious "The Drift Muscle".  I set to looking those up and found that he's now working with Hot Version to produce those.  As I set to work on finding those I discovered something amazing!  Hot Version International on Vimeo!  They took the next step in the video/dvd world and are now starting to rent their DVD volumes on Vimeo, and not only are they doing that but they have included English subtitles in them!  It's fucking rad!  Totally worth checking out for anyone that's interested in killer Japanese drifting!

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

GKtech Custom Arms

With all the news coming out about some of the arms breaking I think it's time I started to take things a bit more seriously.  Apparently the "extreme" arms are having binding issues and breaking under bind and the Zero Ackerman arms mounted reversed are also having issues with binding and breaking.  Luckily for me with my combination of my PBM rack eccentric spacers and my SPL high misalignment outer tie rods, I'm not having any binding or over centering issues.  This basically puts mine out of risk of breaking, however since I'm not a fan of running something in a way that it has broken for others I've decided it's finally time I worked on making my own custom arms.

Currently I'm still in the prototype phase, right now I've got a local machine shop working on machining up the first one I will try.  I'm super excited to get it back so I can do some testing with it.  If all goes well I plan on having a finalized arm made and ready within the next 2 months.

As for some info on the design, I've slightly shortened the arm compared to the Zero Ackerman, actually they are even a few mm shorter then the Extremes as well.  I've also located the arm in a position which should put it at a very very slight amount of ackerman rather then zero.  I'm also thinking about making a second set of arms with more ackerman to be used on short tight tracks, but for now I'll just be focusing on the first set.

Monday, November 4, 2013

Drift Day 46

After having made a trip to Shiomi Garage and getting the handbrake mounted in place all we had left to do is run the brake lines and bleed the system.  Didn't take too long to do, the hardest part was figuring out how to run the lines which turned out rather nicely.  Ran them through the hole where the oem cables went then up through the trans tunnel eventually going into the master cylinder.

With the lid of the arm rest being so close to the handbrake I had to figure up a different way to connect the lines then what I had done in my 240... Man I wish I would have used banjo bolts like we did on the Z32.  They worked out great, and the only issue that we had is one of them needed trimmed down a little.

The other thing we took care of were getting some tires early in the week and then had them mounted during my lunch break.  Initially I wanted to have her try out the Achillies ATR Sports, but unfortunately the place we ordered them through were out of stock and said the tires are on back order for several weeks.  So instead I decided to have her try out some cheap no name tires.  Delinte Thunder D7, which were super cheap and looked to be rather promising.

Once everything was all taken care of with the car it was time to pack up and ready ourselves for DD46!

Saturday morning the day before the event we loaded up the car, made sure our bags were packed, and the tools were with us.  Then it was off to Shawano, WI!

Since I was sitting this event out we were able to ride together to an event for a change. It was really nice having someone keep me company for the drive up, made the time go by a lot faster.  Becca was also super happy about this, no driving for her, just a nice relaxing car ride.

My favorite thing about this event is that it's held on a Sunday.  This meant I have a whole day to drive up there which meant all day time driving and plenty of time to stop for food rather then eating in the car.  Of course since we don't have an A&W in Des Moines, I always make sure to stop at one.

This would be the farthest trip we've made for a drift event so far, usually I fill up when leaving, stop once for food and gas, then we're there.  This time I had to stop twice, and the second stop I wasn't very fond of.  Running on fumes I had no choice but to stop at a small town station, had a ton of people give us dirty looks and I swear they thought the 300zx was some sort of alien space ship.  Heck they had a horse carriage parking spot which had obviously been used recently...

All finished up and we made it to our hotel just as it was getting dark.  Time to get the electronics charged up, one of them being some new walkie talkies I picked up so we would be able to talk to each other while I was watching from the side lines.

The morning of the event was super foggy, could hardly see anything on the way there.  Even some random lady pulled up beside me to bitch about how she almost rear ended me because she couldn't see, and it was somehow my fault?

Really cold out we got registration taken care of and unloaded the car.  Thankfully by the time the drivers meeting started the fog had cleared, although it was still cold...I think the high that day was showing 34 degrees.

With having new tires and not having driven the car in a while she decided to warm up a bit at the donut pit.  Right away it was obvious she would be fighting understeer issues the whole day.  The car kept wanting to push like crazy, although once sideways everything was fine.  (Sorry for not having pics up to this point, I was really trying to focus on getting her ready for the track)

All warmed up it was time to do her first lap around the roller coaster course "USA International Raceway"

The morning went by rather well, she had the layout down immediately but with the car continuously wanting to push it made the second corner difficult. Something to work on and keep in mind for the future.  This being an issue that she hasn't had up until now pointed at the tires being what the problem was.  Apparently these no namers had a lot more grip to them then I had expected.

Lap after lap she kept fighting understeer problems, I had the idea of removing her front sway bar to help fight it but since it was so cold and it was almost already noon I decided it best she keep doing laps and be forced to learn how to overcome them by initiating differently.

She figured out a really aggressive clutch kick solved the problem of understeering but lead to the issue of the car kicking too hard and spinning... I remember she would come back from every lap talking over the radio about how disappointed in herself she was, and her biggest worry was that she thought she was embarrassing herself.  During lunch break we talked about it and re assured her that nobody was out there making fun of her.  Everyone I met and spoke with that day were super friendly people and were having a blast.

After filling up on some food it was time to hit the course again, and after a hot minute it began to rain.  This had my hopes up for her since every event she's been at it's always rained towards the end of it and she's always done better in the rain.

She improved like I thought but still found herself understeering like crazy going into turn two.  There was just no beating it, but that's okay.  It gave us something to learn from, come next event if she's still rocking the 300zx some changes will need to be made.  I'm thinking about looking into a better front tire and adding a stiffer rear sway bar.  I think that should solve it, and if not we'll give removing the front sway bar a try.

The day ended a little early which I think everyone was okay with.  I know I was, standing in the rain when it's hardly above freezing gets real old real fast.

It was a killer fun event to go to and a big thanks goes out to Club FR for hosting it.  I can't wait for the next one, hopefully I'll have my car with me next time.  Until then, gonna keep working on the cars and continue focusing on getting better.

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Becca's First Visit to Shiomi Garage

For those of you that know Shiomi Garage (which I hope is everyone who's reading this) then you'll know just how cool dude is and how much Japan has been an inspiration to him.  Just recently Travis took a trip out to the amazing island and had an awesome experience.  Everyday he was showing photos of his trip and I really wish I could have afforded to go with him.  As soon as he got back I made sure I went to pay him a visit to talk about his trip and hang out with him all day.  Heck dude got to meet the legendary Miura-San of TRA Kyoto so you know he's going to have some bitchin' stuff to tell about his trip!

I made sure to start my trip up there just like every other one.  Stop at the petrol station, buy some food and drink, then snap a shot of some Icy Cold To Go at the 80/35 bridge!

After the short hour + drive we had made it to our destination where we found Travis still asleep and when woken up I don't think he even knew who or where he was for a few minutes.  Right away we opened up shop and Becca got to lay eyes on the Sil80 for the first time.  She was in love with that car more then I think she loves me.

The new steering wheel he had gotten from Japan was killer awesome.  It was a really nice quality suede wheel.

I was also diggin the notch in his LCA for tie rod clearance.

Last trip I made up there for all the help he's given me I told him I would buy him a new drill.  So I hooked it up with a nice new Dewalt Drill and my old turbo elbow/downpipe I had just taken off my car.  It was the least I could do for everything he's done for me.  After unloading all that I had also brought up a hydro handbrake for Becca's car which we decided to work on installing.

After just a matter of minutes we had the center taken apart and the stock handbrake removed, we then figured up a spot to mount it using some factory holes and then Travis fabbed up a bracket for the front portion which used the factory hand brake bolt holes.  The handbrake sat perfectly in place!

Happy with that we realized there was no need for the cables anymore so we got to work on getting the car in the air and removing those.

Then I caught Becca reading through the Video Option magazines that he had brought out for us to look through.  It was a beautiful sight.

And once she realized I snapped a pic of her sitting around reading a mag she made sure to catch me slacking off reading one too.

Then it was back to work putting the interior all back in place.  A few test fits and a little bit of trimming here and there and it was finished!  I must say it sure did turn out looking like a clean install, and what was really nice is it all fit up under the arm rest!

The time there seamed like it went by way too fast, looked over a bunch of cool stuff from Japan and Travis was even nice enough to surprise us with presents from over there.  His and her's "oh shit handles"!

And he even threw in a magazine with it!

Oh and a radiator cap which I don't have a picture of.  Felt like it was Christmas up there with all the gifts!

Big thanks man!  Looking forward to next time like always!