have not forgot about you guys, worked overnight at the hospital then straight to the stadium for the Broncos Patriots game, fell asleep as soon as I got home. Back at the hospital righ now then jury duty this morning. Will post up pics when I get home from that.
Raced at Eagles Canyon Raceway in Texas almost 2 weeks ago. The track has a fun layout and good elevation changes, but can you say bumpy?? I only got to run on Saturday as I broke the case on my transmission. Looks like I got lucky and only damaged 4th gear on both the lay and main shafts. As of now I am calling the 13" wheel experiment over. My results indicate that the 15 is the way to go if you want to stay with the radial tire. It may be possible that a cantilever 13 is a fast setup, but I mount my own tires and don't want to fight cantilevers.
The problem with the Quaife started 2 years ago at the 2012 Runoffs. At that time the clutch setup I was running was a 4.5 inch button clutch with a mazda automatic flex plate serving start duties. During the race the flex plate broke and for the last half of the race I had a bad vibration in the car. The underside of the car was oiled down pretty bad. The flex plate also took out the rear main on the engine. So there was both trans fluid and engine oil on the underside of the car.
The off season between 2012 and '13 I had a Jesse Prather Motorsports engine built and I replaced the main shaft gears in the quaife. All of 2013 I fought a leak in the quaife. The interesting thing is that there was no leak when the car was sitting static, but after a session I would have to wipe down the underside of the car, I tried sealing the transmission multiple times with no luck. I ended up running a diaper on the transmission for the second half of last season and the Runoffs last year.
The point being I have not had much time to address the transmission until it forced my hand. My theory is that the vibration from loosing the flex plate at the 2012 runoffs caused a crack in the transmission case, the crack started at the bore for the lay shaft. It would stay closed and sealed until the car was run, then when the car was run and the transmission loaded, the crack would open and leak fluid. Eventually the case weakened enough that there was a catastrophic failure.
I really like the transmission and am in the process of putting it back together. Here is a short video of the moment it let go. If you look at the rear camera you can see all the transmission oil as it's turned to smoke.
The good news, all that is left to get parts wise is the input shaft, lay shaft spindle and the needle bearings. The bad news, my next race is May 3rd/4th, and the parts are in the UK. Taylor Race is the direct supplier here in the USA, hopefully they will be able to get the parts to me in time. If not the back up plan is to put my "B" motor in the car with a stock transmission and clutch and flywheel.
If the back up plan is the way I have to go, the car will not be competitive and my only goal will be to qualify for the Runoffs. I would do the minimal needed to qualify and would just be collecting finishes, not exactly the way I pictured this season playing out. I need two more Majors weekends to qualify for the Runoffs it would be May 3/4 and May 24/25.I guess we will just see how quickly the parts get here.
The above two shots of the lay shaft spindle, needle bearings support the lay shaft on this end. The lay shaft is supported on the other end by a large roller bearing. Pretty clear that there had been a problem for quite a while.
I clicked this link and found your video from the 2012 Runoffs.
Holy sheet dude, you were playing with disaster a few times running wide on some of the exits.
Looked like you stayed calm in the car and did everything right (just ride it out...) but I about **** my pants in my computer chair.
I'd be curious to see your 2013 Runoffs in-car
(PS - 2000th post, whoopie, gay)
Yeah, was really pushing the car and unwinding the wheel in 2012, no power, had to make up for it any way I could. Definitely unwound the wheel to much passing the crx coming out of 7, I wanted to get past the guy before he parked it again in the kink. I will post up the first 4 or 5 laps of the '13 race, still made some mistakes, but it was a better drive. Note my big miss shift entering the carousel on lap one. My drive was much more conservative this year, during the last lap of this video you will me signal the car in front that I want to stay in line, he does not communicate back, so I decide to make the pass, it appears that he had other ideas.
Last edited by hingstonwm; 04-05-2014 at 10:20 PM.
Obviously I don't know the whole picture, but from the laps I've seen the speeds you were doing (not lap time per se) were drastically better in 2013...duh. How much driver, car, horsepower?
2012 - average-ish carousel speed = 82mph, turn in for the kink at 112mph, min speed through kink = 108 mph, max speed before braking before Canada Corner = 123mph
2013 - average-ish carousel speed = 84mph, turn in for the kink at 115mph, min speed through kink = 112 mph, max speed before braking before Canada Corner = 127 (we'll credit Prather Motorsports for that...).
Those differentials are huge. The difference between a pro driver at Road America, and a top level amateur is usually the carousel and the kink (and the resulting speed carried to Canada Corner), at least in my experience. Usually 1-2s per lap just in those areas.
Turning in for the kink at 115mph takes *****, only people that have been to Road America would understand.
After watching a couple of your videos, now I'm really curious to drive an EP/FP miata. Seems like a crazy, fun animal.
Somewhat similar corner speeds to the STL Civic and Grand AM civic I drove last year
^^^ Thanks!! I was much more comfortable this year; had much more track time than the previous year, ran the test day, and had the previous years laps to draw from. In 2012 I had a total of 22 laps on track for the week, I had more than that this year just on the test day.
I had more power, but I also had much more seat time, the combination of the two are pretty easy to see in the video.
The FP miata is a absolute blast to drive, good guys to race against, and the cost to run, and maintain the car is fairly reasonable!
I mentioned in an earlier post that I was going back to 15, definitely the right choice, the car works better and the added ground clearance will be nice in the event of an "off".
At the '13 Runoffs I had a moment on day 1 of qualifying and ended up in the tire wall on the outside of Canada Corner, no suspension damage but plenty of cosmetic damage. It took a little work but we were able to get it back together for the next qualifying session. Used plenty of rivets, roof flashing, and tape, but the end result was acceptable. It was good enough that I decided to hold off on repairing the car until I was qualified for this years Runoffs.
More changes made and planned, moved my tach to a more user friendly position and installed Rumblestrip predictive timing. Both are good upgrades.
I am also ditching my current upper and lower control arms. I have installed V8 roadster uppers and have a set of lowers with heim joints. But am not certain that I want to use them, the reason being the shock mount on the lower control arms appears to be located to far forward on the control arm. I have a couple of shots from a friends car using the v8 roadster arms. You can see from the pics how the bottom of the shock is
oriented towards the front of the car. Not sure I want to use these lowers because of this. I have a set of stock lowers that have derlin bushings in them as a back up. No matter what I decide, I had to change out the front sub frame as the old one was modified for the control arms that I had been running. My old arms had 1/2 inch heims, in order to run this set up the pockets for the eccentrics had 1/2" washers welded in.
The plus side with the V8 stuff is it uses a stock sub frame so if an arm were to fail a stock arm can be used to get thru a weekend. Here are a few pics.
Last edited by hingstonwm; 07-16-2014 at 08:24 PM.