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Bonneville Salt Flats Discussion => Build Diaries => Topic started by: Mike Brown on April 07, 2015, 01:57:52 PM



Title: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on April 07, 2015, 01:57:52 PM
Hello All,

I have started a belly tank lakester.  I plan to run the car at the ECTA track in Wilmington Ohio which is close by.  The project started with a P-38 body from Class Glass Performance.  I fabricated a perimeter frame from 2"x3"x1/4" steel tubing (photo attached).  The drive train consists of a LSA crate engine, "shorty" four speed transmission from Jerico and a Winters Xtremeliner quick change rear end. 

Mike Brown


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Glen on April 07, 2015, 02:08:26 PM
Mike welcome to the forum. Please add the city/state you live in so a local may be able to help you. You are on the riiight  track with the build. Keep a photo diary during the build so we can give you any help. :cheers:


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Elmo Rodge on April 07, 2015, 02:33:29 PM
Mike, looks like you've got a good start there. You'll be glad you got the chassis out close to the body.  Tanks have a habit of running out of room very quickly. Wayno


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Rex Schimmer on April 07, 2015, 03:25:49 PM
Mike,
Looking forward to watching your build. My question is: Are you going to more or less copy ever other P38 tank build (the "classic" build)  with lots of axles and radius rods, steering rods, shock adsorbers, spindles, headers etc all hanging out in the wind or are you planning to try to integrate these into some sort of aerodynamic apendage that will provide the mimimum amount of aero drag? If you go with the "classic" build you are then almost completely dependent on having the "best" engine to be able to go fast. If you go with the "aero" approach then you have a leg up on the majority of the other cars. Aero is pretty much a free speed "enhancer" and the reduction of frontal area x coefficient of drag is equal to a proportional amount of horse power increase, i.e. 25% less drag is equal to  25% more horse power.

One other thing about the P38 tank, I know that the center line flange is sure a nice way to make the body removable but it is pretty ugly when it comes to being "aero". Again, looking forward to your build.

Rex


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Milwaukee Midget on April 07, 2015, 03:55:18 PM

One other thing about the P38 tank, I know that the center line flange is sure a nice way to make the body removable but it is pretty ugly when it comes to being "aero".

Wayno, are you going to take that lying down?

Oh, yeah, it's the only way you can fit in your tank . . .  :wink:

Mike, best of luck with your build.

And Elmo Rodge is correct - packaging is always the headache on tanks.


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: WOODY@DDLLC on April 07, 2015, 04:33:23 PM
Mike welcome to the forum. Please add the city/state you live in so a local may be able to help you. You are on the riiight  track with the build. Keep a photo diary during the build so we can give you any help. :cheers:
Too late Glen! I already know he is 15 minutes from my house!  :-D :-D He can't escape! :-D
I told Mike you can never take too many pictures or ask too many questions for this bunch! Mike has built some other neat stuff so this should be a clean little machine!  :cheers:


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Elmo Rodge on April 07, 2015, 05:01:23 PM
I never said packaging was a headache. It is merely an interesting design exersize.  :wink: Wayno


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Glen on April 07, 2015, 05:10:14 PM
Woody, you know we can't wait to pick on him, Elmo will keep him honest. :evil:


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Seldom Seen Slim on April 07, 2015, 06:45:28 PM
And yet - Mike didn't take the hint so I filled it (location) in for him.  You're welcome. :roll:


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Skip Pipes on April 07, 2015, 07:21:49 PM
Nice start.
Keep posting pics and don't get ruffled over unsolicited suggestions. They’re offered up to help and not intended to offend. :-D
 
Skip Pipes


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: tauruck on April 07, 2015, 08:27:30 PM
Mike, I'm subscribed. Wish you all the best.
Living 15 minutes from Woody is a great start. :-D :cheers:

Regards, Mike.


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on April 08, 2015, 06:30:27 AM
I was unable to find anyone to bend the rectangular tubing.  I built the perimeter frame in sections mitering each joint on a milling machine with a home made sine table for accuracy.  Each end was then chamfered at 45 degrees 1/8" deep for welding. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on April 08, 2015, 06:38:49 AM
Rex,

I am going for an aerodynamic build.  I chose the supercharged (565hp) LSA engine mainly for its compact size.  It fits inside the body without any changes.  I think that it will be easier to build an aerodynamic build by mounting the front axle rigid eliminating all the suspension parts. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on April 08, 2015, 07:34:20 AM
I attached a photo of the "shorty" transmission that Jerico built for me.  A tail shaft was just going to make the car longer and the drive shaft shorter. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on April 08, 2015, 02:24:23 PM
This is gear ratio chart showing the speed in each gear at the factory redline of the engine using 28" tall land speed tires and current gear ratios assuming no wheel slip. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Skip Pipes on April 08, 2015, 03:13:24 PM
Super work.

Really like the frame material. Keep a picture of the cut frame section in a binder with your logbook. That way if you’re asked about material thickness where the cage is welded, you have a picture for reference.

SP


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: kiwi belly tank on April 08, 2015, 03:19:56 PM
Smooth LSR tires won't work on blacktop or concrete, they don't have enough rubber on them & won't take the heat.
  Sid.


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Elmo Rodge on April 08, 2015, 05:46:13 PM
Mike, are you going "inside" or will your head be sticking out?  Wayno


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on April 08, 2015, 05:54:37 PM
The cockpit is designed for a sit up position.  My head will be just high enough out of the body for safe forward vision.  I am running the dual mass dual disk LSA clutch.  (photo attached) The clutch release is from Tilton.  I have used these with great success. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on April 08, 2015, 06:08:19 PM
I have certifications for all of the material that I am purchasing for the build.  I have attached a photo of the beginning of the roll cage (excuse the poor quality of the photo).  The cage components were purchased from SW Race Cars.  Woody stopped by this evening to offer his advice.  Woody is a wealth of knowledge. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on April 08, 2015, 06:13:44 PM
Attached is a photo of the frame in process.  I find it much easier to TIG weld when the frame can be positioned so I don't have to stand on my head.  I use a small overhead hoist on a monorail in my shop.  The monorail has pivot on the wall side so I can swing it from side to side. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Jack Gifford on April 08, 2015, 11:38:16 PM
I like the frame. It appears to use the [limited] space to best advantage.
A sprung front axle needn't be terrible aerodynamically. My lakester has cross-over linkage and coil-over shocks inside the body, leaving just the radius rods out "in the air". [The worst aero part of my front end are the good-sized disc brakes; I'm considering ditching them, then I could run inboard wheel discs.]


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on April 10, 2015, 11:25:03 AM
I will not be running front brakes.  I machined the brake rotor portion off of the hubs to have less hanging out in the air stream. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: tauruck on April 10, 2015, 09:52:21 PM
Great job Mike. :cheers: :cheers: :cheers:


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on April 15, 2015, 06:32:54 AM
I ordered rims yesterday.  I plan to run Moon discs and wanted to weld tabs for Dzus fasteners to the rims as well as fully welding the centers.  These rims come standard with a powder coat finish.  I prefer to not weld powder coated steel.  Most powder coating shops can burn the powder coating off for a fee.  I contacted Cragar and they were able to supply their "69" series rims with a bare finish.  They also make this rim in a 4-1/2" width for Goodyear Land Speed Tires.  The rims cost less than $60/ea from Jegs. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Dr Goggles on April 15, 2015, 06:53:13 AM
Its just me but I reckon salt and powder coating don't mix.

Use alkyd resin, it's repairable, adheres better and doesn't hide corrosion creep.


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: SPARKY on April 15, 2015, 07:56:56 AM
Rustoleum rattle can primer--- my frame paint of choice---- but then I have been accused of building UGLY CARS   :-D


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Peter Jack on April 15, 2015, 08:44:35 AM
I totally believe in rust paint as opposed to powdercoat. I use powdercoating in a lot of the projects I build where they'll never be reworked but race cars don't fall in that category. As a weldor I find two part paints and powdercoating to be much more difficult to repair and then the recoating is much more difficult and expensive and the repair/modification shows up more.

Pete


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on April 15, 2015, 09:42:43 AM
I also like the Rust-O-Leum product line.  Their rusty metal primer has great adhesion.  I have also been accused of building "ugly" cars.  My daughter told me no more flat black projects so I have switched to semi-gloss!


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on April 17, 2015, 08:27:34 AM
The roll cage is coming along.  I am pleased with the LSA engine package.  With supercharger and intercooler the entire package will fit in the body without the need for any alteration. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: lsrjunkie on April 17, 2015, 09:45:54 AM
Looking good Mike! Looking forward to watching the old girl come together.   :cheers:


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: jacksoni on April 17, 2015, 09:59:40 AM
The roll cage is coming along.  I am pleased with the LSA engine package.  With supercharger and intercooler the entire package will fit in the body without the need for any alteration. 
Have you tried climbing in and out with full fire suit and helmet on? The cage is sorta narrow and the front circular hoop is going to make getting legs in kinda tough. You're not a midget are you? sorry.  :evil:  :cheers: when I first built my liner mocked it all up with plastic pipe and seemed lots of room. Didn't have helmet on.. Ut Oh! Ended having to raise the cage. I think you are ok height wise but that front hoop concerns me.


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on April 17, 2015, 11:41:04 AM
The LSA dual mass dual disk clutch is 1-1/4" taller than standard clutches.  I machined a 1-1/4" spacer from aluminum.  It was a lot of material to remove for the transmission clutch release support so I started with a 4" hole saw.  It went easier than I expected on the lathe.  The hole was finished up with a boring bar.  I then had to machine a spacer for the pilot bearing.  The pilot bearing spacer is sandwiched between the cobore in the crankshaft and a cobore in the flywheel.  There are three different flywheel bolt patterns on LS engines, 6, 8, and 9 bolt.  I will be fabricating a guard for the flywheel from 1/4" steel. 

I have successfully entered and exited the roll cage with a helmet on but not a fire suit.  I am 5'-9" tall (does not qualify for midget height) and it is close but not tight. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Elmo Rodge on April 17, 2015, 12:04:30 PM
Mike, try to get in and out FULLY suited.  :wink: It's amazing how fast things change when you get everything on.  :cheers: Wayno


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: SPARKY on April 17, 2015, 12:10:59 PM
I second that ---more than one cage had to be cut  :-o  and remade at the last moment!


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Stainless1 on April 17, 2015, 03:20:19 PM
Hopefully you had the inner skin, steering and controls mocked up in the drivers compartment when you did that.  Stepping in without any obstructions is easy... you might want to cut the hoop and run a brace to the frame, then add the hoop farther forward.


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Dr Goggles on April 17, 2015, 03:49:00 PM
This is gear ratio chart showing the speed in each gear at the factory redline of the engine using 28" tall land speed tires and current gear ratios assuming no wheel slip. 

585hp? It's gonna go faster than 220 :-D


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: ronnieroadster on April 17, 2015, 06:52:18 PM
 Having built the cage in my Lakester and needing to bail out fast after doing crop circles at Wilmington I know the design of your cage is not going to work. As others have mentioned the hoop over your legs needs to be moved forward so you can get out in a hurry if need be. Also the seat location looks high in my cage I layed the seat back a lot more this gave me a much lower cage along with less mass in the air.
  My tank is not as wide as yours the widest point is only 31 inches but even with the SFI 20 fire suit which is whats required for a blown car theres still enough room for me the driver.  Its not like being in a Caddy but for the short time were in suited up and under way its good.
 Now towing to the line and returning to the pits thats another story its tight so we try to put a little guy in there for those long rides. Many years ago we strated a build diary on the lakester early pictures show the first cage design which was to high. Latter I removed the cage and built another thats three inches lower I was able to do this by laying the seat down more.


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: SPARKY on April 17, 2015, 10:21:47 PM
EVERYTHING has to be in there---SS1 & RR are spot on!!!!!!!!!!  You just can't believe how a control or two---or the strg. gear change stuff--belts too---what made me have to redo mine I had to change the brake pedal mounting


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Dr Goggles on April 18, 2015, 03:05:48 PM
With regard to the cage and that hoop. You can use a net and or straps as well as the mandatory arm restraints in that area but this is what I see as the main issue. Lowering the top of the cage will give you much better aero,better aero means better conversion of fossil fuel to fastness and that's what we're here for.

When you lower the top of the cage you'll find the best way to get into it the car is to squat with your knees up and slide  back as you straighten them. That's not possible with that bar there.

I'm not claustrophobic but wearing a -20 suit on a 100+ degree day in the cab of a tank will give you a fair idea of what it must be like, if you can indeed get in there at all.

I'm not sitting on the fence making idle comment here, I've been there, I've had to bite the bullet and make changes, I want to see you run this thing fast, soon.


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: SPARKY on April 18, 2015, 08:23:32 PM
DR. G is spot on ---- are we racing ---- or what 

I am completely inside a 30" tank and I am 6'3" and 240 with a SFI 20


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Jack Gifford on April 23, 2015, 09:33:23 PM
I found this one picture of the rear suspension in "Speed Queen" lakester- front is pretty much the same. I misspoke earlier- it's not coil-overs, it's longitudinal torsion bars with the crossover shocks inside the body, connected to the short ends of the torsion bar 'L' arms. So the only suspension pieces outside the body are the long ends of the torsion arms (and of course the radius arms and the ends of the track bars).


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on May 01, 2015, 07:45:08 PM
I am designing the suspension.  After some dialog with Joe Timney I have decided that a full suspension system front and rear is in order.  The suspension will be a link design most likely Satchell or triangulated four link.  I like direct threaded links using 3/4" rod ends.  The standard material for direct thread links is 1"OD .156" wall DOM.  I think that this is strong enough for the front suspension since there are no brakes on the front axle.  For the rear links I wanted something stronger but did not want to weld ends into larger tubing.  At my local tubing supplier I found 1-1/4" OD .375" wall DOM.  This will allow me to bore each end and single point threads on a CNC lathe so they will be perfectly straight. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on May 10, 2015, 06:20:24 PM
The suspension links turned out nice.  One piece design with no welding, straight threads. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on May 10, 2015, 07:28:12 PM
Winters specifies a 11.532" bolt circle with 11 bolts that attach the side bells to the center section.  My Extremliner quick change pattern was closer to a 10.932" bolt circle with 11 bolts.  I machined two brackets from 1/4" steel that will be used to attach the upper suspension links the rear end housing.  I am planning on a triangulated four link (Satchell) type suspension. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on May 28, 2015, 07:58:57 PM
I finished up the bracket for the top suspension links on the rear end.  Not wanting to purchase a left hand thread boring bar I purchased a 3/4-16 left hand tap from Jegs.  It was the Allstar Performance brand.  I had to return it.  Even using the tailstock of the lathe to help push the tap and hold it straight it would not cut at all.  I purchased a tap from McMaster Carr and it worked perfectly. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Rex Schimmer on May 28, 2015, 11:40:14 PM
McMaster and Carr!! If they don't have it you don't need it and if they do it is quality (none of that Chinese $hit!) and I get 2 day delivery from their warehouse in LA.

Love em!!

Rex


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on June 07, 2015, 05:45:49 PM
A photo of the rear suspension.  This Hotchiss style link suspension does not need a panhard rod due to the triangulation of the links.  In my limited testing there is no binding with an inch of movement up and down.  I think I will use this suspension design for the front also. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: John Burk on June 07, 2015, 06:59:09 PM
Mike
With satchell linkage the roll center is at the level of the angled links . When they're all angled like yours it has 2 roll centers so the rear suspension is ridged  in the roll axis . Making either the upper or lower links parallel would fix that .


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Jack Gifford on June 08, 2015, 12:02:41 AM
... the rear suspension is ridged [sic]  in the roll axis...
Assuming you meant 'rigid': I'm not seeing that. It looks to me that if the rears of the two top bars were moved to be together, there would be zero binding under any situation. And with them as close as they are, and with reasonably-limited suspension movement, there appears to be effectively no binding.


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: John Burk on June 08, 2015, 10:11:29 AM
Jack
With satchell linkage with the uppers angled the lowers must parallelogram for one wheel to lift . If all are angled none can parallelogram . The suspension can still go up and down but one wheel can't lift independent of the frame . The biggest problem is the stress it puts on the linkage and the twisting force where the axle tubes where they go into the side bells of the QC .


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: SPARKY on June 08, 2015, 10:36:04 AM
red neck solution  solid  :-o


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: ronnieroadster on June 08, 2015, 09:29:55 PM
Mike it was great talking with you at Wilmington. I enjoy seeing your design work and the way you machined the parts. I'm looking forward to seeing the finished car at Wilmington in the future.
 Ronnieroadster


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on July 04, 2015, 07:43:30 PM
I have decided to use rubber as the suspension element.  The folks at Timbren have been very helpful.  Note the difference in compression and rebound on the deflection chart.  The rubber has a definite integral damping affect.


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on July 04, 2015, 07:55:28 PM
I had some initial difficulties ordering a steering rack from Unisteer.  The original applications engineer thought the application was "dangerous" and was not all cooperative.  I finally contacted Brandon Kirby 800-338-9080 ext. 249 at Unisteer and was able to make it happen.  They still build a 1.2" per revolution steering rack which is the slowest that I could find.  They have a order form on their website for custom racks.  Fill in the dimensions and send it in.  They can quickly tell you if they are able to build it or if changes are required.  My rack will come complete with 5/8" rod ends for the 1/2" steel steering arms that I am using on the steering knuckles.  I am looking forward to getting the rack on July 20th. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on July 04, 2015, 08:02:36 PM
The chassis is now a roller.


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: manta22 on July 05, 2015, 12:12:50 AM
I have decided to use rubber as the suspension element.  The folks at Timbren have been very helpful.  Note the difference in compression and rebound on the deflection chart.  The rubber has a definite integral damping affect.

Mike;

That's called "hysteresis"-- the rubber does absorb energy-- that's why it gets hot.

Regards, Neil  Tucson, AZ


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on July 26, 2015, 07:11:23 PM
I installed rubber springs made by Timbren in Canada.  They are very compact and have worked out well.  Timbren makes the rubber springs in a variety of shapes sizes and durometer.  The upper brackets were machined from 1" thick steel plate.  The upper mounts are threaded 3/4-16 with alloy threaded rod made into adjuster screws.  There is also a an aluminum adjuster that pilots inside the 1-1/4" hole in the rubber spring.  The lower mounts are 1/4" steel disks welded to 1-5/8" OD tubes coped to match each axle.  There is a 1/2-13 stud welded to each lower mount which allows the spring to be secured without squeezing it.  There is a spacer and steel washer inside each spring. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Jack Gifford on July 27, 2015, 12:24:57 AM
Looks good. Do the springs have sufficient damping that separate shock absorbers are not needed?

Oops! I now see the rear shocks.


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on July 27, 2015, 01:06:05 PM
Jack,

Per the rule book shock absorbers are required however just jumping on the frame it is amazing how much dampening there is in the rubber springs.  The compression rate is highly progressive and with the dampening in the rubber springs I don't think that I will need to run sway bars.  I attached a photo of the individual spring components. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: SPARKY on July 27, 2015, 01:57:04 PM
thanks for the close ups


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on August 04, 2015, 11:34:45 AM
I received the custom steering rack from Unisteer yesterday.  The rack matched the drawing exactly and came complete with dust boots, rod ends and a universal joint for the steering shaft.  I machined brackets to mount the rack from 1" thick steel.  The brackets will be attached to 2" DOM tube which go all the way to the perimeter frame.  The 1.2" of rack travel per revolution of the steering wheel is very slow which what I need.  I am very pleased with the rack and pinion from Unisteer. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on August 27, 2015, 05:43:06 PM
The link tabs have been final welded to the axle housing and the brakes are in.  I have used Wilwood brakes on multiple projects with good results.  I am running two calipers per wheel.  One will be operated by a foot pedal and the other with a hand brake. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on September 15, 2015, 06:00:12 PM
Help!

I am preparing to final weld my roll cage and am in the process of adding gussets, actually knee bars from 1" DOM 1/8" wall.  I have read the rule book section regarding gussets and am still not clear.  Does the 4" dimension refer to each leg or the hypotenuse per the photo attached?



Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on September 15, 2015, 06:06:35 PM
I am using a Jerico transmission with a Hurst shifter.  Since the transmission is behind the cockpit I will be using push pull cables to connect the shifter to the transmission.  Is there any need to have a working reverse?  It would require an additional cable just for reverse. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: jdincau on September 15, 2015, 06:13:35 PM
About the gussets, for a definitive answer call the chief inspector Steve Davies   714-671-9454     cartechscta@gmail.com


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: jdincau on September 15, 2015, 06:14:39 PM
I am using a Jerico transmission with a Hurst shifter.  Since the transmission is behind the cockpit I will be using push pull cables to connect the shifter to the transmission.  Is there any need to have a working reverse?  It would require an additional cable just for reverse. 
To the contrary they want a reverse lock out, no need for a cable


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: krusty on September 15, 2015, 06:18:20 PM
Mike, I used a Long vertical gate shifter in our rear-engine modified roadster (the shifter is straight line, i.e., it is locked out of 3-4 until you move forward out of 2d, and then locks you out of 1-2), This let me put the shifter on the left side and avoid long, looping cables. I figured the simplicity of operation would resolve any potential confusion on the driver's part. I was right - 6 current records and three red hats. Plus, 1/4" Morse cables have worked fine.

I used a 4" center line on my gusset tubes; no complaints from tech.

vic


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: jacksoni on September 16, 2015, 07:21:25 AM
I am using a Jerico transmission with a Hurst shifter.  Since the transmission is behind the cockpit I will be using push pull cables to connect the shifter to the transmission.  Is there any need to have a working reverse?  It would require an additional cable just for reverse. 
On my liner with rear engine used a T-10 trans, Hurst 4 spd shifter mounted on left with solid rods from shifter to trans with appropriate heim ends and maybe a spacer on the trans arms (don't remember). The pattern was reversed the way I had it but that no issue. Worked fine. No reverse of course.


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Sumner on September 16, 2015, 02:37:53 PM
Mike, I used a Long vertical gate shifter in our rear-engine modified roadster (the shifter is straight line, i.e., it is locked out of 3-4 until you move forward out of 2d, and then locks you out of 1-2)...

How did you engage 1st to begin with?  Any pictures of what you did to lift it up into the 1-2 track/gates?

(http://1fatgmc.com/car/car-other-1/2900-101A%20combo-1.jpg)

Thanks and it is the shifter I have for the G-Force 101A 4 speed,

Sumner


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on September 16, 2015, 06:53:35 PM
Thanks for the shifter recommendations.  I will lock out reverse on the transmission and use two cables for 1-2 & 3-4 gear selection.  I am ready to weld the firewall in place.  Should the firewall be fully welded or tack welded?  If it is tack welded is there an approved sealant to make it liquid tight?


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Stainless1 on September 16, 2015, 07:22:32 PM
You might want to put it on tabs and bolt it in.  3M Fire Putty will seal it fine. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: krusty on September 17, 2015, 08:27:20 AM
Sum, I haven't found a pic of the shifter install yet.  Imagine your shifter with a normal "ball" on top, rather then a handgrip and your squeeze type 1-2 gear  selector made to pull straight up via a "T" handle (Long sells it this way). Last thing I do is place the car in first gear (engine is running) by reaching in from outside the car while the driver holds the clutch pedal down. Jump in the push truck and off we go.

I found that it was difficult for the driver to do this one (left) handed by himself . and impossible to reach across with with his right  to raise the lockout due to proper arm restraint. It is simply a procedure I put in place and that's how we do it. For drivers, my instruction is clutch out and accelerate, pull, push, pull, chute, shutdown. :-D Your squeeze handle type shifter could be made to work this way (and be a lot shorter, too).

vic


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Ron Gibson on September 17, 2015, 09:34:28 AM
You could use a Morse cable for the back and forward and a small pneumatic cylinder for the squeeze mechanism with an indicator light to tell you it's in first.

Ron


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Sumner on September 17, 2015, 12:01:51 PM
....Last thing I do is place the car in first gear (engine is running) by reaching in from outside the car while the driver holds the clutch pedal down. Jump in the push truck and off we go.....

OK, I see that the driver isn't putting the car into first in your case.  In the lakester the engine/transmission/shifter will also be far behind the driver so what you do could be an option.  I have a couple plans for making it so the driver can select 1st but was interested in how they might compare to what you are doing so thanks for the input.  

(http://1fatgmc.com/car/car-other-1/2900-101A%20combo-1.jpg)

In the picture I posted above the transmission has the stock Long Vertical Gate.  I'll replace the lever and pull grip with something I'll make since I don't want to butcher the stock one in case I go to sell it down the road.  Also the reverse lever shown above will be removed,

Sumner


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Sumner on September 17, 2015, 12:06:22 PM
You could use a Morse cable for the back and forward and a small pneumatic cylinder for the squeeze mechanism with an indicator light to tell you it's in first.

Ron

Thanks Ron,

Sumner


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on October 05, 2015, 12:15:39 PM
I am looking for some help with a starter.  I have the GM LSA crate engine.  I would like to use a compact gear reduction permanent magnet style starter for exhaust clearance.  I have used Power Master starters on various projects with great success in the past.  The starter recommended by Power Master is for a standard LS engine part number 9109.  The flywheel is 168 tooth.  The starter bolts to the block like standard LS series starters but the 9109 LS starter does not fit.  The starter mounting bolts on the block are 2-7/8" but in line.  The 9109 LS starter bolts are 2-7/8" apart but staggered about 3/8".  Has anyone used an aftermarket starter on the LSA engine?  

How embarrassing.  In an effort to photograph the problem I removed the block mounting plate from the starter.  Much to my surprise without the starter attached it mounted right up to the block.  I then clocked the solenoid to a position below the starter (about 5 o'clock) missing the three sensors and it did fit.  There will be plenty of clearance to my exhaust as I had hoped.  So a PowerMaster 9109 properly clocked will fit a GM LSA crate engine. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on October 05, 2015, 07:59:08 PM
I am lining the cockpit with 14ga steel.  A roller helps to form the sheet into a matching radius before tack welding in place. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on October 19, 2015, 07:00:47 PM
I started the exhaust using 2-1/2" tubing.  I use exhaust donuts in the construction as they allow really tight bends and you can weld them back together at any angle providing that your cut line always goes through the center of the donut. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on October 19, 2015, 07:04:05 PM
The flanges were CNC machined from 7/16" ground steel plate. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: sofadriver on October 20, 2015, 12:13:32 AM
What is an exhaust donut? I see the "donut" but I'm not getting the concept.


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: tauruck on October 20, 2015, 12:24:44 AM
A donut is a circular tube that can be cut into pieces to make bends. :cheers:


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Speed Limit 1000 on October 20, 2015, 12:33:01 AM
http://secure.chassisshop.com/partdetail/C76-562/

It is a stamped piece that you can cut into sections and weld together. You can get a smaller radius than you can make with a tube bender.:-D


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: tauruck on October 20, 2015, 12:34:02 AM
Wish I could get them here. :roll:


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on November 04, 2015, 07:15:24 PM
I started on the water tank for cooling the engine.  I am using 1/8" 5052 aluminum.  This tank will be located under the engine.  The outside is TIG welded with MIG bead inside wherever possible. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on November 04, 2015, 07:18:15 PM
The driveshaft came in today.  SW Race Cars built this one for me.  3" mild steel tube with 1350 universal joints both ends.  The transmission does not have a tailshaft, just a splined shaft sticking out the back.  I shortened a standard transmission yoke from Strange. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Elmo Rodge on November 04, 2015, 09:46:06 PM
Lookin' good Mike Quality all the way.  :cheers: Wayno


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Bob Drury on November 04, 2015, 11:42:32 PM
  The Donuts were invented By Kiwi Squeak Bell who lives in Bakersfield and are stamped out in New Zealand where He still has property  and kin.  He makes them in mild steel and Stainless.  I have used both and they are the Katz Meow! The inside diameter is equal to the pipe diameter (3" tube = 3" I.S. diameter, etc.).  They are stamped in two halves and then seam welded around the outside radius.
                                                                         Kiwi Konnection Hot Rod Parts
                                                                         (661) 871-KIWI (5494)
                                                                          925 Bernard St.
                                                                          Bakersfield, Ca.  93305


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: kiwi belly tank on November 05, 2015, 12:04:40 AM
I knew they come from NZ but I didn't know they were Squeak's invention. That's what I get for becoming a hill billy.
  Sid.


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Jack Gifford on November 05, 2015, 12:38:56 AM
... This tank will be located under the engine...
Nice use of available space.


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: tauruck on November 05, 2015, 03:23:00 AM
Great build quality. :cheers: :cheers:


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on February 06, 2016, 04:43:08 PM
I included an expansion tank on the engine coolant tank.  I fabricated it with flanges so it could be easily removed.  The LSA engine has steam vents coming from the heads that will attach to the expansion tank.  Since the tank is "U" shaped I included a steam line from the opposite side of the tank.  I did add provisions for a radiator cap.  I will use a 6psi cap.  I pressure tested the tank with air at 20psi.  The flat section under the oil pan bowed out so I added a piece of aluminum bar through the center of the plate to the curved exterior. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: manta22 on February 06, 2016, 05:49:13 PM
Nice work, Mike.

Regards, Neil  Tucson, AZ


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: tauruck on February 06, 2016, 07:16:38 PM
I agree and Neil how clean is that shop?. :cheers: :cheers: :cheers: :cheers: :cheers:


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: manta22 on February 06, 2016, 08:32:03 PM
It's a lot cleaner than mine, Mike!

Regards, Neil  Tucson, AZ


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on February 10, 2016, 08:26:53 PM
I have started the parachute system.  The chute is a Bonneville style from Stroud.  My chute tube is 6" OD 1/8" wall 6061 aluminum.  Is the preference to run the chute lanyard through the tube or outside the tube?

Thanks,

Mike


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Stainless1 on February 10, 2016, 09:11:15 PM
It is done both ways... more important, mount position, too high above CG will unload front, too low will unload back.... Tether length.... position... chute size... speed it will be popped are all questions that should be answered....
Best idea... talk it over with the chute guy to get the chute and mount point tailored for the car, then decide where you will mount the can.... that will tell you if you need to go through or under for the mount.
 :cheers:


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: awelker on February 10, 2016, 10:29:29 PM
From what I was told when discussing my chute with the manufacturer was that the chute line should pull through the center of gravity of the car.  As Stainless said, too high it will lift the nose, too low it will lift the tail.

I pull through the tube and it is mounted very close to axle height. Don't remember tether length off the top of my head but these pics give a general idea of how at least my chute style trails at speed.  My chute has deployed well and pulled nice at Bonneville, Loring, and Ohio.

Just from a quick look at the height of your chute tube seems like pulling through the tube would be a little high.  But that is just my opinion.

-Andy


(https://farm2.staticflickr.com/1642/24831009362_072c4aa5bb.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/DQepZ5)IMG_2613 (https://flic.kr/p/DQepZ5) by Andrew Welker (https://www.flickr.com/photos/vonwelker/), on Flickr

(https://farm2.staticflickr.com/1466/24318416414_18f5bb7fd9.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/D3WeXC)IMG_2615 (https://flic.kr/p/D3WeXC) by Andrew Welker (https://www.flickr.com/photos/vonwelker/), on Flickr


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on February 12, 2016, 03:47:20 PM
I machined a 1/4" compression fitting with 1/4" hose on the opposite end.  This makes for a very compact and secure connection of braided stainless (Spectre fractional size hose) to the tubing. 

I saw Andy's car at the Ohio Mile.  It is an engineering marvel and very well executed.  After seeing Andy's photos and making some coarse calculations I estimate that my CG is nearly in line with the perimeter frame.  I have ordered a section of 6" schedule 40 steel pipe for a new chute tube.  I will cut the back of the frame so the tube can be welded in place making it a structural piece of the perimeter frame. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: manta22 on February 12, 2016, 06:45:57 PM
Nice work, Mike.

Regards, Neil  Tucson, AZ


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: ronnieroadster on February 12, 2016, 08:58:37 PM
 On my lakester using a tube for the chute deployment I connected the chute to the chassis so its positioned at the cam shaft centerline. Joe Timney Delaware Chassis works guided me on the proper location for attachment. After five seasons of deployment at speeds now over 180 MPH the chute deployment has never upset the car.


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Elmo Rodge on February 12, 2016, 09:58:53 PM
Mike, I found my center of mass and mounted my chute accordingly. So far I am pleased.  :cheers: Wayno


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on February 14, 2016, 02:23:36 PM
I will borrow some scales and find the center of gravity (mass) so that I can mount the chute tube at the correct height and keep the chute lanyard inside the tube.  Thanks for the recommendations.  I included a photo of the workshop inside the garage for Neil and Tauruck.  The workshop is heated and cooled which extends my working season in Ohio.  The small milling machine has both manual and full CNC operation.  The lathe is one of my all time favorite machine tools, a Haas tool room lathe.  The lathe has full manual and full CNC automatic operation with tabs that can be quickly filled in for various operations such as single point threading.  I am thankful to a well equipped shop. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: manta22 on February 14, 2016, 03:04:43 PM
Nice workspace and great machine tools, Mike!  :cheers:

Regards, Neil  Tucson, AZ


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: WOODY@DDLLC on February 14, 2016, 03:06:21 PM
And I can testify that it looks even better standing there!  :cheers:
And no I'm not showing youse guys my shop!  :x


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: tauruck on February 14, 2016, 04:28:37 PM
I think we call him Dr. Brown from now on.
That's a surgery. :wink:

Thanks for that photo Mike. I'll start tidying up my work space tomorrow.
You set a good example.

Regards, Mike. :cheers:


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: bearingburner on February 14, 2016, 05:17:31 PM
Nice shop. My Bridgeport is circa 1946 my Southbend lathe is a 9" 1934 , my bench drillpress is a circa 1920 model.


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: fordboy628 on February 15, 2016, 07:14:05 AM
Very nice shop!!

I was going to be jealous of the mill and lathe, but since I'll be 65 in a few months, I'm just going to concentrate on my woodworking and fly tying after that.

 :cheers:
Flyfishingboy


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Rex Schimmer on February 15, 2016, 02:04:17 PM
Very nice shop!!

I was going to be jealous of the mill and lathe, but since I'll be 65 in a few months, I'm just going to concentrate on my woodworking and fly tying after that.

 :cheers:
Flyfishingboy

Right!! Mark do you really expect us to believe that!

Rex


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on February 17, 2016, 06:36:08 PM
I changed to 6" schedule 40 pipe for my chute tube.  The frame was coped for a good fit when welding the tube in place.  The chute will now be at a much better height and I gained 51 pounds of ballast. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Elmo Rodge on February 17, 2016, 07:57:26 PM
Mike, how high is the tube from the ground? I'm assuming you're still planning on mounting the tether in the tube? Wayno


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: kiwi belly tank on February 17, 2016, 09:22:49 PM
I'm surprised nobody has mentioned the lack of rigidity in the chassis after the cage, is that it or is there more to come?
  Sid.


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: johnneilson on February 17, 2016, 10:12:22 PM
I have the tether attached outside the tube.
I can remove the tube and stand it vertically for packing the chute, then replace in the car.
You can see the attachment point, rear of and below the tube, just above the push roller.


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Stan Back on February 18, 2016, 12:29:06 PM
Ours is tethered to the 1/4-inch 2x5 rear crossmember.  We just put a notch in the bottom of the tube to accommodate it.  I don't like the idea of what might happen if the car was a little off-straight (yes, I know it's not a roadster) and what damage it might do to the tube and the surrounding body work.

Here's, maybe, a picture.


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on February 18, 2016, 09:12:27 PM
Elmo,

The center of the chute tube is 22-1/4" from the ground.  There is rake in the chassis with the front being 1" lower than the rear.  I am planning to route the tether inside the tube.  The tube is .280" thick steel (schedule 40 6" pipe). 

Sid,

The perimeter frame is 2"x3"x1/4" wall tube but there is more frame to come in the rear.  I will be using a link over the engine between the rear cage hoop and the hoop after the engine.  I plan to make the link with right and left hand thread rod ends so that I can tension it after it is installed.  The link will need to be removable for engine access.  There will also be additional bracing between the hoop after the engine and the rear of the frame.  I have fuel tank, supercharger intercooler tank and battery that all has to fit in this area.  There are also 1" diameter "knee" braces on each hoop to the rectangular perimeter frame.  I will post some additional photos as I am always looking for ways to add additional strength to the chassis. 

Thanks for the comments. 

Mike Brown


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on March 30, 2016, 06:46:44 PM
The front of the LSA is getting busy with coolant lines.  I am using an electric water pump.  The only thing driven off of the crankshaft is the supercharger.  I elected to build an adjustable belt tensioner instead of using an OEM spring tensioner. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on March 30, 2016, 06:48:34 PM
Since there are "shade tree" mechanics it is natural to have shade tree painters.  My engine mounts and blower tensioner getting a little Rust-O-Leum before final installation. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on April 24, 2016, 05:15:32 PM
After much research I am making progress on the transmission shifter.  I ordered 5/16" Cable Craft push pull cables with male threaded ends.  I fabricated a mount to attach the cables to the Hurst competition plus shifter.  I machined solid ends for the cables.  The ends are attached to the shifter levers with stainless steel bushings.  I felt no need to use rod ends as the alignment on this end of the system is very accurate and there is no binding.  The cables exit through a bushing in the firewall that can be sealed.  The cables go up and over to the top of the transmission.  I have machined custom levers for the transmission that face to the rear of the car to maintain a standard shift pattern.  Note that the 5/16" cables are large and have 11/16" threaded ends for the outer housing.  The bend radius is 8" but the cables are very stiff.  My bend radius is a compound radius but thankfully much larger than the minimum. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on April 28, 2016, 08:23:14 PM
I completed the transmission end of the shifter.  The 5/16" cables are stiff but workable since the bend radius is large.  The mount was made from 1/4" steel.  I used 5/16" rod ends to attach the shifter cables to the shifter arms.  The shifter arms were made in two pieces.  One piece was turned on the lathe with a "keyway" machined on the mill in the back to drive the double flats on the Jerico transmission.  The arms were then machined with a matching cope so they could be rotated to any position while the adapters were on the transmission.  This allowed me to insure that the arms were perpendicular to the cable while in neutral.  The shifter was locked in neutral with a 1/4" pin to insure proper alignment.  I scribed witness marks on the transmission shifter lever assemblies so the could be fixture for welding off the transmission.  The shifter works great.  The force is low with very minimal lost motion which makes finding neutral very easy.   


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on May 03, 2016, 05:57:22 PM
Finishing up the shifter allows me work on the next layer of the car which is the fuel system.  I was ready to start machining some fittings when a search found "AN O-Ring Unions".  These great fittings by Fragola allow you to connect an AN O-Ring port directly to another AN O-Ring port.  To allow the components that you are coupling to be aligned one end is fixed and the other end is adjustable using a nut.  This saves an incredible amount of space over port adapters, hose fittings and short pieces of hose or an AN to AN coupler.  The beginning of my fuel system is an AN-12 Enderle combination fuel filter and shutoff.  The filter/shutoff is connected to the Aeromotive fuel pump and then on to the fuel pressure regulator.  This makes for a very small package with less connections to leak.  I will use a microswitch to insure that the fuel pump cannot run with the fuel shutoff. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: manta22 on May 03, 2016, 09:06:37 PM
Those fittings are good to know about- thanks, Mike.  :cheers:

Regards, Neil  Tucson, AZ


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Rex Schimmer on May 04, 2016, 12:02:37 PM
Mike,
Your fuel pump/filter/regulator system is very nice and compact. Is the tank return line the connection on the bottom? I looked on the Aeromotive site and they did not give a schematic of the connections. I assume that the two side connections that appear to be in line (front and back in your picture) are the regulated pressure connections that go to the injection system. Nice parts and I like the double O ring fitting, I have logged it into my memory for when I re-plumb my roadster injection.

Rex


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on May 05, 2016, 09:48:15 AM
Mike,
Your fuel pump/filter/regulator system is very nice and compact. Is the tank return line the connection on the bottom? I looked on the Aeromotive site and they did not give a schematic of the connections. I assume that the two side connections that appear to be in line (front and back in your picture) are the regulated pressure connections that go to the injection system. Nice parts and I like the double O ring fitting, I have logged it into my memory for when I re-plumb my roadster injection.

Rex

Rex,

The return line connection is on the bottom of the regulator as shown in the photo.  In the car the connection will point up with a short AN-10 line connecting back to the fuel tank.  The two connections on the side are actually intended to be returns from each fuel rail on a V8 application.  I attached an illustration of the connections from Aeromotive (I searched their site and found the instructions).  I spoke with their tech department and it is OK to use one port as fuel in and the other for fuel out to the fuel rail as my crate engine requires.  I wanted to have enough capacity that If I need 1,000hp some day I don't have to swap out a bunch of parts. 

Mike Brown


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on May 05, 2016, 09:52:59 AM
With regards to the fuel system what is the opinion on foam in the fuel tank?  My tank came with foam, I had to remove it to install larger bulkhead fittings for the fuel pump inlet and bypass lines.  I am concerned about getting air in the fuel from the return line.  I could add a "dip tube" so that the return line is below the expected fuel level or just reinstall the foam. 

The tank also has an AN-8 vent line with a ball type roll over valve.  Where is the preferred spot in the car to route the vent line? 

Thanks,

Mike Brown


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on May 06, 2016, 07:30:56 PM
After some research I decided to not use foam.  Jaz the manufacture of the fuel tank (and foam) specifically state on their website that the foam cannot be used with water for intercoolers or with fuel that contains alcohol.  I expect to run E85 in the future so the foam is out.  Junior Thompson (of 60's gasser fame) told me not to run foam in a mechanically injected Hemi street project many years ago.  So I fabricated a "dip tube" using an aluminum coupler machined with 7/8-14 threads that will screw on to the fuel return bulkhead fitting inside the tank and connect a short section of 1/2" aluminum rigid conduit.  The fuel returned from the regulator will enter the tank below the fuel level and I hope reduce or eliminate aeration of the fuel. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on May 08, 2016, 06:20:33 PM
I fabricated a mount for the fuel tank.  The tank, shutoff, filter, pump, regulator and lines have been installed.  The next goal is a battery box, some wiring and then on to starting the engine. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on May 19, 2016, 05:42:01 PM
The fire bottle mount is mocked up.  I have been making angles fabricated from 1/4" steel that bolt to the frame.  A section of 1-5/8" tube is welded between the angles spanning the car.  The fire bottle mounts are attached to 1/4" x 4" steel plates welded to the tube. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on May 19, 2016, 05:45:42 PM
The battery, fuel system and intercooler system were made into a module that bolts to the frame.  The module is easily removed for access to the engine and transmission. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on May 19, 2016, 05:46:26 PM
A side view of the chassis. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on May 19, 2016, 05:47:13 PM
A top view from the back. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on May 19, 2016, 05:47:51 PM
A top view from the front. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: tauruck on May 19, 2016, 09:06:55 PM
That looks great Mike. :cheers: :cheers: :cheers: :cheers:


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on May 22, 2016, 05:48:29 PM
I cut most of the steel for the car using a portable band saw.  It is one of my favorite tools. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on May 22, 2016, 05:50:46 PM
Sometimes there is a need to cut small pieces or parts that are not easily held in a vise.  I clamp a piece of aluminum plate in the vise then secure the part to be cut using a small "C" clamp.  This works really well. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on May 22, 2016, 05:51:58 PM
The completed fire bottle mount.  I added gussets under each plate. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Rex Schimmer on May 22, 2016, 06:02:34 PM
Mike,
My son and I have a Milwaukee portable ban saw and we used one of Swag Off Road's mounts to make it into a small table metal ban saw. One of the most used tools in the shop!! This is their link to the saw mounts. You might like it!
http://www.swagoffroad.com/SWAG-Portaband-Tables-Accessories_c_35.htm

Like your progress!!!

Rex


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: wheelrdealer on May 22, 2016, 07:29:52 PM
Mike,
My son and I have a Milwaukee portable ban saw and we used one of Swag Off Road's mounts to make it into a small table metal ban saw. One of the most used tools in the shop!! This is their link to the saw mounts. You might like it!
http://www.swagoffroad.com/SWAG-Portaband-Tables-Accessories_c_35.htm

Like your progress!!!

Rex

Mike:

I second that. The Milwaukee band saw and the SWAG Off-Road table mount is one of the best tools I have. Bought it to build some headers, now  I use it every day.

BR


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Jack Gifford on May 22, 2016, 11:15:52 PM
Ditto on portable bandsaw being a most-used tool. I recently needed to make some long cuts (19") of a width (4"?) that wouldn't quite fit in the throat of the saw. I made custom mounts for the roller guides that let the blade run untwisted, instead of the usual 45 degree twist. It worked fine.


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: 4-barrel Mike on May 22, 2016, 11:18:21 PM
Which is your preferred table mount?

Mike


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on May 26, 2016, 07:39:54 PM
The challenge is always packaging.  I thought that I could easily put a tach and a small switch panel in the space between the steering wheel and front tube.  Well the tach fits, now to find a new location for the switch panel. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: ronnieroadster on May 26, 2016, 08:19:49 PM
When I built my lakester I installed the yellow shift light however I never actually looked for the light during any of my runs. There's so much time during a run you will find its easy to watch the tach and where your going on the track. A time example for my car which runs just short of 180 in the mile its 30 seconds of seat time from when you leave the line on a run. 
   When I decided to eliminate the shift light that gave me more room for gauges and switches. My car is very similar to yours its very narrow in the dash/gauge area. My dash has the tach in the center along with three gauges spaced left and right of the tach. Also on the dash I have four switches including a starter push button and one LED indicator. There's a lot of stuff on a small panel creatively shaped to conform around the single tach and still allow plenty of room for the drivers legs to not come in contact with the dash. One area of the build I truly enjoy is the creative use of compact packaging.


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: manta22 on May 26, 2016, 09:24:03 PM
Mike;

Could you mount your shift light vertically behind the panel? This would reflect on the windshield like a head-up display (HUD).

Regards, Neil  Tucson, AZ


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: ggl205 on May 26, 2016, 09:56:40 PM
Hi Mike:

My dash and especially the two fire bottles are located in roughly the same space on the chassis. One of the problems we have is how little space there is for a pull or push cable for fire bottles. What are you going to use for cables?

John


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on May 27, 2016, 06:23:14 AM
My fire suppression system is activated with a push knob that attaches directly to the fire bottles. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: ggl205 on May 27, 2016, 06:45:59 AM
My fire suppression system is activated with a push knob that attaches directly to the fire bottles. 

Did you have a custom cable length made?


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on May 27, 2016, 06:54:24 PM
John,

I attached a photo of the fire suppression system activators.  They are push style and mount directly to the fire bottles, no cables are needed.  I did have custom Control Craft cables made for my shifter.  They are large 5/16" versions and came out perfect. 

Mike


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on May 27, 2016, 06:59:44 PM
When I built my lakester I installed the yellow shift light however I never actually looked for the light during any of my runs. There's so much time during a run you will find its easy to watch the tach and where your going on the track. A time example for my car which runs just short of 180 in the mile its 30 seconds of seat time from when you leave the line on a run. 
   When I decided to eliminate the shift light that gave me more room for gauges and switches. My car is very similar to yours its very narrow in the dash/gauge area. My dash has the tach in the center along with three gauges spaced left and right of the tach. Also on the dash I have four switches including a starter push button and one LED indicator. There's a lot of stuff on a small panel creatively shaped to conform around the single tach and still allow plenty of room for the drivers legs to not come in contact with the dash. One area of the build I truly enjoy is the creative use of compact packaging.

Ron,

I have seen your lakester and it is a marvel of compactness.  Your tank is much smaller in diameter than mine.  I think that the shift light has to go to make room for a few switches.  I need a fuel pump, ignition and water pump switches along with a starter button.  I have some very bright LEDs that are clear when off.  I can find place for a LED shift light.  I hope that the phrase "imitation is the most sincere form of flattery" works for you.  I am going to paint my tank silver after seeing yours. 

Mike


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: ronnieroadster on May 28, 2016, 12:54:54 PM
HI Mike
  Part of the silver on my front half tank body is the original aluminum I just use a scotch bright pad to keep it silvery then once I painted painting the lower half black that helped to hide all the years of abuse the old tank went threw plus out on the salt it will be visible much better.
  Mike another thing to think about the way you would trigger your fire bottles. Being located under and behind the dash area might be a problem for two reasons.  One if you happen to hit a bottle knob with your leg or knee getting in or out of the car that will quickly ruin your day. Second once your all belted in fire suit and helmet plus Hans device all on the amount of extension you will have on your arms and head movement may not allow you visibility and access to those bottle knobs.   
     In my car I decided to place control for the fire bottles on the right side of the frame the same general location as the chute release this location protects against a mistaken fire bottle actuation and its not a stretch of my body to get to these important controls. trigger of the bottles plus its in a location easy to get at without having to look down below the dash area.
     Were planing on being in Wilmington next month if your in the area stop by your more than welcome to sit in the car to see what I mean about the control access. We could even strap you in helmet and Hans on to see what little movement there is.
 Ron


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on June 04, 2016, 05:51:07 PM
I decided to machine a block to hold the fire suppression nozzles angled away from the fire wall and angled apart to get better coverage.  When I need to do multiple operations on the mill and repeat angles I layout the angle on a piece of scrap material, drill holes and add roll pins.  This holds the part consistently at the same angle each time that you put it in the vise. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on June 04, 2016, 05:52:28 PM
This is a photo of the machined part setting against the roll pins to hold the angle. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on June 04, 2016, 05:54:05 PM
This is a photo of the part with the fixture in the vise.  A stop is required to hold the fixture in the same location as the part is removed and replaced. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on June 04, 2016, 05:55:30 PM
This is the part with mounting holes, tubing connector and nozzles. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on June 04, 2016, 05:56:48 PM
A photo of fire suppression nozzles covering the firewall from behind the drivers seat. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Stainless1 on June 04, 2016, 07:12:43 PM
What fire suppressant are you using?  How many cubic feet of space does it cover when you are in there?  My concern is the nozzles look like they would release a lot of suppressant in a very short time, you actually want your suppressant to be flowing till you can get stopped and get out.
YMMV  :cheers:


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on June 05, 2016, 01:00:35 PM
What fire suppressant are you using?  How many cubic feet of space does it cover when you are in there?  My concern is the nozzles look like they would release a lot of suppressant in a very short time, you actually want your suppressant to be flowing till you can get stopped and get out.
YMMV  :cheers:

I am using the aqueous system from Fire Fox.  The cockpit suppression system is 6-1/2 pounds.  Each nozzle has a #46 (.081") restrictor.  The cockpit is open.  The body is a not regular cone, there is a front bulkhead that the pedals come through to form the foot box however it is not sealed so I calculated the gross volume without me inside.  My best estimate is less than 15 cubic feet. 

I have an additional 6-1/2 pound system with 3 nozzles for the engine compartment. 

Mike Brown


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on June 07, 2016, 08:05:31 PM
I purchased the LSA controller kit with the crate engine.  The controller included a wiring harness and fuse box.  To expedite the wiring process by eliminating adding additional fuses and relays I modified the fuse box.  There were already relays and 30A mega fuses in place for the fuel pump and fan.  I brought new leads out for the fuel pump and fan relays which I will use for my fuel pump and cooling pump.  These will be controlled with toggle switches in the cockpit.  The wiring harness also needed to be shortened for this application.  I solder each wire connection and cover with "moisture resistant heat shrink tubing"  I get the heat shrink from McMaster Carr.  It is some amazing stuff, it has a substance like hot melt glue inside so when you shrink it with a heat gun the glue sticks the tubing to the wiring.  You can see the glue oozing out from the end of the tubing in the photo.  It makes for some very secure connections. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: manta22 on June 08, 2016, 12:33:08 PM
Shrink tubing with a meltable inner wall is good stuff. Nice, Mike.

Regards, Neil  Tucson, AZ


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on June 09, 2016, 07:12:57 PM
I finished plumbing the intake into the LSA engine.  The intake tubing is 4" and passes through the cockpit behind my left shoulder.  The crate engine uses a MAF sensor.  The sensor installation is very specific, it needs to be in a straight section of at least 6" long and have at least 10" to the throttle body.  I had just enough room to make it fit.  Jerry Hoffman at DIYAutoTune could find some more horsepower in this combination using only a MAP sensor and a speed density controller when the time comes. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on August 02, 2016, 07:48:34 PM
The cockpit is tight including the foot box.  I have successfully used Wilwood parts in multiple builds.  The master cylinders are located behind the steering rack so the pedals needed to be extended.  I started out by cutting up the Wilwood pedal.  I intended to weld a spacer in place but decided against it since is was cast aluminum.  It is good cast aluminum but I did not want to compromise the brake and clutch systems.  This photo is where I started. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on August 02, 2016, 07:50:27 PM
I mocked up a pedal and then started fabricating it from 3/4" aluminum plate.  It would work but I wasn't pleased where it was heading.  This is a photo of the "rough" cut pedal from plate.


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on August 02, 2016, 07:56:42 PM
I ordered a second pedal assembly from Wilwood and was pleasantly surprised when I received it.  The new pedal is a two piece design.  The pad that contacts your boot is beautiful stainless steel.  There are raised edges around the holes which grip your boots and eight mounting holes that allow the pad to be mounted center, left or right.  A fantastic design.  I machined four rectangles from 1/4" plate steel.  Two had clearance holes to attach to the pedals and two were drilled and tapped 10-24 to allow the pads to be bolted in place.  I used 3/4" diameter steel rod to make the spacers that I needed to get the pedals out past the steering rack.  This turned out great. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: tauruck on August 02, 2016, 08:18:13 PM
That looks great Mike. It is a beautiful design.
All the best. Top notch build. :cheers: :cheers: :cheers:


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on August 03, 2016, 04:13:12 PM
A photo of the lettering.  Dan Shaw in Milford Ohio has done hand lettering on all of my projects.  The name of the car is "itisforfreedom.com".  This is a great group of people who started a Christian school in the Dominican Republic.  The school is for the children whose parents harvest sugar cane on a 240,000 acre plantation.  I have made a few trips to help with their infrastructure.  The grid power is only on for a few hours per day with sometimes disastrous results when it comes back on.  They are now off the grid and use solar power as much as possible.  Check out their website, it is amazing what they have done down there mostly with manual labor. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on August 03, 2016, 07:37:36 PM
A photo of the pedals installed in the car.  The next step is build a foot box.  The car weighed in total at 2,426 pounds with 1,045 pounds on the front and 1,381 pounds on the rear.  I plan to build the foot box from 11ga steel in an effort to get more weight up front.  I would like to start with a 50:50 weight distribution.  The throttle pedal is the factory drive by wire system that came with the engine controller. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on August 03, 2016, 07:43:43 PM
I used an electrical panel from Joes Racing.  The panel was reasonably priced, had good switches and lights to indicate when the switches were on.  I chose to have very basic controls.  Ignition, fuel pump, water pump and a starter button.  The starter button is robust however to eliminate the need for heavy gauge wire into the cockpit I added a starter relay which kept all of the cockpit wiring at 18 gauge.  The chute lever and inertial switch for the fuel pump are visible in the photo.  


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: ronnieroadster on August 03, 2016, 08:43:56 PM
A photo of the pedals installed in the car.  The next step is build a foot box.  The car weighed in total at 2,426 pounds with 1,045 pounds on the front and 1,381 pounds on the rear.  I plan to build the foot box from 11ga steel in an effort to get more weight up front.  I would like to start with a 50:50 weight distribution.  The throttle pedal is the factory drive by wire system that came with the engine controller. 


  For a better handling car the weight distribution should be determined based on the center of pressure location from the rear axle center line. Once the C/P location is know the center of gravity location must be in front of the C/P by up to six inches. The amount of weight needed on the front axle might be less than your 50/50 idea.


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on August 04, 2016, 08:15:57 PM
I estimated the pressure center using a calculator found on the Landracing forum (http://www.mh-aerotools.de/airfoils/software.htm).  This calculator estimates my pressure center to be about 4" behind the center of the wheel base.  To move the CG to 6" in front of the pressure center will place the CG 2" in front of the wheel base center.  This will require slightly more weight on the front than the back.  This will be more than the 336 additional pounds to the front end that I estimated for a 50/50 weight distribution. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: John Burk on August 04, 2016, 10:43:55 PM
Hang a model from a thread and blow air at it . You may be surprised how far forward the CP is .


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Interested Observer on August 05, 2016, 07:32:51 AM
Mr. Brown,
The aerotools calculator appears to operate on an area-weighted basis and for an aircraft uses the planform layout.  Was your result also based on planform or, more appropriately, a lateral profile form?  Or, perhaps a modified partially yawed profile that includes both front wheels? 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on August 05, 2016, 10:27:12 AM
Mr. Brown,
The aerotools calculator appears to operate on an area-weighted basis and for an aircraft uses the planform layout.  Was your result also based on planform or, more appropriately, a lateral profile form?  Or, perhaps a modified partially yawed profile that includes both front wheels?  


For the first attempt (and not knowing much about the software) I took a photo of the car from the side perpendicular to it.  I used Photoshop to "cut" the car out, imported the image and pressed the button to analyze.  If there is a better methodology I am open to it.  

Thanks for your interest in my project. 

Mike Brown


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Rex Schimmer on August 05, 2016, 02:19:27 PM
Mike,
Are you including your weight when you do your CG calculations? Just a thought as if you put my fat a$$ in the drivers seat I would bet you would not need to add front weight! Good reason I'm not a driver!

Rex


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on August 05, 2016, 02:42:58 PM
Mike,
Are you including your weight when you do your CG calculations? Just a thought as if you put my fat a$$ in the drivers seat I would bet you would not need to add front weight! Good reason I'm not a driver!

Rex

A good question.  Yes I did get the weight while in the car.  I was able to borrow four wireless electronic scales from the local Porsche club to weigh the car.  This allowed me to get simultaneous weight from each corner of the car while sitting in it.  The scales are amazing.  I contemplated gaining 300 pounds for ballast but decided against it when I realized that I didn't want to buy another fire suit.  So the ballast will be metal either steel or lead or both. 

Mike Brown


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: krusty on August 23, 2016, 03:38:06 PM
Tungsten! The favored weight of racing teams with more than decent budgets!  At 1204.41 #/cu.ft., you could layer your helmet with Tungsten (0.069699635 #/cu.in.) and still fit in your drivers suit. If you need front weight, consider Tungsten sole plates on your driving shoes. The possibilities only end with your budget!   :mrgreen:

vic


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Rex Schimmer on August 23, 2016, 05:21:16 PM
Vic,
You old grouchy old "fart" you got to many zeros, it should be .695 lb/cu.in. so it is about 7 times heavier than aluminum and 4 times heavier that steel and about 1.7 times as heavy as lead, but the price is around $75/lb in round bar form and a pound of tungsten is only about 1.4 cu. in. so you dont' get much for your money.

Rex


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on August 24, 2016, 06:30:09 PM
The factory drive by wire gas pedal did not well in the foot box.  The plastic factory pedal attached to the throttle sensor with a knurled pin.  I replaced the factory pedal with a new one that I fabricated.  The round disk is an exhaust valve from a 1955 Chrysler Hemi. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on August 24, 2016, 06:31:48 PM
I fabricated suspension link retainers from 1/4" stainless steel.  They are secured inside the panel with a clamp collar and cotter pin. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on August 24, 2016, 06:34:37 PM
When you first don't succeed read the directions.  I soaked the exhaust wrap in water overnight (in a zip lock bag) per the instructions and was able to successfully apply the exhaust wrap to the tail pipes of the car. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on August 24, 2016, 06:38:51 PM
Tungsten! The favored weight of racing teams with more than decent budgets!  At 1204.41 #/cu.ft., you could layer your helmet with Tungsten (0.069699635 #/cu.in.) and still fit in your drivers suit. If you need front weight, consider Tungsten sole plates on your driving shoes. The possibilities only end with your budget!   :mrgreen:

vic

Well the tungsten possibility ended quickly with my budget.  I added (3) 50 pound rectangular blocks of steel and will be rechecking the CG this weekend.  I would really like to make an initial pass at National Trail dragstrip in Hebron Ohio before going to the Ohio Mile in Wilmington Ohio for the last race of the season. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on August 26, 2016, 08:12:47 PM
I like to use safety wire on critical fasteners used in assemblies like suspension.  I am adverse to drilling 1/16" holes 1-1/8" deep through the heads of grade 8 bolts.  I prefer to drill through the corner of the hex.  This same methodology can be used for nuts.  I purchased a drill jig for this purpose but was not satisfied with the results.  I broke too many drill bits ruining expensive bolts.  I came up with a successful methodology using my milling machine.  I find the edge of the hex point and move into the bolt 1/8".  I mill a flat using a solid carbide two flute Kennametal end mill which makes a flat.  I then step back another .020" and drill a 1/16" hole using a Guhring parabolic flute drill bit.  I have drilled over two dozen holes without breaking a bit.  I keep the speed down to 1,500 rpm and use synthetic gear oil to lubricate both the end mill and drill bit. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on August 26, 2016, 08:13:47 PM
A photo of drilling the 1/16" hole in a nut. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on August 26, 2016, 08:15:29 PM
A photo of drilling the 1/16" hole in a bolt.  The flat was milled before this photo. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: tauruck on August 27, 2016, 06:08:38 AM
Mike, that's some awesome advice. I was scratching my head about doing that very job.
You just saved me a large head ache. Thanks. Regards, Mike. :cheers: :cheers: :cheers: :cheers: :cheers:


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: fordboy628 on August 27, 2016, 07:04:57 AM
I like to use safety wire on critical fasteners used in assemblies like suspension.  I am adverse to drilling 1/16" holes 1-1/8" deep through the heads of grade 8 bolts.  I prefer to drill through the corner of the hex.  This same methodology can be used for nuts. I purchased a drill jig for this purpose but was not satisfied with the results. I broke too many drill bits ruining expensive bolts.  I came up with a successful methodology using my milling machine.  I find the edge of the hex point and move into the bolt 1/8".  I mill a flat using a solid carbide two flute Kennametal end mill which makes a flat.  I then step back another .020" and drill a 1/16" hole using a Guhring parabolic flute drill bit.  I have drilled over two dozen holes without breaking a bit.  I keep the speed down to 1,500 rpm and use synthetic gear oil to lubricate both the end mill and drill bit.  

The aluminum jigs sold for this purpose are JUNK, do not waste your money on them.    I have and use a WWII era surplus jig, made of tool steel, for this purpose.

The aluminum jigs allow the drill to "wander", enlarging the jig hole in the fixture.    Drill breakage starts immediately thereafter.     Also, "low twist" (helix) cobalt drills with 135 degree point angle work best for me.   I could probably make a 118 degree, regular twist drill bit work in a pinch, but DO NOT use high helix drills, as they are very "flexible".   High drill bit rpm, light feed rate and cutting fluid definitely help drill bit life and reduce drill bit breakage.    Instead of the end mill trick to start, a small diameter center drill can be used.   Again cobalt, high rpm, low feed and cutting fluid are required.

If you are drilling a LOT of Gr8 or hardened "Allen head" bolts, find or machine a tool steel fixture, and get the cobalt drills.    You will save your sanity in the long run.

Just my 2˘

 :cheers:
Fordboy


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on August 27, 2016, 07:39:25 AM
I like to use safety wire on critical fasteners used in assemblies like suspension.  I am adverse to drilling 1/16" holes 1-1/8" deep through the heads of grade 8 bolts.  I prefer to drill through the corner of the hex.  This same methodology can be used for nuts. I purchased a drill jig for this purpose but was not satisfied with the results. I broke too many drill bits ruining expensive bolts.  I came up with a successful methodology using my milling machine.  I find the edge of the hex point and move into the bolt 1/8".  I mill a flat using a solid carbide two flute Kennametal end mill which makes a flat.  I then step back another .020" and drill a 1/16" hole using a Guhring parabolic flute drill bit.  I have drilled over two dozen holes without breaking a bit.  I keep the speed down to 1,500 rpm and use synthetic gear oil to lubricate both the end mill and drill bit.  

The aluminum jigs sold for this purpose are JUNK, do not waste your money on them.    I have and use a WWII era surplus jig, made of tool steel, for this purpose.

The aluminum jigs allow the drill to "wander", enlarging the jig hole in the fixture.    Drill breakage starts immediately thereafter.     Also, "low twist" (helix) cobalt drills with 135 degree point angle work best for me.   I could probably make a 118 degree, regular twist drill bit work in a pinch, but DO NOT use high helix drills, as they are very "flexible".   High drill bit rpm, light feed rate and cutting fluid definitely help drill bit life and reduce drill bit breakage.    Instead of the end mill trick to start, a small diameter center drill can be used.   Again cobalt, high rpm, low feed and cutting fluid are required.

If you are drilling a LOT of Gr8 or hardened "Allen head" bolts, find or machine a tool steel fixture, and get the cobalt drills.    You will save your sanity in the long run.

Just my 2˘

 :cheers:
Fordboy

The fixture that I purchased was hardened tool steel with a jack bolt to keep the corner of the hex pressed tightly against the fixture.  The problem that I had was pulling these stringy hard chips all the way up through the fixture without the chips binding the bit.  With no fixture and the parabolic flute bits pulling these chips up to just clear the drilled hole is no problem. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Rex Schimmer on August 27, 2016, 04:09:31 PM
Mike,
I like your lock wire hole drilling method however because for years I did not have a mill I would clamp the bolt in the drill vice with one flat perpendicular to the drill head and then near the edge of the hex I would drill a shallow hole with the 1/16 drill then I would turn the bolt so that the shallow hole was now on the side and very carefully insert the drill, while turning, into the shallow "pilot" hole which is now at approx 60 degrees from vertical, and start drilling slowly. If I took my time and used good drills I was pretty successful. Much easier on a mill. Lots of ways to skin the cat!

Rex


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: manta22 on August 27, 2016, 06:22:58 PM
That's the way I've done it too, Rex.

Regards, Neil  Tucson, AZ


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Peter Jack on August 27, 2016, 06:28:15 PM
That's the method I've always used with great success. Thanks Rex. While I was figuring out how I was going to photograph the operation you made a totally clear picture using only words. Well done!  :cheers: :cheers: :cheers:

Pecking at the hole in short bursts rather than using steady pressure seems to help by keeping the hole clear and the drill bit cool.

Pete


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on August 28, 2016, 05:39:07 PM
The benefit of using a parabolic flute drill bit is that you don't have to "peck" drill the hole to clear the chips.  With a standard flute drill bit you should be able to drill holes 3 times the bit diameter without the need to peck or clear chips.  Depending upon the parabolic flute bit holes can be drilled 5 or 10 times the diameter because they "pull" the chips out of the drilled hole.  When chips pack in the hole there is a lot of sliding going on which greatly increases the heat and the chance of catching which causes bits to break.  With some materials like stainless steel the heat will quickly work harden the material.  When the chip comes out cleanly the heat of the cutting action comes out with the chip.  I was able to drill the 1/16" holes without pecking.  I attached a photo of a drill chip that is almost an inch long attesting the to fact that the parabolic flute bits do a great job with these hard stringy materials. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Rex Schimmer on August 29, 2016, 06:45:41 PM
As I am a real "tool junky" I guess I need to be getting some of the parabolic flute drills and give them a try.

Rex


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: fordboy628 on August 30, 2016, 06:44:53 AM
Are "parabolic flute" drill bits the same as, or similar to, "high helix"?


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: NathanStewart on August 30, 2016, 03:18:25 PM
I think I read that this is an ECTA car only but I believe they more or less follow the SCTA rule book.  There's one paragraph from one rule that many, many special construction racers miss.  Last paragraph of rule 3.D.3 Arm/Leg Restraints: "All Special Construction vehicles shall included an inner liner or system of roll cage members for driver protection in the event of body panel destruction or separation.  For a restraint system to be deemed acceptable, no part of the driver shall extend outside the inner plane of the roll cage structure".  That means plate on the outside of the cage is not acceptable.  Just sayin'.


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on August 30, 2016, 06:48:33 PM
Are "parabolic flute" drill bits the same as, or similar to, "high helix"?

A parabolic flute drill bit may be high helix but it actually refers to the flutes of the bit which are shaped to pull the chips up from deep holes.  They can be had in high speed steel, cobalt, carbide and with various point angles.  I like Guhring brand.   


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: ronnieroadster on August 30, 2016, 07:56:21 PM
I think I read that this is an ECTA car only but I believe they more or less follow the SCTA rule book.  There's one paragraph from one rule that many, many special construction racers miss.  Last paragraph of rule 3.D.3 Arm/Leg Restraints: "All Special Construction vehicles shall included an inner liner or system of roll cage members for driver protection in the event of body panel destruction or separation.  For a restraint system to be deemed acceptable, no part of the driver shall extend outside the inner plane of the roll cage structure".  That means plate on the outside of the cage is not acceptable.  Just sayin'.




  Natan you have a great eye for the details the ECTA rule is identical to the SCTA rule the inner panels must be on the inner plane of the roll cage an easy correction to do now.
 Ron


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: fordboy628 on September 02, 2016, 07:10:15 AM
Are "parabolic flute" drill bits the same as, or similar to, "high helix"?

A parabolic flute drill bit may be high helix but it actually refers to the flutes of the bit which are shaped to pull the chips up from deep holes.  They can be had in high speed steel, cobalt, carbide and with various point angles.  I like Guhring brand.   

Thanks.    I can see where the "thicker" core of the parabolic flute would also be "stronger" and more resistant to bending in service.

Checking through my woodworking toolbox, I noticed that the specialty, German made drills I bought for deep hole drilling in wood and acrylic are a parabolic flute design, for "deep hole chip removal".


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on September 24, 2016, 12:10:27 PM
I fabricated the foot box from 11 gauge steel.  I made a few practice pieces from aluminum before the final version in steel.  The bends were made on a D&K power leaf brake. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on September 24, 2016, 12:12:41 PM
A view of the interior with the new cockpit lining material inside the tubing.  Thanks to Nathan for catching this before I head to the ECTA event this coming weekend.  The lining material is 1/8" 5052 aluminum. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: ronnieroadster on September 24, 2016, 03:28:08 PM
Hi Mike
   Are you planing on running the car this coming weekend?
        Ron


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on September 24, 2016, 03:53:45 PM
I am registered and plan on attending the September ECTA event. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on October 03, 2016, 06:25:38 PM
I was able to make a shake down run at the Ohio Mile.  Getting the car through tech was challenging.  The SFI 45.1 roll cage padding is some stiff difficult to work with material when the roll cage is tight.  I could see no way to add SFI 45.2 padding to the seat for a head rest.  The ECTA tech inspectors were helpful.  It was determined that the back of my cage was close enough to my helmet to serve as a headrest if it was covered in the SFI 45.1 roll bar padding.  So I cut the head rest from the seat and made it work.  I saved the rolled edge extrusion from the section that I cut off and will weld it on to the raw edge of the seat. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on October 03, 2016, 06:28:39 PM
I coped holes in the roll bar padding with a hole saw for the 1" cross tubes in the roll cage.  I broke one section of tubing bending it to conform to the roll cage tubing.  It was tedious work bending the padding to fit so that it could be secured with wire ties. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on October 03, 2016, 06:33:40 PM
I knew that using a total loss electrical system would require a 16 volt battery and a matching charger but I ran out of time and used an AGM 12 volt battery.  Don Gilmore and his team were a great help charging the battery with their generator and charger while we waited in line.  Never the less with the load of a 30 amp fuel pump, 12 amp water pump, 8 amp engine control unit when the intercooler pump kicked in under boost the voltage dropped to a point that the ECU did not like.  I plan to move the electric water pump to the rear of the engine and add a mini alternator. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on October 03, 2016, 06:44:14 PM
Per predictions of a few on the forum it was a challenge passing the "bail out" test.  The biggest issue I had was the new cockpit liner made from slick aluminum.  I had practiced many times with my gear on but was shocked by how 1-3/4" of additional height which restricted how far I could pull my feet back messed with my muscle memory and the ergonomics of a quick exit.  The new roll bar padding also forced me to lean forward with a slightly lower helmet position.  I had a great friend that races with the Porsche Club give me some help figuring this all out.  We added non slip strips intended for stair treads to the floor of the car and other slight changes to the belt adjustment and hand grip areas until I was able to quickly exit the car.  I can only say practice, practice, practice with all your gear on every time you make a change to the cockpit regardless if you think that it will make a difference or not.  I have got great advice on this forum. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on October 03, 2016, 06:50:24 PM
The line at the Ohio Mile ready to leave for my first pass ever. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: SPARKY on October 03, 2016, 07:10:55 PM
So Mike me boy---did you get a big ole   :-D going down the track?????????????  Inquiring minds need to know


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: awelker on October 04, 2016, 07:06:08 AM
Mike,

I'm glad you got to make a run.  Now the fun begins as you make the list of the upgrades you want to do. Congrats.

Andy





Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on October 04, 2016, 06:16:39 PM
It was a great experience running the car for the first time.  I did have smile on my face the entire way.  It will be a challenge for the ECTA to find a new venue as this was the last race at Wilmington Ohio.  The plans are for some additional testing at a drag strip before heading to the next event where ever that may take us.  Many thanks to everyone that helped this weekend including Don Gilmore and his entire crew that showed us how to pack the tube chute and charged the battery with their generator while we waited in line. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: oj on November 05, 2016, 05:21:47 PM
This has been a great thread, I just read the entire thing and its is very informative.  I enjoyed the craftsmanship, thats the fun of it really.  I am starting the design of a tank myself, is there anything you wish you'd done different? 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on November 27, 2016, 06:13:39 PM
OJ,

I wished that I would have insured that the seam on the fiberglass tank was matched better before I spent hours building the perimeter frame inside it.  When it came time to put the top front section on it did not fit.  I ended up cutting the body section and adding a nasty splice to make it fit.  It will take more work to make this look good than it would have taken to insure that the fit was correct the first time.  This was my first special construction project also.  Check out all the recommendations that you get on this site, there are a lot of racers that have been there done that.  Post pictures, it is amazing the things racers can spot in a photo. 

I wish the best with your project. 

Mike Brown 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on November 27, 2016, 06:27:47 PM
I am in the process of adding the alternator.  I have used the really small 65 amp alternators on other projects and they worked well.  I buy all of my pulleys and belts from B&B Manufacturing in Indiana.  They have the best center distance calculator that I have ever used.  The calculations are to three decimal places and have always been spot on.  The calculator lets you select the pitch and width of the drive.  You can enter the desired center distance and it comes back with the closest combination that is longer.  You can change pulley sizes by a tooth and recalculate.  I do this with different pitch drive systems until I get the center distance that I need.  I prefer to build systems that fit without the need for idler pulleys or large slots.  As it has been said on this website belly tank construction is all about packaging.  They also let you purchase online with a credit card.  Great people, great service. 

I ended up with L pitch (trapezoid style teeth) drive in 1/2" width.  The belt length is 244 with 19 and 32 tooth pulleys.  The alternator is driven from the upper supercharger pulley.  The supercharger is overdriven 2.6:1 for a maximum rpm of 16,600.  I wanted to slow the alternator down some so these pulleys give me a .59375:1 ratio for under 10,000 rpm on the alternator.  I purchased pulleys with 1/2" bores since I would be machining them to fit. 

Attached is a photo of the pulleys and belt. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on November 27, 2016, 06:30:45 PM
I machined the large pulley to fit on the alternator.  I machined the pulley to match the original "V" belt pulley that I removed from the alternator.  Attached is a photo of the machined pulley on the alternator. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on November 27, 2016, 06:37:25 PM
I machined holes in a piece of 3/4" thick plastic that would locate the alternator in the space available.  I bolted the alternator to this piece of plastic and clamped the opposite end to the blower pulley.  This kept the alternator aligned with the blower pulley so that I could mock up a mount.  I ended up removing the factory charcoal canister purge valve that came with this crate engine.  I machined a 1" thick piece of steel to block the valve location.  I then realized that I could use this piece of steel for one end of the alternator mount.  I bent up a piece of 1" diameter DOM tube that I had left over from the roll cage.  I added a brace from 1/4"x1" thick steel.  A lower mount was made from 1/4" thick steel plate.  The top view attached shows the upper mount. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on November 27, 2016, 06:42:38 PM
The photo leaves some to be desired but you can just see the 1/4" plate steel of the lower mount just to the right of the engine oil filler.  This plate is secured to the end of the head with two bolts in existing tapped holes.  A spacer made from 7/8" steel rod connects the bottom mount of the alternator to this steel plate.  The mount is very secure with no vibration when the engine is running. 

Now to redesign those steering arms that were flexing giving me some shimmy. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Jack Gifford on November 28, 2016, 01:29:59 AM
It appears that you're going to extremes (synchronous drive, 10K armature RPM) to have 65 amps (over 780W) available. What will demand that much electrical power?


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on November 28, 2016, 07:49:29 AM
It appears that you're going to extremes (synchronous drive, 10K armature RPM) to have 65 amps (over 780W) available. What will demand that much electrical power?

The LSA requires a vacuum/boost referenced fuel system with up to 68 psi of pressure.  I am running an Aeromotive Eliminator fuel pump.  The pump alone requires almost 15A of current.  The engine cooling system water pump draws about 14A.  The intercooler pump is another 10A of current.  The ECU idles at a couple of amps however the ignition draws over an amp per 1,000 rpm.  At low rpms I need about 40A of current which requires that the alternator be spinning very fast.  The alternator is rated for a maximum of 18,000 rpm.  I use toothed timing belt drives because I like them.  They are very compact and don't require any pretension to keep them from slipping. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: RichFox on November 28, 2016, 11:51:59 AM
I am to cheap to buy new pulleys. In this case I used Honda Gold Wing cam drive pulleys from a junk yard to drive an oil pump on a 28 Chevy. Turned the stock pulley to 1 1/4 and bored the Honda pulley to fit. Brazed them together. Made guide plates to keep the belt on and brazed them on the center and through holes to 5 teeth on the outside. Looked at how close I could mount the pump and compared that to belt sizes and ordered a belt from an industrial hardware store. Before and after pictures of the pulley. I need some aluminum to mount the pump so I can finish this.


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Jack Gifford on November 29, 2016, 01:04:29 AM
Thanks for the info Mike. I hadn't considered all the pumps being electric.


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on November 29, 2016, 07:30:34 PM
Safety is important and even little things can make a difference when you are having a "bad day".  I saw the results of a fire in the engine compartment of a land speed car.  Thanks to the on board fire suppression system the worst was some burnt wiring.  The fire happened when blow by pushed the dipstick up out of the tube spraying oil on the hot exhaust.  The oil spray continued feeding the fire until the engine was shut down.  I decided that it would be good to secure the dipstick on my car to help prevent this from happening.  I added a standoff and bracket to the engine so that the dipstick could be secured with a wire tie. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Stainless1 on November 30, 2016, 12:16:23 AM
Covering the bases will keep you from saying "well Subaru" how did that happen... keep applying the lessons learned the hard way by others... it doesn't have to happen to you to learn from experience.
 :cheers:


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on December 06, 2016, 08:25:12 PM
A photo of the upper alternator pulley.  I machined the pulley for very close (slight shrink) fit on the press fit hub of the factory upper supercharger drive pulley. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on December 06, 2016, 08:27:00 PM
I machined a drill jig that I could clamp around the pulley to get straight holes to insert roll pins.  Red Loctite was also used to secure the pulley to the hub. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on December 06, 2016, 08:30:41 PM
A photo of the completed alternator drive.  By virtue of a careful selection of pulleys and belt no idler or slotted brackets were needed.  The alternator puts out 26A of current at idle.  The car draws 33A of current at idle with all the pumps running except the intercooler.  As soon as the engine rpm comes up off idle the alternator current goes above the draw. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Glen on December 06, 2016, 08:35:28 PM
Mike, use a piece of safety wire in place of the tie wrap, a flash of flame will melt it in seconds Just a thought.


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on December 06, 2016, 09:24:12 PM
Mike, use a piece of safety wire in place of the tie wrap, a flash of flame will melt it in seconds Just a thought.


Glen,

Thanks for the recommendation.  I will change to safety wire or a stainless steel wire tie. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Frank06 on December 21, 2016, 05:19:19 PM
Mike, I just read this whole thread and enjoyed it immensely.  I didn't see how fast you went at Wilmington, but am curious if rear brakes only worked the way you thought they would?

thanks,
Frank


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on January 01, 2017, 07:54:42 PM
Mike, I just read this whole thread and enjoyed it immensely.  I didn't see how fast you went at Wilmington, but am curious if rear brakes only worked the way you thought they would?

thanks,
Frank

Frank,

The dual caliper disk brakes on the rear felt spongy to me before I went to the track.  There are a lot of loops in the brake lines and I have 2 psi residual check valves. I bled the brakes conventionally and with a vacuum bleeder.  They still felt a little spongy.  I went 125mph at Wilmington for my first licensing pass.  I slowed down to 90mph at the traps with concerns about how well the brakes would work.  I smoothly let off the gas as Keith recommended and then eased into the brakes.  The car slowed down quicker than I could have ever imagined.  I actually had to get back on the gas to make the first turn off which I think is 3/8 mile past the traps.  So I am no longer concerned about the brakes and am well pleased with their performance. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on January 01, 2017, 08:13:16 PM
I feel that whatever location the new ECTA track is at it will be further away than the 20 miles the Wilmington track was.  I decided to buy a trailer to haul the car on.  I had used a large enclosed race trailer that a friend graciously hauled the car to the track on as well as a U-Haul trailer and U-Haul dolly.  The car is very low and was chore to load.  I have towed our inboard ski boat around the country for decades on a single axle trailer and prefer this type trailer.  After research I chose an aluminum trailer made by Aluma.  The trailer has a gross weight capacity of 5,800 pounds so with a 2,800 pound car and 1,050 pound trailer I have ample capacity.  The axle is a torsion unit.  The car fits great on this 14-1/2 feet long trailer.  The trailer tilts and has a hydraulic snubber cylinder for vehicles that can drive on and off.  Not want to stress the clutch in the car I chose to winch it on the trailer.  To do this I need to manually control the tilt.  I added a manual hydraulic cylinder that tilts the trailer and holds it into position until I release it.  I added a worm gear winch rated for vertical lifting.  No brake is needed, it locks in position by virtue of its worm gear design.  I have used these winches many times before and have been very pleased with them.  The latest design I purchased has a 5/8" hex for the handle connection.  This allows you to use the supplied handle or a battery drill with a 5/8" socket.  I use a 18V Makita battery drill and it pulled the car completely on the trailer without exhausting the battery.  More photos to come. 


Title: Re:
Post by: Frank06 on January 02, 2017, 07:15:22 AM
Nice trailer!  I like the winch idea.

Can you post wheelbase and track of the car?  I can't find if you already posted it.  (thanks)


Title: Re:
Post by: Mike Brown on January 02, 2017, 12:35:57 PM
Nice trailer!  I like the winch idea.

Can you post wheelbase and track of the car?  I can't find if you already posted it.  (thanks)

Frank,

The wheelbase of the car is 125".  The rear tires are 325/50 15 which makes them about 12-3/4" wide.  The rear track width is about 57" with the outside of tire to outside of tire about 70".  The front tires are 185/75 15 which makes them about 7-1/4" wide.  The front track width is about 55-3/4" with the outside of tire to outside of about 63". 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on January 02, 2017, 12:42:58 PM
I attached a photo of the winch that I use to load the car. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Jack Gifford on January 03, 2017, 02:34:33 AM
I also have an Aluma, but it's only 12' long- I guess the wheelbase of my lakester is less than yours. I bought 6' aluminum ramps with it (which store beside the lakester's front wheels). I mounted a bumper jack to the tongue to allow jacking high enough so the ramps are in line with the trailer floor, to avoid scraping the belly of the race car. Also added "feet" that slide down at each rear corner, so when tilted up the weight is on three stable points, not the tires. I use an electric winch connected to the battery of the break-away brake system- since it's normally plugged into the tow vehicle (to maintain the trailer battery), winch power comes from the tow vehicle's system. Using starter relays, I put together a DPDT switch for the winch, so I can have a light-gauge wire cord with a remote switch- about 25' long to be 'most anywhere while operating the winch.

I like the Aluma trailer. But I realized after first loading the lakester that the trailer (3,000 lb. rated) was not intended for the load (about 2,200 lbs.) to be only at the extreme four corners. I had to make up steel strap trusses (1/4" x 1 1/4" strap?) above each side to keep the trailer from flexing. They are pyramid shaped, about 16" high in the middle, with threaded rod anchoring through 5/8" thick aluminum "plugs" at the ends of the trailer rails. This works well- trailer bed stays flat now. [In the photo, part of the near-side truss is visible (painted black) just behind the stored ramp]


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Koncretekid on January 03, 2017, 07:03:37 PM
Your choice of an aluminum trailer is a good idea.  A few photos of my steel framed trailer after 6 years at the Salt Flats.  I considered posting these in a separate thread but couldn't decide where to put it. I cringe when I think about its last trip to Loring and back, with two bikes inside at 70 mph. I, too, bought an aluminum trailer to replace it.
Tom
(http://i1103.photobucket.com/albums/g465/koncretekid/DSC09776.jpg) (http://s1103.photobucket.com/user/koncretekid/media/DSC09776.jpg.html)

(http://i1103.photobucket.com/albums/g465/koncretekid/DSC09777.jpg) (http://s1103.photobucket.com/user/koncretekid/media/DSC09777.jpg.html)

(http://i1103.photobucket.com/albums/g465/koncretekid/DSC09778.jpg) (http://s1103.photobucket.com/user/koncretekid/media/DSC09778.jpg.html)

(http://i1103.photobucket.com/albums/g465/koncretekid/DSC09783.jpg) (http://s1103.photobucket.com/user/koncretekid/media/DSC09783.jpg.html)


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Seldom Seen Slim on January 03, 2017, 07:29:58 PM
Aw, hey -- I'd be just as wary of aluminum as the steel.  The aluminum trim bits and pieces on our trailer are all pretty well dissolved.  It's out in the barn and snowed in so I can't get pics, but maybe it's time to go carbon fiber for trailer components.


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Peter Jack on January 04, 2017, 12:09:17 AM
I would hope the trailer's built from 5xxx series aluminum. That material is what serious aluminum boat hulls are built from and it's resistant to salt water corrosion. Most other aluminum alloys will do exactly what Jon described.

Pete


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Buickguy3 on January 04, 2017, 09:42:46 AM
     All cars and trailers on the Salt are pretty much "sacrificial". You just have to decide when enough is enough. The problem is knowing that point in time.
   Doug  :cheers: :cheers: :cheers:


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Seldom Seen Slim on January 04, 2017, 10:36:22 AM
Doug, I can always point back in time to when I should have known better and retired the trailer. :roll:


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on January 04, 2017, 03:56:04 PM
I am showing the car in "Survivor's Alley" at the Cincinnati Cavalcade of Customs this weekend.  I hauled the car down on the new trailer.  Unloading took about 15 minutes total including removing the straps.  The car comes off the trailer without dragging anywhere. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: ggl205 on January 04, 2017, 04:05:01 PM
Doug, I can always point back in time to when I should have known better and retired the trailer. :roll:

I think we all face this fate with trailers. I will be using a modified open steel trailer this go around. When completed, it is off to the sand blaster and two or three coats of either Rust Rocket or POR-15. That should keep the salt termites at bay for a few years.

John 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on January 09, 2017, 04:45:54 PM
I exhibited the car at the Cincinnati Cavalcade of Customs.  I learned something new about my car from a spectator.  A young woman with a group of children pointed at my parachute release cable sticking out from the back of the chute tube and explained to the children that this was a rocket car and that was the fuse that needed to be lit to send the car down the track! 

The 99 car in the foreground is the 1951 Indianapolis 500 winner on loan to the Shaw's and their Survivor's Alley from the Indianapolis Motor Speedway museum.  It is a great looking car with Offenhauser power. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Stan Back on January 09, 2017, 06:26:52 PM
Tell us about the Crosley . . .


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: 55chevr on January 09, 2017, 07:42:32 PM
I think the Crosley won the 1951 Indianapolis demolition derby.


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Podunk on February 14, 2017, 09:46:40 PM
Hydrogen Peroxide ? Would that put you in a fuel class?


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on March 06, 2017, 04:19:11 PM
All of the mile/mile and a half events now require front brakes.  I did not want to bolt on some metric GM calipers and rotors that would be hanging out in the wind, the car already has poor aero and I did not want to make it worse.  I decided to fabricate some disc brakes that will fit inside the rims of the front tires.  I had already machined the vented rotors off of the hubs I am using.  I really like how the Wilwood rotors on the rear are driven by castellated dogs and held in place with a large snap ring.  I decided that I could do a similar design for the front keeping it compact.  I machined drive slots in my hubs.  There were diagonal gussets cast into the hub.  I machined the gussets down to the same depth as the slots (for 1/4" thick rotors).  They were drilled and tapped 1/4-20 for bolts to secure the rotors to the hubs. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on March 06, 2017, 04:20:38 PM
I machined some 1/4" steel plate for rotors.  The tabs fit into the slots machined in the hubs. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on March 06, 2017, 04:23:32 PM
The finished rotors and hubs.  I will use graded bolts with safety wire to secure the rotors to the hubs.  I have small SC series Wilwood calipers.  I will fabricate the caliper mounts next.  The plan is to put the front brakes on a hand brake. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: manta22 on March 06, 2017, 05:12:56 PM
Mike;

Who made your aluminum tilt trailer and how do you like it?


Regards, Neil  Tucson, AZ


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on March 06, 2017, 07:26:58 PM
Mike;

Who made your aluminum tilt trailer and how do you like it?


Regards, Neil  Tucson, AZ

Neil,

The trailer is Aluma brand.  Their website is alumaklm.com.  My trailer has a GVW of 5,800 5,200 pounds and is a single torsion axle.  The trailer tows great and is sufficiently strong for my belly tank car.  I had very specific goals of a single axle, light weight and tilting.  I don't think this trailer is specifically listed for hauling cars but it works great for me.  Normally you would drive vehicles on to the tilted trailer and when the CG is forward enough it lowers against a dampener cylinder.  Getting unloaded is the reverse.  Since it is impractical to drive my car on and off I added the manual winch and tilt cylinder.  I can hold the bed tilted for loading and unloading without the chance of it going back to the flat position.  I think that the trailer is well built with LED lights and other nice features.  I hope this helps.  

Mike Brown


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: manta22 on March 06, 2017, 08:12:47 PM
Thanks, Mike. I've been considering buying an aluminum tilt trailer so your opinion of your trailer helps me quite a bit. Do you know your trailer model number?

Regards, Neil  Tucson, AZ


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: WhizzbangK.C. on March 06, 2017, 08:57:51 PM
I think the Crosley won the 1951 Indianapolis demolition derby.

C'mon Joe, everyone knows that no Crosley has ever WON a demo derby.  :cheers:


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on March 07, 2017, 08:49:56 AM
Thanks, Mike. I've been considering buying an aluminum tilt trailer so your opinion of your trailer helps me quite a bit. Do you know your trailer model number?

Regards, Neil  Tucson, AZ

Neil,

My trailer is a 8214HS.  The following is a link to the trailer on the Aluma website. 

http://www.alumaklm.com/utility/single-heavy-axle/8214hs-utility-trailer

Mike Brown


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: manta22 on March 07, 2017, 11:20:09 AM
Thanks, Mike.

Regards, Neil  Tucson, AZ


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: ronnieroadster on March 07, 2017, 03:42:05 PM
All of the mile/mile and a half events now require front brakes.  I did not want to bolt on some metric GM calipers and rotors that would be hanging out in the wind, the car already has poor aero and I did not want to make it worse.  I decided to fabricate some disc brakes that will fit inside the rims of the front tires.  I had already machined the vented rotors off of the hubs I am using.  I really like how the Wilwood rotors on the rear are driven by castellated dogs and held in place with a large snap ring.  I decided that I could do a similar design for the front keeping it compact.  I machined drive slots in my hubs.  There were diagonal gussets cast into the hub.  I machined the gussets down to the same depth as the slots (for 1/4" thick rotors).  They were drilled and tapped 1/4-20 for bolts to secure the rotors to the hubs.  





   Mike where did you get your information from that all of the mile/ mile and a half events now require front brakes? ECTA had considered that chage for 2017 but decided to not go forward with it that was decided before not having a location to run on this year. Your saying its changed?


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on March 07, 2017, 04:18:36 PM
All of the mile/mile and a half events now require front brakes.  I did not want to bolt on some metric GM calipers and rotors that would be hanging out in the wind, the car already has poor aero and I did not want to make it worse.  I decided to fabricate some disc brakes that will fit inside the rims of the front tires.  I had already machined the vented rotors off of the hubs I am using.  I really like how the Wilwood rotors on the rear are driven by castellated dogs and held in place with a large snap ring.  I decided that I could do a similar design for the front keeping it compact.  I machined drive slots in my hubs.  There were diagonal gussets cast into the hub.  I machined the gussets down to the same depth as the slots (for 1/4" thick rotors).  They were drilled and tapped 1/4-20 for bolts to secure the rotors to the hubs.  

Ron,

The 2016 ECTA rule book page 31 paragraph 3.W states 175 MPH and over - four-wheel brakes are required.  I was told when I went through tech in 2016 that because the rule books came out late for 2016 they were not going to enforce the rule until 2017. 

Mike Brown



   Mike where did you get your information from that all of the mile/ mile and a half events now require front brakes? ECTA had considered that chage for 2017 but decided to not go forward with it that was decided before not having a location to run on this year. Your saying its changed?


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on March 07, 2017, 08:43:34 PM
The rotor will definitely fit inside the rim of the front tire.  With the brake line connection on the back of the caliper I think a small cutout will suffice for the caliper. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on March 18, 2017, 12:50:46 PM
I machined caliper mounts from 3/4" thick aluminum plate. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on March 18, 2017, 12:52:40 PM
I needed a 1-1/8" thick spacer from the spindle flange to where I was going to mount my inner wheel discs.  I machined the spacer from extruded aluminum tube.  I was able to purchase 6" OD 4" ID aluminum tube online from Speedy Metals.  They sell this tube by the fraction of the inch.  I was able to get blanks cut 1-1/4" tall.  This greatly reduced the material cost and machining time for these spacers.  The material was at the house two days after the order.  A good company to deal with. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on March 18, 2017, 01:00:18 PM
The inner wheel covers were fabricated from 14 gauge galvaneal steel.  I did get those fabricated on a turret punch.  The hole that the caliper protrudes through I cut with a sabre saw. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on March 18, 2017, 01:01:55 PM
A view of the inner wheel disc, caliper mount and hub with rotor. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on March 18, 2017, 01:03:04 PM
A view of the inner wheel disc with the wheel in place from the front. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on March 18, 2017, 01:06:09 PM
A view of the caliper sticking through the inner wheel disc.  Now onto adding a master cylinder with lever and plumbing. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Jack Gifford on March 18, 2017, 11:10:17 PM
Nice job of getting the calipers almost completely out of the airstream. How much clearance wheel-rim-to-inner-disc?


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on March 19, 2017, 12:35:54 PM
Nice job of getting the calipers almost completely out of the airstream. How much clearance wheel-rim-to-inner-disc?

I have about 3/16" from the inside of the inner disc to the inside of the wheel rim.  The rolled edge on the perimeter of the rim is slightly further inboard than the disc.  After I machined the spacer I debated if it would be better to have the inner disc flush with this edge.  With the aero on this car I was over thinking it.  I hope the aero is better with the inner discs and brakes than it was before I added the brakes. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on March 23, 2017, 06:48:27 PM
I decided to drill the caliper slider bolts and safety wire them.  I need to figure out a location for the front brake master cylinder and then plumb the new brakes. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on April 22, 2017, 07:22:07 AM
I used a Wilwood kart master cylinder for the front brakes.  I added a lever for operation.  The plumbing was short so I used Areoquip braided stainless #3 lines and fittings.  An advantage of braided lines is being able to temporarily relocate the master cylinder so I could bleed the brakes without a second person.  The brakes bleed well and at about 1/4 stroke the lever is very firm.  I will put the master cylinder back in the car, secure the lines with some Adele clamps and we should be good to go. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on April 22, 2017, 02:30:22 PM
A photo of the hand brake installed in the cockpit.  Not much room left for anything else!


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on April 27, 2017, 04:45:06 PM
When going through my initial tech inspection the inspectors did not like the shield that I had fabricated to protect the fuel line as it crossed the bell housing.  They suggested that it could be improved by using pipe to protect the lines in the area that they crossed the bell housing.  I re-plumbed the fuel lines for better protection.  The #10 AN fuel line received a 180 degree fitting at the tank and 90 degree fitting at the fuel pressure regulator which redirected the line so it does not enter the bell housing area.  The #8 AN pressure line to the fuel rail was relocated so that it was straight in the section over the bell housing.  I was then able to use a section of pipe to protect the fuel line as it crosses the bell housing.  I added a tab so that the fuel filter could be secured to the section of pipe with a hose clamp.  1/4" thick steel bar secures the pipe the frame work that holds the fuel tank, intercooler tank, battery and fuel system. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: tauruck on April 28, 2017, 01:03:57 AM
Awesome work Mike. That's a neat job.
Great build. Thank you. :cheers: :cheers: :cheers:


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on June 01, 2017, 07:57:33 AM
Loring will be a 22 hour drive for us.  I wanted to make a dyno run to make sure that the stumble I had on first run at Ohio was battery voltage related and that the alternator fixed the problem.  After getting setup on the dyno some bad behavior showed up.  John at Weapon X in Cincinnati determined that I had the MAP and BARO sensor connections reversed.  We swapped the connections and did some additional checks and all was good.  The engine cooling water was getting warm so I decided on a pull in second gear for more my full throttle run.  This is not as accurate as fourth gear pull.  The pull resulted in 480 rear wheel horsepower.  John let me know that my blower belt was slipping a little but the air fuel ratios were good indicating that my fuel system was performing well.  I plan to make some passes at Kilkare Dragstrip in Xenia Ohio to check the chute and then back to the dyno for a few more pulls.  I will be better prepared with additional water for the cooling system.  The staff at Weapon X are the real deal.  It was great to have John there to further educate me on the LSA engine. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: bearingburner on June 01, 2017, 10:04:24 AM
Will look you up at Loring.


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on July 21, 2017, 12:48:11 PM
My wife and I made it to Kilkare dragstrip for a test & tune session yesterday.  The weather was oppressive however the staff at Kilkare were both helpful and professional.  We made three 100 mph 1/4 mile passes.  There was no "shimmy" in the front end like that I had experienced at the Ohio Mile.  My assumption was affirmed that the steering arms from Speedway Motors were the culprit in the "shimmy" problem.  On the third pass I deployed the chute for the first time.  The chute worked well even at 100 mph.  The Kilkare staff was nice enough to gather my chute up after I turned off the track so that it could be put on top of car and not get caught on the concrete barrier, easy up tent, cooler etcetera.  I believe that a trip to Loring may be in our future. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on September 09, 2017, 05:27:27 PM
I decided that a windshield would eliminate some of the buffeting that I experienced on the test runs at the dragstrip.  I used cardboard to create a pattern that was transferred to 3/16" acrylic.  I smoothed the edges cut on a band saw then beveled the corners to reduce the chance of cracks. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on September 09, 2017, 05:29:55 PM
I attached the windshield to the body using 1/4-20 phillips truss head screws with 1-1/4" diameter fender washers to spread the load. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on September 09, 2017, 05:39:23 PM
My experience with clear acrylic sheet is that it is extremely notch sensitive.  Glazing shops routinely score a line and crack acrylic verses sawing it.  The same goes for holes which concentrate the stress.  So I make large holes using Uni-Bits or negative rake drill bits designed specifically for plastics.  These bits "scrape" the material out verses cutting.  I use a very slow speed.  The hole then gets the tool marks polished out and the edges chamfered using a single flute countersink.  To prevent the threads of the fastener from touching the acrylic I machine a spacer that is a slip fit into the hole.  This spacer also prevents the fastener from tightening down on the acrylic.  The spacers are machined .005" taller than the material.  To make the windshield easy to remove when transporting I used Nutserts in the body so there is no need to get to fasteners inside the body. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on September 09, 2017, 05:55:28 PM
We traveled to Maine for the Loring Timing event.  The staff was spectacular.  We made three runs on Saturday.  The first at approximately 125 mph, the second at approximately 150 mph and the last at 191.87 mph.  I did not change the engine cooling water all day.  On the last run the intercooler water temperature was over 140 degrees after the return trip to the pits.  I suspect that the ECU was dialing out some timing from the engine.  I was also not able to concentrate on the tachometer so I was shifting late when I felt the car stop accelerating due to the rev limiter.  I plan to eliminate the tachometer and just use a shift light.  I think that there was room for a higher speed if the shifts were quicker.  The chassis performed well.  There was no shimmy on the front wheels at all.  The original shimmy issue must have been caused by the Speedway Motors steel steering arms flexing.  I would also like to add a logger to the OBD2 port on the controller so I can review the engine performance.  


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on September 09, 2017, 06:00:17 PM
There was no record at Loring for B/BFL so I established it at 191.87 mph.  


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on September 14, 2017, 06:10:43 AM
My son helped servicing the car between runs.  Andy Welker told me that the track was rough on chutes.  Three runs and there were holes in the bag that holds the main chute.  I will send the bag back to Bob Stroud to be reworked. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: NathanStewart on September 14, 2017, 10:39:06 AM
Cool! Way to go!


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: kiwi belly tank on September 14, 2017, 08:04:24 PM
The bag is dead meat flopping around out there, it's always going to get beat to death. I cut them off & toss them. If you're packing the tow line with long loops as shown in that pic you are running the risk of it tangling. 10 to 12" overlays work best creating a tighter pack to also prevent pilot spring creep.
  Sid.


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on November 06, 2017, 07:05:55 PM
After my run at Loring I felt a need for more data.  I added an OBII data logger from AEM.  The logger has a built in 3 axis accelerometer along with the ability to log 42 different codes in real time from the engine ECU.  This will allow me to see what is going on with intake air temperature, timing, fuel, supercharger boost and shift point rpm etcetera.  So far it has been an easy installation with a two wire connection to the GMLAN output, power, ground and a switch input to control when the logging starts and stops.  I am anxious for the 2018 ECTA season as Blytheville Arkansas is only an 8 hour drive from home. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Rex Schimmer on November 16, 2017, 01:23:00 PM
Mike,
Duke and I will be watching with great interest your installation and use of the AEM data recorder. That is the same unit that Nathan Stewart suggested for us, Nathan said that it has 8 analog channels which may be enough for our use but being able to go with the CAN system certainly opens up lots of potential information. (Maybe more than we really need!)

Rex


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: WOODY@DDLLC on November 16, 2017, 02:16:31 PM
Always be careful what you ask for Rex!  :-o :-D


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on December 11, 2017, 03:59:37 PM
I was at the PRI show and asked for some assistance at the AEM booth with the programming to make the LS oil pressure signal read correctly on the AEM logger and it turned out that I was speaking with Nathan.  What a small world.  He showed me how easy it actually was to do.  My logger is up and running. 

I used SFI45.1 roll bar padding from Jegs on the round tubes of my cage.  It was really stiff and prone to cracking when I installed it.  With the very little UV exposure outside it has turned brown and cracking more.  Any suggestions on a better SFI45.1 round roll bar padding? 

Thanks,

Mike Brown


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on December 11, 2017, 04:00:58 PM
The AEM wiring harness was expensive so I purchased the individual parts (listed in the manual) and made my own.  It turned out great. 

Mike Brown


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on February 04, 2018, 01:19:24 PM
I need a shift on the car as it was too difficult to drive and concentrate on the tach at the same time.  My tach came with a shift light but it was too large to fit in a location that could be easily seen and did not interfere with vision of the track.  I created new shift using a socket for a clearance light and a new yellow LED bulb.  I used the connector and section of wire from the original shift light as a pigtail.  The connections were soldered and secured with heat shrink tubing that has adhesive inside.  I fabricated a quick bracket that will be secured to the tubing with wire ties. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on February 04, 2018, 01:21:02 PM
The shift light is high enough to be seen while driving and does not obstruct the view. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on February 12, 2018, 05:46:12 PM
When I built the car there was that rush to get it running.  I plumbed the engine coolant overflow into intercooler tank while I was figuring out where to put a dedicated tank.  So far the engine coolant has not overflowed into the intercooler tank but planning for that eventuality I fabricated a dedicated coolant overflow tank.  I included a dip tube so that if the coolant did overflow when hot it could draw water back from the overflow tank when it cooled down.  I added a drain and a breather.  Packaging in a belly tank is always the challenge (I heard that on this forum from someone!).  I was able to squeeze in a tank made from 4" diameter aluminum 12" tall. 

We are registered for the April ECTA event in Blytheville Arkansas.  Excited to run on the new track. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on February 12, 2018, 05:47:25 PM
I included a photo of the tank installed between the fuel tank and the engine ECU. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: fordboy628 on February 13, 2018, 06:46:34 AM
Mike,
Duke and I will be watching with great interest your installation and use of the AEM data recorder. That is the same unit that Nathan Stewart suggested for us, Nathan said that it has 8 analog channels which may be enough for our use but being able to go with the CAN system certainly opens up lots of potential information. (Maybe more than we really need!)

Rex

Always be careful what you ask for Rex!  :-o :-D

YES!     Be careful of "Information Constipation" ! ! !    Gigabytes of "data" can overwhelm.     Make sure you have analysis software, and get familiar with using it.     Have a plan to rate data in level of relevance/importance.

Having given my warning, I'll also say this:   Data logging is probably the ONLY way you are going to gain insight into the dynamic conditions of the vehicle during a "run".     You need to learn how to "Verify & trust" the data from your system.

 :cheers:
Datadrivenboy


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: ggl205 on February 13, 2018, 08:42:51 AM
Mike, we do something similar with coolant recovery. Works like a charm.

John


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on February 13, 2018, 05:34:20 PM
I have used Jaz fuel tanks for a long time however todays pump gas caused the seal on the cap to swell requiring prying to get the cap off.  Jaz sent me an O-ring seal verses the cup style seal at no charge.  This worked better but the cap seemed loose.  OK probably for water on the intercooler tank but I did not like it for the fuel tank.  While at the PRI I ordered a new cap from Jaz that uses the O-ring seal that seemed much better.  The mating portion of the cap is a machined aluminum ring verses the stamped steel.  The only difficulty is that the new cap requires a 1/16" larger diameter hole in the tank than the original.  I finally drained the tank removed it, enlarged the hole then spent way too much time cleaning the tank out before reinstalling it.  I hope this resolves the issues that I was having.  The photo shows the new style cap on the fuel tank and the old style on the intercooler water tank. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Tman on February 13, 2018, 06:25:09 PM
I was at the PRI show and asked for some assistance at the AEM booth with the programming to make the LS oil pressure signal read correctly on the AEM logger and it turned out that I was speaking with Nathan.  What a small world.  He showed me how easy it actually was to do.  My logger is up and running. 

I used SFI45.1 roll bar padding from Jegs on the round tubes of my cage.  It was really stiff and prone to cracking when I installed it.  With the very little UV exposure outside it has turned brown and cracking more.  Any suggestions on a better SFI45.1 round roll bar padding? 

Thanks,

Mike Brown

Orange Aid tube padding  was SFI rated and far superior than that rock hard stuff. The guy that invented it actually told me you could pass the SFI testing with a 2x4 stud. Not my idea of "padding"  The company changed around and I had to dig the last time I looked for the product.


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on February 13, 2018, 06:47:38 PM
I was at the PRI show and asked for some assistance at the AEM booth with the programming to make the LS oil pressure signal read correctly on the AEM logger and it turned out that I was speaking with Nathan.  What a small world.  He showed me how easy it actually was to do.  My logger is up and running. 

I used SFI45.1 roll bar padding from Jegs on the round tubes of my cage.  It was really stiff and prone to cracking when I installed it.  With the very little UV exposure outside it has turned brown and cracking more.  Any suggestions on a better SFI45.1 round roll bar padding? 

Thanks,

Mike Brown

Orange Aid tube padding  was SFI rated and far superior than that rock hard stuff. The guy that invented it actually told me you could pass the SFI testing with a 2x4 stud. Not my idea of "padding"  The company changed around and I had to dig the last time I looked for the product.

Thanks, I will look them up. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on February 13, 2018, 06:55:07 PM
Mike,
Duke and I will be watching with great interest your installation and use of the AEM data recorder. That is the same unit that Nathan Stewart suggested for us, Nathan said that it has 8 analog channels which may be enough for our use but being able to go with the CAN system certainly opens up lots of potential information. (Maybe more than we really need!)

Rex

Always be careful what you ask for Rex!  :-o :-D

YES!     Be careful of "Information Constipation" ! ! !    Gigabytes of "data" can overwhelm.     Make sure you have analysis software, and get familiar with using it.     Have a plan to rate data in level of relevance/importance.

Having given my warning, I'll also say this:   Data logging is probably the ONLY way you are going to gain insight into the dynamic conditions of the vehicle during a "run".     You need to learn how to "Verify & trust" the data from your system.

 :cheers:
Datadrivenboy

I am sure that I will have more data than I will know what to do with at first.  I three immediate areas that I would like data o.  My primary concern is wheel slip at speed.  I can't rely on a visual of the tach to know how fast I should be going verses actual speed.  The car is light at 2,800 pounds.  I hope to find out if I need more weight or more horsepower.  I an currently running a stock GM ECU which uses a MAF sensor.  I would like to eliminate the drag of the external air filter and plumbing but will need to see if the MAF sensor readings go crazy when I remove the air filter.  The engine is supercharged and intercooled.  If the intake air temperature gets too high the ECU will be pulling timing and horsepower.  Without logging this data I will never know what the ECU is doing. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on February 13, 2018, 06:58:35 PM
Mike, we do something similar with coolant recovery. Works like a charm.

John

I like your coolant recovery tank.  I thought about a square tank but then thought about all the welding and then realized that I had some 4" OD 1/8" wall aluminum laying around. 

Mike


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: ggl205 on February 13, 2018, 09:27:51 PM
Mike:

That vented square aluminum tank is an oil puke tank. The round black plastic Maroso tank is for coolant recovery.

John


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: fordboy628 on February 14, 2018, 06:01:39 AM
Mike,
Duke and I will be watching with great interest your installation and use of the AEM data recorder. That is the same unit that Nathan Stewart suggested for us, Nathan said that it has 8 analog channels which may be enough for our use but being able to go with the CAN system certainly opens up lots of potential information. (Maybe more than we really need!)

Rex

Always be careful what you ask for Rex!  :-o :-D

YES!     Be careful of "Information Constipation" ! ! !    Gigabytes of "data" can overwhelm.     Make sure you have analysis software, and get familiar with using it.     Have a plan to rate data in level of relevance/importance.

Having given my warning, I'll also say this:   Data logging is probably the ONLY way you are going to gain insight into the dynamic conditions of the vehicle during a "run".     You need to learn how to "Verify & trust" the data from your system.

 :cheers:
Datadrivenboy

I am sure that I will have more data than I will know what to do with at first.  I three immediate areas that I would like data o.  My primary concern is wheel slip at speed.  I can't rely on a visual of the tach to know how fast I should be going verses actual speed.  The car is light at 2,800 pounds.  I hope to find out if I need more weight or more horsepower.  I an currently running a stock GM ECU which uses a MAF sensor.  I would like to eliminate the drag of the external air filter and plumbing but will need to see if the MAF sensor readings go crazy when I remove the air filter.  The engine is supercharged and intercooled.  If the intake air temperature gets too high the ECU will be pulling timing and horsepower.  Without logging this data I will never know what the ECU is doing. 

Mike,

In a word, YES.

Drivers simply have "too much to do", (say . . . self-preservation . . . .), at speed, to be reliable readers of gauges and be expected to report back the readings.    Data logging of gauge readings, or even a cheap Go-Pro camera aimed at the gauge panel, can solve that problem.

If the throttle body opening and/or the MAF sensor location is perpendicular (approximately) to the air-stream or so, without the airbox/filter/etc, expect issues with the sensor.   Any large fluctuations in pressure or flow at the MAF sensor are going to cause you problems.    And you are correct to think you will need data to resolve said problems.

I realize that this is a simplistic answer, but, some sort of low drag ducting to your inlet should resolve your issue.    You need to get Woody interested to help you solve this.

 :cheers:
F/b


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on February 18, 2018, 05:31:06 PM
I added a drain to my intercooler tank.  I machined a bulkhead fitting from stainless steel and used 1/4" ball valve.  I use a garden hose to drain the water tanks by installing a garden hose thread to 1/4" npt adapter.  As insurance against a leak I install caps over the garden hose output. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on March 19, 2018, 05:52:20 PM
I use an open trailer to haul the lakester around.  I had a tonneau cover made to cover the cockpit.  I did not want to use snap bases with the long sheet metal screw protruding out the back.  I tried #6 button socket cap screws but the snaps did not fit well over them.  I machined the #6 button head screws into a flat head.  My Haas lathe has a feature that allows you to select the angle, ID or OD and when you crank one handle the other handle moves appropriately to cut the angle you programmed.  So I turned the button head screws into flat heads that worked great. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on March 19, 2018, 05:54:07 PM
A photo of the tonneau from the rear. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: ronnieroadster on March 19, 2018, 07:52:01 PM
A photo of the tonneau from the rear. 






  All the years I trailed my lakester on an open trailer I just covered everything with a nice custom fit car cover the material used was boat canvas . Each time i modified the body design the cover was updated to continue form fitting the race car. Every time we took the car out for a race event it would always rain this luck with the weather continued with our long trips to Bonneville the cover has withstood everything thrown at it very happy with the material used.
 Ronnieroadster


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Rex Schimmer on March 20, 2018, 12:15:07 PM
When Duke and I got ready to go to Bonneville last year Duke bought a roll of shipping plasstic, about 20 inches wide and we wrapped the car from the nose to the back of the canopy. That stuff sticks to itself pretty well and it kept the car clean all the to and from the salt. It looks like we probably have enough to do at least one or two more trips. Not as custom as your cover or a custom tonneau cover but seemed to work well.

Rex


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Seldom Seen Slim on March 20, 2018, 12:27:55 PM
Rex, I've seen the Ack Attack bike show up on the salt all wrapped in stretch wrap, too, but yours is the first feedback on how well it works. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: ronnieroadster on March 20, 2018, 02:55:33 PM
When Duke and I got ready to go to Bonneville last year Duke bought a roll of shipping plasstic, about 20 inches wide and we wrapped the car from the nose to the back of the canopy. That stuff sticks to itself pretty well and it kept the car clean all the to and from the salt. It looks like we probably have enough to do at least one or two more trips. Not as custom as your cover or a custom tonneau cover but seemed to work well.

Rex


  Thats a great idea Rex      :cheers:


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on March 21, 2018, 02:50:48 PM
I like the plastic wrap idea myself.  When returning from Loring last fall it started raining.  I had a roll of the plastic wrap but it was too large to go under the car.  I wrapped the cage as much as I could then used tough tape (nylon filament) to secure it all.  The wind started pulling at the plastic wrap and I added some duct tape which did hold.  Removing the residue from the duct tape when I got home was a chore.  I decided that I didn't want to do that again so I had the tonneau made. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on March 31, 2018, 09:58:03 AM
I received my information packet and rule book in the mail this week for the Arkansas ECTA event.  In the section on tires there was a new section in italics.  The key information is that tires manufactured earlier than 2012 (per the date code on the tire) will not be allowed.  I checked the date code on my tires which was 2014 so I have a couple of years left before these tires will no longer be allowed.  It would be a long ride back home if I couldn't compete because my tires were out of date. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Seldom Seen Slim on April 01, 2018, 06:17:07 AM
Okay - here's a hint that'll make your inspector happy:  Find the date code on your tires and highlight them.  Use a silver sharpie or yellow chalk or something that's easy to find and circle or somehow mark the date.  Having searched way too many times to find the code on bike tires (we've had a ten-year age limit for a long time) I finally started carrying said silver marker when inspectnig and marking the little oval so everyone could find it easily the next time(s).

You're welcome. :-D


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on April 16, 2018, 06:44:22 PM
We went to the inaugural ECTA event in Blytheville Arkansas.  It is about an eight hour drive for us.  The track is very nice at 10,000 feet long, about an additional 1,000 feet longer than Wilmington.  The Strupps are doing a great job getting the event organized.  The weather however did not cooperate.  There were no runs made on Friday due to high winds then rain.  Thunderstorms prevailed through the night until mid morning on Saturday.  Cars were called to the line about 2 in the afternoon.  We were about 5th to run.  Everyone was a "rookie" so no runs above 175 mph were allowed.  I made a warm up pass at 147.2 mph to check the chute and brakes.  During the run I again shifted at the rev limiter as my shift light never came on.  I later determined that the tach doesn't store the setting, the adjustment on the face of the tach is live.  I bumped the adjustment getting strapped into the car and it was set at 10,000 rpm, I wasn't going to hit that one.  Note to self, check the rev limit setting each time before starting the engine.  The second run of the day was not to happen due to a window blown out on the track, high wind then rain.  The good news is that we were number 3 for Sunday.  We started early Sunday, I checked the shift light setting and made a run of 183.7 mph.  That was a few tenths faster than my mile speed at Loring.  We enjoyed the event even though there was not much racing and a lot of down time.  That run set the record for B/BFL at Blytheville.  The previous B/BFL records at Wilmington was 141.8 mph and 154.3 mph at Maxton.  I am looking for the next 17 mph to make the 200 club. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: wobblywalrus on April 16, 2018, 11:24:53 PM
That was a good meet for you.  It looks like you had a lot of success.


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on April 18, 2018, 06:32:11 AM
During my 183 mph run at Blytheville I felt the rear of the car move to the left after I shifted into second gear.  The rear tires were loosing traction.  I am running a spool in the rear end.  Woody sent me a video of that run with a note that read "Stay OFF the paint!!!".  Watching the video it was clear that my right rear tire was on the paint of the runway surface.  When getting back on the throttle after shifting it was patently evident that the car shifted 6 inches or more to the left as the left tire had more traction than the right.  Lesson learned, stay off the paint.  Thanks Woody!


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Lemming Motors on April 30, 2018, 10:39:51 AM
During my 183 mph run at Blytheville ....... evident that the car shifted 6 inches or more to the left as the left tire had more traction than the right. 

If I had been driving then the very next sentence would read ...... and then the car shifted 6 inches back to the right as the left tire lost traction running over a trail of runny poo.

John


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on May 11, 2018, 04:48:26 PM
Last night we went to Kilkare dragstrip in Xenia Ohio.  Everyone associated with the track has been great to deal with.  They are very helpful.  The first pass was good except that I banged up against the rev limiter yet again.  I checked the setting before starting the engine and it was set at 6,000 rpm however I must have bumped it or it vibrated out of position.  I have to get that fixed one way or another.  I roll off of the starting line, when the clutch is fully engaged I can then apply full throttle.  A quick shift into second gear and I am at the finish line.  I keep the speed below 100 mph and I can easily slow down for the first turnoff using just the brakes.  We got off to a slow start as someone ahead of us in a new Corvette (less than 500 miles) had trouble doing a burnout.  They turned the traction control off, did the burnout then left the line without traction control.  About 600 feet down the track they lost control, spun twice and crashed head on into the concrete barrier.  The driver was OK but in my estimation the car was totaled.  It took over an hour to remove the car and clean the track.  During my second run after shifting into second gear the rear of the car shifted to the left, I eased off the throttle, got control then finished the run.  The race director attributed the lack of traction to rolling through the water box before heading to the starting line and not doing a burn out.  I will drive around the water box next time.  I did get logs from the data logger which was the main goal.  Now to figure out how to make the logs useful. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on May 15, 2018, 07:27:24 PM
I attached a screen shot of the data log from the drag strip.  Short but revealing.  The middle graph shows engine RPM.  The top graph is throttle position and intake pressure in PSI.  The bottom graph is G force from the built in accelerometers.  The purple line is linear acceleration.  At one point early on in first gear the car stops accelerating even thought the RPM is coming up indicating that the tires are slipping.  I could not tell this from drivers seat.  At the 2:54 mark the green lines show lateral acceleration which is where the rear end went right then left.  At the same time the purple line shows that the car is not accelerating at the same rate while the rear end is moving left and right.  I am really enjoying this.  A big shout out to Nathan for pointing me to the tutorials on Youtube. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on August 13, 2018, 12:18:52 PM
The chassis felt like at times that it was flexing.  I decided to connect the main frame hoop at the front of the engine to the rear frame hoop to the parachute tube to stiffen the chassis.  The connectors needed to be removable in order to access to the engine.  The frame hoops are very close to the engine when removing or installing it in the chassis.  The attachment points needed to not protrude very much into the engine space.  I decided to weld blocks of steel the hoops.  The blocks protrude about 1/4" into the engine space.  I then used doublers made from 1/4" thick steel to connect the links to the blocks.  The links can be preloaded when installed in the chassis by virtue that the front link has left and right hand threaded rod ends.  This allows me to loosen the link for installation and removal while tightening the link before final torque on all the other fasteners.  I machined the parts "cookie cutter" style on the CNC mill.  I machine the holes in the material blanks first then use the holes to fasten the material to a plate so that I can machine the entire perimeter on the mill.   


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on August 13, 2018, 12:20:40 PM
A photo of the front link showing the rod ends along with its attachment to the center frame hoop and front frame hoop. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on August 13, 2018, 12:21:51 PM
A photo of the rear link showing its attachment to the center frame hoop and parachute tube. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on August 21, 2018, 09:10:55 AM
I have received a lot of criticism of my air intake system from fellow racers.  The intake system was a last minute project with a single goal.  The goal is to supply air with low enough turbulence for a usable MAF sensor signal.  I am running the stock GM ECU which relies on the MAF sensor to calculate the fuel for the engine.  If I a cannot build an intake or scoop that will be lower drag and produce a usable MAF sensor I can have a custom tuneup which will delete the MAF signal and rely on the MAP sensors for load sensing.  This will take substantial dyno time and calibration to create a speed density tune up.  I am going to try to fabricate a new scoop that will reduce the drag and still produce a usable MAF signal.  I can evaluate the MAF signal since I have this signal being logged on the AEM data logger.  There is a new track within an hours drive in Indiana, https://infinite-speed.com/.  The track is only a half mile with a 3,000 foot shutdown but better than a 1/4 mile dragstrip with a 1/4 mile shutdown.  The owners cater to people with exotic street cars but has agreed to let me make a few test and tune passes. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on August 21, 2018, 09:14:11 AM
I have attached a photo of the new intake.  I started with the fiberglass headrest that I bought with the original belly tank body that I did not use.  This design is too short and did not produce good MAF sensor signals.  I added an extension made from cardboard and tape which worked much better.  Now I need to decide if I am going to fabricate and extension or start from scratch on a one piece longer design. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on August 22, 2018, 09:56:39 AM
The new scoop has a short section of intake tubing welded to a plate.  This short section of tubing is connected to the rest of the intake system using a flexible coupling and hose clamps.  The metal is attached to the fiberglass using methacrylate.  This adhesive is the best that I have ever used between metal and other materials.  I have not decided on starting on a longer scoop from scratch or extending this one.  Hopefully I will get some good advice from friends who have been there done that. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on August 28, 2018, 07:42:59 AM
I decided to build a new scoop.  I used the "column of air" calculations with the "Woody" factor along with hydraulic area calculations for the size of the scoop.  The scoop is purposely long to hopefully not confuse the MAF sensor.  I started with 1/8" aluminum folded into a channel.  To improve the aerodynamics the tail will be tapered.  I marked out a design with cardboard template so the design would be symmetrical and cut it out with a saber saw. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on August 28, 2018, 07:44:24 AM
I folded the tail section by hand and TIG welded the corners. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on August 28, 2018, 07:46:38 AM
I welded a 4 inch "spigot" to a back plate that will attach to the intake system with a flexible coupling.  This back plate will form the floor of the scoop. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on September 07, 2018, 07:27:55 PM
The wonders of CNC.  I machined what I hope to be a flow straightener that will go opposite the air intake with the MAF sensor (unless Woody chimes in to tell me that I should throw it in the trash).  I used a section of 4-1/2" UHMW plastic.  The UHMW is secured to a piece of aluminum as you can rarely machine this stuff directly in a three jaw chuck without tossing it out of the machine.  Chip control is paramount as they are all continuous which can be very dangerous if they wrap around the tool post or worse yet a finger.  One line of code to set the radius and another that reads that line to rough the shape out in steps before the final smooth cut.  CNC machining still amazes me.  I was hoping to try a few of these options to reduce drag while keeping the MAF sensor happy at the 1/2 mile event close to home.  The event was canceled due to the rain.  So we will give a try in a couple of weeks. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Rex Schimmer on September 08, 2018, 02:07:12 PM
Mike, Since you have a CNC lathe, you might consider machining the spigot and where it is connected to the scoop floor give it a nice large and smooth radius, then put a "blocking/turning" vane aft of the inlet spigot to direct the air to turn 90 degrees and go in your spigot. You mite even use two turning vanes, one about half way across the inlet spigot diameter that would only be about 1/2 of the scoop depth and then the final one that goes from the roof of the scoop to the floor with a nice radius. Also make sure that the scoop inlet is above the boundary layer at the inlet to insure full velocity air at the inlet.

Rex 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on September 09, 2018, 03:25:17 PM
Rex,

Thanks for the input.  The bottom of the scoop is about 5/8" out from the body.  Is that enough to help with boundary flow issue?


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Rex Schimmer on September 09, 2018, 05:37:33 PM
Mike,
Since your scoop is fairly far forward 5/8 should be good, the boundary layer should be pretty thin.

Rex


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on September 09, 2018, 06:26:19 PM
The inside of the new scoop.  Regardless of what I do the engine will barely idle unless there is a some sort of restriction in the intake system.  I can simply place my hand over the intake with small gaps between my fingers and the engine idles good.  I calculated the open area of the screen and added it in front of the my "flow straightener" and the engine idles good.  It appears that the MAF sensor just needs some sort of pressure drop across it to work, I am not sure that turbulence is the real issue.  My hand across the intake could not be particularly good at reducing turbulence however I can feel the pressure drop.  I think it may be time to stop toying with the MAF sensor and get the speed density tune up. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on September 09, 2018, 06:29:52 PM
A photo of the new scoop attached to the car. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Rex Schimmer on September 10, 2018, 07:43:28 PM
Mike it looks good. Regarding the idle are  you sure that the butterfly is closing completely?

Rex


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on September 11, 2018, 07:00:58 AM
Rex,

I potentially know where you are going with this.  For a decade I drove a Jeep with a blown early Hemi that had Hilborn mechanical fuel injection (prepared by Junior Thompson) and a Lenco transmission on the street.  Those 3" butterflies rarely fully closed after cruising with reasonably high intake manifold vacuum regardless of how many return springs were used.  An 1,100 rpm idle equated to .002" clearance between the butterflies and the injector housing.  I had to rap on the throttle to reduce the intake manifold vacuum so the butterflies would snap shut.  Not the safest thing to do on the street.  I eventually replaced the mechanical fuel injection with a pair of Weber carburetors which had ball bearings on the throttle shafts which exhibited much better (safer) behavior on the street.  

This is a modern computer controlled engine.  The throttle is drive-by-wire with a servo motor operating the butterfly which is controlled by the engine electronic control unit.  The throttle pedal is electronic.  I was concerned about that and one of the reasons that I added the AEM data logger.  There are multiple things going on between your foot and the butterfly.  By trial and error I did find the actual butterfly position in the data log (I can watch it real time) and it looks OK.  The actual idle speed is controlled by an idle air control motor.  This is a stepper motor that works an idle air circuit that bypasses the main butterfly.  This circuit is somewhat like the idle circuit on a Weber IDF carburetor.  

On my initial dyno pull the tuner told me that my blower belt was slipping because the boost was never as high as it should have been.  I only have a crankshaft pulley and blower pulley with a rib belt.  I use a fixed tensioner verses a spring loaded version and did not think that the belt was slipping.  Looking at the data from the Kilkare run (after I had tightened the belt) I still had low boost.  I researched this and found that the blower bypass butterfly was set incorrectly from the factory.  On most modern supercharged engines they use a butterfly in the intake system that allows the blower to be bypassed during normal driving which helps to keep the intake air temperatures down.  The engine electronic control unit controls this butterfly with vacuum/boost pressure acting on a diaphragm and a solenoid.  To keep the butterfly from sticking there is the equivalent of an idle adjustment screw.  It was an improper adjustment of this screw that kept the butterfly open slightly further than it should have been reducing my boost.  I am contemplating eliminating this feature.  This feature is great on a vehicle with traction control and a body computer that helps to keep the average Joe from getting into too much trouble on the street but may be complicating driving a race vehicle with the goal of using the most horsepower available.  

I am just in the infancy of figuring this combination out.  It will be interesting to see how it turns out.  


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: NathanStewart on September 18, 2018, 03:41:28 PM
Hi Mike, glad to see you're still hang in there and learning and progressing. Hope all is well.


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on September 25, 2018, 09:39:41 AM
I use the Tilton 6000 series hydraulic clutch release bearings.  The cockpit of the lakester is so small that I could not get enough stroke on the clutch pedal to insure a complete release of the dual disc LSA clutch.  Sometimes there was a clash when shifting the transmission into gear when stopped.  I never had any problems shifting the transmission when running.  I was using the standard 7/8" master cylinder.  So using the philosophy of if 7/8" is not large enough bigger must be better I installed 1-1/8" master cylinder.  I had no more problems with the clutch releasing fully.  After that I had multiple problems breaking the tires loose shifting into second gear.  Both at Blytheville and Kilkare dragstrip.  The clutch had a somewhat digital feel, in or out.  I decided to try a 1" master cylinder which still gives me a full clutch release but retains some feeling that I can release the clutch smoothly without dumping it all at once.  I was hoping to see how this theory worked in practice but the 1/2 mile event in Batesville Indiana was canceled do to angry homeowners adjacent to the track which resulted in the new facility owners seeking rezoning for the property.  I will most likely head back to Kilkare dragstrip for a test & tune session. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on October 19, 2018, 07:42:33 AM
Last night I was at Kilkare dragstrip for a test & tune session.  It was a wonderful cool evening.  I was able to get in three 1/4 mile passes.  The changes to the car all seemed good by the seat of the pants feel and the time slips.  The additional link definitely stiffened up the chassis eliminating the bouncy feel during shutdown.  The smaller clutch master cylinder gave me better feel of the clutch eliminating the digital feel while still insuring complete disengagement.  The engine was making significantly more power I assume do to higher boost.  I had the highest top speed (115.12) and lowest ET (12.1891) of all my test & tune sessions.  This car is obviously not a dragster with a 2.48:1 rear gear so I roll off the starting line and do not press the throttle to the floor until after the clutch is fully engaged.  For the first time the shift light came on in second gear and I had to shift into third gear.  I have not reviewed the data from the logger but I would expect to higher boost since properly adjusting the boost bypass valve and we will see if the MAF sensor is happy with the new scoop.  The staff at Kilkare is tops in my book.  They are professional and run an orderly and safe event.  The data from the $25 test & tune session is invaluable to me. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: tauruck on October 19, 2018, 11:46:03 AM
Nothing you do in LSR is wasted time or energy. 8-)


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on November 04, 2018, 08:17:36 PM
I attached a photo of the data from the last test & tune session at Kilkare drag strip.  The middle graph is the MAF sensor signals which are very choppy.  The tune up definitely needs to be changed from MAF to speed density.  Note that at wide open throttle the ECU does not use these signals for fuel or timing.  The bottom graph is the acceleration.  The acceleration rate slows down at about the 1:39.5 mark, the rpms are still climbing at a fairly quick rate and I attribute that to traction issues as the tires are probably slipping.  I do not heat the tires up with a burn out as I would never get that opportunity in a mile event.  In the top graph I included three different signals.  The white trace is the throttle position.  You can clearly see taking off (40% throttle), shifting twice and shutdown.  The green trace is rpm.  The engine is about 3,000 rpm as I take off dipping to about 2,500 as the clutch engages and the car starts accelerating.  You can see the rpm climb through the gears.  I did not spend much time at full throttle in third gear so I think that the car will easily run quicker than 12 seconds in the quarter mile.  The light blue trace is the MAP signal.  Ambient air pressure is approximately 100 kPa so anything above that is supercharger boost.  The disturbing thing is that as the RPM climbs the boost drops off.  The most likely scenario is that the ribbed blower belt is slipping as boost increases.  The tuners at Weapon-X have suggested that there is not enough belt wrap on the blower pulley.  Their suggestion is to move the idler pulley closer to the blower pulley.  So I did pick up some boost by adjusting the blower bypass butterfly however there is still substantial amounts of boost (horsepower) to be gained by correcting this belt slippage issue.  My previous blower drives were all timing belt drives and I never had any belt slippage in that configuration.  There is not room for a conventional timing belt drive with a 2.6:1 overdrive ratio needed for this small blower so I will look to optimize the ribbed belt drive.  Without my AEM data logger I would not be able to diagnose problems like this, make changes then verify if the changes corrected the problem. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Jack Gifford on November 05, 2018, 01:13:17 AM
That's a good  display of data logging usefulness.
If the shifts weren't so lazy, ETs would be in the tens! :roll:
I don't understand why a timing belt blower drive of the same ratio wouldn't fit? Problem with minimum bend radius of toothed belt?


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on November 05, 2018, 07:46:47 AM
Jack,

As always thanks for the comments.  Test & tune sessions for me have always been about getting some data in an effort to improve the mile performance.  I have always wanted to get data and not break any parts, hence rolling out easy waiting for the clutch to engage before applying full throttle and lazy shifts.  The 12 second quarter mile was a little exciting and I may try a little more aggressive driving without breaking parts. 

I am limited to not much more than an 8" crankshaft pulley due to my water tank construction.  The factory ribbed belt is 7.8" diameter with a 3" diameter blower pulley which gives me a 2.6:1 ratio.  The blower spins at 16,640 rpm with a 6,400 engine rpm.  I can find crankshaft pulleys for 8mm gearbelt pulleys (I would have to change to an aftermarket harmonic balancer) in that size however I cannot find a blower pulley small enough.  The crankshaft pulley would need to be reduced in width and custom blower pulley created.  The OEM blower pulleys are steel and pressed onto the shaft, no keys, pins or other driving components.  Aftermarket pulleys use a press on hub that the pulleys are bolted to much like when using a GMC type blower. 

There are two aftermarket systems that are too wide for my application that I may be able to modify.  I plan to make some changes over the winter in preparation for next year, I just haven't decided which way to go. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Jack Gifford on November 06, 2018, 12:51:20 AM
I don't know about narrower, but I recently bought a 32 tooth 8mm pulley (3" wide belt). It didn't take me long to machine a hub for it to fit my crankshaft.


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on November 06, 2018, 07:43:46 AM
With a little research I found that LSX Concepts has 8mm HTD upper and lower pulleys for $900 per pair.  The lower pulley requires an aftermarket harmonic balancer for $500 and the upper pulley requires the Lingefelter 10 bolt hub for $65.  The 8mm HTD belt is about $50.  In my application I would need to design and build the idler pulley for this system as theirs uses attachment points on the OEM water pump.  I don't have an OEM water pump.  At the modest boost levels that I am looking at I may try a Gates "green" belt with the idler pulley mounted closer to the blower pulley.  A trip to the drag strip for a test and tune session or a dyno session would let me know if this corrected the problem. 


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Stainless1 on November 06, 2018, 11:33:00 AM
Hey the nice part of that is "there is a solution...  it just costs time and money"  :cheers:


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: tauruck on November 06, 2018, 11:54:14 AM
Gee whizz, those pulleys are cheap as chips here.
Maybe I've got the wrong idea but I'll post a pic tomorrow.
Maybe you get lucky???.


Title: Re: Belly Tank Build Diary
Post by: Mike Brown on November 06, 2018, 03:30:48 PM
Gee whizz, those pulleys are cheap as chips here.
Maybe I've got the wrong idea but I'll post a pic tomorrow.
Maybe you get lucky???.

Thanks for the response, cheap as chips would make for a lucky day.  I look forward to your reply. 

Mike Brown