Dennis Clan Shenanigans

Re: Dennis Clan Shenanigans

Postby 3rdgendennis » Tue Aug 04, 2015 6:11 pm

Been a while since any update. I did get some video uploaded of the RallySprint:
AM course:
PM course:

Then I ran the Dart at the Mt Burke Hillclimb back in June. I was having trouble with the transmission-second gear doesn't seem to have any synchro left (perhaps from trying to shift with no clutch at Stafford :? ). Video:

And I finally convinced my dad to get back in the driver's seat (he hasn't run since Josh crashed Maxed Out at Fall Ascutney 2012) and we will be double-driving his new SRT4 Neon. I'm almost done caging it, and we will have about a week to finish up the build before Okemo 2.
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The youngest David Dennis
"If you're not living on the edge, you're taking up too much space"
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Re: Dennis Clan Shenanigans

Postby 3rdgendennis » Mon Aug 10, 2015 12:08 pm

Got a bunch done this weekend on Dad's new car. Dad finished most of the temporary rewiring, including the kill switch and battery relocation. It started up for the first time since we first tore it apart (much to dad's relief). Meanwhile, I finished the cage:
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And welded in some harness attachment points:
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Josh just about finished his new car, too, so we will have two new cars to debut next weekend at Okemo. That makes a total of 7 entries in 5 cars for this event!
The youngest David Dennis
"If you're not living on the edge, you're taking up too much space"
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Re: Dennis Clan Shenanigans

Postby 3rdgendennis » Tue Aug 18, 2015 3:55 pm

First off, thanks to everyone involved in making Okemo 2 happen! Paul did a great job for his first time as co-chair! The goal for the weekend was definitely a success, and that was to get my dad back in a car. He was already talking about Ascutney before we left for Okemo.

It was to the surprise of many that all of the Dennis Clan was at the hill by dark on Friday, and all with running cars! Even better, they all drove onto the trailer under their own power (Allan's even towed it's own trailer)! But we each had an issue or two:

Saturday great, and the SRT4 ran better than we could have ever expected for it's first day of hillclimbing. Dad ran a 2:46.29 on his first run in the morning, and followed it up with two more 2:46's that afternoon. It took me a couple runs to get some confidence in the car and myself, as I had never driven this car and my last run at a hillclimb ended rather suddenly. I ended up with a 2:46.12 on my last run Saturday (didn't want to beat dad too bad :lol: )

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On Sunday, the SRT4's exhaust melted the shifter cable outer layer, so the cable was just bending instead of pushing the transmission into 2nd or 4th. Dad and I each took our fam run and first run Sunday with no 2nd or 4th gear. During lunch, I found a piece of rod and some hose clamps to hold the cable straight, and that worked for the rest of the day. On my second run, I blew an axle at check 6. After coasting back down the hill, we tag teamed the car to get a new axle in, just in time for dad to be the last car in the run group. On my 3rd run, the car felt down on power, and I noticed boost was slowly dropping. By check 3 I was down to 2 psi, so I pulled off at check 4. Blew a hole in a 90* coupler going into the intercooler. John Hart had some gorilla tape, so I wrapped it up and got it back on, but the day was called just as I was finishing, so I didn't get to make a last run-a little disappointing.

Brian figured out at the end of the day Saturday that he was only at about 75% throttle with the pedal on the floorboard, so he fixed that before running Sunday. Kevin blew the top off a spark plug sometime Saturday, and figured it out on the fam run Sunday morning. A set of plugs from Walter (thanks!) got him running again. Josh and Dan had a smoking issue with the Capri. Still not 100% sure where all the oil is coming from, but a re-routed pcv hose helped a bunch. The car started running on 7 cylinders at the end of Sunday, so that will need to be figured out too. Friday night, we realized the wheel wells were going to cut the tires down on the Capri, so Josh removed them.

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Here's some in car from the SRT4:


The youngest David Dennis
"If you're not living on the edge, you're taking up too much space"
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Re: Dennis Clan Shenanigans

Postby 3rdgendennis » Thu Sep 10, 2015 11:42 am

Dad has been putting in an hour or three every night doing small stuff on the SRT-4. We got a lower hardpipe for the hot side of the intercooler to replace the rubber elbow that blew out on my last run at Okemo (and we think was keeping us a bit down on power all weekend). We had what sounded like a small exhaust leak at Okemo too. That turned out to be the flexible area of the downpipe had blown out completely, which was overheating and boiling our power steering fluid, and burned through the shifter cables. Downpipe was replaced along with the shifter cables. We also have a mechanical boost controller on order to turn up the boost from the stock 14 psi up to about 18-19. The factory turbo isn't happy about anything over 20 psi.

A couple weekends ago, I brought the Dart back to NHMS for another try at drifting. Lack of power steering (or even a steering rack) isn't making it easy. I fought inconsistent electrical issues all day before figuring out the ignition box went bad (likely a result of the faulty alternator that was putting out 20V at burke). Finally got some seat time, and got to take Dad for a ride-along (the giggles were priceless). I only got to run one day, because right at the end of Saturday, the clutch disc disintegrated. Who would have thought that a 15 year old clutch with 1000+/- of race miles that sat for 5 years at a time would be unhappy with 3rd gear clutch dumps :lol:
Image (photo credit: Sarah Yang)
Image (photo credit Ashley Brackett)

In the meantime, I've been getting more practice bending and temporarily liquifying steel. I installed a roll bar in a Toyota Starlet this week
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The youngest David Dennis
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