Cool Shirt

Okay, so in the previous post I alluded to making my own cool shirt.  Well, I finally got around to it.

I chose to make a 4-zone shirt like a real FAST shirt.  I don’t know if it is actually better, but conceptually it seems like it could be better having each unit of water only in contact with 1/4 of the total area.

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Cool Suit

Okay, I’m not the first person to every do this.  Most of the prior credit goes to:

http://www.ghidinelli.com/2011/02/28/diy-cool-shirt-system

I’ve made a few tweaks of my own, though.  Namely, I added bulkhead fittings to the parts list in order to be able to run the plumbing from the trunk to the cockpit without leaving a penetration.  And a second set of quick disconnect fittings so the cooler can be removed without disturbing to fixed plumbing.  Second, I’ve modified the shirt design to be a 4 zone shirt to minimize hot/cold areas around the shirt.  In addition, I’ve mimicked the plumbing pattern of the FAST shirt to maximize the cooling surface area.

Below I’ve include a complete parts list.  It includes enough materials to make the cooler, and plumb it into the car, and create two complete cool shirts.  All plumbing parts (tubing, fittings, etc) are from McMaster Carr (www.mcmaster.com).  The cooler and pump are from River Marine (www.rivermarinesupply.com).  The only supplies you will need will be for your mounting system…which depends on where you choose to mount the cooler.

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Eagles Canyon – Track Day

Okay, so there are a lot of firsts in this post:

First time at Eagles Canyon Raceway
First time using GoPro HD camera
First Video edited with Sony Vegas
First video posted to Vimeo (new vimeo plus account)
First vimeo video posted to this forum.

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Brake failure

The brakes worked just fine throughout the day at ECR during all track sessions.  However, when getting ready to depart the paddock after packing up, the brakes started making a grinding noise.  The noise was exactly like that of a backing plate scraping along the rotor.  That’s actually what I expected to find….that the caliper had frozen on the pins and the inside pad had worn down to the backing plate even though I still had 50% left on the outsides.

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Odds and Ends

I only had a couple of simple goals for the day:

1.  Disable the clutch safety switch that prevents you from starting the car, unless the clutch is depressed.

2.  Install a horn button.

3.  Rewire my dash switches to include ON indicator LEDs, and pre-wire for the GoPro remote switch mod.

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GoPro HD Camera Mod

gopro

 

So, I bought a GoPro HD camera.  But, my camera is mounted on the main-hoop diagonal, and I can’t reach it from the driver’s seat while buckled in.  This last weekend that meant starting the camera when I got to the grid, then starting the process of buckling up, putting on my helmet, and waiting to be released from the grid.  As many people have noted that results in about 8 minutes of dead video at the front of every recording.  There has to be a better way!!!

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Upgraded to Solo!

So, there’s lots more to tell, and it will take some time to get it all down on “ePaper”.   But, the biggest news of the weekend is that I’ve been upgraded to run solo.  Actually, my instructor got out after the first green session, and said, “Your doing good enough to drive solo.  You don’t need me here.  Just work on tightening up those Apexes.”

At the time I presumed that just meant that he would recommend upgrading me to the intermediate group at the end of the day.  Still cool.  That was my goal for the day because it opens up so many more options for seat time.  Besides the intermediates get a full 120 minutes of green-flag seat time.  The Novice groups only get 80 minutes.

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Initial Setup

The last couple weeks have been a bit hectic.  I’ve been swamped between things around the house, and some family stuff.  Its a good thing I got the car “done” two weeks ago.  Otherwise, I wouldn’t have had the time to finish and I’d have missed the day at the track tomorrow!

Busy-ness aside, I managed to make it down to TeamMER yesterday and get the initial setup put on the car.  It was kind of a nervous thing, because I didn’t know if they were going to find any major problems…and was already out of time to fix before Saturday.  I’d planned on going LAST saturday..which would have given me a week to fix any issues.  Since that was not the case, I was a little nervous when he first put it on the scales.

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Clutch / Transmission Complete

So, step 1: clean the transmission.  Engine degreaser, brash brush, some elbow grease.  All clean.  The main thing to watch out for here is to close up the speedo opening, and the top of the turret.  You don’t want to get any water down in these.  I stuffed the openings with absorbent towels, and then taped over the opening with 1 1/2″ masking tape.  Then I was careful to not direct the water spray AT these taped over openings.

P1010002 P1010003

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ArrrrARRrrRrrRrrRrrrgGGGGGgGGGG!!!!!!

Friggin’ hydraulics!

I bought a slave cylinder for the known failures…So, I replaced it and replaced the flex-line, and curly cue with a braided stainless from Advanced Autosports while I was at it. Seems like a prudent plan, eh?

Well, guess what….the master cylinder is bad! Apparently, the reservoir isn’t draining into the cylinder. When I tried to bleed the system no fluid was pulled out of the res. Every time I opened the bleed screw with the pedal released you could hear the air sucking back into system.  Perhaps the MC could be fixed (find what’s plugging the opening from the res. into the MC)….but, is that the right approach for a 20 year old car headed to the race track?  Probably not.