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Old 04-25-2014, 11:49 PM   #1
skivittlerjimb
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Question 24H of Lemons - what next?

The car - 1981 262C Bertone with a B230FT out of a '93 940 Turbo with 200k+ miles. LH2.4.

The goodies - 15G, MBC, T5 swap, 225s on Hydras (yep, tires too wide for the wheels), Hawk HPS pads, cut stock wagon springs, IPD bars, KYB GR-2s, welded diff, 20-ish gallon fuel cell (well it's technically a 24-gallon cell, but we've never been able to pour more than 20 gallons into it)

The past - 2009 to 2011 NA B230F in a 1992 245 w/M47 trans:
Stafford Springs '09 - 5th overall; Summit Point '10 - 8th overall; Stafford Springs '10 - 6th overall; NJMP '11 - 10th overall, Class C Win; NHMS Spring '11 - 8th overall; Class B Win, Summit Point '11 - 8th overall, IOE; Stafford Springs '11 - clobbered by our friends' Firebird while in 1st place two hours in.

2012 - warmed over B230F (VX cam and decked head) in the Bertone chassis w/M47:
NJMP Spring '12 - 6th overall, Class C Win; NHMS Spring '12 - 10th overall; Summit Point '12 - 25th maybe? (RF wheel fell off with 30 minutes to go in the race, but welded back the sheared hub and took the checkered lap); NHMS Fall '12 - 8th overall.

2013 - B230F+T for first two races, then B230FT thereafter in the Bertone chassis. T5 swapped in after first race, 15G swapped in after the third race.
Monticello '13 - 79th overall, M47 munched 2nd gear; NHMS Spring '13 - 77th overall, rear end locked up + coolant leak = engine fry; Summit Point '13 - 23rd overall, T5 puked 5th and reverse gears; NJMP '13 - 7th overall; NHMS Fall '13 - 27th overall, rear end let go with 40 minutes left; Arse Freeze Sonoma '13 - 94th overall; didn't run most of Saturday after the driveshaft fell out of the car.

2014 so far - 2-Hour Sprint Race Sonoma '14 - 22nd overall, did one driver change; Sears Pointless '14 - 35th overall (we were headed to 25th-ish overall until I spun and stalled with 40 mins left), Gingerman '14- 2nd overall

So we never expected to get so close to an overall win with this car, but were ecstatic to get a 2nd place in a small field (50) cars last weekend in Michigan. We would have been beaten by two E30s and a 944 if they all hadn't had mechanical issues of some sort. Now we need to figure out both how the make the car handle better and use less fuel if we have a prayer of winning an overall in the larger, faster fields (125+ cars) in the east coast and west coast races.

At 15psi (just before fuel cut on the stock 940 turbo computer) we get just under 2 hours of drive time on a full fuel cell, even with a few yellow flags during our stints. We can also pass all but the fastest V8s and turbo cars (like Towery's) on the straights. At 8 psi we can get 2.5 hours of drive time in a normal race, a bit more if we short shift from 3rd to 4th at 5k or 5.5k. At this boost level we're usually on pace with the E30s on the straights, but the V8 302s and 350s and fast turbo 4-cyls. are walking us. On the NA B230F with the fuel cell, in theory we could have gotten 3.5 hours per stint with a bit of fuel saving and a few yellow flags, but it's rare a driver can keep driving fast and safe for much more than 2.75 hours, especially on a warm day, in our experience. Longest stints we ever did were 3.25 hours a couple of times, and those weren't exactly "safe."

So we're planning on finally doing the lower ball joint / control arm mod to get more camber in the front, and we're planning on getting stiffer springs as well, and are going to experiment with dual rear bars and are willing to try no rear bar on a test day. We're also going to try to pull a few more pounds out of the car if we can. Maybe 10-15 more lbs. could still come out of it with a plasma cutter. We're right around 2,475 lbs. right now as my best guess.

Question is, is their any safe way to keep the power levels up but use a bit less fuel? To be competitive we really need to do 2.5 hour stints without short shifting. Would the combination of adjusting the cam timing and an ECU chip get us closer to our goals if we can safely monitor AFRs? Should we just be happy we what we have and hope the stars align and we get an overall win someday if all the BMWs and Hondas break? What about aero? At NJMP we're pushing 120mph at the end of the straight and we don't have any sort of front air dam or rear spoiler. School us. Should all but our hotshoe driver spend $1,500+ on a Skip Barber or weekend school to get faster?

We want to put a 4-cylinder Volvo in the winner's circle at a Lemons race. We've lurked on TB long enough and want to help either our team or another Volvo Lemons team reach that goal. A 745 turbo did it in Chump Car, so we know it's possible. And yes, we are nuts.
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Old 04-25-2014, 11:55 PM   #2
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cut more weight from the car.More than 15 lbs . less weight is as good as more HP..........and will help milage too. You're going to have to go 'cutting edge" here
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Old 04-26-2014, 01:37 AM   #3
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Fuel- any chip will hurt more than help. They throw more fuel in most of the time. I would work on aero here. A front air dam would be great. I once used a 1g eclipse bumper on a 89 mirage GT. Did wonders for the fuel seemed to help handling. Find a modern plastic bumper cover that will "fit" on the front. Modern cars are all about reducing front air drag. Also cover as much of the under of the car with flat panels as possible. This will get better mpg and may help suck the car closer to the track. Vent the back of the hood. Get the air that's built up under it out. This is a large hold up in cars. If you already haven't take off the mechanical fan. This is a major drag on the motor and believe it or not aero hamper. Remove your t stat. It will help the motor run cooler and take up for the loss of fan.

Suspension-Don't double sway the rear. You want the car to pivot, not spin. Buy a used set of Koni adjustables send them in to be rebuilt and custom valves to what ever spring set up you have. Best money you may ever spend.

Brakes. Get a bumper cover with openings in the bottom. Use these for brake ducts. Then get a custom set of brake pads made. Once again. A little more money. But having a brake pad made for the actual wieght of the car will be surprising. I beleave Hawk used to do this for us.

Hope I helped and gave you some ideas.
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Old 04-26-2014, 03:08 AM   #4
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Buy a larger fuel cell?
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Old 04-26-2014, 11:33 AM   #5
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Buy a larger fuel cell?
Max legal size of the fuel tank is 24 gallons.
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Old 04-26-2014, 11:38 AM   #6
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Ah, that explains it. Aero, and tune it for efficiency, You are right, you definitely need a standalone to get to the next level.
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Old 04-26-2014, 12:17 PM   #7
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Some Mazda brakes would lighten it up a bit and then get busy cutting metal out
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Old 04-26-2014, 12:28 PM   #8
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can you run Plexiglas windshield?
aero updates - like said above - front air dam - also the e30s bumpers/front spoilers fit with little modification
mid cycle - 1983-85 bumpers weigh the least on 240s
what's the gear ratio in the rear ?
remove most of the inner hood and trunk support

did you remove the rear axle accident "crash bars" (I don't know what they are called)
remove front brake splash shield

pictures of interior would help

where in Cali are you
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Old 04-26-2014, 12:44 PM   #9
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some suspension work might help...

Coilover conversion in the front will save approx 8 lbs.

If you want to save fuel you should concentrate on aero mods and reducing drag. Did you remove all the glass? You might consider putting in thin plastic sheet, make some under body trays to smooth out the entire bottom.
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Old 04-26-2014, 01:55 PM   #10
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can you run Plexiglas windshield?
aero updates - like said above - front air dam - also the e30s bumpers/front spoilers fit with little modification
mid cycle - 1983-85 bumpers weigh the least on 240s
what's the gear ratio in the rear ?
remove most of the inner hood and trunk support

did you remove the rear axle accident "crash bars" (I don't know what they are called)
remove front brake splash shield

pictures of interior would help

where in Cali are you
You mean lexan right, not plexiglass?
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Old 04-26-2014, 02:01 PM   #11
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Some Mazda brakes would lighten it up a bit and then get busy cutting metal out
The Mazda brake idea was inveneted for 240s intended to be used on gravel where we rarely touch 105mph...

The pistons are 4 x 36mm, thats a good bit less than a 740/940 dual piston things..
Yes lighter weight but does the guy want to reduce the power of the brakes in front on a track car on asphalt?
I don't think so.
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Old 04-26-2014, 02:12 PM   #12
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You mean lexan right, not plexiglass?
yup
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Old 04-27-2014, 06:39 AM   #13
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Bert! Our team SlowSwedes racing has gotten some valuable info and parts from you guys over the past two seasons. We look forward to seeing you guys at NJMP.
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Old 04-28-2014, 02:19 PM   #14
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Thanks for all the suggestions so far. To answer a couple of the questions:

-I'm not sure what year our metal bumpers are but they're full width aluminum bars that are pretty much perfectly placed for possible front or rear impacts in traffic that sometimes (not that often, really) happen in traffic at Lemons races, so I don't think we want to mess with them. They're not perfectly straight but they do the job well.

-All of the glass except the windshield is gone. We need to start looking for a Bertone windshield now, becase Lexan front glass sounds like a PITA, and ours has gotten more dings and cracks at each race. Lemons rules specify that side windows be all the way down or removed, but quarter window and rear glass can be retained. Our glass is long gone, even if we wanted to put it back. I can see putting the quarter windows back via Lexan to reduce a tiny bit of drag, but right now our trophy rack that holds our Bert doll and Bert's pigeons would be in the way if we tried to put Lexan in the rear. There are theme priorities in Lemons to consider, too.

-No, I don't think we want to mess with the front brake calipers to save weight. The brakes are one of the best things about our Volvo, even with relatively "mild" Hawk HPS we can out-brake most of Lemons field in any given race.

The car is located in Vermont now. It spent four months in California at my house in Danville this winter so we could do all three races at Sonoma. We hit Gingerman in Michigan on Bert's way back east to his home in Vermont. We plan on doing at least four more races with it this year if possible.

We can still cut a lot of interior sheet metal out of the inside car, but I think it will only amount to 10-15 lbs. at most. Almost all of the sound deadening is gone from the interior and the trunk area (there is a tiny bit left up underneath the pedals), and the rear crash triangles were one of the first things to get tossed for weight savings. We'd fully gut the doors, but we need to retain the ability to easily open the side doors from the inside of the car, so we've held off in order to have a fully functioning interior and exterior door handles. We could also diet the wiring harness a bit more to save 3 or 4 lbs. Also, the bracket that is holding the alternator right now is HUGE and way overkill. We relocated the alternator to the driver's side of the engine bay when we put the 940 turbo motor in. Anyone have good examples of minimized alternator brackets? We of course don't have a/c or power steering to worry about anymore.

The aero stuff is intriguing. My team would probably laugh at me, but we all agree we need some sort of front bumper to cut the airflow from under the car. I'll take a look at the E30 front cover option, as those are plentiful. On a coupe profile like the Bertone, would a small aero extension make sense on the roof or the trunk lid to smooth airflow and reduce low-pressure areas behind the car? Anyone have good examples/pictures of well-executed drag reduction spoilers? Also, I've never seen a 240 with air vents in the hood to remove air, not even on the Group A cars in the 80s. Anyone got an example of where you'd put them or results after putting them in?

For fuel savings, would a more efficient I/C make any difference to fuel consumption? We were considering upgrading to a big NPR I/C as we're still running the stock one. I would think lower intake temps would not necessarily mean more fuel because fuel delivery is primarily determined by amount of boost, airflow as measured by the AMM, and throttle position, yes?

For the ECU, could we get a chip that only slightly raised the boost fuel cut limit and/or the rev limit? That would certainly be helpful in certain situations, though potentially dangerous. We would like to raise boost fuel cut to 18psi instead of 16psi and raise the rev limit to 7k instead of 6700 or 6800 where it is now. We would also consider driver-adjustable MBC, so if the situation called for fuel savings or maximum power, we could adjust it mid-race, though that's pretty dangerous, too.

Handling and grip are likely to be our biggest gains moving forward. More camber up front should help. We're open to experimenting with our rear stiffness. We're going to put in FCP lowering springs (roughly the same height as our cut wagon springs) and see how that helps with weight transfer and such. Right now we get some understeer is slow corners because the welded diff wants to keep the car moving forward. A bit more weight transfer off of the insider rear should help with that. In medium and high speed corners the car is very well-balanced and power-on oversteer is pretty easy to induce, but never alarming or twitchy. The E30s in particular always seem to have more ultimate grip than we do, though.

Anyway, appreciated the ideas and suggestions. We're always happy to help newbie or veteran teams with Volvos in Lemons. The Volvo camaraderie is always present at just about every race, and it's an aspect of Lemons we thoroughly enjoy.
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Old 04-28-2014, 03:15 PM   #15
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Scramble boost may be a good answer. 10 seconds of extra power at the push of a button?
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Old 04-28-2014, 03:45 PM   #16
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I would think that replacing the factory intercooler with something more efficient, be it ebay 31x12x3 or NPR, would actually help with economy. I mean, if you cooled down that incoming air, it would be easier for the engine to make the same power and you wouldn't have to push it as hard.

I have watched my IAT's soar on Tunerstudio from just a 15g at 10psi running the stock intercooler, I can only imagine what your IAT's look like on the track pushing the hell out of the thing.
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Old 04-28-2014, 04:54 PM   #17
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-I can see putting the quarter windows back via Lexan to reduce a tiny bit of drag, but right now our trophy rack that holds our Bert doll and Bert's pigeons would be in the way if we tried to put Lexan in the rear. There are theme priorities in Lemons to consider, too.

I would do the 1/4 windows. Cheap and if it work if not no harm

On a coupe profile like the Bertone, would a small aero extension make sense on the roof or the trunk lid to smooth airflow and reduce low-pressure areas behind the car? Anyone have good examples/pictures of well-executed drag reduction spoilers? Also, I've never seen a 240 with air vents in the hood to remove air, not even on the Group A cars in the 80s. Anyone got an example of where you'd put them or results after putting them in?

If the back glass is removed, I would think the the lack of the back glass is causing a issue here. What I would do. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i0Q0nx0_Dgc . Make a small wood/soap silhouette model of the car. Add some smoke. This way you can see what the rear window being gone has done. Then you can add spoilers to it.

For fuel savings, would a more efficient I/C make any difference to fuel consumption? We were considering upgrading to a big NPR I/C as we're still running the stock one.

Yes do this. Cooler intake temps equals more power from less fuel used.

Right now we get some understeer is slow corners because the welded diff wants to keep the car moving forward.

Loss the welded diff. Add a LSD. You are dragging that inside tire around in corners.

Get a set of coil overs front and rear. Makes it easy to change spring rates for track specs. And the ability to corner weight the car.
As for the hood vent

1 - Duct behind the radiator up through the hood - if you can;
2 - Louvers, not an open hole with mesh (visualize it: do you want a vertical column of air intersecting with the hood's already-in-place horizontal flow? No, you don't, because it will create backed up turbulence & be a huge step backwards in terms of aerodynamics);
3 - Louvers placed in front because it's the air that just passed through the radiator that you want to evacuate; and
4 - Don't forget to duct the incoming air to the radiator & oil cooler. This is a two-fer: a - you maximize cooling potential; and, b - you maximize air flow potential through the openings, the radiators, and out the louvered vents.

I took this from a BMW form I read once. I saved it due to how good he described it.
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Old 04-28-2014, 05:00 PM   #18
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Handling and grip are likely to be our biggest gains moving forward. More camber up front should help. We're open to experimenting with our rear stiffness. We're going to put in FCP lowering springs (roughly the same height as our cut wagon springs) and see how that helps with weight transfer and such. Right now we get some understeer is slow corners because the welded diff wants to keep the car moving forward. A bit more weight transfer off of the insider rear should help with that. In medium and high speed corners the car is very well-balanced and power-on oversteer is pretty easy to induce, but never alarming or twitchy. The E30s in particular always seem to have more ultimate grip than we do, though.
What is the spring rate of the FCP springs?
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Old 04-28-2014, 09:14 PM   #19
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Ok, the hood vents mounted about 2" behind the rear edge of the radiator do make sense to suck some hot air out from under the hood and potentially help aero a tiny bit. Again, might be hard to convince my teammates it's worth it, but if our best wrench does end up buying that plasma cutter he's always wanted, it's one more reason for him to use it.

We do have ducting of sorts that directs as much air over the I/C and radiator as possible and lets as little as possible into other parts of the engine bay. The cover of our FB page has a decent shot of the front end of the car. We use ABS plastic to prevent air from slipping in between the headlight opening and the IC / radiator.

Building a homemade wind tunnel sounds cool, but I doubt I'll ever get around to it. I'm sure the lack or a rear glass is not helping matter with aero, and if we ever come across an easy to install roof line extender that doesn't obstruct rear view we might give it a try.

I'm not sure of the exact rate of the FCP lowering springs, but the small bit of research I did seems to suggest that they're very similar to the IPD springs in terms of rate and resulting ride height, just $60 cheaper. We don't want overly stiff springs, as lot of the tracks we run at have serious bumps, big curbs, etc. A super-stiff suspension sounds good on paper but over the course of an 15-18 hour race weekend, it means that everything related to the suspension takes more of a beating, including the driver.

We have considered going the G80 route with 25mph limiter removed, they're just tough to find. I'm pretty sure Towery is running one in their Cheetah Volvo. We've never compared notes on low-speed corner push tendencies. Do the G80 rear ends stand up to abuse? We re-weld our rear about every 3 or 4 races, because eventually the welds do fail.

Oh, and our rear end ratio is 3.73:1. It tends to be perfect and we spend a lot of time in 3rd and 4th gear at most tracks. We only need 2nd for the slowest corners and really never need 5th gear. This is with '87 Mustang T5 gears.
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Old 04-28-2014, 09:40 PM   #20
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Check out this (write) up.

http://forum.savarturbo.se/viewtopic.php?f=21&t=80972

A little over board for a LeMons car. But ideas.

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Old 04-30-2014, 01:31 AM   #21
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Will I be seeing you guy at NJMP in a few weeks? I live practically down the street from there.
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Old 04-30-2014, 05:47 AM   #22
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Maybe swap in some more modern injectors with a better spray pattern? With a 15G even at 1 bar of boost the stock fuel map is still very rich. You should borrow an ostrich off someone and do a bit of tuning yourself get it all dialed in. I take it you have a wideband?
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Old 04-30-2014, 04:07 PM   #23
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Will I be seeing you guy at NJMP in a few weeks? I live practically down the street from there.
Yes, Bert will be there. NJMP Thunderbolt is both a good and bad track for Bert. It's good because it's a relatively fast course as Lemons go and we can do a fair bit of passing on the straights. It's bad because all the full throttle means going through lots of fuel. We have a garage bay rented for the weekend so definitely stop by and say hello. We usually have cold kegerator beer at the east coast races (when the track is cold, of course).

Quote:
Maybe swap in some more modern injectors with a better spray pattern? With a 15G even at 1 bar of boost the stock fuel map is still very rich. You should borrow an ostrich off someone and do a bit of tuning yourself get it all dialed in.
Suggestions on which injectors to use? Cheap and easy to set up would be nice.

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I take it you have a wideband?
You'd think so, wouldn't you? We have been spoiled by how reliable our B230Fs and B230FTs have been, and we've often talked about installing a wideband, but without much of a way to tune it for fuel delivery (other than turn the boost down or up), we've never gotten around to it.
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Old 04-30-2014, 04:31 PM   #24
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I'm not sure of the exact rate of the FCP lowering springs, but the small bit of research I did seems to suggest that they're very similar to the IPD springs in terms of rate and resulting ride height, just $60 cheaper. We don't want overly stiff springs, as lot of the tracks we run at have serious bumps, big curbs, etc. A super-stiff suspension sounds good on paper but over the course of an 15-18 hour race weekend, it means that everything related to the suspension takes more of a beating, including the driver.

We have considered going the G80 route with 25mph limiter removed, they're just tough to find. I'm pretty sure Towery is running one in their Cheetah Volvo. We've never compared notes on low-speed corner push tendencies. Do the G80 rear ends stand up to abuse? We re-weld our rear about every 3 or 4 races, because eventually the welds do fail.
Why not just buy regular 5" springs that have a printed spring rate so that way if you need to make an adjustment you atleast know what your baseline is?

Hoopty race cars doesn't mean you have to have a hoopty suspension.

G80s are very easy to find. If you run a g80 weld the weight, don't cut it.
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Old 04-30-2014, 11:46 PM   #25
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A diet is mandatory!! We race a '85 244 (turbo) and have it below 2300 pounds with 1/2 a tank of fuel. Less weight means easier on brakes, faster tranistion through corners, easier on tires, less fuel for same lap time and of course it's "FASTER".

We took the car apart and weighed everthing and replaced only what was required with the lightest best option available. For example we saved 23 pounds of copper (sold to recyler $$) in removing all unescessary wiring. Be Ruthless!

good luck
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