May 2016

24May

I bought a portable petrol powered generator last week, from SGS Engineering in Derby. I'd spoken previously to other competitors and the fact that some venues dont provide power, meant that sitting in a paddock, with no possibility of using a heat gun or a battery charger, was going to significantly hinder preparations between runs. So I contacted SGS, and went to their trade counter, to take a look at the 2200W model. I was very impressed, with the quality, the ease of use, and the very low noise that it made, so a deal was struck and SGS loaded one in to the back of the BMW. So I took it with me to Snetterton, and I must say, I cant believe how I've managed for all the years without one. With two power sockets, and 2200W capacity, using an extension lead we ran a 2KW heat gun to clean Pete's tyres, I charged the Mygales battery using a fast charger between runs, and I even powered the laptop and charged the phone and GoPro batteries from it. It is so useful. If you are in the market for a generator, please check out the range from SGS Engineering. Very highly recommended.

23May

Snetterton weekend was hugely successful for myself, with a 13th Overall finishing position in the British Sprint Championship. I just missed a Top 12 run off by a few seconds. And when one of the 12 finalists broke a driveshaft, there was a chance that I might even make it, if they couldnt repair their car in time. But they did, so I had a third timed run as consolation, and sat and watched the Top 12 have two run off runs.

On Saturday I learnt the track, which was the 100 layout, over a lap and 3/4. I was around 10s slower than Pete Goulding in the sister car, but as he had been to the track before, and this was my first visit, I had a lot to learn. On Sunday though, I sliced 3s chunks off my time on the first three runs, to draw to within 2s of Pete, but my second timed run was my fastest, a 91s run, and my third run I was 3/10ths slower, as was most other competitors, so I wasnt too disheartened. Given Pete had a 50BHP advantage over me, plus a lighter car, I felt very pleased with it being just a 2s gap. Watching the video I can still see areas where I can improve. I did manage to avoid braking for Hamilton and Palmer, though I do lift, I could do with a partial lift next time to carry more speed in to those two corners. I was also braking at the last 50M board for Agostini, which took some courage. The car was amazing though, the diffuser really seemed to pull the car down, and I never really had any issues with grip all day. Fortunately we had to dry days, so I had 10 drives, in the dry, which did my confidence no harm at all.

Next event is Blyton in July. Without a major sponsor, I simply cant afford to do two events in June, so I'll enjoy the break, and focus on getting ready for Blyton instead. If you would like to sponsor me, paying for event entry fees, typically around £250 per weekend, then please get in touch, as I've plenty of room on the car for company logos.




The Picasa web album can be seen below:
BSC Snetterton May 2016
Video, and data to follow :D

15May

So the diffuser is now attached on the near side. I've drastically modified the original stepped floor section, which is a fibre glass honeycomb composite (heavy) and is easy to cut and trim. I've avoided cutting the diffuser where possible. I'll attach the offside section today too. I've also removed the gear position sensor, as it was giving spikes on the datalogger, which I think were interfering with the gear changes. I've a spare so its just a small job to change the connector on the end and swap the two over.
Diffuser fitment
Diffuser fitment
Diffuser fitment
Diffuser fitment
Diffuser fitment

14May

I've replaced the series regulated K&N filter with one twice the size, which oddly weighs less than the one it replaces. The new one is 5" long, with the same 64mm id etc. Part Number RC-9630. The reason for changing it is the car is booked in at NHM on June 21st for some tuning, and Troy commented that Pete's car was perhaps restricted by the air filter. Pete now has 220BHP and 240ft/lb following his visit on Wednesday. Shame I cant get mine tuned in time for Snetterton next weekend, I'll just have to drive the socks off my car, which now has a 50BHP deficit to Pete's. Old vs New filter
But I am almost finished fitting the rear diffuser. I'll post pics just as soon as its done. This should give me far more grip on the fast stuff, so maybe I can carry more speed round the corners than Pete, but I'll definitely be lacking straight line speed compared to him.

09May

Regrettably, what with everything else thats been going on, I missed the MIRA sprint on Saturday, so my next outing will be Snetterton on the 20th May, a round of the British Sprint Championship. In preparation, I've fitted the new seatbelts, and adjusted them, and the dashboard is now ready, after a little more fine tuning.

Pete Goulding now has two FTD's under his belt, in his EcoBoost, and I've some catching up to do.

I'd like to fit the undertray for Snetterton, so I'm buying some lengths of threaded rod so I can fasten it in place. M5 or M6 should be adequate.

05May

RIP Howard, you'll be sorely missed by me, you were my inspiration, you introduced me to motorsport, and for that I will forever be indebted. After a short battle with cancer, Dad died peacefully at his home, surrounded by immediate family. He had so many ambitions left to fulfill, so many events to enter this year in the Renault Twingo 3. He leaves a big hole in my life, and it will take me some time to come to terms with the loss.
1937-2016

03May

I've changed the layout on the Dash4Pro so that there are two screens, that swap from screen 1 to screen 2 automatically when the speed is above 20MPH, and then reverts back to screen 1 again as the speed drops below 20MPH. The theory is that whilst queing, the screen displays information that might be required, such as oil temps, and when competing, or travelling faster than 20MPH, the dash reverts to a simpler layout, with less information. I've set an alarm on the oil pressure, to come on at <1bar, so essentially, all I need to do is concentrate on driving, and the dash is there should I need it. The most important reading for me is the battery voltage. I should be able to relax a little, knowing how much juice remains. Whilst there is no alternator driven from the engine, starting the engine presents the single biggest current draw, so I must avoid stalling the engine whilst manouvering around the paddock as I approach the start area. This short video shows the display working with the engine running.

I have replaced the seat belts in the car with a Sabelt 6pt harness. The belts that came from Radical looked a little tired, and these are dated to the end of 2021, so I've six years use to look forwards to. Replacement harness
Replacement harness

I tried the diffusers on Saturday, and the longest of the two fits perfectly. I'll have to work out how to attach it to the car now. Rear diffuser mockup
Rear diffuser mockup