1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Prawn and BigAls A3 Track Car

Discussion in 'A3/S3 Forum (8L Chassis)' started by Prawn, Dec 29, 2010.

  1. Prawn

    Prawn My other car is a MINI!!!!

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2006
    Messages:
    10,566
    Likes Received:
    2,144
    I'd love to do another day before the ring, if anything it'd be keevil on august 22, but if I'm honest, I fully expect to be struggling to get the cage done in time! I've had enough of it for this week so I'm not touching it today. Will start a fresh next weekend. Get the box finished Saturday, and make a start on the cage on Sunday :)

    Also considering new seats before the ring too, although they're potentially a bit controversial :p
     
  2. Google AdSense Guest Advertisement



    to hide this advert.
  3. 666markyboy

    666markyboy Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2008
    Messages:
    1,163
    Likes Received:
    38
    Controversial seats ??? how so ???
     
  4. Westy

    Westy Double Dark Side! Diesel & 8P

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2008
    Messages:
    17,376
    Likes Received:
    1,013
    Will you be happy not giving the old girl a track thrashing before the long trip to the ring?

    Why are the seats controversial?
     
  5. Prawn

    Prawn My other car is a MINI!!!!

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2006
    Messages:
    10,566
    Likes Received:
    2,144
    Well,

    At Christmas, I bought some sparco sprint 5 seats, but I couldn't fit in them :( I weighed almost 20 stone (yes, I know-fat bastard!), so I sold them and bought the cobra monacos I have now because they're pretty roomy. THey are however, steel framed, heavy, and not THAT comfy on a long journey.

    I now weigh 16st 4lb, and can now fit in most seats (including the sparcos I sold to plunky) perfectly fine.

    I fancy a slightly tighter seat, and something GRP with a bit more give in the shell. I don't wnat to pay much for them though.

    I found these this morning:

    Professional Motorsport Parts, Spares & Rally Equipment from Rally Design

    They're not FIA approved, and they are cheap. This is the controversial bit!

    The grp shell is an identical copy of the sparco pro 2000, made from the same GRP. A bit more research, and apparently rally design reckon they ARE fully FIA compliant, but they have not been tested due to the cost of the testing for approval. If the seats were tested, the price would go up considerably to cover said costs!

    So, whilst we're just using the car for trackdays and the ring, I am going to give them a try! Obviously if in future we decide to compete we can get something FIA approved, but for now these look great, and they're also much lighter than my current monacos.

    Neil, I'm fairly confident I can "test" the car fully without taking it to a track ;) although it would be nice. I think I've got my work cut out to get it ready in time for the ring as it is!
     
  6. Prawn

    Prawn My other car is a MINI!!!!

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2006
    Messages:
    10,566
    Likes Received:
    2,144
    A few more pics of the ones I'd get:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  7. Prawn

    Prawn My other car is a MINI!!!!

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2006
    Messages:
    10,566
    Likes Received:
    2,144
    After a pax laps on my last trip in a very well sorted 306, I decided I needed 6 point harnesses. I felt much safer with the 6th straps in place, and it was nowhere near as uncomfy as I imagined it would be.

    When i bought my Titans, I bought them knowing they had a 5th slot on the buckle should I wish to upgrade.

    That's come in pretty handy now. Just ordered 2 6 point crotch straps, which attach to the buckles single slot via a T-bar setup. Absolute bargain price of £32 posted for the 2 sets of straps for both harnesses. They're also given them a 2015 FIA date so as to match the rest of the harness :)

    Should make it a little safer.

    Hoping to get started on the cage this weekend
     
  8. Westy

    Westy Double Dark Side! Diesel & 8P

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2008
    Messages:
    17,376
    Likes Received:
    1,013
    I love a good harness. It's no good if you need to lean forward to put the lap ticket in the ticket machine at the ring :(
     
  9. Prawn

    Prawn My other car is a MINI!!!!

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2006
    Messages:
    10,566
    Likes Received:
    2,144
    they tend to be manned now mate, for that very reason :)

    When I'm too far away to reach, a friendly german dude takes my lap card, swipes it for me, then hands it back.

    most helpful!

    it's strangely funny also, telling people at work that I've just ordered some webbing straps for my ******** :)
     
  10. Prawn

    Prawn My other car is a MINI!!!!

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2006
    Messages:
    10,566
    Likes Received:
    2,144
    So, finally got a bit of time to work on this over the weekend, despite working until 4 on Saturday, I'm happy with that's been done.

    Gearbox finished off saturday night, everything went back on nicely, and I did the final jobs this morning, refitting the driveshafts and putting it back on it's wheels.

    Then it was time to start work on the cage!

    I'll start by saying, a MASSIVE thanks to AndyP for his help (huge effort) today. Not only for being 10x better than me at welding and fabrication, but also for driving 35 miles to get here, to work hard from 9-7, Couldn't have done this without Andy at all. Top man.

    [​IMG]

    After taking both the front and rear sections in and out, SEVERAL times each, we eventually found a way of getting both of them into the car at the same time.

    It sounds stupid, but was seriously difficult to get it all into place. Took a good few hours just to wangle it in.

    Finally though, it was near to it's final resting place:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Onto a bit of CAD (Cardboard aided design) to start making up the feet:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Boxes were cut and made up to sit under the feet, and when we were happy with them, Andy welded them up, ready for fitting:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    First box in place, and ready for welding:

    [​IMG]

    Second box in, and partly welded up:

    [​IMG]

    Annoyingly, at this point, we ran out of gas for the welder, so had to stop welding for the day.

    Moved onto making up the boxes for the front legs instead, ready to weld up next weekend:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    I also noticed, once the cage was in, I couldn't open the glove box any more!

    Being a DRT, this has to remain comfy to drive to Germany 600 miles from Cornwall, so I'm keeping the glovebox, electric windows, aircon, and stereo.

    5 minutes with a grinder and a stanley knife, and the glovebox opened again, even if it does look a bit ghetto.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Finally, it's not yet finished, but I have a roll cage :)

    [​IMG]
     
  11. Sam_

    Sam_ Down under

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2011
    Messages:
    2,939
    Likes Received:
    417
    Andy loves all that doesn't he, shame he's into volvos!!
     
  12. s3dave

    s3dave TFSI Hybrid
    Supporter

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2009
    Messages:
    10,120
    Likes Received:
    734
    Top work...i cant believe the amount of fabrication needed to get it to fit....It was 8L specific yeah?
     
  13. superkarl

    superkarl MAN OF STEEL

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2010
    Messages:
    8,538
    Likes Received:
    1,724
    Why isn't it Orange!?! :(
     
  14. Prawn

    Prawn My other car is a MINI!!!!

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2006
    Messages:
    10,566
    Likes Received:
    2,144
    because it isnt finished yet :)

    The original plan was to dry build and fit it, then pull the cage out for painting.

    Having struggled like hell to even get it into place, I've now decided it's NEVER comming out again. I honestly don't think I could remove it even if I wanted to.

    So, new plan, is to paint it in the car :)

    Will also be typing the cage into the shell at a few points where it's VERY close already.

    Dave: the cage isn't actually 8L specific, it's for a 5 door mk4 golf!

    Turns out golfs are alittle more square around the windscreen, because the front cage is jammed up tight against the windscreen surround at the top, although the tighter a cage is to the shell the better really!
     
  15. Sam_

    Sam_ Down under

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2011
    Messages:
    2,939
    Likes Received:
    417
    Are you intending on gusseting the cage to the A & B pillars? I never got to try it but my old 306 I was building had this:

    [​IMG]

    Heard it helps in stiffening the shell.
     
  16. Prawn

    Prawn My other car is a MINI!!!!

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2006
    Messages:
    10,566
    Likes Received:
    2,144
    Will hopefully be doing something similar yes :) Although it's a bolt in cage, it's swinging more towards semi weld in. there are a few places where is touches the shell already, so these will be tacked to stop it from creaking at all, and I'm hoping to make up a few little gussets for various other places whilst I've got Mr. P's welding skills!
     
  17. badger5

    badger5 www.badger5.co.uk
    Site Sponsor

    Joined:
    May 28, 2004
    Messages:
    8,246
    Likes Received:
    1,172
    any pixs of the drivers door... that front hoop looks set back quite a lot.. you tried a seat in there, for in and out?
     
  18. Westy

    Westy Double Dark Side! Diesel & 8P

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2008
    Messages:
    17,376
    Likes Received:
    1,013
    Yeah you need to fit the driver seat and see how easy it is climbing in and out.
     
  19. Prawn

    Prawn My other car is a MINI!!!!

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2006
    Messages:
    10,566
    Likes Received:
    2,144
    Just uploading a pic now Bill, will type this whilst it uploads.

    The front hoop is fairly close to the dash, and it's as far forward as it can be. At the top of the screen the cross bar sits perfectly, and the corners are RIGHT tight in the corners above the screen, so I guess it's where it's ment to be!

    the front legs have quite a rake on them, so I'm hoping getting in/out shouldn't be too much of a problem.

    I guess that's the downside of a bolt in cage that doesn't go through the dash, but i wanted it bolt in like this, I I guess I have to live with the access limitations!

    [​IMG]

    the reason the front legs are straight like that, is to keep them MSA/FIA compliant. Regs only allow a certain number of bends in the front legs, and the jap style ''dash dodgers'' don't comply. This one is fully FIA compliant

    You can see from the side mounts where my seat will sit. i'm hoping it'll be OK!

    May need a snap off steering wheel boss to help my Dad get in though!
     
  20. badger5

    badger5 www.badger5.co.uk
    Site Sponsor

    Joined:
    May 28, 2004
    Messages:
    8,246
    Likes Received:
    1,172
    I know my ibiza one, 1st one I had, which was from seat sport but made by custom cages (bolt in) and I was forever catching my right foot getting in and out, to the point I almost dislocated my knee once.. and sat there in abject agony not knowing what to do.. and I only have little feet. :p

    FIA have tightened up their regs where they dont like bends at all now, and additional tubes get added.. which makes ingress even more difficult. The LCR racecar here is like that.. nightmare, scaffold frame to get in and out.

    My ibiza's weld in cage has large double door bar on a cross (X) which is a complete mare to get in.. Snap off wheel for me too.. lardy phat belly and me not being very bendy in me old age.. lol

    The other thing to check, which looks like it should be ok, is the clearance from the steering wheels rim to the A hoop.. Again my ibiza's std steering wheel would fit, but, not with my hand holding it.. Enter Sparco dished wheel which I got with the cage.
     
  21. Prawn

    Prawn My other car is a MINI!!!!

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2006
    Messages:
    10,566
    Likes Received:
    2,144
    Thanks for your advice Bill, I appreciate it :)

    I think the steering wheel clearance will be massive. i don't have any pics which show it well, but the cage bows out LOADS around the steering wheel area, so it's right tight against the doors when shut, then comes in to the top of the A-pillar. it's as wide as it could be near the wheel, probably for that very reason!

    FIA have indeed tightened up on the regs for bends.

    I think a QR wheel will be a must once I install the Double door bars, mine will be X-d too. although removable so it can be used on the road still.
     
  22. Google AdSense Guest Advertisement



    to hide this advert.
  23. Prawn

    Prawn My other car is a MINI!!!!

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2006
    Messages:
    10,566
    Likes Received:
    2,144
    Got a bit worried today ater a few comments, that my seat might clash with the X-brace in the main hoop. SO tonight after work, I threw the seat in to see how it was.

    [​IMG]

    Good news is, it fits fine!

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    about 35-40mm between the seat back and the cage brace, and the brace is nowhere near the harness slots either, so shouldn't cause any issues.

    Got a few more pics of how tightly it fits the shell too

    I like how the front hoop is fairly wide, to aid vision, and steering wheel clearance, which is often overlooked on 'Dash dodger' style cages like this.

    [​IMG]

    It sits dead tight against the top corners of the screen too, it's actually touching the shell here, so I think I'll put a weld at this point, to tie it in further, and stop it from creaking:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    The main hoop also seems to fit the roof nicely. I was a bit worried when I saw the AHS golf that the main hoop sat a little low, but those fears are gone

    [​IMG]

    Front cross bar also fits the windscreen very nicely, and the X-brace in the roof isn't too low either as it's bowed upwards

    [​IMG]

    Considering this cage is built for a 4 door mk4 golf, I'm VERY happy with the fit :)

    Will be taking JJ's advice on the front feet, really glad we didn't weld them in now! (removing part of the thing metal near the inner sill to get a continous weld)

    WIll also be welding the boxes up externally as well as internally, I don't think you can be too safe!

    Just the door bars and harness bar to do after that lot. Harness bar I'm not worried about at all, or the first door bar. It's the second X-d door bar I think we're going to struggle with!
     
  24. Prawn

    Prawn My other car is a MINI!!!!

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2006
    Messages:
    10,566
    Likes Received:
    2,144
    when the car was last used, I thought i could feel a bit of movement in the engine when decelerating. I was going to check it out the evening the gearbox broke, but with the box breaking, it wasn't really an issue any more!

    When removing the gearbox, I was a bit shocked to find the lower gearbox mount (dog bone) was loose. that explained the rocking.

    it wasn't until Sunday morning when i went to refit the dog bone mount, that I found out the thread in the alloy box casing had stripped :( Not surprising really seeing as this box has been removed/refitted 6-7 times in it's life.

    The last helicoil kit I bought in M12.1.5 cost me £38, although I found the correct M10x1.5 kit on ebay for just £9.99. it looked decent, so I took a punt on it

    [​IMG]

    Looks like good enough quality to me, the inserts are stainless, so it should do the job perfectly.

    Just got to tighten up the driveshafts whilst it's up in the air, and repair this thread, then I can drive it again.
     
  25. Westy

    Westy Double Dark Side! Diesel & 8P

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2008
    Messages:
    17,376
    Likes Received:
    1,013
    That's a massive helicoil. I've used smaller coils before and it did the job perfectly. Good luck mate.
     
  26. Prawn

    Prawn My other car is a MINI!!!!

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2006
    Messages:
    10,566
    Likes Received:
    2,144
    Yup, fairly big! Being an old girl, the alloy threads have seen better days. First one to go was the M12 engine mount thread, and now the dogbone thread, it's totally gone!

    thank god for my super solid INA engine mounts, or it'd have been wobbling about like mad! Even with no dogbone on there now, you can't rock the engine at all.
     
  27. Prawn

    Prawn My other car is a MINI!!!!

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2006
    Messages:
    10,566
    Likes Received:
    2,144
    Seats have arrived :)

    [​IMG]
     
  28. 666markyboy

    666markyboy Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2008
    Messages:
    1,163
    Likes Received:
    38

    In my game i've fitted Helicoils over an inch in Dia in the past...... but we tend not to use them these days in favour of a ring locked insert like these Alcoa -- Product Catalog: Ring Locked Threaded Inserts
     
  29. Prawn

    Prawn My other car is a MINI!!!!

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2006
    Messages:
    10,566
    Likes Received:
    2,144
    Repaired the dog bone mount thread in the gearbox tonight, the £10 ebay kit worked perfectly, very happy with it. that's all back in now with some thread lock to keep it there.

    I then moved into installing the crutch strap on the drivers side. I've drilled this and bolted it through the floor, with eye bolts in the chosen places, and FIA spec plates behind to strengthen the area up.

    Crutch strap in place, I tried the new seat on my side mounts:

    [​IMG]

    Very happy with it, and the 6 point harness is awesome too, it feels so comfy and safe. Not annoying at all as I once feared

    [​IMG]

    Also, the new seat is stupidly light, I can't believe how little it weighs!
     
  30. Westy

    Westy Double Dark Side! Diesel & 8P

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2008
    Messages:
    17,376
    Likes Received:
    1,013
    Let's hope its nice and comfy after 6hours worth of driving to Germany. You'll fall out the car and walk off like John Wayne ;)
     
  31. Prawn

    Prawn My other car is a MINI!!!!

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2006
    Messages:
    10,566
    Likes Received:
    2,144
    as you can probably tell, with lap times comming down and down, and speed getting higher and higher, safety has become out new priority on this build!

    It was all very well cruising round on 10 mins or so, but now with mind-low 8's in mind, it'll be good to know we're as safe as we can possibly be!

    Will have to see who's the lightest of all the people on the ASN trip in september, and they can be my pax for a hot lap :p
     
  32. Speedy Steve

    Speedy Steve Active Member

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2008
    Messages:
    1,258
    Likes Received:
    16
    Looking cool Nick although i see sound deadening on the floor! extra weight lol. I remember how light my Magnum Carbon kevlar seats were in my Renault 5 turbo saved me so much weight was unreal
     
  33. aragorn

    aragorn "Stick a V8 in it!"
    Staff Member Moderator VCDS Map User

    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2008
    Messages:
    16,695
    Likes Received:
    477
    IIRC the standard seats in the A4 were something like 22kg each. Thats half leather, with airbags and electric lumbar supports.

    A steel framed monaco is around 10kg.

    Those fibreglass ones are probably more like 7-8kg, and look far far comfier than a monaco!

    I've already pointed them out to a mate of mine whos been after light seats for a while.

    I REALLY need to get some of my projects completed and start a track car build myself. I've even lined up a free shell, which should be mine in a few months.
     
  34. Prawn

    Prawn My other car is a MINI!!!!

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2006
    Messages:
    10,566
    Likes Received:
    2,144
    I'll weigh my second seat this evening.

    For reference, the RMD seat, WITH steel side mounts and sliders, weighs less than the monaco seat alone!

    I reckon the seat itself will be sub 7kg. It's seriously comfy, and actually holds me unlike the monaco!

    A3 seats were equally heavy, well over 20kg each!
     
  35. Westy

    Westy Double Dark Side! Diesel & 8P

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2008
    Messages:
    17,376
    Likes Received:
    1,013
    You dont realise how much some of the interior weighs until you try and remove it. I was amazed at how heavy my mates carpet was in he M3 when he ripped it out!!! He then spent hours with a heat gun removing all the sticky glue that was under the carpet and this filled up a carrier bag and weighed a few more kgs!

    If you really want to get serious with weight saving Nick look at swaging some of the metal like this:

    [​IMG]
     
  36. aragorn

    aragorn "Stick a V8 in it!"
    Staff Member Moderator VCDS Map User

    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2008
    Messages:
    16,695
    Likes Received:
    477
    I'd have just hacked that whole panel out!

    Cage is doing far more for structural strength than those panels are, so hack them out!
     
  37. aragorn

    aragorn "Stick a V8 in it!"
    Staff Member Moderator VCDS Map User

    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2008
    Messages:
    16,695
    Likes Received:
    477
    Some inspiration:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  38. Prawn

    Prawn My other car is a MINI!!!!

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2006
    Messages:
    10,566
    Likes Received:
    2,144
    I know there's loads more weight to come out folks, but I have to drive this thing 600 miles to germany! Hence why it's keeping the aircon, electric windows, and stereo :)

    Want to do plastic rear windows though, and remove a bit more sound deadening in places.
     
  39. Westy

    Westy Double Dark Side! Diesel & 8P

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2008
    Messages:
    17,376
    Likes Received:
    1,013
    Pah, I've seen a clown in a stripped out Nova drive all the way to the ring and back with nothing but his exaust note for company. He needed ear plugs for the journey home lol. It all depends how track orientated you want to get I suppose.
     
  40. Prawn

    Prawn My other car is a MINI!!!!

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2006
    Messages:
    10,566
    Likes Received:
    2,144
    it's not track orientated, it's nurburgring orientated :p

    I think if I can build a car that'll lap in around 8 minutes, and still have all the creature comforts, then that's an absolute winner.

    When it's 38 degrees in a belgium traffic jam, I'd be pretty ****ed off if I had to get fresh air through a 4'' hole in my plastic window!

    it's also worth noting that I make these trips with my Dad, who would suffer much more than me with something too stripped.
     
  41. aragorn

    aragorn "Stick a V8 in it!"
    Staff Member Moderator VCDS Map User

    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2008
    Messages:
    16,695
    Likes Received:
    477
    Trailer and a comfortable derv tow-bus!
     
  42. Prawn

    Prawn My other car is a MINI!!!!

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2006
    Messages:
    10,566
    Likes Received:
    2,144
    Nah, for so many reasons. our trailer isn't big enough for the A3, we don't have a decent tow car, or room to store one, and I like keeping this fairly useable too, it means it can be genuinely enjoyable to take to shows and go out for a sunday blast. I can also take it shopping, and use it work work occasionally should I need to. it's just all round cool keeping a few creature comforts.

    Plus, it was only 1070kg before the cage, even with all the mod cons still installed! so not exactly a fatty S3 :p
     

Share This Page