What's all this about?
Armed with a team of barbeque and
automotive experts and a 1989 Saab 900
purchased for $400, Team Carbeque is a
unique racing team determined complete the 24 hours
of LeMons... all while making barbeque under the hood.
Find out more: >> Click here to read our mission statement
Posted by Adam Goral, Captain on July 28, 2012, 3:56 pm CST
Every time we bring up our new aero ideas, everyone tells us the same thing. "Forget the aero, add more power". If we just went for the usual solution, we wouldn't be who we are. This series, afterall has, Mercury Bobcats dicing with Volvo stationwagons/ schoolbusses, normal IS abnormal. So, instead of going with the mundane backyard engineered turbo setup or tiresome mid-engined 302 conversion, we are investing in our aero (and reliability with a special secret transmission fluid recipe from the Rally-Ho SAAB guys, and a cheap-ass $35 oil cooler, pray for us). So far some diveplanes were cut out of the spare van metal scraps in the garage and eyeballed into place, and the rear panels were added to round out the shape. The test revealed our hood louvers don't really work (we have an idea), and in order for the dive planes to adequately generate vortices over the front wheels the bumper will have to be modified. Saying we didn't get any looks doing this test is like saying George Foreman doesn't appreciate a lean chicken breast.
Also learned: the rear hatch is surprisingly aerodynamic, with minimal boundry layer separation (Adrian Newey is my uncle....not really). If there's time, a longtail might be fabricated to cut down drag even further, increasing stability and straightline speed. It'll be the "Road America" aero package.
Meanwhile, Dan the barbe-guru is finishing up the V3 manifold enclosure and we're gonna get testing asap! We've got less than 20 days to finish the Q, then its race time!
git yer zipties!!!1
Posted by Adam Goral, The Gearhead, Team Captain on July 18, 2012, 11:10 pm CST
This brings us up to where we are now. The car is running well, we secured our drivers, our fees are paid, the oil cooler is installed, and the bbq cooking box v3 is finishing up its cardboard template stage and preparing to make its transformation to real metal this week. We hope to get around 3-4 racks of ribs in this puppy. With 1.5hr stints, we figure the meat should be done in two of em. Two stint ribs, can you smell that?
Complete BBQ box and begin testing
Reinforce the rusty area holding up the front right suspension
Move kill switch
Romp the hell out of the local townies
Cook BBQ all day long
Gettin work done son!!
Posted by Adam Goral, Captain on July 18, 2012, 10:55 pm CST
Meanwhile...the 900 went its engine/trans swap and got all hooked up back home. Still on the to-do list, move kill switch to new location per regulation and finish the V3 redesign of the BBQ box that’s going against the engine manifold. The box has been redesigned to be connected to the body and exhaust manifold, so to get around the torquing of the engine breaking it, several areas include flex joints so that vital BTU's don't get let out. To go with this, a vented ducts blowing on the bottom of the trans will in theory help keep the gearbox cool, while the addition of an oil cooler hopefully will maintain lower temps in the engine/trans assembly itself. *hopefully*...I mean, couldn't hurt right?
Step one: Push the engine/transmission out of Soggy's jeep.
Step two: Pull
Step 3: Install (the trick is making it look easy by describing the process with one word, we're hardcore like that)
Step 4: Paint the spare/street set of wheels a pleasing "someone just got murdered in here by a garden implement" red
Step 5: Tint headlights LeMans GT/GTS class yellow, add some dive planes, and begin the BIG PIMPIN on public roads. Coming to a northern Illinois/southern Wisconsin car show near you.
Don't worry, you can't miss it. If you do, it's because you're deaf.
Welcome Dave, our fourth and final driver for our next race!
...and the CBQ captain goes on an adventure with team Failcar
Posted by Adam Goral on July 18, 2012, 10:51 pm CST
When Team Failcar signed up for their first LeMons sanctioned race at the Autobahn this spring, they thought they'd invite me along to crew, on account of the Carbeque captain's now *vast* SAAB experience (haha). They ran a Chumpcar race at Road America earlier which didn't go well, I think there was something about a wheel spindle exploding due to a sheered CV nut. They came back with a vengence, and finished the Showroom Schlock Shootout 2012 decently well. We would have been able to put that car in the top ten if we hadn't lost a few hours with a confusing fuel leak. Apparently the wrong fuel pump seal was in, causing fuel to pool on top of the fuel tank (luckily, only when the tank was topped off full), and when the wiring saw the opportunity...well anyway...the car was on fire for a little while, but the amazing speed of their fancy turbo car managed to put it out after a lap or so. I think the car just really wanted to be a jet.
Here's the team siphoning fuel out via conveniently placed rust hole in the trunk floorpan.
Anywhoo, we got our fourth driver! Dave Yong was an arrive and driver for Failcar and left me quite impressed, especially when he came in a half hour early to end his stint on account of fatigue. IE he did NOT stuff the car in the tire barrier, because he forgot what corner he was at. This happens in endurance racing. They were running three hour stints, and the Autobahn south course is quite a demanding track...so this awareness is comendable. He also is fast, consistant, and has experience driving on Road America. So now we've got our full driver lineup to include two ringers. How stoked are we? There he is in the blue on the left (and Carbeque captain in the orange denting the hell out of the roof, the last non dented part of the whole car).
Pretty obvious we got the best one!
Did I mention Marc brought the Radial engined MR2? It actually turned laps this time!!
It's engine purred like a poorly lubricated jackhammer.
Willy is BACK
Posted by on July 7, 2012, 8:27 pm CST
Be shocked, veteran race driver and father of a Spec Miata racing Champeeeen Willy Thompson WILL BE BACK to race/bbq with us in August! He's got it all folks, experience at Road America, a big ol trailer to fancy us up a bunch, and a pension for BBQ (which is actually on the contract when signing up to the team). We can't imagine any other reason for him to like us so much.
I spent some time looking around and emailing different tracks to see if we could get some track time before the race. I thought it would be handy to dial in our handling and braking to be ULTIMATELY ok, so when Blackhawk Farms replied back with a crapcan test day, we signed up and asked Willy if he wanted to join us. He jumped on, seeing as Blackhawk Farms is his team's home track (BTDT Racing). Check out that stripe, hellllz yea.
As usual, some problems were encountered during the transmission/engine pull so when we told Willy we weren't going to make the date, instead of calling us jamokes he offered up his Spec Miata race car for us to lap in. So Dan, Willy and I found ourselves on a beautiful early spring day (unseasonably hot actually) doing laps in a real race car. The best part? It helped us to realize our crappy SAAB isn't actually as crappy as we had previously thought, and the experience we had on track at Autobahn and Gingerman kept us from having any major incidents. I just wish we were allowed to put some slicks on the 900! Those spec tires were SWEET.
Willy gets behind the wheel to show how it's done..
While we were setting up, a familiar car rolled past...I double-taked. It was the old RBank Racing SAAB 900, a past LeMons overall winner, apparently with a new team getting ready for the 2012 season. The new team was appropriately named "Failcar", full name "Team Failcar III: The Battle for the Chumpionship: The Movie: Game: In 3D!". They could be described with many words, unfortunately all are synonyms for SLOW. I knew that they had a problem due to the car's quick history, but they were smart in getting their teeth cut at a track day instead of pulling a Carbeque, and turning the first on track laps in green flag competition. They were great guys, and I hereby name them as official allies. Their hood came off on track.
*queue Le Mans theme music* oh wait, I have it right here, thanks youtube! starts at 1:18
Here's our onboard video footage for the event!