Archive for March, 2009

A cheap way to keep my engine bay clean

Posted in General, Mods and Maintenance with tags , , on March 15, 2009 by minibee62

I completed a little mod today to fix something that had been bugging me. Before the BC Coilovers I had covers on the holes in my strut towers and very little dirt got into the engine bay. The coilovers leave those holes open I’ve found that my engine bay is more dirty than ever since I installed the BCs. So I had been looking for something to plug those holes.

I wandered around Home Depot and Lowe’s a few times looking for some type of rubber grommet or plug that I could use but couldn’t find anything large enough. The holes is about 2.5 inches across so I started thinking about those plastic grommets they use in computer desks to route cables. So this is what I found:

Here is the strut tower hole with no cover. See all the dirt and sand? I didn’t used to have dirt like that when those holes were covered.

I found these computer desk grommets at Lowe’s for about $5 each.

This is what the grommet looks like. The goal was to get the damper adjustment knob to come through the hole.

The camber adjustment screws touch the bottom edge of the grommet. So I made marks on each side to do some cutting and clear those screws.

Here’s the grommet after cutting with a Dremel. The two notches are the cuts I made to clear the camber adjustment screws. To keep the grommet in place I put some of that “sticky tack” putty around the edge.

The just press it in place in the hole and snap the cover back on. Depending on your camber settings you may have to expand the U-shaped hole in the cover. My camber is set at -1.8 and the knob fit perfectly.

I plan to clean up the engine bay to see if it makes a difference and will report back in a few weeks.

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Crossing the yellow line will cost you

Posted in General on March 12, 2009 by minibee62

Every time I go to the Dragon I watch in horror as people ignore all the warnings and cross the double yellow line. Not only is this a one-way ticket to a pine box for yourself but it puts everyone out there at risk. Cross the line and die. It’s that simple. And with under 50 days to go until MOTD 7, here is another reminder for us all:

Hubcentric rings fused to hubs?

Posted in Autocross, General, Maintenance with tags , , , , , on March 1, 2009 by minibee62

My Konig Rewinds require the use of hubcentric rings. They came with cheap plastic rings but I decided to buy the more durable aluminum ones because I autocross and change my wheels often. I have a set of holies for autocross and in January when I went to change my wheels I discovered the aluminum rings had fused to my rusty and corroded hubs. I whacked on them with a hammer and screwdriver for over an hour and they would not come off. I ended up running with my Rewinds and street tires for the January autocross but was determined to fix the problem for February.

This is what I did:

First I bought a bottle of “Fabulous Blaster” spray at Wal Mart and sprayed it between the rings and the hub to loosen things up. I let them soak for about 15 minutes and then was able to get the rings off with a hammer and screwdriver.

Then I used a piece of fine steel wool to clean off most of the rust and corrosion. The wheel studs, center of the hub and the rotor were masked off for painting.

A friend had once suggested that I paint my hubs. In addition to making them look nicer, I figured the paint would fend off corrosion and help keep the rings from getting stuck again. So I used Rustoleum black paint to paint the hubs.

I put a thin layer of anti-seize on the ring surfaces that touch the hub and the wheel. I did not put anti-seize on the hub. There was some interesting discussion about the use of anti-seize in a thread that I started on NAM. Some folks seemed to think the anti-seize would make the lug nuts get loose over time but that has not happened.

When I went to take my wheels off for autocross the rings came right off. And the added benefit is that I have nice, black hubs showing through the spokes of my wheels instead crappy-looking corroded ones. This would look even nicer for those of you who have large wheels with really open spokes.