Friday, March 30, 2007

Thunderbird 2007 report

Thunderbird 2007 Rally, up in British Columbia, was a few weeks ago. Hans came along as a navigator, running the Timewise computer for the first time and experiencing right seat duties. He did a great job, considering the amount of information to take on board, along with my less than helpful help from the wrong side of the car.

Jeff did a wonderful write-up on the TeamD site. Congrats to Satch Carlson and Russ Kraushaar in the 1969 Saab Sonett for first place overall. They really showed the newer AWD cars how it should be done -- front wheel drive and no excess power!

I have many more pics on Flickr.

Saab Head

A few weeks ago I finally got around to getting the head rebuilt and replaced. With the help of Hans, it wasn't too bad of a job. We figured that at some point in the not too recent past the head gasket had been replaced, as it came off nice and easy. The intake manifold was another story, though. Spent more time cleaning that off than just about any other procedure.

Unfortunately the shop that rebuilt the head I rescued from a junkyard did not remove the old exhaust manifold studs. However with some judicious hammer action, they were persuaded to hit the road. Nice fresh studs and nuts were used in the reassembly.

Test drove for a week and the hesitation under hard boost is now gone. The valve cover was pretty leaky, with a lot of oil going in cylinder #1, so I don't know if the cause was the bad plug threads in #2 or the excessive oil around the #1 plug. At this point I don't care 'cause it's solved!

Next step is to tune the wastegate. Thanks again to Hans for his help in freeing this up.

After that comes the engine compartment rewiring. Need to do that before the next rally, which I hope to be Coast to Coast up on Vancouver Island in May.