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Supra Owner Since 1996
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2,723 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Went down to run on the road course at Miller Motorsports Park outside of Salt Lake City last weekend in the Supra, and participated in the Tarzan Lap Battle during the GT Live event.

Finishing up my first lapping session on Saturday, I can smell something funny, but I've been really hard on the brakes and tires for the last 20 minutes and there are cars in front of me. Last lap anyways, so as I'm pulling off the track I see smoke coming out of my hood. I hope it's just my brakes, but I hurry to the pits anyways. As I stop I can now see flame coming out of my hood! I popped my hatch to grab my fire extinguisher and threw open the hood to see my fuse box and wiring harness on fire. And of course my extinguisher didn't work as advertised and just kind of sputters out as I watch my car burn. Some spectators came over and doused it with water bottles. So super duper, my whole drivers side engine bay in ruined. Fire started from a hot wire running under my power steering reservoir bracket, came unsheathed, arked, and started the blaze. Must have been all the flex from my targa top huh guys? Had to rewire and insulate what felt like hundreds of wires and replace a couple of melted relays. Car ran and thought I was going to make it home.




Chapter 2:
Cars running and I look down and go....Crap, where did my crank damper pulley bolt go??? Can't drive the car without it incase the pulley falls off. I just spent $400 for that. Thanks to a generous Cody Phillips for removing the bolt from his drag Supra and Brett for loaning me his car to take the road trip to Cody's house. Found it my first attempt even though I haven't been there in a couple of years. Listened to some weird mixed CD Brett cooked up. Collected the part and went out and partied with the bolt assuming I would install it the next day and be going home until.....

Chapter 3:
Sunday I put in the bolt and took the car for a test drive and it ran fine, but sounded funny. Popped the hood and my friend noticed that he could see the timing belt eating its way thru the timing belt covers. Disassembled the front half of the motor to find that my timing belt tensioner idler pulley bracket had broken and my timing belt was just flapping in the wind and working its way off. What luck! Was out of time and no way to get parts on a Sunday so the car was to be abandoned until next weekend. Having lunch with the Boise crew that was to give me a ride home, Cody returned my call and exclaimed he had the idler bracket I needed. Followed by a BL billet tensioner plug. SWEET! Talked with Brett and he was generous enough to leave my friend and I his car. Retooled with a crank damper puller to get at the timing belt tensioner bracket and thought I would be out of there within an hour until and back to Boise by midnight........





Chapter 4:
With the crank damper bolt coming out, the keyway on the crank got wallowed out and was FUBAR!! The key was digging into the damper so that I couldn't pull it off. Even pulled some threads out I was trying that hard. It was loose to the effect that I could move it from side to side and feel the slop in the keyway. Well, decided to stay an extra night and see if a race shop would be open on Monday and have a better puller.

Refreshed from another night at the Hilton, never found Paris but she's most definitely not LDS, retooled again with a big hammer. Fixes everything. Also rented a 3 jaw gear puller. Went out to the car and nothing. Had a race shop helping and couldn't get the damn pulley to even budge. Luckily found that the geniuses at BL developed a two piece damper, that I'm now running, unbolts from a collar sleeve that has the keyway and slides on the crank. So now I can at least get to the timing belt tensioner bracket and we should be going home until.....

Chapter 5:
Well now, just where was the zero (TDC) mark on the damper when I unbolted it??? Crap, and where is that little chunk left of my timing belt cover that has the zero degree on it??? Damn guessing game. Ended up putting the timing belt back on one tooth off, not bad considering how much guessing I was doing. Equates to about 5 degrees retarded and the car ran like crap, popping and fizzing all the way home. Had a cut off time to leave SLC by 2pm on Monday to get my friend back to Boise in time for his flight home at 9:30. Had the car running at 1pm with no time to readjust the timing.
Theee END! Time to build my spare block, paint, and wiring harness.

Huge thanks to:

  • Brett Todd for the wheels
  • Cody Phillips for the parts stash
  • Falken Race Team for the only other 2J power plant in their IS350 and searching spare parts boxes plus electrical tape.
  • Miller Motorsports Cobra Race Team for borrowed tools and time.

 

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Premium Member
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10,170 Posts
Road racing stresses the car and driver in ways that other forms don't. I've never seen a Supra experience what you had happen after 20+ track days with my car and others.

Is the wire you speak of under the PS pump stock or something aftermarket?

Glad your car didn't burn to the ground!
-Chris
 

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Supra Owner Since 1996
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2,723 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
It was an after market wire I had in there from my first stereo install and currently unused. Therefore not fused. I guess I was saving it for a rainy day since it was already routed thru the car.
 

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Premium Member
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It was an after market wire I had in there from my first stereo install and currently unused. Therefore not fused. I guess I was saving it for a rainy day since it was already routed thru the car.
Glad it wasn't OEM.

Glad you're safe. You think you'll hit the road course again or has this soured you on the experience?
 

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17,263 Posts
Damn, I'm just glad you didn't burn that thing to the ground! :eek:

Another adventure for sure! I hope your time spent road racing was pretty fun before all the drama.
 

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Supra Owner Since 1996
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2,723 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
Glad it wasn't OEM.

Glad you're safe. You think you'll hit the road course again or has this soured you on the experience?
It has definitly put a sour taste in my mouth. There was a BFG karting experience I went on just before my session and it was so much more fun drifting and bashing my friends off the course into the dirt. I was just starting to use the whole track and getting faster by the end of the session. I can now see how much stress it puts on your car going 100% vs. a quick quarter mile. I may try it again in the future with the correct suspension setup and a local track. I'm not afraid to break down in Portland, but it made for a very stressful weekend. Thanks for the kind words.


 

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900 BHP Club :)
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should have bought a chevy! (like a guy in a chevy truck yelled at me when I had my hood popped at work checking my oil :lol:)

that's some sh1tty luck though man. Glad your car didn't burn to the ground. I need to put a fire extinguisher in my car too and hopefully it'll work if I need it.
 

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Nothing
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1,491 Posts
Wow, I was supposed to go to that event, but my ride up there fell through. Sorry to hear about all of this happening. Wish I could have been there to help.
 

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Stock Twins King
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Woah~! That has been my biggest fear when going to a session aways from home. I drove like at 6/10ths when I went to the Pahrump road course event at Vegas last year. Nothing worse than being 1200 miles from home, no friends, no trailers, no tools. Anyways, as Quick eluded too, driving a car HARD at a road course event can be the hardest thing possible on our cars, or any cars.

This really sucks to hear of all the shit that happened. Sounds like you had some great support, which really helps. It is a fact though, after a long 20 minute session in a relatively hot day, it can produce some defects from past installations.
Heat and vibration will bring any defects to the surface. You definately had a real pile of them al at once! At least none of these caused loss of control out onthe track, another fear~----------So, you got the bug now--lol!

Stu
 

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Supra Owner Since 1996
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2,723 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
Actually, other then Supra owners, support wasn't that great. Had to go thru 5 race teams before one would give you the time of day and of course they all claimed to not have what I asked for. I was broke down for 3 days before the Ford shop told me to push the car down and they would take a look. In the end it was all me. I only used their impact gun to put the new crank bolt back in. Actually my friend and I were wearing National Guard free bee shirts so we didn't mess up our clothes and they thought we were part of the one weekend a month. I said numerous times that weekend that if I had a shop there and an enthousiest was stuck there, I would do everything to help them out. Was just about as stressful as SILV last year when I lost my water pump. Sucks when you own a rare sawt after car but can't get parts.
 

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Good thing you've my car for a trusty repair shop :).

Now if I could only have grass...............heheh. That's definitely next on the list, glad you made it home ok
 

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970 Posts
Like I said to yah when it happend, that sucks I feel for yah. I have had it happen to be, except I didnt make it home with the car. Luckily you always seem to get it handled and on your way, even if its a day or two later.

Glad I drove and had an extra car to leave with you.
 

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The new #1 Hardtopper
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Actually my friend and I were wearing National Guard free bee shirts so we didn't mess up our ABERCROMBIE shirts........QUOTE]

FIXED! :)

In all seriousness, this is exactly why I got a trailer, so you can just load it up and deal with it later. You do lose some of the fun of driving the car though, its a trade off.
Like Brett said though, you seem to get it handled. You have been through a few of these "episodes" and always seem to make it out allright. To me it appears that you "enjoy" your car more than most anyone. Iam also glad that the car isnt burnt to the ground. Just like Mike (a Boise local that lost the motor in his STI on the second lap) "It'll be back."
I just wish I would have put forth the effort to prep my car for this event so I could have come down and played with you guys. We would have had a Roe-sham-bo to see whos car came back in the trailer. :)
 

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Crazy!! Man, that is one of the 3 fears I dont want to experience.

1. Car burning to ground
2. Car getting totalled by idiot driver
3. Car getting stolen

In those pics, your car looks really nice(except for the burnt ones.) . Post up some more if you have them.

Glad you made it back, and the supra didnt leave you stranded to long and im sure it will look 10times better when back together properly.

-Brian
 

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Supra Owner Since 1996
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2,723 Posts
Discussion Starter #18
Actually my friend and I were wearing National Guard free bee shirts so we didn't mess up our ABERCROMBIE shirts........QUOTE]

FIXED! :)

In all seriousness, this is exactly why I got a trailer, so you can just load it up and deal with it later. You do lose some of the fun of driving the car though, its a trade off.
Like Brett said though, you seem to get it handled. You have been through a few of these "episodes" and always seem to make it out allright. To me it appears that you "enjoy" your car more than most anyone. Iam also glad that the car isnt burnt to the ground. Just like Mike (a Boise local that lost the motor in his STI on the second lap) "It'll be back."
I just wish I would have put forth the effort to prep my car for this event so I could have come down and played with you guys. We would have had a Roe-sham-bo to see whos car came back in the trailer. :)
Hah! I had just heard about your auto-x oil cooler incident over the weekend and I was feeling sorry for you. As much as I like a challenge in life, figuring out how your going to get your car home and having to solicite help is one of the most stressful experiences in life. There will be a truck and trailer in the future, but for now, no more racing outside the PacNW.
 

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Alpine Hardtopper
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So sorry to hear about this! Your "away from town" luck has been just horrible this year. I'm amazed that you could still start/drive the car after the fire though. Not that I have many parts to help, but if there's something I can do from up here, let me know-
 
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