Installment Number Five: Final check-up
before roll cage.
The body is lowered back onto the
Because pure stock racecars must appear with stock body panels we cannot hang the body on a racecar chassis, instead we must create our racecar chassis from the inside out. That also makes for tough repairs if we damage it severely.
In order to build the perfect chassis we must be sure that our stock components are in good order before we start the actual installation of the roll cage. In this installment we check out the brakes, rear suspension and front suspension. We then install the engine and square it into the frame. You should place new motor mounts in the
frame prior to motor installation. Some of you may prefer to install your power-plant after you have built the chassis and roll cage. This is up to you. You should however be sure that the mounts are square and that there will be no binding from transmission through the driveshaft to the rearend.
The preparation prior to placing the body back onto the frame includes connecting your brake lines and lashing them down to the frame rails. Keep them out of possible danger from being hit by track debris. Check your rules concerning brake bias adjustments. Some classes allow bias adjustment for the rear brakes. In the RENEGADE division we must stay with the OEM brake proportional valve. Brake setup will be a caution in this class. Bushing should be replaced in all upper and lower A-arms. Polyurethane type will be the best choice. Be sure that you do all 4 bushings the same. Springs and shocks should be of a dependable after market type(if allowed in the rules). Springs must be the same as the manufacturer designed. No coil over and no sleeve adjusters allowed here. The rear suspension should include new shocks and springs. You
With the engine installed and squared in the compartment you can begin to make room in the shop for the completion of the car and the roll cage kit.
can get a set of rear coils that are after market and will set in the car as original equipment. You want to balance the ride height so that the car sits level and gives a good stock appearance. Prior to putting on the body you should put all 4 tires/wheels on the frame. Check frame clearance and eyeball your basic setup. One thing to remember; you should have centered your steering gear and your linkage. It is easier to do this with the motor out. Be sure to take out all rubber stops on the A-arms and check suspension clearance through the entire bump process. Use your floor jack to aid you in this process. Check the rear end the same way. You can, if the car is relatively level, place the floor jack under the pumpkin and lift the car up off the ground. Note which wheel comes off the floor first. More on
this subject later in the
Last but not least, you should have a trammel bar (home brew will work) to check relative square. The bar can easily pick up strange dimensions that are questionable. Use the bar to make diagonal cross reference measurements. For instance, from the front shock to the center of the cross member on both sides. There should be very little difference here. You can check, but pay less attention to those measurements behind or in front of the wheels. The real concern is the square of the frame from ball joint vertical center-line to axle center-line. Chances are you will get good results if you built-up your frame using good welding and construction techniques. You should be ready to install your cage and actually prepare to create a racecar chassis. This part can be tricky because welding can load or un-load the properties of the frame. Remember which wheel was off
the ground when you checked the rearend with the floor jack. If the body is balanced properly, the same wheel will come off the ground when you make this test with the body on! Keep this in mind!
We will prepare the roof cut. We will show you that on the main page soon.
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