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My AU XR6 HP Track Car #14 

 

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 Post subject: My AU XR6 HP Track Car #14
Posted: Thu Nov 12, 2015 10:42 pm 
Getting Side Ways
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Joined: 20th Nov 2005

Ride: AU XR8 220 Manual

I thought I would start a build thread on my new project but first a little back ground...

I have owned a lot of cars, everything from my first car an XF GLi through to modified XR8s, WRXs and Skylines. I have loved all of them. While owning my most recent project, an AU XR8 220 Manual, I got the bug to do some motor racing. It is something that I have always wanted to do but funds and time have never allowed it. I have enjoyed modifying road cars but loved the idea of building a track car as much as I did the idea of racing one. Just another way/avenue of enjoying motorcars I guess?

Anyway, my brother and I recently took our daily drives to a Tampered Motorsport track day. Mine a 2014 Pulsar ST-S turbo and his a Fiesta Zetec. We were both INSTANTLY hooked. The driving, the focus and the atmosphere were all great. We couldn't get enough. The cars performed flawlessly and not to shabby for street cars on street tyres I might add.

We attended the next one again having learnt so much about the track and tyre pressures etc on the last one from the very friendly entrants there. My brother bought himself a set of semi slicks (toyo R888) as his street tyres were cheap and horrible on track.

By the end of the day we said we have to build a car each. This was aided by the fact that we saw a poor sole write off his daily driver Honda there, with no way of getting it home. Dailys and racing are not a good mix as they say.

Here are a couple of pics for fun.

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So after that I decided I had to build a car, the obvious choice was my XR8, it was sitting there with lots of good mods. I had been talking a lot to Grippy and CRBrooksby and felt that maybe the much lighter XR6 HP with the live rear end and much lighter starting weight may be a better base. (thanks guys, your help has been amazing!)

Why an XR6, well I love the look and there are a few extras, gauges, alloy tail shaft, better engine, diff gearing etc. Also I can remove unwanted parts and sell them for something such as the interior, not as likely with a Forte.

I thought hard about it, I really did want to run an AU, they seem to perform so well as track cars, are reliable and parts (especially the 6) are dirt cheap.

I sat on it for a while and fate made the choice for me, I had someone offer me very good money for my XR8, too good to refuse (compared to what I paid) and sold it.

I was on the hunt for an XR6 that night and after a while I found my project base.

It was a 2002 XR6 HP manual in Narooma Blue (my favourite), factory manual and the only mods a cat back exhaust and BA wheels.

It had 200k on the clock but drove fairly well and seemed honest enough. The guy selling needed quick cash and was aware of some of its bugs. It has some minor body damage to the passenger rear wheel arch, a couple of key marks, a slight miss in the engine (likely old ignition parts or fuel filter etc) and some slop/slack in the steering wheel. Other that that it was great.

I talked him down to $1800 without plates and the deal was done!

Anyway her is is after just a quick wash. No detail yet but I will get to it soon once the body work is done. That way I can cut and polish out the blending.

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So I am pretty stoked with the base, yes I could have bought an MX5 etc etc but I really wanted to race a falcon and with the price of engines, gearboxes, parts and panels for these things, it is just too hard to say no.

So the plans!!

The car will start off as a club track car basically. I plan to get involved with the FPV&Tickford owners club as well as events like Tampered Motorsport etc and run as many track days and hill climbs as I can.

The plan will be to build a quickish, fun car on a reasonable budget and just get out there and have some fun.

The to do list!

- Fix the wheel arch and tidy up the key marks and stone chips etc
- Sort out the play in the steering wheel
- Find the miss, replace all ignition, fuel components, new oils all round etc
- Strip out the interior
- Fit a race seat with harness
- Half cage
- BF Turbo brakes all round with braided lines and track focused pads and rotors
- New shocks and springs (yet to decide on combo) with standard sway bars and superpro bushes
- Camber kit to get as much neg camber as possible
- Bonnet pins, extinguisher and sticker kit
- Extractors, no cat and half exhaust exiting out the side
- Intake modifications
- J3 chip
- Cam and head work down the track.
- Short shifter kit
- Much more no doubt!!

I expect it will take me 12-18months to get it onto the track, I am really looking forward to the build so wont be rushing it.

I also need to sort out a car trailer.

Thoughts so far? Thanks guys!
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 Post subject: Re: My AU XR6 HP Track Car #14
Posted: Thu Nov 12, 2015 10:55 pm 
Getting Side Ways
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Age: 30

Posts: 756

Joined: 20th Nov 2005

Ride: AU XR8 220 Manual

First Update:

I have been reading into the suspension slop/slack problem that I have. The common seems to be the intermediate shaft. The symptoms are that when the wheel is centeres, either on road driving or sitting still in the driveway, the steering is completely lifeless for about 10-15 degrees either side of center.

Once you go past this point the steering takes up and drives normally. This seemed to be covered by a faulty intermediate shaft. I found one on ebay, new, as seen below.

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While this has helped, it has only cured about 20% of the problem, what is the next likely candidiate? Faulty rack?

If the wheels are turned when parked then there is no slack, it is literally only around center.

Ideas???

Presentation is important to me, this wont be a big budget build but I don't see why it cant look nice on the track. I hate that 'drift pig' look and although I want to use the car and not be afraid of marking it, I want to be proud of it at the same time.

I touched up the big stone chips as well as the key marks on the doors. I will endeavor to cover them with stickers to hide the key marks as best as I can.

I want to cut and polish the car (it needs it) but figured I best paint the required sections first to try and get an even finish.

This will only be a home job, nothing professional but it should be good enough for a race car.

This is the damage, it looks like he has backed into a sign or post.

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I have started to rub it back and shape the metal, I will fill what I can fix and paint it.

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While working on this I decided to start to remove excess weight.

If it doesn't need it to turn, stop or go then it is coming out!

The first step, mud flaps haha!

I think I saved 1kg from removing all the dirt behind them, no rust luckily!!

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I have also started removing bit from the engine bay, stereo wiring that was there, washer bottle, intake system.

The air con will go and I will re locate the battery inside the cabin or boot.

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That is all for now, updates may be slow but I will put up what I can when I can.

Please give me any suggestions you have on the steering or any other aspect of the build. I always welcome any input or ideas.

Jason.
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 Post subject: Re: My AU XR6 HP Track Car #14
Posted: Fri Nov 13, 2015 2:30 pm 
Oompa Loompa
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Location: nagambie
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A good foot rest next to the clutch pedal helps
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 Post subject: Re: My AU XR6 HP Track Car #14
Posted: Thu Nov 26, 2015 6:27 pm 
Getting Side Ways
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Age: 30

Posts: 756

Joined: 20th Nov 2005

Ride: AU XR8 220 Manual

Time for a bit of an update...

I have finished the bit of panel work the car needed. I was really happy with the results actually. There is still some slight damage (three small dents and a scratch on the back door but I will put my racing number over the top.

Below are some repair pics.

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And the final product. Just a quick rub back at this stage. I will be giving the car a full cut and polish in a month or so when my brother comes to visit. That will give the paint a chance to harden also.

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So with that done, I turned back to stripping the car. First job, tow bar delete. I had to remove the bumper to do so. Pretty straight forward on the AU actually.

While there I cleaned all the dirt that you can see in the photo and mostly stripped out the boot. A few little things left to do there.

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I have now turned back to the engine bay. Air con delete is almost done. All engine bay components are out except for the compressor. I am sourcing a air con delete pulley at the moment.

Amazing how much room there is in this engine bay without the creature comforts!

I was to also get rid of the cruise control box in the far left corner, does anyone know if I will have any issues with the ECU if I remove the air con or cruise control?

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 Post subject: Re: My AU XR6 HP Track Car #14
Posted: Sat Nov 28, 2015 12:50 am 
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such a tidy base to start from!

and ripper price too!


change the rack, will help with the issues, takes a bit of maneuvering though :P
and do the tie rod ends while your there, they could be worn
re install the airbox with a K+n filter and tickford snorkel, if you need more air ( i doubt ) a 3 " hole through the airbox and the metal underneath, and you can run some flexi tube to the front bar.

doubt removing the cruise will cause ecu issues, maybe just unplug it 1st and see?
might just give a fault code? same as aircon

being a track only car what about a shorter diff? :P not like you need to do 230kmhr
and yes it will do this!

 

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 Post subject: Re: My AU XR6 HP Track Car #14
Posted: Sat Nov 28, 2015 11:47 am 
Getting Side Ways
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Age: 30

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Joined: 20th Nov 2005

Ride: AU XR8 220 Manual

Good tips there, thank you. I will replace the rack, not going to muck around when it is so important, I will do the tie rods too. Have you done this? Big job?

I was thinking about running a territory intake pipe and either the airbox or a pod behind the driving light and remove it.

Diff gears are certainly on the possibility list as it is an open wheel diff, I need to have an LSD installed so a good opportunity to change gears! Good way of offsetting the weight at least.
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 Post subject: Re: My AU XR6 HP Track Car #14
Posted: Mon Nov 30, 2015 3:08 pm 
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TUF250 wrote:
Good tips there, thank you. I will replace the rack, not going to muck around when it is so important, I will do the tie rods too. Have you done this? Big job?

I was thinking about running a territory intake pipe and either the airbox or a pod behind the driving light and remove it.

Diff gears are certainly on the possibility list as it is an open wheel diff, I need to have an LSD installed so a good opportunity to change gears! Good way of offsetting the weight at least.



yes i have its pretty easy, got an exchange rack of ebay, cheaper by $100+ than my local auto1 and that included postage to WA!

the hard part was moving the rack out and back in again
jack the car up nice and high on stands, it does help
i think i removed all the hoses as well,

tie rods just count how many turns when you untwist them, and then the new ones twist on the same :) may need a wheel alignment anyw
ohh find an Ef/el auto trans cooler , they are small and use this on the power steering
as a cooler, cut the ps/ lines infront of the rad where it loops back around looks like " ) " if your looking from the front of the car

ohh being an XR6 is should all ready have an LSD

 

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 Post subject: Re: My AU XR6 HP Track Car #14
Posted: Tue Dec 01, 2015 7:59 pm 
Getting Side Ways
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Age: 30

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Ride: AU XR8 220 Manual

Thanks. Sounds like it's not too hard then. I will Gove it a go. Will need a camber kit and wheel alignment anyway so no problems there.

I have been told that in the HP models the lsd was an option but I will get it up in the air and check it. If not maybe I will try a mini spool.
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 Post subject: Re: My AU XR6 HP Track Car #14
Posted: Wed Jan 20, 2016 11:35 pm 
Getting Side Ways
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Age: 30

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Joined: 20th Nov 2005

Ride: AU XR8 220 Manual

Time for an update!

Progress is slow on occasions with the little one at home and work commitments, but I get a bit of time here and there and the progress slowly adds up.

I have finished my air intake. BA intake with alloy pipe and a pod mounted behind the drivers headlight. Pics soon. Should flow more than enough at this power level.

Next was a full cut and polish, the result was great for a race car. With some stickers on, it will look fantastic.

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Next job was to strip the interior. My dad and brother joined me for the day and we had the entire interior removed in a few hours.

NOTE: most interior parts except for FRONT seats and Steering Wheel are available for purchase if interested.

We were surprised with how heavy some of the items were. I will put up a full list soon for those interested but a few note worthy items were:

The inner door seals (one set of three) 4kgs, carpet was 10kg with under lay and the back seat which was 20kg!

Overall at this stage between the air con, other superfluous engine bay items and the interior pictured, we had removed 162 kg from the car. Impressive we thought for a light spec XR6 that weighs only 1530 Kerb according to ford.

Here are some pics.

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As you can see, pretty bare (and dirty!) but starting to look a little like a race car.

Next was to strip out all the non required items behind the dash. First job... dash out...

I have never done this before and honestly without the rest of the interior there, it wasn't that hard. The dash however is damn heavy, I will tray and remove some weight from it but I am not sure how much can really come out.

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So a fair bit came out here, the air con/heater/climate unit you can see weighed 12.7kg and all the sound dedender and various other bits that were not required came up to another 5kg so 17.7 removed on top of my 162 kg, that leaves me with a total of 180 kg removed.

This now makes the car weigh in at approx 1350 kg, XF ish weight! My hope is to get another 50kg out of it so that when the half cage and seat go back in the race weight will be 1350 kg or less. This combined with an AU XR6 engine with a J3 chip and exhaust should move along quite nicely.

Here is how she sits today.

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So next is to tidy up some wiring, delete some unnecessary wiring from behind the dash. I want to get what ever weight I can out from behind the dash but I think some wiring and plastic climate pipes will be about it.

After that I will remove the sound dedener, I hear this is good for about 10kg.

Opinions, I am thinking about removing the headlights completely. (day time racing only) which will save some considerable weight and putting on the XR head light covers. I could paint there from the back with body colour and out stickers on the front. I think it will look good on a race car. I am even thinking of leaving one off to flow cool air to the pod. thoughts?

With the bumper off I will remove the horns and anything else I can and put a power steering cooler and front tow strap in while there.

That should keep me busy for a while.

Let me know of any suggestions.
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 Post subject: Re: My AU XR6 HP Track Car #14
Posted: Thu Jan 21, 2016 6:33 am 
Technical Contributor
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Don't refit the dash, make up a aluminium panel and mount the cluster in that. You can also then use this to add additional gauges and switches and remove unnecessary items.

Get Dry Ice to assist in the removal of the sound deadner, spread it over the floor and it freezes the deadner making it easy to scrape out. Make sure you use good gloves or you will freeze your hands.

Leaving one headlight open will allow cold air straight into your intake. Put a bit of fine mesh on the inside to stop intruders (bugs, birds) :D .

Use a small auto trans cooler for you power steering cooler, I have used the E series trans cooler on mine. It is amazing how quick the power steering oil heats up and how hot it gets.

 

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 Post subject: Re: My AU XR6 HP Track Car #14
Posted: Thu Jan 21, 2016 6:19 pm 
Getting Side Ways
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Age: 30

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Ride: AU XR8 220 Manual

Thanks for the tips. I have given some thought to the dash idea, I actually saw one the other day on boosted and it looked really good.

Sound deadener is definitely on the cards, someone said 10kg+ which would be nice!

Good idea with the mesh. As long as tracks don't require any front lights during the day but I have seen cars without headlights at almost every event so far. I wonder if the same is true for wipers, wiper motor and arms would be heavy.

I like your thinking about the e - series cooler. I was looking at aftermarket but all seemed a bit too big, I will try and find one of these at the wreckers.

Cheers
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 Post subject: Re: My AU XR6 HP Track Car #14
Posted: Fri Jan 29, 2016 11:57 pm 
Fordmods Junkie
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SWC wrote:
Use a small auto trans cooler for you power steering cooler, I have used the E series trans cooler on mine. It is amazing how quick the power steering oil heats up and how hot it gets.


OI! i allready said this in an earlier post :P :P:P:P:P:P:P


are you keeping the car regoed? or is it a trailer queen?

dont forget to remove the spare wheel etc
as well as the speakers in the rear parcel shelf!


i did read somewhere that a rule of thumb is every 50kgs you drop = a 0.1 second drop in 1/4 mile time
so at 200kgs drop should see a 0.4 sec drop
now considering i did a 14.9 in mu xr6 auto in full street trim ( minus the spare :P ) and only exhaust and intake mods you are goign to be close on a 13

im so tempted to do what you are doing and have some fun...

 

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 Post subject: Re: My AU XR6 HP Track Car #14
Posted: Fri Apr 15, 2016 10:17 am 
Getting Side Ways
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Ride: AU XR8 220 Manual

Update time.

Things have been moving along nicely on the track car. Lots that still needs to be done but I am enjoying the project along the way.

Since my last post I have completed the air con delete. The Nuline pulley works really well. It lines up perfectly and has saved a heap of weight. My only little problem was having to space out some bolts.

Next I got stuck back into the interior.

Before I refit the dash I made up a sandwich plate to reinforce the firewall at the clutch cable point. Hopefully it is enough but I will be keeping the cable well adjusted , I have read that this is the real key to keeping the firewall in one piece.

I also installed a new clutch cable while I was there and made a bracket to strengthen the pedal box.

Before fitting the dash I cut out any non essential wiring and brackets from behind the dash. Every little bit of weight helps!!

I also covered all the holes that you can see in the firewall from the climate unit. I used thing alloy plate and painted it black form the engine side.

Now this this was done it was time to refit the dash.

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Starting to look like a car again.

My next job was the sound dedener. I started with a hammer and chisle and lost interest VERY quickly!!

I had read about using dry ice. This stuff is fantastic. It works an absolute treat. Literally throw it on the area, leave it for a few mins before the crackle and pops start. As it freezes it shrinks and breaks the seal with the metal underneath.

Once this happens, hit it with a hammer and its done. All that is left to do is clean up the little stick bits with some citrus cleaner.

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The total weight saving here was 11.4kg. Not bad for 30mins of work.

I then decided to install my tow straps. One front and one rear. A little bit of bumper trimming required but they went in quite easily.

I also installed a power steering cooler using an e series auto trans cooler. It fits nicely behind the bumper opening.

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I have also removed the back part of the exhaust so it dumps at the diff. This saved 4.7kg without removing any mufflers.

Lastly I have put on some light wheels. These are kings 17s, so they will fit over my BF turbo brakes and saved 4kg a corner. I also sold my BA wheels for $50 less than what I bought these for. So, 16kg removed for $50. Not bad!!

I think they look pretty good. Well, they will when I finally lower it.

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My next job is to install some leads and coils as it is missing a little and then start making some alloy door trims I think.

Stay tuned!!
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 Post subject: Re: My AU XR6 HP Track Car #14
Posted: Sat Apr 16, 2016 12:40 am 
Fordmods Junkie
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nice work!

wont the ally trims weigh more than the cloth?

what about the window regs?

i read some where the electrics are actually lighter than the manual winders!

 

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 Post subject: Re: My AU XR6 HP Track Car #14
Posted: Sat Apr 16, 2016 10:16 am 
Getting Side Ways
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Age: 30

Posts: 756

Joined: 20th Nov 2005

Ride: AU XR8 220 Manual

Thanks. The door cards were surprisingly heavy from memory, at least a few kgs each. I can get alloy to make trims at 1mm so should be light. Hopefully i can cut some of the metal out of the door to offset the weight.

Interesting point about the Windows. I had assumed that I would put manual ones in but looking at them, I think you are right. Wouldn't be much in it.

I would like to cut down on the locking mechanism as I won't need that too.
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