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Borders Hillrally - on board with Friesian Racing


Henry Webster
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Now that the dust has settled from the Borders HIllrally, I can report that we had a brilliant time, but mixed success.

The event, although having a large contingent of gravel tracks is pretty tough. The off road sections are some of the roughest I have known, a mixture of big rocks, small rocks, more rocks, water and mud. And the tracks were very, very fast, but slippery.

Unfortunately it was the rocks that put an end to our fun. After puncturing on the first stage helping out a fellow competitor we were then on the back foot throughout needing to play catch up. Although we set some fantastic times, including a number in the top 5 it wasn't enough and in the end the transfer box cried enough after we clouted a particularly nasty stone.

dsc01936.jpg?w=500&h=332

The remains of the Transfer Box.

We put in a flying time in the following stage after holing the transfer box. There was a bit of a vibration which started at about 50mph, but started to clear at 75! But on finding this at service and with 4 or 5 more similar stages left to run we reluctantly called it a day.

We will be back next year. There are more photos, the complete event report and an excellent bit of video from the event at http://www.FriesianRacing.co.uk

H

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Hi Mark, thanks!

I haven't yet worked out my plans for next year, but there is a new Hillrally planned for August in Wales, hopefully there will be something in Perthshire in July and I'd quite like to get back to France to do a couple more there, but I'm also toying with a crack at the British Cross Country Championship.

I'll no doubt make some decisions over the holidays and will update the website accordingly.

H

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Gussets are an unknown at the moment - my cage falls well short of the latest spec, but I'm wondering whether they will accept an MSA Rally Log Book - as there are dispensations for cars with old log books in France too!

HANS is a given and I've been considering that for a while.

How's yours?

H

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Not done much to Discofairy recently. Have been concentrating on repairing it's engine and building the new one. The cylinder heads have been in the engineering shop for a month, I think he's lost them.

Oh... last week we had a new bespoke exhaust fitted with headman headers. It's now lifted up as close as it can be to the floor and is protected by the chassis. Only problem is, it's tooooo quiet. When it gets warmer I am going to modify the centre silencer with an angle grinder and remove some baffles.

I now have a nice collection of parts to fit including a new front axle with Torque bias diff'. I have the Megasquirt almost done, just finishing the loom... but the Megasquirt has had to go for first aid to HFH. Got a 7" touchscreen and a micro ITX motherboard ready to fit in the dash, so we can run Megatune or similar... or when crash we can watch a DVD while we wait for rescue.

We are going to move the battery from the front wing and put it in the back with a new rally raid spec cutout and some posh pushy buttons.

After Christmas, it's going to Mr Hubel's for gussets and a few roll cage mods. We need a cross in the roof and crossing door bars.

Also, what engine mods have you had done? Did Roland modify the engine or just the engine management?

And finally, how's your transfer box?

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Sounds like good progress to me!

We've done away with the centre box, but otherwise the exhaust is standard and we have kept the standard manifolds.

What diff do you have in the back? I run with an open front, the viscous centre and a torque biasing rear and it seems to be a good combination. Are you not trying to stay in the standard class and instead coming to join me in Super Production?

The battery is just behind the transmission tunnel in MuddyMoo, and we too run electronic cut off - had too many 'Autolec' switch failures over the years! I like the sound of the PC and touch screen, we've been playing with the idea of some digital dash elements, but haven't got very far with it yet.

The engine is pretty much as I built it with a cam in it, but not much else apart from care and attention putting it back together. Roland has fitted the Omex 710 and associated hardware, removed the dizzy (yay!) and mapped it. He also fitted a lightened flywheel and paddle clutch. Its a step change better. Its always been a good engine, but it really flies now and wants to rev and rev!

I don't know what to do about the cage at the moment. I really should rip it out and start again, as it is rather over heavy as it is. But then I think, if I'm going to do that I may as well build a new car into my road Discovery and incorporate some of the other stuff that I have been thinking about over the years.

Transfer box is on the bench, but garage has been too cold to do anything with it yet. I've got another one to build into, so I guess that will happen over Christmas.

Regards

H

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Really a great video, there's a whole lot going on with that steering wheel huh? :o You must really be knackered after such an event, I could only imagine..

I really know about it when I haven't been keeping in good shape!

Being fit makes a huge difference to my performance on an event. I wasn't particularly fit in advance of the Borders!

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We have a middle box, but no back box, so do you have just a back box, or straight through?

The torque biasing differential is going in the back. I think it's a Torsen diff' but not sure, it's one of the original diff's the car was built with. We managed to track it down and buy it back. We are using a 4pin in the front, I was confused :)

In car PC - one of these -

ASrock ITX Atom motherboard.

One of these -

Liliput 7" LCD touchscreen.

Add a 16Gb SSD and some RAM - Total cost <£200.

Did you port / polish / modify your engine, other than rebuild with new cam?

We have stripped the engine, cleaned it with a toothbrush so it's nice and shiny, then had it chemically cleaned. Crank polished, new main and big end bearings, new piston rings, new Cam / followers and vernier duplex timing gears, ported inlet manifold, ported heads (if we ever get them back).

I have just read Mr Hiatts link to the FIA roll cage spec. Quite an interesting read, and i'm guessing this is the document the French are implementing. The gussets don't have to be bent gussety things in the true sense of a gusset, they can be a tube welded across corners to strengthen a join.

I'm not sure what modifications put us in Super prod over Standard. Is it just your slippy diff that puts you in modified production?

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I have just read Mr Hiatts link to the FIA roll cage spec. Quite an interesting read, and i'm guessing this is the document the French are implementing. The gussets don't have to be bent gussety things in the true sense of a gusset, they can be a tube welded across corners to strengthen a join.

I don't think that's right. The Rallye Tout Terrain regs, which are done by the FFSA, require bent plate gussest and then refer you to the FIA Article for a drawing of the gusset. As our mutual Chinese friend observed when I last spoke to him, you could do the Dakar with a lesser spec roll cage than is needed for a French Rallye.

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  • 2 weeks later...

We have a middle box, but no back box, so do you have just a back box, or straight through?

I just have the little back box. Is loud, but well within the limits. Much better - when we ran the standard exhaust we kept finding spectators in the route!

Did you port / polish / modify your engine, other than rebuild with new cam?

A little bit. Just took the casting marks off really. I didn't do much in the way of port matching or true polishing.

We have stripped the engine, cleaned it with a toothbrush so it's nice and shiny, then had it chemically cleaned. Crank polished, new main and big end bearings, new piston rings, new Cam / followers and vernier duplex timing gears, ported inlet manifold, ported heads (if we ever get them back).

Excellent, should be great. I was really pleased when I did mine.

I'm not sure what modifications put us in Super prod over Standard. Is it just your slippy diff that puts you in modified production?

Think it is mainly the diff - but after that it gives alot more freedom. Have a look at the BCCC regs or one of the Scottish Hillrallies.

Good effort on the transfer box!

Yes, Daan, I was quite impressed its quite a substantial casing. I have written one off before, but I believe that was due to a mounting working loose. I was impressed that we managed to knock a great hole in the bottom. It was a proper rough event, though, but with some fantastic fast flowing stuff too. Really good fun!

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I was looking through your Flickr album and noticed you had cracked one before. It's bad luck to do two. How about a bit of protection for it?

Might be a good idea, I certainly will take another look, but I think the causes were different. In the first case a mounting bolt worked itself loose and dropped out, which we didn't spot until after the event leading to much more stress on the casing.

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