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RE: Getting Started Means Never Finishing

Ray,

How are you spending $8k-$15k on a home-shop built car for P or G2? This does not jive with my view and experience. May be you are dealing with a partially home-built effort?

There ARE some good cars and deals out there...but also some ripoffs. I had a friend who bought a rip-off....lost his shirt overall. The lesson from that: Have someone you know and who knows rally cars look at, or consult over, a rally car with you before you buy.

Regards,
Mark B.
 

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RE: Getting Started Means Never Finishing

>Ray,
>
>How are you spending $8k-$15k on a home-shop built car for P
>or G2? This does not jive with my view and experience. May be
>you are dealing with a partially home-built effort?
>Regards,
>Mark B.

Yes Mark,
I was referring to solely home built efforts. If you have someone build it, you better have a wealthy uncle that likes you a lot.

Whiplash Rallye Sport
(Rallying is not a crime)
 

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RE: Getting Started Means Never Finishing

I can build a basic one for less. But, I do my own welding and fab, engines, etc.

Regards,
Mark B.
 

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<<<< Now I'm trying to have a motor oil leak fixed that was "overlooked", and am back waiting again.>>>>

Good car prep huh?

I didn't get to where I am today if it wasn't for rallying - BROKE!!!!
 

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If you are on a tight budget, set your sites on running rally-x and, if you dont already, volunteer to work a few rallys in differing jobs to get a feel for things first hand.

If you go that route (run rally-x) you can run a bone stock GTI and depending on the tire you choose and your driving skill be quite competitive. GTI's in the years you mention are plentiful, cheap and surprisingly reliable, though expect to at least do a good tune up if not also some parts replacement in the suspension because things have just gone away from age. Rally-x isnt hard on a car so beefing it up isnt really needed, and doesnt really give you any advantage. From there you can decide if you want to fab up your car for rally (a lot of work - fun if you are into doing it yourself and possess the skills and equipment - expensive if not) or look for a good prebuilt car. You will also have a better idea what you want and dont want.

For a starter rally-x GTI, I would look for either an 8 or 16V, with power steering (better ratio). The 16V breathes better so has more to offer above 5500 RPM and costs more if you break something like a timing belt. The 8V feels a little more torquey around 3000 RPM and is pretty much out of steam by 5500 without a good cam but can take more abuse, costs less to fix and is more plentiful. I would also look for a CIS-E or Digifant because they are pretty easily tunable. The CIS can be tweaked too but it takes a lot more skill. Get one without a sunroof if possible - for rally-x it doesnt really matter but if you were to go ahead and built the car for rally it has to be replaced with steel and welded shut - no sense in doing unnecessary work.

As for cheap tweeks, I would get a Pelolock. The diff as originally supplied has a very slight preload provided by a couple washers that give a very low level limited slip. These are usually worn and even when new do nothing to reduce slip. The Pelolock replaces them with a higher preloaded set and a couple nice flange seals to increase the breakaway torque from near zero to about 85 (claimed) pounds. It aint realy limited slip but costs about 1/10 a real LSD and doesnt require tearing the tranny down to put in.

Most important is tire choice. There is no substitute for rally tires, new or good used, but that will put you in a modified class for good reason and you may or may not want that. My advice for non-rally tires is to go to the local events and see what the fastest production guys are running and start there.
 

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Do you want to be a rally car driver or a rally car builder? Or do you want to be a one-man do everything kinda guy?

Rally cars are tools. They should not be "named" like children. Like a mechanic, you should use the tool to do your job (learn how to drive better). When you have reached the upper end of the performance envelope for that car (when you are beating the guys in the class above you), you should move on.

In other words, if you wanna become a good rally driver, and you are short on cash, your first purchase should be either a go-kart or a dirt bike. If you want to run rallycross, buy a $300 Golf, block the vac. line to the brake booster, and get some snow tires. When you are ready to rally, sell the beater for $300 and buy a rally car.

You can choose to be both (rally car builder/engineer and driver), but one will definitely slow the progress of the other. Focus on driving and you will learn much of the engineering by necessity.

I vote for buy.

Read this. Its old, but still useful.
http://www.msprotege.com/forum/showthread.php?t=37150&
 

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From most of the people I have talked to at rallys, they all say VW's are the way to go. If anything breaks, you can go to a junk yard and get parts for dirt cheap. I heard of someone dropping a tranny, and picked one up at a junk yard for a few hundred bucks and in place in a few hours.

But I'm not the supremem athority on rally. I'd say go with whatever is easiest (and cheapest) to fix if you need to.
 

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>
>I am a fan of building. Based on my expereince with 1 car my
>first that I built (with lots of help from others in the
>area). It took much longer, cost a little more, but it was a
>priceless expereince I know more about the functioning of a
>rally car than I would if I bought a complete car. I also
>know how to fix anything on the car when it breaks and know
>where the weak points and problem spots in the car are. I
>would do some things differently if I were to build it again
>but it is safe reliable and fun.
>
>
>
>Matt Smith
>www.fireantracing.com
>Viva NASA Rallysport
>
>
>
EXACTLY! Finally someone who feels the same way...I have looked at alot of used rallycars, and most (OK, all) were a ragged out POS in my price range.

-C
 

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Correct me if I am wrong, but from your comments I am assuming you are not a professional mechanic (or have that level of skills). If my assumption is correct:

1. Buy a ready built car.

2. Buy a car that someone else built.

3. Do not build your own car.

4. And this one is really important......

DON'T TRUST ANYONE ABOUT ANYTHING! Rally people will talk endlessly about "the helpful rally community", and there is truth to that. However, rally is like any other group of people... there are people that are not honest and will take advantage of you.

There are also honest, well intentioned people that think they know everything, but they don't know everything.

Bottom line: go to rallies, meet people, talk with them, check out references, etc, etc.

Also: everyone will have an opinion of what you should or should not do. Remember.... it is your time and money, not their's.
 

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One other thing.... If you haven't already done this...

Define your goals to yourself (not someone else's goals for you).

Do you want to win, place, finish middle pack, not DNF for any reason, look cool, or just play? There is no shame in any of these goals.

If you want to win..... Lurch's post has some serious stuff to think about.
 

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I went the rallyX/build/stage rally route with a GTi 16v and I don't regret it a bit. You have to be honest with yourself about putting in the time, because it takes a lot of it. It really helps out to have a buddy as into it as yourself to spread the work out.

Since you are just starting up and thinking about doing RallyX first, I'll assume that you are fairly thoughtful/patient person and not hell-bent on "winning" your first year. If you just want to have fun ripping around in the woods you can build for pretty cheap...but probably not tons cheaper than an older prepped car. Its true, all you need to get on stage is a cage and the necessary safety equipment...just make sure the cage is well-built so that your car lasts while you beef-up the other parts. You will probably be going slow enough when you start out not to off it and really screw the car.

We're putting up pretty good times and our car is basically stock engine and brake wise with a fairly budget Bilstein setup. If i'm slower than the next guy its probably because I pussed-out and used the brakes too early on a few corners, not because my suspension wasn't good enough.

I'd say that I'm having more fun racing a car that I built than if I bought it prepped. It feels like more of an accomplishment, and I'm less ready to stuff all that work into a tree...although those trees seem to be getting closer and closer the more I rally.
 

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>From most of the people I have talked to at rallys, they all
>say VW's are the way to go. If anything breaks, you can go to
>a junk yard and get parts for dirt cheap. I heard of someone
>dropping a tranny, and picked one up at a junk yard for a few
>hundred bucks and in place in a few hours.
>

If you're going by what's in junkyards, one should rally a Taurus or a Lumina.

- Pete (VW in a junkyard? Haven't seen one for years, they all died looong ago)
 

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I am planning on building a production class 1987 200sx over the next few years. My added resource is that I worked (and hopefully again next summer) at Vermont sportscar- vtcar.com . I also want to co-drive but I really want to drive too. My neighbor will help me to weld a cage in as he used to work at a hotrod shop as a welder/fabricator. I'm going to buy Sparco Sprint seats and some harnesses, and the engine remains pretty stock. This way, I also have the added advantage of knowing how my car works if it breaks. I think building a car is half the fun, but that's me.
plus, this is gonna be my daily driver too. ;-)
 

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A 200SX sounds fun.

If you get your friend to help you build the cage, make sure you get some design advice from a rally shop. Rally cages are built to withstand different sorts of impacts than road cages.

Also, you might want to reconsider using your rallycar as a daily driver. There're some serious safety implications with driving around in a caged car without a helmet. If your cage is far enough away from your head and you're strapped in with a good harness, it's probably ok, but if not...*CRACK*. There goes your head.

Also, my general impression of Sparco Sprints is that they're fine for 20 laps, but I wouldn't want to sit in them all day.
 

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>Also, my general impression of Sparco Sprints is that they're
>fine for 20 laps, but I wouldn't want to sit in them all day.

Totally agree. I have a set of 'em in my car, and though we only drive 2x 2 hours or something, I still think that I sorta "sink in" to them after like 30 minutes or so. I'm really getting annoyed with it, so considering changing at least mine.

Best regards
Brian
1985 Golf GTi 8V - Digifant - for "Klubrally" (Danish equivilant of autocrossing - sorta).
 

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This thread has only focused on the Build vs. Buy scenario. You?re talking about making large investments in time and money without ever having been behind the wheel at a stage rally event.

Option three, rent a car first. Give yourself the opportunity to make an informed decision. Is this what you really want to do? Because you Really, REALLY have to want it, in order for it to be worth the effort.

Jason Takkunen
www.sisurallysports.com
Rentals Available
 

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>My friend and I are planning on building a car to use in
>rallycross and clubrally events in the future. we have been
>looking around for a suitable 2WD car to use, and so far we
>have narrowed our search down to a late 80's-early 90's GTI, a
>1990-2000 Toyota Celica, or a mid-90's Civic or Integra. We
>have also considered a Subaru Impreza or Celica All-Trac, but
>most of the articles on the subject say to start out in a 2WD
>car. we would like to know which of these cars is the best
>starting platform (i.e. easiest to modify and tune), and what
>the most cost-effective mods for rallying would be. We are on
>a fairly tight budget, and may not actually start building
>until next year. any response would be appreciated.


I am in a simular situation. I have bought a MK2 Golf with an engine swap up to the 2.0L cross flow 8V from a MK3. It came with a skid plate and bilstien shocks (as well as interior weight reduction). I am racing it in auto and rally x events and it is a blast... plus it is my daily driver. True I did buy it "semi" preped, but I am a big fan of running what you got. Currently I am looking into getting a cage for it and finding that cage kits that would meat RA's specs are not all that expensive. So I guess what I am tring to say is do what you can do and don't regret it.

I am thinking that I am going to start doing hill climbs hopfuly next year, but I will have to see where I am located then and if there are any hills... god I hope there are hills.

Well that is what I got to say

Otis
 

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I built my first car...

An open class talon... Pretty basic build but I did build the motor and freshed the gear box.... I got the shell for free (needed some work) and paid around 1500 for my cage.... At the end I added it all up and it was around 13k for a car that I could have bought for 8k at the time....!!! Besides that fact I was happy with the car and it worked pretty well, but I crashed it 5 events later (Hi Mark!!) that was that.... I saved the motor and some parts that are going into my new galant VR4.... I support building cars IF and ONLY if you have a sound understanding of car prep and what not..... Building junk cars is NO good for anyone... So if you can build a good car and do most of the work yourself GREAT! If you are unsure about the prep invloded than buying maybe a better option.... You most certainly will save money if you buy! ALso you often get alot of spare parts that you may or may not want to fill up your garage when you buy....

My new car is actually UNDER budget! I may make it out of this build with a car thats worth more than I have into it!!! Crazy!

:7

Regards
Larry Parker
 
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