Topic: Opel Prep for West Coast 2017

I've been loving what I've been seeing of the 24HoL Rally, but I wasn't able to do the 2016 event. 2017 is looking good for me though.

I'm going to start prepping my '71 Opel Kadett Caravan. Pretty early to prep, but I'm motivated, and the car needs a lot...

It was somewhat drivable when I bought it, but I noticed the clutch was slipping when I was driving back from the DMV. I pulled it apart a couple years ago and put a new clutch in, but never finished reassembling it. I'm going to push it into the shop and get that done.

What did you guys learn from the previous events? What did you wish you had brought? Any advice for a 1st timer?

1971 Opel Kadett Caravan for Lemons Rally
1998 Volvo V90 with Explorer 5.0 Swap for Fun
1998 Volvo V70 XC AWD Beater with a Heater
2003 Land Rover Discovery for Reliability?

Re: Opel Prep for West Coast 2017

Red0ktober wrote:

What did you wish you had brought?

A co-driver would have been nice. Thanks to nearly simultaneous transmission failures in my car and my co-driver's car just before the start of last year's rally, I ended up driving the rally in a different vehicle, solo. Going in a convoy worked nearly as well for navigational purposes but if you can talk someone into accompanying you, that's probably better overall.

1982 MG Metro 1300: IOE 2015 Pacific Northworst GP, Longest Distance 2010 Cd'L Box Wine Country Classic
1980 KV Mini 1: Worst of Show and Fright Pig Supremo 2009 Concours d'Lemons
1978 H Special: Second-Round Elimination 2010 Lemons Pinewood Derby at Sears Pointless
1967 SAAB 96: IOE 2012 Pacific Northworst GP

Re: Opel Prep for West Coast 2017

mharrell wrote:
Red0ktober wrote:

What did you wish you had brought?

A co-driver would have been nice.

I'm working on some people.

You're the 2-stroke Saab guy right? I was hanging out with the Tinyvette guys at Thunderhill a few years ago.

1971 Opel Kadett Caravan for Lemons Rally
1998 Volvo V90 with Explorer 5.0 Swap for Fun
1998 Volvo V70 XC AWD Beater with a Heater
2003 Land Rover Discovery for Reliability?

Re: Opel Prep for West Coast 2017

Secret to success? Bring something interesting and semi-reliable (reliable enough that you spend more time driving than repairing, but not enough so you don't get points for creative repairs), and hit all the checkpoints. Late starts mean late arrivals which means missed checkpoints and later starts the next day. Most importantly, have fun.

Re: Opel Prep for West Coast 2017

Red0ktober wrote:

You're the 2-stroke Saab guy right?

For the West Coast, anyway. There's also a team on the East Coast. Some would argue there should be more. I would argue there should be more. There should be more.

gogmorgo wrote:

...and hit all the checkpoints.

Well, up to a point. Some days seem to be intentionally designed with too many checkpoints so that one is forced to choose wisely, such as the two independent routes running the length of Nevada on the same day or the far-flung and/or occasionally almost impossible to reach checkpoints in Death Valley. I'm not sure the Moscow rally had much of that, though, so maybe Steve's still trying out different formats.

gogmorgo wrote:

Most importantly, have fun.

Oh, great. One more thing to put on the to-do list.

1982 MG Metro 1300: IOE 2015 Pacific Northworst GP, Longest Distance 2010 Cd'L Box Wine Country Classic
1980 KV Mini 1: Worst of Show and Fright Pig Supremo 2009 Concours d'Lemons
1978 H Special: Second-Round Elimination 2010 Lemons Pinewood Derby at Sears Pointless
1967 SAAB 96: IOE 2012 Pacific Northworst GP

Re: Opel Prep for West Coast 2017

mharrell wrote:
Red0ktober wrote:

You're the 2-stroke Saab guy right?

For the West Coast, anyway. There's also a team on the East Coast. Some would argue there should be more. I would argue there should be more. There should be more.

The one on the east coast is actually powered by a Geo Metro three cylinder. I think it's even turbocharged now.

Terribly Awesome Racing
Dozen time loser. You'd think I'd know better by now.

Re: Opel Prep for West Coast 2017

I would agree with everything that has been said. I just got home from running the winter rally in a pretty uninteresting and reliable car (88 LTD wagon). A more interesting car will be on my list for next year, hopefully without sacrificing too much reliability. Co-driver is important for making the best time- researching, posting, etc. while on the road, though many made it just fine without- if you go solo, definitely bring a cb (bring it either way). We brought tons of tools, some spares and about a weeks worth of food and water, I will be packing a lot lighter next time.Get as early a start as works for you, you may need that extra time by the end of the day.

Re: Opel Prep for West Coast 2017

Maverick74 wrote:

The one on the east coast is actually powered by a Geo Metro three cylinder. I think it's even turbocharged now.

Okay, fine. If that's how it's got to be, I'm the two-stroke SAAB guy.

1982 MG Metro 1300: IOE 2015 Pacific Northworst GP, Longest Distance 2010 Cd'L Box Wine Country Classic
1980 KV Mini 1: Worst of Show and Fright Pig Supremo 2009 Concours d'Lemons
1978 H Special: Second-Round Elimination 2010 Lemons Pinewood Derby at Sears Pointless
1967 SAAB 96: IOE 2012 Pacific Northworst GP

9 (edited by gogmorgo 2017-02-10 08:55 PM)

Re: Opel Prep for West Coast 2017

The east coast rally was pretty different from the first. Day one did have a set of "optional" checkpoints but frankly if you're trying to be competitive they aren't optional. Rally #2 also had much more of a straight(ish) from a-b via all the check points route than the first rally, fewer check points and not as scattered, which likely made it easier to hit them all.
But the "start early and hit all the checkpoints" strategy my team employed the second time around was definitely better than the "get on the road after the sun has reached its zenith and maybe if you're lucky hit the primary checkpoint before 10pm" strategy that happened the last go-round.
It's apparently also helpful to park a Waffle House sign on your roof. Creativity and ingenuity will nearly always get you points I think.

Re: Opel Prep for West Coast 2017

To add to what has been previously mentioned, try to book hotels and stuff ahead of time if you are traveling to the start of the rally. Or at the very least figure out where you are staying that night before you hit the road. We kinda went by the seat of our pants the first go around and it lead to a lot of headaches and frustration when we pulled into a random city absolutely exhausted from the drive and had to struggle to find a place to sleep.

Also, its worth it to book the "base camp" hotels each night if you can. Dragging a broken-ass car across the countryside is a lot more fun when there is a group of similarly foolish individuals to hang out with on the other side.

Driver of the White Unicorn (1976 Impala) in the 2016 Lemons Rally

Re: Opel Prep for West Coast 2017

Not choosing education over crapcan road rallying.

Re: Opel Prep for West Coast 2017

Codriver. For sure.

I was out there on my own and I'm pretty sure every day I lost at least 2 hours each day to "Sitting still desperately trying to get navigation to the next checkpoint" or "driving off into the wilderness because Waze/Google Maps decided that no signal meant they could just drop the route altogether" or simply checking/posting to Facebook. Having a second set of eyes and fingers to tend to the electronic needs of the event is pretty damned important even if you're not chasing points.

I also missed a checkpoint because the local parking situation was so positively atrocious that the only reasonable way to get it would have been to drop off a runner and orbit the block.

It's also tougher to get points for being funny/amusing on your own.

And then there's the "being so completely frazzled from driving" bit.

Book your hotels in advance. Preferably as soon as you know you're signed up and have the hotel list from Steve. Maybe even book some cancellable rooms before that. It's no bueno to get into a town where some other event is happening and discover that there isn't a single hotel room available. This happened to several teams in Memphis - there was some absurd Garth Brooks concert doubleheader thing  that literally took over the city. I actually walked into my hotel and the first thing the receptionist said was "Sorry we're full, so are all our other affiliates, and I don't have any other recommendations". "Ah, but I planned ahead and made a reservation" was the magic phrase. Some of the teams that didn't reserve in advance actually drove part/all the way to the next morning's first checkpoint to find a hotel.

If the last checkpoint of the day is a good place to eat dinner, make sure you find out when they close and plan appropriately. If you fail to do this, you will arrive 2 minutes after they close. After your GPS sends you on a 10 minute tour of driving the wrong way down one way streets.  I'm looking at you, Hank Williams Burger Bar.

When a meter maid sees you eyeing up an empty space and shakes his head at you, drive on.

Driver, Pit Monkey, Rod Buster and Engine Fire Starter
Team FinalGear

Re: Opel Prep for West Coast 2017

Having done both, with and without a co-driver, id say having a codriver is desireable, especially if your car isn't designed for modern highway speeds.

If going cb, get a dash mount, both of the handhelds in my Chevette this time failed to transmit more than 10ft and where relatively useless for receiving.

Tools, always tools.

I've managed to not book rooms so far, but also have avoided car camping.  I suspect this run of luck will run out this coming summer rally if I'm able to attend.

I went from a 2001 Dodge Diesel to a 79 Chevette.  Neither had huge problems, though the latter had a decent oil retention problem.  Though compared to the rest of the field 3-4 qts a day vs some teams 3-4 qts a fuel stop wasnt bad.

Bring a map,  there's usually deadzones along the routes.

Re: Opel Prep for West Coast 2017

I've got the Opel in the shop now, it's been in pieces for 3+ years, I found out that it needed a clutch on my trip back from the DMV. Put a new clutch in but never finished the reassembly.

https://arayvg.by3301.livefilestore.com/y3m0iz1j04ZJrCZRQ_lK9SRa3qafe5D2ZnZhXTMDfpN3A-Hqn5vtj4Ig5InpUAhpoUdg0NBQiAt5eWlqqWORnqXvIXraQYoAIesdExlhCJqGlC58dsRvt1pOPafighbJzQYAsRzmycBgnfdj_0d938WASsRM9ZWHAgwmORkAwe4Q4g?width=1024&height=576&cropmode=none

I don't know much about carburetors so I'm going to be installing a wideband sensor into my crusty eBay header to make sure I'm tuning it reasonably safely.

https://bhyqpq.by3301.livefilestore.com/y3m4NROMmCoJ5HbmZe1LMjt2yjqqudCQa8ElREJ7UCNdih10OWemBc-BehL2e7zb2NERYxWQaVAckuWLJobT4TCwfwoM4fK8NHLEy9bnxJSCrjaXqc7w0oAXc3e_DD-8IQIgd8GpZZFC3K-8pBEAxCBjq94s0QnmJlcZ-auJcQEKkE?width=5312&height=2988&cropmode=none

Or: I don't know much about carburetors, so I might retrofit it with an Iron Duke TBI and Megasquirt.

https://cbayvg.by3301.livefilestore.com/y3mWm1VkGxWDPMl2wtpTdMDIlQatRJ3R537NwUillT1pHt4rDRemhcTt3J1w98XRqWIu1CMiul70UwCV7zLC_uZ-qtIzfkOgv7tDS7zRw2ImBmdyra3NuEQK2yZYPOXNc1BNxcki0NlcRyctwUy1PRzp_Tlaje6M3m6xe6GWZYRKZw?width=5312&height=2988&cropmode=none

The rusty 1-1/2" exhaust didn't excite me, nor did it mate with the eBay header, so I ordered a bend kit which was only available in 2-1/4".

https://arznyw.by3301.livefilestore.com/y3m80PCVcl8FqhcJqJ7AXVL6Y7xYfv4JpeMf9NQaCZ2A-FfQFknPuwerI65i3Kj2fNHKL4p7uPGl60X1YGoDH_Ja_K47akAm-_RPyF0aYQRjFjlWrzJtN3rWfkimXkCax7pYd-6Npaln4AwHT0ASW46CQ8He9aihJAoYhTlfS70KtU?width=576&height=1024&cropmode=none

Progress is being made on the exhaust system. I used a resonator from a '97 Ford Explorer in there, and it will be finished off with an unbranded (flowmaster knockoff?) muffler leftover from a friend's Mustang project.

https://bbyqpq.by3301.livefilestore.com/y3mkP2ubqOVTwLmau_-B7sf0xaUQoxSlJDpYzx6dScjsDkyBpHb9bj8v_9d8oHjVHJZ-han24L64ajVrCNUnLCOJAlubj4ixlByVjZBoaj7KEa4tlJNJxWcKkgonS47Z67YDCmERaJScMKqMuuWVFov2XDQkVA-lV7rANz58NCPMpw?width=1024&height=576&cropmode=none

I hope in six months this will be reasonably roadworthy and tested. Can't always get Opel parts in a pinch.

1971 Opel Kadett Caravan for Lemons Rally
1998 Volvo V90 with Explorer 5.0 Swap for Fun
1998 Volvo V70 XC AWD Beater with a Heater
2003 Land Rover Discovery for Reliability?

Re: Opel Prep for West Coast 2017

The Iron Duke TBI will be a great improvement over a carb.

That said, carbs are easy, and most are tuned for about 3,000 ft or so, as that's US average elevation.

What carb did it come with?

Re: Opel Prep for West Coast 2017

jimmystikx wrote:

What carb did it come with?

It came with a Solex, but I have a Weber from an Opel GT. I'm sure the Weber would do well, and I'll probably carry that as a backup.

I have all the Megasquirt gear laying around unused, seems like a neat thing to do with it, but I would need to make/modify the fuel system.

1971 Opel Kadett Caravan for Lemons Rally
1998 Volvo V90 with Explorer 5.0 Swap for Fun
1998 Volvo V70 XC AWD Beater with a Heater
2003 Land Rover Discovery for Reliability?

Re: Opel Prep for West Coast 2017

I might see if I can source an SPFI unit from a Subaru GL/Loyale EA82 engine. The packaging looks a little better, and I think those might have a 2-wire PWM idle control instead of the GM stepper motor style. That would allow me to run it on a Megasquirt 1 chip instead of MS2 (so I can use the older of my leftovers).

1971 Opel Kadett Caravan for Lemons Rally
1998 Volvo V90 with Explorer 5.0 Swap for Fun
1998 Volvo V70 XC AWD Beater with a Heater
2003 Land Rover Discovery for Reliability?

Re: Opel Prep for West Coast 2017

It might be an inch too much poke on the tailpipe, but I'll leave it there until I gouge my shin on it. Still need to finish one weld and install some hangers, then the exhaust should be done. Header and intake are bolted on solid. Need to find the carb gaskets which I should already have somewhere and temp up a fuel system. I have a new mechanical pump installed on the parts car that I could retrieve, but I have a mechanical pump delete plate and oil pressure safety switch already installed on this engine, so I might as well finish off the electric pump install. Waiting on a couple parts arriving tomorrow, but it should be nearly ready to start.

https://qualdg.by3301.livefilestore.com/y3mCsDamAXPrnSw7kAX408GNI34zKxbO-Lmy2kqL_7dc67ZyN6Y6LJPv4x35hsTjuJzfekgsFk_6f7V3KDAEBt-_IY6y8O9eqYWjDdAP-8-xx749laaDNEHSYP4Icd49zn_ca3A4crcBzI8jkTRXXVRRDLOZH7XS3sl9wKD6P--yLM?width=1024&height=576&cropmode=none

1971 Opel Kadett Caravan for Lemons Rally
1998 Volvo V90 with Explorer 5.0 Swap for Fun
1998 Volvo V70 XC AWD Beater with a Heater
2003 Land Rover Discovery for Reliability?

Re: Opel Prep for West Coast 2017

Red0ktober wrote:
jimmystikx wrote:

What carb did it come with?

It came with a Solex, but I have a Weber from an Opel GT. I'm sure the Weber would do well, and I'll probably carry that as a backup.

I have all the Megasquirt gear laying around unused, seems like a neat thing to do with it, but I would need to make/modify the fuel system.

The Chevette has a Weber 32/36 mech secondary carb. So far it seems to be easy to tune.  The hard part has been setting up the electric choke on it, but fiddling around has gotten me to a pretty reliable point in starting.  I'm not quite ready to dig out the plug over the idle mix screw yet.

Re: Opel Prep for West Coast 2017

Does that thing have siamesed intake ports?

Re: Opel Prep for West Coast 2017

jimmystikx wrote:

Does that thing have siamesed intake ports?

No, there are individual runners cast into the intake.

I also have the Weber 32/36. Mine came with a water choke, but I got an electric choke to swap as I didn't want to run extra coolant lines. Maybe I should have just gone manual. I don't know that I've ever driven it with the Weber. I've probably only driven it 20-30 miles total.

1971 Opel Kadett Caravan for Lemons Rally
1998 Volvo V90 with Explorer 5.0 Swap for Fun
1998 Volvo V70 XC AWD Beater with a Heater
2003 Land Rover Discovery for Reliability?

Re: Opel Prep for West Coast 2017

My spare engine looks suspiciously clean, maybe it's rebuilt... I thought this engine was seized, but it was actually the trans it was attached to that was seized. I've never run it, but maybe I should. I'll poke an endoscope into the cylinder and see if it has the high or low compression pistons. According to the stamps on the block, there should be a high compression engine in the Kadett now, and this "spare" engine should be low compression. Maybe if it's low compression I'll get a little TD03 and put some boost to it. wink

https://ruytyg.by3301.livefilestore.com/y3mSm0UG5jC5Zrg9xn9qTqmAzPkmhUAflPcREnGch8boY1K8ERtHK3ARSzqbUCBMQv8zjnaD2mNHzp8sMiG2qM4tckWzWYwGz8dvrIzbo1jKCD5jttttUbxEzYqlADbWu0Ve7eMSdhtFP9PpD3A2yQJFDi86FtUlDnHi0mxYBfci-M?width=576&height=1024&cropmode=none

Mercedes thinks I should install these Chevy seats in the Opel.

https://pubipg.by3301.livefilestore.com/y3m-JZYD5ypbfx71gkYJjOAPbjRU076JBRvaQD_0jRYy-IuUMnN1d1YXeZCnFzYGITyeBBhZS3Mtce2EGGYXbUSijG23kLmDiypYX6jt8Q_vVqXlid9GiUbhjDJ4mZtpTGZgqdbetJR3ShBXM31_76jyWaxsmM8qXieoTbcMZC-lww?width=576&height=1024&cropmode=none

1971 Opel Kadett Caravan for Lemons Rally
1998 Volvo V90 with Explorer 5.0 Swap for Fun
1998 Volvo V70 XC AWD Beater with a Heater
2003 Land Rover Discovery for Reliability?

Re: Opel Prep for West Coast 2017

I dug up some pictures and measurements from three years ago. This is what I had in mind for the GM TBI adapter plate.

https://q0bipg.by3301.livefilestore.com/y3mO1EjRL7Msld3-4RV6z7Xal4kioJJRthLj23pOYZZ6DzwCekbWpjVH-RHNFw3GXCmBNi3ZsaMk-vJJ2sHbSkjNcVHTlZuoz4rA68tsrQpLcQG0EoHqKrZFUnVyMKsi_er4ESPHVh7sAZHVm_wyDaklBIE3qJxsFHdqz4GiCh_3eE?width=1024&height=576&cropmode=none

https://rebipg.by3301.livefilestore.com/y3mE6Z_KXmaStGM6_DIHd_jYO2m_UY8PKQ-oUtcO7GZjngYxrt9yGe9frXguxNmHRH_9qREcWlh323QQ266b7ytv3ARmMK3xm79-8MDY4r3_B-mn0cYztXRhwaIe6BCKT6XmM17g-JiKoRPZMcPe4XNJnKQSS6v0BxuPugD5dcFIHU?width=951&height=1024&cropmode=none

https://qkbipg.by3301.livefilestore.com/y3mgrccPMPnkYy9JU19K-PHl9WJj291eRARbs-hOoJmEyJ0-vnRA6TFn1eFsMFtLIUFfLlQV-7Bik5uaq1o06cy3I4cQkGlWCyTr4NxrZIh9o1xskz8AnCkVLKQ5RvMUPN1Ur9Y5J8R8pYkeRrBW6LDDbc1AaZW5g9_OP4IvRCyseA?width=1024&height=576&cropmode=none

1971 Opel Kadett Caravan for Lemons Rally
1998 Volvo V90 with Explorer 5.0 Swap for Fun
1998 Volvo V70 XC AWD Beater with a Heater
2003 Land Rover Discovery for Reliability?

Re: Opel Prep for West Coast 2017

It lives!

It's leaking coolant, no driveshaft, and the clutch cable isn't connected. But it runs!

https://youtu.be/V3A8GFUysyQ

1971 Opel Kadett Caravan for Lemons Rally
1998 Volvo V90 with Explorer 5.0 Swap for Fun
1998 Volvo V70 XC AWD Beater with a Heater
2003 Land Rover Discovery for Reliability?

Re: Opel Prep for West Coast 2017

Hope to see you on east coast. Opels UNITE! even though mine might not be a pure opel, it be strill dope smile

https://www.facebook.com/greatglobsofoil/
This car....Is said to have a will of it's Own. Twisting its own body in rage...It accelerates on.
1978 Opel/Buick Isuzu - 4 races, IOE, Incredible Feats in Badge Engineering 1996 Ford Probe GT - under a knife
http://i.imgur.com/m3KbADo.gif