Topic: Okay - noob hopefuls needing some advice

Registered: 2014-05-19
Posts: 2
Hey guys,

So it finally looks like all the stars aligned and me and my weirdo friends can make 24 hours of Lemons happen (fingers crossed about acceptance). Buuuut - we have some basic questions for what to expect:

First off, how exactly do you manage the $500 budget? Some cars I see, I can totally understand how they cost so little, but then there are others that I can't fathom costing less than $1500-$3000. I read that you can sell off parts to recuperate some budget, but still...it seems confusing.

Is the decoration and sill-ifying of the car counted in the budget?

I'm sure I have more questions, but I guess those are the two things we're kind of confused by.

Thanks yall!

Re: Okay - noob hopefuls needing some advice

There is an awesome search feature where this question has been asked and answered many times.  If you have more questions after reading through, let us know.  I recommend you go spectate a local race and talk to teams.

Re: Okay - noob hopefuls needing some advice

Look at it this way, it has to be worth $500. We paid $850 for our 1st car (84 L69 Trans AM). I sold about $1800 of stuff off of it making our car a $0 car. That gives you $500 to spend on go-fast parts. You'd be better off spending more than $500 on something running/driving that has some performance features and selling stuff you won't be using than buying a POS $500 car that has no value.
The best bang for the buck is to buy a done car. Plenty out there.

"get up and get your grandma outta here"

4 (edited by TheEngineer 2021-09-15 06:23 AM)

Re: Okay - noob hopefuls needing some advice

Budget is purely wrapped around the actual car, and modifications to the car that make it faster. Anything safety related, or driver comfort related are not counted in the budget. And as Mr.Yuck mentioned, you can sell things to "regain" budget. Not all items sold count towards reclaimed budget, and you can't ever go into negative value, but it's one way to give yourself some breathing room.

So car purchase price? Budget item. Engine upgrades? Budget item. Brakes? budget exempt. Fuel components? safety budget exempt item up until they become a performance booster. Fancy gauges and data logging and cool shirts and video equipment? budget exempt. Theming I think is or used to be a budget item in the rules, but you will never get sweated on that unless it also somehow is a performance booster, theme to your heart's content.

Section 4 of the rules does a good job outlining what does and does not count towards the $500 limit. But feel free to ask clarifying questions if something seems gray area to you.



The other thing to consider is that you can get budget back between races through residual value. So cars that have been around for years and years have had a lot of time to get better and better. Which can lead to some of the "how is this a $500 racecar" views from new teams.

20+ Time Loser FutilityMotorsport
Turbo Dodge Powered E36 Build
2008 Saab 9-5Aero Wagon
Retired - 1989 Dodge Daytona Shelby 2011-2015 "Lifetime Award for Lack of Achievement" IOE, 3X I got screwed, Organizer's Choice

Re: Okay - noob hopefuls needing some advice

One more  thing, not sure how it is now but back then you had to "log" everything...keep receipts, print c-list/ebay ads, photo transactions and such....

"get up and get your grandma outta here"

Re: Okay - noob hopefuls needing some advice

TheEngineer wrote:

So car purchase price? Budget item. Engine upgrades? Budget item. Brakes? budget exempt. Fuel components? safety budget exempt item up until they become a performance booster. Fancy gauges and data logging and cool shirts and video equipment? budget exempt. Theming I think is or used to be a budget item in the rules, but you will never get sweated on that unless it also somehow is a performance booster, theme to your heart's content.
.

Having judged and classed cars for a few races, I would never hold the $$$ spent on the theme against your car unless it was there specifically to increase performance.

1992 Saturn SL2 (retired) - Elmo's Revenge -  Class B winner, Heroic Fix winner x2
1969 Rover P6B 3500S(sold) - Super G-Rover - I.O.E Winner, Class C Winner
1996 Saturn SW2 - Elmo's Revenge (reborn!), Saturn SL1  Dazzleship
1974 AMC Javelin - Oscar's Trash heap - IOE,”Organizer's Choice" and "I got Screwed" award winner

Re: Okay - noob hopefuls needing some advice

I'll try to summarize and keep it short based on our experience building our first Lemons car (truck):

Like Mr. Yuck said, cheaper to buy an already prepped car rather than build...BUT building was soo much more enjoyable!! With that being said, if you're going to build (and even if you're not going to build) read the rulebook front to back...and then read it again! Know that thing like the back of your hand and it'll make everything so much easier. If you have a question during your build or prep, email someone (John the safety/tech guru got to know us REALLY well during our build bc we didn't want to get anything wrong). Safety is #1 so make sure you do your DD and know what you're doing!

As far as cost goes...IT'S ALWAYS GOING TO COST MORE THAN YOU THINK!! Like Yuck said, the purchase price of the car counts, but you can recoup some/most/all of that cost by selling crap off it. Example: don't need the passenger or back seats=sell them. Stereo=craigslist/FB marketplace and so on, those sold items count back towards your budget. After that, the only costs that count towards your "$500" are go fast/performance parts eg. engine, drivetrain, suspension etc. Safety does not count towards your $500...so the roll cage, fire suppression, brakes (and brake cooling for that matter) and anything else relater to safety doesn't count. Depending on what you want out of your build, it's actually pretty difficult to not exceed the $500...I would say most teams spend more, but as long as you don't show up with a fully prepped SCCA track weapon that'll get you a million penalty laps you'll be alright. Typically judges never count the costs related to themes/decorations so you're good there.

Make sure you keep and catalog receipts for everything related to the build. We put together a binder that we bring with us thru tech to show our costs, and we update it as we make changes and whatnot.

If you have any other questions don't hesitate to ask or shoot me a PM

alfredobrown wrote:

Registered: 2014-05-19
Posts: 2
Hey guys,

So it finally looks like all the stars aligned and me and my weirdo friends can make 24 hours of Lemons happen (fingers crossed about acceptance). Buuuut - we have some basic questions for what to expect:

First off, how exactly do you manage the $500 budget? Some cars I see, I can totally understand how they cost so little, but then there are others that I can't fathom costing less than $1500-$3000. I read that you can sell off parts to recuperate some budget, but still...it seems confusing.

Is the decoration and sill-ifying of the car counted in the budget?

I'm sure I have more questions, but I guess those are the two things we're kind of confused by.

Thanks yall!

LS-10 Racing '98 Chevy S-10
2021 NOLA: 21/65 (6/25 B-class) snapped upper control arm
2020 MSR: 73/103 (27/36 B-class) blown transmission

Re: Okay - noob hopefuls needing some advice

alfredobrown wrote:

Registered: 2014-05-19
Posts: 2
Hey guys,

So it finally looks like all the stars aligned and me and my weirdo friends can make 24 hours of Lemons happen (fingers crossed about acceptance). Buuuut - we have some basic questions for what to expect:

First off, how exactly do you manage the $500 budget? Some cars I see, I can totally understand how they cost so little, but then there are others that I can't fathom costing less than $1500-$3000. I read that you can sell off parts to recuperate some budget, but still...it seems confusing.

Is the decoration and sill-ifying of the car counted in the budget?

I'm sure I have more questions, but I guess those are the two things we're kind of confused by.

Thanks yall!

Setting the location in your profile would also help. There are plenty of teams out there willing to talk to you in person or via phone and answer whatever questions you need answered.

1992 Saturn SL2 (retired) - Elmo's Revenge -  Class B winner, Heroic Fix winner x2
1969 Rover P6B 3500S(sold) - Super G-Rover - I.O.E Winner, Class C Winner
1996 Saturn SW2 - Elmo's Revenge (reborn!), Saturn SL1  Dazzleship
1974 AMC Javelin - Oscar's Trash heap - IOE,”Organizer's Choice" and "I got Screwed" award winner

Re: Okay - noob hopefuls needing some advice

We just did our first race this summer, hope you stick with it because your first race weekend is just an unbelievable amount of fun if you bring a Lemony attitude.

We had an old S10 laying around and were trying to decide whether to build it or buy a car.  A car we were watching on eBay sold for about $1200, we didn't bid bc we figured we'd have $2K in it after picking it up and adding fire suppression (which was all it needed).  Well....by the time we added our cage, brakes, seat, belts, kill switch, tires, fire suppression....we were VERY far North of $2k. 

However, counterpoint would be that racing a car you built is a pretty nice feeling. 

Hope you stick with it!   Oh, and read the rules, then read the rules, then have friend read the rules, then buy the audio book of Eric reading the rules.

2021 Gingerman-I:  IOE (Strickland Propane), 2021 Gingerman-II:  Mid-pack...mission failed successfully
95 Chevy S-10

10 (edited by duthehustle93 2021-09-16 10:22 AM)

Re: Okay - noob hopefuls needing some advice

It seems like the focus is $500 of reliability/performance. If you've got a miata/e30/other reliable/well-performing car, be prepared to break out excel sheets and receipts proving that it's sub-$500. We get scrutinized every time for our stock miata with some ebay springy-bois. Now, show up with a $20k Volkswagen Phaeton w/ a W12 and I would bet they'll put you in class C with 0 penalty laps, and I'd fully support it. Bottomline is either bring a log book with a good car, or run something unreliable that should never be endurance raced with an unlimited budget.

It depends on what you're going for, but I don't regret going pre-built, it saved LOTS of money. Lots of $2000 retired cars and free retired shells that the PO likely has $4-7k invested.

Full Ass Racing
#455 Piñata Miata

Re: Okay - noob hopefuls needing some advice

duthehustle93 wrote:

Now, show up with a $20k Volkswagen Phaeton w/ a W12 and I would bet they'll put you in class C with 0 penalty laps, and I'd fully support it. Bottomline is either bring a log book with a good car, or run something unreliable that should never be endurance raced with an unlimited budget.

It depends on what you're going for, but I don't regret going pre-built, it saved LOTS of money. Lots of $2000 retired cars and free retired shells that the PO likely has $4-7k invested.

Technically, any W12 is (within reason) guaranteed Class C 0 laps.

I always suggest the race-proven, recently tech'ed car to new teams.  We build on average a new car avery 1.3 years.  Where do you think think the old cars go when we get bored wth them after winning (or not) the IoE?  Are they still viable racecars...yep.  Are they sold for less than the value of the work (just the money, not the hours) we put in them...yep.  Could they turn a lap tomorrow after passing tech...yep.  Will they be a ton of fun...of course.  Are they gonna win anything...nope.

Re: Okay - noob hopefuls needing some advice

Bring an obscure or weird or slow or different car ( or all the above ), and no one is going to care what you spent on it, not even the judges.

Bring a BMW E30/36, Miata, or similar "racy" car and you'll get scrutinized for what you spent.  But you'll still be able to race and have fun.

And always, always, build your first car yourselves.  The amount you spend and headaches you'll endure will completely fade away when you finish a race in a car YOU built.

COM ( Chief Operating Moron ) of Burnt Rubber Soul Racing
Current fleet: 95 Ford Probe, 81 Mazda 626.  Past: 81 Imperial
Facebook page:  https://www.facebook.com/burntrubbersoulracing

Re: Okay - noob hopefuls needing some advice

dont overthink it have fun. dont spend thousands and thousands on the car, because it can get out of hand

Re: Okay - noob hopefuls needing some advice

We built our first lemon and bought 3 that were already race cars.  While I love them all, the one we built is the best.

If I had to do it over again, and something was available in 2009, I would've bought one already complete.  It was alot harder and took alot more time than I had hoped, and my life was very busy back then.

Either way, if you follow the rulebook, you should be able to get out on track.

Silent But Deadly Racing- Chief cook and bottle washer, Ricky Bobby's Laughing Clown Malt Liquor Thunderbird Turbo Coupe, Datsun 510, 87 Mustang (The Race Team Formerly Known as Prince), 72 Pinto Squire waggy, Parnelli Jones 67 Galaxie, Turbo Coupe Surf wagon.(The Surfin Bird), Squatting Dogs In Tracksuits, finally a B class winner.

Besmirching race tracks in the Eastern US since 2001

Re: Okay - noob hopefuls needing some advice

Duff Beer is selling their Class C winning Volvo 850 for a song at $2000 right now.  U BUY!

Re: Okay - noob hopefuls needing some advice

OnkelUdo wrote:

Duff Beer is selling their Class C winning Volvo 850 for a song at $2000 right now.  U BUY!


He's right, this deal is amazing.  No bias here, I don't know the team, I just know we spent twice that to build a car that is slower :-)

2021 Gingerman-I:  IOE (Strickland Propane), 2021 Gingerman-II:  Mid-pack...mission failed successfully
95 Chevy S-10