After the dyno running-in and set-up of the engine, Steve and I both thought all we would have to do is insert the engine back in the car, connect everything up and away we go.
It didn’t quite work out that way, there were a few snags, but Steve and Dave thankfully sorted out the last few issues and I headed up to Wembley on a cold and wet Friday afternoon to pick up the car.
I called Steve at Jaz on Tue 11th Feb to see how he was getting on after he’d picked-up the engine from Neil Bainbridge’s dyno the Saturday before. The good news was that the engine was “almost” in the car. The “almost” was due to bit of a problem with modifications to the oil cooling system – he suggested I visit the following day to see what was what.
My mate Stan and I headed up to Jaz on the 12th to find engine man Dave at work underneath the car which was up on one of the Jaz ramps. The engine was fully fitted and attached to the gearbox which had remained in the car whilst the engine rebuild was in progress.
I called Jaz on Mon 3rd Feb and got the great news that, at long last, my engine was being run-in on the dyno at BS Motorsport.
Earlier, Steve had temporarily given up on his fight to bore out the mis-matched 2.0L inlet manifold to 2.2S spec. However, through a fortunate and timely parts swap, he got hold of a proper matching 2.2S manifold to stick on the engine which enabled dyno testing to go ahead.
Steve had delivered the finally complete engine to Neil Bainbridge (who heads-up BS Motorsport) a couple of weeks previously, but we had to wait patiently for Neil to return from his annual pilgrimage to Daytona and then for him to then catch up on a backlog of other engine jobs.
With running-in under way – I arranged to meet Steve at the dyno the following evening (Tue 4th Feb) to discuss the running-in results with him and Neil and to observe adjustments and further power runs to optimise engine set-up and performance.
I was reading an article in the Nov/Dec 2013 edition of Classic Porsche about a recent celebration at the Nurburgring of the late, great Stefan Bellof and it reminded me of the times I’d seen him race in Group C endurance cars in the early 80s.
I was fortunate to see him during a period where he was one vital half of a wonderful racing partnership with Derek Bell driving a Porsche 956 in the Rothmans sponsored factory team. What I didn’t realise was that Bellof was idolised by a young up and coming fellow German driver – Michael Schumacher! Shades of the Vettel & Schumacher relationship in more recent times.
This event has been held annually for a number of years now to coincide with the weekend of the London To Brighton Veteran Car Run. To show the cars Regent Street is closed is closed off between Oxford Circus and Picadilly on the Saturday to allow a range of the veteran cars participating in Sunday’s run to be viewed at close quarters. Their owners also tend to turn up clad in matching period costume which makes for quite a spectacle.
Sorry folks – I had hoped to be reporting back on the results from dyno testing today but Steve at Jaz has still not managed to retrieve the throttle bodies. It looks like the engineer working on them is missing presumed on half-term holidays.
The good news from Steve is that the fan is sorted and ready for him to pick up en route to BS Motorsport for the dyno test. He’ll fit it before plugging the engine into their test cell.
My old mate and fellow petrolhead Pete who works out in Oman sent me a link to to a really funny advert on Dubizzle – a Dubai based website. The ad was for a “Very special classic car – 1969 Aston Martin”.
They say that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery but trying to make a 69 Spridget (MG Midget or Austin Healey Sprite) look like an Aston Martin is stretching imitation to its limits.
The 911 is a very peculiar beast. Without going all Clarkson by railing about the bonkers rear engined VW Beetle layout – the most peculiar thing about the 911 is the length of time it’s been in production.
With 50 years of continuous modification the 911 offers seemingly endless opportunities to update or backdate cars according to personal taste, prevailing fashion or market values at the time.
As the weather was much better than forecast I went down to Brooklands early yesterday morning. It’s a bit of an anorak’s paradise but there is some interesting stuff there and the remaining sections of the banking are quite poignant.
the old workshops
The old workshops and sheds contained some nice old cars & bikes and there were also some interesting original and replica planes in the big hanger. John Cobb’s 23 litre Napier Railton is one of my favourite cars – it set a Brooklands outer circuit lap record of 143 mph. There was also a fantastic Alfa streamliner that was originally designed by Vittorio Jano to challenge the all-conquering Silver Arrows but he was sacked by Alfa before it was completed. It disappeared and then resurfaced again in 1978. It’s been restored back in Italy and looks fantastic with a mid-engine, central driving position and passenger seats either side. Shame it never received the V12 engine it was intended to have.