One down

posted Mar 30, 2010, 5:46 PM by Scoob Edoo
Well, that was quite the experience.  Where to start?  How about the weather.  Forecast was for mid- to upper-50s and sun with clouds.  Reality was quite different - low- to mid-40s with no sun and occasional rain.  And wind.  Don't forget the wind.

My kart: got the motor started with little fanfare, a few times.  When it came time to roll up to the line during 2nd heat, the shifter came off of the J-arm!  Don't know how or why, but we found a nut that fit (ish) and made it work.  Then when I got it rolling, I found that there was no clutch action at all.  Not happy, but I made my first run by slamming the trans into 1st gear at the line and got some good action shifting and feeling the power of the TM for the first time.  It wasn't wet, but it wasn't dry, either, so I did some sliding around a little, but had fun.  The brakes were an issue, too - as in the brakes needed to be bled.  Badly.  Even though we had done it as our last item when Chris and I put it all together, we must not have gotten all of the air.

Chris went out and was pretty scared when he realized that there were almost no brakes for him.  He took it easy and nursed it around the course to make it back to bleed the brakes.  We also tried to adjust the clutch cable to see if we could get any action out of it.  Nada.

I took a second run and was letting it all hang out - the brakes were rocking and I was finding the powerband a little more easily and I was starting to have fun.  Until I got about half-way throught the run and got red-flagged.  There was an incident with the car in front of me and we shut down for at least 30 min.  During which time the skies opened... I had the rain tires, but between the brakes, the clutch, and many push starts, I was whupped and decided to end the day then.  I parked it and got ready for Kieran's runs.

So on to Kieran's kart: Started right up initially, and sounded strong.  When I was getting ready for his runs, I tried to start it and the pull string came out and did not retract (again!) - the recoil is slipping.  So I had to unmount the motor, take the starter off, rewind it and put it back together!  Not happy about the silly starter on that motor.  The other motor is just finished today, so we should be getting that one back and I'll mount that one to see how it runs.  And I'll need to get the 'remote' starter working to use that instead of the pull-start.

So Kieran took his first run in the new kart and was scared - the throttle stuck open and the brakes were not stopping the kart.  Scary for me, too!  But I fixed it and sent him back out for his second run.  He was more comfortable on that run, but the throttle wasn't responding well and it wasn't getting up to full-speed.  So there's a lot of room for improvement.  After that run, the kart was still revving very high and I was trying to adjust the idle and air/fuel mix to calm it down.  That's when he pointed out that the throttle pedal was actually jammed forward.  When I released it, the motor died.  Because I had messed with a few knobs, I wasn't able to get it back to life and he was done for the day, too.

Vicky ran her kart with the new 6.5 clone motor on it and she was fast from go.  It helped that she's using the same chassis as last year, so she was comfortable in it, whereas Kieran had to adjust for everything new.  Should be interesting to see how the season goes.

So now back to my kart, sitting on the stand, waiting to go back on the trailer.  I noticed that there was some oil leaking from the rear of the motor and got underneath to investigate.  2 mysteries solved: the oil was leaking from the clutch actuator which was missing the lower bolt that holds it onto the block!  So THAT'S why we had no clutch!!!  Replacing the bolt will solve both of those problems.  Chris especially is very interested in having a working clutch...

So now I have 2 weeks to get both karts ready for the 2nd Philly event.  And a week to get his racing kart ready for the first practice.  That one is still in several small pieces, but I have a plan.  Wish me luck.