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BigMac Racing is back

posted 27 Apr 2011, 08:44 by Kieren McDonald
Well the engine has finally been fired up in the car once again after an eventful start (well kind of start!!) to the season :-) What a relief! A huge thanks to Dick Hunter, Rob Selby and Simon (plus family & fiancée) for their great efforts in making this happen!

Dick Hunter took the engine straight back to the garage so that the gearbox could be stripped and re-cased.  The engine was packed off to Rob Selby (thanks Leon!) to work out what the cause of the failure was and to rebuild in time for testing before the next race - quite a tight timeline!

Rob's conclusion for the failure was due to the old-style pistons that had been used, although no-one was to know.  The engine came with the car that Dick bought many years ago but had not been raced by him so was prepped ready for me and was running good on the rollers - new pistons were already in so there wouldn't have been any reason to pull them out.  Apparently the old-style pistons have a weak point that can lead to failure - most people know this so are machined to avoid this but presumably they had been put straight in by the previous owner, oblivious to this issue.  Unfortunately for me, I had the poor luck of finding out on the 1st race weekend.  Although admittedly, I probably could have saved some of the damage if I had spotted the oil pressure drop that would have presumably shown on the dial!

Rob fortunately had many of the parts ready to install and there wasn't much to salvage from the old block! It was decided to dyno the engine once built at Rob's workshop-invaluable at this stage in my opinion!  A couple of issues were found with the carb, timing, etc - one of which had caused my rev-limiting issue on the Friday testing.  Rob was extremely happy with the dyno run, stating there would be more power than the old block and is probably more reliable and good for a fair few years - let's hope so :-D  A video of the dyno run can be seen here.  It really is a great facility so you should get in touch with Rob Selby if interested!!

Simon then undertook the task of refitting the engine - a few issues arose but nothing stopped Simon pushing through to complete a great job - a brilliant achievement!

The time came to turn the power....ohhhhh, how good it sounded!! :-) It certainly sounded and seemed to run a lot smoother than the old block so money well spent, albeit a very expensive introduction to motor racing!

Testing is booked for Snetterton 300 on Friday 29th so we shall be celebrating the Royal wedding in style - I CANNOT WAIT!!! Let's all cross our fingers and pray for good luck for rest of season!

Looking forward to seeing everyone at Snetterton for the next rounds and hopefully getting plenty of laps under my belt...and a signature on my race license :-)