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Hi all and Happy 4th. 

 

Even though I'm originally a Brit, I would have wanted independence from the British Crown had I been here in those days.

 

Anyhow, I am working on the suspension of the car now having put to bed engine, clutch & gearbox. 

 

I spent a very interesting time on the phone with Simon the owner of Meteorsports in the UK, he is a long time racer of Caterham's and is a suspension specialist, we talked a lot about the merits of one way, 2 way, 3 way,  digressive versus linear damping and finally active damping. I was wondering what the good folks of this forum had to say on the subject.

 

For my setup I am leaning towards Nitron 2 way . but I must confess active has me thinking, based on the Tractive controller (used in RUF Porsches and a few others) it certainly has me intrigued, its about the same cost of the 3 way Penske or similar.

 

Glad to hear any thoughts...

 

Bart

 

  

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23 hours ago, Bartman said:

Even though I'm originally a Brit

 

Mostly forgivable.  Could have been worse, you could have been French!  :classic_tongue:

 

 

Bart - you dont really say what your car use is.  All track?  Road touring?  Racing?  Blend of track days road touring?

 

As a past customer of Meteor, I can attest to Simon's knowledge of shocks. 

Meteor Motorsports - General Sevens Discussion - USA7s

 

A couple of us have gone the Tractive suspension.  Hanns Per has it installed on a CSR in Switzerland for exclusive road touring usage.

tractive electronic damper installation - General Tech - USA7s

 

I have a project in play on a new CSR build that will be track focused.  The suspension is installed but the car is still being worked for integrating electrical.  

2021 Caterham CSR "CatKong" - Member Rides - USA7s

 

I know someone else on this forum has purchased the suspension but name escapes me.  Not sure he has installed yet.  

 

After visiting Simon in Wales in February 2020, I drove an R400 spec Caterham with the tractive suspension at Donington a month later.  It was a very interesting experience.  It took me 10 laps to stop "fighting" the car and reacting to the suspension changes mid-corner.  Once I did that then it was an uncanny experience.  The car was nicely flat in corners yet remained supple in ride.  If I slowed down the turn in, then you could sense the suspension harden up as the corner progressed. Its not overt, its quite subtle.  If not on a track, I bet you would never know.   That convinced me the Tractive is a better option than 3 way Penskes which was going to be my original choice.  The Penskes are superb shock absorbers, I had them on a previous Caterham, but the Tractive suspension is better again.   

 

The Caterham CSR will respond better to the Tractive active suspension as Caterham screwed up the specs and made it too soft.  But it was impressive on the R400 car I drove.

 

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Hi  Croc,

The visit with Simon must have been great, honestly were it not for COVID I would go see him this summer as I usually spend some time each year in the UK. There are so many really good guys in the UK for Caterham and Motorsport in general. 
 

For the car My plan is that it will be a track car and have very little (if any) road use I want to keep it for a number of years and have a car that I can grow into, my local  track is Summit Point and I will certainly track it there and others up the east coast. 
 

I am spending the 4th in Maine. It’s just like the UK.  Cold and Wet. 

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8 hours ago, Bartman said:

 

I am spending the 4th in Maine. It’s just like the UK.  Cold and Wet. 

 

As a former resident of Maine, I think you got off lightly.  Wait till winter.  

 

8 hours ago, Bartman said:

For the car My plan is that it will be a track car and have very little (if any) road use I want to keep it for a number of years and have a car that I can grow into, my local  track is Summit Point and I will certainly track it there and others up the east coast. 

 

Ok, so your approach with Tractive would be similar to mine where the presets on the controller will be:

- dry (hard/firm all round)

- intermediate (mid-way between soft and firm)

- wet or road ("soft" all round)

- Front soft (for tires going off or balance issues)

- Rear soft (as for front soft)

 

There is space for one other preset but not sure what it will be yet.  

 

Which groups do you run with at Summit Point?  Would like to try that track one day.  

 

 

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Bartman: What are your roll cage plans, if any? Here are a coupla shots of the custom cage on my track-only Caterham. As you can see, the driver’s side cage extends out about 9” from the side of the car. So it provides lots of crush space. I am not a fan of the stock Caterham cage as it has minimal crush space on the driver’s side. The downside of such a stout cage is it adds a lot of weight.

4BF4805B-D4CD-4CC0-9DAA-3D9287928092.jpeg

7C6B2033-ED28-4FD7-B45E-E259A8B9D5DD.jpeg

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Hi,

 

Thanks for the photos, my car currently has a track day hoop (not the flimsy Caterham one) an aftermarket one braced as yours but without the side impact and front sections, My plan will be to remove this and add something similar to what you show. It's not planned yet but is on the list with plumbed in fire suppression as well.

 

I ordered the active set up from Simon, not the 3 way R-ACE -2 but the mid level ACE-2, he is suggesting spring rates of 250 front and 150 rear. To get this to fit I am also fitting the wider track front wishbones etc. The wheels will be 8" Rear and 6" front 13" diameter, looking at the tire choices available I will likely use Toyo 205 and 225.

 

The Sadev is due to be ordered today with the geartronix GCU, for the moment I decided not to go paddle shift, although this might come later I want to run the car a bit before adding any more complexity. 

 

Best,

 

Bart.

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Posted (edited)

We have a great fairly local cage builder that I used for my cage, he is on the site Dan Lipperini in Exeter PA. I will try and find his web site, it alluding me at the moment. 

 

Graham  

Edited by fastg
Spelling, not my strong suite
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Thanks Graham,

 

I think its Racelabz.com, I will give him a call as its pretty close to me (Bethesda). Thanks again for the heads up.

 

Bart.

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Here are a couple of photos. It’s in storage at the moment so pics are dark. I didn’t see any specific information, or model # on it,  beyond Recaro Hans. 

 

I also have a fire suppression  system (the red bottle in the passenger area is linked to nozzles in the engine bay and activated by a pull-out knob on the dash), and a Fuelsafe tank, so it is a big step up, relative to the protection offered by a standard se7en, on the track, or off. 

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Thanks for the pics, the outer lip of the Recaro seat near the hips appears to be wider than the width of the cockpit, you seem to have overcome this by positioning the right lip over the tunnel, which I can’t do. Grrr. Sorry for hijacking this thread.

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Quick update on progress:-

 

Thanks to Graham I made contact with Dan @ Raelabz.com, absolutely super guy, I sent him photos of what I am looking for in a roll cage and he is up for the job, I will take the car to him and he will size it all with me in the car, I plan to ask them to make a similar/duplicate version of Kitkats.

 

Wheels and tires are ordered. wheels from Meteor Motorsports in the UK, Compromotive CSX 7" front 8" rear with tires from Roger Kraus, Avon ZZR 185/55/13 and 215/55/13, I discovered too late it was +/- $100 cheaper to have the tires shipped by Caterham but then Roger was great to deal with so its all good.

 

I had a lot of back and forth with Tillet on the B6 seats, finally I decided to give one a go with the sides cut to make it fit in the S3. I tired to buy this locally but it was +/-$500 more for just one seat than buying in the UK and shipping...

 

The gearbox is ordered from France, very nice folks there too and luckily I speak French so easy to communicate with, might be a bit harder if this is not in your skill set as the US distributor is kind of hard to get hold of to talk to, they are super busy with race support activities so not a problem just hard to get the hand holding I needed.

 

I did have some consternation about fitment of the gearbox to the engine, apparently Caterham supplied the T9 with a 30mm spacer between the bell-housing and front of the box, the bell-housing I have (and will re-use) does not have this spacer, after a little research it seems I have a Flowtech housing that was made specifically for Caterhams which is 30mm longer than standard and therefore does away with the spacer.

 

I received and mounted the Momo type 27 wheel onto a quick release hub, not a fan of drilling the holes needed as there is no template supplied so its back to high school geometry and a compass, went just fine and happy with the results. 

 

I decided to remove the existing windscreen and replace with an aero screen, again ordered from Simon.

 

Lastly, I have clamshell fenders currently and I have a spare set of cycle fenders and supports, I plan to replace the clamshells, they are in 100% great condition but I'd rather be able to see the wheel directly. I'm not sure what will need to be done to make this happen yet so if anyone has done this it would be a great help to hear how the supports are mounted and what you did with the headlights etc. 

 

Any Happy Tuesday.

 

Bart.

 

 

 

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I have attached pics of my Cat’s low profile lights, rivets filling holes where clams once existed, and long-delayed shot of my driver’s seat, looking at it from the passenger side. FWIW. I tried to fix the upside down pics, without success…..

 

AFAIK, all work, including the cage,  was done by Bruce Beachman at his Caterham/race shop in Washington state. He is a member here and a font of information. He may have the exact  roll cage measurements? If not, I am happy to send more pics of it.

seat.jpeg.3f8e844af76163ccd4657d99d8184da8.jpeg

 

 

FDF7D08E-618E-45C2-A4AC-53CC1CE335DE.jpeg

 

nosecone1.jpeg.552f49620e57204cf6d1b327d7d24a0d.jpeg

 

Edited by JohnCh
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The photos are very helpful. Mounting the lights in the grill is interesting, I assume no cooling issues with the slightly restricted air flow?

 

I need to take a good look at the cycle fender mounts I have and see how they mount to the upright, not sure if there is more to it that removing the clams making good then bolting on the fender supports and moving the lights, I like what you did with them, gets the lights out of the field of view and makes you more slippery I imagine . My car is sitting in a warehouse until I have assembled all the pieces and parts for the rebuild and not in my shop so I can't just take a look see.

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16 minutes ago, Kitcat said:

Thx John, the pics are better right side up:).

For some reason, some photos don't respond to the hack of rotating them in the native Windows Photo viewer.  I had to use MS Paint, which did the trick.  Now back to our regularly scheduled problem solving and upgradeitus programming...

 

-John

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The lights location has no effect on cooling.
 

Here are some more pics of other quirks/mods that the car came with. In addition to the 21 gallon fuel tank, for endurance racing.

 

The third  photo shows 2 hooks on the passenger side of the roll cage. I use one to hold the steering wheel, the other to hold my helmet. Surprisingly helpful. 
 

The bottom photo  is an off/on switch for the fuel pump. Helpful when starting a flooded engine.
 

The 4th photo is a dash shot. I have a combo oil temp/ water temp guage. The oil temp shows the oil  takes at least 5’ more to warm up, after the water temp says the engine is fully warmed.

 

Also in that shot, at the top, is a rev guage/shift guage ( a bunch of green LEDs, then 2 reds). When the reds both light up and then flash, it’s time to shift. I totally rely on this guage on track and ignore the rev counter.

 

The 4th picture is a custom jacking point. Very helpful in a 24 hour race, otherwise irrelevant, tho I do use it to change tires.

 

The top picture 

 most importantly shows the tiny low fuel guage between the 2 large circular gauges on the far left. This has save me  from running out of fuel inumerable times. It starts to blink when fuel is really low. Nothing is more embarrassing than pulling off due to low fuel, and having your entire run group flagged into the paddock, while you are retrieved (I suppose…..).

 

The red pull lever triggers the fire suppression system. So far it has not been needed.

 

It also vaguely shows  an A/F ratio guage. Helpful as a level of protection when doing chassis dyno pulls.

 

 

All in the for-what-it’s worth category.

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Dan is a great guy to deal with, he will build exactly what you want. A couple of tips, have the correct seat installed and don't forget you helmet so you can select the Hight, position and the rake of the top bars. Also make Dan's life easier and save you a little money strip everything out of the car that will get in Dan's way. Passenger seat, trim, any gas tank covers, you say your swapping to aeroscreen, but I would have the cage built with the windscreen in place in case you change your mind.  

 

I also know a great (the best I have ever used) in the area, Wally's Iron Works in Mt Airy. 

 

Graham  

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