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This weekend found a lot of friends of Garage Woolery visiting for our Summer Tech Day.  Many of them pitched in to help with the Charger project, helping us to remove the entire front end off the car:   engine, transmission, K frame, and front suspension were all removed in one day.

The method we used for this removal may seem a bit unorthodox, but is the correct way to remove the involved systems.  Unlike the classic method of using an engine hoist to lift the engine out of the engine bay, we basically did the reverse procedure used by the factory to install the suspension and drivetrain.  At the factory, the engine, transmission, and suspension were installed by lowering the body onto the K-frame/engine/transmission/front suspension as a unit.  Aside from ancillary connections (hoses, electronics, etc). the entire drivetrain is held in by just 5 major bolts!   After disconnecting all the ancillary bits, we were able to simply lower the engine to the floor  using a couple of hydraulic jacks.  Then we lifted the front end of the car to make room for the whole assembly to slide out from under the car!

Once we had the assembly out from under the car, we installed special caster wheels that mount to the frame rail using the same bolt holes previously used to support the k-frame assembly.  Then the car was lowered onto the casters, allowing the body to be pushed around the garage at will without needing jack stands.

Next step:  We’ll be sending the Charger body to Blackbird Fabworx to have a custom suspension upgrade installed, as well as some serious chassis stiffening, seam welding, and a custom cage install!

Today we added a much needed new member to the Garage Woolery family:  The Shop Truck!

This truck is a vintage 1954 Chevrolet 5-window pickup truck.  Except for paint and some newer wiring, everything on this truck is original!  It’s in great shape for its age, though we do plan to go through the mechanicals to ensure everything is up to snuff.  It will be used as a shop truck, too…this beauty will not be a garage queen.  The thing we love most about this truck is the beautiful vintage smell of the interior.  It’s that perfect mix of mohair, oil, old fabric, fuel, and whatnot that gives the car an unmatched aromatic patina.  Expect to see some Garage Woolery logos on the doors soon.

 

Yesterday we visited Blackbird Fabworx in Northridge, CA to have a custom windshield header bar fabricated for the Pitcrew Roadster.  Moti did a great job turning our ideas into reality.  This modification essentially turns the existing Hard Dog Hardtop rollbar into a 7-point street semi-cage.  Do do this mod required welding captured nuts into the windshield header to distribute the loads over a larger area, as well as fabricating a custom mounting pad and welding it to the main hoop of the roolbar.  It does a great job adding stiffness to the body, eliminating all cowl and windshield header vibration.

Here are some pictures of the mounting points.  Notice the bolts that hold the front of the brace.  These are bolted into nuts that have been welded into the windshield frame so that the stresses are dispersed over a wider area.  The rear view mirror screws are not placed under any stress at all, they still only hold the mirror in place.

The rear mount uses four allen bolts to a plate with welded nuts inside the mount.

This bar will not only act as a chassis brace, but will also be used to secure the G-String bikini top instead of the PVC tube that comes with that top.  The bar is also a bolt in affair, allowing it to be easily removed.  These pics show the bar in its unpainted state, but it is being sent out to be powdercoated for a nice finish.  Once it’s back in place, new SFI padding and a leather cover will be fitted to the rollbar again.

We had the opportunity to upgrade the black leather Lotus Elise seats in the Pitcrew Roadster to red leather Elise seats.  Considering the Lotus inspired exterior colors, we just couldn’t turn away from these!

We’ll be adding some more red to the interior to match the seats later.  We’re thinking red carpet (removeable with snaps), and red leather door bolsters & dash crash pad.

Just in time for spring, the Pitcrew Roadster has received a new custom G-String bikini top from Project G!  Project G was running a group buy on these tops, and we couldn’t help but ordering one in custom matching colors for the car.  It keeps the sun off the shoulders during hot days, and is very lightweight!

Today we installed a set of custom made carbon fiber side panels for the Ariel Atom.  These panels will clean up the rather dirty aerodynamics of the Atom, increasing it’s top speed by approximately 15mph.  It’ll also help keep out the rocks, pebbles, and other debris from inside the cockpit.

We’ve also upgraded the rear wheels and tires, increasing the wheels from 16×8’s on 225/50/16’s  to 17×9’s and riding on wider 275/45/17 Toyo R888 tires.  This bigger & wider rear tire setup has been track proven to reduce lap times by up to 2 seconds.  We can really feel the difference in the handling, the car is much more planted in the corners and power oversteer on turn exit is greatly reduced!

The carbon fiber used to make the side panels is the same weave  used in the body tub construction, and the weave was oriented so that it matches up to the body tubweave, too.  This ensures a clean look.

Garage Woolery Stickers

We just had a run of a couple hundred stickers made up, a hundred in the traditional Garage Woolery green and yellow colors, and another hundred in black and white.  We were originally planning to sell them at cost to enthusiasts…

However, we here at Garage Woolery recently learned of the passing of one our own in the local sportscar enthusiast community,  Kevin Harney….also known to many online as Darkdrifter.

Kevin was a well respected, nice guy who did a lot for the Southern California sportscar and drifting scene.  He was the kind of guy who helped a lot of others in the auto hobby.  We decided to use these stickers to help raise a little money for Kevin’s surviving family members in their time of need.  If you would like one or more of these stickers (and help raise a little money for his family in the process), please send a self addressed, stamped envelope containing a donation (we’d suggest US$2.00 for each sticker) specifying which sticker(s) you’d like to:

Garage Woolery Stickers
ATTN:  Kevin Memorial Fund
10131 Shady Point Drive
Whittier, CA 90603

100% of all donations raised from this run of stickers will be donated to Kevin’s family.