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Old 27-09-2016, 11:17 PM
seanj seanj is offline
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Name: Sean
Camaro V2 - excuse for a rebuild

I had a lot of fun at the Apocalaps track day over the weekend.

Fun that probably stretched beyond my capability as a driver...

I hit a wall pretty hard around the back of the track towards the end of the day. I lost the rear end and spun across the grass into the barrier. I still can't figure out exactly why the rear end got loose. Maybe sand on the track? Maybe worn rear tyres by the end of the day? Maybe the car is just too much of a handful for me?

I caught the crash on a GoPro for your viewing pleasure of my pain.

https://youtu.be/QR5NdGdBAuE

The aftermath



Pretty flat front end



I got off pretty cheaply. My helmet hit the steering wheel hard enough to bend it.



I was a bit dazed initially, but came around after a few seconds. I've got a mild case of whiplash and mild concussion. I think I would have been a lot worse if I wasn't wearing a 5-point harness. I've got bruising across both shoulders and across my stomach where the the straps were. My advice to anyone doing this sort of racing like this to install one of these harnesses. Probably the only reason I don't have a f*cked up face, head or neck at this moment. It was the best $200 I've spent in a long time. It installed in an afternoon and clips out when I don't need it.

Thanks to all the crew who were checking on me, pulled up next to me on the track asking if I was ok, called me over the last few days or gave me a man-hug after the crash. The support so far has been overwhelming with lots of offers of parts, assistance and anything else I need. Thanks to Russ who helped pry the sheetmetal off the front tyres so we could load it on the trailer. Special callout to Tom who let me use his trailer to get the car home and probably didn't get himself home to about 8 at night after we finally got mine in the garage. You're all legends.

So in case you can't tell, this crash is now the start of the rebuild that I was planning on doing next year. The car has some rust in the rear under the roof and sills and i was planning on stripping it next year to sort that out.

Rather than just repairing the damage at the front of the car from the crash and leaving rust in the rear, I think this is an opportunity to bring that rebuild forward.

With that in mind, I did a quick damage assessment on the car yesterday to so I can plan the rebuild.
The damage to the car seems to be mostly cosmetic sheetmetal so far. The radiator is shagged and the front pulleys are scratched, but engine looks to be fine.

The subframe where the radiator support panel mounts is pretty badly bent.



The chassis connectors have bent at the mounting point to the subframe due to the force



The motor looks like it has moved at least 50mm forward under impact for the headers to hit the upper A-arm castle nut. (Crap photo)



Is it normal for the engine to move that far forward under impact?

Has anyone worked with subframe damage like this before? What's the likelyhood of it being bent?
Is this a good excuse to replace the subframe with an aftermarket one?

Rough plan at the moment:
  • Strip car and media blast
  • Replace front sheetmetal
  • aftermarket front subframe
  • keep the BBC (of course )
  • probably 4L80E auto
  • Rewire
  • new interior
  • Some decent bucket seats

tossing up:
  • Mini tubs
  • 4-link or torque arm rear end (dunno if there are any torque arm designs that will let me keep my Dana 60?
  • roll cage

Unfortunately, I've just sunk a heap of money into a 7 week holiday to the USA (parts buying trip? ), so won't be making any major purchases until next year. Will spend the next few months disassembling and figuring out what can be reused and what will need replacing.
Attached Images
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File Type: jpg DSC_0220.JPG (235.8 KB, 399 views)
File Type: jpg 20160926_065038206_iOS.jpg (143.0 KB, 375 views)
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1969 Camaro, green/black vinyl. 540 BBC, th400, Holley EFI, 4.10 TrueTrac Dana 60, too much rust and not enough traction.

11.015 @ 111mph

Last edited by seanj; 29-09-2016 at 09:51 PM..
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  #2  
Old 27-09-2016, 11:58 PM
Stealth 69's Avatar
Stealth 69 Stealth 69 is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: Perth
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Name: Justin
Quote:
Originally Posted by seanj View Post
Rough plan at the moment:
  • Strip car and media blast
  • Replace front sheetmetal
  • aftermarket front subframe
  • keep the BBC (of course )
  • probably 4L80E auto
  • Rewire
  • new interior
  • Some decent bucket seats

tossing up:
  • Mini tubs
  • 4-link or torque arm rear end (dunno if there are any torque arm designs that will let me keep my Dana 60?
  • roll cage
This gearbox - https://www.summitracing.com/int/par...600p/overview/

Mini tubs if the budget allows (more tyre equals more grip)

Definite 4-link/Torque arm upgrade - get that power to the ground - most kits have shaped mounts that weld to the axle tubes so you may be able to adapt
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  #3  
Old 28-09-2016, 12:50 AM
qik66 qik66 is offline
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Location: queensland
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Name: Neil
Ouch!! That looks like a hard hit, count yourself lucky to walk away. as for the car I think you will find the chassis is bent, would pay to put it on a straighten table to see if it has twisted.
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  #4  
Old 28-09-2016, 11:44 AM
70Chev 70Chev is offline
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Name: Darren
Sean

That sucks the giant hairy meatball big time. Glad to hear you weren't badly hurt and awesome you're turning it into something positive. Looking forward to seeing your build progress.

Darren
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  #5  
Old 28-09-2016, 12:31 PM
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D4RKSIDE D4RKSIDE is offline
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Good on ya for just looking forward and turning this into something positive mate. I don't think I would of been able to open the garage door for weeks.

So, what's the build name going to be?
I was thinking maybe "Shannons Green", "Hard Hitter" or "Loose End"?

What? too soon?
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  #6  
Old 28-09-2016, 12:32 PM
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tonner tonner is offline
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Sorry to hear about it Sean.
Glad you had the harness, in the rebuild make sure you have a harness bar installed as that will considerably reduce the length of the straps, which will stop you hitting the steering wheel, god forbid if it was to happen again. Oops, I just noticed the cage was in the tossing up section, please if you are considering to continue to run the car hard, move this to the top of your too do list.

Last edited by tonner; 28-09-2016 at 06:38 PM..
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  #7  
Old 28-09-2016, 05:07 PM
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skyper skyper is offline
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Wow i don't know what to say
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  #8  
Old 28-09-2016, 06:26 PM
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rodent rodent is offline
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With every ending is a new beginning, good luck with the rebuild bro
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  #9  
Old 28-09-2016, 09:46 PM
Booah Booah is offline
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Name: Denton
Hope your bruises are getting better Sean. Lesson learnt for me, harnesses and bar/ cage going in the stang for the next one.
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  #10  
Old 28-09-2016, 10:29 PM
seanj seanj is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by D4RKSIDE View Post
Good on ya for just looking forward and turning this into something positive mate. I don't think I would of been able to open the garage door for weeks.

So, what's the build name going to be?
I was thinking maybe "Shannons Green", "Hard Hitter" or "Loose End"?

What? too soon?
The car is in the garage backwards, so I am looking at it from the rear through the living room window, it still looks fine from the rear.

It's time to laugh about it. Mel has already been teasing me about the crash. Her proposed project name was "Pink Floyd", because it's another brick in the wall...although "Hard Hitter" is not bad. Open to suggestions on this one

Quote:
Originally Posted by tonner View Post
Sorry to hear about it Sean.
Glad you had the harness, in the rebuild make sure you have a harness bar installed as that will considerably reduce the length of the straps, which will stop you hitting the steering wheel, god forbid if it was to happen again. Oops, I just noticed the cage was in the tossing up section, please if you are considering to continue to run the car hard, move this to the top of your too do list.
If I continue with any track stuff beyond autocross(which I most likely will), I will be installing a cage and harness bar. I need to look into the legality of a cage though...
Will most likely get the body to you later this year for blasting Greg.
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1969 Camaro, green/black vinyl. 540 BBC, th400, Holley EFI, 4.10 TrueTrac Dana 60, too much rust and not enough traction.

11.015 @ 111mph
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  #11  
Old 28-09-2016, 11:35 PM
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tonner tonner is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by seanj View Post
If I continue with any track stuff beyond autocross(which I most likely will), I will be installing a cage and harness bar. I need to look into the legality of a cage though...
Will most likely get the body to you later this year for blasting Greg.
No worries Sean, To fit a cage the rear seat will need to be removed and it can only be a 4 point cage (nothing forward of the hoop).

The worry about running harnesses without a cage is that if some how it ended up on it's roof, the harness doesn't allow for the torso and head to move sideways and that won't end well.

On the tubs, you really don't want a big tyre on the back with a big block up front as that will only induce more push on the front end, the front and rear tyres should be balanced.

Can I ask why an Auto? a manual is way better for autocross and track purely from an engine braking standpoint.

If you are going to look at a new subframe, take a good look at the Speedtech deal, my mate Ron Sutton designed all the geometry for it and it's awesome.

Last edited by tonner; 29-09-2016 at 07:46 AM..
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  #12  
Old 29-09-2016, 02:26 AM
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69SS 69SS is offline
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Far out man. Great to see your positive spin on this bit of bad luck and that you walked away with whiplash and bruising only. Looking forward to seeing the rebuild!!
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Old 29-09-2016, 08:06 AM
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stuart stuart is offline
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Good to see your ok and your spirit in high.
When I pulled up next to you I could see how devastated you were.
I want be racing again with out a harness after this.
If I can help in anyway I am only down the road.
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Old 29-09-2016, 02:37 PM
seanj seanj is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tonner View Post
No worries Sean, To fit a cage the rear seat will need to be removed and it can only be a 4 point cage (nothing forward of the hoop).

The worry about running harnesses without a cage is that if some how it ended up on it's roof, the harness doesn't allow for the torso and head to move sideways and that won't end well.

On the tubs, you really don't want a big tyre on the back with a big block up front as that will only induce more push on the front end, the front and rear tyres should be balanced.

Can I ask why an Auto? a manual is way better for autocross and track purely from an engine braking standpoint.

If you are going to look at a new subframe, take a good look at the Speedtech deal, my mate Ron Sutton designed all the geometry for it and it's awesome.
Good to know about the cage Greg. Will be unfortunate to not be able to take the young one for a ride in the back, but actually having it legal would be a benefit. Harness bar would be a no brainer with a 4pt cage.

If using an aftermarket front subframe, I will be going bigger tyres on the front too. I was thinking about going 'square' tyre size (same dimensions all round), but not too sure how that would look with the camaro proportions? Most aftermarket front ends spruik being able to run a 305 wide front tyre

There's a few reasons why I want an auto:
  • It's cheaper to run an auto that can handle ~700hp rather than a manual. A ~1000hp rated 4L80e is ~$5k usd including convertor. A T56 swap would mean I'd need to purchase SFI rated belhousing, expensive clutch, pedal and master cylinder setup which I currently don't have.
  • I'm planning on drag racing this car as well as twisty racing
  • Wheel mounted paddle shifters are now available which bolt on
  • I'm lazy and like not having to shift when cruising
  • Running Holley EFI means I can program the shift points to my liking, so it should be a lot smarter than my current T400

Speedtech subframe is definitely an option. Rear end is the biggest question as I'd rather use my current diff. Being a Dana 60, it doesn't look like there are any torque arm options out there, so I may have to look at Chassisworks, DSE or AME for a 3/4-link rear end solution .

Quote:
Originally Posted by 69SS View Post
Far out man. Great to see your positive spin on this bit of bad luck and that you walked away with whiplash and bruising only. Looking forward to seeing the rebuild!!
Positive Spin... is that another pun Lyndsay?

Quote:
Originally Posted by stuart View Post
Good to see your ok and your spirit in high.
When I pulled up next to you I could see how devastated you were.
I want be racing again with out a harness after this.
If I can help in anyway I am only down the road.
Will keep that in mind Stu, thanks mate. Was still a bit dazed when you pulled up to be honest! Will let you know if I need a second set of hands when dissasembling.

f*ck knows how, but the Chev grille emblem survived pretty much unscathed! Might be able to flog it off to a commodore owner to start the rebuild fund

Attached Images
File Type: jpg 20160926_091824109_iOS.jpg (210.2 KB, 372 views)
__________________
1969 Camaro, green/black vinyl. 540 BBC, th400, Holley EFI, 4.10 TrueTrac Dana 60, too much rust and not enough traction.

11.015 @ 111mph

Last edited by seanj; 29-09-2016 at 09:43 PM..
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  #15  
Old 29-09-2016, 05:29 PM
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WILD68 WILD68 is offline
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Name: Jamie
Ouch! Sorry to see...

Ive spun out in my Camaro in that exact same spot, I only just kept it off the wall

But I have crashed into the wall at the motorplex and know the feeling all too well. Good luck with the rebuild!
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