6 Jul 2008

A busy weekend. Saturday the table was finished, attaching the remaining panels and lifting the heavy *cough* bastard *cough* onto the sawhorses. Borrowed the engine hoist and scales from my brother so I could answer a question that’s been bugging me for a long time: what are the drivetrain component weights? I expected it to be about the same as the Honda H22A1 I used in Kimini, or about 475 lbs. This engine’s basically the same, in fact it’s a bit larger, 2.4 liters instead of 2.2, so it seemed fair to expect about the same.

So what does a Honda K24A1 weigh? Engine + exhaust manifold + alternator + starter = 283 lbs. This does not include the flywheel or clutch (I have neither), nor engine mounts. The 5-speed transmission weighs 87 lbs + 10 lbs for the intermediate shaft, for a total of 381 lbs. Figure 8 lbs for an aluminum flywheel and maybe 15 lbs for the clutch. As far as I can remember, these are the same parts included when the H22A1 was weighed. So the grand total is 403 lbs, which is pretty awesome, a lot lighter than the H22. Of course neither total includes the engine mounts and axles but I’m pretty happy. It nicely lowers the weight by ~70 lbs and moves the CG further forward, now at an estimated 40/60 front/rear. I’m happy.

On the floor alongside the table is the bundle of wood that will become the mockup. I’ll buy some plywood to make 90 degree “bends” for the cage, but things are moving along. I included a sketch (preliminary) as a teaser so you can get a feel where things are headed :). The last shot was after I turned off all but one of the lights, the first parts of the puzzle on the table, awaiting their buddies to become something pretty cool.

1 Jul 2008

Regarding the next book, I’m considering a “cookbook” binding so that it lays flat, convenient for the garage. OTOH, it doesn’t look quite as professional to me, and the kichen-type cookbooks we own have an annoying habit of not standing upright in a bookcase, slowly sliding down and either warping or falling over. I realize this is getting way ahead of things but I’m wondering what you think, if it even matters.

30 Jun 2008

Kimini is in storage, freeing up garage workspace (I almost thought Kimini was going to sell last Saturday, but oh well.) After a very long (and of course, hot) day the table is mostly done, leaving only the top surface left to to install. It shouldn’t have surprised me how heavy the table is; it’s a beast, enough that I had to get two neighbors to simply turn it over. As construction progresses we’ll see how smart it was going to the effort and expense of a 5′ x 10′ table as opposed to a 4 x 8 that would have been easier, cheaper, and lighter. Oh well, I won’t be whining about not having enough table space.

What’s with the hole in the center? Since it’s a 5 x 10ft table made from 4 x 8ft sheets, some puzzle-solving resulted in using three full sheets with no leftovers. It did result in being four square feet short though, so the hole has been labeled an “access port” if I have to get up under the chassis.

The big pile of boxes behind it are parts: engine, tranny, seats, pedal cluster, fenders and nose which will go on the table and everything else going underneath. Got to free up floor space so I can move around.

Once the parts are in place it’s a matter of getting everything where they’re supposed to go and see how it all fits. As was done with Kimini, I’m going to resist (very difficult) going straight to steel and will instead build a wood mockup. It saved so many goofs and much heartache that it more than makes up for its time and cost. I can see the design in my head; it’s now a matter of fine-tuning the details, especially since plans will be based on it. Much like Kimini, it has to be right the first time.