Making room for a clutch pedal

Since I’m back to square one on the T bucket build, I’m contemplating how to make enough room in the footwell for 4 pedals including the dead pedal. Now installing a mid engine leaves tons of room for a clutch because everything is behind the body so all I need to worry about is linkages. But as low as the Sprint-T is the transmission and bellhousing will be fighting for room with the gas, brakes, and if I get a manual transmission the clutch pedal.

So one thing I was thinking about was my 210 or so pounds sitting halfway between the center and the outside of the body has a moment of 2362.5 inch pounds. I can off set the engine and transmission by an equal moment and get a perfectly balanced car for autocrossing, and that many inches will be available for pedals and feet to push the pedals. My worst-case is an all-steel SBC with a TH 350 transmission that weighs a total of 695 pounds that is 19″ wide at the crankshaft, and much wider at the heads. The tricky part is I only have the width of the front firewall to work with because of how the body pinches down to the firewall on a T-bucket. On the driver’s side I have 3½” of room without offsetting the engine to the right. Add in the offset and I’m looking at 6.9″ (175mm) of side-by-side foot room to fit feet that are 173mm wide the pair without shoes. My absolute worst case is the 4.6 Mod motor by Ford that weighs a ton and is like 22″ wide where the footbox goes, same size as the Coyote but 200 pounds heavier and half the power. The moment for that engine alone is almost the same as the SBC engine with the TH350 transmission. It’s a good thing that engine is so durable because otherwise it sucks as an engine.

Actually I don’t need to fit my feet in that space, just the master cylinder(s) and linkage. I have an entire 7½” to put my feet, side by side with the SBC engine mounted on centerline, or 11″ with the engine offset. Which leads me to ask how small were my parents’ generation’s feet, because I know there were Track Ts with the body mounted down low over the engine and the driver with his backside inches off the racing surface sitting beside the transmission, using a frame that had been heavily “Z’d” to get the engine and body down low.

I was also thinking about using the kit brake mount and a false floor over the master cylinder to move the pedals out of the way. I’m not sure how I would get that pedal hooked to a balance bar pushing two master cylinders to adjust the brake balance, but I can figure that one out after I get up in the morning.


How does a single party in control of both houses and the presidency shut down the government? #TrumpShutdown

Alternate title to today’s post was Charlton Heston’s line from Planet of the Apes. “You finally really did it,YOU BLEW IT UP! AH, DAMN YOU! GOD DAMN YOU ALL TO HELL!

I don’t like to get political in this blog, really, but this level of stupidity just floors me. I’m seeing over on Twitter that some in the Senate are blaming the Democrats for this. Might I point out that when you were basically opening the Treasury to corporations and the 1% you didn’t need Democrats to pass it. But failing to keep the lights on and the bills paid is somehow on the Democrats. I’m still a bit hazy how the math works on thar, especially when there were two bills, one that had broad support, and one that was so bad even Republicans had to hold their noses but still could have passed. So, which one went to vote? Seriously, I don’t know. Did anything get presented for a vote before midnight?

And where is #CheetoJesus during this catastrophe? Getting ready for a “party” at his resort that has $100K/couple as the “cheap seats”, fawning distance requires a quarter of a million dollars per couple. A quick reminder that campaign contributions for federal elections are under $3K per family per election, so this can’t be for Trump’s 2020 campaign. So where is all this money supposed to be going other than The Donald’s wallet, in strict violation of the emoluments clause of the Constitution?

I can’t take it any more, I’m going back to sleep.

Still detoxing, nothing much else going on

Short post tonight. Detoxing has seriously screwed up my sleep schedule so I am putting off getting my schedule straight until I get my meds straight. Right now I’m on a vampire sleep schedule getting up around sunset after getting to bed around sunrise. After detox I’m going to try moving waking time to 0900. I have a deadline of 2/14 as I need to be awake for the Lab Rat Keeper at 1130 after a 2:15 bus trip. The table for detox gives me a week of leeway to get my sleep schedule right.

I know I can do this, but I have to safely get rid of the anti-depressants.

It’s really cold here

It has warmed up to 59°F (15°C) in my office via trapped body heat, up from 54 (12) when I sat down at the computer. Outside was even worse at 29°F when I fired up the laptop, 23 now. For readers in lands where the metric system is in use, those are all minus temperatures where you might live. We are looking at possible single-digit temperatures in the early morning (-13°C). Needless to say, I’m not calm, cool and collected about the cat’s fortunes tonight.

Other fun things: the touch pad that acts as a mouse on my almost 5YO Chromebook doesn’t work except for the left click when I push on the pad until it clicks. I could really use a new laptop here at Casa de El Poeta. I done wore this one almost completely out. Dead keys, dead battery, now a dead mouse pad.

In other news I’m in better shape than Our Fearless Leader. Even taking into account the numbers released were fudged in his favor, I’m 30 pounds lighter than him. And I look a hell of a lot better than he does. Which I should, because I have died a lot more than he has. To my knowledge, I have died at least 2 times more than Trump. Not twice as much, two times more, there’s a big difference. And BTW the next time I die I’ll know how to use the viewer because I’ve used a touch screen and understand gestural interfaces now. It would have helped if someone had explained that instead of saying I should become one with the universe. Of course most of their customers have a lot longer to play with the interface than I had. I mean what’s 2 minutes compared to eternity? They look at the new guy getting frustrated and they say “Give him time, it’s not like he has anyplace else to go.”

And in spite of the best I could do with both cats adding their best body heat, the temperature has dropped to a finger-numbing 56°F, so I’m going back to bed where it’s nice and warm under the covers. BTW that means that both cats are inside out of the worst of the cold. Clint and Clyde are both comfortably warm tonight.

I’m detoxing, posts might get weird for a while

I’m eliminating all the brain drugs because the side effects are worse than the disease. I was taking anti-depressants because untreated PTSD from when I was a kid turned into depression, so I took SSRIs which helped the depression for a while until the side effect of destroying my ability to have sex kicked in. I managed to get most of a year in without depression, and I had a positive attitude and everything. I was even cheerful and talked with my wife regularly. That was great while it lasted. but eventually side effects kinda blew that out of the water.

So, then I changed meds in an attempt to find one without sexual side-effects, with the first attempt getting the side effects in full effect before the intended effect of reducing depression even started. Which brings me to the current med, that uses a chemical strategy that does not even affect my depression. Well my soon-to-be-previous-med, that takes as long to wean off of as it required other meds to be clear from my system. It will be about 2 weeks to detox enough to switch to an SSRI. Then at least another 2 weeks to get back up to speed on the SSRI as I mourn the death of my sex life, or not. I might decide to just save the money and live in a dull, grey world, and retain something of my sex life.

In other news I was going to get my toes done Tuesday, but we are experiencing the southern end of an arctic cold front that dropped the temperature about 40°F overnight, from a high of 57° to a forecast low of 20 tomorrow morning, with wind chills expected to be in the single digits. That’s chilly. We had to fight to get the cats to come in and stay in because they want to be out in what is still pretty warm, and now they are pacing the hall yelling to be let out.

Change in circumstance leads to change in mental state

I don’t know if I will ever have the re$ource$ to build out any road-going version of the hot rod, and it has caused a downward trend in emotional futures here at Casa de El Poeta. Those of you betting the new anti-depressant was not going to work after it “settled in” can now collect your winnings. It looks like I can either have a sex life or not be depressed, but not both at the same time. And that knowledge is depressing in and of its own self. Throw not having the financial resources to build the car on top of that… Fortunately I’m staying above the suicide line. I’m sad I won’t have the hot rod, and all that but I won’t let it drive me below the suicide line, I’ve been there and it is a Very Dark Place (using Milne Capitalization for emphasis).

On the other hand, not having to restrict myself to any rules or regulations except “will it go fast” and “will it be fun to drive” turned loose a bunch of mutants from the imagination. One in particular was based on the A-Mod car with the 90° Vee Twin sidewinder engine next to the driver, and the exhaust pipes running out the passenger side of the body and a small gas tank hanging from the roll cage to feed the EFI pump. That one would have been funny-looking with the rear axle tucked up behind the body and the front axle just far enough in front of the body not to hit the tires against the fiberglass at full lock. No visible engine, especially if I run the exhaust under the body. And not enough room outside the body to put an engine as small as the 420cc Predator from the local Harbor Freight store.

I then went through all the permutations of putting a liter class I4 motorcycle engine in the car, using both the mid-engine short chain drive to a differential and the front-engine offset to a lightweight rear axle. Both of those would work as long as a separate electric motor could be used as a reverse. I was sticking that engine in every which way trying to find a performance advantage. The only way that had a theoretical advantage was the mid-engine short chain drive. So still thinking even though there’s really nothing I can do with it.

OK I’ve been doing this writing thing for a while, and my nose is froze just from normal breathing. And right now I’m listening to “The Bertha Butt Boogie” on YTM, the album version. In case you thought things were “normal” around the ranch. I think I was in 8th grade when Jimmy Castor did his thing with Ms. Butt. The other hit from that album, “Troglodyte” is also in my rotation. But that still doesn’t do anything to make my office warmer than the current 64°F which is the warmest reading I’ve had with all the TVs and computers running plus my personal heat pumping into the space. It was 62° earlier when I first looked today.

Getting back to the opening paragraph, now I need to go through detoxing from my anti-depressant, which takes about 2 weeks to do and from the instructions sounds like Hell to go through. There are 2 main reasons to go through this, the first being it doesn’t work for me and I don’t need any more chemicals running through me than absolutely necessary. The second thing is this med makes me sleep half the day, and depression does that to me all by itself, I don’t need any help in staying unconscious. So the med has to go. I guess I’ll be unmedicated for a month to see what my baseline feels like, I really need to test that when I’m playing with my brain chemistry. Back to baseline after a failure. Making a note of that. Right here in my blog I’m making a note that I need to spend a month without brain meds to gauge my mental condition after I have a brain med that fails to work as advertised.

And with that, I really need to take this shoe off. I have a toe that needs a trim and the nail base is starting to hurt. If I try to run around the house unshod I’ll be hurting from another source so I need to get my feet back in bed where they will be warmish or so. I think I really need to hit the road and get my nails done in the morning, or after I get up since technically it’s already over 2 hours into the “morning” as I post this.

Stupid cat won’t come in out of the cold

Yep, Clint keeps going back out into the freezing cold weather. The aggravating thing about that is Mrs. the Poet is the one letting the cats out to freeze in the cold. It’s almost as if she wants them to leave or something. I get them to come in and she turns around and lets them go back out a few minutes later and then doesn’t wait for them to come back in a few minutes later as cats do. And then I spend hours at the door trying to call them back in from wherever they have holed up for the night. I end up with popsicle knees because she can’t keep the cats in when the weather gets cold.

And it would be so easy to do, just don’t let the cats out when they get done with dinner, act like you don’t hear them for a couple of minutes and they shut up and settle down for a warm night inside. I can say this here because Mrs. the Poet and our mutual friends don’t read my blog, because they read it a few times before I stopped writing about and linking to bike wrecks and decided it was “too depressing”. That’s one of the main reasons I stopped covering bike wrecks, I was making myself more depressed. Now I can semi trash-talk her and Mrs. the Poet will never even know. Of course I would never deliberately really trash talk Mrs, the Poet, calling her a pushover for the cats is pretty much as far as it will go.

And basically what I’m saying is I’m worried about the cats in the cold when she lets them out.

Operation Time Shift underway

I’m currently at hour 20 of Operation Time Shift, intended to put me to sleep at or shortly after 2200 tonight so I can be functional by 0700 Thursday. I will be back throughout the day to update this post, so yes, I’m liveblogging again.

OK just passed 23 hours and coming up on 24 and as long as I don’t have to pass any field sobriety tests I’m good.

Passed 24 hours since I got up and I keep finding the world tilting and I’m hanging out of my chair. This ain’t good.

Coming up on 26 hours awake and I’m getting my second wind, although the world still tilts alarmingly on occasion.

Almost hour 28 and still hanging tough, but it’s getting harder and harder to sit up straight in my chair, I seem to be leaning heavily to the left. And I’m also having trouble telling my left from my right. That ain’t helping at all. Also all that coffee is taking its toll on my bladder sphincter as I have totally lost count of how many trips to the bathroom I made since sunup. Somewhere in excess of 14, but less than 20, I think.

Still caught in a circadian slip

And pretty much nothing else to report.

I don’t have anything to use for the powertrain or any raw stock to use for a build. Basically if I was moving on this build I would be driving in circles, except I don’t have an engine or wheels, or a gas tank. I have a really neat steering wheel, most of a front axle (in pieces), and a body. And several square miles of mental plans with options for different engine/transmission combinations.

Now: Circadian slip. This is a real thing. I’m getting up at 5 every day, but instead of 0500 I’m getting up at 1700. So I have to figure out how to make myself sleep and get up at 0500 instead of 1700, something that has never happened in my life. Part of the problem is we are so close to the Winter Solstice that there is very little daylight for resetting my biorhythm. And artificial light at night doesn’t help keep me running on a diurnal as opposed to nocturnal rhythm. And my anti-depressant med makes everything, except my depression and my sex life, worse. Seriously, the soporific effect of Mirtazapine is so bad that I can take it and spend the next 12 hours asleep so I need to do the 36 hour reset one of these days soon, but I already took my pill for this 24 hour period and will probably be asleep soon. I just have to remember not to take my pill tomorrow night and then zombie through until Thursday night before sleeping again. I’ll need 2 pots of Opus grade Coffee (beyond weapons grade) and a clear path to the potty, and I should be good to go (and go and go and go…).

Now to work out the logistics to staying awake for 36 hours at 59 years of age and sign off…

Nothing to report

I basically have just been hanging out and thinking and not really doing much because I lack the resources to do anything with. I have made some detail changes to the center section of the combined Sprint-T/TGS2 build that unless you somehow managed to get copies of the previous designs for comparison you wouldn’t notice the changes. Still trying to get the taking the meds schedule to mesh with the “normal” sleep schedule and having zero luck doing it.

Y’all have a good one.