Tag Archives: Mini Sprint-T

Happy SAD

For those not up on the current jive SAD is Singles Awareness Day, AKA National Condom Day, AKA Valentine’s Day and a bunch of other stuff. I chose this particular headline because it is a contradiction when read as the words they appear to be, but not in their literal meaning. I mean “Happy NCD” has meaning but no ironic subtext like “Happy SAD”.

Also a reminder that there are many suicides today by people who think they will never be in a relationship and a lot of these are single-vehicle “accidents” that sometimes involve innocent bystanders like pedestrians or cyclists. So stay alert out there especially between 2300 and 0100 tonight, that is peak time for Singles Awareness Day suicides.

Since I’m temporarily stalled on the 1:1 hot rod I have been doing some minor piddling around with the Mini Sprint-T, specifically the wheels. As delivered the Wide 5 wheels were way too wide for the street tires but too narrow for the race rubber. I have engineered fixes for both those problems but I only have the tools to fix one of them. As delivered the back half of the rim is almost exactly the right width, but the front side is way too wide. Since I still don’t have that lathe I’m going low tech, wet or dry sandpaper and an old mirror to get a flat surface to sand off the outside of the rim to the right width. Just as a reminder the W5 wheels I got from the vendor were for a 10″ wide (bead-to-bead) scale wheel while the street version uses an 8″ wheel and the race version uses a 14″ wheel. Also don’t forget there are 1″ wide bead flanges on each side of the wheel so the overall scale width is not the spec width*scale but the flange width*scale. Basically I need to take 0.08″ off the outside half of the wheel for the street wheel. The scale race wheel will be made with a vacuum forming machine that I’m building from the stack of broken toasters that have 2 settings: off and charcoaled bread, and the centers from the outer halves of the wheels that will be sanded down to glue inside the vacuum formed outers. The only thing I haven’t figured out yet is how to form the flange on the outer street wheel so the tire doesn’t fall off the rim before the glue dries.

I know this is early but I want that travel warning to hit as many people as possible so they don’t get hit later tonight.

PSA, Opus the Unkillable

That was easy, time consuming but easy

I feel accomplished today. I went for a walk and picked up something for Mrs. the Poet, then got some tools (files) from the hardware for working on the mid-bucket and the Mini Sprint-T, got a present for the B-Day party I was invited to on Saturday, and fitted one of the steering arms to the spindle all by 2100. I had to walk 4.2 miles to get all of the stuff done that I had to leave the house to do, and then spend about 2 hours filing tiny amounts of metal off the steering arm until it fit flat against the spindle registers. It’s a snug fit, almost an interference fit, but fit it does. The material is so hard that there were no actual filings, just a dark powder that got my hands dirty but didn’t actually spread anywhere. I used a mill bastard file that was designed for precision work by the captive brand for Lowe’s, Kobalt. It worked very well. Tomorrow I will take some pictures of the arm I didn’t work on and the one I did work on and show the difference in fit on the spindle.

I also used the walk to rack up check-ins on my phone game that pays me money to play. I hit my limit again. I may not be racking up the big points, but I’m still racking up points to get more gift cards. And then next month I start selling plasma to make up for the gigs I lost in 2016. So Yay! me.

PSA, Opus the Unkillable

Just chillin’

I need to go to the hardware and get a file or 3 to fix the steering arms so they fit the spindles, but right now my foot still hurts, so I’m sitting tight and just chilling and reading Twitter and web comics on separate devices. I prefer to use my phone for Twitter, and my laptop for webcomics, so until just now I was bouncing back and forth between the two like some kind of screen addict. Now I just have the laptop active while I do the blog post. The weather forecast is that tomorrow and Wednesday will be much warmer so I’ll do my walk then and get the files. Actually I’ll probably go to Harbor Freight on the bus and get a whole set of files. And I can also use these to make the Mini Sprint-T, files are useful tools.

So I just finished my walk to get the $$ for tomorrow’s shopping trip and it was about the same temp outside as it was in my office when I left, but now my foot hurts again. Tomorrow should be better.

PSA, Opus

Hope everyone had a merry Yule

Instead of a merry Yule I went on a 4.22 mile walk to pick up the car cover I ordered last week so my parts car doesn’t get stolen by Codes. I’m not allowed to have an unregistered/inspected vehicle on property but as long as they can’t tell it’s unregistered I’m good. In TX current registration/inspection status is indicated by windshield stickers so if they can’t see the windshield they can’t tow the car out of my driveway. This car cover is supposed to go all the way down to the rocker panels on the bottom of the car, so to see the windshield they would have to come onto my property (legal) and remove the car cover (not legal) to uncover the windshield.

The weather was slightly above normal temperature for the date, which meant I could walk in shorts and a t-shirt to the parts store to get my stuff. Of course I can do that down to about 55°F, but colder than that and I have to start throwing on layers toot sweet. If I keep moving and there is no wind chill 55° is uncomfortable but not excessively so, but the conditions were 60°F and light winds while I was out. On the up side with all the walking I’m doing I’m burning a lot of calories. Not as many as when I was riding my bike everywhere, but lots more than sitting at my laptop.

On the Mini Sprint-T front some of the changes I’m making on the mid T-Bucket will transfer over to the Sprint-T and because the one is supposed to be the other only smaller it will show in the Mini Sprint-T as well. TBH I see the changes as an improvement for frame stiffness and ease of assembly for the full-size version of the car. For the model, it’s ehhh 6 of one half-a-dozen of the other.

Time to hit the hay.

Opus the Unkillable Badass

People die, but life continues. Plus my Christmas list.

I finally processed another hero from my childhood shuffling off this mortal coil, and I can’t think of anything better to say than what Scott Carpenter said during Glenn’s launch into orbit: “Godspeed, John Glenn.”

Now what I need for Christmas (I need this regardless, but Christmas is a good excuse to send it to me).

The new bike needs head and tail lights and my DIY supply closet is fresh out of things I can hack for the cause. I would like a nice bright headlight that can use the 8.4 V lithium pack from the mega light that burned out, or a similar light that will let me stack two tail lights vertically and put one on blink and the other steady. I also have a diffusing lens from the headlight that fits a large variety of headlights like the Magicshine 303.

I really need some raw stock for the T-bucket project. The big one is 1.5″ square 0.060″ wall 4130 chromoly, I’m going to need like 40 feet of that. Also need 1.5″ x 0.120″ wall round for the roll cage (SCCA rules) about 20 feet, and another 20 feet of 1.5″ x 0.060″ round for frame rails. I’ll also need some light sheet but I haven’t figured out how much and what size I’ll need for that, so hold off on getting that. My welding supplies will handle 4130 alloy so I’m good on that.

If anyone has a small lathe they want to donate to the cause the wheels for the Mini Sprint-T will be much easier to mod to the right widths, and a lot of other things that need to be done as well. Otherwise I’ll have to figure out how to turn my Dremel into a lathe with hose clamps and 2X4s.

As always any cyclist will appreciate gifts of food. I have a weakness for Swiss Colony Summer Sausage and Mrs. the Poet loves their sharp cheeses and petit fours. Basically though anything sausage and/or cheese from the Swiss Colony is good.

And Amazon or Starbucks gift cards are always welcome. You have no idea how much a hot coffee or iced tea means when you’re out and about and don’t have cash on hand for a meal or snack. And there are always things we need on Amazon at a good price with free shipping. 😉

Last thing, there is a water-resistant windbreaker on Alert Shirt that would be perfect for this part of TX. It’s light enough to wear by itself in spring and fall rains and would also work as a wind-proof top layer over other stuff in the winter. I would need an XL for that.

Everyone have a safe day, especially those of you in the midwest in the blizzard conditions.

PSA, Opus the Unkillable Badass

OK, Seriously Bummed By This

Mrs. the Poet has placed her foot squarely on my dream of building a hot rod and ground it to flinders. I am not allowed to build my hot rod on the property where we have our house, and I don’t have any budget to build it any place else. So free parts car will have to be abandoned. Plans for the mid T will have to be discarded. Dreams of competing in Goodguys autocrosses are ruined. Hundreds of hours calculating frame member sizes wasted.

And the worst of it the $500 model T body sitting in the living room is now a literal white elephant (with a few spots).
Me in happier days
Dreaming of actually driving this thing.
Some of the spots
Here are some of the spots from the parting lines from the mold.

One thing that won’t change is moving forward on the Mini Sprint-T. I have to make a run to the hardware for another tube of mock-up glue (that I’ll also be able to use to repair Mrs. the Poet’s damaged Hummels she inherited from my mother) but the drills and adjustable collet I got for my Dremel tool have already been put to use cleaning up some parts and doing a little bracket fabricating. The dead toasters we got are being used to make a vacuum-forming machine to crank out modified bucket bodies in scale. (Three heating elements in a toaster, of which 2 can be used to make a heating unit for a vacuum former.) And I still have the 3 scale engines I can use (the SBC for the most-likely version, the LS7 for the “ultimate” version, and the Coyote Ford for the “Ford in Ford” version). The Coyote was dropped from consideration for 1:1 construction after doing a weight comparison to the LS series and actually seeing how far it hung past the sides of the bucket firewall. Not a good look without “blinging” the heck outta the engine to make it look goodbetter. Now don’t get me wrong, the Coyote is a good-looking engine, it just is Really Wide when installed in a T-bucket which makes it kinda dominate the visuals, forcing a cosmetic makeover.

And in other news I’m taking a day off from my walks, mostly because my left foot feels like it has been beat on with a big stick and my butt feels sore on the right side b/c I have been walking without the lifted left shoe. It has been years since I did any kind of walking without a lift on my left shoe to make up for the loss of about 17mm in my left leg from the crash, and the bottom of the foot is having to get used to just having a normal thickness sole between it and the concrete when I walk. It’s also really disconcerting when I walk in the house in my slippers and I hear rice crispy sounds with each step, but that’s the reality that has been getting louder the last 15 years. Part of that is just the reality of getting older unrelated to surviving getting hit @ 60 MPH with a truck.

Billed @€0.02, Opus the Unkillable Badass

I just got a check from Facebook

I’m going to be quite honest about this and say I had forgotten completely about the issue that resulted in my getting the check, to wit Facebook using my name and avatar picture for advertising purposes without requesting permission first. This took place shortly after MySpace started censoring the sh!t out of links in my blog and I left MS for WP and FB.

So anywho, I have a check for $15 that I will now spend on useless things like groceries and comic books. Probably more groceries than comic books.

Also while I am doing a post, I bought a keyless chuck for my Dremel tool through Amazon using the gift cards I get from the mobile game, and a set of tiny drills to use in the chuck from Lowe’s using the card that I can’t use everywhere but I can use in a few places they pay me with at another one of my side gigs. This means I can finish building the scale SBC for the Mini Sprint-T. And yes I’m still building the Mini Sprint-T even though the full-scale car will now be mid-engine with a Mopar V6. One slightly ironic thing is the Sprint-T had to have an automatic transmission because there was no room for 3 pedals between the transmission tunnel and the side of the car, while the mid-engine car will have a flat floor and acres of room for pedals but no manual transmission available, just a full manual controller on the slush box.

While on the subject I have mostly finished redesigning the frame for the switch from front to mid engine. One thing I changed was the location of the forward hoop of the roll cage, which was also a crossmember of the frame, that had a diagonal running from the top of the rear hoop to the bottom of the front hoop. On the front engine version this ran through the passenger compartment, but on the mid-engine version I’m moving the bottom rail out from under the body and the bottom of the hoop likewise meaning I don’t have to figure out how to get the painted body back on the frame with parts of the frame under and over the body and one big part running through the body, because that “one big part” will now be outside the body. It will be a close fit but it will clear. The other thing changed was the location of the front coilover mount both on the axle and the frame. The new axle mount will be as close to the end of the axle as possible without the back of the spindle making contact with the unit at the ends of the turning travel, on top of the axle tube. The new frame mount will be high above the axle so that the front wheel doesn’t hit the diagonal from the frame mount to the bottom of the front hoop of the roll cage at full compression and full turning travel. This is a very unlikely place for the wheel to be but it is possible so the frame has to clear the tire. This has the secondary effect of increasing d which increases the torsional rigidity of the frame, meaning better handling.

And that’s about it today, go ride a bike. I’m still stretching to be able to ride mine again.

Billed @€0.02, Opus the Unkillable Badass

Long time no blog.

I know I haven’t written anything in a while. There are reasons for that. First of all there has been a slow-motion train wreck going on in my Twitter feed because of the fuzzy Jack-o’-Lantern pretending to run for President. Second I got a bit behind in my e-mail and even doing more than 300 a day I’m still looking at nearly 1000 unread messages. Do you know how long it takes to get through 300 new emails in one day? And to compound that I have to stop and leave the house for a couple of hours every day so that I can maximize my returns on my phone game that pays me money, because it’s a lot more work now than it used to be. I’m still making the same amount of money every week, but I have to get out every day and max my checkins to do it.

Also on the “leave the house” list was grocery shopping, twice. Once was our regular day and again yesterday as one of my side gigs paid off $100 for several months’ of “a few seconds a day” work. The kicker on this one is I have to get paid in the form of a gift card that can only be used in a few places, otherwise it becomes taxable income that I would lose a major chunk of in the form of SS taxes. So there is only one store that sells food on the approved list…

And today I spent some time away from the house playing someone else’s character in a Shadowrun game. This time I was playing a 5’2″ 90 lb. Chinese girl decker and the character sheet said she was abrasive and cold with a chip on her shoulder. We were on a Zombie hunt, and also had to kill a vampire and rescue a werewolf from the corporate lab that created the zombies in an effort to have slaves that did not need to be paid because they were legally dead. Unfortunately zombies are unable to follow even simple directions so the project was in the process of getting shut down when the zombies and the vampire they were using to create them escaped into the lab. They managed to get the doors to the outside locked, but only had until sundown to clean things up before the vampire could let himself and the zombies out. Our Street Samurai took out most of the zombies, my decker took out a few, and the technomancer managed to get into the weapons side of the security system and take out the vampire and the rest of the zombies. We rescued the scientist/werewolf we were also supposed to rescue. My character disdained the males in the party to make a pass on the lady werewolf…

It was a good thing I have a Shadowrun dice roller on my phone because I would have needed a bucket to bring the d6 I would have had to have to make some of my attack and saving rolls. My dice app goes to 99 d6.

Last week we went on a 5 day camping trip in Southeastern TX, near Flatonia. This was memorable for two reasons: Mrs. the Poet went camping with me, and we both tripped and fell down a lot in the dark. I dislocated the other collarbone and bruised my other hip from the previous fall off the bicycle, and Mrs. the Poet skinned her knees and hands again. We also had about 9 times as much meat at meals as we are used to eating as “p'” people (too impoverished to buy a vowel). One of the big problems we both had was getting off the ground after getting out of “bed”. Another bed-related problem was Mrs. the Poet did not believe me when I told her to pack lots of blankets for sleeping and just packed the one that did not even cover us completely that we use to keep our feet warm in the winter. We still had a great time anyway.

Off on another tangent, my full-scale T-bucket project just took a major change in direction. I had the engine and transmission from a running Chrysler minivan practically dumped in my lap for barely over scrap value. Plusses: we are talking really cheap engine and transmission for less than the core charge for a transmission on the previous version, this will take almost 200 pounds off the total weight of the car, moving engine behind passenger compartment leaves a flat floor with plenty of foot room, computer controlled transmission simplifies setting up mechanical portions of the controls; just a floor lever with 4 detents and two paddle switches on the steering wheel. Minuses: Engine makes 160 HP in stock form, both the engine and transmission are on the far side of 200K miles, both are computer controlled and need aftermarket computers to make them work in the T-bucket, most of the car needs to be redesigned to make a FWD engine and transaxle work driving the rear wheels behind the passenger compartment, FWD brakes don’t have e-brakes so e-brakes need to be adapted to one end or the other, almost all of the car weight will be on back wheels making sorting braking and handling dicey.

The prospect of going mid-engine on my T-bucket has really got me inspired again, ditto the prospect of getting the project moving towards completion some time before I die. The Mini Sprint-T project has all the parts I can’t make on my own and will continue as it was before with the SBC and the LS7 engines.

And that kinda gets you somewhat caught up on activities at Casa de El Poeta.

Billed @€0.02, Opus the unkillable badass Poet.

What happened yesterday and the State Fair trip today

When I left off yesterday I was barely succeeding at preventing a face plant into my laptop. I went to bed right after posting and slept until about 1000 this morning. I had my coffee and a warm poptart from the replacement toaster that showed up yesterday. I much prefer my poptarts to be warmed inside and slightly crisp from the toaster outside, rather than the cold from the package ones I have been having since Mrs. the Poet killed the old toaster. The reason we have a replacement toaster is the one I got the beginning of the month came with a defective timing mechanism that would not hold the bread-lifter down to toast. The heating elements would get power and start to warm things up but I had to hold the bread lifter down myself until the poptart or toast was done, not a practical thing to do when you are almost asleep and the coffee hasn’t kicked in because it’s still in the pot.

So anyway, yesterday. I went to bed about 0230, tossed and turned until maybe 0400, got up 0610, and stumbled through taking a shower until 0650. Unfortunately in order to get to the LRK in time I had to leave the house at 0645 and be fully dressed. That wasn’t happening. I finally got dressed at 0710 and got ready to catch the next bus and hope to salvage something of the day. I got to the LRK about 1015 for a 0930 appointment. Fortunately there was an opening in the schedule because someone(me) had missed an earlier appt. and they moved everyone else up because they were early. Then the fun started (again, pt. 2). My blood work from the previous visit had something that was out of limit for the study and hours were spent on the phone discussing it. In the meantime my blood sugar was dropping like the proverbial stone, because I had been up since 6-ish with nothing to eat or drink except the tiny swallow of water I used to take my antidepressant. The upshot is I’m going to have to go back Tuesday for more tests and I may have to miss my religious retreat/camping trip next week. Then I had to stop along the way to pick up something I bought earlier, then wait an hour for the next bus home and get bread and by the time I got done with that it was after 1700 and I was dragging tail. After dinner I tried to post to this blog and well you saw how well that turned out…

That brings us to Fair Day!😆😈 Time to look at cars, eat anything deep-fried, look at the quilts and other fine crafts, and walk ourselves to death. I had less of a problem because Mrs. the Poet doesn’t like to try the cars on like I have to. There were some of the cars that I had a much easier time getting in than getting out and vice versa. The thing was there was a lot of time I wasn’t on my feet that Mrs. the Poet was standing outside the cars, not good for her problem with her back. If anyone is interested Mrs. the Poet wants a red Corvette, a dark blue Camaro, a white Mustang, or a gunmetal Challenger. Add a black Fiat 500 Abarth to that list for me, on the costs-are-no-limit list. On the other list we had several compact hatchbacks with gas mileage in excess of 35 combined and still-spritely performance. We had nachos, deep-fried cookie strips, lemonade and Dr. Pepper ice cream for our fair food. There was a lot of stuff we wanted to try but that was the limit of our food budget ($20), and we had come on a day that had cheap food.

Looking at the crafts I learned there is an adult scale model class. I also learned that the Mini Sprint-T would qualify, which means that if I get to building I might be able to enter the finished model next year.

And it’s about time for bed again…

billed @€0.02, Opus the Poet.

I spent most of yesterday unconscious, also a large chunk of today

There is something out there that is trying to kill me, and not even aware of what it’s doing. Some tree, weed or grass is attempting to reproduce and in the process is making me miserable. I have burning eyes, a nasty post-nasal drip, and a hacking cough from the post-nasal drip. I have a treatment for it, but that treatment is also the same thing I use to go to sleep at night, and the known dose for treating allergies is twice what I use as a sleep aid at night. So I have a choice between awake and miserable, or asleep and not feeling like I’m stuck underneath a stampede of small cattle. That caught under the stampede feeling is because the intercostals in my chest are exhausted by all the coughing caused by the runny nose/post-nasal drip.

On the Mini Sprint-T front I have almost determined the length I need to cut the rear axle tube so that the rear tires track is the same as the front. The stock for the rear axle tube protrudes exactly 0.125″ inside the hub, and the brake disk has to be 0.1428″ from the front of the wheel mounting surface for a scale caliper to fit between the hub and the disk. Subtract the .0675″ thickness from the front of the mounting surface to the back of the hub as received and the back of the hub needs to have .0753″ of added material for the mount for the brake disk. That means the front axle will have (2 * .1428) + 1.92 inches or 2.2056″ between the mounting flanges, and the rear axle tube would be 2.056 – (2 * .0675) + .250 or 2.3206″ long, leaving .68″ for making the standoffs for the front hubs which would be the same 0.200″ as the rear hubs. Yay! for having more than enough raw stock on hand. I’m still pondering the choice of material for sculpturing the back side of the hub for mounting the disk.

Off on another tangent, I madecollected $6 this weekend from that game app on my phone that pays me to play it. So Yay! money from playing on my phone like it was a job. This is the same source of funds that I used to buy the rice cooker/vegetable steamer back in July, so perseverance and patience will get me good stuff. I have also used these funds to purchase most of the things I am using to make the Mini Sprint-T. The kits I bought for inspiration and as a source for making the body, the engine for the SBC version, the tires for the street version, and all the raw stock for making the frames, were all sourced through Amazon. The water pump and front engine mount, the LS7 engine and the 700r4 transmission for the SBC engine were sourced through VCG Resins, while the wheels, hubs, rotors, and rear axles were sourced through Ron Coon Resins . Those items were bought with money from other side gigs.

And that’s pretty much all I had to say today.

Billed @€0.02, Opus the Unkillable Badass Poet