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The USFRA has new Club Car, Thanks to your support!!

This car is to provide an opportunity for the hardworking volunteers of the USFRA to get a taste of Bonneville racing. Many of these folks work year after year to provide racers with a quality LandSpeed event, without ever getting a chance to feel the thrills every driver gets when “the course is yours”. We intend to fix that. The only way to ever get a chance to drive this club car is by volunteering and working at least two USFRA events.

It should be made clear that this “USFRA Club Car” is not intended to be a racing vehicle, it is a Bonneville Trainer and Licensing car. It will never compete for any class records. It will provide the opportunity for workers to get a better understanding of the safety issues from a drivers point of view. It will open the door to their first Competition License steps and status as a Bonneville Driver (priceless!!). For those that earn a chance to drive, it will provide a highlight of their Bonneville experience.

Visit Mooneyes.com -- supporters of the USFRA Club Car Project!

If you're working on a Mustang project, head to AmericanMuscle for Mustang auto parts


To receive Email updates on USFRA Club Car progress-- email a request to be added at
clubcar@saltflats.com

Club Car Project Progress!!


Thanks ever so much to all who have so generously conbtributed.

 

email clubcar@saltflats.com

Club Car update 2/19/13

The USFRA Club Car Project is nearing Completion!
A group of dedicated volunteers has steadily and quietly been workin all along. These photos show the progress. The car is gorgeous when seen in person. the detail work remaining includes electrical wiring and plumbing supply lines. Expect an appearance of this Roadster at the Utah Valley University Car Show --Saturday May 18, 2013.

Club CAR at UVU Car Show 5/18/2012

The Club Car with shiny fresh Paint and Graphics was on display with a great selection of Bonneville Salt Flats Cars in big USFRA Display.

Still some finishing touches to be completed, but looks very nice in the company of the other race cars.

On the back deck lit yoiu can see a list of the folks who contributed and worked on thsi project.
Click on the photo for a closeup view of the list of names.
If your name is on that list The USFRA Volunteers want to say a big hearty "Thank You"!!
If your name is not on that list, it is still not to late to help out.

Body Paint and Graphics 5/08/12

More evidence here of that work that has been quitely progressing all winter. This Roadster took tons of quality fiberglass and body work to make ready for Paint and Graphics.
The excellent body prep and paint are the result of many hours of very skilled labor by the USFRA's own Dave Maxwell.
Ron Christiansen designed and applied the sharp looking graphics.
The Ferrari Yellow paint is coutersy of BASF, and the vinyl graphics were donated by Schmidt Autobody here in Salt Lake City.
What you see coming together will be completed and on display at the upcoming Utah Valley University car show May 19 & 20.


Yeah, this is gonna be cute!!!!!

 

Chassis Paint 4/28/2012

Much work has been quietly been ongoing over the winter. This is long and winding Roadster Project is about to blossom in to one SWEET RIDE!!

Here is just a taste of what is in store over the next 30 days. The chassis is now complete, and freshly sandblasted and painted.


Lots of bracing and gussets. There is no flex in this structure.


The highly trained and exceptionally skilled Paint Crew-- Hugh Coltharp and Monte Widdison admire their labor.


Just a glimpse of the exceptional structure designed to handle horsepower and protect the driver.

 

 

Club Car Update 1/25/11

Hi All

I hope the winter weather is being mild to you.

The USFRA volunteers have been quietly working away on the Club Car. There has been much work on the Fiberglass Roadster body. It was purchased as a "Race Weight" part, and indeed it was very light. We determined that to stand up to the rigors of Bonneville competition it would need some stiffening and reinforcement. Since the doors and trunk lid are molded inplace, the drivers will climb in over the side, and the body itself will mount to the frame via Dzus Fasteners along the bottom edges. So some of these areas are going to see a load. We have bonded into these particular areas, extra layers of fiberglass matt and fiberglass cloth. We also added a special stiffening core material called Coremat. You can see the Coremat as white areas in the black fiberglass layup matrix.


Notice the white "Coremat" reinforcing high stress areas.

Before our work the body it was very flexible and even somewhat fragile. Now it has substantial stiffness, and great resistance to bending and twisting. All this has been done carefully, so as to make the body "want to" be in a shape that closely matches the Frame and its support and mounting points. The body shape is at its most relaxed when positioned on the chassis. This work is being done by guys who have built and raced roadsters for many years, and it is clear that the club car is benefiting from a wealth of experience.


Now the body is feeling very firm and strong, yet still very lightweight.

We are now starting the process of fitting the Toneau Cover (rigid cockipt cover) to the body. The Toneau cover provides a more aerodynamic streamline surface than the open cockpit. In order to get it to fit properly, the vestiges of the windshield mount posts must be sawed off and that small area rebuilt with fiberglass cloth/matt/resin layup.

We intend to have the club car on display at the upcoming AutoRama, March 4-6, 2011.
We hope to see you there!

Club Car Update 9/06/10
Hi All
It’s been a busy racing season. We displayed the rolling chassis at World of Speed 2010. I hope you all got to to see it. Here’s a shot for those who weren’t fortunate enough to make it to Bonneville this September.

Remember, at World of Speed 2009, this car was just plans on a drawing board.


Work has been progressing. The master fabricators at McNeese Racers Supply have been busy.
In these photos you can see lots of new diagonal bracing, steering box installed and functioning, a firewall, steel floor panels, front shock mounts, pivoting spring shackles (lets us have enough caster without spring bind) and a lot of other detail work.


We had a lot of support demonstrated at the salt, including one anonymous donor who left an envelope containing 5 fresh crisp $100 bills at the gate as he was leaving the races.

Thanks to all who helped, this wouldn’t happen without your support.
One more detail----We have an engine!!! A complete ready to run racing engine. The longtime Bonneville racers (and currently NHRA Top Fuel Racers) at Strasburg racing in Lindon, Utah donated much machine work and time, to make this top notch powerplant possible. Visit www.strasburg-racing.com for your racing engine needs, you’ll be in good hands.


We will again be working on this car soon, hopefully getting it back on the chassis table in my Salt Lake City shop sometime around Thanksgiving. Hope to see you there!

email clubcar@saltflats.com

 

March 15, 2010 Update

It has been a very busy few weeks leading up to the Salt lake City Autorama. The Club Car Build Crew reached our goal of presenting a "Roller" at that prestigious show. Those of you that build can appreciate the milestone attained when you can "Push a car instead of carrying it." Here are a couple of photos shot as we loaded the car into the Autorama hall.

As you can see, it is a very nice start, however we are far from finished. Much work remains, and there is a lot of enthusiasm and energy among the Club Car Build Crew to continue. The realities of time, club funds, and need to prepare for the upcoming racing season will likely inhibit progress for a while. We intend to mount the fiberglass body and to install the steering system components. By then it will be approaching Racing Season. Many of those folks in the photos below have to begin preparing for Bonneville, as it always arrives sooner than expected. The car will be on display at World of Speed in September so that you can inspect our handiwork.

One of the best things that have accompanied this build is the enthusiasm and interaction the work has generated within the USFRA volunteers. You can sense the energy and participation shown in the photo below taken as we loaded the roadster to go to the Autorama.

Remember, this project would not be possible with out YOUR support.
Thank You-- from the USFRA volunteers.

Jan 29 2010 Update

USFRA volunteers have been busy. Deep inside the Secret SkunkWorks we have been cutting and saddle notching tubing, measuring, grinding, welding and making a significant start on this project. We are still awaitning delivery of the Rod-N-Race Fiberglass body, but the basics of the frame are emerging from the pile of tubing.

We put the USFRA's Chief Starter (and generic Tall Guy) Monte Widdison in the drivers Seat to determine roll bar height. We intend this car to fit a wide range of driver sizes, so we start with the large. Next will be raising the seat so that the smaller persons helmets are also properly centered in the roll cage.

The prebent roll bar hoops were intentionally left long to allow custom fitting.

This is starting to look like a race car chassis.

Dec 2009 Update

That 4" Drop front axle from Joes Speed Shop made a great place to start.


The Basis of the frame resting on the chassis table- note the Ford 9" Rear axle housing.

I addition to the parts clamped up on the chassis table, we have many other parts prepped and waiting. we want to check a couple of dimensions on the fiberglass body be fore we commit.

The tricky business of fitting round tubes together to form a good tight fitting junction is no trivial matter. Working as a group we have developed tooling and fixtures to allow us to create multiple identical parts.


Progress will continue into the New year. I hope to have great progress photos to add in the next month.

October 2009 update.

Racers have been very generous in contributing to the Club Car Project. Brian Savage has stepped up to the plate and graciously contributed funds to purchase a fiberglass roadster body from Rod-N-Race fiberglass. Now that the USFRA's World of Speed Event is complete, we will be ordering this critical component very soon. A number of items were given to Larry Volk at Speedweek for use on the car, including a set of SBC aluminum cylinder heads, and an assortment of custom fabbed aluminum tanks. I expect that we will use these tanks for water and fuel. Also, The group of folks who came to World of Speed and ran the beauticul vintage Austin-Healys passed the hat and had an auction at their Bonneville Dinner, to benefit the USFRA Club Car project. They donated $1650.00 to the Club Car fund. Amazing support from our new friends, and congratulations on your successful of the Vintage Racing Austin-Healeys to the Salt.
Thanks to all who have been involved and contributed.

We will be rescheduling our fabrication skills sessions for late October, once my shop (and Myself) have recovered from this years racing efforts. We will be practicing Saddle Notching 1 5/8" steel tubing and experimenting with various fitting/alignment techniques and we will be working on best practice methods for tack welding Saddle Notch Joints.

Feb, 2009 Club Car Update

Progress continues. The great people at Joes Speed Shop in Ponca City, OK. chipped in with a freshly machined Model "A" Front Axle with custom 4" drop. Joe shipped it complete with new spindles and all the shiny bits and pieceslike spindles and kingpins needed to get us rolling. Joe makes most of the dropped axles like this nationwide. Nice people and excellent traditional parts!!

As I mentioned previously, getting a handle on a chassis design has been a challenge. Considering that the Roadster is one of the most traditional of Bonneville vehicles, there is suprisingly little information avaliable detailing construction. So I have been gathering information--I think the process is called Research!! About thanksgiving myself and another USFRA guy visited Larry Volk to check out his very successful Bonneville Roadster.

Larry is past President of the USFRA and current President of the 200 MPH Club, and has been racing successfully at Bonneville for a long time. What I learned while photographing and measuring his Roadster is that building on traditional '32 Ford frame rails is not the only way to go. Maybe not even the best way. We aren't building a street rod, we're building a race car. So I went back to the drawing board--literally. I started with a fresh reading of the Roadster Rules.

Here are the SCTA Roadster Rules in a nutshell.

Exact replica of a roadster body as produced between 1928 and 1938
Bodies shall be mounted in a conventional manner and all stock panels must be mounted in their original relationship to each other
No modification is allowed to the body from the stock firewall location back and the window down
Door hinges, windshield posts, filler caps, and brackets may be removed
The bodywork between the original windshield line and the grille shell is optional
Grille shells must have a minimum of 530 square inches of frontal area
No fenders are allowed
A rigid tonneau cover and headrest fairing are allowed
Distance between the bottom of the frame and body at the windshield line, is not less than 28-1/4”
Streamlining allowed: Air Ducts, Air Intakes, AirVents, Hood Scoops and Headrest Fairing.
All other streamlining is NOT allowed
Any type frame may be used and the body may be channeled to the bottom of the frame
Engines may be set back 25% of the wheelbase
Driver must remain entirely forward of the rear axle centerline and behind the engine
Overall length of the car, from front of grille shell to rear of the body, is no greater than 143”
Minimum Wheelbase Requirements: Engine Classes AA, A, B, C, D, E, XXF, XXO 100 inches

With those rules in mind, I started drawing. Heres what I came up with.

The information gathered in that sketch allowed me to start designing a fully defined roadster in my favorite CAD program. Every item in this assembly is a fully defined part, complete with dimensioned detail drawings, and sub-assembly drawings. Now I can get a handle on how much tubing is required to build a chassis and roll cage.!!

Next Steps

We have a local chassis builder bending a set of the roll bar hoops. We need a body for fit up and to make sure we get everything in the right places. We have been looking at a one piece fiberglass unit like this Rod-n-Race unit. If anybody has one let me know, maybe we can make a deal.

The USFRA membership is scheduled to discuss Club Rules for this car at our March meeting. Hopefully we will arrange for a Crew Chief and a couple others to help cordinate the upcoming work. So many local folks have offered their help with fabrication.
We look forward to the build, This is gonna be fun!!!

Thanks for your interest in this project, It couldn't happen with out your help!!
clubcar@saltflats.com

Nov 2008 Update

It has been a while since we have updated the club car project. The delay was not due to neglect—instead, we have been busy finishing up from the largest World of Speed to date. Also, there has been so much going on behind the scenes, and so many things pending that we have been waiting before updating.

So where to start---Well, for one thing, we have undertaken a big change in direction. It has been decided that in the interest of Bonneville tradition, we are going to build a Roadster. We will not proceed with the building of the ’75 Chevy Monza. We will use some of the parts from Lloyd Perry’s Chevy Monza donation, including the Ford 9” rear end and the steering box. We are looking for a good home for the Monza. We would really like to see this ’75 Monza be built for Bonneville competition, if you are interested, let us know. (This Monza has gone to Bo Burkdoll and will be a Bonneville Project.)

Instead of building the Monza, we will focus on fabrication of a traditional Roadster, to run in the Fuel/Gas Roadster class. Remember--this car will never compete for class records, it is intended as a Bonneville trainer and as reward for USFRA workers.

Second, the response to our request from parts and financial donations from the racers has been greeted with an amazing display of generosity. We have so many folk who would like to donate, that I have been requested to put together a detailed “Parts List” specifying what we have and what we need. More on that a little further on.

We had a number of racers step up at World of Speed and donate some big ticket items.

George Poteet shipped us a pallet containing a full set of 4 new Goodyear Land Speed Eagle Bonneville racing tires mounted on new Taylor Made steel wheels.

Bud McManus donated the Chevy 350 CID engine/trans as mentioned previously. We have also had cash donations. As you probably know, cash is pretty useful stuff. We had cash donations from Guy Lombardi and from the West Culver Garage Guys. We look forward to more of your excellent support.

We have also had a number of offers of assistance. For example, Straussberg Machine has offered to assist us with preparing the engine.

Richard Spencer donated 2 fire suits and a brand new set of Nomex Underwear.

Mostly however, what folks have been asking for is a list of what items we don’t have for the project. I have attached a first draft of that parts list as an excel file. I am still adding to it and refining it. Click Here for Parts List

I have begun to pull together what I hope will become a list of what parts we have, and what parts we need. I needed some point of reference to create this list, and I have chosen the Speedway Motors catalog and web site as that reference point. The Speedway Motors guys are longtime Bonneville supporters and Land Speed Racing veterans, they offer most all the parts needed to build our Roadster Project, and their catalog is one of the most widely distributor in the Hot Rod Industry.

I need to make clear, Just because I describe a part, using Speedway Motors language, part numbers, and their online photos of the part does not mean that only the speedway motors part is acceptable. In fact equivalent parts from any vendor, from your own custom fabrication shop, or an original part that will do the job is what I mean. The speedway references will simply help to make sure everyone is talking about the same “Kind” of part.

This “Parts List” task has made clear that I don’t know squat about Roadster design. In putting together this parts list, I can see that there is a wide variety of choices in design and construction details. The Roadster is an art form unto itself. The local USFRA has a number of longtime Bonneville and street roadster builders that will guide us thru construction of a sharp traditional Bonneville car with safety as our primary goal.

We are also very interested in YOUR opinions on style, design, cockpit layout and part selection.

Email us—We want you to weigh in. Please feel free to suggest what choices you prefer, and for purpose of discussion, Speedway parts numbers and/or photos are great for letting all of us clearly understand you’re your ideas.

The USFRA Club Car now has it’s own email address!

Send your thoughts, ideas, suggestions, opinions and concerns to clubcar@saltflats.com

--Racers--
If you have parts and pieces sitting unused in your shop, please consider donating some of those parts to the USFRA Club Car Project. The donated parts will be cleaned, inspected and repaired, if we can use them, we will. If they aren’t exactly what is needed, they will be bartered, traded or sold and the proceeds used to acquire parts and pieces we do need.
Be assured that nothing contributed will go to waste, and nothing will go into anybody’s pocket, this is an all volunteer effort.

Our hope is that one day in the not too distant future, you will see the USFRA Club Car sitting in the staging lanes at World of Speed, and you can say,
“Yeah, I helped the USFRA get that one going!”

Thanks in advance for your participation.

To help out, contact any USFRA official
or
Email
clubcar@saltflats.com


To receive Email updates on USFRA Club Car progress-- email us at
clubcar@saltflats.com

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