Professor_Brap (Forum Supporter)
Professor_Brap (Forum Supporter) UltraDork
10/28/20 9:32 a.m.

Glad your ok, hell of a story to boot. If you need anything let me know. 

Justjim75
Justjim75 Dork
10/28/20 12:54 p.m.

Daaaaaaamn!  Glad it wasn't worse, hope the insurance takes care of you

barefootskater (Shaun)
barefootskater (Shaun) UberDork
10/28/20 2:01 p.m.

The 2020 challenge was awesome. 

We landed in Gainesville at about 5 on Thursday. Checked in and hauled all our stuff inside.

 
Folks were totally awesome. Super helpful, super nice. We got started swapping wheels and watched other people filter in. Registration opened, we got our stickers and everything and the poor old Mudstain became a real racecar. 

Food was grilling (thanks hobiercr!) and the atmosphere was great. John brown located me a sander and the wheels really became the focal point of the car. Free wheels are best wheels. 
I couldn't sleep. Too excited to go racing. 
Friday morning I got up early, smashed some food in the hotel and followed Siri to the track. We set up our canopy and took a walk to check out the competition. About 9 the course was open for walking and shortly after that tech opened too. 
I had signed up for first shift course work so when they called us out I was stationed at corner 1 and got a first look at what was happening. About 15 minutes into the 30 minute practice session, JG got on the horn and said if any course workers wanted to get some practice before competition started that we were free to do so. So I did. I got two laps in before they called it and I parked the car for a bit so I could go watch. In those two laps I realized just how hard I could push that car before traction was lost. 
This is only the second autocross I've driven in and the first time I'd driven the mustang with a rear sway bar, good springs, and good tires. It was a revelation. I could control the back end with the brakes! 
The car struggled with two things. 
Power and understeer. 
not much I could do about power, but the understeer was helped by braking later and rotating into the corners. I got two times laps in and asked Allen to drive it. He only did one lap but managed to put down a 56.2 iirc. That was 4 seconds faster than I had done so far. In my remaining 3 laps I was able to get down to 57.6 and was damn proud I ran so close to a pro! 

I went to go find dad so he could get some fun runs in but just as we got back to the car it started raining. Fun runs were cancelled. Then they decided to postpone the drags until the next morning too. We spent the next couple hours waiting in the car in the rain. 

I sat in the back with the seat folded down and the hatch open. Some folks came by and we had good conversations. It wasn't racing, but it wasn't the worst way to spend an afternoon. 
Dinner was at 5, then we went back to the hotel to rest up. I slept through the pool party and only managed to swing out there at almost midnight on a candy run. Pretty sure I met Poopshovel, who wasn't even competing. 

Saturday morning we went back to the track and I told dad that he was driving. He had a wristband and had made the journey so he nervously went out and lined up. 

19.6

19.1

then I took a turn

19.4

then we talked about tires. We were not having any traction issues, and the stock wheels and tires were lighter and shorter so we put them on the rear and dad went back out

19.1

19.0

he came back and said he didn't want to break anything and didn't feel like he could do better so I made two more runs. I really wanted to hit my personal goal of 72mph which we hadn't quite managed yet.

On the last run I did 18.6 @72. Done. Goal managed. I had dumped the clutch at almost 4K and shifted at 6, right at the top of the tach. Crossed the line at 5100 in third gear. 
 

Then I decided that with a last place drag finish, and 4th from last autocross, I couldn't really hurt anything by actually being judged. So I plead my case and received 11.75, only losing 1/4 point overall. 

All that was left was the awards ceremony. I actually managed a bit of a nap first. We were awarded the longest drive honors and I got my picture taken! 
 

That was so much fun. Needless to say, I'll be back. Not sure when, might be a few years, but I'll be there again. 
 

Thanks, GRM, for making the event happen this year. Thanks to everyone who helped at the event and along the way. And congrats to everyone! I didn't see anything but smiles all day long (when I could actually see faces anyway). 
 

jfryjfry (Forum Supporter)
jfryjfry (Forum Supporter) Dork
10/28/20 2:43 p.m.

Glad you're ok.  What a mess!   But what a story!

barefootskater (Shaun)
barefootskater (Shaun) UberDork
10/28/20 9:40 p.m.

The next bad idea is beginning to form. I still do not know what my budget will be, so this is all a little hypothetical. Let me paint you a picture:

03+ panther. White?

but it's a wagon! 
 

No third row, just flat behind the rear seat. Delete the parcel shelf and relocate those speakers. Make the rear seat back removable or foldable somehow. And for fun, a big fixed "glass"roof. The only real trouble would be figuring out what donor to use for a hatch/ rear graft. 

slowbird
slowbird SuperDork
10/28/20 9:52 p.m.

In reply to barefootskater (Shaun) :

This is starting to sound like my kind of stupid. laugh

For what it's worth, I saw a Town Car wagon conversion once. I think they used a Caprice or some such thing as the grafting material. Taurus would be easier to find but maybe not wide enough. Better yet, get two Panthers, an old box wagon and a new fancy one. Put the boxy wagon part onto the newer car and splice the rounded back end onto the boxy one. Or make the boxy one into a pickup truck since it'll be halfway there already.

Oh and rear jump seats would be funny. I wouldn't want to ride in them on the highway, but an autocross run would be okay. You could have 8 or 9 people in the car all at once.

03Panther
03Panther Dork
10/28/20 9:55 p.m.

In reply to barefootskater (Shaun) :

I have a 06 Magnum I would gladly donate to that shenanagons! My wife won't let me do it to her mom's old car (my 03 Merc.) I don;t know what is wrong with her!

0 hit to budget, but AL is a LONG way away!

barefootskater (Shaun)
barefootskater (Shaun) UberDork
10/28/20 9:57 p.m.

In reply to slowbird :

Jump seats are genius. Pretty sure I could find a way to make that happen. Taurus rear would possibly be good. Easy to get the back half of a panther roof and fill in for the narrower hatch. Plus it keeps it all in the family so to speak. Caprice would probably be a better fit, but those are getting hard to come by. 

barefootskater (Shaun)
barefootskater (Shaun) UberDork
10/28/20 9:59 p.m.

In reply to 03Panther :

I'm not looking to build this for challenge, but if it fits... AL is a long way though. Shipping/fuel would cost more than finding one locally. If I could stomach a Chrysler, I'd just find one and save the effort, but I've had nothing but the worst luck with them. 

03Panther
03Panther Dork
10/28/20 10:00 p.m.

In reply to slowbird :

The ugly azz butt of the caprice wagons is the only reason I don't own one, so I def. would not use that! I've seen a photo-chop of that done, but looked horrible. I've even considered a Astro van dutch door top/back... since I have one of them around too! Not sure that could be tied in ok, though.

03Panther
03Panther Dork
10/28/20 10:02 p.m.
barefootskater (Shaun) said:

In reply to 03Panther :

I'm not looking to build this for challenge, but if it fits... AL is a long way though. Shipping/fuel would cost more than finding one locally. If I could stomach a Chrysler, I'd just find one and save the effort, but I've had nothing but the worst luck with them. 

Sadly, proprietary dodge electrics is the reason I did not fix this one back up. I loved driving it. I have toyed with the idea of swapping in my LT1/T56...

slowbird
slowbird SuperDork
10/28/20 10:37 p.m.

I hope these images will inspire you, rather than cause you to think "oh someone did it already, what's the point" as I sometimes think when I discover my wild ideas have been done before. laugh

Here's that one I mentioned before. Looks like F150 taillights, also.

 

Here's one that shows the Taurus option well.

 

I can't decide which one I would go with.

wae
wae UberDork
10/28/20 10:40 p.m.

What about

03Panther
03Panther Dork
10/28/20 10:41 p.m.

In reply to slowbird :

I assume both of those are actual cars, not 'shopped?

The caprice looks better done than the photo job did, and actually looks better than the taurus from that view.

03Panther
03Panther Dork
10/28/20 10:43 p.m.

In reply to wae :

Shorten that a bit, and remove the vinyl top, to "de-hearse-afy" it, and I could rock that! Never seen one.

slowbird
slowbird SuperDork
10/28/20 10:47 p.m.

In reply to 03Panther :

First one is definitley real, saw an auction listing for it with numerous angles. Second one looks real to me, but could only find one image and it was on pintrest.

03Panther
03Panther Dork
10/28/20 10:54 p.m.

By the shadows it looks legit... except now I shaved the rear door handle, and legenthened the rear window a bit. I think the taurus may be a win.

barefootskater (Shaun)
barefootskater (Shaun) UberDork
10/28/20 10:59 p.m.

Hearse is only ok if I can easily put a rear seat. 
the caprice graft looks better than the Taurus, but that's not saying much. 

Im thinking more of getting another cv roof to graft in the extra length. Would look more natural I think. I'm not sure what the extra side windows would be. Maybe some hinged flip-out things like the rears on an old extra cab truck. Of course I could make my own... but I'd rather not. 

barefootskater (Shaun)
barefootskater (Shaun) UberDork
10/28/20 11:00 p.m.

It's those Taurus taillights that ruin in. The glass doesn't look half bad at second glance. The roof rack is boss! That's a must have. 

03Panther
03Panther Dork
10/28/20 11:16 p.m.

In reply to barefootskater (Shaun) :

I think you could graft the panther taillight back in no worries. Ive got to talk to SHMBO'd again... then again, better not!

03Panther
03Panther Dork
10/28/20 11:18 p.m.

I would imagine the panther back seat mounting is under the added "floor" in that hearse. They are not very creative when the make 'em.

And I've got several fold down back seat options for ya, being the enabler I am!

barefootskater (Shaun)
barefootskater (Shaun) UberDork
10/28/20 11:51 p.m.

Eh. It's probably too much work for a daily. I'll probably end up in an old focus or something. Doesn't mean I can't dream about these shenanigans though. 
Supposed to get a rental car tomorrow and start talking with lawyers. No idea when I'll find out how much insurance will give for the mustang. Aggravating. 
FIL has a 96 explorer that I quite like, but something is messed up in the transfer case and I don't want to deal with fixing it. He also has a YJ (too thirsty, no good for kids) and a 2001 civic which is auto and a gx. And a factory bi fuel cavalier. If I was cool I'd buy the old brat and swap something cool in it but that's too much work and no back seats. 
Off to the classifieds to see what I see. The mustang came from FB, maybe I'll get lucky twice...

03Panther
03Panther Dork
10/28/20 11:54 p.m.

In reply to barefootskater (Shaun) :

My wife ABSOLUTELY agrees with the too much work part! You are disappointing those of us that want to live vicariously through you, though.

GIRTHQUAKE
GIRTHQUAKE Dork
10/29/20 1:00 p.m.

Thank goodness you came out of the crash okay; I'm in EMS and older vehicles always concern me greatly.

How are ya'll doin now you're at home?

barefootskater (Shaun)
barefootskater (Shaun) UberDork
10/29/20 1:07 p.m.

In reply to GIRTHQUAKE :

Dad is good. Back to work already. I'm pretty sore still. Pretty shaken. The bruises are starting to look rad. My head is a little fuzzy still. The worst part though, is the insurance put me in a rental. It's a Nissan. 

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