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2002 Cmp Fall Lemons Wrap-Up


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So we fared well with the 2002 on its virgin Lemons event. ONLY $6k invested including $1100 in 2x sets tires/rims. We turned a 2:04 best lap and 160 total laps. The stock bakes with aftermarket pads worked alright.. in the front. The stock rear drums overheated and fried the brand new porterfield shoes. We plugged off the rear brakes and ran front only for the rest of the race. Later tthe front brakes overheated while Cj was keeping up with the tii. The Tii blew a diff in the last hours of the race with no spare on hand. One of the ring gear bolts came out and yea.... 


Me turning some of the best laps with full brakes and minimal traffic



Cj keeping up with the TII front brakes only, then overheating front brakes.



Car 200 was the carby and 102 was the tii. 40 and 3 penalty laps respectivly. 



mods to 2002


race weight with 170 lbs driver and 1/3 tank 2240lbs

2.25" mandrel bent exhaust

open element filter

stock brakes with Porterfield Endurance pads (front pad/rotors for sale soon with ~80% life left)

SS brake lines

38/38 de-choked, jets tuned damn close to perfect

wideband 02

bottle cap bmw e30 rims 10mm spacers to clear struts on tire deflection

195/60/14 Dunlop Z1 tires

Edited by sl0ride
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This carby 2002 is about as stock as one would want to take on a race track.  We intentionally avoided using fancy go-fast parts in an effort to maintain the exhilarating sensation of speed.  The car has ample body roll, and with zero camber up front and a welded diff in the rear, it pushes a bit in turns.  The outer shoulder of the front tires gets chewed up in a jiffy, requiring remounting of the tires at the end of each race day.  We'll address the front camber issue this winter by modifying the inner fender walls and moving the upper strut bearings in until we achieve 3.5 degrees of negative camber.  That way we'll be able to make do with all stock suspension and steering parts, which are both cheaper and easier to source in the event we need to replace those components in the future.  On the tii, we used camber kickouts and moved/rotated the upper strut bearings, achieving just a bit more than 1 degree of negative camber.  This cost money, and wasn't very effective.  It also complicated matters, as the camber kickouts aren't readily available, and they require non-stock fasteners.  Two of those non-stock fasteners came loose on the driver's side strut housing during our Lemons race at New Hampshire Motorspeedway last October, sending CJ into the gravel with no steering.


The motor produces usable power between 3k and 5500.  Above 5500, it falls on its face.  Pulling from 5500 to 6k on flat ground takes upwards of 5 seconds.  We suspect it's due to the restrictive emissions exhaust manifold.  We've sourced a crusty long tube header for $100 from a FAQ member, which will hopefully help squeeze a bit more out of the upper end.  Still, we're not trying to build an 8k Schnitzer race rocket; we're aiming for a reliable, fun car that we can campaign in Lemons and Chump Car events while we learn to race.  The predictable handling, reasonable power-to-weight ratio, and rather inexpensive parts make for an excellent race driver training car.  Being able to battle with other 2002s in a Lemons race is just icing on the cake.


As for the $6k cost referred to above, that's not really a fair value, as it doesn't take into consideration the $1000 of parts that were sold off the car, or the remaining $500 of parts that have yet to be sold off, and includes several high dollar items that were purchased by sl0ride at egregiously high prices when he was an innocent n00b.  The real cost of the car is closer to $3800, including the cage, wheels, tires, brake pads, brake lines, safety equipment (seat, roll bar padding, harness, kill switch, decals, etc.)  It's a real Lemons car, and was built on a Lemons budget.  We didn't replace anything that didn't absolutely need to be replaced.  We did all the work ourselves, including an absurd amount of body reconstruction and welding by sl0ride.


This winter the car will get a rattle can and roller paint job.  We're still discussing the paint scheme, but are leaning toward a race replica art car, possibly with fender flares and a rear wing.  We have to replace the rear main seal, which leaked like the Valdez during the race, and the shift selector O-ring, which also leaked profusely.  The rear subframe mounts are completely shot, as are the trailing arm bushings.  The Lemons organizers gave the car a $100 residual value at the conclusion of the CMP event, allowing us to spend $400 before the next race to get the car race ready and safe.  As the car will also be competing in Chump Car events, we'll be adding a fire suppression system, and possibly a few other safety gizmos.  All in all, we have a decent car to work with, and not an unreasonable amount of work to do between now and next season.


'76 2002 "Verona" / '12 Fiat 500 Sport "Latte" / '21 Toyota 4Runner TRD Off Road Prem “The Truck”


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  • 1 month later...

I am looking to do a ChumpCar build with a 2002, and would be interested in your thoughts, particularly in light of the new rules (http://www.chumpcar.com/downloads/2014-2016chumpcar-rules.pdf).  It seems like you could spend a few bucks on the motor or the suspension, but not both.


I helped build and Alfa GTV-6, which ran great but (surprise, surprise) was not super reliable.


They have shuffled the rules a bit, as the recent dominant cars have been:
E36 325 (in bone stock form)
E30 325 (tweaked a bit)
As such, I am interested in your thoughts on how fast I could make a 2002 with a total "value" under the rules of less than $500.
The attribute a $150 "value" to a 2002.  To that I can add:
 Non-OE replacement shock absorber or strut: $25/corner 
 Any adjustable shock (valve, shim, gas cylinder or knob-select): $75/corner 
 Non-OE coil springs (including ‘coil-over’ kit): $20/corner 
 Pair of custom/commercially-made adjustable camber/caster plates: $20 F/$20 R 
 Pair of homemade adjustable camber/caster plates: $5 F /$5 R 
 Shock/Strut-tower reinforcement bar (commercial or homemade): $20 each 
 Non-OE suspension component: $10 per component 
 Wheel spacers/hub adapters: $5 each 
 Non-OE sway-bar: $50 F / $30 R 
 Non-OE radiator (except aluminum): $5 
 Non-OE aluminum radiator: $35 
 Non-OE oil cooler (engine, transmission and/or differential): $20 each 
 Accusump and/or Oil Accumulator: $10 (max limit 3 Qt.) 
 Dry-sump assembly: $500 
 Commercial racing oil pan: $75 (homemade or custom-made, see 4.5.5) 
 Exhaust Header: $50 per engine 
 Aftermarket Ignition Coil: $30 single coil; $50 multiple coils 
 Performance distributor or aftermarket ignition system: $50 
 Heim joint tie rods: $5/end 
 Non-OE suspension bushings: $25/car 
 Non-OE engine/transmission mounts: $10 per engine / $10 per transmission 
 Non-OE CV or axles: $50 per pair of CV, axles 
 Non-OE driveshaft: $50 per single driveshaft 
 Non-OE differential cover: $10 
 Non-OE ECU or chip replacement or chip re-programming: $75 
 Non-OE carburetion, induction or metering components/assembly/system: $100 
 Non-OE cylinder head(s): $150 per engine 
 Non-OE camshaft or valve train: $100 per engine 
 Non-OE master brake cylinder: $50 
 Non-OE proportioning valve: $25 
This is what I came up with (which is $155 over budget):
Car 150 Cam 100 Springs 80 Shocks 100 Camber plates 40 Bars 80 Radiator 5 Header 50 Ignition 50 Total 655


If you were to build this car (and I may well ask you to), would you:

- Build a tii with a stock motor and skip the cam and header?
- Build a non-tii, add cam and header (a race cam, using my piano tops, but otherwise stock - has to run on pump gas), and just use stock shocks, cut springs and massive ASBs (or the other way around, all spring, stock bars)
I also have a resto going on with our 74 tii.  It was too nice (and too close to family) to turn it into a race car, but I love driving it, and think it would be a hoot as a ChumpCar.  However, I do also like to have a competitive car.

74 2002tii (Sputter) - Not entirely stock - Over 18K miles since full restoration in 2014

15 BMW X5 diesel (the bombed out roads of Houston finally won)

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The Chump rules don't cover the tii.  You'd need to request an assessment of the tii's value before you redo your budget.  


From running a tii in Lemons for the past 3 years, it's no simple task.  Replacement parts cost far more, and are harder to come by, than with a carby 2002.  Fuel and ignition issues are also more difficult to diagnose and resolve.  I've recently run Lemons events in a carby car with a 38/38, and another with dual side drafts.  Both were much easier and cheaper to setup and run in endurance events.


As for your budget, we're going through the same analysis, as we plan to add Chump Car events to our calendar for next season.  Cut springs, stay with stock shocks and struts (or get them re-valved, but plan on it costing you a lot more to replace them when they get damaged or fail, as custom valved shocks and struts aren't covered under Bilstein's warranty), and get some huge anti-swaybars.  Forget camber plates, as they're essentially worthless unless you go with coil-overs.  You can get about 0.5 degree of front camber by installing the upper strut bearings at about 90 degrees to the stock position using new mounting holes.  Or you can modify the inner fender wall and move the entire strut mounting surface inward, gaining far more camber if you're so inclined.


An alternative formula for your consideration:

Car: $150

Non-OE carburetor (38/38 or side drafts): $100

Header: $50

Anti-sway bars: $80

Non-OE suspension bushings (poly or solid): $25

Sport cam (nothing that will be noticeable): cheat, and it's $0, otherwise it's $100

Homemade adjustable camber/caster plates, front only: $5


Total cost: $410 (Cheaty McCheaterson), or $510 (Honest Abe)


'76 2002 "Verona" / '12 Fiat 500 Sport "Latte" / '21 Toyota 4Runner TRD Off Road Prem “The Truck”


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Gruff -


Thanks for the feedback.


I have a tii street car, and I was trying to figure out if the additional horsepower would make up for the additional cost (call it $50), but allow me to spend all the money on the suspension (avoiding the $100 carb and $100 cam and maybe the header).


I would want to get allll the negative camber, since if I am going for the relatively low HP go kart, its got to be able to turn to keep from eating tires


On the diff, did you guys go welded?


Last, you should give ChumpCar a shot.  Their events are very well run, and are a little more racy and a little less circusy than the other group.


Thanks again,



As an aside, under ChumpCar rules you can solve your brake issues.



74 2002tii (Sputter) - Not entirely stock - Over 18K miles since full restoration in 2014

15 BMW X5 diesel (the bombed out roads of Houston finally won)

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