BANG is never a sound you want to hear…
On the upside, my weekend started and ended just like this.
But unfortunately this happened in between. Our extravagant testing plans ground to a halt not a minute into trying… Sometimes you win and sometimes you lose! If you’ll recall, we’d made a number of fairly major changes to the car in the hopes of finding more speed. One of the big changes and the #1 item on the testing docket was to see if the softer rear springs and different 3rd link spring made any difference on our axle chatter.
Yup, they did. My first launch of the day the car spun the tires just barely then hooked and LAUNCHED. Mind you, this is on 40+ run slicks, so this was looking good. Another test launch a little further down our test course revealed about the same behavior. I did a short lap to see how the new rear bar felt and was really pleased to find that the car didn’t feel nearly as on edge as it had before. I swung the car around and pulled down to where Todd could watch the rear axle so I could launch a third time to call it good.
Rev, dump the clutch and BANG, followed by some rather nasty noises. Todd told me after I shut off the engine that something had looked off, but by the time he realized it, it was too late. Above is what he noticed, the axle had broken the flare while I had been driving, so evidently something had given way, oddly which didn’t come through in the driving!
Shiny parts and oil told the tale.
One of the last of the original parts on the car was the third link mount. About 20 years of abuse were too much for it and it sheared right off, nosing up the axle, shattering the u-joints, and breaking one of our shocks in half when the axle twisted.
Back at the shop we started the disassembly process. The right rear shock body completely split in half. The left side bent, but didn’t break all the way.
One of the trailing arm brackets had broken as well, which is part of the reason the axle shifted in the car.
Things get chewed up really good when a spinning driveshaft lets go… Luckily it looks like the 3rd member is ok. Back to work! New parts are already on their way and the car will be back in action for testing in July!