And Then There Were 6
3rd gear was my old favorite thing. 3rd gear is also my new favorite thing. #projectroxy— db (@dbwilldo) April 26, 2014
Transmission installation completed today. I’ve been able to drive her around the block and up on the highway. First impressions are very good! 3rd, 4th and 5th are very good. Initial MPG estimates in 6th at 70MPH are around 33 (and increase of about 5MPG) and overall drivability is great! Did I mention I really like 3rd gear. A lot?
It is going to take some getting used to. The clutch is different. The feel is the same, but it grabs earlier than I am used to. As you know, the gates in the 6 speed are well notched. In the Midlands, not so much. Normally shifting is good, down shifting is going to be the bigger challenge. Nothing that a little practice won’t cure.
I have a punch in the nuts to the next person to remind me about reverse.
And, I think I might have lost a little in first gear. Maybe. It could be the new clutch that I have to get used to, but I might have lost a little off the line. Time will tell.
Oh, and finally, had the oil pan gasket replaced. The oil pan was so dirty that Jerry almost made me buy a new new one! The last thing, mechanically, that needs to get done is the power steering hoses. Soon. Very soon.
Road trip in my near future. And a track day! Watch out!
When last we met, we were discussing the replacing of the transmission. Parts list built and order, transmission sourced, the whole bit. Everything was on track for Roxy to spend Thursday and maybe Friday at Eurotechs with Jerry. I only needed her to go a few more days.
Roxy, as it turns out, had other ideas.
Driving home Monday night, she stopped going under her own power, kinda. I was able to find 2nd and 5th, I think, which was enough to get her safely off the highway to await a piggy back ride on a truck (see above). Got her to the shop and unloaded and then Jerry took a look. Turns out, it was only the shift cable coming disconnected. Since she was there, he attached it “good enough” to move her around to get parked. As I type this, she is still there, parked in the row reserved for cars that are getting big repairs.
In the meantime, I get to spend some quality time with Alice. Everyone in AZ knows Alice. She’s a modded R53, currently under the care and feeding of the Summer’s. They are kind enough to let me use her while Roxy gets sorted out this week, so a HUGE shout out to them! Of course, with every car borrowed, besides a full tank of gas and a car wash (not the $3 wash either), will be the photo shoot. I’ll share those once done, hoping for sunset tomorrow.
For those of you wondering how long I have gone for this to happen, check it.
I don’t care who you are, that’s pretty damned impressive right there. Updates as they become available.
Not the Noise I Wanted to Hear
New axles have been on the list for quite some time. Associated with bad axles are noises. Noises that I got used to hearing and knew what they were. Noises that I didn’t really worry too much about, since I knew replacements were ready and waiting.
2 days before I started hearing a new noise. Actually not new, it’s one that I heard 10 years ago. It’s the noise of a dying Midlands transmission. At least I’m pretty sure. Really noticeable, now, in 4th and 5th at highway speeds, its like a high pitched whine/clicking noise. It is hard to describe. Trust me when I say it is not pleasant.
Plans A and B have been put into place. I’m pretty sure plan B will be the more inexpensive route and, at the same time, yield the best results. I just don’t want to activate Plan C yet unless absolutely necessary. And, really, I won’t know more until Jerry gets her back on the rack to drive test and hear the sound and check everything out.
So close. Less than 9k miles to go and that damned Midlands decides to crap out. Still, in the grand scheme of things, 10 years and almost 250K miles is pretty damned impressive for anything. My fridge isn’t even that old!
Updates as they happen.
On the Way to 300K; 290,900
(more photos in my flickr stream)
This week I will pass 291,000 miles on my MINI. Actually, should be happening on Tuesday, Wednesday at the latest. Everything is going as expected and very little has changed. Up next? Axles (this week) and time to refit some track day tires on the extra wheels. More about that in a coming post. Finally, I’m hoping before summer is in full spring to get the oil pan gasket taken care of.
Already done? Besides a complete exterior detail (or, my version of said detail), I had all of the windows re-tinted. Window tint was the first mod I did on Roxy, going 35% all the way around. That was 11 years ago. The tint had faded and was scratched, and tint technology has come along way since then. Now, all of the windows are again tinted 35% (this time legally, suck it California) with ceramic tint. Supposed to block 75% of the heat coming into the car. I have tested it, and it’s like this.
You know what it’s like to open an oven door to check the cookies? Rolling down the window on the sunny side of the car with this tint is exactly like that. Amazing but true. So glad I got this one redone.
Also on the short list is new windscreen. This one is also long over due, but I’m hoping this week.
Re: new tires. Yea. Because race car. Stay tuned for more!
Tech Prep for #swminifest
Heading to Southwest MINI Fest this weekend? Want to make sure you are in the loop for all updates and always know what is going on? Here are a few things that you can do.
Relax. I know you don’t use Twitter and don’t want an account. That’s cool. Here is how you can get instant updates without an account and for free. Bee tee dubs, this also works if you already have a twitter account. You will need to have a phone that can receive text messages. Any phone, not just smart phones. Here is what you do:
Send a text message to 40404 with the words follow swminifest.
That’s it. From that point forward you will receive instant updates via sms. Works on all phones and even works if you are already following @swminifest on Twitter.
The schedule page is really clever. There are map links to almost all of the events. Bookmark it and create an icon on one of your home screens for quick and easy access.
Hopefully these will help you get the most out of the event. That and sunscreen and plenty of water (it is the desert after all) and you’ll be all set! Can’t wait to see everyone this weekend.