S.V.P. regardez ce LIEN
Thursday, December 24, 2009
Friday, November 27, 2009
First of all, a couple of snaps of the rather crowded engine compartment. A lot of these modifications were carried out after the car left the workshop at Evolution Engineering in 2001. Amongst the mods are an hydraulic brake servo and a Peugeot master cylinder, the original Lancia item and its replacement being as usual, useless - as with my own car which uses a FIAT Regata item. There is also a lot of complex wiring - too complex in my view.
this photo - it doesn't always look quite like this!
The bloke who (later) modified the Fanalone decided that it would be a good idea to alter the run of the petrol feed pipe. He cut off the original at the bottom of the bulkhead and then threaded a copper extension through the sub-frame; this was a pain to remove, and I promise it will not be going back!
With the sub-frame finally out of the car, I have decided to do a spot of engine dismantling in situ as I am rather limited at home for workbench space.
The engine is to be rebuilt
A closer view of the head. Fanalone experts will spot the "error"
which of course will be rectified. Come on experts, what is it??
There is a spare gearbox from a car alleged to have covered only 80,000km (50,000 miles) which will probably be fitted in pace of the existing one which is not nice to use. My Renault 5 GTX which has covered over 290,000km has a gearbox that Fulvia owners could only dream about - and it has perfectly-chosen ratios and is still silent despite shocking neglect!
Another joy is that a bottom ball joint must be replaced so I shall be looking for a "Porta-Power" to borrow, as with the sub-frame out I shall not have the weight of the car to help me with the dreaded front spring. A friend of mine will remember the enormous TWANG when attempting to lift the spring with a bottle jack... The jack ended up about 20 yards away, with a nasty groove on its shaft, fortunately without killing anybody. You have been warned!
Incidentally, it was with the same friend that I removed a sub-frame assembly complete from a Fulvia in 38 minutes. Oh to be young again!
Thursday, July 23, 2009
The lady who owns the rally Fanalone for which you might recall I built the engine and other bits and pieces, has decided that after 26 rallies without an overhaul, the time has come for a proper look.
So I am taking out the subframe which will provide an opportunity for a good clean up and also easy access to the steering and suspension components. The engine will be dismantled too.
I shall make photographs of the process which will be a fairly long one and comment here and there about stuff that I find.
More in a few days.
Friday, May 29, 2009
The article, which concerns cars that are propelled by propellers, appears on a site with the curious name of Dark Roasted Blend
Here's a sample of what you will find there:
The picture shows one Count Bertrand de Lesseps, intrepid man, demonstrating his "Auto Aero" car in 1912; so intrepid is he that he is even smoking a cigarette...
Dark Roasted Blend's raison d'etre is "Weird and Wonderful Things" and I can promise, they are not lying! Definitely one to bookmark and well worth a visit.
Friday, May 01, 2009
The idea is that blind people could be unaware of approaching vehicles and thus could be at risk of injury. This story is reported in The Register.
Fair enough, but there'd be no problem with my Fulvia, how about yours? If it must be electric then I would opt for a couple of 100W amplifiers, suitable loudspeakers and a decent recording of a V16 BRM
Monday, April 27, 2009
Ross Brawn says that his cars have had no updates since the start of the season, and Jenson Button says that the Red Bulls are already faster.
Adrian Newey at Red Bull will not have been idle since his absence from the trackside was ordered a couple of weeks ago.
I am still not inclined to bet against Red Bull this year, despite McLaren's improving form and the presence of Luca di Montezemolo at Bahrain which may well have stimulated the Ferrari team somewhat. It must be acknowledged that Kimi Raikkonen had a good race, whilst his teammate was, like Red Bull's Mark Webber, rather unlucky.
Sunday, April 19, 2009
Thursday, April 16, 2009
In those days there would be excitement because Team A had an special new engine, Team B had a monocoque chassis, Team C had a new fancy fuel etc.
Nowadays there is little room for manoeuvre, although we have recently had an excellent, though very difficult-to-understand example in the matter of the diffusers, in particular those fitted to Brawn (née Honda), Toyota and Williams cars. As you may have read, these were said by other teams to be outside the regulations and a protest was raised which was thrown out yesterday by the FIA. Here from the BBC F1 website is a picture of the diffuser fitted to the Williams. As I understand it, the top is supposed to be a straight line; this obviously isn't but is apparently within the regulations. I say good luck to them; they are much cleverer than I!
I cannot reproduce any illustrations from the Official F1 Website, hardly surprising I suppose, given that it's generous Bernie Ecclestone in charge, so you'll have to look up the following couple of items yourselves.
First the McLaren diffuser
And then the one fitted to the Brawn GP car
It is always important to remember that FI designers are at the top of their profession, highly paid and highly esteemed; McLaren for example would have devoted a great deal of time and attention to the design - it would not have been signed-off lightly. Some of the protesting teams have claimed that the so-called "double-decker diffuser" is worth up to half a second a lap - 24 hours in F1 terms!
But there's the rub: amongst the "non-double-decker teams" one has been consistently quick and in some cases quicker, than the "double-deckers". That team is Red Bull-Renault whose car was designed by the famous Adrian Newey. This fact makes some of the whinging from certain other teams seem a little silly - Ferrari in particular springs to mind - Ferrari, whose car and apparently organisation this year are shall we say, less than superb.
Following the overturning of the protest of course, all teams except Brawn, Toyota and Williams will be developing their own "double-deckers". Anyone care to bet against Red Bull this season?
Here, quoted from Autosport.com, is Adam Parr, CEO at Williams, talking about the diffuser issue:
"Part of the case presented against us related to what we call as the use of multiple vertical transitions. Essentially, you have to have a reference plane, which is like the plank, and 50mm above that you have the step planes. One of the key issues in the case was: when do you have to have a transition between those two?
"Essentially you have to have a vertical transition between the two when the step plane is visible directly above the periphery of the reference plane. Where you don't, it is explicit that you don't have to have one. So one of the key issues in the case was that if you don't have to have one at certain points then by definition you can have many transitions.
No doubt this has helped enormously to clarify the matter eh readers?
Thanks to "Auntie Beeb" former Technical Director Mike Gascoyne helps to lift some of the fog...
Saturday, Shanghai: Sebastian Vettel achieves Red Bull's first-ever pole position. Here are Jenson Button's (Brawn GP) comments from Autosport.com:
"It's not quite as good as what I expected," Button told the BBC. "The Red Bulls were quick yesterday, we were watching them in the high speed corners and they were very, very fast.
"So if you at Q2 it looked like they had two or three tenths on us, so yeah they are competitive. And it's not us driving around slowly or having a lot of fuel in the car because it's Q2 and you run with low fuel so they are going to be tough to beat.
"We knew they were competitive but we didn't think quite that competitive."A bientôt
Saturday, April 11, 2009
Here in France it is illegal to have any device that detects police radars/lasers. Worse, whilst there are as yet fewer fixed cameras than in the UK, one can often see the Gendarmes with their blasted jumelles (binoculars) trying to earn a few euros for the impoverished republic. They also have unmarked cars with radars or lasers installed.
As I understand it, the law about detectors is a bit vague in Britain (although this might have changed recently) whilst I suppose that jammers are strictly "off the menu.".
Things are different in the USA; here is an article from Jalopnik via Gizmodo all about a RENNtech-developed Mercedes-Benz. Apart from the 580HP and 465lb/ft of torque and appropriate suspension mods etc., the ultimate accessory is a radar/laser detector and jammer. This is built-in - to the rear-view mirror! Wonderful stuff. One of the comments on the article points out that such accessories are illegal in Virginia, but then that still leaves 49 other states to "explore!"
Tuesday, April 07, 2009
Anyway, he is my favourite post-war driver (though I have a big place in my heart for Mike Hawthorn) in respect of his staggering talent and ability.
Here I have a couple of videos for you. Pertinently the first one happily in colour, shows Fangio at Monaco driving the Lancia D50 - OK, "Lancia-Ferrari"... The noise! EDIT: I have just this minute discovered this thread on the Atlas Nostalgia Forum. It appears that this film was made in 1970 and Fangio (at 58 years old) is driving a D50 - doesn't explain though why there is a Ferrari badge on the front of it, instead of the "shield and flag"
And here at the Modena Autodrome in a 250F - great car control and more wonderful noise. As a (English) Lancia Club friend observed to me, once the engines went above about 10,000 it became difficult to relate to the noise. I agree.
Until the next time.
Sunday, April 05, 2009
I was browsing the excellent fora on Atlas today; these really are excellent for those interested in Motorsport. Apart from the "Racing Comments" forum which is concerned with current events in F1, there is the superb Nostalgia Forum and also the Technical Forum. The contributors to this are very well informed - at least most of them - and some of the contributors are obviously in the highest echelons of the Motor Industry - or perhaps Motorsport industry. The expertise and breadth of knowledge to be found there is quite simply breathtaking.
And it was a thread there that prompted this post.
Those of you who are "hands-on" Fulvia owners who cannot resist taking things apart may have been distressed to notice the sad state of your rocker shafts... Yes, Lancia in its wisdom (or perhaps they let the cost accountants out for a breath of air) chose to run the forged steel rockers directly on the hardened steel rocker shafts. If you have removed the valve gear you will probably have noticed the depressing wear in certain places. I should add, that had Lancia bitten the cost bullet and lined the rockers with bronze bushes which would be the normal engineering procedure (oil retention) amazingly the shafts would have worn probably just as much. In the 1930s, Lancia produced the wonderful Aprilia, a car years ahead of its time - like so many Lancias. The engine, a narrow-angle V4 of course, featured duralumin connecting-rods. These had no bearings, the dural ran directly onto the steel, and it was the crank that wore - not the rods!
Well here's a thread from the Atlas Technical Forum that is concerned with the subtleties of rocker shaft design and manufacture. Should appeal to the engineers and mathematicians amongst you!
Meanwhile there is a chance that I shall finally be in a position to offer you proper Fulvia (mechanical) attention if you live in the Geneva area or perhaps if you are on a pilgrimage to Turin! I may well be operaitng at a garage in Evian les Bains directly on the shore of Lake Geneva. If my expertise fails to attract you, then surely the view will!
Watch this space.
Thursday, February 05, 2009
If you click on the link you will find some more pictures.
With my experience at Evolution Engineering which specialised in Lancia and FIAT, I have to say that this "kit" appears to have used various FIAT components - almost certainly from a Uno Turbo. At a glance it would seem to me that the problems would be formidable. Here are some of those that spring to mind:
- With 9.5/1 or 10.5/1 compression (1300/1600) one could run very little boost without meltdown ensuing rapidly, so special pistons would be required to lower the compression ratio.
- This problem would be exacerbated by the necessarily long inlet pipe (where would you run it?) which would mean lag and raised inlet temperatures
- Pressurised carburettor(s) would be very difficult to arrange, so electronic injection/management would be required. To install this would not be trivial; the cheapest approach would probably be to use a plenum chamber and single throttle body scrounged from another Uno Turbo; then of course there's mounting the sensors - oh yes and the small matter of calibration.
- Routing the exhaust, always a problem on a Fulvia would be rather tricky... and how long would that welded-up exhaust manifold last?
- The Fulvia's original radiator would have to go - under-bonnet temperatures would be a big problem and of course you'd have to find space for the intercooler.
- Finally, I would say that off-boost performance would probably not be very impressive.
Desite all this I have a weakness for modifications as my readers probably know, so best of luck to whoever won the auction!
Saturday, January 17, 2009
So with this in mind I have no hestitaion in including the following dialogue between Autosport and Luca di Montezemolo, Ferrari boss and big noise in the Formula One Teams Association (FOTA).
Di Montezemolo has been prominent in demanding that the teams receive a bigger share of the TV revenues that at present appear to accrue to Bernie Ecclestone's organisation. Thus:
Q. Isn't it a guarantee...
LdM: So you never want to talk about Ferrari, only Ecclestone? I haven't come here to do PR for Ecclestone! I'm kidding.
Q. When talking before Christmas about the redistribution of revenues and more, you said these things need to be re-discussed with Ecclestone. Two days later Ecclestone launched a scathing attack against Ferrari and its top management, which you've never replied to. We've now seen a hug...
LdM: You're either born a gentleman, otherwise you'll never become one.
Tuesday, January 13, 2009
Apologies to Phil Laing of South Africa; I wrote a piece last July on this subject and promised Phil that I would include a link to his website, for the Cape Lancia Club - which is well worth looking at as there is plenty of interesting Lancia stuff going on in SA as a glance at the site will demonstrate.
The link is going up now!
Music and Radio Blog Club
However, in tribute to its brave effort, I shall leave the existing track on this page (which amazingly still works)
Sadly my Playlist no longer works (hence its removal) thanks to the absurd "Hadopi" legislation in France. Apologies to all.