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Thread: New Zealand Historic Muscle Cars Under HRC

  1. #21
    This is my August E-mailout for Historic Muscle Cars, just sent today. If anyone wish's to be added to my E-mailouts please shoot me an E-mail, dmathers@xtra.co.nz Dale

    First up, we must thank the HRC Committee Jim Barclay, Chris Watson, Tony Roberts and Steve Holmes for there undying support for HMC and what we are trying to achieve. These 4 guys want to see a "True" Historic Muscle Car class for O3L Saloons in New Zealand, and with events like the Festival of Speed at Hampton Downs having International exposure and attracting overseas drivers, its fast becoming the premier Historic meeting on the New Zealand racing calendar, all great stuff so lets get in behind these guys and give them our support.

    We're just under 6 months out from the January Festival of Speed, http://www.nzfmr.co.nz/ and as this is the kick off for HMC several have asked about further race meetings, this is still been sorted, but it is plan'd to have at least 2 other events thoughout the summer using the Historic Racing Club format such as there Legends/Tasman meetings, we don't want to over do it in the first year as many have other commitments and we still want to nurture owners, and make sure there cars fit HMC rules, i'll keep you posted on this and will have those dates set in concrete before the years out.

    We're pretty much past the dead of winter, and plenty has been happening amongst interested HMC racers. Five Vehicle owners have or currently are, converting their engines back to Cast Iron Cylinder Heads as per the MSNZ T&C rules, let alone HMC rules, this is good news!! But by far the greatest interest has been those interested in racing on the correct Goodyear Blue Streak 15" race tyres, we have 6 Vehicles making the change, remember, these are the actual tyres that they raced on in the day, very "period" and "correct" for what we are doing. Though a contact with the American Historic Trans Am group, i have got intouch with their Goodyear Blue Streak Tyre supplier and will be importing several sets in the next few months, if anyone is interested please let me know. And although more expensive than your regular DOT Road tyre, the better US exchange rate has helped close that gap.

    I've had lots of positive feedback with what we are acheving, numbers are looking good for BMW, with a couple of purchase's happening and others reconfiguring there current vehicle. Its looking like a pretty even spread of Monaro's, Torana's, Camaro's, Falcons and Mustangs with the Javelin and possibly a Capri V8 or two, etc. And to all those making the extra effort, you need to know that you will not be racing against any NON conforming vehicles, the rules are the rules, NO Grandfathering, NO Mates deals, NO Sponsor's deals, NO Organiser's or Committe privilege's, NO let me race and i'll fix it next time deals, etc, when you're lined up on the dummy grid, and you look across that the guy next to you, you need to know he's "paid" the same price you have to be there. Im less concerned about numbers, we want QUALITY for HMC, if we only get 5 cars and they all 100% legal, thats a great grid to me, but i know we'll easliy better that!!

    I spent Saturday afternoon and Sunday at the Auckland Speedshow recently, helping Chris, Tony, Clare, Melissa out at the HRC Stand, a fantastic show with good crowd numbers due too poor mid winter weather. I handed out fliers and spoke with many about HMC, lots more positive news and interest, and offcourse, many questions particulaly regarding rule deffinations. It was great to talk straight and answer these questions directly, and as i've mentioned in pervious mailouts, don't just presume, contact myself or Tony Roberts Tony@hamptondowns.com for a final answer.

    Steve Holmes has a great article in the next issue of Classic Car Magazine and another preview in NZV8, he has finally got the HMC website up and running, all voluntary work on Steve's behalf, so check out www.historicmusclecars.co.nz this website is based around our own significant and uniquely rich NZ Saloon Racing History, HMC is about reliving this era.

    There are few of you that haven't raced for sometime and are dragging out your race cars!! Check that your MSNZ Race Licence is up to date, if its lapsed you will need to resit it again!! hate for you to turn up at BMW with no licence and can't race!! an item thats easily over looked.

    So thats about it for me this month, keep warm and keep working towards that end goal, and remember our HMC moto "The Cars are the Stars" otherwise you're racing with the wrong group, and make sure you join HRC http://www.grandprix.org.nz/Contact_Us.wse their membership deal at $50 is a bargain.

  2. #22

    Historic Muscle Cars

    Haven't had much time of late, but have my steel Bonnet semi fitted to the Boss to meet the HMC rules of all original panel work and Spoilers.

    Dale Mathers
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  3. #23
    Now to colour match Dale, I think thats why we all ran mat black bonnets in old days, a bit easier. But with your talent and friends it won't be a problem. Do you have to do much to bring car up to regs.

  4. #24
    Quote Originally Posted by Rod Grimwood View Post
    Now to colour match Dale, I think thats why we all ran mat black bonnets in old days, a bit easier. But with your talent and friends it won't be a problem. Do you have to do much to bring car up to regs.
    Not much Rod, because i originaly built the car to MSNZ T&C rules to begin with it fits HMC rules, only the Bonnet/Bootlid(i had fibreglass) and i've had to remove the upper and lower tube suspension control arms and go back to original!! and im good to go.

    Dale Mathers
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  5. #25
    Dales September HMC Newsletter:

    Greetings HMC Followers

    Another month whistles by and plenty has been happening!!! Steve Holmes ran
    several more articles in NZV8 and Classic Car so this once again created
    more interest in HMC

    Its great to see those interested phoning or e-mailing about rule
    definitions and interpretations, great stuff guys keep it up.

    Probably the one definition that needs most clarification is the wording
    "Standard Series Production Car" when it comes to "Body Work" and
    "Spoilers". What this means is that all body work including Spoilers,
    Bumpers, Grills, Headlights, Taillights, etc and flared guards as on A9X
    Torana's, must be as "exactly" in dimension and material as what came down
    the assembly line as made by the manufacturer. Now the word "Material" is
    quite an important description as it means (for instance in my case), my
    factory fitted plastic 69 Mustang front spoiler is easy and cheap to
    purchase and legal. What i can't do is make one out of aluminium, steel,
    fibreglass or Carbon Fibre. I wouldn't want to anyway.

    The object of this is to keep the HMC fleet looking exactly as the
    manufacture intended using the manufacturers type of materials. This allows
    the viewing public to better identify the vehicle and stops material
    upgrades like carbon fibre.

    This includes all Homologated specials where 100 or more vehicles where
    made. Any production run less than 100, like a 69 ZL1 Camaro (they made
    70), a Dekon Monza, a Greenwood Corvette, and most any Bathurst special
    "Race Part" is not allowed.

    Any odd ball race part you may have seen in some magazine from back in the
    day on a car similar to yours, does not qualify it has to be as provided by
    the Factory, EG: 100 or more on a STANDARD SERIES PRODUCTION CAR as came
    down the assembly line. It is easy to check, just Google it.

    Let's look at the Homologated Special A9X Torana, they made exactly a 100 so
    that means you can build any Torana Hatch and fit all A9X body parts. Now
    some aftermarket parts suppliers for these Toranas (and others as well) are
    remanufacturing the fender flares, spoilers, scoops, a little wider, higher
    and longer. This is "not acceptable" as all components must be the
    dimensions of the original make and model, there are manufactures making the
    correct parts, so please make you use them.

    Also another question in respect of 67/8 Camaros, they didn't come from the
    Factory with a cowl bonnet but the 69 model did. Because of this you can
    use a Cowl Bonnet on your 67/8 because those "3 year" Camaro's are
    considered the same make and model (Generation 1 to you Camaro guys). But
    you can't fit a cowl bonnet on a 70/3 Camaro (Generation 2) because this is
    a different model which never had a Cowl bonnet from the Factory.

    Hope this helps clear this up. Any questions with regards to above please
    contact myself dmathers@xtra.co.nz or Tony Roberts tony@hamptondowns.com

    What we are trying to achieving here is for the betterment of Classic Racing
    in NZ. It puts almost every pre Dec 77 over 3 Litre Saloon and Sports cars
    on a equal footing, while racing each other for FUN. It just can't get any
    better than that.

    I know some of you may be considering whether to make the changes required
    but remember, "Less is More". So fit those correct wheels, that factory
    spoiler, the right cylinder heads and come out for some FUN racing. It'll
    be worth it, most of us are too old to get that phone call from Bernie
    (Ecclestone) and our cars have made all the history they're ever going to
    make!!

    We just want all vehicles with HMC to be visually period correct, and of a
    standard acceptable to a true Historic Race Class at events like the up and
    coming Festival of Speed at Hampton Downs and other Historic events.

    I have quite a few of you changing or upgrading wheels, this is been mostly
    done to allow the correct 50 profile tyre and while a 1" upsize is allowable
    you should consider keeping to the correct size if possible, this been 15"
    for pretty much all vehicles. Although we can upsize to 16", quite a few of
    us are opting to keep at the 15" size and this is a good idea as in the
    future, the 15" Wheel will be the only allowable size. If you are having
    rims made or planning to purchase a set it is probably best to buy 15"
    wheels now as this will be the standard down the road.

    I was at Eastern Creek several weeks ago for this year's Muscle Car Masters,
    event number 5 for the organisers and the biggest event yet with great
    weather and plenty of action!! Now if you think we here at HMC are tough
    with the rules, you should try racing with their CAMS Group NC Historic
    class. They must use the same size wheel rim that the particular vehicle
    came with and a minimum 60 profile tyre! It's the same deal with their body
    work, no odd ball spoilers, etc. The engines must be exactly the correct
    size with no aftermarket heads and blocks! Yet they had 85 entries split up
    into 3 groups!! Those Aussie are onto it I must say!! All-round it was a
    great event with the high $$$ TCM group setting some amazing lap times with
    close racing and it was great to talk with Jim Richards and other Ex pat
    kiwi's.

    I will be at the HRC Ice Breaker at Hampton Downs, 24/5th September on the
    Saturday if anyone wants a chat. And don't forget the Annual MG Classic run
    by the Wellington MG car Club at Manfield is coming up on November 12/13th.
    I will be racing my orange Mustang at this event so for anyone down that
    part of the country do come up and make yourself known, happy to talk about
    any HMC issues, along with a good car chat as well.

    There are few of you that haven't raced for a while and are dusting off your
    race cars!! Check that your MSNZ Race Licence is up to date, if its lapsed
    you will need to resit it again!! hate for you to turn up at a HMC event
    with no licence and can't race, its an item that is easily over looked.

    It's early days yet but check out the newly up and running HMC Website,
    www.historicmusclecars.co.nz and also go to www.theroaringseason.com for
    great Historic motorsport stuff and online forum.

    Attached is a great YouTube video of what Historic Racing is all about, just
    image this been HMC!! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cjs9K59gdHs and did you notice visually how correct these cars are!!

    So thats about it for me again this month, the days are stretching out so
    keep it up and keep working towards that end goal, and remember our HMC moto
    "The Cars are the Stars" otherwise you're racing with the wrong class, and
    make sure you join HRC http://www.grandprix.org.nz/Contact_Us.wse their
    $50 membership deal is a bargain.

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  6. #26
    The first HMC car to get its new 15" Goodyear Bluestreak cross-ply tyres and 15" wheels fitted. Looks fantastic Dale!

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  7. #27

  8. #28
    Very nice Dale, very nice

  9. #29

    Historic Muscle Cars

    He's one sitting in my shop!!! I have the front hubs of to down size the front rotors, i did have clearance with the 15" rims but is was too close.

    Dale
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  10. #30
    Its interesting Dale, you told me you were fitting softer front springs to run these tyres. How is it with a smaller diameter wheel and a tyre with a taller side wall than the 16" you previously had, you have to also fit softer springs? My understanding was the tyre itself plays a small role as a suspension item, so you'd think having the taller side wall would mean the 15" wheels would automatically provide more of a cushion.

    Its interesting, reading Mark Donohues book "The Unfair Advantage", when they built their first Penske Camaro in 1967 for the Trans-Am, Donohue wasn't sure what spring rates to fit the the car, so took a punt, and fit 1200 pounds on the front, and 400 pounds on the rear. And he said the car was virtually un-drivable. He became completely disenchanted about it after a few races, and knew softer springs would help the situation, but didn't know what rates to go with.

    In the end, after struggling through a few races, he had a few different sets made up. He tried 750 front, and 350 rear, which made an immediate improvement, and in the end settled on 550 front and 180 in the rear, which was a huge difference to those originally fitted.

  11. #31
    Steve, as a rule of thum the springs should just barely hold the car of the ground and the shocks do the rest!!! but having enough knowledge on shock adjustment choice is the problem when your only a weekend warrior, so for most(including myself) its easier to uprate the springs for a instance performance gain rite out of the box!!and mostly it has been the Puke front straight bumps that have made most uprate the front springs. I always knew my front springs where too heavy as i have slight under steer(which i like) and lowering the front spring rate will change this and help turn in, also the many cornering pictures from Stew Wood have help me to see what my car is doing!! The quite large and soft side wall on the Blue Streak obsorbe's alot of energy so to take advantage of this i need the car to lean more on the corners, this is why i have always used a 50 profile tyre and have beenable to out handle others with a big 315/35X17, they have less side wall and so hence less rubber contact on the track under extreme corning(this applies to most vehicles with a roll centre above the wheel centre line, EG most Saloons) funnily enough i had worked out i need about 900LB down from 1200 and when i was at EC last month and got a closer look at Bowe's mustang with its wheels off, his front springs had 900 stamped on them!!

    Also, with the infomation above there are just so many more variables that its too much to get into here!!

    Dale Mathers

  12. #32
    Thanks Dale, it'd be interesting to know if JB really does run 900lbs front springs, or if he just had 900 stamped on them for the benefit of his rivals when they take a nosey under his car to see why its performing so well! I was quite shocked the first time I saw the TCM cars race, and how softly they rode, and the bounce they had under brakes, after becoming accustomed to the CMC cars and their large diameter wheels and rock hard suspension. I wonder what the Historic Trans-Am guys run, and how near they are to what Donohue first used on his Penske Camaro.

    Have you done anything with the rear springs Dale?

  13. #33
    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Holmes View Post
    I wonder what the Historic Trans-Am guys run, and how near they are to what Donohue first used on his Penske Camaro.
    Hello Steve,

    Here's something I've mentioned to Dale before, but since you asked about someone running these tyres in Historic Trans-Am (in the US), here it is again...

    My front springs are Guldstrand (though they may be a re-packaged MOOG part). Guldstrand's part number was G11-001, and they were rated at 600lb spring (as delivered). From memory, I had to cut about 1.5" out of them for ride height, so it's probably a bit stiffer front spring now. I didn't verify the spring rate before or after cutting.

    Here's a quote from a friend who bought a similar pair of front springs from Guldstrand in the 1970s:

    "I think 650 to 700 is probably a good rate for the front. If you get a Moog #6041 is what Guldstrand sent me in the early 70's they were in the Moog box. I think I cut them to 13.5" free length, but my car was probably lower than you might want to run a road race Camaro."

    In the rear I run a set of 200lb stock style multi-leaf springs with 1.5" lowering blocks.

    For shocks, I run period Koni double adjustables, front and rear.

    The above items are on a 1969 Camaro Z/28 Historic Trans-Am race car.

    -Chad

  14. #34
    Thanks for that info Chad. Very interesting. You don't post here often, but when you do its always worthwhile. I know you're not driving at 101% as Donohue would have been with the rates I listed above, but have you ever tried different spring rates on your Camaro?

  15. #35
    Hello Steve,

    Indeed, I try to drive at no more than 99% of my capabilities. I have used a stiffer (900lb) front spring, as that's what was in it when I bought it. I felt the 900lb front springs provided more understeer by mid-corner, though initial turn-in was good. The front also wanted to break loose in corners with bumps or undulations.

  16. #36
    Hey, Hey Chad 99%, from what i've seen thats a very QUICK 99%, LOL. I believe youre rite on the money!! because of the different suspension control arm pivot ratio's the 900LB springs in my mustang(2:1) work out at about 700LB in most GM(1:75) products like Camaro's, the understeer and turn in you you felt with 900LB's is exactly what my Mustang feels like with 1200LB springs hence im keen to try it out with changed springs and Goodyear tyres, i will report back in 3 weeks!!!

    One of the best books around and its an old one called "The Trans Am and Corvette Chassis" Design/Theory/Construction, had this one for years and it still aplies today!!!

    Glad to see you posting on this board here Chad, you're a very informative person.

    Dale Mathers

  17. #37
    Quote Originally Posted by OCTARD-USA View Post
    Hello Steve,

    Indeed, I try to drive at no more than 99% of my capabilities. I have used a stiffer (900lb) front spring, as that's what was in it when I bought it. I felt the 900lb front springs provided more understeer by mid-corner, though initial turn-in was good. The front also wanted to break loose in corners with bumps or undulations.
    I guess the harder springs would provide less grip in the front Chad, hense the understeer? Have you since changed your rear springs also? Or do you like the balance of the car the way it is?

    And yes, 99% of your capabilities is good! 99.2% might be a little risky though.

  18. #38
    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Holmes View Post
    Have you since changed your rear springs also?
    The car came with 225lb rear springs and 900lb fronts. I changed to 175lb rear springs, because I felt the throttle induced oversteer came on a bit too early with the heavier items (225lb).

    I like the current balance with the lighter front springs I mentioned before.

  19. #39
    Thanks Chad, thats some really good info. So with the throttle induced oversteer coming on a little too early, thats got to be good for the crowds, but not so good for the rear tyres?

  20. #40
    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Holmes View Post
    So with the throttle induced oversteer coming on a little too early, thats got to be good for the crowds, but not so good for the rear tyres?
    And not so good for getting around the track as quickly as you'd like.

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