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Dusterbd13-michael MegaDork
1/4/22 7:42 a.m.

The box that keeps on giving!

Wilwood dual master pedal. 13 master cylinders from .75 to 1 1/16. Two boxed of rebuild kits for calipers and masters. Ziploc sandwich bag of fittings and tabs and speed bleeders. Two new in box masters. Large handful of extra fluid resivoir. Three bias panels, and a wilwood bias adjustment knob assembly. 


If anyone sees something in here they need, make me an offer. I need recoup.

Patrick GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
1/4/22 7:48 a.m.

That's a haul

Dusterbd13-michael MegaDork
1/4/22 8:01 a.m.

In reply to Patrick :

Right? Way more in that box that i expected, even after quickly digging through it at the sellers house. I need three masters, the fittings, a bias gauge panel, and the bias adjters. Ill probably jeep all the rebuild kits that fit the parts i use. The rest, after that? Dunno. Recoup i guess. 

AWSX1686 (Forum Supporter)
AWSX1686 (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand UltraDork
1/4/22 10:28 a.m.

In reply to Dusterbd13-michael :

I dunno if it's worth recoup or prorating the pricing to yourself. $125 for that lot, I think I'd count it up by piece and divide it out. 

1 Wilwood dual master pedal,13 master cylinders, 2 boxes of rebuild kits, 1 sandwich bag of fittings and tabs and speed bleeders, 2 NIB masters, 1 Large handful of extra fluid reservoirs, 3 bias panels, 1 wilwood bias adjustment knob assembly. 

I'd call that 24 pieces. $125/24 = $5.20/piece towards challenge budget. 

RacetruckRon GRM+ Memberand Dork
1/4/22 11:04 a.m.

Shot you a text. If you have a 13/16ths master I'm looking for one of those.

Dusterbd13-michael MegaDork
1/4/22 11:20 a.m.

In reply to AWSX1686 (Forum Supporter) :

Im not sure the piecemeal approach would fly. Its a non-homogeneous lot. However, the three masters i will need, one bias gauge, fittings would come up to $26. Which would work perfectly. 

AWSX1686 (Forum Supporter)
AWSX1686 (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand UltraDork
1/4/22 11:22 a.m.

In reply to Dusterbd13-michael :

Might be worth asking on the Challenge section, similar to approval of FMV. I think it would work though. 

Stampie GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
1/4/22 12:15 p.m.

In reply to AWSX1686 (Forum Supporter) :

Nope the rules state he would have to fmv each part then ratio that price to the lot price.

AngryCorvair (Forum Supporter)
AngryCorvair (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
1/4/22 12:33 p.m.

To me that is a homogeneous lot of "brake parts" and should be legit to pro-rate.

also, I'll buy the nicest pressure gauge set you've got, and I need more info on any remote-mount fluid reservoirs, as I'll need one for my clutch.

AngryCorvair (Forum Supporter)
AngryCorvair (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
1/4/22 12:34 p.m.
Patrick said:

That's a haul

No kidding!

AWSX1686 (Forum Supporter)
AWSX1686 (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand UltraDork
1/4/22 12:43 p.m.

In reply to Stampie :

Rereading the rule I guess I agree with you. 


A part’s cost may be pro-rated by weight or quantity if from a homogeneous parts lot (example: zip ties, nuts and bolts, a box of 20 identical axle shafts, etc.), or relative retail value if it was purchased as part of a heterogeneous parts lot (all-you-can-carry sales, storage unit buyouts, garage cleanouts, etc.) Relative retail value is calculated as follows:

  1. Assign and prove a fair market value to every part in the lot.

  2. Add those fair market values together to calculate the total fair market value of the lot.

  3. Express the fair market value of the part you are pro-rating as a percentage of the lot’s total fair market value.

  4. Multiply the actual price paid for the lot by that percentage in order to determine the part’s relative retail value.

Mostly because the example for homogenous parts lot specifies "identical axle shafts" as an example. 

AngryCorvair (Forum Supporter)
AngryCorvair (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
1/4/22 12:56 p.m.

I know what the rule says, I just like giving everyone as much budget as possible. devil

AWSX1686 (Forum Supporter)
AWSX1686 (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand UltraDork
1/4/22 1:08 p.m.

In reply to AngryCorvair (Forum Supporter) :

I'm with you there!

wvumtnbkr GRM+ Memberand PowerDork
1/4/22 4:14 p.m.

Ohhhhh....  I need a master cylinder...

I'll let you know what size and then you can tell me how much you want for it.


Also, I have 2 brake pressure gauges in a panel that I will never use as well if somebody else needs some.


Dusterbd13-michael MegaDork
1/5/22 9:11 p.m.

I wanted to blow the dust off this project.


At the awards banquet at the GRM $2017 challenge, I gave this car to my best friend. I walked away from it. He campaigned it locally in autocross for a short time, then got remarried. Four kids, taking over the family business, car sat. it was sold to a fellow GRM member in Detroit, then went to Chicago, then wandered around. It wound up in Atlanta, mostly parted out and left for dead.

I had made minimal effort to track it down after seeing some on track accidents and realizing my Miata wasn't the right choice as a track weapon for me. Regardless, the amc had wound up with the brother of another grm member in Atlanta, and the owner called me. Offered me the car for free if I wanted it.


I debated for a while after being sent pictures and seeing how far gone it was.


But, the cage sold me on the car. The cage is the main reason I even attempted to track it down as it was a 2016 scca gcr spec cage for hillclimbs. The car never got a logbook, but it was close when I gave it to Dallas. The cage hadn't been hacked up or altered. So we made plans, and Dallas, Dustin and I loaded up and drove to Atlanta.

20211030_115446 by Michael Crawford, on Flickr


when we got there, we met an awesome man who refused my money. Les, thank you again for the car, and the hospitality. I really appreciate it!!


the car was pretty much what I expected. It was never intended for the elements when we built it the first time, and that will be corrected in the rebuild. But this is what I got to start over with. We decided via the fair market value process that for GRM $2000 challenge purposes, the roller was valued at $300

20211030_124837 by Michael Crawford, on Flickr

20211030_124842 by Michael Crawford, on Flickr

20211030_124856 by Michael Crawford, on Flickr

20211030_141931 by Michael Crawford, on Flickr

20211106_165442 by Michael Crawford, on Flickr

20211106_165508 by Michael Crawford, on Flickr

20211106_165524 by Michael Crawford, on Flickr

20211106_165607 by Michael Crawford, on Flickr


so, getting it cleaned up and assessed was the first order of business. i shoveled out the leaves and debris. Few pieces of steel, an indy three speed shifter, still has one of the halon bottles and two nozzles. Ford brackets there, tank full of skunked gas, harnesses really crusty, quick release wheel seen better days. The jegs mechanical gauges appear to be salvageable though!

I went ahead and pulled the stuff I could to make it easier to clean and inspect. The fuel tank, though partially full, was really crusty and had some holes in the top. Scrapped it. The seat was pulled, harnesses scrapped, ford mounts removed, padding pulled off the roll bar, and pulled the flares. The flares did not survive well. Car cleaned up reasonably well though!

20211126_104053 by Michael Crawford, on Flickr

20211126_104108 by Michael Crawford, on Flickr

20211126_104121 by Michael Crawford, on Flickr


next step was planning further than the general “GRM challenge, then hillclimbs and track car to death, LS and four speed should be cheap, and I need bigger brakes and cheap tires” that was my start.


So, one of the guys that pits with me at the autocross is a “retired” hillclimb tech inspector. I had him come out to the house to look over the car and give me an idea of a plan to meet regs and logbook for hillclimb. Him and his wife hung out for a few hours, really dug through the car and listened to my plans. I took notes, and need to get a paper copy of the hillclimb GCR for SPO class on the bench for when I start cutting this thing up.


Here's my notes on paper, then what I jotted down in type when they left


20211227_101817 by Michael Crawford, on Flickr


Spo hillclimb class, cage is legal as designed. Needs gussets at all junctions, and two nascar bars need some more weld. requested to see more tie ins to the body at the roof, a pillar, b pillar, and the planned front tube frame.


They want a front mounted battery kill, externally accessible fire bottle pull, tow hooks both sides front and rear. No glass lights. Window nets both sides. All holes filled in firewall and floor. Steel in car fuel lines, steel in car brake lines. No steering column lock. Gt1 fuel cell ground clearance rules. Rear wheel wells need sealed to quarter panels with non flammable material. Fenders over the tires requested, not required. Lexan or glass windshield. Nonflammable materials throughout preferred. Subframe connectors preferred due to rust in shell. Acrylic or open rear glass ok. Aero unlimited. Must meet noise regs. Weld up holes in rear cage tubes.


I have a plan, and will be getting a logbook!!!


so, I moved on to shopping. Christmas is a fantastic time for used parts shopping. Everyone's looking for money to shop with, or pay with shopping with. And its the off season, so a glut of leftover and no longer needed parts hits the market. I spent a bit of money right off. Ill try to go front to back, with receipt, explanation, and parts. I may miss something.


Up first is the front suspension. The AMC stuff leaves LOTS to be desired, but the killer for me was brakes. Ultimately, its very limited by rotor size until I get to making everything from scratch with two piece rotors, etc. them comes the fact that the steering ratio is slow, camber gain isn't that great, etc. so I decided to clip the car. Ultimately I decided on an rx8 front subframe. Double a arm, rack and pinion, broad parts availability, cheap, and 13 inch rotors out of the box. The even better part is its a self contained subframe, and dirt cheap because nobody wants them. Downside being the electric steering rack cant be stand alone, and possibility of header issues. Regardless, something I can work with. I scrounged around, found a guy up in salisbury parting out a bunch, and struck a deal. For $100, I got a complete front suspension and brakes, extra subframe, rx8 carbon driveshaft, rx7 oil cooler

Screenshot_20211107-180734_Phone by Michael Crawford, on Flickr

20211107_151304 by Michael Crawford, on Flickr

20211107_163300 by Michael Crawford, on Flickr


then I struck a deal for an engine. Joe Burchett had a complete 5.3 dropout from an 2001 tahoe (allegedly) that ran well and had a bad trans. Came with fuel pump, harness, accessories, dbw stuff, engine, trans. Theoretically everything I need. As ive never done an ls swap before, ill find out what all im missing later. Cause I know ill be missing stuff. Anyway, he dropped it off when he was up this way, and I grabbed it for $500 from him. Was able to sell the “bad” 4l60e for $75 as a core to a local guy, so a $425 5.3 is what im starting with. Its stripped down to the bare engine and manifolds and on the stand waiting for me to do something with it. Its filthy.

20211217_094655 by Michael Crawford, on Flickr

20211221_190845 by Michael Crawford, on Flickr


I also picked up a $50 5.3 core from my scrap metal guy. it was in the bed of a scrap car he got, full of water and growing moss. When I got it home, I found that the cam was a ball of rust, the cylinders were completely junk, etc. so I stripped everything salvageable off of it, and traded the junk short-block to another guy on GRM (he thinks he can save the crank) for a neat aluminum shifter handle, corvette aluminum engine stands, and a no-name firewall pedal box (looks like tilton, but no markings. And floor mount, not firewall mount. But I can work with it)

20211218_080832 by Michael Crawford, on Flickr

20211220_143700 by Michael Crawford, on Flickr


I sourced a used ls1 flywheel and clutch for $50

Screenshot_20211102-082831_Facebook by Michael Crawford, on Flickr


no recipt or picture but a generic $20 used aluminum allegedly good radiator was grabbed


moving out of the engine bay, I was able to source a $300 saginaw four speed from a dude named Tim on craigslist. He pulled it from a big block 70 chevelle. It came with a cracked bellhousing, used clutch, and odd hurst shifter. Its a wide ratio trans, so not ideal, but the price and package was right.

20211124_190950 by Michael Crawford, on Flickr

20211128_080411 by Michael Crawford, on Flickr

20211128_080415 by Michael Crawford, on Flickr


I guess wheels and tires are next. The AMC came with the set of 15x10 wheels it had when I gave it away, just rustier and wrapped in some old avon slicks. I also was able to score another set of 15x10 wheels for free in between Sunday lunch and taking my daughter for confirmation class. Gave the three ok mud tires to untouchable from grm for spares for his trail rig.

Screenshot_20211121-122835_Facebook by Michael Crawford, on Flickr

Screenshot_20211121-135821_One UI Home by Michael Crawford, on Flickr

20211121_143258 by Michael Crawford, on Flickr


was able to make a deal on 4 sets of pirelli pzero TA2 tires with plenty of life for 75 a set. Should last me most of a season or two before I need to resupply. At least that the hope. Additionally, these are the same size as common circle track slicks, so cheap tires that are readily available should be no problem.

Screenshot_20211203-083853_Facebook by Michael Crawford, on Flickr

imagejpeg_0(5) by Michael Crawford, on Flickr


the other set of wheels I grabbed are s197 mustang bullet wheels. Some classes require 200tw, and I figured that 200tw would be good for flat towing and rain use as well. Kind of a swiss army knife wheel and tire package. I dont know if ill use them for the challenge, but at this time they are in the budget. Ill wrap them in 245/40/17 rs4 when the time comes.

Screenshot_20211018-084953_Facebook by Michael Crawford, on Flickr


I also scored a $40 poly 22 gallon cell. SCCA inspector said it would be ok as long as I do the can, cage, and firewall to regs. Im ok with that, and will do so. The reasoning behind such large cell is so I don't have to carry extra fuel jugs in my truck for a full HPDE day. I can fill up in the morning before the event and run all day is the goal. However, getting it IN the car will be an interesting exercise. But I think I have a plan with going in from the bottom, building the fuel cell cage to catch multiple tabs in double shear with 3/8 bolts. The inspector signed off, but its something I will pay close attention to. Ive had second degree burns over a large portion of my body, including the nads. Not again. I also grabbed a steel filing cabinet from the free pile at habitat that has steel sides big enough and thick enough to make the can out of.


20211211_074439 by Michael Crawford, on Flickr

20211211_074342 by Michael Crawford, on Flickr

20211216_143403 by Michael Crawford, on Flickr


for the firewall around the cell, I plan to use 16ga aluminum. Found a guy in leesburg with 50x20 sheets listed at $5 each, and stampie, racetruckron and I made a bulk order for cheapness sake. I wound up with 29 sheets at $1.72 each. Its actually a little too thick, but not terribly so. Minimum thickness was 20 gauge.

Screenshot_20211228-101008_Facebook by Michael Crawford, on Flickr

20211228_195438 by Michael Crawford, on Flickr


up next, lets talk about miscellaneous stuff. The broad brush strokes of plans are cool and all, but the devil is in the details. That's also where most of the fun for me is, if im honest with myself.


As my father beat into my head, “not running is an inconvenience, not stopping will kill you”. So brakes are awfully high on my list of things to spend good money on. To that end, I first looked at whether 15s would clear the rx8 brakes as delivered.

20211122_083309 by Michael Crawford, on Flickr

so, there was a couple of options in front of me:

  1. downsize to the automatic rx8 brakes. Less rotor diameter, similar pad size and calipers. Ultimately, lower thermal capacity.

  2. Try to build a little big brake kit like FM does for the NC miata using wilwood calipers and off the shelf calipers

  3. space the 15s out more than they already will be until everything fits. 1 inch should do it.

I decided that, all things considered, I want to go for four piston calipers that are lighter with a good pad selection for up front. Used wilwood dynalites are cheap around here because of circle track, wilwood makes pads in every conceivable compound, and flyin miata uses them in every little big brake kit.

So I bought some (3 calipers, box of pads) for 60 bucks. Then, I was given another pair of the, for free. So I should have enough to work with for the front. On the rear, I was give a set of 300zx twin turbo two piston calipers and rotors to replace the explorer rear discs on the car currently. I think, overall, that I will lower the unsprung weight while increasing brake capacity and thermal capability. Winning all the way around. Hopefully I can fit it all under my cheap circle track wheels.

Screenshot_20211226-145822_Facebook by Michael Crawford, on Flickr


I needed master cylenders for my brake upgrades. I want to use the tilton pedal box and balance bar with different masters front and rear, and will also need a master for the hydraulic clutch system. That added up quickly to 120 the cheapest I could figure. So for 125, I got a box of brakes. 13 master cylinders, two boxes of rebuild kits, a wilwood brake bias bar adjuster, three bias gauge panels, baggie of hardware and fittings, wilwood brake pedal, box of reservoirs, etc. buttload of stuff.

Screenshot_20211231-090057_Facebook by Michael Crawford, on Flickr


last misc ill discuss on this post is the SRI performance bag. They're a shop in mooresville that sells used race parts. A lot is overpriced for my purposes, but generally there's some gems in there. This time, I got the billet hood props for $15 for both hatch and hood when they get lighter, a $10 billet crossmember, and a $15 fireproof shift boot. Just good bits to have for this, I believe.

20211210_132643 by Michael Crawford, on Flickr



so that gets us up to today. Called foils metal up in harrisburg this morning and they're bringing in my 3x3 tube for the framerails. They are step one on this build. However, before I start in hard, I need to get the engine in my ACR neon and finish up the rust repair on dads 51 ford truck. And prep the miata for the upcoming autocross season.....


urrent budget total: 1733 with two sets of wheels and tires included

AWSX1686 (Forum Supporter)
AWSX1686 (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand UltraDork
1/6/22 8:36 a.m.

Looks like you're well on your way to having quite the car!

OOh Boy, that was a mouth full.  Seems like you have enough parts to keep you occupied this winter.  I think you may need a bigger plate though, for all the stuff you have on it.

Dusterbd13-michael MegaDork
1/6/22 10:33 a.m.

In reply to Dirtydog (Forum Supporter) :


The amc will be a soonish project. Im going to try and break it up into manageable chunks instead of going full out on it. Enjoy the process and think things through a little better than i usually do. 

However, family first. And unfinished projects first 

Dusterbd13-michael said:

In reply to Dirtydog (Forum Supporter) :


The amc will be a soonish project. Im going to try and break it up into manageable chunks instead of going full out on it. Enjoy the process and think things through a little better than i usually do. 

However, family first. And unfinished projects first 

Yes, family first.  Life, is an unfinished project, you'll get through this.

Billy_Bottle_Caps GRM+ Memberand SuperDork
1/6/22 12:35 p.m.

Man great progress with buying stuff. Can't wait to see you update on this car, really like it!



Dusterbd13-michael MegaDork
1/7/22 12:19 p.m.

2x3x 1/8 tubing is 7.39 a foot now. 

Minimum of 20feet goin in....

RacetruckRon GRM+ Memberand Dork
1/7/22 12:57 p.m.

Berking hell.  Steel prices are insane 

untchabl HalfDork
1/7/22 1:58 p.m.

Yeah, steel is crazy. 1.75" x .120" DOM was $7.89 a foot a couple months ago when I had to buy about 240 foot worth.

stafford1500 GRM+ Memberand Dork
1/7/22 2:55 p.m.

The material I have left over from building the cage in this AMC has more than doubled in price per foot. Good thing I saved the off-cuts and a length big enough to help get some of the cage updates Michael listed done.

Dusterbd13-michael MegaDork
1/7/22 3:29 p.m.

In reply to stafford1500 :

I owe you big for that, sir. I really do. 

I was flabbergasted by the price when I got up to the counter. Guy in the back said it went up, maybe to 3-4 a foot. He hadn't heard recently though, and new shipments bring new prices.  

I about E36 M3 myself whe the dude at the register told me the total....

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