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Lovell and Freeman fatally injured during Oregon Trail SCCA ProRally

SCCA has issued an official press release regarding the accident:

HILLSBORO, Ore. (July 12, 2003) – Subaru Rally Team USA superstars Mark Lovell, 43, and Roger Freeman, 52, both of England, were fatally injured Saturday during the first special stage of the Oregon Trail SCCA ProRally event.

The first car away from the starting line, driver Lovell, and co-driver Freeman, left the prescribed course moments into the stage and struck a tree in their Subaru Impreza WRX. The two were pronounced dead at the scene by emergency medical personnel. Details of the incident were held until the families were notified.

“This is a tragic day for the world of rallying and motorsports in general, “said Steve Johnson, SCCA President and CEO, who was in attendance at the event. “Mark Lovell and Roger Freeman were among the best crews in the world, but they were also great competitors as well. Our prayers go out to their families, Subaru Rally Team USA and all of their friends and supporters.”

The duo who had been rallying together for twenty years were competingin their third event together of 2003. They entered the Oregon Trail fresh from success winning the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb of June 27. The 2001 Overall Drivers Champion, Lovell is survived by his wife, Julia, and his children Oliver and Thomas. Roger Freeman is survived by his wife, Alison, and children Becky and John.

A decision was made to finish Day One of the rally while information regarding the accident was gathered and after rally organizershad consulted with SCCA national staff, national safety stewardsand at the request of Subaru Rally Team USA Manager and close personal friend of Lovell and Freeman, David Campion. The field then ran an abbreviated schedule of stages later in the day. The rally will continue with the completion of the final six stages on Sunday as scheduled.

Two crash during Oregon Trail Road Rally

No names have been mentioned, but it’s fairly safe to assume this is Mark and Roger. I really have no idea how to feel about this.

The Associated Press

7/12/2003, 7:45 p.m. PT

HILLSBORO, Ore. (AP) — Two men participating in an Oregon Trail Road Rally event died Saturday morning when their car struck a tree, the Washington County Sheriff’s Office said.

The accident occurred at 10:53 a.m. on a gravel road in Washington County maintained by the Oregon Department of Forestry.

The victims were the first to drive the course and had apparently gone about nine-tenths of a mile when they lost control and struck a tree, sheriff’s deputies said. The car went airborne and settled in a ditch on the other side of the road.

The speed of the vehicle on impact could have ranged from 80 to 130 mph but investigators had not determined the exact speed.

Both victims were from England and were members of the pro-rally circuit. They were wearing helmets and all standard safety gear, deputies said.

The identities of the victims were not released pending notification of their families.

Much like certain aircraft, rally cars carry black boxes, which record engine information. Investigators recovered the vehicle’s black box and were examining it.

Members of the Oregon State Police and the Washington County Interagency Crash Analysis and Reconstruction Team were assisting in the investigation.

WRX 4EAT to BC6 5MT Conversion

By: Andrew Hobgood

So, my conversion is complete, and except for a few tiny issues, it works incredibly well.

For the overview, the patient is a MY02 WRX (GD2) with the 4EAT transmission (TIN TVA14YN1AA). It suffered one center differential failure (input sun to epicyclic diff gearset failed and sheared, as did contact faces on the input side of the planets). This was replaced to the tune of over $2500 in parts and labor. About 9 months later, the transmission started shifting poorly and flaring on cold fluid (winter here in New Hampshire). One morning, the car refused to go into any gear and wouldn’t move. Shavings were found, and the current best guest is that the oil pump in the transmission disintegrated.

Now, tired of dealing with not being able to repair an automatic, I decided to replace it with a 5MT gearbox. This would give me less driveline loss and better overall acceleration performance, and I was tired of being harangued for not knowing how to drive one. The auto tranny has its definite advantages — but it was time for me to move to something else.

I bought a 1990 Audi 80 quattro ($800) to get around while the WRX was off the road, and to learn the minutiae of driving a 5MT.

I came across the 5MT (TIN TY752VJ1AA) from a MY93 Legacy Turbo (BC6). It had about 150k miles on it… but it was already out of the donor car and sitting in the garage of a friend, attached to the motor. The price was right ($100), and figuring out how to separate it. I pulled it, deadlifted it into the back of the Audi, and brought it home.

The front final drive was now dropping to a 3.90 from the original 4.11 of the auto WRX. Unlike the 5MT WRX, the BC6 transmission used a 1:1 center transfer ratio, so I needed a 3.90 rear differential. I didn’t want to give up LSD, so I had two options — get a 3.90 LSD from a Legacy Turbo (only available in LSD for one MY, and would require different axles), or do a ring/pinion conversion on my stock 4.11 unit.

I decided to do the latter. I obtained a 3.90 open rear differential unit from a friend who had it sitting in his closet after a Legacy Turbo LSD conversion into his Outback Sport. Again, the price was right — it was free for the taking, since he needed to clean out his condo. Conditional on this was that I take the axles off his hands too — spares for the rally car! 😀

I had Bill’s Driveline in Manchester, NH do the ring/pinion conversion, since I lacked the experience, equipment, and parts to do it myself. $200 later, I had a 3.90 LSD that would use my stock axles, and was assembled to the right tolerances, and re-shimmed by a professional.

The new transmission crossmember and starter were obtained from a 5MT 1992 Legacy wagon (BF4) at pick-apart yard in Worcester, MA. I also took the pedal kit and some shifter interior pieces in case I’d need them. We also rolled a 1993 1.8L AWD Impreza onto its side and pulled the propshaft, with the hopes that it might fit… $21, and I had all of the above.

The pedal set and propshaft from above didn’t end up working, so I ordered a WRX pedal set, clutch master cylinder, clutch hard line, soft line, bracket, and slave cylinder for $180 from Suzuki Subaru Kia Parts in Rancho Cordova, CA. The propshaft from a 5MT WRX was purchased for $185 from F&S Auto Parts in Roxbury, CT.

Clutch, flywheel, and pressure plate were out of a WRX with approximately 9k miles, and were nearly pristine. I got them for free from a little birdie at a local dealership, as they were removed from a vehicle under the clutch shudder TSB. I also received an STi short shift linkage (without lever) for free from another birdie at another local dealership.

Throwout bearing, vehicle speed sensor, some wiring harnesses, and other miscellaneous bits were ordered new from Exeter Subaru and Manchester Subaru. I also ordered various hardware pieces, most notably a $40 part to mate the STi linkage up to the 5MT’s shift linkage shaft. I also bought a lot of nuts and bolts. While the car was apart, I also put in WhiteLine rear subframe bushings, rear subframe locking kit, STi transmission mount, STi pitch mount, a Kartboy short shift lever and Knuckleball, and a gutted WRX up-pipe.

We removed the stock 4EAT and rear diff by following the instructions in the manuals, more or less. We had hard copies of the factory transmission and wiring manuals, as well as the Haynes Legacy manual. The remainder of the important manuals (chassis, primarily) were electronically available on a laptop in the garage.

The rear diff was re-geared, put back in with the new subframe bushings and locking kit, and the rear suspension was reassembled.

While the 5MT was separated, we swapped out the stock Legacy linkage for the STi short-shift linkage. Particularly, this involved removing a double spring pin that held the linkage joint to the main shift rod. Using a punch and hammer, drill, mallet, etc., we made no progress. No lubricant would penetrate, and the metals appeared seized together. The smaller inner pin drilled out with no problem, but we broke drill bits trying to drill out the bigger one. We ended up using a small bolt, C-clamp, and O2 socket, as well as a ball joint puller and breaker bar, to force out the spring pin. Conservative calculations say that it took about 30 tons of force to get the pin out — wow. Once the pin was separated, the joint wouldn’t come off the rod… we ended up Dremeling it off one chunk at a time until the whole thing came off.

This accomplished (over two days, probably dumped 10 or more man-hours into the freakin’ thing), we cleaned up and oiled the linkage rod and attached the new joint with a bolt, nut, and lock washer.

The 5MT went in by following the manuals as well, with the new mounts going in. The front pair of holes for the 5MT transmission crossmember had little plastic plugs in them, but were pre-drilled and tapped. Score another point for parts-bin engineering. Alignment was a *****, but we got it all to come together.

We did the up-pipe in here too, which involved draining all the coolant, as it was all coming out of the turbo lines anyway.

The hydraulics went in, as did the pedals. Once again, parts-bin engineering prevailed, as the holes were already cut in the firewall and the firewall insulation for the clutch master cylinder. The starter wire needed a little massaging to stretch all the way to the terminal on the MT starter, but it wasn’t a big deal.

The WRX propshaft rear section was perfect length from the bearing to the diff, but the front section is about 1cm too short. Realistically, there’s plenty of spline engaged in that sleeve yoke that there’s plenty of strength, and no leaks. The only way to do this right is to use an Impreza rear section and a Legacy front section, or to lengthen my existing one. I might do this if it proves to be a problem as time goes on.

Now, with everything hooked up, I filled the gearbox with Redline Shockproof Light (pureed Smurf!) and the rear diff with Redline 75W90NS. All synthetic oils… expensive, but I need all the protection I can get.

I made a custom wiring harness using the vehicle speed sensor extension wire from a WRX, the reverse/neutral harness from the BC6 transmission, and the harnesses from the 4EAT… one harness tricked the starter circuit (the P-N sense switch on the inhibitor switch harness), and the other harness brings vehicle speed, reverse, and neutral sensors all into the driver’s footwell, where the TCU would normally reside, without running new wires through the firewall.

I then set to work splicing, getting the vehicle speed sensor wired up to send its signal on what used to be the vehicle speed output signal on the TCU. I pulled ground from a nearby harness, and ignition supply from what used to supply the TCU. The N and R wires are still unattached, so my reverse lights don’t work yet.

After that, she ran perfectly. Started fine, idles great, no problems. It occasionally throws a P1596 (AT diagnosis signal high) CEL, but it doesn’t limp… I just need to figure out how to get it to stop looking for the TCU. 😀 At the worst, this would be an ECU swap, but as it stands now, the CEL is barely a problem.

Important parts and approximate prices:

  • transmission (TIN TY752VJ1AA): $100
  • 3.9 open rear diff (from MT OBS): Free
  • rear diff conversion labor: $200
  • shudder takeoff clutch, flywheel, pressure plate: Free
  • clutch master cylinder, lines, slave, and pedals (WRX): $180
  • WRX 5MT propshaft: $185
  • junkyard MT starter motor: $15
  • junkyard tranny crossmember: $6
  • new WRX vehicle speed sensor: $60
  • new WRX VSS harness: $25
  • STi transmission mount: $90
  • fluids (gear oil, coolant): $50
  • STi short shift linkage: Free
  • Kartboy shift lever: $100
  • Kartboy Knuckleball: $30

So, all told, a bit over $1000 for the important stuff, and $1300 including new bushings, short shift stuff, and other optional items.

Important tools…

  • Breaker bars (suspension components!)
  • Torque wrench (don’t overdo it, kids…)
  • PB Blaster (beats WD40)
  • Engine assembly lube (with moly, lithium, and graphite… for throwout bearing)
  • Spray lithium grease (for other random greasing)
  • C-clamps and patience (for removing that odd Spring Pin of Doom)
  • small Frenchman (proved invaluable at fitting in small spaces)
  • transmission jack (getting the tranny into the car
  • would be virtually impossible without this)
  • ratcheting box wrenches

Big thanks to:

mad-dog999 — Can’t thank him enough. This guy used his unnaturally long arms and skinny hands and body to fit into spaces that my 6’3″ 275lb frame simply couldn’t. He was there every weekend, through every last hour of this job. He kept encouraging me when I though it would never happen, and proved to be the best assistant that money can’t buy. 😀 There’s a reason we’ve got him as the crew chief for our rally team… 🙂

IggDawg — for the garage, muscle, mechanical advantage, and comic relief.

Sephro — thanks for letting us use your tools, and break them… 😀 also, mad props for finding a transmission jack.

wac — for the free diff and wiring suggestions

Darshu — for the nearly free transmission, and paying for my shaft. 😆

dano — for grabbing my shaft. :p

Sean, webkris, LinuxGuy, and anyone else who stopped by — thanks for labor and encouragement. 😀

North Ursalia and — thanks for putting up with my parts questions, searches, orders, returns, re-orders, etc… and mad phat dealz y0!

joe z and Sully at Manchester Subaru — more parts and such…

First off, it’s working great so far! 😀

The car is so fast now… between the drivetrain and the up-pipe, it just pulls and pulls…

Unfortunately, there aren’t a whole lot of pictures… neither mad-dog999 or I own a digital camera, and we were too busy actually doing the work to get pictures. 🙂 Sean and webkris occasionally stopped by to snap some pictures, so I’ll see what I can dig up.

Most of the process is well documented in the shop manuals, except for the actual bits that needed “conversion”…

Interesting key notes:

  • Converting the Legacy Turbo cable speedometer to use an electronic sender was relatively easy. They both use the same diameter and thread pitch. I had to file down the upper part of the plastic housing for the electronic VSS to get it to clear the transmission case. After that, it just hooked right up.
  • The clutch system of the BC6 tranny is identical to the WRX (pull-type hydraulic). All of the parts (including release bearing, clutch disk, pressure plate, and flywheel) are WRX parts. Same thing with the slave cylinder and other hydraulics… bolt patterns were identical for the slave cylinder, and the slave piston indent in the release fork was perfectly placed.
  • Pressure plate bolts need to be bottomed out… the torque spec on them is 11 ft-lbs, but it takes way more than that to get the plate to seat onto the flywheel. Do them slowly and evenly until the plate is seated all the way, then just check and make sure that they’re down to your 11 ft-lb spec.
  • Do NOT try and use old flex-plate bolts to attach the flywheel to the crank. We damaged the threads in one of the bolt-holes on the end of the crankshaft, and it was mangling threads on the bolts. We ended up re-tapping the hole before attaching the flywheel… it took a 10mmx1.0 (ultra-fine pitch, not the 1.25 fine pitch) tap and steady hands (on mad-dog999’s part) to make things right again.
  • The wiring manual is invaluable for modifying the harnesses. Make sure you mark which page you’re working from so if you get distracted or lose your page, you come back to the right one… I screwed up at least once and made half of my wire colors for the turbo diagram, and half for the non-turbo. I realized this early, but it added some extra splice time to my efforts.
  • On the inhibitor switch, only one wire is necessary to fool the starter… there’s a specific Park/Neutral starter interlock wire that is separate from the gear indicator wires… short those two contacts together. If you’re anal, you can connect these over to your neutral switch or make a starter interlock relay. I’m not that anal. 😀
  • The other harness can be used to interface to the bulkhead harness to bring all of your signals into the car without running more wires. Use it. The TCU doesn’t need it anymore. 🙂

Right now, cruise control is broken, my reverse lights don’t light up, and I can start the car without the clutch in (though, some would argue that this is a feature). The car occasionally throws a P1596 MIL, but it doesn’t limp. I can check/clear the code from my in-dash SECS unit, so it’s no big deal.

Stub harness — this attaches to the inhibitor switch bulkhead connector to convince the starter to crank.

Custom bulkhead harness — this takes the VSS wires, neutral switch wires, and reverse switch wires and brings them into the car on the old signal I/O wires that used to go to the TCU. These come out on the B54/B55/B56 connectors that now no longer go into the bottom of the TCU under the steering column.

So, the one-week update…

Starting on Friday night, as the car was parked in its space overnight, it leaked a little bit of gear oil onto the pavement… I spent Saturday driving around, returned to my apartment, and when I opened up the hood, was greeted by smoke, which was more gear oil landing on the exhaust and burning off. Kept watching my level like a hawk (it had been slightly over-full) and did an autocross yesterday… the leak got progressively worse as time went on.

webkris, Mr. The Plague, Sean, and I put it up on jackstands last night, pulled the exhaust system and tranny crossmember and found the leak. The rearmost seal on the transmission was oozing fluid every time the shifter lever was moved. The rearmost seal is directly in front of the lower shifter pivot plate, and both are held to the transmission with a single (!) bolt. This appears to be factory standard on the older transmissions, and the newer ones use only two bolts. End result, the end plate on the transmission was flexing, causing the gasket to flex, and gear oil to ooze out.

Still, that plate has an additional four holes and two studs coming out of it which are all pre-threaded. I found some matching bolts and nuts in my box of Subaru parts, and managed to secure the plate better. Take it gradually when tightening, and don’t overtorque — it’s an aluminum case, and you will strip out threads if you try to put too much force onto them.

Bolted the transmission crossmember and exhaust back up, and it looks like there’s no more leaking at all. All in all, I lost a little over a quart of gear oil. I’m ordering some more to top it off and to have a stash around for if something like this happens again.

Corbeau releases FX1 as inexpensive alternative to Sparco Evo

Corbeau has released the FX1 line of fiberglass composite race seats as an inexpensive alternative to the more expensive Sparco Evo. While the FX1 is designed for medium sized drivers and is similar in dimensions to the Sparco Evo 2, the FX1 Wide is claimed to be the largest race seat in production with dimensions slightly larger than the Sparco Evo 3.

Many thanks go out to Brett Setliff over at for doing the research on these seats before they were released and drop shipping them to Hatch Manufacturing, our cage builder, for installation into our Subaru Impreza rally car the minute they became available! We are quite impressed with the FX1 Wide but, as with any other inexpensive product, we have found a few quirks.

First impressions…big and mean!

First of all, the FX1 Wide seats are absolutely huge! Both my navigator and I had major concerns about finding proper seating due to our 44″ waists and birthing hips. We both had issues just barely squeezing into the Corbeau Forza and the Sparco Evo 2 so we knew we needed to find larger seats. We initially looked at the Corbeau Forza II but decided to wait for the FX1 to be released. We knew we’d chosen the right seats when Brent Hatch of Hatch Manufacturing called us and voiced concerns about physically fitting the seats into the cage!

At first glance, the FX1 Wide appeared to be just as good as the Sparco Evo 3. The fiberglass composite shell is extremely sturdy and slightly flexible with high quality outer fabric and padding. Major friction points are reinforced with leather patches and the colored padding can be removed for washing. As a bonus, additional colored inserts and padding can be installed for a better fit.

Quality/price/performance…choose two!

As with virtually all products, the old adage of you get what you pay for certainly rings true. At $299 and $344 respectively, the FX1 and FX1 Wide can hardly be called cheap. Compared to the more expensive $549 and $599 Evo 2 and Evo 3 seats as well as the $819 Corbeau Pro Sport, however, one has to imagine that the price difference is justifiable. Fortunately, the inexpensive price of the FX1 seems to be due to Corbeau designing the seat on a budget and not cutting corners.

Minor gripes and concerns.

Since the FX1 is a first generation seat and we are some of the first guys in the US to take delivery we fully expected there to be some issues. Most of the issues were quite minor:

  1. To simplify installation we purchased the Corbeau seat bracket designed to fit the FX1 Wide into our GC8 Subaru Impreza. The holes in the bracket did not line up exactly with the feet on the seat and had to be modified slightly with a die grinder. Corbeau verified that this as a minor issue that happens occasionally.
  2. The outer fabric on one of the seats let go in shipping and had to be reattached. This was a simple matter of unhooking the removable tension wire and realigning the fabric.
  3. The glue on one of the plastic harness slot inserts let go and had to be reglued. Since the inserts are flat and the back of the seat is curved it appears that this may be an issue if not enough glue is used to attach the inserts at the factory.

Installation procedure.

Actually fitting the FX1 Wide into a car becomes a game of inserting a square peg into a round hole. Stuffing the FX1 Wide into the GC8 Subaru Impreza chassis required liberal use of a sledgehammer to dent in the transmission tunnel just behind the shifter. Taller drivers who use the seat farther back on the slider may not have a rubbing issue but the fit is still extremely tight. The Corbeau driver seat bracket fit perfectly on the first try and there was plenty of clearance to use both the stock bolts and the eyebolts included with our Sparco six point harnesses to attach the bracket to the chassis.

Since a custom bracket was fabricated to mount the navigator seat as close to the floor and as far back as possible, installation of the harness eyebolts became an issue of chicken and egg. The eyebolt could not be torqued to attach the bracket to the chassis while the seat was on the bracket but, once the bracket was torqued to the chassis, there was not enough clearance to reattach the seat to the bracket. Creative use of physics and folding of the time space continuum, however, allowed everything to be attached properly. We’re still not 100% positive how we got it to work.

Long term comfort and seating position.

It takes some getting used to the new seating position of the FX1 Wide on the Corbeau brackets. Because the base of the FX1 Wide is thinner with less padding than the stock seats the overall seating position is just over two inches lower than stock. This drastically lowers the center of gravity but completely changes the dynamics of driving the car. Adjusting the steering wheel all the way down with the stock seats just barely touched my thighs where I now have over two inches of clearance with the FX1 Wide. Shorter drivers may have an issue with the steering wheel position being too high even in its lowest setting.

Although the padding is much thinner and not as contoured as the Sparco Evo 3 the seats are extremely comfortable, even in a daily driver. Both my navigator and I feel quite at home in the FX1 Wide and I personally have had no comfort issues during both two hour drives and my 30 mile commute to and from work. My navigator has complained of minor discomfort during spirited driving but that can easily be rectified with padded inserts.

Installing the Corbeau FX1 into the Nissan NX2000.

By: Brian Vecchiarelli

I installed the Corbeau FX1 in my 1993 Nissan NX2000 with the seat rails supplied by Corbeau. Installation couldn’t have been easier: 1 Philips head screw to take out some trim and four 14mm bolts to get the stock seat out. The FX1 went in just as easily. The Corbeau rails matched up perfectly and, four bolts later, the seat was in! The whole install took no more than 15 minutes.

The seat is very firm, even for a race seat, but all padding is removable and upgradeable. The seating angle is ideal and the shoulder bolstering is perfect. The seat by itself rocks.

Unlike the lower seat rails for the GC8 Subaru Impreza, the seat sits quite a bit higher than stock with the Corbeau sliders for the NX2000. At 6’1″ I have to slouch down if I don’t want my head to hit the sunroof so there is definitely no helmet clearance and, with a harness, I’ll never sit in the seat correctly with the supplied Corbeau seat rails. All this is easily fixed by a using different mounting scheme or fabricating custom brackets by hacking up the stock sliders.
According to Brett Setliff at Corbeau also makes sport rails to lower the seating position.

How to paint a rally car…

The car is finally painted! The blue looks pretty decent and here’s a quickie rundown on car preparation…I’ll have a complete 50/50 (looks good at 50 MPH from 50 feet away) paintjob howto put together once I’m finished. In a nutshell:

  1. Use 60 grain dry sandpaper on a handheld electric sander ($20) or, if you can afford it, random orbit sander with dust trap ($150). Sand through the clearcoat until you hit paint. Here I am prepping Kris’ rally Neon…notice the “white” dust. This is clearcoat dust…when the dust turns red, you’ve hit paint.
  2. Use 220 grain dry sandpaper on the same sander to smooth out the scrapes from the 60 grain and remove the swirl marks. Hitting the white electrically applied factory primer is good…hitting metal is bad but not Earth shattering.
  3. Drill holes and use a dent puller to yank out huge dents. Sand to bare metal then use a ball hammer to whack the holes back in. Sealer should then be used on the inside to reduce the chances of rust (I forgot to do this because I suck).
  4. Start Bondo body work where required. Scrape up with 60 grain and apply Bondo. Form Bondo with 100 grain. Smooth with 220 grain. 220 grain still leaves a rough surface but this is good…we want a hardcore tough paintjob, not a show paintjob.
  5. Use Bondo Finishing Putty to fill in all the air bubbles in the Bondo. It’s impossible to apply Bondo 100% smooth when you first start working with it.
  6. Prime all areas to be painted with Duplicolor Filler Primer or Plasti-kote Filler Primer. The filler primer is thicker, runs less and fills in the rough spots from sanding. I coat the entire car and then immediately start over from the beginning with a second coat while the first coat is still tacky.
  7. Let the car flash for 15 minutes until a dry skin forms over the primer and then repeat the two medium coats again. Let dry overnight, preferably a week or two to bake in the sun.
  8. Wet sand primer with 600 grain.
  9. Thoroughly wash car with automotive car wash fluid and tar/wax stripper.
  10. Spray down walls of painting area with water to reduce dust. Let car dry, use cotton lint-free towels.
  11. Use Prep-All or any other alcohol based paint prep solution to remove all residue and dust.
  12. Fire up compressor to full capacity at 60 PSI blow. Mix paints. MSA acrylic enamel requires a 8 parts paint to 4 parts reducer to 1 part hardener.
  13. Use cardboard or wood to test your spray pattern. It takes a while to get the proper air pressure to air flow to spray pattern mix.
  14. Blow down color just like the primer…coat the entire car with a light to medium coat so you can still see primer. Go back and do the entire car again immediately with a medium coat so you can’t see primer anymore.
  15. Let car flash for 10 to 15 minutes until a skin forms and is just barely tacky…if you press your finger will get wet. Spray down car again with two medium coats.
  16. This should be enough, let dry with an exhaust fan overnight. Move car outside the next day and let bake in the sun.


Trunkmonkey Racing Announces Co-Driver and Prepares for Entry into Production GT

For Immediate Release – July 7, 2002 – Haverhill, MA

Haverhill, MA – After bringing home a second place season finish in the 4WD snow tire class of the Boston BMWCCA ice racing series, Trunkmonkey Racing has acquired an MY96 Subaru Impreza L 2.2 in preparation for entry into Production GT. Sean Sosik-Hamor has stepped up to the plate as team owner and driver and has chosen Andrew Hobgood as co-driver. Vehicle preparation has started and will continue throughout the Summer.

When asked to comment on being chosen as co-driver for Trunkmonkey Racing, Andrew replied, “sweet, and by sweet, I mean cool.”

Sean has been autocrossing and rallycrossing for the past three seasons and has just now acquired the funding to enter into the ClubRally circuit. A schedule has been set to have the car mildly prepared for Production GT by Fall for entry into rallycross and rallysprint events sponsored by Team O’Neil and WDCR as well as the 2003 Boston BMWCCA ice racing series. The car should then be fully prepared by Spring for entry into ClubRally events.

The goal of Trunkmonkey Racing for the first ClubRally season is to simply gain seat time and finish DLBF. Sponsorships have not yet been announced.

Team updates and journal can be found at

How to Apply Vinyl Decals

  1. Prepare surface by thoroughy cleaning with an ammonia or alcohol based glass cleaner. Vinyl will not adhere to dusty, oily or freshly waxed surfaces.
  2. Cut vinyl to shape and use a squeegee or credit card to rub the applicator sheet into the viewable side of the vinyl.
  3. Tape the vinyl in place using masking tape as a hinge to ensure proper placement.
  4. Flip the vinyl out of the way, remove the protective sheet and spray surface and vinyl with a fine mist of water.
  5. Flip the vinyl onto the wet surface and check for proper alignment. Vinyl may be removed and repositioned on a wet surface multiple times during the initial application process.
  6. Once desired placement has been achieved, use a squeegee or credit card to rub out all water and air bubbles. If possible, rub in a single direction from left to right or from top to bottom. For larger applications, rub from the center to the edges.
  7. After rubbing out all water and air bubbles, slowly remove applicator sheet. If vinyl lifts from surface, repeat step 6. Vinyl won’t stick when wet, so all moisture must be rubbed out before removing sheet.
  8. Dab area with paper towel or cotton rag to press down all edges, remove excess water and speed up drying process.
  9. Move vehicle into garage or carport overnight to reduce moisture. Do not run windshield wipers or wash vinyl for 24 to 72 hours to make sure glue cures and bonds with surface.