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Porsche 944: Keeping cool on a hot day

86 porsche 944 engine bay
86 porsche 944 engine bay

After feet and feet of snow a winter or two ago, it’s quite welcome that summer brings driving weather. At the autocross a while back, though, it was really, really hot–not that I’m complaining or anything. But it was other-end-of-the-spectrum hot. At the autocross, I was lucky enough to bring one recent-vintage car (Porsche 997 Targa 4) and two older cars (1973 914 and 1986 944). Keeping the machinery cool became more of a focal point than when I’m just running the newer car. Even the newer car can hit 250°F+ for coolant temp when running at a race track like Palmer or Thompson on a hot day. Idling waiting for runs at the autocross drives up the temps no matter what, so you get a lot of heat that doesn’t have the benefit of fast airflow like you get when running laps on a race track. So how can we keep things a bit cooler? Continue reading Porsche 944: Keeping cool on a hot day

997 Lower Control Arms For More Negative Camber

I’ve always noticed how race car tires have a very different attitude than street car tires. They are often wider and sit under beautiful fender flares. But they also seem to have a bit more tilt in them where the bottom of the tire sticks out further than the top. I’ve lately discovered this to be called “negative camber”. Camber is the tilt of the wheel around an imaginary axis line that would run either between the two front wheel centers or the rear wheel centers. When the top of the wheel moves in toward the center line of the car and the bottoms move outward, that is “negative camber”. The opposite is positive camber.

Why does camber matter? Continue reading 997 Lower Control Arms For More Negative Camber

Taking Stock of 914 Parts

The last two days involved getting most of the bits that came with our purchase of the car. The prior owner is a very nice and clearly quite diligent person who carefully acquired the many items needed to convert a 914-4 to a 914-6. Having just watched Van Svenson’s 40+ page tutorial on how to rebuild a 914 motor in gory detail, I’m starting to understand the “signal” that I have much to learn and that real motor work is not for the faint of heart or budget. At least it was a good primer for me to think long and hard about what to do with two 1.7L motors and a 2.7L 911 motor…

Here are the bits that are now stored away. Everything except the 911 motor is present and accounted for.

Air cleaner
Air cleaner
Extra bumper cover (for making fiberglass mold maybe)
Extra bumper cover (for making fiberglass mold maybe)
Center console w/o gauges
Center console w/o gauges
Original steering wheel
Original steering wheel
Metal bit, not sure what it is for
Metal bit, not sure what it is for
Exhaust
Exhaust
Metal bar, no idea what for yet
Metal bar, no idea what for yet
Shifter and cable tunnel?
Shifter and cable tunnel?
Bumper grills with fog light holes (no fog lights)
Bumper grills with fog light holes (no fog lights)
Chassis stiffening kit
Chassis stiffening kit
Stock torsion bars
Stock torsion bars
Rear hub
Rear hub
Shift cable reinforcement
Shift cable reinforcement
19mm master cylinder from 911 (yay, brakes!)
19mm master cylinder from 911 (yay, brakes!)
Steel rocker panels (the plastic ones on the car used to get cracked in shipping cars from the factory)
Steel rocker panels (the plastic ones on the car used to get cracked in shipping cars from the factory)
Side window glass
Side window glass
A-arms
A-arms
914-6 motor mounts
914-6 motor mounts
914-6 motor mounts (inside box)
914-6 motor mounts (inside box)
914-6 cheesehead for engine cooling (?)
914-6 cheesehead for engine cooling (?)
Various bits
Various bits
Rear glass
Rear glass
911 front suspension, rotors, brakes
911 front suspension, rotors, brakes
Extra transaxle
Extra transaxle
1.7L motor (may have been rebuilt but origin unknown)
1.7L motor (may have been rebuilt but origin unknown)
Back of 1.7L motor
Back of 1.7L motor
6-cylinder headers with heat exchangers
6-cylinder headers with heat exchangers
Half shafts (have 4 total)
Half shafts (have 4 total)
Clutch assembly
Clutch assembly
Steering spacer (needed to gain clearance with 911 front suspension bits)
Steering spacer (needed to gain clearance with 911 front suspension bits)
Boxes of fasteners
Boxes of fasteners
Front end stuff - wheel bearings, axles, steering boots, tie rods
Front end stuff – wheel bearings, axles, steering boots, tie rods
Tie rods
Tie rods
Wheel bearings and bolts
Wheel bearings and bolts
More bolts
More bolts
Axles for 5 lug conversion
Axles for 5 lug conversion
6" and 7" Fuchs wheels (best wheels ever!)
6″ and 7″ Fuchs wheels (best wheels ever!)
Sweet mother of lots of parts. Generator, intake bits, gauge housing, tin bits, wires, oil cooler, door handles (inner), and more!
Sweet mother of lots of parts. Generator, intake bits, gauge housing, tin bits, wires, oil cooler, door handles (inner), and more!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

 

Nearly forgot two headlights (confirmed to work) and a pile of articles, books, and 914-specific documents. The second one on top caught my eye immediately – how to fix the shift feel of the 914 so it is crisp! Looks like I have some work to do.