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Mercutio
04-18-2015, 05:32 PM
Last year at the Shootout, my car weighed 3,441 pounds. Even though I'd weighed the car lighter than that before (thanks to fuel), I decided that was too heavy. I wanted to see if I could get it down below 3,400.

Some of you may remember posts from last year about things like "What does this connector do? What about these wires? How about this bracket?" I was looking for places to remove weight a little bit at a time, since the car just doesn't have many more easy-to-find weight in large chunks. Some, like the sound deadening and AC, I'm determined to keep.

But I saw the unused connectors for the electronic suspension sitting there in the engine bay, and it irritated me. Just how much wiring in the car was no longer necessary? My car didn't have power seats, a stereo, or fog lights anymore, either. So I began removing wires. Lots of them.

In the process, I found other things to remove. There were these brackets above the rear package shelf, but below the package shelf carpet, for the stereo amp. These weighed 1.5 pounds.

http://i241.photobucket.com/albums/ff99/featheredmafia/The%20Red%20Car/210_zpsgkhjdybn.jpg

Then there was the dead pedal. It's kind of ridiculously overbuilt and serves as a bracket for some other stuff. It weighed 2.75 pounds.

http://i241.photobucket.com/albums/ff99/featheredmafia/The%20Red%20Car/211_zpsov2v7efs.jpg

To get to some of the wiring, I had to remove the carpet and rear seat. These brackets fit around the perimeter of the rear seat trunk opening. I had been under the impression that only cars with flip-down seats had these brackets. My LX came with a V-brace, not these, so I swapped them. That saved 2.75 pounds.

http://i241.photobucket.com/albums/ff99/featheredmafia/The%20Red%20Car/208_zpswmqpuvwn.jpg

Years ago, I thought it would be necessary to add this rear diff cover in place of the stock piece. Well, I've never seen guys with more power than I have break the stock diff cover, so I put the stocker back on. That saved 4.5 pounds.

http://i241.photobucket.com/albums/ff99/featheredmafia/The%20Red%20Car/209_zpskslnxqmr.jpg

There were a few other little things, too. I won an aluminum water pump pulley at the Shootout. I even swapped out the electrochromatic rear view mirror with the standard mirror from my LX. Those two changes saved another .75 pound.

And oh yeah: the wiring. I got rid of the wiring for the stereo, power seats, fog lights, electronic suspension, rear view mirror, sun visors, and even the remote entry system (that last one was probably a mistake, as it took a some work to rewire the door locks to work). That project took a lot of time and electrical tape, but as best I can tell, ended up saving about 14-15 pounds of wires, switches, relays, brackets, etc.

http://i241.photobucket.com/albums/ff99/featheredmafia/The%20Red%20Car/207_zpsnrjvmll0.jpg

I also replaced the rear sway bar with a custom tubular piece, which I discussed in another thread. That saved 3.75 pounds.

I found all of the weights I've mentioned by actually weighing individual pieces on a digital postal scale, so I had a good idea of what I'd taken out of the car: my notes said it was a bit over 32 pounds.

Today was the first time I've actually been able to weigh the car this year. I genuinely didn't know whether it would be below 3400 or not. I thought it might be within 10 pounds, and it can be hard to estimate fuel load. I believe it had less fuel today than it did at the Shootout, but nonetheless, I was pretty pleased. I know you guys think I'm nuts for looking for a pound (or less) here and there, but it all adds up.

http://i241.photobucket.com/albums/ff99/featheredmafia/The%20Red%20Car/206_zpsjg6bpta1.jpg

XR7 Phillip
04-18-2015, 05:50 PM
Very nice! :D I love hearing about all the little things you can get rid of. Keep it up.

Phil

driller
04-18-2015, 09:15 PM
I'm impressed! :)

aroot1
04-19-2015, 09:48 AM
Drag racers adage, "every 100# is .1 of a second. Can't find a place to remove 100#? Find 100 places to remove 1#!"

And I'd bet it's even more of an improvement turning corners!

Adam

XR7 Dave
04-19-2015, 11:15 AM
Driving Will's car at 3500 or so pounds a few years ago it is very noticeably more nimble and responsive than a normal SC. I think it was the most fun SC I've ever driven.

Mercutio
04-19-2015, 04:45 PM
I appreciate that, David. One of these days I'll get the car back up to you for some more power and you can drive it again.

Mercutio
04-19-2015, 06:46 PM
As an FYI, I just went to the gas station and put 14.5 gallons in the car. So it was low on gas, but not exactly dry yet. The VMM fuel light lit up on startup, but then turned off on the road. I find that happens quite a bit: it'll often come on for a bit, then go off for maybe 20 miles or so before coming on and staying on. In fact, that's pretty much the same scenario as at the Shootout last year (VMM light came on a few miles from the hotel, then turned off), so the fuel state may have been fairly similar at each weighing.

Edit: assuming the tank is actually full, the car should weigh around 3473 now (that's using math, not weighing it again).

1FSTBRD
04-19-2015, 07:46 PM
Wow, that's impressive to get the car that low in weight! I agree on the dead pedal, it seemed to be really well (needlessly) overbuilt, as if someone is going to have a left foot that weighs 200 lbs or something. :D I tried to remove mine, but when I realized it was attached to something else, I left it alone because it seemed like it was more hassle to remove than it was worth.

If you don't mind listing the other stuff you'd removed in the past, and how much it weighed, that would be awesome. Ironically, the AC in my car is the one thing that I won't mind removing to save a bit of weight.....it needs to be recharged, and I don't need AC anyways. The condenser in front of the radiator i've already removed, and it seems like the rad runs a bit cooler and the intercooler is getting more air at the front of the car.

Have you found anything inside the doors that can be removed? One thing I'd noticed with these doors is that when I stepped into a 1984 Hurst Olds with those big G body doors (and power locks, etc), they were still pretty noticeably lighter than the Thunderbird doors.

Mercutio
04-19-2015, 08:10 PM
I've listed a lot of that stuff before, and while there's no need to go through it all again here, I'll link to those threads:

http://www.sccoa.com/forums/showthread.php?110054-What-stuff-weighs (http://www.sccoa.com/forums/showthread.php?110054-What-stuff-weighs&highlight=what+stuff+weighs)

http://www.sccoa.com/forums/showthread.php?117812-dropping-weight/

There's also a very old but very informative thread from Mansier about the weights of parts he removed while building his road race car:

http://www.sccoa.com/forums/showthread.php?25210-The-Before-Picture-%28Road-Racer%29

Our cars' doors are inherently heavy because they're enormous. The only things I've removed from my doors have been wiring and the speakers.

If you have any other specific questions, let me know and I'll do my best to answer them.

SCrazy
04-20-2015, 08:57 AM
Will....check out the glove box door. I think the freakin thing is lead lined!!! The glove box must weigh 5 lbs!!

Of course you can always cut off some bumpers!!!

The passenger side air bag is very heavy also.

SCrazy
04-20-2015, 08:59 AM
Our cars' doors are inherently heavy because they're enormous. The only things I've removed from my doors have been wiring and the speakers.

I am in the process of installing fiberglass doors with lexan windows, my factory doors weighed in at about 95lbs not including door panels, speakers or wiring....I would say right about 100lbs total, heavy suckers.
(Did I already post this somewhere?)

Edit: Yup...in your shootout post sorry for cluttering this up.

Mercutio
04-20-2015, 06:33 PM
Will....check out the glove box door. I think the freakin thing is lead lined!!! The glove box must weigh 5 lbs!!

Of course you can always cut off some bumpers!!!

The passenger side air bag is very heavy also.

The glove box door is also very fragile in the latch area, which is a neat combination.

I don't see me cutting away my bumpers or removing an airbag on a street car, but I can understand why you have.

The next thing I look at for weight reduction is probably going to be the wheels. I don't like the current availability of 17" tires in the 255-275 range, so I may have to step up to 18s to run the quality of tire I want to run. And if I do, I may as well find something nice and light.

1FSTBRD
04-20-2015, 07:34 PM
The thing about the Hurst is that those are the big, heavy G-body doors on a mid size car, that sometimes have hinge issues because of the weight/ size of the door. There was still things like power locks/ doors on the Hurst, an additional pull handle to close the door, but it was something that I thought was interesting....certainly there is some way to lighten the T-Bird doors. Maybe not? :( Maybe it's just better bracing in the doors for impact or something.

DrFishbone
04-22-2015, 12:59 PM
Nice work, Will! :D

S4gunn
04-22-2015, 02:35 PM
Q: How much are you planning to keep your car street legal?

Q: Do you have a cage to help with stiffness?

My tbird is a track car and with a 3.8NA, full fluids but no driver, I weighed it on corner scales at exactly 3000LBs.
When i swapped in a 302 V8, I re-weighed the car at 3150LBs.
FWIW, my cage probably added 150-200LBs of metal+plate so we are talking about an overall diet of 750-800Lbs from stock.

Stuff I removed for you to consider:
* the entire interior except for two Corbeau track seats (aka no interior plastic bits, rear seats, no carpet, no roof liner, and all sound deadening).
* Cut out underhood metal (had to add pins for peace of mind considering how floppy it is now)
* Removed EVAP canister and emissions equipment; removed air conditioning bits. Cut down windshield wipers to only actuate one wiper arm.
* All excess wiring going back to the rear of the car except for the wires to control the ABS, pop the fuel door, and the rear tailllights.
* Skeletonized (aka cut out the excess metal) the package shelf, the rear interior metal to the left/right of the rear passengers,
* Cut out the spare tire well and replaced with aluminum sheet
* Removed the dash and all the HVAC stuff except for a tiny portion of the frame to bolt the steering column, the gauge cluster, and a panel that holds all my aftermarket gauges.
* All glass removed except the front windshield
* Skinned the doors and cut off the window frame (it's super flimsy now and if you want to get out of the car, you reach outside and pull the outside doorhandle). Riveted a small amount of the seatbelt material to act as a pull handle to close the door.


Besides putting the driver on a diet, replacing the front windshield with lexan (which sucks to use from what I've heard from others), going to a tubular front K-member, and replacing the rear LCAs/rear UCAs/rear diff with aluminum bits from a Mark VIII, I'm not sure how much more weight we can save off this chassis. She'll still be a porker. Considering I'm tired of parting out cars (and therefore am not likely to buy a Lincoln to cut up), I doubt my car is going to get any lighter.

While I have driven this car to work (50mi away) in this condition, it wasn't a pleasant drive. If you want to keep the car stock looking and useful, here are the items I would consider:
- Skeletonize the hood or replace it. Don't forget the hood pins!
- Pull up the carpet and scrape all the tar. I think I weighed the tar and it was 40-60Lbs worth of gunk.
- If you want to throw money at the problem, look to replace the rear suspension/diff bits with MK8 equivalents.

Mercutio
04-22-2015, 07:38 PM
Q: How much are you planning to keep your car street legal?

Um. All of it? All the way? Not sure how to phrase a response to that. It's a street car that occasionally gets raced, not the other way around.


Q: Do you have a cage to help with stiffness?

No, for several reasons, including the fact that I don't want to hack the car up, don't want to lose the back seat, and don't want bars anywhere near my head unless I'm wearing a helmet.


Stuff I removed for you to consider:
* the entire interior except for two Corbeau track seats (aka no interior plastic bits, rear seats, no carpet, no roof liner, and all sound deadening).
* Cut out underhood metal (had to add pins for peace of mind considering how floppy it is now)
* Removed EVAP canister and emissions equipment; removed air conditioning bits. Cut down windshield wipers to only actuate one wiper arm.
* All excess wiring going back to the rear of the car except for the wires to control the ABS, pop the fuel door, and the rear tailllights.
* Skeletonized (aka cut out the excess metal) the package shelf, the rear interior metal to the left/right of the rear passengers,
* Cut out the spare tire well and replaced with aluminum sheet
* Removed the dash and all the HVAC stuff except for a tiny portion of the frame to bolt the steering column, the gauge cluster, and a panel that holds all my aftermarket gauges.
* All glass removed except the front windshield
* Skinned the doors and cut off the window frame (it's super flimsy now and if you want to get out of the car, you reach outside and pull the outside doorhandle). Riveted a small amount of the seatbelt material to act as a pull handle to close the door.

You're describing something I don't want my car to be. Nothing wrong with that if that's what you want, but it's not what I'm after.


If you want to keep the car stock looking and useful, here are the items I would consider:
- Skeletonize the hood or replace it. Don't forget the hood pins!
- Pull up the carpet and scrape all the tar. I think I weighed the tar and it was 40-60Lbs worth of gunk.
- If you want to throw money at the problem, look to replace the rear suspension/diff bits with MK8 equivalents.

-My hood is fiberglass, so that's a non-issue.
-I've decided against that, since I want the car to have some degree of luxury and comfort left.
-Already done.

Flex
04-23-2015, 01:28 PM
Selling the control freak cover? If so, how much? Thanks.

Tim Groth
04-23-2015, 02:29 PM
The glove box door is also very fragile in the latch area, which is a neat combination.

I don't see me cutting away my bumpers or removing an airbag on a street car, but I can understand why you have.

The next thing I look at for weight reduction is probably going to be the wheels. I don't like the current availability of 17" tires in the 255-275 range, so I may have to step up to 18s to run the quality of tire I want to run. And if I do, I may as well find something nice and light.

Wondering if these numbers posted were with the SVE wheels installed or with a different wheel installed. I know my same style wheel in 18x9 / 18x10 is a heavy wheel combo.

Real impressive numbers either way.

-Tim

S4gunn
04-23-2015, 05:14 PM
One more item to get rid of that I just remembered: front rotor dust shields. IIRC, they weigh maybe a pound each -- but that would be unsprung mass you are removing.
-g

Flex
04-23-2015, 05:28 PM
One more item to get rid of that I just remembered: front rotor dust shields. IIRC, they weigh maybe a pound each -- but that would be unsprung mass you are removing.
-g

I would doubt they weigh that much and they don't move so they are not unsprung weight.

Mercutio
04-23-2015, 06:26 PM
Wondering if these numbers posted were with the SVE wheels installed or with a different wheel installed. I know my same style wheel in 18x9 / 18x10 is a heavy wheel combo.

Real impressive numbers either way.

-Tim

Yes, the 3386 weight was with the 10th anny Cobra wheels. They're real Ford wheels, not knockoffs, and 17x9, so they're probably lighter than what you have. With a 255/45-17 Goodyear, each weighs 51 pounds. By way of comparison, my 95 Cobra Rs and 275/40-17 Hoosers were 45 pounds per corner.


I would doubt they weigh that much and they don't move so they are not unsprung weight.

Dust shields are definitely unsprung weight.

Flex
04-23-2015, 07:57 PM
Yes, you are correct. I was thinking rotational mass.

1FSTBRD
04-24-2015, 07:11 PM
Getting back to the glove box, has anyone found a way to lighten it? It seems needlessly heavy. Is there some sort of metal plate in it?

35thpartdeux
04-24-2015, 07:21 PM
It's easy enough to remove that you could remove the glovebox at the track.

Mercutio
04-24-2015, 07:40 PM
The glove box door assembly weighs 5 lbs, 3 oz. Don't think I wouldn't know.

But in terms of lightening it? no good ways I can think of.

SCrazy
04-25-2015, 08:02 PM
The glove box door assembly weighs 5 lbs, 3 oz. Don't think I wouldn't know.

But in terms of lightening it? no good ways I can think of.

I have not done it yet but it is my intention to gut that sucker. When I am done it will be nothing more than a plastic door with a hinge.

I'll take some pictures of what I find inside.


Not sure if you have this yet Will but the rear steel bumper weights 15lbs....that does not include the foam, just the steel.

Mercutio
04-25-2015, 11:28 PM
Brian, I'm a kind of surprised you wouldn't just remove it entirely.

SCrazy
04-26-2015, 07:42 AM
Brian, I'm a kind of surprised you wouldn't just remove it entirely.

I guess I just didn't want the big hole in the dash. If I can reduce the glove box to just the plastic outer door and a hinge I will happy. The actual glove box part has to go due to the bars from the roll cage.

SCrazy
04-29-2015, 08:26 AM
I gutted the glove box last night. It is basically 3 pieces the inner black "box", a steel plate, then the outer decorative door.

The steel plate was spot welded to the hinge but did not reinforce the latch at all. I was able to drill out the spot welds and I am just reinstalling the outer door and hinge. Weight savings according to my bathroom scale 4.6lbs with that weight being pretty equal between the box and the plate.

I think the plate could be removed without affecting the functionality of the glove box, the only thing you would sacrifice is the pneumatic shock thing.

Crappy pics......

63304

63305

DrFishbone
04-29-2015, 08:48 AM
That's a great idea Brian! The early model is assembled a little differently, but should be able to be modified the same way. I'll have to check into that. :)

BLOWN38
04-29-2015, 10:32 AM
When you said decorative, were you talking about the flower baskets?:D

I will have to do this mod when I get around to finishing my car.

SCrazy
04-29-2015, 10:43 AM
Car parts on the dinning room table.....needless to say Jen wasn't home:cool:

DrFishbone
04-29-2015, 12:56 PM
So that 4.6lbs off the car's weight includes the flower baskets? :p

Mercutio
04-29-2015, 07:54 PM
Brian, that's a smart idea. I'm kind of sad I didn't think of it myself, especially considering I've taken the glove box apart to repair the latch.

I just ran out to the garage and did this mod, but I did it just a bit differently. I drilled out the spot welds for the hinge, as you did, but I cut the mounting boss for the hydraulic strut away from the rest of the plate and just bolted that part back in place--it's still held in place by two screws and seems solid enough. I saved just a hair over 2 pounds that way.

Thanks for the idea.

Micahdogg
04-30-2015, 10:55 AM
Do you still have the metal plate that covers the shifter housing inside the car?

George95PearlSC
04-30-2015, 10:59 AM
Car parts on the dinning room table.....needless to say Jen wasn't home:cool:


Brian - those are some impressive numbers coming from your 94 SC not too many if any come close to that

Awesome!

Will you be bring the car to Carlisle?

Micha - are you bring your SC to Carlisle this year as well?

SCrazy
04-30-2015, 01:21 PM
Brian - those are some impressive numbers coming from your 94 SC not too many if any come close to that

Awesome!

Will you be bring the car to Carlisle?


Thank you

I unfortunately can't make it to Carlisle this year but I'll be at the Shootout for sure!!

Mercutio
04-30-2015, 09:58 PM
Do you still have the metal plate that covers the shifter housing inside the car?

I think so, and I believe I kept if for sound deadening purposes, or maybe just keeping critters out of the car. Of course, I could always run without it for a while and see whether I can tell the difference.

Micahdogg
05-01-2015, 01:22 PM
I bought a small black garbage can like this and it's the perfect contour (I think I used one of the sides) to replicate that plate. Just drill a hole in the middle for your shifter. You probably don't want to run without it as exhaust fumes find their way through there.

http://www.apartswarehouse.com/Images/Products/2956-s.jpg

George95PearlSC
05-01-2015, 01:27 PM
Thank you

I unfortunately can't make it to Carlisle this year but I'll be at the Shootout for sure!!

Brian,

Sorry to hear you cant make it! Was looking forward to seeing you and the car!! :D

Hoping its a much bigger turn out this year for the Supercoupes....:cool:

1FSTBRD
05-05-2015, 11:17 PM
Ditch underwear, clothes, shoes--2 lbs.
Shave head--.10 of a lb
Full body shave--.05 of a lb
Diet/ fasting before the race--50 lbs ('ya don't see a portly horse rider in a race, do 'ya?)
Clipped fingernails/ toenails-- .009 of a lb

:D