Monday, June 13, 2011

HRPT - Home Sweet Home in Alabama

Home Sweet Home!
We made it home on Monday. The first 900 miles coming home were high speed and trouble free interstate driving. But, our epic journey wouldn't have been complete without another adrenaline jolt. So just as we got to Pensacola, FL, the front brakes started making a terrible clunking noise and then the engine died when we were caught up in slow moving traffic.

We crept back into Gulf Shores the final 40 miles trying to apply the brakes as infrequently as possible. We thought the engine dying was related to over heating so we turned off the air conditioning everytime we slowed down. It was really HOT without a/c.

Yesterday, Harold and I met at the shop to check out the brakes. It turned out the problem was that a bolt holding the caliper had come loose. (The same problem we had to fix on Steve's car back in Indianapolis.) The good news was that we could fix it at the shop where we had the needed tool. A tool we did not have on the trip.

We also replaced the thermostat with a cooler rated one, replaced the temperature sender, and the fan clutch. We're hoping that this will cure the problems of running too hot. If this doesn't fix the problem, the next step will be to switch the oil we are using to Royal Purple. The circle track boys swear by it to reduce engine temperatures. I don't want to think of what we'll have to do if that doesn't fix the problem.

We had a great time and are already planning to make next year's HRPT. We think "Bobbie Sue" deserves a third chance. She is an awesome car to drive. With almost 500 horsepower waiting to leap, a comfortable ride, and excellent handling she is all fun. But before she's ready, we're going to repair the alternator, add some insulation to the inside of the car, swap out the transmission, and switch from hydrostatic power brakes to vacuum power brakes so she'll stop as well as she goes.

Next year's Hot Rod Power Tour will run from Detroit to Dallas. Look for us to come by on a road near you.


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