My Next Project: An Ugly (but really fast) 1969 Mercury Cougar

I’ll admit it – I had resigned myself to the fact that the M3 would be my “muscle car.” I mean, it’s V8-powered, it’s analog, it’s a bit rough, and it’s a riot, so that’s close enough to “muscle car,” right? Well, what happens when someone offers you a 1969 Mercury Cougar for free? And what if it’s priced at “free” for many very good reasons? Well, if you’re an idiot like me, you say yes.

Of course, I’m one to look a gift Cougar in the mouth, so I at least made sure it would run first:

So it ran, but it was still rusty, beat-up, locked-up, torn-down, and 12 miles from my house. More on that next time. And as far as the “really fast” part goes, consider the following: Canfield, Wiseco, Comp, Scat, and Hayabusa.

2017 Racing Wrap-up

In 2017 I made it to one RallyCross event, eight Autocross events, two autocross schools among three SCCA regions, one drag strip, and I put about 3000 total miles on the car. The M3 managed to accomplish all of that without any major failures, but definitely not without some minor failures. Check out what worked and what didn’t:

Installing a Hardwired Dash Cam in a Lincoln MKZ

I picked up a dashcam a couple of years ago, wanting to get in on all of the great YouTube videos of meteorites, and explosions, and cars flipping over, and everything else that definitely happens during my daily commute. I’ve mounted it temporarily in a couple of cars, but never permanently. After picking up the MKZ last week, I decided to get it in there for real, because otherwise I’m going to see Bigfoot and have no proof.

I bought this dashcam, which offers full HD recording and a host of other nice features.

11-dashcam-spy-tech-g1w-cb.jpg (more…)

SCCA Starting Line School + Getting Those Tires Good and Hot

This past weekend I attended an SCCA Starting Line school held in Lincoln. It’s designed for people new to autocross (and motorsports in general), the class was a birthday gift from my wife. I packed up on Friday and headed out for Lincoln, about a 3 hour drive for me. Instead of putting a few hundred highway miles on the new (used) RE-71Rs, I decided to just run my snow tires on the interstate and swap to the summers for racing. Which led me to the realization that I can fit a single tire in my trunk. Why didn’t I just get a Touring? (more…)

Video: Installing wheel studs in an E36 BMW M3

Do you swap between race wheels and street wheels often? Do you run different wheels and tires for winter and summer? Do you run wheel spacers? Do you want frustration-free wheel swaps? Ditch the stock wheel bolts that the E36 came with and install some wheel studs.

The whole project can be knocked out in an hour for around $100.

I started with a set of wheel studs: Amazon

And a set of long open-end lug nuts: Amazon