Sunday, December 30, 2012

The Great Bronco Engine Transplant-Phase III- Holley, Mr. Edelbrock and Mr, Ford Form A Team

Warning: This is another installment in the ongoing saga of "The Great Bronco Engine Transplant". Many posts have been published over the last two years chronicling this engineering/installation project. Those people looking for sailing info will probably be disappointed, move along.
In November, I reported on the change in priorities of Phases II and III of The Great Bronco Engine Transplant and how I acquired a Edelbrock Performer Manifold and Holley four barrel carburetor.. So this month I completed Phase III by installing the manifold and carburetor. A lot of planning went into this installation to make sure I had all the parts before I started. An early December order to Summit Racing ensured that I had most everything I needed, but plans changed and two more smaller orders finished this project as well as some purchases from the local autoparts store.
I started this on the afternoon of Wednesday Dec. 19. The disassembly went fast and in a couple of hours I had everything cleaned up and ready to install the new manifold. I prefabbed the throttle and cruise control cable mounts and painted them. I did not start installing anything until Thursday and finished Friday afternoon. I was still waiting on a Summit order, but it was mainly cosmetic stuff and I could live with out it.
There was actually quite a few small things to do to get the new intake system installed. One item that always seems to be a problem is the throttle/cruise control cable mount. The mounting location is different between the stock manifold and the aftermarket one. This time I could not modify the existing bracket, so I fabricated a new one from steel plate. It turned out well and seems to function good. In addition, I had to make a new fuel line, PCV hose, modify vacuum hoses, modify the electric choke wiring and add a relay for the choke. While I was at it, I took the distributor apart and changed the mechanical advance weights.
I had the Bronco started Friday afternoon. It seems to have much improved high end power. I notice that it accelerates nicely while merging onto the freeway and accelerates all the way up the hill on Waaga Way. Low end power is a bit harder to evaluate. After putting about 170 miles on it, it does not appear that the mileage is much better than the stock two barrel carburetor.
I may start that in January or February. 


 The old carburetor and manifold removed.
 Holley and Mr. Edelbrock joined up with Mr. Ford.
 Everything installed and functioning well. The throttle cable and linkage always seems to be a headache. I built my own cable mount this time from scratch, unlike the last time when I pieced together parts from both the Granada and Bronco.
I thought that the new Holley carburetor would be taller and the air cleaner would hit the firewall. But it was no higher that the original carburetor and about a half inch farther forward. So the stock air cleaner still functions for now.

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Progressive Insurance International Motorcycle Show

Warning: Motorcycle content!

Today was the Progressive International Motorcycle Show held at the Washington State Convention Center in Seattle.  A friend and I caught the 0720 ferry and when we arrived in Seattle, we had a half hour hike up the hills to the center.

The show has most of the major motorcycle manufacturers represented as well as accessory companies, insurance, ride promoters and custom and vintage motorcycles. I was a little disappointed that some of the motorcycles that I wanted to see were not displayed. Still there was plenty to see. After a couple of hours, we headed back to the ferry with a side trip to the Gum Wall in Post Alley and a fish and chips lunch at Ivars.

 The show opens and the crowd enters.
 Motorcycles and people everywhere.
The Can Am Spyder is always a popular motorcycle.
 I liked the paint on this custom.
 This started out life as a Yamaha. Very little original remains. Interesting finish, it is brass plated. I wonder how this bike handles with the strange front suspension?
 At the Allstate Insurance exhibit. A nice clean custom by Arlen Ness!
 At the Allstate Insurance exhibit.
 This was an interesting custom "dually". It has a rotary engine.
 Dual wheels on both front and rear.
 I got to ride with Flo!
 The gum wall in Post Alley. Disgustingly interesting!
The gum wall in Post Alley.

Monday, December 3, 2012

And Now For Something Really Self Promoting...

Last night was the Yacht Clubs Christmas party and business meeting. I boycotted the event this year. A friend brought me the final race awards that I had accumulated. Here is most of what I won in 2012. The turkey is not here. Neither is the perpetual West Sound Sailing Association trophy. And I forgot to add the third place Shaw Island Classic plaque. Most of this stuff is useful: the bags are great for carrying stuff to the boat, the travel mug for ...well...drinking coffee in the car, and the blue mugs are great except I already have about twenty of them!

But more than the usefulness or not of all these items is the memories that each one represents. There were great races where we made good decisions, sailed fast and left the fleet behind. There were races where we made bad decisions and did not do so well. There were races where we were far in the lead only to have conditions change and lose our lead. There were sunny days with  good winds. Rainy days, some with lots of wind and some with no wind. There were also days of no wind and scorching sunshine beating down on our heads.

Along with the memories are the times racing with others on the boat and working like a team. Thanks to all that raced with me in 2012!

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Winter Vashon Race 2012

The Winter Vashon Race is a race that starts at the Tacoma Yacht Club near Pt Defiance and goes around Vashon Island. This race is the first race of the four race South Sound Series. Lots of people think that we quit racing in the winter and start racing again in the spring. This race is the beginning of my racing season.

On Friday, I delivered the boat to Tacoma Yacht Club. I got an early start at 0635 and arrived at the guest moorage around 1000. I was able to get a great spot on the dock. As the day went on, more boats arrived and the docks filled up with boats. Later in the evening, Tacoma Yacht Club put on their usual pasta dinner. Much discussion centered around the weather forecast for the next day. The forecast ranged from winds in the low teens to the high twenties. Through the night, the rain pounded down and the wind rattled the rigging of the assembled boats.

Saturday morning was actually pleasant. The rain had passed and the wind was blowing at about 12-15 knots from the south. As boats milled around the starting area, it was interesting to see many boats sailing with small jibs. We were one of them as we anticipated the wind increasing.

We got a good start on port near the boat end and set the 1-1/2once spinnaker. Most of our class went right. We sailed more toward the west to try to get into stronger flowing current in Colvos Pass. "Tantivy"(J109), "Grace E" (J35) and "Absolutely"(G&S 39) stayed in front of us. The wind built and we jibed near the west shore. We had a great run north as the wind built into the low to mid 20's and saw speeds as high as nine and a half knots. It was a fun run and as fast as we could go, the Olsen 30's and a B25 stayed right with us. We gained some on the leading boats but still rounded the mark boat in 4th place.

We started the beat back along the east shore of Vashon Island. We kept the #3 jib up, but some boats tried sailing with their larger jibs and soon were overpowered. We sailed past "Grace E" and gained on "Tantivy". We tacked back toward the Vashon Island shore to avoid adverse current and look for smoother water. We gained on the boats in our class that sailed down the middle of the sound as well as some of the boats that started before us. Some boats appeared to sail far southeast into Poverty Bay and found themselves in debt as they fought more adverse current. As we approached Pt Robinson, the wind increased to gusts in the high twenties. "Tantivy" tacked back to the west and crossed our bow. From here untill the finish, we had a close battle with them.

After passing Pt Robinson, we tacked to port and intially it appeared that we could lay the finish. But after a couple of miles, we were headed and tacked away from the shore. By now, the winds had increased in the gusts to the low 30's and the waves were very steep and short. We were plowing through the waves hosing down the crew and washing water into the cockpit. I am a "freak" because I not only steer the boat, but I also trim the mainsail. While we were in the stronger winds, it took a lot of energy to steer the boat through the gusts and around the bigger waves and constantly adjust the traveller and mainsheet. Near the finish, the wind headed us more and lightened and we tacked a couple of more times to make the finish at 1423. "Tantivy" finished a little more than a minute ahead of us and since they owed us time, we corrected on them for second place. "Absolutely" finished an easy first by more than six minutes ahead of us.

It was a fast race and we were able to sail in stronger winds for a change. Thanks to the crew of Jim, Walter, Kathleen, Dave, Tom and Rainer for putting in a stellar effort. Thanks to Tacoma Yacht Club for putting on a great event

Results can be found here: Winter Vashon Class Results
The crowded moorage on Saturday morning.

At the start.

Flying up Colvos Pass

Here is our track for the day. We sailed clockwise.