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Perfect day

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  • Perfect day

    Eight months of frustration has finally deliver everything promised, and I just had an amazing day. Before sunrise, I went to the garage and started my Birkin. Just yesterday, I thought I had finally solved the last remaining issue with cold starts. Even though the air temp was only 50 degrees, the engine started immediately, and settled in to a nice throaty idle. Satisfied that everything now seemed ready, I shut her down and went for some early morning exercise.

    Just before lunch, I laced up my driving shoes and headed for the garage. Once again, to my relief, the Birkin started immediately--this time the temperature was a balmy 72 degrees. I am starting to have a good feeling about this. I started off, easing the clutch out and feeling the power of the new engine. There is now, roughly, twice as much power at the rear wheels than I had before the engine swap and upgrades; so, I didn't want to do anything stupid. I think I was only doing 60 by the time I reached the end of the driveway. Yeehaw, this car accelerates like a missile.

    So, with a light right foot and a grin on my face, I set out for a short little shakedown blat. That was my intention, anyway. Really. As it turned out, the car ran so well, the weather was so perfect, and the road was so enticing, my 'short drive' lasted the rest of the afternoon. I decided that a quick run up to Mount Baldy would be a nice test of the tuning--both altitude and cold air. I'm glad I made that impromptu plan. There was nearly no-one on the road. Of course, by the time I got to the top of the hill, I was freezing in my t-shirt. So, I crossed my fingers and stopped the car to put on a fleece jacket. I needn't have been concerned, the car fired right up.

    On the way up the mountain, I was amazed at the improved handling from the new wide-track front suspension. The difference was especially noticable in the switchbacks above Baldy Village. Previously, those turns were a bit nervewracking for me. Today, though, they were so much fun I went through several times--both up *and* down. :-)

    On the way back down the hill, I decided to turn off onto the 20 mile slalom called Glendora Ridge Route. In the past, I've generally avoided that piece of pavement while on motorcycles because of the incredible density of very tight turns along a two-way road not wide enough for two cars to comfortably pass. Today, though, I was in heaven. My Birkin felt perfectly balanced and I just felt alive. I was enjoying the road, so rather than push the limits of my cheap old tires, I drove at a gentlemanly pace. A *brisk* gentlemanly pace, I'll admit, since I did pass two motorcycles who were doing their best to stay ahead of me. I was driving sedately enough, however, to notice that every beautiful, spandex clad, female bicyclist I passed was flashing me a huge smile of approval....

    It simply does not get much better than today. Wonderful weather, a terrific road, a fantastic car. what more could I want? That's a rhetorical question, bythe way...I'm about to open a bottle of red wine to cap off my perfect day.
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  • #2
    Congratulations! So what was wrong with that ECU? Did you fix it or did it just go away?

    Yes, these are nice roads and reminds me that I did not move the Seven for a month or more.

    By the way, since the car seems to be moving now, any interest to join us for the 3-day Thanksgiving blat? (back roads up to Carmel and back)

    Anyway, I had an almost perfect day. That is, because I finally got a decent engine from the scrap yard that will be the parts donor for my old ZX1 if something ever dies. Almost means because I had to drive up the second weekend to Santa Barbara (where the junk yard is) because the first time they gave the wrong engine to my son who picked it up and he can not tell a V8 from a moped engine..... Oh well, now I am up to the elbows in grease to make a nice spare parts pile from the lump.

    Gert

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    • #3
      Originally posted by slomove View Post
      Congratulations! So what was wrong with that ECU? Did you fix it or did it just go away?
      I'm crossing my fingers that it just went away. That, and I believe the starting problems were related to the heavy reliance on starting ether to start from cold. I haven't looked at the map to see if any of the apparent randomization has occurred--I'll do that tomorrow. But, it ran like a champ at all throttle openings, and several loads, for almost 200 miles today. I still have a couple of small issues to resolve, though I don't expect any of them to keep me off the road.

      By the way, since the car seems to be moving now, any interest to join us for the 3-day Thanksgiving blat? (back roads up to Carmel and back)
      I'm leaving on a road trip Sunday before Thanksgiving. I don't think my wife will agree to the Birkin, but we're taking coastal roads to Petaluma, then across to the Sierra foothills and back down. I'm planning to spend the entire week on wandering two lane roads, whilst visiting family.

      Randall

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      • #4
        Randall, you inspired me to get my Birkin out and do a 200 mile drive this morning. A little chilly, but I had the roads to myself.




        Last edited by soareyes; November 15, 2009, 05:09 PM.

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        • #5
          I did a 110 mile drive today :D

          Randall, why did you need to change your engine?
          www.morgansegal.com

          The funny thing is my wife goes " What is that car a Morgan ? " and I said "No that's a Caterham but there is a Morgan driving it " -delise

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          • #6
            cool... took a little hike to get that one shot:)

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            • #7
              Originally posted by mopho View Post
              Randall, why did you need to change your engine?
              More power! I had a stock ZX2 running on the Ford ECU in limp-home mode, and a fully built ZX3 was available for a great price. How could I not upgrade?

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              • #8
                Originally posted by soareyes View Post
                Randall, you inspired me to get my Birkin out and do a 200 mile drive this morning. A little chilly, but I had the roads to myself.
                Very nice. Which road is that center photo?

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                • #9
                  That's at Inspiration Pt. on Hwy 2 a few miles past Mt. High ski area. The road is still closed about 5 miles past this due to the fire.

                  Stan

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by rzempel View Post
                    On the way back down the hill, I decided to turn off onto the 20 mile slalom called Glendora Ridge Route.

                    Too bad you didn't finish last week. I was up there last Sunday-except I started from glendora, went down mt baldy and then back up again... It would have been funny to run into you.

                    I only did about 70 miles this weekend, but I did make it to cars and coffee and drove up the coast.

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