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"Val Update" from Down Under
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Rob Simmons
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Post subject: (Mon Apr 08, 2013 8:16 am) Reply with quote

I haven't been very good about keeping this thread updated... Embarassed

Sorry Geoff!

I just got another email from Geoff the other day. His little 170 made 191 HP on a chassis dyno! Shocked Very Happy

Geoff Pine wrote:
A couple of weeks back I took the 64 to Albury for Chryslers on the Murray. It is the biggest show in the southern hemisphere about 3 ½ hours drive from Marong. We went in convoy with Tim’s VG ute towing the 64, my friend from Adelaide also had his VG ute and Jeiger drove his 69 VF 318 Coupe. We rented a house for three days and had a great time. I won best Competition car and had hundreds of lookers and photos taken. They have a dyno on site and I got talked into giving the old girl a run. The biggest crowd of the day gathered around and I sat in the car while the operator spun her up to 6500 rpm and 191 hp at the wheels. She sounded great and got a lot of people talking as there were some big blocks that only just made 200 hp.


Pretty cool stuff, huh? Wink



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Post subject: Catching up with some RACE details!! :-) (Mon Apr 08, 2013 10:42 am) Reply with quote

I felt bad about not keeping this thread updated, so I went through some old emails to catch things up a bit.

I failed to post that Geoff has actually RACED the Val several times! Shocked Embarassed

Here are most of the updates I've failed to post:

Nov 09: I had a fantastic time with the 64 at the track and felt very pleased with myself for an old nuffer’s first time who has no idea how to drive. I kept it on the track and did not hit anything or break anything. It was the oldest vehicle out there and plenty of people were looking at it. Quite a few said it was ‘too good to be out here’. The track was Winton motor raceway and my trusty CL ute pulled the 64 as smooth as silk. We sat on 100km/h and got there in 2hrs. I just love the noise of the old girl at full song. It was a club day where you could have a passenger and we were put into one of four different groups according to your lap time. As I had no idea I asked a friend who suggested about the 1min 50. As it turned out that was a bit quick for me, but we were let out onto the track one at a time to spread us around the track so it wasn’t a big deal. There were four sessions that went for 15-20 minutes each. I was pretty nervous prior to the first session. In fact, I was in the car 30 minutes before I needed to be. There was a little rain about, but it held off for all but one session. On my first session I took off a bit quick spinning the wheels in first and second before waking up to myself. I threw a fan belt towards the end of this session, but did not notice the alternator light go on; no damage done. For one of the sessions I was passenger while the fella that built the engine (Linden) took the wheel to help me sort out the bugs. He is a smart guy and has done a bit of racing in his day. He does not pull any punches and made a few good suggestions. We both had trouble down shifting to second on one corner, and I think I have sorted this out. The brakes were in Lindens words $#^%*&%$. I think I have a solution to this issue as well. We only revved it to 6000 and Linden thought that there is some balance issues with the flywheel/clutch area so in the holidays I will be pulling the gearbox and getting this sorted. It was a dog to steer with the 16:1 box and 4 degrees positive caster.

Dec 09: I have rebuilt the 64’s original 24:1 steering box into a 20:1 unit using an NOS Aussie worm and ball assembly that I have had for 20 years. Can you believe it fitted the US box with no worries? Linden also suggested more negative camber as 2 1/2 degrees is not enough. My best time was 2.11, Lindens was 2.01. I know 10 seconds a lap is a lot, but I could not have cared less. I was a happy man! In the last session I got black flagged as Lance was holding the video camera in the car, a big no-no apparently. This cut the session a little short but it was time to go anyway. I am hoping to get to the track again in jan/feb 2010.



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Post subject: Winton Raceway 26 Jan 2010 (Mon Apr 08, 2013 10:44 am) Reply with quote

The latest trip to Winton raceway on 26/01/10 was a bit of a disaster. I won’t go into detail but I did manage to miss a gear and over rev the poor thing bending two push rods in the process. No big deal. I just hope I have not bent any valves. I will check the valves this week. Somehow when I rebuilt the Aussie/ US 20: 1 steering box one bearing race managed to slip off during assembly. This allowed the worm shaft to move too far and 14 of the 54 balls were floating around in the grease as was the errant bearing race. Needless to say, cornering was not the best. What a dill, I can’t believe I did that. I have since taken the box out and put it together properly this time. I replaced the bent push rods and reset the valve clearances. The old girl seems to be running well, but I still have to check the valves. I cut open the oil filter to make sure I did not do any real damage, nothing of consequence thankfully.



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Post subject: Winton Raceway June 2010 (Mon Apr 08, 2013 10:45 am) Reply with quote

I took the 64 to Winton two weeks ago. I managed to knock 9 seconds off my lap time just by driving her more like a race car and using the brakes and gears more appropriately. I had a great time and was pretty happy that I did a quicker time than a 65 V8 Mustang. I only went gardening once, no damage thankfully. The old girl still isn’t revving cleanly and has a nasty vibration around 4500 rpm, so I thought I would try another damper. I swapped the fluid one for a Romac elastomer type last week but have yet to try it out. I am also in the process of relocating the clutch master as it was very heavy to operate.

The racing I am doing in the 64 is not door to door. They give you a transponder to time you and put you into groups with 10-20 others that have around the same lap time and let you onto the track one after the other. You get about 20 minutes per session and there are about five sessions per day. I actually passed a couple of vehicles last time I went. That was a real hoot! There is another one on 26th Sept, so I will be going for some more fun to try out the new damper and clutch mods. I am also fitting a rear anti-sway bar.



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Post subject: Winton Raceway December 2010 (Mon Apr 08, 2013 10:47 am) Reply with quote

I had a blast at Winton last Sunday. Unfortunately, it was a bit on the damp side so I did not crack the 2 minute barrier. The best I could manage was a 2.06. I only missed a gear once with no damage thankfully. I even managed to keep it on the black stuff, but did do a few ‘tank slappers’ that were a little scary. The new 27mm front anti-sway bar seems to have helped. Although I won’t find out how much until I get a dry day.



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Post subject: Winton Raceway August 2012 (Mon Apr 08, 2013 10:48 am) Reply with quote

I am still running the 64 at Winton and last time out on Aug 26 I ran a new Personal Best of 1.51. She is still running strong and looking great. I would like to break into the 1.40s. Every time I go out I make a few changes. Last time I put some 1” torsion bars in and reset the rear shocks.

** These updates are from vehicle owner/builder/driver Geoff Pine. Wink



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Post subject: More updates from Geoff (Tue Sep 23, 2014 1:03 am) Reply with quote

I just got a USB drive from Geoff in Australia with some videos of him racing the Valiant Down Under. I haven't had a chance to check it out yet, but will soon.

The Val took Best Competition Vehicle in their local Mid State Mopars show in June.

He said in his letter that he planned to take the Val to Sydney's Eastern Creek Raceway for the annual Muscle Car Masters September 7-8 for some parade laps. (The package took a little over two months to get from Australia to Germany)

Another note in the letter is that he took her to the Mopar Nationals last December to see what she would do in the quarter mile. With the little 170 and 4 speed she clicked off a 14.7 at 103 MPH, blowing away a big block Charger in the process. She is set up for road racing, not drag racing and spun at the line, but that 103 MPH indicates she could do better with some traction. Wink

Once I have a chance to watch the videos I'll post again.



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Post subject: (Tue Sep 23, 2014 5:42 am) Reply with quote

Fantastic results and rundown. Thanks!

Wish I had looked that guy up down there...

Lou



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Post subject: (Sun Mar 05, 2017 9:18 pm) Reply with quote

Bump



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Post subject: More recent happenings (Wed Mar 22, 2017 4:12 am) Reply with quote

Hello All! Thanks to GTS225 and others on the H.A.M.B and Australian forums I was able to get back in contact with my old friend Geoff Pine!

It has been way too long since we updated this thread. Here are some new happenings with the Val Down Under.

This weekend just gone was the 25th running of Chryslers on the Murray held at Albury Wodonga. There were about 750 Chrysler vehicles of all types there. Last time I went to COTM was in 2013 and I won Best Competition Car, and guess what? In 2017 I also won best Competition Car. I also gave her a squirt on the dyno. In 2013 she pulled 191 RWHp at 6,500. In 2017 she managed 213 RWhp at 6400. Same dyno and same operator both times. I was very pleased with the result and the applause from the crowd was pretty good too. Like a fine wine she gets better with age.

In June last year as part of our club’s Mid State Mopars show we ran a motorkhana event. I let my friend Tim drive as I always mess up and go the wrong way. Unfortunately, on the second run he pulled a big neutral going from 1st to 2nd hitting about 10,000 rpm and the result was 4 bent push rods and two bent valves. I machined up two new valves and had some trick pushrods made, fitted new adjusting screws in the roller rockers, as the ball end on some of the adjusting screws were disappearing, so far, so good.

In 2015 I tackled Mt. Tarrengower Hill Climb, I will tell you about that later.

If you want to see the old girl in action, Search You-tube for 1964 Plymouth Valiant V100 Part 2. There is also part 1 but it is a bit dull. Tim put these on for me some time back.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ws4jSYeu9p0

I just watched the video (12:35). She sounds awesome at full song!
Very Happy



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Post subject: Mt. Tarrengower Hill Climb + PICS!!! (Wed Apr 19, 2017 9:17 am) Reply with quote

I've asked Geoff to give me some more stories of the things I've missed, so he just sent me his adventures at the Mt. Tarrengower Hill Climb.

Here is the story from Geoff:

I had never been to a hill climb event prior to Oct 2015. I thought it may even be a bit boring, but I was wrong. It was good fun. It is a two day event held every year at Mt. Tarrengower which is in the historic town of Maldon, about a 20 minute drive from Marong. It is a 2km climb rising from 375m to 570m with an average gradient of 9.8%. The event has been running for over 80 years and is open to pre 1972 cars and bikes.

The first day is practice for those who have not competed before and for those who can run under 60 seconds. I had two runs on the first day. The first was just to get a feel of the track and I ran a 59.2. The second I ran a 53.5. I gave her a bit thinking I would leave her in third gear. I glanced at the tacho as I went over the line, how does 7200rpm sound? Pretty good as it turns out, as it echoed down the mountain. But a bit high I thought so I planned to use 4th on the next run.

On the second day, competition day, we each had three runs. My first was a 52.5, followed by a scary 52.3 run when I dropped a wheel in the dirt! The resulting tank slapper was no fun, but I managed to hang on to her. I backed off on the last run with a 54.4 knowing that the previous 52.3 was a winning time.

I won my class and got a nice trophy for 1965 touring cars over 2000cc. I was up against a couple of 3.8 litre Jags, a Mk1 Zepher and a Falcon Sprint and I hosed the lot! I went home a happy man. Not a bad result for a first time old fella with Parkinsons who can’t drive.



Way back in 2005 when I first started this thread I was in Iraq and didn't have access to any of the cool photos Geoff had sent me of the build... It's taken me 12 years, but here are some of the photos with the story re-told:

Quote:
Hi Rob
Seymour Pederson tells me you have a 64 two door post Valiant for sale. Could you please send me some details about the car? He mentioned it was in Tucson and that you may be able to get it to Long Beach. How about Oakland? I am building a car for our Historic Touring car competition (road racing), so I'm not looking for a show car, or even a runner, just something with a clean complete body.


Here is how she looked when I sent her to Geoff from Tucson, AZ in 1999.




Quote:
I finally took delivery of the car on July 28, 2000. Boy the importing business is a slow frustrating one. She sat in Oakland, California for two months! I was really happy with the car when she arrived. Aussie 64 Valiants are not the same. We didn’t get a two door until 1969 or a four speed until 1972 and that was behind a Hemi six. I had Doug Dutra send me some 170s and an A-833 four speed because we only ever got the 225 over here.






Quote:
As soon as I got her I got busy getting her running for a 'Final year of Plymouth' run. A group of us got all the Plymouths we could find in the local area and went on a run followed by a show where there were about 200 cars of all types. The old girl went like a charm and certainly created some interest. It took a fair bit to get her going as it must have been a long time since she last ran. I drained the fuel tank, replaced fuel hoses and filter, cleaned out the carb, bled the brakes, replaced core plugs, spark plugs, rocker gasket, water pump and oil filter, changed the oil, rebuilt the steering column using local parts, made new gear linkages, repaired the seat, removed the window tint, made some tail light lenses, lowered the rear and fitted some 14" alloy wheels from another car. Looking at that list, a bloke has to be mad! All that for one weekend!




Quote:
Once the initial fun was over it was time to get serious building her into a real race car.

I started by buying myself a MIG welder and replacing the floor with one from a 1964 AP5 Valiant (AP stands for Australian Production). I measured up the floor pans and compared them and they were the same. I was not keen on patching it up as you don't have floor coverings in a race car. I spent a solid week cutting, welding and grinding, followed by a bit more cutting, welding and grinding. The floor looks bloody excellent and you have to look pretty close to see where the new sections are. I modified the tunnel to fit the four speed. I cut out a section of the floor hump and the crossmember from the Aussie Val and bolted it up to the gearbox on an engine stand. This made it easier to see what had to be done as I made my own gear linkage rods for the four speed out of 4140 alloy steel. I used rod ends to try and minimize slop for more accurate shifting. I finished up this job by fabricating a sheet metal cover for the rods and shifter. I tried to make it look factory, but only had a couple of photos to go by. I had a full competition roll cage installed. It looks great. I am really happy with the job. It is very well made and very neat.








Quote:
I would love to run disc brakes, but the rules don't allow it. I have to run what was available in 1964 i.e. 9" drum brakes all round. You can see now why I am running the 170 slant and not the 273 V8! I decided to make what improvements I could and started by making a wooden pattern to have some heavy drums cast at the local foundry which I machined myself with cooling fins. I also have to run the 4"stud pattern. I read about the beefier spindles and upper control arms that were available on the later A bodies in Mopar Action, so I had a set sent over from the U.S. The knuckles and hubs are very beefy, they make the stockies look like match sticks. Getting them shipped over took almost three months, but it was worth the wait.








Quote:
I made a set of headers and talk about a nightmare! The combined factors of the narrow A body, triple Webers, starter access, clutch Z bar, torsion bar and steering box on the 'wrong' side certainly made it a challenge. As if these things weren't enough, I made the primaries equal length. I bent the tubes in 3/4" and then got them copied and mandrel bent out of 1 5/8" tube. I bent three tubes three times each and they still weren't quite spot on. After much work they look mighty good and are within 30mm of each other in length. I would have liked a bit more clearance, in most places there is 10mm. I had them ceramic coated as I couldn’t stand to have them rust after putting so much time and effort into them.










And baffled oil pan.




Quote:
Since the car will be raced on road courses and not just in a straight line, some steering and suspension modifications were in order. I got a 16:1 steering box and some other suspension stuff from 'Firm Feel'. I fabricated some brackets to attach a front sway bar. I strengthened the K-member by welding in extra gussets around the steering box mount in several places (you could actually see the steering box move up and down when turning). There are also plates behind the strut rod location holes to turn the C-section into a box section. I hope I haven't just added extra weight. It was just guess work on my part. I converted the 64 stud mounted idler arm to the through mounted variety with roller bearings. It looks pretty trick and was a lot of work.






Quote:
I made and welded some sleeves to the upper control arms for extra bushing support and fitted a strengthening plate to the lower control arms. Then I had them powder coated and fitted off-set bushings for more caster and camber. I also added some extra strengthening to the upper control arms, fender wells and fender apron as well as some diagonal members across the radiator support panel and two plates under the front roll cage mounts. I also strengthened the clutch Z bar.




Quote:
You have to run FIA approved seats and period style wheels no wider than 1"over stock so I had some14x6 Torque Thrust D type alloy wheels sent off to have them 'cut and shut' from 6" to 51/2".




Quote:
I took her to the panel shop in mid October 2004 and was told it would be finished by Christmas. I picked it up the last weekend of June 2005. Some how, two months turned into eight. There was plenty of high drama along the way and the so called ‘quote’ was blown out of the water, but the end result is pretty damn good, not perfect, but pretty damn good. I had all the bumpers, door handles, tail lights and badges re-chromed and stainless strips, headlight bezels and grille all polished
.





Taken home by the same trusty tow rig that picked her up at the port.


Geoff sent me more photos of some of the cool things he has done to her. I don't have them all loaded into my Image Shack account yet, so I still have more work to do.

Stay tuned!! Very Happy



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Last edited by Rob Simmons on Wed Apr 19, 2017 10:13 am; edited 4 times in total
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Post subject: (Wed Apr 19, 2017 10:08 am) Reply with quote

Super cool, Rob and Geoff. Wish I had contacted Geoff when I was in Aussie a few years back.

Fun in the sun with a V...

Lou



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Greg Ondayko
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Post subject: (Wed Apr 19, 2017 10:26 am) Reply with quote

Very Cool Stuff.


Some things to consider when getting to the next Building stage for Grüne Hölle car.


Thanks Rob.


Greg



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Rob Simmons
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Location: Wiesbaden, Germany

Post subject: (Thu Apr 20, 2017 1:17 am) Reply with quote

She definitely went to a good home! Wink



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