2015 car 1971 Javelin / AMX

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ah8tk
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2015 car 1971 Javelin / AMX

Post by ah8tk » Tue Mar 03, 2015 7:19 am

The car I decided to build was the 1971 Penske Racing - Mark Donohue Javelin / AMX. This is the same car that won the 1971 SCCA Trans Am championship, with 7 wins of 10 events. At the time little AMC beat the big three with their new Javelin / AMX.

Last summer when we were in Kenosha, for the homecoming, we saw some guys unloading their replica of the #6 Donohue car. Noah just happened to be wearing his T-shirt of the #6 Javelin. The owner asked him if he wanted to take his shoes off and sit in the car. The owner even let him start the car.

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It all starts with the plan, last year I built a Javelin, and three other cars, for the 2015 Cub Scout recruitment campaign (photo, below the plan is from this campaign). So I thought I was ahead of the game:

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The assembly started, start out with a block, add the top, cut out the weight reduction pocket. Cut out, and shape, the wheel wells, glue the sides on and trim the block.

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Then the sides are trimmed to 2 3/4", on the table saw. And the DFW is recessed into the block:

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The horizontal and vertical cuts were made:

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And the carving began:

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And sanding, priming and painting. This would be why I am not a painter, I painted the whole car white, masked and painted the red and masked and painted the blue. The red did not turn out well with a crisp line down the center of the roof, but the blue turned out good (and some of the bad is covered by the windshield). Guess I just need to spend more time on painting.

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The wheels were painted. The axles were polished, the wheel bores were polished and waxed, and it was lubed and run down the test board. It was set to steer 3” in 4’, it was ready to race.

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The Javelin / AMX did not race as well as the original, in the Real Street class it came in 9th of 15 entrants.
Last edited by ah8tk on Fri Nov 10, 2017 4:53 pm, edited 2 times in total.



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Vitamin K
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Re: 2015 car 1971 Javelin / AMX

Post by Vitamin K » Tue Mar 03, 2015 9:35 am

Some of the racing leagues have classes where you race with a 1/25th scale plastic model attached to the top of the car. That never really excited me much, because, y'know, it's just a plastic model. But a class where you actually had to build a realistic looking racer out of wood is something special, IMO.



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Re: 2015 car 1971 Javelin / AMX

Post by ah8tk » Tue Mar 03, 2015 9:48 am

Vitamin K wrote:Some of the racing leagues have classes where you race with a 1/25th scale plastic model attached to the top of the car. That never really excited me much, because, y'know, it's just a plastic model. But a class where you actually had to build a realistic looking racer out of wood is something special, IMO.
In our race you could use a plastic model body, but you would have to find one that is under 2 3/4" width. We only had one model body in our race.

I built one, but we didn't have the time to get it out and registered before the race. It may be in the Max Velocity, Pinewood Derby Times, sometime in the future.

The model bodies on a wood slab have never thrilled me either.



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Re: 2015 car 1971 Javelin / AMX

Post by ngyoung » Tue Mar 03, 2015 10:12 am

Those classes usually still keep the width limited enough not to have 2 cars bump. NPWDRL for example uses 3.5" width and max length of 8.25". That does still exclude some models that are too long. Weight is also increased to 6oz. Recently they moved to running only 2 cars at a time though on the outside lanes. For a while it was starting to get dominated by the lambos or aerovet style bodies. It seems to help take away some of the aerodynamic advantage of the low profile designs had when racing with all lanes full.

Have you tried using other woods like balsa or basswood for the added pieces to make your car bodies lighter? You do some great work carving the shape. Something I don't think I could ever do. Do you draw out those car plans yourself as well? That alone is an underrated skill figuring out what lines maintain and what to leave out as well as getting all the proportions and dimensions right.



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Re: 2015 car 1971 Javelin / AMX

Post by Darin McGrew » Tue Mar 03, 2015 3:08 pm

Vitamin K wrote:Some of the racing leagues have classes where you race with a 1/25th scale plastic model attached to the top of the car. That never really excited me much, because, y'know, it's just a plastic model. But a class where you actually had to build a realistic looking racer out of wood is something special, IMO.
Years ago, one of the boys in our derby built a car using detail pieces taken from a plastic model. The car body was carved from the original block (plus extra wood for the fenders), but he used the roof, bumpers, grill and other bits from the plastic model to complete the car. It looked very good, but was much more impressive once you figured out how he had built it, that he had carved the block so it mated with all the plastic parts from the kit.



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Re: 2015 car 1971 Javelin / AMX

Post by ah8tk » Tue Mar 03, 2015 6:36 pm

ngyoung wrote:Have you tried using other woods like balsa or basswood for the added pieces to make your car bodies lighter?
I have used some basswood for an 18 wheel truck I built for the CVSN Pinewood Challenge. I am not a big fan of balsa wood. I don’t want to spend a lot of time on shaping something that can be ruined by a fingernail.
ngyoung wrote:You do some great work carving the shape. Something I don't think I could ever do. Do you draw out those car plans yourself as well? That alone is an underrated skill figuring out what lines maintain and what to leave out as well as getting all the proportions and dimensions right.
The plans are created by me and Noah, this way we know what each side should look like. Some vehicles need to be massaged to fit within the 2 3/4" X 7” PWD envelope. One of the plans I have started is an AMC Gremlin, it will not be the standard PWD dimensions, it will be a lot shorter.



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Re: 2015 car 1971 Javelin / AMX

Post by Noskills » Wed Mar 04, 2015 11:28 pm

Andy what is the purpose of the vertical cut in block?
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Re: 2015 car 1971 Javelin / AMX

Post by ah8tk » Fri Mar 06, 2015 7:20 am

Noskills wrote:Andy what is the purpose of the vertical cut in block?
I’m assuming you are talking about the cut below:

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This slot is for the front of the bottom plate. The cut above the red line is a mistake (this is what happens when the cut is made after one of the sides is glued on). This is what happens when I don’t use the build list, that I created.

The bottom plate is what stops the car after the finish line, on our cars it is held on with double stick tape. The front and the sides go into the body to keep this cover from moving when the car is being dragged to a stop. In my mind this helps hold the bottom in position after many stops.

Hope this makes sense.
Last edited by ah8tk on Fri Nov 10, 2017 5:07 pm, edited 2 times in total.



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Re: 2015 car 1971 Javelin / AMX

Post by Noskills » Mon Mar 09, 2015 2:53 pm

Got it Andy. Thanks.
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