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SN95 24 hours lemons Build Thread Profile - SN95 Mustangs

This is the Build Thread for 24 hours lemons. Reply below.

July 2020 (Some of this has been shared in another thread on 7.5 Diff - Centralizing here)
  • Stripped the interior.
  • Tacked in the cage and fully welded a few spots like top of the main hoop.

  • Test fit the seat - ordered the seat brackets too late so wasn't able to install. check out my awesome wood seat brackets.
  • Dropped the fuel tank and installed a new fuel pump. realized the evaporator sensor plug was wrong. reinstalled the previous but pretty new looking pump. new fuel filter. Ran a lot better with new gas!
  • After tripping over the rear sway bar 4 times I just installed it to get it out of the way.
  • I think i have the kill switch figured out drew a diagram but didnt start wiring.
  • Realized both rear axles are bent. Previous owner hydro planned it into a ditch pretty bad I guess. 2 of the rims were cracked pretty good!
  • Radiator support pulled out and put the bumper back on.
  • Professional welder for 'completed' welding
  • Found an 8.8 rear end from a 99-04 mustang in the u pull it. Put fresh synthetic fluid in and ran it.
August 2020
  • SPA fire suppression system
  • Installed the 8.8 rear end, lSR Performance 1.5 inch Lowering Springs. 460 lb/in - Front; 280 lb/in - Rear, Tokico D Spec adjustable shocks
  • 17x8 inch wheels with 245 Hankook R-S4s
  • Crow Enduro 6 point harness
September 2020
  • Friend finished welding cage - There was a ton of stuff the 'pro' missed. Where the A pillar bar landed on the spreader plate only had about 1/4 of weld on it.
  • Front Cobra calipers and 13 inch rotors, stock rear calipers and rotors with Carbotech RP2 on front and back.
  • Steinjager Rear Upper Control arms with J&M spherical bushings
  • Steeda X2 ball joints and outer tie rod bumpsteer kit
  • Battery box in stock location
  • Battery box.PNG
  • AC delete, K&N air filter
  • Noticed water dripping from the exhaust. Tested and found exhaust in coolant. With less then a week until the race and lack of confidence in my ability to replace the head gasket I rolled the dice on some head gasket sealer.
  • IMG_2597.JPG
September 12th, 2020 The RACE!
  • Car passed tech and ran great. Class B no penalty laps.
  • Took about 8 hours off saturday night to sleep.
  • All 5 drivers got their fill of track time.
  • Hit 300 official laps.
  • With about 15 minutes left in the race the car lost all power, could barely keep it running. limped it into the pits. checked it over and fired right back up with full power. Went back out for 2 more laps and the checkered flag.
  • The biggest problem the car had was brake warp. By sunday morning the dunk, dunk, dunk was pretty bad. Will definitely have to add some brake cooling for 2021. The RP2 pads can really eat some rotors when they get hot. Cooling is a must!
  • IMG_0478.JPG
  • Everyone agreed the weekend was awesome and excited to do it again next year.

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2021 plans
  • More power! swapping in a 4.2 with 80k miles from a E-150 van. Also solution to whatever head gasket / head issue on the current 180k 3.8.
  • IMG_0412.JPG
  • Brake cooling - Kenny brown ducts
  • brake ducts.PNG
  • Louder exhaust - some things are better with sound! X pipe, with Borla side exhaust
    side exhaust.PNG
  • cool shirt for longer stints
  • Quick release steering wheel for us old guys to get out a little easier
  • Transmission cooler
  • Do my best to copy AJ Hartmans post radiator ductiong
  • 1619586121273.png
  • MM pan hard bar
  • Caster camber plates
  • Better theme!
worked 16 hours on it yesterday. Installed mm panhard bar


brake cooling ducts
Caster camber plates

added calipers to the todo list. These were brand new before the 24 hour, 300 lap, 750 mile race

Installed new rotors too - also were new pre race
Another weekend and a lot of anxiety about having this thing ready in 7 weeks. Fixing it till its broke my be the new theme.

Disconnected everything getting engine ready to pull.

nice thing about not having an interior is it was easy to cut holes to get to the top two bell house bolts

using the old wrecker gave us more vertical and was easier then pumping. I had checked all the way around enough times that i didn’t miss anything.

my first engine pull ended up easier then I thought. Getting it back together the hard part?

before pulling the engine i used an angle finder and i think my rear LCAs are about level. Was hoping for 3 degrees down to the axel o well. Set my pinion angle too

Figured out the correct oil pan to use my 2000 3.8 oil pan apparently wont clear one of the girdles on the 4.2. The 4.2 oil pan on the right wont clear my k member. The pan on the left from a 2001 3.8 should clear the girdle bolts with the two channels running down.


added duct inlets for the brake cooling. Hoping the ugliness keeps with the spirit of $500 racing and helps the bs judges overlook other aspects of the car. At least thats my excuse for my terrible craftsmanship that looks nothing like I imagined it would.


Was going to replace the transmission front pump seal but it looked dry under the torque converter and had remanufactured stamped on torque converter so i decided to leave well enough alone for once

replaced transmission filter

Mocked up the borla side exhaust - i think im going to have to pull the after market side skirts.

I thought driveshaft loops were for big horse power drag cars and then i read about a track car catapulting and decided it wouldn’t hurt

Installed quick release nrg steering wheel setup. Masking taped it up so it doesn’t get destroyed while it bumps around the shop.
Also replaced the cooked seals in the front brake calipers but forgot to take pictures. The boots were cooked for sure. Disintegrated when removing! Surprised how much junk had formed inside the brand new calipers after only 300 miles.
Last weekend got another 14 hours in on it.

Wanted a better radiator but not a lot of options for performance radiators on v6 99-04. While the 99-04 GT radiator would bolt up to the support I didnt want to deal with the expansion tank and hose changes. The internet told me 94-96 v8 radiators would work well so I grabbed a champion 2 row. its an inch shorter, the pegs on the bottom were 1 3/8 closer together and the top pegs were further apart.


Decided to leave the passenger side alone and adjust the driver side to fit. Drilled out the welds, drilled new holes, and put some bolts through.

Had to drill larger holes on the front side of the radiator support to tighten the nuts
chopped a little out of the radiator support so the neck would fit nice

The top passenger side bracket stayed the same. The top driver side bracket had to be bent out and all around to fit.


Moved the intake & accessories over to the 4.2. Was going to try to use the 4.2 upper intake because it has longer runners - with the lower rpms we will be running to last 24 hours I felt it would be an advantage. After realizing how much extra work I was going to have to do chopping up the wiring harness i decided that was a bad idea.


Found the cam position sensor was in pretty rough shape so ordered a new one of those.

Ran out of time to get the motor dropped in so left it lay. This week my old man, he is the best, got the motor dropped back in and all connected up. tieing up a lot of loose ends - hope its running in a few more days!

Only 23 more days until the race!







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Ugh started it up and wanted to run half second but then stopped and wouldn’t turn more than a 1/4 turn back and forth. Took off the front and timing gear on cam side exploded and tore up the crank gear too. Hoping its squared away this week. Searching around on the internet tells me this is probably a symptom and the potential causes are over torqued cam gear, piston to valve interference, valve spring bind, seized cam, cam thrust plate screw backed out, or cam thrust plate installed incorrectly. Happy to hear any other ideas.
probably just throw the old tired 3.8 back in this weekend. All it really needed was a head gasket. I believe they call this "a self solving problem" in the lemons recap videos. The B.S. judges normally don't worry too much about policing cheated up engines or higher horsepower swaps because most of the time it just blows up a few hours in. I'm grateful I get to do the swap at the garage instead of in the paddock :)
Well the seized cam was caused by the balancer shaft coming forward to interfere with the cam gear. Balance shaft was allowed to come forward because thrust plate was wore out. If thats wore out im wondering what else is going to fall apart on this motor! O well - mechanic was able to harvest the necessary parts from the old 3.8 to make it run.

Spent 25 hours between Saturday and Sunday working on it and feel pretty decent about being ready to race in 2 weeks. Put radiator back in and hoses all hooked up. It ran terrible for most of the day but still had enough power to spin the wheels in loose gravel

After sufficient beating of head against the wall we discovered plug wires on 5&6 were switched. Gives me little faith in our abilities! Ran well after that with stock tune. Lucky for us because i cant get my moates quarter horse email tune to run at all!

Setup the center console panel close to the way i want it. Left the white protector on it for now but shiny aluminum underneath. AFR gauge installed. Trans temp to come. One of many lights to come. Cool suit and coms coming soon.

After some deliberation pretty happy with how i got the trans cooler mounted and lines routed.
Race weekend was a success! Everyone got plenty of track time and the car ran strong. Noon Saturday to noon sunday at high plains in CO.

Saturday was hot! it hit 99 but the new radiator and water pump kept engine temps good. Transmission fluid was running hot. 235 if you took it easy and 245 - 250 if you pushed it. Even middle of the night at 60 degrees trans temp was 235 when pushing it. The 10x10 stacked plate cooler just wasn’t up to the task!

We got a lot of compliments on the theme - a few haters that it looked too good for a lemons car. The bs judges didnt mind though. V6 auto? Say no more class b with no penalties.

The single stage metallic paint looks good in pictures and 20 feet away but any body man that gets close will cringe at the ‘DA and Spray’ results details

Had some minor black flag issues early in the day Saturday but we got it calmed down later.

trac loc really started to slip by Saturday evening. One wheel wonder for probably half the race.

ran 367 laps this year vs 300 last year. 2:25 best lap time this year vs 2:29 last year. No problems passing that geo metro on the straits this year - even passed a gt mustang on the straight!

Since everyone else wanted to sleep the car was all mine from midnight to 6 am. Would run about an hour then would take 30 mins off to drink/eat/bathroom/caffeine/ice to coolshirt/fuel. I think i did that cycle about 4 times before i forgot where i was on the track at 6 am.

for reference this was turn 8 on my best lap

and this was my turn 8 when i think im in turn 12, then realize its 8, then realize its time to end the 6 hour stint and go sleep

during the last 2 hours on sunday we developed a weird brake condition. In turn 8 the brakes pedal would always go flat to the floor on the first push and then be stong on the second push. I think we just boiled the brakes - there are a string of three big braking zones in the first half of the track. Can you think of anything else that would have caused that?

our pit neighbors had a less fun wknd. Gained an infinite capacity oil pan on Friday testing

so they went to a used car lot in denver and bought another car for a donor!

Crazy, They were only one of the 4 or so engine swaps I witnessed

this other team was running a 1950s dodge pickup. When the manual steering gave out they decided racing a 1950s dodge truck wasn’t hard enough so they decided to grab an electric steering system from some 2019 toyota that required making the ecu believe it was still in the original car.

this mazda miata with cadillac 4100 ht turbod is always stupid fast but ran into some head gasket issues
This old volvo? I think? Was way faster then it had any right being!32109024-1A7A-4738-B1FD-B74AEDFE7717.jpeg

there was also an ls swapped e36 bmw that was apparently too much car for the drivers as they could rarely turn more then a couple laps without going 4 off so after probably a dozen black flags they were told to go home.
Starting into the prep for the September 24 hour race again. The three big issues are rear brakes melting caliper piston seals, transmission overheating and diff slippage. Over the winter it kind of snow balled and I bought more parts then I need. Going to try working on the car in my garage this summer instead of dads shop. No lift or fancy tools but no 4 hour drive either!

First order of business is ripping apart the rear end to replace the diff with a tru trac. While I’ve got the axels out I’ll be upgrading the rear brakes from gt solid 10.5 rotors to cobra vented 11.5. Hoping this will reduce heat enough to keep brake fluid in the caliper and not on rotor/pad.
Ditching the carbotech rp2 and trying st47s to see if that is nicer to the rotors. Plenty of pad left on the rp2s after 2x24 hours though!

Will also replace the wheel bearings and seals. Not sure if this leak on drivers side is from seal or brake caliper but doing both to be sure! Passenger side is definitely brake fluid leak.

Hoping to leave the pinion alone and not have to adjust gear pattern.

installing arp studs to fit some 18x10.5 wheels. Hammered them out with old wheels still on to protect axel flange. Did this first agains old diff instead of waiting and beating on new bearings / diff.

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