We had a month until Chumpcar’s 2017 Cookie Cutter Classic at Gingerman Raceway, and still had a mountain of tasks on the to-do list, so we had to hustle if we were going to get our Saab 900 ready to race.
So maybe I lied when I said the cage was finished. We still had one small addition: an adjustable seat back support brace. This is required in Chumpcar in any application where seat sliders are used. The Civic was still dead in the driveway, so we just stole the one from it’s cage, cleaned it up, and welded it to the cage in the Saab 900.
As the seat back-brace was being cleaned and installed, I worked on fabricating a mount for the instrument cluster. I tried to focus on making things modular, especially after our experience with the Civic, so I decided to use some sheet metal with roll bar mounts for an easily removable, yet sturdy, mounting solution.
The next task I knew was far from a priority, but I couldn’t pass up painting the interior of the race car. Nothing was mounted. No safety systems were installed. It was never going to be any easier. As to not hinder any progress I made sure to plan all of the painting on days we didn’t wrench.
The next few days were spent on the remainder of the cockpit, which included the installation of the fire suppression system, kill switch, steering wheel, gauge cluster, and window net. Frankie even made a special appearance to help mount some roll cage padding during one of his trips to Michigan.
We took the same approach with the mechanical work as we did with the work in the cockpit; safety first. That meant freshly rebuilt calipers, Carbotech brake pads, Centric rotors, and stainless steel lines front and back. During this process, we also upgraded to 308mm front rotors from a Viggen, along with 300mm vented rear rotors from a 9-5 3.0L. A more detailed explanation on this swap can be seen in the original [BGKP Saab 900] article.
As we crawled around underneath the car installing brake lines, we noticed the fuel lines were leaking. Hassan and Gabe set out to remove the rusted tank straps, drop the fuel tank, and install new fuel lines.
My time was spent focused on replacing the valve cover gasket. Once again, I couldn’t pass up an opportunity to spray paint, so I grabbed a can of wrinkle paint to spruce up the valve cover before installing the new gasket. Upon reassembly, I ditched the old, dirty bolts for some shiny new stainless steel button heads.
We made it to the home stretch, and we were ready to mount the seat for the final time. Once the seat was installed, we checked all of the belt angles and installed the six-point harness in our race-ready Saab 900.
We finished up with about a week left to spare, and since we had the extra time, we decided, at the very least, the car needed a wash.
For more detailed explanations on the different safety systems we touched on in this article, check out our original Chumpcar build story for the BGKP Civic. As for the 900, the next story will take us to Gingerman Raceway in the 2017 Chumpcar “Cookie Cutter Classic” 8+7 endurance race.