Since I was still waiting for the new master cylinder to
arrive I concentrated on getting the body panels done.
Before bolting in the drivers side floor I added another
support bar close to the transmission to keep the floor from flexing too much.
Next up was getting all the remaining vent lines hooked up and
terminated. The transfer case and transmission vent lines run to a pair of
valves, then to a filter. If I roll I plan on closing the valves to
prevent fluid loss during recovery. The engine vent line just runs to a filter
while the fuel cell vent line has an inline tip over valve then terminates at a
My new master cylinder arrived on Thursday and I had the rear
brakes bled in about 15 minutes so the problem definitely was the old master
cylinder which I suspect never worked correctly even when new.
I spent Friday evening bolting on the last minute stuff like
the skid plate and securing a few tools. The test run was Saturday morning
at 6am out at Table Mesa.
Right off the bat I noticed the buggy was running really hot
when driving in high range on the roads. Not sure if this is a new problem
because I haven't really driven the buggy much during hot weather with the new
V6. Another issue is the rear suspension feels too stiff and the rig
sits a bit high in the back. Some lighter springs will be needed to address both
issues, I plan on swapping out the 250lb lower springs for some 200lb springs.
I am hoping it is not a valving issue as the new coilovers I bought were
supposed to be valved from the factory the same as the old 16" travel coilovers.
As far as performance goes I am happy to say the rig performed
the same or better than before. I was able to crawl the big waterfall on
Collateral Damage with no water in the front tires which was not possible with
the old setup so that was an improvement. The second real test was
crawling the two big obstacles on Annihilator which the rig did with ease.
Lastly I am not real impressed with the PRP seats I installed in
place of my old Beard seats. They are just plain uncomfortable on the
bumpy stuff. My best guess as to why they felt uncomfortable: I think the headrest is angled
to far back, preventing you from resting your head on it while driving. In
addition I felt like the cutouts for the shoulder belts was too low (I am 5' 10"
tall), whenever I hit a bump it felt like my back was getting compressed which
resulted in back pain after a few minutes of driving. To fix the headrest
issue I took the seat cover off and bent the frame to angle the headrest forward
about 10 degrees. The only thing I can do for the shoulder belt issue is
route the shoulder belts beside the headrest. We'll see if they band-aid fixes
will work, if not I'll be putting my old Beards back in and selling these to
someone shorter than me.