This week Torque Tube Media takes a look at the finals steps in building up the Bruce Stephens Racing V91 A.R.T Chassis Sprintcar. This, the 3 rd and final instalment of the build series, takes the A.R.T to the point of being race-ready.
In fact as the Team photo of the completed racecar is taken, it’s the night before it’s first scheduled race outing at Warrnambool, Victoria for Round 6 of the SRA Eureka Series. Check out the final steps of the build in pictures.
BSR greatly appreciate the support and assistance provided by:
- Lakes Entrance Country Cottages
- Hobbs Trenching
- JSR – John Sidney Racing
- Marsh Building Services
- Mainline Dynolog Dynamometers
- The BSR Team: Graham Summers, Trevor Smith, David Aldersley, Hayden Smith, Steve Pilbeam, Rob Bowie, Gary Doig and Matt Stock.
BSR would not be fielding a racecar without the valued support from these guys.
Well with all the bits and pieces assembled from part 2, it's now time to get serious. Matt Stock has flushed and cleaned the fuelsafe bladder system in the tail tank and gets ready to bolt the assembly in place - this is where the car's V91 identity comes to the fore !
The fuel tank is now in its resting place ready to supply raging amounts of methane to the JSR 410 CI Chev up front. The A.R.T Chassis came with slotted aluminium upper tank mounts - this aids installation - it can be a challenge sometimes to co-ordinate all four tab mounts when bolting up a conventional mounting system. Here the A.R.T gives that a nice touch and removes any misalignment issues. The rear nerf bar is also secured in place
The Front Wing is now assembled to the Chassis mounts. The A.R.T Chassis came with two top mounts for the front shockers. Bruce Stephens is a bit of a perfectionist and is always on the look out for commonsense ideas to enhance the Team's performance. Bruce engaged local Victorian Chassis Constructor Lee Foster to incorporate a few enhancements to the Chassis - this small triangulation brace below the rear attachment point was added for strength - a discrete structural addition, but one that could mean the difference in taking victory or not after a unplanned coming together during the race
Dash is mounted and Crew Chief Graham Summers goes about fitting the gauges.
BSR Team Owner Bruce Stephens takes an active roll in the build up. Here Bruce sets about sizing the header gasket to the JSR 410's massive ports. There is no point spending truckloads on a killer engine if you don't clear gasket encroachments on the exhaust ports - a simple marking pen will do the trick to show where excess gasket material must be removed
An air tool with suitable grinding bit and a steady hand are what's needed to remove the excess gasket material
The header gaskets are now matched to the ports and the headers can be bolted to the heads. You know you are on the home straight of the build when those "pipes" get fixed in position. These pipes are Schoenfeld "Stepped" units. They come off the heads with a 2" pipe and sleeve into another pipe that is a whopping 2 & 1/8". The step is clearly visible above Bruce's right hand
The PWR Aluminium Radiator is in position and the honey comb protector sheet is fitted with cable ties to protect the delicate fins from flying debris
Front Nerf Bar is fitted with high tensile cap screws and nylock nuts
Throttle linkage set-up is crucial - the linkages are checked for full opening of the butterflies and then locked into position. Adjustment is via small rod ends (also known as heim or rose joints)
The Engine still needs the finishing touches - connection of the the magneto to the MSD Box that has just been mounted on the dash
The all important air filter being fitted. It's job is key in protecting the engine from the masses of dirt that a Speedway surface can "throw" at an engine. I never could understand the old days where they raced without air filters and the ram tubes were exposed to the outside world ??
Ah yes ! The top wing that is so synonymous with a Sprintcar gets locked to the A.R.T Chassis
Inner pressed-metal side panels complete the internals of the cockpit
Now this is a cool idea. BSR have a starter motor assembly that can be bolted to the diff for no-fuss engine starts
The starter is bolted on to the diff in place of the rear hat. The car is jacked, rear wheels removed and started in gear using batteries and a push button starter lead that comes with the starter unit. Once running, the car is taken out of gear. Super useful if you are in an industrial estate and can't legally perform a push car engine start
The Drag Link connects the steering arm to the front left wheel. Here the connection to the steering arm is being made.
A safety strap is mandatory to connect the drag link to the chassis in case it comes adrift through the rigors of racing - otherwise it would be a a gruesome missile
BSR's chosen driver Matt Egel arrived at the factory after flying from Adelaide the Friday night before Round 6 of the SRA Eureka Series at Warrnambool. In this picture, Matt loads his race seat into the cockpit and sets about fitting it
Matt Egel like the entire BSR Team is safety conscious. Matt was meticulous in positioning his seat before it was torqued into place. Apart from the obvious safety aspect, it is important a driver feels as comfortable as possible in order to be competitive
Matt Egel not only mounted his own seat, but also looked after the seat belts too. Here Matt has secured all the belts to the chassis and bundles surplus seatbelt webbing neatly with a cable tie
Looking good now ! - the LH front wheel gets mounted to the front end. The front wheels have a different rim offset left to right
Shock absorbers are next in this build up. Here the left rear shock gets fixed in place. All sorts of shock combinations are available nowadays. If fact, the past 4 years have seen leaps and bounds in shocker technology and dyno-ing
Locating of the side nerf bars
It's engine start time ! The racecar is fitted with all wheels, bars, shocks etc and is wheeled outside for a start. The headers face away from the factory to avoid filling the place with exhaust gases. It has its rear wheels removed and is placed on rear axle stands. The starter motor unit is used to breath life into the JSR 410 - HOW COOL !
The build up job is complete. The car is refitted with rear wheels and rolled back inside after the engine start. The 410 JSR sounded AWESOME - let me tell you. She has all the fruit and heaps of horses. The BSR Team members present for this part of the build are proud of their achievement. L to R: Graham Summer, Matt Stock, Bruce Stephens & Matt Egel - SWEET BEAST !
Naturally fibreglass exterior panels and bonnet are fitted prior to loading into the truck
But before the "Winged Beast" can go into the transporter for tomorrow's race at Warrnambool, all the gear required for racing has to be carefully selected and loaded into the BSR Transporter
Wouldn't you know it ! The Team got in the road of the completed racecar when we took the Team shot. Here is the V91 A.R.T with all it's livery on show. This believe it or not is how the car came back from Warrnambool the next day - see the mud on the wheels ? That is because it got rained out and the Team only got engine starts in. That's Sprintcar Racing ! Driver Matt Egel returned home to Adelaide without turning a racing lap. So the BSR Team are going to do it all over again this weekend (Dec 17th) as Warnambool again hosts the SRA Eureka Series - this time round 8. Good Luck Guys !
So BSR now have an A.R.T Sprintcar ready to race – a cutting edge engine and nothing spared on the running gear and bolt-ons. Any additional help for the Team is most welcome.
The coming summer season of Sprintcar Racing is chock-a block-with events that will attract huge crowds and national television programming (paid, free-to-air and internet). Throw in national print media coverage and radio, and it’s very apparent that now is a great time to consider Corporate Exposure with Bruce Steven’s Racing.
Contact Bruce from BSR (Bruce Stephens Racing) if you would like to participate in a Marketing Partnership and make the most of this opportunity for High End Corporate Exposure.