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Maintenance

The general maintenance requirements are much the same for this chassis as for any high performance vehicle.  As this vehicle is basically a competition car, its maintenance should be looked at more like an INDY car, Trans-Am car, or a sport bike. 

It is therefore highly recommended that the owner take a bit more time and effort in the maintenance of this chassis to insure top performance at all times.

 After all, it is your car.  You should be as proud of its underpinnings as you are of your paint job.

Some basics are as follows.

Cleanliness of the suspension components.

This is an area in which most vehicles are completely ignored throughout their operating life. It is recommended as good practice that all components of the suspension (IE. rod ends, A-arms, coil-over dampers, anti-roll bars, etc.) be cleaned by hand with shop towels that are lightly coated with WD-40 or its equivalent on an every 5000 mile basis. This allows the owner to inspect all bolts and various components both visually and by feel for any damage that may have occurred in use and for any loosening or increase in clearances due to wear.

Cleanliness of the stressed skin chassis.

This is also an area typically overlooked in maintenance. As this chassis relies on all of its components for strength and performance, the cleaning of the chassis allows the owner to inspect all areas for damage from usage. Cleaning is as recommended above. Of particular importance are rock dings in the paint on the chassis. These will allow corrosion to begin, therefore when found, these must be touched up by application of fresh chassis paint just as you would touch up the paint on your Bodywork.

Chassis and Suspension bolt and nut torque's.

It is extremely good practice to check the status of bolt and nut torque's on a regular basis. If the vehicle is being raced full time, this is done before each practice/qualifying session and then checked again before the race. If the vehicle is only used for road use, it is recommended that these are checked every 15,000 miles or after usage on particularly bad road conditions. (IE. Washboard surfaces, or on Northern roads after the winter) It is also recommended that a chemical locking compound be used on all bolts. (Loctite blue, not red.) {Note: also see Carroll Smith's book "Prepare to Win". This book gives excellent detail preparation recommendations, which we do not have the room for here.} Note: See torque chart at end of manual.

    Chassis fluids and Lubrication of components.

  1. Front upper Rocker Arm grease fittings. These should be lubed every 15,000 miles with a Molybdenum filled grease such as Sta-Lube NO. 3141 Molygraph. (Note: Lithium based with 2 % Molybdenum Disulfide/2 % graphite)
    Warning: Do not use a lubricant with more than 10% moly or graphite! This will damage the composite bearings in the rocker arms.
  2. Upper and lower front Rod Ends. Same as 3 below.
  3. Rod Ends. (Pickup points and anti-roll bars) These are all racing quality PTFE lined units. Therefore no lubrication is required. It is good practice to clean the rod ends with a shop towel every 5000 miles.
  4. Anti-roll bar blades. These are assembled at the factory with Moly based lube at both the rodend and rotator section. (Sta-Lube NO.3141) Unless the vehicle is used for competition and the bars are adjusted constantly, you should be able to go 15000-30,000 miles before any lubricant renewal is required on the rotator end. (Note: Disassembly of blades and bar is required.)
  5. Pedal assembly. The bearings on the pedal pivots and master cylinder rods should have a application of spray type white lithium grease every 15,000 miles. (GUNK part NO. L6-16 is a good example of the type.)
  6. All body hinges, striker plates, latches, etc. should have a application of spray type white lithium grease every 5000 miles or as required through inspection.
  7. Wheel bearings. As these units are sealed cartridge type bearings, no maintenance is required.
  8. Brake and clutch fluid. Use only DOT 4 fluid. The braking system requires high temperature fluid. CASTROL GT LMA or Wilwood Brake fluid is recommended. It is also recommended that the systems be bled and fluid completely replaced before every race or once a year for road use. 
    NOTE: Silicone fluids must NOT be used as they will damage master cylinder and brake caliper seals.
  9. Rear traction-lock limited slip unit. For road usage a 90 weight limited slip lubrication as recommended by FORD is required. For competition usage, REDLINE Synthetic lubricants are preferred.
  10. Rear Constant Velocity joints and halfshafts. These should be inspected and re-lubricated every 25,000 miles with a high pressure moly-based lube( Sta-Lube NO. 3141 Molygraph is recommended). For competition use these units are typically checked after every race for axle damage and wear, therefore lubrication is renewed at this time and lubrication specification is as above.
  11. Fuel Cell. If the vehicle is going to be stored or not used for a significant time period, the fuel cell should be drained completely and all fumes allowed to vent. This is to prevent the forming of varnishes in the foam filled cell. NOTE: Some fuel suppliers suggest the complete filling of the unit before storage. Check with your fuel supplier for recommendation. (NOTE: addition of alcohol for storage is NOT recommended.)
  12. Batteries. The batteries supplied with the vehicle are sealed type which have a 72 month life. There is no need to add anything to these units during their life time. If you store the car, make sure to remove the ground straps to avoid any current leakage over the long term. This will also prevent any galvanic action between dissimilar metals in the chassis during storage in high humidity areas.
  13. Radiator and cooling system. As the radiator and supply pipes are aluminum, it is most important that a non-corrosive type premium anti-freeze and summer coolant such as PEAK or its equivalent be used. It is also very important that all air is removed / bled from the system upon filling as the radiator is of the cross flow type and can trap air in itself and its related plumbing.
  14. Dry sump tank and system. (Competition only or optional for road use)  The oil level is checked on level ground, at the dry sump tank dipstick, with the engine running and the engine oil at 140 degrees f. minimum. When changing oil, the engine sump as well as the dry sump tank must be drained separately. It is of great importance that the oil be hot before changing, otherwise a minimum of two (2) quarts of old oil will remain in the system. System capacity is 12 to 13 quarts depending on your engine sump, oil cooler, and filter configuration. It is very important to prime the system after oil change. Follow the oil pump manufacturer's instructions for priming method.

Chassis Bolt Torques

Front Suspension
Lower outboard rod end nut. 75 ft lbs.*
Lower inboard rod end mount bolts. 24 ft lbs.*
Upper Rocker arm shaft. 15 ft lbs.*
Upper Rocker arm inboard bracket bolts. 30 ft lbs.*
Upper rod end nut. 30 ft lbs.*
Anti-roll Bar mount bolts. (frame attachment) 35 ft lbs.*
(Cap attachment) 25 ft lbs.*
Anti-roll Bar blade actuator bolts. 15 ft lbs.*
Anti-roll Bar rod end nut. 14 ft lbs.*
Upper and lower damper bolts 35 ft lbs.*
Wheel mount nuts.(use Never~Seize lubricant) 75 ft lbs.
Rear Suspension
Lower outboard pivot bolts 34 ft lbs.*
Lower inboard rod end mount bolts 24 ft lbs.*
Toe Link rod end bolt 24 ft lbs.*
Upper outboard pivot bolt 34 ft lbs.*
Upper inboard rod end mount bolts 24 ft lbs.*
Anti-roll Bar mount bolts. (frame attachment) 35 ft lbs.*
Anti-roll Bar blade actuator bolts. 35 ft lbs.*
Anti-roll Bar rod end nut. 14 ft lbs.*
Upper and lower damper bolts 35 ft lbs.*
Wheel mount nuts. (use Never~Seize lubricant) 75 ft lbs.
General Items
1/4 bolts 6 ft lbs.*
5/16 bolts 17 ft lbs.*
3/8 bolts 30 ft lbs.*
7/16 bolts 42 ft lbs.*
1/2 bolts 65 ft lbs.*

Note: An asterisk indicates use of locking compound (Loctite blue)


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