Sunday, September 6, 2009

Lock and Load

I picked up the WRX from IAG on Wednesday night, forgoing a Capitals season ticket holder event and another chance to skate for free at Kettler to do so. I wasn't particularly happy about having to do so, but it was either then, or wait until Friday, and I wanted the chance to put some miles on the new differentials before leaving the car with Shawn, the B-stock driver who was going to take the car out to Lincoln for me.

The Mfactory front differential is evidently not completely "plug-and-play" for the 2006 WRX. While Greg McCance had no issues with his 2002 car (which requires "axle stubs"), my car was a bit of a challenge. The guys are IAG were evidently having issues with getting the axles and the new front diff to cooperate. The rear Cusco diff was no problem at all.

Saturday morning, I dropped off Pat at BWI for his flight to Omaha, or, as he calls it, "The Homeland." His dad still lives in Omaha, and he is going to visit for a few days before heading to Lincoln. I came home, and started to clean and load the WRX for it's trip.
loading the WRX

I need a better vacuum. Between the vacuum at the local car wash and the attachments to the vacuum at home, I still couldn't get as much grime out of the car as I would like. It was a lot better than it was when I was done, in any case. I also washed the Rotas before putting them in.

I started all this around 9AM and by noon, I was grabbing a quick lunch and getting ready to head out the door. I touched base with Gabe, who would be picking me up at Potomac Mills, and with Shawn, the driver, and then I was on the road. 1:45, I was at Shawn's house, and then he took me over to the mall where I got to ride back to Gabe's apartment in the ghetto-fabulous DSP Maxima. Mary must really like him if she puts up with riding in the back of that car instead of insisting that he drive the M3!
tires in the car, and ass-kicking boots ready to be packed

Three hours later, I'd successfully navigated the Metro and Amtrak mazes, and had finished the 40 minute walk home from the BWI rental car building.

Shawn and his codriver/car owner Chike were leaving Sunday morning around 7AM, and I got a phone call about five hours into their trip. "Did you have any issues with the transmission leaking?"

I couldn't lie, especially considering how worried I am about my vehicles when others are driving them. "When I picked the car up on Wednesday, I was smelling gear oil after driving it. It didn't really leave any spots in the driveway, and I took it to a car wash to get the undercarriage cleaned off because I knew they'd had issues with the axles and there was likely gear oil spilt."

He told me that he'd looked underneath and there was a "steady drip." I clarified that it was a drip and not a flow and then told him I'd call JJ and find out what he thought. Shawn asked if he should wait for an answer, and I told him, "I didn't smell gear oil when I dropped it off, and if it's just dripping and there wasn't anything in your driveway after last night, I'm not going to worry about it. I will let you know what he says."
the larger of the spots in the driveway is visible here. it didn't seem significant until the phone call

JJ thought it might be the axle seal, possibly slightly damaged from the issues with getting the axles and the front diff to play nicely. I also called Billy Brooks, and conferred with him about what to do with the car once it got to Lincoln, as there were a couple of days before competition and even before Pat would want to drive it at the Evolution School Test-and-tune. I relayed the information to Shawn, and five-and-a-half hours after the initial call, he just checked in and said that the transmission dipstick is showing that the level is okay.

The car should be in Lincoln tomorrow morning. Billy and Greg (McCance) will look at it for me, and everything should be good to go.

In the meantime, @WDCRSoloNats is reporting via Twitter that Ian Baker won the Finale Hawk Super Challenge over Sam Strano, but Strano took the year-end Challenge win. Annie Bauer took the L2 win and therefore the L2 year-end win, as expected, despite some shifter linkage issues on the FSP car. Leslie Cohen won the Ladies Challenge for the event and for the year.

Maybe next year I'll revisit the ProSolo Finale. In the meantime, I've got some work to do in order to be prepared for the days I'll be gone.

1 comment:

  1. Congrats! I saw your name while reviewing the Nationals results.