Dutton Kit Cars and their owners

I went to the KitNet track day at Castle Combe today in my Legerra. It was cracking weather and I had a good day. There were positives and some negatives. So starting with then the positives: My new tyres performed well and took 5 seconds off my lap times (down to 1m 35sec), I finally got the Legerra over the ton at 100.3mph on the straight, I met a load of nice chaps and did a lot of chatting plus, to round off the day, I drove it home at the end of the day. Two of the chaps were Duttons - but don't ask me their first names because I don't remember.

I spent all day yesterday preparing the car for today. I didn't manage to finish fitting my new seats so I had to revert back to the old ones. The new ones hold me better so I wouldn't have to brace myself in corners as I do now. With all of the extra grip from the tyres (Toyo Proxes R888R's) then the steering forces were quite a bit higher and it was quite a workout.

They say that racing improves the breed but it only served to find weaknesses today. I lost 2 of the bolts off my alternator, so had to grovel around under the hot and oily car. Luckily the organiser had a good selection of bolts in his support vehicle. (In the background of the picture you can see the Dutton brothers putting the remains of their car back on their trailer after hitting the tyre wall at Quarry)

I also had to remove the windscreen wipers because the wind was blowing them across the screen.

I had part of the brake light switch break off.

I also had a heater hose come off when I parked up, so I had to get the jack out again to remove the front wheel to get at it.

My day finished a little early when the car developed a 'misfire' which doesn't appear to be an electrical problem. So it now sounds like a Subaru. The 'misfire' didn't just happen, or I would have noticed the change, it just developed. I rather fancy that it got a little worse on the drive home.

It could have been worse: early on in the day I managed to get 3rd instead of 5th on the straight and saw the rev-counter returning from over 7000 rpm. That could have been a bit of a mess but it survived. I also found that I had to watch the revs because it didn't feel like it needed to change up until over 6500 (yes, that happened a few times).

So, overall it was a good day. I enjoyed the driving, the mechanic-ing and the racing. And I enjoy having the aches, up to a point. I am a bit concerned that my 'misfire' might be something more serious but that'll give me something to do over the winter.

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Comment by James Doulton on February 26, 2017 at 22:56

Thanks guys. I have wire brushes, including brass ones. I might remove the cam followers so that I can put loads of blue industrial kitchen roll to catch the debris. It might be quite therapeutic to polish the lobes up. Interestingly, the lobes are worse than the base circle - I wonder if that is anything to do with the micro-structure of the steel, or maybe just that they stick out and get more condensation!

Comment by Adrian Southgate on February 26, 2017 at 22:36

The Sierra cam looked like that when I first fitted it into the car. I used a small brass brush and a big wad of kitchen roll, a bit of 3in1 helped.

Comment by Paul Sheridan on February 26, 2017 at 22:01

Best to clean the lobes up gently with a rotary wire brush, you will probably find that the rust comes right off. just dont let all the spoil go into the oil ways.

Comment by James Doulton on February 26, 2017 at 21:08

I'm really fed up. After many months of delay, due to building a new garage for my new Dutton, I finally got back to the Legerra. I had nearly finished getting the cylinder head back together before the garage started but I'd not adjusted the cam followers when it was overtaken by events. Now when I finally got the car clear of other stuff, I lifted the bonnet ... and my heart sank. This is my high-lift cam that I fitted 2,500 miles ago.

Do you reckon it'll just polish off with a little running, or is it fubar? If I'm going to need a new cam then I might go for a hotter one with a bit more top end, rather than this high torque one.

Comment by Daryl Heasman on September 25, 2016 at 18:05

Come along Doulton  man up or I will send Old Butler down -:))

Comment by James Doulton on September 25, 2016 at 17:38

In a word, Daryl, Yes!

I had a bad back for over a week. Then that V6 came up and I fitted a towbar to my Hyundai and retrieved the car from Sheffield, and did my back in again in the process. Then I had 3 days in Rome on business. This last week I have been a bit under the weather with a mild cold and I do keep falling asleep as soon as I sit down. All pretty pathetic.

Comment by Daryl Heasman on September 25, 2016 at 11:32

5 weeks ,did you keep nodding off James

Comment by James Doulton on September 25, 2016 at 0:43

So I have now got the cylinder head back on the engine and I just need to get the bolts re-torqued after I have run it for a few minutes. It has taken me 5 weeks to get this far! I have all new valves and they are lapped in. I fitted some stronger cam-follower retaining springs to stop the little devils jumping off their posts again.

While the head was off, I measured the position of the inlet valves when fully opened by my high lift cam (Kent FR30) and discovered that the valve protrudes 3.1mm below the mounting face of the head. The pistons come virtually flush with the top of the block and the head gasket compresses down to little over 1mm. So a cam belt failure could result in about 2mm of metal to metal impact if the cam stopped in the wrong place. 

Comment by Daryl Heasman on August 20, 2016 at 23:25

I would sack that b service engineer James quick

Comment by James Doulton on August 20, 2016 at 23:20

Well, that incompetent service engineer seems to have mislaid my micrometer so I have had to use my 3 verniers, which all give slightly different results. Anyway, it looks like V35122 for the exhaust and V90178 for the inlet. Mine is actually a Sierra EFI cylinder head so I don't understand those 7mm diameter stems you have listed. My Haynes manual for the Sierra list all pintos as having ~8mm stems.

I think that the 8.21mm valve is an oversize because 0.2 and 0.4 oversizes are listed in my manuals (Sierra, Capri and RS2000)

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