Tag: LeMons

By on March 20, 2014

Aside from “real racers” who insist The 24 Hours of LeMons is a joke, everyone else understands this series’ willingness to embrace engineering and artistic creativity, providing somewhat-wholesome entertainment and—best of all– giving away a metric ton of track time for little cash.  As a member of the LeMons Supreme Court in their Texas races, well, bias from judicial bribes and heartless praise bestowed upon me aside…

…here’s a dirty little secret: you can go LeMons racing in any fully depreciated machine with ZERO PENALTY LAPS, no matter how awesome the vehicle was when new. Provided you bend (not break) the rules with your whip.  And give everyone a good reason to love/hate you.  The Poorvette is proof positive. (Read More…)

By on March 10, 2014

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Racing is more than the story on track. If there’s thing I’ve learned in the last few years of rassin’ adventures is that the real battle in racing is the one leading up to getting the car on track. Not just the mechanical struggle of preparing a car to drive in conditions its creators had never anticipated, but in the personal struggles the teams could never had anticipated, too.

Some may have noticed we’ve been quiet on our Lemons exploits last fall, and it wasn’t for lack of trying. Plain and simple, the deal for our 450SLC fell apart in such spectacular fashion that we decided to tactfully push it under the rug and move on with plans for our own in-house team. Sure, we’d wasted a ton of money, travel, and time off work, but what would the point be of publicly humiliating the person who had let us down?

That was our opinion, anyway. But Brandon Spears, owner of the Syndicate Lemons team, “builder” of the 450SLC we’d arranged to rent, and the letter-downer in question, had a different opinion about letting sleeping dogs lie.

(Read More…)

By on October 22, 2013

My worst moment at the College for Creative Studies was during Portfolio Review: a presentation of one’s body of work since the beginning of the semester.  So it comes as no surprise that my favorite parts of a LeMons race is judging the artistic(?) themes of the cheaty $500 race cars in attendance.  Let’s combine the two for this quick vignette into an alternate world of automotive design: come up with a moderately creative theme, say or do something idiotic, make me laugh and perhaps I’ll forget about that fancy header…or those super cheaty shocks that supposedly “came with the car.”

Did you really think that car design ends in the studio? (Read More…)

By on August 12, 2013
Yeah, I opened this up for the screen shot, but I had been listening

Yeah, I opened this up for the screen shot, but I had been listening

You have heard it before, you’ll hear it again. Probably soon, probably better and probably from Louis CK, in which case it will definitely be funnier.

But what an age we live in! Literally, a mere 10 years ago my wife sat at home hoping my once a week phone call from Africa would actually connect. Today, I am texting her as she has lunch with her little brother in Virginia. But what’s more impressive is that I am doing that while watching real time race updates as my buddies the Three Pedal Mafia and their beater Rolls Royce battle Speedycop and his amazing upside down racecar at on the 24 Hours of Lemons at NJMP. The mighty K Car wagon is there as well.

(Read More…)

By on April 30, 2013

As with most harebrained schemes, this one started on innocently enough. But like a  Sorority President’s profanity laced email, the greatest K Car ever raced is making its way across America. Like the video reading by Michael Shannon, it is bringing all who experience it the same joy and probably more profanity. (Read More…)

By on March 18, 2013

TTAC commentator crabspirits writes:

I stumbled upon your Lemons Z34-fiero article.  My brothers both had LQ1 Cutlasses and whoever designed that engine was a sadist. They both blew the headgaskets and were impossible to work on. FYI: we run the SHO-swapped, mid-engine Geo Metro in the 24 Hours of LeMons. I had some good battles against that LQ1 Fiero, some captured on my helmet cam. (Read More…)

By on December 31, 2011

Danny writes:

I am looking to buy an RX-7 (FC) convertible. I currently own a hand me down 2000 Honda Accord V6 from my mother in law. this car drinks WAY too much gas. 20 dollars in 89 octane gas DAILY! my commute is about 50 miles round trip. but I always loved Mazdas my dad had a 1984 323 with a 1.3, a 929 with the V6. I grew up playing with FDs in Gran Turismo. now that I can buy a cheap used car I was thinking about an FC convertible. BUT the major problem that I have is my job, I work for a Chevy dealership as a salesman. The GSM and the SM fired a guy who bought a Toyota Corolla S brand new.

I don’t wanna lose my job but I LOVE the FC and will not buy anything else, I know rotaries are as unreliable as an iron duke but that doesn’t matter. I have access to a repair shop so free labor is there. the parts might be a problem, though i think there are plenty of them in my local junk yard. so please help me figure out my dilemma I Don’t want to drive that POS accord in the summer heat, because it has no A/C, brakes are almost shot.

(Read More…)

By on October 3, 2011

Since there are multiple TTAC Hacks on assignment here at the 24 Hours of LeMons, you’re getting into the mix from multiple angles. And, here in the Piston Slap corner of the world, the Cars are the Stars! But some whips simply have too much going on: feats of engineering superiority, a collection of creative/rare parts and a dump truck full of historical irony. That’s right, historical irony…with a touch of revenge!

(Read More…)

By on December 4, 2010

A top speed of over 140mph. Zero to sixty in less than 7 seconds. A composed suspension and jellybean-sleek sheet metal that still looks handsome after all these decades. That’s the 1989 Ford Taurus SHO, but Sergio Perfetti’s example is more than the sum of its historically relevant parts. And not just because it’s won two consecutive endurance races in the 24 Hours of LeMons on a $500 budget.

(Read More…)

By on September 24, 2010

And without any further ado, here are the last 5 engineering wonders from the recent 24 Hours of LeMons: (Read More…)

By on September 20, 2010

The 24 Hours of LeMons came back to Houston, and it was another race of epic proportions with a side order of sheer lunacy.  While the racing was hot, the Texas heat and humidity with a shocking lack in coastal winds made the event even more punishing on everyone involved, including the punishment-intensive judges who laid down the law in LeMon’s BS inspection.  I still have battle scars from the late night mosquito bites. No matter, I weighed the facts presented by the team’s (supposed) $500 budget and snapped a few pics that readers of Piston Slap might enjoy.

(Read More…)

By on June 17, 2010

One has to be slightly off their rocker to make a LeMons racecar. But then again, you also have to possess self-awareness not seen in most other forms of motorsport. Simply put, this race series totally rocks. And without any further ado, here are the final five vehicles in TTAC’s Ten Coolest Engineering Feats of The 24 Hours of LeMons Dallas. (Read More…)

By on June 14, 2010

While LeMons’ Judges Jonny and Phil took a breather to get married (not to each other) I was one of four people with the honor of taking their place. It’s true, there was a quartet of judges needed to do what those two professionals do on a regular basis, no matter what previous accounts may suggest. So I inspected close to 100 crap cars to see if they meet LeMons’ $500 purchase price criteria.  And while I did, I found the Ten Coolest Engineering Feats of The 24 Hours of LeMons. So let’s get right to it. (Read More…)

By on February 23, 2010

It was bound to happen.  Combine the irresistible force of the Datsun 240 Z with the charming demeanor of TTAC’s “LeMons Racing Experience” (LRE) team captain, Troy Hogan, and we were bound to win something.  And that point was the February 2010 running of the 24 Hours of LeMons in Houston.

We didn’t win the race, unless in 28th place counts as winning. But this time we got a prize, the highly coveted Index of Effluency now rests on our mantle:  and it is the top prize in LeMon Land. To quote judge Murilee Martin,it is “the pinnacle of all LeMons awards….(given) to the team that accomplishes the most with the crappiest car.”  While we always had the latter, the former is the textbook definition of “added perk.” And our new paint job (fashioned from the Paul Newman-era BRE racing livery) certainly looks trophy-worthy. The $1500 worth of nickels didn’t hurt either, even if we shouldn’t put them on the roof of the car for photography.

(Read More…)

By on December 17, 2009

Perhaps you’ve seen the advertisement: an Optima battery survives the rigors of a demolition derby, then goes into the vehicle taking it’s owner home. But is it pure advertising hyperbole or is there something to the claim? To find out I tested the Optima Red Top and Yellow top batteries in situations ranging from daily-driving to that demolition derby-in-denial, the 24 Hours of LeMons.

(Read More…)

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