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MiniBuild #14 ~ Project Baja Racer

2021 Arizona International Harvester Rendezvous

Damian Grihalva

High Wheeler
Joined
Mar 14, 2002
Messages
2,158
Points
38
Location
Colorado Springs
Well, according to the thread views, the title of this thread caught a few peoples attention. So I guess its time to fill you in.

For many years I've been interested in building a Baja-style racer. When I got into Scouts, I went to the Tulare show in California. There I saw and met Mike and/or Jeff Ismail breifly and saw there Massive tow rig and heard of their exploits racing the traveller (sorry guys, I can't remember which/who as I was a BRAND new IHer at the time). Between then and now, I've had a growing desire to build a racer, but over the past decade, I've seen and heard of a few folks racing IH's. Years past and I found myself looking up pictures of John Comer with one of his racers tearing down a track (weather it be in the mud or ice racing). Similarly I seem to have been drawn to Tom's (Mandera) threads about his adventures with his Racer. I admired from a far, seeing Tom and John's exploits, and in my mind I wanted to build an actual racer that would put IH back in competition.

About 6+ months ago, I was flown out of state by a potential customer who wanted me to look at his T-ette and Crawler for possible builds. Although nothing came of those, we were able to chat quite a bit about building a competition rig that I had in my mind. I was complaining about the lack of technology in current more local racers and using the same technology I use in my XLC kits (not new either, but at least a few centuries older), but on a grand scale and then taking it to the track for real (and hopefully) national competition. One thing led to another, and this build was born.

As my partners will attest to, this build has been sitting in the outskirts ~ severe back-burner if you will ~ since that trip. For the most part, we've kept our mouths shut ~ except to each other. One gentleman agreed to cover parts cost for me, I agreed to donate time and labor, and still another their knowledge of racing. So this build will be a one-of-a-kind racer. More of the product of a few peoples desire to put a decent [possibly] nationally competitive racer back on the track than anything else.

I'm hesitant to give the names of the people involved in this project and we're kinda getting together on this build more as friends donating time, money and effort, into a common goal. Come to think of it, this scout really doesn't belong to anyone of us in particular. But regardless, there is the background of this build. Feel free to offer suggestions or comments as you see this build come together.

We're doing this as a community project, and hope to involve the IH community. I've invited the others to join into this build and hope they will. But its up to them. If they choose not to join in, I'll simply be adding/paraphrasing their comment from our private communications as they relate to this build.

With that. I hope you all enjoy this build.
 

Damian Grihalva

High Wheeler
Joined
Mar 14, 2002
Messages
2,158
Points
38
Location
Colorado Springs
Lets start his off the 'meat' of this build with some begining pictures. Here is the chassis I aquired for the build. I got it from Mike Goodman (I think) for $300 who had it on blocks until I persuaded Gary Billings to bring it up to me when he was in Durango visiting with Mike.

It has sat on my Mom's property for the past 4ish months while I was finishing up some projects and making room for it. I don't have too much time to build this truck ~ and with the other projects (one of which you guys haven't even seen yet) ~ we're going to crank it out as quickly as we can. Goal time: 1 month.

Here's what we're starting with.
mb14_1.jpg

mb14_2.jpg

mb14_3.jpg


Even though the scout is rough. Its got it where it counts. I need from the fire-wall to the B-pillar. And we've already started taking this beast apart. Unfortunately, as you'll see in the pictures, the weather isn't cooperating.

We started on it after old Mother Nature dropped a few inches of snow on the ground. It was cold ~ but Paul and I got right to work.
mb14_4.jpg


As you can see, the engine is gone from this chassis, and there is several things left to make it mostly comlete.
mb14_5.jpg


Alas, it's all for not. Everything not needed is removed.
mb14_6.jpg


Once the insides are gutted, its time for the fenders... Paul, with his signature pose works while snow starts falling again :nono:
mb14_7.jpg
 

Damian Grihalva

High Wheeler
Joined
Mar 14, 2002
Messages
2,158
Points
38
Location
Colorado Springs
After Paul and I got the engine bay stripped, he started on the fenders while I tore out the dash and prep'd the door for removal.
mb14_8.jpg


While ripping (literally) the dash out, the glove box tore open and we found some old stuff that was left behind. Sunbock anyone? Insect repellent? Funny, even the bugs were smart enough to stay out of the weather....what what wrong with us?:clown:
mb14_9.jpg


Dash completely stripped.
mb14_13.jpg


We left after getting the front fenders and inner-fenders off. Doors are gone too. Getting the two fender bolts along the rockers required a bit of laying down in the snow. We didn't get any pictures of the snow falling at its max ~ but after nearly 4 hours of tear down. We were done. Before we left, I snapped a few more shots.
mb14_10.jpg

mb14_11.jpg

mb14_12.jpg


I'll be adding more pictures as I get a chance. Hope you enjoyed the beginings of this project.
 

lonchair

High Wheeler
Joined
Feb 27, 2002
Messages
1,261
Points
38
Location
Buda, Texas
Well I can send you some inspiration. I have an issue of Scout Four Wheel Drive Magazine from 1978 with an article over IHs factory racing. Specificly a win at Riverside, SCORE World Champianship, and the Baja 1000. I also have a copy of Sherman Balch's Tuff Terrain Products catalog (1979 1/2 edition). I'll put some copies in the mail to your shop address tomorrow.
 

Hutch

Farmall Cub
Joined
Jan 15, 2004
Messages
343
Points
0
Location
AZ/Wyoming
Cool :cool2: What class of racing are you building it for? Can't wait to see where this goes.
 

Damian Grihalva

High Wheeler
Joined
Mar 14, 2002
Messages
2,158
Points
38
Location
Colorado Springs
Well I can send you some inspiration. I have an issue of Scout Four Wheel Drive Magazine from 1978 with an article over IHs factory racing. Specificly a win at Riverside, SCORE World Champianship, and the Baja 1000. I also have a copy of Sherman Balch's Tuff Terrain Products catalog (1979 1/2 edition). I'll put some copies in the mail to your shop address tomorrow.
Hey cool man. I'll see about getting some scanned in to add to the build!

Cool :cool2: What class of racing are you building it for? Can't wait to see where this goes.
Not sure ~ I know that's a bad answer. But we're using a 'Race' version of the XLC kit and not having stock suspension, and coil-overs front and back, and engine pushed back 8-10", and the back half of the frame cut off...may limit our class choices.

We are basically building for the 'unlimited' class (in most states local classifications). As far SCORE's official rules, I'm not sure where that will land us. If anyone has some experience on SCORE classes, please let me know ~ I'd prefer to build to a specific class specification for SCORE then see where that lands us locally ~ rather than the otherway around.

Damian
 

Tom Mandera

Dreams of Cub Cadets
Joined
Oct 19, 2001
Messages
4,427
Points
63
Location
Helena, MT
We are basically building for the 'unlimited' class (in most states local classifications). As far SCORE's official rules, I'm not sure where that will land us. If anyone has some experience on SCORE classes, please let me know ~ I'd prefer to build to a specific class specification for SCORE then see where that lands us locally ~ rather than the otherway around.

Damian

In SCORE, the two classes that will apply are.. 1450 Sportsman... and TROPHY TRUCK.

More or less, as long as the engine matches the grille, and the tires are inside the body (provided all of the safety stuff is up to snuff), it'll make Trophy Truck (or BITD Trick Truck)

Not a chance to race in Class 3, where the SSII won the 500 back in the day.
 

Gary Billings

Dreams of Cub Cadets
Joined
Jan 20, 2002
Messages
4,392
Points
63
Location
Conifer, CO
Lets start his off the 'meat' of this build with some begining pictures. Here is the chassis I aquired for the build. I got it from Mike Goodman (I think) for $300 who had it on blocks until I persuaded Gary Billings to bring it up to me when he was in Durango visiting with Mike.

Yeah, that was a fun day...the best part was stopping by Damian's house and getting the "W.T.F., do you know what time it is?" look at 9:30 as he was about to put his kids to bed :tt2: :beer:

-Gary
 

Robert JetFxr

High Wheeler
Joined
May 19, 2003
Messages
1,645
Points
38
Location
Somewhere in the middle of Montana
"I agreed to donate time and labor, and still another their knowledge of racing. So this build will be a one-of-a-kind racer. More of the product of a few peoples desire to put a decent [possibly] nationally competitive racer back on the track than anything else. "

Damian I never meant for you miss any work or suffer financially to do this build. I will be sending you 1000.00 minious the cost of a Radiator next friday.I looked at it as a way we could promote the IH Scout as a wonderful hobby and great platform. I get very tired of the idea that Scouts are cheap and not given the respect I feel they deserve. I know if one puts the same time effort and funding into a Scout as with a Jeep, Toy, or Bronco a Scout will win hands down.
I looked as this project as a way for the IH venders to come togather and get the word out about there products and ideas. For this too work as I had invisioned the IH vendors will have to shake hands and agree that this a worth while goal. We who love and own Scouts will benifit in then long run.
I feel you could not ask for or get a better spokesman than Tom, his efforts to promote 4 wheeling and Scout racing are unequaled.
Robert
 

Damian Grihalva

High Wheeler
Joined
Mar 14, 2002
Messages
2,158
Points
38
Location
Colorado Springs
Yeah, that was a fun day...the best part was stopping by Damian's house and getting the "W.T.F., do you know what time it is?" look at 9:30 as he was about to put his kids to bed
Heheheeh ~ I didn't give you that look did I? OOps. :gunsmilie: Thanks again for getting it for me. I didn't have the time/trailer/expertise with a Hilift to go get it.

I've got to take more pictures of the chassis. The bed is gone now. Nothing but a front cab area with a frame sticking out the back and front.

Damian I never meant for you miss any work or suffer financially to do this build.
If I were, I'd have pulled the plug on this build. I just need to keep the paying customers happy AND get this done. I think the next month will see several MAJOR Scout builds from D and C. This Racer is just one.

I get very tired of the idea that Scouts are cheap and not given the respect I feel they deserve. I know if one puts the same time effort and funding into a Scout as with a Jeep, Toy, or Bronco a Scout will win hands down.

I looked as this project as a way for the IH venders to come togather and get the word out about there products and ideas. For this too work as I had invisioned the IH vendors will have to shake hands and agree that this a worth while goal. We who love and own Scouts will benifit in then long run.
Amen to that.

I feel you could not ask for or get a better spokesman than Tom, his efforts to promote 4 wheeling and Scout racing are unequaled.
Agreed. Besides being an over-all nice guy. He's got the experience in the seat that the scout will need.
 

Damian Grihalva

High Wheeler
Joined
Mar 14, 2002
Messages
2,158
Points
38
Location
Colorado Springs
Well, the back end is cut off, just a a-to-b pillar of a body, a couple seats and two frame ends sticking out of it now.:alucard:

We should have the rig in the shop tomorrow! We're discussing how much and what kind of tube to use for the cage. Should have thing rolling along soon.
 

Damian Grihalva

High Wheeler
Joined
Mar 14, 2002
Messages
2,158
Points
38
Location
Colorado Springs
Well I guess I can update this. First, I'm super surprised I didn't catch phenomia, you all saw we took the front end apart while it snowed on us. That was a WARM day. When we went back to get it with a trailer, the high was 15. Up where the scout was...it was officially "BUTT COLD"

But with some inspiration, we were able to get the chassis on the trailer (just 3 of us) and get it home. Here's some begining pictures. I left the chassis in my garage a couple days to let the snow melt off it. Its still melting :online2long: but things need to start so here we are.
 
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Damian Grihalva

High Wheeler
Joined
Mar 14, 2002
Messages
2,158
Points
38
Location
Colorado Springs
1) Good old Paul got busy with a broom and started ~ emphasis that STARTED ~ sweeping the chassis out.

2) More sweeping.

3) Look at all the yummies

4) Driver seat getting gone. I will say these were a bit of a pain. Normally the bolts simply come out from the top. So while in the great-white-north we used a sawzall to cut the bases enough to tilt them over. However, the PO replaced the floors and rockers which means mis-matched bolts and the need to get UNDER the scout. As you could tell from the pictures above, that wasn't going to happen at the property.

5) Driver out, time for passenger.
 
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Damian Grihalva

High Wheeler
Joined
Mar 14, 2002
Messages
2,158
Points
38
Location
Colorado Springs
1) Seats gone, trash still there

2) Firewall, we will be completely tubing this out. Its up to Tom what design.

3) Pay-dirt. The hole reason we picked this chassis is that the floors and rockers are still good (the PO replaced them). The rest of the chassis was getting junked anyway.

4 & 5) Front frame rails. Man, if there is one thing I hate about working on scouts, is making this look clean and new. We are in process of cutting every last bracket and mount off the frame from the front to the rear cab mount. This part of the build sucks, and takes quite a while, but if you want the job clean, it has to be done.:hammer:
 
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