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n80

Where do you get a TR?

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n80

I'm not in the market for a TR right now but sometimes when I'm thinking ahead about future track plans I often come back to the idea of the TR in terms of expense, consumables, etc. But when I look around on the internet there is very little info about these cars and virtually none for sale. Right now I see one on racing junk.com and it is in Texas (only $5000!). (I'm in SC).

 

So just for pure speculation let's say someone wants to jump in to TR, first as a track day car and then maybe WTW. Where do you find one? I know I can talk to the SE TR guys (Sonny and Ralph, I have not met Randy yet) but it may be 3-4 months before I get to another event.

 

One other question, can a TR accommodate a tall driver? I'm 6'4" and long wasted which means headroom is usually more of an issue for me than leg room for me.

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braknl8

Randy is who you need to talk to. He'll be able to answer any questions you have.

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n80

Thanks Chris. I may be at CMP (as a spectator ) later this month so I might try to find him. If Brad is there I need to take a look at his car. If he can find a way to fit in one I probably can too.

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TowDawg

Randy is definitely the one to talk to.

You can build a top car with all the upgrades and spend a decent little chunk or get a used car and still be out there having a blast. We've got a great class and no matter what position you're in, there's always someone you're battling with.

Once you go W2W, you'll look back at track days and wonder why the hell you didn't go W2W sooner.

 

Brad now has custom built car with extra room in the cockpit, but he drove a standard one for quite a while, so there's definitely ways to fit taller drivers. I'm only 5'10", so no issues for me, but Will is 6'2" and has no issues at all.

Swing by the Full Throttle rig and we've got a few you can sit in just to see the difference seat and pedal placement can make.

We've got the red hauler/stacker and black cars and usually take the corner set-up where the other TR's are. (One intersection towards the pit area from the garages.)

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ME2z
I'm not in the market for a TR right now but sometimes when I'm thinking ahead about future track plans I often come back to the idea of the TR in terms of expense, consumables, etc. But when I look around on the internet there is very little info about these cars and virtually none for sale. Right now I see one on racing junk.com and it is in Texas (only $5000!). (I'm in SC).

 

So just for pure speculation let's say someone wants to jump in to TR, first as a track day car and then maybe WTW. Where do you find one? I know I can talk to the SE TR guys (Sonny and Ralph, I have not met Randy yet) but it may be 3-4 months before I get to another event.

 

 

Great question George. I have considered the same thing. I have put a lot of money in the Z and would prefer a better long term solution.

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n80

Mike, I often think that I'd want something 'faster' than my Z for a dedicated track car, but then again, I've been passed by TRs when running DE-4.....which is not a knock on the Z, I'm certain the guy passing me in the TR could make my Z go faster than I do.

 

I'm just getting tired of doing the whole brake pads, rotors, fluids, tires and seat swaps every time I go to the track. Pads and tires are expensive for a Z too. So is bouncing off a tire wall. And whenever I think about a cheap, safe dedicated track car I keep coming back to the TR.

 

I could run a TR in DE-4 for a while and then get a comp license if I wanted to and a used TR would probably cost less than what my Z is worth now even after crashing it.

 

The only downside I can see is that I don't see them at VIR, and I like VIR a lot. I could still DE at VIR but I don't think the TRs caught on at NASA-MA.

 

Anyway, this is pure speculation. Nothing is going to happen soon (I'm paying for a wedding in 2 weeks ). I'm always thinking about my options. If I can get over to CMP next weekend I'll try and talk with the TR guys.

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ME2z
Mike, I often think that I'd want something 'faster' than my Z for a dedicated track car, but then again, I've been passed by TRs when running DE-4.....which is not a knock on the Z, I'm certain the guy passing me in the TR could make my Z go faster than I do.

 

I'm just getting tired of doing the whole brake pads, rotors, fluids, tires and seat swaps every time I go to the track. Pads and tires are expensive for a Z too. So is bouncing off a tire wall. And whenever I think about a cheap, safe dedicated track car I keep coming back to the TR.

 

I could run a TR in DE-4 for a while and then get a comp license if I wanted to and a used TR would probably cost less than what my Z is worth now even after crashing it.

 

The only downside I can see is that I don't see them at VIR, and I like VIR a lot. I could still DE at VIR but I don't think the TRs caught on at NASA-MA.

 

Anyway, this is pure speculation. Nothing is going to happen soon (I'm paying for a wedding in 2 weeks ). I'm always thinking about my options. If I can get over to CMP next weekend I'll try and talk with the TR guys.

 

It's also in my long term plans. I'm at the point with the Z that I need to replace the suspension, put in a roll bar/cage, replace seats, replace more bushings, etc. That's a lot of money that could be spent more wisely. I now have two daughters in college so I have to watch how fast I go down the rabbit hole.

 

Let me know what you hear from the TR guys.

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braknl8
Randy is definitely the one to talk to.

You can build a top car with all the upgrades and spend a decent little chunk

 

What is a front-running TR bringing these days?

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haase1375

I did race 125 shifters and 250 superkarts for the passed 40 years. I finally got tired of spending mega dollars on the karts. three years ago I bought a 2008 roller TR and bought a hayabusa engine kit from ebay for 2500 and installed and purchased the parts I needed from gary tinker and randy s.. the TR has been the best racing thing I have done in last 10 years. I wished I had switch to TR a long time ago. I simply love it. the equation is like this 25% is the car 25% engine 50% is the driver. if you set the TR correctly and have a reliable STOCK second gen engine and drive it correctly you will finish top 5 overall at your events. check out some of my video's on you tube under firouz haghighi. these cars are by far the best bang for dollar.

 

good luck

 

firouz

team texas

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umades

N80,

 

I live between Rock Hill and Fort Lawn. Got my first TR April 2011. I had taken a 2011 Shelby GT500 to CMP in February for my first time ever on any track. I did HPDE1 that weekend and my instructor allowed me to solo on Sunday afternoon. My next event was a turn one day at CMP. After 3 track days, I knew that I needed a track car. I rented a showroom spec Miata from my instructor for my 4th day on a track and didn't like the car. I went to 600 Racing to look at TRs and there was a used one for $8,500 that I bought.

 

I took my TR to CMP in May and signed up for HDPE2 and was allowed to do lead follow. By the end of the weekend, Randy and Darrel offered to me to take the competition school in June at Road Atlanta. I wrecked my car on warm up laps before the comp school on Friday but repaired it and got in HDPE3 for the weekend.

 

I raced that car for a while and bought another used TR in 2012. I raced that car for awhile and bought a third TR. Mid 2013 I sold all 3 TRs and got out of racing. June of 2014 I bought back the third TR that had been converted to a ST3 spec and raced in ST3 until the Eastern Nationals where I placed third ( behind 2 Corvettes and in front of 6 TRs and a Mazda)

 

This year, I have returned my car to TR spec and am racing in the TR series ( currently in second place in points verrrry far behind Ralph Nolan.

 

I have said all this because it lets you know I have a fair amount of recent experience with TRs and if you like, I am willing to meet you in Rock Hill over lunch to share with you my experiences. You can pm me or we can meet at Marys - you name the day.

 

Mike Rea

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sonny
What is a front-running TR bringing these days?

While a simple & straight forward question, not a very simple & straight forward answer.

 

Answer = It depends...

 

A front runner is gonna need a 'Busa motor in it these days. The only ones that I know of building TRs with a 'Busa in any quantity are Gary Tinker & Randy Suddreth (TRV). You can have TRV build you a car from the ground up with a brand new chassis straight from 600 Racing or start with a roller. I'm pretty certain a brand new, front-running 'Busa powered TR with all the bells & whistles will be >$30k. Of course, that number also depends on what kind of bells & whistles you want (data acquisition, cameras, communications, transponder, etc).

 

A used TR will cost from $3k (circle-track roller) to $17k (road coarse set-up w/Yamaha water-cooled motor).

 

If you did the majority of the work yourself -- A 'Busa conversion is ~$10k (engine, wiring harness, ECU, tune, misc bits to make the engine fit) + chassis $? + road course set-up ~$3k (springs, diff, etc) + fiberglass body ~$3k.

 

If you can find yourself a used TR with a busa conversion, I'd say that's the least expensive way to get a front running car. However, since the busa conversions are only starting to show up at the track, not many are for sale at the moment. (I know, I've been watching RacingJunk & keeping my ears to the ground for a used one since last year.)

 

But as expensive as all this sounds, the consumables are what really make this affordable racing. Tires are $500/set & they'll last at least 1/3 season if you run in every single practice, qualifier & race. Brake pads ~$200/set for an entire season. Change the oil & filter after every race weekend. Brake fluid flush every other race weekend (overkill).

 

Also, something else to consider: as a dedicated race car with a tube-frame chassis, these things are very hard to break & parts can be cut off/welded for repairs. If I did to a Spec E30/Miata/H2 as I've done to my TR, I'd have gone thru at least 2 cars already. (OK, let the jokes begin. I'll start -- Yes, us Asians are krazy drivers...) But with the TR, I've just had to replace broken fiberglass body panels, front/rear clips, misc. broken components. Other TR drivers can atest to being hit by other cars (in/out of class) & suffer minimal damage -- which if in a different vehicle, would have rendered that car a total write-off.

 

As another aside, the TR's on RacingJunk going for ~$5k are circle car set-ups with air-cooled Yamaha motors. If you get one of those, consider only the chassis & body useful. You'll need to convert it to road coarse set-up & consider at least a water-cooled Yamaha or convert to busa. Whle the air-cooled motors can be run, they don't have the longevity of a water-cooled motor & will need a rebuild much sooner than a water-cooled motor. I'm assuming one of the reasons those cars in TX & NV are going for so little is bc the motors have gone to their limit & need a rebuild/refresh. As I understand it, 600 Racing isn't even dealing with the air-cooled motors any longer & have only gone to working on water-cooled Yamahas.

 

I know of at least one brand new, never seen a track, busa-powered TR to be at CMP this coming weekend. There will also be at least 1, if not 2, newly converted ones there as well. Come to the TR "camp" to check them out, meet the owner/drivers & talk with Randy.

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n80

Great info guys and I really appreciate it. Still in long range planning mode for sure..........and I move very slowly with this type of decision but everything I'm reading here makes this sound like a viable long range plan. And as Mike Ellison pointed out, as much as we love our Z's they can be pricey even as dedicated track cars so the more I've explored that route the less realistic it seems. And SpecZ does not seem to be taking off anyway.

 

Mike Rea, I may take you up on your offer, or at least find you at the track.

 

Sonny, as I've watched the internet for used road course TRs over the last year I see a fair number of them going for around $10k. I believe most of them have had water cooled Yamahas but definitely not Hayabusas. Should I assume that these engines are close to needing work for that price?

 

If I could get through an initial season (which would consist of a DE4 weekend, then comp school and then a last place race or two) with a so-so engine would $10k be a bad buy for a car that I was fairly sure would need a new engine for the next season?

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sonny
If I could get through an initial season (which would consist of a DE4 weekend, then comp school and then a last place race or two) with a so-so engine would $10k be a bad buy for a car that I was fairly sure would need a new engine for the next season?

The cars for ~$10k probably have water-cooled motors but might be circle track cars. I haven't seen a decent road track car with a water-cooled motor in it for less than $12k. If it was a road course car, I'd venture to say it was missing some (major) stuff or the engine was close to needing a refresh.

 

Problem with an unknown water-cooled motor is you just don't know what the history of the motor is & how long it's going to last. Kevin Mewborn & I bought cars from the same father-son circle track team. (Something happened to the father where he couldn't race any longer so the son decided he didn't want to compete any more without his dad competing.) His engine has been going strong for over 3 yrs. Mine was strong for 1 year & then it blew-up. I bought a used motor that looked good & passed compression/leak down testing. I ran it for a season & it was down on power after that one year. I ended-up refreshing it & when it was taken apart, found it to have every top quality internal available for those motors already in it. But it still needed a refresh. This was last winter & I ran it most of last year (to a 2nd place season points championship). I should be good to go for at least another season or 2 with it. But, who really knows?

 

One of the main reasons why people are going to the busa is bc of the unknown quantity of the Yamaha motors as to their longevity. They were never designed to push the amount of weight & produce as much HP as we've been pushing them to make. They were designed for motorcycles with less than half the weight of the TR. The Hayabusa is designed to make >190HP but is detuned to <130HP for TR application. This will help to increase the longevity of the motors since they aren't being pushed anywhere close to the limits of design.

 

Having said all that, there is nothing wrong with your original plan. I guess the same could be said about any race car's engine -- you never know the history & how well it's been maintained. All you can do is a leak down & compression tests & hope for the best.

 

The other thing to consider -- as the busa's start to dominate & become more popular, people are going to be getting out of their Yamaha powered cars. So, the market will drop on those cars & the Yamaha motors will get steadily cheaper to purchase. There are PLENTY of Yamaha motors available from the Legends side of the market so sourcing one of those motors will never be difficult. So, waiting, as you've planned, will work to your advantage.

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braknl8

Great info, Sonny...and I'm sorry if I hijacked, George.

 

Sonny, you offered for me to drive your car at rrr when I was in DE2 but since I had never been there, I declined. Been kicking myself ever since.

 

The one that just popped up on the nasa-se fb page looks like a great starting point.

 

It is very hard to get past the open-car thing for me. Too many half-shafts going through windshields, tree limbs etc. Has anyone crashed one at a decent speed other than Sonny's brake failure into 10a, last year? Do they crash well? ...not insinuating that they don't, I'm just not educated about those aspects of them.

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n80

The one that just popped up on the nasa-se fb page looks like a great starting point.

 

That one is a good example of what I've been seeing from time to time but no details given on that particular one so who knows.

 

And when Thunder Chicken was for sale it was also around $10k.

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sonny

The one that just popped up on the nasa-se fb page looks like a great starting point.

 

That one is a good example of what I've been seeing from time to time but no details given on that particular one so who knows.

 

And when Thunder Chicken was for sale it was also around $10k.

The guy selling, Ray Scott, is a well known quantity in the TR grp. Pretty much everyone with a Yamaha motor goes to him to have the jets on the carbs tuned. He's also a talented engine builder. More than that, he's an all-around great guy. If he says that car is good to go, it's good to go. (But it might be an air-cooled motor.) The only downside to that car is it has the original body-style. Body-styles are personal preference (there are 3), but the full-body style (like mine) is theoretically the fastest bc it is more aerodynamic. The aero differences are less important at CMP but come into play in a big way at Rd-A, RRR, VIR & Daytona. Again, a new body will cost ~$3k if you purchase it & install it yourself.

 

As an aside, the Thunder Chicken had an air-cooled motor. Again, the cars with air-cooled motors are worth less than the ones with a water-cooled motor.

Edited by Guest

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sonny
Here you go Sonny:

 

http://www.racingjunk.com/NASA-Performance-Touring/182369747/Championship-Thunder-Roadster.htm

Wish I had the time and money to look into this one.....and wish it was closer. Listed as NASA PT so assuming road course set up/

Thanks. I've seen that one listed a number of times already. Thus far, after having been listed a number of times, it hasn't sold. It's set-up for PT & will need mods to make it legal for TR. The original ad at the beginning of winter listed everything on the car. There were way too many things that had to be removed/exchanged to make it TR legal. Also, IIRC, it has carbs instead of fuel injectors so detuning it for TR would be much more difficult. In my mind, more trouble than it was worth. But thanks for pointing it out!

 

Again, you guys need to come over to the TR camp at CMP, look at the cars & talk to Randy Suddreth, He's also more than willing to field phone calls.

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n80

I thought I might be able to make it over to Kershaw tomorrow just to spectate but wedding plans/preparations for my daughter are getting in the way.........I know, misplaced priorities........but I will get together with the TR guys at the next event. Should have more freedom and more track budget once all this wedding stuff is over.

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TowDawg
Great info, Sonny...and I'm sorry if I hijacked, George.

 

Sonny, you offered for me to drive your car at rrr when I was in DE2 but since I had never been there, I declined. Been kicking myself ever since.

 

The one that just popped up on the nasa-se fb page looks like a great starting point.

 

It is very hard to get past the open-car thing for me. Too many half-shafts going through windshields, tree limbs etc. Has anyone crashed one at a decent speed other than Sonny's brake failure into 10a, last year? Do they crash well? ...not insinuating that they don't, I'm just not educated about those aspects of them.

 

 

Did someone say crash? lol

Here's video from my car when Will's master cylinder failed going into turn 1 at CMP last year. Considering I had almost gotten around the corner and the way he hit me, it was essentially a 95-100mph hit. Messed up the cars pretty bad, but both are back out and running well. I chipped a couple of teeth, but neither of us were even sore the next day. They might be light, small cars, but safety is another huge advantage of a true, purpose built, tube frame, race car.

 

 

Sorry you couldn't make it by the hauler at CMP, but we'll be at RA in a couple of weeks too.

With the number of people that did come by and chat/ask questions, I wouldn't be surprised to see the class continue to grow in NASA-SE.

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phastafrican
Did someone say crash? lol

 

With the number of people that did come by and chat/ask questions, I wouldn't be surprised to see the class continue to grow in NASA-SE.

After all that crashing on Saturday, you're basically getting your own race group starting next month for goodness sake. Better keep growing the class to make this move worth it. I expect to see 20 TRs out there soon.

Edited by Guest

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sonny

But the run group isn't just TRs. I believe it's the TRs plus all the ST cars as well.

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phastafrican
But the run group isn't just TRs. I believe it's the TRs plus all the ST cars as well.

ST3 since it's mostly TRs and any other sports racers we get like the 818/Radical/Carma (Jim's final call on how that plays out).

 

But with the counts of those, it's still basically a TR race. #justsaying (plus edited previous comment)

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TowDawg

Hopefully they get the Carma sorted out soon.

That thing could fly on the straights, but was a rolling chicane through the corners at CMP.

 

As for the wrecks, I know mine was caused by an ST3 car out of control. "Most" of the others were just a poor decision on the starting grid. Putting cars that run similar lap times, but in ENTIRELY opposite ways, was a recipe for disaster on Sat. The Sun race was long race and no double-yellow when they changed the starting groups around.

 

I actually like running with other cars on the track, as it adds to the fun. However, power cars that basically park in the corners and momentum cars than have to fly through the corners, aren't a great mix. SpecE into Thunder would make a lot more sense to me. They're about the same speed through the corners as the Thunder cars, so they'll get passed on the straights, but not held up in the corners. With the TR's in Thunder, it's just a back and forth that you can't get away from. Pass someone in the corner, they pass you back on the straight, then stuck trying to pass the same car at the next corner.

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Grintch

 

One other question, can a TR accommodate a tall driver? I'm 6'4" and long wasted which means headroom is usually more of an issue for me than leg room for me.

 

 

I have a twin? It seems I have written exactly those words before.

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