Eat Moar Toona!

More pictures of last weekend’s work on the Volvo Amazon. The new engine is IN. And, she RUNS! For all the naysayers that said, “Nay, there is no way you can build an engine for less than $500!” I say to them, “Look in our engine bay, oh sayer of Nay!”

On Saturday, Gary came over and between the two of us, we wrangled the lump into position and screwed it down. Saturday, Anthony and McCall joined in the fun, and the four of us poring over the engine were soon able to breathe life into the beast. She runs. Very, very well. After clearing the air pockets out of the cooling system and installing the new $16 Sun water temp gauge, the B20 fired up, took up a nice, sweet idle at around 1500 RPM, and came right up to 180 degrees and stayed there. After everybody left for the day, I let the engine ‘break in’ around 1500-2000 RPM for about 20 minutes, or as long as she would run on the oil bottle full of gasoline I had feeding the fuel pump. So far, so good. No strange noises, no drama, even the dwell was still spot-on despite the distributor having been removed from the old engine and reinstalled on this one without being touched. Rob’s points held up well.

I just want you to know, I have NEVER heard a B20 run as smoothly as this one does. And, when I blipped the throttle, it responded instantly. Knock on wood, this seems like one healthy motor! I turned the idle speed screws down as far as they would go, and even with almost no fuel the engine still was turning at 1000 RPM, and smooth as silk.

In other news, we have one small issue- the safety cut-off switch for the electrical system bit the dust somehow, and needs to be replaced. I never liked that switch, and thought it cheap. I guess we’ll have to find another. The rear brakes are 99% done, just need to tighten the castle nuts and cotter-pin them. Anthony is about 95% done with the new fuel cell mounting, and it looks great- secure and very professional. That pretty much just leaves the front brakes, and whatever welding/ hole-filling I have to do on the inside. We made a lot of progress this weekend.

As always, pictures are in reverse chonological order.

9 Responses to “Eat Moar Toona!”

  1. matt says:

    Very nice. When’s the next LeMons, again?

    I wore my Tunachuckers shirt to work the other day, under a short sleeved button down. Apparently all that was visible was:


    Which was, of course, misinterpreted.

  2. Pitt says:

    The race is September 12th and 13th. less than 2 weeks away!

    I’ve been rocking the SAPS shirt that I traded you for the Tunachuckers shirt, quite frequently. Very comfortable shirt.

    One of my teammates, Rob, had to be in Korea for a few weeks, and gave a Tunachuckers shirt to one of the Korean fellows he was working with over there who was apparently fascinated with our car and the 24 Hours of LeMons. My mind wants to explode considering the language and cultural barriers we’ve crossed. I can imagine Kim Il Jong seeing that shirt and thinking America is going to drive a car full of rotting fish into North Korea, and thus deciding to send a nuclear weapon our way.

  3. matt says:

    …and that’s why this was the best summer ever.

  4. Pitt says:

    I’m actually having a hard time trying to work this morning, envisioning a small Korean fellow proudly wearing a neon green TUNAChucker shirt as he’s wrenching on a transit car. For some reason that seems really funny to me.

  5. matt says:

    Kill some time. Check out the unintentionally hilarious shirts at

  6. BrianN says:


    I need to dig up my pictures of Korea. I have some pictures of funny signs like a restraunt called “sweet buns” and a place with a sign that said “An Office.” Jin bought some clothes at a place offering “fine feminist fashion”

  7. Pitt says:


    So…Jin dresses like Hillary Clinton now?

  8. matt says:

    Much like Eskimos and snow, feminists have over 300 words for “pantsuit”.

    My favorite translation issue:

Leave a Reply