After getting back from the never lift drift day to find this all over the back of my car......
I knew something was abit, erm, broken.
So up she goes and I'm greeted with this nice big hole in my diff casing!
The crown wheel was badly scoured to, but as it was just around the edge its fine for now.
The worst part was cleaning the diff out to find this nice little hand full!
So with the diff cleaned out and the damaged double checked I had to fix it fast. I'd been invited to the Redline magazine performance test day in two days time. I managed to find another gearbox and diff combo, as they are one unit on the Volvo 340/360 range, but I didn't have time to collect and fit it.
That left only one option. Chemical metal. It wasn't an ideal fix but it held the oil and when the diff was rebuilt it span fine with no bearing damage and would last the Redline magazine day and give me enough time to collect the new gearbox and diff.
So with the car back in one piece I was ready for for an early start and a day at Santa Pod driving the handing course and running the strip.
I got a call from my friend Mike last week to say he had arranged a new and regular drift practice day to be run through his new website, Never Lift. These days are set up to be fun for anyone, in any kind of car, to come along and drift. No bullshit, no pressure, just plenty of seat time, a cheap price, good people and a good time. The track is in Birmingham, at the stock car stadium in the Birmingham Wheels complex. This track is a place a lot of people won't drift because of the high wall and no run off but its wide enough for anyone one to come and have fun without to much fear of crashing. The perfect day for my first drift day of the year!
So early the next morning i swung by to pick up a new face in Dtown but an old hand in the drift scene, Oscar. Oscar has just started the same motorsport course I'm just finishing in Derby and also has few super swedes of his own.
Keep an eye out for a full feature on both his 16v powered sleeper and his 200bhp turbo drift 360 soon.
When we arrive the day is already up and running, with a slammed E36 setting the bar high from the off.
After getting into the inner track, I was met by Matt, who's in charge of the track, and told to make myself at home. So before sorting the car, I had a walk around to check out the other cars.
These two super slammed E36's have to be the lowest road cars in the UK. Both converted to 2.5l, these cars look tatty but get driven hard everyday.
This E36 compact was joined by the drivers wife's daily because it was his first track day and he wanted a way of getting home in case he hit the wall.
The last two cars were this E36 325 and a Vauxhall Carlton, with its 3 ltr straight six engine.
After passing the basic skills figure of 8 test, which everyone does to prove they are safe to head out on track without an instructor, I saddled up ready for my first few laps.
This track is all about line in order to link to two corners, taking a nice wide line as far down the straight as possible to manji into the next corner with no need to straighten up.
In the Volvo, you cant ever lift because it'll bog down and lose angle. So with the throttle pinned and no hand break, momentum is key. Momentum and big balls.
After this shot was taken i went into the next corner a bit fast and clipped the curbs on the inside and bent a wheel. Not much damage and I kinda like the way you can see the blue and white curb paint around the rim.
In the afternoon, the track was run in reverse and mike raised the bar by saying we should have a wall scraping comp. I was game so decided to try and clip it on the was in and out.
I managed to get within a few inches but never managed to touched the wall. Having to manji in, facing the wall the wrong way until the last minute was some of the most exciting drifting I've ever done!
Next time the wall is mine!!
Mike did manage to tag the wall.
Celebrating by posing for the crowd.
We wear wall scrape dents like medals.
Overall this was one of my most fun drift days, and at only £20 it was a bargain! Hopefully these days will be regular and more and more people will come along. I'll keep the blog up to date with Never Lift website progress.
After dropping Oscar off and parking the car up, I noticed something stinky on the back of the car.
Time for a refresh. I thought the previous identity design wasn't quite capturing the feel of Sweet Oblivion. As some of you may or may not know, by day well.. by most of the night too, I'm a (final year) graphic design student. The previous logo was a mash up of various fonts. The new logo is my own completely bespoke design. The idea behind the design is to capture the very essence of some of the silly things we all like to do with cars. The swooping elements of the letter forms echo the shapes of a well executed driving line just clipping the apex of a corner, or the perfect drift a hairs breath from the track wall. I have always had massive love and respect for Japanese tuning styles. It has certainly been a constant inspiration for myself and friends. So I also wanted to capture the feel of old school Japanese street team stickers, not just in the style but, the did they mean that to sound kinda rude? wording too. Oh, and the green is now a minty fresh one too.
Limited run, vinyl stickers are now available from The NEW Sweet Shop.
And I have some T Shirt designs on the way too :)