11:45 PM, Thursday, March 16th, 2017:
3 years ago I used this title when I was just seeing a prop for the first time. Now I use it because it is indeed a machine. This is both the quickest and longest 2 1/2 months of my life. It's stunning we're even here, yet we labored over every goddamn second. Words can't do this justice, ya gotta watch:
So, let me reiterate - it's not the speed that concerned me about the car, I've jumped out of a plane... it was the lack of a suspension, a lack of alignment, and that fact that we're fish-tailing at excessive speeds WITH MY MORTGAGE. I can't express how little I will ever push this car once we achieve the record. I have to understand that after the amount of work Kenny has put into this, I have to let him enjoy it a bit... but I can't fucking stand it. I don't even want to DYNO it. THAT is too hard on the car to me. So yeah, driving it any more than technically necessary makes me anxious...
...THAT being said: wow. The torque, sweet jesus the torque. I'm not sure I ever fully understood what that word meant. The fact that the power is available at every speed is what just messes with your head. It doesn't matter what gear you're in, you move your foot an inch and it's like first gear. I'm shaking my head as I'm typing this. It's simply the power + what is truly a relatively light car. 2800lbs ain't much. Not when paired with 600hp. That horsepower is usually relegated to 3800, not 2800. What that means is YOU MOVE. Top speed doesn't even enter your mind, because the first 60 mph is so insane. Stunning.
The sound, however muffled, is a little ludicrous. It took less than 5 minutes before I turned to Kenny and said: "We're not driving this across the country." We actually talked about it just for the fun of it all. We would have a place to stay for free across the entire country thanks to the friends I've made THROUGH the time machine... but the idea of not being able to speak to him for 4 days? Dude, that's some form of torture. It's really, really loud. Kenny builds race cars so he thinks it's fine... but I shit you not: it's painfully loud. I'm embarassed to drive this in my neighborhood for fear of pissing people off. We have 2 mufflers and 2 catalytic converters to boot. So it just is what it is. Speaking of that...
The clutch is comically hard. It feels like a leg press you're happy you did ONCE. The idea that this is something you will be pressing for each gear seems impossible. I actually thought it was that stiff because the car was off. I haven't the slightest idea how we pull the parade off tomorrow and the weather is iffy at best. I can't imagine getting this far and then skipping the parade, but the clutch - dear JESUS the clutch. It isn't made for a parade. No manual is, but this? Whew. We'll see.
Obviously more as we progress through the trip but I had to get my feelings about that first drive. We now start the testing and break-in phase (none of the gauges work, ugh) WHILE I'm doing my events this weekend, but the car, is, running. Wow.