Last week was a very busy one as usual here at the Heasman Steering workshop. We had quite a few impressive and unique vehicles roll in through our doors.
This stunning GTR came in to us his own coil-overs in the boot. Not all cars we see come through the doors get Bilsteins put in, despite popular belief. This customer had his own plans for the car but just wanted us to professionally install and setup the new coil-over system into his GTR for a much more track orientated setup.
So that’s exactly what we did. After installing the coil-overs in, we set the heights, camber, toe, and castor. Chris, our specialist technician took it for a quick test drive, making sure nothing scrubbed or rubbed in the guard area, then it was off to the corner weight machine to make sure the balance of the vehicle was 100%. On AWD vehicles such as the GTR, corner weight is absolutely crucial! On a race track which has fast speed direction changing corners, or chicanes, the balance of the vehicle is the most important factor. If your AWD vehicle feels very unsteady in directional changes the chances are not all four corners are weighted equally. We suggest you make a quick pit stop at our workshop and see what we can do.
It’s no secret, we do get a lot of track orientated vehicles come through the doors. This is another example of that. A clean and subtle Nissan S15, a daily driver, but come weekend time, a track monster. This S15 had come in after a fresh set of wheels and tyres were installed. We conducted our wheel alignment and heights setup, and again after a quick test drive by Chris it was off to the corner weighting machine to be balanced.
“Can you set up my fitment?” Is a question we get asked almost daily. We see some crazy cars come in with sometimes even crazier wheels for suspension setup. Take this Lexus IS350 for example. The customer has opted for something pretty unique but aggressive wheels, a set of R34 GTR wheels. A perfect PCD fitment, but it took some adjusting for them to sit right and not scrub the guards on this daily driven IS.
Here we have the perfect example of a WOW moment when a car rolls in. This beautiful Porsche 993 GT2 came in to get an alignment. Of course being a classic that it is, it was over to Doug Heasman’s aligning station. The Servex Wheel Aligner machine is for the classic built cars where they may only have one tie-rod, or only one adjustment side, whereas the modern cars have adjustments available on all four corners and therefor can be aligned on the modern TRON aligner. Even with it’s superior technology for the day, this GT2 needed that hand touch, and no one else is more qualified on the Servex aligner than Doug!
Double trouble! These two monster muscle cars have been in the shop for some TLC.
The Firebird 400 is as original as they come, right down to the OEM Tacho gauge on the bonnet. Pristine as it is, after all these years or driving, the body of the car has started to sway around a bit and behave like somewhat of a boat. Off it went to Doug’s Servex Aligner, only small changes were made to the heights, toe, and castor settings, but they made all the difference to the drivability of this old girl. No need to re build the shocks just yet, after what you could call a slight tightening, this old bird is good for a few more years yet.
As for the charger, This bad boy was a little bit fresher than the old Firebird, it only needed a freshen up on the wheel alignment. Being such amazing highway cruisers, there’s nothing more annoying than a car that pulls to one side!
Last but certainly not least, our day out at Sydney Motorsport Park with nothing but Ferrari’s! We went along with a few of our customer’s in support of their vehicles and good times. The California we modyfied was seeing its debut on track after all the work was completed, and this was very important for us. We wanted to make sure that there was absolutely zero negative impact on any part of the car.
And of course our long time customers Astra Limousines brought out there Ferrari F430 Challenge Cup Car for it’s inaugural run on track as an Astra Motorsports car. We had the race car in the workshop over the weekend just to double check everything was on tight, balanced, and driving true. Needless to say, even amongst all the high end Ferrari’s on the day, the Challenge race car was a crowd puller! With it’s race tuned gear changes, supported by its straight through race exhaust it was screaming and popping all day.
The Cup Car didn’t miss a session all day, and just like the California, we had our Pro Driver Nathan Antunes jump in and take them for a proper test on track! The feedback from Nathan was nothing but positive on both cars! The California out-performed it’s stock, factory counterpart. The lower, and stiffer springs aided in a much more stable chassis, while the slightly wider wheels provided a much more planted car due to it’s slight extra track width.
As for the Cup Car, well as we mentioned earlier it didn’t miss a beat all day. It was blessed with a fresh set of Michelin Slicks right from the get go, so we left the scrubbing in to Pro Driver Antunes. Slicks when fresh can be a recipe for disaster if you don’t know what to expect. But after a few laps of scrubbing the tyres in, it was over to Alf Merlino, the head of Astra Motorsports for his much anticipated drive of the car. The smile couldn’t be wiped off his face all day.
Much more on this epic day out, many more photos to come. We’ll be running a full feature on that soon, for now here’s a little of what to expect.
Photography by SELECTNINE