My 944 has a problem: when the gas tank starts to empty, the back end gets light. I've ruined its perfect 50-50 weight balance by taking off the heavy glass hatch. I don't have any fancy-schmancy metal ballast just lying around, however, I could probably source quite a few Truck Nutz.
Many people are able to corner balance their race cars using suspension. However, this is a LeMons car, and per Judge Phil, anything I'd do to improve it would bump it up a class. I don't want to be in the top, fastest Class A. This isn't a Class A Porsche. It looks as though I'm stuck using my floppy, worn-out, non-adjustable suspension until I finally eat it and buy another Type 3 Fastback for ultimate aircooled domination. I could, however, manually adjust the actual distribution of weight among the four wheels using some form of ballast.
So, could strategically placed Truck Nutz be the answer?
My big glass rear hatch weighed 84 lbs, and now it's not helping keep my car's rump weighed down. Sure, I could put it back down and force the back end of the car (which sprung right up to monster truck height without the hatch on) to squat down where it belongs, but then I'd lose the excellent airflow through the cabin for the drivers. Our car never feels anywhere near as hot and stuffy as the 944s with a hatch do. Rather, it feels as if we're running a convertible with the benefits of a real roof above us providing glorious, wonderful shade. Driver cooling is vital on an endurance car, so reinstalling the hatch is a no-go.
According to BullsBalls, Truck Nutz are 2.33 lbs each. If I added roughly thirty-six Truck Nutz dangling off my 944's back end, it would be the exact weight of the hatch, plus it would keep the car's rear planted and lower my center of gravity.
I could tinker with the amount of Nutz needed, too. The previous owner of my first 944 kept the rear end from coming around with a 45-pound weight bolted into the spare tire well. With the Truck Nutz's weight further from the axle in the rear, I could probably get away with installing fewer Nutz. Not only would I have a lower center of gravity with all the Nutz installed, but I could have less weight than stock after all! Ha HA!
This should work, right? Er, um, I don't know.
The first rule of Truck Nutz is that they must dangle. They must wobble to and fro, as your Nutz hang low. Unfortunately, the sheer number of Truck Nutz needed to replace the weight of a hatch in any way, shape or form means that there would be a lot of flopping, swinging weight on the back of my car.
All of those Truck Nutz swinging to the outside of a turn when the car is loaded up on its outside wheels seems like a surefire recipe for surprise oversteer.
Pro: Now that's more like a real Porsche!
Con: Spinning leads to black flags. Black flags lead to embarrassing penalties. Embarrassing penalties lead to packing up your trailer early. Nope.
That's not even getting into the thought of all this flopping weight in quick transitions. Farewell, any future attempts to autocross the Porschelump. Quick slaloms would just make my row of Truck Nutz whack into each other, which I'm sure would damage the carbon fiber print. (Of course I'd have to get the CarbonNutz—because race car.)
So, I could simply alleviate this problem by mounting the Truck Nutz in a stationary fashion to my rear bumper, but then they're not really Truck Nutz, are they? They're just a row of sad, motionless composite ballsacks sitting in place.
I guess that's a nope.
Photo credits: BullsBalls (CarbonNutz), Shawn Rodgers (plotting)