RCR GT40 Build Questions

Like Howard mine took around 12 years, first 18 months was rebuilding the engine. Probably cheaper and much quicker to buy a crate engine but it was the part of the build I enjoyed the most, also taking time really helps with spreading the cost. When my wife asked how much it was costing, I could say £4k, but forget the "a year".

Looking back, I think it is more about perseverance that skill, bit of a cliche but if I can do it anyone can, albeit with a lot of help advice and encouragement from many.
 
"My first question would be how much time can you put into this. Firstly on a weekly basis and then on a month to month basis. Can you pretty much commit to nearly every weekend at least 8 hours and a couple of hours 3 or 4 days during the week after work in the late afternoons and evenings?

Do you believe you can maintain that pace for at least 2 years?" Howard's quote

That is your best advice right there. It is spot on, perseverance is absolutely the key, there will be "builders fatigue" along the way and unforeseen maddening episodes, such as getting gorilla glue on lower A arms bolts inside the footbox and not realizing it until the nut is completely stuck, having to cut it off.

Another thing Howard mentioned that is very true, be ready to assemble and disassemble almost every component of the build more than a couple of times, Without exaggeration I have removed or repositioned every single part of the suspension at least 3 times. Recently changed more than 70 safety washers and triple that amount in spacer washers of different thicknesses, and had to enlarge a few, which is a frustrating process.

Patience and endurance, I make the goal or working on the car at least a few minutes every day, finish on a strong note, find simple tasks that can be finished, be realistic and remember that every step takes longer and almost always has unforeseen difficulties. Stay flexible and humble. Nothing is super difficult but nothing is super easy and straight forward.

But I think the most important ingredient for success is that you enjoy being in the garage finishing an amazing project every day. If the enjoyment is not there you will burn out quickly , I believe that is why many people never finish. It is the journey that matters.

Best wishes to you and hope you dive in and have lots of fun. And have a very cool car at the end.
 
Another thing, my 15 year old is helping and we do a lot together, but he gets burned out easily and I let him do his school stuff, girlfriend, golf team, etc. and work on the car any time he wants . I wish he was as fired up as I am about the car but he has many other priorities and activities, which I totally understand. So having realistic expectations in working with your son is also important. He has learned a ton along the way, and any time I need help he never turns me down, that is priceless. It will be his someday anyway LOL!!
 

Chris Kouba

Supporter
All of this is excellent feedback, it will definitely be a MASSIVE undertaking but don't be daunted by numbers that Howard is throwing out there. They are true- these projects are a time vacuum, but you don't necessarily need to commit to those quantities of time. I did at the start, but I experienced all sorts of highs and lows going through my build, and sometimes the best thing for me to do was not see it for a couple of months. If you know you can't put that time commitment together up front, don't let that stop you from moving forward. Things will come up during the build. I had an interstate move for work, a house remodel, a 3 month sabbatical, a wedding... All sorts of things come up. Backing down the commitment will drive out the completion date, but if you're not doing this professionally, it's all part of the process of building a car. For a reference, it took me 5 years (I think) to get mine moving and registered. Notice I did not say "finished".

One thing I have seen very helpful if you do decide to jump in, the easiest way to log time is to commit to doing something on the car every day. It can be just a 10 minute job, but do something which puts the car in front of you and you touching something which goes on or into it. If you do that, you'll have no trouble logging the hours. One small thing turns into a couple of them, because hey- you're already in the garage anyway right? Before you realize it, at least an hour has gone by and your wife is wondering where you are.

The old adage of eating the elephant applies here. One spoonful at a time.
 

Randy V

Admin
Lifetime Supporter
Throwing this out there too....
I never put a schedule out there for one of my builds. Why? Because if I was trying to hold myself to a schedule, it would be like having another job. God knows I didn’t need that extra stress.
To me and many others, they journey is as-important as the destination. Relax and enjoy the journey and you’ll have many pleasant memories to look back on.
 

Keith

Lifetime Supporter
The one thing that most new builders overlook is the time spent figuring out what to do and how to do it as well as searching for parts/materials, digging up information etc. I would estimate that I spent 1 to 2 hours doing that type of work for every hour spent building......then, plan on another hour or so every week posting on the Forum.
When I built my RCR 40 I was not married so I could spend 3 or 4 hours every evening plus two twelve hour days on the weekend so mine went pretty fast compared to some other builds. I cannot stress enough the importance of planning your work so that you can do things right the first time and avoiding rework. If you can’t figure it out, just ask someone here; there are good knowledgeable people here willing to help.
Keith
 

Neil

Supporter
Building a car from a kit is much different from building one from scratch. Kit building is mostly planning the sequence of assembly and finding the time to do the work required to complete the job. Any deviation from the standard kit falls into what a scratch builder does during his whole project. Essentially, the kit provider has done 90% of the project for you- all the design, development, research, vendor searches, and parts fabrication. Your finished kit car will be essentially the same as every one else's from that kit manufacturer unless it is "customized". That is where one gets to distinguish his work from that of others. Whether the project is built from a kit or from the ground up, the effort is rewarding. Learning new skills and seeing your project completed is something that most people never experience.

I read in a book somewhere about the guys who sit in a pub with a cigarette in one hand and a beer in the other, complaining about "the high cost of racing".

The most difficult step in a car building project is just getting started!
 

Chris Kouba

Supporter
Essentially, the kit provider has done 90% of the project for you- all the design, development, research, vendor searches, and parts fabrication.
That may be a little generous when referring to RCR. Yeah, the BIG pieces are there (and pretty sexy with CNC stuff too!) but anyone who's built these knows that the devil is in the details. Putting it another way, if mine came with 90% done, I'd say I only did another 85% more.....
 
90% applies only to suspension (still requires a lot of fine tuning and replacing all safety washers) and frame, the rest is more like 20%. You are on your own for the other 80% . In my experience anyway.
 

Randy V

Admin
Lifetime Supporter
I’m not sure there are very many of these cars you can truly call a “KIT”. More like a compilation of parts that you figure out how to build a car out of.
Is there a true Kit where the manufacturer takes you every step of the way - IE Insert Tab-A into Slot-B, then fit that assembly to Assembly-X from Bag-123?
—-
Wuold be interesting to know. Meanwhile, these cars are component packages which require a degree of mechanical and fabrication knowledge to bring them all together..
 

Neil

Supporter
What you say is true, Randy. No slight intended against a car that is assembled from a kit; it still takes skill, time, and dedication. The finished product inevitably reflects the skill and imagination of the builder.
 

Howard Jones

Supporter
I think the GT40 kits are a bit more comprehensive than the SLC or other low volume builds like 917s. The reason is the power train in a GT40 is pretty much standard and many use a non EFI carb. The SLC, and others, can be a blank slate and that's the appeal. This makes it more difficult for the manufacture to anticipate the parts list.

My guess is the RCR GT40 can be put together with nearly all the parts coming from RCR with exception of the engine and gearbox. If you use an SBF 302 based Winsor/ Holley 4bb and a Porsche G50 for example it should go pretty straight forward. An SLC can be pretty close with a crate LS and the recommended transaxle from RCR. It will be the additional electronics and modern interior upgrades that many do that stray from the "standard build" path. But then, that the fun for some of us,

In reality, none of these kits are a simple assembly process. All require the builder to figure out what his build standard is. Build standard being a VERY individual thing.
 
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