All Ford Day "Best Presented Race Car"April 9th, 2017
The All Ford day at Auckland was a real eye opener. There were so many cars of interest and people there. It was so good meeting many of my clients that I had only spoken to over the phone or by email. The show incorporated several Ford clubs; I had been invited by the RS owners club of which I am a member. After a week of cyclone David coursing major flooding in the north we were presented with a hot dry Sunday for the display. The clubs and organisers had done a great job with plenty of food stalls and kids play activities. Prize giving was unbelievable with some incredible prizes from the sponsors. These included water blasters, tools, tool boxes, gift vouches and apparel. Prizes were awarded from peoples choice and judges choices. It was a pleasure to receive "best presented race car" award from the judges.
A great day and a very big thank you to all involved and the generous sponsors.
Sierra Cosworth 3 door Ground up BuildOctober 1st, 2015
We knew it would take all our engineering skill to build this vehicle. Starting with a very average vehicle we stripped every item out until it was a bare shell. Them time for a media blasting to give us bare metal to work with where required. We then designed and fabricated mounts for pedal box, front and rear suspension, battery, drop tank, seat and of course a roll cage.
Next it was of to the paint shop, this transformed the look of the vehicle, clean and sharp.
Now the assembly process can start. Most of the mechanicals came from our tried and true Sierra Sapphire race car. The three door and Sapphire carry the same floor pan dimensions! Many items of course were remade or modified to suit.
The assembly process seems to be the most rewarding as you can see the changes bringing it closer to a completed vehicle. Every item that had come of the car to be reused was repaired, cleaned, polished or painted. This to takes an enormous amount of time, but the reward is worth the effort.
Completion was getting very close. We had fabricated so many items such as dash, fuel cell, door cards, even polycarbonate side and door windows. The car was completely rewired with a loom made to suit by lodge Auto Centre.
Completed but naked! Time for sign writing.
To say I am proud of the work standard and commitment my staff put into this project would be an under statement. Lodge Auto Centre will use this car on the circuit and desplay it at various events.
Improving PerfectionNovember 6th, 2013
The Farrari 430 Scuderia.
To most people this is a car you could only ever dream of owning, but to the odd few people this is a realitly. One of the worlds top supercars the Ferrari 430 Scuderia is as close to perfection a we think you could ever get, but here at Lodge Auto Centre we think there is always a bit of room for improvment.
When a long time customer of ours intrusted us with his 430 Scuderia and wanted us to fit an aftermarket exhaust system we were only to happy to take such a job on! This car is awesome to start with and the sound it makes through its factory exhaust already makes you stand up and listen, I mean its a V8 Ferrari engine that revs to 9000+ rpm, it would make any petrol head go week at the knees, it was hard to think there was any need to replace what already seemed perfect, but hey we were not going to say no.
We set too and removed the rear aerodynamic defuser fron the underneath of the engine bay and gained access to the exhaust system. After removing the factory exhaust (which was not overly complicated to remove) we unpacted a pollished stainless steel peice of art that was the new exhaust system. I already had a smile from ear to ear just working on such a car but when I saw the new exhast I was in car heaven.
Fitting the exhaust into the carbon fibre linned engine bay was a pleasure and all we wanted to do was hear this new system at work , so as soon as we were happy that everything was correct we fired up the supercar and stood back and listened. It was a sound that I had only heard before at the Melborne F1 grand prix it screamed!!! Not only did it improve the exhaust tone but increased the engine performance also, hard to believe but yes both horsepower and torque were segnificantly up on standard.
A pic of the engine bay after the new exhaust was fitted, carbon fibre everywhere!!!!
We are now a Garrett Authorized sales and sevice center !!!!August 8th, 2012
One of the worlds largest turbocharger companies, Garrett by Honeywell, has recognised Lodge Auto Centre as one of New Zealand's industry leaders in the turbocharger market.
Only a very select number of Turbocharger shops around the world are given the authority by Garrett to be a "Garrett by Honeywell Authorized sales and service center" and we are very proud to be one of them.
Lodge Auto Centre has been in the Turbocharger industry for some 35 years now, and with our vast range of knowledge and some of the most advanced equipment on the market we are now one of New Zealand's leaders and most trusted turbocharger workshops.
We are the only workshop in New Zealand with a Heines TC-3 vibration sorting rig, this guarantees the same high level of balancing after reconditioning, as when the turbocharger was first assembled by the factory.
The Turbocharger is a exciting and growing industry, with this new association to Garrett we look forward to continuing on working with existing and new generations of turbochargers which Garrett are continually developing.
For ALL your turbocharger needs from cars, trucks, tractors, motorsport, industrial and marine applications, from rebuilds to brand new units We are the experts!!! Give us a call.
Cosworth engine rebuilt from the ashesMarch 19th, 2012
This was no ordinary rebuild that we were faced with. The 1990 4WD Sierra Cosworth was delivered to Lodge Auto Centre on the back of a tow truck due to being overheated. An overheated engine is never a good thing but when we tried to remove the spark plug leads and they had been melted into the cylinder head, we knew that this engine had been hot!
We set to and began to remove the cylinder head and assess the damage done to the engine, on disassembling the engine we knew that this engine would require a complete bottom-up rebuild.
As we have a vast range of YB Cosworth engine parts in stock we were able to start the rebuild on this engine immediately. It was stripped to the very last nut and bolt and then we had to determine what was going to be recoverable and what was going for a trip to the bin. Anything that was part of the cooling system was no longer usable, so all the sensors had to be replaced along with the radiator, water pump and coolant header tank. The engine block was then over sized and another set of pistons and new rings were fitted, with new bearings fitted to the crank and a reconditioned oil pump, the block was starting to take shape. The cylinder head was the next piece of the puzzle. As this is made from aluminium it can be damaged by the heat more so than the cast iron block, we set to and strip the head. After hardness testing the head to find out if it was still going to be usable we set to on rebuilding it with new valve guides and freshly cut valves and seats and all new seals it was now ready to bolt back onto the block. New ARP head studs were fitted into the block before the head was torqued down onto the group A head gasket. The cams were then timed up and a new cambelt and Cosworth tensioner were then fitted.
The next step was to rebuild the turbocharger as this is also water cooled. The damage to the internals of the turbocharger were as to be expected, they went straight to the bin! After replacing all the seals and bearings we then assembled the turbocharger and balanced it on our in-house VSR (Vibration Sorting Rig) balancer. New genuine exhaust manifold gaskets where then fitted to the cylinder head and the turbocharger was the bolted on with all new studs and specialist heat locking nuts. The engine was now ready to be fitted back into the car.
Once a new alloy radiator and coolant header tank were fitted, the engine went into place. New engine oil was poured into the engine, all the wiring was plugged back in all the hoses done up, coolant was now in the engine, it was time to turn the key for the first time since this engine had literally been in a melt down. It fired up like clockwork not a glitch at all! As I type this the car is in the middle of its running in process and will be ready to deliver back to the customer in a few more hundred k's.