How can you tell its December?? GN's are off the road.. NO-- got 24" of snow last night ( 12/2 )--- !! I was thinking about dropping my GN motor in the snowmobile.. Now there would be a quick 60' !! Hope this letter finds all of you and your families doing fine and enjoying the holidays. Our meeting of 11/16 went well- we had 18 attending. John O- brought 3 model GN's to raffle off and Steve B brought a video which introduced the GNX- that was pretty cool. Phil T brought a brake by-pass and throttle stop assy he designed and built. Both devices work- I've seen Phil's car with these installed and they definitely improve the braking ability and launch boost at the line. At our next meeting- Phil will again bring these to show and sell at a reduced club member price. I am hoping Paul P, Paul C, Ron T and Daryl L will attend our next meeting. We are hopeful these four will display their cars at the upcoming indoor car shows in March. We need to discuss the details--- While Im at it- does anyone have any information on an application for the show at the Buffalo Convention Center? Next Meeting- Jan 18 - Sat- 6 pm at the Athens Restaurant in Cheektowaga . You will order off the menu. I will bring a scaled GN and a Club Hat to raffle off. Plus- your 2003 Dues ($10.) will be due. We need to start thinking about 2003 events and family outing-- express your thoughts at the meeting!! This months commentary is from club member Phil Toenniessen. enjoy the thread! See ya at the meeting- bring a friend!! Have a Merry Christmas- Larry
Article by Club Member Phil Toenniessen This is just my third year of being a Buick enthusiast (many of you have known about the excitement of Buicks much longer), but I have thoroughly enjoyed my cars. The first was a black ?87 Turbo T that had 91,000 miles and needed paint. When I bought it my family was a little skeptical, but I believe it turned out to be the perfect car for me. I spent most of the first year working on the car. Self-teaching oneself takes time, but with the help of the G.S.C.A., W.N.Y.T.B.C. and Mark Burnam, I enjoyed the learning process and experience. I never registered that car, only raced it, because that was where my interest was. In the 60?s I campaigned a C stock Corvette at both Niagara and Lancaster. I guess I just dated myself since many of you probably don?t remember Niagara Raceway Park in Niagara Falls. Mark recently told me that some guys came into his shop and were telling him about the ?old guy? that was racing a GN (in the 11?s) at Leicester with bullet holes in the back. Well that old guy was me. I?m 59, not that old really, but probably the oldest in the club. I?m retired, very happily married to my fantastic wife Jan for 37 years, have three married children and six grandchildren. Spend my winters in Florida, that?s part of the reason it took me so long to do my Turbo T. During the summer, Jan and I own and operate the Lake Ontario Motel in Newfane. Okay, back to the racing. On Aug. 4, 2000, I made my first trip to Leicester. A 12.98 at 109.18 miles per hour with a .879 reaction time. Wow, what a rush, but was this thing hard to drive. Build boost, watch the boost gauge, get staged, watch the starting tree. I realized quickly that I needed advice and help. Enter Mark Burnam, Larry Gable, Jerry and Ann Thompson, and Buster and Karen Covert. They not only offered advice on how to race a turbo car, but provided moral support. By Oct. 29, 2000 I have made my 36th trip down the ¼ mile a 12.19 at 113.27 miles per hour. With the W..N.Y.T.B.C. members advice things were coming together, but reaction times were very inconsistent. During the off season I contemplated a solution to my problem. After several unsuccessful attempts I came up with the current design of the ?Boost Right Easy Stage?. On July 7, 2001 I made my first trip to Leicester with my new invention on the car. After some testing and tuning things started coming together consistency. On Aug. 11, 2001 I made four runs at Leicester 12.563 to 12.624 ET 108.95 to 110.61 M.P.H., .598 to.626 reaction times. The consistency I was looking for, but now I have to figure out how to cut a better light. Another story maybe. The current version of the ?Boost Right Easy Stage? is different than the 2001 version due to problems reproducing the parts, but those problems resulted in a simpler, cheaper and much better unit. The ?Boost Right Easy Stage? is a brake activated throttle stop. It?s adjustable and allows you to preset how much gas you can give the car on the starting line. The easiest way I know to explain this is to tell how I use it. I can somewhat preset the stop right in my drive, that saves track time. When at the track, after my burn out, I stage one pre-stage light, apply brakes, then I depress the gas pedal enough to start building some boost. You can watch your boost gage now. I ease off on the brake pedal to set the second prestage light. When I see that light come on I jam the brakes on hard and push the gas pedal down hard but because of the stop, it can only go so far. Consistency! When the third amber light flashes, release the brake pedal (throttle stop automatically releases). Push gas to floor. Now you can make adjustment to stop to get starting line boost where you want it. You can watch your boost gauge to do this if you want, but try to leave in the time you would in a race situation. The longer you sit on the starting line the more boost you will build. You have to keep setting the stop up until you attain maximum desired boost in a 2 to 3 second race situation. In October of 2001, I traded my ?87 Turbo T and cash for an ?87 GN with 34,000 miles, good original paint and many engine and chassis modifications. This past July I licensed the car and found a new use, cruise nights and car shows. We also own an ?88 Ford Thunderbird Turbo Coupe with 28,000 miles, so it was fun for Jan and I to take both cars. I didn't race my GN until late in October, but did manage some high elevens. As with my Turbo T, I have some learning to do. The car should be capable of running low 11?s or maybe high 10?s. Plans for next year include more racing, testing and tuning, trips to Norwalk in May and the GS Nationals at Bowling Green promotion of the ?Boost Right I?ll see you all in April, God willing.