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 Post subject: Day Trippin' in the G8
PostPosted: Tue Oct 13, 2020 6:36 pm 
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We decided to burn our COVID masks for the day and took a day trip to the Bonneville Salt Flats. It’s only a couple hours from home, so we gassed up the G8 and took off.

Our first stop was just west of Salt Lake City, at a place called Saltair. I’ll let you look up the history of Saltair on the interweb, but we got out and walked around the place thinking this was what was left of the turn of the century (1800-1900) resort. Turns out this is “Saltair III”, and the original Saltair resort was located about a mile west of this one (and is now a State park). The structure is no longer there, however. We’d already got back on the road before we discovered this. While it was an interesting structure, that was disappointing news.
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There’s just not a lot to see or report on between SLC and Wendover, UT, until you come upon the Tree of Utah. Since I was driving I didn’t get a picture of the tree, but there happens to be a few on the ‘net so I stole one so it looks like I snapped a pic (don’t tell anyone).
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About a mile or so east of the exit for the Salt Flats Raceway, there’s a Bonneville Salt Flats rest area on I-80.
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We stopped to take care of a little business and read the marker. If you don’t want or have time to go to the actual track, this is a good place to stop and check out the salt. Those people aren’t ice fishing.
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About 10-15 minutes from the rest stop, we got to the actual entrance to the salt flats. And that little BLM sign is all the glory there is.
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This is where the pavement ends and the salt begins.
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On the salt.
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Made the first run in sport mode and with traction control disabled. That turned out to be a little sketchy as the back end drifted out several times. You can see me compensating with steering input in the video. I had to back off a couple times and getting a little drift at around 99 mph, even though very slight, is almost enough to put a potato in your pants.
https://i.imgur.com/EjG2nGq.mp4
Sorry about the poor focus near the end of the clip, my attention was directed elsewhere. Also, anyone have a clue how to get the sound unmuted? It's a little more interesting to watch when you can hear the engine whine and the transmission shift.

The factory stock (other than an axleback muffler) G8 GXP topped out at 149 mph. It felt like it had more to give, but it seems to be governed at 149.

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Subsequent runs were accomplished in sport mode with the stability system active. “Stability System Assistance” displayed on the DIC up until around 70 mph. It felt much more stable.
https://i.imgur.com/5hY4T5v.mp4

The Bonneville Salt Flats is not an awesome place to play hide-n-seek.

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The salt itself is rather interesting. It acts like it melts or softens as you drive on it and sprays on the wheel wells much like snow does. Then it hardens. Since I didn’t want to leave the salt under the car, we crafted this undercarriage washer using PVC pipe and 90* sprinkler heads. Cost a little less than $30 and worked like a champ.

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 13, 2020 9:22 pm 
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I like that undercarriage washer.

So, do you just pull in, find your own lane, and then make a run? Or do you have to pay, they direct you to somewhere, you get in line, etc?

I wonder if on street tires, if there is some level or resistance in the salt that kept you restricted a little.

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Retired Bonneville Owner and former GM Tech:
2004 Pontiac Bonneville GXP: Black/Ebony *SOLD*

Summer Toys: Combined 827 RWHP / 877lb/ft RWTQ
2004 Pontiac GTO: Impulse Blue Metallic/Black/M6: lots 'o mods, 415 RWHP / 405lb/ft RWTQ!
2006 Cadillac STS-V: Light Platinum Metallic/Light Gray/A6 - Spectre CAI, Magnaflow exhaust, Speed Inc. tune, 412 RWHP / 472lb/ft RWTQ

Daily Drivers:
2015 Chrysler Town & Country Limited Platinum: Mommy's NEW RGC
2007 Chrysler Town & Country Limited: Daddy's beater affectionately called the Rolling Garbage Can or "RGC" for short
2009 Pontiac G8 GT: L76, Sport Red Metallic
2009 Chevrolet Impala SS: LS4 V8, Victory Red
2003 Chevrolet Suburban 2500: Doeskin Tan - new plow truck
1999 Chevrolet Suburban: Sunset Gold Metallic - Daddy's winter beater and plow truck


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 14, 2020 2:00 am 
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CMNTMXR57 wrote:
I like that undercarriage washer.


This.

Apparently Saltair 3 was an old AF hanger. Not a bad repurpose.

That's pretty cool you ran on the flats in your car.

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 14, 2020 10:21 am 
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CMNTMXR57 wrote:
So, do you just pull in, find your own lane, and then make a run? Or do you have to pay, they direct you to somewhere, you get in line, etc?

I wonder if on street tires, if there is some level or resistance in the salt that kept you restricted a little.

You'd think, being a BLM area, there would be some kind of fees and control. But no, you just drive right on out there and it's free. While it may be different on a Saturday, Friday when I went there was nobody out there. The area is so expansive and open and flat you can drive wherever you want. You can see someone else coming for miles. Literally. You see in the pictures I found the blue line used on the track. There's nobody out there telling you what to do or where to go. You might think this is a recipe for chaos, but imagine being on Lake Michigan in your boat - it's kinda like that - plenty of room to operate. You'd think there'd be tons of people out there on the salt, but there isn't. I think most people go there and look, lick, and drive on the salt for about 5 minutes, then leave. Other than that, there's not much to do out there. I know it's hard to imagine there's not a lot of people out there roasting their cars. You just have to experience it to understand. I could see other people parked on the salt, but I was the only one on the proper track. And it's 10 miles long, so you can drive until you find a clear spot if there's someone else on the track.

I'm sure sticky street tires have an impact on the top speed as does temperature, air density, altitude, surface condition (it was rougher than I thought it would be), etc. But it's pretty cool just to drive out there and see what she'll do. :) If you smoke your motor though, getting a tow truck from Wendover is just the beginning of your expenses. On the bright side, cell service on the salt flats is stellar.


95naSTA wrote:
Apparently Saltair 3 was an old AF hanger. Not a bad repurpose.
Apparently so. You wouldn't know it to look at it. According to what I read you can see the pilings for the original resort if you go down the road to the State park. I knew the park was there, just had no idea it was the old location of Saltair. Had I known that I would have gone and paid the fee to look around. Maybe next time. I believe some of the pavilions from the original structure were moved to Lagoon (amusement park north of SLC - the Beach Boys mention it in the song "Salt Lake City") a long, long time ago and still exist there today.

On V2 of the undercarriage washer, I think I'd use a 10' piece of pipe instead of a 5 footer. Those sprinklers put out some water and you wouldn't get as wet with a 10' stick. Also I'd probably put some inline skate wheels on the ends to make it roll easier on the cement. Of course those mods add cost, time, and complexity to the cheap, quick, effective simplicity of the original design.

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 14, 2020 3:53 pm 
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Definitely cool just being able to pull in and go.

One thought I had, now keep in mind, I wasn't able to watch it with sound, so I can't hear how things were going. But one thing I have found with my 6L80E in the Caddy (I haven't done a top speed run in the G8 yet), is that once it shifts in to 6th, it's the equivalent of chucking an anchor out.

On a trip to mexico with the car, I ran another heads and cammed, manual GTO. We were door to door well up near those speeds. Then mine shifted to 6th, and I watched him pull.

Now it may just be that in the V, when it shifts to 6th, it drops the RPM's so much that I loose boost (something obviously not applicable to you), but seriously, it felt like a parachute came out.

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Retired Bonneville Owner and former GM Tech:
2004 Pontiac Bonneville GXP: Black/Ebony *SOLD*

Summer Toys: Combined 827 RWHP / 877lb/ft RWTQ
2004 Pontiac GTO: Impulse Blue Metallic/Black/M6: lots 'o mods, 415 RWHP / 405lb/ft RWTQ!
2006 Cadillac STS-V: Light Platinum Metallic/Light Gray/A6 - Spectre CAI, Magnaflow exhaust, Speed Inc. tune, 412 RWHP / 472lb/ft RWTQ

Daily Drivers:
2015 Chrysler Town & Country Limited Platinum: Mommy's NEW RGC
2007 Chrysler Town & Country Limited: Daddy's beater affectionately called the Rolling Garbage Can or "RGC" for short
2009 Pontiac G8 GT: L76, Sport Red Metallic
2009 Chevrolet Impala SS: LS4 V8, Victory Red
2003 Chevrolet Suburban 2500: Doeskin Tan - new plow truck
1999 Chevrolet Suburban: Sunset Gold Metallic - Daddy's winter beater and plow truck


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 15, 2020 1:40 am 
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Sirius wrote:
On V2 of the undercarriage washer, I think I'd use a 10' piece of pipe instead of a 5 footer. Those sprinklers put out some water and you wouldn't get as wet with a 10' stick. Also I'd probably put some inline skate wheels on the ends to make it roll easier on the cement. Of course those mods add cost, time, and complexity to the cheap, quick, effective simplicity of the original design.


Some delrin pads/feet might slide easier too.

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 15, 2020 9:34 am 
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I wish I knew what I was doing wrong that disables the sound track in the videos. :roll:

You can't see due to my lousy cinematographic skills but, yeah, my car did not shift out of 5th. I'm guessing we have the same transmission and if yours won't pull 6th gear, mine certainly won't. 6th was obviously too tall for my engine at those speeds.

Good suggestion on Delrin pads for the undercarriage washer, Mike. It slides ok as is, but in the interest of improvement wheels or pads might be a good one. Although as little as it would be used the PVC would likely last indefinitely.

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 15, 2020 10:42 am 
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Yes, we both have the 6L80E.

I just wasn't able to listen to it here at work. I don't know if the audio worked or not. :)

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Retired Bonneville Owner and former GM Tech:
2004 Pontiac Bonneville GXP: Black/Ebony *SOLD*

Summer Toys: Combined 827 RWHP / 877lb/ft RWTQ
2004 Pontiac GTO: Impulse Blue Metallic/Black/M6: lots 'o mods, 415 RWHP / 405lb/ft RWTQ!
2006 Cadillac STS-V: Light Platinum Metallic/Light Gray/A6 - Spectre CAI, Magnaflow exhaust, Speed Inc. tune, 412 RWHP / 472lb/ft RWTQ

Daily Drivers:
2015 Chrysler Town & Country Limited Platinum: Mommy's NEW RGC
2007 Chrysler Town & Country Limited: Daddy's beater affectionately called the Rolling Garbage Can or "RGC" for short
2009 Pontiac G8 GT: L76, Sport Red Metallic
2009 Chevrolet Impala SS: LS4 V8, Victory Red
2003 Chevrolet Suburban 2500: Doeskin Tan - new plow truck
1999 Chevrolet Suburban: Sunset Gold Metallic - Daddy's winter beater and plow truck


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 20, 2020 6:28 pm 
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Heading out for a run.

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What 149 mph looks like from outside the car. Doesn't seem that impressive, but it specks out pretty quick.

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It sounds pretty good, if I could get Imgur to keep the sound track.

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 20, 2020 10:47 pm 
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Haha. Proper exit on that first one.

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95 SLE... a keeper. 241k miles. Low and Slow.
97 BMW 528i
98 Infiniti vq35'd i30: 13.3@104mph, 30MPG Hwy (RIP)
02 Jag X-type
03 BMW M5
07 Infiniti G35s 6MT (Sold)
07 Ducati Monster S2R 800 with DS1000 swap
83 Yamaha IT175K
72 Yamaha DS7: '74 RD250 swap, JL chambers

Info on dropping a 92-99: Here.


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