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Thread: For Sale: Track Ready Hayabusa-Powered Birkin S3

  1. #1
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    Apr 2016
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    Default For Sale: Track Ready Hayabusa-Powered Birkin S3

    For Sale – Track Ready Hayabusa-Powered Birkin S3
    Charlottesville, VA



    With great regret, I am selling the Hayabusa-powered Birkin S3 I purchased in May of 2016. Not to go into too much detail, but I had a total hip replacement on my right hip in November and am not having the outcome I had expected. I am finding that braking with my right foot in autocross is causing me enough problems that I know I would be unable to attend a track day with the Birkin for the foreseeable future.
    I’m not trying to make this a pity party, I intend to purchase a VW Golf R with a dual clutch transmission and teach myself to left foot brake. I will be back to the track! But I want to make it clear that the Birkin is not the fault for the short ownership, it’s just that my circumstances have changed dramatically and it makes no sense to own a vehicle that I can no longer drive. Alas.
    Enough about me, now to the car that I absolutely fell head over heals with a little over a year ago…

    PICTURES:
    I’ve created a youtube video with pictures here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aCfy4hxGN8M.

    THE BIRKIN:
    I purchased the vehicle from Dick Brink, who had originally sold the kit in the early 2000’s to a gentleman in San Antonio. This gentleman raced it successfully for a number of years before retiring from racing sometime around 2008. Last year, he commissioned Dick to get it running and sell it.

    The engineering work that he put into the car is unbelievable. My understanding is that he is a mechanical engineer that owned a machine shop—this is not the work of a shade tree mechanic or a weekend warrior. Rather, this car is the work of a professional as a present to himself toward the end of a long career. Included with the sale is a banker’s box full of meticulously detailed files covering every aspect of the build by system.

    The car is currently set up for me at 5’9” and around 150 lbs. But my understanding is the previous owner was 6’4” and I think around 230 lbs. With some pillows behind her, my daughter has autocrossed it and she is 5’2”. It’s got a quick release steering wheel that aids entry and exit, although I have no issues getting in and out with the steering wheel in place (even with my bad hip).

    I weighed the car this winter at 1100 lbs. without driver. I was told by the previous owner that the engine should be making around 197 horsepower, although I have not verified that. I will say that in either first or second gear with hot 35-compound Hoosiers on concrete and pointed in a straight line, the car produces wheelspin at full throttle in second gear. And that’s with the tall gearset. It has a quick change gearset and I have shorter gears, but I just don’t see the need. What’s interesting is that even while spinning the rear wheels, the car was controllable—there was no real attempt by the car to swap ends. I don’t know if this is a function of a solid rear axle (I know nothing about drag racing, but I know they favor solid rear axles over independent rear suspensions).

    I have not driven another 7 will IRS to compare but you would never know that this car has a solid rear axle just from driving it. It’s certainly nothing like a Mustang with a solid rear axle where every bump around a corner causes the rear end to skip. I’ve been told that it is a much bigger deal to have the wide front end on these 7’s (which this car does) than an IRS. And at least as far as I can tell, there may even be some advantage to the solid axle.

    I did have issues last year with fuel starvation in the first autocross, and in turn 4 at Virginia International Raceway. The car has a 5 gallon main tank as well as a swirl tank. I replaced the rear fuel pump and rerouted and replaced all the rubber fuel lines and did not have problems when I subsequently autocrossed it (although I have not returned to VIR due to my hip). It’s my belief that the old rubber fuel lines were kinking and reducing fuel flow, hence the new fuel lines fixed the issue. I've also not had success using the paddle shifters, but manually operating the sequential transmission has been delightful. The reversing mechanism is trouble free (although sometimes the car has to roll forward/backward an inch or two to engage it).

    The installed harnesses are 6-pt Schroth ASR, and are street legal and can be used as 4-pt as well. They are out of date, so for HPDE’s they are fine (check your group’s rules), but would need to be re-webbed for racing. The fire bottle is just below the green zone on pressure.

    The condition of the vehicle is “track ready”. In other words, it’s no garage queen. I’ve tried to do the best I could in the pictures to point out any flaws. There are chips in all of the fenders, and a cone caused a three inch split in the middle of the right rear fender. The aluminum panels are scratched in numerous places. Like I said, “track ready”.

    STARTUP / DRIVE / WALKAROUND:
    Here is a video of me starting it up yesterday cold after it had been sitting for about 6 weeks and taking it for a spin (note that the car is not titled so I should not be driving it on public roads. I do have a Manufacturers Certificate of Origin and it was my intent to put headlights and turn signals on it and get it titled). It normally fires up immediately on the first crank, but I think the battery was a little flat from having sat so long, so it took an extra fraction of a second to catch. (I know I should have it on a trickle charger, but I never intended to be going so long between drives): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bUuzANPGXYc.

    ASKING PRICE:
    $22,000 or best offer. I also have an open trailer with brand new tires, bearings, and electrical connector that I could throw in for another $1000. Please PM me if interested and make an offer. I'm in Charlottesville, VA.

    MORE VIDEOS:
    VIR: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=COoYHszMAt0&t=11s.
    Autocross: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tt4dX6NtTDQ.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

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    Last edited by teamking; 08-06-2017 at 01:23 PM.

  2. #2
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    Apr 2016
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    Hi all,

    I thought I would revive this thread with some good news / bad news. The good news is that I managed to take the Birkin to the track last month at VIR and it was an absolute blast! There was no fuel starvation, and I ran a 2:14 as my best lap. I definitely think that with some fresh 25 compound tires and more seat time, I could easily put down a sub 2:10 time. But that brings me to the bad news. My hip just wasn't up to it. I ran about 25 laps on Saturday, and that was all I could manage. I did about 5 laps in my friend's softer Cayman on the second day before I said enough is enough.

    I had some recent interest in the car, which has made me realize that I just need to let it go on to someone who can enjoy it. Unfortunately, there is no real end in sight for my hip issues (I've torn one of the tendons and those just don't heal quickly). And I'm finding that driving is extremely problematic. So, it's actually better for me to sell it on, and not be tempted to bring it to the track for at least a couple more years. At which point, it just doesn't make sense for it to sit in my garage when someone else could be enjoying it.

    It sure was a hoot to be back on track, brief as it was:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=syPt0sLZfG0

    I'm open to any reasonable offer at this point, so let me know if you are interested at 606BigOak AT comcast DOT net. Thanks!

  3. #3
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    Oct 2006
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    Cincinnati
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    Very impressive VIR time! What was your top speed there (typically we se7en owners pay a price in top speed for the car's lack of aerodynamics). Any idea what mph was in the climbing (uphill) S's? I'm sore after a few hours of track time in my Caterham so can appreciate how hard it would be with a bum hip. Not to mention getting in and out with a full cage.
    '97 Caterham Super Sprint, 1700 Crossflow-sold
    '09 Birkin S3, Duratec-sold
    '03 Caterham Zetec track car

  4. #4
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    Apr 2016
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    Actually, top speed was really interesting. At one point I hit 128, but then realized that it was because I was getting a tow from a corvette. Without tow, I think 124 or maybe 125 was my top speed.

    Climbing esses: I think the camera (Garmin VIRB XE) showed me entering about 115 and keeping it in triple digits the whole way through. I think that the speed it shows is accurate, but it's only updated at about 1 Hz and there is a lot of averaging going on. (It's funny to use that speed on autocross videos, because it shows the speed moving up to about 10 MPH *before* you even start to launch the car). So, on a long straight, it's pretty accurate, but when you are accelerating or decelerating, you have to realize that it's showing you the average speed over about 5 seconds. I don't think I ever bothered grabbing the data out of my AIM solo, which gives a less averaged GPS speed.

    In any case, I wasn't pushing it hard through the climbing esses-- you'll note that I didn't use any curb at all. I think that was only my 10th lap in the car ever, so I'm still getting comfortable in it (even if it wasn't at all comfortable for my hip!) So, I really do think a 2:10 is very possible if I were to get some more seat time and some fresher tires.

    Thanks for the sympathetic words. It's funny, getting in and out of the cage is not an issue for me, as long as I am careful about which leg I use to carry most of my weight. And I had thought a year ago that it was the force of pressing the brake pedal that was problematic, but I've changed my mind on that. I think experience has taught me that sitting in the seat while I'm cornering is the real issue-- there is just a lot of bumping and loading going through the right hip as you're taking a left at nearly 1.5g's on an imperfect road surface. I think that is directly exacerbating my bursitis which is in turn causing extra stress on the tendons, particularly the gluteus medius tendon. (Although if there are any experts on hip anatomy that want to chime in, I would be glad to carry your suggestions to my PT or doctor, because we are all scratching our heads). And of course, you can imagine driving this car elicits a fair amount of adrenaline, so I felt great as I was driving it and when I got out. 30 minutes later... not so much.

  5. #5
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    If left turns are your issue, you should come to NJMP there are only 2 lefts on each track. And they are the slowest turns on the tracks. Well it MIGHT help.

    Tom
    Mangia bene, Ridi spesso, Ama molto, Guidare veloce

    2000 Caterham Superlight #123
    1.8L VHPD Rover K Series
    2009 Caterham SV
    2.3L Cosworth Duratec

  6. #6
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    And for those rare lefts, I could just make three quick rights each time!!!


  7. #7
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    About that adrenaline bump: Hurley Heywood says he now gets in a race car a 70 year old but gets out a 25 year old.
    '97 Caterham Super Sprint, 1700 Crossflow-sold
    '09 Birkin S3, Duratec-sold
    '03 Caterham Zetec track car

  8. #8
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    That makes sense: Einstein's theory of relativity dictates that if we drive fast enough, we never get old!

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