An update, finally, what’s been going on….

An update, finally, what’s been going on….

Well honestly we’ve been having too much fun driving the car and sitting down to write about it hasn’t been on the top of the priority list. Guess I would never make it as a writer for a car magazine.

So let’s start with the cruise. With the Cobra “done” and ready for it’s inaugural cruise we headed out to Golden, Co to meet up with the rest of the club for the 12th Annual Mile Hi Cobra Club Cruise Colorado on June the 14th. It also happened to be our 29th wedding anniversary. We met up with the rest of the club and waited for everyone else on the cruise to arrive.

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Once all 16 cars were there we headed out Steamboat Springs. We used US 6 and then US 40 to get to Steamboat avoiding I-70 as much as possible. The drive to Steamboat was uneventful except for a little bit of rain and a slightly misadjusted throwout bearing that we got to listen squeal most of the time. The upside being once we were over 45MPH it was pretty much hard to hear over the engine and wind noise.

We arrived in Steamboat and stayed 2 nights at the Grand Hotel. Here are some closer pics of some of the other cars.

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After 2 fun days in Steamboat we packed the cars up and headed out to Grand Junction. Once again we used US 40 to 134 and then 131 to get to I-70 and then a small portion of I-70 to get to Glenwood Springs. We got off I-70 and we had our first casualty, unfortunately a car from Texas suffered a failed number 7 cylinder and pretty much stopped. It appeared to be a flat spot on the cam. They ended up getting towed back to Denver and then caught up with us in Grand Junction in a rental. Not a rental Cobra but a Explorer, still a Ford. From Glenwood Springs we used 82 to 133 to 92 to US50 to get into Grand Junction. This is us stopped just South of Glenwood after the Texas car failed. We were also keeping our eye on the weather as it looked like we were all going to get a car wash provided by Mother Nature. We got a little bit of drizzle and fortunately the hard rain never materialized.

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Here we all got an unexpected stop as the road was closed for some blasting to clear some rocks from a slide.

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We eventually made it to Grand Junction

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And then tucked the Cobra away in her jammies for the evening.

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The next day the weather cleared and everyone set to cleaning the cars and getting ready for some more driving.

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On the morning of the 18th the weather continued to be great and we headed out to Crested Butte.

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A quick stop at a Ranger station next to a beautiful lake somewhere along Hwy 65.

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The view during our lunch stop after we went through Crawford.

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Another stop for construction. Unfortunately this one was for some road resurfacing and resulted in lots of gravel on the road. We weren’t too happy about that and took it a bit slower.

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And finally Crested Butte and no rock chips.

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On Friday the 18th the cruise was over and everyone started heading back to Denver pretty much on their own. We took US 50 to US 285 and then US 24 into Colorado Springs instead of going through Fairplay. Part of US 285 was shut down for repair so we just decided to go through the Springs and that way we were able to stop at Rudy’s BBQ in the Springs. If you’ve never been you gotta try it.

Now this is the part of the story where we ran into a little bit of a problem. Somewhere shortly after getting on US 24 I started hearing an exhaust note coming from the front right of the engine. This is unusual because the side pipes dump pretty much right below our ears. So hearing something come from the front of the engine is not normal. I suspected that it might be the gasket between the J-Pipe and the side pipes, until I went to down shift for a hill and got a very large back fire on the right side. It did scare the bit out of Caroline. I decided to continue on as all else seemed ok minus the extra noise and occasional back fire.

Eventually when we got home I took a closer look and discovered the J-Pipe had actually cracked and since the crack is upstream of the O2 sensor I think it was causing the ECU to think the right side was running lean and thus was dumping more fuel into those banks. This excess fuel probably ended up collecting until we got the back fire. You can see the crack in the pic below right around the base of the flange where it connects to the pipe on the bottom. You can also see inside, where it’s all black, and see the light leaking through. Once I discovered this I took the piece out and had a muffler shop weld it up. I called Factory Five and they claimed that this didn’t happen very often and felt it might have just been a bad weld. They sent me a replacement no charge and actually sent me the set incase the driver side was flawed also. I’ll put the new ones on soon but I’ve already decided to replace them with a different solution. I’ll detail that in a future post.

Beyond that the trip was an uneventful awesome time. Caroline and I both really enjoyed the time with the other members of the club and we really enjoyed the time we got to drive the car, it was a blast. We also started learning how to get used to all the attention the car draws which is even more pronounced when grouped with 15 other Cobras.

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Here’s a shot I took the other day to show the whole engine crammed into the car. Not sure I’ve shown anything like this before so thought I would share it.

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And to wrap up here is a little bragging. On July 4th we decided to enter the car in a car show at the Vault here in Parker. We took Best in Class for Original Street Rod. Not to shabby for it’s first time out. We received quite a few compliments on the car.

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That’s it for now, I hope you enjoyed the post. With the car essentially done, though these cars are never really done, I’m not sure how often I will be posting but I know every now and then I’ll get something posted and when I start another large project that will get much more coverage. Plus I’ll keep everyone up to date on the Miata, it’s sort of sidelined right now as we enjoy the Cobra and it consumes a bit of our time. Later and thanks for reading all my ramblings.



  1. Wilson
    Jul 12, 2015

    You gotta drive it to Keystone! Looks great!


  2. Ron da Silva
    Jul 13, 2015

    Fun post Randy.. and interesting way to enjoy your anniversary! The cobra parade seems like it would be a lot like snowmobiling.. unless you are the pace car it would seem that everyone else is going too slow.. Maybe that is just me though..

    Love the overhead shot of the engine compartment and Caroline’s matching nail polish (assuming that isn’t your hand holding the trophy at the end!). 🙂

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