“An Idea Is Salvation by the Imagination”
– Frank Lloyd Wright
Building the X3 has been a long and tireless journey- it’s rewarding and exceptionally challenging all at once. Metal work, for those that do not work around it daily, is exhausting in its own. The creation of any racing vehicle requires constant thinking ahead for the consideration of various mounts, component interactions, induced stresses, and proper sequence of the build. One complication, for instance, is in the constant checking of fitment for factory plastics. We have trimmed many pieces to avoid component interaction and, have had to lesson various bends and angles on the cage in order to ensure the eventual placement of the OEM plastic.
For overall rigidity and utility, we opted to go with a ‘slung’ rear profile that houses the spare in a low-CG orientation. This is a critical consideration and is easily felt during excessive maneuvering. The factory Can-Am bed is not useful in any regard- it is perched very high above the engine, has minimal space due to shared housing of the inter-cooler and air box, and is unfortunately narrow.
Removing the bed is a fantastic option in two regards: it allows for uncapped sizing of the inter-cooler and enables massive area for storage. In the interest of performance, we replaced the OEM inter-cooler with a Mishimoto Race-Spec J-Line inter-cooler. The cooling capacity of our new inter-cooler is roughly triple that of the factory equipment: for added assurance, we will facilitate this airflow with a dual set of six inch puller fans. Our radiator- a Mishimoto Dual-Pass Race-Spec- is substantially larger than the stock configuration. We have situated both immediately aft of the cabin in a stacked configuration to optimize use of the local airflow.
Progress this past week was phenomenal- we effectively completed the cage and are in the final stages of frame gusseting. The OEM cage weighed a pitiful 39 pounds; the new Draco cage weighs 125 pounds. Constructed entirely from 1.75″ OD, 0.095″ wall tube, we are absolutely confident in the protection our cage will offer. 10 structural points govern the cage- all single-weld failure regions were redundantly gusseted for rule compliance as well as an added factor of safety.
For the upcoming week . . .
- Preparation Work for Paint/Finish
- Paint and Texture
- Frame Gusseting
- Plumb inter-cooler, radiator, air box, CVT
Driver of the #428 Draco Motorsports Polaris RZR. Co-Driver for the #804 Can-Am X3 during King of the Hammers. Ultra4!!