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Almost done....forever

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Rixter

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This is probably going to be a long post.

So today I finished my last recitation I will ever do, after I finish grading the last assignment, I will no longer be a GTA. I'm not sure what all to say about it, I was pretty scared to do it at first, but in the last two years I think it has been really good for me. Both it and grad school has really changed me, for the better, and while some people may say I'd have been better off just getting a job and making some money, it's been an experience I'll never get anywhere else. And as of next Monday, I'll be done with (school) classes for the rest of my life, and I'll just have to finish up my thesis over the summer. It's kind of weird, and it hasn't really hit me yet, because after high school I went to a community college, then to university, and continued through grad school, for a total of eight years of college. Yeah...I didn't exactly rush through. So school has been the only thing I've known for pretty much all my life, and for the last two years grad school has bascially been my life, I don't know what 'free evenings and weekends' means anymore. So, long story short, woohoo!
This of course means I am currently looking for a job, but maybe I'll make a post on that later.

In other, more interesting news, my car project has basically been put on hold for two reasons: time (obviously), money.

Now about the money, as soon as I know if I have a job I'll be good, as I have plenty saved up to last through the summer. I just don't like spending money when I don't know when my next paycheck is gonna be, ya know?

It's status, however, is that the last thing I received in the mail was my intercooler (a big friggin' intercooler at that :) ). I had also ordered some turbo headers, which I think I mentioned before, but they should be at my Dad's (where I'm sending all my stuff, as my studio apartment doesn't work well for that) by now, which is totally awesome. So really, I should have all the parts now :D.

Except...

I've been thinking/talking to people, I may need to get new pistons, because mine have 175k miles on them. Now, as it turns out, pistons aren't cheap. There exist cheap ones, but they will probably break when boosting. So needing pistons got me thinking, if I'm gonna change them, I seriously might as well bore it out, not the OMG MAKE BIGGER MORE POWER kind, but the seriously everybody does that when rebuilding the engine, as it gets rid of warping and defects which happen over time. The standard bore is '30 over', meaning from a bore of 4.000in, to 4.030 in, and my 302 goes to a 306 (and I gain like a whopping 5 free hp out of it). Then I also got to thinking, this guy on the mustang forums sells stroker kits cheap (name brand, he actually represents a reseller company). This would bring me up to a 331 or 347, and when stroking, you get monster torque. My main concern with this is the horsepower I'd be attaining would easily bring me to block-splitting territory if I wasn't real careful with the boost. So I've decided that because I am (and will be) using the stock block, a simple bore should be fine. The stock block, by the way, can 'traditionally' handle up to 450 wheel horsepower and be ok, get above that and you're on "borrowed time". Although I've heard of people with up to 600hp making several 1/4 mile runs with no problems, that requires some seriously good tuning.

Which brings me to tuining. I think I'm definately going to have it professionally dyno-tuned. I know nothing about tuning, my brother hasn't done it before, this is a little different than turning the screws on the side of a carburator, this will be a fuel injected twin turbo v8. For the safety of my investment, I'll leave it to the professionals.

My OTHER problem is what to do while my car is out of commision (which will surely be a while), which is another reason I haven't really started yet. Idealy, I get a job, and then I buy some dumb daily driver and finish my car, but again, I don't know how much money I'll have lying around to do that sort of thing. Fortunately my brother has a Dodge Stratus our cousin gave him, which is a real pos, but it runs. So I guess I'd drive that for the time being.

Oh yeah, I may also be buying another turbo, we have one good one, but the others need rebuilt, which my brother and I also have no experience doing, and I'd rather not have a turbo shatter on me.

So yeah, the car project hasn't stopped, just have a lot going on right now.
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Congratulations. That's a massive achievement and will make for a monumental life change. Good luck with finding a job and adjusting to life outside of academia.

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