StanceWorks: COMPETITION DEBUT: My K24-Swapped Ferrari is stuck in Australian customs – Episode 1

Posted: 2023-09-15 13:30:55
Author: StanceWorks
Join us in the StanceWorks Discord!

If you want to support the StanceWorks channel and builds, here’s the link to the patreon!

Be sure to check out and claim your 15% discount code for fast laser-cut parts!

Be sure to follow StanceWorks on Instagram: @StanceWorks

Follow me personally on Instagram at @mike_stanceworks

Be sure to support our friends at H&R Springs for helping bring this Honda-swapped Ferrari project to life:

Check out Bamikaze Garage here!

Last but not least, check out the rest of the gang that helps to make this project happen:


00:00 – Intro
00:46 – The Airport Fiasco
03:21 – On Australia Soil
04:48 – Dude, where’s my car?
06:21 – Battery Hunt
07:07 – The Car Arrives!
08:07 – Customs Rules and Regulations
09:58 – How’d the Ferrari fair in shipping?
12:54 – Scott lays out a plan
14:32 – The thrash begins
17:50 – But wait, there’s more!
18:43 – Vibrant joins the team
20:50 – The last details before the dyno
23:07 – Gear Position Problems
24:33 – Startup!
26:15 – Our mission on the dyno
29:15 – Satisfaction.
30:11 – How it’s Made: Haltech Edition
32:49 – Closing Thoughts

11:30 – Off to Haltech!

StanceWorks Video Transcript

Foreign Guys we are here at Sydney Motorsport Park this has been a long time coming thank you to haltech and World Time attack challenge for making this happen once again if you somehow missed it we are here in Australia in the container behind me is the Ferrari we are here to

Compete this weekend let me rewind a little bit show you how we got here and then let’s unload this thing it’s hard to believe that it was only back in March that we received a call from our friends at haltech and with it an invitation to come to Sydney

Australia to compete in the world time attack challenge at the time of that phone call we had a car that had never been driven and less than 100 days to transform it into a competition ready race car but here we are at Los Angeles International Airport ready to board a

17-hour flight to make a dream come true With us of course are our clothes and camera gear but also the entirety of our spares package for the Ferrari just two pelican cases are carrying everything we hope will need in order to successfully turn laps at Sydney Motorsport Park now if you’re thinking it would have

Been a lot easier to send this stuff in the container with the car you’d be right except we didn’t even have most of these parts in hand when the car had to ship out back at the beginning of June as a result before we even got off the

Ground our trip was off to a tumultuous start our big Pelican case tipped the scales at 125 pounds the desk clerk informed us we’d have to get the weight under 99 in order to put it on the plane so thus began the arduous process of moving heavy parts from the Pelican case

To our clothing bags just to get it below weight we had to get crafty and it took a few attempts but eventually we got well below the threshold and settled it 91 pounds we’re in or at least that’s what we thought and so did the clerk until we informed him

We’re International Travelers and that means the bag limit is 70 pounds for what reason I can’t have it over 70 pounds with 20 more pounds to cut from our luggage it became a decision-making process of what could come along and what needed to go in the trash

We inched closer and closer to that 70 pound limit eventually landing at 71 while our personal bags were bursting at the seams and pushing the limits of their zippers but by removing my hood prop we finally crossed the mark and landed on 69. with that hurdle cleared we made it onto

Our flight and settled in for the long night ahead my uncanny ability to sleep through anything meant that I slept for the first 11 hours of this Behemoth flight while the rest of the gang stayed awake watching a number of movies most of which weren’t any good at all yeah

Ladies and gentlemen good morning and welcome to Sydney local time here approximately 6 57 a.m please remain seated with your seat belts Fastenal to the captain of the gate turns off the fastest our Friday night departure from Los Angeles put us into Sydney Australia bright and early on Sunday morning and

Upon Landing we promptly retrieved our rental cars and did a few hours worth of sightseeing knowing the rest of the trip was about to get a whole lot busier Thank you With some touristy stuff out of the way it was back to business so we stopped into the local Hammer barn and picked up all the stuff we had to throw away at the airport and a handful of things we just didn’t bring with us stuff we figured would be easier to buy down

Under instead of lugging through airport security we’re talking zip ties rivets every form of tape you can imagine all the things you come to expect with your typical stanceworks quality build after a beer run and then a night of sleep at our atrocious Airbnb we were

Off to the track bright and early Monday morning to finally get a look at the Ferrari and what kind of condition it’s actually in it’s been at sea for two full months and landed in Australia on the afternoon of August 17th but when we got to the track there appeared to be a

Bit of a problem uh we’re with one of the cars yeah so they’re only getting like cleared or something now so you know that’s definitely your container we don’t know that’s what I was going to look up right now to see uh if that one’s us or not yeah so you’re

Told to be here at eight but that was what’s the word retainers are currently stuck in customs if you are the containers still yeah they’re supposed to be released at 9am so are they here no they’re gonna bring them here that container still has its Customs seal and apparently they’re going to

Release the containers from Customs at 9am bring them here with Customs agents here like dude and open them we don’t know for certain but like we got in the morning open them here with Customs agents to go through them so and so began the process of waiting and

Waiting and waiting some more that fear in the back of my head where I worried what if for some reason the car gets stuck in customs and after all of this time and money I’m unable to race here in Australia but with downtime on our hands we

Decided we’d make the best of it and we went over to Australia’s version of O’Reilly’s or AutoZone known as super cheap auto to get some much needed parts and pieces it says acid in it though they have an AGM battery to do it oh I mean I guess if we get the wrong

One and come back and find something different I had shipped the Ferrari to Australia without its battery in place following all sorts of bad news from lithium batteries and salt water I decided it was the smart idea only problem being it was quite difficult to find any sort of

Battery in the same form factor as what I was running back home Australia is known for taking its Motorsport regulations very seriously and if the battery doesn’t fit securely within its Mount well we’re not going to be allowed out on track but we’ll solve that one later we went

Back to the track after we finished our errands and met Alan from World Time attack along with the whole crew from haltech Australia Spirits were back on high because a few phone calls had been made and questions were answered our missing container was simply the result of a clerical issue it

Had been released from the port and should be arriving at the track any minute however we weren’t out of the woods quite yet although the container did arrive successfully at City Motorsport Park there was still the actual Customs clearance process to allow the car to touch down on Australian soil

The Australian government is incredibly strict about what they let in and out of the country foreign contaminants like seeds or insects pose a huge threat to their environment and as a result everything inside of the container must be thoroughly checked to make sure we don’t introduce any invasive species to the native wildlife

We cleaned the Ferrari for days before it left so fingers crossed all right we’re by security officers okay so Australia being an island country um we’re not all our species and environment hasn’t really had any sort of interaction with other countries like for example America you know Canada and

Mexico so there is that sort of interaction happening because our animals plants environment hasn’t evolved to cope with other sort of pests and diseases outside it’s actually quite detrimental um and the best example that I tell people is this um Beetle called the Capra Beetle and it’s a small little Beetle it’s probably

About two mil thick and it eats grains and it’s prolific in other countries the species of rice have gone through that they’ve learned the environment has learned to adapt with it so they’re able to cope if we were to get that Beetle to come here

Um and if it was to get into our farming crops and all that we lose 40 billion dollars a year because our grains and exports here in Sydney is one of the most test disease-free in the world and the demand for overseas to ask for our grains is so

High that’s how our economy so that’s why we’re very strict given that I’m not Elon Musk and can’t afford to waste 40 billion dollars we made absolutely sure that the Ferrari would glide through customs given how much time we spent cleaning it up but we didn’t expect Customs to check

For hydrocarbons and almost immediately we were told we had to clear the area while the container aired out thankfully though this wasn’t seen as a big deal and within 15 or so minutes we were allowed to help get things unload while the Customs guys gave everything a

Once over inside of this container was Ryan Turk’s formula Supra Ferris quartermis C6 Corvette and of course perched on top the Ferrari 244 gtk car looks pretty good I think we’re in pretty good shape it doesn’t look like it got very Rusty which we were kind of worried about

The only problem is we leaked a little bit of oil out of the back of the car onto some kind of totes underneath it and I think that’s just because of the Steep angle that the car is at we had some kind of backflow through the return

Line from the turbo sump pump that’s not related to the dry sump it’s a complicated system but everything looks really good I think we’ve just got a little bit of engine oil that came out thankfully not a big problem we’ve got a big wheat coming up to get it all ready

Seems like it should be good though I’m excited Despite the fact that shipping containers are not hermetically sealed we were quite surprised at how dirty the Ferrari got during Transit perhaps the car just sat outside before it was loaded in or maybe containers get dustier than I imagined but it had a solid layer coating every surface

Despite that fact though after looking under the hood and the engine cover our customs agent was satisfied with how clean the car was as a whole and let us pass on through uninterrupted the Ferrari was officially on Australian soil and this brought to an end one of the most stressful few months stretches

Of my entire life I felt like I finally had my car back but within minutes it was time to load it up and send it on over to haltech so we could begin the once-over process oh thankfully haltec’s not too far away only about 10 minutes from the track

Itself making it a great home base for us to get the car ready but before we start turning any wrenches or in the Australian’s case spanners how Tech wanted to get some press photos done to promote the fact that the car had indeed made it safe and sound

James set up some lights whipped out his camera and did what he does best and the results are fantastic these are easily some of my favorite photos of the car to date foreign So car is safe and sound here at haltech again none of this would be possible without them they’re going to keep it overnight we’re going to come back tomorrow and get started on the process of getting it a bit more cleaned up we just did a quick and dirty job we’re

Going to go through Nut and Bolt the whole thing and get it ready maybe even put it on the dyno and get tuned for some new fuel which I’m pretty excited about these guys have been awesome I’m stoked that it’s here this is a reality it has officially happened this is dream

Come true fingers crossed we run into no issues and we’ll be on track in no time and that means it’s time for day three with a lot to accomplish and time ticking by way quicker than initially anticipated Scott was kind enough to sit down with us and put together a game plan

Our test sessions with the Ferrari mean that it drives well enough but there’s still a lot of details and settings within the Nexus R5 that Scott can fine tune to make the driving experience that much better namely we’re looking for gear indication flat shift functionality

Fail safes and a safe tune for 109 fuel here in Australia since we won’t be running the 110 Octane we were running back home but better known as tuning fork most of you guys probably already know this is Scott hilsinger’s specialty and in going with the trend of how Tech being one of

The most hospitable groups of people I have ever met they were kind enough to give us full access to Scott and his wealth of knowledge and experience to get the Ferrari fine-tuned to perfection but not before some fresh merch showed up bright and early well now I feel like I gotta change

There we go stoked on it awesome guys thank you so much for the privilege hell yeah and with the stanceworks logo on the front with John as a stanceworks logo on the front so will people be able to buy this online or is it only at the event okay

I know people will be asking so I’ll have to say hey only place to get it better book that ticket to Australia right now all right all right enough standing around I know what most of you are actually here for and the reason all of you actually watch this channel is for

Work on this car and on the surface it might seem like there’s not much to do after all just a handful of months ago we got the car out on track for its first test sessions two on back-to-back weekends one at button Willow and one at Willow Springs in

Those test sessions we proved if the car is ready to turn laps we worked through some of the teething Pains of a fresh project and solved a lot of the issues that reared their head today it’s about Crossing tees and dotting eyes uh the car looks pretty good though everything still looks

Intact from the trip nothing no major rust or anything didn’t get damaged the uh the way it was put on the rack on the container is kind of sitting on the frame rails in a couple spaces but it doesn’t look like it damaged anything majorly stuff it’s looking good so far

Okay so no surprise there that’s probably what everyone expects but there is still quite a bit of work to do there are hoses rubbing in different places there are nuts and bolts that need tightening and leaks to solve just to start things off not to mention some light fabrication to meet safety

Regulations tomorrow but we should be able to knock things out pretty quickly given the size of the team we have so let me introduce them first up we’ll call him Mike Senior my dad there on the right he was eager to come on the trip and get his hands dirty

The rest of the crew you guys might recognize we’ve got Justin from U-joint off-road Byron from liked bow and my buddy John Salerno not to mention Anthony running the camera to make this episode as good as it is it was a divide and conquer process where everybody picked a job and stuck

With it the coolant hoses and brake lines that were facing potential wear through were secured and reinforced while any potential leaks underneath the car were identified and cleaned so that we could pinpoint them in the future should they reoccur uh there’s a little bit of a drip right

Here on the bottom side of the oil pan so we’re just checking all the oil pan bolts make sure they’re all nice and tight but on top of that there are some other changes that we had planned for before the car even left the United States so let’s rewind again

Some of you may remember the brake bias testing we were performing while we were at Willow Springs and what we found was that the rear wheels locked just before the fronts on threshold braking even with the bias set all the way forwards requiring a pad change we reached out to

The folks AT AP Racing and they sent over a pad compound one step down from what was already on the car we packed our new brake pads in our carry-on luggage and then performed the rapid install on the lifted haltech this simple change should fix any brake bias issues present on the car

Previously but the only way to find out is to drive it on track once again we’ve got a loose transmission bolt which is not ideal but thankfully that’s what we’re here doing we’re checking everything and a lot of these bolts haven’t been tightened since the first

Cut time the car was on the track but we’re just going through literally every single nut and on the car we’re going to mark them all the paint marker once we’ve confirmed everything is tight and we should be ready for track duty tomorrow but chasing down any potential failure

Point is exactly what we’re here to do so I’m totally fine with finding flaws because it means we’re preventing a problem everything so far though has only scratched the surface and there’s still some heavy lifting to do starting with some light fabrication by building a patch panel to close one final hole in

The firewall it’s a port originally intended for the HVAC unit and it’s big enough to fit at least one hand through so we’re gonna rivet some aluminum in place to close it off and meet our rulebook while we’re at it we’re also going to clean up the roll cage I noted in a

Previous episode that we coated the entire thing in cosmoline to prevent rust while it was traveling over the ocean but cosmoline is a bit sticky and can create a mess so I want to remove anything anywhere we might touch to prevent from ruining my race suit or just tracking it everywhere

And then of course there’s the last minute edition of one more sponsor to our Livery our friends at vibrant performance who have supported the project from the day it began along with adding them to our Livery we’re also going to be updating to their new version of the HD clamps

Some of you may remember it was actually the loss of an HD clamp that cut our first track session short in the Ferrari it wasn’t so much that the part itself failed but that the Locking pin mechanism is easy to misinstall and thus I blame myself but hence the redesign

So this is the old style vibrant HD clamp it’s what we had before and they have a huge pressure rating but the only downside to them is if you don’t get these fully these pins fully seated which I think is what happened on our first track day if you don’t have it all

The way in there to lock it in place it can vibrate its way out and if it vibrates it way out then it’s going to open up and you can lose it so we’re swapping everything over to vibrant’s new style clamp which no longer has a

Pin that can come out so this one’s held captive and it’s a locking pin if you press it and then open the latch the whole thing opens up it’s sprung loaded spring-loaded so it works much better easier to do with one hand you can assemble the whole thing you don’t have

To fiddle with a pin and even more secure than before to install them we don’t have to make any changes to the car itself it’s just a matter of pulling the old clamps off and installing the new ones even the O-rings and the internal sleeves are all the same it’s a straight transfer And just like that it’s done we’ve got four in total that we’re going to swap over which will make serviceability easier and it means we won’t lose a clamp on track this time around so one more final and special thanks to vibrant for joining the team and

Sponsoring the car and giving us the opportunity to do cool things like this instead of Shilling mobile phone games so we had to come up with a new battery they size their batteries differently here than in America so we’re having a little bit of a problem finding

Something that fit in here we found this one which is a wet cell battery which is no good we don’t want that in case of Max and we don’t want that splashing anywhere so we went out and find a AGM motorcycle battery that was pretty close and we kind of cobbled together a

Solution to bolt on some terminals to it so we didn’t have to change the ends on the cable so now we just need to come up with a quick solution to figure out what needs to be done to keep this in the battery box nice and snug and we’re all

Set on a battery well my first place I go when I’m looking to solve a problem in most cases is around the dumpster usually find what you need what we’ve got here it’s a good old 2×4 for North America that’s exactly what we need there we go

Cut a couple inches off of this puppy and we’ve got ourselves a secure battery not going anywhere making sure no hoses are rubbing on anything so we don’t run into any like run through issues on the track we had a couple that are real tight just because there’s no space in

This car so we’re just wrapped with some silicone around the outside of it put some zip ties in there and it adds a little extra layer of protection but now finally I think we’re ready for the dino our first goal is to make sure that we’re tuned properly for VPS 109.

Australia does not allow leaded race fuels so the 110 we normally run back in North America is a no-go now of course the octane rating for these two fuels is really close so we shouldn’t really see a difference but given the fact that haltech has a Dyno

And is willing to do some tuning for us why not strap it down and make absolutely sure we won’t face any issues as said at the beginning of the episode we’re not a professional race team here and I cannot afford to break anything unnecessarily but while plugged into the computer

Scott also took the time to set up our gear position sensor some of you pointed out in the comments in previous episodes that while on track I had no indication of what gear I was in on my Dash I was having to memorize what gear I was in at

Any point on the track which can be a challenge with the sequential given you can’t feel what gear you’re in by just the position of your hand while cycling through the gearbox though it was clear something wasn’t quite right Scott wasn’t seeing the information he anticipated he’d see and

Thus he had to dive in and take a deeper look interesting yeah I’m getting gear adjustments on my Dash now one is ground three is five volts which is going to be our green green three yellow is a signal wire which is the one in the middle

Flicking up and down a couple of gears and just let me know what’s good just whichever way say reverse 288 neutral the next gear the next gear if there’s one thing that gets me hyped up it’s hearing an Australian like Scott see danger with excitement after fiddling with the sensor he got it

Working and now it’s finally time to fire the car up for the first time in months might not be I don’t know with Scott’s confirmation that everything looks good under the hood all that’s left is to bolt on the missing Wheel and Tire and to lower this thing back down to planet Earth

Honestly I would have argued that the car was ready for yet another track session the second we unloaded it from the container but for our team of five it was a 10 hour push just to get it to this point it goes to show you can never be too thorough in preparation And for the first time ever I could actually tell when the car was in reverse without having to check with the clutch it’s admittedly a simple detail but man does it feel like an important one foreign So as Scott straps this thing down let’s go over what we’re aiming to accomplish on the dyno because I need to be clear we’re not looking for any sort of power figure what we want is a bulletproof safe tune for the 109 octane fuel and we

Want Scott to work his magic and set up the mythical flat shifting for a sequential transmission you guys have been asking about this ever since our first drive video now it’s finally time to set up the details that allow the flat shift settings to work so we don’t have to

Lift off the throttle between gears First things first just put the engine under load so Scott can check the air fuel ratios and make sure everything looks good as far as our fuel Foreign With the basics out of the way and our fail safes in place I actually traded places with Scott believe it or not he climbed into the car and fit and then he turned it up Scott was quite complimentary of Andrew Molina’s fuel mapping so we moved on to the flat shift tuning of the transmission After some time spent rowing through the gears and making small modifications on the haltec Nexus R5 Scott signed off on our flash shift tune when we pull on the shift lever the ECU Cuts both spark and fuel meaning we don’t have to lift the gas pedal during shifts making for

Lightning quick changes between gears which makes for a faster car and allows me to focus more on the drive I don’t know whether it’s easier to get in or out of the car for a seven foot tall giant but Scott pulled it off and then handed it back to me one more time

To test it out Hello [Applause] It’s hard to put into words why Shifting the transmission without Ever Lifting the throttle is as cool as it is but man this is by far one of the coolest experiences I’ve had behind the wheel of this car so far it really feels like true race car

It’s just yet another way that haltech has taken this project above and beyond anything I ever thought that it originally could be but with that I actually think we’re done preparing the car it should be ready for its first session out on track tomorrow evening it goes to cinemotorsport park for a few

Festivities and then on Thursday morning we find out what this car is actually made of I’ve said it so many times before but this truly feels like a punctuation point on this build perhaps not a period but a colon it’s something we’ve been working towards for two and a half years

So trust me when I say episode 2 is going to be insane but we’re not done yet during our time at haltech our host and hero Richard was willing to give us the full tour of their facility to show us how this awesome equipment is actually made because believe it or not haltech

Systems are built entirely in-house from the circuit boards to the software that runs them all haltech ecu’s have their circuitry laid out and printed by these machines right here and it’s capable of producing a board in just a couple of minutes so for my subscribers that are interested

In both manufacturing and inventory this means they don’t have to keep thousands of them on the Shelf at once instead they make them as customers need them but to that end that means haltech has complete control over the quality assurance process as Richard Put it they don’t want to be

Responsible for blowing up someone’s hundred thousand dollar engine so every single boarding component is tested before it leaves the factory and gets to customers hands but to clarify it’s not just the circuitry and electronic components that are made here everything is also assembled in-house each member of the crew back here is

Trained on a specific product and thus knows it intimately both inside and out after the finishing touches have been put on by hand once again everything is tested and he rejects are sent to a completely different unit within the building but everything that checks out is packaged up

They go on a quality control I we have a program that runs and heats them up really hard around the whole column processes through it so that’s QC that qc1 that goes through and then once they’ve passed that test they get cased and then once they’re cased they go back

On a Tuesday process again because you know when you’ve got a yeah Anything Could Happen you’ve got a 20 30 50 100 000 engine we don’t want to be the the reason that blew up I have told anyone that will listen anytime they ask that I had more or less

Every Standalone company I’m capable of naming except for maybe one or two offer up their equipment for the Ferrari build I kind of had my choice but now that you’ve seen the capabilities of what the system and the car can do along with how thorough and quality controlled the products

Themselves are or even the fact that it’s an Enthusiast run company that really cares about what they’re doing well it should be pretty obvious why I chose haltech to partner with that’s incredible I don’t think that I really understood how much of it happens here I mean I

Know that it is oh it’s made in Australia and all this now but it’s like to see it all Under One Roof bottom to top even down to the software is getting written upstairs is incredible yeah yeah I know when I partner with a company it’s an endorsement that goes both ways

And I want you guys as my supporters and viewers to have absolute confidence in every brand that I bring to the table and work with so if this doesn’t seal the deal for haltech I don’t know what will so here’s to them and the rest of our

Sponsors for bringing us on this journey and I hope you guys come back next week for episode two