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Thread: SH!T. SevereHailInterceptTeam safely taking 8 inchers(your mom)

  1. #1

    Default SH!T. SevereHailInterceptTeam safely taking 8 inchers(your mom)

    Sorry about that. My biggest problems in life come from trying too hard to be funny. Hi. I'm Mike. I am a professional storm chaser, and I drive a subaru. Specifically, she's a worn out 05 2.5rs wagon, totaled by softball hail and a half-blind elderly woman with no insurance. I would love to tell you more about the SH!Twagon. However, to truly understand this S.H.I.T., you must look into the past...

    S.H.I.T.
    Severe Hail Intercept Team

    It all began back in 2008. We came up with the acronym after a few hours of smoking drugs and killing cops on GTA San Andreas. It was just a joke at first, but then we realized we had seen over 50 tornadoes, and only seen baseball hail 2 or 3 times. Finding the big hail on purpose is harder than finding the tornado. That, and we missed quite a few tubes because we didn't want to bust out any windows. Sometimes you have to punch through the hail to get to the sweetspot...





    So we decided to use the acronym and build a roof-rack that fully protected the windshield, and even a little protection on the sides and rear... The Tahoe became the S.HIT. A lot of the chaser community thought it was fun, we even had a cameo on the Discovery Channel show...



    I had chatted with Reed Timmer a few times, and he knew we were the S.H.I.T., so when they passed us to get to this tornado, Discovery edited this to make it look like we were cockblocking them. In all reality, the tornado had already crossed, they didn't pass us until a full minute after that. He screamed "get around this f*cker SCANTLIN GOOOOO"(Scantlin is my last name).

    So that's the original SHlT. I miss the tahoe, but I sure as hell don't miss the 14mpg... onward...

    S.H.I.T. 2.0

    I just kind of fell into this whole Subaru thing. I know a skateboarder dude in Tulsa with an old lifted wagon, I've always been intrigued by rally ****, and one day I just decided to check it out. Some googling and forum surfing turned into craigslist surfing. That night I found a 94 lego wagon with low miles for a good price. So I bought the wagon with every intention of bedlining the whole thing, building a huge hail rack, and doing the Forester strut/spring lift. However, storm season snuck up on me, and I chose to chase in my granny wagon with no hail cage and no lift. She did very well, averaging 27mpg, 28k miles(mostly chasing) since January, assisting me with the 30 tornadoes in 2011. Here are some highlights:




    one of the early February blizzards in Tulsa


    INCREDIBLE supercell structure 4-22-2011 Gainesville, TX


    awesome tube near Abilene, TX 4-24-2011


    Piedmont, OK EF5, Falcon Lake addition. This was a rough day for me. Watched the mile wide beast cross Waterloo a couple miles in front of me. First on scene, a minute behind the tornado. Being there and helping before fire/ems is quite a sobering experience. This day I found a 2 year old baby boy clinging to life after being tossed 200ft from his home with his 3 year old brother and 4 year old sister. That's a story for another day...


    Rare Osage County, OK tube in the hills. 7-18-2011


    Surprise sunset lightning June 2011

    S.H.I.T. 2.1

    The old leggy wagon treated me well, and took the beating like a champ. With the extra weight in the back, she didn't handle the slippery mud roads too well. Also may have been something wrong with the awd. Anyways, I ended up swapping the tranny/rear diff. into a 97 impreza L sedan. I took her on a few chases, and she handled the mud and abuse like a champion. Here are some highlights:


    Nice supercell structure, NW OK September 17, 2011



    November 7, 2011 AMAZING tornadoes near Snyder, OK



    S.H.I.T. 2.2

    I started a new job back in March. As I pulled in, I noticed a gorgeous silver 05 2.5rs wagon, completely smashed by hail. I loved it so much I shot a few pictures. I got inside and found out it belonged to a friend of mine, and was damaged by the May 16, 2010 NW OKC prolific hail event, which I chased. I begged him to sell me the car, and he said he would once he gets financially stable enough to buy a new truck... November 10th I got the email I had been waiting for all year. He was ready to sell her.


    baseballs


    mud test passed


    lightbarz



    I have some big plans for the 05 rs wagon. Always use protection. My goal is to make the shnitwagon capable of safely taking world record hail-stones(8 inches). I also decided a simple exo-cage would be neat-o. Not so much to protect us from rolling, but for falling trees/power poles. I started off wanting to do a sturdy tube bumper front and back, and a roof-rack that protects the windshield from the big hail. We were in lower Manhattan for Hurricane Sandy, and it's a miracle none of the trees fell onto our rental car. Every time there is a fairly significant wind event anywhere that isn't the Great Plains, someone dies in a car from a falling tree. I've also had many near-miss run-ins with downed power poles at night. It would add some peace-of-mind, as well as look pretty sick. I like attention, and a lifted impreza wagon with an exo-cage and a weather station on the roof would do the trick.

    phase 1:
    install all red panels(I want my own hail dents)
    forester suspension lift
    tires
    front tube bumper

    phase 2:
    rear tube bumper
    roof rack w/pneumatic windshield guard
    polycarbonate door glass.
    simple exo-cage
    white Line X the entire body?

    Phase 1 starts this weekend. I found an 04 forester today at the pull-it-yourself-@sshole salvage yard. I'm going to wrestle the struts and trailing arm brackets out tomorrow, get new front axles, and git-r-dun. I pretty much never follow through with plans. Don't be surprised if I don't update this thread hahaha.....hah....
    Last edited by StormWagon; 08-18-2013 at 08:07 PM. Reason: boobs.
    05 rs hail wagon
    RIP 97 Impreza L sedan
    RIP 94 lego wagon
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  2. #2
    Senior Dirty Member wagonryan's Avatar
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    wow what an intro! chasing storms sounds mad fun. I love inclement weather. you'll love your car so much more when its on forester struts man! follow through with that if nothing else!


    Stance might make her dance, but a lift will drop her pants.

  3. #3

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    first thing in the morning(1pm) I'm going to snatch the stuff off the forester. Someone already took the fronts off and left them for me. How big of a b!tch is the trailing arm bracket going to be? should I get one off of an outback instead?
    05 rs hail wagon
    RIP 97 Impreza L sedan
    RIP 94 lego wagon
    www.TornadoVideos.Net
    FaceBooks Tweeter
    Check out our online on-demand series Tornado Chasers! 2013 season out soon!

  4. #4

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    great thread! I hope you do update it some more then this one time! im looking for a new car(forester or impreza wagon) to replace my current one(crown vic) to use for when i go out and do some chasing and other stuff my s.a.r. group does.

  5. #5

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    NICE! I use to chase in a p71, but got stuck in the mud a few times. Good stuff.
    05 rs hail wagon
    RIP 97 Impreza L sedan
    RIP 94 lego wagon
    www.TornadoVideos.Net
    FaceBooks Tweeter
    Check out our online on-demand series Tornado Chasers! 2013 season out soon!

  6. #6
    Senior Dirty Member wagonryan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by StormWagon View Post
    first thing in the morning(1pm) I'm going to snatch the stuff off the forester. Someone already took the fronts off and left them for me. How big of a b!tch is the trailing arm bracket going to be? should I get one off of an outback instead?
    totally depends on the rust situation. are you dealing with a forester xt or the older gen? pb blaster is your friend. spray what you think will do the trick and repeat that 3 or more times. also bring a breaker bar. that will help a lot with the lower strut bolts. I bought the legacy outback brackets new, but I had a hell of a time getting the ones off my car. I live in the NW and have worked at a ski resort for the last 4 years, so plenty of rust has built up. Hopefully since yours is newer they will come off pretty easy.


    Stance might make her dance, but a lift will drop her pants.

  7. #7

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    there was no rust at all. I'm sure it won't be easy, nothing about working on cars ever is, but it looked pretty clean underneath.
    05 rs hail wagon
    RIP 97 Impreza L sedan
    RIP 94 lego wagon
    www.TornadoVideos.Net
    FaceBooks Tweeter
    Check out our online on-demand series Tornado Chasers! 2013 season out soon!

  8. #8
    Senior Dirty Member wagonryan's Avatar
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    right on man! good luck with it, and post up pics after you swap the struts!


    Stance might make her dance, but a lift will drop her pants.

  9. #9
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    This is badass... I guess as far as building cars to handle the roughest conditions, you're pretty well on your way. I like your plans for the vehicle... I was originally thinking something like metal grates to cover the windows, but polycarbonate sounds like a great idea... Only issues with it are flexibility, ease of scratching, and the lack of legality for it, at least in my area. I know that I can't legally run windows that aren't safety glass (or laminated safety glass) on a street car, as I was looking into possibilities for a project truck I have. But, if you build some sort of quick-release system onto your doors and side windows, you could easily pop the plastic on and off as needed... It'd be best if you could design it to release from inside the car with your front windows open. That way, if you end up rolling the car or anything during your adventures, you can still pop out the plastic to get out of the car. Otherwise, you'd be stuck, unless you can open the doors or hatch.

    What do you mean by the pneumatic windshield guard? Are we talking pneumatically operated, or one on pneumatic struts (so it absorbs some of the shock, rather than transferring it to the body)?

    The Forester lift is a great start... The Outback brackets may be slightly better, but the Forester ones should be close enough. I found it a PITA to get them off though... The bolts into the body weren't so bad, but the trailing arm bolts were pretty tough. You'll probably need a breaker bar to get them, or a good impact gun.

    I'd love to build my car into something that, with grates on the windows and all, but I need to justify it to my better half... She helps me with the car sometimes, so I'm sure she'd notice if I started fabricating grates to cover the windshield and polycarbonate screens for the windows.
    "My name is Fil, and you'll do what I say. Woot, woot..."

    GC/GF/GM Suspension Reference Thread
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    The author is not responsible for anything that results from the above opinion, including (but not limited to): Injury, damage, or death. If you don't know, leave it to a professional.

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by pope_face View Post
    This is badass... I guess as far as building cars to handle the roughest conditions, you're pretty well on your way. I like your plans for the vehicle... I was originally thinking something like metal grates to cover the windows, but polycarbonate sounds like a great idea... Only issues with it are flexibility, ease of scratching, and the lack of legality for it, at least in my area. I know that I can't legally run windows that aren't safety glass (or laminated safety glass) on a street car, as I was looking into possibilities for a project truck I have. But, if you build some sort of quick-release system onto your doors and side windows, you could easily pop the plastic on and off as needed... It'd be best if you could design it to release from inside the car with your front windows open. That way, if you end up rolling the car or anything during your adventures, you can still pop out the plastic to get out of the car. Otherwise, you'd be stuck, unless you can open the doors or hatch.

    What do you mean by the pneumatic windshield guard? Are we talking pneumatically operated, or one on pneumatic struts (so it absorbs some of the shock, rather than transferring it to the body)?

    The Forester lift is a great start... The Outback brackets may be slightly better, but the Forester ones should be close enough. I found it a PITA to get them off though... The bolts into the body weren't so bad, but the trailing arm bolts were pretty tough. You'll probably need a breaker bar to get them, or a good impact gun.

    I'd love to build my car into something that, with grates on the windows and all, but I need to justify it to my better half... She helps me with the car sometimes, so I'm sure she'd notice if I started fabricating grates to cover the windshield and polycarbonate screens for the windows.
    We have polycarbonate windows in the door on Dominator 2, and they work just fine. They have stayed curved for 2 years now. I don't think they were even properly heat molded. Now we have the equipment to do it correctly, so I'm not worried about that. The mr11 or 12 lexan is scratch resistant and doesn't yellow. I'm surrounded by guys that have been using lexan for years so I'm not worried about it at all. They say we can do it, that's all I need to hear. As far as legality/safety... I'll talk to Kevin about a quick-release option. I hadn't even thought about it. Now all I can think about is a tornado rolling me upside-down in a muddy pond in South Dakota, and I drown because of my lexan windows. We'll figure something out.

    I know 3m makes an impact-resistant film for vehicle glass. We had it on the support vehicle this year... softball hail in 70mph rear flank downdraft winds went right through it. The window held together, but the hail punched right in, watch at 1:11



    As for the windshield guard, here is some inspiration:



    It will be very similar to this. I'm not sure what's going on with the camera mount on the brush guard, but I love this truck. My hail-guard will not touch the body of my vehicle. It will be a part of the exo-cage.

    I'm not sold on the forester struts, and it's all because of that little video of a lifted obs doing donuts, hitting a rut, and flipping. I like mud. A LOT. I want some extra clearance, but I don't want to lose my ability to slide sideways on gravel, dirt, mud, etc. I will try it for the winter, but I may just get new OEM struts with stiffer springs and the Jackson Rally 1" spacers. I would love a clone of JacksonRally's vehicle.
    05 rs hail wagon
    RIP 97 Impreza L sedan
    RIP 94 lego wagon
    www.TornadoVideos.Net
    FaceBooks Tweeter
    Check out our online on-demand series Tornado Chasers! 2013 season out soon!

  11. #11

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    One of the most original and interesting intro posts i've seen! Thanks for sharing all this with us (i had to pimp that shot of your GC with the tornado in the background on our FB page).

    Huge hail coming in through the window was crazy!

    Welcome to DI!

  12. #12

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    Tag me in the picture! My name is Mike Scantlin. I'll head over to your page.
    05 rs hail wagon
    RIP 97 Impreza L sedan
    RIP 94 lego wagon
    www.TornadoVideos.Net
    FaceBooks Tweeter
    Check out our online on-demand series Tornado Chasers! 2013 season out soon!

  13. #13
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    Hi, welcome!
    I rolled my OBS on FXT struts rallying it on my track. It is definitely something to be careful of. Maybe go with the 1" lift ad some bigger tires IMO.
    I currently use sti suspension and 215/65/16 Firestone Winterforce.

    I can't wait to see your battle wagon! Good luck with the build, you'll fit right in on DI.

    Scott

    96 impreza (H6 swapped, wider body, Fxt trans)---
    99 Impreza outback (sti suspension, stockish, black)
    2004 ctsV (for sale)---
    1998 cbr600 cafe fighter.

  14. #14

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    Thanks man. Is there a thread for your eg33 swap? That idea has been on my mind for the past week or so...
    05 rs hail wagon
    RIP 97 Impreza L sedan
    RIP 94 lego wagon
    www.TornadoVideos.Net
    FaceBooks Tweeter
    Check out our online on-demand series Tornado Chasers! 2013 season out soon!

  15. #15

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    Quote Originally Posted by StormWagon View Post
    NICE! I use to chase in a p71, but got stuck in the mud a few times. Good stuff.
    its a nice and quick car, but i dont need to get stuck or any of that jazz when a tornado is coming at me!!

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