Archive for February, 2009

Viper Differential Lubrication Service

Written by editor on . Posted in Tech Notes Plus, Winter 2009

Just like engine oil, your Snake’s differential fluid must be replaced at regular intervals. Not as often, but at regular intervals nonetheless. Chrysler LLC recommends your Viper’s differential lubricant be replaced every 22,500 miles (36 000 km) for 1992–2003 models, and every 18,000 miles (29 000 km) for 2004–2006 models. If your Snake is operating under severe service conditions then change the lubricant more frequently. Refer to the owner’s manual for the exact severe service drain interval. The fluid should be changed immediately if contaminated with water.

Drain Procedure:

  1. Drive the vehicle until the differential lubricant is at normal operating temperature.
  2. Raise and support your Viper. Note the jack locations and safety instructions in the owner’s manual.
  3. Remove the differential fill plug (see Figure 1).
  4. Remove the drain plug (as equipped) and go to step no. 5. Otherwise, install a fluid transfer pump into the differential fill hole. Remove (draw out) the axle lubricant from the differential.

    Go to step no. 6.

  5. Drain old lubricant completely, clean and install the drain plug. Tighten plug to 15 lb-ft (20 N·m).
  6. Fill differential with Mopar® Synthetic Gear & Axle Lubricant SAE 75W-140 GL-5 allowing enough room for 4 oz of Mopar Limited Slip Additive, Part No. 04318060AB. The differential is full when the lubricant is even with the bottom of the fill hole. Clean the fill plug and install. Torque the fill plug to 15 lb-ft (20 N·m).

Fluid Level Check

The exterior of the axle should be examined for evidence of a leak during every oil change. If there is evidence, the differential fluid level should be between the bottom of the fill plug and a point approximately 3/8 in. (9.5 mm) below the fill hole (Figure 1).

Long-Term Storage

Do you store your Snake for more than 90 days? If so, Dodge recommends that you turn the rear-wheel spindles several times each month. This will circulate fluid through the differential and help prevent corrosion of components above the fluid level.

Got A Leak?

Differential fluid leaks can be caused from a number of circumstances including: too much lubricant, worn axle shaft seals, cracked differential housing, worn pinion seal, worn/scored yoke, or a differential cover that is not properly sealed. Need help? Call your local Dodge dealer today.

Dana/226RIA (Model 44) Specifications
Lubricant Specifications

1992–2006 Viper Differentials use Mopar® Synthetic Gear & Axle Lubricant SAE 75W-140 GL-5, Part No. 04874469, meeting MS-8985 and Mopar Limited Slip Additive, Part No. 04318060AB, meeting MS-10111.

Torque Specifications

Differential Drain/Fill plug, 15 lb-ft (20 N·m)

Capacity, Refill

Differential lubricant 41 oz (1230 ml)

Friction-modifier additive 4 oz (120 ml)

All 1992–2006 Vipers are equipped with a Hydra-lok® or Trac-lok® (clutch type) limited slip differential. When replacing lubricant, it is important to add a few ounces of friction-modifier additive to the gear lubricant for the differential clutches. Failure to use this additive will result in clutch chatter and shortened clutch life.

What’s Your Question?

Got a topic or procedure you’d like
us to cover in Tech Notes Plus?
Please send your suggestions to
[email protected].

Apocalypse Wow!

Written by editor on . Posted in Winter 2009

Sometimes you find Mopar® fanatics in the most unusual places. Take Chris Orthodoxou for example. Born in the small town of Hounslow, Middlesex, England. Orthodoxou started racing under the Mopar flag at a very early age.

His Mopar journey began in 1983 when he began competing in a red 1972 440 Plymouth ‘Cuda (which he still owns to this day). Success came quickly. He said, “My first ever quarter-mile pass was 14.1 sec @ 101 mph at Blackbushe.”

He continued, “The ‘Cuda was raced throughout the 1980s and early 90s and eventually ran a best ever of 11.30 @ 119mph at the Mopar Nationals in July 2005.”

Now that his appetite for Mopar performance had been whetted, it soon became necessary to move on to another model. Orthodoxou explained, “In 1989 I acquired a 1967 Dodge Dart and prepared it for competition. It was fitted with a hot 440 engine and Torqueflite transmission. I entered it in championship series racing in the Super-ET bracket and ran a best time of 11.10 sec @ 121 mph.”

Orthodoxou added, “We put the 511”( ex-Pro-Mod ) Mopar B1 engine together in 1993 and progressed into the Pro-ET bracket. There I ran a best time of 9.42 sec @ 139 mph. Next came the 556” siamesed 4-bolt blocked Mopar B1 engine and that ran a best time of 9.04 sec @ 149 mph.”

He concluded, “The Dart launched hard and ‘wheels up.’ It was always a real crowd pleaser.”

And speaking of crowd pleasers, Orthodoxou has now produced a dragster that is absolutely blowing people away. Apocalypse Motorsport, operated and managed by Chris and his wife Angella, now owns and races a Dodge Viper GTS drag race car. The Viper has taken the British and European drag racing scene by storm since its unveiling in July 2006.

The Apocalypse Motorsports Viper is powered by an 1,100 horsepower, all-aluminum HEMI® V8. And Orthodoxou proudly pointed out that the car lives up to its reputation. “She is officially the quickest Dodge Viper in Europe, having run a best-so-far 7.811 second quarter-mile @ 172 mph.”

Orthodoxou described how the new Viper came to pass. He said, “The Viper build was completed in June 2006. I picked it up from SID Race Cars in Great Yarmouth on July 1 and unveiled it at our headquarters to gasps of amazement on July 2. Present at the unveiling were reporters from a local newspaper, Eurodragster.com (the European drag racing official Web site), colleagues from the drag racing scene, Mopar aficionados, other Dodge Viper owners and friends and family.”

He continued, “The race track debut was at the European Doorslammers meeting at Santa Pod on July 8, 2006. After completing observed runs, the new car made it all the way to the final round (in a 16-car field) where we finished runner-up having run a fastest time of 8.13 sec @ 164 mph. It was a remarkable achievement for a brand new car on its maiden race track outing.”

The next time out at the Mopar Euronationals the Viper was nudged into the seven second zone with a best of
7.97 @ 167 mph. And to top the weekend off nicely, the Viper won the “Ultimate European Mopar” trophy.

Since then, the Viper has gone on to experience even more success throughout England and Europe. Orthodoxou said, “We unleashed the Viper for her first competition event of 2007 at the Shakespeare County Raceway Spring Speed Festival meeting. It was the first track outing with our recently rebuilt engine and it produced back-to-back quarter mile performances of 7.92 @ 170.05 mph,
7.94 @ 169.9 mph and 7.91 @ 171.10 mph.”

He added, “We were very happy to finish in the fourth qualifying spot out of 13 cars. The third qualifying run culminated in a new best-ever top speed of 171.10 mph. As an added bonus, we were also the only ‘Door’ car to qualify in the top 12 among a field of dragsters and altereds.”

Orthodoxou continues to run the Viper whenever he can, taking on all comers. “It’s not only popular with the fans, but also with the media and the Viper continues to be covered extensively in many auto sport and customizing magazines. It’s been a great ride, in more ways than one.”

The Viper Strikes Back

Written by editor on . Posted in Winter 2009

By Darren Jacobs

A new motorsports star dawned behind the wheel of a Dodge Viper in 2004—Samuel Hübinette, a.k.a. the “Crazy Swede.” Hübinette quickly became a fan-favorite of the Viper Nation, capturing two Formula Drift (FD) championships while steering a Mopar®-powered Viper. After switching to a Mopar Dodge Charger in 2007, the “Crazy Swede” returned to his familiar Mopar NuFormz Racing Dodge Viper SRT10® for the 2008 Formula Drift season—with a vengeance!

The ultimate Snake charmer, Hübinette slid and slithered his trusted Viper, owned and prepped by Shaun Carlson’s NuFormz Racing team, to a runner-up finish in the final 2008 FD championship standings. In his return to the Viper Nation, Hübinette captured three podium finishes and three No. 1 Qualifier spots in seven events. His top-five points finish was the fifth of his career—impressive, considering the FD series has been in existence for only five years.

The dominance of Hübinette and his Mopar-powered Viper has been a constant on the FD Series, as has the support Hübinette has enjoyed from the VCA. The drift star’s first FD title came in 2004 while driving a Mopar Viper Competition Coupe owned by Nevada VCA president Marko Radosavljevic.

Radosavljevic’s Comp Coupe proved too good—it was banned from FD competition after the 2004 season. That didn’t stop the resilient Hübinette. He simply switched to a new Dodge Viper SRT10, and has scored nine career FD victories, a series high. Eight of those wins have come while drifting a Viper (Hübinette claimed one win in 2007 while driving his Mopar Dodge Charger).

“The Viper, with its 100-inch wheelbase, is the perfect platform for drifting,” raved Hübinette. “It’s not too short and not too long, and with the massive torque of the Mopar V10 engine it’s enabled me to have great success.”

Perhaps the biggest obstacle Hübinette has faced during his years in the Dodge Viper has been to get the Snake to “bite” sideways (as is needed for drifting) instead of forward, as the car was designed. Make it more of a sidewinder, if you will. “The Viper has so much forward bite, because the car is set up for going fast and straight ahead on the street or at the track” said Hübinette. “We’ve had to adjust the set up and figure out ways to get the car to have that bite and speed, but only sideways. That’s probably been our biggest challenge.”

Hübinette, a native of Sweden who became a U.S. citizen in 2006, confessed one of the greatest perks of his job—developing deep and lasting friendships with the VCA members he has met.

“It’s been awesome, getting to know all the Viper people throughout the years, attending VOIs and seeing all the support from the local Viper clubs as we travel throughout the country,” Hübinette said. “It’s been tremendous fun, and I’ve got to meet so many great and giving people. We definitely missed them the last year when we ran the Charger. It was fun to come back to the Viper this season and see all the familiar faces coming out to our events again.”

Coup d’état

Written by editor on . Posted in Winter 2009

By Mark Giannotta

If you’re one of those who think the Viper’s glory days in international racing are behind it, you need to think again. The Dodge Viper—especially the Viper Competition Coupe—is not only vying for top honors on some of the most legendary tracks around the world; it’s actually blowing the doors off the more expensive race cars.

From Sebring and Watkins Glen to Nurburgring and Monza (and even some tracks in Brazil) the Viper is still running against—and beating—the top marques in the world.

Fly your Viper flag proudly, race fans. Around the world, we’re still kicking ass and taking names.

British GT3 Series

No country has a longer or more distinguished record in road racing than Great Britain. With legendary drivers such as Jim Clark, Nigel Mansell and Justin Bell setting the standard, to win the British GT3 series championship requires not only a fast and reliable car, but also a highly skilled race team. So it’s no small accomplishment that, even before the season ended in the United Kingdom, the Viper Competition Coupe clinched the British GT3 series championship for the second year in a row.

Comp Coupe drivers Jon Barnes and James Gornall were crowned the 2008 Avon Tyres British GT Champions at Brands Hatch in Kent, after taking an emphatic fourth win of the season, bringing their wounded Dodge Viper across the finish line in 7th position. Barnes said, “It is fantastic to have won the 2008 Avon Tyres British GT3 Championship, although I must admit that it hasn’t sunk in at all yet!”

Showing that some of it may have actually sunk in, he continued, “It feels a little strange to have the championship sealed up already; we still have two races remaining at Silverstone and Donington. I want to take this opportunity to thank everyone that has worked so hard to make this championship win possible, all of my family, friends, supporters and sponsors. This year has been tough and we have had problems both on and off the race track, but that makes me even more proud of what we have achieved.”

Making the Championship Run

The championship-clinching race had its share of drama. Team Trimite Brookspeed woke at Brands Hatch to find clear sunny skies and warm temperatures. Barnes was especially eager to get behind the wheel of the Viper, as the Team Trimite car’s ABS problems that were encountered at the last race had been fully cured and the car had also been fitted with a new 6-speed sequential gearbox on loan from fellow Viper runners, Team RPM (See? Viper owners stick together no matter where they’re from.).

Gornall took the Team Trimite Dodge Viper out onto the circuit for the first part of the hour long free practice session. James reported that the car felt good and that the new sequential box felt great and was extremely easy to use compared to the car’s old 6-speed manual, road car derived gearbox.

Barnes added, “Wow, the new gearbox has totally transformed the car! Instead of just using 2nd, 3rd and 4th gears like in our old manual gearbox, the closer ratios in the new sequential box allow us to make use of every gear from 2nd to 6th and we can change up through the gears in the blink of an eye!”

Bright sunshine arrived just in time for the start of Race One on Saturday. As the packed field of cars made their way along the Start/Finish Straight, Paddy Shovlin began to squeeze Gornall up towards the edge of the circuit. He held his nerve as the start lights went out, but he dropped back to third position to avoid being punted off the track into the first corner. Gornall then retook second place from the #14 CR Scuderia Ferrari down Pilgrims Drop on the opening lap and then on lap 4 he took the lead after a daring maneuver down the inside of Paddy Shovlin at Paddock Hill Bend. From there on in, Gornall commanded the race for the duration of his stint, leading the chasing pack of Ferraris around lap after lap.

Despite a spongy brake pedal in the closing stages of the race and a misfire caused by low fuel, Barnes crossed the finish line with more than seven seconds in hand over the chasing pack and took a fantastic fourth victory of the season for Brookspeed Team Trimite.

Vipers Vs. Vipers

Trimite is not the only team racing Vipers in the British GT3 series. There are several others who have opted for V10 power including Team RPM and ABG Motorsports. Craig Wilkens who, along with Aaron Scott, drives for the ABG team, explained why they wanted to go into the 2008 season with the Dodge Viper.

“We chose the Viper based on two main factors,” Wilkens said. “First, the team who ran the car before us had won the British GT championship with a Viper. The second and possibly main factor was budget. With thestrength of the pound at the time, the Viper was very attractive both from a purchase point of view and a running cost.”

There was another rationale Wilkens admitted, and it was a reason that most Viper owners can understand. “The final factor involved wanting to drive a car with a clutch! There are a number of race cars with hydraulic pedal shift gearboxes which I really feel take away an element of driving.”

Overall, Wilkens praised the car for its traditional strengths. “The obvious advantages are its brute force and its reliability. It wasn’t until the last round of the season that we experienced any real mechanical issues.” He did point out that the Viper does not have every edge over the competition. “Although the brakes on the car are superb, I think it is fair to say that some of the Italian machinery can pull up a little shorter than the Viper.”

He continued, “The start of this year was a bit of a nightmare for us and getting the car competitive took longer than we anticipated. We have, however, enjoyed five podium finishes and one pole position, although the pole time was achieved by the team professional, Aaron Scott.”

Finally, there is one advantage the Viper has that Wilkens has good reason to appreciate. “A few years back, during a driver change, my predecessor—without realizing it— managed to pull the key from the ignition of the Porsche we were driving. I then sat there shouting for the key to be found! We still managed to win our class on that occasion, but I was happy to discover the Viper doesn’t have any keys to lose!”

Wilkens believes there may be bigger things on the horizon for the Viper. “In addition to the full British GT 2009 season, we are considering options to compete in rounds of FIA GT3 Championship, subject to additional sponsorship being found.”

He added, “We are working on a strict winter testing plan which will see exploration of a number of set up ideas to ensure we start 2009 with the best possible package. After all, a Dodge Viper has won the British GT Championship for the last two years. If we can maintain our relative performance, there is no reason we can’t make it three.”

SPEED World Challenge GT Series

The season started off on a good note for Woodhouse Performance when the announcement came that Jeff Courtney would be in the driver’s seat of the #99 car for the 2008 season and Tommy Archer would fill in for at least part of the season. Claudio Burtin contacted Woodhouse Performance wanting to sponsor the team and drive in tandem with Tommy Archer. It was a huge day for the Woodhouse team. Having Foametix sponsor the team would be a huge help.

With the assistance of Foametix, Tommy Archer went on to win three races—flag-to-flag—at Miller, Mid-Ohio, and Road America. As team owner Bob Woodhouse put it, “Tommy doesn’t just win, he dominates.”

Woodhouse had some unfortunate luck at The Glen when both motors blew up during the race. But the rest of the season went on without a glitch and the team was able to add a few more top 10 finishes.

Overall, Woodhouse was pleased with the team’s progress in 2008. “All in all it was, by far, the best year Woodhouse Performance has ever had. Now we just have to build on this for the 2009 season.”

For more information, visit woodhouseperformance.com.

Schaldach wins Rookie of the Year

In another example of how you never forget your first time, Aspen, Colorado, native Gunter Schaldach won the SPEED World Challenge GT Rookie of the Year in 2008, competing in his #9 Dodge Viper Competition Coupe. The 35-year-old driver first started racing just three years ago and moved into the pro series at the beginning of this season.

Accepting the award at the SCCA World Challenge banquet in Atlanta, Gunter thanked his Lala Motorsports crew for their hard work and was looking forward to the 2009 season. “Gunter embodies the perfect customer for the Viper Competition Coupe,” stated Lead Engineer, Jeff Roselli. “The car is sold ready to race so the younger teams and drivers can focus on their own development rather than spending resources on the car.”

Currently, 124 customers have taken delivery worldwide of the Viper Competition Coupe. In SPEED World Challenge GT, the Viper competes against eight other manufacturers, including Porsche, Aston Martin, Ford, Chevrolet, Cadillac, Pontiac, Mitsubishi and Lexus.

American Le Mans Series

Given the state of the racing in the American Le Mans Series today, with increased funding and competition from a number of different auto manufacturers, it would be extremely difficult for Viper to reproduce the championship results from almost a decade ago. But the Primetime Race Group is looking to recapture some of that past glory by campaigning a Dodge Viper in the GT2 class of the ALMS.

In Primetime’s first full season competing in the ALMS, the team brought home 8th place in team Championship Points and 4th place in Manufacturer Points for the series. Primetime was second in qualifying four times between the 2007 to the 2008 Petit Le Mans at Road Atlanta.

The Primetime camp began with a Competition Coupe Dodge Viper and turned the Snake into an American Le Mans Series legal GT2 Viper. Team owner and driver Joel Feinberg explained some of the challenges of racing in the ALMS today. “Due to the Viper’s torque, weight distribution and speed, we faced the challenge of breaking parts and mechanical issues that a lot of manufacturers don’t. For instance, the Primetime Viper carries an unbelievable amount of torque through the corners. That has caused the driveshaft to break three times throughout the racing season.”

Still, Feinberg is looking optimistically toward the future. “I’m excited to continue the development of the Viper throughout the 2009 ALMS racing season. I think a reasonable goal is to finish in the top five of team Championship Points.” For more information, check out www.primetimeracegroup.com.

FIA GT3 Series

A European racing publication summed up the Viper’s participation in the FIA GT3 Series this way: “The Dodge Viper may be the less expensive of the GT3 front-runners however it can create a few surprises!”

One of these came at historic Monza, where the big V10-powered American muscle car would have won, but suffered a costly time penalty because of a slight mistake in the pit stop timing. Another came in Germany where Team La Torre from Italy succeeded to place two Vipers on the podium in the second Oschersleben race, with De Pasquale-Sabatini from Italy and Lunardi-Vannelet from France taking the checkered flag on the heels of the winning Corvette.

As a GT3 series observer wrote, “The mighty Viper was not the fastest GT3 car on the twisty German circuit, but its overall consistency and good balance make it a competitive contender on nearly every occasion.”

At the Oschersleben race, La Torre driver Gilles Vannelet, the reigning GT3 champion, added a piece of motor racing history to his credit with an unbelievable sequence of overtaking maneuvers at the start of the race. From the 16th position on the grid, he emerged in 3rd place as the cars emerged from the first corner of the race!

Brazil GT3 Championship

Ever wonder what happened to Emerson Fittipaldi? He’s alive and well and racing in the Brazil GT3 Championship series. Fittipaldi’s involvement shows how far the series has come over the past few years as accomplished drivers from around the world have journeyed to South America to test their racing skills.

And featured among the competing marques is the Dodge Viper Competition Coupe. In fact, there are six Vipers going head-to-head with Ferraris, Aston Martins, Corvettes, Lamborghinis and Porsches—and doing very well.

The Vipers finished near the top of the overall standings in the series this year, with the #20 Viper driven by Wagner and Fabio Ebrahim finishing in third and the #63 Comp Coupe of Alceu Feldmann and Paulo Bonifacio in fourth.

For more info, check out gt3.com.br.

Earn Free Mopar® Accessories through the Viper Sales Advocate Program

Written by editor on . Posted in Winter 2009

How would you like to earn $1,000 worth of Mopar® Accessories or Performance Parts for your Viper? Or maybe you’d prefer $1,000 worth of service on your Viper (or any other Chrysler vehicle you own) at your local Dodge dealer. If you’re a member of the Viper Club of America, you can choose either of these two options just for doing the same thing you do every day: Be an Advocate for the Dodge Viper!

Chrysler LLC and the VCA have joined forces to make a special offer to VCA members everywhere. If you refer someone to purchase a new 2008 or 2009 Dodge Viper, you’ll receive $1,000 worth of Mopar Accessories, Performance Parts (even tires!) or $1,000 in dealer service. As a bonus, if you become a Sales Advocate for two people, you’ll receive a $500 certificate for the second referral. There’s a maximum of two referrals per club member.

Here’s how it works: Visit the Viper Club of America Web site (www.viperclub.com). Print out the referral form located there and give it to a prospective customer. When the customer turns it over to the dealer when making the purchase, you will receive credit for the Viper sold.

Once the purchase is complete, you can then visit your local Dodge dealer and order your Mopar Accessories, Performance Parts or tires. Or you can have service performed on your Viper (or any other Chrysler vehicle you own). Then send the receipt to VCA headquarters within 30 days and you’ll be reimbursed up to $1,000.*

Newly elected VCA national president Chris Marshall explained how this program came about. “The VCA has always enjoyed a close relationship with the people at Chrysler, Dodge and SRT®,” he said. “This program is just another example of how we can all work together to ensure the future survival and success of the Dodge Viper—and give our VCA members something in return.”

Marshall also pointed out that the Sales Advocate Program can have some real benefits for the VCA on a regional and national level. “If any VCA chapter reaches a level of 10 referrals, it will receive a $2,500 donation from Chrysler to use toward club events. And, if we reach a total of 150 confirmed sales, Chrysler will give the VCA a Viper at no cost. We’ll then hold a raffle for this Viper and be able to raise a significant amount of funds for our national organization.”

Marshall continued, “This program represents a tremendous commitment by Chrysler to the VCA. We’re very excited about the potential funds that would be made available to our VCA chapters and their members. In addition, if there are any Viper owners out there who are considering joining the VCA, this would be a great time. For the low cost of membership, they could receive a significant return on their investment if they recruit another person into the Viper Nation.”

If you have any questions or require more information about the VCA Sales Advocate Program, call VCA headquarters at 1-800-998-1110.

* The program details are still being finalized and are subject to change at the time of this printing.

In the lap of Luxembourg

Written by editor on . Posted in Parting Shots, Winter 2009

Hello Viper Friends!

I’m sending this message from Luxembourg, a small country in Europe that only has eight Viper owners. As far as I know, we have two 1994 RT/10s, a 1997 GTS, a 1999 GTS, three SRT10s and my yellow 1995 RT/10 in the entire country.

I wanted to share these photos of my Viper, along with some of my other vehicles. In my garage I also have a 1972 Dodge Charger R/T with the 440 cid engine, and a Ram pickup.

My wife Martine, our son Billy and I are all big Dodge fans. I also have a large collection of models and most of them are Dodge and Mopar® products. Thanks for making such a great car.
I will always be a Dodge and Viper enthusiast.

René Mahr

Luxembourg, Europe

Only in California

Written by editor on . Posted in Viper Lifestyles, Winter 2009

When developing the ACR, the experts at SRT® added an aero system for the vehicle that would produce more than 1,000 lbs. of downforce at 150 mph. Leave it to Maurice Liang in California to come up with a way to add an optional 100 lbs. of downforce to the package.

Revved Up Rookie

Written by editor on . Posted in Viper Lifestyles, Winter 2009

Roger Paim, from Wareham, Mass., is new to this whole Viper thing, so he was understandably thrilled to find out how much fun it is to be a member of the Viper Nation. He explained, “I’m very excited to be in the Viper Club of America. I’ve only been a member for three months and the people I’ve met so far have been incredible.”

He continued, “I attended the Pocono event and I got to meet Ralph Gilles (Vice President of Design for Chrysler). He was so down to earth and even walked outside with me to look at my Gen 1 Viper. We talked for awhile and he even posed for a picture with me. It was a great experience for me and I can’t wait until the next event.”

Seeing Red

Written by editor on . Posted in Viper Lifestyles, Winter 2009

By Scott Hirko

Here is an image I shot in my studio of my 2000 GTS. When I bought the car a few years ago I decided I need a nice shot to make a print for my wall. As a commercial photographer, I had all the tools I needed. I spent a day in my studio lighting the Viper and shooting various angles and detail shots for the image. Then I spent several hours in Photoshop® working on the image and adding the background. The finished image is pretty close to what I envisioned in my head. I call it “Seeing Red.”

Scott Hirko Photography Inc. is located in Newbury Park, Calif., and you can see more images on www.hirkophoto.com.