Forums Forums Builds & Mods Y.A.M. (Yet Another Miata) …

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  • Cameron AlbeaCameron Albea
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    Post count: 305

    If you ran with HSCC in 2015 or 2016, you probably remember the incredibly fast red miataΒ in STR. The original builder of that car, John Ward, sold it to a friend of mine. Due to a happy set of circumstances, I recently purchased it from my friend and am prepping it to race again. As I continue to build it, I feel that I can’t brush away the work that John did on it. So, since I have a limited copy of the old forum, the first few posts on here will be from his original build thread. Anything I do on the car will go afterwards.

    Thanks John for building a bad ass car and helping me get it ready this season. You’re always welcome to co-drive.

     

     

    Everyone loves a build thread… So I guess i’ll try to help out this forum section with a bit of a build diary for my new-to-me Miata.

    Introductions first… my name is John, and i’m new-ish to the area (Hendersonville). This years NS #1 event was my first time back Autocrossing in like 4-5 years or so thanks to Art Truckenbrodt who let me pilot his FX-16 around. Prior to that, i had a 2002 Honda S2000 that i built up over time, and was last running it in the BSP class. I did fairly well with it, but never quite took it to that “next level”… it was always a compromise.

    It was fairly under-prepared, since the car was still my daily driver, so i had to have A/C, radio, etc πŸ™‚ Also, i drove it to all of the events with a tire trailer on it, so if i ever broke it (which did happen) i’d be looking at a gnarly towing situation with AAA, and hope that the tow truck had a trailer for my tires also, or they got left on the side of the road πŸ™ … So there wasn’t much motivation to really push the car hard. Eventually, i decided that the risk/reward ratio was not great enough, and eventually stopped Autocrossing with it… so painful to see the car sitting there NOT doing what it was designed to do…

    When i moved here, i needed a truck for my shop, and wound up trading in the car πŸ™ I had decided that if i ever got back into Autocross, it’d be with a MUCH cheaper car that i could just have be dedicated to being a play-thing. That way i could do whatever i wanted with it, and if it broke, then i wouldn’t have to worry about how i’m going to get to work, etc.

    Thankfully, the Miata fits that bill perfectly… it’ll give me a feel of my S2000, but with the security of knowing that it was cheap enough, so if it breaks or somehow gets written-off, that i’ll be ok with that. And also, if it ever breaks while at an event or something, Miata parts are everywhere, so i could probably fix it easily. And now i have a truck as my daily, so i can tow it to events if needed, and not worry about how i’m going to get home if i break it.

    So, the search was on… my “eventual” plans for this car will be for the SSM class… Thats where i really wanted to go with the S2000, but never could. This car will take a while for it to get there though. I am planning on starting out with it bone stock, and slowly modifying it. But since i know where i want to end up with it, it gave me a much better idea of where exactly to start…

    I know i want the car to be able to be street-driven if need be (important regarding inspection), i wanted the 1.8L engine, and i wanted it as old as possible (lower weight/less stuff)… So, that left me looking to specifically find a 1994 model. This would be conveniently OBD1 (no scanners at inspection), 1.8L, and it’d be the oldest/lightest 1.8 i could find (yes, i know swapping is legal in SSM, but not lower classes that i’m planning on running while i build the car).

    After searching high and low, i finally came across this gem not far from here…

    it is my “Unicorn” of a Miata… a 125k mile 1994 A-Package… no power anything except for mirrors, it is remarkably clean for its age, and it has never been molested by any teenagers that i can tell. Heck, the tape (es, it has a tape player instead of a CD) in the glove box is ‘Americana’ by Michael Martin Murphy… Not exactly teen-friendly music πŸ™‚

    All in all, it still has all of the stock equipment in it (spare tire, etc), and the interior is downright perfect! For what i paid for it, i could not have gotten a better specimen to begin my build from… The only downfall, is that according to Mazda, this car was not equipped with the Torsen diff… so that’ll be something i have to get in the future. But i’m ok with that, the rest of the car is so clean, it’s worth it to me.

    The only real issues it has are purely “wear”… it desperately needs brakes, and the shocks are still the original shocks which give the car more body roll and ocean-motion than my Tundra has… lol! It is seriously bad driving it with all of the sway… I have some new brakes on order, but i may not be able to fix the suspension issues by the next Night Series event, so that could potentially be kinda … um… “fun”.

    Well, that’s it as it sits… not much to really show off. The only thing i’ve done to it so far is detailed the engine bay, and given the car a good vacuuming and waxed it… Brakes are ordered, and i did do an impulse buy of a future part for the car that i can’t install yet (darn rules)…. i’ll post up about that later.

    Thanks for watching!

  • Cameron AlbeaCameron Albea
    Moderator
    Post count: 305

    Hi Mike! Thanks, i appreciate it! πŸ™‚

    The more and more i look at this car, the more i think i scored the cleanest 1994 i could ever dream of… lol! The carpet and the rest of the interior is in perfect shape… even the drivers seat bolster shows extremely minor wear. I’ll try to get better pics up later today from my real camera instead of the iPhone pics.. lol!

    I really appreciate the offer to help with the car! There is one complication though… since all of my tools and stuff are at my shop, the car will live at my shop, which means the only time i will have available to work on it is in the daytime on weekdays during lunch, and my newly-started “smoke breaks”… hahaha! Of course if you’re available during the day, then that’s no big deal, you’re welcome to come by the shop anytime…

    Speaking of which, right now my biggest scramble with the car is appropriate brakes, and MAYBE suspension in the car by the NS #2 event. The rotors and pads are ordered, and i probably won’t have them until Tuesday (decided againsti the parts-store easy button, and got real pads/rotors). And then i MIGHT be able to have my suspension in-hand by Tuesday as well if all goes well with the local suspension guru’s… So, as for coming by the shop, its looking like late-day Tuesday or preferably Wednesday morning may be great times to think about it πŸ˜‰

    In planning-news, after some extremely careful consideration, and reviewing what the required budget would be to do it (thats always the kicker, eh?) I’ve decided that this year, and maybe even next year, to go ahead and keep this car at STR prep-level and see how it goes there. Meanwhile, i’ll be able to do SSM planning outside of the car, such as motor and transmission building, acquiring suspension components needed, etc. Then, when things are closer budget and parts-wise, make the transition quickly in the off-season.

    So for now, its basically EStreet for an event or two until i can finish off the suspension and wheel/tire things, then onto STR… it doesn’t have an LSD in it, so that’ll hurt for a bit until i am able to get the one i want, but regardless, i am SUPER stoked to be back in some kind of car of my own… haha!

  • Cameron AlbeaCameron Albea
    Moderator
    Post count: 305

    In the ‘devastating to me’, but ‘no one probably cares’ category, i was removing the gauge cluster to see about possibly raising the steering column some (not really enough to justify the effort), i removed the gauge hood and accidentally pulled up a BIT too much on it, and cracked the back mount πŸ™ ….. dangit. And they aren’t cheap. I have a replacement one coming, but that’s still a total bummer… i may not try to remove that hood ever again…

    Also, to make myself feel a LITTLE better about destroying my gauge hood, i went ahead and ordered up my wheels… since i’m planning on staying in STR for a short while, i decided to go ahead and get a set of the Advanti Racing Storm SFor sure… worse-case scenario, it’ll be a great place for me to talk to myself at… haha! I like sorta chronicling things anyway…

    Update of sorts… the rotors arrived today… pads still out there in la-la land somewhere with the brake lines. The only other thing i’m waiting for to be able to actually drive the car on Wednesday night is the pads now. So i’m happy about that… worst-case i’ll go get some auto-zone specials or something cheap.
    1 wheels through Good-Win-Racing… They are just a hair lighter than the 6UL wheels that everyone seems to buy…. and everyone seems to buy the 6UL, so i kinda wanted something a bit different maybe… lol!

    I’ll get some pics up on Monday/Tuesday… should have more interesting stuff showing up on the brown truck by then maybe.

  • Cameron AlbeaCameron Albea
    Moderator
    Post count: 305

    Well, i’ve kinda neglected this build thread a bit… mostly because yesterday is when everything basically got here and got in the car, so i barely had the time to get everything on the car, let alone get the pics and stuff posted up here πŸ™‚

    Last night was the first time i’ve really driven the car… anywhere. Let alone around any cones πŸ™‚ haha! I finished putting everything on the car, and had my wife help me with bleeding the brakes about 2 hours before i had to leave to get to the NS event last night… and after that, i had a lot to deal with at the shop, so i couldn’t test it or even touch the car basically until i left… So consequently, other than driving up to the mailbox and back to make sure the brakes at least stopped the car, i really didn’t actually get to drive the car, or begin bedding in the brakes (important)… On the bright side though, the Ohlins suspension came in on time, so instead of driving around in a very ‘floaty’ boat of a Miata with the severely blown shocks, i was able to at least have some form of control over the bumps πŸ™‚

    So, no time to test, no alignment, and i didn’t even know if the car was going to plow forward in the turns, or decide it wanted the ass-end to go first around every turn… It was going to be a FUN night! With all of this going for me (hah!), i was pleasantly surprised on my first run… the car actually behaved VERY well! …. well, except for the tires.

    The tires i had were still the very small, and 500 treadwear rated POS tires it had on it when i bought it… my wheels showed up yesterday for the eventual “STR” version of the car… but TireRack doesn’t have the tires i want in stock yet…

    SO….. between the crap-tastic tires, and the AWESOME Carbotech AX6 brake pads and fresh rotors i put in, i was having random brake lock-up and random plowing issues (sorry to the corner workers at the first ‘chicago box’… my plans there never did actually work out until the last run)… The brakes were the most interesting part, because as the night went on, the pads were of course bedding in to the rotor, and every time i hit the brakes, they seemed to work even better and better (too better)… so i was always locking them up as the night went on… lol!

    Regardless…. the car did amazingly well in my opinion… the driver could have done a bit better (i’ve never hit so many cones in one event in my life… wow! lol!), but i’m happy with everything, and EXTREMELY happy that i found/bought this little car…

    Onto the pics of stuff!!!

    Of course the first thing i bought for the car was the brakes… I decided to go with the Carbotech AX6 pads… Its what i used to use on my BSP S2000, and i loved them! These things are VERY grippy, and do it when cold… unlike “track” pads that need a lot of heat before they grab… on the flip-side, if i ever decide to do a track day or time trials event on a bigger track, these will have to be changed… they don’t like getting too hot.

    I also got these braided brake lines, but i did not have time to do the full swap on them, so i didn’t install them yet…

    After i got the brakes ordered, i began looking into my sway bar options… It seems like everyone and their brother goes for the Racing Beat front bar on these cars… But i kind of wanted a BIT more adjust-ability/future expansion possibilities than that bar gives… so i opted for a more racing-oriented bar that would give me options… enter the ISC Racing front sway bar….

    This thing is a BEAST! Also, if i need to change bar diameters/strength, i can easily find other bars that will work since it is basically a standardized racing setup. It definitely required a lot more to install than most bars though… radiator removal, installing the upgraded mounts, etc. But i feel it is VERY worth the effort!

    Once the sway bar was ordered, of course the next thing to do is the shocks/springs… Once again here it seems like the “cool kids” are all doing the Xida (sp?) suspension on these cars… i decided to go for something i felt was not only more reliable, but also MUCH more tune-able, and can grow with me/the car… I got a set of Ohlins DFV shocks/springs. The reason for this is simple… they have a great warranty first of all, but Ohlins USA is right up the street from my shop… so if i need new springs, or to have them re-valved or rebuilt, i can just drive them over, drop them off, and easily pick them up… And its OHLINS… so they DO really know what they are doing… haha! I’m sure the Xida is a great setup, but i feel that this will be best for me/for the car.

    So, OUT with the old-n-busted….

    And in with the Ohlins-hotness….

    Last but not least for now, is the wheels/tires… as previously mentioned, i don’t have tires yet πŸ™ But my wheels did come in… Since this is an STR-bound setup for now, i went with basically what everyone else is going with… a 15×9 wheel. Everyone seems to use the 949racing 6UL wheels, and i wanted something a tad different… I found these at Good-Win-Racing … basically the same specs as the 6UL, but 1mm different on the offset, and a bit lighter (yay)…

    So… hopefully by the Day Series event, i’ll be able to actually make it there… but i’ll also have real tires on these wheels, and have the proper ride-height and alignment on the car… πŸ™‚ I can’t wait!!!

    Anyway, thats it for now… thanks for watching!

  • Cameron AlbeaCameron Albea
    Moderator
    Post count: 305

    Finally got tires ordered… I have been waiting with my finger on the Buy button for a while now waiting for some tires to come off backorder, which they finally did, but it’ll still be a couple weeks until they are available… i was originally wanting to run some Rival S tires, as they seem to be the “new hotness” in ST classes, but i also wanted a set of tires for the upcoming Day Series event. Also, i’ve heard very mixed reviews on the Rival S tires lately… many don’t like it becuase the tire requires driving much differently… who knows… i think its all splitting hairs… I’m sure that the Rival S is ultimately a faster tire, but ANYTHING will be better than the 185/60-14 500-Treadwear POS tires that are on it now… LOL!

    So, i have a set of Hankook RS3 v2 tires on the way… yAy!

    Once they are on, i’ll finally set ride height, and get the car aligned, and it should hopefully be all ready to go for Saturday in STR…

  • Cameron AlbeaCameron Albea
    Moderator
    Post count: 305

    Well time for an update… i got the tires put on the wheels yesterday thanks to Downtown Tire in Hendersonville… those guys are awesome! The owner has a Spec Miata, so they seem to be on the same page over there πŸ™‚

    Very happy with how it looks… i’m not going to slam it… decided to lower it just a little bit, but i’d like to maintain much of the original geometry that Mazda intended for now. I may choose a different path later… but for now, i’m not wanting to do too much to fast now that the car is at this point.

    So, now its off to get the alignment… and then a nice restful sleep in the garage before heading to Franklin tomorrow πŸ™‚

  • Cameron AlbeaCameron Albea
    Moderator
    Post count: 305

    Thanks guys!

    Man, yesterday was a BLAST! The car was much more stable than i thought it’d be… maybe a bit TOO stable. Setup wise its a bit tight… on a couple of key turns, it wanted to plow straight forward rather than rotate, but i have a good idea of which issues I’ll have to work through to get it better… but for the first time out in this configuration (and only my second time autocrossing this car), it was awesome!

    As far as the results, i was able to get the 4th fastest time of the day in both the Raw results and the PAX results… And got 1st in STR. So very very happy with those results…

    I’m planning on going to the Georgia Match Tour on June 5-7th (Anyone else here going?)… So i’ll be missing the next Day Series at Black Pond… πŸ™ But since the Match Tour is a bigger/faster course on concrete, i’m going to leave the setup exactly as it is, and see how it does down there in comparison.

    Kinda bummed, because i didn’t really get a good picture of the car at the event yesterday… lol! But i did snap this cool pic from the Bridal Veil Falls on 64 during my road trip to the site in the morning…

    And of course the Black Pond site … If you missed this event, you missed an AWESOME site and course! Make sure you are at the next one! πŸ˜‰

  • Cameron AlbeaCameron Albea
    Moderator
    Post count: 305

    See, i knew this would be a great place for me to talk to myself at… lol!

    In “update” news, nothing has changed on the car yet since the last DS…. but the good news, is that i had a family thing come up that’ll keep me from attending the Georgia thing, so i’ll be at the next DS at Black Pond πŸ™‚ Really looking forward to running there again actually. It was a LOT of fun, and SO MANY RUNS! …. lol!

    I’m going to change a couple of samll things on the car before then… mainly alignment for now. The car was pushing a lot and not quite doing exactly what i was asking it to do in a few sections, so i’m going to try to fix that a little bit more. I still have to remove the dampers and have them re-valved for proper spring rates also, but that won’t happen before the DS.

  • Cameron AlbeaCameron Albea
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    Post count: 305

    Small update… i got in a new main relay just to see if that’d fix it, and also because the “main relay” that was in the car was not an actual OEM Mazda relay… it wound up being a fan relay for a Honda that happens to have the exact same plug… so now i have a factory relay in place. Still doesn’t run without the jumper though. So, my next step is to source a 1994 ECU and see if that fixes it… my ‘scary’ thought though is that something else may have caused an ECU failure, and i’m not really wanting to hurt another ECU in the meantime. So i dunno. Again, runs fine with the jumper.

    Oh well. ‘sigh’

  • Cameron AlbeaCameron Albea
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    Post count: 305

    Updates n whatever (is anyone reading this? haha!)

    So a couple of days ago, i found a buyer for the Hankook VS3v2 tires. This is a budget build, and i really didn’t want to stomach another tire purchase just to try out another set of tires… So i had to sell the first set before i could buy the others… I was still hesitant to do that though, since i had like 3 events on the Hankooks, and was beginning to understand them more and set the car up for them… and each event on them had been better/faster than the event before. So, going to a new tire would be a step backwards in many ways.

    Regardless, i sold the tires, and immediately ordered the BFGoodrich Rival-S 225/45-15… they showed up a bit before lunch yesterday, and i got them mounted at Downtown Tire in Hendersonville… I still had to finish some work at the shop, and of course be at the AG Center at like 3:30pm or so for course setup… Sooooooo, no time to actually try to wear off tire mold release, or even really find a secret location to maybe see how it would handle compared to the Hankooks… and i definitely did not have time or even a direction in which to alter alignment settings. Sounds like a recipe for success, eh? πŸ™‚

    After last night, a couple of things are very clear; these tires definitely like to grip better than the Hankooks… My alignment settings are WAY too tight for them actually. For the Hankooks, they really enjoyed everything thrown at them to tighten the car up, yet give it good turn-in. So to me, that was a decent amount of toe-in on the rear, good deal of toe-out, and lots of negative camber. I think with these tires the key will be to back off the negative camber some, reduce the toe-in in the rear (this one i think was killing me the most last night, as the car did not really want to actually rotate…. it’d TURN, but not rotate). I’m also going to reduce the toe-out just a bit to let the car roll easier. It has NO problem turning… and once it can rotate better with the rear, the turn-in will be too much if i leave this much toe-out on it.

    So… bottom line, the tires did better than i thought they would to be honest, especially having not had time to wear them in much… But all in all, a ton of fun was had, regardless of the tire situation, and thats waht all of this is about anyway πŸ™‚

    …… oh, and yes, the fuel pump situation still is not resolved, so the car is running (and running fine) with the jumper installed to switch on the fuel relay instead of letting the ECU do it. πŸ™‚

  • Cameron AlbeaCameron Albea
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    Post count: 305

    Thanks Mark… at least ONE person is πŸ˜‰ haha!

    Well tire update… I did not get a chance to get the alignment or anything new done for the car for the Day Series (sorta on purpose… more on that later), so i just rolled with it as-is. The car felt much much better than the Night Series when the tires were new, and the car felt better and had a more secure feel to it (except that one time i accidentally drifted through all of the cones at the cross-over; +20 or so i think… haha!… sorry guys, totally my fault on that one. I let her get a bit to wide on the turn entry, and she really did not want to come back in as fast as i wanted her to…)

    I’m also sure that was due in part to me figuring out more and more how to drive on them as well. These tires require a MUCH different driving style than the Hankooks did. And to be honest the Hankook style is a bit more how i like to drive… I’m not as much the “hang the tail end out on every corner” kind of driver, and that’s sort of what these Rival-S tires seem to respond well to. Even if you don’t drive like that though, the Rival-S still feels like a ‘faster’ tire than the RS3v2 without a doubt.

    Of course most of this is all still likely just “noise”, as i’m still just trying to get used to driving this car as a whole. It responds very differently compared to what my S2000 did… but then again, the last year i ran my S2000 was a few years ago, and that was also on 285/18 Hoosier A6 tires… So this is other-worldly …. not in a particularly better or worse way, just… ‘other’

    So anyway… its all still probably just chasing my tail around… which is also why i’m less than quick about going and changing alignment settings from my base-line, and even shocks/springs… the shocks/springs are still in ‘off the shelf’ configuration. I have not had them valved/stiffened yet, because i’m wanting to see how the car does as-is. Also, i have yet to do ANYTHING performance-related to the engine, so i’m sure there is still decent gains to be had there between intake/exhaust and STR-legal computer stuff. There is also more weight-loss stuff i could do also if i want to get a bit more crazy about it. I’m still just having fun though, and want to keep it that way… which is also why I’ve decided to scrap the ‘SSM Build’ plans for a while.

    πŸ™‚

    Looking forward to the next Day Series in Franklin!

  • Cameron AlbeaCameron Albea
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    Post count: 305

    Miata…. M for Misery πŸ™‚

    I figured i’d update this with a bit of results from the last Day Series. Basically, i had a fantastic result overall, but it coulda been better, and i wish i had gotten more than 2 runs in. Ultimately, i only got 2 runs in, because the clutch started making HORRIBLE noises after the first run… I think i may have broken a spring on the disk.

    My first run was slideways as could be, and my second run was run in 1st gear for the whole thing… i hadn’t planned on doing that, but when i launched, it made worse noises, so i decided to just not shift, and finish the course out because i didn’t want to shift and risk hurting the clutch more… Run #2 wound up being faster than my sideways first run though, so that was cool/unexpected. Just shows how bad spinning tires and ‘drifting’ can be to your time on an autocross course… It IS marvelous fun though… lol!

    At the lunch break i went ahead and decided to try to limp the car home… that way if something did fail on the trip, at least i wouldn’t have been having to deal with it at night time. Thankfully though, the car made it home. I only had to use the flutch a couple times at some key stop lights, but i rev-matched and clutchless shifted most of the journey.

    This is basically where the REAL adventure begins… i talked to 2 different places about getting the clutch swapped… the first place is a “racing friendly” shop, and these guys were a referral from someone who i thought would send me to the right place. Well it would have been the right place if i felt like getting REAMED… these guys were marking the clutch price up literally double what i could buy the clutch for retail online… and the labor rate was about double what it should be… and this was the “hookup deal” apparently… SMH. so much for friend of a friend at THOSE places. sigh.

    The second place i talked to is a small one-guy shop where i was referred to by a good friend and neighbor who is also into sports cars heavily… this guy is treating me right on the deal thankfully, and is very knowledgeable on Mazdas, so i’m happy about that… Once i have a chance to deal with him and get the car done, i’ll broadcast the shop name) although i do have to supply the clutch since he doesn’t have a good line on the OEM setup i need for the STR rules apparently, or not ‘timely’… The big issue, is i’m not sure it’ll be done by Wednesday night… But i’m crossing my fingers. The biggest issue i have is getting my car to him, and i don’t know many people around these here parts, so i haven’t been able to find a ride/someone to follow me over to drop it off, and i found out my AAA membership had expired (woulda been GREAT to find out when i was on the road back from Franklin… hahaha!). I’m heading out of town for the weekend, so the fastest i can get it there would be Monday morning when my wife would be able to pick me up from his shop.

    So… it’ll get fixed… but i may be rolling in my Transit Connect minivan for the Night Series… it would actually be quite fun πŸ™‚ It has a very low center of gravity, and handles decent with nice steering… so it’d be fun to see how it actually does… And it is a 1.6L Turbo engine and the transmission has ‘Sport Mode’… so how bad could it be πŸ˜›

    Aaaaaaanyway. The life and times of a Miata autocrosser… woohoo!

  • Cameron AlbeaCameron Albea
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    Post count: 305

    Welp, i have the diagnosis… Over the weekend my mechanic got the car apart and found out the exact issue… i thought it was a spring or something in the disk, because of the noises and how/when it was making the sounds… as it turns out, it is actually the pilot bearing that completely blew up… like literally just the outer race is left. Also, not that it had anything to do with that, but the rear main seal was indeed leaking a small bit… but the disk didn’t have any oil on it or anything, so we’re guessing that when the bearing let go, the parts had to go somewhere… and that is likely where i got my slipping clutch from… parts in the clutch plate, or otherwise being jammed up with bearing shrapnel.

    So, new replacement clutch is at the mechanics now, and it should be put back together by tomorrow sometime, and hopefully i’ll have a minute to put a few miles on the car before bringing it to the AG Center… i’ll just have to calm down my launches just a wee bit for Wednesday probably πŸ™‚

    I’ll just be happy it’s back on the road… yay!

    Just wish i could have put a better clutch in… not sure the ST rules are all that great when it comes to that. I doubt any aftermarket clutch would make THAT big of a difference in anyones times. sigh

  • Cameron AlbeaCameron Albea
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    Post count: 305

    Time for another small update…

    The car did fine… the nut behind the wheel still needs a bit of work though regarding confidence-building in the car. lol! That will only come with time, practice, and knowing more what the car will do on odd surfaces… It is still new to me, so i’m still very much in a discovery phase with the car. The biggest issue last night for instance, is no matter what i do or try to tell myself, i am far too timid about certain areas of the AG Center lot… So i find myself coasting-down, not being very aggressive (coasting rather than being on gas or brake) where i need to be (large areas that waste a lot of time). But all in all, the car performed flawlessly, and kept doing exactly what i was telling it to do, except for my first run down at the bottom of the hill where i wound up accidentally drifting it a bit (a lot) into the up-hill slalom section… which did not do much to help me ‘build confidence’ for my remaining runs, particularly because that is the biggest area on the lot where i lack confidence in the car (long sweeping left turn with a curb to the right).

    As for the clutch… The new clutch felt good, but it is definitely grabbier than the last clutch… it doesn’t like to be slipped too much right this second, so i’m now getting a decent amount of wheel hop on the car… before, i guess the old/tired clutch gave way easier, so i never noticed the hop. Now, it is defintiely something i either have to completely change how i launch the car for, or see what i can do about upgraded bushings and things in the rear… BUT… thats a rabbit hole i’m not sure i want to go down, because when you make sections of the chain stronger, you allow other sections of the chain that were otherwise fine before turn into the weakest links… So i’m not sure how i feel about that, since the transmission/axles/driveshaft are next in that line.

    Well that’s about it for now. I think my next plans will involve the engine actually making a bit more power. Some kind of cold air intake and lightweight exhaust seem like a good place to start with that. But until then, I’m (im)patiently waiting for the next Night Series πŸ™‚

  • Cameron AlbeaCameron Albea
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    And that brings us to the present. John ended up selling the car due to an issue it had; it wouldn’t rev above 2200rpm. While that was great for launch control, it wasn’t really good for anything else. The problem ended up being a bad ecu. Anyway, my friend owned the car for a few months, did a street alignment, and was running it on the spare all seasons that it had initially as a daily driver. I got the car a few weeks ago and haven’t done much to it other than a full detail and swapping the Racing Beat catback that was on smurf onto this car.

    The plans for it now are just to get it back into a race-ready configuration. New alignment, essentially the same that John ran minus the toe. A new cold air intake might find its way on the car, but that’s to be determined.

    Anyway, thanks for reading!

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