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Old 04-27-2010, 02:24 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gospeed81 View Post
I didn't know I was still subscribed to this paint drying competition, let me go fix that...
Harsh. By now you'd have installed, removed, reinstalled, removed again, sold, purchased more, installed, removed, and sold again my whole pile of parts, but not everyone moves at your pace.
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Old 06-01-2010, 01:12 PM   #22
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Boundary Engineering frame rails are installed...just have to bend the fuel/brake line brackets. Roll bar is mocked up and drilled, so that'll get bolted down next once I have the frame rails finished. Going from basically no bracing to roll bar/door bars/frame rails, I'm expecting a pretty dramatic increase in stiffness and decrease in NVH.

Pics to follow.
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Old 06-09-2010, 09:46 PM   #23
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Pics as promised, though they are fuzzier than I realized. It's so frickin' hot and humid that when I take the camera outside, the lens fogs up. I was too impatient to let it warm up since I was getting fricking eaten alive by mosquitoes.

Getting the roll bar mocked up after cutting the rear deck:

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Kind of typical for how I work. Messy.

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Paused the roll bar installation and decided to do the frame rails at the same time. Swiss cheese floorboards.

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Reassembling the interior, ran out of light tonight but it should be done by this weekend. Have to recharge the battery too, forgot the driver's side interior lamp and drained it while I did the install. Whoops.

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Old 06-09-2010, 10:59 PM   #24
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The bar turned out great! Maybe I shoulda done that before selling it to you... easily $50 more!
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Old 06-16-2010, 12:44 PM   #25
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Been driving a few days now with the roll bar, door bars, and frame rails in place. I have to admit, I'm a little underwhelmed. It's definitely an improvement, but I think my expectations were too high after reading all the threads on frame rails and door bars ("...it's a solid as a brand-new BMW now!").

The Miata structure is just kind of shuddery, no matter how much you brace it. It definitely feels stiffer, but sharp bumps still crash through the suspension. Now that the structure is stiffer, I feel like the H&R coilover set (which I was very happy with before) is probably a little undersprung. I know that no rear-sway is the hot setup, but I'm wondering if a thicker front-sway might keep the car from rolling quite as much in the corners.

Ordered my roll bar padding yesterday (Longacre Mini HD sticks), it is a definite necessity with this bar. I'm 5'10" and I have to keep the seat a little more upright than I prefer to keep my head off the bar. Anyone taller than me would have a hard time driving the car comfortably right now. A foamectomy or maybe even race seats may be on the list in the near future. Since it's a daily driver, I'd prefer to keep the stock seat belts and avoid a harness. I'm going no-wrap on the padding, just going to zip-tie it in place with something under the zip-ties so they don't gouge into the rollbar paint.

The seats were a pain in the *** to put back in with the door bars in the way. Specifically, the door bars don't allow the seats to move all the way forward -- the plastic housing on the left side of the driver's seat makes contact, so it's really, really difficult to get the 2 rear bolts started. I finally used a screwdriver as a lever in one of the rear slider holes to keep the seat lined up while I started the other bolt.

Overall, I'm still happy with the improvement, even if it's not quite as dramatic as I had anticipated. The car definitely seems to move as one structure now, and while it's awfully hard to be sure given how long between when I drove it pre-rollbar/doorbar/framerails and when I drove it post-rollbar/doorbar/framerails, it feels like it's slightly more tail-happy now -- very sharp turn-in, and the tail gets a little light feeling just a bit earlier and at lower speeds than it used to.

Next up on the list is the switch to my Team Dynamics Pro Race One's, and bolting on the R-package front lip. The first little hassle is that 3 of my wheels have white lettering around the rim of the wheel, so I've got to spend an evening with some decal remover trying to get the letters off without scratching the wheels.
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Old 06-19-2010, 11:31 PM   #26
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Didn't get as much done today as I wanted but it was too hot and humid to spend all day outside, and anyway I had something else to occupy my attention:

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Oooh! A red box!

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5-drawer, 29" width, ball-bearing slides....and I got it on sale for $165. Not bad.

Besides cutting drawer liners and playing around with the new tool cabinet, I did manage to get a few interior things done. I cut my seatbelt tower panels to fit around the roll bar, readjusted the seatbelts to retract better, drilled a spot in the center console to thread my 1/8" minijack aux-in for MP3 players. I also got my Longacre rollbar padding in the mail and picked up some bigass zipties from the hardware store...padding will be a good thing:

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And you can also see how the door bars interfere with the seats being pulled all the way forward. Won't matter for me, but it might keep my wife from driving the car.

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No pics of the last task of the day, but I pulled out the Team Dynamics and started cleaning up the 3 used wheels...removing the old "Team Dynamics Racing" lettering around the rim and pulling off the old adhesive lead weights.
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Old 06-22-2010, 02:59 PM   #27
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Just snagged an LC-1/DB gauge kit with a new sensor. I'm running out of excuses now for why my build hasn't started...I think all I'm missing is the GM IAT, and a drill/tap kit for my oil pan.
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Old 06-22-2010, 03:04 PM   #28
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What brand of door bar is that? Doesn't look to go as high as the Bethania ones.
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Old 06-22-2010, 03:12 PM   #29
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Kirk Racing, they are integrated with the roll bar.
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Old 09-05-2010, 05:17 PM   #30
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Minor update, swapped the H&R's out to try a Bilstein MSM coilover set I got from jacob300zx.

Took me a few days to get this set ready to install -- Jake swapped the collars at my request but they didn't really fit the front springs. The rear springs were fine, but the front springs just wouldn't fully seat. So, I took the collars over to a machine shop near my house and them turned down just enough to fit into the springs. The guy charged me $20 and they were done by the next morning.

New turned-down collar on left, original diameter collar on right:

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You can see how much material was removed:

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Spent yesterday afternoon swapping the suspension. Fronts:

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And rears:

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And finished:

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Took it for a test drive last night...mixed feelings on the Bilsteins. Definitely firmer than the H&R setup, but not punishing. Surprisingly controlled over bumps and rough pavement. Downsides so far is that it seems to have introduced a clunking noise in the rear suspension, and it also seems to have exacerbated the 65 mph vibration. Wheels were balanced about a month ago, though I haven't had a good alignment so I need to have that done soon. All I can guess is that the softer spring rates of the H&R setup were soaking up some of the vibrations while this setup with its firmer springs is transmitting more of the vibration to the body.

All in all, though, I'm pleased. Gonna try to get the R lip sanded and sprayed today, and installed tomorrow. Maybe the rollbar padding as well.
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Old 10-04-2010, 01:37 PM   #31
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Finished up the alternator swap on Saturday, pleased to fire it up with no squealing belts or whining bearings, so I guess I was pretty close on the belt tension. Will check it again in a week or so to see if I need to reset it.

Also worked on the roll bar padding -- these are Longacre HD mini 36" sticks. I used 3 sticks (9 ft total) with just a few inches left over at the end. I bought some bigass zipties to hold the padding in place. I'm fairly pleased with the fit of the padding, and I think it'll look better once I cut the neoprene Rapz stuff to cover it.

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Old 10-04-2010, 01:58 PM   #32
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Beefy. Price for the padding? The zip tie picture is awesome. I've wanted to do this with full wrap around padding, purely for looks, although that doesn't look too bad. It gets expensive though.

Roll bar is ~$400 with only a remote possibility of using it, but in the mean time it both looks good and stiffens up the chassis.

Roll bar padding looks to be about $145 for SFI rated wrap around padding, and it's nothing but looks until you use it.
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Old 10-04-2010, 02:08 PM   #33
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This is what I used:

http://www.racerpartswholesale.com/p...ollbar_Padding

Came out to $40 total with shipping for 3 sticks.

A lot cheaper than SFI full wrap, and (hopefully) better than pipe insulation. It's definitely much firmer than pipe insulation, anyway. For a track car, though, you probably want the SFI stuff.
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Old 10-04-2010, 02:22 PM   #34
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you like your gangster lean, far back sitting style haha... im as tall as you and my recaro sits about 2" forward of the lowest part of the parcel shelf...

try it, you will like it... spirited driving becomes more fun.
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Old 10-04-2010, 02:34 PM   #35
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Hmm? My seats are not as far back as you think.
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Old 10-06-2010, 01:02 PM   #36
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Have you got the sway bars installed? Did you fix the shimmy? Impressions?
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Old 10-06-2010, 01:05 PM   #37
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Nah, haven't even unpacked them yet...got tied up with the alternator swap and then decided to take care of the rollbar padding before I did anything else. Spent last night playing around with home audio stuff, snagged a nice CL deal on a Denon receiver and some Klipsch speakers.
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Old 04-16-2011, 11:50 PM   #38
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Wow, 6 months since the last update.

I think I'm going to UrbanSoot this **** and start over with a 1.8l car. NB if I can find one I can afford, NA otherwise. Pondering a Rotrex build.



EDIT:

Anyone interested in a 1992 NA with < 100k miles, Boundary Engineering frame rails, Kirk Racing roll bar + door bars, and a 3-spoke NB steering wheel? Will have the stock daisey's on it, and probably a set of NB GR2's with stock NB springs and tophats. New soft top last year, and matching hardtop.

Will also be selling off the BEGi system, MS2, ACT HD, and a few other things too most likely.
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Old 04-17-2011, 03:05 PM   #39
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I'd be interested in the frame rails if you part anything.
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Old 04-17-2011, 05:44 PM   #40
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If I remove them I'd be keeping them.
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