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The Slowest Miata in Tampa Build

Old 12-12-2016, 09:52 PM
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Default The Slowest Miata in Tampa Build

Figured I'd quit being a bitch and start being a little bit more involved with the community. Here we go:

My history:
I had a ’94 a-package that I converted to an r-package and autox in various Pennsylvania, Maryland, and DC SCCA regions.

It had the following mods:
- R-package bilsteins revalved by Bilstein for a lot more low-speed compression
- Different rate bumpstops from RE Suspension to help with rotation
- 14x6 hollow spokes with kumho V710s (225 width)
- Exhaust turndown
- Removed a/c for weight reduction
There wasn’t much else I wanted to do. I added gas, oil, and tires when necessary. I sold it before I moved to Florida for work as it was the car to have in ES, which had good participation numbers in the region. A non-a/c miata doesn’t do so well in Florida…

The search:
I wanted something different and the newer NB miata intrigued me for its stiffer chassis, more rear travel, and more power. I found a ’99 that fit my budget that looked good mechanically but is in need of some paint TLC. Agreed on a price and drove it home.

The drive home was entertaining on the Selmon’s Expressway. The top was up but the windows were down at 4k rpm and 70 mph. It was quite loud inside, so I decided to put the windows up. I looked down at the switches since I’m still new to the car and I noticed a stick in the passenger footwell by the door. It didn’t surprise me since the miata was stored on a farm. Then I noticed the stick moved, had no legs, and a forked tongue. The stick was a 18” long garter snake. I was ok with the passenger until he slithered up the tunnel and was on the shift ****. Needless to say, I quickly pulled over into the emergency lane and set him free in the grass. Not sure why I didn't get a picture.

The car:
1999 miata with leather package
134k miles
Chassis looks solid. I haven’t found a piece of rust where I normally find rust. There is one service panel on the parcel shelf that has a few spots that I’ll clean up. I don’t think the top is original so it was probably the result of the previous top.



Maintenance looks good. Brakes, new. Cooling system, new. Fluids, new. Engine, less than 20k miles. All of the electrical wiring looks unmolested. Timing belt, water pump, seals, and o-rings are new. Its currently missing the tray under the engine and haven’t seen a drop of oil hit the garage floor.

Long term plans:
This will be a Friday – Sunday car. I have a 2011 BMW 328i that will by my 4 door DD that I thoroughly enjoy. Its been to Sebring and PBIR with no issues. The Miata will spend plenty of time at the local tracks.


Current modifications:
Chassis:
- HDHCDD roll bar
- DIY master cylinder brace

Suspension:
- Budget bilsteins (550/350) with MSM bilsteins, summit racing sleeves, ISC Racing rear hats
- Racing Beat front sway bar (1.125")
- 949 Racing front endlinks
- MSM rear sway bar
- Alignment (front = -2.1 deg, 0 toe, 4.5" ride height) (rear = -2.0 deg, 0 toe, 4.5" ride height)

Brakes:
- Hawk Street/Race pads
- Centric braided lines up front
- Wilwood prop valve

Wheels & tires:
- 15x9 Advanti Storms
- 225/45/15 RS3v2s

Drivetrain:
- Exedy Stage 1 clutch

Interior:
- Sparco Pro 2000 seat
- PCI adjustable mount
- Schroth Profi II 6H
- Delrin teardrop shift ****

Engine:
- RoadsterSport v3 muffler
- 01+ NB2 header
- Koyo v-core aluminum radiator
- 949 Racing braided clutch line
- 5X Racing adjustable timing wheel (set to 14 degrees)

Last edited by vtbandit; 01-01-2018 at 03:58 PM.
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Old 12-13-2016, 11:31 AM
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Howdy neighbor! I hope to see you at the track soon. Currently prepping my car for Sebring on the 7th and 8th of January.
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Old 12-13-2016, 12:53 PM
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Thanks Ryan. I'll be at Sebring 1/7-1/8. Unfortunately, I will be only working grid and won't be running. I will have the miata though. Will you be in Sebring Saturday night? If so, we should get together.
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Old 12-13-2016, 01:13 PM
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Sixshooter and I usually stay at the hotel in the track since we live to far to be worth driving up each day. I'm not 100% going yet as the car just got out back together and I need to drive it a bit to see if there are any major problems but Sixshooter is instructing I believe. He can correct me if I'm wrong.
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Old 12-13-2016, 05:08 PM
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I've got to get the car back together (and recover from this vertigo) but that's the plan.

We need more local track regulars. Hope to meet you soon.
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Old 02-01-2017, 11:44 AM
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Suspension updates
I scored a set of 15x9 Advanti Storms and 225/45 RS3v2s with only 1k miles on them. It was a huge help on the budget as new wheels and tires would have been twice what I’ve paid.

Also installed a HDHCDD that will get some SFI padding prior to my next event.
HDHCDD roll bar
New wheels and tires

Engine & drivetrain updates
I removed the cast exhaust manifold and installed an 01+ header. It was cheap, fit my budget, and even found a buyer for my stock manifold as he was prepping his car for stock class autox. Install was straight forward, weight savings was noticeable when I was holding the two in my hands, and it should be worth a few horsepower. A 37mm v-core Koyo radiator is going in this weekend. Found one for sale locally with only a month of use. It is not the newer hyper v-core, but with relatively close to stock power levels, I’m not really concerned. I bought it because I’m not sure how good my first radiator ducting will be and figured that an upgraded radiator, mediocre ducting, and close-to-stock power levels should keep engine temperatures under control even during hot florida track days.I went to drive the miata to work two weeks ago and the clutch pedal went to the floor when I put my foot on it. A quick check under the hood revealed an empty clutch master cylinder and a leaking slave. One weekend later I was installing a new slave cylinder and a 949Racing (Thanks Emilio!) braided clutch line. Luckily, the previous owner didn’t fully attached the mounting brackets for the hard clutch line, so the line install was relatively easy.I read “How to Drive” by Ben Collins over the holiday break, and he wrote about hand placement on the shift **** during upshifts and downshifts. I’ve been trying to follow his recommendations when I’ve been driving the miata and realized that I really don’t like the stock shift ****. $20 and Amazon prime later, I have a 2” round, delrin shift **** that seems to work great.

Track updates
I worked grid at the January NASA Sebring even and met Ryan G and Sixshooter, and another miataturbo member but i'm bad with names. I didn’t have much time for socializing but thoroughly enjoyed myself. The race grid was over 60 cars, which was about 20 cars more than what the Sebring grid area could handle.I’ve convinced my wife that since I went to 24 hours of LeMans last year that I should go to the 12 hours of Sebring in March. I’m not sure how I pulled that off, but she is the best wife I could ask for. I’m going with 3 friends, staying at local motel Friday and Saturday night, and expecting some great racing based on what I saw and heard about at Daytona.Next events for the year will be Sebring at the end of April with NASA. I’m indecisive of whether to do Homestead with NASA in March or Roebling Road with NASA in early april. Has anyone run at Homestead and Roebling Road?

Here is how she sits now.
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Old 02-01-2017, 11:49 AM
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Updated the modification list in first post.
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Old 02-01-2017, 12:25 PM
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That would have been me at Sebring.
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Old 02-01-2017, 07:06 PM
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I've done Homestead and Roebling. They are very different from each other but certainly worth experiencing. What HPDE level are you running?
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Old 02-01-2017, 07:29 PM
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I'm in level 1.
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Old 06-10-2017, 02:34 PM
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Suspension/Brake update:
I took advantage of a TireRack rebate from the TNIA event in April and picked up some Hawk Street/Race pads and rear Centric rotors. I received $75 in rebates which brought the total to something stupid cheap like $120. They are louder and dustier on the street, but I bought some Griot's Garage heavy duty wheel cleaner to combat the dust and seems to get the wheels clean. The pads handled the Sebring club course on Thursday with no issue. Overall grip was increased compared to the Stoptechs. I'm happy with the change.

Engine update:
Added a 5X racing adjustable timing wheel and bumped the timing to 14 degrees. Good for 2.5 hp...

Track update:
PBIR was in April and was the first time on the RS3v2s on the track. The car ran fine, but unfortunately I didn't have time to setup the GoPro or data acq.

Thursday was a TNIA event at Sebring running the club course. A little disappointing that it wasn't the full course, but for $125 I was ok with a focused evening just on the tighter section of the track. It was my second time driving Sebring and first time in the miata. I need to get more comfortable braking at the limit of the car and consistently hitting my points. video to follow...
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Old 06-10-2017, 03:56 PM
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Video finally uploaded. First lap looks to be the fastest at 1:29.4. I didn't start Harry's lap timer prior to going out so I ghetto timed the laps while watching the video.

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Old 06-10-2017, 04:19 PM
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man that looks fun, i have to say that i am spoiled with the smooth tracks that have plenty of run off here in Indiana
A friend my brother and i did Le Mans in 2015, we camped out in the track for 5 nights and whent to Nurburgring after the the 24 hr race and rented cars for a couple hours, still trying to talk them into doing Daytona.
The endurance races are a lot of fun go to and walk around while watching them

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Old 07-23-2017, 09:53 PM
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I attended the SCCA CFR PDX at Sebring this Saturday. They were short instructors so I only had an instructor for the 3rd session. The positive part was I was signed off for solo work so I can save a few bucks next time when I register since I won't have to pay extra for an instructor.

Car updates:
Had one issue on Saturday at Sebring. Looks like when I'm shifting from 2-3 and 3-4 the clutch is slipping. After I release the clutch, the engine will take ~2-3 seconds to sync with the rear end. I looked this morning and I have what looks to be a rear main seal leak. I don't have the desire to tackle this myself so I'll probably have a local shop do the work. The question is should I be prepared to replace the clutch while I'm there? Thinking about going with either the Exedy clutch that is good for 170 ft*lbs or the FM stage 1 that is good for a bunch more. Both of them will be in line with the future plans of a MS3 and more power.

Events:
CFR SCCA PDX
Here's video from my 2nd session. Based on timing the video it looks like my best went from a 1:29.4 to 1:27.0 between the TNIA event and this event. I've cleaned up some of the turns. Unfortunately, I don't have video from after I had an instructor with me to helped me tidy up the tower turn, which should have shaved off a few tenths.

Here's video from my 2nd session

Upcoming events:
September - Roebling Road with NASA
October - Sebring with NASA
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Old 07-24-2017, 08:57 AM
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If you go in to do a rear main seal you absolutely want to replace the clutch. You also want to change the seals on the front of the transmission and put in the new throwout bearing and pilot bearing. You don't want to have to do any of this more than once except when you want to. I would also go for the stronger clutch so that you do not have to do it twice. There is no need to buy the weaker one and turn around in a year-and-a-half or 2 years needing to throw it in the trash and spend money on another one.

I'm looking forward to getting back to the track in the fall. I'm glad you got signed off. Good Times ahead!
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Old 07-24-2017, 10:53 AM
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Sixshooter,
Thanks. I'm going to call Jeff at Maztech today for a quote and get input from him. It makes sense to do all seals and bearings. Still undecided on clutches. I'll do some research on the forum this week.
The two that I'm considering are either the Exedy that is 1 step above oem equivalent or the flyin' miata level 1.
Exedy:
EXEDY Performance "Stage I" Organic Heavy Duty Miata Clutch Kit for Miata 1994-2005
Flyin Miata:
https://www.flyinmiata.com/fm-level-1-clutch.html

The FM one can handle more, but even my long term plans don't have me exceeding the Exedy limits.
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Old 07-24-2017, 05:53 PM
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Originally Posted by vtbandit View Post
Sixshooter,
Thanks. I'm going to call Jeff at Maztech today for a quote and get input from him. It makes sense to do all seals and bearings. Still undecided on clutches. I'll do some research on the forum this week.
The two that I'm considering are either the Exedy that is 1 step above oem equivalent or the flyin' miata level 1.
Exedy:
EXEDY Performance "Stage I" Organic Heavy Duty Miata Clutch Kit for Miata 1994-2005
Flyin Miata:
https://www.flyinmiata.com/fm-level-1-clutch.html

The FM one can handle more, but even my long term plans don't have me exceeding the Exedy limits.
Why's that? 170 tq for a clutch is measured at the crank. That's not all that much.
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Old 07-24-2017, 06:11 PM
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Originally Posted by ridethecliche View Post
Why's that? 170 tq for a clutch is measured at the crank. That's not all that much.
One could argue that I'm on the wrong forum, but I don't foresee boost in my future. I'd either need a change in priorities or some serious peer pressure to go down that slippery slope.
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Old 07-24-2017, 06:26 PM
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Originally Posted by vtbandit View Post
One could argue that I'm on the wrong forum, but I don't foresee boost in my future. I'd either need a change in priorities or some serious peer pressure to go down that slippery slope.
Serious peer pressure it is!
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Old 07-25-2017, 07:19 PM
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Get the FM clutch.
My excedy flywheel is fine but the clutch gave up very early. Also the excedy pilot bearing sucks and will fail. Don't use it, it has metal shields instead of rubber seals, all the grease spins out.
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