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Old 06-14-2018, 03:14 PM   #1  
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Hi, My name is Luke, I am the proud owner of a 97 Miata.

TL;DR: PhD student at Purdue, has experience making stuff, plans to make solutions to problems I made for myself.

Okay now that that is out of the way, allow me to tell you a bit about myself. I am a PhD student at Purdue doing my research on air breathing engines (jet engines). Specifically I work on ignition and fundamentals of combustion. I spent my undergrad and masters building mini baja cars for the Baja SAE competition you can check out the video to see what my team did. second link is to an excellent crash by Auburn University at a race that my team ended up winning.
As a team we built everything on the car except for the fox racing shocks (and our drivers fox racing socks, old inside joke I'm sorry). I specialized in composite construction and aerodynamics for the vehicle. I did a lot of manufacturing as well on the project so I am pretty comfortable running a mill or lathe. I'm pretty new to welding but I can stick too pieces of metal together and a grinder and paint makes me the welder I ain't. I come into my own more when it comes to theoretical work and simulations. I have a lot of experience with CFD and FEA and I will probably end up using it while making parts for my car. If I do anything particularly interesting I'll make sure to share it.

My previous car was a 08 VW R32 (lightly modified) which I traded to my dad for his 98 Toyota Land Cruiser which I was using to move around my motorcycles (76 cb750, 01 yz125, 06 DR650, 01 gs500e, one bike is never enough). Literally the week I moved to Lafayette I got into and accident and the Land Cruiser was totaled. Since I am going to be in Lafayette for a while ( hopefully I don't fail out) I decided to pick up a Miata. The car is completely stock and looks great. Very clean for 130k miles and with some spare cash I picked up a hard top to boot. I honestly almost feel bad modifying a car this clean.

But I have a few friend in upstate New York who agreed to to let me use their machine shop for a week to turbo my car. They also have a spare holset h1c off a 1st gen cummins they are letting me have cause they don't need it anymore. I just have to rebuild it. It might be poorly sized but free is free and I can engineer a solution to get it to spool.

My current plan of action is to buy/design a whole bunch of parts during the year and when winter comes around I'll take a week off and attempt to turbo my car. I'm looking to hit 230ish hp the first winter and not do any bottom end work. Then spend a year trouble shooting at low boost and acquiring bottom end/driveline parts and then go for like 350 whp. My 4th year of school is everything goes well I'll have to find something else to turbo maybe my cb750 cause boost makes everything better.

If all else fails I think my friends have an aluminum BMW v8 laying around that I could try to get into the car. But this would be the wrong forum for that.

I look forward to sharing my progress with everyone and maybe getting some feed back on my bad ideas.

-Luke "Nihilist" Dillard
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Old 06-15-2018, 09:48 AM   #2  
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Hey Luke,

I think you'll feel right at home here. (Powertrain calibration/Powertrain NVH engineer here).

Looks like you've got a good start so far. Make sure you read the pinned posts, otherwise here's what I would do in your shoes:

Prep work:

1. Do all required maintenance now. Oil, Belts, oil seals, clutch replacement if needed, brake fluid (ATE Type 200 or Motul).
2. Get yourself a standalone ECU. You'll find Megasquirt 3 to be the popular one around here; however, there's been many others used with great success. From a technical standpoint the new AEM infinity is vastly superior, except there isn't too much Miata support with it.
3. Learn to tune on a mostly stock setup. At this point, you can DIY and intake for like $70 bucks and even dig into tuning on ethanol.
4. FF 640 cc Injectors wired in sequential. You'll find that not only does the car run better, idle better, and have better response but it'll be mostly ready to turbocharge.
5. Upgrade brakes. Centric premium rotors and Gloc R10/R8 work great for street stuff with mixed track use.
6. Radiator/Coolant reroute
7. Learn to drive (if haven't already). Track the **** out of the car at this point, as it will be basically bulletproof.

Actual Turbo Stuff:

1. Kraken 1.8L Manifold + 3 Inch DP + Lines/fittings = $730 shipped (Probably the best bang for buck manifold out there that's strong af, and flows well)
2. Inconel studs + Stage 8 hardware = $89 (We have big issues with the turbo lifting off the manifold here)
3. EFR 6758 or you're choice of GT2554R or GT2560R. =$1209 (It's worth noting that the EFR is worth EVERY penny, and will make you power goals)
4. Ebay bar and plate IC = $119
5. Ebay IC piping or DIY it = $105

Total: ~$2200

Following this path will give you a bulletproof reliable car that you can dial back to ~230 whp and have fun everyday without issues OR when you build the motor just turn the boost up and make ~350 whp.

Cheers!
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Old 06-15-2018, 10:41 AM   #3  
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The actual turbo stuff he posted is a good place to start. I would recommend either doing the MK turbo kit for the easy entry level button but not for your power goals. The Trackspeed is very well thought out and will achieve your goals. The FF640 injectors are great and i run them now but on my new motor (400+whp goal) im going to run ID1000 or maybe ID1300, it is pushing the FF640 injectors at that power level. Dont wast your money on an ebay IC just spend the money and do it right the first time you you will be much better off especially for your power goals. Trackspeed is the answer. Call their shop they are very informative and will lead you in the right directions.
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Old 06-15-2018, 02:50 PM   #4  
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Thanks for the welcome and advice. I'll try to put it to use. Currently I plan on trying to make the H1C work even though its not the most properly sized turbo. If I run into huge issues I'll probably spring for the EFR. In the meantime i plan on modifying the turbine side to get a more favorable A/R and I am already a developing a quick spool valve. I'll throw a cad up once I run some thermal expansion calculations on it to make sure it doesn't bind in case people want to make their own or maybe my buddies with the shop would be willing to do a limited run for people if there is interest.

I already got myself a trackspeed radiator and the coolant reroute literally showed up yesterday. I'll have to install them when I get some free time. ECU and fuel system are the next on my purchase list.
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Old 06-15-2018, 02:53 PM   #5  
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Sounds like you are off to a good start. Make a build thread so we can all see your progress.
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Old 06-20-2018, 01:21 PM   #6  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by matrussell122 View Post
The actual turbo stuff he posted is a good place to start. The Trackspeed is very well thought out and will achieve your goals. The FF640 injectors are great and i run them now but on my new motor (400+whp goal) im going to run ID1000 or maybe ID1300, it is pushing the FF640 injectors at that power level. Dont wast your money on an ebay IC just spend the money and do it right the first time you you will be much better off especially for your power goals. Trackspeed is the answer. Call their shop they are very informative and will lead you in the right directions.
Id argue that a decent bar and plate IC from ebay is just fine. BUT I'll raise you this, if that is a question, then OP should just spring for the Fab9 Stage 2 IC. It's super cheap, but I would still grab the ebay IC piping.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nihilist View Post
I already got myself a trackspeed radiator and the coolant reroute literally showed up yesterday. I'll have to install them when I get some free time. ECU and fuel system are the next on my purchase list.
Sounds like you did some research and are off to a good start. That'll get you started off right.
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Old 06-20-2018, 01:35 PM   #7  
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The OP is running almost $900 in quality cooling components why waste money on an ebay IC core. And the Fab9 IC is decent but for just another $150 you could have a way way better IC from trackspeed with precision core.
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Old 06-22-2018, 02:51 PM   #8  
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I'm starting out with an ebay IC just to keep initial cost down. My first goal is ~230 hp and a cheap IC should be able to get that. My current plan is spend my money on reliability mods not power parts. So I bought a bunch of cooling parts, cast manifold, damper, ect. Hopefully this will get the build in the car faster and then I'll have time to trouble shoot the system before turning the boost up.
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Old 06-25-2018, 04:15 PM   #9  
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Finally got around to starting a build thread. Link is here if you want to check it out.
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