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Old 03-29-2010, 03:47 PM   #1
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Let me get ready to prepare to introduce myself. Hello, my name is Rich. For a living, I run a programming shop for a small company in Baltimore that does mostly web-based LAMP stuff, with a smattering of other varied technologies thrown in for good measure. For fun, I travel, participate in a few open source programming projects, play music, and after a 3 or 4 year furlough, I am autocrossing and turbocharging small-bore Japanese 4 cylinders again.

I've recently taken possession of a '92 Miata that was well looked after and owned by a male hair dresser; I didn't actually think this stereotype would manifest itself in my search for buying a Miata, but alas it did. It has a new soft top, newish paint job, a racing stripe, a 'show-bar', and unknown model 6-spoke 16" Konig wheels that probably weigh 20 pounds each, shod with oh-so-exciting all-season tires. Here's a crappy picture my girlfriend snapped off with her iPhone:



I've owned a number of Mazdas over the years, but never one powered with pistons (1xFB RX-7 and 2xFC RX-7's, one turbocharged). My last major automotive undertaking involved an '86 MR2 with a 4A-GZE (supercharged) bottom end paired to a Silvertop (20V VVT) 4A-GE head, a T3/T4 turbo, a giant trunk-mount Volvo intercooler, and a self-assembled Megasquirt n' Spark w/ Ford EDIS, which I believe I ganked from an Tempo in the junkyard. The chassis had all rust repaired, a fresh paint job, Tokico Illumina's with eBay Miata coilovers running reversed 450# springs in the back, 350# springs in the front, and urethane bushing set. I got to the point of partially assembling the frankenmotor when some girl came into my life and f'd my s up, at the same time I was about to move to Albuquerque for a job; I ended up selling the whole lot, which I now regret.



For the last 3 years, I've been whipping around in this thing:



Which, aside from a 3" Turbo-back exhaust and self-tuned ECU, is fairly stock. Being the nerd I am, I made a 'carputer' for the STi (which fits completely in the 2DIN slot, but I did have to modify the heater-core duct to fit the cables out the back), which runs a highly customized load of Gentoo Linux, fully boots off of an SSD in 10 seconds (after POST), runs GPS, my music collection, SD digital video capture, engine telemetry/data logging, handsfree bluetooth, and even over-the-air HDTV, MAME, and internet tethering though my iPhone if the mood strikes and I am parked.




I've been trying to find *the* Miata forum, but some are desolate and abandoned, while others seem to appeal more to the visual than the technical. After lurking here for a couple of weeks, I believe I've found a place where people know their ****, threads are rarely clogged up with speak from uninitiated (because you all are harsh; I'll need to be careful), and the quality of content is very high.

My plans for the Miata are: torsen II rear, major suspension overhaul, and a Megasquirt on the stock engine for starters. I'm debating a 1.8 swap or staying 1.6. Either way, I'll probably want to do a mildly-built motor with rods and pistons, and I'll need to figure out what Turbos work well (I remember I was going to do a Disco Potato on the MR2 when I got some cash - I imagine that it is probably a good fit for the Miata too since the displacement is similar), then build it from there.

Anyhow, hello!
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Old 03-29-2010, 03:52 PM   #2
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You have found **the** miata forum, welcome.
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Old 03-29-2010, 11:06 PM   #3
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Hats off to you sir, I couldn't criticize anything you posted (besides the fact you kept such a beautiful STI stock,performance wise. It's a sin, I tell ya!) even if I wanted to. Welcome to the forums!
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Old 03-29-2010, 11:34 PM   #4
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Very slick in dash computer there in your subie.

yeah, this is the most bestest forum I've ever been on. Besides the obvious miata tech, the quality of "other stuff" you'll find on here is pretty impressive.

I recommend Absurdflow for turbo stuffs. Not affiliated.
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Old 03-30-2010, 02:51 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KPLAFIN View Post
You have found **the** miata forum, welcome.
Awesome. Glad to hear it! Let's go for three ***!***

Quote:
Originally Posted by hackingjack View Post
Hats off to you sir, I couldn't criticize anything you posted (besides the fact you kept such a beautiful STI stock,performance wise. It's a sin, I tell ya!) even if I wanted to. Welcome to the forums!
Thanks! The STi, while mild, has a lot of potential from merely uncorking it and adding boost and fuel; most done up with a 'stage II' catless make around 300 at the wheels, which is 35 or 40 over stock, along with a healthier on-boost torque curve. I unfortunately needed to get the bi-yearly emissions done a couple of weeks ago, so I replaced the catless DP with a catted one, and it feels like the car lost 20 HP and 50% of its awesome boxer sound. Speaking of which, a Subi boxer 4 has to be one of the damn coolest sounding motors I've heard, and I've heard a lot; it is up there with V12 Ferarris and Porsche F6's for awesome factor.

From here out, I'll need to weigh if the STi or the Miata gets the goods; I was thinking I would be much happier putting some sways and droplinks on the STi and leaving it be for 18 months (it has way too much roll stock that should be addressed), and concentrating on building the Miata.

Quote:
Originally Posted by TurboTim View Post
Very slick in dash computer there in your subie.

yeah, this is the most bestest forum I've ever been on. Besides the obvious miata tech, the quality of "other stuff" you'll find on here is pretty impressive.

I recommend Absurdflow for turbo stuffs. Not affiliated.
Thanks! That was a pain-in-the-*** project, but having a head unit built to your exact specifications, so long as you know a bit of python and GTK, is very satisfying, and thankfully I can duplicate it quite easily if the need arises. The Miata has a 2DIN slot, right?

Also, your moniker (Turbo Tim) threw me as I knew another Turbo Tim from rennlist (see Rennlist Discussion Forums - View Profile: TurboTim ) 8 years ago when I owned a 944 turbo. His shop was Speed Force Racing - Your forced induction specialists , though I don't know his affiliation at present.

Last edited by hotspoons; 03-30-2010 at 03:08 AM. Reason: fucking denver giraffes
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Old 03-30-2010, 04:03 AM   #6
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welcome! great intro thread, enjoy your stay here!
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Old 03-30-2010, 04:09 AM   #7
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I definately agree with you that the boxer is automotive harmony! Never have I heard such a beautiful sound from a 4 banger. It just has that unique sound that allows you to tell right off the bat what's coming at ya, like the Mustang GT's throaty rumble.

I would definately add a set of sways on the STI since it's relatively inexpensive (compared to building power anyways) and as you mentioned, has quite a bit of body roll. Otherwise, leave it as a kickass DD and build the Miata. Just my 0.02

Good luck on the NA! (and again, good job on the in dash computer. As a mild geek, I know it's a lot of work and it will be a cold day in hell if I manage to do such a thing)
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Old 03-30-2010, 11:24 AM   #8
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hello, great intro
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