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Old 03-17-2011, 01:39 PM   #1
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Hey All,

Been lurking on MT for a little while but ready to make my introduction. I'll keep my bio brief, however feel free to ask questions.

I used to own a '99 that I bought brand new. Tracked it for ~6 years. Kept it pretty mild on the mods. Exhaust, sport brakes, coilovers, sway bars, wheels, rollbar and hardtop.

Sold the '99 a few years ago and experimented with other cars on the track (350z, Boxster S & JCW MINI Cooper). Last year I got back into a Miata, a brand new '09. Current mods include rollbar, coilovers, exhaust and wheels. Taken it to the track only twice so far, but more enjoyable than the '99 was.

Love the '09 but now considering a dedicated track car. Just found a '90 with 183K miles but only 80K on the motor. Has half of the FM catalog installed: FMII w/Hydra & 550s, FM oil cooler, Koyo radiator, FM happy meal and Koni/GC. Also has a HD sport rollbar.

Does this sound a like a good start to a turbo track miata? I've really enjoyed all my Miatas on the track but am I little leary about the reliability of a turbo. I've read through a lot of the threads here and it sounds like I might be ok with this car. I know that the diff will still be a weak point. Am I getting in over my head?

TIA

Nathan
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Old 03-17-2011, 01:55 PM   #2
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If it still has the stock diff that will defiantly be a weak point, but if the price is right it doesn't sound like a bad starting point. For the track you may need to change the studs on the mani of that car to keep them from getting loose, but other than that there are a lot of us track guys that have very little problems with our cars.
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Old 03-17-2011, 02:06 PM   #3
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fm2 is always a good starting point.
if its in great shape and has tons of parts already on it all you'll need to do is the normal "track prep" stuff like inconel studs, good diff, good brakes, and possibly re-route the coolant (unless all that is already done) and you're set.


Hit up Gotpsi? or Savington and his crew and they'll get you set up with the quickness.
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Old 03-17-2011, 03:48 PM   #4
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Ya, unfortunately it still has the stock VLSD. I've got the FM/M-Tuned coolant re-route but needs to be installed.
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Old 03-17-2011, 03:53 PM   #5
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As for the price, I think its a good deal but you guys tell me. I can pick up the car for a little more than what it would cost to buy a new FM kit w/o electronics.
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Old 03-17-2011, 03:54 PM   #6
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If its a track only car (and your brave), run it till it breaks. I ran mine for 2 years and it never broke. I just swapped over when the parts came free or close to it.

Last edited by Gotpsi?; 03-17-2011 at 04:28 PM. Reason: bad things can happen
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Old 03-17-2011, 04:24 PM   #7
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bamo?
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Old 03-17-2011, 04:48 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by Gotpsi? View Post
If its a track only car (and your brave), run it till it breaks. I ran mine for 2 years and it never broke. I just swapped over when the parts came free or close to it.
Why do I need to be brave? Ya, I'm going to try not to fiddle with things too much. Have a tendency to fix things that ain't broke.
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Old 03-17-2011, 04:49 PM   #9
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bamo?
Yup...is that you Matt?
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Old 03-17-2011, 05:08 PM   #10
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Well the brave part is because of the worst case scenario. Say your at Thunderhill and your going around turn 8 at about 100mph and it just decides to lock up when it brakes or turn 10 at Infineon and it puts you into a wall. Or it could just strip gears and be done but you never know. And unfortunately a torsen swap is the most expensive thing to do when it comes to these cars. There are less expensive options like the rx7 diff in a open housing though.
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Old 03-17-2011, 05:44 PM   #11
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Yup...is that you Matt?
yup! how you been?
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Old 03-18-2011, 01:09 AM   #12
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Well the brave part is because of the worst case scenario. Say your at Thunderhill and your going around turn 8 at about 100mph and it just decides to lock up when it brakes or turn 10 at Infineon and it puts you into a wall. Or it could just strip gears and be done but you never know. And unfortunately a torsen swap is the most expensive thing to do when it comes to these cars. There are less expensive options like the rx7 diff in a open housing though.
Hmm, food for thought. Never thought it would lock up, just that it would blow up and free wheel. I'll be definitely keeping an eye out for a deal on a diff.
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Old 03-18-2011, 01:15 AM   #13
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yup! how you been?
I've been good. Playing Goldilocks with cars and getting myself ready to get married.

Good thing the wifey to be is very supportive of my addicition.

How's life on the other coast? Sadly, I haven't seen much of BAMO in a long time.
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Old 03-18-2011, 01:16 PM   #14
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Haha, welcome to all BAMOans.

Why is the 09 more enjoyable at the track than the 99 was?

As for "turbo reliability" - it's got to do with heat generated, simply from the power production. As mentioned in an earlier post, you may start to have perpetual turbo-to-manifold-studs loosening issues, and the proven fix is to upgrade them with roughly Trackspeed Inconel studs (may be cheaper). They do require that the manifold holes be redrilled and tapped for the larger diameters (not a big deal).

Aside from that, big fans, and a 6 speed (if making big torque, >12 psi on a 99+ or >18 psi on a 1.6)


Cheapest big brakes are the 01+ factory "big brakes" - I've got a front set for sale
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Old 03-18-2011, 01:44 PM   #15
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Haha, welcome to all BAMOans.

Why is the 09 more enjoyable at the track than the 99 was?

As for "turbo reliability" - it's got to do with heat generated, simply from the power production. As mentioned in an earlier post, you may start to have perpetual turbo-to-manifold-studs loosening issues, and the proven fix is to upgrade them with roughly Trackspeed Inconel studs (may be cheaper). They do require that the manifold holes be redrilled and tapped for the larger diameters (not a big deal).

Aside from that, big fans, and a 6 speed (if making big torque, >12 psi on a 99+ or >18 psi on a 1.6)


Cheapest big brakes are the 01+ factory "big brakes" - I've got a front set for sale
Hey Jason, long time no chat. Hope things are well.

'09 > '99, IMO, stiffer chassis, better powerband, better brakes and bigger trunk which means easier to pack for the track.

The studs seem to be another thing to watch out for. I'm not looking to make big power, or at least I say that now. The car is a 1.6 w/GT2554R. I'm thinking 200 hp, 2K lbs would make for a fairly reliable and fun track miata.

I'll keep you in mind when I'm ready for some brakes.
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