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Old 07-01-2008, 07:57 AM   #1
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Default Spec Clutch Stage 3-5 Question

I have recently purchased my turbo kit from BEGI and now i need to choose a clutch. I have done my homework and been reading the threads and now i am pretty much decided but i wanted to make sure that there isn't a better option.

I think i am going to go with the ACT HD with a 6 puck spring pp, but before i do i have one question.

Does anyone have experience with the spec stage 3 4 or 5, because they are all the same price or a little cheaper than the ACT and i was wondering if they might be a better option. I read Samnavy's experience with the stage 2, and that is an option but i was wondering if any of the other stages might be better. The car is going to be mainly street driven, but i have no problems operating a heavy clutch.

The goal i have in mind is to have the most reliable clutch for a car that will be producing 200-240whp.
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Old 07-01-2008, 08:49 AM   #2
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No Miata experience, but I had a Spec Stage 3 paired up with a Fidanza LWFW on my Mazdaspeed Protege (stock clutch started slipping on the dyno).

It held well, and gripped hard, but I wasn't a fan of the engagement. It didn't start to grab until pretty high up in the pedal travel, and didn't have much travel once it started to engage. I got used to it, and could drive it pretty well...but good luck throwing someone else the keys, lol.

One other small part that was really annoying (since it was my DD), was an intermittent squeek when letting the clutch out (right when the clutch started to engage). Others on the MSP forums had similar issues, but I was told it could be more related to it being a puck clutch vs. it being a Spec clutch, FWIW.
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Old 07-01-2008, 10:08 AM   #3
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check with carolina clutch for ACT prices first.
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Old 07-01-2008, 10:18 AM   #4
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I have also since re-evaluated my Spec dislike. When I swapped in my new motor and inspected the clutch, there was an obvious hot-spot on the PP and an uneven heat-ring on the disc. Although my clutch install was meticulously and painstakingly done, there stands a good chance of operator error during the install. Either that, or a couple of the PP bolts stretched or something weird.

In any case, since I reinstalled the clutch on my new motor and turned up the boost, I couldn't be happier with my StageII Kevlar. It grabs like a champ with decent modulation and stock pedal effort, and is dead silent. If it lasts 50k miles, it's a dream.

Kinda makes me look like an *** for all the ****-talking I did. I don't know how the kevlar would hold up on the track after it gets really hot, by for DD, it's pefect.
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Old 07-01-2008, 01:19 PM   #5
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Default Pricing

Carolina clutch is where i went to find pricing 391 shipped for act HD with sprung 6 puck. that compared to 335 spec stage 2, 326 spec stage 3, 335 stage 4, and 402 for stage 5 at http://www.jdsperformance.com/spec.a...iata&fcmd=cars

So in the end I am wondering if any of the higher stages are worth getting over the ACT. The problem i am having is it seems there are very few who have tried spec much less the higher stages. Currently combing through other miata forums to see their experiences.
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Old 07-02-2008, 11:36 AM   #6
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I had a Competition Clutch in my 03, Stage 4. 6 puck ceramic, engaged like stock and held everything I threw at it... On top of that, CC are great people.
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Old 07-02-2008, 11:48 AM   #7
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How much power do you plan to make? An ACT HD standard disc can hold ~300 whp fine.
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Old 07-02-2008, 02:05 PM   #8
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As i said i am going to end up around 200-240whp, so i don't really need the clutch to be able to hold up to 300 but that would be a nice 20%+ margin of error.

The advantage i see in spec is that the users seem to think it feels more like stock than the ACT and it is a competitive price , but the only reviews i found on the stage 3-5 were drag racers that were using 3+ and they just briefly mentioned it still felt like stock. There don't seem to be many daily drivers using spec stage 3-5.
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Old 07-02-2008, 02:20 PM   #9
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Out of all the clutches I've tried I liked the Centeroforce dual friction the best. The pedal was softer than stock, and engagement point in a normal spot. It engaged like a street disc and held my 230-250rwhp. I had an issue, like sam, where my initial install was to blame for a slipping disc. When I pulled it, it had hot spots, likely due to improper torquing of the PP. The nature of carbon fiber and kevlar discs require a proper torque, as they have low friction coefficients, but handle heat and longevity better.

Before that I had the ACT HD street disc. Stock like pedal, quick engagement. In my case it failed to hold more than 220rwhp or so. Dunno why, but it did, while others have seen over 240rwhp on theirs. The only complaint with the ACT is the engagement point, I still really dont like the low point. Otherwise, great clutch.

Currently I have a ACT HD PP with a 6-puck clutchnet disc. I love and hate it. Since the ACT PP engages low and the nature of that 6-puck is to clamp fast without slipping, it took a bit of getting used to. So DDing it can be troublesome, but I'm very smooth with it. I only have issues where I'm daydreaming of men and i make quick launches when i fail to go at green, sometimes it simply throws me back into my seat and off we go. The 6-puck however it absolutely great for holding power. It locks. No slipping at all, rev it up and dump and watch the tranny eat itself.

I've also driven on a 1.8L ACT HD - street and enjoyed it. as well and a 1.6L ACT XT street. I actually like the heavy pedal coupled with a street disc. Same thing with an Exedy Stage I, drove a car with this a few times, felt stock handled a **** ton of ******** abuse with over 190rwhp and tons of clutch kicks.
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Old 07-02-2008, 02:31 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tiber55 View Post
As i said i am going to end up around 200-240whp, so i don't really need the clutch to be able to hold up to 300 but that would be a nice 20%+ margin of error.

The advantage i see in spec is that the users seem to think it feels more like stock than the ACT and it is a competitive price , but the only reviews i found on the stage 3-5 were drag racers that were using 3+ and they just briefly mentioned it still felt like stock. There don't seem to be many daily drivers using spec stage 3-5.
Get the standard ACT HD 1.8 clutch and never think about it again.
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Old 07-02-2008, 03:12 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Braineack View Post
Exedy Stage I, drove a car with this a few times, felt stock handled a **** ton of ******** abuse with over 190rwhp and tons of clutch kicks.
My friend has an Exedy stage 1 in his K20A2'ed EP3. I think its my favorite clutch I've driven. His car doesn't have a ton of power, so I can't comment on its overall holding ability, but it doesn't slip at all on a launch or when bangin' gears, and it feels wonderful.
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Old 07-03-2008, 02:01 AM   #12
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I have had a lot of success with Spec on my Mustang but never used it on the Miata. I currently running a ClutchNet setup and I like it. Check them out too. They will still honor the GB price if you ask.
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