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> Enter the Rx8, Grapplers shiny new daily
Grappler
  Posted: Oct 7 2016, 11:25 AM


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Since I'm the worst at updates I'll try and break this up into a couple of posts over a couple of days.

This summer went by way too quickly. I primarily focused on the quality of events I went to instead of quantity.
I cut down a bit on the Autox I went to and focused on going to more HPDE and Time attack related stuff.
Parts list was definitely short this year, I focused on just keeping the car as simple as possible and finding the limit of the car in every corner.

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My helmet expired so a visit to the local speed shop hooked me up with a 2010 Helmet and a set of gloves. I could of gone with just the helmet but I get really sweaty hands when I drive and so far the gloves have helped. Also on the docket where some track pads so I picked up a set of ST43s all the way around and some centric rotors. I probably could of gone something a bit more mild but this car maybe sees 350 miles of street use each year, So I'm not too worried. I did find it entertaining that these spendy pads come in such a plain brown box.

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So I ended up picking up a set of re71s in 245/40/18 same size as last year just a better compound than the old Rivals I had. Surprisingly I haven't managed to burn through the set yet, in fact I might flip them side to side and run them again next year.

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First even of the year in April I didn't even drive my car. It was a small HPDE run by the 365racing crew in Shawano, WI at USAIR. Keen observers may notice a wild Spazbadger posing in this photo. Since I didn't bring my own car, I had the rare opportunity to drive 3 out of the 5 cars that our crew brought down. I had a blast figuring out how to drive each setup. I even drove the infamous SpazEvo, still not sure how I feel about Evos in general but it was an awesome experience.
Spaz
Posted: Oct 11 2016, 07:42 PM


I just wanna go fast
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I never remembered to get this to Grappler, but here's the raw video from his session in my car.

YOUTUBE ( https://youtu.be/2UvTEGWkkwY )
Lonely_Driver
Posted: Oct 12 2016, 09:27 AM


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That's good advice about the event thing. I'm just not a huge fan of autox but it's way cheaper than a track day here.
Grappler
  Posted: Nov 9 2016, 02:31 PM


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QUOTE (Spaz @ Oct 11 2016, 07:42 PM)
I never remembered to get this to Grappler, but here's the raw video from his session in my car.


I was wondering what happened with that footage. Thanks for posting it man smile.gif

QUOTE (Lonely_Driver @ Oct 12 2016, 09:27 AM)
That's good advice about the event thing. I'm just not a huge fan of autox but it's way cheaper than a track day here.


Yeah, Most Autox events here are about $50ish If I skip two I can do short track day. $250ish for a whole weekend event.

Anyways I think this should cover the rest of the year. I've been trying super hard to balance race/life budget this year. Trying to save up for a big garage with one of those weird buildings people call houses.

I suckered myself into a single Autox event this year, if we don't count proving grounds. I felt pretty good with how I did. the DSP class here is kind of a joke so don't let the classing fool you.

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Sadly I couldn't drive at Gridlife this year, so I did the next best thing. I tagged along with Matt DeReus Racing (check him out on facebook). We met up with the RS/365 racing crew, at gingerman raceway for the time attack event they were hosting.

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Let me tell you even just being around these guys is a learning experience. I've never met such a friendly group of people that is willing to share what they know.

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After Gingerman I prepped the car for Proving Grounds. The classing is a bit, shall we say open ended so i took out the interior. My god did it sound awesome inside the car.

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:edit: looks like I might have to break this up a bit more :/edit:
Spaz
Posted: Nov 10 2016, 09:04 PM


I just wanna go fast
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QUOTE (Grappler @ Nov 9 2016, 05:31 PM)
:edit: looks like I might have to break this up a bit more :/edit:

*Looks at time stamp* Oops, someone ran out of work day.
Grappler
  Posted: Feb 22 2017, 10:21 AM


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About 7 or 8 months behind... I guess I could call this a semi quarterly update.

To quickly summarize 2016 I attended 3 more events before the year was over.

Proving Grounds 1 was my first time at a legitimate track. I competed in Triple track showdown and took 12th in class. I also set a benchmark time in my car around the BIR short course at 1:58.087 in a standing start.

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YOUTUBE ( https://youtu.be/vlVwrTS7do0 )


I came away with a few things to work on, as the saying goes "You always leave time on the track". Luckily I had a quick refresher at DCTC and also snagged a snazzy photo of my car.

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I came back to BIR later in the fall looking for .087 seconds to get into the 1:57s. I went into that weekend sticking with Just Autox and standing start time attack. Since no one wants to see a Rx8 drag race anyways. I'm not sure what it was but I found those .087 seconds and then some dropping over 4 seconds off of my personal best.

Fri. Autox 5th in class
Sat. Autox 3rd in class
Standing Start 1:53.927

YOUTUBE ( https://youtu.be/7XZC5wwqTMg )


Super happy with how list last year went, just looking back at all of this makes me that more excited for this year.

2017 Plans:

I think its time to give myself a bit of a mechanical advantage and fix a few things a long the way. The car developed a slight oil leak on one of the oil line quick disconnects so the whole system is getting redone. I've got some new brake hoses sitting on my counter and still need to delete the air pump in the car. Otherwise I'm hoping to throw a set of Bilsteins and springs at the car so I'm not riding on bump stops all the time but we will see what the budget allows for.






Spaz
Posted: Feb 22 2017, 01:05 PM


I just wanna go fast
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QUOTE (Grappler @ 2 hours, 43 minutes ago)
I'm not sure what it was but I found those .087 seconds and then some dropping over 4 seconds off of my personal best.

It's called improvement! You did well out there, man. I'm excited to see how much faster you end up this year with a few mods to the car and a winter's worth of letting this past season sink in.
xiao
  Posted: Feb 22 2017, 01:35 PM


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QUOTE (Grappler @ 3 hours, 12 minutes ago)
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Beautiful picture my friend!! ohmy.gif happy.gif

SPOILER
Grappler
  Posted: Feb 23 2017, 01:22 PM


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QUOTE (Spaz @ Yesterday, 1:05 PM)
It's called improvement! You did well out there, man. I'm excited to see how much faster you end up this year with a few mods to the car and a winter's worth of letting this past season sink in.


Haha I hope so and thank you. I'm so stoked for this season, new track(s) new parts and hopefully new limits.

QUOTE (xiao @ Yesterday, 1:35 PM)
Beautiful picture my friend!! ohmy.gif happy.gif


Thank you! smile.gif
Grappler
  Posted: Apr 11 2017, 12:19 PM


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Picked up the car this last weekend, which is a whole week earlier than normal. Wahoo! She started right up and gave me no issues. So of course I had to reward my car with part 1 of the mod list this year and the next morning tore all the suspension bits out and put new ones in.

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Shiny Bilstein HD (B6) and Tein S Tech springs. While not coil-overs it's definitely a step up from the blown suspension that was previously on the car. I'm just tired of riding bump stops in the corners, and the up-rated springs are already making a huge difference.

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We also took some quick measurements to see where I'm sitting alignment-wise and it looks like things have shimmied around a bit. Probably from a few curbs and/or off track excursions I've had. I really need to look into a quick trick alignment setup.

I'll hopefully finish the before/after measurements tonight should be able to rough in my alignment settings and figure out how much more of an adjustment range I have.



Grappler
  Posted: May 16 2017, 10:44 AM


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Busy day Sunday, got a chance to fix the leaky oil lines. Theme of the day was simplify, add lightness. 11 hours of wrenching later 9 oil lines became 3 and I removed a few pounds from the car. user posted image
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Took me several hours to make these oil lines I hope I never have to see them again.

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So much stuff in the way...

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A rare photo of the elusive spaz badger who happened to be wrenching right next to me.


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Grappler
  Posted: May 18 2017, 11:55 AM


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2 steps forward 1 step back as they say.

At the prompting of one of my friends we decided to wrench for a few hours again last night. Finally installed the brake lines that have been sitting on my shelf. ST-43s aren't exactly know for pedal feel but there is a lot of good feedback with these lines. I'm excited try these out and push them hard tomorrow.

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Of course Raceaflais had to rear his ugly head and hit me with the reality hammer. We finally got the suspension to settle of course we discovered that pretty much all of the front suspension bushings/adjustments are seized. I guess I can thank Mazda for that as they never lubricated the fittings from the factory. That said we tried to tweak the seized bushings as much as possible sadly the tie rods are also seized so the alignment is going to be pretty rough until parts come in. Should be close enough for a short couple of runs at the local driving course this weekend.


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I'm glad we discovered this now instead of later, it still destroys my budget for a while. On the plus side everything in the front of the car will be new and fresh. I've ordered up some power flex (Race 90A) goodness for the lower control arm assembly. Moog tie rods and a whiteline camber correction kit that I've had my eye on for a while. Another sleepless night in a garage never hurt anyone right?
Grappler
  Posted: Jun 6 2017, 01:22 PM


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Sleepless night was definitely an understatement. Knowing the bushings/tie-rods were seized in the front wouldn't do. Out came the emergency funds and a few days later a nice selection of parts showed up.

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Shopping list
Moog innner/outer tie rods
Whiteline offset upper control arm bushings +/-.5
PowerFlex Lower Control arm bushings (90a Race)
Mazda Factory alignment bolts $$$

I had the fortunate opportunity to use a friends garage and the gracious help of a couple of friends. Even with help I started at about 9 AM Sunday on memorial day weekend. Lower control arms came out with copious amounts of cutting and swearing. Making a nice pile of old bushings.

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On to putting in the new bushings, queue more cursing and cutting. Ironically it took us almost as much time to put in the new bushings as it did to cut the control arms out.

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By the time we started putting everything back together very late and the car didn't actually touch the ground till about 2:30 A.M. A rough (very very rough) alignment later and I arrived home at about 5 A.M. Monday morning. 18 hours of wrenching and a shower later the car could be aligned properly.


Was it worth it?


Well fast forward to last night Gridlife is literally a couple of days away and I was crossing my fingers that everything would go smoothly. Courtesy of that same friends garage and a quick trick alignment tool. We were able to dial in a fairly aggressive alignment. Hopefully I'll have a bit of time with a pyrometer at Gingerman to fine tune everything but its a hell of a baseline.

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Spaz
Posted: Jun 6 2017, 08:42 PM


I just wanna go fast
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That's an awesome baseline alignment! I'll have to play around with the pyrometer as well with the RS-4s... They've got a lot of rubber inside the contact patch in comparison to the VR-1s.

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