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Haha well that was probably because I don't have the capability to make it look any less car-like.
For clarification, it still looks like a Miata since you retained the front bumper instead of hacking it in half and adding an air dam like a lot of the more competitive racers on CR. I know the air dam is more aerodynamic, but I feel like it ruins the look of the car.
 

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Discussion Starter #107
For clarification, it still looks like a Miata since you retained the front bumper instead of hacking it in half and adding an air dam like a lot of the more competitive racers on CR. I know the air dam is more aerodynamic, but I feel like it ruins the look of the car.
Ahh yeah, I see what you mean.
I do understand the 'air dam' idea that people go for, but I agree with you. I feel it loses the cars fundamental lines at the front, and makes it look ugly.
 

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Discussion Starter #108
So not a lot has been happening with the Track car lately, in fact it's literally just sat in the corner for the last month and a half. But I've started back on the car this week hopefully it will be in good running form within a few weeks with the last of the mechanical pieces buttoned up.

In the meantime, I've fettled with the NA a little which excitedly includes taking it to Broadford for a track day with the Local Nissan Skyline Car Club.

Had a blast running around on the track, it's been way too long. And while the car had some random chinese hard tyres and generic brake pads, it was till great fun.
A track day on a 'street' car is sure to find the weak links in the chain... in this case, the generic spark plugs suffered under the stress, the stock upper radiator hose got all fat and ballooned, and the supercharger belt was stretched and rubbing itself away, there was a buildup of rubber gunk under the bonnet as a result.
So, some new plugs, belt and hose and the car is good as new.

I actually entered to get my brother to come along for his first on track event. He managed to work down from a 1:22 to eventually a best time of a 1:17 in a completely stock Toyota 86. I had a go for a session and did a 1:15 in his car so we have a bit of a benchmark.
A short clip of my brother with me in the passenger seat giving some instruction.

And a couple of laps in my car while it was still healthy, plenty of fun tassling with the likes of a Porsche Cayman GT4 and a Nissan GTR. The porsche was running what appeared to be slicks :-O
 

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Discussion Starter #109
So it has been a long time between updates (as usual really).
Progress on the Track car has been slow, sometimes it seems like it is the lowest on the priority list after all the other things in life.
But with that said. lots of things have been happening.

I've spent some time fiddling with the idea of a water sprayer for the intercooler, and have made up a little Alu reservoir bottle which supports the factory windscreen washer bottle pump. A good opportunity to put my welding skills to the test as this was very thin aluminium.


And for an experiment, here's the new battery that's going in the car. I bought two for redundancy purposes, but I'm crossing my fingers that just the one will suffice.
They are LifePo4 batteries, and as such are considered to be safer than typical RC LiPo's but still offer many of the power output and weight benefits. They were about $60ea I think so pretty good value if they hold up, or an expensive paper weight if I blow them up.


The car used to run a strut tower brace - in my opinion they don't do a whole lot. But the reason I ran it was for the big bolt I used as a brake master cyl stopper.
So, I designed up my own brake master cyl stopper which is with the laser cutter at the moment which will allow me to leave the strut brace off completely. This is a pic of a 3dprint prototype to confirm my dimensions and I was pleased to find it all lined up mostly perfect. Next step is to make the steel version.


Onto the supercharged NA, as I mentioned in the previous post, the car got a new upper radiator hose which was a generic silicone job off ebay. A new SC belt - they are super easy to find as the part numbers are generic, I think this new belt is off a Mazda CX-5. And some fresh spark plugs.


Another thing which got me a little bit excited, installed some of these side skirts on the car. Big fan of the look, I think they really make the car look lower and more agressive.



We've got ANOTHER car in the garage... This rather sad looking NA6 has arrived for some much needed TLC. I've already got to work on it and made a lot of progress as you can see from the pictures below.
It needed all new glass, a variety of mechanical attention, a whole lot of cleaning, and some mild panel beating among other things.
More details on what I did, and what the plans are for the car are yet to come, but rest assured it will get the same treatment as all the BEAVIS cars - that being lots of love but thrashed at the track!



And, lastly, a litte bit of a plug... super excited because I've gotten some new PVC stickers made! I designed them up myself using my limited Photoshop skills.
These things are perfect for bumpers/windows/external use, and if you are keen for one (please buy one and support me!), please visit my web store: http://www.beavismotorsport.com
 

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Discussion Starter #113
In case you hadn't noticed. It's been a suuuuper long time between updates - the longest I think I've ever let it go. Why? Well mostly just because of all the other MX-5 things that needed to be done. But the main item worth mentioning that I've been working on is another MX-5!

Now this sorry car was destined for the local car wrecker, so I snapped it up before they got their dirty mits on it!
A 1990 NA6 with some 250,000kms on it, stolen and recovered. But sadly very badly damaged in the process. If I ever met the people who caused all this damage boy would I want to give them a 'stern talking to'. Honestly they damage they caused to someone elses property for ZERO benefit just boils my blood.


Anyhoo, after picking the thing up effectively sight unseen, I had to assess the damage and, well, the to do list was immediatly pretty extensive:
  • Every window was smashed
  • Roof was slashed beyond repair
  • All 4 quarter panels were kicked in
  • Ignition barrel was destroyed
  • The car was filthy inside and out
  • The shifter needed a complete rebuild
  • And the list goes on....
So I quickly got to work stripping the car down for a 'rebuild'. The door trims needed to come off to be repaired, the seats and rear carpets were removed for cleaning and the damaged roof removed.


One of the first things I wanted to get completed was the new soft top. I sourced a new roof online and swapped it over on the existing frame one night while in front of the telly. Not too hard to do but certainly time consuming. Here it was after first throwing it back on the car, its certainly nice and taught when latched down!


Then the interior needed to be reassembled, I repaired the door cards which were pretty sad, cleaned everything up as there was glass EVERYWHERE! And, gave as many things as possible a wipe/clean/paint as necessary to get the interior up to scratch.
I had a spare ignition barrel and keys from my NB track car, so I replaced the damaged NA item which doesn't have quite the same dimensions but I was able to make it work.


While I was at it, I swapped in a nice new short shifter with new bushes as the shifter in the car was completely trash, it felt horrid and was as floppy as a........ well something really floppy? Took that as an opportunity to also video the install process. As seen here:


Onto some of the exterior items, and firstly I had to remove the bumper and guards to try and clean them up and straighten them out. The fools who had stolen the car had kicked the crap out of the front guards, the drivers side was particularly bad. I was able to recover it to a respectable level with some careful massaging. Still damaged/wavy but not completly ugly.


Under the bonnet, things seems pretty good and in fairly good nick. There's the usual oil leaks that you get with an old NA, so first thing I did here was replace the valve cover gasket. While pretty much all the other seals need attention also, this will do for the moment.




While under the bonnet, I also took the opportunity to add a little bit of bling with this radiator cooling panel designed by yours truly. Makes for an awesome shelf to keep your tools in order while working on the car and really neatens things up! Want one? You can order them from www.beavismotorsport.com/store


Onto the rear body work. This was some of the more daunting work the car needed as this was much more extensive body work than I'd expected would be required before collecting the car. Anyway, it was just a matter of getting in there beating out the dents from inside the trunk area, then sanding back the exterior paint and smoothing it over with filler.


After a few nights/weekends here and there I was able to get it good enough for some primer and for the first time be able to visualise a mostly straight pair of rear quarter panels.


While they werent body shop perfect, I really did think they were 99% there. I had the odd few little spots that were a little off but again, given how the car was when I got it I really felt this was a complete transformation.


To finish off that job, of course I need to give it all a paint job - it actually turned out much better than I expected, however, it ended up being so nice that it didn't blend in well enough with the rest of the car. So I ended up trying to paint the whole car. With only 1.5ltrs of red paint on hand, I sadly ran out toward the end of the paint job so I'll re-do it someday in the future to get a better result. But, nonetheless it's already WAY better than when I first saw the thing!


Basically the ONLY modification this otherwise stock car got was a set of these hilariously cheap coilovers. WHY??? Well, for science mostly.
Yeah, I was just genuinely interested in seeing how they might perform for sub $500 coilovers. You can't expect them to be very good at that price, and this seemed like as good an opportunity as any to find out how they would do.


If you're interested in finding out how they actully perfromed, well I've put a video together on that here with my take on things:

And so, the final result was a car saved from the wreckers and back on the road! An MX-5 still running and driving on the road makes me ever so happy. This car is club registered for occasional use only, hence the burgundy front registration plate. And now the plan for the car is to help my brother to set it up as a super cheap track day car. Something just to get out there and have a drive.


Lastly, if you are curiour around the question of costs.... in terms of actual money spent, it's probably well under $2000 to get to this point.
HOWEVER, I spent MANY hours bring the car back from the dead. Would I have been better off just buying a half decent car for maybe $4-$5k? Sure, but then I wouldnt be able to say I saved and MX-5 from a certain death!
Stay tuned for updates on how we make this car a track toy, and of course next time I promise there will be news on the BEAVIS Turbo NB.
 

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Discussion Starter #114
Thought it would be fitting to post up a lap of me in Dave Moores impressively fast 300+HP turbocharged daily/track car.

This is my first time at Winton Raceway with the new surface, and my first time driving a car with this level of power on track, but I apparently set the fastest lap the local MX-5 club have on their record list. That's mostly thanks to the capability of the car, and NOT me... as I am very rusty and certainly don't want to bend someone else's car.

Nonetheless, the thing is a hoot to drive and it's great to see it getting to the point of being fairly reliable on track.

 

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Discussion Starter #115
How about that update on the Track NB that I've been owing you all for oh so long? Well here it is!

So finally back onto the Turbo track car.... and first up, I thought it would be fun to post up a video I put together of what it's like trying to start a car for the first time in about 2 years after an excessive collection of changes have occurred to the poor thing.
The cars had a lot of changes between running from ecu retunes to turbo installs to new ignition system to completely different injectors to a change in the entire intake system. You can probably predict roughly how it goes.

The cause of the start issues ended up being simple, in reworking the wiring for the ignition I had to donate some of my wiring loom to another car for a short while and in the process, the pinout on the deutsch connector for the coil packs had been switched... resulting in Cyls 1&4 firing when 2&3 should have been, and vice versa.



Moving on, one of the breather lines was annoyingly close to the dipstick, and if you know anything about these cars, you know the dipstick handle is made of faberge egg... if you even just think about touching the dipstick it breaks.
So to try keep the hose away from the dipstick, I found a spare 45deg bend AN fitting and it made such a simple thing seem so satisfying. Not strictly necessary, but it made me feel good.




Regarding the forementioned battery from a few posts ago, I ended up designing a mounting bracket, and hooking the thing up to an anderson connector for easy disconnects or to attach a jumper pack etc. Mounted up under the dash so battery cabling is all very short and should save a nice amount of weight.
 

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Discussion Starter #119
Now if you've been following my posts via Instagram/Facebook you'll have seen I recently got this Electric water pump in and working.
Why go electric water pump? Other than the personal challenge and my own curiosity in something different, it will allow for running the pump even when the motor has stopped, which will presumably be good for the turbo, it makes bleeding a breeze as theres no thermostat and therefore no need to run the motor up to temp to try flush out air pockets and it is controllable via the ECU.


To get the thing in and working, I first needed to remove the old mechanical belt driven water pump (which was brand new sadly so theres $100 down the drain - doh!) and to get to the water pump, meant all the 'bits' on the front of the motor need to come off including valve cover and plastic timing belt covers, pulleys and the timing belt then lastly the water pump itself.



In place of the old water pump I've installed a modified & gutted spare water pump. This pump has had a block off plate welded where the old impeller lived, and is needed to do 3 important things... 1) fill the big hole in the front of the motor, 2) Provide mounting locations for the timing belt pulleys, 3) provides the convenient location on the exhaust side of the motor where the water pump inlet housing bolts to...
You can also see the slightly odd nakedness of having no water pump pulley. All I need now is a belt from the crank to the alternator. No other belt driven items on this motor anymore.


Speaking of the inlet housing, that also copped some modification. I flipped it 180 degrees, shortened it, and blocked off the old holes for the heater core hard line and the small coolant line barb.


With all that done, the new Electric Water Pump had a home to go to, and it fit right in. The pumps inlet and outlet are about 38mm diameter, wheres the Mazda runs 32mm hoses. So I found some aeropro branded straight reducers locally which fit perfectly on each end, and made the install a breeze. (now that everything else was modified to suit)


The elec pump is now all plumbed into the radiator, and the inlet to the 'dummy water pump'. It sits in place just with the support of the silicone hoses, no brackets or other mounting is required.



And, it's high enough above the bottom of the subframe that it shouldnt have any issues clearing the lower splitter and floor... And most importantly, the thing is pumping fluid! I ghetto rigged up a car battery to check it was all happy and it ran like a dream. Made some really amusing gulping noises for a minute or two before all the air was purged.


Keep a look out as I've got a video coming in a week or two with more detail on the EWP if you are keen to see how it was done and want to hear my soothing voice talk you through the process. :p

Cheers
 
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