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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
After messing around with this rather elaborate fastback project for so long I am ready to start something much more simple, inexpensive and no t fiberglass related. With the NB fastback nearly done and ready for orders, plus making the changes for the NA version and coming up with a stripped down DIY/track version… the fiberglass guys are going to have their hands full.
I've been trying to figure out what to do for a diffuser for my car.
I've been thinking about an elise diffuser for a while (saw the one mounted flush with the bumper on m.net in the huge aero thread 2 years ago) and seeing what _thepass_ did with his NA settled it.
As a side note, that car is one badass all business NA…I love it.
Huh… I just look that that m.net thread (bookmarked) and see the flush mount was _thepass_ as well... nice work.

The lotus diffuser seems to work almost perfectly with our miatas, but finding a used takeoff isn't that easy and will get even harder as people catch on, the prices are all over and the aftermarket ones are fairly expensive.
So I decided I'd like to create a new diffuser from scratch, using these key design elements of the lotus diffuser:
-Aluminum construction, obviously.
-3 separate sections (maybe 4?), likely with 2 different angles
-rolled edges, cost permitting

Other then that I plan to change the dimensions and shape to be more miata specific.
I'm also looking into making the center section with the appropriate curve and not just flat with a bent in angle. Accepted geometry seems to be to start at 6-7deg and transition to 16-20 deg
I would like to keep it 3-4 separate pieces to keep shipping costs down. It will be easily assembled with a basic hand rivet gun. I'd like to include some basic mounting hardware including turnbuckles for the trailing edge to give people freedom to play with the angle as well as install it further forward or backward.
There are a few other idea's I'm kicking around
-simple pan for ahead of the diffuser
-A-arm pans to further smooth about airflow before the outside sections of the diffuser
Both are things that should add very little cost to the kit, and both could be optional.
I'm thinking about offering more then one versions of this kit, something like...
1. basic aluminum diffuser pieces only
2. diffuser and pans only
3. diffuser and hardware
4. diffuser, pans and hardware.

Of course, I want it to be attractively priced, and I want to be able to have a final design and ship them asap without going through change after change like we have with the development of the fastback.

I have talked with the local fab shop that make a lot of reproduction shelby parts for our mustang restoration and parts business and am meeting with them in the next week or two to go over options and figure out costs. They are pretty high tech (laser scanning, laser and water jet cutting, cnc etc) and specialize in sheet metal fab for industrial applications (around here that means food and paper plants, high end yachts and military trucks) and this is a cakewalk for them.
The only issue will be balancing features and price.

Thoughts?

As for _thepass_... I think I may owe you a free diffuser for the inspiration.
 

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Sounds awesome. Are you going to design for a cut bumper or under the stock one?

I would assume a cut one, I would be interested on the turn out of these I am wanting a diffuser.
 

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Sort of on topic suggestions for parts!

I feel like a locally built aluminum underbelly (Beatrush style) might be a hit as well. Also, the diffuser coupled with a shorty bumper or bumper cutout helper might be good as well.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
No bumper plans except maybe including some sort of cutting template piece of plastic or paper to tape on your bumper and mark it. My thoughts with the turnbuckles is for max flexibility to work with cut/uncut bumpers and all the aftermarket options out there. I would think the best setup would involve cutting the bumper not so much to clear the diffuser, but to vent heat and above pan airflow.
Yeah... was thinking about the same thing bronto. This sort of aluminum stuff is cake, its coming up with slick mounting solutions that tough. If people don't mind just getting the metal and being on their own... no problem. Our cars are all so radically different chances are there will be no "one size fits all" mounting solution anyway.
Eventually I should just add a generic hardware section to my online store with turnbuckles, panel fasteners etc. I have a store up and running by the way... its just hidden because there is nothing in it yet ;)
 

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Might I bring up the possibility of an aluminum panel that would cover the mid section of the car? Basically, a piece that would bridge the gap between a Beatrush style underbelly panel and the diffuser.

I for one, would be very interested in a piece like this, especially in conjunction with any type of miata specific aluminum diffuser.
 

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I think this should one step at time personally. There is alot going on under this area and if warhorse wants to appeal to the largest group of people, they will have to figure out a way to fit all kinds of bracings for the miata w/ the diffuser and the bridge panel. Finish the diffuser first, lets see how it looks, and then lets talk about the panel to bridge the gap.
 

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I am very interested. A DIY mounting option would keep cost down, and most people who want this can figure out there own mounting.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I am very interested. A DIY mounting option would keep cost down, and most people who want this can figure out there own mounting.
I tend to agree with this. I think the best way to handle this is aluminum
panels only and maybe expand to more of the underside. I can then work with customers to start a tech section on the website (and a dedicated thread here when Warhorse gets full sponsorship and its own forum section) with different peoples approaches to mounting, links to best prices on associated hardware etc. That will keep cost down, get the product out faster, make my life easier and get some good mounting ideas out there without having to wait and see what we come with for the kit that may or may not work on your car. A lot will rest on the shoulders of the pioneers who jump on this... But that's nothing new.
 

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very interested
 

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Sort of on topic suggestions for parts!

I feel like a locally built aluminum underbelly (Beatrush style) might be a hit as well. Also, the diffuser coupled with a shorty bumper or bumper cutout helper might be good as well.
+1, and the radiator cooling panel too
 

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Discussion Starter #18
This weekend I took measurements, did some proper drawings and made a 1/8 scale model out of cardboard. I just brought the drawings and model to the fab shop and met with the CAD guy. It went very well and he said my ideas were good and they would have no problem producing it, but we didnt get into costs yet. We should have some numbers by the end of the week and a prototype shortly after that.
 

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I really like the idea of a "rivet yourself" type of kit. Im sure this would greatly reduce shipping costs.

Looking forward updates
 
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