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wvumtnbkr GRM+ Memberand PowerDork
8/27/21 10:42 a.m.

I can tell.tou from experience on a 2nd gen rx7 that a gurney lip on the front edge of my hood vents did massively positive things to the airflow and underhood temps and engine water temps.


It was WAY worth it.



RedGT Dork
8/27/21 3:06 p.m.

Good to know.  I am really hoping my schedule works out and I can test the venting and gurney lip back to back before winter.

RedGT Dork
9/9/21 10:23 a.m.

It's been a while between events and I have had an abnormal amount of time in the garage due to a quarantine period and taking some vacation days that had to be used by the end of the year.  So let's make the RX8 pretty again.


Since the spare hood turned out to be gorgeous I put it on and cut up the other one.

Then the fenders looked especially bad by comparison, and i could see that from the driver's seat which is the only view i really care about.

So I went back and bought the good fenders off the same car.  They needed some minor rust repair at the bottom but the top of them had actual clear coat, and no more snow-plow-dent.

Now the front looks like a E36 M3ty crash repair or something with it not matching the doors and quarters, so that gave me motivation to try and clean up the paint on the parts of the car that don't unbolt easily.  Like the glass, it was covered in a layer of this thick crap atop the 'normal' clear coat failure and oxidation.  What I found was that Meguiar's Scratch-X cut right thru it.  Specifically that brand.  A few other scratch removal products don't even touch it (Nu-Finish, Mother's, my old 3M rubbing compound II) but whatever combination of abrasives are in this one work great.  My guess is there are other products in the 'clear coat scratch repair' category that would work too.  So, apply liberally and go to town with a cheap random orbital buffer for a WHILE.  It cuts the glass clean and makes the paint pop again!

Before, the result of testing a variety of products with little success, and casually chipping away with a razor when I felt like it:


And after:

You can see around the outside edge of the glass some of the gunk remains that I will have to polish out by hand.  But the bulk of it is done and so much better.  


And the rear window.  I don't have a 'before' pic of this but it was about as bad as the sunroof.  Now it looks ordinary and boring, like any other rear window that you can ACTUALLY SEE THROUGH.  Finally.  Again, some remaining gunk along the bottom edge that needs to be chipped off or hand-polished.

Here we have the new fender installed, forward area of door has been 'polished' and is a reasonable enough improvement:


And the car as it sits today.  The passenger side is done, the driver's side is still a work in progress.  It was facing south without shade for most of the car's inactive period and is much more sun-blasted and doesn't pop back to life as well.

RedGT Dork
10/25/21 10:14 a.m.

I've never been a fan of the black wheels, though they were sort of growing on me.  A set of CS-legal gold RPF1's popped up in a neighboring region so I grabbed them.  Met up at an autocross about 2 hours away from both of us to pick them up.

Like most 17" wheels on these cars, they just barely clear the brakes.  Actually these have more room than some, wheel weights fit with no sweat:


I was planning to take the Falkens off the black TrackLites and swap them to the new wheels, but a friend had takeoff nearly-dead Yoko A052 so I picked those up to see how they compared.

I've learned from my Miata a few weeks ago that once Yokohama edges look that thin, one good spin/lockup will finish them off and expose cords.  They're fast until bald but don't seem to have ANY visible change in the rubber before you hit cords like some other tires.  It just happens.  This is one of the Miata tires that died recently:

But we'll give it a try.  I'm bringing an extra street tire spare to events in case of cording a tire or two and facing a long drive home. 


And here they are on the RX8.  I like the red/gold.  This car finally looks decent IMO.  From this side anyway.

RedGT Dork
10/25/21 10:46 a.m.

So the RPF1 w/ 245/40-17 Yoko A052 are a solid 5 pounds per corner lighter than the TrackLights w/245/45-17 Falken RT660.  Only about 1.8 pounds of that is the wheel, the rest is due to the difference in tire size and brand.  The shorter size makes for better acceleration as well, correcting a goof i made when buying the Falkens.

So far I tried them at one event and it went very well.  I've run at this particular site a bunch this year and the pavement has very little grip compared to, well, everywhere else.  I thought by the last run of the last event, I had finally figured out shock and tire pressure settings for here, so I tried exactly that on these 'new' tires and hoped for the best.  The mostly cloudy, cool day with a breeze had me using tire blankets.  After 3 runs they were only needed on the rear which was amusing.  Either my driving style or the car's setup is working the front end noticeably more.  It's not a difference I had noticed at previous events but I'll have to figure out if there's any actual concern.

The course had some quirks and painfully tight sections to negotiate but the car generally did whatever I asked of it which was a really nice change from struggling to get it to turn at this site most of the season.  The results showed it, finishing technically first in pax by the slimmest of margins, ahead of a number of people that I had been behind for the last few events.  Full disclosure, the guy in 2nd place only got 3 runs (out of 6) before rain moved in and ended the event early.  I assume with 3 more runs he would have beat me.  On the other hand I ran the time shown on my 3rd run and kept hitting cones trying to go faster afterwards so maybe not.  It's all bench racing at that point but even a 2nd place finish would be a marked improvement over the rest of the season with this car.  I definitely like the Yoko's feel and forgiveness more and am more comfortable tossing the car around on them.

Bonus, it was wet most of the way to the event in the morning and most of the way home in the afternoon so the tires got very little street wear.  I'm hoping to get two more events from them this year and then buy a new set for 2022.

CyberEric Dork
10/25/21 11:17 a.m.

Nice! Car looks great!

Indy "Nub" Guy
Indy "Nub" Guy PowerDork
10/25/21 4:46 p.m.

Looks good with the new wheels yes

RedGT Dork
11/2/21 9:56 a.m.

Ran another event, in the cold, with rain.  Found two things going on.  I think the shocks just have too much compression damping, even at minimum, for this very low level of grip.  The tires never felt any warmer than ambient, as expected for a rain event.  On top of that, the rear tires were more bald than i thought so the car was not confident on throttle.  The result was tiptoeing around and managing to win the class but wayyyy off the pax pace.



Hungary Bill (Forum Supporter)
Hungary Bill (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand PowerDork
11/2/21 4:27 p.m.

Lovin the red/gold look and I'm watching those hood vents with interest.  Is there any chance you own a magnehelic gauge?  I'd be very curious to see what the underhood pressure looked like before and after.

RedGT Dork
4/22/22 10:47 a.m.

After a verrrryyyy long winter, finally back at it.  First track event with the vented hood.

So I hadn't datalogged before but just from keeping an eye on the temp, even in ~60 degree weather the coolant would get up over 200 degrees on track. On a hot summer day it would clear 220 and then I'd do a cooldown lap.  Often times waiting for a point-by would create a cooldown sector anyway so it wasn't a HUGE problem but certainly an inconvenience.

This is a log of lap 6 with no traffic during the whole session, no cooldowns, just going full bore the whole time.  (data is only 1hz which is why there appear to be some no-lift shifts.  I'm not that hardcore, sorry)  Temp climbs to the 190F range and that's it.  Comes back down to thermostat point rapidly too.  Every lap looks like this, there's no longer that steady gain of ~5 degrees a lap until it hits 220 and i back off, like i was seeing last year.  So far the hood vents seem very effective, looking forward to testing more in hot weather.


Obligatory PoconoPicture:


And I suppose I got all the value out of these (used, free) tires at this point:

RedGT Dork
5/3/22 11:24 a.m.


Looks alright from a few hundred feet away.  Looks even better blurry in the background.


RedGT Dork
5/18/22 10:19 a.m.

Another event.  Solid temps again.


Had a small vibration in the front end about like I've had since the hood was installed.  During the second session it was clearly changing each lap and getting slightly worse each time so I came in early and checked everything over.  Couldn't find any issues, marked the tires on the off chance they were moving on the rims, and went out for the 3rd session.

Ho. Lee. berkeley.  I'd heard of tires moving on the rim and suspected it on my autox car before but never actually bothered to check.  The red marker line began the session aligned with the valve stem...


So that explains the vibration.  Wow.  I *think* the mfgr's colored dots on the tire were aligned with the valve stem initially like they're supposed to be, but I wasn't sure hence adding the extra mark later on - if the dots were aligned, then the tires have actually moved a half-rotation in 3 sessions meaning they're about as out-of-balance as possible at the moment.

I guess I'll pull the wheel weights off and see how it is from there.  Can't get any worse I don't think!  


RedGT Dork
9/14/22 2:30 p.m.

To make a miscellaneous update to this thread, the track season was cut short this year because we moved.  The RX8 now has lots of space to play with its friends but in the process I burned so much vacation time that weekday track events got axed.

I did take all the wheel weights off and it drives nicely at all speeds on the street again.  So i guess i won't bother balancing the yokos on these wheels in the future...or get wheels with a knurled bead area.


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