1 2 3 4
KyAllroad UltimaDork
11/18/21 8:19 a.m.

1.6 brakes.  Cross drilled for even more lightness.

Coilovers should be lighter than factory struts.

Add turbo....wait, that went the wrong way, but worth it!

David S. Wallens
David S. Wallens Editorial Director
11/18/21 8:35 a.m.

So, seriously, do I want to think about removing the a/c? It hasn't been used in years. This is not a daily driver. The car goes to and from events. That's it. 

KyAllroad UltimaDork
11/18/21 9:08 a.m.

In reply to David S. Wallens :

The last mod I did to my first Miata was to remove the AC.  After that I just couldn't stand it as anything but a race car and it got sold.

My next two didn't have AC and lasted just months each.

Now I have AC again (two NCs and the current turbo NA).  I just prefer the option of cold air.  Even in a race car, while sitting in grid it's so nice to be able to turn on a cooling breeze.

But if it doesn't work and you don't care, it does take some weight off the nose of the car.  The bracket the compressor bolts to must weigh 10 pounds and getting it out of the engine bay helps with cooling.

David S. Wallens
David S. Wallens Editorial Director
11/18/21 9:34 a.m.

FWIW, I can't remember the last time I ran the a/c in this car. Maybe 15 years ago? I should see if it even works....

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
11/18/21 10:33 a.m.

Coilovers are not necessarily any lighter than factory shocks. In fact, I'm going to say all of the two-piece units on the market are heavier. The super-cheap eBay ones are incredibly heavy. About the only place a coilver has an inherent advantage weight-wise is a smaller diameter spring - and on poorly specified ones, springs that are too short :)

Meanwhile, our aluminum-body Fox shocks are 40% lighter than a Koni.

Cross-drilling rotors isn't a great choice because 1) that mass is actually doing something and 2) cracked rotors suck. But yes, if you don't need the heat capacity going to small diameter rotors can help. Lighter calipers help even more.

I'm old now. I like AC :) But it's a good place to save a chunk of weight, especially if you also pull the evaporator out from under the dash. There's a piece of plastic ducting that goes in its place. David, if you want to trade a full AC system for that chunk of ducting, I'd be interested...

It's surprisingly hard to pull significant weight out of an early Miata. Mazda didn't talk as much about their "gram" strategy at the time but it was there. You pretty much have to be resigned to giving something up.

Most extreme I've come across: gun-drilling the long bolts in the front upper control arms
The one I kinda wish I hadn't done: stripping the support and hinges off the bottom of the trunk lid and attaching it with pins. Just a PITA almost all the time. But I suppose it does make trunk access easier when I have the wing mounted.

Toebra Dork
11/18/21 5:30 p.m.
tpwalsh said:

Buy a hard top, remove the softtop. It's worth 30 lbs or so.

This will change which autocross class you are in quite significantly

1 2 3 4
Our Preferred Partners