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It's time for Super Tours unleash the NB cars!

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#61
Steve Scheifler

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Or, you know, learn to drive a stick. ;)
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#62
Jim Drago

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If we are going to have even an ounce more power, we need to switch to 6-speeds.
 
The 5-speeds are trash. I consume about 4-5 per year due to 3rd gear blowing up.


You clearly have ran a six speed on track? Biggest pos ever made.
The 5 spd is not the issue, two season on my box in stl with 195 hp.
Sadly transmission failures I see are 90-95% driver related . If you are tearing the teeth off of third or twisting shafts, 100% driver.
If using that yellow tractor trailer clutch, throw it away and run a STOCK Mazda pressure plate. I have lost two transmissions in 15 years of SM. One at Hallet and one at cota that just got hard getting into third and was 2 seasons old

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#63
CDM

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Ah, so this is the "NA6 turns 30 and has a midlife crisis" episode isn't it  :laughing:. I propose we should just mandate an LS swap for every NA SM so they can all midlife crisis together and simultaneously buy and be the Corvette it always dreamed of  :hugegrin:  :hugegrin: . joke time over.

 

My honest noob opinion of this is generally not in favor anytime soon due to the cost/parity disruptions, though all cowboys ride into the sunset eventually....

Depends a lot how the NC series does methinks.

 

Now onto a personal point:

I possibly wouldn't be racing if it weren't for the 91 NA I was able to convince my sponsors (read: parents) to invest in to initially prove my ability and generally make sure this class is what I wanted. 8K is a lot easier to convince for this than 15-20K+ I'll tell you that much lol. There's no better way to prove this and improve my skill as quickly as possible than a HST event. So for my second ever race I went to the Atlanta HST and came in the top 10. Being able to race against the best naturally makes you better (and since the 1.6 punishes every little mistake I'd count this point double). Limiting this great, cheap, AND high quality intro to racing NA to NB SM learning path would turn it into a system of doing vintage/regional races learning/cementing questionable habits and then moving up to majors/hst with those. It basically shifts the price up and decreases the critical initial skill development...

Bonus point: They're so dang cute I'd miss seeing them on the grid  :crying2:

 

P.S. Tyler, 4-5 transmissions A YEAR? Please post a video of your shifting I'm legitimately interested in this


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#64
TylerQuance

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Jim, have run a 6 speed on track in WRL. Ratios are strange to get used to but I thought it was fine...?

Have used a stock pressure plate forever. Have tried sprung clutch discs too.

 

Corrected to 3-4 per year... got a little excited.

 

Definitely agree it is driver and track dependent. I have heard all the theories and believe 3rd breaks for me after a couple cycles of abrupt left foot braking with throttle overlap. Difficult habit to break but is not a problem in any other car or any other gear. Momentum transfers fast into a gear that was not designed to transfer torque backwards. Upshift as hard as you want I say... the brake pedal is what breaks them. I can prove this in 2 laps at any track of your choice if someone donates a gearbox I can turn into a box of rocks.  :pessimist:

 

I break one every time I go to Hallett, I believe the issue initiates in T6 braking

I break one every time I go to Sebring, I believe the issue initiates entering T5

I do not break them at COTA, but many others do. I do not LF brake here and skip 3rd on the downshifts.

 

3rd gear has oiling grooves where I believe stress concentrates at the base of the tooth in 4 places making the gear weaker than the others.

 

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#65
Martinracing98

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The more I think about this the more strongly I am in the camp that says do not anything splits into  regional and non regional type of classes. Multiple people have described, like myself, that they do a little of both. Also looking at tracks like Blackhawk the SRF to SRF3 has resulted in cost after the initial upgrade for brakes, and transmission changes and has knocked 2 seconds of lap record. I do not think the gained speed will be worth the split or worth the possible extra wear on things like brakes.

 

I think providing a pathway for 1.6 NA to become 1.8 is great if manageable. People I know that are on the fringe thinking about getting in look at the low cost of 1.6 NA and like it, but worry what if the statements of being not competitive are true. Then they have invested in a car that can not ever compete. A 1.8 coversion pathway would allow people to get in at low cost with an incremental path to the 1.8 motor.

 

Then what else? We have discussed previously one tire set for HST and some majors. I think that is great. Is there other things that make these more race cars? Remember we are dealing with perception when it comes to pulling people in not the actuality of the racing. I am not sure the dash we run makes it a better race car. Would getting rid of it make it appear like more real of a race car?



#66
Jim Drago

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Jim, have run a 6 speed on track in WRL. Ratios are strange to get used to but I thought it was fine...?
Have used a stock pressure plate forever. Have tried sprung clutch discs too.


I find them to more fragile and impossible to get in the correct gear. The gates are way too close together. I ran one in my stl car for two sessions, over revved the car as I was in the wrong gear 40 times ;( Literally almost stopped betweeen gears and said ok this is third.. oops first , oops 5th.. same with 4 versus second and sixth. Worst designed transmission I have ever driven. The NC 6 speed not all that great, but easy to drive. 
They suck

I left foot brake quite a bit, so did Craig Berry. Both very easy on boxes? Stearns and Sandlin do not left foot brake and go through the same boxes about every 2-3 weekends, both have gone through two in one weekend on several occasions? No idea what that means, but add it to your data file?   I have watched videos of Blake and Stearns and did not see anything hat stands out. Both have blown up third and almost always twist the counter shaft 
.


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#67
OrangeCrush86

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If Danny Steyn wins a few big events in a 1.6L. No one will question parity anymore and we can all live happily ever after. 

 

He already single-handedly fixed the NA8. :)


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#68
Jim Drago

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If Danny Steyn wins a few big events in a 1.6L. No one will question parity anymore and we can all live happily ever after. 

 

He already single-handedly fixed the NA8. :)

I include in him each night in my prayers when I confess to god what I am thankful for  :)


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#69
Tom Hampton

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Definitely agree it is driver and track dependent. I have heard all the theories and believe 3rd breaks for me after a couple cycles of abrupt left foot braking with throttle overlap. Difficult habit to break but is not a problem in any other car or any other gear. Momentum transfers fast into a gear that was not designed to transfer torque backwards. Upshift as hard as you want I say... the brake pedal is what breaks them. I can prove this in 2 laps at any track of your choice if someone donates a gearbox I can turn into a box of rocks.  :pessimist:
 
I break one every time I go to Hallett, I believe the issue initiates in T6 braking
I break one every time I go to Sebring, I believe the issue initiates entering T5
I do not break them at COTA, but many others do. I do not LF brake here and skip 3rd on the downshifts.
 
3rd gear has oiling grooves where I believe stress concentrates at the base of the tooth in 4 places making the gear weaker than the others.

 

Huh. I would expect stabbing the brake while still on the throttle to induce an increased FORWARD load. 

 

I'd think abrupt 4-3 downshifts with minimal brake (or similar downshift without rev match and using engine braking to slow the car briefly) would be more inclined to induce high (reverse-shock) loads...such as T1 at Hallett.  I know a few drivers who basically just jam it into 3rd at turn-in, use the over-rev to slow the car enough and back to FT.  Seems like the oscilating load from FT 4th gear, to unloaded (clutched), downshift to 3rd, declutch, over-rev reverse-load, FT 3rd gear would be harder on the gear box. 

 

I've never broken a tranny, but I broke my Mazda Comp with a missed 2-3 upshift from the abrupt reverse torque.   Perhaps if I'd had a torsen, the gear-box would have broke instead. 


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#70
TylerQuance

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Huh. I would expect stabbing the brake while still on the throttle to induce an increased FORWARD load.

Yeah that makes sense.
Accel with the drivetrain would be the same direction as decel with the wheel/brake rotor.

All I know is that I can break a gearbox warming tires in 3rd on an out lap. Lots of abrupt gas-to-LF braking. I don't warm tires in 3rd anymore.

Back on topic... did better shocks help or hurt our numbers? Same? Faster cars would be neat, but they are still Miatas and it still costs the same to compete. We are here to compete with each other in equal equipment that is supposed to be low-cost racing. It doesn't matter to me how much power we make as long as it is still a test of skill.

Spec Miata remains the best way to compete with [lots of] pro-level talent on an amateur budget. That is the draw for newcomers we need to uphold.
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#71
Carl

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So how much performance (in terms of lap times on an "average" track) would be unleashed by eliminating RP and reducing weight?



#72
Bul Winkle

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A few late observations based on inputs... 

 

Making observations to any other Spec racing class might not be relevant. In some cases, it was a parts issue on some, or rules advances in others, but either way, the cars evolved. Miatas are not in these groups, as there are still many eligible cars, and likely few imminent parts issues, so if we can stay in our own lane, and focus on what needs to happen to grow our own run group, that may be something this body could strive for. 

 

Several threads are discussing what to do to assist SCCA in growing their fields. I ran in Phoenix, where a 60-70 car field for the entire entry population was the norm2 NAs entered. There was definitely a problem, and. am not sure they are running road races any more there. The idea of excluding anyone at the base from an opportunity run at a higher level even will only discourage that are in our base. Aside from that, what if there is another aspiring Danny Steyn (or put your name here______) out there with an NA that does well against the 99s? Bring it. Nothing more fun to watch than Mactutus in his NA6 running in the top ten at Road Atlanta last season.

 

Sooner or later, the 99's will have to come to terms with their own age related issues, just as the NAs are doing now. Vintage is an opportunity for the NAs, but turnout relative to the cars that are out there might not be sufficient to sustain that program. Only time will tell, and besides that, the reputation for contact has soured a few of those groups to say 'never ever'. That is not a good path forward as other cars had once not longer SCCA competitive. I do run with a couple of vintage groups in an NA, and am working to be an ambassador, but even some in attendance can't get past their "I see you, so I must hit you". The challenge remains. 

 

Parity will always be a challenge, this diatribe is not intended to argue that further, but there are plenty of cars that COULD come out, if there was a way to manage on track challenges that would make it worth doing so. If there is truly a desire to fill a field, and NAs, NBs, and NCs, and (NDs, and NFs) are all truly different, then let them be, and grow the entries. It could be be Run Group A, Larries1, Larries2, and Larries3.

 

 

 

AAAAAAAnnnndd GO!!!



#73
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Back on topic... did better shocks help or hurt our numbers? Same? Faster cars would be neat, but they are still Miatas and it still costs the same to compete. We are here to compete with each other in equal equipment that is supposed to be low-cost racing. It doesn't matter to me how much power we make as long as it is still a test of skill.
.


Good question Tyler. I can give a personal answer.

The shift to decent shocks kept me in SM. I was getting bored and frustrated driving a car with suspension that required odd turn in driving techniques to be really fast. As Haldeman noted to me, now the car goes into corners like a race car. My first drive with the Penskes was a revelation. And fun.

What adds to that fun is when I pull out my ballast and run at around 2350. And when I pull my restrictor plate. It’s a different car and far more engaging to drive. I don’t buy the argument by some that doing this increases our risks or car wear.

I really do understand the arguments by NA car owners. But I’d love to race SM in a lighter and unrestricted (no restrictor plate) car.

CNJ
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#74
Danny Steyn

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Good question Tyler. I can give a personal answer.

The shift to decent shocks kept me in SM. I was getting bored and frustrated driving a car with suspension that required odd turn in driving techniques to be really fast. As Haldeman noted to me, now the car goes into corners like a race car. My first drive with the Penskes was a revelation. And fun.

What adds to that fun is when I pull out my ballast and run at around 2350. And when I pull my restrictor plate. It’s a different car and far more engaging to drive. I don’t buy the argument by some that doing this increases our risks or car wear.

I really do understand the arguments by NA car owners. But I’d love to race SM in a lighter and unrestricted (no restrictor plate) car.

CNJ

 

Claude, despite you and I agreeing of most things in the past, this is one area I think we diverge on. Personally I have never seen an exception to "Speed Costs Money". The faster you go, the faster you spend. I wish it wasn't true, because I would personally like to race faster, but in my experience the laws of physics don't lie. The faster you go, the faster you wear sh!t out, the faster you crash , the faster you spend money.

 

The more lateral G's, the faster and more profound the lateral wear. The more longitudinal G's the faster and more profound the longitudinal wear. Whether its tires, brakes, rotors, parts, engines and more. And I don't have an NA car, but I also don't want to see them excluded either. But, hey, just one voice in the wilderness! It's all good!


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#75
Steve Scheifler

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I’ll agree with Danny on this with the one special exception that sometimes “faster” is the result of things working correctly and costs actually go down. Look back to the original stock hats & stops. Too little compliance, travel and camber meant we had to choose the least bad of lousy setups, either wearing tires unevenly shortening their life or driving a skateboard that overheated them. In theory the Penskes are the final step in that evolution, controlling the suspension better for improved performance and less tire wear.

All that said, the Miata runs in many other classes so there should be plenty of comparative data out there.
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#76
callumhay

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So how much performance (in terms of lap times on an "average" track) would be unleashed by eliminating RP and reducing weight?

For me as a mid pack, (maybe back pack), sometimes front mid pack , well never really mid pack, Larry: not much. Maybe a couple of seconds at Sebring but still 4-5 seconds short of the fast guys. ( Running a different class so I'm not in the SM group just comparing times). If everything was the same you could probably do a rough calculation assuming that you were on 100% power approx  60% of the time (although that is track-dependent) and factor in the percentage increase in horsepower and then factor that in to lap time. I have tried that as a predictor for me and it is frustrating because I am not consistent in the other percentage of time off gas...because as we know losing speed in these cars is a killer.  I've read on here in other posts that removing the plate will not help your lap times much...which is surprising when you see the size of the damn hole in it. I believe it if you are talking about an average driver... Now the fast drivers I'm sure would eke out a considerable lead over the slower drivers with the extra HP.

 

  For anyone struggling to find speed  I would suggest running a different group one weekend with your miata so you can watch the SM group. Assuming the field is decent and skilled you will see a noticeable difference in the entry speed, mid corner speed and line in the first 5-6 cars compared with the rest and you will see it progress to the negative as all the cars go through. It is "not much" but is indeed important in setting up a good lap time...especially when compounded lap after lap.  Then just get back in your car and go and try and do the same thing  :)

 

The restrictor plate I am trying to remove is the one in my head which says "Oh sh!t, there's a corner, I need to slow down" to replace it with " Here comes a corner and I know exactly what I am going to do with it."  IMO if you have not mastered the car at low HP, removing the RP just makes that whole situation worse as it does make you brake earlier due to higher speed....and for me it just goes downhill from there. 

 

Maybe others will be able to answer your question from an everything equal perspective ( consistent driver, optimized car, same grip etc)

 

At the end of the day though when we are talking about the future, what age cars are going to be the best? I think it is a good discussion to have...but even an NB car is still 20 years old and at some point the same discussion is going to be had about them.  I guess I'm curious as to what factors are in play that have held the Spec MX 5 back from being a majors class with sealed engines?

 

Cal 


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#77
Cnj

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Claude, despite you and I agreeing of most things in the past, this is one area I think we diverge on. Personally I have never seen an exception to "Speed Costs Money". The faster you go, the faster you spend. I wish it wasn't true, because I would personally like to race faster, but in my experience the laws of physics don't lie. The faster you go, the faster you wear sh!t out, the faster you crash , the faster you spend money.
 
The more lateral G's, the faster and more profound the lateral wear. The more longitudinal G's the faster and more profound the longitudinal wear. Whether its tires, brakes, rotors, parts, engines and more. And I don't have an NA car, but I also don't want to see them excluded either. But, hey, just one voice in the wilderness! It's all good!


Claude?

Anyway, as Steve and Bench have joined the chorus, I obviously need to defend my honor :)

Does a totally juiced STL exhibit more wear and tear than a stock SM? Sure, I’d believe that. But you guys are splitting physics hairs by taking a position that removing weight and restrictor plate from my NB car (between 3-5% change) is impactful.

On a practical level - for the last 12 years I’ve been pulling weight and restrictor for track days. I have no evidence of any additional wear and tear. If it exists, I certainly can’t measure it. On the other hand my joy is increased 7.35%.

On a theoretical level, is it your argument that a 50-75 pound weight reduction will increase lateral loads on hubs, suspension, etc? If so, then make your engineering argument. Will the car come into the braking zone a little faster? Sure. While I would buy the argument that the braking distance might be slightly longer, I could also make the argument that a lower mass = lower loads.

Anyway, I stand by my opinion. I have more fun driving my car with slightly lower weight and slightly more power.

C(Craig)NJ
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#78
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Anyway, I stand by my opinion. I have more fun driving my car with slightly lower weight and slightly more power.

C(Craig)NJ

 

Craig, I do not have the numbers to compare restricted car to non restricted car, and I agree that I don not expect the cost increase to be very significant, but I do believe you will notice it. In terms of HP only, my understanding is that non restricted 99's will make around 13-15HP more and VVT's around 9-10HP more than there current restricted versions.

 

Trust me, I too like to go faster and for that I have now run my STL program for 3-1/2 years. On average I am going 5% faster in my STL car compared to my SM car in terms of lap times (4.5% for tracks with only one 5th gear straight and 5.5% faster for tracks with more than one 5th gear straight). For me this pleasure of running 5% faster has increased my costs by approx 2.5 times the cost of running SM. 

 

I guess the mathematicians and engineers can extrapolate from this curve, and figure out the cost increase. But I have never seen tires or brake pads last longer when accelerating faster or decelerating quicker. And I suspect engine costs will also go up as the rush to find the heads and headers and intake manifolds that flow better will require more time on the dyno.

 

And sorry about the "Claude" - too much wine at lunch for me! Was channeling my inner Inspector Clouseau!


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#79
Steve Scheifler

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I never said you would be able to clearly identify the difference, and so long as the cars don’t get more tire rather than less I doubt very much that you would. But I like to agree with almost everyone once in awhile, even Danny. :)
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#80
Bench Racer

Bench Racer

    Different strokes for different folks : )

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  • 5,306 posts
  • Location:Wauwatosa, WI
  • Region:Milwaukee
  • Car Year:1990
  • Car Number:14

Wating :bigsquaregrin:


Broken record - You are starting to sound like a broken record. Donor - Made PayPal donation Bona fide - A bonafide Spec Miata driver




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