Bill - '97 STO

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rennkafer
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Bill - '97 STO

Postby rennkafer » Fri Aug 14, 2009 9:38 pm

Ok I figured it's time to start a build thread...

I bought the car Jun of last year (08) looking like this... had the Volk TE37's, Tein Basics, and rollbar on it from PO.

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After a couple months I changed over the wheels/tires to a set I had in storage for my Lotus 7 replica (which has Miata spindles)... figured it was better than letting the tires rot.

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The first things I did to the car were rip out the ugly wood trim kit, change out the beat up head unit,put in some mats, and do basic maintenance. I also added a Flyin Miata exhaust and sway bars.

The Tein Basics turned out to NOT be a feature of the car that I liked... they're about the worst coilovers I've ever driven on and Tein should be ashamed to sell them. After much research I decided to pull the trigger and had a couple long talks with Sheikh at FatCat Motorsports. This ended up with me buying a set of custom valved, damping adjustable Bilsteins from him. Being part of the very first group buy on these it took a little waiting time for them to be done, meanwhile I collected other parts to put on the car. These included a Torsen diff, new clutch (Clutchnet), light flyhweel (Fidanza), Poly control arm bushings and diff bushings (Energy Suspension), Mazda comp engine mounts, and an M45 supercharger kit.
Bill J
1997 Miata STO, 550/350 FCM adjustables, 15x9 6UL, 225/45-15 RS3's, 6spd, turbo in progress...
1967 International Travelall
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Re: Bill - '97 STO

Postby rennkafer » Fri Aug 14, 2009 10:42 pm

Now that I have the coilovers, I'm putting on the whole suspension, Torsen diff, clutch, flywheel, bushings, cleaned/painted control arms all in one three day weekend. Here are some pics of the first day of that process...

Noon today...
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4:30pm today... Exhaust off, suspension off, diff out

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Before a little cleaning...

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After some cleaning...

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Found a couple things to fix while I was there...

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Either the trans seal or the rear main is leaking... Oak Tree had the seals in stock though, thanks Frankie!

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I'd actually found this before, but since the exhaust is off I'll take care of it. This is what happens when you run over a plastic grocery bag on the freeway... STINKS!
Bill J
1997 Miata STO, 550/350 FCM adjustables, 15x9 6UL, 225/45-15 RS3's, 6spd, turbo in progress...
1967 International Travelall
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Re: Bill - '97 STO

Postby rennkafer » Fri Aug 14, 2009 10:59 pm

A few more pics from today...

If you're going to take your car apart, mark stuff so you remember what goes where...

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Mark where the suspension was... the alignment won't be perfect when you're finished but it's closer than guessing...

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Here's a few of the parts going on...

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Bill J
1997 Miata STO, 550/350 FCM adjustables, 15x9 6UL, 225/45-15 RS3's, 6spd, turbo in progress...
1967 International Travelall
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Re: Bill - '97 STO

Postby Savington » Fri Aug 14, 2009 11:11 pm

Bill, I was chatting with Nick (roommate) about your alignment problems. He said that front alignment problems can be caused by funky lower balljoints. Replace those alignment bolts and your lower front balljoints while you have everything apart. The bolts are $40 or so from Frankie with the BAMA discount.
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Re: Bill - '97 STO

Postby Popstoy » Sat Aug 15, 2009 7:25 am

I wasn't aware that you could replace the ball joints without replacing the a-arm's, and agree bad ball joints will screw up a alignment. Bob
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Re: Bill - '97 STO

Postby rennkafer » Sat Aug 15, 2009 7:31 am

Popstoy wrote:I wasn't aware that you could replace the ball joints without replacing the a-arm's, and agree bad ball joints will screw up a alignment. Bob


LOWER balljoints... they bolt on. It's the uppers that aren't replaceable.

Andrew, the only problem we had was the tech saying -1.8 was all he could get. While I can't disagree with you on those things being possible causes, I think the lower balljoints (which are really well supported in the arm) would have to be mightily bent (mine aren't) to cause much issue. I will look them over more carefully today though I did already check them for play (none). I'm thinking the tech may have been BS'ing us... you recall the day we had it aligned they had to do it twice and I think it's more than possible he was BS'ing. I also have two full sets of alignment bolts... I'll go through those carefully too, though again unless they're visibly bent they shouldn't have much effect on alignment.
Bill J
1997 Miata STO, 550/350 FCM adjustables, 15x9 6UL, 225/45-15 RS3's, 6spd, turbo in progress...
1967 International Travelall
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Re: Bill - '97 STO

Postby Popstoy » Sat Aug 15, 2009 11:07 am

Bill could you be ride height challanged, with not being able to get the camber you want. It's possible to scarafice a little castor for camber. Bob
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Re: Bill - '97 STO

Postby howangsNA » Sat Aug 15, 2009 12:57 pm

hey bill, where did you pick up the redline oil? Local or order from the intereweb?
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Re: Bill - '97 STO

Postby Douche Bag Boy » Sat Aug 15, 2009 3:25 pm

I didn't mark any of my hardware and didn't have any trouble with reassembly ;)

Though I usually place things in a way that I would be able to tell where they came from.
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Re: Bill - '97 STO

Postby 2cam16 » Sat Aug 15, 2009 6:36 pm

Looking very nice,Bill. Keep us up to date.
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Re: Bill - '97 STO

Postby rennkafer » Sat Aug 15, 2009 9:25 pm

Douche Bag Boy wrote:I didn't mark any of my hardware and didn't have any trouble with reassembly ;)

Though I usually place things in a way that I would be able to tell where they came from.



Your stuff wasn't apart long... try doing a restoration that way, you'll start marking stuff.
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Re: Bill - '97 STO

Postby Douche Bag Boy » Sat Aug 15, 2009 9:32 pm

rennkafer wrote:
Douche Bag Boy wrote:I didn't mark any of my hardware and didn't have any trouble with reassembly ;)

Though I usually place things in a way that I would be able to tell where they came from.



Your stuff wasn't apart long... try doing a restoration that way, you'll start marking stuff.


Remembering now that we did bag and tag almost everything when we "restored" the front end of my car :lol:
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Re: Bill - '97 STO

Postby rennkafer » Sat Aug 15, 2009 10:28 pm

Ok here's tonights update... Nick came over and helped me in the morning and we got the trans out, shifter rebushed, old clutch/flywheel off (old one was stock 17lb, new is Fidanza 9lb) and new ones back on. Mazda comp engine mounts are in, old differential bushings out and housing/mounts cleaned up and painted. After some errand running I went back and made the front upper offset bushings in the machine shop at work.

Ok now pics...

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The final product on front left with an original style poly bushing front right...
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Bill J
1997 Miata STO, 550/350 FCM adjustables, 15x9 6UL, 225/45-15 RS3's, 6spd, turbo in progress...
1967 International Travelall
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Re: Bill - '97 STO

Postby rennkafer » Sat Aug 15, 2009 10:30 pm

howangsNA wrote:hey bill, where did you pick up the redline oil? Local or order from the intereweb?


Hoang, I bought it through work at Speed Warehouse in Hayward... Vic Hubbard (their retail side) would have it too.
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Re: Bill - '97 STO

Postby howangsNA » Sat Aug 15, 2009 10:32 pm

so the offsetted bushing is to get more neg camber?
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Re: Bill - '97 STO

Postby rennkafer » Sat Aug 15, 2009 10:35 pm

howangsNA wrote:so the offsetted bushing is to get more neg camber?


Correct, I want more camber than I can get at my ride height.
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Re: Bill - '97 STO

Postby Douche Bag Boy » Sat Aug 15, 2009 10:58 pm

Is the stock you're using for the offset bushings poly or what?
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Re: Bill - '97 STO

Postby rennkafer » Sat Aug 15, 2009 11:22 pm

Douche Bag Boy wrote:Is the stock you're using for the offset bushings poly or what?


Delrin
Bill J
1997 Miata STO, 550/350 FCM adjustables, 15x9 6UL, 225/45-15 RS3's, 6spd, turbo in progress...
1967 International Travelall
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Re: Bill - '97 STO

Postby Popstoy » Sun Aug 16, 2009 6:01 pm

Aren't you worried, the delrin is a little overkill for the street, being it's not completely maintance free, nor a life long, one time mod? Bob
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Re: Bill - '97 STO

Postby rennkafer » Sun Aug 16, 2009 9:52 pm

Popstoy wrote:Aren't you worried, the delrin is a little overkill for the street, being it's not completely maintance free, nor a life long, one time mod? Bob



I've had 3 or 4 cars with all delrin or UHMW bushings (and probably 6 or so with Poly), none of the bushings lasted less than 3 years or 30-40k miles.... given that I put maybe 200 miles a month on the Miata on average I'm not worried that they'll wear out soon. In my experience, Delrin/UHMW bushings don't require any more maintenance than poly bushings IF you use the nasty gooey lube that comes with the poly bushings, which I do.

If they prove to be a pain.. I'll just put in the poly bushings that came in the kit and realign the car with less camber.
Bill J
1997 Miata STO, 550/350 FCM adjustables, 15x9 6UL, 225/45-15 RS3's, 6spd, turbo in progress...
1967 International Travelall
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Re: Bill - '97 STO

Postby Popstoy » Mon Aug 17, 2009 12:19 am

I've had Derlin, and poly in a few cars as well, just too much maintance for me. I've got poly in my car now, but they're bonded sleeve like oem, made by a company in England, called polybush. A little on the expensive side at $550 a set, and they don't make offset's. With my Tein Flex's, I can set my ride height independent of spring rates or preload, so camber isn't a problem for me. How much static camber are you trying to get? Surely you realize, unless you planning on running "R" rated tires that can use 5+ degrees of neg camber, any static camber that would exceed 5+ neg camber at full bump, does nothing but burn up tires faster. No that's not completely true either, Neg static camber of 2-3 degrees on a street tire will give you a little quicker initial turn in, but will lose traction long before you get to full bump. Do you have powersteering, and are you going to keep it. Some don't like powersteering for any number of reasons, weight, hp, feel. Increaseing castor adds to feel and increases the camber curve, allowing less static camber to be used, and still reaching the full bump camber, with turning, that you desire. Forgive me, I'm sure you know all of this already. Bob
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Re: Bill - '97 STO

Postby blackmx5 » Tue Aug 25, 2009 4:24 pm

Nice writeup bill, if you need a hand with the JRSC let me know, ive done a few over the years.
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Re: Bill - '97 STO

Postby rennkafer » Tue Aug 25, 2009 6:27 pm

blackmx5 wrote:Nice writeup bill, if you need a hand with the JRSC let me know, ive done a few over the years.


Thanks, will do. I'm thinking it may not be a standard install, though I might install it stock then change things up. I'm thinking about leaving the TB in the stock location and using a bypass valve... no idle droop issues.. no boost lag... and then an intercooler too.
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1997 Miata STO, 550/350 FCM adjustables, 15x9 6UL, 225/45-15 RS3's, 6spd, turbo in progress...
1967 International Travelall
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Re: Bill - '97 STO

Postby red5racing » Wed Aug 26, 2009 11:28 am

Bob/Bill:
How difficult is it to swap out the bushings? Hints and tips? I would be replacing with stock bushings.


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Re: Bill - '97 STO

Postby rennkafer » Wed Aug 26, 2009 1:44 pm

With access to a press and lots of sockets and bits of tubing to properly support the arms it wasn't tough, just time consuming. From what I've read most people heat up the bushings until the bond breaks and beat them out. There's a writeup on M.net somewhere I think.
Bill J
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