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Maniac0301
Maniac0301 Reader
4/16/18 1:20 p.m.

Its been ages since my last update.  I'm still driving still loving the car.   This last weekend we had a rallycross event at the Port St Lucie fairgrounds for the CFR SCCA region.  The car is really getting dialed in and I'm improving every event as a driver.  I'm now jostling for position amongst the faster guys with cones being the deciding factor between 6th and 5th place for me out of 12 drivers.  There are 3 drivers that are just out of my league right now jostling for the podium finishes and then a group of about 5 of us with me mostly in the bottom of that pack.  Heres some in car video from the event.  I only managed to record 2 runs the first in the morning and the 2nd from the afternoon runs driving the course the other way around.

 

 

I've got some livery additions coming up as well as a window net I'll be installing in preparation of the May Daytona Showcase event.  For anyone in central FL May 5th and May 6th is a showcase event where there will be club racing, autocross, and rallycross all withing Dayton Speedway.  The event is free to spectators and ride alongs will be available at no charge for all types of driving.  I will only be there on Sunday May 6th due to family obligations on the 5th.  

GIRTHQUAKE
GIRTHQUAKE New Reader
4/17/18 12:35 p.m.

It amazes me how under the radar the AW11 has stayed, despite how impressive their suspension setups are. Maybe the mid-engine status gives people pause?

Maniac0301
Maniac0301 Reader
4/17/18 3:43 p.m.

I get a lot of appreciation for the MR2.  There's a general fear of snap oversteer when pushed but I've not looped it yet despite getting fairly sideways.  I do run with my swaybar removed for the dirt so that may be a factor.  This is the only vehicle I've driven quickly offroad so I don't have much comparison to other platforms though.   A couple people who've ridden along seem to come out of the experience surprised at the car and they way it can dance around.  You do have to setup the weight transfers ahead of time and theres no power to pull you out if you get it wrong you just bog and go slow.  It also seems that people think its harder to work on because of the mid engine but I've not found that to be the case for the first gen the 2nd gen sucked though.  Much of that may be due to the removed A/C and EGR stuff so perhaps it gets harder with those items intact.

racerdave600
racerdave600 UltraDork
4/17/18 3:53 p.m.

I raced and autocrossed MR2s for years, and never found the 1st gen cars to snap oversteer.  Sure if you jumped off throttle mid turn the rear would come around, but nothing like the early 2nd gen turbo cars.  Mid engine cars were always my favorite as you could turn the car with the throttle.  Once you understand how they work, its difficult to go back to any other car.  Its like a whole control system other cars lack.  

 

Maniac0301
Maniac0301 Reader
4/17/18 10:47 p.m.

I've definitely found that to be the case even in the dirt I don't feel the car to be out of control with snap oversteer.  I can certainly balance things for a good ole scandy flick without too much trouble.  Left foot braking and throttle control and incredibly important in the dirt and I think doubly so in the 1st gen MR2s.  I finally got a window net up on the passenger side (still haven't fixed my broken window) so I'll be legal to give ride-alongs on Sunday May 6th at Daytona.  If your curious what a mid engine car feels like in the dirt come on by.  I can't say that I'm expert but I've learned a lot between last season and this one.

Maniac0301
Maniac0301 Reader
5/30/18 8:59 p.m.

My daughter soon turns 12 and by SCCA rules she can start riding along with me.   To that end I'm looking to upgrade the seats and harnesses to keep us from getting tossed around inside of the car.  I bought these from a local Autocross guy with an '05 WRX STI.  The front tabs will mount right to the front bar in the MR2.  Not sure on the rear yet.   It looks like they will be higher than stock which is what I wanted to let my daughter see over the hood.   I'll make adjustments to the driver seat to lower its mounting and it is height adjustable for when she starts driving.

 

 

Maniac0301
Maniac0301 Reader
6/10/18 10:49 p.m.

So I had been a busy little boy lately.   First off before the May showcase event I went ahead and added some more touches to the livery adding the Toyota and TRD logos to match the Celica I'm using and inspiration.

 

I also purchased the seats that I posted about earlier.  Over the last two weeks I've been working on installing them along with a RaceQuip harness that I found unused in a pawn shop.   To make the seats work I had to cut down the brackets quite significantly.

I mounted the front of the seats to the bar that runs across the floorboard that the old seats used.  1 of the corners I could use the existing captured nut the other I had to drill and use a nut/bolt.

The rear mounts kind of fell into place.  The WRX seats mount to the tunnel on the inside mount and this ended up lining up with the hold for the lap belt.   So I used that point for the seat and the new harness belt.

The shoulder belts I went through the firewall.   I was hoping to get a harness bar but none of the universal ones were short enough for the MR2.   I saw another MR2 guy put his through the firewall so I did the same using a 4" X 8" spreader plate for each set.

Heres the final result.   The passenger seat deliberately is mounted high so my daughter can see where we are going.   The driver seat is as low as I can make it.   My helmet barely scrapes the roof although it did that will the old seats as well.   At least now I have the harness to help keep me from bouncing around.   The driver seat also retains the height adjustment for when my daughter starts co-driving in a couple years.

 

 

 

 

 

 

hhaase
hhaase HalfDork
6/11/18 6:06 p.m.

That livery is pretty sharp looking.   Really ccool to see how far this car has come along.

 

-Hans

Maniac0301
Maniac0301 Reader
6/12/18 12:53 a.m.

In reply to hhaase :

Thank you.  I've been really enjoying the process of adding here and there.   The best part is the lack of things breaking so I can work on it when I want and not feel pressured to get stuff done before the next event.  Next on the list is likely a hydraulic hand brake after that some power adder.   Once those are done I'll start looking into either LSD options or heading towards a more offroad appropriate suspension setup.   There's some guys I've talked to who do wheel to wheel rallycross in Europe that have some suggestions.

Maniac0301
Maniac0301 Reader
6/21/18 8:21 p.m.

Shot from the last Rallycross in June.   Photo shot by Rally Girl Racing

Maniac0301
Maniac0301 Reader
7/18/18 11:44 p.m.

Big event this weekend hence the seats before the last event.   This time I pulled the car off the trailer to handle some general maintenance.   I did the normal fluid check all was nominal except coolant which was a bit low so I filled that up.   I then unplugged every spark plug wire and cleaned the ends with contact cleaner.   I replaced the my distributor cap and rotor with a new set that I had bought and then lost in the move into my new house a couple years back.

  I also added a ground strap from the head to the chassis.   I never had a dedicated ground for the head so I decided to rectify that.   I'm hoping this fixes my won't start when hot issue although I doubt it will.   I also discovered some interesting items.   My computer is from a 85-86 AW11 and the injectors are high impedance which is odd for an MR2.   I swapped to my other computer which is for 87-89 cars but there wasn't any discernible difference in performance either way and I don't have the mounting brackets I use setup for that computer so I put my original one back in.   

Because of the way that I had my throttle cable run I had to run my AFM upside down.   In theory this shouldn't really effect anything but I've wanted to right it.  I also cleaned my air filter and it was caked on the outside with mud.   So I decided to change around my intake setup so that I can turn the AFM upright and to move the filter closer to the factory air intake.  I'm hoping this spot is also less prone to dirt and mud.  Heres the old setup:

Here's the new location and setup:

I also created a new bracket for the intake to hold it in place.   I'm using the curve of the shock tower to help locate it from forward and back movement.   Its strong enough to allow me to shake the car with the air filter.  Also that AEM Dryflow filter is really good.  My previous cone filter let a ton of stuff in.   The intake and the inside of the filter were spotless when I pulled it off.

 

 

edizzle89
edizzle89 Dork
7/19/18 1:22 p.m.

In my 87 (i think all 87+ AW11's) the stock air filter went through the rear firewall and into the trunk of the car, I put a cone filter in the trunk similar to this picture:

 

 

That seems like i'd be a decent option for keeping the filter in clean, fresh air.

Maniac0301
Maniac0301 Reader
7/22/18 7:22 p.m.

Interesting yeah trunk mounted is likely going to happen once it get attached to a turbo mounted in there.  

Got back from Sebring today here are my in-car vids from the 2018 DirtFish SCCA Dixie RallyCross National Challenge.  Congrats to Tom and Leon for the Constructor class wins.  My finish not so great.  10th out of 14th.   I think I'm finally hitting where I can reasonably see some benefit from throwing some dough at tires.   I've caught up with the pretty fast guys I think getting some rubber that wasn't last used in 2006 will probably help me dice in and among them rather than trailing a couple tenths a run behind all of them.  Gonna have to talk to the budget office for approval.   

Any way here are my runs I split the videos up by day with 3 runs on Day 1 and 4 on Day 2:

Day 1

Day 2

Maniac0301
Maniac0301 Reader
10/4/18 6:39 p.m.

This last weekend was my last RallyX for the year.   CFR has one more event but I won't be able to make it.   I had the pleasure of having a co-driver this weekend which was pretty cool.   Especially awesome was that my co-driver Dave was one of the fastest MR drivers in our region who recently broke his E30 rallycross car.   It was great having someone with his experience in the car to see where I'm at as a driver and where the car is as he is usually battling for podium.  In this case I did beat him overall for the day although his fastest run was faster than mine.   The first part of the day he was a bit easy on the car and still learning I'm sure he would beat me overall if we co-drove the next event.   Here are our stage results I'm Tommy in case that wasn't known.

It was interesting talking about the car over lunch the main thing I conveyed to him was just how the 4age engine works.   It needs to have the revs up all the time.  I would hear him shift to 2nd and be at about 3k and the car just won't go anywhere.  He said the car was ok in the morning.   After lunch when I repeated to just wing the engine and hold first for much longer he really started to warm up to the car and the kind of old school feel of zinging a twin cam 1.6l engine.   He snuck this pic in at the end of the day. 

 

The other thing I learned is that the car needs some improvement I've gotten to the point as a driver where I'm not the only limiting factor and spending some money on the car will yield results as opposed to just an angry wife.  So I'm taking the winter break as an opportunity to work on some stuff.   I'm actually thinking about cracking open the transmission and welding the diff.  Results from people who have done so have been mixed but I have 2 spare tranmissions and I'm willing to give it a shot.  Next on the list is tires.   I need them badly the 15 year old Silverstone Rallye tires I have just aren't cutting it.   I'll be looking for recommendations on rallycross tires on a budget something more than winter tires.  Finally I may crack on with the turbo build.   I'm going to pull out, flow test and clean the injectors and work out an external trunk mount turbo.   I'll report on how that goes as I make progress.

Here are my runs for the 2nd half of the day continuous user error for the first half kept me from capturing any runs from the morning.    I tried out a new location for the camera it definitely looks like I'm going faster.

https://youtu.be/iM5x_J6gkQo

And for fun a comparison of my fastest run to Dave's and of the fastest run of my car vs the fastest MR car of the day

https://youtu.be/En9Y1TJksGA

https://youtu.be/6ccZR5Oq8OQ

 

hhaase
hhaase HalfDork
10/4/18 7:11 p.m.

Really interested in your trunk turbo thoughts as that may be the same direction I’ll be going in most likely. 

Maniac0301
Maniac0301 Reader
10/4/18 7:52 p.m.

My thoughts are that its not ideal compared to a traditional manifold mount.   You lose a lot of heat energy going from the engine bay to the trunk but certainly less than the normal applications of front engine cars with turbos for mufflers.   The actual run from the exhaust manifold to the trunk is about the same distance as the run from the manifold and through the up pipe on WRX's and they seem to do all right.   It also has the advantage of keeping the heat out of the engine bay although I will be taking steps to shield the ECU and wiring from the turbo heat. 

My initial plan is a very small turbo from a 90 dodge spirit (mostly because I have two of them) and running wastegate (5lbs) boost estimated around 130hp to the wheels.   According to multiple sources the AFM and the fuel system has enough overhead for 8-10lbs of boost just from the additional opening of the AFM door.   As added precaution I will be running a wideband and a rising rate FPR.  I'll run a sandwich plate on the oil filter for oil and tap into the lines going into the throttle body for water.  I'll tap a bung into the oil pan for oil return.  Luckily in the trunk I will be able to easily keep the turbo high enough for good oil drainage which is an issue on some of the manifold type turbo installations.

If that goes well my 2nd step is a stand alone ECU, bigger injectors and an intercooler in the engine bay where the battery used to be.  I will need some sort of ducting to get air past the intercooler.   Estimated 150hp.   Finally I plan on going with a 7afe block with 4age head on it it increasing compression slightly and upping displacement to 1.8l and a coil on plug setup estimated 200 possibly as high as 250hp.   I won't be able to rev as high but powerband should be very meaty with lots of low end.   

I'll need a bigger fuel pump somewhere along the way probably once I get past 150hp.   I don't really plan on going over 200 my goals are 200hp and 2000lbs but you know how addictive boost and power are.   Luckily 7afe blocks are a dime a dozen and so I'm not too worried about blowing one out.  Step two and 3 are likely to occur over the next several years so plenty of time for things to go wrong and put a wrench in all my plans.

hhaase
hhaase HalfDork
10/4/18 9:13 p.m.

I agree the AW11 is one situation where a remote turbo suffers from far less drawbacks,   the only real thing I'm not sure is where to place it in relation to the catalytic convertor.  I've seen a few discussions that say the heat from the cat could be beneficial.   My biggest concerns with a traditional manifold mount are that it's a very difficult location to access and it's a lot of heat right behind the small of my back.   

That and once I go dry-sump,  it'll make plumbing a lot easier for that system if the turbo is in the trunk.  I can have all the suction lines in about the same location on the engine.

-Hans

Maniac0301
Maniac0301 Reader
10/4/18 9:42 p.m.

For me as this is  an offroad vehicle and my state doesnt do any type of emissions testing I just won't have a cat.   My current cat is gutted and mostly there so I didn't have to make a test pipe.  I plan on going straight from manifold to a flex pipe and then up into the trunk through the floor which conveniently already has a hole in it.

Maniac0301
Maniac0301 Reader
10/5/18 7:18 p.m.

Another issue I've heard with the standard turbo install is the heat is right next to the starter and it wrecks them fairly quickly.  Many people actually relocate the starter to eliminate this concern.   Won't be a problem with a trunk mounted turbo.   It will be fun to compare your setup to mine.   Primarily a dichotomy of one bodged together and one done the right way.  I am planning on moving the AFM to the inlet side of the turbo to keep the extra heat of the compressed air out of the AFM and for packaging of the pipes to the throttle body.   Once I go stand alone I'll swap to a MAP sensor and remove the AFM restriction.

crankwalk
crankwalk SuperDork
10/8/18 12:51 p.m.

I may have missed it but with the heat and mounting concerns of a turbo, why not just use the supercharger route? It seems like it would be easier on just about all counts.

mr2s2000elise
mr2s2000elise None
10/9/18 11:20 a.m.

Beautiful car. Have been following your build. I had a similar life story like you. Had a 93T for a long time. Kids + family, gave that up. Just picked up a mint 1 owner 94 now and very happy.

Maniac0301
Maniac0301 Reader
10/11/18 6:16 p.m.

@crankwalk I literally logged in to talk about supercharging.   I actually wouldn't mind putting a cetrifigul supercharger where the A/C used to be.  It seems like a good use of the space.   I know there is of course a supercharged version of the 4age they used in MR2s but theres some pretty weird stuff they did with routing and the like for that car and parts are fairly expensive.   If I could source a cheap centrifugal I'm pretty sure I could fab up whats needed to make it work.   

One of the reasons for going turbo though is costs.   Basically I have at least 4 used turbos sitting in my garage and a whole mess of flanges and downpipes.  So to keep costs down I would use what I got.   Again its probably not ideal if I were actually building a trunk mount turbo option I would look into the work of those who build remote systems.   Several of them talk about adjusting the ratio between the size of the turbine and the compressor specifically for remote work.  As custom built one off turbos are expensive I won't be following that route and I'll just make due with what I got lying around.

Maniac0301
Maniac0301 Reader
10/16/18 7:38 p.m.

I had been working to make my garash a better place to live and finally got it into an ok spot so that I could then stuff it full of MR2 in pieces.   I'm tackling the boost first.   I'm going to try to do things one at a time so I don't get in over my head.   First priorities are boost and tires.   If I have time I'll pull the trans and get the diff welded but I'm going to wait on that until I have at least the boost sorted.  This is my first time adding boost to a NA car.  I've worked on all sorts of turbo engine cars doing all the normal kind of bolt ons but never a conversion and definitely never a conversion without some sort of kit to work off of.

We know I plan on putting hte turbo in the trunk which solves a lot of issues and creates only a few.   I have a TE04H turbo from a 1990 Dodge Spirit I used to own the turbo was rebuilt not too long before the head gasket went and the car sat with water in the block.   I got it running but it was never right afterwards and I scrapped the car after pulling the engine and seats.  With the Impulse RS I had purchased the owner gave me some random Volvo stuff with the Impulse.   Amongst that was a volvo TD04E turbo.   Between what I had left of the dodge and parts from the volvo turbo I have gathered water and oil inputs to the turbo pointing sort of in the right direction.  

As well as the battery I also had the ECU mounted in the trunk.   Previously I had just used some random captive nuts and bent up some brackets to attach the ECU.   The ended putting it right in the middle of the trunk.   For the upcoming turbo install I want to shroud the ECU from heat.   I relocated the ECU much tighter to the trunk wall, lower and closer to the battery.   I'll create a heat shield from a scavenged side of a dryer.  

 

FooBag
FooBag Reader
10/17/18 9:38 a.m.
Maniac0301 said: Next on the list is tires.   I need them badly the 15 year old Silverstone Rallye tires I have just aren't cutting it.   I'll be looking for recommendations on rallycross tires on a budget something more than winter tires.  

What is the surface that you run on down there? Sandy, hard packed clay, loam, ???  This will make a heck of a difference on the correct tire choice.

Do you know what the new owner of the Impulse RS did with it?  I very much wanted to buy that car from you but the distances involved and finances didn't allow at the time.

Maniac0301
Maniac0301 Reader
10/17/18 9:40 p.m.

The surface is really loose.   Pretty much like really fine dirty dry sand.   Its slippery as when it rains.   Tires last pretty well out here though although I can't go around buying new tires more than once a season.

The guys I sold the RS to ran 1 event at Dayton in 2017.   He then bought a house and is wrapped up in all the domestic type things that entails.   He sold the car to the person who bought Mosquito Control the primer gray 300zx.   He's been to a couple events at Port St Lucie in the RS although he lives up near Gainesville so can't make it to every one.  He's very happy with the car though.

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