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    Thread: The "you need a Miata" thread

    1. I need new ones NeverEnoughCars's Avatar
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      09-30-2019 11:48 PM #5676
      One of our interns forgot to turn the light off on her NA Miata when she got to work the other day. I saw them up and dim when I came back from lunch at 2. She had backed into a spot in the morning in a corner of the lot. Luckily the two vehicles next to her left at 5 so I could jump start the Miata. I doubt she will be backing in anytime soon.
      Quote Originally Posted by Turbio! View Post
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    3. Member
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      10-01-2019 12:17 AM #5677
      Quote Originally Posted by NeverEnoughCars View Post
      One of our interns forgot to turn the light off on her NA Miata when she got to work the other day. I saw them up and dim when I came back from lunch at 2. She had backed into a spot in the morning in a corner of the lot. Luckily the two vehicles next to her left at 5 so I could jump start the Miata. I doubt she will be backing in anytime soon.
      Believe it or not the battery has moved up front on the newer models, still maintaining a 50/50 weight distribution.

      It is funny though when people don't know where their battery is located and end up baffled when they do. My neighbor had some Chevy thing (I can't remember the name) that resembled a retro CUV....battery was in the trunk, absolutely zero access to it, but it had a charging block located under the hood. Smart I guess but why complicate things so much? Chevy definitely wasn't looking for helping with weight distribution on this thing.
      '14 F-150 FX4 (bread and butter)
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    4. Senior Member Sporin's Avatar
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      10-09-2019 09:08 PM #5678


      I started the shock job. The first rear one came out no big issue, but ... they sent me the wrong ones for the rear.

      One number off. I should have received 341143 and 341127. What I actually got was 341143 and 343127. Emailed Shockwarehouse and hoping they make good even though they've been sitting on my shelf for a year.

      I also discovered that my already-too-old tires (2004 date codes) are also really low on tread. So new skins next spring for sure.

      That's probably it for little red this fall.

      Last edited by Sporin; 10-10-2019 at 08:44 AM.

    5. Senior Member Sporin's Avatar
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      10-10-2019 08:46 AM #5679
      Looking at the shockwarehouse site there's no way they are helping me out over a year since shipping (45 Day return policy and enough restocking and shipping fees that even if they did do it for me I'd be out a bunch of money.).

      Ordering the correct ones now from another vendor. Want to get the car back on the road for a little more fall driving before winter comes.

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      10-10-2019 12:11 PM #5680
      Quote Originally Posted by Sporin View Post
      Looking at the shockwarehouse site there's no way they are helping me out over a year since shipping (45 Day return policy and enough restocking and shipping fees that even if they did do it for me I'd be out a bunch of money.).
      .
      I mean, did you actually contact them to ask? What have you got to lose in admitting you know you're past the return and gently pointing out they made an error and you're happy to be cooperative?
      Losing is just a winning streak in the wrong direction -David

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      10-10-2019 12:31 PM #5681
      Quote Originally Posted by Claff View Post
      One more Track Night in the books. This one involved a bit of a thrash because I tried to fix things.

      First mistake was going with poly bushings back in 2015, but that doesn't rear its ugly head till later.

      Earlier in the summer I thought I heard some thumping from the right front shock. Fortunately, there's the Koni guy on site at Solo Nationals who can fix that kind of stuff. So I yanked out the suspension and threw the shocks in the truck. Koni guy found one the shock in question had a torqued pistol, often caused by using an impact to buzz the top nuts on (oops). He fixed that and rebuilt the right front so they were equal. The rears were fine. He had the shocks for a day and charged me $20 for the parts needed for the rebuilds.

      Back home, I reassembled the coilovers (without using the impact) and while I had my hands dirty, figured I should look at the brakes. The fronts were very thin (Autozone pads don't hold up to three track nights, go figure). Talked with Sam Strano about more suitable brakes and he sent me Hawk DTC30s. I also ordered a new set of RE71Rs through him.

      I had everything together Friday night. My next week was going to get busy: I didn't want to put the new tires on until I got an alignment, so that was priority #1. But those tires needed to be mounted, and I needed a new trailer tire since I had one go bad on the way home from Nationals. This all had to be done before Thursday.

      Monday afternoon I drove the hour to my preferred alignment place in Gaithersburg. Got there and the car was making some fun noises out of the front end. Alignment guy felt something was up and put it on the lift, and spotted what looked like a bad bushing (twisted? torn?) in the right front lower control arm. So I didn't get an alignment and instead had to drive 90 minutes home (thanks DC traffic) to weigh my options while something in the front end rattled away over every bump.

      Tuesday I bit the bullet and pulled the right LCA with its original rubber bushings out of the wife's '93 (the green car I took on vacation earlier this summer). I marked the alignment on the '90 and pulled that LCA and franky the bushings looked OK to me, but what do I know. I put in the other arm using the old alignment marks and just eyeballing things, the camber looked right and toe was still zero according to my toe plates. A quick drive around the block showed me the car went down the road straight, but that rattling was still there.



      Finally it dawned on me, the rattling was from the brake pads not staying put inside the calipers. I could quiet them down by applying a little brake pressure. A buddy asked if I had the anti-rattle springs installed, and I admitted that I never saw them in the 11 years I owned this car, or in the '93 which we've had for ten. But I was told that this would fix it so I found an Autozone with a hardware kit in stock, got that, and Wednesday I put the car in the air and put those in. Quick test drive, brakes are quiet. Nice 15-minute $12 fix.

      But at this point I knew I didn't want to drive back to Gaithersburg and back for an alignment, and the car seemed to track straight, so I said I'd wing it this last time out and kept the old tires on the car. I threw the wheels and tires from the '93 (2012 Dunlop Z1 Star Specs) into the back of the truck for spares and loaded up for Dominion.

      Track Night went really well. I was a bit concerned about having new brakes but they kept calling for Intermediate drivers to come to pit road and nobody was going, and I wound up first in line. Early on braking was an adventure, I got enough heat in the pads to get them nice and happy while the tires weren't there yet so I was modulating on the edge of lockup quite a bit early. Eventually I figured out how to slow down and did OK. I took another second off my best time and didn't have to deal with much traffic. There were three cars slower than me: a Cayenne Turbo S, a Fiesta ST, and a newish Civic. They were all good at letting me by. I was only passed by four cars, a Charger, a Mustang, and two newish Camaros. I got my doors blown off by the Camaros every session, while the Stang and the Charger I only dealt with in the first one.

      I have to figure out what to do with the car over the winter. I've disliked the poly bushings almost as soon as I installed them and I'd like them gone. I just picked up a set of control arms and I might install them as is, or maybe put in the Mazda competition bushing set ($700!). We'll see how badly I cheap out. Nice bonus, the control arms I got include the spindles and NA 1.8 brakes so I might install those calipers just because I have them. Either way I'm looking forward to next spring when I can take the car out again with a real alignment and fresh tires.

      Nice job man! Good to see you doing more track days. Have you done a full track event yet with a club or just the track nights so far?

      How are lap times coming at dominion? Looks like around 1:45 from the video which is a good time for a 1.6 in intermediate group.
      Last edited by 300_munkeys; 10-10-2019 at 12:34 PM.

    8. Senior Member Sporin's Avatar
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      10-10-2019 12:37 PM #5682
      Quote Originally Posted by Diamond Dave View Post
      I mean, did you actually contact them to ask? What have you got to lose in admitting you know you're past the return and gently pointing out they made an error and you're happy to be cooperative?
      Yup, I have emails in to them and will follow up on the phone., If I can recover some of my money with a return at least, that's what I want. I just didn't want to play the process and lose weeks waiting for new shocks.

    9. Member Claff's Avatar
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      10-11-2019 11:28 PM #5683
      Quote Originally Posted by 300_munkeys View Post
      Nice job man! Good to see you doing more track days. Have you done a full track event yet with a club or just the track nights so far?

      How are lap times coming at dominion? Looks like around 1:45 from the video which is a good time for a 1.6 in intermediate group.
      I have not yet done a real track day. I'm a cheapskate and love getting a track night for $125, while I have a harder time justifying double that for almost anything else in the area. My WDCR SCCA buddies say I would really benefit from having in-car instruction, and I agree, but it's a big check to write.

      This last time out I lowered my personal best lap to 1:43.7. With fresh tires I bet that can go down quite a bit, but that'll have to wait until next spring.
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    10. Senior Member Sporin's Avatar
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      10-13-2019 02:29 PM #5684
      Can’t get the new shocks in without a spring compressor I guess.

      I tried using the jack under the a arm like i did for removal. No biggie to get it all lined up and in place but I can’t get enough of the shock top post to pop through and grab the nut.



      Gonna get some spring compressors so I can assemble the top hat onto the other pieces then get it into place like that. I think spring compressors will make the fronts a lot easier as well so it’s a good investment.

    11. Senior Member Sporin's Avatar
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      10-13-2019 05:29 PM #5685
      Spring compressors acquired.

    12. Senior Member Sporin's Avatar
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      10-13-2019 08:17 PM #5686
      So I was able to put everything together with the spring compressors on the floor. But then I can’t take the spring compressors off because the notches are caught in the now compressed coils.

      So I think the trick will be to get it all in place using the jack like I did earlier then use the spring compressors to snug it a little bit tighter so I can get the top nut on in the car. Hoping to find that middle ground.

      At this point I pretty much have all winter to do it.

    13. Senior Member Sporin's Avatar
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      10-14-2019 09:15 AM #5687
      Last night I had the thought that maybe my initial problem is related to the shock top post's fit in the tophat. You need to wiggle it a bit to get it through and I wonder if I just didn't have it lined up correctly when I did the no-compressor method? Gonna try it again today while I have my helper home from school (holiday).

      Couldn't figure out how to reuse the old boots after chopping off the old, hard bump stops (I have new, modern ones). So now I need to get some generic shock boots as well.

      The old shocks are SO BLOWN they don't even return to full length on their own and you can compress them with 1 finger. Looking forward to a much smoother, controlled ride when this is all said and done.


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      10-14-2019 02:21 PM #5688
      Quote Originally Posted by Claff View Post
      I have not yet done a real track day. I'm a cheapskate and love getting a track night for $125, while I have a harder time justifying double that for almost anything else in the area. My WDCR SCCA buddies say I would really benefit from having in-car instruction, and I agree, but it's a big check to write.

      This last time out I lowered my personal best lap to 1:43.7. With fresh tires I bet that can go down quite a bit, but that'll have to wait until next spring.
      Haha I understand. Yes, you would benefit from some right seat instruction but you are setting some very good lap times for your experience.

      Just do enough days and move up the ranks quickly enough to become an instructor

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      10-14-2019 02:23 PM #5689
      Quote Originally Posted by Sporin View Post
      Last night I had the thought that maybe my initial problem is related to the shock top post's fit in the tophat. You need to wiggle it a bit to get it through and I wonder if I just didn't have it lined up correctly when I did the no-compressor method? Gonna try it again today while I have my helper home from school (holiday).

      Couldn't figure out how to reuse the old boots after chopping off the old, hard bump stops (I have new, modern ones). So now I need to get some generic shock boots as well.

      The old shocks are SO BLOWN they don't even return to full length on their own and you can compress them with 1 finger. Looking forward to a much smoother, controlled ride when this is all said and done.

      Which top hats are you using? Upgrading to the later style top hats will give you much longer bolts. The very early ones suck (90-93) and even the 94-97 are better with longer bolts on the top hat. The NB are an upgrade but you will need appropriate and new bumpstops to take advantage.

    16. Senior Member Sporin's Avatar
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      10-14-2019 03:29 PM #5690
      Stock 94 pieces.

    17. Member sicklyscott's Avatar
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      10-14-2019 04:28 PM #5691
      Quote Originally Posted by Claff View Post
      I have not yet done a real track day. I'm a cheapskate and love getting a track night for $125, while I have a harder time justifying double that for almost anything else in the area. My WDCR SCCA buddies say I would really benefit from having in-car instruction, and I agree, but it's a big check to write.

      This last time out I lowered my personal best lap to 1:43.7. With fresh tires I bet that can go down quite a bit, but that'll have to wait until next spring.
      In my area you can do a HPDE with PCA for $350 for 2 days. Sure it's still not $125 but you'll get more seat time and instruction. I know a few people that formed really bad habits on track after doing a couple track nights without instruction.

      I even know a guy who thought he was an expert at a track because of all the time he spent on it, he went and did a turn by turn and posted it on YouTube. He was way off on his lines. He was slower in his newer M3 than I was in the Miata.

      Point being, get instruction at least once so you can call BS on yourself when doing something silly.

      In other news I finally got my flaming pile back together, just in time for winter. I'm still taking care of some odds and ends (brake light switch in-op, WB not ready correctly) but it was good to drive it out of the garage.

      Here she sits with her sibling, both crying they haven't made it to the track this year. And sadly I'm thinking about posting them both up for sale.

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    18. Member DrivinAW8's Avatar
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      10-15-2019 05:51 AM #5692
      Just drove a ND (GT trim) and loved every second of it. It was so much more fun than the M2 Comp I also just drove. I guess I would have liked a more screaming engine (my father had an S2000 and a Boxster S so that’s my benchmark), but really, 60mph is the upper end of comfortable on the twisty rural western PA roads I love so much, so do you need that much power?

    19. Member sicklyscott's Avatar
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      10-15-2019 11:01 AM #5693
      Quote Originally Posted by DrivinAW8 View Post
      Just drove a ND (GT trim) and loved every second of it. It was so much more fun than the M2 Comp I also just drove. I guess I would have liked a more screaming engine (my father had an S2000 and a Boxster S so that’s my benchmark), but really, 60mph is the upper end of comfortable on the twisty rural western PA roads I love so much, so do you need that much power?
      I am of the opinion that the ND (or any Miata for that matter) would be perfect with 200 whp. Still not too fast for the street but gives you a little giggle factor when you open it up.
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    20. Member Tornado2dr's Avatar
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      10-15-2019 07:06 PM #5694
      Quote Originally Posted by DrivinAW8 View Post
      so do you need that much power?
      Of course you do!


      Quote Originally Posted by sicklyscott View Post
      I am of the opinion that the ND (or any Miata for that matter) would be perfect with 200 whp. Still not too fast for the street but gives you a little giggle factor when you open it up.
      That kind of bump would be great. But to be honest, most of the fun with this car is not done rocketing up to silly speed on wide open roads.
      Quote Originally Posted by Turbio!
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    21. Member
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      10-16-2019 12:09 PM #5695
      Quote Originally Posted by sicklyscott View Post
      I am of the opinion that the ND (or any Miata for that matter) would be perfect with 200 whp. Still not too fast for the street but gives you a little giggle factor when you open it up.
      I totally agree. The majority of the local Miatas tend to be stock or low dollar mods, which is fine, but on the roads you can really tell how slow they are; no acceleration grunt. I drove around for about a year with my SR20 Miata on a "safe map" ECU before getting it tuned and it felt very fast. Turns out the tuner found almost 30hp when I drove to LA for the Japanese Classic Car Show. 180WHP in an NA Miata is a crap ton of fun. getting up to 200WHP would be just perfect.
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    22. Member sicklyscott's Avatar
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      10-16-2019 02:18 PM #5696
      Quote Originally Posted by Diamond Dave View Post
      I totally agree. The majority of the local Miatas tend to be stock or low dollar mods, which is fine, but on the roads you can really tell how slow they are; no acceleration grunt. I drove around for about a year with my SR20 Miata on a "safe map" ECU before getting it tuned and it felt very fast. Turns out the tuner found almost 30hp when I drove to LA for the Japanese Classic Car Show. 180WHP in an NA Miata is a crap ton of fun. getting up to 200WHP would be just perfect.
      My Rotrex 1.6l had 195 rwhp, it was fantastic. The power delivery was awesome. Not enough torque down low to get you in trouble but more than enough pull up top to make things fun. It's certainly not warp speed but, it does seem to be the sweet spot to me. With the suspension mods and wider, stickier tires I have, it's a great match.

      Can't wait to see what it feels like with the BP4W I just threw in.
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    23. Member cockerpunk's Avatar
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      10-16-2019 02:23 PM #5697
      im not sure where you guys need more power, on the back-roads with only a set of decent summer tires you can be doing double the speedlimit on stock power, stock suspension 1.6.

      on track the extra power would be nice, you could actually use it there. my built mr2 was honestly a bit terrifying to drive on the street with only ~180rwhp, it was scary fast on the backroads.

      id like the extra power on track though, i wish my STS car was allowed the headwork we are allowed in spec miata, it would make a difference, and it would be a very nice bump in straightline speed.
      Quote Originally Posted by ice4life View Post
      Sounds great. Maybe I'm just a fascist and didn't know it.. I don't know if I even care anymore.

    24. Member Zillon's Avatar
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      10-16-2019 04:24 PM #5698
      Quote Originally Posted by sicklyscott View Post
      And sadly I'm thinking about posting them both up for sale.

      wat.

      You just built the LFRX8.

    25. Goes in two directions RAVatar's Avatar
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      10-16-2019 05:21 PM #5699
      Quote Originally Posted by Zillon View Post
      wat.

      You just built the LFRX8.
      You still got the cheddar NC? Not ashamed I followed you on IG to see if you still had it.

      I've been slowly starting a slush savings fund for something RWD since I sold the Genesis but this time I want to keep the Fiat. Miata or older GT86 would fit the bill perfectly.
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    26. Member Zillon's Avatar
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      10-16-2019 08:04 PM #5700
      Quote Originally Posted by RAVatar View Post
      You still got the cheddar NC? Not ashamed I followed you on IG to see if you still had it.

      I've been slowly starting a slush savings fund for something RWD since I sold the Genesis but this time I want to keep the Fiat. Miata or older GT86 would fit the bill perfectly.
      I do - not for much longer. Priorities changing, got back into cycling in a big way this year and I've driven the NC maybe twice since I went to the dragon in May. Sad, but oh well. Just not a good area to be into cars and fun driving (traffic, roads, work parking situ is le crap).

      Picked up a tiny camper (see IG) as well, which will take the garage space when the NC eventually departs. I currently have a friend who just moved to TN who's on the hook for now, just waiting for him to get through moving into the new house and what-not. If he falls through I'll send you a message. I've got a short list of people who spoke up last time I mentioned getting rid of the car, I haven't forgotten.

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