This past weekend I changed the oil in the Healey. That’s not really a big deal with a normal car, but with the Healey it’s an excuse to start and run the engine until warm, which is always a bit of an event in colder weather.
Last week I mentioned that the Healey had a carburetor issue related to a sticking float valve. This would explain the fuel economy that barely broke into double figures on the last tank, not to mention the smell of unburned gasoline that enveloped the car when idling. Just switching the Healey’s ignition on would cause a disturbing stream of gasoline to run out of the overflow on the forward carburetor. Clearly this issue needs to be resolved before I take the Healey out for early Spring hooning.
On the StartingGrid Facebook page we were discussing the various project cars we writers and reader (writers to be?) have, and the issues they are posing. The Healey is suffering from a stuck float in its forward carburetor. An easy fix, I just need to get out there and do it. Expect an update soon.
Well, it’s the moment that we’ve all been waiting for! Project Asuka has finally arrived on my doorstep!
I’ve been looking for a second project car to act as a backup for Project Kyoko, as well as be some cheap fun for the spring/summer autocross season. Asuka is a car that I purchased from a friend at a price so low, we might as well call it a gift. (Thanks!)
Just a quick snap of TJ and I playing around with Project K today. The Miata hasn’t been running very smoothly lately. So once again, I have a list of parts to replace longer than my arm. New header, which has cracked again, a few next belts and other odds and ends.
It’ll make for another good post when I get around to fixing all of it. (That’s what I keep telling myself…) Or I will have gotten fed up and just got into another project.
Anyway, stay tuned and I’ll keep you updated with something meaty next time.
It’s been a while since I’ve done a project log update on Project Kyoko. The reason was that she had been off the road for a while with a busted VLSD. The car had an unbearable gear whine that was just terrible. So I spent much of the holiday season messing around with Project MR2, and researching where I could find a suitable 1.6 replacement.
*Sorry for the lack of photos on this post. I just haven’t had the time, and actually really don’t have a good camera to take snaps yet.
Project MR2 has definitely started out well-intentioned enough. In fact, it initially really even start out as a ‘project’ at all. For sometime, Project Kyoko had been the workhorse car between myself and my girlfriend. Due to where our jobs took us, we ended up putting over 100 miles a day on my little Miata, and somewhere along the lines of around 25,000 miles over a year! (I’m not joking.)
With all of that mileage, Kyoko started to wear out. If you’ve noticed, many of my recent project logs for Kyoko have been installing replacement parts or repairs, rather than autocrossing because of this. It actually got to a point where I stopped recording some of the work being done to the car, because it was just a reminder of how much money I was spending on the car just to keep it on the road. >.<
But this post isn't about Kyoko, it's about Project MR2. At it's core, Project MR2 meets a basic need. A second car.
This weekend, we were trying to chase down a leak in the clutch lines that’s causing the clutch to go soft now and again. We found the leak, but no shop in the area has the clutch line in stock, so I’ll have to go hunt one down. TJ did replace the clutch slave cylinder while we were in there.
We also got a chance to reinstall my headers, which tried to free themselves from the car last week. It’s nice to have that deeper sound back, and the powerband has moved back to being more mid-range.
Oh yeah, and we’ve got some stickers available now for the blog. We’re giving out the first set for free. If you’re interested, just email me at relaxeddriver(at) gmail, and we’ll see if we can get people some.
Ever since I’ve started to own Project Kyoko, I’ve learned that no weekend will ever go according to plan. The plan had been this weekend to hook up with Peter and go down to Shelton, where there was a possibility of driving his Locost kit car at an autocross. Peter has also picked up a “new” NA8C, and I had planned to swap cars with him in order to bring that down south to the autocross. I was super looking forward to it.
I say plan, because like I mentioned earlier, nothing ever goes according to plan with Project Kyoko.
On my way down to Peter’s, Kyoko’s humming exhaust started to turn into a dull buzzing. It sounded alot like an exhaust leak, so I decided that when I had a chance at the end of the weekend, I would jack up the car and check. However, after a few minutes the buzzing turned into the loudest roaring sound I had ever heard.
It sounded like it was running right off the header! Fortunately, I happened to be by my local indoor kart track and was able to pull into their garage in order to check to see what the problem was.
It was running right off the header, and only the header. Turns out that my 4-1 Racing Beat headers had failed right at the weld underneath the collector. The subframe had caught the downpipe when it literally fell from the car. Apparently, my car loves weight reduction so much that it just spits parts off the car!
Well, this was just great… So now I was stuck down south, with a car that is too loud to drive ANYWHERE.
Fortunately, I have some other friends who own Miata and, after taking Alex’s car out to Bonny Lake, I was able to source a stock exhaust manifold. However, by the time that I got back it was too late to start working on the car!
Luckily Savannah, who has taken photos for the blog before (like these and these) , lived nearby and she was able to put me up for the night. Honestly, after the afternoon I had been having, it was the most comfortable couch that I had ever crashed on. She completely saved me from sleeping in my car.
This morning, Cameron and I were back at the kart track and started to work on Kyoko. We were able to pull out the broken Racing Beat header. The break was clean at the weld, so we could determine that it was nothing that I had done. It was just crappy build quality on the design on the header. Cameron is thinking about trying to weld it back together.
In the meantime, we were able to fit the stock manifold back on. Kyoko now doesn’t sound like a demonic Harley-Davidson, but she doesn’t have the same peppy revving sounds that she did before.
Le sigh. After one weekend of no breakages, normal service has been resumed.
Project : 1982 Toyota Corolla -”The Whistling Bat”
Took about three years to build it to where it’s at now and a ridiculous amount of redoing a lot of things to get almost everything right. Almost everything has been modified.
From ashy to classy.
Lately, I’ve just been super busy with work and other drama to do a proper project log update. However, I wasn’t going to let a silly thing like real life get in the way of doing some racing!
I was able to pick up a Go-Pro camera for a super good deal, which was perfect as I had an autocross planned for the upcoming weekend.
So this weekend was a pretty busy one for Project Kyoko. I spent the entire day before preparing the car, and I had my friend John planning to co-drive.
After getting up at the crack of dawn, John and I made the trek south to Bremerton Motorsports Park. When we arrived, we were the third car there, so it was super nice to have our choice of grid spot. Pays to get there early, I guess!
I wish I had a picture of the track-map to show, but trust me when I say that it was a nice mixture of speed and technicality. The outer edges of the course were more power sections, while the middle section was tight with triple gates. (I’ll probably start taking a copy of course maps, and scanning them in on following posts.)
John’s a pretty fast driver, so it was nice to have someone co-driving who knew what he was doing. Both of us have driving styles that are as different from one another as chalk and cheese. I’m super smooth, and John just wrings the car by the neck.
I think the most interesting part of the day was to see how our differing techniques got us around the course in about the same time. Since we had the camera with us, we decided to just film one of our runs just for fun.
What was super cool about having a co-driver was that I could immediately compare his driving style with mine, and see where improvements could be made. His driving always highlighted areas where I could afford to be more aggressive with the car, when it wouldn’t bite me back. The whole day was just a blast! John got five runs, and I got a sixth due to a re-run because of some timing mix-up. (Not that I’m complaining )
Shockingly, Project Kyoko survived all eleven runs without a single mechanical issue (that we know of), which is worth noting since I first since I got the car. I think that John might just be the car’s good luck charm.
If so, he’s welcome to drive her anytime. Now we just need better tires and more seat time.
Yesterday brought a lovely evening to Seattle. This necessitated taking a ride in the Healey. What better excuse for a Healey ride than a pizza run? There are few things in this world better than rumbling around in a sportscar on a warm summer evening. A full belly and a full moon inspired the shot above. I wish I had a real camera with me and not my iPhone; however the best camera is the one in your hand.
Want to read all the posts on The Healey? Click here
Ok, ok. So I’m super sorry for the blurry pictures, but I am terrible at taking pictures. And also my digital camera was made before the turn of the century… I really need a better camera.
However, let the log commence!
So it’s been FOREVER, since I’ve written a project log update for Kyoko. However, that doesn’t mean that no work has been done on the car. For a while, I was having a micro-drama with seemingly constantly having to replacing parts on Kyoko. However, I suddenly had an epiphany which made all of the drama seem mute.
The Healey was mostly dormant for a few decades before we exhumed it. It had its original 48 spoke wire wheels with ancient retread tires. This was not a setup we wanted to drive any distance. New wheels and tires were easily ordered through the nice folks at Hendrix Wire Wheel and Moss Motors.
We’ve been working late nights at Chase Race getting Pujo! ready to race. In order to comply with the strictly enforced budget cap in the LeMons series, we are often forced to find creative ways to do things. The latest Pujo! Penny Pinching Project® involves the relocation of our electrical kill switch and the installation of a push button starter.
Here is a quick update on the Perils of Pujo!. Of large importance to a race car is keeping oil on the inside of the engine. Pujo!, as you saw in our last installment, had become quite adept at converting the oil inside the engine into smoke outside the engine. To determine the source of the oil, we consumed some beer, grabbed some hammers and took apart the turbo.
I’m really digging John Pattison’s Toyota Starlet Glanza. The Glanza is is a car that I wish we could have had here in the States. Small, lightweight and turbocharged, the Glanza is basically a micro-fun-box.
Based in the UK, Pattison has modified his Starlet to be a fairly quick street car. John has a pretty good understanding of the Starlet, being the secretary of the UK Starlet Club, so you can tell, even at a glance that he’s made a well-rounded package. The modifications are fairly light, but with a focus in all of the right places to be potent. Currently, the car is running at 1bar of boost on the TD04 to reach the 235bhp on standard internals.
The car at present is away to have a stage 2 Forge Motor and should make 270-280 bhp @ 1.4bar. I hope that John sends us more photos when his car comes back, so that we can see the updates!
- Engine Mods: Race-Tech TD04 Kit Manifold,De Cat, Japspeed FMIC, Magnecore HT Leads, Japspeed Cat Back Exhaust, EManage Blue ECU, JD Tuning Engine Damper and OEM LSD Gear Box
- Interior Mods: Blitz SBC-ID boost controller
- Exterior Mods: 15 Inch Rims, Varis Carbon Bonnet, IDWorkz Varis Bumper
- Suspension Mods: KYB Shocks all round fitted with Tien 40mm Springs (Soon to be replaced with Miester R Coilovers) Front Brakes upgraded to Levin Twin Pot set Up, Yellow Stuff Pads, OEM Front and Rear Strut Brace’s Tegiwa Brake Stopper
Thanks for these photos, John!
After a couple of drives around the neighborhood, the first system to raise its hand for attention was the cooling system. The radiator developed a healthy leak in its core.
The first work party on Pujo! was a tremendous success. Being a team of drinking gourmands, Doug and I set the tone for the day by first procuring adequate beer to fuel the wrenching. The choice of the day was Churchkey, a northwest brewed pilsner perfect for hydration and idea inception when hammers and cursing fail to reveal a solution.
StartingGrid’s latest project car is this 1960 Austin Healey 3000. This car is a driving adventure. It makes incredible sounds and is an attention magnet. It seems that everyone has an uncle or in-law who had a Big Healey at some point in their life. In the short time we’ve had this car, we’ve already had several conversations with folks who have shared stories of adventures they or their family members have had in Healeys. My wife and I have signed on to be Healey adventurists.
I too have an in-law who had a Big Healey. This car was owned for nearly four decades by my father-in-law. He kept it in his heated garage and tinkered on it, lovingly maintaining and improving it, but rarely driving it. He’s a busy guy with a ton of competing interests, adventure for him does not necessarily involve roadside field expedient repairs of a half century old sports car. Being a rocket scientist (no, really) he’s doing the smart thing and replacing the Healey with a Miata.
I’ve been working on bringing the Healey out of hibernation and hope to make it a reliable daily drivable car. While I don’t intend on commuting in this car, you will see it Street Parked as my wife and I take summer evening spins and impromtu runs into the mountains to echo the hills and valleys with the sounds of this straight six.
Maybe you’ll see the Healey at an event soon? I’m not a show and shine sort, favoring instead driving and racing. Stay tuned for more updates. I’ve already completed a few projects and am so far really enjoying working on this car. The Big Healey has a long history of being a sturdy adventure partner. They were entered in LeMans and did well in international rally competition. It should be happy to put up with the occasional autocross, right?
Aaron Severson of Ate up with Motor wrote a great history of the Big Healeys.
Davin’s post of the Lamborghini creeping out of a driveway resonated with me as my
newest most recent addition to the fleet is at stock ride height but scrapes over everything. That’s the exhaust in the picture above. It’s about three and a quarter inches off the ground.
These exhaust clamps dangled another half inch or so lower, making this car able to drive over things only a little thicker than a crushed soda can without scraping.
Some quick hacksaw work increased the ride height to a streetable level. I can’t go anywhere near a speed bump though. Speed bumps, it appears, are a newer invention than is this car.
Stay tuned for a formal introduction. You’ll be seeing a lot more of this car.
Well, if you want to call replacing a water pump an adventure. TJ and John K spent all Sunday helping me replace my water pump, thermostat, timing belt and radiator hoses.
Honestly, it was probably one of the more straight-forward repairs that we’ve done on Kyoko. I was smart enough to bring extra cash, so that we could pick up tools as we needed. Plus, TJ’s mom ordering pizza made working through the hours easier. Hopefully, my car karma will start to change so that I can start doing some autocrosses and track days soon…(fingers crossed)
Meanwhile, I installed a new Momo Corsa steering wheel, and painted my valve cover. (Priorities, right? ) I’m not sure if I like the flat-bottom wheel design yet, but I do love the new steering postion. It brings the wheel closer to me, and gives me more spaces for my knees and legs. I’m going to have to give it some time…
Bonus! – My girlfriend picked up a new car! She bought herself a white SW20 (NA) MR2 on Saturday. She hasn’t named it yet, but I got a chance to take it for a quick test drive once she brought it home. The 2.2 liter has more torque than the Miata does, but it does not have powersteering, so it’s a bit heavy.
Still, it’s pretty exciting to have the engine start up behind you. She’s talking about raising the car just a bit, so that she has better ground clearance. (The previous owner decided that hellalow was better than hellasafe.)
The most important thing is that 1) it runs, and 2) Lisa really likes it. So that’ll be an exciting mini-project coming up soon.
So this weekend, I’ve experienced the most expensive autocross runs I’ve ever had. I had decided to head down the 70+ mile drive to Bremerton Motorsports Park to race at the BSCC event there. I had spent the few days before doing upkeep on Kyoko, and picking up some used Toyo R888 tires that I could race on.
I’ve had some wonky (ie: crappy) Miata luck when it comes to going the track, lately. But when you love something you can never keep away, so I decided once I gave the car a once over that I would go and run the morning session away. My plan had been to ‘hedge my bets’; in case Kyoko had problems by dual-driving Mike’s GTI in the afternoon, so I could get some racing done. I felt like I had been a good enough person that my car would actually run an entire event, problem free.
Kyoko had some other ideas…
My first run went fine, as I was taking it pretty easy, just to make sure that all my wheels stayed on etc. It was decently quick for a shakedown run (63.xxx), so I decided that on my next run that I would start to up my pace. (Just jump straight to: 36 seconds, because I’m too lazy to edit the video.)
As I went into the slalom, I noticed a strong familiar (i.e.: frustratingly detectable) scent of coolant, so out of reflex I lifted off the throttle, which then spun the car. I love how no one notices my clean runs.
Pulling back into the grid, the smell worsened. I leaned under the car and saw that Kyoko was just vomiting coolant on the ground. At this point of my Miata-fatedom, I just decided that ‘it figures’, and pulled my car off to the side of the pit area. After opening the hood, I saw the source of my woes.
You can see where a hole blew out the back of the radiator, and was just streaming coolant onto the ground. It was probably just old and ready to go. (So that’s nice… Not really.) I scrambled to get my phone, and started to call up as many parts areas that I could get the number for. I had three things on my side.
- There was a parts store that had a spare radiator. (Lucky)
- Steven and his girlfriend Tracy were also at the track, and were able to give me a ride to pick it up. (OMG, one thousand thank yous, as they totally saved me!) (Lucky x 2)
- I’m at the racetrack, so people have tools everywhere. Totally better than having a failure on the freeway. (Lucky x 3)
Steven and I were able to get the new radiator into the car in under an hour, but by the time that we were finished the afternoon run group was deeply underway. (There are times where I wish that autocross just had open run entry…)
So what did I get out of this weekend? 1.5 autocross runs, and a new radiator ($200 in total). Am I having fun yet?
Quick update: So tires and wheels have been the name of the game for the last few weeks. I was able to find a great deal on Toyo R888s that I wasn’t able to pass up. All it required me to do was to drive down to Chase Race in Duvall, pay for them and pick them up. Doug was super awesome, and already had the tires mounted and ready to go when I arrived.
Afterwards, I drove back up with my now ‘third’ set of spare wheels and headed home to complete another project. I’m debating on whether I’m going to have these wheels painted too, or leave them alone. Although now I have a room that’s full of random wheel/tire combinations, I am really excited to actually have some nice rubber for autocrossing.
Speaking of painted wheels, though! Blue! I finally had a chance to test fit the ones that I had painted last night. I’m still not sure if I like them, but I’m trying them out for the weekend to see if I’m feeling them or not. I do really think that the blue really does pop, and these will make good trackday mule wheels. (So I guess it really doesn’t matter how they look.) Plus they were pretty much free, so I shouldn’t really complain.
So readers know that Kyoko had just suffered a recent theft, when some punk stole the wheels off my car. While I’m still on the hunt for whoever took my RPF-1s, Bret was gracious enough to reach out and provide a set of stock late-model Miata wheels for free! (permanent +10 awesome points.) As a ‘plus’, they have some old race rubber on them, which would be good for a practice or autocross. Free track day tires!
I mounted the tires and ran them for a day, just to wear the old rubber off the surface of them before moving back to another set of stock ‘daisies’ that I have sitting around. The rubber on these ‘free wheels’ are a bit squirrelly to run around on the daily streets, and dangerous if it gets wet. However in the meantime, I can’t just leave things alone now, can I?
So, I spent yesterday cleaning up my new tires with chemicals and wire brushes. Then I took some blue metallic paint that I had around, and treated the wheels and then with several layers of clear coating. I intentionally over-sprayed them, so that they have a deep dark blue color to them.
Again, I decided that these tires would make for good track day tires, once I’m finally able to get back into racing again. So as long as they look good from ten feet away, then that’s all that matters, right?
Fun Miata fact: Apparently these stock Miata wheels were made by Enkei. If you flip them over, they have Enkei stamped on the back. Who knew?! Hopefully you’ll see pictures of these tires mounted on a track day or autocross soon.
I went to sleep last night with my car looking like this.
I woke up this morning with it looking like this…
When I saw my car up on blocks, I felt like this…
So it goes without saying that I’m pretty angry right now. I’m going to be combing Craigslist to see if anyone is selling any silver Enkei’s. They’re probably mine. How @!#$#ed up is that, when people have to take other people’s things, because they don’t have their own. Scumbags!
With money being how it is, it doesn’t stop me from wanting to make updates to Kyoko. I’m just being made to be more creative with my ideas. So in the downtime, I’m coming up with sample modifications, which if I like then I’ll make more refined versions of what I have in the car now.
#1 Interior door handle delete and strap:
I have longer arms, so my elbows hit the interior handle when cornering hard. So after a quick visit to TC Motorsports, and sitting in one of their Spec-Miatas, I got the idea to remove the door handle and make this plate-strap. This is just the basic concept, using a Simpson lap-belt from some worn harnesses, and some aluminum that we had lying around. Now I have more interior space on my side, and my elbows don’t run into things.
#2 Hand carved shift-knob
I love one-off interior pieces, because I think that they add character. A friend’s dad carved me this shift knob out of vine-maple. It’s super light and strong, which makes for really positive and easy shifts. A few coats of lacquer, and it has a super nice shine to it. I was told that if I wanted, he would paint it, or carve words in it or whatever else I’d like, but I like the natural look for now.
I think this spruces up the interior, and feels a lot better than the ‘weighted’ Razo shift-knob that I had before. A smaller Nardi Corn steering wheel will help with the final ‘space-saving’, but like I said, things are tight right now.
Someone was able to grab a picture of Kyoko and I doing the business at Pacific Raceways last weekend. I was taking my IRDC Racing Driving school, which was a ton of fun.
I was only able to get two sessions out of the day, due to my clutch giving up the ghost, but it was totally worth it.
Oh man, the need for more action shots are growing…
I didn’t take a lot of photos this morning, because I didn’t have a lot of time this morning. I couldn’t sleep, so I ended replacing the valve cover gasket and a few other small things on the car this morning before heading off to work.
Super nice to be able to get a few small things done in the morning, just before you start the day. On another note, I’m thinking about removing some of the stickers on the car…but we’ll see in the next few days how I feel about it.
Sorry for the cameraphone pictures, but I wanted to grab some shots of some of the garage time that Kyoko got this weekend. One of my karting friends was able to help me replacing the pads and rotors on the car. TJ is a great mechanic, and I can pay him in food, so it works out well.
Found this image surfing through Miata forums. What do you guys think? Should Kyoko transform into this for 2013?
Things I see that I like:
Updated front splitter
Hood mounted Tow-hook
I’ve been doing a lot of daily driving recently, and thus have worn the hell out of the tires on Kyoko. The extra mileage, plus needing an alignment meant that I’d driven the front tires down to cords. Eek! (There is a follow up-story about this, for another post.)
Since tire replacement was pretty much mandatory, I decided that because of all of the commuting I’m doing that my car was going to need some tougher rubber. A fellow autocrosser, and the one who took this photo, works at a tire alignment place near me and was able to help mount new Primewall rubber and get Kyoko aligned.
Since the weekend ended up pretty much being random car-stuff, I’ve got a few other odds and ends to finish up tonight and tomorrow, which I may post on then too.
Sykart Indoor Racing Center, my local indoor karting track decided they wanted to run their logo on Kyoko. I thought was a great idea. I love the kart track that I race at, so I will do anything I can do to support them.
The logo was designed at ‘JJ Graphics & Signs’, and I was able to pick it up and have it installed today. This shop provides vinyl design and installation for PRO3 race cars, so I was happy for them to work on my car.
Sorry for the grainy-shots, but they came from my cameraphone.
I’ve always felt like cars need to be driven in as many circumstances as possible. As a car guy, I’ve always found myself at conflict with ‘garage-queen’ car guys who treat Honda Civics like Ferrari F40s. I always feel like pictures of hyper-clean cars are more ’fake’ than cars with a bit of dirt on them.
Therefore, my ride is normally a bit more ragged looking than most. It’s not intentional ,but it’s just a result of the lifestyle that my car exists in. She’s driven daily, normally covering 100 miles a day with my commute. Fortunately, Kyoko is an exciting car to drive so every mile is just a joy.
Granted, I’m not trying to win any car shows. If I were my outlook on car-life would be vastly different though.
Today was the first day that I was able to free Kyoko, and so I made sure to take a snap of her with my cameraphone, so that people know that we’re finally free!
In the next few weeks, Kyoko will be getting some better pictures taken of herself for the blog, so I’m really looking forward to that. However for right now, it’s just nice to be able to move around!
So earlier this week, I noticed that Kyoko had developed an exhaust leak. Since I wanted to send some time at PGP doing some hot laps, I thought it would be a good idea to see if I could get the leak fixed first before I went out on track.
This is just a random snap of Kyoko as she’s parked next to a co-worker’s Mini Cooper. Man, she makes the Mini look towering, eh?
Another passing thought: I wonder how much more technology is in that Mini Cooper, compared to my Kyoko?
It makes you wonder how the driving experience has changed over the years, due to the introduction of more technology. Do modern car owners feel like they need aids like DSC, traction control, etc to have a good experience?
Just thinking about it right now. What do you think? Yay or nay? (Vote after the jump)
This was not how I expected for Kyoko to sit for most of the day…
So after spending Saturday at the indoor karting track, I decided to spend Sunday on the outdoor kart track driving Kyoko. I had heard that PGP Motorsports Park had started a new membership for Lapping Day drivers, and I wanted to get myself one.
After dropping of Kasumi’s old rear spoiler to a fellow Miata friend, so he could work on his ‘Panda-bear’ project (more on that later), I decided I head down to get my membership. Figured while I was down there, I would take a few laps.
I spent some time with another Miata owner yesterday morning over coffee. Steve Schaeffer has done some instruction at the Nurburgring, and some teaching at some of the local performance schools in the area. We had planned to get together and get some coffee, but the shops were so full that we ended up taking a walk around the local neighborhood.
It was super refreshing to chat with an experienced driver about how to teach driving technique to other people. I have been interested in becoming an instructor myself, although I know I need alot more seat time first. Plus, it was super nice to just walk around the neighborhood and learn new things about housing… and other local Greenlake folklore.
After a bit of a walk/chat, Steve took some time behind the wheel of Kyoko. I think he really liked it, and I enjoyed getting a chance to watch a good driver up close.
A few weeks ago, I was able to take Kyoko out for a run on our local outdoor karting track. It was nice to be able to shakedown the car with some untimed laps, and get to know her a bit better. I have to say, that I LOVE this car. Much better than ‘Kasumi’ by a factor of 100.
I was planning on changing to Kyoko’s winter tires the next day, so this was as good of time as any to have some fun. The track was a bit slick as it was cold and the sun was already going down. The plan is to spend more time out there over the winter and get more seat-time before spring heats up again.
I believe this was taken on our of our first laps out, because of the brakes being on so far after the turn- in point, but I’m just going to fake it and say that I was trail braking.
Thanks for Michael Ewald and his dad for grabbing pictures that day. So much fun!
In my last post, we saw how trains we’re poking ahead slightly in this battle, partly down to cost. One of the ways we could all save a few pennies, especially in this climate where companies seek to get every last penny they can from us, is to get our hands dirty and get under the bonnets or our cars.
Most things on cars, all though seem incredibly complicated and difficult, are relatively simple; older cars especially, which is handy as they are more likely to break down. For example, the ABS system on the old Calibra is a simple cog on the driveshaft and a small magnetic sensor.
As the teeth of the gear pass the sensor, the magnet will pick up strong or weak pulses, feeding back to the cars computer, letting it know that that wheel is spinning, therefore not locked up and skidding. It’s a beautifully simple solution.
So yesterday, I mounted Kyoko’s winter wheels and loaded her summer shoes into the apartment. They are Enkei RFP-1s with Toyo Proxes on them. However, since I bought the car in the winter time, I never really got the chance to feel what Proxes drove like in the proper operating temperature.
Regardless, I will take the time to properly clean the wheels now that they are off the car. Also, this gives me some time to figure out what summertime rubber that I will mount on them in the next few months. I’ve been super interested in the Falken RT615-K, so that is always an option. Also, if I know someone who has some used summer rubber, I may just use those depending on the budget when the time comes.
Hopefully, I’ll be able to take some more photos with Kyoko with something more than a cheap camera phone, but for the moment….*click!*
Not much going on: Just a brief update on Project Kyoko- So this afternoon, I spent some time mounting Kyoko’s winter shoes.
They are OEM 14′s with used Bridgestone RE-960 on them. One thing I didn’t think about was because of the smaller tire size, they lower the car a bit, so now I have to be even more careful around large curbs and speed bumps. I also made sure to change her oil, while I had some time under the car.
I’ll spend some time this winter up at our local outdoor karting track on the winter tires, just getting more comfortable with the car on untimed runs around the track. I’m sure other shinanigans will occur as well.
Yep, so I picked up a new car, and she’s got stickers.
I initially bought a Miata, because I wanted to have fun. I’d always wanted a Miata. The lightweight chassis, and high-revving engine was always an appeal to me. Everyone I’ve seen has always had fun in one.
So this February, I bought one. It was a very happy day! I’d finally purchased one of the cars that’s on my ‘list’, as one car I had to have before I died.
The Roadster has been frustrating the hell out of me lately. When I picked up the car, I knew that she wasn’t perfect, but I had no idea how little she had been taken care of before I bought her. Now I spend alot of my time fixing several things that the previous owner took less than perfect care off.
I haven’t been able to enjoy the car once this year at the local autocrosses, without something happening to her.
Ever have a day that ends up, completely opposite of what you had planned?