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Matt U

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Matt U last won the day on April 16

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  1. Here is the best clean run that I did all day. It's in the TO section, but was still a 40.222 in STX and more importantly clean. I can see multiple seconds where I am on the limiter, especially at the finish. Still pretty happy with it though.
  2. I'm about 95% sure that the countryman is not legal to run. Because all the street/stock class's don't allow anything that would lower the car or widen the track width, we usually go off of the OEM specs. So on that note, the manufacturer states that height is 61.5" and the track width is 61.1" in the rear and 60.0" in the front. An example of a on the edge of legal car is the Ford Fiesta ST with a height of 57.2" and a track of 57.7" front and 57" rear. The regular Fiesta is not allowed to run. There have been Fiesta ST's that have rolled over, more than once. I know that you want to run, and that's great to hear, but having fun with autocross isn't supposed to include a chance of a roll over... Another option to consider for cheap autocrossing, is a Miata. No not some lightly used 2017 or something. A mostly sorted NA or NB Miata. Parts are cheap and they are scattered everywhere. Plus they can be super easy on tires, unless you pull a Kevin and flat spot a new set of Rivals... I guess it depends on your personal situation if you can add another car, mostly dedicated to autocross.
  3. You pose an interesting question there Banner. If you are driving into work or to a store, you can still practice looking ahead to where you want to go. We all should be looking ahead on the road anyway but bad habits are easy to form. The more tricky thing with autocross is fine adjustment of your line is done with your peripheral vision. If you are looking for more seat time and have a little bit of money to spend, Octane raceway is an option. Karts don’t translate into car driving techniques very cleanly, but getting comfortable pushing harder without making mistakes will translate. I’m talking about systemically pushing a little harder into a turn, or carrying a little more apex speed. Looking a little further ahead at slow pinched corners (more important than looking ahead on fast corners lap time wise). The way I have stayed sharp is mostly studying my previous runs. I save all of them and watch them section by section. There is some good reeding on this and other things at Beyond Seat Time https://www.beyondseattime.com Hope that helps a little.
  4. Bill, sometimes there are little things written in the factory service manual that allow for smaller diameter bolts on the lower part of the strut. A quick Google search and it seems that the lower strut mount on yours is a ring style, so there’s no adjustment there. Regarding the rules, basically the lower spring perch to the wheel centerline on a strut can’t be anything different than O.E. So the Koni and Bilstein are the right choice. There is also a rule that droop travel needs to be 1” or less difference from the O.E. shocks. Just because I did the research on this a while back, I figured I should share. Now, Koni makes the Str.t (street pronunciation apparently), and the yellows. The Str.t is a non-adjustable version of the yellow at full soft. The yellow have a “rebound” adjuster only. I say “rebound” in quotes because there is what is called cross-talk in the yellow’s, so about 40-50% of what you add in rebound will also be added in compression. Now on to the Bilstein camp. There is the B6 and the B8 that are both viable options that are class legal. Now before you say that the B8’s are designed to work only with lowering springs, that’s not really the case. I talked with a few shops that rebuild them and they all agree that the B8 will work with stock springs. The biggest difference with the B8 is that the amount of droop is 1” less than the B6, which is legal, and the B8 is slightly stiffer. One big thing to note on the Bilstein’s is that they are mono-tube shocks, so they will flex less. The other thing that may influence your decision is that because the Bilstein’s are mono-tubes, the nitrogen pressure in the shocks actually acts as a bit of additional spring rate. I have heard about 10-15 lb/in in addition spring rate just due to the shock alone, for both the B6 and the B8. This can help a softly sprung car be a little bit better in the roll rate department. Lastly the Bilstein’s are non-adjustable, but there are a lot of shops that can re-valve them if you need it. I know there’s a lot to digest, but I figured I would put it out there.
  5. I’m going to second Scott’s advice to ask lots of questions at an event. Most of us still remember our first event and the drinking from a fire hose that came along with it. Just remember to be a sponge for at least the first few events, there’s no one here to try and impress. Autocross is reasonably different than road racing, so most forum advice you’ll come across on the internet needs something a little stronger than a pinch of salt for this type of racing.
  6. So, you may be asking yourself, what does it look like to be right there on a really good run just to through it away at the end? Well, glad you asked! Here is what it looks like side by side the top PAX of the day. The sound is from the right window.
  7. Okay, here is my fastest clean run. It was a 42.681, though there was a lot left on the table. The next post will show that...
  8. So because I was curious how I did, I added the PAX index to the sheet that Kim provided. So now you can sort by overall PAX time as well as see the overall PAX points. Results 04-10-21 with PAX.xlsx
  9. I think Todd has a really good point with the crossover between AM/PM groups. We could setup something where registration and tech open while B group is running, so registration would close at like noon or so. Then everyone for the PM group could start a course walk almost as soon as the B group is done running, though there will need to be a little car human herding because I think there will be more cars and people in motion on site than we usually see. It might even be possible to have the PM drivers meeting before the course walk. That would probably ensure 5 runs.
  10. There were some timing issues since the first group went out. We tried to add a fifth run column and a group of us couldn’t figure it out, so that would affect the live timing. The timing got a little more complicated by the afternoon runs. All in, Jason should be SUPER THRILLED when he gets back and starts sorting this out. The score board was a nice thing to have but it was a give and take. Anyone could look at how they were doing, but it tended to be the kitchen where everyone would congregate making timing and observers frustrated. I used to write down each runs time after I parked, but the new live system made me complacent as well.
  11. Lance, good point about the concrete slab being flat and level. You can also use the tiles as shims on the floor, but you will need a long level or a laser to set the height. Regarding the weight being in the car to simulate the driver weight, it usually is a tiny change. This varies from car to car and how stiff the car is. On an STX built car, adding the driver weight really only mattered when I corner balanced the car. The car camber change I couldn't measure the change because the car only squats like 1/4", maybe less, when I get in the car. I'm also no light weight at like 235lbs.
  12. John, One idea that I have seen is to use sheets of vinyl tile with a little bit of a lubricant between the tiles. Both Lowe's and Home Depot have them for like $1 a tile. That way they won't rip but will still allow rotation. For the front to back alignment, what you are referring to is called the thrust angle. Basically if the toe of the rear is set, where is it pointing in relation to the front of the car. There are a few way to measure this, but with a laser you want to set the laser so that it's shooting a line that is parallel to the pinch welds/frame. Then you can measure from the toe plates what the pointing angle for that wheel is. You should measure half of what your total toe is, because your only measuring only one wheel according to a parallel reference line. Keep one thing in mind, the more complex the suspension geometry the more of a pain it will be to adjust just one setting. On a strut based car, it's pretty straight forward to set camber then toe. On a multi-link, like the rear of the FRS and BRZ, all adjustments affect each other, so it can be a bit of a tail chaser. I would suggest to get a few 12' tape measures at a hardware store and compare them to one another. If you have 3 or 4 tape measures and none of them agree on a measurement should be, you will think that your cars alignment is always changing but in reality it was just the measuring device. I would also get a 12" ruler where 0" is actually at the edge of the ruler instead of offset. A lot of these are called either a "steel rule" or a "machinist rule." I personally have these https://tinyurl.com/nuw8ybwm, and https://tinyurl.com/3kun2279.
  13. First off, the A052's can NOT be flipped on the wheels as they are an asymmetric tire. Outside has to stay outside. Regarding number of runs, on a STX car, so there is camber, we are probably going to get about 100 runs from a set of tires. I have been logging the tire wear across the tires since the January event. This appears to be very similar tire wear to the RE71R's for us anyway. We have never run on the rivals or the 660RT's, so I can't comment on those. The A052's are rumored to be the hot ticket for concrete surfaces, as well as wet conditions. I think the A052's are very similar to the RE71R's in most ways, but are a little more forgiving and are not quite as sharp. If you have a camber challenged car, they will eat the A052's quickly and they really shouldn't be flipped on the wheel.
  14. Sid, you’re absolutely right that it’s not an apples to apples comparison. Speaking of tire wear, proper camber, little tow, and a light car it’s almost impossible to beat up the tires. We barely have to spray the tires when co-driving in the summer here. There is one big draw back to the A052’s on a camber challenged car that I just realized, they are asymmetric. So if you burn off the outside edge, which is common, you can’t flip them to get some more runs out of them.
  15. I believe if everyone keeps patient and plays their part in protecting others by wearing a mask we might be back to a more normal by September. The issue is that a lot of the population is just tired of having to do something that they don’t want to do. So if we do our part, that is a small piece of the larger puzzle that isn’t causing a potential issue. Please keep in mind that the move to “back to normal” won’t be everything all at once. It will be more structured, like being allowed to bring guests, but only if they live with you and everyone still needs to wear a mask. This would be regardless if you have been vaccinated, because you can still transmit a virus. Every virus transmission also accelerates the chance of mutation of that virus. So, if there are enough mutations of the virus, then the vaccination is no longer effective, then everything starts over. The steering committee as well as everyone else wants things to get back to normal with guests and TO’s. But if we lifted the masks and went full steam ahead and we had a member die, I personally would not be okay with that. I’ve had family member’s hospitalized and my wife had two coworkers die from this virus, so please be patient and we will get through this together.
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