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Discussion Starter #202 (Edited)
Weigh-in Update

For my second post in the last year and a half on here I'd like to say this is fucking awesome.

Now go weigh it!
LOL, Thanks! Glad to be post-worthy. :)

As a reminder, our previous weight data is below. I weighed it again last Sunday. As predicted, even as I've continued to shave weight here and there, once the rollbar went in (as well as the heavier wheel and tire combo), the car hasn't gotten any lighter. Here's the new data:

Total weight: 2720lbs
Front weight: 62%
Left weight: 50%
Cross weight: 50%

The L/R and cross weights are perfectly balanced which is a pleasant surprise. The front weight improved slightly - because the rollbar is closer to the rear. Unfortunately, the total weight has gone up almost 90lbs.

The rollbar is about 2lbs/ft, say 75lbs including baseplates. Wheels & tires are about 10lb heavier each - say 115lbs total increase. Seems about right that I found about 20lbs of misc stuff since the last weigh-in.

Thinking about a polycarbonate windshield and backglass. :D

There is still a bit more weight that can come out - I want to lighten the body panels - especially the hood. I need to remove the cats and the stock mufflers. I will continue to work on trimming weight, but I figure at this point, when the cage goes in it won't be getting any lighter.

As a reminder, here is where we started:
Total weight: 3160lbs
Front weight: 58.6%
Left weight: 50.5%
Cross weight: 48.9%

So I rolled it up on the scales tonight and here's what we got:
Total weight: 2632lbs
Front weight: 63.4%
Left weight: 50.8%
Cross weight: 51.2%

That's a nearly 17% weight reduction and about 600lbs lighter than stock.

As I expected, most of the weight shed was behind the front wheels so the Front weight went up 4.8% - a lighter hood will help here. Left and Cross weights stayed about the same - that's good.
 

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Discussion Starter #204 (Edited)
DIY Alignment

Time to set the alignment. We will start with camber, since changes in camber also change toe. The plan is to set all four wheels at -2.5deg, then fine tune the camber using the skidpad and pyrometer until we have even temps across the face of the tire. As you know the front has no factory camber adjustment, but since we've added eccentric a-arm bushings and adjustable ball joints we have plenty of adjustment.

If you don't have an expensive camber gauge, you can make a jig and use a level like I do. To start you'll need the following materials from your favorite racing supply house (Home Depot) - about $14.
3' stick of 1/2"square tubing
Three 2" long 1/4x20 philips head screws
Three 1/4x20 nyloc nuts
Three 1/4" flat washers
Three 1" long, 1/4" dia aluminum spacers (or sleeves)

Cut the square tubing into a 10" piece and a 20" piece. Weld the long piece to the center of the short piece at right angles.



Drill 1/4" holes 3/4" from each end of the short piece. Assemble screw thru the spacer and square tubing and secure with a flat washer and lock nut.



Set the two lower stand-offs on the rim and mark the location for the upper hole. You can drill a hole for 18", 17", 16" rims and just move the stand-off.

The jig is held to the wheel with a 6" bungie. The digital level with magnetic base is from Sears - $30.



The nice thing about this setup is the ground (or lift in my case) doesn't have to be perfectly level. Set the level in front of the tire - note that it is slightly out of level.



Zero the level



Then measure the angle of the wheel in relation to the ground (or lift). In this case we have -2.5deg.



The rear has factory adjustment using these eccentric washer dials.



Note there is a reference mark above the washer dial and there are grooves in the bolt so the washer dial will rotate with the bolt. You will see the same from the backside.



If you remove the washer, you see the bolt rides in a slot.



To adjust, you DON'T remove the nut and washer. Jack the tire off the ground, loosen the nut about one turn and rotate the bolt from the backside. Here we have it adjusted to the factory maximum.



Unfortunately, the factory max adjustment only yields about -1.5deg. We'll be elongating the slots to get up to -3deg. :D

Stay tuned for toe adjustment!
 

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Discussion Starter #205
After a little time with the cutoff wheel, we have a longer slot :thumbup:



Re-installing the lower control arm, we find we can get up to 4deg of negative camber. :p



After setting both sides to -2.5deg, we set the rear toe to just bearly a skoash of toe-in - less than 1/16". Can't see it on my toe gauge because of the flash - sorry.



The rear toe is adjusted by the rod in the top of the pic. The front toe is adjusted by the tierod ends of course. The front toe is set to 1/16" toe-out. Pretty much ready to give this thing a flogging!! Can't wait to see how she handles!:D
 

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loving the DIY alignment
 

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After a little time with the cutoff wheel, we have a longer slot :thumbup:



Re-installing the lower control arm, we find we can get up to 4deg of negative camber. :p



After setting both sides to -2.5deg, we set the rear toe to just bearly a skoash of toe-in - less than 1/16". Can't see it on my toe gauge because of the flash - sorry.



The rear toe is adjusted by the rod in the top of the pic. The front toe is adjusted by the tierod ends of course. The front toe is set to 1/16" toe-out. Pretty much ready to give this thing a flogging!! Can't wait to see how she handles!:D

Please keep us up to date :)
 

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Discussion Starter #209
Well the car is just about ready for the track. Washed it up this morning and took it for a spin. I think I'm REALLY gonna like this thing on the track!


Upcoming schedule:
Tech inspection - 2/11
Auto-X @ VMP 2/12
Test-n-Tune 2/19

If the car is ready after the above dates, I plan to head back to VIR Late Feb or early March. Let's see if we can get thru the season without breaking anything!
Things aren't quite going as planned. While doing some shake-down testing around the neighborhood, several minor issues were discovered. The only significant one was a leaky axle seal. Unfortunately, I missed the Tech Inspection and the Auto-X while making that repair. Fortunately there is another Tech Inspection on 3/17.

The car is all ready for the Test-n-Tune Sunday. We're planning skidpad testing in the morning - making camber, pressure and swaybar adjustments based on tire temps. The afternoon will be autocross practice on a fairly long, fast course. Currently the weather forecast sucks - let's hope they are wrong.

The first road course time trial (points event) is April 7th & 8th at VIR. I'm hoping to get some seat time in the car before then.
 

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Discussion Starter #211
how hard was it to replace the axle seal?
It's not too bad. Remove the tire, separate the upper ball joint, lean the knuckle away from the car and pull the axle out. Pop out the old seal and tap in the new one. The slide the axle back in and reconnect the ball joint.

The worse part is I have to reset the camber and toe again. :mad:
 

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I was told by a co-worker the other day that I am a patient person. I am....but only when I am PAID to be. Nobody here is paying me....updates NOW dammit! :)
 

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Discussion Starter #215
Sadly, I've had to put the toys away for a bit. We've had a elderly parent fall ill unexpectedly and we find ourselves evaluating options of in-home care, nursing homes, etc. It will be another few weeks of rehab before we know for sure the level of care required. As always, family comes first. The Mazda will sit patiently in the barn, under the tarp until the time is appropriate - probably mid to late summer after we get everything sorted out.

Sorry to be a downer.

CR
 

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Discussion Starter #216
Update

Registered for the 3-day track event at VIR Sept 7-9. Yes the same one that blew the motor last year. :D Let's hope for less drama this time.

The car is pretty much ready. I'll put fresh brake fluid in it and haul it to the local race shop for its annual tech inspection.

Couldn't run the full season this year as planned, but 3 days at VIR is not to be missed. :p

CR
 

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Dude. Your threads are incredible. Generally I skim posts/skip pages, but with this thread and your engine replacement thread I've read every post. In the case of the latter I've actually read through it five or six times.
 

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Enormous props to you CanyonRider, it's was almost like a Chilton/Hayes manual in a thread. :)

Bye.
 
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