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Spec E46 racing class forum
Official Spec E46 racing class forum.

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Old 11-30-2013, 02:00 PM   #41
vaio76109
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Quote:
Originally Posted by unevolved View Post
Are there any provisions/encouragements to upgrade cooling systems? I saw "stock size" in the rules, does that mean oversized aluminum radiators are disallowed?
I ran a 330 with a stock radiator and a Stewart water pump for years in Texas and never had a cooling issue.

PS-There's another car joining SE30 next year in TX.
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Old 11-30-2013, 08:11 PM   #42
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^thanks, i didnt see that link the first time
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Old 12-02-2013, 12:50 PM   #43
technik14
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Just show up

might I chime in here.
I helped start CMC2 on the west cost. I have raced with the west coast SE30 guys and spec Miata. Everyone is faced with the same criticism about the initial rules. Jason and James have done everything right to get spec E46 off the ground, or started, or the ball rolling, and really nothing more. just get it going. spec Miata and SE30 are not where they started, they have evolved. at the end of the day these guys are faced with the problem that not everyone will be happy in the beginning, but I think you will be racing your car wink wink
I am testing my spec 330 e46 on the 29th (provided parts show up cough cough ) because if there is a gripe about it, it will be proven on the race track with a car. I would be willing to bet that after the all the dust is settled with the 330 those guys would be more than willing to look at everything else that is proposed, just one thing at a time at the moment.
I will say this when we started CMC2 we didn't know if it was a good idea. we just showed up and looked at the data. the worse case was that we had fun on the track. BUT getting a series off the ground is a lot like aligning stars. so for now lets work with what they have done so far. lets take our cars to the track and race the hell the of them because that is awesome.
pure performance is going to build a spec E46. It is only a matter of time before midnight oil gets on board. this is a good idea we are prepared to help solve these issue having the best time [I]ever[I] (trying to sound like a teenage girl) on the track (and drink a few adult beverages afterward and yell at each other) so if anyone has concerns come to the track and help us brake a few things because this is happening on the west coast.
thanks for listening

peter
Ps I really need those parts
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Old 12-02-2013, 04:43 PM   #44
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From the responses here it seems like the intent is specifically to *not* be as "spec" as spec E30 or spec Miata. I would imagine the thought process is that if you want "cheap", "identical" racing, there are already two very good options for that, and that maybe this can be a next step between that and more formula-based or professional series.

I'm not sure I would quite call this spec racing, just due to the association with much more highly determined "spec" series, but I can certainly appreciate the market positioning, that hopefully these cars feel a little more like what someone would *want* to build if they had free reign, while maintaining close competition among very similar cars.

I sit on the Street Touring Advisory Committee for SCCA Solo, (a category which allows limited street-friendly mods like suspension and bolt-on power stuff) and I can appreciate the balancing act in designing a ruleset - you want to make them reasonable to implement, while limiting the effect that pushing the rules to the limit will have, and making it a fun place to compete.

I've also competed in my E46s (sport, then ZHP) for the past 8 years, and spent a lot more than $20k building custom swaybar mounts, custom shock and camber plate setups, custom seat mounts, swapped headlights, custom header/exhaust setups, and rebuilding my diff with different ramping and clutch settings. For a $5 acrylic trophy for driving around cones in a parking lot.

I've used two sets of shocks, three front and two rear swaybars, three sets of wheels, tested tires, camber, caster, ride height, bar config, springs, and diff settings, and ultimately even changed cars. For a $5 acrylic trophy for driving around cones in a parking lot.

And I'm *not* one of the really crazy ones, and I don't know ahead of time what the track would be. (yes, I have different setups for tighter or more open courses, and for low-grip situations)

So a lot of the rulesmaking discussions we have within the STAC are about "if I were totally crazy, what would I do with this allowance?", and then deciding whether that's what we want done in our category, because we know that *someone* *will* go there. And a lot of the time the question is about whether someone going there (whether competitively successful or not) is going to convince others that they have to do that to compete, and whether that will discourage participation more than it helps ease of implementation. It's easier for you with a set vehicle, (we manage a ruleset for a couple hundred cars across six classes) but I think a lot of the issues impacting rulesmaking are still the same - what level of crazy is going to impact the desire of your target market to spend their racing budget on that class, rather than something else?

Will it be:
- The guy with a second set of coilovers he swaps out for wet use, or a bumpy track?
- The guy with a second diff he swaps out to optimize for different levels of desired power-on oversteer/push?
- The guy running a standalone ECU and bringing his own 110 octane racing gas that costs $30 a gallon?
- The guy running a custom arm-mounted swaybar front & rear?
- The guy testing 5* of camber vs. 10* of caster vs. gigantic bars, all with custom parts?

I'm not a road racer, just an autocrosser and karter, and so maybe these things are all further beyond the diminishing returns curve in road racing than they are in autocross, where national championships are won and lost by a tenth of a second. Maybe the speed & distance magnify the driver disparities enough not to matter? My apologies for wasting bandwidth if these are not things that really matter in competitive road racing, just trying to poke holes where they may be helpful to the long term health of the series.

Oh, and just to reiterate, the biggest one that concerns me is using the 330, and using it with short gearing. These motors just don't like to rev, and it seems like throwing a 3.46 at them without encouraging supporting mods (like dampers at the very least) is asking for trouble, and they're not exactly E30 or Miata motors in terms of replacement cost... If I were building this class, I might consider building it around the E36 non-M instead. (cheaper to buy, similar power/weight, more durable, cheaper motors that are easier to tune, cheaper diffs)
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Old 12-03-2013, 01:19 AM   #45
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I've been looking at the rules and some of the items mentioned here don't seem to apply:

Will it be:
- The guy with a second set of coilovers he swaps out for wet use, or a bumpy track? Given the spec shocks and springs I don't see this as happening. The shocks are SA so they may be adjusted, but why replace?
- The guy with a second diff he swaps out to optimize for different levels of desired power-on oversteer/push? This appears to be a possibility. I can see some guys with a spare diff or two.
- The guy running a standalone ECU and bringing his own 110 octane racing gas that costs $30 a gallon? I thought I read that the ECU was going to be locked, and gas was limited to 93 octane pump.
- The guy running a custom arm-mounted swaybar front & rear? Easily fixed with a rule mod requiring stock sway bar mounting and pickup points.
- The guy testing 5* of camber vs. 10* of caster vs. gigantic bars, all with custom parts? Camber plates seemed to be limited to stock mounting locations with adjustment to allow for mounting hardware and adjustments. Again, not likely and probably subject to the judgement of the scrutineer.
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Old 12-04-2013, 08:38 AM   #46
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rob_h View Post
I've been looking at the rules and some of the items mentioned here don't seem to apply:

Will it be:
- The guy with a second set of coilovers he swaps out for wet use, or a bumpy track? Given the spec shocks and springs I don't see this as happening. The shocks are SA so they may be adjusted, but why replace?
They're single adjustable, and I don't see anything on the BW website indicating whether both compression and rebound are adjusted with a single knob. Since they're upgradable to DA, I'll assume it's only rebound, like most SA shocks. Would you want to run the same compresssion regardless of the track or conditions? I wouldn't.

Quote:
- The guy running a standalone ECU and bringing his own 110 octane racing gas that costs $30 a gallon? I thought I read that the ECU was going to be locked, and gas was limited to 93 octane pump.
Can you quote that section of the rules? I saw this:
Quote:
A custom ECU tune may be specified in order to ensure compliance and maximize
power/reliability. [This will be evaluated further once prototype cars are built.]
ok, so I don't think there's an allowance for standalone ECUs, but does that mean stock ECU tune? How do you check that for compliance? *which* stock ECU tune? Who can read/confirm the tune? (I have to send my ECU to florida when I want it tuned by AA, tuning an M54 seems to be a bit of a black art) Are we really going to open up the exhaust without changing the tune? I can verify that the header spec'd will definitely suck on a stock ECU, I know because I've tried it. (though I'd be surprised if tuning made it much better)

Where in the rules is fuel octane limited? How do you actually police 93 octane? (we're struggling a lot with similar limits in SCCA Solo, I can tell you it's a thorny issue)

Quote:
- The guy running a custom arm-mounted swaybar front & rear? Easily fixed with a rule mod requiring stock sway bar mounting and pickup points.
I agree, I think that might be wise, but you'll still have folks buying three different bars and testing them at different settings...

Quote:
- The guy testing 5* of camber vs. 10* of caster vs. gigantic bars, all with custom parts? Camber plates seemed to be limited to stock mounting locations with adjustment to allow for mounting hardware and adjustments. Again, not likely and probably subject to the judgement of the scrutineer.
Wait, so if I show up to competition, having spent $2,000 building custom parts that perfectly fit the letter of the rules, but give me an advantage, you'll have someone arbitrarily determining I'm illegal, without changing the rules??? WTF???

That's a great way to scare people away from wanting to compete there, or to encourage corruption. Here's the rule:

Quote:
Adjustable or fixed camber/caster plates are permitted. They must be installed in the
location intended by the manufacturer, per their instructions. The three front strut
mounting holes may be slotted laterally, only to enable more range of camber adjustment.
The strut tower center hole may be notched/trimmed, but only as necessary to enable
clearance for installation of the tightening hardware (i.e. nuts, bolts, washers) originally
supplied with the camber plates.
I can absolutely build a camber plate that bolts to the factory location and locates the strut way up under the strut tower somewhere to give me any geometry I desire. Since I'm the "manufacturer", the plate is being used exactly as designed, per my own instructions.

I'm still not sure why you'd need to notch the center hole to clear the hardware, but hey, one more place I could get mighty creative if I didn't want to do the spacing & relocation dance.

Since you're already speccing the car, I'd recommend just specifying a list of approved camber plates, just list anything sold by BW, Turner, TCK, and Vorshlag, and allow competitors to request others. Easy to understand, easy to police.

Last edited by murph1379; 12-04-2013 at 08:40 AM.
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Old 12-05-2013, 07:43 AM   #47
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Guys, first rule of thumb is, if it doesn't say you can do it in the rules explicitly, you don't do it. You don't assume anything. All of these hypothetical questions are answered if you follow that rule.

If there is really unclarity, you raise that and gets clarified BEFORE you implement it.

This is infact a Spec series, calling it something else is just lack of sight. It has better components used, focuses on driver development as much as any other spec series. It on the other hand, has just enough adjustability to allow drivers to dial in their car.

At the end, I am very confident that this car is going to be much more fun to drive than any spec cars, and will be a blast series.
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Old 12-05-2013, 09:08 AM   #48
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Guys, first rule of thumb is, if it doesn't say you can do it in the rules explicitly, you don't do it.
Since when have racers ever followed that? The guy with the fastest car is usually the guy who understands the rules better than the other guys and finds the loopholes. If you're not forcing rule changes, you're not trying hard enough to make the best car possible.

No one who wants to win is going to follow the "spirit of the rules."
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Old 12-05-2013, 11:26 AM   #49
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True dat. Racers will always find a way to make their spec car a little more "equal" than the others.
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Old 12-05-2013, 12:58 PM   #50
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I also like to think that one of the reasons the rules were left a bit open is because this is a new class! You can't just post rules for a brand new class and have everything sorted out. As Peter (technik14) said, when CMC2 was being formed it didn't happen all at once. It took a few years for the people to figure out what works and what didn't, so you have to give them a little spacing with the rules until cars are finally built and raced. Everything can be said about "this happening" or "that happening" but until people actually show up and with built cars then we only have a guess of what can happen.

I love the idea of this class and am seriously trying to talk some friends of mine into building a car for it here on the west coast. I would really like to see this series get going; I totally believe it can be a really fun class.
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Old 12-05-2013, 01:13 PM   #51
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Since when have racers ever followed that? The guy with the fastest car is usually the guy who understands the rules better than the other guys and finds the loopholes. If you're not forcing rule changes, you're not trying hard enough to make the best car possible.

No one who wants to win is going to follow the "spirit of the rules."
That's pretty much crap, and not true.
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Old 12-05-2013, 01:19 PM   #52
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Which part are you disagreeing with?

I'm not sure what your association with this Spec E46 governing body is, but please understand I'm not trying to attack you/the group. I want this to succeed, and I'm trying to provide a different perspective.
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