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Murgatroy
04-29-2007, 04:57 PM
Yesterday I took Mudhoney and a baseline run of the Dragon and Cherohala Skyway.

This is a rather popular road that I drive quite often as I grew up in the area and live close. It has a very technical and tight part that is very popular with motorcyclists and the Skyway is more of a high speed sweeper with lots of scenic views. I live very close and I think I have decided to purpose build my car to drive this.

Mudhoney is bone stock beyond a gutted cat. Including the 13" wheels and tires.

I was impressed with the 3SFE. I am used to running with high horsepower V8s and RWD but I am just as comfortable in high revving FWD as well.

Yesterday after 150+ miles and several hours of heavy abuse I have an idea of what I need to modify on my ST162.

First and foremost is a seat. I have stock 4th Gen seats. I prefer the 5th Gen seats as they cradle me more. But I think I am gonna go with some ricer non adjustable seats. Maybe a 4 point harness as well. I am a smaller guy, I was all over the seat and that was just not acceptable for me.

Next is gonna be a new shifter. I am not sure if my issue was the linkage, shifter, or tranny, but without my hand holding the knob in second, I would pop out every time I accelerated out of a turn. This was not acceptable. I needed two hands on the wheel at times to get turned fast enough and it was not groovy to stomp the go pedal and just free rev. Some bushings and a short shifter should do the trick. I may also go with a T-Handle knob. I have an aluminum cylinder knob now, and it fit well, but I think I would like something bigger and more comfortable to hold onto.

The Pedals were fine with my smaller worn shoes on, maybe a set of dedicated driving shoes would fit the bill, but I still intend to remove the rubber pedal pads and cover the metal in skateboard grip tape.

Wheels and tires are next. My tires talked to me the entire time. I know I had some 4wheel drifting going on, other than my purposeful hamming for the photogs. I think a set of 15"-16" wheels with a good sticky tire will do. A smaller sidewall for less folding under and a better feel, but not too small for a seriously harsh ride. I am thinking a set of Sportmax 002 wheels in 15x8 with some Toyo Proxes 4 or RA-1s.

Brakes are next. This was the only serious issue I had the entire time. I had new pads on good rotors bled taught with old fluid. Halfway through the first run (Dragon/Technical) I had no pedal and had to engine brake to the end. My rotors blued quite badly. I have set of stock rotors in the trunk, they will be installed t'marra with fresh pads. But I may go with some slotted or crossdrilled rotors with some sticky pads later. I am also going to flush all the brake fluid out with fresh. Maybe find some with a higher boiling point. 4 wheel discs might be required if I get too much faster.

After all of this I am gonna do another shakedown and decide what goes next.

Suspension will have to be reworked, I know this already, but I want to see what I can push with the stock 200XXX miles on it already. I will have to go with new bushings and everything. I am not sure what brand or how stiff yet. I think the softer suspension actually helped me at a few points, these roads are not exactly perfect.

Power, I am not sure about that yet. I would love to swap and see what the turbo world is all about, but as of yet, I only ran out of power once or twice and had to worry about the higher horsepower cars. I think an intake, header and a little tuning should hold me over for a while. Especially with some serious weight reduction. I did this with a full interior and a trunk full of tools.

The interior is going to come out of this car. The Door panels forward will remain, but that is it. I daily drive her, and will till I get the wife a new car and get Chaos back. Rear seats, panels, trim, everything including the carpet is gonna go. I think I will also get a 4-point cage put in with some extra chassis bracing. A 3-point brace on front and rear strut towers will come as well.

I will retain the radio. I like my music. I will retain the CB. But under the hood the AC and CC is gonna go.

I am not sure what else she might require, or how she will handle the route after this, but it should be a lot of fun. And that is what I am after.

Please critique and let me know what you think, offer suggestions or flame. I am comfortable in my abilities and experience, but I respect other opinions as well, without them we don't learn or better ourselves.

I have also decided I love the Celica Platform. Period. These little cars are fucking awesome, and I know awesome. I rate them with some of the most spectacular vehicles I have owned and driven.

Murgatroy
04-29-2007, 11:08 PM
I have already snagged a short shifter and an intake tube. Awesome.

I spoke with Grayscale about the cage, so we should work that out sometime soon. I will do a fancy write-up about that. Right now we are trying to determine the best layout for a 4-point rollbar.

Futant3
04-30-2007, 12:35 AM
Sounds great! I don't see you getting 8 inch rims on there though. It might be possible with the right offset and some fender work but my 7's are super tight as it is.

If you get the 4 wheel disc to work out you have to do a detailed write up. Everytime I think I have all the right info and a plan it turns out something about it won't work 100%. I need to get ahold of a guy from the old 4gc.net, only guy I know of that has actually done it.

4thgenceli
04-30-2007, 12:41 AM
Welp, if you want some KYB GR2's for the 4th gen, I have front & rears that I'm not gonna use.

PhillyDRFT
04-30-2007, 06:37 AM
Amen for a post like this. I tell SO many people to take your car out and drive it, beat on it, make it "do what it do" before you start changing things on it. Get a good feel for the car and you'll know what to do next.

I think you've got a pretty solid game plan to go by. good luck with it. If you need any body/paint work. Come upto PA and visit us!

Murgatroy
04-30-2007, 09:51 AM
A car is meant to be enjoyed. That is what it is about.

If you are gonna build a car, IMO you should build it for what you want. If that is to be fast in a quarter, win show trophies or shame high dollar cars with poor drivers, so be it.

It reminds me of a story my father used to tell. He was an officer in the Navy. He and another officer were up for a promotion and a new position on the ship. When the other officer was overlooked for the promotion he asked why. The response was such 'I saw you in the galley the other night. You got your tray, set down, and salted your food, then you began eating. You salted your food before you tasted it. How did you know the food needed salt before tasting it.' That is one of two things my father ever said to me that I hung with.

Why modify something if you don't know what the weak points are?

1990CelicaGT-S
04-30-2007, 11:31 AM
Good story. And really, how many people are going to drive your car? That's why you have to build it for yourself. Good luck Murgatroy. I can't wait to see all this go down.