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vms4evr
08-11-2007, 07:34 PM
So I took the 90 Celica GT to its first AX a week ago. It's bone stock. Appears to have original springs and replaced Monroe Sensatracs. The bars, bushings, etc all look original. The trailing arm (I believe it is called on these) on the drivers side is bent. So I assume that is causing some problem. Needless to say I'll be some work on it fairly soon. It has 15" Toyota wheels with 205/55-15 Bridgestone all season tires that are pretty shot. From the wear pattern I'd say the car appears to have positive camber (yeachhh). Brake pads are some replacements I got at NAPA that are decent but feel like low dust ceramic. Not the best choice for AX.

I ran it HS. There were 7 cars running HS. To my surprise I came in 3rd and trophied!!! A new Mini on V710 race rubber snagged 1st and beat me by about 6 seconds! 2nd place was a new Mazda 3 on race rubber by 2 seconds. The 4 cars I beat out I beat by 2-6 seconds. They were all on street tires. Another Mazda 3, Honda Civic, Honda Fit, Mitsu Lancer. Not too shabby since I AX a Vette. Did that for 4 years and was very competitive. Last 2 years I only AX about twice a year. PAXed mid way against all cars. Came in about 60 out of 122 entries. I got tons of shit from my buddies when I showed up with the Grape Mobile :hehe:

So I have no clue how to drive a FWD on an AX course. First it was tight and I couldn't get it to rotate properly. Then after playing with rear air pressure I got it loose. Real loose. Did a little off course excursion and scared the crap out of a couple of course workers. :laugh:

So I started with air pressure at 40/36 (F/R). Then dropped to 40/34, then 40/32. The care felt a lot better. So I decided what the heck and went 40/30. Well that really loosened it up... These are hot pressures, btw.

The suspension feels sloppy all over. Felt like a dingy in the ocean with the front/rear and side/side body roll. Braking was either so-so or randomly locked up a wheel. I think it was right front.

So I think I would like to keep it in stock class and not get crazy. So those of you doing AX. Give me some ideas on getting the car setup. I'm used to setup on a Vette, not a Celica. Alignment, tire pressure, shocks, sways, driving technique?

extremeskillz
08-11-2007, 07:40 PM
do the eiback sportline springs, suspension techniques rear sway bar, a wider wheel and tire combo. 17X9 rear and 17x8 front. And maybe some braces for the upper rear strut tower. This will make handling a dream. If you can get adjustable shocks i would recommend. Def adjust you camber for AX.

Hiko
08-12-2007, 12:27 AM
You don't mean to say that the Mini was racing in HS do you? The old mini was a GS vehicle, and the new one is looking to be reclassed as BS (:eek: ). Still, that makes keeping up like you did even more impressive! Congrats :bigthumbu


do the eiback sportline springs, suspension techniques rear sway bar, a wider wheel and tire combo. 17X9 rear and 17x8 front. And maybe some braces for the upper rear strut tower. This will make handling a dream. If you can get adjustable shocks i would recommend. Def adjust you camber for AX.

While those are all good ideas, if he is intending on staying in a stock class, he can't do any of those besides the shocks.

I'm sure you know the rules for stock class, so I won't bore you with those. As far as alignment goes, you can't get much negative camber up front, but get as much as you can. I'd also recommend at least zeroing out the toe, with maybe putting some toe out on either the fronts or rears. Front toe out will directly combat understeer with no oversteering induced, rears induce oversteer. You might prefer toe out in the rear as you are used to a car more willing to rotated.

You also have the tire pressures about where I prefer when I autox. Though I prefer to go to 42 in the front, and around 34 in the rear.

For shocks, the only real choice is Koni's. Or if you are loaded, Penske would make a setup for your Celica I'm sure.

As to the front sway bar, if you are going to go to race rubber, get a whiteline (no choice here, they are the only people that make 5th gen front bar). If you want to stay on street rubber and have fun in AT class, just keep the stocker (I know Joey will disagree, but that's my opinion).

In all honesty, making the move to STS will not cost ridiculous amounts, and will make your car way more fun to drive on the street. The downside is that if there are any 240sx's or Civic Si's in your region, you will not be competitive. Just some food for thought.

KoreanJoey
08-12-2007, 01:22 AM
Konis work really well for autoX... but I'm definately not an HS runner... as to the pressures it really depends on your tires as you'll have to run higher pressure depending on the stability of the sidewall of the tires. And I don't disagree with you Hiko, I just was already in C Prepared/Street Mod when I started... not like I can go much higher in the mod classes. Get a front sway bar and run stiff shocks, set the shocks in the rear higher in order to create rotation as a stiff front swaybar will make it harder to rotate without some help in the rear. It's hard to say exactly what you need as far as suspension setup as I don't know how much you daily drive your car. My car has been retired to mostly weekend warrior stuff.

Joey

PS: I'll check on this thread on and off and chime in when I can.

extremeskillz
08-12-2007, 01:27 AM
Hiko your right i forgot he mentioned stock class. My bad but yea some adjustable shocks and a camber adjusting kit would do the trick.

KoreanJoey
08-12-2007, 01:33 AM
Race rubber is always good :) STS isn't always good to be in because it's indexed. And you need to find how well the index works for you in comparison to how well you run.

Hiko
08-12-2007, 02:11 AM
Race rubber is always good :) STS isn't always good to be in because it's indexed. And you need to find how well the index works for you in comparison to how well you run.

I don't mean to be disagreeable or anything, but STS is not an indexed class. It is a raw time based class, just like SM.

Acadian Racer
08-12-2007, 03:53 AM
drill about a dozen to fifteen 1/4" holes in your rear rear brake pads this will tighten you up on entry and disconnect the front sway arm,or put a longer bolt in so it only grabs if you really get the front end lifting, to loosen it on exit. Also a larger diameter rear sway arm will help loosen you up. Two things to remember about a FWD car whatever you do to the rear suspension will have the biggest effect and point the wheels where you want to go and hit the gas she'll pull you right through.
Also as far as the camber goes, crash bolts can be bought right from Toyota and are probably considered stock. I'm getting about -3.5 degrees on my right front and my left front is positive, as I run a stock car, but I cant remember the number of degrees we got from it. You can get them in three different stages I'm running the stage three bolts.

KoreanJoey
08-12-2007, 06:40 AM
Um... street tire? um... I've always ran indexed. Because I've run ST w/ an SM index and it sucks.

Hiko
08-12-2007, 06:37 PM
Hrrrmmmmmmm, I guess it's a difference between our regions :shrug: Sounds like a good idea, though.

vms4evr
08-13-2007, 06:13 AM
Thanks guys got some good ideas. To answer a few questions and ask more...

Thanks. Surprised me to trophy! Yes the Mini is an HS overdog and is getting bumped. I wasn't sure if the Mini S or the Mini was going to BS. Either way that car works very well on an AX course. I knew I couldn't beat him. He happens to be a good friend of mine and I was surprised I could even drive the car and not come in DFL. That makes staying in HS more attractive.

I have kicked around the idea of running in STS but haven't checked on the rules. So I don't know what mods I can do. Only catch to STS class is there are some very well prepared and driven Civics that compete nationally. I'm not likely to beat them. The only 240sx that is fast around here is a DSP car.

So for now I'm leaning towards stock class. That means shocks and r-comp rubber and a front bar. I'm not paying for Penske shocks so that is out. Konis are doable, maybe a Koni SA.

I'll get it in for alignment as soon as I can. I'll try some of the ideas you guys noted. I'll check as to whether the crash bolts are legal. So if I leave it in HS for now and just replace the tires with some RT-615s. How do I set the toe front and rear to make the car rotate without me spinning like I did last week?

I can say with certainty that going from being a RWD hack to a FWD one is confusing as hell, but a good challenge. The recovery from a push or loose car is done totally opposite from RWD. My buddies were trying to get me to do it. After all this time racing a RWD high torque car doing the opposite to control the car is tough. I tried and as soon as I went to do it my brain said :wtf: and refused to let me... I just need seat time to adapt to that part.

Slider
08-13-2007, 04:50 PM
I usually run 50/46. Seems to work well for me and my tires. They're just decent summer tires. The front still seems to be rolling onto the sidewall a bit but that can't be really cured.

Shadowlife25
08-13-2007, 06:38 PM
Don't feel bad, you did incredibly well all things considered. I've had my AllTrac for over a year and I'm STILL learning how to drive it to it's limits (and mine :) )

Hiko
08-13-2007, 07:34 PM
Yes the Mini is an HS overdog and is getting bumped. I wasn't sure if the Mini S or the Mini was going to BS.

http://www.celica.net/smilies/smilies/pat.gif I somehow totally fogot about the non-S Mini. Yeah, it's the new S that's looking to be reclassed. I haven't heard anything about them reclassing the old ones though.


I have kicked around the idea of running in STS but haven't checked on the rules. So I don't know what mods I can do. Only catch to STS class is there are some very well prepared and driven Civics that compete nationally. I'm not likely to beat them. The only 240sx that is fast around here is a DSP car.

A very quick overview of STS is suspension is pretty much unlimited within the realm of bolt on parts, and the engine is limited to I/H/E and an SAFC. Catch for us, though, is that the cat can't move, so we'd have to find a header that leaves the stock position.


I'm not paying for Penske shocks so that is out.

CHEAPSTAKE! Who doesn't have an extra $2000 to shell out for shocks? :laugh:
Don't forget that you can also get a cat-back (more for the weight), a K&N air filter, and stainless steel brake lines.


I'll get it in for alignment as soon as I can. I'll try some of the ideas you guys noted. I'll check as to whether the crash bolts are legal. So if I leave it in HS for now and just replace the tires with some RT-615s. How do I set the toe front and rear to make the car rotate without me spinning like I did last week?

Those camber bolts are only allowed if "authorized by the manufacturer". Not sure exactly what that means. As to the toe, I think it'd be a bit safer if you did toe out up front. This will keep you more neutral, and also help the poor transitions the stock toe in creates.


I can say with certainty that going from being a RWD hack to a FWD one is confusing as hell, but a good challenge. The recovery from a push or loose car is done totally opposite from RWD. My buddies were trying to get me to do it. After all this time racing a RWD high torque car doing the opposite to control the car is tough. I tried and as soon as I went to do it my brain said :wtf: and refused to let me... I just need seat time to adapt to that part.

Wish I could give some advice here. I've only ever driven a FWD and AWD at an autox. Only thing I can think of is that, though I'm sure your friends already told you, if you start to spin, countersteer and give the throttle the beans.

vms4evr
08-13-2007, 08:28 PM
I usually run 50/46. Seems to work well for me and my tires. They're just decent summer tires. The front still seems to be rolling onto the sidewall a bit but that can't be really cured.

I hear guys with FWD telling me things like this. 50lbs and more. Just really makes me nervous. On my track car I'll go 40/38 hot. But that car is a bit different than a Celica.

Don't you guys blow up tires pulling this? The tire spec says maximum inflation at something like 44lbs.

vms4evr
08-13-2007, 08:35 PM
Don't feel bad, you did incredibly well all things considered. I've had my AllTrac for over a year and I'm STILL learning how to drive it to it's limits (and mine :) )

No problem there. Don't feel bad at all. I was more confused making the transition to FWD drive than anything else. Believe me when I showed up and people started ragging on me and my GrapeMobile. Well, half of the people there got beat by it with PAX! Everyone in HS, including my buddy in the Mini, were like WTF is going on here. That things looks like crap and rolls like crazy going down the course. And then the SOB beats most of us!!! My buddy would have let me borrow his V710s just to trounce the guy in front of me so I could get 2nd. But they won't fit on the Toyota.

It was a fun day driving something totally out of character for me. I want to keep on driving it and kick some more ass with it :bigthumbu

Slider
08-13-2007, 08:51 PM
Those camber bolts are only allowed if "authorized by the manufacturer". Not sure exactly what that means. As to the toe, I think it'd be a bit safer if you did toe out up front. This will keep you more neutral, and also help the poor transitions the stock toe in creates.

Maybe it means if crash camber bolts are available from the manufacturer?


I hear guys with FWD telling me things like this. 50lbs and more. Just really makes me nervous. On my track car I'll go 40/38 hot. But that car is a bit different than a Celica.

Don't you guys blow up tires pulling this? The tire spec says maximum inflation at something like 44lbs.

I think the max is mostly for safety reasons on the highway, like running the car at top speed for a longer period of time, the heat builds up and the tire might blow. I've ran the pressures like this at autox for a year with no problems. The max pressure on my tires is 51. The slip angle is a little smaller compared to running lower pressures but you get a little more grip.

vms4evr
08-13-2007, 09:23 PM
http://www.celica.net/smilies/smilies/pat.gif I somehow totally fogot about the non-S Mini. Yeah, it's the new S that's looking to be reclassed. I haven't heard anything about them reclassing the old ones though.

Yeah the Mini-S is very good. But that regular Mini is no joke either. They are both improperly classed. The folks who run Nationals all know which car to get to manipulate the system. A lot of folks driving Celis in HS and GS gave up on them. They're more focused on winning trophies than what they drive though. I've been told if a Mini doesn't show up then I have a good chance in HS.


A very quick overview of STS is suspension is pretty much unlimited within the realm of bolt on parts, and the engine is limited to I/H/E and an SAFC. Catch for us, though, is that the cat can't move, so we'd have to find a header that leaves the stock position.

That is where the costs start going up. My costs for mods in HS would be the lowest I think. For the purposes of learning the car a year in HS with it might be the right approach.


CHEAPSTAKE! Who doesn't have an extra $2000 to shell out for shocks? :laugh:
Don't forget that you can also get a cat-back (more for the weight), a K&N air filter, and stainless steel brake lines.

Hey buddy! I resemble that remark :D
Only $2K, you must be buying the cheap version or used ones. I got offered a used set for my Z06 for $2400 and was told that was a steal... They are awesome if you setup the car properly with them. If you don't match the right springs to them you just pissed away a lot of money.


Those camber bolts are only allowed if "authorized by the manufacturer". Not sure exactly what that means. As to the toe, I think it'd be a bit safer if you did toe out up front. This will keep you more neutral, and also help the poor transitions the stock toe in creates.

I have 2 friends who used to compete at Nationals in a 6th and 7th gen Celica. I'll ask them if we can get away with that.


Wish I could give some advice here. I've only ever driven a FWD and AWD at an autox. Only thing I can think of is that, though I'm sure your friends already told you, if you start to spin, countersteer and give the throttle the beans.

Yeah and I have only ever driven RWD. At least on a track or AX course. Driving an AWD doesn't count. That's for hacks who can't drive a FWD or RWD worth a damn :hehe:

That part about recovering from the spin is going to take some getting used to. I'm just going to have to pitch the car around and practice recovering it. I usually do 1 Banzai run just to see what sections you can drive faster than you thought and which ones you really can't...

Acadian Racer
08-13-2007, 09:52 PM
just remember on the fwd the more air you have in the front the more push you'll have in the corners. As for the toe I only have experience doing left hand turns and I know when we have the toe out you have to fight it on the straightaways but she turns the corners a lot better. I recently put a front sway arm off of a fifth gen on the rear of my car to supplement the stock rear and it made a huge difference.Im running KYB GR2 struts this year, and they seem to be a good bang for the buck option. As for recovering from the spin, if you can catch it right at the edge of breaking loose, points the wheels in the direction you want to end up in and just mash the gas, FWD cars will pull right through.

vms4evr
08-14-2007, 04:38 AM
Acadian Racer -

I've read both your responses. That's really interesting that you are running a Celica in oval track racing (redneck roundy round as i like to call it) :laugh: I grew up in a small town with a short track. Lots of fun watching them. They were all your typical American cars with either 6s or V8s. Anyway...

Drilling holes in brakes is illegal in anything but Mod classes in AX. My rear brakes are drums. I have never heard of drilling holes in brakes. Rotors sure. But in rotors on track it is a bad thing. Unless you like cracked rotors all day long. Seems drilling holes in brake pads is no different. You are weakening the pad backing plate and material. I would expect the material to crack like crazy. It's softer and more porous than the backing plate or a rotor. On track in my Z06 I already cause pads to crack when they get down to about a 1/3 to a 1/4 of their life. I use blank rotors and they crack within 4 weekends at best. If you are trying to lower the amount of braking capability on the rear why not just use cheap pads?

You are talking about disconnecting one of the end links on the front bar to disable it? So that car has no front roll control and only rear control? Wouldn't that cause it to push like a dump truck? The rear bar in stock class is not something you can change. Stock class is very limited. The front bar I can change and go smaller or larger if it helps balance out the car better.

I'm looking into the camber/crash bolts to see if there is a loop hole around that. If they are a direct replacement from Toyota then it might be a freebie. Unless I'm wrong a FWD would not be different than a RWD when it comes to camber. More in the front and less in the rear? Or is it the exact opposite?

The comment about more in the front tires the more you push is right inline with my understanding of any car regardless of what wheel makes it go. I chalk my tire edges and watch for them to roll right up to the edge. Once I get that then it is my default pressure front and rear. On my RWD I never set front pressure to let the car push. I'll lower rear pressures to get more grip or control throttle on oversteer. I'll deal with a car that has oversteer vs understeer any day of the week. Now on a FWD I'd be leery about dropping pressure to control understeer and have the tire start rolling over.

I'm definitely thinking KYB GR2 at minimum if I can't do Koni SA. The Monroe Sensatracs are probably mushier than the stock struts were. Makes for a nicer ride on the street, supposedly. I think they suck and make the car porpoise too much.

Slider
08-14-2007, 04:50 AM
If you disconnect the front bar, you'll get oversteer. You're basically giving the same effect as making the front springs softer in turns while the rear is stiffer, so you'll get oversteer. One of the mid mounts on my swaybar is broken so maybe my car drives differently. Not sure if my front swaybar is still effective.

When I put my pressures at 50/50, I would get a good amount of oversteer. I could easily throw the car into a slide with braking, or just on fast transitions. It looked cool drifting the hairpin after the slalom but it wasn't as fast even if I kept the sliding down. I dropped the rear pressure a few psi in the rear and it felt perfect, dropped my time too.

Acadian Racer
08-15-2007, 04:50 AM
Ive never tried auto crossing but on the oval track i had way too much rear brake to compensate I put in a brake bias valve and still had to drill holes in the rear pads to keep from being too loose getting in the corners. However i did not drill through the backing plate just the braking material. I've tried cheaper pads it was not enough. My pads only last a couple of race days without cracking anyway but still grab well enough to throw me through the windshield, without the harness that is. As for only having rear control what I have found is that whatever you do to the rear suspension directly affects the front more so even than the rear, besides air pressures that is, keeping in my mind that I have no real experience racing RWD

KoreanJoey
08-26-2007, 07:16 AM
If you're having problems with braking/ oversteer try putting the toe in the rear to 0 or maybe a minor amount of toe in.