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MaxA
Albert Park


Joined: 11 Oct 2015
Posts: 1646
Location: Helsinki


PostPosted: Fri Apr 26, 2019 6:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

You might have a bent or failed top mount but it's more likely the strut top itself, which can be hammered flat (usually with a piece of wood).

When it comes to coilovers, people tend to run APs for comfort and stance (i.e. very low ride height), but the ST range seems to be the current go to coilover in the mid range. And do bear in mind that adjustable top mounts and rear camber arms are probably required for a good set up (try a firm called Orranje, they have lots of good product and great service).
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997.2 Carrera4S: white over blue, driven and tracked, seldom clean.
 
  
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Counter Of Beans
Spa-Francorchamps


Joined: 10 May 2018
Posts: 359
Location: Hampshire


PostPosted: Fri Apr 26, 2019 10:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Max, I would ideally like coilovers that improve the crashy ride (it's on Bilstein B4's at the moment) but without lowering the car. There are a trillion speed cushions around here that the car currently clears, and I wish to keep it that way. Not remotely interested in a lowered stance, but greater compliance would be nice.
Will the AP's result in a lowered car? Any others I should consider?
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MaxA
Albert Park


Joined: 11 Oct 2015
Posts: 1646
Location: Helsinki


PostPosted: Mon Apr 29, 2019 3:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Counter Of Beans wrote:
Max, I would ideally like coilovers that improve the crashy ride (it's on Bilstein B4's at the moment) but without lowering the car. There are a trillion speed cushions around here that the car currently clears, and I wish to keep it that way. Not remotely interested in a lowered stance, but greater compliance would be nice.
Will the AP's result in a lowered car? Any others I should consider?


Hello Counter. An S tends to be pretty crashy, especially with stock rims (the S spokes weigh 11.4kg each) and non runflat tyres. It is a big improvement to simply run lightweight rims: my OZs weigh 6.5kg each...

If you're looking to keep the stock ride height, then I think your only choice is either Koni FSDs or the new Koni Active Shocks (there is some speculation that they're just rebranding FSDs - which stood for 'frequency selective damping'). It's similar in concept to Öhlins dual flow valves. They seem optimised for the stock springs, and they don't lower the car.

APs and STs (both of which are made by KW) lower the car 20mm at least (not as bad as it seems in my opinion). Funnily enough Öhlins minimum reduction is 15mm.

The thing is, if you want to avoid scraping things, there is a trick. It's called a 'lipectomy': the front lip seems designed to scrape everything, so removing it - usually with a dremel or some such - removes a lot of embarassment when it comes to negotiating speed bumps. My 53 doesn't scrape even though my car is lowered about 30mm (which is regarded as a modest drop).
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MaxA
Albert Park


Joined: 11 Oct 2015
Posts: 1646
Location: Helsinki


PostPosted: Mon Apr 29, 2019 3:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

MaxA wrote:

This weekend, we'll be working on set up: I'm planning to fit adjustable top front mounts from Vorshlag to add a bit more camber to the front end.


I've added the Vorshlags and trimmed the strut tops for proper access to the bolts with an allen key. The plates are a little bit thicker than the fixed camber plates that came from Öhlins (and which looked like they had about half a degree of negative camber), so I assume that I haven't taken out any strength.

And even on the lower range of adjustment (there are two ranges) there's about 3 degrees of negative camber right now! A little much for the day-to-day but they're easy to adjust, as they just slide when you loosen the bolts.

I'll align the camber at -1.25 front and -1.5 at the rear. I need to have a look at the rear camber arms and check they're still adjustable: you literally just loosen the locking screws (?) and turn them with your hands ... but it would be easier on a lift, not lying under the car on jack stands!
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rabbitstew
Hockenheim


Joined: 21 Aug 2015
Posts: 718



PostPosted: Mon Apr 29, 2019 3:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I changed the fuel filter on mine over the weekend and my god, after 100,000 miles it was black and the petrol in the filter housing looked more like oil. Shocking! Cleared it all out, refitted and car fired up straight away which is always a relief.

Also bought a hobbo intercooler which has arrived today, so will be fitting that at some point. Am intrigued just how good / bad it will fit - hopefully wont be too bad with just a bit of grinding off the inlet manifold with a bit of luck.

I also had a go at machine polishing some of the old bodywork - the bonnet has a ton of scratches on it for some reason. Unfortunately I discovered they are too far gone, so it will need a front end respray. Not really worth paying someone to do it on a car this cheap, so it will be a DIY job once the weather perks up a bit.
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MaxA
Albert Park


Joined: 11 Oct 2015
Posts: 1646
Location: Helsinki


PostPosted: Mon Apr 29, 2019 5:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

rabbitstew wrote:
I changed the fuel filter on mine over the weekend and my god, after 100,000 miles it was black and the petrol in the filter housing looked more like oil. Shocking! Cleared it all out, refitted and car fired up straight away which is always a relief.

Also bought a hobbo intercooler which has arrived today, so will be fitting that at some point. Am intrigued just how good / bad it will fit - hopefully wont be too bad with just a bit of grinding off the inlet manifold with a bit of luck.

I also had a go at machine polishing some of the old bodywork - the bonnet has a ton of scratches on it for some reason. Unfortunately I discovered they are too far gone, so it will need a front end respray. Not really worth paying someone to do it on a car this cheap, so it will be a DIY job once the weather perks up a bit.


I'm happy that the filter needed changing, if you see what I mean. Maybe try some nice Shell stuff or something?

I'm intrigued about the IC, you just need a good seal on the 'snoot boots' (why they are snoot is beyond me...).

And sorry about the bonnet: warm place for a cat? Is there a chance to find a fresher one from the salvage maybe, or someone selling parts? Mine has a proper peppering of stone chips now... and I've only just got some of that touch up paint. It probably won't go well...
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Counter Of Beans
Spa-Francorchamps


Joined: 10 May 2018
Posts: 359
Location: Hampshire


PostPosted: Mon Apr 29, 2019 9:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Cheers MaxA, great advice, will see what 'er indoors has to say.
Regards, Mike.
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MaxA
Albert Park


Joined: 11 Oct 2015
Posts: 1646
Location: Helsinki


PostPosted: Tue Apr 30, 2019 5:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Counter Of Beans wrote:
Cheers MaxA, great advice, will see what 'er indoors has to say.
Regards, Mike.


Good luck. She wouldn't notice I reckon if you did take that front lip off (even if it's made of the toughest materials known to man). And it's basically a free mod.
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MaxA
Albert Park


Joined: 11 Oct 2015
Posts: 1646
Location: Helsinki


PostPosted: Mon May 13, 2019 12:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

We should be 'taking it to the track' on Saturday - a track day at Ahvenisto with one of the BMW clubs. I need to keep an eye on the weather as it's still very cool, just 5c this morning, with a day time high of 9c. It's great for IATs but I'm not sure I want to run semi's if I can't get any heat in them.
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MaxA
Albert Park


Joined: 11 Oct 2015
Posts: 1646
Location: Helsinki


PostPosted: Tue Jun 04, 2019 2:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ahvenisto went well, and the new Quaife really helped on the uphill sections of the track when previously grip was at a premium. It was also nice and warm which really helps grip, even if not all of the BMWs managed to stay on track (thanks for all the ***** gravel on the main straight you bastards).

This weekend, we'll be over at Alastaro, which is a much wider and flatter track, which seems fairly straightforward in the MINI (if you get the line right) but which reveals itself to be a bit trickier in a quicker car: there are dips which elongate braking zones and corners which require a lift. Maybe I can take some of the learnings across.

We'll have to see about the weather, as there's rain in the forecast, so I'll stay on my Bridgestones and leave the semi's at home. We'll then make a weekend of it, go to sauna, stay up late and drink beers while making up stories about what we got up to at the track.
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MaxA
Albert Park


Joined: 11 Oct 2015
Posts: 1646
Location: Helsinki


PostPosted: Mon Jul 29, 2019 8:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Alastaro was a hoot, hot and dry, and quiet, so plenty of track time. I was running Nitto NT01s (a semi slick, more like a cut slick with a square shoulder and a rating of just 100), and according to my buddy in the car behind me, I was coming out of some of the slower corners on three wheels: lifting the inside front ...
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MaxA
Albert Park


Joined: 11 Oct 2015
Posts: 1646
Location: Helsinki


PostPosted: Thu Aug 15, 2019 1:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

We also made it over to Knutstorp in Sweden with the R53s and GP2 this summer. It required some cars, a trailer, a tow car, a ferry (each way), some driving, lots of V Power and e85, a couple of ice creams, and a shitload of 'Lonkero' (my "sponsor" Hartwall Original Long Drink 5.5%) in the after-party.
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rabbitstew
Hockenheim


Joined: 21 Aug 2015
Posts: 718



PostPosted: Thu Aug 15, 2019 2:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Good stuff. My R53 has been running really well. In the end the cheap hobo intercooler was such a terrible fit I got an airtec one instead and fitted that. Lovely bit of kit. The suspension turned out to be shot, so I replaced it all with AP coilovers, with adjustable camber top mounts upfront and an uprated adjustable whiteline rear ARB. I also fitted new front wishbones & inner/outter ball joints and polybushed it all as well as the engine mounts. Car handles like its on rails now, even with horrible dunlop runflats.

Clutch ended up slipping with the extra power, so i swapped that for an OEM LUK one with a new stock duel mass flywheel. I was tempted with the valeo one but read some bad reviews on them.

Think next on the list will be to sort out the sloppy gearchange. Ive got a short shifter ready to fit so will do that when I get some time.
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MaxA
Albert Park


Joined: 11 Oct 2015
Posts: 1646
Location: Helsinki


PostPosted: Fri Aug 16, 2019 7:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

rabbitstew wrote:
Good stuff. My R53 has been running really well. In the end the cheap hobo intercooler was such a terrible fit I got an airtec one instead and fitted that. Lovely bit of kit. The suspension turned out to be shot, so I replaced it all with AP coilovers, with adjustable camber top mounts upfront and an uprated adjustable whiteline rear ARB. I also fitted new front wishbones & inner/outter ball joints and polybushed it all as well as the engine mounts. Car handles like its on rails now, even with horrible dunlop runflats.

Clutch ended up slipping with the extra power, so i swapped that for an OEM LUK one with a new stock duel mass flywheel. I was tempted with the valeo one but read some bad reviews on them.

Think next on the list will be to sort out the sloppy gearchange. Ive got a short shifter ready to fit so will do that when I get some time.


I'm happy to read that you've got a good set up, it makes such a difference. Sorry about the hobo intercooler, that was a waste of money.

I don't know why the Valeo clutch kit gets a bad rep, my buddy over here is running one on his highly modified track JCW which has a BVH and Catcam, ethanol conversion, and all sorts; I was at the dyno when he ran 270hp on the stock bottom end/internals and original supercharger (and he's got around 230,000km on the clock, many of which were acquired at the track).
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MaxA
Albert Park


Joined: 11 Oct 2015
Posts: 1646
Location: Helsinki


PostPosted: Fri Aug 16, 2019 7:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I was going to add, the R56 MINI John Cooper Works GP in the pictures - the one with the number 21 and GP-2 number plate - is my brother's car. It's also modified and is dyno'd at 280bhp.

He wasn't too happy to be 3-4 seconds a lap slower around the 2.2km Knutstorp circuit and blamed it all on the tyres ... I think that he just needs more practise, more sleep and less hangover.
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MaxA
Albert Park


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Posts: 1646
Location: Helsinki


PostPosted: Mon Sep 16, 2019 2:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

We were back at the track on Saturday with Mini Club Flying Finns at Ahvenisto: a tight, twisty, narrow, cambered and dangerous little track without any FIA approvals whatsover. Except for historic racing.

I made it by midday, jumped out, took off the summers, put on the semi-slicks (almost slick aka 'part worn' Nitto NT01s), added 2 degrees of camber, stuck my helmet on, and went out.

And then it started raining.

I didn't have any heat in the tyres, the track got wet and cooled down, and there basically wasn't any grip at all for the rest of the day, at either the front or the rear. Oversteer and understeer in the same corner. The only place I got any grip was under braking into the first corner.

I even went grass cutting at one point, when I found myself off line, and then sideways and then off the track. Dont know

And then by the time I'd switched back to summers (part worn Bridgestone Potenza RE002s), it was too late. Bollocks. Season over. Mad
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rabbitstew
Hockenheim


Joined: 21 Aug 2015
Posts: 718



PostPosted: Wed Sep 18, 2019 10:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sounds like a bit of a nightmare session. Sad

I had some adventures last weekend. I swapped out the front right hand CV joint for a new one as the old one had a little play in it. But for some reason the drive shaft must have not clicked into it correctly as upon the test run the shaft popped out of the CV joint. This is the long shaft with the mid-mount point on it. Anyhow, I got a mate to tow me home (I was only 5 mins away) and the rattling around shaft made a few horrible noises but I got home okay. Re-fitted the CV joint and made sure it was 100% on right. I could see some marks on the inside of the alloy where the loose shaft had hit the wheel so I assumed that is what the noises had been.

Anyhow, car drives fine now once again, but now there is a distinct CLUNK noise when you change gear, which is especially noticeable when you change from 1st to 2nd. I have a new shaft on order to replace the whole thing as I wonder if I have damaged it, but it sounds to me its more coming from the gearbox which is a bit of a worry as I really dont want to take it off again.
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MaxA
Albert Park


Joined: 11 Oct 2015
Posts: 1646
Location: Helsinki


PostPosted: Tue Sep 24, 2019 1:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ah, well it's always fun at the track even if your so-called buddies point and laugh at the grass cuttings on the car. At least there was grass to spin on to at that point, it's a narrow track with some very limited run off (hard granite rock) in places.

And since it was the last event of the season, we had a summer house booked, so we BBQd some steak, had a sauna, drank a few beers and some red wine, and laughed at each other spinning out on GoPro footage. It was a bit of a late night.

Sorry to hear of your driveshaft woes, it might be OK as these Getrag six speed gearboxes are really very robust.
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MaxA
Albert Park


Joined: 11 Oct 2015
Posts: 1646
Location: Helsinki


PostPosted: Thu Nov 07, 2019 3:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

My little MINI is covered in muck and now wearing its 16x7 Team Dynamics and 195/55-16 Nokian Hakkapeliitta8 studded winters. There obviously isn't so much grip but the Quaife seems to put it down quite well.

My boy is dreaming of the days when the sea freezes over so we can cut a little track out there on the ice and practise driving, sliding, handbrake turns, over- and understeer. He's begging me not to refit the Sparco bucket seat so that his cousins (my nephews) can all also have a go!

You might think I'm mad, but there isn't much harm you can do on the ice as there's no snow banks, nothing to hit and no grip so there's no need to rev it out - it's all about managing the little available grip at modest revs, so I'm tempted to just let him out ... until I get cold, and need to defrost in the car.
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MaxA
Albert Park


Joined: 11 Oct 2015
Posts: 1646
Location: Helsinki


PostPosted: Fri Nov 08, 2019 9:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

An autumn shot of my 'British Racing Brown' R53: it's running Öhlins R&Ts lowered 30mm all round, with Vorshlag adjustable front top mounts (so perhaps another 5mm lower at the front as they're not as thick as the fixed Öhlins plates) for a bit of positive rake; c. -1.5 degrees of negative camber all round; 16x7 OZ Ultraleggeras with ET32; 205/50-16 Bridgestone Potenza RE002s; and - from this angle - you can also see the aero spoiler and JCW exhaust tips.

And yes, it's a dirty grey brown colour. This was a coffee break on a run in the country. Hence the project name.
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