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nramsey
12-06-2006, 06:30 AM
Hi all,

I currently have a Miata that I use for track days, but since I don't use it for anything else, and it's pretty slow down the straights, I am considering selling it and using the funds to upgrade the Audi for dual street/track use instead. I run in the Advanced group now with the Miata, so the pace will be quick and demands on brakes high.

I currently have the mods below in my sig (chip, exhaust, coilovers, wheels/tires). I'm wondering what the best items to spend around $3k on would be. My prorities are:

Braking - I can currently fade the stock brakes/pads just on aggressive backroads driving. I want something that can take laps at Pacific Raceways in Seattle without too much fade. I'm currently considering the ECS Stage 2v2 Boxster 13.1" upgrade, along with some good street/track pads. Will this setup, along with a pad upgrade in the rear, be strong enough for relatively fade free performance on the track?

Intercooling - With the GIAC chip, I don't think the stock IC is going to cut it. I did some datalogging a while back and the intake temps were rapidly increased when just doing some WOT 3rd gear runs on a backroad with ambient temps around 60 degrees. I'm thinking the Racetech/SPP intercooler would fit the bill. I just don't want to risk engine destruction with the long periods of WOT in a lap.

Anything else I'm missing? I know my suspension is on the soft side for track use, but I plan to give it an event or two and see how it works before upgrading just yet.

Thanks!

94jedi
12-06-2006, 07:18 AM
I don't have any track experience but from speaking others that do, I think you're on the right track with those two mods. basically, cooling is a major concern so you may also want to look into a powersteering cooler and maybe an oil cooler. just my .02.

bassed
12-06-2006, 07:29 AM
To be honest your OEM SMIC with any of the GIAC programs will do just fine for track use. Unless you plan on going BT I would hold off on a FMIC. I would however do a Snow Stg2 in your case. I would do the ECS STG2v2 or 3 myself, based on knowing how my car handles on the track and with spirited street driving. I would hold off on the CO's as well and maybe grab some H-Sports.

offroader1006
12-06-2006, 07:35 AM
i would stick with the smic, just make sure its clean and clear of debris. the ecs stage 2, SS lines, a fresh ATE flush and some hawk pads, and youll be good on brakes.

i would definitely get some sway bars and some track tires.

i think that will be your greatest improvement in track use.

G-low
12-06-2006, 08:00 AM
stoptech makes some nice brake upgrades aswell and H-sports are a must

audisnapr
12-06-2006, 10:36 AM
In order of priority...

- harness or at least factory seat belt cam - most important thing is to keep yourself secure in your seat (as you prob already know). the other stuff listed below will be for not if you are getting thrown all over the place in your car. Factory B5 A4 seats have no lateral support at all.
- tires - and even smaller, lighter wheels if you can afford it - 17's max.
- sway bars - I love my H-Sports
- decent spring/shock combo or coilovers (although def not necessary to start)
- BBK to be competitive, A8 upgrade with decent pads to have some fun. good fluids. ECS Stage2v2 is what I run and love'em.

don't worry about the FMIC like others have suggested. Use that 1K for something else, ie: BBK

onemoremile
12-06-2006, 11:21 AM
^^^ pretty much what that track slut said.

I run the A8 rotors with stock calipers and stainles lines. The real trick is to get a set of pads that work. My Carbotech XP9 (or 10) are exceptional. They are all you need to reign in a good suspension, track slicks, and about 250hp. I can run 20 minutes sessions without a hint of fade. When I'm done they are so hot that i can't get close enough to them to check the tire pressure. They are pricey but will last a good long time.

Solid rotors are the way to go. Modern pad technology deals with pad gassing right in the pad design. Solid rotors are more pad friendly and have more mass to absorb heat. Braking is about one thing only - heat management.

With each platform upgrade like additional power, additional grip, and better balance comes additional load on the brakes. If I'm on street tires and stock sport suspension I can get away with running good ceramic street pads. If I put the RA-1s on with the coilovers and then I'll be in the grass with the street pads. The suspension and tires let me carry more speed through a corner, get back on the gas earlier, and brake later. That all puts more heat into the brakes and could take the pad out of the temp range considered it's happy place.

If you are going to be serious about this then just jump in and get the Porsche calipers. I should have done that earlier but now I have to do a few more track days on my stock calipers to take those expensive Carbotech pads down. Otherwise I'd never get my money's worth.

Some track day insurance will not allow a harness without a roll cage. Our cars have very strong A and B pillars so you would really have to flip the car hard to collapse the roof. I wear a strap that goes around me and the seat just under my armpits. I just used a piece of string to measure and then went and got a wide webbed belt fit for a fat guy. It works like a charm. I got the kind where the web slips through the buckle and cinches down. That way it is infinitely adjustable and quickly removed if need be.

94jedi
12-06-2006, 11:25 AM
so you guys don't think ps or oil coolers are necessary on a dual duty car? I would think that the ps fluid would be near boiling on a track run. Same thing for oil....wouldn't it be best to have a cooler too?

I'm actually surprised you guys thought the smic would suffice. Like I said, I would imagine the smic would heat soak in a matter of minutes and some track sessions are close to 30mins ...

I guess in terms of priorities, tires and brakes are #1. (I do realize that)

onemoremile
12-06-2006, 12:12 PM
My PS cooler has always been warm to the touch but not hot. Most lighter track cars don't even have power steering. The faster you go the easier it is to turn the wheel. I'd bet that autocross is far harder on the power steering than a track day. Track days use smooth minimal inputs too. Autocross is pretty much thrashing back and forth in a somewhat controlled manner.

My K04 run a max of 17 psi on weak sauce Neuspeed programming and the SMIC wasn't enough. Halfway through a 20 minute session the boost gauge wouldn't read about 3-4 psi. That sounds like a hot turbo breathing into an overwhelmed intercooler to me.

I'm trying to sweet talk my way into a good sized fmic for the K04 to see how it does. Anything over 250hp requires a bigger intercooler with direct access to real air flow.

I track oil temps and only noticed them getting above 250f when I had the heat soaking issue. Otherwise they are in the 220-240 range. Again, above 250hp or so this is a viable upgrade. Synthetic is good for 280 degrees or so but anything over 250f is a sign to slow things down a bit. I'd do an external oil cooler with big fat lines to add as much capacity as possible. Mount that and a tranny cooler style power steering cooler in the stock SMIC position like Joe/Audisnapr did.

As long as the power is reasonable the car does pretty good at managing thermal demands. They were built to cruise all day at 100mph after all.

onemoremile
12-06-2006, 12:18 PM
FWIW, I run high octane fuel at the track to avoid detonation, not to increase power production. Running the little K03 and K04 turbos hard just turns them into little fire breathers and the higher octane keeps detonation under control. Proper intercooling and a well implemented WI system is really the best for safe combustion at the track.

These are also on my list of track slut mods. The goal is plenty of power with absolutely no fear of grenading the engine. Obviously anything could happed at any time but I can still increase the factor of safety substantially.



Another great track mod is a fire extinguisher mount. If you remove the rear seat bottom you'll see two big studs sticking up in the middle. That is a perfect place to mount an extinguisher. I have plans to make one and may make several if it works out.

smoothie
12-06-2006, 12:24 PM
i never realized how much there is to running on a track with a street car. i'm impressed[up]

I run 4wheelers [:p] \/\/\/\/

audisnapr
12-06-2006, 12:26 PM
Originally posted by onemoremile
^^^ pretty much what that track slut said. = why I run a external power steering and oil cooler. It's just way cool to say, "dude, check out my coolers".

Pat you are right - an oil cooler can be handy. And like Jim illuded to, it ups your oil capacity, which in itself helps keeps the oil temps down. I saw my oil temps up around 250 pretty regularly while I was on the track. I figured it was just a preventitive measure to add a thermostat (180*) sandwich plate and oil cooler.

The power steering cooler came more because I didn't like that damn piece of tube (factory cooler) ghetto rigged to my FMIC - I'm a freak like that. Besides, the PS cooler was a very small investment - installation was a PITA because I had to fab up my own brackets, but in the end, it all worked out nicely.

PS. see my new sig [:D]

audisnapr
12-06-2006, 12:30 PM
Originally posted by onemoremile
Another great track mod is a fire extinguisher mount. If you remove the rear seat bottom you'll see two big studs sticking up in the middle. That is a perfect place to mount an extinguisher. I have plans to make one and may make several if it works out.

I did mine back when I installed my BT. Not for the track, but for fear of an oil leak post ghetto installation [:p] Mine is bolted the rear of my driver's seat bracket (aftermarket seats). It kills the foot space for the rear passenger, but who cares when I have "some" peace of mind.

onemoremile
12-06-2006, 12:37 PM
I've also though about mounting an extinguisher to the area on the center console just to the left of the front passenger's legs. It would be an aluminum plate that an extinguisher mount could easily attach too. The extinguishers I use are long and skinny. Maybe 3.5" or 4" diameter and 20" long.

nice siggy.

ScottyB 1.8T
12-06-2006, 01:30 PM
great info guys! i'm taking notes here.


have you guys ever had the need for any sort of oil pan baffles? do you run stock oil levels on the track or fill it up a bit more to prevent any pressure loss? i figure on street tires i might not be able to push the oil around that bad but if i ever use R's i might be worried.

onemoremile
12-06-2006, 07:03 PM
These pics are from opposite sides but you can see pretty much where the oil pickup is. Oil starvation only looks possible under heavy braking or maybe trail-braking. I've never really had an issue and run the oil right in the middle of the stick. If I ran my old Jetta VR6 on the track with less than 1/2 stick the oil light would pop on and the car would beep at me. Adding 1/4 quart killed the beep.

http://i23.photobucket.com/albums/b397/onemoremile/IMG_2882.jpg

http://i23.photobucket.com/albums/b397/onemoremile/IMG_2872.jpg

tkarwin
12-06-2006, 09:27 PM
I want someone to make an underdrive pulley for our power steering pumps. It would be less taxing on the pump and also add a little weight to the steering. Not to mention it might actually add a few ponies.

I regularly autocross my car, but I have only tracked it once. The only thing I can advise from my experience is to get a good set of brake pads. I roasted through a set of mintex redbox during that track day. It was scary. I boiled the paint off of the back of the pad.

Other than that, lean the car and asses what you want to improve on it. You know what it's like to track a car since you have had experience with your miata. I am not sure that the A4 will be as fun as the miata, but you can try. :)

nramsey
12-06-2006, 09:41 PM
Thanks for the tips guys!

What is a "Snow Stg2"?

I realize my car is really just set up for some street entertainment and looks. In my Miata I have done quite a bit to improve it's track ability: coilovers with KYB adjustable shocks, sway bars, Torsen rear LSD, later model brakes with Spec Miata pads, rollbar, 15x7" wheels with RA1s, header/exhaust etc. I realize I'll have to take it easier with the Audi because of the soft suspension and heavy street wheels/tires. Eventually I'd like to get some light 17" wheels with some RA1s, but for now I'll probably just run street tires.

Do you guys really think the stock SMIC will handle the heat? My GIAC x-chip will sometimes run 20-21 PSI in the higher gears and when I first installed the chip I had some detonation at low revs/max boost before it pulled timing out. I would run high octane, but man it's about $7 a gallon or something at the track. I guess it's worth it to not replace the engine though.

Nice to see a nice technical enthusiast discussion on here from time to time :)

ScottyB 1.8T
12-07-2006, 03:55 AM
Originally posted by onemoremile
These pics are from opposite sides but you can see pretty much where the oil pickup is. Oil starvation only looks possible under heavy braking or maybe trail-braking. I've never really had an issue and run the oil right in the middle of the stick. If I ran my old Jetta VR6 on the track with less than 1/2 stick the oil light would pop on and the car would beep at me. Adding 1/4 quart killed the beep.


cool, thanks for the advice/pics, definitely helps

onemoremile
12-07-2006, 07:52 AM
Snow Stg2 is a water injection kit from Snow Performance.

I'd seriously just put a Flyin Miata turbo kit on the little car and take it to the track. Nearly every mod you'll have to do to the Audi will be to fight the extra 1100 pounds it has over the Mazda. Lighter weight makes everything better.

If you don't want to bother with the turbo kit you could always drop a used Ford 5.0 HO in there for about the same amount of money. The weight distribution is about the same as with the turbo kit too. [wrench]


104 unleaded is only about $4.25 at Gingerman. For a while there it was barely more expensive than 94 octane premium. The stock SMIC will be ok as long as you keep an eye on your boost gauge. If you floor it and max boost drops to the teens it is because the turbo and/or the SMIC is heat soaked.



Originally posted by nramsey
Thanks for the tips guys!

What is a "Snow Stg2"?

I realize my car is really just set up for some street entertainment and looks. In my Miata I have done quite a bit to improve it's track ability: coilovers with KYB adjustable shocks, sway bars, Torsen rear LSD, later model brakes with Spec Miata pads, rollbar, 15x7" wheels with RA1s, header/exhaust etc. I realize I'll have to take it easier with the Audi because of the soft suspension and heavy street wheels/tires. Eventually I'd like to get some light 17" wheels with some RA1s, but for now I'll probably just run street tires.

Do you guys really think the stock SMIC will handle the heat? My GIAC x-chip will sometimes run 20-21 PSI in the higher gears and when I first installed the chip I had some detonation at low revs/max boost before it pulled timing out. I would run high octane, but man it's about $7 a gallon or something at the track. I guess it's worth it to not replace the engine though.

Nice to see a nice technical enthusiast discussion on here from time to time :)

94jedi
12-07-2006, 08:38 AM
Originally posted by onemoremile
you could always drop a used Ford 5.0 HO in there for about the same amount of money.

Friend of mine did that and let me tell you that was one of the most "fun to drive cars" ever. It was a plain old 130k mi 5.0. Nothing special. Just after I moved out of the area, he dropped a fully built, aluminum headed, BAC'd(big ass cam'd) 331 stroker in place of the tired 5.0. He planned on going FI with the miata too...funny thing is I haven't heard from him in a while...he's probably having too much fun with his "monster miata" to give me a call lol.

onemoremile
12-07-2006, 08:51 AM
A Miata V8 is basically a Cobra without the giant tires and stiffened chassis needed to run them. Cobras are the most fun when they are somewhere in the 250-350 hp range. Miatas are best in the 200-300 range. When the chassis gets overpowered the car goes from fun to scary. The potential for disaster goes up exponentially.

I've run during Cobra days and have found that with a 17psi K04, RA-1s, and balanced suspension I was running about 2 seconds behind the Cobras and about 3 seconds behind the Mustang Cobra Rs on real slicks. The Cobra roadsters had the potential to go much faster but none of their owners wanted to die for a lap time. The Mustang Cobra Rs and I could go balls out without any real worry. There is an immense difference in stability between a 90" wheelbase and one over 100".

There was a corner that I had my tail out often. The Cobra Rs did too. The late apex line just put the cars in the perfect position to gas it early and let it hang out. This is why a massive crowd gathered around that corner. None of the Cobra guys got the rear out without spending some time in the grass. They would tiptoe around the corner and just drag race down the straight. Most of these Cobras were in the 475-600hp range. If one had about 300 it could have done it just fine.

onemoremile
12-07-2006, 09:41 AM
To clarify:

The Mustang Cobra R is a special edition track toy. 385hp, 0-60 in 4.4, and a top speed of 175. Usually running fat R-compound tires. The ones at this event were caged, had extiguishers, drivers wore full race suits, and none had license plates. They were dead even with a mostly stock C5 Z06 on Hoosiers and a 997 turbo on Michelin Cups.

http://www.diseno-art.com/images/Mustang_Cobra_R.jpg

This is a Cobra. 2550 pounds, aluminum block 427 making 575hp, 275mm fronts and 315mm tires out back. Coilovers, Wilwoods, etc..
http://www.audizine.com/gallery/data/500/1174IMG_2023_small-med.jpg

94jedi
12-07-2006, 10:23 AM
mmmmm....the 2000 Cobra R. 5.4L monster. I love that car. BTW, they were sold to the public and legal for street use. One of the best handling out of the box mustangs ever. Oh and no radio. haha.

onemoremile
12-07-2006, 11:19 AM
The Cobra R is a hell of a car. With 375whp, some Hoosiers, and my old setup I would be all over them.[a4] [wrench] [race]

nramsey
12-07-2006, 10:22 PM
I used to have a turbo on my Miata a few years ago. Was a somewhat custom Greddy with a Flyin Miata intercooler and Link ECU. Made 215 RWHP at ~13 PSI. Was an absolute scream, but I had a bitch of a time keeping the turbo bolts tight and was always afraid of driving it hard for some reason. In the end the car just isn't worth enough. The car itself is only worth about $3k, I just can't justify putting another $4500 in turbo shit on it. I've also had the Miata for almost 10 years now, and have been tracking it the last 6 years. I'm ready for a change...

I appreciate the tips though!