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      12-17-2018, 08:00 AM   #111
Kgolf31
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You followed the advice of a guy with zero experience, zero proof, and zero success on how to build an exhaust?
If it works, it works.
So Salty.
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      12-17-2018, 10:05 AM   #112
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Clearly the one that can actually breathe at high RPM. Seems to me your car likes to choke out 6k+

We don't use less than 3k RPM autocrossing, so it's not really ideal to cater an exhaust to low range torque when it's not necessary.

Also like how your dyno graph only starts at pull at 3000 RPM yet you want to make such a bold statement that you make 20+ at 2000 RPM. Either way, I don't know about you but with the purpose of my car, and this thread, that RPM is useless.

Either way, I don't own the car anymore, and don't really care. It's just funny how you want to shit on someone's thread. Lets not even mention how you probably have 0 autox or track experience, so your information is quite useless as well.
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      12-17-2018, 01:05 PM   #113
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My engine was a N51

STX you're not allowed to swap intake manifolds. Therfore your dyno is null and void since you're N52 w/3 Stage. The information you're giving him is pretty much worthless really.

Lets not forget that you also had E85 blended into your tank which is illegal for STX as well.

Apples to Oranges...

There was no "lesson" taught. I did my exhaust, ran an OTS Tune from AA which as we all now know is pretty inferior to those of BPC, and still went out and didn't suck. Feel free to search the SCCA database if you want the proof.
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      12-17-2018, 09:51 PM   #114
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If you could take your argument elsewhere, that'd be great. My car is not a daily driver - it is an autocross car and becoming a track car. I expect to go beyond this class and when I take the cat out, I may consider reworking it, but at this point it is just fine. The car has enough power to overcome its tires at low revs - I'll take the breathing.

Thank you for your input,
Mark
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      12-18-2018, 12:40 AM   #115
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Originally Posted by lowside67 View Post
If you could take your argument elsewhere, that'd be great. My car is not a daily driver - it is an autocross car and becoming a track car. I expect to go beyond this class and when I take the cat out, I may consider reworking it, but at this point it is just fine. The car has enough power to overcome its tires at low revs - I'll take the breathing.

Thank you for your input,
Mark
Haha, ok. I'm done here for good.
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      01-13-2019, 08:50 PM   #116
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Hey lowside67 it looks like you also found that your car doesn't have the HBA (Hydraulic Brake Assist) or HVV (Maximum Brake Support) option. My trace file doesn't have those either.

However I swear I have felt HBA kick in previously...
Have you experienced perfectly consistent brakes since turning these options off?

Could LUEFTER or GMB be different acronyms for the same thing?

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Originally Posted by lowside67 View Post
DIFF_LOCK
This is the actual electronic differential - ie the automatic application of one wheel braking to whichever rear wheel is detected to be slipping under throttle application.

FLR ("Engine Power Reduction to Prevent Brake Disc Overheating")
This is the worst of them all. Modern BMWs will actively cut the throttle in the middle of your track day if it has reason to believe that your brake pads are overheating. Normally, this wouldn't be such a bad thing - nobody wants to crash into ARMCO going 140mph. The problem is, your BMW doesn't actually have temperature sensors anywhere in the braking system. The computer relies on a "calculated" brake disc temperature based on several inputs including ground speed, brake pedal application force, and the frequency with which the electronic differential applies "torque-vectoring" braking. Your BMW has no way to know that you installed a Stoptech Big Brake Kit with Castrol SRF fluid and Performance Friction PFC01 pads. It just assumes you are running the stock system and cuts your throttle based on values that would overheat the OEM brake pads.

FBS ("Brake Fading Compensation")
Brake fade compensation "calculates" the temperature of your brake fluid. The higher the calculated temperature of your brake fluid (remember, there is no real sensor), the more hydraulic assist will be added to your brake pedal. In theory, this masks brake fade on the street. On the track, it makes a consistent brake pedal literally impossible.

BB_RAB ("Brake Standby")
This is another ridiculous feature that works well on the road, but terribly on track. If your car detects an aggressive throttle lift-off, it will pre-tension the brakes in anticipation of a hard braking maneuver. This would actually be great if it wasn't for what it does next - if you don't brake within 8 seconds of throttle lift-off, it un-tensions the brakes. I have a theory that people who think they are experiencing pad knock-back on the track are actually just being victimized by this "feature." Turn it off for a more consistent brake pedal that responds predictably.
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      04-20-2019, 09:38 AM   #117
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Updates for 2019 Season

For 2019, my friend and codriver Rich and I are going to return to the 128i to campaign it in STX. We won't be heading to nationals but look forward to competing at Packwood to see how the car is progressing; we have several good benchmarks in the Pacific Northwest.


Car is filthy but this photo shows the ride height after spring change

The first change we made was the front spring rate - we went from the previous ~400lb-in 7" spring to a ~500lb-in 6" spring. This length worked out nicely - the perch is at the top of the coilover but the spring is not loose at all, it has just the tiniest amount of preload to keep it in place. From a ride height perspective, the car is VERY low - which I am fine with, I believe in running the car low.

We threw some new RE71Rs and headed out to our first Test & Tune of the season - the car was fantastic and we were immediately encouraged as the new spring rate in the front really helped the car slalom more effectively and yet does not seem to have had any negative impact in the sweepers. The limitations of the shocks are becoming clear - on a hot max grip we are essentially setting the shocks to their maximum "stiffness" and would likely turn the knob further if it was possible.



We are also continuing to prep the car to the class rules. We are generating enough grip on a hot day that seats are graduating from a "nice to have" to a "must have". There are lighter options than the Pro 2000s but they fit me well, are reasonably priced, and the ability to either side or bottom mount them adds some flexibility down the road.

My stock heated, unpowered, non-sport seats weighed 52lbs each (which includes the seatbelt receiver). The new Pro 2000 weighs 21lb per the same scale.

I went with Brey Krause mounts for both sides - I really like how simple they are. I chose a slider for the driver side and direct mount to the floor for the passenger side. The slider side reuses the factory BMW slider off the seat - this is not a particularly light solution with the complete factory BMW slider weighing 10.0lbs including seatbelt receiver. The brackets weigh another 4lbs for a total of 35lbs on the driver side.

Driver side:
21.0lb seat
+8.8lb factory slider
+1.3lb seatbelt receiver
+3.9lb Brey Krause slider to side mount adaptors
35.0lbs

Passenger side:
21.0lb seat
+1.3lb seatbelt receiver
+4.0lb Brey Krause floor to side mount addaptors
26.3lbs

A quick word to the wise - the max height setting on the direct floor mount brackets is still quite low. I am short so this probably isn't a problem for somebody who is 6' but I wouldn't be able to drive at autocross effectively without spacing it upwards.

We have our first event next weekend (Apr 28th) and will provide some feedback from there. Looking forward to being back!

-Mark
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      04-22-2019, 02:36 PM   #118
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Glad to see this thread revived. Taking a break from working on mine this weekend to focus some attention on my wife's 135i. Your thread and the STX thread have been great sources of information.
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      05-02-2019, 04:30 PM   #119
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Well, we had our first event of the season - just a small local event and relatively light on competition. However, the car worked well - the immediate feedback is that both my codriver and I very much prefer the new higher front spring rates. The car still turns in extremely well but the extra stiffness makes the car feel a lot more responsive through slaloms and offset gates - really a big step in the right direction.

With that said - we had 94 drivers out and my codriver had first place PAX by over 1 full pax second so a great showing for the car. I couldn't get away from the cones, the results tell the story - my fastest clean time was over 1.5 seconds slower than numerous scratch times.

During the event, we noticed it smoking blue a bit - going to need to dig into this and hoping it is something PCV related and nothing more ominous. Our next event is our holiday May 20th so hoping to have this all back together by then.

Onwards and upwards!

-Mark
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      05-04-2019, 06:53 AM   #120
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Mark,

Any videos from the event?
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      05-05-2019, 08:14 PM   #121
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Unfortunately not - we don't currently shoot video, just run datalogging. We might try and get a gopro happening at the next event but it has not been much of a priority for us.

-Mark
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      05-13-2019, 02:36 PM   #122
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Updates for 2019 Season


Car is filthy but this photo shows the ride height after spring change
Are these Apex SM-10? They look great!
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      07-26-2019, 01:31 PM   #123
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Second Half of 2019 Season

As I said before, this is a relatively quiet season - between getting married, honeymoon, a new job, and a few other "non-race" items, there has just been a little less time for a serious season.

With that said, the changes we have made to the car have made it faster than ever. The race seats were a sorely needed improvement and I am extremely pleased with the Brey Krause mounts - they are a really clean and efficient solution. The increased front spring rate in the car has also helped a lot, as evidenced by our pace at some of the most recent events.

VCMC Summer Blitz

Besides Packwood NT, our biggest event of the summer is our local VCMC club's "Summer Blitz" event which is scored as the cumulative best PAX time of each of 4 courses over 2 days with 3 runs on each.

My co-driver Rich and I came in 1st and 3rd PAX overall for the whole event respectively with a 1-2 class and group finish. STX was one of the most competitive classes of the weekend with 5/10 of the top PAX finishers being STX cars.



Packwood NT

I know it's been said before, but Packwood really is the most beautiful autocross venue in North America. It oozes "Pacific Northwest" everywhere you look. It's a small town, somewhat off the grid, in the middle of nowhere... a perfect spot for a gathering of motorsports enthusiasts.



Our plan going into Packwood NT was to just drive the car. The shocks are underdamped for the spring rates we run so are effectively run at full stiff at all times, so the only adjustment we have on our car besides tires pressures is our own driving. One thing we have done a good job of in 2019 is learning to use the substantial data we receive from the car to improve our driving.

We use the RaceCapture Track system connected through CAN to give us: Throttle Position, Brake Pressure, and Steering Angle. Combined with GPS data for speed and positioning, it is a powerful set of tools to allow us to optimize our inputs.



We knew we were in for a tough competition in STX. With 21 drivers, it was the largest class, and there were several "serious" contenders with national pedigree and well prepared cars in attendance (including the only other 128i being campaigned in North America in STX to my knowledge!).

My car is well prepped but there are several obvious ways to add money to improve the car:
1) Better shocks, we are far underdamped and can't easily rebuild the Ohlins to address
2) Dyno tune, we are on an off the shelf AA tune that doesn't do much
3) Weight loss, we have a stock 45lb battery, stock front brakes, fog lights, stock muffler, etc.

I don't say that to generate excuses, but rather to speak to how good the car is in its current level of prep. My co-driver Rich finished the weekend in 3rd place overall and had the fastest time for day 2 among a sea of talented drivers and well prepped cars. I finished the weekend in 7th on the back of a poor day 1 performance but took some solace at running a 46.2 clean on day 2 which was good for 3rd on day 2 at about 0.1s back from the lead.

All in all, a great weekend for us and the car - we took a car that has some room to be prepped further on tires that were arguably not at their best (we were the only car in the top 8 on Bridgestones, all else on Rivals, and ours were 100 runs old) to a great finish. I'm very proud of where we finished and it proves again how good these cars are.

2020

Of course that begs the question, what next? I think in 2020 I will likely return to running an open wheel car, as good as this year has been for me as a driver, I just can't get away from the fun factor. I have not yet decided if I will sell the BMW or just park it in the garage for another year - TBD.

Thanks for tuning in,
Mark
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      07-31-2019, 04:54 AM   #124
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Great results this year!

You originally had TCK DAs on the car, right? What made you switch to the Ohlins?

I hope you keep the car, I just picked up a 128 with the intention of building it toward STX prep. I've been reading through your's, Kyle's, and Ryan's threads as inspiration.
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      07-31-2019, 08:39 PM   #125
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My TCKs were bought used and while were expected to be in good shape, they were missing pieces, damaged in shipping, all around just beat up. I thought about replacing them with new but honestly I have had two sets of TCKs and I just don't think they are very good. On my E36, going from my TCK DAs to a set of (much more expensive) ASTs was a night and day difference and made me realize how poor the TCKs were.

My Ohlins are undervalved for the spring rates on them but even as a simple street shock the difference between turned down and turned up is pronounced. For STX, you are going to want between a 400 and 500 front spring and it's just not quite enough shock on stock valving.

-Mark
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      08-01-2019, 07:56 AM   #126
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Interesting, I have TCK SAs on my 328ti and, when I got them, thought they were a huge step up from a spring/shock combo. I've always wondered how a high end coilover would compare. I'd much prefer to buy a good suspension and be done with it rather than trying all kinds of different shocks.

Was your E36 a dual duty car? Or completely autox focused? I guess my real question is, how did the ASTs behave on the street? TCKs seem to be decent at being a good compromise shock where you can daily them if needed but then stiffen them up for competition.
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      08-01-2019, 10:42 AM   #127
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spidertri View Post
Interesting, I have TCK SAs on my 328ti and, when I got them, thought they were a huge step up from a spring/shock combo. I've always wondered how a high end coilover would compare. I'd much prefer to buy a good suspension and be done with it rather than trying all kinds of different shocks.

Was your E36 a dual duty car? Or completely autox focused? I guess my real question is, how did the ASTs behave on the street? TCKs seem to be decent at being a good compromise shock where you can daily them if needed but then stiffen them up for competition.
My E36 was a track and autocross only car but for awhile I was driving it to the events so it did see some street miles. A good shock is good because it can do two things - adjust to a wide range of settings (ie "soft" for the street to "firm" for competition) and do so repeatably and without the adjustments cross-talking to each other.

The ASTs were great shocks - at "soft" they were far more comfortable on the street than the TCKs they replaced, and that included increasing spring rate at the time. In competition, the car just took on a new level of liveliness and yet felt so much more controlled.



That's a very old video of my E36 when I had the ASTs in it - you will see we have a relatively bumpy and relatively dirty site, the car moves around a lot, and yet it is extremely compliant and always "comes back" to forward easily. That was the biggest change from the TCKs is the car was just easier to drive fast.

With that said, the downside of "real" race shocks on the street is wear. They are designed to work better at the expense of requiring far more frequent rebuilds and often don't have as heavy duty weather sealing etc. I wouldn't waste your money on MCS/AST/JRZ for a street car - in fact, for that application, I would very happily buy my Ohlins again. For the price, I think they are an awesome product, I am just trying to use them at nearly 3x the spring rate they ship with and that's not a fair ask of any product...

-Mark
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      08-01-2019, 10:45 AM   #128
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Are these Apex SM-10? They look great!
Yes - square 18x8.5 +35, no spacers. Here's a better (cleaner) photo:



-Mark
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      08-01-2019, 05:52 PM   #129
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Quote:
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Yes - square 18x8.5 +35, no spacers. Here's a better (cleaner) photo:



-Mark
Looks great! I didn't think ET35s would fit...
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      08-02-2019, 10:48 AM   #130
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I have -2.1 degrees rear camber and -3.6 degrees front, which makes all the difference. They rub on only the absolute most extreme bumps when the car is loaded up, totally usable on a daily basis in my opinion (which my 255 RE71Rs on 17x9s are NOT).

-Mark
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      08-02-2019, 11:28 AM   #131
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lowside67 View Post
I have -2.1 degrees rear camber and -3.6 degrees front, which makes all the difference. They rub on only the absolute most extreme bumps when the car is loaded up, totally usable on a daily basis in my opinion (which my 255 RE71Rs on 17x9s are NOT).

-Mark
What tires are you running on these? Maybe I missed it.
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      08-02-2019, 04:15 PM   #132
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Quote:
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What tires are you running on these? Maybe I missed it.
Quote:
Originally Posted by lowside67 View Post
I have -2.1 degrees rear camber and -3.6 degrees front, which makes all the difference. They rub on only the absolute most extreme bumps when the car is loaded up, totally usable on a daily basis in my opinion (which my 255 RE71Rs on 17x9s are NOT).

-Mark
And how aggressively did you have to clearance the connection tab between the fender and the front bumper?
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