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RacerX

'93 626 Lemon Racer

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On 8/10/2017 at 9:28 AM, RacerX said:

It's obvious where the power gains are. More revs equal more power. I setup up the cam timing to sacrifice that top end for more bottom end. That motor has an unusually long stroke. So, the piston speed/acceleration is high. I was too chicken to spin the motor that fast all weekend.

except we took the stock motor and threw it in the trash.  Now we have the JDM FS-ZE engine with a proper dyno tune.

19143743_1379004885518571_209647029200329638_o.jpg

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On 8/10/2017 at 9:28 AM, RacerX said:

Hmm, the rear brakes locking up first? That's new. Was this while the pads were hot or cool?

Those HP+ pads on the rear have very high friction at cold temps and good friction at high temps (race temps). They are popular with the AX crowd. At race temps, the DTC-60's on the front start to grip much more and it balances out. If you are having trouble keeping temps in the front pads there at Sebring, you could try a different rear pad with a temp/friction curve more similar to the fronts.

If this happened while the pads were hot, you might check the e-brake set screw on the rear calipers and make sure it's not clamping down and causing the pads to drag.

We tested on a set of worn out R71s, like the rears are almost bald.  I'm sure it was more of a tire issue.  Alex drove the car for a 1.5 hour stint without issue, after Sean was in the car for over an hour is when he started noticing this.  We loaded the car and went home since we are now at VIR racing our other chumpcar.  We'll do a full tear down on the car when we are back and see how bad the tires are in the rear, i'm guessing they are completely done.

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On 8/11/2017 at 10:41 AM, InActiv Motorsports said:

 

Thanks for the video post. Now, I have something to study to help learn the track before I come out and race with you guys next month.

Is there a Friday practice day? Are you planning to have the car there for the team to get familiar with it and the track?

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23 hours ago, InActiv Motorsports said:

except we took the stock motor and threw it in the trash.  Now we have the JDM FS-ZE engine with a proper dyno tune.

19143743_1379004885518571_209647029200329638_o.jpg

 

There's not much difference between the FS-ZE and the motors I ran.

It's the same cam profiles, bore, stroke, spindly rods, forged crank, etc. The difference is solely intake and pistons (10.5:1 vs 9.0:1). Since you haven't hooked up the VICS solenoid on the intake, I assume it's skewed toward high rpm power. The dyno chart above seems to support that.

I had advanced the cams about 4 degrees, choose to use the '93 FS-DE intake, gave it a fat fuel curve, and setup a reasonable ignition curve with more low to mid rpm ignition advance than factory that then flatten out around 5K rpm. The motor woke up around 3500 rpm, peaked about 5000 rpm, and started to sign off after about 5500 rpm. We shifted at 5400 to 5500 rpm. I had the rev limiter in the MicroSquirt set at 5900 rpm. Having raced a completely factory setup with the factory ECU for 8+ races. I can definitely say the motor was making a little more than the 130 hp factory power. I assumed we were pushing 140 hp at the crank.

So if you change the cam and ignition timing (FS-ZE cam gears + professional tune) to spin the motor 21% faster (1.2K more rpm) at peak power, that's 21% more air and fuel. Thus you can expect about 21% more power. Let's round that down to about 18% more power due to losses from inefficient head/valve passages. That turns 140 hp into about 165 hp. Now add another 5-7 hp for the extra compression and another 5-10 hp for a professional dyno tune and that gives you about 175 - 182 hp at the crank. That's about 150 - 156 hp at the wheels if you factor in power loss through the drive train. More RPM equals more power.

I'm feeling better about my seat of the pants dyno tune I was running before I sold the car :-)

For all I know, the motor could run all weekend long pushing 6500 rpm at each shift point. WheelerZ pushes his V6 KL-DE there all weekend. But, that motor is significantly over-square with a shorter stroke (74 mm vs 92 mm). So piston acceleration is much lower.

Here's a great audio comparison of the two different motor setups. Just listen to the motor at the 3rd to 4th gear shift point. 

https://youtu.be/9NvsRnMz5Ek?t=7m40s

https://youtu.be/9RSHgGwhsF4?t=35s

 

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On 8/11/2017 at 2:21 PM, InActiv Motorsports said:

We tested on a set of worn out R71s, like the rears are almost bald.  I'm sure it was more of a tire issue.  Alex drove the car for a 1.5 hour stint without issue, after Sean was in the car for over an hour is when he started noticing this.  We loaded the car and went home since we are now at VIR racing our other chumpcar.  We'll do a full tear down on the car when we are back and see how bad the tires are in the rear, i'm guessing they are completely done.

WheelerZ, did you ever figure out what was causing the right rear lockup under braking at the Glenn?

I wonder if InActiv is bumping into the same thing. I noticed a little twitch in the car under braking in Inactiv's video from the testing. That was never a problem before. It looks similar to the twitch your car developed when the right rear started locking up under braking.

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I was thinking about that actually. Our diagnosis was just a worn out caliper. Replaced both rear calipers and all is well again. 

The guys we buy pads from at Frozen Rotors say that try great calipers as a wear item and replace once per year. We will be doing the same now as well along with our normal service and lube before each race. 

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BTW, those rear calipers have been on the car for a few years now. If in doubt, maybe it's time to put the fresh spares on the car.

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On 8/12/2017 at 4:31 PM, RacerX said:

Thanks for the video post. Now, I have something to study to help learn the track before I come out and race with you guys next month.

Is there a Friday practice day? Are you planning to have the car there for the team to get familiar with it and the track?

No, Chump will not be hosting a practice session on Friday (practice sessions are rare, at least in the eastern region where we race). We will have the car at the track early to get drivers in the car, suited up and acquainted with everything and perhaps even drive around the paddock. We also have to tech the car for 2017. 

It's doubtful the previous engine was making 140 hp. Very likely much less. A stock DE will make ~100-105 whp (against a stock rating of 118 hp @ 5500 rpm). A bolt-on DE will make ~110-115 whp. In fact, putting ZE cams in a DE has shown to produce only very modest power increases (attached dyno graphs). A key issue is a proper tune. A rich tune is going to hurt the engine as it not only impedes efficient combustion, but washes down the cylinders with fuel while diluting the oil and reducing viscosity. The end result in endurance racing is a bottom end failure (bearing, rod, etc.). We honestly turned to a professional to tune the car on the dyno. The current tune has 17 degrees through peak torque, 21 degrees out at rev limiter, AFR tuned to 12.9 @ WOT and also a fuel cut that shuts off the fuel completely on long decel. 

We'll be going through the brakes when fresh pads go on the car and if warranted, will put the new spares on and rebuild what's on the car and put them in the spares box. No doubt the old RE71's we were running had somewhat of an impact on the braking performance. 

FSDE with header, intake, exhaust, UDP.jpg

DE w ZE cams and intake vs stock.JPG

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Before you tell me how much power my setup was making, read the 69 pages of this thread. I've run far more engine/part combos than the original 115hp '93 hydraulic lifter motor. In fact, your FS-ZE is not the first one in that car.  I bet I've even posted those same old dyno charts before.

I ran the original hydraulic lifter motor for the first several races. Later I updated to a 98+ 626 solid lifter based motor. Those motors were rated at 130hp from the factory (w/FSD7 cams). This one came out of a very nicely built Probe I bought and parted out. That motor had a professionally ported and decked head, stainless oversize valves, Eabach valve springs, port matched 626 intake, solid lifters, FSH9 intake cam, FSD7 exhaust cam, under drive pulley, light weight flywheel, and balanced rotating assembly with K1 rods and Wiseco pistons. I ran it like that with the factory ECU for a couple races and then upgraded to custom ground Crower cams with the adjustable cam gears and went back to hydraulic lifters. I played with the cam timing on that setup and figured out how to move the power band around. I then updated the ECU to the Microsquirt. At that point, the car was making very good power. I played with the tune from race to race. Tweaking fuel and adding more ignition advance in the low and mid range. At that point, I am confident it was making around 140 hp peak power at the crank @5000-5200 rpm. That lower end always had problems with low oil pressure and I could never figure it out. Eventually about two weeks before our next race, I noticed that one of the oil jets was broken. That obviously explained the chronically low pressure. So, I swapped the ported head with Crower cams onto the '93 lower end with the forged crank. I even dialed back the cam timing a little to let is rev out a little more. But, when I put the head on the block the locating dowel that helps position the head gasket pressed all the way into the head. This allowed the gasket to slip a few hundredths of an inch. The 3rd cylinder piston began hitting the gasket ever so slightly. The motor only lasted a couple hours on the track before the rocking induced by the contact with the head gasket locked the piston in the cylinder and punch the rod through the side of the block :-(

At that point, I decided to see if I could locate a decent FS-ZE. Most the JDM crap they try to sell you is a MPV mini van motor. I pulled the valve covers off 10 motors before I found a true FS-ZE. The oil in the head was a little roasty looking. But it turned over fine, it had no slop in the crank thrust, and it rotated smoothly. I dropped it in and took it to the track to test. Sadly it had been over heated and blown a head gasket before it was pulled from the car in Japan. I took it back to the shop and I pulled the head off and took it to a local head machine shop. I looked through their inventory of rebuilt heads and cores and discovered the USDM Protege FS-DE head has the same casting number. So I had them rebuild one of those and deck it to the max. Before I re-assembled the car I inspected the pistons and confirmed they had a higher dome than the USDM pistons. But, I noticed there was a little scuffing and rust in the number three cylinder. Probably a result from the overheating event. But it cleaned up easily and the piston seemed snug in the bore with no unusual rocking. This motor was so tight and clean it couldn't have had more than 30K miles on it. So, I decided to risk it. I installed the FSH9 intake cam and Cork Sport FSH9 profile exhaust cam, set the advance to 4 degrees on each (given the milling on the head I figured this was closer to 3 degrees advance), installed hydraulic lifters to see what they did to limit the top end, bolted it all back together, and took it to the track. That combo was very healthy. It was making a little more power than the previous FS-DE setup, the cam timing had the power coming in nice and low and the lifters had the power tapering off around 6k rpm. Sadly, the motor didn't survive the test session. It developed a rod knock pretty quickly and poked the #3 rod through the block. Apparently that overheating in Japan hurt it worse than I thought.

I decided I'd had enough playing with FS-?E engines. It was time for a new challenge. That's how I ended up with the Integra.

The motor in the car when you got it, was bought sight unseen out of Craigslist. If I recall it was a hydraulic lifter motor out of a '96 626. I cleaned it up, freshened the paint, installed a rebuilt oil pump and water pump, installed a new timing belt and cover, installed the FSH9 cams, bolted it into the car, hacked up a Protege header, and started it up. It too had a blown head gasket. I probably ran the autotune on the fuel map while the car sat in the garage. But, I didn't modify it by hand and I didn't touch the ignition curve. I was done messing with the car. I already had a B18A1 Integra waiting to roll into the shop. I sold the 626 to the first guy willing to give me $1000 for it, the safety equipment, and all the spares.

So yes, I am very confident that I raced a motor setup making 140 hp at the crank and that FS-ZE was making a little more, but I didn't get a chance to qualify it. Given the porting, milling, balanced Wiseco pistons, under drive pulley, cams, ignition curve tweaks, tuned header, and free flow exhaust I would have to be an idiot if I could not squeeze an extra 7% horse power out of a motor.

Your setup makes more peak power, I'll give you that without even driving it. The pro tune certainly helps. But, you are revving the snot out of a motor with a 92 mm stroke to do it. Mazda did make a motor combo that peaked at 6800 rpm. But, they only built and sold that motor in a single sporty Protege model for the Japanese market. Every other car, including the Protege 5 and the MazdaSpeed Protege Turbo, utilizing that lower end made peak power at 6K or lower. That's how I came to my decision to keep the power band below 6K. Just because the factory made one model of car that peaks at 6800 doesn't mean it will run all day WOT at those kinda of rpms. Just ask a Honda racer. One thing this motor has on the Honda motors is it's not an open deck design. So, it's easier on head gaskets (if you keep the locating dowel in the right place, and temps appropriate). Besides, the FS-DE has a 92 mm stroke. It's a torque monster. So I built just that. Notice in our videos, we never used 2nd gear in even the tightest corners.

Speaking of lugging the motor, I still suggest wiring up the solenoid for those intake buttery fly valves. There's an output available on the microsquirt. I did some research a few years ago and they opened them around 4500 rpm. That means they will boost your torque/power in that critical 3000-4500 range. If you aren't dropping that low coming out of some of the tighter turns on the track, you are really thrashing on that motor and transmission.

I don't remember how much ignition advance I was running. But, I am pretty sure it was more than 17 degrees at peak torque (about 5K rpm). I do remember it was 12 degrees at idle. I left the fuel map fatter at WOT as well. I don't remember exactly. I bet it was more like 13.2-13.3. It was really rich at part throttle and idle sometimes. It depended if I bothered to clean it up after running the initial auto tune after swapping heads/motors/etc. I didn't cut fuel on decel. But, I did advance the ignition noticeably. That was a very cool trick I learned somewhere. It slowed the motor decel a little and eliminated stalling when you chopped the throttle harshly with the clutch in.

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2 minutes ago, InActiv Motorsports said:

THIS engine with the dyno tuned standalone well not be a weak point in the car as far as performance OR reliability. 

Hahaha, Id be knocking on wood or crossing your fingers saying stuff like that!  Might as well be waxing the car while your at it!:biggrin:

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Also a 13.3:1 AFR is not fatter than 12.9. It's leaner. 

A full load AFR in an NA engine should be in the 12.0-13.0 range. 13.3 is getting too lean and will increase EGT's as well as lower the safety margin for fuel variances. 

 

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1 hour ago, thewheelerZ said:

Hahaha, Id be knocking on wood or crossing your fingers saying stuff like that!  Might as well be waxing the car while your at it!:biggrin:

We're pretty happy with how the car worked at Sebring last week. Three hours on-track and no issues. We think some adjustments to the fuel tank/pickup (Hydramat) will help and we'll button up a few other items and it'll be ready. 

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Hey John, I'm trying not being a dick here.  (this is Alex, the mechanic on this car)  we all have been using the same account.

Anyways, you have never put the car on a dyno, so in fact you have zero idea how much your old setups were making, you also never had it dyno tuned, only street tuning. Ask any real race shop which is the better option for tuning a car.  You can't say X is worth 15hp and Y is worth 5hp so XY=20hp gain.  Thats not how any of this works in the real world.

You did a great job on the car when you had it and made everything easier, but you are NOT an engine builder or tuner and this car showed it after we got it.  reving the car 21% higher does not give you 21% more horse power.  thats not how internal combustion engines work. 

I have been a professional mechanic for over 20 years, I have seen the errors in your posts about building engines, you even admitted to forgetting extremely critical engine parts that caused engine failure.  I'm only letting you know this to know we are not some group of idiots who threw a car together and are running it.  We have dyno graphs to prove A/F ratios and horsepower levels of the engine build.  We had a professional tuner go over the entire tune and fix it.  Who was your tuner? 

We've actually talked about racing this car ourselves just to prove how good of a car it really is and then give renters something to aspire to.

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At the end of the day, I will remind everyone that we are all car enthusiasts here, specifically for Mazda and the 626/MX6 and alike. This thread is also specifically about builds for an amateur racing series and chronicling the progress (car and drivers) from start to finish.

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We put OEM headlight housings back in the car with LED replacements. 

Also, we are replacing the gauge setup. Will be mounting 2 5/8" oil pressure, oil temp and water temp gauge with warning lights for each. We found the digital gauges difficult to see during the day and these will allow renters to easily scan the gauges and report back to pit. We'll keep the voltage and FP gauges and mount them in a 2-gauge holder somewhere out of the way. 

 

Mazda FB(14).jpg

Mazda FB(15).jpg

Mazda FB(16).jpg

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Looks good.  Im a bit surprised that the gauges are hard to read in the sun. Interesting though, RacerX said he replaced the digital gauges so he could get more accurate readings from his drivers.  I always thought my drivers were better at reading our dial style gauges, but have had some radio messages that are wildly inaccurate when I go back and review the video.

I like how the dials basically say "all good" if the dial is pointing straight up.  I think if I were to do it over though, I'd go with digital and use the idiot lights for high water temp and low oil pressure.

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59 minutes ago, thewheelerZ said:

Looks good.  Im a bit surprised that the gauges are hard to read in the sun. Interesting though, RacerX said he replaced the digital gauges so he could get more accurate readings from his drivers.  I always thought my drivers were better at reading our dial style gauges, but have had some radio messages that are wildly inaccurate when I go back and review the video.

I like how the dials basically say "all good" if the dial is pointing straight up.  I think if I were to do it over though, I'd go with digital and use the idiot lights for high water temp and low oil pressure.

Yeah i liked the theory of the digital gauge as far as exactly what it was reading, but after the testing at sebring and verifying gauge operation, they were not very accurate.  Looking up the gauge and the sending units found them to be some of the cheapest you can buy.

It was mostly how the gauges were mounted causing not being able to read them in the sunlight, if they were directly in front of your face you could get a good daytime reading but after noticing inaccurate readings as far as temp and pressure, we agreed mechanical auto meter gauges were the best thing to do.  they will me mounted above the bar, in the drivers direct vision.

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1 hour ago, thewheelerZ said:

Looks good.  Im a bit surprised that the gauges are hard to read in the sun. Interesting though, RacerX said he replaced the digital gauges so he could get more accurate readings from his drivers.  I always thought my drivers were better at reading our dial style gauges, but have had some radio messages that are wildly inaccurate when I go back and review the video.

I like how the dials basically say "all good" if the dial is pointing straight up.  I think if I were to do it over though, I'd go with digital and use the idiot lights for high water temp and low oil pressure.

I didn't get to drive the car during testing as I was coaching someone during our test time.   I did drive on the road around Alexs' house a couple days before hand and the first thing I said to him when I got out of the car were that the gauges were useless. I'm sure they are awesome at night but i couldn't see them at all during the day.   I even tried rotating the whole cluster on the bar and it didn't help enough and it's not something we want the drivers do in the car while they are on track anyways.    Other 2 guys said the same thing at the track after driving during testing.   Not a big deal as the kit we found is a perfect cheap solution and we also get idiot lights. 

Matt 

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On 8/28/2017 at 2:27 PM, thewheelerZ said:

By the way, to RacerX being down in Texas, I hope you and family and friends are all safe and sound down there.  Stay safe man.

I'm not sure what part of Texas he's in.   Hopefully he is safe and dry. 

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13 minutes ago, InActiv Motorsports said:

I'm not sure what part of Texas he's in.   Hopefully he is safe and dry. 

Home for RacerX is in Dallas, the Dallas-Fort Worth area got some rain but only around 3" or so.  He works in Houston, coastal Texas got 30" of rain.

 

We switched to digital gauges because I don't wear my bifocals in the car.  When asked to read the analog gauges my response was "They're all generally pointed straight up."

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I'm glad to hear it. His Facebook profile lists Houston and I couldn't remember where the new house was.

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I'm high and dry here in Dallas. I got the heck out of Houston last week before the weather got bad. I commute between Dallas and Houston these days. Dallas is technically home, but I keep a my camping trailer down in Houston and stay there when I'm working there. I know better than to ride out a hurricane in an RV park :-) No telling if I'll find my trailer in the same condition I left it in last week though.

I installed the digital gauges to minimize the wild variety numbers new drivers read off over the radio. I'd get numbers varying more that 20 degrees depending on the driver. But, I was a bit disappointed by the visibility of those digital gauges. They had a lot of glare and low contrast. Relocating them might have helped some. But, I didn't bother. I'm not surprised you chose to replace them. Analog gauges with idiot lights was another consideration. That's a good setup for arrive and drive racers too.

Absolute accuracy wasn't the priority as long as the values are relative. They were and we could tell when things were going good or bad. I think there were three different temp sensors on the coolant manifold. One for the ECU, and old one from the previous gauge, and the new one. So, no telling how it got wired up. To be honest, what does better accuracy really buy you in the end? What temp, pressure, or voltage are you going to call a driver in preemptively? We learned that you will drive the car as long as it's driveable. After all this is LeMons, Chump, or WRL. It's a cheap motor/transmission. Drive it as long as you can and fix it before the next race weekend.

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