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Conan

What are the priorities of a great Track Car?

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So ive got my nice 318iS Touring and im looking forward to throwing it around a track - so what are my priorities!

And yes I know sorting my erratic driving out will be the most effective change :wink:

I'm gonna start with a Z3 Steering rack to stop the e30s bus like steering turn and a quick shifter cos its cheap and effective.

Then im guessing things are: Tyres/brakes/arbs...............

But what are the priorities????

I think a Breyton/Reiger lip spoiler might really help also...........

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Three things for me:

1. Suspension

2. Brakes

3. Tyres

You want nice, stiff suspension to cancel out the roll. Depending on what you go for may negate the need for uprated ARBs.

Brakes - nuff said.

Tyres - something nice and sticky. I'm really keen on Toyo T1-Rs at the moment, they're not very expensive but much better on track (and road) than things like Michelin PS2s, although I don't think they'll last quite as long. You could go further and get 888s or similar, but you want to have upgraded other things like bushes to get the best out of them.

Once you've got the basics right you can move on to other bits and bobs. Weight saving is a big one.

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Tyres - something nice and sticky. I'm really keen on Toyo T1-Rs at the moment, they're not very expensive but much better on track (and road) than things like Michelin PS2s, although I don't think they'll last quite as long.

Is there an optimum wheel size - im on the lookout for some cheap track rims - that works the best?

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There is an old adage that will serve you well: Make it stop, make it handle and make it go - in that order!

1) Uprated pads and fluid on standard discs will be a great start. Think something like Mintex 1144/1155 with ATE Racing Blue fluid - a great VFM combo.

2) Track it, see how you get on, see what you want improving.

3) Suspension. Ideally something where you can get negative camber on the front, lower and stiffen it. Do some reading to find spring rates that suit the E30 and then make sure dampers are ones that work with those springs. Don't forget a good geometry set up after. Consider coilovers from the start.

4) As per point 2.

Chances are there will be a few cycles round 3 and 4. Notice I didn't bother with engine upgrades in what I said. However, the importance of a race seat and harness can not be overstressed - you become part of the car and can relax your arms on the wheel - it is important it can wriggle as required.

Also, each kg you strip will reap rewards!

For tyres, if you go R888 type then it will be great but you will really strain your bushes etc. Go for something like Kumho Ku31's - cheap but fantastic wet/dry grip, nice tough sidewalls and a progressive breakaway.

I've practiced all I have just preached on the VX and it is superb now - so much better than when I bought it.

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Very good advice above.

I've spent a fair amount on brakes, with larger disks/calipers, Greenstuff pads and stainless lines which did improve things a fair bit for my first outing at Bedford. The change to Yellowstuff pads and Racing Blue fluid made a massive difference on track at Snetterton, and I had no repeat of brake fade and looooooooong pedal that I had with previous setup.

Lowering springs which are usually stiffer do help, and spot on advice about ensuring dampers can operate with the amount of lowering thats planned. Sport dampers may be needed.

I've not done the ARB upgrades, but judging by the ride in Jamie's and Duncan's cars it also improves the handling a fair bit.

If you don't need to keep the car for family type usage then consider a weight loss programme before expensive power upgrades :wink:

I'm not doing another passenger/spectator day - it was just too frustrating :evil:

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Your wheel size should be driven by a couple of things - diameter by what's needed to fit over your brakes, and what fits in the arch if you lower it. Width will make a bigger difference, as the more tyre on the road (so bigger contact patch) the better.

I don't know much about the E30, but I'd imagine a 16x7.5 or 16x8 would be best.

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for my money i wouldn't worry about power and go ARB's and brakes first - although the 318is has 325i brakes as stock i think (not sure what the touring is) so if its 325i size i'd be looking at pads, fluid and braided hoses.

then i'd look at suspension/ seats and harnesses/ lightening.

be interested to see how this goes on track as i do fancy one!

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Power is not an issue - wants this thing gets into its stide it flies!

Think they're 325 discs all round but ill check with Jamie.

I'd like to look at getting some seats that would work both every day and on track

Question: Do harnesses have to be fixed to the chassis/bulkhead or can you get them intergrated into the chair?

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try and find some mitsibuishi recaro seats from an evo 1-5 They look nice, they give good support and have holes for belts but they also recline so you can get the right position on road and track. i have mine mounted on e28 runners so i get adjustment fore and aft too, this way you can add eye bolts to replace the normal bolts which hold the stock belts in and then clip in the belts as you need.

Paid £130 for them (a pair) plus £50 to have the bases made up. be warned recaro list e30 seat subframes BUT they only fit aftermarket recaro's not original equipment recaro's like these

Not ideal but i fix my belts to the rear seat belt points.

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Speaking as the former owner, I would like to start by saying that you are a very spiteful GIT Andyb :lol:

To be honest if I had kept the "little white hearse" I was going to take it to the ring and before I went do the following:

1. Change the brake fluid and pads.

2. Leave everyting else well alone.

Matt, don't start chuking money at it until you've experienced it as it is, you may well be very pleasantly surprised, just ask anyone who has tried to keep up with me through he twisties, there is almost no body roll and definately no understeer, the steering is fine, why change it :?::?

Try it out first, then assess what you think it needs, save your dosh for the M5 running costs, you'll need to :wink:

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So recaro subframes wouldnt fit those evo seats.

How/where did you get frames made up?

No because they are OE recaro rather than aftermarket - seems that recaro are very secretive and don't have standard seat bolt patterns - if you buy say a monaco S seat they then make up runners for you - so in effect they are not 'off the peg'

my local welder fabricated them from my drawings which i drew after the wood work exercise.

That said - apart from seats (which can only be a good thing) try it before spending money. as i said earlier i have a desire for a 318is and i reckon ARB's and brake fluid & pads would be the first things - the rest is supposed to be pretty good.

i would then consider suspension/ bushes and lightening

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I won't change anything before the first TrackDay (Bar maybe Pads and fluid!)

The steering is the best of the 5-odd e30s ive ever driven by a long way - very light and direct. But a friend has the e36 rack in his 325 and the speed and feel is another step again!

Those tyres Dan was going on about might be useful too!

Problem is Jamie is that the car is in such nice condition and setup already! :wink: Im a natural tinkerer and theres nothing to tinker with cos its all good!

Spent all of yesterday hammermiting the few rust (surface) spots on the inner arches and valance and then went over them in Alpine White and she looks great. Gave her a good claying as well and she just looks spot on!

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I won't change anything before the first TrackDay (Bar maybe Pads and fluid!)

The steering is the best of the 5-odd e30s ive ever driven by a long way - very light and direct. But a friend has the e36 rack in his 325 and the speed and feel is another step again!

Those tyres Dan was going on about might be useful too!

Problem is Jamie is that the car is in such nice condition and setup already! :wink: Im a natural tinkerer and theres nothing to tinker with cos its all good!

Spent all of yesterday hammermiting the few rust (surface) spots on the inner arches and valance and then went over them in Alpine White and she looks great. Gave her a good claying as well and she just looks spot on!

I am glad you're still pleased with it Dan, says Eta man reaching for his pipe ad slippers :lol: I do miss it, I forgot to say that it had 17's on when I first got it, the ride on road was horrible, I would say that would be a backward step IMO, Dan is right about the Toyo T1R's, great tyre and seem to have brought their prices down in line with others at last.

I agree with Duncan, the best way forward would be decent pads and fluid, the seats and harnesses would be the icing on the cake, I do happen to know that Sepia maybe sell his Corbu seats and harnesses that have been cluttering up my garage :roll::mrgreen:

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What's the spec of it currently, in terms of brakes/tyres/suspension etc?

As the others have said, try it on track and see what seems to be letting it down, and go from there. Having said that, if you've got (reasonably) standard brakes then pads and fluid would be a no-brainer, same if it's wearing Nankangs.

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Its very good n road already with minimal roll and is lowered 35mm on bmw shocks.

Not sure if there the standered or iS shocks? (Jamie?)

Seems that a good seat makes a huge difference to the track experience so maybe ill start there.

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Its very good n road already with minimal roll and is lowered 35mm on bmw shocks.

Not sure if there the standered or iS shocks? (Jamie?)

Seems that a good seat makes a huge difference to the track experience so maybe ill start there.

Standard shocks, but fairly new.

Ageed seats and harnesses first and some decent brake pads + dot 5.1 fluid would be the place to start

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Matt, if you are putting buckets in please don't go for the ones like Dan has - alright for snake hips but exruciating for the more padded amongst us 8)

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