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· Potato Camera Operator
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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
So, this winter, I plan on making some major changes to my car in the name of making it better to drive. As it is, my car was recently placed in H-Stock (most likely by oversight/mistake) at an event based on SCCA rules, and won by an extremely wide margin, even on all-season tires. I don't imagine the same mistake will continue to be made next year, and I'd like to build the car to fit a class as well as possible while still maintaining the goals I already have. My priority with this car is to build it to be as much fun (according to my personal taste) as possible in every situation I drive it in, then to be as competitive as possible when I do race it. Basically, what I "feel" the car "needs" to be fun to drive comes first, SCCA rukles come second. I'd rather lose in a car that I absolutely adore than win in a car that I'm not 100% fond of.

For reference, here is what the car has...

-H&R coilovers, stock strut mounts
-450 lb/in rear springs, 150x60mm, standard H&R front springs
-Polyurethane rear endlinks
-Polyurethane torque strut inserts
-SPC camber arms
-K|BDev. toe arms (heim jointed)
-2.5" exhaust, factory header
-Marcy intake
-Steeda Tri-Ax STS
-16x7.5 et20 wheels
-205/40-16 Kumho Ecsta AST
-Disconnected front swaybar
-Rubber front lip spoiler (from an Escalade)


And here is what I plan to do before now and the beginning of next season:
-FSWerks "Race Plates"
-H&R 514lb/in front springs, 100x60mm with helpers
-H&R 571lb/in rear springs, 100x60mm
-Rear droop limiters (if needed)
-Reconnected front bar with adjustable, heimed endlinks
-Polyurethane front and rear LCA bushings
-Crower 3/4 race cams
-Header
-Dyno tune
-3.5" aluminum intake with 3.5" MAF tube
-Dyno Tune
-Clutchmasters Stage I clutch
-Clutchmasters aluminum flywheel
-205/40-16 Falken Azenis RT615K tires on 16x7.5 et20
-300mm front rotor conversion with Centric slotted rotors and Stoptech pads.

My question is this: Where would this put my car for classification? I'd like to run Street Prepared, but I have a feeling that the heims in some of my suspension parts and the camber plates will move me to Street Mod. If that's the case, is there anything that I can/should change/add to my plans to better fit a specific class?

Please excuse my ignorance, I appreciate your time!
 

· Don't Call Me Gaga!
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31,810 Posts
The cams and race camber plates both put you into Street Mod FWD.

The long block has to be stock for FSP, and the center hole in the strut tower must remain unmodified.

The toe arms I can't really recall without picking up the rulebook, but if you went poly instead, they'd be legal for sure... but if you're running illegal arms and still on street tires, I don't think I'd sweat that one.
 

· Potato Camera Operator
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I'm looking at spring rates right now, and though I was originally planning on 514F/571R, what are people's experiences with significantly higher rates? I'm considering 913F/1027R, but I've got a sneaking suspicion that those rates are way too high for the way my car is set up.
 

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I dont think many people have gone that high. Couple track guys i think. Id like to see it done in a street car. Hopefully mine lmao. Have to pick the brains of some more guys before i start buying springs.
 

· Don't Call Me Gaga!
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Thanks for the info, Lorne! How competitive (assuming the car had a good driver) do you think it has the potential to be?
Well, with stickier rubber, it could certainly do well locally. If you're an awesome driver, you can do things with a lesser car than you might expect, such as midpack or higher at Nationals.

I'm looking at spring rates right now, and though I was originally planning on 514F/571R, what are people's experiences with significantly higher rates? I'm considering 913F/1027R, but I've got a sneaking suspicion that those rates are way too high for the way my car is set up.
Well, our FSP car runs 900lb front springs and 571lb rear springs. No front bar, big adjustable rear bar. Once you start making a car that stiff, the conventional spring rate ratios kind of seem to go completely out the window. I'd like to try more rear spring, but the car is working so well this year I don't want to mess with it.

In my PWSC track car, I just upgraded to 431F/550R... I didn't really choose the rates so much as find them, since I got the springs for $25ea used.

The FSP is sort of streetable, but all it takes is one big pothole to really do some damage.

The PWSC car is still pretty streetable with those rates, though on the really rough roads it isn't much fun.

California canyon roads are pretty choppy, and neither of these cars are up for that anymore.
 

· Potato Camera Operator
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Discussion Starter · #7 · (Edited)
Do you think you'd have any luck moving to a smaller rear bar and higher rates in the FSP car, or would you stick with the big bar? To be honest, the red car is the biggest inspiration for my own. If I could find some F2 flares, I'd be running a 225/40 on a 16x8.5.

As far as "streetability" is concerned, I think our definitions of comfrotable differ widely, but the concern of damage due to potholes is not something I'd thought of before.


Thanks for all your input, Lorin.
 

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High rate springs and comfort will never go together. We are running like others big numbers but its a dedicated track vehicle. 750 up front, 950 rear, no front bar, 32 mm adjustable rear bar. Only sticky tires, in the parking lot where we sometimes play with street tires that are our intermediate rains with a tread wear of 200 the rear will step out in a heartbeat on small bumps and overly aggressive turns, race rubber, just add throttle and it goes where its pointed.
 

· Potato Camera Operator
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
If you saw the height at which my car sits, you'd understand where I'm coming from on the topic of "comfort" :lol:

This is where my concern comes in, and you nudged at it a bit in your post: Will the springs be too much for sticky street tires, or should I be able to get away with it? I don't want the car to be too twitchy. I'm not looking for a hand-of-god decree here, but a general idea would be awesome. Thank you!
 

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I've been testing rates in the 500-800# range with Koni Yellows. I've found the car to be surprisingly comfortable on the street. Keep in mind that the rear motion ratio means the effective rear spring rate is only ~70% of the spring's actual rate. (That's a rough estimate. I can't remember the exact MR.)

IMO, your spring rates should be somewhat reflective of the amount of grip your car can generate. If you're on a low-grip surface with street tires, you'll probably find 500# springs will work better than 900# springs. However, if you're running 275-width Hoosiers on smooth concrete, the 900# springs will work better than the 500# springs.

One more suggestion: Find a front spring rate that you're happy with first. The rear springs are literally a 60-second swap on these cars. So you can test different rear spring rates VERY easily. I have been swapping rear springs at events, based on the level of grip.

I think the Focus has potential in STF, FSP, or SMF. The nice thing about SMF, is the minimum weight rule. Which is based on engine displacement, and/or Forced Induction. That really helps to level the playing field.
 

· Potato Camera Operator
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Excellent info! I've been taking the motion ratio loss into account for the rear springs, but haven't realized it was that extreme. I'll maybe wind up with something around 600 up front, maybe 750 or so out back.

Maybe I just haven't driven that many cars, but mine seems to generate an astounding amount of grip on all-seasons, even.
 

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I'll maybe wind up with something around 600 up front, maybe 750 or so out back.
That should be a really good starting point. Then you can increase/decrease rear rates according to how much rotation you want. One of my favorite things about my Focus, is the ability to tune the rear of the car with spring rates, ride height, shock settings, and tire pressure.
 

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Jmt has given very accurate info and is totally correct in that the rear is super easy to work on, for us spring changes also does affect corner weight results but with a notebook full of info we have been lucky to be able to use the track scales to make the final adjustments. Once set you will be fine.
 

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im in street mod with like none of the work needed to be competitive in street mod (car was half gutted after the swap and i just ran it like that. i have never bothered to change classes yet or even get properly set up for street mod (so few fwds for street mod i get lumped in with the camaros, mustangs, and awd cars....) i dont win. but at teh same time im not a complete loss. i may just need some sticky tires ( i put the interior back in it last summer and the car drove better. idk...)the focus may do well in sm if i can get some tires figured out...
 

· Potato Camera Operator
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Discussion Starter · #18 · (Edited)
Instead of doing a limiter you can get the shock shortened and revalved to handle the droop.
That's a $500 fix to a $50 problem from my perspective. I don't have any indications that I'm not working the Bilsteins within their limits, and from what I've read, the new springs won't be changing that. I'm really only looking to revalve if I have to.
 

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My camber plates came in, now I'm starting to think about other little details for when I work on the car over the winter. The concept of safety wiring the axle nuts has come to mind. Any thoughts on that?
Someone on here was talking about mazda nuts and drilling them for a cotter pin. I think it was Lorin.
 
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