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Discussion Starter #1
So Dirtlab 2000 sprung into action again this weekend in our continuing quest to find the weakest link in the Focus. Car has 52,000 miles with over 1650 on track, about 180 this past weekend. Here are the findings:

Gators 1 - Falkens 0. A slightly overexuberant run through turn three resulted in clipping the inside gator at the very beginning and shearing a piece of tire about 6 inches long (circumferance) and 3 inches deep from the tire. Learned that cord has a markedly lower coefficent of friction than rubber, and watched lap times plummet.

The stock exhaust manifold probably should not be used for a turbo since I cracked mine right at the union of the collector and number four pipe. This happened on Staurday, ran the car in that condition all Sunday and the 350 or so miles home with no ill effect. Currently looking at the MAC unit as it has a 3 year warranty and is only $100 more expensive.

The fuel starvaion issue reared its ugly head again. So with the help of Tom Freeman, I cut an access panel in the rear seat area and cleaned the sok filter and pickup screen. They were FULL of varnish. The cleaning solved the problem and allowed me to run at around 1/4 tank with no starvation, quite good considering the long sweepers Roebling is famous for.

Check you brake lines carefully before every event. Mine were fine before the weekend, but at the end of the second day when removing the wounded Falken, there were some distinct bubbles in the lines. Time for stainless, I guess.

The Porterfield R4 rear pads provided by Gary Kole (garyk) were simply perfect, not a single peep all weekend. I have yet to inspect their wear, put the performance gets an A+. Thanks Gary!

The Bilkenstein suspension made a huge difference. My best indicated exit speed to date (out of 9) was just around 82-83 mph. The Bilkenstein allowed that to be raised to 91-92mph! Since the turn in for the 7 is where gas is applied, and I am doing around 65mph, I am hoping that someone can do the math and figure out what horsepower increase would be needed to get a like jump.

I disconnected the front sway bar for day two. The results are mixed. The car is definately faster on power. I was able to come out of 9 at an indicated 95mph a number of times. However, turn is definately slower. Plus, the outside front takes even more of a beating as the camber control is simply not there. Obviously, the Bilkenstein has done a good job, but an LSD is still needed.

I have limited computer access this week, but will try to field any questions that you might have.
 

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Sounds fun........I too have noticed cord offering dissappointing low grip.


So on track are you running Hawk Blues in front, and the R4 shoes in the back? I'm losing track of your brake exploits......er.....or is it "exploitation"......

Went with an "offer I can't refuse" on Hawk HP+s.....and the hugely better cold street performance than the Mintex C-tech 1155s worries the hell out of me.
Just how easily did you destroy a set of these?

It's always great to hear the success of the Bilkenstein.......great job!
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Actually, I swapped to rear discs, and am running the R4's in the D886 plate. I am still on Hawk Blues, but they continue to smear and chew up rotors, so I will be looking at an alternative for the next set. I have a work contact looking at procurring me some Ferrodo DS pads, hopefully some DS3000+. If not, I will probabaly go to Panther XP8's or 9's. Tom Freeman ran those on his Miata, and they were outstanding.

As for the HP+, I nuked them pretty quick on track. They wear away very fast once they get up to a very high temperature. Depending on your track, you may get away with them, or you may not. Just buy real pads and change them at the track.
 

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glad to hear you made it to roebling. was thinking about front bar disconect for one session at summit next week. still struggling with front rear bias. seems a lot of front drivers go w/o front bar. this is still new to me.
 

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Re: Dirtlab 2000: Roebling Road 2003-No front sway bar

Gary, since you have a Quaife, you might find that you do not need to disonnect the front bar. I did it because the bar was reducing pressure on the inside front wheel, and, coupled with natural rearward weight transferduring acceleration, causing me to lose traction coming out of corners. An LSD will compensate in that situation. It is still a worthwhile experiment, but traditional THEORY (and we know how that goes sometimes) says that you should not see a jump in speed similar to my own.
 

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Re: Dirtlab 2000: Roebling Road 2003-No front sway bar

Hey Rich, I tried responding to your question last week, but my emails just bounce. It's not the first time, and I don't know why.
 

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Rich
9 is pretty flat out with lots of side load. What gear were you in? I have trouble with tire spin on 2,4,5, and 7.
A slightly overexuberant run through turn three resulted in clipping the inside gator at the very beginning
Isn't 3 usually a late apex to set for for 4, which I haven't figured out how to go fast through.
 

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Rich
Are you flat out from 7 to 9?
I usually come out of 7 hard on the gas, but will feather 1/2 way between 8 and 9 to set the front end, picking back up about the turnin for pit. 2,4,5, and 7 are where I have had tirespin in the Mustang or the FormulaFord.
A slightly overexuberant run through turn three resulted in clipping the inside gator at the very beginning
um, Isn't 3 a late apex to set up for 4?
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Actually, I have found with FWD, that I do not need to go so wide on the entry to 4. The off camber outside pulls the nose too wide and I have to fight it to apex. To that end, I can run a more gentle turn in at 3, take an earlier apex, and turn in from when the passendger side front is just outside the crown. The curbing I hit is the beginning of the second section, the little patch after the main one.

My best laps are flat from turn in at 7 to braking at 1. I 'lift' to get into fourth gear, but that doesn't count in my book. I am also flat from 2 to 4, when I get it right. I ran some 1:32's on street tires this weekend.
 
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