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Learning how to build Lotus Seven replicas...together!
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PostPosted: February 25, 2016, 7:08 pm 
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Joined: June 11, 2008, 1:31 pm
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Location: Denver,CO
Wow looks great. How did you get the speedometer to work with your KOSO guage? Did you use magnets or did it work off your stock speed sensor?

Evo

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PostPosted: February 25, 2016, 9:45 pm 
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Joined: July 6, 2009, 11:50 pm
Posts: 159
I'm using the factory Honda speed sensor to drive the Koso gauge. It just took a bit of math to figure out the right constants to use. The Honda sensor outputs 4000 pulses per mile, so I chose to set the number of magnets to 4, and then calculate the tire circumference required to get 1000 revolutions/mile which worked out to 1609mm. This is for the original Prelude tire size though, so I then had to compensate for the difference.


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PostPosted: March 28, 2016, 12:22 pm 
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Time for a major update. A few weeks ago I got all my paperwork off for my VIN application. Everything went fairly smoothly, the only extra thing they wanted was a notarized letter declaring where the major components came from and approximate purchase dates even though they had all the receipts and donor vehicle registrations that I sent in. I got that together the next day and everything was approved. I managed to get the car to the shop without getting wet but by the time the inspection was done it was raining outside and I got pretty soaked on the way home. It was a small price to pay, but now I'm fully street legal! There were a few things the shop had me change but they were all reasonable and gave me advanced notice so I could change them before I brought the car in. They wanted a regular style seat belt buckle not a racing harness, reflectors on the fenders so the overall size was more clear at night, and a solid steering wheel hub instead of the quick release. I also removed the wings to draw a little less attention and cut out some weight.

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It feels good to have that all behind me, and now I can focus on tuning the car a little better. At first the brakes were pretty poor but I've added more rear bias and removed a lot of the negative camber and they're much better now. The car is quick but not quite as fast as I was expecting. I guess my perception of acceleration has changed a little since I started riding sport bikes. It will be adequate for autocross, which is primarily what I do, but I could see myself wanting another 100hp on a road course. Right now I'm fighting a bit of a battle with some understeer. Sometimes it's bad, sometimes it's OK. I think I'm partially fighting tire temperature differences. It's still pretty cool here so the tires are definitely not at an optimal temp and with the front being so light, it takes a lot more work to get some heat in them. I'll have to wait for an autocross, somewhere where I can push it and warm the tires up, to really tell.


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PostPosted: March 28, 2016, 5:09 pm 
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Joined: June 8, 2010, 8:02 pm
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Location: White Rock, BC, Canada
Congrats on being legal! Now the grind is over, and it starts to be fun.

Cheers.

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PostPosted: March 29, 2016, 9:58 am 
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Joined: July 29, 2006, 9:10 pm
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Location: Oregon, usually
Congratulations! That is a major milestone!
Zac88GT wrote:
I also removed the wings to draw a little less attention...
Oh yeah, that'll do it. Nobody's going to notice you with the wings off. :wink:

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PostPosted: May 17, 2016, 1:10 am 
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Joined: July 6, 2009, 11:50 pm
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Time for an update! I've put almost 2300 km's on the car so far and it's been quite reliable. The clutch master cylinder started leaking so I had to replace that, but it was over 20 years old so it was inevitable. The weather has been pretty good and at times even warm enough to drive in shorts and a t shirt. The car gets tons of attention and people give you thumbs up everywhere you go. Driving it is kind of a strange mix of embarrassment and pride. I managed to snap a few pics outside my work just as the cherry trees were blossoming.
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As for the Performance of the car I'll break it down by sections.

Brakes:
At first I found the braking to be very poor. The pedal effort was quite high, and the fronts would lock up at only moderate deceleration levels. Now that the pads are bedded in and I'm used to positioning my foot on the proper part of the pedal the effort is totally reasonable. I've also adjusted the balance bar for a lot more rear brake and removed a lot of camber which helped immensely (I might be adding some back but I'll get to that later).

Cooling:
In cooler ambient temperatures the cooling system seems to be fine. I did have it get quite warm on me one time though. It was the hottest day so far this year (28*C) and my wife and I decided to go out for a 4 hour loop. The car was fine in city conditions or even slower country road cruising. It was only when we hit the highway with sustained higher speed and traffic that the rad could not keep up. It could maintain a reasonable temperature if I kept the speed to ~90km/h but with increasing speed the temp would start to rise. To be honest i'm not surprised at this since there is no radiator ducting at all. I think the shape of the car and lack of body work allows air to enter in and hit the firewall behind the radiator causing a high pressure area that stalls any airflow through the rad. I'm going to add some ducting to better connect the rad to the opening in the front. I'd also like to add ducting behind the rad but i'm not sure if I should duct it to the low pressure area underneath the car or up through the hood GT40 style. Any thoughts?

Power:
The car is quick, but not nearly as fast as I was imagining. I love the N/A power and instant throttle response so I won't be going turbo, but maybe it'll get a set of cams at some point. The Vtec hits pretty hard. I think substantial mid range gains could be had if the engagement rpm was lowered. I did do a 0-60 mph test, actually it was 0-100 km/h (62.5mph) and it ended up at 4.9s. This was on a bit of an incline and since the car does exactly 60mph in 2nd there was a 2-3 shift and an extra 2.5mph in there. I think it would probably do a true 0-60 in 4s but I'll have to change the settings in my Koso dash to find out. Fuel mileage has been great at ~28mpg. The exhaust sounds great but it is a little loud so there may be a redesign in the future if it causes problems at the autocross events.

Handling:
I've been making lots of suspension tweaks to try and get some of the understeer out of it and I think I'm on the right track. As it sits now the rear is 15mm higher and the front is 15mm lower. I tried the caster at 5*, 7.5*, and 3.5*. I found the higher caster to have too heavy of steering, and the weight jacking really accentuated the fact that I have an open diff. I found I liked the lowest the best for lighter, more precise steering, and less weight jacking. I changed the front springs out for 300lb/in from 200lb/in because I found the turn it was fine but it was washing out a little after that. Kind of like it was great while on the compression of the shock but once settled on the spring it was too soft. I read that lack of roll stiffness in the front could cause that and also that the roll stiffness distribution, as a rule of thumb, should be about 5% higher in the front than the static weight distribution. With the 200lb springs the roll stiffness was 30% front with a 35% weight, while the 300lb springs put the front roll stiffness spot on at 40%. Right now I'm running -0.25* camber in the front and -0.75* in the rear with 20 and 30psi tire pressures respectively. After this weekends autocross I found that the car could use a little more camber than that. Perhaps I'll bump it up to -1 and -1.5 or so for the next event.

Autocross (Putting it all together):
This weekend the car made it's debut autocross. I went into the event with pretty low expectations. My old turbo Miata pretty much FTD'd every event I attended so the new car was following in some pretty big footsteps. With the amount of understeer that I felt was plaguing me on the street I didn't think there was a hope in hell the car would be composed on the track. I was pleasantly surprised. While it still had some understeer on corner exit, the car handles beautifully on transitions, steady state, and corner entry. I had a blast and ended up 2nd overall. I was .5s behind 1st which was a hyabusa powered 7 on Hoosier A7's (I'm on Rival-S street tires).

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http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_8Qp9yRHqr0
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LZAcVNg8Bsw


Last edited by Zac88GT on August 13, 2016, 3:03 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: May 17, 2016, 6:34 am 
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Joined: April 19, 2016, 1:03 pm
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Location: Falls Church, VA
SWEEETTTTTTTT!!!!!! :cheers:

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PostPosted: May 17, 2016, 10:54 am 
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Joined: September 22, 2005, 10:29 am
Posts: 421
Great job. That's one of the best looking cars to come out of these pages.


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PostPosted: May 19, 2016, 8:52 am 
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Joined: May 19, 2016, 8:46 am
Posts: 26
Location: Chesapeake Va.
Zac Interesting build. Can you tell me what type of headlights you used and where you purchased them? Any other information about them would also be appreciated. Thank you


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PostPosted: May 20, 2016, 7:25 pm 
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Joined: July 6, 2009, 11:50 pm
Posts: 159
Reddragon wrote:
Zac Interesting build. Can you tell me what type of headlights you used and where you purchased them? Any other information about them would also be appreciated. Thank you


The headlights are a DOT approved motorcycle headlight made by "Bikers Choice". Specifically they're called the "Sunray" headlight and are available in satin black or chrome. They have high and low beam using a single H4 builb. They throw a good amount of light and have a decent pattern so they're quite pleasant to drive with. I purchased them from Canadasmotorcycle.com but I'm pretty sure a number of places carry them.


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PostPosted: May 22, 2016, 7:40 am 
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Joined: May 19, 2016, 8:46 am
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Location: Chesapeake Va.
Zac

Thanks for the reply.


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PostPosted: June 8, 2016, 2:43 pm 
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Joined: July 16, 2013, 10:10 am
Posts: 14
Simply amazing!

So a few thoughts for more power since I been building a lot of F/H stuff in the last year.

I have made 230hp from a bone stock usdm h22 with out to much work. A good header, ported oem manifold, and a retune. Before this was done the car made 190hp. For ported manifolds take a look at http://store.220racing.net/

If you want to shoot for 230+ you will need a bit more work. This is where the h22 does not shine...... the frm sleeves do not allow for to many options, and sleeving a block will run you 1k+. I put together a bit of a hybrid engine for a friend, he end up making 275hp recently. F20 block (Iron sleeves), bored the block out to 86mm, used supertech k20 11:5 pistons, f23 crank and forged rods (97mm bore), ported lower h22 intake manifold with rosko upper, 80mm tb, and skunk 2 pro 2's.


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PostPosted: August 13, 2016, 3:02 pm 
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I had the car to another event on July 10 and the results were very similar. I added a little more camber on all 4 corners to try and get a bit more grip and even out the wear on the tires. The whole day was a blast and I battled for FTD with the Seven that beat me last time. In the end, he got a smoking fast run and took the lead by 1/2 second.

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http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gZIeN0jMLZ8

The cooling system was once again at it's very limit for the event. There was just enough cool down time between runs that by the time we changed driver groups I would not have been able to do an extra run. One of the projects for this winter is to make a fiberglass duct for the rear of the radiator and direct the air up and out the hood through one of these hood louvers that I've ordered.
http://trackspe.nextmp.net/universal/small-center-louver.html

In the mean time I thought I'd upgrade the rad fan. I went with a single speed Derale high output 12" pusher fan.
http://derale.com/products/electric-fans/universal-electric-fans/high-output-single-rad/12-high-output-rad-pusher-fan-2014-08-14-detail

The old fan is an ebay special that came with the radiator, and when I tested it, it only drew about 6 amps and moved almost no air at all. The new fan draws 24 amps and almost took off out of my hands when I powered it up. It now lowers the engine temps from 100*C down to 94*C in less than 10 seconds. Be warned though, the fuse holder and 30amp fuse that are supplied with the fan are not adequate for the startup current. I went through 4 fuses in the last 5km of my drive to the in-laws house. I had it wired into an unused 40amp circuit anyway, so I just cut the inline fuse holder out and now it's perfect.

I was worried about the volume of the exhaust at the last event, and sure enough I received a warning. We don't have many venues for events around here so we try to be respectful and keep all the neighbors happy. To be honest it was a little too loud even for my taste. The drone while cruising was really bad if you had a helmet on, and people could hear me coming from a ways away. I tried making some silencers to go in the tips and they had a decent effect on the volume, but they really choked up the engine at high rpm. I loved the sound, simplicity, and looks of the old exhaust but it was time to design something quieter.

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I didn't leave myself that much room for an elaborate exhaust so packaging was a bit of a nightmare but I came up with this.

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I managed to squeeze in a high flow cat, resonator, muffler, and a turn down. The results are fantastic. The car is so much quieter now, even over the old system with silencers, and I can't notice any decrease in power. It's actually 2.5lbs lighter too!


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PostPosted: August 21, 2016, 5:16 pm 
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Joined: June 11, 2008, 1:31 pm
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Location: Denver,CO
That exhaust looks awesome. How did you do the muffler? I take it you cut it open and added a u-bend? Do you have any build pics of it?

thanks

evo

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PostPosted: August 22, 2016, 10:36 pm 
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evo626 wrote:
That exhaust looks awesome. How did you do the muffler? I take it you cut it open and added a u-bend? Do you have any build pics of it?

thanks

evo



Actually the muffler is completely unmodified. It's a Magnaflow #14210. 5"x8" oval body, 2.5" inlet/outlet on the same side, and the muffler case is 14". I think it might be used mostly for C5 corvettes.


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