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Performance Modifications for the NG900 / Old 9-3 This forum contains PERFORMANCE related Q&A's for the NG900 and 9-3. This may also include suspension.

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Old 09-25-2007, 06:46 AM   #1
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Tracking a 9-3

OK I'm going to use this thread to ask some questions and maybe get some documentation down on how you can setup your 9-3 to take some track days down.

First: If anyone is serious about taking it on the track, DO THE SUSPENSION because it makes a world of difference. 90% confident a stock powered 9-3 with proper suspension will beat a staged 9-3 with stock suspension around a track.

TIRES!!! Proper tires are huge. This is a main point of this thread. I am most likely going to buy a set of slicks for the track, and am curious if anyone has done this before for the 9-3.

What is the optimal size? 225/45/17? 215/45/17? 235/40/17? or do I step down to a 16" wheel and run a taller sidewall? If I use a 16" wheel do I run the risk of suffocating my brakes? As it is now the caliper barely fits inside the 16" snows I have.

Thoughts?

Feel free to post questions if you are curious about tracking your own and I'll try to answer with the limited knowledge I have.
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Old 09-25-2007, 07:12 AM   #2
 
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FWIW: Keep the 17s. Hoosier makes a 215/45 that's legal for most classes but actually is as wide as a 225 at the tread.

Your stock pads should be the first to go. Upgrade your pads to a street/light race compound like Hawk HPS. The difference is huge, especially with repeated stops. I watched Topher's video and there was a high-speed right sweeper followed by a tight right and a couple of esses that probably gave the brakes a real workout...
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Old 09-25-2007, 07:37 AM   #3
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I will be following this as well. Jon there were a few cheapie wheels on tire rack that were ~19-20lbs. Not sure how much the Vig 17's weigh.

Kumho Victoracer are pretty damn good too.

Here is a list of tires they have for 225/45/17 on TR: http://www.tirerack.com/tires/Compar...t=All&x=86&y=9
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Old 09-25-2007, 07:40 AM   #4
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I will be following this as well. Jon there were a few cheapie wheels on tire rack that were ~19-20lbs. Not sure how much the Vig 17's weigh.

i believe they weigh about 25 lbs.
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Old 09-25-2007, 07:48 AM   #5
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FWIW: Keep the 17s. Hoosier makes a 215/45 that's legal for most classes but actually is as wide as a 225 at the tread.

Your stock pads should be the first to go. Upgrade your pads to a street/light race compound like Hawk HPS. The difference is huge, especially with repeated stops. I watched Topher's video and there was a high-speed right sweeper followed by a tight right and a couple of esses that probably gave the brakes a real workout...
Yea I also planned on getting different pads.

HOWEVER, I want it to be normal for street, so swapping pads for the track then back again is the only way to do it. Do I need to get a second set of rotors that match the pads? Or is it ok to use 1 rotor and 2 sets of pads?
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Old 09-25-2007, 07:48 AM   #6
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i believe they weigh about 25 lbs.
I'd say that's about right, maybe a touch more.
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Old 09-25-2007, 07:50 AM   #7
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Yea I also planned on getting different pads.

HOWEVER, I want it to be normal for street, so swapping pads for the track then back again is the only way to do it. Do I need to get a second set of rotors that match the pads? Or is it ok to use 1 rotor and 2 sets of pads?
get rotors to go with pads. so imprints will match. But i would just go with riding track pads on the street to.
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Old 09-25-2007, 07:56 AM   #8
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I need to do some research on tires, there is a lot of info and choices!

Is there a place somewhere that has good discussions about different tires? Reading the user opinions on tirerack is ok but I'd like a little more depth.
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Old 09-25-2007, 07:58 AM   #9
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get rotors to go with pads. so imprints will match. But i would just go with riding track pads on the street to.
That's what I was thinking. I might take that opportunity to get some nicer rotors as well. My instructor at the SOC track day was a rep for a company that produces performance rotors - they looked like they had their isht together.
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Old 09-25-2007, 08:10 AM   #10
 
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You can and probably should use the same rotors for street and track. Our stock rotors are vented cast iron that can absorb a shitload of heat. If you already have slotted rotors, then even better...

If you go with racing pads, only the pad composition changes, not the size, so the imprint issue doesn;t really factor in.

Most guuys I know who track their Bimmers and Porsches just carry extra sets of pads and wheels to the track.
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Old 09-25-2007, 08:11 AM   #11
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Would it be stupid to use cheap steel wheels?
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Old 09-25-2007, 08:24 AM   #12
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Would it be stupid to use cheap steel wheels?
Probably since they are heavy to the max.
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Old 09-25-2007, 08:25 AM   #13
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Yeah, but I think it would be a good way to save a few $$$ so you can spend more on the tires...


Anyway.
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Old 09-25-2007, 08:25 AM   #14
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Would it be stupid to use cheap steel wheels?
Not stupid at all, IF you can get a big enough diameter and a width. Usually works for smaller cars, i.e. Civic's or Miata's as they already came with relatively small wheels.
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Old 09-25-2007, 08:29 AM   #15
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Yeah, but I think it would be a good way to save a few $$$ so you can spend more on the tires...


Anyway.
Truth.

After looking at tirerack there are a few sets of wheels that are under 21lbs for under $150 each, some like $110 so that's not that bad.

*edit found one under $100 each for 21.5 lbs!!
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Old 09-25-2007, 09:30 AM   #16
 
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Not stupid at all, IF you can get a big enough diameter and a width. Usually works for smaller cars, i.e. Civic's or Miata's as they already came with relatively small wheels.
+1....the only problem would probably be getting them in 16x7, and lighter than the stock wheels at that size....
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Old 09-25-2007, 09:51 AM   #17
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+1....the only problem would probably be getting them in 16x7, and lighter than the stock wheels at that size....
Ya I think I'll just stick to the cheapies on Tirerack, looks like some good deals to be had for a little over $100, which is reasonable.
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Old 09-25-2007, 09:51 AM   #18
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Truth.

After looking at tirerack there are a few sets of wheels that are under 21lbs for under $150 each, some like $110 so that's not that bad.

*edit found one under $100 each for 21.5 lbs!!
Yeah, I bought some Tire Rack "House Brand" wheels, Sport Edition F2's...17x7.5, and they weigh about 21lbs a piece....certainly not light, but not terrible either.
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Old 09-25-2007, 10:30 AM   #19
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http://grassrootsmotorsports.com/ great magazine, great forum on their site as well. last months issue had a review of racing tires, they always have great articles about tires and the like. as for the wheel issue, 21lbs is pretty darn heavy if you are serious about the car handling well. i'd probably either step down to some 16's, since theyll be cheaper and lighter, and tires will most likely be cheaper, or spring for some good light 17's.

Paul
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Old 09-25-2007, 10:50 AM   #20
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http://grassrootsmotorsports.com/ great magazine, great forum on their site as well. last months issue had a review of racing tires, they always have great articles about tires and the like. as for the wheel issue, 21lbs is pretty darn heavy if you are serious about the car handling well. i'd probably either step down to some 16's, since theyll be cheaper and lighter, and tires will most likely be cheaper, or spring for some good light 17's.

Paul
Unfortunately the price difference between 20/21 lbs and 17/18 is huge (usually).
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