Domo: Episode II - Attack of the Mini2 Drones - Blogs -
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Domo: Episode II - Attack of the Mini2 Drones

Rating: 2 votes, 5.00 average.
by , 13/09/10 at 16:25 (1146 Views)
Around this time Mini2 was becoming more and more tiresome, with posts being deleted, Roland of GTT fame talking more and more BS day after day and generally things getting very heated.

MT was close on the horizon and the increasing sea of frustrated users were growing ever closer to the Torque side...

#Bypass valve FAIL

Usually, getting in the car and going for a spirited drive usually involves firstly turning off the poor traction control... After a 15 min cruise to get the car up to temperature I was heading out from the Retford area towards Newark-on-Trent in Nottinghamshire... some fantastic fast country roads. From one junction I used WOT in 1st and shifted to 2nd quickly (but not a full throttle change)... this usually gives a brief 2nd gear "chirp" from the grippy Goodyear eagles.

However.... instead i got a huge "BANG", followed by no power, a near face full of windscreen and a flashing TC light. Grr... the dreaded ASC+T kicked in. Ever since that moment acceleration was dull, restricted and the car felt much slower.

The suspect was diagnosed as the bypass valve and I was booked in at 1320 to have it fixed, Janny Mani and a dyno...

^ Ouch, if your car feels down on power take a look at the bypass value. On pre-facelift cars it has a very weak spring. This is also why you should never use ASC!

More from 1320Mini

Had the Janspeed fitted at this point and from a cold start the exhaust is raw, raspy and will crackle and snap for a good 200 yards. This was not good because thats how I like it and it was egging me on to give it some beans when it's cold.

When it was up to temperature it's a deeper, "muddier" lower note and it popped occasionally and rarely crackled.

Well since I had the Janspeed fitted a few things went downhill, and the result of the diagnosis was a knackered flywheel and seen as it's in that area a new clutch wouldn't hurt. After speaking with Paul and Chris at 1320 who put me in touch with Jan at RMW I decided on what I wanted from a new clutch.

# I didn't track the car.
# The cars a daily driver so I didn't want it to be an "on/off" switch.
# Smooth changes.
# Better torque holding capacity.

The end result was the Clutchmasters FX200 and alumnium flywheel ordered through Jan at RMW:

Chris @1320 did a fantastic job of fitting everything, in very quick time and I can't really go into detail but lets just say went well out of his way to sort everything out for me and ensure I didn't end up spending more than I had to. Absolutely first class service.

The difference between a company who's core business relies more on customer retention than one that is based on product sales really, really shows. I couldn't have been more pleased. And as for the bill... I couldn't find a local garage that would do this kind of work cheaper if I tried, let alone one who's a specialist!

I left 1320 for the drive back (approx 80 miles) and firstly I though Chris may have accidentally put Baileys in the gearbox instead of oil... it feels like a new box smooth and much more rewarding...and it wasn't exactly notchy (before the flywheel went).

The clutch initially seemed fantastic, it required no more skill than the standard clutch and the pedal was light and much smoother than stock, engagement was perfect... very quick and very smooth does exactly what it said on the tin.

The new flywheel made the car feel much more lively, response and rev matching on down shifts was much improved but takes some getting used to (as the revs drop much quicker). Previously two heels to the gas would do it whereas now only one is needed so I was braking sometimes down-shifting too early for a corner. The car felt sorted and much more of a complete package.

The results in video form of Janspeed & Clutch were as follows:

Now when there were less than 500 miles on the clutch (way before that video was made!) there were some tell tale signs all was not well. See here I assumed this was just a one off during the break in period.

Unfortunately the FX200 lasted just 9 months in my hands and believe me, I was so, so careful during break in after having forked out for clutch change so early on (30ish k)...

Initially the FX200 was wonderful and I was so so pleased with it, but after the tell tale signs kicked in I should have known better. Looking back and being a little naive on uprated clutches the initial problems gave the whiff of early signs of not being a good quality clutch that suited my driving... although it did pass and I stopped worrying. Looking back maybe I should have had it checked because something wasn't right for it to die so quick.

In the last few weeks of it going it just slipped and then was an absolute pig to drive upto 1320, if I left it longer it would have been undeliverable. If your going to go for a uprated clutch go with the FX400, I think driving on the roads in the UK is about the equivalent of repeatedly tracking a car in the US

I decided to go down a different route and try an alternative. The Helix Group N Organic...

This performed in the same way as my old Clutchmasters but with a much, much heavier pedal (it pretty much throws your foot off the pedal) but so far no slip at all and works brilliantly.

As much as I enjoyed the sound of Janspeed with JCW exhaust now and again and the big difference in torque, the sound on occasion it was too much for me... (yes I know). So I had to depart with, it was partly a way of raising funds for a new clutch. Shame because this is the one part bar the pulley which made the most butt dyno increase!!!

Updated 19/09/10 at 15:21 by batou

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  1. sef's Avatar
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    Great write up...