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The manual solid tensioner isn't something I want to use really, stretch belts take a huge effort to get on, I can see potential for them to suit a manual tensioner, still not something I'd do, I think there's potential to overload the belt drive. On a stretch belt system the tension is taken up in part by the crank damper isn't it? Applying such tension to the R53 stock damper would no doubt compromise it, and almost certainly the supercharger snout if not also the idler pulley or tensioner arm and bush quite possibly. What I would do though, and I already have some here needing ends fitting which I'll test soon enough, is to utilise a gas strut in lieu of the one way damper, these can be built to specific gas weights 2kg, 4, 6 etc. So they add tension supplementing the spring of the normal tensioner to a point, and in particular they resist compression much better. What they would also do is shorten belt life of course. This isn't the primary concern for me though, all I have in mind is peak belt performance. These can be swapped for when required or just left on. Damper longevity could be a factor given the engine heat, although a small shield can be added to help protect from exhaust heat and the damper body can be wrapped to a degree also. I'll get round to finishing them and will make some available to suit daily or track use perhaps, the ones I have at the moment are 6kg.
 

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The manual solid tensioner isn't something I want to use really, stretch belts take a huge effort to get on, I can see potential for them to suit a manual tensioner, still not something I'd do, I think there's potential to overload the belt drive. On a stretch belt system the tension is taken up in part by the crank damper isn't it? Applying such tension to the R53 stock damper would no doubt compromise it, and almost certainly the supercharger snout if not also the idler pulley or tensioner arm and bush quite possibly. What I would do though, and I already have some here needing ends fitting which I'll test soon enough, is to utilise a gas strut in lieu of the one way damper, these can be built to specific gas weights 2kg, 4, 6 etc. So they add tension supplementing the spring of the normal tensioner to a point, and in particular they resist compression much better. What they would also do is shorten belt life of course. This isn't the primary concern for me though, all I have in mind is peak belt performance. These can be swapped for when required or just left on. Damper longevity could be a factor given the engine heat, although a small shield can be added to help protect from exhaust heat and the damper body can be wrapped to a degree also. I'll get round to finishing them and will make some available to suit daily or track use perhaps, the ones I have at the moment are 6kg.
Thanks! Looking forward to your experiment!

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Discussion Starter · #124 ·
Went to Brands Hatch yesterday for our first track day. Forecast a couple of days beforehand was looking pretty wet but aside from rain overnight there was none all day so once the track had dried it was a really great day.




Was a really good day, absolutely loved it. The mini held out very well indeed, I was impressed/surprised it took the abuse and just kept on going.
Was flying round corners even though it’s still on standard suspension but looking forward to being on Coilovers.
Built my confidence up through the day and had tuition at 11 which really helped to get my speed up and I was considerably faster by the end. Prior to tuition I was at about 90 before braking for paddock hill afterwards I was a shade over 100 and taking the bend around 55/60. It’s a pretty scary corner particular for a first time out.
Think I’ll do brands again next month as it is quite a challenging circuit with the elevation and camber changes. Paddock hill turn is ridiculously bum clenching due to the opposite camber.
Brakes were definitely a wise upgrade stopping power was immense.

Only a couple of small issues to resolve, the exhaust / trim needs some work as it clearly got very hot and they are now one.

After a prolonged blast the PAS fluid showed signs of seeping from the reservoir.

I did get told during the day that it should be tucked up in a garage and not going round track haha

Some pics from the day, still waiting for the on track ones.









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Discussion Starter · #128 ·
Haven’t had the chance to do anything car related since Brands but got some bits sorted.

With the days and nights getting colder I decided it was time to get the heated elements into the Recaros. Wasn’t too bad to do, just fiddly! Would hate to have to do it again, oh wait.... one more side to do luckily passengers are a rarity recently.

Laid out to test prior to tearing the seat down


Light stayed on and they heated up nicely!



Seat tear down


Elements in, tidied them up more prior to closing it up. The cable you can see is for the airbags and is threaded through the lower upholstery.



Didn’t get any pictures of it closed up but it’s as it looked prior to removal so very happy with the outcome and most importantly they still work!



Whilst the seat was out I decided to finally give the carpet and surrounding trim a clean.





Also had a stab at the steering wheel with a micro fibre and flash APC.



Better than it was but can be better so will attack with a soft toothbrush also to get into all the creases.




Also separated the exhaust tips from the rear splitter as they’ve been joined in matrimony since brands.





Managed to get it tidier but the lower splitter has had it it.
Will change at some point for either GP or GP2 lower. Given the price of the GP trim the GP2 seems better value given the aesthetic change it gives rather than just thicker version of standard.
But don’t want to move the battery and convert to an R56 exhaust to enable the tunnels to fit.
Have seen that Colin Greene did it with a Miltek, so it’s doable. But still some thinking to do here.

Next on the list though over winter are coilovers and rear trailing arms with JCW 280mm rear set up. Have started collecting parts for the later.
 

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consider some YCW's for it with their nice Swift springs
 

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Discussion Starter · #130 ·
Probably a bit rich for my blood at the moment, partner is on maternity leave so the mod budget has taken a hammering until she is back to work

Luggage net courtesy of Big Jim

 

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Discussion Starter · #131 ·
Picked up some MeisterR’s from Nixkf (Thanks Nick, absolute top guy!)

Looking forward to fitting them when I get a chance, hopefully over the coming weeks. Will get some adjustable control arms to fit also so rear camber can be adjusted when I get it all set up.

Don’t plan to go too low but will definitely take a chunk out of that arch gap!

Plan was to do trailing arms and JCW rear brakes at the same time but those are likely to be completed early next year as I’ve decided to use new bearings and calipers so I’ll just keep acquiring bits as they come up in the mean time.

 

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they look clean

what are the numbers on the springs? 62 180 05 etc
 

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Discussion Starter · #134 ·
They are extremely clean, very happy with them!

It has the 5kg springs they come with as standard and also some softer 4kg ones for the rear. Will run the 5kgs for now but have read today that going up to 6kg can make a big difference to handling but want to see how the ride is first plus I need to build my mod pot back up again 😅
 

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yeah I thought they were 5's, what length?

I don' think I'd use 4's, the 5's are too soft as it is, the lowest I'd want would be 6f 5r imo unless purely road comfort with lows, the trouble with putting higher rates on these is the rebound has to be quite high already ime,
 

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Discussion Starter · #137 ·
yeah I thought they were 5's, what length?

I don' think I'd use 4's, the 5's are too soft as it is, the lowest I'd want would be 6f 5r imo unless purely road comfort with lows, the trouble with putting higher rates on these is the rebound has to be quite high already ime,
The fronts are 62.170.005, will check the rears when I go into the garage next.

Don’t plan on going too low, just enough to take the arch gap away.

Swapped the rear springs over to the 5kg yesterday and raised the height on all 4. All adjusters move nice and freely.

Have started spraying the bolts on the mini in the hope I’ll have some time the coming weekend to make a start.

Also noticed I must have acquired a tenant whilst it was parked up for two weeks after brands
No sign of them though.




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Discussion Starter · #140 ·
All‘s I bought were some M7 adhesive eyes for the arch liners 😆
😄 which style did you go for?

If you’re still after Hardrace arms they’re a touch over £150 a pair on driftworks for the rubber busheones at the moment.


Just bought a pair of alloy trailing arms from eBay for £40 posted, disc retaining screws are snapped off but I wanted to put new bearings on anyway so no drama. Still don’t plan to fit those until next year though as will do it when I upgrade the brakes.
 
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