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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Cheque book Racing R53 build

Thought id start a thread.

I used to be very into trackdays and spent an inordinate amount of money tuning VAGs and Fords to be used as a combined family/trackday car. These typically involved power way above what the car could actually handle and the usual always chasing traction. I did alot of trackdays and sprint events and was even fortunate at one point of my career to have worked in Moenchengladbach in Germany, a spritely 90 miles from the nurburgring so have done alot of time around there.

Had just had a few years away from the trackday and tuning scene due to working away 5 days per week where instead i spent inordinate amounts of money on cycling, however i recently had a very near death accident on a pushbike which has led to the wife and family asking me to get back into cars and bin bikes.

Immediately i gravitated towards VAGs again thinking of 400+hp targets etc until i drove past a MCS up for £2k and thought a Mini would be a cool change. The wife come home and wasnt best pleased which is strange as she said to llget back into cars......haha

Initially had plans of £1k chassis, £1k engine and £500 brakes for what would be a road going everyday use second car/trackday car. It didnt last!

New plan: Road legal trackday that is legal for use in MSA racing series. I also want to do as much of the work myself as possible....

This is the car as she started:

02 MCS, Chilli Pack, 70k mileage. Lots of rattles. Its also got an unknown catbCk exhaust fitted which fortunately has a decent exhaust note and doesnt drone.


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Discussion Starter #2
I notiiced the car had a knock when turning left under load. Traced it to a torn OEM top mount so thought id start on the chassis work first with BC Racing RM series coilovers & adjustable top mounts with some Front & Rear Eibach ARBs and the issues started immediately

The front coilovers went on fine. Put the front wheel on and the strut was in full contact with the rim and tyre. Not impressed but fixable with new wheels or spacers.

Went to the rear and then had bigger issues. Bearing in mind the rear coilover bolts into holes at the top and bolts into the bottom theres not any scope to fit them wrong yey for some reason yet the strut was touching the rear hub assembly.

Have spoken with BC who have heard of this issue before and it requires a spacer bush which they are sending some out. Still waiting on this fix!

Also found that the Eibach ARB when fitted touched the rear wishbone mount on both sides. Given it was touching unloaded without any tension and the bar is hollow, I decided to refit the stock bar because if it tore though the bar at any point it would loose all strength and potentially tear. Eibach have had minimal advice on the matter other than they havent heard of it before. Not going to bother putting it back on.

Hopefully get some direction or parts from BC this next week

This was also before i started to consider doing a racecar project so i initially looked into a Mini GP2 rear Seat Delete. It was in 3 days before i had a change of plan. Needed some trimming but a nice fit.

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Discussion Starter #3
Had a chat with a friend building a car for the Armed Forces Racing Championship on thursday lunch. Woke up early on saturday and took abit of a step into the unknown haha.




Front seats and carpets will be out this weekend. Will hopefully pick up some seats as well and fingers crossed get them fitted as well.

Seat wise im thinking of Cobra Monaco Pro which are FIA approved for 5 years and only £186ea pending some comfort/support tests with one at GSM in Nottingham this weekend. I can upgrade at a later date to something better but key for me at the moment is race legal and well priced so i can get onto track sooner.

Cage wise im torn with what to do.

A weld in custom cages 6 point cage was quoted at around £2k fitted incl VAT. A thought im considering right now is if i should go down the route of a bolt in cage then use the saved money for the brakes which are next on the list. I dont really want the cage just for safety. Id also like it to add value wirh handling and stiffness so if the bolt ins are able to be welded to the car body with plates just like the weld in cages this may be a viable option moving forward.

Example being, coming from competitive cycling i used to witness guys spending £5k on a bike due to saving 1kg and being a little stiffer yet their issue limitation wasnt the bike it was their legs and the fact they had a pretty large p!$$ tank. Same will apply to my driving skills.


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Discussion Starter #4
Ive contacted custom cages and safety devices today to find out what can be done within regs.

Visited GSM in Nottingham today to look at harnesses amd seats. I had initially looked at Cobra Monaco Pros but after sitting in them there isnt much lateral support at all. I'm now thinking of some Sparco Sprints which seemed to fit much nicer.

Gonna source some R56 rear arms this weekend as well i think. Also going to sort a new steering rack and pump out as im cwrtain its playing up.

Any pointers on good places to source a power steering pump with warranty?

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If you're just doing uk club racing it's highly unlikely you need an in date seat. All you need is one with harness holes and is mounted in accordance with the msa blue book.

Also spend the time getting the sound deadening glued on crap out, you'll probably save 5-10kg doing this. It's time consuming but you just need a hot air gun and a paint scraper.

If you're plannng on racing make sure the series you want to take part in allows for R56 rear arms.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
If you're just doing uk club racing it's highly unlikely you need an in date seat. All you need is one with harness holes and is mounted in accordance with the msa blue book.

Also spend the time getting the sound deadening glued on crap out, you'll probably save 5-10kg doing this. It's time consuming but you just need a hot air gun and a paint scraper.

If you're plannng on racing make sure the series you want to take part in allows for R56 rear arms.
Judging by project threads on here the sound deadening is only around 1-2kg which im not sure is worth the effort for the gains

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Discussion Starter #11
Some more stripping of the car today. Getting the carpets out was emotional ?


This part was an absolute nightmare to get out as i couldnt fit a socket or spanner into the space to remove it


Anyone know what this part is?


Ive considered removing all rigid the sound proofing but it looks like its a nightmare job and if ive read correctly its only about 2kg max which im not sure is worth the effort.
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If you want to go hard-core....like you seem to be going ... I managed to strip 2.2kg worth of excess wiring out from the loom plus alot of sound deadening (which is pretty easy to get off with a decent chisel and a decent hammer), some people like to heat the sound deadening up and scrape it off but I find it goes all sticky. Keep cold and you can get pretty much all of it out in a few hours of work but I think it was that plus the wiring was over 5kg possibly. Which doesn't sound like alot but if you're taking the carpet out and headlining you may as well have fun with the small kg's too! As they all add up looking great so far

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Discussion Starter #13
I might have to put it in the shop for the wiring loom. Dont trust myself to not cock that up lol.


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If you go for it you will hate the sight of loom tape for the rest of your life lol

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Discussion Starter #18
How did you manage to fit a pushbike in the mini in the first place?
Haha. Thats worth more than the car is lol. The sale of that bike and all my other cycling stuff has funding this so far and will continue to for a while lol.

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Discussion Starter #20 (Edited)
So back along i mentioned how my BC coilovers touched the hubs on the rear



BC have now sent another set pf lower strut connections




Looks like its the fix im after
 
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