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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
So-Jeez-only had the car since 2005-guess I can post some pics...

Car is a 2004 with the 2.3 and Mtx-75 trans.

All Bone stock except for:

1 Sparco Chrono road, Odyssey pc680,Cosworth cat-back,svt springs front and rear,and Tokico HTS all all around.

Rear sway bar is stock-front sway is disconnected and tied up.

A pair of ST brand machined aluminum spacers (.80") reside between the front strut mounts and strut bearings.

Kinda ghetto-but puts the car back at about stock ZX3 height in front-but with the 20%ish stiffer svt springs.

The idea is to try and keep off the bumpstops-and it works pretty well until things get rutted...I'm going to different front springs this week...

Been meaning to hit up our local rallyx's for quite some time-and finally 2013 was the year...



So In Chronological order..

Feb 2013 -Ridgecrest Rally school and rallyx-running in Stock Class-a CRS event:




Next to my new Saab buddy.



My first pit area-snows are on!



Blue painters tape is my friend-my artistic skills-not so much!



Hatchbacks Rule!



Dirt set-up is 195/60/15 Firestone Winterforce on 15x6 Braid Gravel rally wheels-38mm ET.



Nobby Tires and a Focus-meant for each other!


So for my first weekend ever driving a FWD in the dirt-third place in class-fairly good size class-Yeah I'll take that!-My trophy.



So on to my next event-Glen Helen-March 2013-my first SCCA event.
A competitor at my first rallyx in ridgecrest informed me that my 38mm et wheels alone actually bump me into Prepared SCCA class-so that's the class I move to.
Just as well-because in Prepared I can put on my Intake and header that have been sitting in my closet forever..

Our organizer at the last minute gets word that we can't run on the usual rallyx course because a Moto-x race is now scheduled and spectators will be using that lot to park...but we can run on the Trophy Truck course!

Some strategic slow-me down cone placement later..rallyx track on the trophy truck course..





Saturday practice-running the course backwards.
Still have painters tape glue on door from last race-wash the car?Yeah..eventually I'll get to it!
After exiting a banked gravel sweeper..headed for whoops..



Sunday's race.
At the bottom of hill climbing a big truck jump.


Glen helen Pit shot.


Mornings can be foggy at Glen Helen.


Lined up in front of my only two competitors in my class that day-the 911 and the Miata.
The cars next to us are stock AWD



So I was kinda bummed that my class was tiny(3 cars)-but if I didn't DNF I'd be good for at least 3rd place-ha ha!

Well we took 1st!
And hah! the funnest part is not even the podium-but going home and looking at the event results to see how many turbo awd car's times in the "faster" classes you destroyed with your 149 hp crapbox and 1 wheel drive!
And I don't even know what I'm doing yet!

And yeah-I know I need a manicure and a shave!


Found a short vid that I forgot about(courtesy of Mike at Flimflam Racing).
First the 911,then me,then the Miata.The rest are awd cars...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sNc7ujamPQA

So-I was going to skip the next SoCal event-a May CRS Ridgecrest event, and just run the next Glen Helen SCCA race-which is a national event,a couple weeks later.

But then I wised up-I need practice,practice,practice..so back up to Ridgecrest I go..But CRS doesn't recognize Prepared class as a separate class-So I'm Running with the BIG Dogs in the Rally 2wd(open!) class-oh well-practice is practice!


Back on flat smooth track in Ridgecrest.


Fun!



And Hey- I got a 2nd place trophy-didn't expect that!



Back to Glen Helen-a 2 day,National SCCA Event.
Never done one..rules are different,,cars are REALLY inspected closer-not only at tech but by your competitors...
I know I've had it easy so far and this placing 1st ,2nd or third ain't going to be so easy.

We have a VR6 powered Golf I've never run against, and a Semi- Pro driver in a really quick Suzuki Swift...ruh-ro!


Staging for start-the VR6,Me,the Swift,and an MR2.
The black car past that is a friends 09 focus coupe with a Fswerks turbo-and runs in Mod 2 class.



At the nationals-your car is required to be stickered-up properly with sponsors decals.
No more blue painters tape for me...


Track was smooth here-but really got rutted elsewhere.
At another part of the course it got so rutted I bottomed massively sending the car off in quite a different direction than I had planned.
At nationals- codrivers are normally not allowed,but our organizer forgot to post that in the regs-much to the delight of my Codriver-my son.


Results-Saturday..4th in class..Nobody was catching that Swift, the VR6 got me,and the MR2 just barely-oh well.
Sunday-I got the MR2 and tried really hard to reel in that VR6-got close-but no cigar.
3rd place-and boy did I work hard for that one...
Crappiest of all my crappy little trophies(this one's a friggin' dogtag!),but fought for the hardest so far this year..





1 last pic on my street tires....taken Yesterday..oddly level in this pic.
It's usually tail-high. I like it level.
On my 17x7 45mm offset TD 1.2's I got from Bustonit here on the group buy.
Tires are 225/45/17 Conti DWS.



Probably the last time the car will sit like this..
Tomorrow some custom 175 inch Lb., 1" lift over stock ZX3 front coils go on..along with some other goodies...hope I'm not screwing up my set-up...I'll post some pics of the new "Cali-lean" focus next week. :)
 

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VERY freakin' awesome! That seems like an absolute blast! Congrats on your winnings, dude. I really like the build
 

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Discussion Starter #3
VERY freakin' awesome! That seems like an absolute blast! Congrats on your winnings, dude. I really like the build
Thanks-it's fun.

Yeah a bit rough on the car..but fun.

If you want to try it sometime,but don't want to thrash on your car-you can do like many do and rent something..
There's always a few...you can always tell by the blue tape over the license plate!

Try to get a Focus/Mazda3/Corolla/Sentra/Hyundai etc.......

Rwd rental would be loads of fun too- but on these loose courses usually you are better off fwd.

But-there's a really good driver in an old e30 that just OWNS out there at my local races-so there are no absolutes as far as FWD vs RWD.
 

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this looks like a ton of fun! I've always wanted to go out just to watch some of the rallyx here in town, but never have. Congrats on making the dive right in! Looks like you're doing quite well.

Moar pics! :banana:
 

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Discussion Starter #5
this looks like a ton of fun! I've always wanted to go out just to watch some of the rallyx here in town, but never have. Congrats on making the dive right in! Looks like you're doing quite well.

Moar pics! :banana:

Thanks!

I have another race September 7th(practice day-yes!) and 8th(race day).

I'm trying to drag the wife and some of her family out to spectate.
I'll give rides too-maybe I can get some of them hooked...

Maybe I can talk them into taking some more pics too.

My cheering section has been notably absent this year-just my my son and me.

I think I'll figure out a mount for my HD handycam-I'm too cheap to buy a go pro....
 

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Nice!!! How much did those Braid wheels cost? :eek:
 

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That's actually really cool haha. Looks like a lot of fun. I really like those rally wheels, car looks good on them kicking up dirt. :thumbup:
 

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A pair of ST brand machined aluminum spacers (.80") reside between the front strut mounts and strut bearings.


And hah! the funnest part is not even the podium-but going home and looking at the event results to see how many turbo awd car's times in the "faster" classes you destroyed with your 149 hp crapbox and 1 wheel drive!
And I don't even know what I'm doing yet!

Probably the last time the car will sit like this..
Tomorrow some custom 175 inch Lb., 1" lift over stock ZX3 front coils go on..along with some other goodies...hope I'm not screwing up my set-up...I'll post some pics of the new "Cali-lean" focus next week. :)
do you have more details on the spacers? where to buy, how much? did you do anything for the rear springs?

I love beating the AWD cars at rally-x.

Also, where did you get you custom springs? what were the specs you quoted? ID, OD, turns per foot, length etc. Whatever needed so that someone else can follow in your footsteps and get custom stiff springs to raise the car.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Nice!!! How much did those Braid wheels cost? :eek:

Thanks.

As far as the wheels:

Here's my quote from Paul at Team Illuminata(great guy by the way):


http://teamilluminata.com/


BRAID Fiesta/Mini/Golf/BMW/Neon/Civic gravel Wheel

Wheel model: Winrace TA
Size: 15X6
Offset: +38
Color: white
Hub Bore: 67 for rings & center caps
Bolt Pattern: 4x100/108
Lug Style: conical, steel inserts, M14
$219 each

Price may have gone up a bit-I've had them for a year or so.

So about the same price as TD's.

For me they are pretty much bling-because I'm just playing in a dirt lot.

But ultimately I want to get the car on stage.

And these wheels are tough-and you can't have too many wheels-right?
 

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Discussion Starter #10
do you have more details on the spacers? where to buy, how much? did you do anything for the rear springs?

I love beating the AWD cars at rally-x.

Also, where did you get you custom springs? what were the specs you quoted? ID, OD, turns per foot, length etc. Whatever needed so that someone else can follow in your footsteps and get custom stiff springs to raise the car.


The front spacers I bought directly from Suspension Techniques-but their website doesn't list them anymore.

Jegs still shows it-but I don't know if they actually have them..

Front:

http://www.jegs.com/i/ST+Suspensions/876/30085/10002/-1


Rear:

http://www.jegs.com/i/ST+Suspensions/876/30041/10002/-1


They are called "spring distance Kits".

I only did the front-as I was having bottoming issues with just the SVT springs only-even just on the street.

And the ass end of the car with SVT springs is already in the clouds...

They seem to be well made-here's page 7 of a FF thread with pics of the front and rear spacers if you want to see what they look like- just don't install the front spacers incorrectly like this guy did initially on this page:


http://www.focusfanatics.com/forum/showthread.php?t=277107&page=7


On this page he figured it out and put them correctly between the Mount and the bearing:


http://www.focusfanatics.com/forum/showthread.php?t=277107&page=8



The custom springs I got from Coil Spring Specialties-they'll make whatever you want.

Let's make sure these new coils work well before getting too excited ...

Wait till I post an update this week right here in this thread with Pics and a short Ride/handling/obstacle bombing review.

Then I'll get you more info on how to order.
 

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Discussion Starter #11 (Edited)
............................................................................................


Ok..New custom front coils are on......




Before:





After:



Why does it seem like I'm always driving uphill? :)



And Cosworth Intake, ITG filter, Outerwear and breather/catch can are finally on-along with H&R 24mm rear Sway bar(connected to reinforced fresh svt control arms with factory end link bushings).

The factory breather pipe can easily be hooked back up to CAI in seconds at smog time.









I'm concerned about the front springs,because I got more than an inch of lift.....grrrr.

They have settled a bit so I'm going to thrash on the car for a couple days HARD before alignment time.

My CV's are not loving me..I'm hoping it settles a bit more....crossing fingers...

Edit-actually-it seems to have settled to about an inch over stock.
Of course that's hard to measure as I haven't had stock springs for years.

Love these new springs,though.
On the street and in the dirt.

To order themI just went on the coil spring specialties site and filled out the request a quote -with my car year,make model.
It asks about any weight reduction-front or rear.
And ride height.
And stiffness % + or - from stock.

I told them the factory spring #'s(I got from Steve),only 20lbs- for a lightweight battery and + 50% rate and 1" height increase from stock.
Springs came a couple weeks later.
 

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Discussion Starter #13 (Edited)
Found some more dirt this weekend out at Glen Helen rallycross.

It was really muddy!

Kinda blew it going too hot into corners and sliding out in the "marbles" which in this case was soupy mud.

Then I calmed down a bit,stayed out of the slop as much as possible-was still able to salvage a 2nd pl.trophy.

Driver needs more practice..looking for practice areas.
This will help so much more than any mod on the car-must mod driver!

The new set-up(taller front [email protected] Lbs/inch,disconnected front sway bar,rear H&R 24mm sway bar) is awesome!

Slightly more tail-happy than before-but very controllable.

No more bottoming in front!

Measured front droop at 2.25" before race-don't know if anything settled more during race-I'll check again tomorrow.
I was worried that the droop wasn't enough-but that's close enough to the 30% droop I was after and I don't notice any topping out over anything.

I've got quite a bit of uptravel now(for a standard stroke strut anyway) so ruts don't bother me and better ground clearance too.

I was worried the 1" taller than ZX3 front springs would upset the handling and make the car lean,but upping the front spring rate to 175 seems to have taken care of that.

Haven't pushed it on the street too hard,but It handles and rides very nice still on pavement,and I haven't even aligned it yet.

Really happy with these springs_ I think i nailed it with the length and rate.

But-I still have Vibrations under acceleration since putting the taller springs in.
Besides the alignment, I'm looking at the axles.
Some of the stage rally guys have had vibes when changing height due to the cv's wearing in a certain height.

When you change height the bearings aren'r running in their "wear divots" in the cv cage like they were-so vibrations.

I'll post here when i get it resolved.

Edit-Vibes were just the toe was wacked.should have known!


My weekend aftermath shots:


 

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I like what you have done! I wish there was more rallyx in NE Ohio sadly they are down south around 4 hours away from me! I did one Rallyx and loved it!
 

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Kyle Gave Me His Oklahoma Foot Disease!
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If you're looking for places to practice I can give you all kinds of tips. Problem is you're going tohave to drive out towards Ridgecrest to do it.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
If you're looking for places to practice I can give you all kinds of tips. Problem is you're going tohave to drive out towards Ridgecrest to do it.
Thanks

But I'm looking for a little closer.

Right now it's looking like hungry valley is the closest,with cal city or some of my old target shooting areas north of the town of Mojave as my 2nd choice.
 

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Kyle Gave Me His Oklahoma Foot Disease!
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Yeah I figured as much.

Have you looked into Rowher Flats?
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Yeah I figured as much.

Have you looked into Rowher Flats?

Funny that you mention Rowher

Within the last year-rented a car for the wife-they didn't have what I requested-ended up with a Jeep compass and when I got back home I noticed the 4x4 badge on the back.

evil thoughts ensued... .

Yeah-just a dodge caliber based crossover car with awd but I took it up to rowher to scout rally roads.

Went a little late and found a couple places but a lot of rocky and very hard terrain with washboard and ruts.

The road out of Texas canyon I believe was actually a little better.

I actually wheeled the thing a little bit on some 4x4 stuff and it did better than I expected.

I'll probably cruise the Focus up there again and get an earlier start-maybe I'll find a smoother area if I look around a bit.
 

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Kyle Gave Me His Oklahoma Foot Disease!
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Just like any desert, the elements really change the terrain a lot from season to season.

I say its worth the trip, if not just do the loop and head back to Hungry Valley.
 
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