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#85324 Oops, I did it again...

Posted by robertcope on 04 January 2017 - 10:12 PM

1992 Acura NSX




* NSX-R ring and pinion

* Short JDM gears

* Fidanza lightweight wheel

* Stainless brake lines

* DC Sport headers

* TiDave non-compliance front clamps

* Large intake scoop

* NSX-R reinforcement bars

* Taitec GTLW exhaust

* Front NSX-R sway bar

* Rar Zanardi sway bar

* Buddy Club Racing Spec coilovers

* Science of Speed baffled oil pan



I'm sure some of you have guessed, but I picked up @HDA's NSX today. I'm really excited to own two iconic Honda products now...





#74600 Future Unlimited - Calm Down

Posted by handsoffsam on 11 February 2016 - 11:50 PM

So those of you that know me in person probably know this has been a side project / job of mine for quite some time, with some big ups ---- and downs (like anything in life, right). Well, finally released the sophomore EP clear of a label and publishing nightmares. Thank god we're not touring anymore, too. Had a few ask, so here it is.


Obviously I like cars, especially on the track, and that tends to carry over into it. If you're not a big fan of 80s-inspired synth music (think early Depeche Mode/Simple Minds), you'll probably want to give this a wide berth. Very, very wide.















#90393 Review and issues: KMiata Swap Kit on NA Miata Race Application

Posted by Shuka on 03 April 2017 - 01:08 PM

KMiata engine/transmission adapter plate -

Another critical component of the kit is the engine adapter plate. The plate goes between the K motor and Mazda transmission. It's a well machined piece, fitting to exacting tolerances. 


KMiata engine adapter plate installed on a K24 motor.


Customers are left playing "guess the bolt" as I mentioned, but installation is still pretty straightforward.


The plate is designed specifically with the 6 speed transmission in mind, which has a slightly different bell housing. The holes don't line up in several places, especially around where the Mazda starter would have gone before. KMiata stated that omitting the 4 or 5 bolts that didn't line up would not cause any issues, and that the remaining hardware would be more than sufficient to hold everything together.



Adapter plate holes do not all line up on 5 speed transmissions.


I would suggest providing holes for both 5 and 6 speed transmissions, or at least offering parts specific to each transmission.


KMiata Flywheel

This is the magic that makes the whole thing possible. The flywheel bolts to the K's crank and accommodates a standard Miata clutch. It's an attractive piece, and well machined.



Kmiata flywheel


I did run into an installation issue - the holes to access the flywheel bolts are very, very tight. I tried numerous sockets, but eventually had to machine my own tool using a socket and bench grinder.




Once armed with a tool that fits in the holes, installation was straightforward and relatively painless.


After my motor blew and we removed the flywheel, I noticed cracks around the bolt wells. KMiata insists it's a non-issue, but it leaves me wondering why the whole area wasn't machined out to allow for better installation gaps.



Small cracks in the bolt wells of the KMiata flywheel


Installation of the assembled unit

Once assembled, installation is pretty straightforward. The motor drops right into place. I found that leaving off the driver's side motor mount was helpful to clear the steering rack.



Assembled K24 engine and Miata transmission


It is worth noting that the front sway bar ends up extremely close to the crank nose bolt. In my case it was so close I couldn't get the serpentine belt over the nose bolt without removing the sway bar!


Surprise! Hood won't close.


Despite claims that the whole thing would nicely fit under an OEM hood, this was not the case for me. As an experiment, I took the valve cover and forward valve cap bolts off. The hood skin still rested directly on the timing chain guide, unable to close. A custom valve cover will not solve this. NA owners swapping in a K24 (K20 is slightly shorter) can expect to have hood clearance issues.




KMiata Rear Upper Water Neck

The OEM K series water necks are not conducive to the swap, so an aftermarket part must be used. KMiata sells a housing that not only gives you a place to mount the OEM water temp sensor, it also gives you an 1/8" NPT for another sender, as well as a 1/2" NPT to install a heater line. You are also given the choice of a 1-1/4" hose barb or -16AN fitting for the water outlet.


The part itself is machined nicely and fits right up, but the machine work on the water outlet is lower quality than one would expect. The O-ring mating surface is rough, and the threads are cut straight though the face. This makes it tough to get a good seal without use of sealant or overtightening the fitting to the point of o-ring destruction. Since the kit uses a straight cut AN O-ring fitting, you would expect a flat mating surface, not a beveled, "textured" surface as provided.



The -16AN Oring mating surface does not provide a very good seal.


I found that the fit destroys the o-ring, so you may want to buy a few spare -16AN O-rings to keep on hand in case of unexpected leaks.


KMiata Wiring Conversion Harness


The KMiata wiring conversion harness provides the link between the Honda engine harness and ECU and your car. In my race build, I completely removed all of the Mazda wiring, but the harness was still quite useful in adapting everything to a few "connect power here" type wires. The harness also provides several relays and an OBD port. I had an issue with the relay wiring, in that all power for the engine and fuel pump is carried across what looks like a #18 AWG wire. Unsurprisingly the wire melted. Apparently later versions of this kit have larger wiring, but KMiata informed me there was absolutely no warranty or support for these harnesses - since the customer is possibly at fault.


I also requested very early on a wiring diagram of the adapter harness, which KMiata would not provide, for troubleshooting situations just like this one.



Melted wires in the KMiata provided conversion harness.


I made my own connection diagram of the harness, and came up with a fix for the melting relay wiring. The latter requires cutting out two relay sockets and installing new ones, they're standard 5 pin units, commonly available at auto part stores and online.


I specifically have the harness for KPro, designed to work with an RSX engine harness.


If you run into the same difficulty, you can find my melty wiring fix here.


And for your reference, here is the complete wiring diagram for the conversion harness. Please consider this is not an official diagram, and that I created it by looking at the harness wiring. There are likely multiple revisions of the harness out there, and this will not work for other harness/ecu combinations.


The harness is pretty expensive (half the cost of an entirely new OEM RSX engine harness in fact!) but in the absence of information or for those gunshy when it comes to wire splicing, it's a great option - provided it doesn't set fire to your car.



The exhaust is tricky, since it has to pass from the passenger side to driver side of the car. I've spent hours staring at the bottom of the car, measuring for oval tubing, and imagining what a sidepipe would look like, but in the end it's a necessary evil of running a K motor in the Miata. The pipes are designed to go between the oil pan and transmission, which is typically a place you don't want extra heat, but again, necessary evil.


I initially received KMiata's custom made equal length mild steel header. They disclaimed that a flex pipe is required, which the shop that built my exhaust happily ignored. The header basically exploded due to metal fatigue. Again, I did not have the flex pipe, so I probably deserve 100% of the blame here. However, be aware that this header design is quite thin and fragile; be on the look out for fatigue cracks.



The two KMiata headers that I have used. The newer, stainless on the right, the broken (and welded back together) header on the left.


The second iteration was KMiata's newer stainless "race" exhaust. Clearance is extremely tight in a few spots with this header. To get it to fit, I had to grind off a significant amount from the midpipe flange. The kit also included a thin replacement for the flywheel cover, which fatigued and broke very quickly. (KMiata now recommends using RTV to keep vibration down.) Additionally, the hardware supplied with the header included no locking feature, so the bolts quickly became loose. I had to replace the hardware and used double-nuts to keep everything together.


Clearance is an issue too - the race design dramatically decreases ground clearance. The pipe hangs at least an inch below the oil pan, making it a target for every curb, rock, or small animal you may encounter in a race.


That being said, the header fits nicely once it's been modified, and made great power on the dyno.


Serpentine Belt Kit

Since the stock belt tensioner must be removed for clearance, KMiata offers a simple kit to bolt a pulley to the timing cover and a perfect-sized belt to match. The solution works, but the belt is not a standard auto parts store shelf item, so you may want to have a spare with you:


Gates K070415 – 7 rib 15/16”x42” OEM for Nissan Tiida '13-15, Versa no ac 09-11




Third party stuff

I purchased a number of items from KMiata to help facilitate the build.


Golden Eagle intake manifold and fuel rail - Nothing but good things to say about both. The intake manifold is pretty, durable and well crafted. The fuel rail is a fuel rail.


Skunk 2 70mm throttle body - After a while, the throttle body began to stick open, causing the engine to rev until the throttle is blipped. Apparently this is a widespread and known issue. KMiata advised me to contact Skunk directly, who informed me that it was purchased from a non-authorized retailer and that the warranty had expired anyway. I would highly advise against buying this product from anywhere.


KPro4 engine management - so far it's been great. Well known by tuners and has many fun features to play with.


TPS extender harness - works as advertised, adapting a B-series TPS to the K series harness.


RBC 50 degree VTC gear - OEM part, works great.


ACT Clutch - Standard Miata clutch - handles the power fine


Important things not addressed by the kit

When I purchased the kit there were more items, but as of today, the swap kit does not address one important item turn-key: Exhaust piping. An industrious person could put together a 3" exhaust in their garage, but most will be seeking the services of a shop. So even if you've managed to get everything else ready to hit the road, you'll still end up towing the car (or driving it very loudly) to a shop for exhaust fabrication. An off-the-shelf setup using OEM mounts would be a welcome addition to their lineup.



KMiata has been very responsive by email, answering questions and concerns about the kit and addressing part issues as they come up. They often return emails in a few minutes, all hours of the day and night. However, even in the case of blatantly failed or poorly manufactured parts, no warranty or replacements have been offered or provided, (with the exception of the oil pickup tube, which they have offered a replacement, but still has not been received.) In other words, you'll get any and all questions answered, but when it comes to actually fixing the issue, you're on your own, even if their newer design fixes your issue. It can be frustrating, but at least they'll listen to you complain while you fix their parts.


Racing suitability

In a wheel-to-wheel sprint race, reliability is paramount. Between failed exhaust components, a leaking oil pan, and broken oil pickup, several races have been lost, track days scrubbed. The kit is not race proven. It is, however, improving as customers ferret out the weak points. Provided the bugs continue to get worked out, the Kmiata kit is viable avenue for power and fun on the race track - when it all works right, the car will put a silly grin on your face and keep pace with embarrassingly higher horsepower cars.

#84515 An Old Veteran Remembers

Posted by hornetball on 14 December 2016 - 06:02 PM

I'm in Italy.  It's late at night.  I've been drinking Grappa.  You'll just need to bear with me as I unload a bit.


I was perusing my USNA class page and came across a post regarding ADM Andy Lewis.  https://www.facebook...272762622788029


That's right, I'm old enough that any classmate that is not retired is either a General or an Admiral.  But I remember Andy as just another young midshipman at USNA that went to flight school with me.  I started in 22nd company in the Class of '85 at USNA and ended up in VFA-83 on Saratoga.  Andy was in 25th company in the Class of '85 at USNA and ended up in VA-72 on Kennedy.  Both these ships conducted combat operations in the Red Sea during the Persian Gulf War.  I remember a lot of things from that time.  I knew that what we were doing was a part of history, for better or worse.  I knew that I was a small cog in a much larger picture.  I remember the nerves and dread before launch, the focus during the long flights, the amazement at some of the things I saw (the entire night sky of Baghdad lit up like the 4th of July, the oil well fires, the Basra road), the relief of surviving another mission, the crushing disappointment and empty feeling when good friends didn't.  The thing that sticks with me the most is the empty feeling.  Veterans Day and, especially, Memorial Day are really hard.  I miss my friends and I feel guilty.


Vietnam was not too distant at that time.  The Saratoga CO had been a Hanoi Hilton guest.  2 of the senior pilots in my squadron had flown in 'Nam.  We were going against the latest Soviet SAMs and we expected to get plastered.  The concentration of SAMs around Baghdad in early 1991 was 6X that of Hanoi in 1972 and Iraq also had MIG-25s and MIG-29s.  But in the end, while we had some losses, things worked really, really well.  At the time I thought "too well" . . . so "easy" that it might lead future non-veteran politicians to make poor decisions.  Remember that George H.W. Bush was a Naval Aviator and was our last President to experience combat.


So, enough of that crud!  I like remembering the good times, and when I saw that Andy had been in VA-72, it reminded me that a VA-72 A-7 Corsair landed on Saratoga accidentally during combat operations.  The Red Sea is pretty small, and there were 4 aircraft carriers operating there at the time.  I guess it was an easy mistake to make.  Here's the proof!



It made everyone's day to hear "Corsair, Ball" coming aboard Super Sara in 1991 -- Sara's light attack squadrons

had transitioned to F/A-18s years earlier.


And here's 27 year old me . . . LT Ricardo Price, complete with Saddam mustache!  http://www.navysite....cv60-91/451.htm


Feeling old.  Time to crash.

#88487 NASA @ MSRC March 11-12, 2017

Posted by handsoffsam on 02 March 2017 - 07:50 PM

Ok, fixed.




@shuko your new board icon

#83211 Bride's New Ride

Posted by hornetball on 15 November 2016 - 12:59 PM

So, @dmo2002 suggested that I get my bride something more appropriate for HPDE than a hulking, LS-powered 4-door sedan.  She's feisty and Italian but can't drive a manual.  So, this seemed like the only logical choice (picked it up last weekend):







#81535 Did a thing: The Yas Marina Experience in an F3000

Posted by ToplessTT on 01 October 2016 - 11:04 PM

I've been fortunate lately on the places work take me (and I say lately cause there's limited glamour in the places I typically go to!).

Was in Dubai a few days for work and decided to check out the Yas Marina F1 Circuit in Abu Dhabi, just 1.5 hrs away...


I wanted to share this with fellow track enthusiasts cause just going there and taking the amazing sights (this is more than just a track, a full blown entertaining complex when compared to COTA!) was a great time. Luckily they had spots open to drive on track too! (You can book in advance)

Now, they offer track driving on Astons, Jaguars, Camaros, etc. but I figured if I was gonna drive on an F1 track I might as well take the unique opportunity to do it in a race car...I mean, when again will I get to do this? (Hopefully soon?)

Here's some of the cars they offer stacked in the pits [emoji106]


So here's the open cockpit single seater!

After checking in and getting a racing suit they provide, you are taken to the 2nd floor for a quick 15 min brief on safety (similar to what we hear on track days) and the car itself

Then you get a helmet and you are on to seat in the car!!! Here's where you can't believe you are doing this!!

They get you strapped in, show you where the ignition button is and off you go!!!


The session is led by an instructor and another instructor follows the pack. There were only 3 drivers in my session and after 2 diagnostic laps you come in to pits and we are separated in 2 groups: the faster group and the slower group...each one lead by an instructor as well.

Then you are off to start pushing! The instructor adjusts speed depending on your performance so they never hold you off [emoji106]

Having done a few track days in an Audi TT all I could think about was - other than don't crash!!! - that the car felt so connected to the track and yourself...and the steering wheel is so small!! And I should have brought smaller shoes cause this pedal box is cramped...and I'm gonna brake deeper this time...and shit, are we done already?


All in all an incredible experience!! For full disclosure you don't drive the entire F1 course but just the west course. Still, you get to drive under the futuristic hotel bridge and you get to realize how much aero really helps first hand. No other feeling like this!!!

Here's me feeling like I just won a Grand Prix lol


When it's all said and done, from the time you get there to the time you leave is about 1 hour. The best hour ever!

Wish I could post some videos but tapatalk ain't helping!

#81445 How do you pay for your addiction? Professional networking...

Posted by jefrac on 28 September 2016 - 07:02 PM

Status update!  I opened my Tint World in The Colony a week ago.  It has been a long road to get here and a lot of work.  The real work starts now, but we are having fun.  It is really cool to be able to involve your family in the business.  I sure do miss the track, and many of you, but hopefully I'll be back in a few months.  


The response has been pretty good, although we are now ready for a lot more business.  I have a very good, experienced team.  These guys have been doing automotive 12 volt work and tinting cars for 20+ years.  They have great reputations in the industry and we are well equipped for any job.  We also do paint protection film and some vinyl work.


I really would appreciate any of you stopping by for a visit, even if you don't buy anything :)  Cool cars attract other customers and I like talking about cars and track events!!  Here are a couple of pics:





#90403 "Racer Coach" vs. "Data Coach"

Posted by lobster on 03 April 2017 - 02:21 PM

he must drive flat out. 

#86919 Another new track?

Posted by Lou Gigliotti on 01 February 2017 - 12:32 PM

Hi Guys, 


     Don't be such pessimists .  

First we have changed up the original design because I also don't like Point and Squirt tracks.  We changed the east straight and made it much longer and it goes through the woods.   
the membership fees and dues are not cheap but in the same breath you all say, "I hope is doesn't go bankrupt like so many track startups." So don't worry, we have a great business plan and with 2 tracks and 365 days, that means a potential of 730 days per year available.    


     SO don't worry, we are going to be a track designed by racers for racers.  It will be built and paved just like COTA so the track will stay SMOOTH with no seams in the track.  GOOGLE  Youtube, "Area 27  A driver's dream" to see who is my contractor

we also have 3 levels of membership with financing available for other than Founding VIP Winners circle members and other founding members.  But with so many available days, we plan on paying the bills with Track days for sure.
Three World Challenge Championships, 4 Runner up Championships, 25 world Challenge wins, with my last win just 18 months ago at the age of 65!  Yes, I can do anything sitting down!


So I will just be "sitting down" while we build this track and finish up here.  My company, LG Motorsports should be moving into the two story building by the end of March.  The building on the right is the first of many garage spaces.

From 1 car to whatever the customer wants.    


Membership does have its benefits. Priority Garage choice, early Member number gets priority on every thing we have available.  It appears that many folks have high stress and high time value and will just pop in as their time permits, so they need availability on demand.  We will provide Concierge service, Arrive and Drive, Full fabrication shop availability. etc.   We didn't build so many winning cars by accident.   So we can take care of any problems.  


See you at the track  Guys,   Hope this answers any questions you have.  


Lou Gigliotti 
LG Motorsports




Here are some images from last Saturday's Car show and Presentation.  We had 200 people there and over 100 cars.  With Barbecue served.   











Bellow are some of the cars that I built and raced over the last 40 + Years.   




WINNER Longreach GP 2001 Below



#85874 Back to basics - 2005 AP2

Posted by HDA on 16 January 2017 - 09:27 AM




#83554 The Grand Tour

Posted by handsoffsam on 22 November 2016 - 09:23 AM

So the lady and I were lucky enough to make it into the relatively small audience for The Grand Tour filming in Nashville..

Which came with all the perks, like actually being up next to the lads and seeing the reels for whatever episode number that is ahead of time. And coffee that wasn't terrible.


They're pretty hardcore about stripping you of your cell phone so my only pics came from entering and exiting the "tent."



Happy to report that Jeremy, Richard and James are actually ten times as funny off-camera as they are on. The scripts are still entirely improvised -- and somehow, I can't remember doing more than two re-takes due to airplane noises or James may just drifting off in a daydream. Despite expecting Class A assholes at that echelon of the entertainment industry, it was surprising to witness that these guys are entirely who you expect them to be: goofy, nerdy, hilarious, and quite down to earth. If anything, just a bit older now.







So it's worth mentioning if you've already seen Episode 1 -- that Nashville will be Episode 8 -- and as of yet, a star still has not made it onto the set alive...




#81794 1966 Datsun Roadster Build Thread (Street Car)

Posted by Dave on 09 October 2016 - 05:42 PM

Hello everyone. I've been wanting a project car for a while now. I finally decided on a 1966-1967 Datsun Roadster. Its called a Fairlady in Japan and its the predecessor to my 350Z (still called Fairlady in Japan). I started watching all the site for cars (ebay, craigslist, BaT) and one finally popped up in Alabama that looked just right for me. It could run and drive, the body was pretty clean. It has almost no rust at all which is amazing considering its 50 years old. I knew it needed a bit of love and care. I contacted the seller and we went back and forth via email. He let me know early on that there was another guy looking at the car too. The seller said he would email us (me and the other buyer) some additional pics of the car in the evening of Monday Oct 3. I got them at 5:30 that evening. I looked at them with my buddy who is much more experienced at this stuff than me. We came to the conclusion that the car was worth a trip to look at. I emailed the seller to setup a time to look at the car at 8pm. The seller replied 5 minutes later to tell me he sold it to the other buyer and not me. I missed out by an hour. Doh. Fast forward to Friday at 11:30 am and I get an email from the seller that the guy backed out on him and I could buy it if I wanted. I am not one to wait, so I told him I'd drive out the next day to look at the car. We left at 6am drove 12 hrs straight through and looked at the car at 6pm Saturday. Car looked great. Went for a test drive and I was a bit surprised as to what I was getting myself into. Also, a damn part fell off the car during the test drive at some point! We said "I hope that wasn't important!" Haha. We got back to the seller's house and I had a chat with my buddy. I was getting cold feet. I was just scared I was getting in too far over my head. My buddy talked me off the ledge, and I went back to negotiate with the seller. We agreed to a price, loaded up the car, and started the drive back home. We got 2 more hours in before we were toast. Neither one of us slept well so we left at 4am to get back to Dallas. I just got back home at 3pm Sunday. What a whirlwind weekend!! Exciting Stuff.


There are a bunch of small things that need to be addressed, and I want to go over all the mechanicals. Every part of the car will be looked over at some point in the process. I'm not sure where to start, but it will probably be the brakes since I'm afraid to go over 40 mph right now. Enough of that here are some pics of the car along the journey and a short video of my first drive when I got home. 


Just after I got it.



Leaving Sunday Morning at 4am.



Somewhere between here and there.




At home. 


#79943 Fiata!!

Posted by hornetball on 14 August 2016 - 03:53 AM

On a work assignment in Italy. Look what Hertz had for me at Milan-Malpensa International (MXP)! It was brand new, I was the first to rent it:

Immediately took it out into its natural habitat -- Italy. First some city driving.

Visconti Castle in Somma Lombardo

Then, off to the Italian Alps.

On the road from Aosta to Cogne (Gran Paradiso national park) in the Aosta Valley:

Overlook above Cogne:

The ideal "Fiata" test road (with Cogne and St. Ursus Meadow below):

Aaaand, home, sweet home (Villa Borghi hotel):

It's good to be the king!

So, having spent some time with the car, my thoughts:
-Feels like a much bigger car than an NA. The hood seems especially long. Quite a difference from the MX-5.
-Super comfortable and smooth Grand Touring car. Power delivery is perfect for cruising the Autostrada and driving the mountain roads. With the turbo, climbing the Alps is no big deal, there's never a loss of power as with a normally aspirated car.
-I think this is the first "Fiata" in Italy. I haven't seen any others, and people would point and stare. Lots of positive comments and I did my best to reply in Spanish -- which is close enough!
-God, I love the ND top mechanism. BEST TOP EVER!!

-When the windows are down, they rattle in their tracks when you close the doors. That's a bit off-putting.
-Above 130kph with the top down, the upholstery on the back of the driver's seat would start flapping. Really strange. I slid the seat all the way back to stop it.
-Wish the exterior was smaller -- less overhang. It feels like a Miata with an Italian body kit -- which is what it is I guess. I like small cars. If you like bigger-feeling GTs, then this is your baby!

#89948 TDE - March 25-26

Posted by hornetball on 27 March 2017 - 10:35 AM

I'm so proud of my ladies!



#86449 C7 Z06 eats Vipers, GT3's and Cannibalizes Corvette Race Cars at Texas Wo...

Posted by handsoffsam on 25 January 2017 - 09:22 AM


#79576 The Driver's Edge WOE Event July 30-31

Posted by RobElliot on 01 August 2016 - 12:51 PM

1st phase of my master plan was a complete success!!! She's already wanting to sign up for her next event! She also wins the best photo competition! This was from the first spin on the skid pan


#91411 NASA April 21 -23 Texas World Speedway

Posted by Hastarock on 20 April 2017 - 10:20 AM

I'll pump you on my bicycle

Dude, you better call it a day for posting.

#85498 Oops, I did it again...

Posted by robertcope on 07 January 2017 - 09:38 AM

Edit: For some reason these look ugly, too. Not sure what's going on. Looking into it. Better pictures here: https://goo.gl/photo...xQJqcGN6hjhEi39


Proper pictures:











#81016 Please help me price my Miata

Posted by AhmadHasib on 19 September 2016 - 12:50 PM

Thanks for all the advice. I've decided to do the most responsible thing a grown adult should do: Discount the advice from my doctor and listen to a bunch of strangers on an online forum  :biggrin: . I don't want to give up on this so soon. I'll cross my fingers and hopefully things will be better post surgery.