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Thread: Prawn and BigAls A3 Track Car

  1. #401
    superkarl's Avatar
    MAN OF STEEL

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    what do you reckon you could potentially do given a clear lap? you should go on one of the weekends where its full flying laps using the other pit. think its 299 for half a day though, but thats just for paying members, no tourists

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  3. #402
    Prawn's Avatar
    My other car is a MINI!!!!

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    Yup, exactly, like that focus. he indicated right for me to pass, then somehow managed to run wide on me still!

    I was WELL past him by the time we went round kallenhard though, and did get a bit of a flash from him after my little slide.

    The thing about the car now though, is that it's SO controllable when it's sliding, I wasn't really worried too much, just a little shocked really
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    Prawns TFSI Turbo'd 1.8T Track Car

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  4. #403
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    My other car is a MINI!!!!

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    Karl, I reckon without traffic, and on the correct tyre pressures, another 10 seconds isn't impossible at all, I was really holding back loads behind that civic for the last 3km, he was braking far too much :S
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  5. #404
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    dam man your a brave talented driver! whats next for the car in terms of improvement? or is there nothing left to improve? lol more power?

  6. #405
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    My mate did 08:04 on a private day in his E36 M3 Evo. You take off so much time by hitting the bridge at 100+mph on a flying lap
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  7. #406
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    thats fast! like seriously fast. BTG?

  8. #407
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    Yeah BTG but hitting the bridge at 100+mph plus there was only about 30 cars on track.
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  9. #408
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    when i span in the rain an e36 m3 went past me twice as fast as i was going. HOW?! HOW!? it amazed me.

  10. #409
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    Quote Originally Posted by superkarl View Post
    when i span in the rain an e36 m3 went past me twice as fast as i was going. HOW?! HOW!? it amazed me.

    My mates one had no engine mods at all, just stripped, caged, 6 pots, and Billie suspension. He wrote it off just after xmas so is currently building a new one that will have the same engine but not one part of the chassis and suspension is being left untouched.
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  11. #410
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    I've seen 145 on the clock (135 GPS) through Foxhole in a 180bhp Honda Civic! You literally have to have the 2 OS wheels on the grass/mud and the trajectory out the corner will set you up to slam on the brakes to get down to around 70mph for the left/right to follow. My favourite part of the track next to Pflanzgarten...

    That same Civic has done an 08:20BTG with traffic and we also took a 1.5 SOHC Civic EK (about 92bhp!) which managed a 08:58!

    Everyone needs to get out there, it's amazing. Well, it used to be when it was 8 Euros a lap!
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  12. #411
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ryan_W View Post
    Well, it used to be when it was 8 Euros a lap!
    I remember the days, and only half the car park used to be full
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  13. #412
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    So, after taking my daily driver A3 out to the Ring in September, my Dad and I decided it was about time we built something a little more dedicated for our Ring trips, which have now become a twice annual event.

    Not wanting to spend the earth, we decided to use my old A3, a car already highly modified running around 230bhp.

    Fast forward 6 months, 3x as much money as we originally planned, and hundreds of hours labour, and the car was ready for it's first trip to the Ring in it's new form!



    Annoyingly, I noticed on Thursday night, that one of my Pirelli P=zero Corsa tyres was fairly low on tread, so decided not to risk wearing it on the drive out there, and to save it for the track.

    So, we stole the wheels off my daily, then set off for the ferry port:



    On the journey with us, 4 mates of mine, Dan and Chris, in the blue 4 door A3, and George and Liam, in the silver A3.

    so, an unplanned single make convoy, all 1.8T engined, all 200-230bhp, all fairly similar.



    A nice early morning dash saw us make the 10am ferry, 2 hours ahead of what we booked, and soon I was waving goodbye to the familiar sight of Dover:





    2 hours later we're back down to the lorry deck where we'd had to park (all too low to get onto the upper deck) and ready to pull off.

    I'd noticed a clonking develop on the car on the way to the ferry, so we pulled over to check it out once off the ferry:



    After checking everything suspension related, top mounts, subframe, steering rack, track rods, wishbones, and finding nothing, I thought I'd quickly check the driveshaft bolts.

    The bloody OS shaft had come loose AGAIN at the inner CV. a constant problem on this car, despite a new box, and new shaft in the last month. I think it's related to the oil it has been covered in when the turbo developed a leak a while back.

    Bugger. Tightened it up, and all was fine thankfully, it hadn't developed enough to ruin the CV joint, like it did last year, ruining my trip!

    So, on the road, and things going well, we took the E42 route to avoid Brussels, hoping it'd be quicker and traffic free....

    ... WRONG! We hit awful traffic, I dont remember where, but it was SO hot inside the car it was terrible, the aircon isn't working at the mo, and Dad and I were cooking!



    Traffic cleared, and we pulled in at the big QB service station 130 miles from the Ring, we chilled out and waited there for 20 mins for George to catch up, who'd had to stop earlier:



    Popped the bonnet for a bit to try and help it cool down, the car wasn't over heating, but we were!



    20 mins later and George and Liam rocked up, a quick splash of super 98, and we were off for the final stint:



    We eventually rocked up Burgstube at 8am, where we recieved a warm welcome, and were soon shown around our rooms:





    We were soon inside, enjoying a few beers:



    Had a really great night too, I met Mike and Alex in there as well as obviously Martin and Heidi (great to meet you guys), and we stayed up until gone 1am chatting to Martin and Alex about all sorts, was great, felt just like being in your local pub!

    We knew we were set to have a good weekend, as Dad had bought his Mascot along for the ride:



    I'm afraid at this point, my photo taking skills left me, and I forgot all about writing a trip report, so this will be rather brief from here on out!

    Saturday morning came, and after a cracking breakfast, we headed down to Aral in Adeneau to fill up with 102RON fuel. Surprisingly, it cost exactly the same as super98 had cost on the way down in Belgium.

    We popped to Brunchen to take a quick look at the time trial stuff going round, but the track was closed soon after we got there, so we headed back towards the village.

    On the way back to the hotel, we popped into Rent-4-Ring to see the new setup. I've met Ralph and Fredy a good few times before, but I've not met Dale before, so i went in and introduced myself, surprise surprise, yet another very friendly welcome, just what we've come to expect around here! A pleasure to meet you Dale, and thanks for taking the time to chat to us even though we wern't customers.

    The new Rent-4-Ring place is brilliant, so close to the track, and it looks smart too. I assume Solo had a good weekend, because his Leon was parked outside most of the weekend, so he mus thave been out enjoying a rental Lucky sodd living in the Burgstube! Very jealous.

    Saw an interesting Ferrari in the carpark, I'll be honest, I've got not idea what it is, but it looked pretty non standard:





    At this point, I stopped taking any pictures, so just a quick account of our track time:

    2pm Saturday, and we decided to go out for our first lap in the car with it's new setup. Dad and I strapped in, me driving, and armed with a 4 lap card, we hit the track.

    It felt OK, I won't say great, just OK really. The car felt verty different to how it did at Castle Combe, and felt VERY down on power. We cruised around for a sighting lap, to find LOADS of accidents on the track, 4 yellow flags, several oil spill signs, and a 20mph single lane precession down through the fox hole.

    Back into the carpark, and George reported his car had no power either. It seems that the extreme heat on saturday was killing our turbo cars. Very odd seeing as I never suffer heatsoak over here in summer, but then again, I guess it's more extreme on track.


    We left it until 4pm, when the heat started to die down, and Dad went out for a lap.

    Round we went with me giving a few directions, and had a really enjoyable lap. Dad seemed to be getting on well with the car, considering he's not driven it much since all the work was carried out.

    I then did another lap with Dan as passenger. The car felt MUCH better, I seemed to be able to get more from the tyres once they'd warmed up, and the power seemed to be back in the colder air.

    After an enjoyable but steady lap, I came back, and Dad jumped into the Driver seat again. I'd downloaded Harrys lap timer before we came, so decided to give it a try as a passenger whilst Dad drove.

    Considering it was Dad's 3rd ever lap, and only second in the car, I was suitably impressed to a lap time of 09:47. Not bad at all! The lap timer app seemed brilliant too.

    With the tyres hot, and enough fuel left in the car for another lap, I decided to try my first solo lap. All my previous laps have been with passengers, so this was a bit nerve racking for me!

    I decided to give the video feature on Harrys lap timer a go, so stuck the phone in the window with a cheapy phone mount Robbob gave me at Combe.

    Here's the resulting vid:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nEOlZLpc474...n_order&list=UL

    A bit of a strange moment at MG2, the focus seem around 3mins appeared to flash his right indicator on around the left left hander, then switch it off, only to stay Very far right on the way into Kallenhard, and indicate right again. I started to make my way past, when to my surprise he ran wide, so I had to hit the anchors there, before pulling past him safely down the hill to Kallenhard.

    Having pulled past the focus down into Kallenhard, I was a bit quick on the way into the bend, and suffered a bit of understeer, a slight lift to bring it round soon turned into a small slide, although strangely more of a slide than I was expecting, easily controlled, but strange all the same. Grip didn't seem like it usually did, and to be honest, it hadn't done all day.

    Carried on through my first solo lap, and had a great time. I'm still fairly new to the track, so please excuse any poor lines. The car felt to be going better too, in the cool evening air.

    Comming up towards wipperman, I was surprised to see a silver civic EP3 race car, which I'd noticed earlier in the day appeared to be very fast. By Brunchen, I was fairly close to it, and after Brunchen 2, I was right up with it and having to hold back a bit. The guy was clearly not interested in moving over, sticking tight to the left hand side of the track.

    I remembered Martins advice about overtaking on the right, and decided to sit comfortably behind him, until such time as he finally moved over at DH. Better late than never I guess!

    Back in the carpark, after a cool down lap, I was really shocked to see that Harrys Lap Timer had recorded an 08:40.1 lap time! Over the moon with that. I didn't go out looking for times at all, but it's nice to get a rough idea of your pace from time to time. Looking back through the video I think a good driver could get much more from the car than I did, perhaps not Super Baguette fast, but I'd certainly think there's an 08:20 in the car, if not a bit better. Not for me though!

    Back to the Burgstube for a few beers, then a quick shower and down to PK for the traditional Saturday night Steak on a stone. lovely as always! Although I think Liam was a bit annoyed that for 20 euros they didn't even bother to cook it for you! haha.

    Sunday morning came, and after a few more beers than planned we failled miserably to make it for breakfast at 07:30, and strolled into the bar at 08:30. WIth breakfast done, we looked on the webcam, and saw the track was shut. Oh well, time to chill out I guess.

    A guy came up to the hotel with a poorly Clio, we helped him whip off the plenum chamber to check the plugs, and it did seem to run better after a clean up, but sadly it wasn't to be, and his misfire came back on his first lap

    I did one lap around 10am, with George as passenger, and found the grip level was poor again.

    Back to the carpark, and the track closed for a crash.

    After an hour of sitting around, I decided to check my tyre pressures.....

    I'd had the tyres flipped round on the rims the week before we left, as they'd badly worn on one edge at Combe due to poor alignment. I had them nitro filled, and asked the garage to infalte them to 32psi. They're usually pretty good to me.

    So, I borrowed a tyre guage (forgot mine!) from a crazy dutch guy (Hi Thomas if you're on here - thanks!) and checked my pressures.

    FECK!!!!!

    1 hour after a lap, with the tyres still warmISH, the pressures were at 45psi all round. Oh christ, no WONDER I had so little grip out there! What a twat for not checking. I'd been so busy it just slipped my mind Ah well!

    Dropped the pressures to 31psi, after remembering the figure Nige used for Karls golf, and waited for the track to re-open after ANOTHER crash.

    went out for a lap with Liam as passenger, and found the grip level was MUCH better. I felt I was able to corner much faster, and able to drive much smoother, with almost no squeal from the tyres, unlike Saturdays laps! Traffic was really heavy though, so I just enjoyed it when I could, and concentrated on trying to get my lines better. From watching Dales videos, and speaking to Solo at the bar, I found I was able to smooth out corners much better, with so many bends requiring a super late turn in. It felt strange, but did wonders for the smoothness. I was also very concious all weekend to keep both hands on the wheel at all times, after it was pointed out that I looked a bit too casual at the wheel on an earlier vid!

    Back into the carpark, and I checked the pressures again. They had risen to 37psi straight after the lap, even with notro fill. SO I backed them off down to 31psi hot, and went out for another lap.

    at 31psi hot, the car felt MUCH better yet again, with loads of grip available, I felt really good about it. The strange understeer/snap over steer tendancy had gone totally, and Chris commented that the car felt REALY planted at speed. Still a good bit of traffic around, but one of my most enjoyable laps ever. A check on Harrys Lap Timer afterwards shows that it was another 08:40, although this time in traffic, and with one yellow flat at Hoe Act. pretty happy with that!
    Last edited by Prawn; 11th May 2011 at 11:58.
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  14. #413
    Prawn's Avatar
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    So, once again the track closed, so we decided to put the 10E value of food on our ring cards to good use, and headed into the Devils Diner for some Lunch.

    Had some incredibly good cheese burgers in there for lunch, then sat around waiting for the track to open.

    To cut a long story short, it didn't reopen until 3pm, by which time we had to go, so having had a great weekend, we resisted temptation to do 'one more' lap, and decided to head home.

    We came home via a different route, which seemed to take ages to reach the motorway, but when we finally did, we soon entered a section of unrestricted autobahn. Unable to resist a quick blast, we shot off down the autobahn, before soon realising we'd need more fuel having just used it all!
    I let the car idle in the petrol station for 2-3 minutes, and then popped the bonnet to check all was well under there. To my surprise, the turbo was still glowing!



    Christ - no wonder it's so cracked if it can get THAT hot on a regular basis.

    Back to the road, and we eventually caught up with George who'd left some 30 mins before us. After boilling on the way here, he'd decided to simply remove his perspec windows to get a bit more airflow on the way home:



    This worked fine for him, until we hit a freak rain storm, and they got soaked! haha.

    We had hoped to catch the 8pm Ferry home, but sadly traffic near Brussels put a stop to that, so the 10pm would have to do. Having loads of time, we stopped off in a service station in France:



    Almost back, not far to go now:



    Back at the Ferry in plenty of time, through passport control, and we had time to sit back and relax. What a bloody good weekend it had been!



    Despite the track closures, it's the atmosphere of the whole place I love so much, meeting new people, seeing people again, it's brilliant.

    After 2 hours kip on the ferry, it was time for home:



    120 miles off the ferry, and I was tucked up safe in bed, which I really needed.

    A thoroughly good weekend was had by all!

    Thanks chaps
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  15. #414
    Westy's Avatar
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    Tyre pressures are something I've never paid too much attention too when I've got to the ring but they make so much difference.

    Great write up mate. I can't wait to get back there.
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  16. #415
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    Nice dude! Cheers for taking the time to do a write up

  17. #416
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    no worries man.

    The new youtube link in the trip report leads to an HD version of the earlier video too, incase you care!
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  18. #417
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    Nick, what version of Harry's lap timer did you use? "Lap timer" (£3.99), or "Lap timer pro" (£9.99)?
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  19. #418
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    Excellent writeup Prawn.... I'm not jealous honest I'm not..... no honestly not even a little bit hats off to ya mate
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  20. #419
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    Excellent write up mate, makes you want to drop your responsibilitys and get out there.....

  21. #420
    Prawn's Avatar
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    Cheers guys.

    Neil: It's Lap timer Pro. Standard lap timer can't do video, you need to buy the video add on for about another £3, so you might as well just buy the Pro straight away!

    Can be used on any track /loop in the world too, you just set a way point at the start line, and it plots it all for you!
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  22. #421
    gez
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    8.40??? 2 weeks ago i was there. My best was 8.50 in my revo2 S3 with 260bhp/300lbs arbs shocks springs polybushes r32 brakes pirelli tyres. I was driving VERY hard. Must be due to the lack of weight you have. I managed 15 laps in 3days

  23. #422
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    Cheers nick. Think I'll purchase that. By the way are you receiving my PMs?
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  24. #423
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    Quote Originally Posted by gez View Post
    8.40??? 2 weeks ago i was there. My best was 8.50 in my revo2 S3 with 260bhp/300lbs arbs shocks springs polybushes r32 brakes pirelli tyres. I was driving VERY hard. Must be due to the lack of weight you have. I managed 15 laps in 3days
    I think a lot of it is all about knowing the track, and when and where you can go flat over the blind crests and corners!

    On my first trip out there, I drove the bloody wheels off the thing and only managed 09:37. the 08:40 was FAR more calm then my 09:37 a few years ago, simply due to a bit more track knowledge and trying to be more smooth.

    Quote Originally Posted by Westle View Post
    Cheers nick. Think I'll purchase that. By the way are you receiving my PMs?
    Yea, I've just read them, sorry matey. I spent abour 3 hours writing up that trip report last night, then fell asleep on the sofa before I got a chance to read your PM's! haha. Will reply this morning
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  25. #424
    Westy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Prawn View Post
    I think a lot of it is all about knowing the track, and when and where you can go flat over the blind crests and corners!

    On my first trip out there, I drove the bloody wheels off the thing and only managed 09:37. the 08:40 was FAR more calm then my 09:37 a few years ago, simply due to a bit more track knowledge and trying to be more smooth.



    Yea, I've just read them, sorry matey. I spent abour 3 hours writing up that trip report last night, then fell asleep on the sofa before I got a chance to read your PM's! haha. Will reply this morning
    Learning the track is something I need to do. I am too agressive and my braking points are shocking. I just enjoy myself and take each corner as it comes. For me it's all about getting round safely and getting home in one piece than setting good times.

    Something I would like to do in the near future is have a track car dedicated to this sort of thing.
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  26. #425
    Prawn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Westle View Post
    Learning the track is something I need to do. I am too agressive and my braking points are shocking. I just enjoy myself and take each corner as it comes. For me it's all about getting round safely and getting home in one piece than setting good times.

    .
    I couldn't agree more!

    the track knowledge helps so much though, in my first laps I was as you say, very aggressive with all the wrong braking points.

    I'd say I'm far safer now I know it a bit better, as I try to concentrate on being smooth and getting the lines right.

    When you do that, the faster times just kinda happen, a 9 minute lap now feels FAR more relaxed than my first few laps that were all over 10 minutes
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  27. #426
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    Great post mate. Just watched the HD vid and noticed that you're (presumably) still having the brake pad warning beep!

    Nice little scrap at the end of the lap too. Makes me want to get back on GT5 and work on the ring knowledge!

  28. #427
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    bit off of the subject of the ring... but.. what was the size of the bolt you used to fix the towing loop to the crash bar? also, do you know of any cheap 20mm spacers up for grabs?

  29. #428
    Prawn's Avatar
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    13mm bolt through the crashbar matey, and 80mm long. needed to be 80mm long as I needed to space the strap down slightly to come out under the bumper line.

    Rooms booked for the Ring in september now, check out Westles Nurburgring trip thread later today: AS.NET RING TRIP

    And these beauties just arrived for me at work



    Been after a set of these for 5 months! Federal 595 RS-R's in 225/45/17 Should be brilliant compared to my P-zero Corsas in 205/50/17.

    it also means my seat wheels are now free to fit my clio cup slicks for a bit of fun
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  30. #429
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    Yes Prawny let's get it on

    I've been looking at a set of Toyo888rs for my 17s but doubt I'll be able to afford them for the september trip

    Is there anywhere you can buy part worn slicks?
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  31. #430
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    my clio cup slicks came from a race team I believe, they used them for one race then discard them, so I've got them with loads of life left in them.

    very few tracks will let you use slicks though, and the ring is of course road tyres only.

    Forget R888's Neil, look into these federals, they're amazing by all accounts.

    Reports so far suggest they have 95% of the dry grip of an R888, with none of the road noise, and more than double the life in terms of wear rate.

    They're a 140 treadware tyre, so still properly soft, and apparently better than R888's in the wet too.

    Biggest bonus is, they're only £106 a corner from camskill in standard S3 size!
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  32. #431
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    Quote Originally Posted by Prawn View Post
    my clio cup slicks came from a race team I believe, they used them for one race then discard them, so I've got them with loads of life left in them.

    very few tracks will let you use slicks though, and the ring is of course road tyres only.

    Forget R888's Neil, look into these federals, they're amazing by all accounts.

    Reports so far suggest they have 95% of the dry grip of an R888, with none of the road noise, and more than double the life in terms of wear rate.

    They're a 140 treadware tyre, so still properly soft, and apparently better than R888's in the wet too.

    Biggest bonus is, they're only £106 a corner from camskill in standard S3 size!
    I'll be banging them on my S3 wheels so that sounds good. I dont do too many track days so if I can get some part worn tyres I should get them a lot cheaper. I'll have a look round. Cheers Nick.
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  33. #432
    BÜBENGRÖPEN

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    Just had a full read through thread. Very impressed. Would love to just attack my A3 like this and go for the stripped out option but for an every day car I'm happy with the comfort I'd have to get a second to ambush lol.

    Loved the look of the car on the orange wheels (I'm biased though :P) and just watched the 'Ring video. Impressive stuff I need to stop getting ideas for my car reading threads like this lol
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  34. #433
    3rd Gear

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    Quote Originally Posted by Prawn View Post
    13mm bolt through the crashbar matey, and 80mm long. needed to be 80mm long as I needed to space the strap down slightly to come out under the bumper line.

    Rooms booked for the Ring in september now, check out Westles Nurburgring trip thread later today: AS.NET RING TRIP

    And these beauties just arrived for me at work



    Been after a set of these for 5 months! Federal 595 RS-R's in 225/45/17 Should be brilliant compared to my P-zero Corsas in 205/50/17.

    it also means my seat wheels are now free to fit my clio cup slicks for a bit of fun

    Thanks mate, I've had delivery of a towing loop too... may not be some people's taste colourwise though!

    really dont know whether to paint my IC pipework black or not like yours, worried it will just chip straight away and then look crap. hows yours holding up?

  35. #434
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    Seems to be holding up just fine so far mate, over 1000 motorway miles covered since fitting and they've not chipped at all yet! 6 coats of satin black seems to have done the job just fine
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  36. #435
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    Car is back with me again for a few small jobs leading up to the next track day.

    Going to start swapping a few bits around to try and recover some lost boost. Going to start with my LCR 4 bar fuel pump, then change the ignition and fuel pump relays, then if that doesn't work, it'll be a forge actuator

    To anyone interested, (plunky? Sportstractor?) I'm doing a trackday at Hulavington air field on July 15th.

    It's a huge airfield track with loads of runoff, and a stupidly cheap price for a full open pitlane day at £109!

    https://orders.motorsport-events.com/EventList.aspx
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  37. #436
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    Nick what sort of boost issues are you having? I'd be very interested to see if you sort them. These cars seem so temperamental with performance due to boost so any way of making them more consistent would be great.
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  38. #437
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    Well it was originally mapped to run 22 psi, which it did for ages without trouble, then it started peaking randomly lower, to the point where it now never really boosts over 16-17psi at all, except for very strange moments, where it remembers it's previous form and goes nuts!

    for example, all over Christmas, 17psi max, jardo drove it up to me in feb, and on the way up t started peaking 22 again, then the next day, back to 17!

    Half way to Germany, for no apparent reason it decided to start making 22-23 like thegood old days, which it kept up all the way there, then in track we were down to 18ish.

    Comming home from Germany it wouldn't go over 16psi, and now hasn't done since getting back.

    You can replicate the same scenario On the same bit of road in the same gear time and time again, and for every 50 times it makes 16psi, just once it'll hit 22 and absolutely fly! All without changing anything to cause the change
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    Very strange. You don't have any timing pull do you? On my old crap map mine used to fly when ir was fairly cool but as soon as EGTs and AITs got high it didn't like it. I think a fmic is a must with that type of boost. Can't wait to get one fitted.
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  40. #439
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    No timing pull no! That's what makes it so strange

    FMIC is indeed a must, can still suffer heatsoak even with it sometimes.

    Oh, and I stole your sig btw
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  41. #440
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    Lol no worries. I put it there to try and drum up some interest.

    Have you got any plans for a fmic? I should have mine on before the ring.

    Also have you got the federals fitted yet? I was wondering how they are.
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