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Discussion Starter #41 (Edited)
well this happened


that's right, you can make your civic a rally car! went to a local event here in GA.

can't really be seen in the video but the car's very neutral midcorner and tailhappy on braking. just a lot of push on exit unfortunately.

some background - I've been doing rallycrosses with SCCA and Tarheel Sports Car Club for years. I did pretty darn well in the past with my old Subaru. i'm familiar with how to go decently fast on dirt and choose to only run at fairly smooth tracks, so i was excited to get the Si out there.

the good - i'd be competitive if i had traction. surprisingly tail happy. more than enough power, long 1st gear made it easy to ride the powerband and stretch it out between corners. never bottomed out, didn't even scrape the front apron. suspension held up fine and did a good job of mixing compliance and keeping response. good brake bias for trailbraking.

the bad - spin, spin, spin. that Torsen ain't gonna torse if both tires have no grip. the wheel/tire sizing was perfect, but the tread on the no-seasons was just unable to do anything, anywhere and i spent most of the time just figuring out where i could straighten the car out so i could do more than feather the throttle. i kind of knew that going in, but its really apparent now that without proper tires i'm just going to stay frustrated. with (A) aggressive snows or (B) a course that was open enough it would have been a genuinely fast car.

some pics (none of me...i was the only guy with a camera)

don't laugh at that monte carlo. he was in the hunt for fastest stock FWD time.




AWD of all vintages out today


not sure if i mentioned the dust. everywhere. everything is dust.


the venue did a crappy job of butting in on the event with a water truck and swamped the whole course right as our run group was in the middle of our afternoon runs. the dirt turned into an insanely slick clay mud that was just ridiculous. i said "F that" and bailed on my last 3 runs. what a waste. i doubt i'll run at this site again.

some cool shots of the mod classes while i was working...













got the results in, and honestly i'm surprised and pleased. counting my 5 runs before i bailed, i was about 6 of 18 overall and would have come in 2nd out of 4 FWD cars. if anything i was at least consistent, only 1 cone and all my runs were basically within a second of each other.

i think i was the fastest car on normal street tires, beat all the Mod AWD guys except 1 and all the Mod Rear. good start and now i have a better idea where i stand.



back to normal life - all cleaned up and hardparking at Costco.
 

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Discussion Starter #42 (Edited)
not much new to report, after that. just gas and go lately. did another ~700mi roadtrip with my family in it recently. 3 people and a dog and a full trunk including a folded up dog crate, fishing gear, and a cooler full of beer. managed about 31mpg with the AC cranked and alternating between a 78mph cruise and some bumper to bumper stop and go. great little car.

that triggered a wave of scheduled and unscheduled maintenance that all ended well. currently sitting at ~102k.

the unscheduled maintenance - AC was blowing warm about 2 weeks prior to leaving. figured i had a slow leak and went in for a recharge the day before leaving. left the shop and it was still blowing a limp 75 degree breeze. ARGH. i started wondering if the rallyx dust and vibration broke something in the system. stayed up half the night researching what it could be - fearing the worst which was a potential compressor replacement ($$$) and decided to try resetting the HVAC control panel as a hail mary move. press/hold the AC and Recirc button, ignition on, then the panel runs all the settings through and clears any stored codes.* IT WORKED.* couldn't believe it. my guess is that the blend door was stuck in between the evaporator and heater core and was just bleeding heat into the airstream. i don't know a thing about AC systems but at least if this ever happens again i have a few leads to go on after my crash course.

touching the clouds on the Blue Ridge Parkway on a freak 75 degree day, perfect!


stopped in Charlotte for a quick break


after getting home it was time for an oil change, almost exactly a year from the last one i did. this time i ran the oil change up to 8200 miles and collected a bit for a Blackstone analysis. this will likely be my last one - i'm content with an annual change and just looking to see if i need to pull it back a bit. Mobil 0W-40 went back in, because it just works awesome and is filthy cheap at wally world.

valve lash time is at 100k. i grabbed a Mahle gasket kit which was a nice value compared to an OEM set and all the rubber parts look very high quality - much as i remember their stuff being from when i used their products in my Audi days. grabbed a set of bent feeler gauges too so i could get to things easier. set the car up for the night to come down to stone cold and up on stands for an oil drain.

the inside of the valve cover was totally free of sludge. very pleased overall.




nothing out of the ordinary to my eyes. chain looked fine, guides have some wear but plenty of life. i honestly could have just reused the valve cover gaskets, all of them were completely gummy without a trace of cracking...the OEM stuff is quality.

no shots of the valve adjustment but it was pretty textbook - intake side was a bit loose, exhaust was a bit tight, and all cylinders were slightly inconsistent. adjusted to .09" clearance on intake and a loose .10" on exhaust, in an attempt to hit right in the middle of the spec.

valve cover goes back on with a dab of Hondabond in a handful of spots. sat another night to let the Hondabond cure. no leaks yet! less tappy when cold, and transitions into VTEC noticably harder, which surprised me. but otherwise ready for another 100k.
 

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Glad to see your tearing it up at the Rally cross and having fun. After seeing that you did your valve adjustment, you reminded me that I should do one as well. I've been meaning to do one at some point just haven't gotten around to doing it.
 
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