Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Third Quarter Progress Review

Remember I had a list of mod jobs at the turn of the year? Well it is now September and below's the current progress:

  • Settle the BC Racing ER coilover damper problem - Still in limbo. 
  • More DIY weight reduction jobs - I seem to be adding weight to Sharkie lately :( 
  • Tidying up the engine bay including possibly some AN plumbing changes for better packaging - Still procrastinating.
  • Proper aero work - Partly done. APR GTC-200 rear wing installed. Front splitter next. 
  • New headlights and rear lights - Can't bring myself to spend a couple grand. Only managed a restoration job for the front headlights. 
  • New seat rails - Done. Bride RO seat rails installed.
  • Revisit the oil catch can setup - Still procrastinating 
  • More carbon and unobtanium parts - Work in progress. Got some parts due to be installed. Stay tuned. 
  • Add more chassis stiffness and rigidity - Zero progress.
  • Add rear arb - Decided on make. Currently in design and manufacturing. Stay tuned.
  • Wider rims and wider tyres - Maybe next year? 
  • Corner weight the car - Ditto
  • Knock detection - Ditto
  • Seat harness - Bought. Stay tuned. 
  • Cylinder head job including new cams - Maybe next year or 2016 :) 
  • Relook into the induction setup. Perhaps a proper airbox? - Ditto 
  • Improve engine bay heat management - Got some ideas and bought some stuff. Other than this, still procrastinating.
  • Paint job (again) - Done. 
  • Install Wilwood brake rotors - Done. 
  • Install WPC oil pump - Still sitting nicely in my cabinet while I procrastinate.

I also added a gearbox upgrade project which is also in limbo due to shipping cost concerns. 

Hope to make up some more progress and lost time as we move towards the end of the year. Please add more positive comments/ideas in this blog or likes in my FB page to get me moving faster.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Bride RO Super Seat Rails - Part 2 Installed

Found some free time to install the Bride RO seat rails during the Raya hols. Installation was DIY with help from Tao. Before installing I took the opportunity to weigh the stock mild steel and titanium seat rail fasteners. Stock.


This means a weight saving of 12 grams per set of fastener (bolt + washer). There are 8 sets of fasteners (4 per seat rail) hence the savings are approximately 96 grams.

Uninstalling the Recaros and H Performance seat rails lead to some not so nice surprises. First surprise is the use of these large mild steel washers to level the seats. Four are used per side of a seat/seat rail. If you're wondering what the wire is for, it's for the "fasten your seat belt" warning light which I no longer use :)

If you are still using the stock dash, make sure the wire is connected to this wire which in turn is connected to the seat rail. If you don't the seat belt warning light will be permanently lit.

Decided to weigh the washers for kicks. Total weight savings together with the seat rail bolts are bout 0.23kg.

The washers are required due to the poor manufacturing tolerance of the H Performance seat rails. These actually incorporate genuine Recaro sliders but IMHO that is the only positive aspect of the seat rail. Picture below of the H Performance seat rail after removing the Recaro.

There is no bridge plate in between the sliders for greater structural strength like the Bride RO. Which is not surprising or should I say shocking as what I found out next when disassembling my Recaro from it's seat rail. Each Recaro SR4 utilizes six M6  x 25mm bolts to secure it to it's seat rail (Front uses 4 and rear 2). Only four bolts were used for my case. This was consistent for both seats. Different fastener heads and length were also used instead of one standard type. Some M8 sized spring washers were even used for an M6 bolt I kid you Not! What you can't see can't kill you right? How much does 12 sets of properly sized and load rating mild steel fasteners (bolt and appropriately sized washer) cost? Can't be more than a couple ringgit. Picture below of the crap fasteners used by H Performance.

Picture below of the Bride RO seat rail mated to the SR4 with proper fasteners. And yes, that's my sofa the seat and seat rail is sitting on top of. I did the assembly in my living room mah.

Picture of the anchor bolt used to fasten the seat belt buckle to seat rail

Seat belt buckle installed onto the seat rail.

Picture below shows the Bride RO vs H Performance seat rail.

The Bride ROs weigh 5 kg each while the H Performance seat rail is 4kg which unfortunately means 0.75 kg of flab is added to Sharkie. If you value your own personal safety this is a compromise I am more than happy to accept. Picture of the new seat rail and seat mounted back on Sharkie. 

Seat height with the Bride RO is approximately 20mm lower than the H Performance seat rail which is perfect for me as I'm not your average height Malaysian. Rail sliding action is very positive. Seat belt buckle no longer does the disappearing act. 

Overall I am very satisfied and impressed with the quality of the Bride ROs. My only regret is I should have gone with these seat rails when I got the Recaros two years back.