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Kuro5hin Chopper: Everything Must Come to an End

By GhostOfTiber in Technology
Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 12:20:33 PM EST
Tags: Kuro5hin Chopper, car, mr2, Murphy's Law (all tags)

The MR2 is built.

Dear god, I am sore and tired.  It started Friday night and was expected to be a job done by Saturday afternoon.

Sunday afternoon rolls around and we're still smashing things...

There's odds and ends to clean up (I'm absolutely sure it needs an alignment and set of plugs) but otherwise I am done working on cars for quite awhile.

The job otherwise went smoothly, I just think we didn't take the time to tie up enough loose ends before trying to take the last steps. The 5SFE engine turned out to have a header crack and exhaust blown gasket, and it made the car roar like it was cool. While the noise is nice, it attracted the wrong kind of person to the car (mostly idiots with honda civics and Folgers Mufflers). Since the headers were a write off, we didn't treat the engine too well and just tossed it in the corner. With the one open exhaust header though, the car sounded like it had a V8.


Part of the problem was that we didn't clearly tie off the ABS connectors. The new MR2 doesn't have ABS. This mostly just gets in the way of a sportscar because the brakes are going to be grippy as hell but also because the ABS sees the wheel hop when driving aggressively and retards the brakes. There's a road near where I live which has an S turn on it down a hill. The first curve is banked correctly but the second curve is reverse banked. There isn't a rusted piece of guardrail next to it since people constantly buy this curve if they're not familiar with the road. The side of it looks like a museum of abandoned body work. The only thing that saves it is that you can drift into the oncoming lane if you screw up and hopefully live through the experience. The red MR2 with ABS used to not be able to take this turn at speed. The suspension would compress through the turn and then the hop exiting the first turn would kick in the ABS. The white MR2 can do it at speed, which sold me on the idea that ABS isn't nearly as good as learning to actually drive the damned car. It's nice to have in an emergency, but general driving shouldn't include emergencies. When the ABS wants to be part of general driving, the ABS needs to go. Since I don't want the extra mass of the ABS wheelhubs anyway, that trash took a walk. The point of this is that we didn't mark the ABS plugs, so we spent a lot of time playing the "does this really plug in anywhere" game. To add insult to injury, the red MR2 had the 1991 "premium" (premium always means "gets in the way") sound system. More plugs on the main harness.

One of the other problems was welding up the exhaust. Jim is a good welder, but by the time we got started welding we had a few drinks and it slowed us down enough that the pace got screwed up. Slow welding means cold joints and things like coking up the tip. Three tips later... Well, it has a greddy exhaust with 3 inch pipes on it (including downpipe) but it was a reach. I broke one of the freshly welded studs off also, so it's just got a c-clamp on there.

The giant intake system (also three inches) had fitment problems. I bought a nice greddy-core intercooler from my buddy but the tubing kit that went along with it was crap and didn't fit. It was also missing one of the hoses, which by 1am Monday morning working with a flashlight, makes an interesting choice between "take the intercooler out" and "make the fucking pipes fit". We chose the latter and I cut up some hose apparently from an audi or something and managed to replace the missing section. I'm told that this is typical of the kit, which means I can look forward to dying horribly when the kit gives up under boost from it's crap-ass quality control.

Finally at 1am Monday morning, we got to the point where we were ready to coolant purge and fire the engine for the first time. We get all the lines hooked up and fill them with antifreeze (the idea is that the extra tubing serves as a reservoir for coolant until the bubbles flow up the tubes and the coolant gets sucked in). We fired the engine and did the coolant purge. Thinking we were home free, we went to take it for a test drive and...


Nothing. The car makes no power. It dies pulling down the driveway. We half expected it to be disagreeable until it soaked out the crap and got the air out of the fuel system, but after a 15 minute idle it's still billowing smoke and hard to start. I was starting to suspect that there was a problem with the fuel pump (replaced with one from a Toyota Supra - bench pressing a gas tank is an adventure) but Trav suggested timing. We had triple checked the timing since this is really hard to check with the engine in the car (think: "mirror on a stick") and then checked it again with the timing strobe.  It was 10 degrees off.

Thankfully we all had time off. Jim is retired. Trav is just a really good guy and was willing to take off. I didn't have a choice since this is my daily driver. I slept over Travs and rolled around on his sofa with his cats to make disgusting greasy cat hairballs all over the thing. The cats thought I was great since I still stank after a shower. We drove back to the Secret MR2 Lab and rechecked the book. Oh did I mention we can't read? The book says the timing strobe will be 10 degrees off and must be corrected for with the diagnostic port when checking the engine.  Sure enough Trav caught it, jammed a paperclip in the data port and the timing lined up almost to perfect. The way the strobe works is that the wheel riding the crank has a mark on it. The plastic covers have a mark on them for 0, -10, +10, and Explosion. The strobe fires when the first cyl fires which should be top dead center (0 degrees). Persistence of Vision means that you can see the normally flying mark clearly when the strobe fires.

Sure enough, we detected that the engine was close, but because I had gone over to a new big intercooler, three inch intake with giant stupid cone filter and three inch exhaust, a little off turns into a big off with a lot more air moving around. We loosened the adjustment pivot on the cap and rotor and lined it back up. Tightening it down became a pain since literally a hair off ruined things again, so Trav was kind enough to keep the strobe on while I bullshitted around with the rotor. The car could probably stand to use a set of plugs also after burning out all the grease and moly.

The free flowing exhaust and intake is worth a lot to a turbocharged car. I don't believe in headers, but I do think that the intake contributes a good bit and the exhaust makes up the rest.

The NA brakes are better than the turbo brakes. This isn't obvious but the turbo brakes are dual-piston and seem to respond less quickly than the NA brakes. More smashing surface means the brakes grip better but take longer to do it. I opted to keep the NA brakes. Bleeding the brakes makes all the difference in the world, I can't even crush the pedal to the floor. The clutch also makes a world of difference. The 130K clutch that came with the car was done and the pedal itself had really terrible fluid in it. Replacing the fluid and bleeding it corrected a myriad of problems in addition to making the clutch and brakes stupidly grippy.

Buy brass shift bushings.  Solid shift bushings are worth their weight in gold, and Ron Paul approves of the gold standard.

The part everyone has been waiting for... The car makes 10 PSI of boost instantly and then starts to creep. The stock system wastegate is set to 10 PSI so the fact that the boost creeps past this means that there's more than enough intake and exhaust for this setup. I am not pushing the limits of this until the first oil change at 1k miles to get all the crap and dirt out, but even in casual driving this happens. Since the fuel-cut happens at 11 PSI which would be a serious overboost for the stock engine (which runs about 8 PSI), its running things damn close. Also the stock turbo can make up to 16 PSI before all efficiency loss, so I may next spring look to adjusting the fuel-cut and tuning the turbo to 14 PSI or so before dyno'ing it. No sense in being greedy, but every PSI is worth roughly 10 HP, so there's another 40 or 50 HP to be had out of the system. There's awesome power to be made here, but I would like to own a beater before trying to deal with every day situations like "how much grip do I have in the rain"?  300 something horsepower on a 2500 lbs car makes a power to weight ratio of .12, which is no longer daily-driver category.

Conclusion:  Buy a horse. It's simpler.


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Kuro5hin Chopper: Everything Must Come to an End | 45 comments (39 topical, 6 editorial, 2 hidden)
Where is the ambiguously gay drama? (none / 1) (#3)
by The Vast Right Wing Conspiracy on Tue Aug 28, 2007 at 12:53:44 PM EST

Like in American Chopper, where Captain Mullet and the Emo Artist Son square off and then hug each other and cry, while Neckbearded Retard Son fucks his tailpipe with a tailpipe (LOLE WINK WINK NUDGE NUDGE)

I'm a pompous windbag, I take myself far too seriously, and I single-handedly messed up K5 by causing the fiction section to be created. --localroger

There's no ambigiously gay drama (3.00 / 2) (#4)
by GhostOfTiber on Tue Aug 28, 2007 at 01:34:56 PM EST

If you were there you would know it's openly gay rape.  Fuck that emotional stuff.

[Nimey's] wife's ass is my cocksheath. - undermyne
[ Parent ]

IAWTP (feat. i came) [dj poppers remix] (3.00 / 3) (#6)
by The Vast Right Wing Conspiracy on Tue Aug 28, 2007 at 01:38:15 PM EST

I'm a pompous windbag, I take myself far too seriously, and I single-handedly messed up K5 by causing the fiction section to be created. --localroger

[ Parent ]
No, he's right, there was no ambiguity to it (none / 0) (#29)
by lawngnomehitman on Fri Aug 31, 2007 at 12:09:47 PM EST

I heard so many comments on homosexuality and japanese rape parties (that was saturday) that I can't consider anything that would surprise me...

[ Parent ]
because got doesn't take roids (3.00 / 2) (#5)
by circletimessquare on Tue Aug 28, 2007 at 01:36:41 PM EST

you need to take roids to result in that sort of psychosexual confusion. steroids mess with the gonads my friend. don't take 'em, unless you like pea sized balls and a confused sexual outlook

The tigers of wrath are wiser than the horses of instruction.

[ Parent ]
We support the conclusion (none / 1) (#7)
by United Fools on Tue Aug 28, 2007 at 02:12:24 PM EST

You also help the environment and fight global warming!

We are united, we are fools, and we are America!
I've never understood this. (2.50 / 4) (#8)
by Kasreyn on Tue Aug 28, 2007 at 04:45:24 PM EST

Unless you do amateur stock car racing, or regularly drive on the Autobahn, what use is any of this knowledge? What is the point in wringing all this efficiency from a system that you're not allowed to take even remotely near its limits? Traffic laws in most countries forbid putting high performance vehicles through their paces. And in professional racing, the driver and the mechanic are two separate people. So either you live in Germany and regularly drive on the Autobahn, or you're an amateur stock car driver, or you happen to own a track on your huge private property (or have access to a track), or you're one of those thoroughly annoying brats who drag race their Acuras late at night and get busted all the time like idiots. None of those are things I'm ever likely to be interested in.

I eschewed learning how to work on cars in my teen years and instead spent the time learning how to build PC's. It seems a lot less restrictive to me.

P.S. And yes, I know it's not about going fast, it's about impressing the ladies. But you could get all the shallow sex you could ever want by slapping a super spoiler and racing stripe on a Lancer. This is really overkill if scoring is your goal.

"Extenuating circumstance to be mentioned on Judgement Day:
We never asked to be born in the first place."

R.I.P. Kurt. You will be missed.
For one... (3.00 / 4) (#9)
by dissonant on Tue Aug 28, 2007 at 06:04:58 PM EST

...it's extremely satisfying for alot of us to modify or put together our own vehicles.  Just like with computers, understanding and tweaking a complex system for performance gains is always fun, whether you actually use that performance or not.  Plus, you can do all your own maintenance and repairs and save heaps of cash.

For two, while you should always (and I can't emphasize that enough) put the safety of yourself and you fellow road users first, there are plenty of twisty, nearly empty, and underpatrolled roads out there.  While I'd never drive or ride at more than a 7/10ths pace on a public road under even ideal conditions (good weather, good pavement, no traffic, no LEOs) because there's always a chance of an animal jumping out, or hitting an unseen patch of diesel, etc., that's usually plenty entertaining enough.  You just ALWAYS need to be aware that you are controlling 2500+ pounds of potentially lethal machinery - you're responsible for making sure you DO NOT lose control of it on public roads, period.

For three, being comfortable with your vehicle at or near its performance limits makes you much more capable of reacting properly to an emergency situation in day to day traffic.  If you've never locked your brakes, or spun out, or taken your vehicle through a high speed slalom, you really don't know what you can get away with when it really counts.  Modern driving aids like ABS, stability control, and traction control help, but they are no substitute for being alert, knowing your vehicle's limits, and knowing the limits of your own skill.

[ Parent ]

You've got it all wrong (3.00 / 3) (#11)
by codejack on Tue Aug 28, 2007 at 09:05:18 PM EST

First off, there's autocross; lots of folks with fun cars driving them around cones in a parking lot, fast. Not my thing since I can't afford to regularly replace tires (or buy a second sets of rims just to race).

Second, there's the emergency contingency: What if it absolutely, positively HAS to be there overnight? You try driving 1200 miles in 10 hours when you've never had your car over the speed limit. Yes, I know, this almost never happens, but it always seems to happen at inconvenient times.

Third, the aforementioned roads to nowhere; I can understand you not knowing if you live in a major city and have never been more than 100 yards from a convenience store, but there are roads that seem to be used only on a semi-weekly basis, many of them ideal for spirited driving. And then there's the South; it is no accident that most NASCAR drivers come from the South. Moonshine aside, we've got all these roads going up and down small mountains, and (usually) light enough traffic to drive like Michael Schumacher. And we do.

Finally, I know it seems like some guys supe up their cars just to get tail, but I have never understood this; my cars look like refugees from Hell, and not getting laid has never been my problem. One of my favorite stories involves taking my (now ex-)wife to buy a car, and finding a bright red, lowered, be-spoilered (is that right?), etc, tricked out Saturn, custom interior and all, but absolutely NOTHING done to the pathetic 100-hp engine. Mine looks like a beater, but has some game, especially in the twisties.

Please read before posting.

[ Parent ]
Only damfools speed on those roads. (3.00 / 2) (#12)
by Kasreyn on Wed Aug 29, 2007 at 05:51:01 AM EST

As a matter of fact I learned to drive in southern Indiana, on country roads. Glacial moraine hills, blind corners, trees in some places only grudgingly providing a gap for vehicles, and in other places cows only sporadically kept away from the tarmac.

Only, I never chose to speed down these roads. I wouldn't dare. Three reasons: 1.) other people who did speed - I'm talking about 40 over the limit - made it too hazardous to go around a corner with anything less than maximal caution, and 2.) the one-lane roads didn't really constitute one lane, and normal sized cars would have to put their right tires off the shoulder just to get past each other. As for trucks, they simply took the entire roadway, driving straight down the center line. And 3.), there weren't a hell of a lot of cops on those back roads but the ones there were were speed-trapping and the worst were the dying little single-intersection towns. In one of these towns I drove through every night, the limit went from 55 to 35 to 15 in less than 50 feet, with two of the signs half-obscured by bushes, and the town's sole officer parked just beyond the 15mph sign with radar pointed all night long. Fucker was bankrolling the entire town treasury.

I used to ride with a friend who drove the way you describe, in a shitty S-10 which he decelerated solely by downshifting. It was a hair-raising experience each time. It's a miracle he's still alive; he's a trucker today, and has survived about five major accidents. As for me, I never got sold on the "thrill" of betting my life that around that next blind curve there definitely would not be an onrushing dump truck coming down the center line, and that I therefore could risk speeding. Nope, nothing doing.

In all my years on roads like that I never saw anything but supporting evidence for my presumptive conclusion that speeding was a really, really dumb idea on those roads. A kid in my high school class was killed on one of those roads when the car he was in (his mother was driving; she survived) came around one of those corners doing five over and hit a cow. I saw a photo of the car after the people were removed, it looked like Superman had bent it into a U to show off.

I love to speed, but I'll do it where I can see the road ahead and have elbow room to maneuver if I have to, thank you. Florida, I'm sure, has spoiled me; everything is flat and the roads are fairly straight. And they actually have a big enough public works budget to resurface regularly. It's excellent. I think I've had less than a quarter the tire blowouts I had in Indiana, though I haven't been here quite as long as I was there.

I don't have a clever ending for this. Cheers!

"Extenuating circumstance to be mentioned on Judgement Day:
We never asked to be born in the first place."

R.I.P. Kurt. You will be missed.
[ Parent ]
Read it twice (none / 0) (#27)
by codejack on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 05:34:46 PM EST

Again, roads with little/no traffic; Indiana's country roads always seem to have some red neck poking along with his thumb up his ass. That's not what I'm talking about.

I'm in Tennessee, where the backroads often don't see ANY traffic for weeks on end, we have very few cows, and the cops are usually pretty reasonable (not to mention rarely on roads that no one uses). I live on a mountain (or as my girlfriend says, a "hill"; she's from Colorado), so I make daily trips up and down winding roads. It used to be fun until we started getting yankees moving up here; soccer moms in Chebrolett Behemoth SUVs + mountain roads = AAARRRGGGHHH!!!

Florida makes me puke; what's the point of a straight road? "Wooooweeee! I can go 180 MPH!" Great, if you've got a car that will do it. Those are usually hideously expensive and/or dangerous, though, and it's still not as much fun as driving the mountain passes, which they usually suck at. Besides, who's really going to thrash a Ferrari?

Also, road construction budget is federal; is it possible Florida gets a disproportionate amount of money? Perish the thought! Not having water seep into cracks and freeze every winter also does a lot for road maintenance.

How many blowouts have you had?! I've never had a tire blowout, although my ex-wife did a few years ago; but she thinks she ran over something. Is this common in Indiana?

Please read before posting.

[ Parent ]
Answers (none / 0) (#28)
by Kasreyn on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 08:31:12 PM EST

Interstate Highway construction and maintenance is federal. I'm not so sure about state roads. And you're right of course that the lack of weather erosion helps.

Every blowout I've had has been due to a nail or other piece of garbage puncturing my tire. Hasn't happened to me yet down here. Perhaps I've just been lucky?

"Extenuating circumstance to be mentioned on Judgement Day:
We never asked to be born in the first place."

R.I.P. Kurt. You will be missed.
[ Parent ]
It's a combination (none / 0) (#35)
by emmons on Wed Sep 05, 2007 at 02:28:23 PM EST

The majority of Federal highway aid comes in the form of a yearly block grant.  So long as states use some of the money to keep its interstate and US highways up to specs they can use the rest however they want for roads.  All states suppliment the federal money in some way or another.

For example Wisconsin gets roughly $800 million in Federal highway aid per year and chips in an additional $1.4 billion or so - nearly all of which comes from gas taxes.  Other states use some state income and sales taxes for their transportation funds.

Money from this state transportation fund is spent directly on state highway and interstate projects, and indirectly by grants to local governments for local roads and streets.  Local governments sometimes chip in local sales and property tax revenue to augment those state grants.

At least that's how Wisconsin does it, but it's my understanding that transportation funding works generally the same way in most states.

In the beginning the universe was created. This has made a lot of people angry and been widely regarded as a bad move.
-Douglas Adams

[ Parent ]

Do you autocross? (none / 0) (#13)
by GhostOfTiber on Wed Aug 29, 2007 at 08:39:45 AM EST

That's what got me from looking at the "budget luxury" market (older lincolns, cadillacs, etc) to performance.  My buddy took me and I was HOOKED.

And yes, I actually bought a second set of rims to keep junkyard tires on.  Tires with the tread worn to nothing are wonderfully grippy when warm and dry.

[Nimey's] wife's ass is my cocksheath. - undermyne
[ Parent ]

I wish (none / 1) (#26)
by codejack on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 05:04:22 PM EST

I have neither the time nor the money atm (going back to school), but my brother and his wife go about every weekend; he's in a miata, and she's got a yaris. I wish I could afford to go, although there seems to be some debate about how my car would do because of the ridiculously tight gearing (4.42 final drive ratio!).

One trick for the tires is to keep the bald ones on the back, and switch out to race. Only works on FWD, though.

Please read before posting.

[ Parent ]
My car looks like trash (none / 0) (#44)
by lawngnomehitman on Tue May 13, 2008 at 11:27:29 AM EST

It seriously does.  I laugh when I see all of these "pretty" cars that don't go fast, particularly because they have about 8000 lbs of stereo equipment and televisions in them.  These cars that are lowered so they can't be driven, but they're shiny and full of batteries and electronics.  My favorite is when I pull up next to them and they try to race.  They see a pile of trash with some wheels and some idiot inside and think "Hey mang, I got this foo", and then they wonder what happened.  

I wouldnt claim my car is a sleeper by any stretch of the imagination, but at the same time, it's not pretty, but it works great.  

If I were racing people on a regular basis, I'd worry more about the car that looks like it's on its last legs than the pretty one.

[ Parent ]

I autocross the hell out of the car (none / 0) (#14)
by GhostOfTiber on Wed Aug 29, 2007 at 08:43:40 AM EST

I also road-rally, which is like the rally on TV except with pavement and getting a lot less air.

You would probably do well to <A href=http://www.scca.com>read a bit about legal racing</a> before looking down your nose at it.  Yeah, people racing on crowded roads is just stupid. On the other hand, the SCCA has autocross, road rally, and hillclimbing, all of which I am interested in. Hillclimbing is prohibitively expensive, so mostly I stick to the other two.

And, uh, have you ever even seen an MR2?  It barely fits two people in it, let alone allows for sex.

[Nimey's] wife's ass is my cocksheath. - undermyne
[ Parent ]

Well, if I understand this correctly, (none / 0) (#18)
by Kasreyn on Wed Aug 29, 2007 at 08:28:32 PM EST

and bear in mind that this is all taken from third-party sources:

And, uh, have you ever even seen an MR2? It barely fits two people in it, let alone allows for sex.

I think that the idea is that you first take the girl out in the sporty two-seater, thrill her with it, use the cramped space in the car as an excuse to be physically close, then take her to your pad for the sex. Having sex in cars is for teens who can't have sex in their bedrooms, or for middle-aged people trying to relive their childhood. Or, I guess, for the rich and famous in stretch limos.

"Extenuating circumstance to be mentioned on Judgement Day:
We never asked to be born in the first place."

R.I.P. Kurt. You will be missed.
[ Parent ]
Not quite... (none / 0) (#30)
by lawngnomehitman on Fri Aug 31, 2007 at 12:15:58 PM EST

The MR2 is great for physically close, if you don't mind a giant trim piece between you and your lady of the night.  The gas tank lives in there, dead in the middle of the car, so there's no getting close.  * there's also no easy sex in one, it's possible... but it's not easy in the least *  T-Tops make it a slight bit easier, but not enough to make it worthwhile

[ Parent ]
A HUNK OF BURNING LOVE (nt) (none / 0) (#31)
by GhostOfTiber on Fri Aug 31, 2007 at 12:55:06 PM EST

[Nimey's] wife's ass is my cocksheath. - undermyne
[ Parent ]

Ridiculously naive post (none / 0) (#33)
by nyet on Sat Sep 01, 2007 at 02:51:39 PM EST

Totally off base. Pretty much every single track in the US has days where the average person can take their car for a non-competitive, untimed event like a high performance driving school (HPDS) or driver event (HPDE). Both are focused not on speed, but on skill and knowledge; you learn how to drive safer and in control in ALL conditions, not "faster".

In addition, the average person can join SCCA or NASA and do the same in competitive events on a (fairly) modest budget depending on the class.

If straight line speed is your thing, there are dragstrips all over the country which are open to the public almost daily.

In any case, I wish EVERY driver was compelled to take at least one HPDS course to actually learn how a car behaves at its limits rather than how the current "driver education" works: learn the laws.

Totally ridiculous.

If you haven't been to at least one HPDS, there are many situations in which I wish I did not have to share the road with somebody as narrow minded (and probably dangerous) as you.

[ Parent ]

How the hell do you get naieve out of his response (none / 0) (#43)
by lawngnomehitman on Tue May 13, 2008 at 11:23:56 AM EST

?  I agree with our point, that there are a lot of drivers out there who can't, and that there are classes in which you can compete without doing anything to your car.  

Hell, I bought an NA mr2 SIMPLY because I wanted to compete in the ES class at autocrosses.  Hillclimbs and track races require more safety equipment (roll cage, fire-proof suit, your own helmet, fire extinguisher), but still run stock classes.  

Considering that it sounds like you've never driven a car with good handling at or near it's limit, I can see why you would think it pointless to do this.  At the same time, there are people who go apeshit with trying to get the biggest and best fishing gear, or the greatest hunting rifle, or the fastest computer, or the best mouse for their computer so they can pwn n00bs better, whatever.  It's just a matter of being interested in something and putting time and effort into it.  

He wanted to have a car that was capable of going stupid fast, and still being able to handle at those speeds.

[ Parent ]

What's brown and sticky? (3.00 / 3) (#15)
by Stick Apart on Wed Aug 29, 2007 at 12:12:30 PM EST

> "I think it could easily be around 200 million people dead because of gun control." - V


What's orange and sounds like a parrot? (none / 0) (#34)
by yuo on Mon Sep 03, 2007 at 01:43:19 AM EST


I wish I had thought of pants pants pants pants pants pants pants pants.
[ Parent ]

ABS and so on (3.00 / 2) (#19)
by trhurler on Wed Aug 29, 2007 at 08:28:57 PM EST

You're wrong about ABS. The problem isn't the ABS at all. Your suspension is shitty. A good suspension does not suffer from wheel hop. :)

Oh, and if your every day driving (as opposed to emergencies,) causes wheelhop, then either you drive WAY too hard in daily commuting or else your suspension is REALLY, REALLY fucking shitty.

Sure, guys used to 60s cars and so on are used to wheelhop. Their old cars mostly had poor suspension designs, solid rear axles and panhard rods, and so on, and there really wasn't a lot they could do except live with it or heavily modify the car (very expensive.) However, wheel hop shouldn't EXIST in any even remotely modern car, such as yours. At all. At least, not on anything with an IRS. If it does, either the geometry sucks, there's too much roll bar, or your spring and damper rates are not up to snuff. (This was one of the biggest jokes of the new GTO - it came out the first year with wheelhop so bad you could hardly launch it. I used to make fun of them at stoplights because I knew by the time they hooked up I'd be at the next light, or else they'd have to launch so soft they stood no chance. They fixed this the second year, at least mostly, but it didn't matter because sales were so bad they canned the whole thing shortly thereafter.)

On the other hand, no matter how well you learn to drive the car, without ABS you need only make one minor misjudgment when braking in an emergency or just because you misjudged a corner entry and now you're completely and utterly fucked (and in a 2500 pound unibody car, likely dead as well unless you've welded in a cage, bolted your seat directly to the floor, and added a racing harness.)

All that said, your estimate of what is or isn't a daily driver is off. People commute daily in nuttier cars than you're describing, and once you can't put your food down without just burning off rubber, more horsepower doesn't make you any less safe. Given the size tires you can fit under an MR2, I'm pretty sure you're already safely to that point in at least first and second. If not, perhaps you need to do some more adjusting.

What's really funny is watching the (admittedly often well performing,) autocross guys in older Civics and Corollas and so on. They suffer HORRIBLY once you put a set of really grippy tires on them. Not ordinary wheelhop. The suspension is so questionably designed that when the outside front wheel reaches full compression, there isn't enough range of motion in the suspension to keep the inside rear wheel on the ground even were there no spring or damper holding it in place at all. Now, most drivers don't have the skill to actually cause this, but it is high fucking larious when they do. It really isn't difficult these days to get overall suspension geometry right, and that was true in the 80s and 90s too, so you have to wonder what the fuck the automakers were thinking. It isn't like it costs a significant extra amount to do what any competent suspension engineer already was trained for in the first place.

'God dammit, your posts make me hard.' --LilDebbie

my take on this (none / 0) (#21)
by khallow on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 12:17:26 AM EST

If the equivalent "Chop" job had been done to a human being, they'd still be talking about it a century from now. Parents would be scaring their children to sleep with this stuff.

Stating the obvious since 1969.
[ Parent ]

Nah (none / 1) (#22)
by trhurler on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 01:21:54 AM EST

I expect bigger modifications than this to be made to people within a couple of decades. As car modifications go, this is moderate. On the other hand, cloning, direct neural interfaces, learned reflex science, and related fields are coming along at rates far beyond what the general public is aware of. It isn't secret, but it isn't overly hyped yet either.

For instance, artificial eyes that actually work for people have been around for at least a decade now, and the technology will probably be commonly available (and good enough to be widely used) in our lifetimes.

Artificial limbs that move when you will them to - they exist and are becoming more usable and "lifelike" all the time. It won't be long before they're good enough to give a natural gait and normal strength with one fake leg. Hands that actually turn, open, and close like real ones (albeit somewhat crude real ones,) are already in use.

Cloning of complete people is going nowhere fast, but cloning of individual organs or pieces of tissue is GOING to happen, and will revolutionize transplant surgery (and lengthen lifespans considerably.)

Artificial senses already exist. (Think carefully about this one and how completely nuts it really is. But it works.)

And so on. Genetic modifications, "design corrections" at the tissue or organ level, and so on are not science fiction - they are working science in labs today, and they ARE coming to a future near you.

By comparison, Frankensteining an MR2 is pretty tame.

'God dammit, your posts make me hard.' --LilDebbie

[ Parent ]
com ci com ca (none / 0) (#24)
by GhostOfTiber on Thu Aug 30, 2007 at 10:47:58 AM EST

You're right about the suspension, it's got the tokiko suspension on it which firms things up incredibly. But, the ABS is calibrated for the stock suspension and does a piss poor job with any modification whatsoever.

It was already sketchy on the stock MR2 since the center of mass was so radically different from anything else in the Toyota kit but doing anything whatsoever to the suspension makes the ABS system next to worthless.  The only annoying design "problem" with it is that Toyota put the ABS fuse in line with both the ABS and the power steering.

[Nimey's] wife's ass is my cocksheath. - undermyne
[ Parent ]

The question is, (none / 0) (#32)
by trhurler on Fri Aug 31, 2007 at 09:28:16 PM EST

Is the Tokiko suspension just done wrong, or did they do the best they could and was it Toyota that screwed up the basic design? Because wheelhop should not happen.

'God dammit, your posts make me hard.' --LilDebbie

[ Parent ]
I'm with you (none / 0) (#41)
by ff on Tue Jan 22, 2008 at 10:58:12 PM EST

Sorta anyway... Some cars just have really crappy ABS that probably should be disabled.

If you take two identical race cars with the same driver and then turn the ABS on and off it will be faster with ABS.

ABS allows you to brake a lot harder, especially in corners because it can keep individual tires from locking up which gives you more lateral traction at maximum braking.  Plus it just lets you stop faster in general.  Even the best driver in the world can not stop a car as fast as a good ABS system (this has been tested by the way; I wish I had a link).

The same goes for traction control.  A really good traction control system will make the car faster.  There was a bunch of hoopla over this in the F1 scene.

[ Parent ]

It's a false comparison (none / 0) (#42)
by GhostOfTiber on Wed Jan 23, 2008 at 06:55:09 AM EST

You're assuming both cars are in a skid.

The non-ABS car won't skid until the tires break loose, then the driver must correct to a state of not-skidding.

The ABS car will activate the ABS before a skid - when one of the wheels starts to skid. This is a perfectly valid condition when cornering since the inside wheels move slower than the outside wheels, but without a differential, this will cause a skid for one wheel on the side of the car. The ABS kicks in, game over. The guy who can put the car on three wheels wins.

[Nimey's] wife's ass is my cocksheath. - undermyne
[ Parent ]

Nope (none / 0) (#45)
by ff on Fri Jan 23, 2009 at 04:59:48 PM EST

When a good ABS system "kicks in" it only unlocks the tire(s) that is losing traction.  The rest of the tires are still braking at maximum and in fact you have more traction because the ABS is controlling the tire(s) having problems while you can push the rest to the limit.  You can't do that without ABS.

A tire that has broken loose provides little to no braking power.  With ABS it can let those tires loose so they can provide what traction they can while you push all the other tires to their respective limits.

[ Parent ]

What do you get out of building computers? (none / 1) (#36)
by gtx on Wed Oct 10, 2007 at 09:37:02 PM EST

Nothing.  You're giving somebody shit for building cars and then explaining that your building computers is a better hobby.

Perhaps he just likes building cars?

What the fuck do you get out of building computers anymore?  The budget off-the-shelf machines will do everything that 99% of any job will ask for, and if you're using your computer for work, somebody else should be paying for it anyway.

That leaves one thing:  video games.  If you're going to seriously tell me that tweaking a computer just to play video games is a better hobby than building cars, you need to get out of the fucking house more often and stop being such a pompous cocksucker.  You're probably one of those people who has spent the majority of his life saying shit like "nobody understands my genius" without realizing that you're an insufferable, boring douchebag who possesses no social skills.  You're not special.  You're not unique.  I'm guessing you're probably young, too, which means that you probably consider "building a computer" to mean "effortlessly slapping a bunch of color-coded parts that you bought off the shelf together."

Jesus, get over yourself.  You are the reason the internet sucks.

i don't have anything clever to write here.

I think your sig explains it all (none / 0) (#37)
by GhostOfTiber on Thu Oct 11, 2007 at 04:02:13 PM EST

Cut and paste adequacy trolls that died long ago which you put in articles you didn't read and you thought no-one was watching...

You don't have anything clever to write here.

[Nimey's] wife's ass is my cocksheath. - undermyne
[ Parent ]

actually (none / 0) (#38)
by gtx on Thu Oct 11, 2007 at 08:09:15 PM EST

if the accusation is that i didn't read the article, i'm mildly offended.  i'm not any more offended than i should be considering that this is only the goddamned internet, but i am still mildly offended.  i actually read the whole thing.

i considered the fact that it might be a troll, but i felt like biting anyway.  it's kinda cathartic.

why did i a reply to a comment on a story that was months old?  well, the link to the story was somewhere conspicuous on the site and i didn't realize it was old until after i wrote it.  had i noticed before writing my reply, i probably would have never replied as i really would have assumed that no-one would be watching.  (although it seems i would have been wrong in any case, as you were indeed watching)

that being said, the saga of the mr2 was interesting.  my dad used to have an mr2 for a while, it was a fun little car.  i wish i'd learned more about cars growing up, i'm just about useless for anything past replacing a headlight.


i don't have anything clever to write here.
[ Parent ]

so where did all the computer stuff come in? (none / 0) (#39)
by GhostOfTiber on Fri Oct 12, 2007 at 08:22:14 AM EST

You realize I'm a linux geek in real life to pay for MR2s, right?

[Nimey's] wife's ass is my cocksheath. - undermyne
[ Parent ]

who's retarded? me, mostly. (none / 1) (#40)
by gtx on Sun Oct 14, 2007 at 02:40:12 PM EST

oh hell, that was my fault.

i accidentally replied to the story instead of the post a couple up that was giving you hell for not being an amateur racer or some shit like that.  i found it kind of irritating that somebody would actually express the thought "building cars is stupid, i build computers which is helpful"

i can see where this makes me look retarded, which i will not even try to deny at this point.


i don't have anything clever to write here.
[ Parent ]

Kuro5hin Chopper: Everything Must Come to an End | 45 comments (39 topical, 6 editorial, 2 hidden)
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