I’ve made some major progress on the Miata! The shop I use for working on my cars is located at work though, so it was as if I spent the last three days commuting to work for my entire weekend. It made for a long and tiring weekend so this week is definitely going be a sleepy one. Thursday night I had an ultimate frisbee league game followed by a 3 hour surfing lesson on Friday morning. Then I went straight to the shop in order to get started on my coilover project. Unfortunately, I forgot my keys to the old miata so the steering wheel locked almost immediately. I worked on some minor stuff on the new Miata instead for an hour and then just went home, having basically wasted a drive out there. Saturday, I went back with a vengeance and spent 7 hours getting some quality progress on the coilover job.
Then on Sunday, I spent another 4 hours in the shop to finally finish the coilover install. I had to remove the rear OEM shock assemblies, fit the FM coils in place, and then painstakingly adjust everything to the right height. I should have followed the instructions and bench adjusted the coil perches to approximately the right height before installation. Especially the rears, as adjusting those on the car was a painful and grueling process. At least 2 hours of that block of time was spent solely on adjusting coilover perches. But at last, they are finally complete with all four corners showing about 12 inches from the hub to the wheel arches. I might still adjust the fronts down another half inch to give a bit of rake (recommended by FM) but we shall see if I have time before getting to the alignment shop. The coilovers ride beautifully in this car, even better than when I had them in the old car. I think replacing the bump stops and reassembling the whole assemblies made a significant difference because I am at a lower height now but I don’t scrape on the speed bumps in my apartment building nor do pot holes cause any crashing/banging about. It feels significantly better than the OEM shocks with 245k miles on them as well, but that is not surprising at all.
The other car is still sitting on jack stands since there are no suspension bits attached to it. But that should be easy work to bolt it back up with the OEM assemblies from the new Miata. I was too tired and my hands hurt from all of the other work, so I figured it could wait a couple of days to complete. In total, I spent 7 hours paying for a spot for the old Miata and 6 hours paying for a spot for the new Miata. Plus it will take another 1-2 hours to finalize the old one before I can roll it back to storage again. Thankfully at only $2 per hour and only one overnight charge of $10, that is a grand total of $40 for a massive weekend of work.
Now I just need to get a proper racing alignment from a good shop and then order brake pads. I have new rotors waiting to go in when the pads do in order to properly bed them. Then I will be ready for my track day at Laguna Seca next Friday! If I can get the alignment this week, I might do an extra track day on this Friday at Buttonwillow, but that might be asking too much to accomplish.
Pictures of the lowered car to come soon!