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Removing power steering for autocross

Old 01-17-12, 08:15 AM
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NY Removing power steering for autocross

So I decided to get into circuit racing. A friend of mines recommended to remove power steering in my RX-7 turbo ll because it's better for circuit racing. Is this true? Any recommendations?
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Old 01-17-12, 10:45 AM
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Your title says AutoX, your post says circuit racing(which implies road course). For AutoX, I would leave it. Everything in AutoX is violent and you will have issues being able to move your wheel fast enough. For track use, it's driver preference. True manual steering gives a more realistic feel/feedback for some. For others, they have the ability to feel the car enough that it doesn't matter.
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Old 01-17-12, 01:09 PM
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try it both ways and see which one you like better. i personally like the power steering as you can concentrate on placing the car, and passing people vs concentrating on getting the wheel turned.
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Old 01-17-12, 01:13 PM
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Before I depowered the rack in my GXL, I would sometimes overrun the pump during fast transitions. The manual steering lets me feel the front of the car better since the vibration and effort change as the tires are reaching their limit, but it definitely adds drama and effort while racing.

The power steering in my TurboII works fine for autocross. I've never overrun the pump, and I don't feel the need to convert to manual.

I wouldn't do the conversion just because a friend tells you to. You want to feel both types of steering for yourself first because it's personal preference.
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Old 01-17-12, 01:34 PM
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thanks for all the help and advice, from what my friend told me cause he is the one that got me in to this, its going to be a mixture of both circuit racing and autoX at the current time my car does not have power steering so i will install it an see how my turbo II drives like.

I also have another question i just rebuild my Turbo II engine i a have about 400 miles on engine do you guys think the engine will give me any problems if i push it to much, i installed a koyorad radiator and Racing beat oil lines to make sure my engine gets enough oil in and heat out, what do you guys think?
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Old 01-17-12, 02:20 PM
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your main issue with any type of racing is keeping the oil cool.

Many here have no issues with the stock oil cooler, others run two in parallel. I moved my oil cooler to the back of the car under the spare tub. No issues with cooling now with the better airflow over the cooler and the extra oil capacity of the 16'(x2) length of 5/8" hydraulic hose.

Other than that, don't overboost a stock engine. if you have it ported, you can add a bit but get the feel of the the car before you start tweaking.

If you car is going to be a street/track machine, there is some creature comforts that you are going to get used to not having. Just a fact of life for this sport.

Also, choose one, either Auto-x or Road race. Under most circumstances, the suspension/steering setup is not compatible between the two.

As far as your power vs manual steering, what others said is true. try each and choose which one fits your body. Even if you are a burly man, manual steering can turn you into a girly man in minutes!

If your track is fast with few corners, then manual works. If your track is mid to slow speed with many corners or any tight corners at all, then you will want power. Even with power, your arms are going to have to work if you spend any amount of time doing corners. Auto-x is a definite power candidate.

In any power setup make sure you have a good cooler so you don't airlock your pump and/or burn it out with heat.

I found that swapping out the PS fluid with DextronIII high performance fluid does better to combat bubbles and heating.

***Edit***

Forgot to mention, that if you find that the pump is hydrolocking when swinging violently from full lock to lock, you can try making new lines to pass larger volume of fluid or do what i did and change to a SBC pump with larger lines.

I use a transmission cooler with this pump and an under drive pulley and I don't have any issues.

Last edited by nofords; 01-17-12 at 02:32 PM.
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Old 01-17-12, 11:22 PM
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Thanks for all the help I will let you guys now what kind of racing I will be doing I'm just so nervous cause this is going to be my first time racing in a actual track, and I'm also going to be representing RX-7, I just hope I make a good time, do you guys now of any good websites with some helpful racing tips and techniques???
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Old 01-18-12, 07:41 AM
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take HPDE (aka racing school). that's about the best tips and techniques you can get.
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Old 01-18-12, 09:07 AM
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HPDE is NOT a "drivers school" and imho a terrible way to get into driving a race car. Fine for guys who just want to go out and drive thier street car, bad bad bad for guys who want to learn how to be a racing driver. I see your from NY, so you can probably run a couple of trackdays with EMRA or a similar organization to get you started. Find a good driving instructor and listen to what they say and away you go. Pretty sure Bertul Roos still has a school up there, another great resource.

Power steering is largely dependant on tire and car weight. If your turning very large staicky tires in a relatively heavy and fast car lap after lap, you will tire out and that leads to mistakes. When the electric powersteering rack went down on one of my RX8's this year we benched the car because literally, it will wear you out.
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Old 01-18-12, 09:35 AM
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I agree above. Go to a good drivers school. And listen to what the instructor
says. Don't worry about being the fastest. Worry about driving the correct racing
line every lap, every corner. Being faster will come with time. Just being out there with a rotary is representing. That's good enough for now. Finding a way to
tow your car home because you put it in the wall because you got over your
head in a corner is not what you want. Take it slow and learn to be smooth.
I have a manual rack that came in my current S4 TII that I'm putting together
for track. I've always had a powered rack in the past. So I guess I'll find out
soon enough. Were usually on track 15 to 20 minutes. So we'll see.

And Don't Forget The Most Important Thing. Have Fun!
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Old 01-18-12, 12:36 PM
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My TII didn't come with power steering and my Horizontal mount IC set up precludes using the stock set up.

I would be much faster in auto-x if I had power steering as with sticky tires I could put the car where I want it if I could turn the wheel fast enough.

I love the way it feels on the street without power steering; but then again, when I want to play around with drifting it is impossible to counter as fast as I would like.

255/275 NT01
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