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Discussion Starter #122
I love the color. The turbo really makes a difference, eh?
So it was a non-abarth with a slush box, and my expectations couldn't have been lower. So when I actually got in it, I was actually pleasantly surprised. Funny how "fast" and "good" are so dependent on your expectations.
 

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Well, that ought to keep you entertained for a couple hours. :unsure: So, what are all the bits for? I assume the black and chrome tubes might be for the inter-cooler, but what's the orange/chrome tube to the left?
 

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Discussion Starter #125
Orange is a fender well intake. So I’ll be doing:
-sway bar
-coil overs
-torque arm insert
-fmic
-plugs and coils
-diverter valve
-tune
-fender well intake
- brakes

And I’ve got some random bits for doing a different version of the boost leak fix that retains the Venturi function while off boost.



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Discussion Starter #126
Progress starts. I installed the new 28 mm sway bar. Suspension is really something I would like to understand better, so I went a little nuts trying to measure what effect sway bar stiffness has on handling


I borrowed some corner scales from a buddy and ran some tire loading tests. It was deeply satisfying to have the results come out close to what I expected.


Really enjoying working on this little car. And for anyone curious, this is my stock weight distribution:

 

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Just as a thought, I notice the LR is carrying 50 pounds additional weight. I'm wondering, if you put it on a rack that lifts the tires, then loosen one of the sway bar clamps, if that weight would distribute itself a bit more evenly.
 

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Discussion Starter #128
Just as a thought, I notice the LR is carrying 50 pounds additional weight. I'm wondering, if you put it on a rack that lifts the tires, then loosen one of the sway bar clamps, if that weight would distribute itself a bit more evenly.
Bear in mind 2 things:
1) I wasn’t sitting in the car, so it’s worse than that
2) coil overs are getting installed now, then we use height adjustments to get the corners to balance


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Discussion Starter #130
I installed vogtland coil overs and attempted to corner balance the car:


The verdict on the Vogtlands:
1) Haven't raced on them, therefore the below opinion is meaningless
2) Only a handfull of miles on them, so opinion meaningless
3) I purchased my car with lowering springs paired to OEM shocks and struts. The change in my ride and handling might not reflect yours

I'm unhappy that the spring compression changes as you adjust height. I'm unhappy that firmness or rebound is not adjustable. In possibly...
related news, I'm very happy with the price I paid. And the feel is better every way compared to what I have. These are definitely not overly stiff, they feel good. So if they keep me planted while thrashing around cones, I will be a very happy man.

The corner balancing was ****. I out the car up and down to adjust 30 times before convincing myself I couldn't get any closer. You reach a point where you have 8 choices (4 corners that could go up or down) and every choice is bad. But It was a really eye opening experience, and probobly not something most people attempt (except for those way more serious than me).

Enjoy the video!
 

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Discussion Starter #132
I haven’t re-weighed it. The guy who lent me the scales is a formula 4 race engineer. In a couple weeks, I’m going to throw a beer, bbq and balancing party with him and 2 other race car guys, and we’ll see if it’s changed, and see if 4 heads and beer can get closer to ideal balance than I did.


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Too bad you can't raise (block) the wheels high enough to slide under the car while it's on the scales. Then you could loosen the sway bars, adjust shock height to balance, then tighten the sway bars again.
 

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Doug, Really enjoying your thread as others are here as well. Thank you for being so fun and yet sensible with your car. Seems like you're taking a conservative approach to your modifications, which if I ever get into it with my car I would do much the same. Someday some more power would be super fun. I would emulate your approach of ensuring reliability and with quality parts. For me, different focus in the near term, I don't want to derail your thread; can I PM you about regular maintenance?
 

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Also, BTW, before reading your first posts I never considered putting the child seat into the car. Just figured it would be too tight a fit. My 3 year old son loves to look at the Fiat, and he really wants to go for a ride. It's time to hook him up!

My car has racked up 34K miles, but it's 7 years old. It's long overdue for the full set of scheduled maintenance per the owner's manual. Hoping to do a good chunk of it myself, but I haven't been under the hood in a few years. I last changed the oil at a Valvoline Instant Oil Change spot. What oil do you like for these cars? Also, looking for recommendations on brake pads. The OEM pads seem very dusty to me, so hoping to find something that makes less dust, sintered or the like.

BREAK BREAK

For power upgrades, what is the consensus on the package of parts that maintains closest to stock reliability?
 

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Discussion Starter #137
Also, BTW, before reading your first posts I never considered putting the child seat into the car. Just figured it would be too tight a fit. My 3 year old son loves to look at the Fiat, and he really wants to go for a ride. It's time to hook him up!

My car has racked up 34K miles, but it's 7 years old. It's long overdue for the full set of scheduled maintenance per the owner's manual. Hoping to do a good chunk of it myself, but I haven't been under the hood in a few years. I last changed the oil at a Valvoline Instant Oil Change spot. What oil do you like for these cars? Also, looking for recommendations on brake pads. The OEM pads seem very dusty to me, so hoping to find something that makes less dust, sintered or the like.

BREAK BREAK

For power upgrades, what is the consensus on the package of parts that maintains closest to stock reliability?

I'm hoping a lot of others chime in, because I deffinately don't consider myself expert enough to have strong opinions on any of this (Other than that 3 year olds ABSOLUTELY belong in Abarths, its negligence NOT to rev the **** out of it for them). I have no evidence to recommend one oil over another. Sounds like there is a laundry list of "earlier than you'd think" maintenance items including plugs, wheel bearings, strut top mounts and engine mounts (maybe trans mounts also). The multi-air brick makes it more important than normal to keep the right amount of clean oil in the car.

On power, It is deffinately consensus that these benefit greatly from a tune. Plugs and coils and perhaps inter cooler help protect reliability when adding that power, so I'm doing them. What type of tune is for some reason a nasty, controversial topic on these. What I believe is true is that any of them will make you happier, but deciding which one will make you happiest requires us to have a giant internet flame war (apparently). I don't want to weigh in on things like springs and cams, but I think when people are discussing it, every point should start with "The multi-air is weird". I haven't thought it all the way through, but I do think that just because something is a great upgrade on an LS or a 2JZ head / valve train, it doesn't necessarily work the same way on the multi-air. Basically, whatever you do, the multi air is going to try to operate the way it wants to, and it has more options to undo your hard work. So if you don't fully understand the multi-air (I don't), then you don't fully understand the effect of your mods. I haven't considered down pipe / exhaust mods yet, but someday maybee? I can't rap my head around swapping something (the exhaust) that comes from the factory better (sounding) than anything else you can get for less than 6 figures.

Brake pads: I am currently swapping from unknown pads to EBC yellows. What I have is bad for dust, and what I'm putting on might be worse, dust isn't my priority. But I haven't seen anyone saying "Pad X really is dust free", despite some manufacturers claiming to be better on dust.

Hope this helps, and people with opinions, please chime in. I'd just really appreciate if you spell out what you've heard, vs what you think, vs what you feel from having tried it, to what you have actually measured. Those are all valuable inputs, but massively different in terms of certainty.
 

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I can already tell I'm going to glean a lot from everyone's examined understanding. Another thing that's been a few years for me is having been on a decent car forum. Thanks for the insight. And thanks for the check list at the top of your post (plugs, wheel bearings..) those are not in the table in the manual.

I was looking at Hawk's "low dust" performance pad. I certainly wouldn't expect great things, but it's the thought that counts?

I would have to agree on the exhaust. Although I'm sure someone has "make it bigger" advice... even for this car. When I first drove my car to work here a couple of guys heard it and came up and asked, "Does that thing have the Ferrari exhaust?" "Um, no, that's just stock". What is the "Ferrari exhaust"? Yes, "Italian" cars (really Mexican in our case) are pretty fun and interesting, but they're not that whacky.
 

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Where did you get the plugs?

Did the open flash tablet's conservative power gain estimate make it more credible to you?
 
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