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Thread: GT86

  1. #21
    We All Live in a Yellow BRZ The359's Avatar
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    Join the club.
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  2. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Leon View Post
    If I manage to sell both my mum's houses (good luck ... small town), I will be in a financial position to get a GT86.
    So very much want.
    We've got another housing bubble inflating here in London, hope a bit of that foamy goodness reaches NZ ;-)

  3. #23
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    YOU KNOW YOU WANT IT

  4. #24
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    OK, got back from my week of driving in the mountains and I've learnt a bit about the 86.

    The rack bushes are a bit crap. They've always been a little soft (steering not quite direct enough, just a bit sluggish) but I think they're now overheating and giving up. Basically if I spend about half an hour driving a road with reasonably constant mid speed corners (basically travelling in the 60-100mph range) and loading the car up a bit the steering gets really bad towards the end. First time it happened I thought I had a slow flat so pulled over to check the pressures and they were all good. Then I stopped for a while and had some food and it was fine. Then the next day after doing something similar it came back again. My thinking is that it could only be the tyres overheating or the rack bushes getting really soft and it's not really the feeling you get when you cook the tyres nor does it feel like overheated tyres so I'm blaming the bushes. The steering is also noticeably worse at the end of the week than at the beginning so I think I've killed them.

    I put pilot sport 3's onto the car on monday morning before I left, main reasons were getting a stiffer sidewall which didn't roll over and better wet weather grip. Tyres are more responsive and noticeably better grip in the dry but the wet weather grip is just unbelievable. This was nice timing as 3 1/2 of the days were on wet roads culminating on late thursday afternoon with a descent down falls creek in reasonable rain with a very wet road. This is about a 30km/20 mile genuine mountain descent and I came down quicker than the last time I drove that road with standard rubber/suspension. Not surprising that with new rubber and suspension I'm quicker until I point out that the last time it was bone dry in the middle of summer. Those tyres are just magic in the wet, will buy again.

    This was also the first real proper test I've had of the new suspension, there are a number of sections that I drove which I had done a year earlier on the standard suspension and rubber. Two sections in particular really highlighted the differences, the road from cabramurra to khankoban (60km, 40 miles) and the back way into falls creek (37km, 25 mile). On the standard suspension I wasn't particularly comfortable on either of these roads even though they are both favourites of mine. Both are quite narrow, narrow enough to not justify a centre line for example, and while they are in a decent state of repair with no potholes they are a quite rough road with a lot of bumps and undulations. The falls creek road in particular is a bit of a goat track with corrugations on the road surface for most of it's length. I love this kind of road as it's constant varied cornering, most of them blind, where you really have to concentrate on what you're doing.

    With the standard suspension the car was getting thrown around quite a bit so you really had to back off as it wasn't leaving you any handling capacity to deal with cars coming the other way on your side of the road or kangaroos bouncing out in front of you. As a result with the standard stuff I was on roads I loved but because I didn't have faith in the car I couldn't properly drive them. With the new suspension that was all changed, the bumps and corrugations dissapeared and I had a beautifully stable and predictable platform to work with. The new suspension is stiffer (6kg/mm front and rear) but the damping is lightyears more sophisticated so it copes with road imperfections so much better while also fixing imo the two big handling defects of the standard suspension - excessive weight transfer to the front wheels under braking and slowness of weight transfer across the front wheels during direction change. Those two sections went from a favourite roads I endured with standard suspension to roads that left me elated. They were two high points in a week full of awesome.

    Complaints. Well, not many but apart from the rack bushes mentioned above I did hit a couple of issues with the car. The first is the fuel tank size, it just isn't big enough. Theres a plethora of awesome roads in this area of aus but not many service stations that carry 98 octane (93 to the americans) fuel. 95 is reasonably common but thats emergency only. The rain saved me a bit as it meant that I was often using a higher gear/lower revs but even still I was running on fumes a few times and had to do a splash of 95 on the last day. Another 10 litres (about a couple of gallons) would do wonders. I've also got a rather nasty clunk in the front suspension which is getting worse and bad enough for me to abort the last bit of the last day and head home on the freeway. It doesn't seem to be affecting handling, my first thought was it may have been a sway bar end link, but I do have issues with the rack bushes so it might be something in there or it might be an engine mount. At any rate I couldn't see anything from the side of the road so I'm heading into a mates workshop on tuesday to check it out (and hopefully also put in whiteline rack bushes if he remembered to order them).

    Of the two police officers I had road safety discussions with the first cop was a complete tool and the second was pretty decent. It was a reminder why I generally avoid driving in Victoria, Australia in general is seriously speed nazi but even in that group Victoria is in its own very special class of completely over the top policing of speed limits.

    I'd also say that the general public is usually bloody decent. Often I was on narrow, winding mountain roads which have very limited opportunities for overtaking. Traffic was very light (often I could drive half an hour without seeing another car) but still on many of the roads I was on you really needed the car in front to pull over to let you through. In almost all cases within a couple of minutes this would happen with the exception of two caravans I got stuck behind. This was on the alpine way between Thredbo and Tom Groggin, a road which is signposted as not suitable for caravans due to it's narrowness, elevation changes and tight corners, and I got stuck for 20 minutes behind these two wankers. There are regular bays which they could pull into to let me through but instead they continued their merry way travelling at crawl pace with a lengthening line of cars behind them. On a road they really shouldn't be on. They were probably engrossed in a discussion about how terrible kids are these days that they didn't realise they were being selfish, rude pricks.

    Finally it was an awesome week and the car was just brilliant. I drove around 3500kms and of that probably 2800 of them were on basically deserted back roads just enjoying myself. The other bonus was that a lot of those roads, probably more than 1000km of them, were completely new to me and all those new roads were just amazing. The 86 is brilliant for this sort of thing and I'm slowly getting it to where I want it to be. I used to do this sort of drive very regularly but between work and being overseas most of the time it's fallen by the wayside however this trip has really motivated me to get out more often.

  5. #25
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    Sounds awesome, really glad you had another good driving trip. A bit jealous!

  6. #26
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    That sounds absolutely fantastic. I'm extremely jealous as I'm not yet in a position to fully enjoy my car.
    More than once the board thread on the twins has had me contemplating one and this write up has been the best so far.

    Glad you're enjoying it.

  7. #27
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    GT86 thread needs GT86 photos

    Omeo-Tallangatta RD. the best bit of this is about 110km long but all up it's around 170km. For that 'best' bit I did it in both directions on different days and in the 220km of driving I only had to pass 2 cars (and only had maybe 8 going the other way). So basically you can imagine 110km of this with the road to yourself.



    Mt Hotham Road. One of my favourite mountain climbs in Australia, properly twisty, no guard rails, make a mistake and you're in a world of pain. Well, more like a thousand feet of tumbling and then not much. Great road.



    And finally the back way into falls creek. Bit of a goat track and I had a few issues with fog. This picture makes it look better than it actually was.



    I should have taken more photos but what can I say, I was driving
    Last edited by IMOA; April 13th, 2014 at 12:56 AM.

  8. #28
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    Well, I'm glad you did take a few photos - just those three give a great sense of the roads you've been talking about.

    The car doesn't look excessively low in those pics, looks just 'right' on its wheels. How much lower is it? What dampers are they? Finding good aftermarket dampers is often tricky among all the boingy rubbish.

  9. #29
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    Yep, it's at a sensible height. About 20mm lower than stock which should put the lowest point of the car at around 105mm (minimum for aus is 100mm). Standard they look a little odd to be honest, kind of like they're on stilts so bringing them down 20mm makes them look normal rather than lowered. This still gives it about the same real life ground clearance as a standard 2006 civic (the civic scraped the front where the 86 doesn't and the 86 scrapes the middle where the civic didn't).

    Suspension is MCA Reds. Locally done by the best damper guy in australia who earned his chops in rallying. They're effectively tweaked proflex dampers, he used to be the aus distributor for proflex and made changes to them until it got to the point where there wasn't really any proflex left, at that point he decided to go out on his own. They're quality coil overs designed by no bullshit blokes who know what they're doing and are happy to have a good chat with you to discuss what you're trying to achieve and tweak the valving to suit. They're also working on FD coil overs

  10. #30
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    Those roads through Victoria are about as good as they get.

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