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Incremental upgrade, or leave it alone?



icek

ClioSport Club Member
  4GTS/7.5R/182
As the first year with the 182 comes to a close I have found myself summarising the experience so far and what might come next.

This year focused on maintenance and learning how the car handles. Luckily I started off with a nearly standard car (lowered on Cooksports and fitted with a Whiteline rear ARB) and feel like I now have a decent reference point. About halfway through the year I swapped PS3s with AD08RSs but have otherwise made no changes.

I enjoyed the car far more on the road with the PS3 tyre, more predictable, fun and less hard work. The AD08RSs added quite a lot of tramlining, a busy ride and twitchiness over rough road surfaces. I feel this is greatly amplified by the vague off-centre steering feel which I presume is a standard feature of the hydraulic system, it always takes me some 15 minutes of driving to get used to how much slack there is off-centre.
On track, the PS3 tyre just didn't seem to last more than a couple of laps before overheating and its sidewalls giving up. The AD08RSs completely fixed that issue and allowed me to enjoy a full 20min track session without feeling the tyres were holding me back. However, the body roll is way more noticeable now and some of that delicate balance has also eroded. Overall though and in 50/50 use, I prefer the AD08RS despite the negative points.

I wonder where to go next, either:

1) Leave it alone for another year and continue to learn how to get the best of the current setup - I'm not going full track car mode anyway and loathe to make too many changes at once

2) Try some small changes to see if I can make the most of the stickier AD08RSs, I'm thinking some of the following but wondering what you would suggest based on your experiences:

- Coilovers - mainly to reduce body roll on track, though I worry if adding stiffness to the dampers will make it less fun still to drive on poorly surfaced roads
- Brake ducts and maybe new pads - brake fade is manageable (DS2500 / Brembo HCs) as I don't go full Hulk on track, but the discs vibrate quite a lot so I wonder if these pads are leaving deposit
- Camber bolts - I wonder if adding some negative camber at the front might improve turn in slightly on track - again not sure if this would make tramlining worse

The first option (coilovers) is the most expensive but if I hated it, I might be able to recover some of the outlay by selling them on. The other 2 options shouldn't break the bank. What would you pick next?
 

dann2707

ClioSport Club Member
2nd option is a can of worms and you'll find yourself chasing perfection imo.

Once you upgrade one thing you'll find the limit of another component, therefore you'll want to keep upgrading bits. This isn't particularly a problem as you'll indefinitely have a much better handling car but just be mindful of the cost and time implications on doing so.

I usually always do option 2 on my cars!
 

Usr117063

ClioSport Club Member
It’s not just the spool valve characteristics that make the steering like that, it’s the rubber in the column. The rack mount bushes are crap inc powerflex, only solution is solid versions. The rack pinion upper bearing is an awful design, you can build up a brand new rack and move the pinion with your hand, think of the weight of the steering and how easy it moves around when driving. Then there is a couple smaller things like the rack rotary seals (inner rack rather than outer) that allow the rack shaft to move around too easily and partly causes the mesh of the gears to be sloppy. Although after fixing everything Ive listed, there is still a slight mesh issue, its very small and Im happy with the steering now but obviously Im going to work on a fix. The column flexes loads and the lower bearing in the column is a road car specific bearing, made to soak up nvh, not what you see in a race car column.

You're more than happy to have a go in mine to compare the difference, if you're not too far.
 

icek

ClioSport Club Member
  4GTS/7.5R/182
2nd option is a can of worms and you'll find yourself chasing perfection imo.
This is good advice and like many others I have thrown mod after mod in past cars, often too quickly to appreciate what each change brought to the table. Now I'm old (well I feel old anyway 😂) and want to savour the journey.

I just wonder if there is any obvious change I should try next and whether it might bring too much compromise.

You're more than happy to have a go in mine to compare the difference, if you're not too far.

Thanks, sounds like you have researched this quite extensively! I wonder what the increased nvh is like with solid mounts. I'm based near Cambridge though it might be that with things opening up there'll be some meets on the cards.
 


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