Autocross Mazdaspeed3 Project #2

See post #1 here Because, you know, scrolling two posts down is difficult.

In the last post, wheels and tires were test fit and photographed and that’s about it. This update will be mostly about suspension. Yesterday, the coilovers arrived. We went with BC for several reasons.

  1. Cost. For $950 shipped with custom valving and spring rates, it is a tough deal to beat. No matter how much haters gonna hate.
  2. If we blow one, they will give us a new shock. Not just rebuild it, give a new one. Once out of warranty, there is a fee, but it is minimal.
  3. They were supposedly custom valved for my custom spring rates. I can not verify this and honestly, we will not be driving close enough to the bleeding edge for it to matter. For what it’s worth, I went with 10K Front and 9K rear springs. This is very close to stock balance front to rear, just stiffened up significantly.
  4. Unlike many of their competitors, they have recessed camber plates. You can see what I mean in the pictures below. Mazdaspeed3’s have a very small hole in the strut tower and with most coilovers you must enlarge this hole to get full camber adjustment. BC does it right and essentially counterbores the entire adjustment area of the plate allowing full movement in the smaller hole.
  5. Many people are doing great on these including my main competition in STX locally. Granted, he is in a completely different vehicle, but BC’s work fine for him.
  6. I had them on my Speed6 and at first they felt soft, but once I got used to them, they were actually pretty planted, I just had to know what to expect from them.
  7. The color is great and just happens to match the vehicle perfectly. Black and gold for the win! Does it matter? No, that’s why it’s seventh and not higher up the list. Although, the wife would probably put it a little higher on the list…
  8. I love beating people with more expensive equipment on a fraction of their budget. It makes victory that much sweeter. Does it make me a poor winner? Fuck yeah it does, but fuck you for losing. Competition makes us both better and if it takes you 5-10x the budget just to keep up, you suck, let someone else take your place you waste of space. Now that that is out of the way, I must clarify, I have not beat anyone in this car yet. Well, I have, but I can’t say they were good or experienced or rich or poor. And the competition will be stiff in my class. And my biggest competition will not be the guys with the cash. I’m just saying it feels oh-so-good to beat them. And I have in past cars plenty. This car is working its way to achieving that with me and my wife at its helm. But it is still far from ready. That is kind of the point of this series of blog posts. To show what we did and take criticism for poor decisions. And if you read my previous posts about a car I was race engineer for many moons ago, you will know I have some experience with this chassis and how to make her sing. So anyone’s input would be taken with a dump truck of salt.
  9. And maybe should have been ranked higher, they fit. At least from my reading it appears to be the case. Many others had so many teething issues trying to get coilovers to properly fit up to the Speed3. BC’s have been one of the few that it appears the engineers actually looked at what they were installing on. Now once I go to install them I may be faced with a craptastical surprise as it relates to this, but for now, based on my reading, they appear to have done it right.

Now for some pretty pictures:

MazdaSpeed3 BC BR front camber plate

MazdaSpeed3 BC BR front camber plate

Another shot of the camber plate

Another shot of the camber plate

I really like the detail on the spring top hat

I really like the detail on the spring top hat

A front and rear

A front and rear

A front and rear again

A front and rear again

As you can see, the gold is not near as in-your-face as the gold of the wheels we got. I like it. Quite a bit.

And the next post will be coming up soon. I picked up those parts on the way home today. And honestly, I don’t know if I need any other parts for quite some time. I will detail that further on the next post.

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