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STS legal mod question

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STS legal mod question

Postby dliverance » Tue Aug 18, 2015 6:46 pm

Hi everyone. I have a few questions for some of the autox veterans. I have a 90 si that I love to death and I plan on running it as an STS car at the local autox. I have no intention of going to nationals but I would like to be competitive. Right now there is a local guy in a crx that dominates the class against 6 or so miatas.

I'm here because I have a few mods that I want to do but I don't want to be bumped out of the class or disqualified. heres the list so far.

JDM front end- This is already in the works but I don't know if it qualifies as aftermarket aerodynamics.

Rear subframe brace/tie bar- This has not been done but I've seen what happens to those rear subframes when you run a huge rear sway bar and don't reinforce them.

NRG hublock/quick change hub/smaller steering wheel- Has not been done yet but I'm adding this for ease of entry/exit from the car and added security.

Racing seat/harness bar/5 point harness- Not done yet but this also is for safety and comfort. I'm pretty sure this one is legal but I figured I'd ask since I'm already here.

Traction bar- Not done yet but I would like to put one in place since my original part is in rough shape.

J's racing polyurethane front lip-Not done yet. I'm also considering the oem SiR lip since it looks like it can take a cone or two. I know this might fall under the aerodynamics.

Back home in FL most of the people in STS didn't really start complaining until you started beating them. I don't know what the locals are like here but I don't want to have to build this car around STS. I'd like to have my personal touch and comfort features without being in SMF.
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Re: STS legal mod question

Postby zrickety » Wed Aug 19, 2015 10:50 am

The traction bar bumps you to SMF though locals may let it slide. I don't remember if solid bushings can be the work around. The solo rule book is online, it's easy to see what can and can't be for STS.
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Re: STS legal mod question

Postby dliverance » Wed Aug 19, 2015 6:30 pm

I've been checking the rule book but I didn't know if a facelift bumper was considered a front modification etc. there's a few grey areas there.
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Re: STS legal mod question

Postby mike l » Mon Aug 24, 2015 11:11 am

It doesn't sound like you are doing any modifications (unless if you have a whole list of mods that are already STS-legal and done, which you haven't told us about) that will make you competitive in STS without exceptional driving. So what is the difference if your mods put you in SMF? You wouldn't be competitive there either (without exceptional driving) . . .
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Re: STS legal mod question

Postby dliverance » Tue Aug 25, 2015 1:52 am

As of right now the car has intake, headers, koni sports, and a freshly rebuilt engine. Next on the list for go fast parts are a set of k1's with good tires and a better rear sway bar.

I have no desire to run SMF locally because it would take a miracle to be competitive here.
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Re: STS legal mod question

Postby mike l » Tue Aug 25, 2015 7:57 am

we actually have a few guys locally that as raw-time fast in STS setups as SMF - but STS and SMF are the two fastest and deepest classes in our local group, so take it for what it is worth.

so anyway, here is my input. we have one guy that IS nationally competitive in STS in a 1991 si (has trophied) - and his car is built within the allowances of the rules.

he doesn't run a rear subframe brace. I don't know if it is because it isn't legal in STS, or if it is because he has decided there is no benefit for his specific car (again, 91 si - not a 90 si). either way, he hasn't had a problem while running a ST 22mm rear sway bar. I can also say that I run the same rear sway on my car (also a 91 si), with no rear subframe brace as well. and I haven't had any problems either. I *believe there are certain brands of sway bar that don't connect to the oem locations, and certain CRX's (non-si, and certain years - not sure if 90 is one of those years) don't have the same reinforcing - and that is the main cause of subframe damage/pull through/out. I think you need to do some research on your specific year/model, and also check the STS rules. he also runs shortened SPSS3 with 500f/600r. I run Sports with 400f/500r.

he runs a 350mm NRG quick release dished wheel with a 1" spacer. definitely legal.

a racing seat is definitely legal, as long as it meets the 25# minimum weight. he doesn't run a harness bar/5 point harness (uses the oem belt). again - I don't know if this is because it isn't STS legal. personally, I believe a 4/5 point seatbelt makes a HUGE difference, but other folks think they are just as efficient (and stay lighter) with dead-pedaling instead. I haven't asked him if that (dead pedaling/weight) is why he doesn't run a harness bar/harness.

Traction bar is definitely not legal in STS.
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Re: STS legal mod question

Postby dliverance » Tue Aug 25, 2015 4:28 pm

Thanks Mike. My car is a 90 si but the last crx I bought before this one was a 91 si and the rear cross member came off of the chassis. I doubt it was because of a sway bar but after looking at it, it just looked like the metal was really thin.

That answers most of my questions about this but I guess it's up to the local guys wetter or not they want to complain about the jdm front. As for the traction bar, I'll just scratch that idea and get better bushings for the existing parts.
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Re: STS legal mod question

Postby AJC » Sat Sep 19, 2015 6:59 pm

I don't think the rear subframe brace is legal. I don't know exactly what the brace entails (I'm much more familiar with the Miatas) but adding braces is usually forbidden. I have some braces that I'd like to add to my Miata but they're not legal.

You can use a harness in STS. I can't because I have a convertible. If I were to develop my CRX further I'd definitely have an aluminum seat and harness.

Different front bumpers are more or less OK. When SCCA took back the body kit allowance in 2010 after people got stupid with big aluminum wings, they said the only thing that was OK to add was factory aero available on your car's body (for example I have all the R-package spoilers and lips on my '90 Miata, which came with none of that). As long as it's not something that's going to give a performance advantage, nobody should care.

Steering wheel/hub is OK. Again, something the Hondas can do but my Miata cannot because the SCCA won't let me switch out an airbag wheel.

My only suggestion is to skip the K1s and go with RPF1s. The 2-3 lbs per wheel saved will add up. Wrap them in Bridgestone RE71Rs and enjoy.
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Re: STS legal mod question

Postby dliverance » Wed Sep 23, 2015 4:00 am

Since the original post a few things have changed. I got a sparco speed seat with slider that weighs more than 25lbs so its legal, I have an NRG wheel and hub combo, I'm still using the stock seat belt for now but I will be addig a roll bar and harness eventually and my wheel ideas have flopped around a bit.

I will be running k1's with nitto neo gens for daily and wet runs and I will be running 7.5" 6ul with the re71r in the 205 flavor for dry runs.

I know the 6ul's have a bad wrap but I'm willing to take the chance. Hopefully this next batch is made stronger.
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Re: STS legal mod question

Postby tommy » Wed Sep 23, 2015 8:54 am

They're not bad rims, and I wouldn't worry about them, I just think that Emilio is an assh*le, from a phone call I had with him about fitment, which is why I went with RPF1s instead.

Also the weird production run scheduling doesn't really encourage happy customers, but if it works with your timetable, that's good.
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Re: STS legal mod question

Postby dliverance » Wed Sep 23, 2015 7:16 pm

Yeah. My season doesn't start up again until Feb. so I have a bit of time. I've heard a lot about Emilio that I didn't like so much. I did look at the gen 4 6ul and it looks like they made some improvements on them.
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Re: STS legal mod question

Postby AJC » Sun Sep 27, 2015 6:23 pm

I've dealt with Emilio on a handful of occasions and he's always been good to me. He even overnighted me a header to a hotel when I was racing out of town and in a pinch, nobody else I called would do that. So he's an OK guy in my book.

Look at the STS grid at Nationals and all you'll see are 6ULs and SSRs. Some Honda guys run RPF1 but they're giving up half an inch per corner and that adds up. I've pretty much relegated all my 7" wheels for daily driver duty. For the race car I have 3 sets of 6ULs (hoarder!) and picked up a set of SSRs over the summer.

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Re: STS legal mod question

Postby dliverance » Tue Sep 29, 2015 1:29 am

Yeah I'm pretty much sold on the 6ul 7.5" with re71r's.
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Re: STS legal mod question

Postby kevbo82 » Tue Sep 29, 2015 12:08 pm

dliverance wrote:Yeah I'm pretty much sold on the 6ul 7.5" with re71r's.

I think 7.5" with the re71's is pretty much a must in STS.
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Re: STS legal mod question

Postby dliverance » Wed Sep 30, 2015 2:49 am

Yeah I didn't realize that extra .5" was so important but the more I read, the less I see 7"
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Re: STS legal mod question

Postby tommy » Wed Sep 30, 2015 9:00 am

Well, if you're going to go that route, why not push it further and get a staggered setup? Roll the fenders and try to squeeze in 8's. I'm sure it's possible with the right finesse.

Though if you're just "trying to be competitive", the minor difference between 7's and 7 1/2's will only shave off a couple of tenths, in the grand scheme of things.
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Re: STS legal mod question

Postby AJC » Wed Sep 30, 2015 11:30 am

Rules state a maximum wheel width of 7.5"

My thought as far as going from 7 to 7.5 - especially when I had a buttload of 15x7 wheels (I went to my first Nationals with RPF1s) - has to do with reducing the number of excuses for why I was getting beat. Everyone's running 6ULs? I'm getting 6ULs. Everyone's running shaved Toyo R1Rs? I'm getting shaved Toyo R1Rs. As I kept going down the list of stuff other people had that I didn't, and checking those boxes as I played catch-up, I found myself getting closer to the guys who had been beating me in the past.

Only problem is now I've gotten to the point where the things I lack compared to National trophy-winners are fairly spendy items (fresh engine, aftermarket ECU). Also, there will come the stunning realization that once the car is at the level of the winners' cars, but I'm still getting beat, so that must mean that I stink.

Either way, the pursuit is fun and I'm enjoying seeing incremental gains both in the car capability and myself as a driver, so I keep spending money and playing with toy cars. Everybody needs a hobby, after all.
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Re: STS legal mod question

Postby dliverance » Thu Oct 08, 2015 3:29 am

I'm going to guess it has something to do with the sidewalls
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Re: STS legal mod question

Postby tommy » Thu Oct 08, 2015 8:07 am

AJC wrote:My thought as far as going from 7 to 7.5 - especially when I had a buttload of 15x7 wheels (I went to my first Nationals with RPF1s) - has to do with reducing the number of excuses for why I was getting beat. Everyone's running 6ULs? I'm getting 6ULs. Everyone's running shaved Toyo R1Rs? I'm getting shaved Toyo R1Rs. As I kept going down the list of stuff other people had that I didn't, and checking those boxes as I played catch-up, I found myself getting closer to the guys who had been beating me in the past.

I'd prefer to leave the question unanswered and think it's really the way the car's setup and not my bad driving. :bounce:

Actually, with a zc swap, I'm hosed anyway, so I've already eliminated the possibility of being competitive without a huge cabbage investment and lots more time behind the wheel. Neither of which is really going to happen.

Didn't know about the 7 1/2" limit; seems like you need a lawyer these days to stay correctly within acceptable class specs.
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Re: STS legal mod question

Postby mike l » Mon Oct 12, 2015 1:58 pm

I'd prefer to leave the question unanswered and think it's really the way the car's setup and not my bad driving.


What many of the best drivers don't want to admit, is that they are assisted greatly by their cars. I know a couple of top guys that can jump in just about any vehicle and compete for RAW FTDs. I know other top guys that will sink to the bottom once they are out of their car.

I'm a prime example of car competency. I was a middle of the pack driver until I began prepping my car. I typically am in the top 20% now, and my car is no where near completely prepped. Heck, I haven't even really worked on tweaking my suspension - other than buying the suspension setup off of an STS nationally-competitive guy that was upgrading his suspension, and putting it on the car.
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Re: STS legal mod question

Postby dliverance » Thu Oct 15, 2015 12:27 am

With the kosei k1 being too narrow and the 6ul not being available for a few more months, I started searching again. Today I found the gram lights 57v in 15x7.5, 4x100, et25. I'm doing the homeowrk now to see how well they'll fit but these might be the direction I go in.
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Re: STS legal mod question

Postby tommy » Thu Oct 15, 2015 8:56 am

RPF01 15x7s are +41. I'm no offset guru, but +25 may be a bridge too far, at least without a lot of work.
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Re: STS legal mod question

Postby mike l » Thu Oct 15, 2015 12:27 pm

+25 on a 7" wheel will usually require flaring/rolling the fenders if you are running 225/45/15 and have lowered the car at all. you may be able to get away without flare/roll if you run a narrower tire (definitely no wider than 205, and my need to go as narrow as 195) - but then you are defeating much of the purpose of running a 7" wheel. you may also have clearance issues with your suspension/braking - depending on your setup.

if you are going to run a 15x7 you should really consider flaring/rolling and going no smaller than OEM offset to increase the width of your car footprint to improve handling. if you look at the nationally competitive guys, almost none of them tuck the wheels tighter under the car by going with a smaller offset (like you are proposing) - in fact, most of them will go with an offset larger than OEM (if allowable, within rules).
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Re: STS legal mod question

Postby dliverance » Thu Oct 15, 2015 9:39 pm

I do intend to roll the fenders and I'm planning on running 205/50's
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Re: STS legal mod question

Postby dliverance » Tue Oct 20, 2015 10:30 pm

YES!!! I found a loophole for my SiR front conversion. Totally legal now. WOOP WOOP.
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