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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
First off let me apologize if this has been covered once or multiple times but I did some searching and never really found what I was looking for.

More or less I want to know what the people that are doing lots of de's tt's or racing feel about the age old ve or det setup for a daily driver.

I am going to be starting a b13 build this spring, the car will also be my daily driver 80+ miles a day, Phoenix summers, traffic etc. Now this car will also be seeing track duty two days a month, with occasional trips to courses farther away. Needless to say it will be driven alot.

This is where my concern comes in, I have had both high a compression n/a track cars and turbo car and had fairly good luck with both. A have a few thoughts on each way and would like input from people that either are, or have been in a similar situation as myself.

If I were to guess, I would imagine that more track whores than not would be going VE as the power and simplicity/reliability factor, but my concern with that is also being a DD, what happens when something breaks? I've made many trips to autozone during track weekends for specific parts. And my other concern is emissions, being that every two years in az they need to be done. Although that part isnt really relative to this forum.

In regards to a DET setup my concern is obviously reliability, I wouldnt need much power for a competent track car (220 ish whp) but would I be asking too much considering all my daily driving?

In short, what are you using currently and why?

Thanks guys.
 

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The anti-Probe.
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Generally speaking the racers use mostly stock motors on their B13's. The NASA racers install intake, exhaust, cams, header, and a non-programmable ECU. The ITA racers substitute a $5000 pro rebuild and a tunable ECU in place of the cams to get the same HP.

If you want to do a motor swap, make huge HP, and then drive 80 miles to work with it every day after "heavy" track use... then I'd probably say that you're out of your mind.

If you can't afford a track car, then modify the suspension and improve the brakes on your B13 daily driver and then give that a shot. You'll have a fun and reliable car that comes with all of the compromises that should be expected.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Generally speaking the racers use mostly stock motors on their B13's. The NASA racers install intake, exhaust, cams, header, and a non-programmable ECU. The ITA racers substitute a $5000 pro rebuild and a tunable ECU in place of the cams to get the same HP.

If you want to do a motor swap, make huge HP, and then drive 80 miles to work with it every day after "heavy" track use... then I'd probably say that you're out of your mind.

If you can't afford a track car, then modify the suspension and improve the brakes on your B13 daily driver and then give that a shot. You'll have a fun and reliable car that comes with all of the compromises that should be expected.
Thanks for the input, I agree that keeping things very simple should be my main priority. Even though I am not looking to make "huge" hp I can see the inherent risk with using the car everyday on top op 8 20 minute sessions per month. Going the DET route seems like asking for trouble with the amount of strain that will be put on the car.

I suppose if anything the VE seems feasible as an alternative being as I could leave that completely stock and have enough power for my liking. Once again thanks for the input, I appreciate it.
 

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The anti-Probe.
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I drove a VE 4 door B14 for one session a couple of years ago. It was a fun car to drive. It was fast too.
 

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I daily drive a turbo b13.

With a basic t25 setup I doubt you will cause too much strain on it. Turbo setups are a little more difficult than ve, ve is is just like dropping a stock motor in and hooking up some solenoids. Turbo is about the same, but you have to setup the intercooler and piping, this is the difficult part if you don't have a pre built kit.

I have never driven a ve b13, but I've driven vtec hondas, and a gts celica. Turbo is so much more fun. The torque, the sound, it's so great. Why would you want your car to sound like a lawn mower when it could sound like a freaking jet engine?
 

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The anti-Probe.
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Was this a friend of yours? Did he do lots of events?
Steve Foltz. He was on the forums for a while. He's good at putting cars together. I drove his car at VIR at had it up to 118 (indicated) when I reached the tower on the front straight. Not bad for a 4 dr 4-banger.
 

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The anti-Probe.
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I daily drive a turbo b13.
Why would you want your car to sound like a lawn mower when it could sound like a freaking jet engine?
What does it sound like on the back of a flatbed when you're getting it towed home from the track?

Hmmmmmm.... what went wrong with my turbo car.....

Oil line clogged, coolant leak, CPS failure, TPS failure, thrown rod, hole in piston, too rich, too lean, electronics fried, engine fire, boost leak, pinhole in intercooler, vacuum hose split, MAF fried, detonation, BOV failure, FPR rusted, exhaust manifold leak, bad solenoid....good grief the list goes on and on.
 

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SR powered S13 coupe
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What does it sound like on the back of a flatbed when you're getting it towed home from the track?
Usually mine was pretty silent and got great gas milage... AAA+, offers a free tow up to 100 miles for free, once per year... used it twice over the past 5 years of doing track days.

Oil line clogged, coolant leak, CPS failure, TPS failure, thrown rod, hole in piston, too rich, too lean, electronics fried, engine fire, boost leak, pinhole in intercooler, vacuum hose split, MAF fried, detonation, BOV failure, FPR rusted, exhaust manifold leak, bad solenoid....good grief the list goes on and on.
Detonation is really the biggest issue if any, I've lost two motors to this on track days. My other little issues and failures over the year are the hardware holding the 02 housing to the turbo always loosening up and blowing out gaskets, WG actuator c-clip working it's way off, turbo water/oil line issues, failing fuel pump... leads to other issues, siezed turbo, and on and on.

For simplicity, the VE is hard to beat for a reliable track car that is driven to/from the track. If you want more power and go the turbo route, you'll eventually want a dedicated tow truck and trailer for those longer drives as there are to many little things that can happen (and do) that can leave you stranded 6 hours from home... especially when your at the 300-350whp range
 

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Hmmmmmm.... what went wrong with my turbo car.....

Oil line clogged, coolant leak, CPS failure, TPS failure, thrown rod, hole in piston, too rich, too lean, electronics fried, engine fire, boost leak, pinhole in intercooler, vacuum hose split, MAF fried, detonation, BOV failure, FPR rusted, exhaust manifold leak, bad solenoid....good grief the list goes on and on.
I haven't had any of these problems, minus the boost leaks, and the exhaust manifold gaskets disentegrating because I didn't replace them before I installed the motor. Running a stock avenir with 240k mile sensors, calum ecu, walbro, and a 300zx maf. It's not like it's hard to find boost leaks, find something the same diameter as the intercooler piping your running and stick a tire valve stem in it and plug up the other end, add pressure and check for leaks. I'm the only one who has towed my car and it was my fault for wheel hopping it and cracking the tranny, at the track.
 

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........p10........
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I plan to do some hpde with my p10. It has a stock sr20de now, but im putting in a VE soon. Another local VE p10 owner is a regular at the track too here in AZ. VE' has held up great, and he seems to do pretty well out there.
 

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Buying up every nx in ont
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I'm building a dd p10 with a stock bluebird set up , I plan on doing a lot of track days with it this year on the setup. I've been racing my nx with the stock de with a cold air intake/exhaust but for me its not enough power on the straights, with the right driver you can keep up with a modded rsx or civic but then they leave you sitting in the straights. with a stock avenier set up or blue bird with a top mount intercooler stock piping etc you arent going to run into many problems as long as you dont plan to run alot of boost.

If you want to go all out with a front mount etc you are going to run into more problems with boost leaks and if your running 15 pounds on the t25 their are obviously more things to go wrong. Personally I would buy a stock det replace all the sensors main gaskets , buy a cheap ecu or even run the stock det and leave it at that , A ve costs more/cost more to modify and you are limitied with what you do , a det you can always upgrade injectors/ecu/exhaust/front mount/turbo and make more power if you feel its not enough. thats just my two cents :D Hope it helps
 

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I think that you would be ahead with the VE just because of the simplicity. I have seen many people try to run a turbo at the races and there are so many things that trip them up it is sort of sad. For drag racing or an occasional blast on the street a turbo is a great tool. For road racing it is a huge engineering excercise to get it all to work right without melting the engine down. I agree that the fmic although functionally superior in theory creates its own set of problems. A friend of mine was helping his son install an EVO turbo and a rediculously large fmic on a Talon and we discovered many things. Those cool fmic that you buy need additional welding to stop up all of the leaks that they have. When you increase the boost from 9ish to 20ish there are 100 things on the engine that start to leak that were not designed for the new boost parameter. Once you plug all of that up you better be holding on. To find all of the leaks they made a plug that could go into the turbo air system at each end (turbo outlet with a fitting for the air compressor, throttle body inlet plug) and pressurized the system. You would be amazed at how much the aluminum tubing grows at 12 psi.
 

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Professor Dingbat
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Search for "cooling" and username "choaderboy2", that should give you some insight on the level of prep required to keep the car reliable for track days.

I've been racing my nx with the stock de with a cold air intake/exhaust but for me its not enough power on the straights, with the right driver you can keep up with a modded rsx or civic but then they leave you sitting in the straights. with a stock avenier set up or blue bird with a top mount intercooler stock piping etc you arent going to run into many problems as long as you dont plan to run alot of boost.
I would strongly disagree. Put your effort into setup and driving skill before you up the power. I was able to pull away from a local forum member with a VE powered NX at a lapping day at Shannonville this fall. His NX has a roadmagnet/AGX suspension and a few bolt-ons added to his VE, I was driving my girlfriend's 1999 1.6l Sentra xe which was bone stock down to not having any sway bars period and over 300 000km on the clock. The only mods on the Sentra were cut airbox, AD22 brakes and well used Toyo RA1 tires. Since I was cornering so much faster, I had close to the same top speed as the NX which had an 80 hp advantage on me. If you take the corner real, real fast and enter the straightaway going fast you have a speed advantage on the high hp, poor handling (or poorly driven) car until almost the end of the straightaway (depending on the track layout of course).

On the reliability front I have blown a headgasket on an otherwise healthy SR20DE in my race car this past summer, the only mods being intake, header, exhaust, flywheel, pullies. I had a few other minor cooling mods and this was not nearly enough if you are driving the car hard on the track. With a Turbo engine it's going to take a lot of effort to keep it cool, not that it's impossible, but it is a major consideration. Maybe McCoy could share what he did to keep his Turbo B13 track car cool on the track.
 

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SR powered S13 coupe
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Search for "cooling" and username "choaderboy2", that should give you some insight on the level of prep required to keep the car reliable for track days.
Yep, alot of good information shared in that thread...

With a Turbo engine it's going to take a lot of effort to keep it cool, not that it's impossible, but it is a major consideration. Maybe McCoy could share what he did to keep his Turbo B13 track car cool on the track.
Mine was no where near idea, but it worked.

The basic setup of my old car.

B13 sentra
Avenir W10 motor
GTiR T28 running at 12psi
JWT S3 cams
JWT ECU/50lb MSD inj/Z32 MAF
AGX/GC suspension
Nismo LSD
225 hoosiers all the way around

For cooling I used the following with some success. When I say success, I mean on track days with temps below 85F I did ok with light to no traffic for a full session On days with temps above this, I'd have to take several cool down laps to keep temps below 235F in a 20-30min session. If you have alot more traffic, you probably won't have as many issues as I did.

Koyo Aluminum Radiator (80/20 water:coolant and water wetter)
300zx 1.2lb radiator cap
UR underdrive pullies to help prevent cavitation
Removed front grill (actuall good for 10-15F temp drop)
Heater on high!

What I really needed to help both oil and water temps was a big old oil cooler... and alot more ducting to the radiator.
 

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bitemyshinymetalass
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Forget both the VE and DET IMHO. Put the money into seat time, suspension, brakes, cooling, and getting to more events. DD? Man I love my car as a DD, more power wouldn't make it any more enjoyable, I already drive it probably too fast on the back roads as it is.

If you need a new motor, put in a $400 10:1 DE and save some serious money and worry about oil temps/oil pressure - the VE is definitely a motor with its higher oil pressures and higher power that you have to keep an eagle eye on oil pressure/temps on the track. I don't think I'd put one in for much track use w/o a Koyorad and preferably a Setrab oil cooler with solid fittings and a thermostatic adapter. Dead reliable motor IF you set it up right and IF you manage the temps and oil.

After the convention in GA this year I logged another 9 events & 1500+ miles on-track time at HPDE's, TT's, and some just open sessions. Two of nine additional events were with great instruction with COMSCC, great mid-season boost to fix some bad habits and learn get more out of the car. From beginning of May to end of August I knocked over a second off my personal best laps times at places I'd been to before same season.

The car is solid in cooling, Koyo, etc. and I ran 60 minute warm weather sessions at NJMP with no issues and temps stayed 180's tops on a 75 deg day end of May. Not a single mechanical issue, drove it to/from GA 1800 miles, and everywhere else from CT (mostly NJ, NH, NY, and PA events). I would not have traded even one of those weekends or weekdays for a DET if it showed up by magic under my hood. When you've been away from the track for awhile then come back with a completely different car (F/F lower hp vs. F/R V6), you climb the learning curve really fast if you work at it. Then it gets harder :)

Replaced my Progress CO's mid year with +100 each end stiffer springs and new Progress dampers to match, went through a few sets of tires and plugs, etc. Mounted up comp tires when I got to the point I was abusing street legal tires badly. Set up the sways lighter, more aggressive camber and zero toe. Add a Koyo, UR pulleys, well you can read my sig list. I still have guys get in my car and kick my ass 2 seconds a lap on a ~60-70 second lap. Usually with me in the passenger seat! More power on the straights? I really enjoy pulling back a huge deficit at Poco North into turn 1, braking much later and with higher entrance/exit speed after someone with a lot more power blows by me on the banking. Found out how much better Wilwoods are with real Ferodo track pads.

Despite 3 class TT wins and 2nd in class in another series, I have a long ways to go just to get the most out of what I already have. Seat time and periodic instruction is the only place I want to spend my money next season besides more tires, more pads, etc. And the car always got me to and from at least a 200 mile each-way trip, no worries.

Sorry for the length of post, I strongly believe the perceived "need" for more power vs. more seat time and events is a really lousy trade-off. What you do then when some guy passes and drops you in a bone stock '91 Miata in the rain with a stock 1600cc motor, wallowing like a pig on pretty tired suspension? True story. I went and talked to him about how he was taking the course, made a new friend and learned a few more things I didn't know from a really good driver! He had 20+ years of regular series racing under his belt and really knew his stuff. Clearly worth more than another 40 whp, since he totally kicked my ass with at least -40 whp over my car! My ST4 class has ~18 Miatas, and only 2 or 3 of them can do that to me. Cold rain has a way of amplifying mistakes ;)


 

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SR powered S13 coupe
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Yeah, but there are just a few tracks out there (2 of the 4 near me) that aren't any fun without a little more power.

Agreed that more track time should take priority over trying to get more power out of the car.
 
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