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Old 01-31-2018, 07:06 AM   #1
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lightweight mirrors

so, lightweight mirrors. the oem mirrors are about 5 lbs per side heaver than the fiberglass product available from GT Racing. unfortunately, the GT Racing mirrors are like $600 per set. too many $.

so, i opened up the mirrors to see if i could lighten them. no dice, impossible to remove the motor assembly - leaves nothing to mount the mirror to, and probably wouldn't save you that much weight, as most of the weight appears to be in the metal.

so, thinking about aftermarket mirrors, but the problem is the need for a blanking plate where the old mirror mounted. i could hack something out of plastic and mount it in some manner, but wondering if one of the capable fabricators/3D printers on this board could come up with something. i could donate the spare mirror, and someone could model the blanking plate from it and upload a file to shapeways or similar?

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Old 01-31-2018, 12:03 PM   #2
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Thought: try to adapt the manual adjustment mechanism from a Mercedes-Benz W124, W126, or W201 chassis? The driver's side were manual (up to about 1992 or so on W124 and W201) with an adjustment arm that protruded into the little "sail" panel on the door where the mirror adjustment switch is on the 986. Use an RHD part to remove the switch (and LHD for RHD cars) with a grommet to finish the cut hole.

Might not work but if it could be adapted that may save a lot of time and money. Plus the mechanisms would be available inexpensively in junkyards for prototyping.
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Old 01-31-2018, 12:31 PM   #3
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hah - i've already got the LH trim panel from a RHD car to trim it all out. i'll see if i can find a manual adjuster (i'm in the sticks and far away from wreckers and the like). i'll also see if i can make my own blanking plate that doesn't look too hack.
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Old 01-31-2018, 01:59 PM   #4
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Question, and please do not take offense...I am asking because I do not race, I am just curious. I know that some people who race are on a quest to lighten their cars as much as possible, and I can understand that with that mindset that it would become easy to obsess over every ounce of "car weight". My question is, given what you were asking about, does 5 pounds really make any noticeable difference? For example, how would that amount of weight influence a 1/4 mile time? In my mind, in would be in the billionths of a second. Additionally, if a couple of pounds does matter, wouldn't every driver go on a diet to drop every pound of unnecessary body weight? From the professional drivers I've seen, this doesn't appear to be the case...they seem "fit", but not emaciated, and could easily drop a couple more ounces (or pounds) if they were really serious about gaining an edge.

I guess my question really is...do a few pound really matter, or is it more a case of obsession and removal because "it can be removed/can be lightened" but offers no measurable improvement in doing so?

Again, no offense meant, just my curious mind is, well...curious.
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Old 01-31-2018, 02:23 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by MWS View Post
Question, and please do not take offense...I am asking because I do not race, I am just curious. I know that some people who race are on a quest to lighten their cars as much as possible, and I can understand that with that mindset that it would become easy to obsess over every ounce of "car weight". My question is, given what you were asking about, does 5 pounds really make any noticeable difference? For example, how would that amount of weight influence a 1/4 mile time? In my mind, in would be in the billionths of a second. Additionally, if a couple of pounds does matter, wouldn't every driver go on a diet to drop every pound of unnecessary body weight? From the professional drivers I've seen, this doesn't appear to be the case...they seem "fit", but not emaciated, and could easily drop a couple more ounces (or pounds) if they were really serious about gaining an edge.

I guess my question really is...do a few pound really matter, or is it more a case of obsession and removal because "it can be removed/can be lightened" but offers no measurable improvement in doing so?

Again, no offense meant, just my curious mind is, well...curious.
no offence, and i think, at least to me, the answer is - both. rule of thumb - 10 lbs = 1 hp. and reducing weight is not a matter of one or two big changes, but rather a bunch of small changes that add up - you lose 100 lb by losing 10 pounds ten times (similar to making power - its a bunch of small improvements that add up, vs just strapping a turbo on). drilling holes in door handles, porsche race cars have a decal instead of an actual hood crest, 'R' spec cars have thinner glass in the windshield, the old 550 spyders were silver because they didn't paint them to save weight, the 987 spyder has aluminum doors, etc. 10 lbs (5 lbs per side) is actually one of the bigger wins in the weight reduction game. esp if the replacement mirror also provides some aero benefits. and, a lighter car is easier on tires and brakes. colin chapman - "simplify and add lightness' - i don't need heated, electrically adjustable mirrors.

and at the track, realise you can often run 20 minutes and not make or lose time on the other guys - races are won by fractions of a second and not big blowouts like in the movies, so every edge counts.

now, will lighter mirrors make me faster? no, the car is already faster than me, and it is only a matter of time before one of the boxster spec guys chime in about putting the energy into driver training instead. however, i like tinkering, and i like improving the machine to the maximum of it's capacity, even if that capacity outstrips my talent. and the spec guys hate this because, by definition, they can't tinker with spec cars, so to them the only way to get faster is to get better. i believe in both. and if i can find a $100 solution to a $600 problem then that is cool too.

sorry spec guys, i think you're great, and would eat my lunch at the track.
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Old 01-31-2018, 03:05 PM   #6
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Thank you very much for answering, it's nice to have perspective from a track driver. Before your response and in trying to answer my own question, I looked at the owners manual for some numbers, listed below (for a base w/ manual transmission):

217 HP ;Weight: between 2777 lbs and 2954 lbs, which I averaged at 2866 lbs; 0-60mph 6.5 sec

Now I understand that these numbers are not scalable, but for giggles, if they were:
2866lbs/6.5sec=441 lbs/sec or 0.002267 sec/lbs.
Given 5 lbs reduction, that would equal just 0.01133 sec reduction on the 0-60 time, or with a car stripped of 100 lbs, an increase of 2/10ths of a second 0-60...which somehow sounds about right (at least to me)....

I should stay away from numbers, and stop asking questions.
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Old 02-01-2018, 06:06 AM   #7
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Everything TRK is spot on (as usual!). 2 years ago I won a regional autocross championship by hundredths of a second. The top two of us (he drives a fully prepped 914) had equal points after 5 events, so the judges added up all of our times and I was a blip ahead. A couple of pounds may have been the difference!
Another great thing about removing weight is that it affects the overall performance: not only does each pound have to be accelerated, it has to be braked and turned. Less mass makes you faster everywhere!
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Old 02-01-2018, 06:43 AM   #8
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thank you sir. i think i am going to get in the game and figure out some 3d modeling. used to do it back in the day, and it should only be easier now, so i'll try to create some files and upload to shapeways and see what i get back (or ask for a 3d printer for valentine's day?!?!?). if i am successful i will share the link. the idea would be left and right blanking plates where the mirrors go; add whatever aftermarket mirror you like for weight reduction, aero benefits, looks, ricerization. as was pointed out already, the interior can be retrimmed with a part from a RHD car when the mirror control is deleted.
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Old 02-01-2018, 02:03 PM   #9
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How about AP car design mirrors or something like these



They don't look heavy and fill the area of the originals in the door.


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Old 02-01-2018, 02:46 PM   #10
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if i recall, hrg do a lot of their own custom carbon fiber work. if not custom, then the unit in the picture is most likely the $600 GT racing unit.
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Old 02-01-2018, 02:49 PM   #11
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Quote:
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if i recall, hrg do a lot of their own custom carbon fiber work. if not custom, then the unit in the picture is most likely the $600 GT racing unit.
Bummer... They would be perfect if not for the price.
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Old 02-01-2018, 03:30 PM   #12
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well, if i can 3d print a blanking plate, then perhaps an entire mirror housing? not that up on the tech; mirror housing might be too big for a conventional 3d printer.
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Old 02-01-2018, 04:03 PM   #13
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Vitaloni Mirrors

The Sebring might fit close enough to avoid the need of a blanking plate.

The California would be nice with a blanking plate.

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