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Old 01-12-2013, 09:04 PM   #1
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Making the Boxster Reliable on The Track

The dream of having a P-Car is now a reality, in the form of a 986 Boxster.
It's a 2001 with 60K miles.

I like to understand what are the main items that need attention to make the car reliable on the track.
The goal for now is not pure speed, but to log track time reliably.
I've done some of the basics at the 61k mark:
- Water pump and lower temp thermostat
- Fuel filter
- Serpentine belt
- Spark plugs
- Ceramic IMS Bearing
- Clutch (OEM Sachs)
Car came with an EVO High flow intake. Car is running on Mutul 8100 oil.
Camber has been maxed out at -.09 in the front. Rears are at -1.5
Down the line I'd like to have PSS9s coils and GT3 Front Lower control arms (I hate seeing the tires' outer shoulders go to waste)


### TO BE ADDRESSED ###
- Power steering cooler
I had PS fluid overflow into my garage floor. Also PS feels/sounds weird after the AutoX events I've done so far (4).
I got the inline cooler and it will go in this week.

- Brake Pads
I'm considering Hawk HP+ as a cost-saving option. I've used them on the track in the past and thought they were satisfactory.

- Brake Rotors
I'm thinking of Centric Plain for now

What else is advised??
Brake cooling gizmos? AOS solutions? Oil temp/press monitoring?
Looking forward to the input of you track junkies!

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Old 01-17-2013, 06:07 PM   #2
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Regarding the Powersteering: def check out an underdrivepulley! A little search here will give you some answers.

A place to start grsautosport.com
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Old 01-17-2013, 06:44 PM   #3
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Would help to know what you mean by "track", Autocross?, DE?, Club racing?

I am surprised that AX has given you power steering issues. I wouldn't expect any issues after 2 minutes. Certainly mine has proven capable of running 90 minutes on the track without any issues. Having said that, I have heard of some racers having issues so maybe some other AXers can chime in.

For me, the biggest concern tracking a 986 will always be oil starvation. You definitely want to look into some sort of deep sump and, if DEing or Racing, an Accusump.

Definitely will want GT3 arms and better spring/shocks. Brakes will be fine just as they are provided you have good pads (I've always run Pagid orange) and fresh fluid. Tires will be critical but will depend of your intended use. Biggest tip would be (and it doesn't matter which type) would be loose all the weight you can.

Have fun.
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Old 01-17-2013, 07:48 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AndyA6 View Post
...def check out an underdrivepulley!
Makes sense. Thanks.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jittsl View Post
Would help to know what you mean by "track", Autocross?, DE?, Club racing? I am surprised that AX has given you power steering issues. ...
By "track" I mean High Plains Raceway, CO as the home track. (Open lapping, DE, TTs).
Yeah AX doesn't tax the car nearly as much as the track, but still I've had power steering issues. The PS cooler is installed and hopefully that is addressed for good.

I've heard about the oil starvation issues and wondering if one can track the without Accusump. Some of the questions that come to mind include
- Can starvation be monitored safely via an Oil press gauge?
- Can good oil pan baffles alone be a solution?
- If deeper sump is needed, how much? .5 quart enough?
Or all these are just bandaids and one must use accusump if taking the car to the track?
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Old 01-17-2013, 09:23 PM   #5
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Here are a few suggestions;

- Underdrive pulley (gsr). Lowers the stress on all of the engine accessories (e.g., power steering pump).

- GT-3 front brake ducts ($35 on eBay) - they are 3x the size of the Boxster brake ducts and simply snap on in 5 mins.

- X51 or EBS oil sump baffle. Everyone in SoCal runs this setup for the NASCAR banking at AutoClub speedway without complaint or engine failure. Accusump is the best solution but a lot more $$$.

- Tires. This is been covered a lot on the forum but a good street/track tire will make a lot of difference compared to a high mileage street tire. A couple good ones are Kumho Ecsta XS and Hankook RS-3, among others. Realize that the faster you go, the faster you're going to go through tires and the softer and stickier the tires are, the faster they wear.

Wait on suspension upgrades until you are near or at the top of your stock class and can drive better than the car. The stock car has an amazing amount of capability and if you're just starting track days you are not likely near the true limit of the car (even though it feels like you are). Compare your lap times with more experienced drivers and when you can match or beat them, you're ready to upgrade.

As you move through DE's to Time Trials, you may want to consider adding some additional safety equipment;

- Brey-Krause roll bar extension ($450). The more room over your head, the better.

- Gloves, shoes, firesuit. Might be overkill for DE's but if you're going to get serious, then you need to get serious about safety.

- Racing seat and harnesses. A racing seat and harness will allow you to sit in the car and drive and not have to expend tons of energy just trying to stay in the stock seat.

- Once you have the seat and harness, you probably need a HANS device. No point in restraining your body while your head flops around in an incident.
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Old 01-17-2013, 09:35 PM   #6
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Oil issues- I favor the X-51 pan. Not impressed with the accusump. Keep the oil level exactly full, not overfilled, and change it often.

Get 2+ degrees front camber or shred a lot of tire outer shoulders.

Brake pads - Raybestos ST-43 (good for 20 track days on the front)

Brake cooling- 997 GT3 ducts ( about $20 a set)

Brake fluid- Motul 600 changed twice a year

Water pump and 160F T-stat

** 80 track days over 6 years running, 5 PCA TT Championships, 4 BSX overall track records**

So far, so good.
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Old 01-17-2013, 09:56 PM   #7
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Awesome!
Oil baffle added to my list of ToDos; and I appreciate the reminder on other items, including safety. Glad to have found 986forum.
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Old 01-18-2013, 06:19 AM   #8
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I agree with thstone about safety gear too. Racing seats bolted to the floor, on-board fire extinguisher, roll bar extension, shoes, helmet, gloves. This setup adds a lot of safety to a dual purpose street/track car with full airbags. Once you decide to add 5pt harnesses a HANS is highly recommended.
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Old 01-18-2013, 08:30 AM   #9
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Remove front bumper cover, clean (vacum) radiators including behind each radiator & A/C condenser. Change oil before & after track day, inspect oil filter everytime. Change powersteering fluid with new oem Pentosion.
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Old 01-18-2013, 08:57 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BYprodriver View Post
Remove front bumper cover, clean (vacum) radiators including behind each radiator & A/C condenser. Change oil before & after track day, inspect oil filter everytime. Change power-steering fluid with new oem Pentosion.
What's the easiest way to change the power-steering fluid? Do you drain it from somewhere or pull it out?
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Old 01-18-2013, 09:48 AM   #11
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Not sure since I haven't ax'd in a while but going to PSS9 will move you up at least one class in many clubs which will make it pretty hard to place well.

I'd also recommend going with a smaller wheel for AX. Cheaper tire cost, more options, last longer/peform better. With a race jack and impact gun you can switch over in less than 10 minutes and drive to the event. I have Bridgestone Potenza RE-11 which are awesome stickies, closest to the r-comps I ran one year, but at 18" way too pricey to shred up on some oatmeal black top. But generally you should wait until at least ax # 10 before spending money on new tires. Early mistakes in a new car make for lumpy tires.
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Old 01-18-2013, 10:01 AM   #12
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interested in the procedure for the PS fluid flash as well.

Last edited by Meir; 01-18-2013 at 10:04 AM.
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Old 01-18-2013, 10:22 AM   #13
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What's the easiest way to change the power-steering fluid? Do you drain it from somewhere or pull it out?
Easy way is to use a Turkey bastard to suck out what you can & top off with new. Repeat as needed. If you want to go deeper the reservoir detaches from the pump body but it's a pain to remove & replace.
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Old 01-18-2013, 10:26 AM   #14
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Gotta love spell check, "fluid flash" and "Turkey bastard"
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Old 01-18-2013, 11:26 AM   #15
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Gotta love spell check, "fluid flash" and "Turkey bastard"

in my case its not the spell check, its just me.
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Old 01-18-2013, 03:00 PM   #16
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Gotta love spell check, "fluid flash" and "Turkey bastard"
Call it what you want, when mine fails to retain half the fluid it sucks up that's what I call it.
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Old 01-18-2013, 05:40 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by com3dorm3 View Post
I've heard about the oil starvation issues and wondering if one can track the without Accusump. Some of the questions that come to mind include
- Can starvation be monitored safely via an Oil press gauge?
- Can good oil pan baffles alone be a solution?
- If deeper sump is needed, how much? .5 quart enough?
Or all these are just bandaids and one must use accusump if taking the car to the track?


If you look around on the Planet-9 forum, you will find a huge amount of data on oil pressure loss with similar Cayman engines. There are simply more serious Cayman track guys out there than Boxster track guys. The general consensus seems to be the oil pressure light is a buffered signal and can't be relied upon for instantaneous warning. Low oil pressure does seem to occur regularly with hard braking into a left hand turn.

Just to be safe, I installed the X51 oil pan and 3 quart accusump before going to any track events.
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Old 01-18-2013, 06:38 PM   #18
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Currently 3 of the 20 engines I have in my queue come from Caumans that died on the track. All were the same issue.
The G forces are NOT the root of the problem.
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Old 01-18-2013, 07:41 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BYprodriver View Post
Remove front bumper cover, clean (vacum) radiators including behind each radiator & A/C condenser. Change oil before & after track day, inspect oil filter everytime. Change powersteering fluid with new oem Pentosion.
Done all that.
Radiators: Looked like someone was using it to mow the lawn.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jager View Post
What's the easiest way to change the power-steering fluid? Do you drain it from somewhere or pull it out?
I cut the line to drain the system and install the PS cooler, but I did not see any plug or drain valve.

Quote:
Originally Posted by LAP1DOUG View Post
... oil pressure light is a buffered signal and can't be relied upon for instantaneous warning. Low oil pressure does seem to occur regularly with hard braking into a right hand turn...
Thanks for the planet9 referral.
I plan on installing a full sweep oil pressure/temp gauge... just because...


As far as oil starvation, I'm hoping the oil sump baffle will do the trick initially, as suggested by some of the members here.
In my case, we're talking about a driver with less than 10 track days of experience and non-sticky tires for now.

but then,
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jake Raby View Post
...The G forces are NOT the root of the problem.
Would you elaborate on the issues and root cause?
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Old 01-22-2013, 12:15 PM   #20
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This is a good thread, very informative.

I've curtailed my track activity for now because I used a Durametric tool and found my "Timing Deviation ?" is around -5 and -6 which is right at the allowable limit from what I have read.

Not sure what needs fixing exactly, so I need to do more research into this.

I would recommend a Durametric reading on a periodic basis to get a base line and to measure against to see where things are wearing.

As far as Mods for the Track, you need to understand the points distribution for the Mods so that you don't inadvertently put your self I a class that you come in last place all the time. Keep it simple at first and when your ability catches up to the car then the mods will start to have a positive effect.

I ended up in a class that only have 3 entries, (I didn't know any better) and came in last place but since racing points are awarded to the top 3 drivers I got points where others whose time was much better with the same car got 0.

Consider applying some tape protection around the wheel wells to protect the paint.

Some folks just use the Blue masking tape at the race but others have the clear protector tape and leave it on all the time.
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