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Author Topic: The Shock Guys are adverising again!
ahamos
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I've been watching this debate with great interest, and while I would absolutely agree that the rebuild in question is not legal, I have to play devil's advocate: does the shop manual give any instructions for repacking hubs? If not, then it shouldn't really matter whether lubes are spec'ed, as the repair itself is not legal.

But, if it is legal to repack the hubs outside of factory recommendations, then how can it be any less legal to rebuild shocks? And if it's not illegal to rebuild shocks, then how is it illegal to have one person do it as opposed to another?

For that matter, if fluids are not subject to specification, what about changing from a heavy shock fluid to a lighter fluid? Even if rebound and compression were adjustable, this would still be outside the scope of what's allowed.

I suppose my point is that anything could be considered cheating, and there's probably no single solution that will absolutely prevent cheating.

Slow Ride
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All fine points ahamos. The cheater are there and its just not with shocks. When I ordered suspension bushing for my car from Mazdaspeed, I was asked what kind I wanted, stock or the competition. When I told him it was for an SM, he told me half the guys are getting the comp ones.

Keep it within the rules.

As Tom noted in one of his posts, it boils down to personal accountability.

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No matter where you go, there you are.

John Mueller Verified Driver Made Donation to Website
Okay, not the slowest anymore...

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quote:
Originally posted by Slow Ride:
Keep it within the rules.

... it boils down to personal accountability.

Amen brother !!!

Kent Carter Verified Driver Made Donation to Website
Future Never Has Been

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Ahamos,

The rules do not say that fluids are free. They say 'lubricants'. It's a bit of a stretch to think that the stewards are going to buy that the primary purpose of the fluid in shocks is lubrication.

I'm intrigued by your suggestion that repacking bearings that are considered factory sealed would be outside of the rules. You may be right. I think you'd find that most stewards would say that 'lubricants' are free would include the grease in the hubs.

Changing the shims and valves in the shocks to bring them to third party's idea of what falls within the range of normal variation of new Bilsteins based on a very limited sample is a totally different ball of grease.

We should spec adjustable shocks and be done with it.

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Do I turn my 99 Hard S into a killerfast SM or seek a donor?

d mathias Verified Driver Made Donation to Website
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Mr. Carter you make very reasonable arguements. But what if I had Mr. Stewart rebuild my shocks and he and I keep our mouths shut. Suppose I get torn-down in tech (requires that I podium so this is purely hypothetical). What happens when my Stewart shocks pass all inspected tolerances? Are they still cheater shocks. If I say nothing, as far as you know they are un-molested. How is this any different than "pro motors", which by the way are the current spec.

-Denny

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Alright guys, this has gone a lot further than I ever thought it would. Let me clear up a few things before we go any further (then continue bashing me).
To start with, shocks are only made up of oil, a piston, and a few shims along with a nitrogen charge. NO BLACK MAGIC! The whole thing with the Spec Miata shock is that it IS A SEALED UNIT. That is why not every shock rebuilder in the country is offering the service I am. I have to have a special machine to work with these shocks, along with Bilstein.
Second. You can not cheat a shock without it appearing on a dyno!!! Shocks control force. A dyno applies the force and measures it. Anything you do to alter a shocks performance will appear on a dyno. When I indicated that there were no signs of tampering, that simply meant that I have a machine to assemble your shocks properly. No holes or marks.
Third. There is a difference in what I offer and what Bilstein offers. They will revalve your shocks, I WILL NOT. So, call them if that is what some of you guys were looking for: 1-858-386-5900. I think you have to talk to Mike, right?
My main goal when going into business was to be different from companies like Bilstein. Somewhere along the line they lost contact with customers. Granted, not everyone has had a bad experience with them. But as with all large corporations, attention to details are lost. That is why we have to worry about variances in shocks off of a production line in Germany. That is why it takes months to have your shocks repaired if you have a wreck. They are more concerned with selling you a new shock(s) than saving you some money so that you can race the next event.
I'm leaving it at this. There is nothing that I, or anyone else, can do to your shocks that will not appear on a dyno, therefore I cannot offer you non-detectable super dupper cheater shocks. But, I can repair your broke shock in time for your next race, and I can dyno your shocks to make sure you don't have a "dead" one throwing off your set-up.

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Bernie Stewart
Stewart Development
1321 West Fairfield Road
Suite #110
High Point, NC 27263
(336) 899-0072 Office
http://www.stewartdevelopment.com

Kent Carter Verified Driver Made Donation to Website
Future Never Has Been

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Bernie,

It's a tough crowd and I appreciate your civil and reasonable responses to our issues. I think the reason so many of us objected to your ads are two-fold. First, we do think that some people are cheating up their shocks. Second, your first ad sounded very suspicious and your second ad wasn't a whole lot better.

I fully recognize that you are a legitimate businessperson offering a valuable service. I can't help but think that you will valve and shim the shocks any way a customer asks you to. That's just good business and I would do the exact same thing. There is nothing wrong with that.

Where it creates a problem for us is that we have limited tech resources. If some racers acquire custom valved shocks for MidOhio or Heartland Park that can't be detected by visual inspection, some people are just plain screwed. The advantage will clearly go to those who are local to those tracks because they can test until they find a good combo of rebound/compression damping. People in Southern California don't easily have that opportunity.

I agree with you, these simple shocks don't have much black magic in them so finding the cheaters would be easy with a shock dyno. Problem is, NASA has already dumbly acknowledged that they don't have access to one (and I don't think SCCA does either), so those who choose to cheat their dampers will get away with it at this year's championships. Besides, the last thing we want to see in impound is a bunch of Miatas taking their shocks out to be dynoed. It's one thing to have your car become a roller when they tear down the motor, but a 'slider' is a bit much.

Bernie, what we have to do is find a reputable service provider who will repair, dyno and seal our shocks for a reasonable fee. I'm told the SRF guys get it done for about $120 a set, but I can't confirm that. Or just go to adjustables. Thoughts?

I appreciate your comments on here, Bernie.

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Do I turn my 99 Hard S into a killerfast SM or seek a donor?

Stewart Development Made Donation to Website
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If you are interested in me providing a sealing kit, along with a serial numbered document for NASA and SCCA archives, I am fine with that.

What is the response from the rest of the group? JD?

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Bernie Stewart
Stewart Development
1321 West Fairfield Road
Suite #110
High Point, NC 27263
(336) 899-0072 Office
http://www.stewartdevelopment.com

Casey Z Verified Driver Made Donation to Website
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Bernie,

You stirred up a hornets nest by saying in public what most have known for a long time and that is people other than Bilstien do work on shocks. That isn't a news flash to most but it is to some. I personally don't care who works on the shocks as long as they will pass on a shock dyno if I ever have the pleasure of running into one at a SCCA event.

As far as sealing and numbering, that would be nice, but unless SCCA can figure out a way to make money on it, it will never happen. I would prefer to keep my cash and just get my shocks rebuilt when they need it without a SCCA kickback (think tires..). Just my opinion...

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----------------
Z Brothers Racing / East Street Auto

Casey Z - 1.6 Kettle
MidDiv National #13

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It would be a service to Spec Miata, not SCCA or NASA. I would provide the documentation for reference to all.

--------------------
Bernie Stewart
Stewart Development
1321 West Fairfield Road
Suite #110
High Point, NC 27263
(336) 899-0072 Office
http://www.stewartdevelopment.com

Kent Carter Verified Driver Made Donation to Website
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Casey, if it turns out to be true that the SRF bozos get their shocks tested and sealed for $120 bucks a set, is that too much?

Bernie, can you dyno and seal a set of shocks for $120 a set and still feed your kids? Repairs would be higher, of course.

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Do I turn my 99 Hard S into a killerfast SM or seek a donor?

Casey Z Verified Driver Made Donation to Website
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quote:
Originally posted by Kent Carter:
Casey, if it turns out to be true that the SRF bozos get their shocks tested and sealed for $120 bucks a set, is that too much?

Yes it is because we are already paying SCCA for compliance (not that we are getting anything for our $$$) so I see no reason to add cost.

It would be nice to have the shock sealed and numbered, etc but if someone really wants to cheat up some shocks they will find a way to do it. Hence the need for the traveling shock dyno our compliance fee should be covering. Just my point of view...

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----------------
Z Brothers Racing / East Street Auto

Casey Z - 1.6 Kettle
MidDiv National #13

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I'm pretty sure that is possible.
Let's see if that is resonable to everyone else.

--------------------
Bernie Stewart
Stewart Development
1321 West Fairfield Road
Suite #110
High Point, NC 27263
(336) 899-0072 Office
http://www.stewartdevelopment.com

Kent Carter Verified Driver Made Donation to Website
Future Never Has Been

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Bernie,

Another thought to kick around... and don't answer it here, in public. How much would charge the SCCA (and NASA if they were interested) to dyno 40 sets of shocks over a 10 day period? Uh... in Topeka.

I know this is where you want to spend your fall vacation... [rolling on floor laughin] Topeka! [rolling on floor laughin] [rolling on floor laughin] [Sleep]

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Do I turn my 99 Hard S into a killerfast SM or seek a donor?

Stewart Development Made Donation to Website
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What if that was part of the evaluation service when everyone sends their shocks in for a check-up within a specific time? This would increase safety and provide maintaince along with solving the problem of tampering. Either way, the revalving issue will need to be addressed. Just ideas. Any suggestions?

--------------------
Bernie Stewart
Stewart Development
1321 West Fairfield Road
Suite #110
High Point, NC 27263
(336) 899-0072 Office
http://www.stewartdevelopment.com

ahamos
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Did this just turn friendly and constructive? Aw, man...

Casey Z Verified Driver Made Donation to Website
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quote:
Originally posted by ahamos:
Did this just turn friendly and constructive? Aw, man...

Give it a minute. It will be back to your regularly scheduled program... [Wink]

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Z Brothers Racing / East Street Auto

Casey Z - 1.6 Kettle
MidDiv National #13

Jason Holland Verified Driver Made Donation to Website
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Bernie,

I'd love to have you (and your shock dyno) at Mid-Ohio for the Nasa Championships. PM me if you are interested.

Jason

--------------------
Jason Holland
Semi-interested civilian

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We'll talk and see what happens.

--------------------
Bernie Stewart
Stewart Development
1321 West Fairfield Road
Suite #110
High Point, NC 27263
(336) 899-0072 Office
http://www.stewartdevelopment.com

Kent Carter Verified Driver Made Donation to Website
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Bernie, great to talk with you this afternoon!

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Do I turn my 99 Hard S into a killerfast SM or seek a donor?

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You too. Let's see what we can put together. Talk to you soon.

--------------------
Bernie Stewart
Stewart Development
1321 West Fairfield Road
Suite #110
High Point, NC 27263
(336) 899-0072 Office
http://www.stewartdevelopment.com

Matt Johnson Verified Driver
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OK, all this constructive talk about pulling/dynoing shocks at major events... blah, blah, blah.

What are the proposed pass/fail criteria? I have had a few sets measured to try to figure out a mean and tolerance band, but we would need many many more to really do it properly.

Oh, and we would want to have control samples at the event to verify that the event dyno is measuring the same as the calibrated one that initially measured the mean and variance (to establish tolerances around the mean).

Oh, and when the baseline measurements are done; make sure to run some brake in (pink noise seems to be a somewhat common break in - but you need a hydraulic or linear motor based dyno to do it) before hand as a 10% delta in forces between a virgin shock and a broken in one is not uncommon.

Don't forget to control for damper temperature...

Just one speed, or a set of speeds?

Would you compare peak force vs. peak velocity, football curves, gas pressures, seal drag???

All I am saying is that it will require a lot more thought and pre-work than just someone showing up with a shock dynamometer. They are a great tool, but if that tool is not applied thoughtfully you will create loads of data that is useless.

(I use one of these beasts for work; http: http://www.roehrigengineering.com/cart/product.php?productid=7&cat=4&page=1 )

--------------------
Matt Johnson
1990 SM #73 - yet another red miata.

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--------------------
Bernie Stewart
Stewart Development
1321 West Fairfield Road
Suite #110
High Point, NC 27263
(336) 899-0072 Office
http://www.stewartdevelopment.com

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http://www.roehrigengineering.com/cart/product.php?productid=4&cat=3&page=1

--------------------
Bernie Stewart
Stewart Development
1321 West Fairfield Road
Suite #110
High Point, NC 27263
(336) 899-0072 Office
http://www.stewartdevelopment.com

David Dewhurst
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***Give it a minute. It will be back to your regularly scheduled program... [Wink] ***

Thanks Matt for a little dose of reality to get back on schedule. [Smile]

--------------------
Have Fun [Wink]

David Dewhurst
CenDiv
Milwaukee Region
Spec Miata #14

jigou Verified Driver
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There was a shock dyno at the Runoffs in 2006. Don't know whose it was, but it was there.

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http://www.plainoldgas.com

 
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