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Author Topic: Won't we always have a Spec Tire?
Dennis Brown Verified Driver Made Donation to Website
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I did not want to hijack others topic's so here it goes.

Won't we always have a spec tire? Everyone is going to run the tire that runs the fastest times. Most everyone agrees that the Hoosier is the tire that results in the fastest times. If the leaders choose Hoosier then won't everyone else.

What people do not discuss is that if we do not have a spec tire what is to stop the tire manufacturer from raising the price because they have the best tire. Our buying power is not going to persuade a company to build us a specific tire so that it can compete with others.

If there was a tire that resulted in 2 secs per lap, how much would you pay extra? $20 or $100 per tire.

I could care less about which tire, I would like not to have to bring 10 sets of tires to the track because each race or race organization has different rules.

I am for whatever everyone agrees and I want to have a process that is transparent. I think that we should pick a spec tire and make the manufacturer pay our compliance fee.

Mike C Verified Driver Made Donation to Website
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OK, we have had open tire and worked well. The ARRC is open tire. A few years ago the top 5 were Good Year, Hoosier, Kuhmo and Toyo.

Only SCCA National races (and yes NASA) have spec tires now. If your region specs Toyo then someone made a blind decision or you got left out.

MEAT

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Jason Holland Verified Driver Made Donation to Website
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Dennis,

This has been argued ad nauseum for years.

Bottom line, for alot of people, the fastest tire is not always the best option. Economy is important.


Spec tires work and it's what most people want. I'd prefer the new spec tire selection debate not devolve into trying to determine if we want a spec tire or open. We've made that decision.

thanks
jason

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Jason Holland
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quote:
If your region specs Toyo then someone made a blind decision or you got left out.

MEAT [/QB]

Isn't it possible they made an informed decision? [Smile]

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Jason Holland
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Dennis Brown Verified Driver Made Donation to Website
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I agree with all of the above and really don;t care one way or the other on the issue of spec tires.

I would like consistency either all open or all spec.

B Wilson Verified Driver Series Champ
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quote:
Originally posted by Jason Holland:
quote:
If your region specs Toyo then someone made a blind decision or you got left out.

MEAT

Isn't it possible they made an informed decision? [Smile] [/QB]
Or took a vote...

-BW

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Bruce Wilson
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Yes, it is possible they took a vote. Unlikely they made an informed decision.

My region voted.

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ALL OPINIONS ON RULES OR SPECIFICATIONS ARE JUST THAT, MY OPINIONS!

Mike C Verified Driver Made Donation to Website
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But yes I agree with it has been decided to spec a tire. The response to that question is overwhelmingly in favor of a Spec. I also agree that the majority have voiced for a spec tire at Nationals and regionals.

MEAT

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Mike Collins
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I really don't even know what the discussion is about? We have a spec tire and we will have a spec tire for at least another three years. Which tire is the only debate and while I don't want a wagon wheel, I think the one that has the least amount of lap time devaition over 10-15 maybe even 20 cycles is the winner. That along with price and availability are really my main concerns. I think that echos 90% of the class at this point?

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quote:
Originally posted by Drago:
I think the one that has the least amount of lap time devaition over 10-15 maybe even 20 cycles is the winner. That along with price and availability are really my main concerns. I think that echos 90% of the class at this point?

I think you are entirely correct.

JD

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quote:
Originally posted by Drago:
I really don't even know what the discussion is about? We have a spec tire and we will have a spec tire for at least another three years. Which tire is the only debate and while I don't want a wagon wheel, I think the one that has the least amount of lap time devaition over 10-15 maybe even 20 cycles is the winner. That along with price and availability are really my main concerns. I think that echos 90% of the class at this point?

Yep. But if I don't ask for feed back I can never then tell you that you had you chance to be heard. Suck it up and deal with it!

--------------------
Mike Collins
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Why is absolute speed, rather than relative speed, of any interest to people, if it costs significantly more to go faster? I we were to go open tire, then, yes, all would be forced to buy the "fastest" tire, which probably would be the most expensive tire. Would that improve racing? I don't think so; all would still be equal in the tire department. Would it increase costs? Of course, probably a lot.

No thanks. The whole point of a spec class is to emphasize driving and setup. Why people want to increase costs in the process is not clear.

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Dennis,
I,like Drago really don't care what we run in this class.Give us something that wil last 3 weekends or so and be done with it.All tires will fall off in lap times after they hit there sweet spot but most will just lose that 1/2 to 3/4 per second and then stay the same from there on out till the cords show.That you can't argue about.
A molded tire is a much easier tire and predictable tire to run,takes some of the variables out of it.
As far as price the Hoosier SM tire was priced the same and Most of the other top tyre companies were gonna be right in there to try to get some of that market.I know of one for sure,I tested a few different sets for them.
As far as our currant tire,I have never taken more tires to the track,had more shaves done,heat cycled a tire to the enth degree to try to find the best tire for that track for any given weekend or spent more money on tires than I have with these Toyo's that are supposedly "cheap" to race.Rain tire aside,most of us and all of them should have a rain tire in the trailer so that cost is the same no matter what name is on the side of it.
This is really not a spec class,we have way to many differences from year to year between cars to call it that.It should really be called Miata Only class.Most of those who want a spec tire are kidding themselves and should all go run in the lapping day events somewhere if all they want to do is make laps with the least amount of work and set up.

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volante

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And Yes,I voted for open tire.

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volante

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quote:
Originally posted by volante:
Most of those who want a spec tire are kidding themselves and should all go run in the lapping day events somewhere if all they want to do is make laps with the least amount of work and set up.

Utter, total nonsense. Wanting to keep costs down by having a spec tire has absolutely nothing (not even a teeny, weeny bit) to do with "least amount of work and set up." It has everything to do with leveling the equipment playing field, minimizing costs, and maximizing set up knowledge and ability, and driving ability. Just what true racers should be interested in.

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quote:
Originally posted by volante:
Most of those who want a spec tire are kidding themselves and should all go run in the lapping day events somewhere if all they want to do is make laps with the least amount of work and set up.

Wow, somebody's (purple) panties are sure in a wad. [duck] [Wink]

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As far as I can tell NASA has already made the choice for us. If SCCA chooses something other than NASA both clubs will be hurt.

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Ralph Provitz
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First off the last thing I want SCCA to be concerned with is what NASA did or is doing.
Valante, I couldn't agree more. I still think a lot [ not all] that want Toyo as the tire have been on them for so long that they don't know any better, or never ran anything else [ I fit into the last category]. I want a spec tire too, but not Toyos. After running Hoosiers for a while I would rather not ever have a Toyo on my car again.
For the money Hoosier is the best deal, all lap times aside.
As for a rain tire, I want a tire that will have a better chance of keeping my car off the wall than a Toyo.

--------------------
Charlie Campbell
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PLEASE everyone write the CRB, SMAC, BOD, and President and ask for a molded tire with a separate rain. That's a $40-$60 savings per set AND one less variable.

It would be SO nice to not have to shave tires. And yes Charlie, a real rain tire would be great too!

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quote:
Originally posted by TimBuck:
PLEASE everyone write the CRB, SMAC, BOD, and President and ask for a molded tire with a separate rain. That's a $40-$60 savings per set AND one less variable.

It would be SO nice to not have to shave tires. And yes Charlie, a real rain tire would be great too!

Tim for SM king of the world! Too bad you make sense. No one will listen... [Frown]

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I get a set of Toyos, shaved by Vilven to 4/32, installed and balanced, for $600 a set. I get an unshaved set for less. And I can have my old rains shaved, and turned into serviceable race tires.

I'm certainly open to the concept of separate rain and dry tires, if you can explain to me why I'll save money doing that. And such explanation should take into account that the rains will be worthless the first time the track dries up early in a race when you went out there with rains on, since you can't use the rains on a dry day.

And while you're explaining, could you tell me what a "real rain tire" is, and tell me with a straight face that it will be a tire that I can put on when it's raining, but won't be a huge liability if the rain stops and the sun comes out as soon as the race starts (not an unusual occurrence around these parts).

Thanks. [Smile]

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Mark,

There is no good fix for the "I went out on rains and then it got dry" issue. No tire is good for both. Witness the F1 guys and others swerving like mad to find a wet patch to cool off the rain tires.

I know you guys in the NW get more rain than most, but on balance I think that argument is a red herring at best. Most make a set of rains stretch a year or two. How many dry sets do you buy in that time period if you are really doing all you can to run up front? In most regions I would bet the rain to dry ratio is something like 1/5 (or a lot more if you are really serious) on a 12 to 14 weekend schedule.

My point is that one set of rains getting recycled every year or so across the country and the class is a wash compared to what we spend on dry tires that are actually competitive.

I feel your pain and I see your point. But, just realize that 4/32's are only being run mid to back of the pack. You should run ITA and try the new Hoosiers sometime. I think you will find religion pretty quick! [Wink]

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In case anyone forgot who REALLY makes up this class...

In other words, cheapasses and/or regular Joes scrimping and saving to make the next Regional race are the often-silent-but-sometimes-vocal majority. A rain tire that can later be shaved into a dry makes a lot of sense for this group. I know this has saved me hundreds over the past couple years.

--------------------
Crew Chief, 3D Racing #64, aka Team Scrappy 2.0
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quote:
Originally posted by Pat Newton:
In case anyone forgot who REALLY makes up this class...

In other words, cheapasses and/or regular Joes scrimping and saving to make the next Regional race are the often-silent-but-sometimes-vocal majority. A rain tire that can later be shaved into a dry makes a lot of sense for this group. I know this has saved me hundreds over the past couple years.

Pat,

I really do understand where you are coming from. Just talking about this with AG via email. We can't find anyplace that will shave our rains. I am sure you guys can tell us about a shop up there we can ship them to. Who is going to pay the shipping?

Or you guys can just ship us your dries to let us "break them in", hope you see I am joking, just kind of...

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quote:
Originally posted by Casey Z:
We can't find anyplace that will shave our rains. I am sure you guys can tell us about a shop up there we can ship them to. Who is going to pay the shipping?

Hmmm, that's a very good point Casey. The place I use (Les Schwab Tires, seems to be a Western thing only) "buffs" the tires on some sort of sander-type contraption rather than shaving them, so they are not concerned with protecting blades from rocks and whatnot. Surely there has to be someplace elsewhere that can do it?

--------------------
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Casey,

Anyone who retreads tires has the ability to buff tires to a given depth. I'll give away a closely held tip. Try your old buffed rains on a track that has needed a repave for a good while, and let us know how you like them.

E & C Retreading
2425 Warehouse Rd
Claremore, OK 74017
(918) 343-5777

-Bruce

--------------------
Bruce Wilson
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Thanks Bruce. Claremore is only 30 min away from me. I have a feeling this is going to be another one of those weird conversations you have in racing. "Hey, I have these race tires and I just need you to buff them a bit..." While surrounded by guys that deal with truck tires all day. Gotta take a chance and make some new friends.

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Probably... And good luck with that [Big Grin] We're just lucky Les Schwab sells Toyos and has an exlusive for the RA-1 in our neck of the woods, all though a lot of us buy mail order to get a better price.

-Bruce

--------------------
Bruce Wilson
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I would like to clarify something as I have been getting PM about my posts in this thread. I am not advocating we have a "dedicated rain tire". I am advocating a no shave required dry tire and an open (DOT) or spec rain tire based on something like the RA1 or 888.

Hope that clears it up.

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quote:
Originally posted by soupy:
First off the last thing I want SCCA to be concerned with is what NASA did or is doing.

Too Late!

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quote:
Originally posted by Casey Z:
Mark,

There is no good fix for the "I went out on rains and then it got dry" issue. No tire is good for both. Witness the F1 guys and others swerving like mad to find a wet patch to cool off the rain tires.

I know you guys in the NW get more rain than most, but on balance I think that argument is a red herring at best. Most make a set of rains stretch a year or two. How many dry sets do you buy in that time period if you are really doing all you can to run up front? In most regions I would bet the rain to dry ratio is something like 1/5 (or a lot more if you are really serious) on a 12 to 14 weekend schedule.

My point is that one set of rains getting recycled every year or so across the country and the class is a wash compared to what we spend on dry tires that are actually competitive.

I feel your pain and I see your point. But, just realize that 4/32's are only being run mid to back of the pack. You should run ITA and try the new Hoosiers sometime. I think you will find religion pretty quick! [Wink]

Thanks, Casey, as always. Your responses are helpful, and done in a pleasant fashion. You are a true asset to this site.

That said, I still don't begin to understand the desire to have more expensive tires, whether a spec tire or a non-spec tire. One way or another, we all will end up with the same tire; what difference does it make if the tire that costs significantly more is a bit faster, if we're all using it?

I do run ITA, and I hadn't thought about the extra time I could get in ITA by running faster tires; that is a nice thought. But, ignoring the use of our cars in other classes, I don't understand the desire to have faster tires, if the expense goes up in the process.

I also autocross, and use V710s for that on my S2000. I have fantasies about using them on a track (when you're as old as I am, your fantasies sometimes are not as lascivious as they used to me [Smile] ), so I really do appreciate the difference in grip between the RA-1 and other tires. That said, I still think that racing is supposed to be about car setup and driving, not who spends the most on engine/tires. If we're all on the same tire, and it's "good enough" (as I think the RA-1 is), I don't see why a few (and it is a few, relatively speaking) are so adamant about upping the ante on tires.

As for rains, unshaved RA-1s won't be nearly the liability in a drying track that Hoosier Wets will be, and they'll be fine for practice tires afterward. Hoosier Wets are dead after 20 minutes on a dry track, and of no use for any other purpose. That adds up to a significant saving over time, at least where it rains a lot.

I remain unconvinced that a tire arms race (added to an engine arms race) will benefit me in any way.

[Smile]

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quote:
Originally posted by Mike C:
quote:
Originally posted by Drago:
I really don't even know what the discussion is about? We have a spec tire and we will have a spec tire for at least another three years. Which tire is the only debate and while I don't want a wagon wheel, I think the one that has the least amount of lap time devaition over 10-15 maybe even 20 cycles is the winner. That along with price and availability are really my main concerns. I think that echos 90% of the class at this point?

Yep. But if I don't ask for feed back I can never then tell you that you had you chance to be heard. Suck it up and deal with it!
This kinda sticks in my craw a bit. I hope I'm reading it wrong....

Mike, are you gathering official feedback or just testing the waters? We've got a dozen SM owners just here in Des Moines, and about 2.5 of us spend any kind of time on websites at all.

I guess I'm a little concerned about 25% (or less) of the active driving population guiding the decision just because they happened to be on the right website at the right time to see the request for input....

Jarrod

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Jarrod. I ask in my offical capacity on this website as the host of the "Rules" forum. I also happen to be on the SMAC. The SCCA ask for feedback via fast track. We have more feedback in this forum thread than all of the letters to the SCCA. I am trying to work with the SCCA on a "zoomerang" type email survey to the SCCA SM drivers. Unfortunatly right now the SCCA does not know who drives what car. They are working on that on there end. I am just looking for more feedback. I am also seeking feedback independantly from this as I am also the WDCR (Washington DC Region) Drivers Rep. We met and voted on what we wanted at the end of last season as I knew this would become an off season hot button.

MEAT

--------------------
Mike Collins
MEATHEAD Racing
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ALL OPINIONS ON RULES OR SPECIFICATIONS ARE JUST THAT, MY OPINIONS!

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Mark, all.

I think what some folks are saying, or at least my opinion of what the message is, is that it will be cost neutral to perhaps select another tire. Or, that it may actually reduce the dollars being spent by front-runners.

I know I spend a lot on tires. Using 4/32" Toyos is out of the question if you need absolute speed. Therefore, I buy either 2/32" or 3/32" depending on the event location.

Shaved to this depth and in a double National weekend, they are typically not usable for competition again. They can be used for a not so important practice sessions, or a regional race in a Regional/National weekend format.

I have never raced on a Hoosier, so I can't first hand say what racing a non-shaved molded true racing tire is like, but I can't believe it can be anymore costly than the Toyo under the assumption that the unit price is roughly the same. Someone else would have to chime in as to how long they remain competitive and/or last.

Competition in SM has elevated a great deal in the last 3 years. With this escalation has been the rise of thinner shaves to get the last tenth of speed which results in more tire use, expense.

I am ok with a spec tire by all means, but I just wish it was the "best" choice. And, due to the required need for "heavy" shaves of Toyos to post the fastest times, I don't think that provides a driver with as much as "spec" as they think against a true molded race tire. In fact, in my opinion, it only widens the difference in speed (advantage) between the budgets and the guys that are attempting to run the Toyos 'til corded.

Now I can't say that the budget unlimited guys won't still shave any molded tire you throw at them for an additional advantage, but ideally, that shave won't provide a significant benefit over an unshaved molded race tire to be of any value. But, having absolutely zero experience on such a tire I can't say and hope someone else can.

--------------------
James York


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Drago Verified Driver Made Donation to Website Series Champ
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hmmm
I think what your doing is great... But I think short of you typing up a draft of each persons in dependant feeling on the matter and composing a bulk letter to the SCCA, it does little to nothing.. probably closer to nothing than little.
It is just sparking up a debate again with strong feelings on both sides on which tire, open tire etc...

We have the general consensus of what is wanted in the tire, Spec, long lasting etc.. Regardless of any input at this point, that is what the goal will be and all recommendations will be to the CRB by SMAC. What the SCCA does, unfortunately they have proved they will do what is best for the SCCA first and SM second, if those two goals are met in one supplier, great, if not the decision will be made in that order. Make no mistake, that is how the decision is made in NASA as well, just much more transparent.

We have also been told we (Smac) are not going to be involved in the test or the decision making of the new Spec tire.

So, as I have stated and will continue to state, it is nice to bitch, argue and complain here, but it does not matter one bit! Letter need to be written to the CRB@scca.com...

If you want to circulate a form letter and all send it in, saying the same general things, that is our best bet... We don't need a 100 letters with 100 different opinions... We need a hundred letters stating basically the same thing, we all need to suck it up and make the best of the spec tire deal and get the best process and tire in place as nothing but a spec tire is an option at this point...

We want low cost
We want least deviation over 10,15 or 20 cycles
We want a transparent test with SMAC involved in some way to see all is above board

Much more than that starts clouding the waters IMO. But I do know that many of the most vocal here and on other sites do not send letters, you have yourself to blame..

My opinion is that the tire test will go down very similar to the last one and we will be on the R888, which I don't know if it is good or bad. But if you want a true test, we need the letters, not opinions here that mean little to nothing

--------------------
Jim Drago
East Street Auto Salvage
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EAST STREET RACING

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quote:
Originally posted by Drago:
hmmm
I think what your doing is great... But I think short of you typing up a draft of each persons independant feeling on the matter and composing a bulk letter to the SCCA, it does little to nothing.. probably closer to none than little.
It is just sparking up a debate again with strong feelings on both sides etc...

We have the general consensus of what is wanted in the tire, Spec, long lasting etc.. Regardless of any input at this point, that is what the goal will be and all recommendations. What the SCCA does, unfortunately they have proved they will do what is best for the SCCA first and SM second, if those two goals are met in one supplier, great, if not the decision will be made in that order. make no mistake, that is how the decision is made in NASA as well, just much more transparent.

We have also been told we (Smac) are not going to be involved in the test or the decision making of the new Spec tire.

So, as I have stated and will ontinue to state, it is nice to bitch argue and complain here, it does not matter one bit! Leeters need to be written to the CRb@scca.com...

If you want to circulate a form letter and all send it in, saying the same genderal things, that is our best bet... We don't need a 100 letters with 100 different opinions... We nneed a hundred lettersstating the same thing...
We want low cost
We want least deviation over 10,15 or 20 cycles
We want a transparent test with SMAC involved in some way to see all is above board

Much more than that starts clouding the waters IMO. But I do know that many of the most vocal here and on other sites do not send letters, you have yourself to blame..

My opinion is that the tire test will go down very similiar to the last one and we will be on the R888, which I don't know if it is good or bad. But if you want a true test, we need the letters, not opinions here that mean litle to nothing

AMEN!

--------------------
Mike Collins
MEATHEAD Racing
http://www.SHEETZ.com
The MEATHEAD Racing 2010 Calendar is up!!!!
www.MEATHEADRacing.com
SMAC Member
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ALL OPINIONS ON RULES OR SPECIFICATIONS ARE JUST THAT, MY OPINIONS!

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Mark you make me laugh! I am not that old, but it sounds like we have the same fantasies!

A couple of points I would like to make as I think there is some miss information out there on a few points. I am not in favor of a significantly more expensive tire. I am a budget guy. I buy the Hoosiers for less than some people are paying for Toyo's. The tires are about the same price if you shop around.

Also, as I clarified above, I would be in favor of DOT rain tire, not something that gets toasted in one session.

Last thing as I got some PM's about this. I am not a Toyo hater. I run both Toyo's and Hoosier's depending on what sanctioning body I am driving with. I think the Toyo is a pretty good tire. I think the Hoosier is a better tire. It isn't that much faster than the Toyo's (if at all) but it is more predictable. Which is important to me.

Okay one more thing because James makes a good point above. There are a bunch of people advocating Toyo's because it is what they know. I just wish that people would be willing to listen to folks that have a bunch of laps on both tires. If you haven't driven a tire, how can you be closed to the idea? I have driven on Toyo's, Hoosier's, and V710's. I will only comment on tires that I have experience with.

EDIT: CRB/SMAC has my letter and I also wrote my BOD memeber.

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

Casey Z - 1.6 Kettle
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quote:
Originally posted by Mike C:
AMEN!

+1

-Kyle

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quote:
Originally posted by Drago:
We want low cost
We want least deviation over 10,15 or 20 cycles
We want a transparent test with SMAC involved in some way to see all is above board

Much more than that starts clouding the waters IMO. But I do know that many of the most vocal here and on other sites do not send letters, you have yourself to blame..

My opinion is that the tire test will go down very similar to the last one and we will be on the R888, which I don't know if it is good or bad. But if you want a true test, we need the letters, not opinions here that mean little to nothing

SCCA really needs to a way to gather member input with today's available technology, i.e. Zoomerang. A lot of folks we race with are reticent to post a public comment or write a letter to the CRB for various reasons, and that hurts the ability to gather of meaningful data. That was evident when we ran the CRB spam-o-matic letter writing campaign. I heard that was the most member input the SCCA has ever received on a rules change.

Jim, I agree with your list, but let's not disregard what is being said in the other thread. The desire for a single spec dry/rain tire is overwhelmingly evident with somewhere around 75% of folks asking for a single spec tire.

Mike,

Given that data, I will be starting a new CRB letter writing campaign if you can't get the Zoomerang option working. I would rather not, but I do feel strongly, as before, that this is a very important rule that should have as much input as possible.

-Bruce

--------------------
Bruce Wilson
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quote:
Originally posted by Bruce Wilson:
Probably... And good luck with that [Big Grin] We're just lucky Les Schwab sells Toyos and has an exlusive for the RA-1 in our neck of the woods, all though a lot of us buy mail order to get a better price.

-Bruce

Funny thing about that. I went in to Schwab last week to order a set of rains. The RA1 showed up in their computer as obsolete; superseded by the R888. I had them contact Toyo and their Toyo rep confirmed the RA1 is obsolete. Schwab can still order them but they are no longer stocking them in their warehouse(s).

Ken

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Mark, The expense is not going to go up. In fact IMHO I think your tire budget will go down if we went to Hoosiers.
As far as going faster on a differant tire, I don't know about you but that's why I race- To go fast. The faster the better. If I wanted to go slow I can do that on the street. So if a differant tire would increase mine and everyone elses speed then great. The faster you go the better driver you need to be.
Everyone can drive at 60. Most can drive at 100. Not many can drive at 150. At least not for long.

--------------------
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Race Engineering
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So we're all ok with shaving tires to 2/32" on the inside and 1/32" on the outside in order to get that last little bit off our lap times? Cuz there are plenty who are willing to do that. How does that make SM racing cheaper OR closer to spec??

--------------------
Tim Buck

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Cajun Miata Man Verified Driver
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quote:
Originally posted by TimBuck:
How does that make SM racing cheaper OR closer to spec??

Let me mail you some specially tinted eyeware.

--------------------
James York


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quote:
Originally posted by TimBuck:
So we're all ok with shaving tires to 2/32" on the inside and 1/32" on the outside in order to get that last little bit off our lap times? Cuz there are plenty who are willing to do that. How does that make SM racing cheaper OR closer to spec??

Tim, what percentage of SM racers nationwide actually use custom shaves like that? Ten percent? Five?

BTW, I agree 110% with what Drago, Collins and others have said- I appreciate the opportunity to discuss and debate this on web forums, but I am glad that SCCA makes the rules based on its own member input process.

--------------------
Crew Chief, 3D Racing #64, aka Team Scrappy 2.0
3rd place E2, 2009 25 Hours of Thunderhill

Crew Chief, EGR/Miller Motorsports #64, aka Team Scrappy
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quote:
Originally posted by TimBuck:
So we're all ok with shaving tires to 2/32" on the inside and 1/32" on the outside in order to get that last little bit off our lap times? Cuz there are plenty who are willing to do that. How does that make SM racing cheaper OR closer to spec??

herding cats ... they just won't follow no matter what logic, knowledge or real world experience is demonstrated.
Felt the same way for years, but now have seen the light ... No coincidence that NASA recently anounced the Toyo R888 spec tire for 2009 and beyond. Great tactical move. The future of this class in SCCA is on the line here with the upcoming Topeka decision. Go spec tire with the triple 8 to allow the best overall long term growth opportunity for the class.
Carlos G.

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I am simply illustrating that the current Toyos are FAR from spec, that shaving costs everyone money, and the FAST guys are doing custom things to them that most aren't. The that the class in general has expressed a desire to more TOWARD a less expensive, more "spec" ruleset. So my suggestions reflect what the class as a whole is trying to achieve.

Personally, I'd like open tires... but whatever way things go I'll continue to happily race SM.

--------------------
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Sure, but this class has already become two classes (at least). There are those who pay $7000 for a motor (regularly), and are happy to shave their tires almost to the cords. They will spend what it takes to be in a position to win.

Most of us are happy to race mid-pack, where there's plenty of action. We have essentially stock motors, and we shave our tires to 4/32, and run them 30+ cycles. Find me a rain tire that is usable for more than one session if the track dries during the race (especially if it's the same tire as the dry tire); find me a tire that I can use for 30+ cycles (my fastest lap ever in my Miata at our home track was on the 31st cycle of that set of tires), and I don't care what it is (as long as I don't have to toss my RA-1s in the bargain, and can use them up).

Finally, I don't think that any spec tire decision (even having no spec tire) will stop the arms race in tires. Those to for whom spending twice or thrice as much on tires, in order to get the last tenth, will still do so, regardless of the tire you choose.

So let's use Jim's list as a large part of the basis, but making the decision to suit the guys with unlimited budgets, in a class invented to try to contain costs, make absolutely no sense.

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Tim,

How could we prevent shaving like this?

As you know, all tires are molded. Some are molded depths that allow them to be used as a rain tire if they're not shaved. Some are molded to a depth that's too shallow for a full rain. But I fail to see how those who seek the ultimate performance regardless of cost will skip shaving these. Just reducing the tires weight by shaving would be an advantage, regardless of other factors.

-Kyle

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In case anyone wants a reminder of the tire poll results from a couple of months ago.

http://forum.specmiata.com/cgi-bin/ultimatebb.cgi?/topic/2/3659.html

--------------------
www.alararacing.com

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Nothing prevents shaving a molded tire either. But they don't HAVE to be shaved, saving ME $$$.

Like I said, I am all for open tires. Then I can run whatever is on sale that month.

--------------------
Tim Buck

MAZDASPEED Motorsports Development
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