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E90/E91/E92/E93 (2006 - 2013)
The E9X is the 4th evolution of the BMW 3 series including a highly tuned twin turbo 335i variant pushing out 300hp and 300 ft. lbs. of torque. BMW continues to show that it sets the bar for true driving performance! -- View the E9X Wiki

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  #1  
Old 04-16-2014, 03:13 PM
SpeedyE SpeedyE is offline
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Can you damage your suspension at the racetrack?

I signed up for a SCCA trackday. I want to learn how to drive this car and what it does when you go past the limit.
I race at this track, and am a race school instructor there as well (motorcycles) so I anticipe I will be going pretty fast and heating up the shocks.

Question:
Factory OEM suspension on motorcycles can be destroyed very quickly on a racetrack from overheating the oil, etc.
Racing suspension needs to be refreshed 1-3 times a year in motorcycle racing.

Will pressing the OEM suspension on a BMW on the track cause any issues ie: causing preload/compression/rebound/oil issue down the road....will it wear it out?
This is a one time deal, will never take it to the racetrack again.

Thanks for any advice

car is a 335i w/ sport suspension
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  #2  
Old 04-16-2014, 03:34 PM
Nerdboss Nerdboss is online now
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I've never heard of such a thing. It's a BMW, it's made to go fast. Enjoy it
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Old 04-16-2014, 04:03 PM
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If you go "past the limit", you may wreck the car, thereby destroying the suspension

Kidding aside, I think if your suspension is in good condition to start, there shouldn't be many issues aside from increased wear. If you had some bushings that were on their way out, there could be some abnormal wear from their lack of availability to control the suspension geometry. Same goes for worn shocks.
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Old 04-16-2014, 04:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SpeedyE View Post
I signed up for a SCCA trackday. I want to learn how to drive this car and what it does when you go past the limit.
I race at this track, and am a race school instructor there as well (motorcycles) so I anticipe I will be going pretty fast and heating up the shocks.

Question:
Factory OEM suspension on motorcycles can be destroyed very quickly on a racetrack from overheating the oil, etc.
Racing suspension needs to be refreshed 1-3 times a year in motorcycle racing.

Will pressing the OEM suspension on a BMW on the track cause any issues ie: causing preload/compression/rebound/oil issue down the road....will it wear it out?
This is a one time deal, will never take it to the racetrack again.

Thanks for any advice

car is a 335i w/ sport suspension
I wouldn't worry about it unless you try and redesign your car like I did.

I had applied "stiffer" anti-roll bars to my former E46 M3 (Eibach installed them at their facility). After 2 - 3 BMW CCA driving schools they (rear) tore through the mounting brackets which had to be re-welded.

I should have left the car as it was (but, geez that car was tight in corners).
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  #5  
Old 04-16-2014, 08:04 PM
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CALWATERBOY CALWATERBOY is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SpeedyE View Post
I signed up for a SCCA trackday. I want to learn how to drive this car and what it does when you go past the limit.
I race at this track, and am a race school instructor there as well (motorcycles) so I anticipe I will be going pretty fast and heating up the shocks.

Question:
Factory OEM suspension on motorcycles can be destroyed very quickly on a racetrack from overheating the oil, etc.
Racing suspension needs to be refreshed 1-3 times a year in motorcycle racing.

Will pressing the OEM suspension on a BMW on the track cause any issues ie: causing preload/compression/rebound/oil issue down the road....will it wear it out?
This is a one time deal, will never take it to the racetrack again.

Thanks for any advice

car is a 335i w/ sport suspension

OK....all right....dude, you're toast!

One good run without auxiliary shock cooling will cause your oil to lose so much viscosity and lubricity that your suspension could seize!

Here's what you do: Wrap each rear shock and front end strut w/cold packs, available at any Rite Aid. Yes. Use wire ties and elastic bandage. Then rip it, and rip it! But please, observe the time specification on the packs you buy - exceed that limit and all is for naught!

NOTE: Ambient temps greatly change effective cold pack use times - consult the manufacturer of your product about your application.

.

Last edited by CALWATERBOY; 04-16-2014 at 08:05 PM.
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Old 04-17-2014, 04:57 AM
fdriller9 fdriller9 is offline
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You'll be fine. Though you may want better brake pads and fluid at the very least.
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  #7  
Old 04-17-2014, 05:42 AM
SpeedyE SpeedyE is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CALWATERBOY View Post
OK....all right....dude, you're toast!

One good run without auxiliary shock cooling will cause your oil to lose so much viscosity and lubricity that your suspension could seize!

Here's what you do: Wrap each rear shock and front end strut w/cold packs, available at any Rite Aid. Yes. Use wire ties and elastic bandage. Then rip it, and rip it! But please, observe the time specification on the packs you buy - exceed that limit and all is for naught!

NOTE: Ambient temps greatly change effective cold pack use times - consult the manufacturer of your product about your application.

.

I bought dry-ice and zip ties....and got a new perm, I am good to go...
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Old 04-17-2014, 06:07 AM
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Mark K Mark K is online now
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I bought dry-ice and zip ties....and got a new perm, I am good to go...


I will second the serious advice to change brake fluid - and that's it. Believe me, your tires will fly a surrender flag way before your suspension even realizes you are on a racetrack

If this is the one and the ONLY time you will drive that car on the track, brake fluid and that's it. Save your money and don't worry about suspension.

I just had (yesterday) tire shop mount 4 slicks on my ex winter wheels. First time on slicks ever - if my instructor agrees on it. Apr 26th on Mid-Ohio. Can't wait ...
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Old 04-17-2014, 06:24 AM
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furby076 furby076 is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CALWATERBOY View Post
OK....all right....dude, you're toast!

One good run without auxiliary shock cooling will cause your oil to lose so much viscosity and lubricity that your suspension could seize!

Here's what you do: Wrap each rear shock and front end strut w/cold packs, available at any Rite Aid. Yes. Use wire ties and elastic bandage. Then rip it, and rip it! But please, observe the time specification on the packs you buy - exceed that limit and all is for naught!

NOTE: Ambient temps greatly change effective cold pack use times - consult the manufacturer of your product about your application.

.
Stop giving him half-arsed advice Cal. Because of you he might jeopardize his suspension.

@OP -> What Cal maliciously neglected to mention is that you do not apply the ice before the race. You need to apply the ice IMMEDIATELY after the race. As long as the shocks are at the highest temperatures then the quick cool-down will help stabilize any issues.
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I agree with furby
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Hahahaha, I like you furb, you like to live dangerously.
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  #10  
Old 04-17-2014, 06:57 AM
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CALWATERBOY CALWATERBOY is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by furby076 View Post
Stop giving him half-arsed advice Cal. Because of you he might jeopardize his suspension.

@OP -> What Cal maliciously neglected to mention is that you do not apply the ice before the race. You need to apply the ice IMMEDIATELY after the race. As long as the shocks are at the highest temperatures then the quick cool-down will help stabilize any issues.

Furb, if one employs post race reactive technique, you should mention Nomex. Yes. Any track pilot annealing red hot shocks must, according to NASCAR regulation, wear full body Nomex.

I lean toward proactive technique - active cold packs - yields better damping and does not require Nomex.


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  #11  
Old 04-17-2014, 08:33 AM
SpeedyE SpeedyE is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by furby076 View Post
Stop giving him half-arsed advice Cal. Because of you he might jeopardize his suspension.

@OP -> What Cal maliciously neglected to mention is that you do not apply the ice before the race. You need to apply the ice IMMEDIATELY after the race. As long as the shocks are at the highest temperatures then the quick cool-down will help stabilize any issues.
I am covered!
Heating pads from Walmart, already purchased.
Velcro'd on w/ kite string attached, and routed to my cockpit...once I have my warm-up lap in, I yank the strings and off come the heat-pads....easy as that!

I still haven't figured out how to mechanically transition to my dry-ice packs....I may wrap instant-cold-packs around the springs, underneath the warmers, and then hit the rumble-strips hard to mix the cold packs and cool the susp down.
I'mma wear a swimmers cap to keep my perm aerodynamic
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Old 04-17-2014, 08:35 AM
SpeedyE SpeedyE is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CALWATERBOY View Post
Furb, if one employs post race reactive technique, you should mention Nomex. Yes. Any track pilot annealing red hot shocks must, according to NASCAR regulation, wear full body Nomex.

I lean toward proactive technique - active cold packs - yields better damping and does not require Nomex.


That's overkill.
Harley Davidson beanie-helmet, and leatherette fingerless gloves keep me safe and stunning at the same time
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  #13  
Old 04-17-2014, 08:38 AM
SpeedyE SpeedyE is offline
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If I pack the inside of my tires w/ dry-ice right before the trackday, will the coldness work it's way (dissipate) to the suspension(?), or am I creating other issues, like taking the chance of over-cooling my brake pads?
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Old 04-17-2014, 08:56 AM
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thekurgan thekurgan is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SpeedyE View Post
If I pack the inside of my tires w/ dry-ice right before the trackday, will the coldness work it's way (dissipate) to the suspension(?), or am I creating other issues, like taking the chance of over-cooling my brake pads?
NO! Fill tires with nitrogen
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Old 04-17-2014, 09:09 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SpeedyE View Post
If I pack the inside of my tires w/ dry-ice right before the trackday, will the coldness work it's way (dissipate) to the suspension(?), or am I creating other issues, like taking the chance of over-cooling my brake pads?
Shirley you jest.
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Old 04-17-2014, 10:15 AM
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CALWATERBOY CALWATERBOY is offline
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That's overkill.
Harley Davidson beanie-helmet, and leatherette fingerless gloves keep me safe and stunning at the same time

A fashion statement, it must be said. I wear Crank Brothers leather, but fingerless gloves may not be optimal après hot laps!

May I recommend a fire extinguisher? CO2 preferred to foam, and listen for the satisfying crack and pop of cooling struts & shocks. Engulfing cloud of vapor draws ooohs & ahhhs!

.

Last edited by CALWATERBOY; 04-17-2014 at 10:39 AM.
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Old 04-17-2014, 10:50 AM
DozerDan DozerDan is offline
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I would laugh you off the track if you showed up with ice packs on your shocks.

Just stop over thinking it and go drive the car. You are not running a 24hr race here. Fire suits for the most part are a sham, your basic suit has a 3 second burn rating, more for a flash over than anything else. Shy of spending big dollars they are not worth much other than when they are 'required'

Fill the tires to proper inflation, make sure your brakes are in good shape and run it.
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Old 04-17-2014, 11:43 AM
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Originally Posted by CALWATERBOY View Post
A fashion statement, it must be said. I wear Crank Brothers leather, but fingerless gloves may not be optimal après hot laps!

May I recommend a fire extinguisher? CO2 preferred to foam, and listen for the satisfying crack and pop of cooling struts & shocks. Engulfing cloud of vapor draws ooohs & ahhhs!

.
I challenge you to find a more handsome pair of racetrack gloves.
The unparallel'd dexterity is reason alone to champion this glove....dexterity equates to feedback which equates to lower lap times. Not to mention their rugged, yet gentlemanly look.
Form follows function, but when the planets align, you have both.... these gloves are a miracle of racing prowess.

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Old 04-17-2014, 11:44 AM
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captainaudio captainaudio is offline
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Unless you engage in an off track excursion your suspension will likely take less of a beating on the track than it does on public roads. On the track you are not going to encounter pot holes, frost heaves, construction plates, etc.

You are far more likely to damage a track car on the street than a street car on the track.

CA
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Old 04-17-2014, 11:47 AM
SpeedyE SpeedyE is offline
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I would laugh you off the track if you showed up with ice packs on your shocks.
Yes....until I set a new lap record, due to innovative, out of the box thinking!
We shall see who is laughing last.
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Old 04-17-2014, 11:48 AM
fdriller9 fdriller9 is offline
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I would laugh you off the track if you showed up with ice packs on your shocks.

Just stop over thinking it and go drive the car. You are not running a 24hr race here. Fire suits for the most part are a sham, your basic suit has a 3 second burn rating, more for a flash over than anything else. Shy of spending big dollars they are not worth much other than when they are 'required'

Fill the tires to proper inflation, make sure your brakes are in good shape and run it.
Normally, you want to over inflate your STREET tires by a few psi for a track day. Slicks, inflate to normal pressure.
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  #22  
Old 04-17-2014, 11:55 AM
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Normally, you want to over inflate your STREET tires by a few psi for a track day. Slicks, inflate to normal pressure.
Huh? Really?
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Old 04-17-2014, 11:56 AM
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Originally Posted by captainaudio View Post
Unless you engage in an off track excursion your suspension will likely take less of a beating on the track than it does on public roads. On the track you are not going to encounter pot holes, frost heaves, construction plates, etc.

You are far more likely to damage a track car on the street than a street car on the track.

CA
You haven't run the LRP skid pad or auto-X course recently then?
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Old 04-17-2014, 12:14 PM
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OP - you'll be fine. As stated, make sure you have new brake fluid and plenty of pad left before starting. Also, take a tire pressure gauge to monitor the pressure after the session. You probably want to be about 40psi HOT to get the most grip out of your tires. This accounts for the softening of the compound when hot. For me in my M3, this equates to 32psi before the first session, but you'll have to figure this out for your car/driving. If you overinflate as suggested (done in auto-x to help the car move around in tight corners), you will have a very small contact patch, limited grip very quickly and risk cording the middle of the tread by the end of the day. If you don't believe me try it. If you don't have a torque wrench, you will be able to borrow one.
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Old 04-17-2014, 12:43 PM
SpeedyE SpeedyE is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fdriller9 View Post
Normally, you want to over inflate your STREET tires by a few psi for a track day. Slicks, inflate to normal pressure.
Conundrum...
I mounted my wheels to a lathe and cut the treads off of my street tires
Now they are street compound slicks.
Should I run a psi in between over-inflated & normal?
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