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Old 06-11-2017, 03:58 AM   #1
HatchetHatter
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Upgrade advice?

I just wanted to start off by saying sorry if this is the wrong section for this. I just didn't see a better one.

A few months ago, I picked up my 10-Series FRS. I've been getting more and more into cars, and after tons of research, figured it was the best place to start. The 10-series just sort of fell into my lap pretty quickly, and I own one now. I just need someone who's more experienced guide me in the right direction.

I already swapped out the taillights and side markers myself (I hated the stock look), but as far as performance goes, I'm not sure where to start. The previous owner installed a TRD airbox, and I'm not sure if it's been tuned or not. As far as I can tell, that's the only performance upgrade.

This is my daily driver, so I'm looking for something that will keep it somewhat reliable while giving the car the kick it needs.

I was thinking about going down a path of brakes, wheels, turbo kit, but as far as the brakes and wheels are concerned, I wouldn't know where to start. For the turbo kit, I was looking at the WORKS stage 2 tuner kit. Aside from it looking like a decent kit for the price, they also have a dealer in Columbus, according to their website. Being from the area, that would be very convenient. Also, working with the stock exhaust is a nice feature. After the turbo kit, perhaps coilovers and suspension upgrades.

Is that a reasonable upgrade path?

I was originally considering a supercharger, but being my daily driver, efficiency is a concern. Even if the effect is slight, that little bit of extra or saved gas will add up over time.

A 2jz swap is also something that I've considered, but that's way over my head personally. I'd have to find a good shop and I'd have to completely rely on them. Plus I've got no idea how much it would cost, how long it would take, etc. I imagine it would use up a lot more gas as well as being a lot more expensive. Perhaps maybe after my other upgrades and a few years down the line, I might consider it. But then again, it would seem like I wasted money on the turbo kit and such.

Any opinions would be helpful for me, and I appreciate the input.

Edit: To be more specific, I'm looking for a daily driver with a bit more power. I want to get into autocross and maybe have a few track days a year, but I don't want anything crazy. The idea is to give it some extra power while still being close to stock in feel. I'm looking for a more grippy setup as well.

The purpose of this thread is to get a plan of what my upgrade path should be so I can start saving and planning things out. It's not exactly a "what's the best part" thread.

For example, how much should I expect to pay in labor to install a bolt-on turbo kit? How much is a tune, and what do I need? Is there any parts I'm forgetting that I'll need to get? That sort of thing.

Last edited by HatchetHatter; 06-11-2017 at 03:53 PM.
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Old 06-11-2017, 12:26 PM   #2
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Ok, congrats on the car, and it looks like you are excited, that is great.

First thing first though, what is your intended use for the car? Do you have any interest in autocross or any type of track days, or are you going to keep it straight dd?

If you want to add power, brakes are always a good start, but you need to decide how big you want your wheels to be, and whether buying boat anchors is worth having larger, better brakes, as many of the available kits require 18" wheels. Check out the section on the forums, there are tons of brake upgrade kits and tons of info on what size wheels they require. And there is also tons of info on wheels as well.

Getting a tune is always a good first step, even a tune on the stock car helps everything.

As for supercharger vs turbo, how much power are you thinking of? Gas mileage is more about how hard you press the accelerator more then which type of forced induction you use. An edelbrock kit on the carb tune will get better gas mileage if driven lightly than a 400 hp turbo on e85, for instance.

The most important thing is to plan, and to take it slowly. Also don't be afraid to red line the car, it is a total different vehicle when it is up near the red line than when it is driven at 4k or so. It was meant to be driven hard and aggressively.
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Old 06-11-2017, 12:51 PM   #3
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Haha, 100 dollars says OP will not follow through with any of his ideas, and ends up with an axle back exhaust instead.
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Old 06-11-2017, 02:02 PM   #4
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Honestly I'd just be happier with grippier than stock tires. Maybe aftermarket wheels but those are mostly for people outside the automobile to look at and my vanity level is at an all time low.
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Old 06-11-2017, 02:10 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HatchetHatter View Post
.............A few months ago, I picked up my 10-Series FRS. ......................This is my daily driver, so I'm looking for something that will keep it somewhat reliable while giving the car the kick it needs.

...............Is that a reasonable upgrade path?

Any opinions would be helpful for me, and I appreciate the input.
Hello HatchetHatter, congratulations on your purchase and welcome to ye ol forum ......

Where in Ohio do you live ...??

Ya know, I get the feeling from reading your post, is that the limitation that you and your car have to becoming "faster" is ....... your ability to drive it ..... and that ain't all bad .....

For a non-tracked DD ....... your car is just fine the way it is.

As eluded to by @Cole, you may consider a mild axle back muffler, to make it sound a bit more aggressive.

If you really want to spend some money on your car, I would suggest you save your money and buy some winter tires this fall.


Have fun and drive safely ...... and stay waaay back from the parking stops.


humfrz
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Old 06-11-2017, 02:51 PM   #6
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As mentioned in earlier reply... kind of depends on what you intend to do with the new rig... followed by how hard a hit your wallet can take. You could spend $1000 or $10,000... and that's kind of the beauty of the 86. There are so many options out there from the aftermarket vendors... it's like having that $20 your G'ma slipped to you as you headed into the candy store.

Everyone's taste, preferences, budget are different, so not sure you can ever get to a definitive "what's the best thing(s) to do....". Do enough reading and you might even find out what NOT to do....

And.. on this Forum, better have a thick skin b/c there will be comments that might make you go WTF??

Rather than give you a list of things to look for... and assuming that your budget is your own biz... I'll just keep it at these points...

- Find a person or shop who's reputation in the area of modification have either industry or community support (referral)

- Research, research, research... separate the wheat from the chaff...

- Remember that this is not a high-end performance rig... it was designed to specific parameters to keep manufacturing costs at a point that the rig could be retailed at a specific print-point. ANYTIME you mod the rig to something outside those parameters... you run the risk of stressing something else beyond its original parameters (example: FI of any kind and how that will affect various parts of your engine and drive train).

- If you hope to never use your warranty (but know that it's there and you're glad it is...), know that anything significant you mod in the way of engine, drive-train, emissions, suspensions, ECU, etc. during the warranty period could be used to void some or all of the warranty.

Enjoy the rig... it IS one of the best handling cars in its segment!! (Just keep the revs UP when you start thinking, Why doesn't this have more power?? Read about the Honda S2000 power band for perspective)
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Old 06-11-2017, 03:36 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by why? View Post
First thing first though, what is your intended use for the car? Do you have any interest in autocross or any type of track days, or are you going to keep it straight dd?

If you want to add power, brakes are always a good start, but you need to decide how big you want your wheels to be, and whether buying boat anchors is worth having larger, better brakes, as many of the available kits require 18" wheels. Check out the section on the forums, there are tons of brake upgrade kits and tons of info on what size wheels they require. And there is also tons of info on wheels as well.

As for supercharger vs turbo, how much power are you thinking of? Gas mileage is more about how hard you press the accelerator more then which type of forced induction you use. An edelbrock kit on the carb tune will get better gas mileage if driven lightly than a 400 hp turbo on e85, for instance.

The most important thing is to plan, and to take it slowly. Also don't be afraid to red line the car, it is a total different vehicle when it is up near the red line than when it is driven at 4k or so. It was meant to be driven hard and aggressively.
I'll go through and reply in order.

Yes, I plan on hopefully getting into autocross and having a few track days a year.

Foe brakes, I wasn't thinking anything insane. I was browsing some online stores earlier, and found a kit by StopTech that's basically an upgrade similar to the stock brakes. It wasn't super high performance, but I'm hoping it would be enough for my use. For wheels, I haven't really decided. I'd be alright with 17 or 18 inches, but I definately want to go a little wider. I was looking at a set of 17x8, for a bit of added grip while retaining a somewhat stock look and feel. I'll definitely do more research.

The plan is what I'm trying to figure out exactly. This isn't something I want to do right now, but I'm trying to get a more solid plan in line so I know what to save for and how much I need.

And trust me, I red line more than I should. XD I have a very good feel for the car after the few months I've owned it.
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Old 06-11-2017, 03:41 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by humfrz View Post
Hello HatchetHatter, congratulations on your purchase and welcome to ye ol forum ......

Where in Ohio do you live ...??

Ya know, I get the feeling from reading your post, is that the limitation that you and your car have to becoming "faster" is ....... your ability to drive it ..... and that ain't all bad .....

For a non-tracked DD ....... your car is just fine the way it is.

As eluded to by @Cole, you may consider a mild axle back muffler, to make it sound a bit more aggressive.

If you really want to spend some money on your car, I would suggest you save your money and buy some winter tires this fall.


Have fun and drive safely ...... and stay waaay back from the parking stops.


humfrz
I live in central ohio, northwest of Columbus. I've fotten a good feel for the car, but i'm still learning. I sort of hold back because there's a lot of deer in my area, but I can still let loose. The point of this post is to make a game plan for the future so i know how much I need to save and what I should get.

I do plan on going to the track eventually, although I wanted to get a better feel for the car before I did.

I personally don't care much about how it sounds. I'm more concerned about how it performs.

Do you have any suggestions for winter tires? I'm all ears. That is something I plan on doing.

Thanks!
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Old 06-11-2017, 04:15 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HatchetHatter View Post
I live in central ohio, northwest of Columbus. I've fotten a good feel for the car, but i'm still learning. I sort of hold back because there's a lot of deer in my area, but I can still let loose. The point of this post is to make a game plan for the future so i know how much I need to save and what I should get.

I do plan on going to the track eventually, although I wanted to get a better feel for the car before I did.

I personally don't care much about how it sounds. I'm more concerned about how it performs.

Do you have any suggestions for winter tires? I'm all ears. That is something I plan on doing.

Thanks!
Ahhh.......yes, Columbus ....... I spent 5 years there looking for a piece of paper ...... finally found it .....

You know of the old 3-C highway (Cincinnati-Columbus-Cleveland) ..... ??

Back in the early 60s, one sunny day, I rode my brothers Honda Superhawk (CB77 - for those of you that go back that far) from Cincinnati to Akron ..... taking the old 3C highway.

However, on the way back it was pouring down rain ...... so, I jumped on the freeway ..... no windshield, no rain gear ...... pulled into our barn, dismounted that bike and didn't ride another street bike for the next 20 years .....

About getting a better feel for the car ..... they tell me that on a track is the place to do it .....

Winter tires, well, up here I can get by with all-seasons to deal with our dusting of snow twice a year. In Ohio, I'll defer to others for a recommendation, although a Bridgestone Blizzak comes to mind.

As far as hitting a deer ...... my buddy Bubba says that the faster you go, the less chance you have of hitting a deer ...... reduced exposure time .....


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Old 06-11-2017, 04:20 PM   #10
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Haha, 100 dollars says OP will not follow through with any of his ideas, and ends up with an axle back exhaust instead.
For once I agree with you.
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Old 06-11-2017, 06:24 PM   #11
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Haha, 100 dollars says OP will not follow through with any of his ideas, and ends up with an axle back exhaust instead.
I remember when I had a long build thread before even purchasing the car.

2 years later, just tires and exhaust.
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Hey, you're the one asking me to shove a turbo engine in my pants.
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Old 06-11-2017, 06:56 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HatchetHatter View Post
I just wanted to start off by saying sorry if this is the wrong section for this. I just didn't see a better one.

A few months ago, I picked up my 10-Series FRS. I've been getting more and more into cars, and after tons of research, figured it was the best place to start. The 10-series just sort of fell into my lap pretty quickly, and I own one now. I just need someone who's more experienced guide me in the right direction.

I already swapped out the taillights and side markers myself (I hated the stock look), but as far as performance goes, I'm not sure where to start. The previous owner installed a TRD airbox, and I'm not sure if it's been tuned or not. As far as I can tell, that's the only performance upgrade.

This is my daily driver, so I'm looking for something that will keep it somewhat reliable while giving the car the kick it needs.

I was thinking about going down a path of brakes, wheels, turbo kit, but as far as the brakes and wheels are concerned, I wouldn't know where to start. For the turbo kit, I was looking at the WORKS stage 2 tuner kit. Aside from it looking like a decent kit for the price, they also have a dealer in Columbus, according to their website. Being from the area, that would be very convenient. Also, working with the stock exhaust is a nice feature. After the turbo kit, perhaps coilovers and suspension upgrades.

Is that a reasonable upgrade path?

I was originally considering a supercharger, but being my daily driver, efficiency is a concern. Even if the effect is slight, that little bit of extra or saved gas will add up over time.

A 2jz swap is also something that I've considered, but that's way over my head personally. I'd have to find a good shop and I'd have to completely rely on them. Plus I've got no idea how much it would cost, how long it would take, etc. I imagine it would use up a lot more gas as well as being a lot more expensive. Perhaps maybe after my other upgrades and a few years down the line, I might consider it. But then again, it would seem like I wasted money on the turbo kit and such.

Any opinions would be helpful for me, and I appreciate the input.

Edit: To be more specific, I'm looking for a daily driver with a bit more power. I want to get into autocross and maybe have a few track days a year, but I don't want anything crazy. The idea is to give it some extra power while still being close to stock in feel. I'm looking for a more grippy setup as well.

The purpose of this thread is to get a plan of what my upgrade path should be so I can start saving and planning things out. It's not exactly a "what's the best part" thread.

For example, how much should I expect to pay in labor to install a bolt-on turbo kit? How much is a tune, and what do I need? Is there any parts I'm forgetting that I'll need to get? That sort of thing.

I would just skip everything else, go straight to a JRSC and some sticky tires on the stock wheels. That is exactly what I did. You can't believe what this car can do after that. Don't waste your money on anything else in the beginning. But you can decide what to do after that.
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Old 06-11-2017, 07:17 PM   #13
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To answer to your post, keep the car stock and just go attend an auto-x or track session. You did mention you wanted to get into those motorsports so just go.

Trust me, I had the same mindset with more power and just throwing money at mods. But wiser minds on here said just go and have fun. Let the car tell you mods to get, not the other way around.

Btw, I've seen videos where NA Twins beating cars with twice (or sometimes 3x) the power around the track simply due to tires and driver mod.

The more experienced folks can chime in here since I'm a filthy casual but go register at your local upcoming auto-x and see
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Old 06-11-2017, 08:38 PM   #14
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So the OP is willing to drop several thousand dollars on a turbo kit, but doesn't want to ruin his gas mileage? A turbo will DESTROY your MPG, bud. If you upgrade your header, you'll get a nice power bump and you'll keep the same or least similar MPG.

But if you want to save money on fuel, it makes no sense to drop all that money on a turbo kit- so from that POV, who cares about MPG? Turbo or SC, don't base that decision on MPG. If MPG is a problem because of money, you'll save tons more money by buying the cheaper of those 2 options because if you buy one or the other for $1000 cheaper, the extra gas will never make up that difference.

Wheels, full exhaust and FI sounds like a good plan. But if MPG matters, go for a nice header instead.
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