In late 2006 my passion for Porsche that had been kindled by owning a boxster lead me to search for a 911. In February 2007 I found a lovely, well used 964 carrera 2 coupe in GP white and embarked on a new adventure. This running report is about my 964 that would be used for high days, holidays and track days and be a 'project car'. It wouldn't matter if it spent time waiting for things to be fixed as it wouldn't be used as a daily driver.

Tuesday, 28 December 2010

First Set of Track Tyres (Mar 09)

In preparation for the new track season I got the spare wheels I've nicked off my boxster shod with trackday tyres. So they're now wearing a spanking new set of Toyo R888s.

I soon found that they work great on the road (albeit that they whine when clocking on) and can't wait to get them on the track next month.

Monday, 27 December 2010

Suspension Upgrade (Mar 09)

The car came to me with the original fitment Boge shock absorbers albeit that the rear shocks had been replaced and shorter springs had been put on to the lower the car. Changing the suspension had always been planned. When it was time, I wanted it to be replaced with something more suitable for the track.

Putting new suspension on something I decided to leave to the experts. Luckily up here we have one of the highly regarded experts in aircooled 911s, Jonny Holland of Unit 11 Warrington. Jonny recommended without hesitation that I should have KW Variant 3 fitted, so that's what I got.



At the same time I had them replace the aging rubber wishbone bushes with the newer polyurethane (super flex) bushes:

Of course having all this done requires a full geo on the car which was carried out by Jonny's colleague, Danny who used to set up 911s for the track when working at Tech9 in Liverpool. The car's ride height has been dropped to near 964RS specs and the appropriate negative camber applied and the castor and toe set to make the car sharper in the handling department. The car now has a very agressive nose down stance:

Out on the road the handling has been transformed beyond my greatest expectations. The nervousness of the front end has gone which is noticeable both while driving at high speed in a straight line and when driving on bumpy roads, where it used to dart about when unsettled by a bump. Turning is now sharp and quick and inspires me with the confidence to drive it swiftly. And while the adjustable bump and rebound is set to medium the ride is still very comfortable on the old bones.

Another job I had tacked on while the car was at Unit 11 was to have them weld a brace to the engine carrier and have it powder coated. The brace was bought from Rennline in the USA and is there to guard against he possibility of the carrier snapping when driving the car hard on track. A snapped carrier would lead to an engine dragging on the floor!

A picture of the brace and with it welded to the engine carrier (black bar in the pic):

New Distributor Caps and Rotors (Mar 09)

Fitting new caps and rotors required removal of the heater ducting on the left side of the engine bay so I also remove the heater blower motor and took the opportunity to remove the inlet manifold on that side and clean it out (the right side had already been done). Here's a photo taken while I was doing all that:

Just like earlier in this thread the manifold had a good amount of oil inside it which I cleaned out and then re-seated the manifold so that it was nice and leak tight. This should stop any minor leaks coming from there. Then it was time to get the distributor caps off. As you can see below with twin distributors, twelve plug wires and two coil wires it's a bit like spagetti junction so taking time to label everything up first with a marker pen is essential if it's going to go back together correctly:

The secondary distributor on 964s and 993s is driven off a small toothed belt so this is a good time to check what condition it's in. I'm happy to say that it looked fine as this has been nagging me for a while. If it breaks you get an immediate loss of power at the top end and can cause damage to the engine if it's driven for a long time with a broken belt, especially if the rotor arm stops on a particular pole causing the affected cylinder to be constantly firing.

The old distributor caps and rotor arms were well past their sell by date as can be seen from the pics below.

Some say that badly worn dizzy caps (like mine) will lead to a loss of power. From the test drive after fitting the new parts I would tend to agree with this as the engine feels a bit more lively. But more importantly I'm glad to have those old caps off which I guess could have lead to misfiring.

Sunday, 19 December 2010

New Engine Mounts (Nov 08)

With time, the fluid filled engine mounts are known to fail on 911s. This manifests itself as a bouncy rear end and difficulty in downshifting through the gearbox when braking hard. In the worst case a failed mount can transmit shocks through the engine carrier with the result that it can fracture and the engine fall out! So I thought with another trackday coming up I should examine mine as there is no record of them ever having been changed.

The left one was sagging a bit:

The right one was sagging a lot:

So I duly ordered new mounts which cost £133 + VAT for the left one and £141 for the right one. This included a discount of 15% from the OPC which I simply asked them for:

Fitting the new mounts involved taking the strain of the engine with a trolley jack, undoing a large nut underneath the mount to release if from the carrier and then undoing two small bolts that held the mount in place. Here's the left mount removed:

The new right mount from the top:

Compared to the old mounts the pictures below show there is only a small gap between the mounts and the frame. I also used some emery paper to clean away some of the unsightly rust on the rear heat shield (that you can see in the photos above) and applied some high temperature engine paint.

New left mount in place:

New right mount in place:

Here are the old mounts. They don't look too bad but when shaken I can hear hydraulic fluid sloshing around which indicates that they had leaked and were therefore were no longer capable of absorbing shocks transmitted from the engine and chassis:

Even on the first spirited test drive I could feel the difference. The mounts have really stiffened up the back end. It used to bob about on uneven road surfaces and crash over bumps. It's much, much more settled now. The gear changes are much slicker. Shifting down to 2nd under heavy braking used to be tricky and required patience. Now it just slots home. I'd heard before that duff mounts caused difficult shifting. It'll be interesting to see what it now performs like both on the road and on the track.