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Discussion Starter #1
So Ive had my 86 MkII for a month or so and its been a blast. I recently did an autocross event and I think I'm hooked. Who else is out there driving these through the cones?
 

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I did back in the 90s but my last season was 02. We weren't very competitive back then in stock classes, already 20 year old technology, now approaching 40. I started modifying the Supra and while the car got slightly faster, it put me in classes with even stiffer competition. Be careful not to fall into that trap as unless you are a dot com billionaire, you can never OUTSPEND your competition, especially starting from behind with antique technology. The smart money stays stock and instead of spending on modifications, spends on travel, participating with other clubs every weekend to maximize seat time. We had this one guy in our local club who was ranked like 3rd nationally who drove a bone stock 89 Honda Civic. He always beat the next fastest car, no matter what class, by at least 2 seconds, he was just that good. We'd have people show up in supercars like Porsche and Ferrari and not a one of them ever came back for a second Sunday, having been embarrassed, beaten so badly by a lowly Honda Civic. Seat time will benefit more than all the mods you could possibly ever do. Don L is our resident guru on autocross. Perhaps he'll chime in.
 

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I am considering going to the local autocross event at the Rockford Speedway this weekend just for fun. Have never been at an autocross, track or drag strip (yes I've street raced :naughty:) and I've been driving at least one of these for over 25 years...got my first when I was 16. Only problem is I see a shock leaking and the rear sway bar link broken on the LH side...cannot get OE part anymore. Love driving these cars still!!
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I'm hoping to just take it to a few local events and have fun with the car with no chances of a ticket. After this first time out I'd like to go with a bigger diameter wheel to see the handling difference. I've already seen it's a pain to lower the mkii. So maybe just better shocks, the car only has 65k on it so everything is still stock Toyota. That's another reason I'd like to stay mostly stock or add simple mods that can be reversed later if need be. Thanks for the responses, I'm glad to be back in a Supra again.
 

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You might consider instead of getting bigger diameter wheels, getting a set of sticky race tires on a set of stock rims. That can make a big difference. All the Miatas used to pull a little tire trailer, but you can fit a set in the hatch with the seats folded. And I highly recommend to look for a chance to sign up for an autocross class. There's usually a few that travel the country setting up weekend courses in different city every weekend and you get two full days of instruction, probably run 60 heats compared to four to six at a typical Sunday event when I was doing it.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Alright, the only tires I had seen were the same ones I have now. The BFGs that everyone uses lol. Really that's the main reason for wanting a bigger wheel is more tire options. But if I'm going put new wheels I may as well go for a 16 over a 15 even if the one inch upgrade is allowed without counting as an upgrade. You're right though, really seat time will make a bigger difference than anything. The next event is September 16th or something like that so I may go again this month.
 

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It used to be that the only tires left in our size besides the BFG's were non-DOT race compounds. You'd do a search for 225/60r14 and there'd be the BFG plus five or six race tires. I guess they've now just quit making 14" altogether and the stocks of race tires have finally been depleted. Damned "vanity sizing" trend has taken over. For racing, I would skip 15 and 16" today as I bought some aftermarket 245/45r16s about 25 years ago and now there's hardly any choices left beyond 225 width. Whatever size you get you'll want to make sure that you will be able to get replacement tires readily because you'll go through tires quickly. (I pretty much wiped a set when I did a two-day instructional course). I would think SCCA would have to start relaxing the rules on plus-sizing wheels because of the lack of availability of small diameter tires. You may just have to take the hit and go with 17's. But I even worry about the long-term availability of those as there's nothing left wider than 255s already. Chip Foose is not going to declare success until every car on the road is riding brightly polished 27x11 Conestoga wagon wheels with a 7mil thick coat of plastidip for a tire.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Haha, damn him! 17's seem like they'd be too big for my taste too. I'll figure it out what's best for my situation eventually. I split my daily driving between the Supra and my old pickup so full race tires without another set of wheels to use them on won't do me any good. I've been scrolling everyone's wheel selections in the forum, a lot of good looking Supras out there. I'm torn between multispokes like the konig dial ins or the enkei compe wats look.
 

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When our cars were new, there was some truly amazing tires available in the stock size. Goodyear Eagle VR Gatorbacks were the best by far. But when it was time to replace them, they weren't available anymore. The best alternative at the time was Yokohama A008's. Many years later when it was time to replace them.... well you get the idea. It just didn't make sense to me to put POS tires under such a wonderful car. So I picked up a cheap set of Enkei 92's as I recall in 15x8 0 offset. They fit well, looked OK and worked well enough. But then when it was time for new tires, there wasn't crap available except for mostly track tires. The pattern was more than just incredibly obvious.
If I'd upgraded to larger diameter wheels a decade or two ago when there was lots of similar vehicles with similar offset 4x114.3 wheels like Mustangs, Z cars, etc, there was a much larger selection available, and at reasonable prices too. But I didn't, so had to pay the price one way or another.
I considered all of the options and decided to convert to 5 lug hubs a few years ago because the wheel selection was and still is extensive compared to the paltry 4 lug selection these days. And in general, they're considerably cheaper than 4 lug ones are now too.
After considering potential future tire availability, I settled on 16x8 0 offset wheels for the same reason that (you) think 17's or larger wheels look too big on our cars. The 16's look period correct in just about any design to me, while larger ones just don't. I discussed my tire concerns with a buddy I've known forever that owns a couple of Goodyear stores and also races. Every set of tires that have ever been on the Supra since it was new were purchased from him.
While 245/45/16's are the proper sized replacement for our original tires and wheels as Phil mentioned, almost nothing was available in that size when it was time to replace them a couple of years ago. But my buddy advised me that were quite a few different 225/50/16's still available and that they were close enough to still fit the wheels properly and would look very similar. He also said that due to the large number of vehicles that use them, they would likely be available for many years. They aren't enough different in looks or performance to matter to me. And that's what I currently have and they're just fine.
Truthfully, the original wheels look wonderful on our cars and if HP tires were still available for them, I wouldn't have likely have ever considered replacing them. Yeah, larger diameter wheels look better and perform better too. But there's definitely downsides to them as well. The ride quality with shorter sidewalls is considerably worse that it was with the 14" 60 series tires as Phil can attest to. Another major disadvantage is the exponential increase in the likelihood of wheel damage from hitting one of the 72 gazillion potholes that now cover just about every square inch nearly every road and highway everywhere. Just look at the proliferation of wheel repair facilities that not so coincidentally have popped up conveniently located where the worst roads are. Many years ago, there were only a very few similar specialty businesses in the whole country.
So my advice to everyone upgrading to larger diameter wheels whatever design or size you prefer, is to buy 5 or maybe even 6 when you purchase them. With 5 you can carry a full sized spare that's an exact fit. Yeah, I know, it's rare to have flats anymore. But using a weenie sized spare creates an immediate handling concern and could quickly cause a lot of LSD wear as well if used for more than a few miles. And from everything I've read, run flat tires really suck in some ways. Sure, they allow driving a very limited number of of miles after a puncture which is certainly convenient. And they save the space and weight of carrying a spare all the time. But after a puncture, they have to be replaced and none of them are cheap by any means.
And if a wheel ever gets damaged, which is a lot more likely than it's ever been, you'll have a replacement available that's an exact match. Trust me, replacing extremely expensive wheels like the Coddington's for example, or having to look forever for a single matching wheel that's relatively rare or any out of production wheels is more than a little frustrating. If a replacement can't easily be found which in many cases WILL be the case, the only alternative is a completely new set and potentially all new tires as well. Just my 2 Canadian pesos worth.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I hear you. I love the original wheels also, probably one of my favorite designs ever.
 

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I'm still kicking myself for not jumping in on the group buy for Coddingtons and ordering a set of all four in 17x8. But at the time I thought the 17's just looked too damned big and I was perfectly happy with my Compomotives. I'm glad I didn't get the 17x10s tho. When Preston listed his set recently for sale, I had my friend who is the manager at the nearby Goodyear store research it and at the time, the only thing he could get would have meant buying a mismatched set, different brand front and rear. Tirerack showed Potenzas but he checked everywhere and all the warehouses that he could buy from were out of stock at the time, couldn't special order and he could get no confirmation of any more coming. I might have been able to get the Potenzas listed on Tirerack but I took it as a bad omen and passed. However, yes, our stock wheels really did look cool and the scaled up version looked awesome.
 

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The two best investments to go quicker at an AutoX is 1) Seat Time 2) Tires.

There are quite a few 15" options for 200 treadwear tires out there now. However, I beleive only 2 of them have anything wider than 225 which is the Hankook Ventus RS4 and the BFG Rival. There are plenty of options for tire sizes in 17" that would suite our cars. What I would recommend is picking up a set of 15" wheels and putting some 200 treadwear 225/15 tires on them. You will be impressed with how much more grip you will have which in turn makes it more fun.

As I said though seat time is the number 1 investment to get quicker. As inexpensive as autox events are it can be easy to get a lot of seat time.
 

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As I said though seat time is the number 1 investment to get quicker. As inexpensive as autox events are it can be easy to get a lot of seat time.
I haven't done it in years, don't know what its like now, but one of the reasons I stopped besides some health problems was that it was hard to get that time. Our local events had so many people that I'd get only 3 or 4 heats in on a Sunday. The rest of the time I was working corners or mostly just waiting around, about 2 hours in between, which for me was enough time to forget what I'd learned the last heat. ;) And those were long days out in the sun from 8am to 5 or 6pm. If it could have been more heats and less HEAT, I might have continued.

One thing you might look into that I never did, find a club in a smaller town. I remember the guys who were really good would travel the other three weekends a month to participate in other regions clubs. They said they could get a whole lot more seat time with the semi-rural clubs due to the much fewer participants.
 

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"When our cars were new, there was some truly amazing tires available in the stock size. Goodyear Eagle VR Gatorbacks were the best by far. But when it was time to replace them, they weren't available anymore. The best alternative at the time was Yokohama A008's. Many years later when it was time to replace them.... well you get the idea." quote from Ray85p

I like the replacing them many years later part lol I remember scrambling for a new set of 008R's at minimum of once a year if we were lazy and only ran local events. Ray looks like more parking than driving. But that's good too.
 

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In the first decade of owning the car, we managed to accumulate about 140K miles. Then we moved from the San Francisco area where just about every weekend during the winter, we drove to Tahoe to ski to the Seattle area where we still are. In the nearly 25 years that we've been here, we've only put around 40K miles on it. It does get driven often, just not very far anymore. A couple of times a year, I just have to do a little late night clandestine road racing. The route I take is about 90 quite rural miles and it typically takes me about 90 minutes.
Although I used to build NASCAR motors when I was young and have experience setting up race cars as well as some track time in some very fast cars, I was never really into racing others or doing autocross. Those A008's arrived on my landing via UPS. That was a sight!
 

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I watch a guy at an AutoX ( we used to call them Solo II's and now Solo I is called a Time Trial I guess, any way...) with a brand new set of Hoosier Auto Xer's that was going to scrub them in for nationals that year. Made 1 run of 55 seconds and got them done good, all the way down to the cord on both front out side edges. Me and the buddy I just bought the Supra from kind of had an on going thing with them so we kind of thought that was funny.
 

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Yeah, we used to call the real soft, sticky race tires gum balls. For a short time (sometimes very short) they'd stick like stink and then be be trash. When up to temp, they'd also pick up every marble and misc piece of crap they ran over. Those would have to be scrubbed off before the next corner or some serious butt puckering would happen. Usually, the car would end up sticking just enough to barely make the corner but occasionally would lead to a wreck. Then instead of the driver learning a lesson and the rest of us laughing our collective ass off, we'd all have to jump in and fix the car, which was never all that much fun. They also would almost stick in place when hot and the car was stopped for long. This would make the car vibrate like crazy until the crap stuck to them all in one small place got scrubbed off.
But 55 seconds seems incredibly like an incredibly short time, even for something like those.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
I'm in Amarillo and our scene here is sorta big but with only 15-30 cars racing you can get in a few heats of three or four laps. The last event and the next one is a night race. So at least the heat won't kill us. I won't be able to put any new rubber on before the next meet, so I'll probably sit it out. I do have to drive on the tires I have on now and don't want to kill them too fast.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Did an oil change on the motor and transmission yesterday. Went with redline mt90. What a difference! After an afternoon of driving, I am a believer.
 

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I'm in Amarillo and our scene here is sorta big but with only 15-30 cars racing you can get in a few heats of three or four laps.
That's nothing. I remember one we had I think they announced 175 cars and I only got three laps total that day but that's been 20 years ago. I don't know if it'd be more or less today.
 
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