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      10-07-2020, 01:32 PM   #1
hsaguirre
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Introduction & Track Day Questions

Hi Everyone - been a long-time member of BimmerPost from when I had a 2011 135i and recent member of M3Post with the recent acquisition of an alpine white 08 M3 manual.

I purchased my '08 w/ ~75k miles and while it was in relatively good condition (especially considering the miles and years), it did require some work which I kept in mind when I purchased.

I purchased the car near Atlanta with the help of True Automotive for a pre-purchase inspection and immediately drove her down to Miami where I live and scheduled an appointment with ActiveAutowerke. First priority was a complete fluid flush, stainless steel brake lines, SRF fluid, BE bearings, ARP rod bolts, and motor mounts. Some complications in the braking system led to an ABS module replacement and rear interior brake line replacement as they were very corroded.

Now that the initial maintenance work is done, my next goal is to take her out to an HPDE event at Homestead which I've participated in the past with my Audi S5.

Few questions that come to mind before my first track day:

1. The car came with 245 PSSs in the front and 265 PS 4S in the rear over stock 220 wheels. Tires are in decent shape. My plan is to go square 18x10 EC-7s down the road. Before my first track day, I was considering replacing the rears w/ a set of 265 PSSs to match the front tires. How important is that for a novice driver? Should I bite the bullet on the new set of wheels and tires even if I'm on original suspension (w/ EDC)?

2. With ~76k miles now on the original suspension, is there anything I should be worried about? I'm considering Ohlins R&T for a handful of years while my car is only a weekend warrior and potentially moving to the KW Clubsports. For now though would like to keep costs relatively low and save for track days.

3. Brakes are in good shape now w/ SS brake lines and SRF fluid. I am considering PFC 08s once bimmerworld gets the fronts back in stock, but any major concerns for first track day on stock pads on stock rotors given the fluid change and upgraded lines?

Thanks to everyone for your input and looking forward to enjoying the ride!

Stu

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      10-07-2020, 01:49 PM   #2
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Welcome to the forum

Good job taking care of the rod bearings and other items right away, it's the best way to do it.

With 76k miles I would think of replacing suspension, but I would not do it in steps. Something like a MCS 1W or 2WNR can be driven around the street perfectly and will handle high spring rates comfortably.
If you want to keep the suspension stock I would add camber plates.

Your question about pads: it really depends on how much experience you have. Stock pads are ok if it's your first day or one of your first days. If not, consider the PFC08 or the PFC11.

For tires, the car won't mind one bit if you have PS4s in the rear and PSS in the front. Depending on how much you want to track you may want to replace them once worn with something like a RE71 which is pretty friendly for street driving and fantastic on track
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      10-07-2020, 02:07 PM   #3
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Welcome!

If the tires are in good shape, I see no need to replace. The PS4S is a tad grippier than a PSS so you might have a little bit of understeer. Save your money. As a novice driver, the money is better spent on track time to get comfortable with the car. Burn those tires up and then replace with the same front and rear. :-)

Similarly, I wouldn't worry much about suspension right now. Just focus on getting track time. No point investing in suspension parts that you may not even be able to take full advantage of. I would spend that money on getting an alignment to help preserve tires a bit and get some easy handling improvements.

Stock pads are going to be iffy, in my opinion. One thing you don't want to be worried about is brake fade, especially as a novice who isn't totally familiar with things. If you can't get the PFC08s in time, there's plenty of other good choices like a Hawk DTC-60.

So yes, the theme here is avoid mods right now and put the money towards seat time. Keep us posted how your track day goes.
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      10-07-2020, 04:35 PM   #4
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Thanks for the replies!

My biggest concern was the mismatched tires, but if that does not seem to be an issue I will hold off for the time being and get some more use out of them.

In the meantime, will look for pads. Will do my research on the Hawks as well.

Stu
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      10-07-2020, 05:32 PM   #5
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Welcome Stu! You're on the right track already - besides the track pads that were mentioned I would add might look at camber plates to help preserve tire life if you find that the addiction is real & you start frequenting the track. These with everything else you have already done makes for an excellent level to start out on the track. My preference at that point would be to then keep tracking at that level focusing on your skills. Once you get to the point where the car is now the limiting factor (preferably without traction control) then its time to start looking at upgrades.

Tires - like they others said no issue running that set for now. In this case though I would say make the jump to the 18x10 (or 18x10.5...) at any point. One of the "slower" 200TW tires that wears like a tank might be a good choice here. I started with Dunlop Direzza ZIII's - was an excellent beginner tire. Had great wear & very friendly manners that really helped instill car control basics for me. Breakaway & recovery characteristics are very friendly if/when you decide to turn that pesky DSC button off (down the line a bit)(but not too far down the line )

And don't be afraid to do anything that makes the car more enjoyable! An axle back so you can hear the car, shifter, even something like a steering wheel you might like better. Got to make sure you enjoy it out there!

Good luck!

Oh and if you find you hate sliding around in the car maybe look at some Schroth Quick Fit Pros
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      10-07-2020, 06:48 PM   #6
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You are largely fine as current equipped. Make sure you have >1/2 pad thickness (don't cheat that). Brake fluid flush in < last 6 months.

Don't go changing the car as a Novice. Focus on building your skills, track vision and awareness of what the car is doing. There is much to learn. Pushing for top speed, threshold braking just delays learning. If your suspension passes pre-track Tech inspection - stay with it. Improve the driver - not the car.

When you are approaching the limits of pads/tires etc - you instructor will tell you.

I agree with an earlier point that Direzzas are great tires to improve on. Great feedback - you always know what they are doing and how you are approaching the limits.
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      10-07-2020, 07:56 PM   #7
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As others have said, save your money on buying anything new for your first trackday. Just get all your fluids changed (assuming they haven't been done already) and go enjoy yourself. If you have some cash burning a hole in your pocket, invest in an instructor during the trackday. It will help you quickly learn the basics/lines so you can really start to enjoy pushing the car.
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      10-09-2020, 11:29 AM   #8
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Thanks for all the replies. I spoke with Henry @ bimmerworld who was incredibly helpful as well as Clark @ Apex Performance (Apex seems to have a great deal on the front PFC 08s) and was able to source both front and rear PFC 08s.

I took OG Shark's recommendation and also got myself the F10 M5 shift knob and a set of sparkplugs to entertain myself over the next month before my first event in November.

Will keep everyone posted!

Stu
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      10-09-2020, 12:00 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hsaguirre View Post
Thanks for all the replies. I spoke with Henry @ bimmerworld who was incredibly helpful as well as Clark @ Apex Performance (Apex seems to have a great deal on the front PFC 08s) and was able to source both front and rear PFC 08s.

I took OG Shark's recommendation and also got myself the F10 M5 shift knob and a set of sparkplugs to entertain myself over the next month before my first event in November.

Will keep everyone posted!

Stu
Get the coil plug puller tool from amazon https://www.amazon.com/Division-DM-E.../dp/B00J9P0US4
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      10-09-2020, 12:21 PM   #10
hsaguirre
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Quote:
Originally Posted by b4hand View Post
Get the coil plug puller tool from amazon https://www.amazon.com/Division-DM-E.../dp/B00J9P0US4
Already ordered! I heard the last two near the firewall are fun to work on.
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