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lightweight flywheel/sport clutch review (long) (archive)

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Posted by alex on February 03, 2001 at 13:39:11:

for those who have been following my escapades in the world of flywheels and clutches know that it's been a week and some since i have seen my baby. today, i went to pick up the car at korman autoworks. took the train out there and was picked up by Jason (aka DreamM3) who has a stock performance 98 m3/2. it was estoril blue as well. hehe. this gave me a chance to experience my car with an intake, exhaust, flywheel, clutch, and redlike fluids and see how it compares to a stock m3.

when ray korman first started up the car, it roared to life. as it warmed a little and quieted down, i could hear a faint rattle from under the hood, aft of the front wheel. it sounded almost like stock, having normal engine noises and such cover it up.

upon entering the car and depressing the clutch, i noticed the extra effory needed for the heavy duty pressure plate. i pumped the clutch a few times and got used to it before i drove off. jason was in the car with me, so he can attest to the performance difference. in the parking lot, i nailed the gas while going slow in 1st. tire hop everywhere and ASC cut on and ended the fun. so i turned ASC off and headed out to the street. from the parking lot, making a left turn onto a empty street, i nailed the gas again as soon as the car was straight. hop, hop, hop, hop, redline, shift, ERRRRRRRR!!!!!!!!, hop, hop, hop, redline, shift. hop, let off gas. the car was phenominal! the tach surged towards redline at an incredible speed. the 1st to 2nd shift produced lots of spin when shifting at full throttle. this was not even power shifting. the car wouldn't break traction and leave rubber like i hoped it would, but throttle respinse was excellent. the street was very sticky.

we then pulled into a side street that was paved with tar. i floored the gas as soon as the car was straight, and off it went. shooting forward like a missle. shifted into 2nd and tires broke loose again and then grabbed on as the car rocketed forward with authority. we pulled around and i put it in 1st. i let the car creep and then i nailed the gas. still no rubber, but there was neck snapping acceleration. the shift into 2nd cause more tire squeal and made the seat belts lock up.

i pulled back into korman and we switched cars. into the stock 98 we went. as we left the parking lot, jason did the same tests. floor in 1st in the lot, a little hop and off we went. into the street, accelerated with no problems and shot off. shift into 2nd was clean. the car was no where close to my 99 m3.

we pulled into the same side street and resumed resting of the stock 98. no chiprs into 2nd and acceleration, while powerful, was not neck snapping. in the same time jason could row up to 2nd gear, i was already in third. i used street signs to measure distance.

jason then pulled into the parking lot and i took over in his car. this was to balance out driver skill. floored in 1st, shift to 2nd, fast, but not as fast as mine. the clutch was so light though compared to my new sachs.

i pulled over and jason got into my car. he noticed that the clutch was much stiffer as well. he floored in 1st, shift to 2nd. by his own account, he said it was significantly quicker. plus, it sounded a lot nicer with the exhaust and intake. hehe.

after we returned, we took some pictures of our cars together in front of korman autoworks. ray even came out and took some pictures too. we talked and he showed us around and told us old race storied. he's a great guy.

on the way back, jason and i played a little cat and mouse on the highway. two estoril m3 coupes flying down the highway. i tried to do a highway acceleration test, but was unsure if jason knew my intent. we lined up and i took off as he trailed by a little bit. then later on, he took off and i was walking up to him.

when he turned off, i still had 30 mins to drive, so i decided to play with 5th gear acceleration. it was definitely lacking when i first hit the gas. but, once the engine got going, it pulled as hard as with the normal flywheel. a downshift into 4th was necessary if you didn't want that lag, but the acceleration in 4th was greater than with the stock flywheel.

i finally got off the highway and was heading home. upset at the fact i couldn't leave any rubber, i decided to try one last time. coming up to a red light, i trailed a car by a couple hundred feet, was in 1st gear doing about 5mph. the light turned green and the other car started going. allowing myself some more distance. click, ASC was off. as soon as i felt i had enough room not to rearend the car in front of me, i hit the gas. EEEEEERRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR!!!!!!!!!! the rear wheels spun like crazy! a shift into 2nd produced massive wheel spin and spun into 2nd until i let off the gas. at minimum, 50 ft of rubber, and more smoke than a diesel engine. needless to say, i was very happy.

by the time i rolled up to my house, the clutch seemed like normal to me. you adjust to it very fast. it also catches much faster allowing faster shifts.

i pulled into my parking spot and pulled out my invoice. i looked at it for a while. then i folded it up and put it away and revved the engine a few times. it was totally worth it. simply incredible!


keep in mind that my car was heavier than jason's. i had my stock clutch and flywheel in the trunk. i also had the clutch that i got from spp. i have to ship it back to them since they shipped me the wrong one and couldn't get the right one out to me. along with power seats, which jason doesn't have. so i'm estimating about 100 extra lbs and my car was still much, much faster than jason's.

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