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roll cage stiffness vs added weight, benefit or hinderance for autocross

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  • roll cage stiffness vs added weight, benefit or hinderance for autocross

    What are the thoughts on which will be faster. I am trying to prep a s13 for X prepared, and am currently grossly overweight. I have a 8 point roll cage that weighs around 165 lbs and am considering removing it to reduce weight. The cage makes a noticeable difference in the chassis stiffness of the rear of the car and does put the weight in a decent location over the rear tires. If there was much of a chance of getting the car to or near minimum weight this would be a nonissue. The car is currently around 2450lbs and is class legal down to about 1800lbs. Keep it or remove it, what do you think?

  • #2
    I'd say you'd be better off without it. You can probably get some or most of the stiffness with some legal braces, or at least a smaller cage. I don't think there's any need for rollover protection in autoX so you could probably build a legal cage with stiffness in mind that's a decent bit lighter.

    Pics of the cage? Maybe we can figure out some worthwhile braces that gets you the same benefits without the extra weight.

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    • #3
      Kinda along the same lines. I'm thinking to keep the cage in it, buy maybe cut out a few bars to drop some weight. I can't imagine a cage weighing that much unless it's BEEFY.

      Where else can you lose weight? glass? door gutting? composite fenders/hood?
      Originally posted by SoSideways
      I don't care what color they are as long as they are LONG AND HARD.
      '04 G35 Sedan 6MT- The DD
      '96 240SX- The Track Toy

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      • #4
        I dont have any good pictures of the cage, but this is what it is. 1 3/4" DOM
        Attached Files

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        • #5
          i'm kind of in the same boat with my (motor swapped) miata. i think its only legal for XP but it also has as full cage. (full cage in miata is estimated at 150 lbs). when i get car back together again i was going to take it out and see how i do. i'm figuring if i can get within striking distance sometime in future i would move my go fast parts to a new chassis without the cage and see if i can get it close to 1800. as it sits now, with a little more work i can get 2150 wet so i would still be 200 lbs off. i think it makes sense to swap chassis rather than devalue current chassis and still have remnants of cage adding weight.

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          • #6
            Until recently I have been daily driving the car an wanted to leave a hand full of stuff in for safety. Bumper supports, door beams, HVAC for defrosting, glass, and some other stuff. I think that I can get about 250 to 300 lbs more off of the car not including the cage. My biggest concern with removing the cage is F'ing up the F/R balance of the car. Last time I weighed the car it was already 56% of the weight on the front wheels.

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            • #7
              Ive heard that XP may require cages soon (lIke every other prepared class), so you may wanna look into that. I really don't know of that's gonna happen or not
              Originally posted by Jason M
              I have no chance to win without the Giken...

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              • #8
                I did not know that any of the prepared cars (for autocross) require cages.

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                • #9
                  Most of the weight of the stuff you're talking about removing is on the front of the car. I'd rather take weight off the front and leave the cage in.
                  If you're worried about the windshield fogging, use some Rain-X anti-fog, or wipe the glass down with dish soap and rub until dry. both work well for keeping the glass clear. I've raced in the rain on a 40 deg day and had clear glass while most of the other guys were dropping out of the race due to poor visibility... and I have ZERO air blowing on the glass. nothing under my dash but gauges, ECU, and brake parts.

                  anyway, I'd start there. It's an XP car-- it shouldn't be a daily driver!!
                  Originally posted by SoSideways
                  I don't care what color they are as long as they are LONG AND HARD.
                  '04 G35 Sedan 6MT- The DD
                  '96 240SX- The Track Toy

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                  • #10
                    rip it out.

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                    • #11
                      I believe CP and BP require cages, but I guess that may just be because of racecar homologation. Like I said, just a rumor. If no one else has heard of it its probably not gonna happen (soon) lol
                      Originally posted by Jason M
                      I have no chance to win without the Giken...

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                      • #12
                        What about removing the cage, adding a harness bar, stich welding the chassis, and then try to use sway bars to rebalance the car?

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                        • #13
                          Leave the cage, try that theory on another shell, win win situation
                          Originally posted by Matt93SE
                          in engrish, it's all about the length of your shaft... :P

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                          • #14
                            There's no such thing as a notionally competitive car with a cage... as simple as that.

                            Plus, round where I race I've never seen a car flip. There are rumors that a Mazdaspeed3 flipped a year or two ago though.

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