Monday, October 7, 2019

Track Readiness - Cooling and Safety

Now that SCCA Solo Nationals is behind us, it was time to install all the parts that I'd been accumulating the past few months to make the Cayman track ready. What does track-ready mean? Well, I've already done a number of precautionary modifications such as the motorsports air-oil separator and a baffled oil pan but the next step is to address cooling, safety, and additional oil monitoring. I dropped the car off with Speedsport Tuning two weeks ago along with boxes of parts and they put it all together for me.

CSF Radiators Installed - 10/4/19
Initially, I had planned to just add an OEM center radiator but with the side radiators being 12 years old, I thought it was worth replacing them as well. After doing some research, I felt upgrading all 3 radiators to CSF radiators would be the right choice. They're extremely well crafted, offers improved cooling performance, and with an all-aluminum design, are more durable than the OEM ones.

CSF side and center radiators 
Obviously, to make the center radiator work, they had to cut out the piece of the front bumper which is actually standard on Tiptronic model 987.1 Caymans. To avoid leaves accumulating on the radiator, I also picked up a Zunsport center grill for a clean look.

All back together with the Zunsport center grill - 10/4/19
Porsche clearly wants to distinguish the Cayman from the 911 and one way they do that is by not including oil monitoring as standard. There are no oil temperature or oil pressure gauges built into the car nor are there any sensors on the engine for it. I hate being on track and not having at least visibility into my oil pressure to know whether or not I'm dumping oil on the track so I had one added in.

Oil pressure sender wired in
I chose the Autometer Ultra Lite II oil pressure gauge because the face matches the OEM gauges quite nicely and fits perfectly in the spot where the Sports Chrono clock sits. This is a much more functional use for that space since having a stopwatch is pretty useless.

Autometer oil pressure gauge in sports chrono gauge pod
A few months ago I received my Heigo Rollbar from Germany and dropped it off with JT Powder Coating to have it powder coated Hot Mustard. Although I don't technically need a rollbar in the car, many tracks now insist on rollbars if you are using 6-pt harnesses with fixed backed seats. I also like having the extra layer of safety.

Powder-coated Heigo Rollbar
I decided to continue to use the DMC harness bar since I like its relative placement and mount points for the harness. Thankfully the Heigo fits in perfectly without interfering with either the DMC harness bar or the GT2 carbon seats (I can still slide the seats all the way back). They installed the rollbar for me including the harness bar that it comes with. This is the crossbar that sits closest to the back of the car. Although I'm not going to use it for its official purpose, I think it helps add rigidity since it ties the two rear shock towers together so it made sense to keep it in.

Rollbar getting installed
Rollbar getting installed
Heigo Rollbar Installed - 10/4/19
As part of them going over the car, they also noted that the coil packs had started to develop cracks so I had all coil packs and plugs replaced with new ones.

The car is now fully track capable. I don't intend on making any of my cars dedicated track cars and I'm far from being a track rat but I do like to know that if I wanted to do a track day in the Cayman, she's ready to go and that I've done everything I can to improve safety for myself and the engine.

Maintenance Update:

Mileage: 39,481
- New Coils Pack
- New Spark Plugs
- New radiators (CSF)

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