Forum

"To Modify or Not t...
 
Notifications
Clear all

"To Modify or Not to Modify, Ah That's the Question"  

  RSS

DaveHartmann
(@dave)
Active Member
Joined: 3 months ago
Posts: 15
25/10/2020 6:17 pm  

So, the other day whilst combing Amazon for CravenSpeed goodies for my first-ever MX5, and ND, I came across a most interesting comment - very long comment regarding modifying our NA, B, D, or D's. Hopefully, posting it won't get me kicked off the Forum or banned from the Club, but here goes: (the author is commenting about their purchase and installation of CravenSpeed "Door Bushings")

 

QUOTE

"The doors of my 2019 MX-5 Sport did not rattle when I picked it up a month ago, but nevertheless I fell for the hype surrounding these replacement bushings and bought the things -- premium priced at $65. They were easy to install and I followed the advice to leave them loose while I closed the doors a few times, then tighten them down. Then I went for a drive on familiar roads and noticed no difference in the car's structural integrity.

Perhaps someone else would notice a difference, and to that person I offer my new red bushings for the discounted price of $60. Barely used.

We American MX-5 owners seem especially vulnerable to "upgrading" our cars. It's ironic, because when we buy one, especially the ND series (since 2016), the car has already been through decades of careful thinking and upgrading by the factory.

I think I know the flawed reasoning behind our folly.

Americans rate acceleration at the top of the list of a car's performance attributes. :The MX-5 conforms to the European standard, which places handling and responsiveness above acceleration. So what do American MX-5 owners do? They buy a new MX-5 and spend thousands trying to turn it into a Corvette. What they end with is a depleted bank account and a frankensteined sports car.

I speak from experience! I'm on my fourth MX-5. The previous three were all NAs. (First generation.) One of them I subjected to the full Flying Miata bag of tricks. (And I have no gripe with Flying Miata: they are an excellent company and their products stand up.) My poor little 1990 Miata was turbocharged to within an inch of its life; the suspension felt as if I was driving on concrete tires; and if I touched the throttle mid-corner, the car wanted to swap ends RIGHT NOW. At the local autocross, guys in stock MX-5s could outrun me because of my car's fatal tendency to spin, which required an ultra-conservative driving technique. I was unable to use the car for daily driving and eventually sold it and started over.

And now here I am on the brink of revisiting my folly, even though my totally stock '19 model pulls a lot harder than any previous MX-5 other than the MazdaSpeed version. But no, I'm going to draw the line with these bushings. Every time I enter the car I will view the one on the driver's side and interpret its silent message: "Abandon all hope ye who enter here."

End Quote

 


Quote
livetodrive
(@livetodrive)
LVMOC VP Moderator
Joined: 1 year ago
Posts: 209
25/10/2020 7:07 pm  

As someone who has dropped a lot of coin personalizing my Miatas, ot dependes on what you do. Modifying, for the sake of spending money is pointless. Have a theme.


ReplyQuote
Triviawayne
(@triviawayne)
Trusted Member
Joined: 6 months ago
Posts: 83
25/10/2020 9:24 pm  

There are so few things I would ever think of changing on my NC Club, and none of it has to do with performance.

Steering wheel and radio would be my top changes.


ReplyQuote
livetodrive
(@livetodrive)
LVMOC VP Moderator
Joined: 1 year ago
Posts: 209
26/10/2020 7:47 am  

@triviawayne

The radio sounds terrible.  I had an amplifier installed under the seat and new speakers in the door. I left the stock head unit intact since NOBODY would steal that thing. Now my stereo sounds great, just looks like it doesn't. I had it done at A&S Installation behind Union Blvd. I leave my top down in public places, the mall, the store, etc. So I didn't want anything that lured a thief into my car.


ReplyQuote
Mike C
(@mike-c)
Eminent Member
Joined: 1 year ago
Posts: 34
26/10/2020 8:08 am  

One of my favorite Miata sayings is, "It's been modified to the point where it's no longer fun to drive."

My personal variation on this is, "It's much easier to make a Miata worse than it is to make it better."

Having said that, I find myself unable to resist making minor changes to my Miatas.  In the past I've owned an NA and an NB, and I now drive an ND.  None of them remained 100% stock.

Because I believe the engineers at Mazda are much smarter than I am, I don't mess with engine, suspension, or drivetrain, but everything else is fair game and I've wasted more money than I care to think about "personalizing" my Miatas.

But for me it's part of the enjoyment of the car, and that's what it's all about.

Modify, or not, as you see fit.

2017 RF Club, 6MT, Arctic White


ReplyQuote
Triviawayne
(@triviawayne)
Trusted Member
Joined: 6 months ago
Posts: 83
26/10/2020 9:10 am  
Posted by: @livetodrive

@triviawayne

The radio sounds terrible.  I had an amplifier installed under the seat and new speakers in the door. I left the stock head unit intact since NOBODY would steal that thing. Now my stereo sounds great, just looks like it doesn't. I had it done at A&S Installation behind Union Blvd. I leave my top down in public places, the mall, the store, etc. So I didn't want anything that lured a thief into my car.

I've learned to live with the bad sound of the radio, but I would like something better in a head unit than 1998's finest.  I'd like to have something with Apple Carplay, but I don't like the idea of having to plug in the phone to get the benefits of that.  So for now I'll live with my Bluetooth receiver and keep the phone in my pocket or the door cup holder.

I don't have any statistics, and don't care to look any up (or actually research any; yeah, there's a difference), but anecdotally, I can say I haven't heard anything about car radio theft being a big thing in years.  I would guess because factory radios have become better, and upgrading to decent aftermarket doesn't cost what it used to, so stealing one doesn't have the resale value it did 25-30 years ago.


ReplyQuote
Flying Dutchman
(@flying-dutchman)
LVMOC Treasurer Admin
Joined: 1 year ago
Posts: 159
26/10/2020 9:22 am  

Between the ambient noise of the Miata and my lousy hearing, I seldom use the radio... can't hear it very well, anyway.  But, Janice listens to it frequently (the car is her daily driver).  There's always that lure of cruising along, top down and the sound system doing its thing 😎.  For that kind of use, the Mazda system (Bose, I think) is just fine.

 

Silver 2011 NC PRHT Grand Touring (actually Janice's car)


ReplyQuote
livetodrive
(@livetodrive)
LVMOC VP Moderator
Joined: 1 year ago
Posts: 209
26/10/2020 9:31 am  

@flying-dutchman

Neither Wayne, nor I have the Bose. Ours is literally the cheapest crap they could find.

Louie


ReplyQuote
livetodrive
(@livetodrive)
LVMOC VP Moderator
Joined: 1 year ago
Posts: 209
26/10/2020 9:34 am  

@triviawayne

I know that I heard radio theft is way down. I attributed that, with no evidence whatsoever, to that stereos are built into the dash now in such a way, that they are very model specific. So what is the point of stealing something that will only fit in one model car, that already has that exact stereo in it? Or, like in my RF, the stereo is part of the whole infotainment system.


ReplyQuote
Triviawayne
(@triviawayne)
Trusted Member
Joined: 6 months ago
Posts: 83
26/10/2020 11:15 am  
Posted by: @livetodrive

@triviawayne

I know that I heard radio theft is way down. I attributed that, with no evidence whatsoever, to that stereos are built into the dash now in such a way, that they are very model specific. So what is the point of stealing something that will only fit in one model car, that already has that exact stereo in it? Or, like in my RF, the stereo is part of the whole infotainment system.

there have always been conversion kits, so I wouldn't think that model specific has anything to do with it.

If anything, replacing a radio in the car has become easier over the years with the better conversion kits, wiring harnesses, and better design of dashboards.

After spending about 15 minutes in the house with the wiring harnesses (one for the radio and one for the car), I spent about 10 minutes replacing the radio in my father's 1997 Plymouth Breeze.  A friend's 2005 Pontiac Vibe took me about the same.

My NC would be a little longer, it's not as easy to get to as in those vehicles, but it's still not much.  I will say YouTube makes life easier as I wouldn't have guessed easily on the extra to take off of my centerstack.  One of the other reasons I'm not so quick to replace my factory radio is my dash is factory tight, and it's nice to not have dash rattle in my car.

 


ReplyQuote
livetodrive
(@livetodrive)
LVMOC VP Moderator
Joined: 1 year ago
Posts: 209
26/10/2020 11:21 am  

@triviawayne

Rattles get annoying really fast.


ReplyQuote
CTt3MX5
(@ctt3mx5)
Estimable Member
Joined: 1 year ago
Posts: 111
27/10/2020 9:25 pm  

I agree with Louie, it is good to have a theme in mind.  Otherwise you can find yourself throwing away money.

While shopping for my ND, I was researching various mods/parts to get ideas and after I e-signed the papers, I placed multiple orders for parts to start modding.  Some showed up before the car was even delivered and a few shortly after.  And more are still coming....my muffler should be delivered tomorrow and over the winter I will be shopping for a summer set of wheels/tires.  Since I am using my OEM wheels for winter use, I am thinking of painting the calipers blue and going with a dark silver/gunmetal wheel.  The blue will match my underhood theme and start button.  🙂

@triviawayne

You could always get an aftermarket h/u that offers wireless CarPlay but they are still on the pricey side.  Yes, rattles suck and only issue I had after my install was my fault.  Apparently I didn't place the SWC module in a good spot and after some driving the h/u pushed out and broke the two plastic clips on the Metra kit.  Other than that the install was easy and I had no issues.

2016 ST GT aka Ghost


ReplyQuote
Triviawayne
(@triviawayne)
Trusted Member
Joined: 6 months ago
Posts: 83
27/10/2020 11:08 pm  

@ctt3mx5

i have seen the wireless ones and they’re about double in price, i didn’t happen to mention them. I don’t want to pay that much for one. 

maybe by the time I’m ready to take apart my dash, it’ll come down in price. 


ReplyQuote
Storm88000
(@stormnd2club)
Estimable Member
Joined: 3 months ago
Posts: 102
29/10/2020 11:58 pm  

For me, having a ‘20 Club, only thing I’m probably going to upgrade is the exhaust. The ND exhaust has almost no sound at all. My NC stock exhaust was louder. I’ll probably get the GWR again, it’s 7lbs lighter and shows around an 8whp gain. Maybe feel a tiny difference and it will sound cool under bridges and tunnels 🙂 🙂

- Jordan
‘93 MX-5 B&T
‘20 MX-5 Club
‘20 Prius Prime Plug-In


ReplyQuote
Share: