2018 CorkSport Garage Update

CorkSport's Mazda 3 guide.

CorkSport Garage

How about something a little different from the usual CS blog? I thought I would give you all a little insight into all the different Mazdas that are owned by employees. Some are daily drivers, some are full racecars, and some are…different (more on that later). So grab a cold refreshment, we’ve got quite a few cars to go through.

The Mazdaspeeds

Owner: Corey
Year/Model: 2004 Mazdaspeed Miata
Mileage: 28,800

Modifications: Full Flyin’ Miata CAI, polished stainless piping, Turbosmart recirculating bypass valve, manual boost controller, O2 signal modifier, boost gauge. Recent Mustang Dyno showed a consistent 189.9WHP.

Corey’s Comments: Purchased new to me at 17,000 miles in 2012 for my 40th birthday. The MSP Miata had been stored for 4 years-everything was original, even the tires. This Miata came from California and had never seen rain. I keep it in the garage and it’s mainly a fair weather/weekend car except during the summer. I enjoy taking a ride in the MSM with each of my kids, but love honking the horn at people and making my son wave back…like he knows them.

 

Owner: Luke
Year/Model: 2009 Mazdaspeed 3 GT
Mileage: 124,000

Modifications: Full bolted, built engine, CS prototype turbo, methanol injection. Too many CorkSport Par

Luke’s Comments: Car has been through stock turbo/stock block, CS turbo/stock block, CS turbo/built block, 35r/built block, and now CS prototype turbo/built block.  Fun fact: my girlfriend went faster in my car than I did when I first bought it.  Stock turbo went 12.8 @ 110mph in the  1320.

 

Owner: Daniel
Year/Model: 2007 Mazdaspeed 6
Mileage: 68,000

Modifications: Custom front license plate delete, CS Interior LED Kit, daily driver dirt.

Daniel’s Comments: Just bought the MS6 a few weeks ago, doing a ton of maintenance before mods. This Mazdaspeed6 started out as a dealer fleet vehicle (whatever that means). Bought it from a guy who owned it the past ~9 years. Hoping to sneak some new Mazdaspeed 6 parts into the CS catalog and feed the zoom-zoom obsession!

 

Owner: CorkSport (shop car)
Year/Model: 2013 Mazdaspeed 3
Mileage: 14,000

Modifications: Virtually everything in the CS catalog for MS3. Plus a few prototype parts that never made their way to the market.

Comments:  Affectionately called “Whitey”. On its 2nd built engine (we use and abuse this thing). This was one of Vincent’s first projects when he arrived at CS: rebuild Whitey’s engine. He just got done rebuilding it for the second time and is now breaking it in.

 

Owner: Barett
Year/Model: 2009 Mazdaspeed 3
Mileage: ~135,000

Modifications: Manley internals, L19 head studs, CS cams, bowl work & porting, all the bolt-ons, 28gph methanol injection, prototype CS turbo, 330mm BBK, other suspension bits.

Barett’s Comments: More info on the engine build here. Made ~465whp at the 2017 CS dyno day. My car hates me and is a constant work in progress.

 

Owner: Brett
Year/Model: 2013 Mazdaspeed
Mileage: 37,000

Modifications: Full CS bolt-ons, big turbo, meth injection, making 430whp 385ft-lbs. BC coilovers w/ custom rated Swift springs, BMSPEC front splitter, Varis rear diffuser, custom side skirt extensions, Volk TE37SL: front 18×11 rear 18×10, paint matched 240Z flares, 330mm BBK.

Brett’s Comments:  I’ve had the Mazdaspeed3 for about 4 years now. It has every CS bolt on in the catalog. Helps that I work here now. This MS3 makes ~430 WHP, and is a stock block for now; built block soon to come. I take more pictures of this car than I do anything else. 

 

The GEN 3’s

 

CorkSport's Mazda 3 guide.
Ready to mod your Mazda 3? You will be after you read this!
Owner: Jennifer
Year/Model: 2014 Mazda 3 2.5L Hatch
Mileage: 100,000

Modifications: Most of the CS catalog for GEN3: Intake, exhaust, lowering springs, adjustable struts, rear sway bar, aluminum skid tray, etc., GEN2 MS3 wheels, big CS livery.

Jennifer’s Comments: The car has been used for the majority of the Mazda3 research and design at CS. This Mazda 3 is daily driven ~80miles each day to torture test CorkSport parts, it helps that the commute to my house is that far round trip. Basically, my daily drive is a perfect example of “running up a hill both ways” for this Mazda 3.  

 

(Left)

Owner: Collin
Year/Model: 2016 Mazda 6
Mileage: 40,000

Modifications: CS RSB, prototype CS FSB, CS RMM, prototype CS performance header, CS license plate kit.

Collin’s Comments: Aside from the performance parts available at CS, I chose this car due to the extra ~30HP compared to most commuter cars. I still get 42MPG on my freeway commute. This is my first New Car I bought myself and I have loved learning how to modify on it. 

(Right)

Owner: Rich
Year/Model: 2014 Mazda 6 GT

Modifications: CS lowering springs/struts, CS front camber plates, CS rear camber arms, CS SRI, CS catback, CS radio control knob, CS license plate kit, 25mm wheel spacers

Rich’s Comments: I drove around the same B2300 for many years while we built CorkSport from the ground up. I finally decided to treat myself and picked this Mazda6 up in 2014. Big shift, and I’ve loved having the luxuries of this Mazda 6. 

 

Owner: Derrick
Year/Model: 2014 Mazda 3 2.5L Sedan

Modifications: Caged, stripped, CS SRI, straight pipe to CS axleback, bunch of custom adjustable suspension, BBK (sometimes), custom racetrack-modified bodywork.

Derrick’s Comments: This Mazda3 could not be sold as a road legal car, so I don’t drive it on the road. There are a TON of track hours on this Mazda 3 and all of it’s modifications. We basically TRY to break our test parts before we let them hit the market, which is good for me because I love to go fast.

 

Owner: CorkSport (shop car)
Year/Model: 2018 Mazda 3 2.5L Hatch
Mileage: 2900

Modifications: CS struts, CS lowering springs, CS camber plates, CS RMM.

Comments: Mainly stock so far, big things to come to the “CBR” (CorkSport Branded Ride). Brett, who has been dailying the CBR, somehow only is getting 23mpg. Expect more parts for facelifted GEN3’s with the CBR’s arrival.

 

The Others

Just because you may not have seen much about them and they don’t get their own category does not mean they’re not special. For me, some of the most interesting cars are down below.

 

Owner: CorkSport (shop truck)
Year/Model: 1995 Mazda B2300
Mileage: 160,000

Modifications: Sweet stickers for extra HP, tire shop wheels, custom faded paint

Comments: Vincent used to own this truck before selling it to be the “new” CS shop truck. He notes that it was involved in 3 accidents, each time the insurance company did not total the truck, leaving Vincent with more money than he spent to buy the truck. No power steering provides an arm workout for those lucky enough to drive this beast.

 

Owner: Derrick
Year/Model: 2016 Miata Launch Edition.
Mileage: 24,000

Modifications: Full CorkSport ND Miata catalog – CS cold air intake, CS catback exhaust, CS front and rear swaybars, CS lowering springs, CS adjustable front end links, VersaTune CS parts tune, CS short shifter – Sparco Drift wheels, Bridgestone Blizzak run flats

Derrick’s Comments: The ND is an interesting car for me as being a lifelong Mazda enthusiast I had never owned a Miata before.  When the ND was announced I had already converted the Mazda 2 into a B-Spec car so I stopped street driving it and went back to my Rx7 turbo as my daily driver so I had gotten used to driving a car with “issues” again.  When I got into the ND for the first time and drove it home it was very surreal expecting some weird sound or smelling hydrocarbons (the Rx7 is old and catless) and the car handled incredible right out of the box.  Of course that lasted all of 3 months until we have Kenton Koch behind the wheel helping us out with the suspension development.  It is one of those cars that I warn people, if you drive it you will want to buy one.

 

Owner: Vincent
Year/Model: 2010 Mazda RX-8 R3
Mileage: 60,000 (original engine, no issues)

Modifications: Turbo XS exhaust, K&N high flow filter, custom VersaTune tune, DBA club spec rotors, Hawk Street/Race pads, Goodridge stainless steel lines.

Vincent’s Comments: I had been wanting a 2nd gen RX-8 since high school. This thing revs out to 9400RPM and is super fun to drive. Just recently sold (hi Aaron) but too good to not include in this blog.

 

Owner: Derrick
Year/Model: 1993 Spec Miata
Mileage: “Lots and lots” (this car has run 25hours of Thunderhill a few times on top of all its other racing)

Modifications: Spec Miata Bilstein shock package, Eibach swaybars, illegal plunge cut cylinder head (lookup spec Miata plunge gate 2014), GLoc brakes, 949 6ul Spec Miata wheels, AIM dash & datalog system, ESR drive side drop floor, Really big radiator.

Derrick’s Comments: I took the advice of all the spec miata people and bought a built car so I didn’t have to spend 6 months building one myself.  The local car was raced for a long time in the northwest and was a front running car before it was parked for a few years.  I picked it up for $6000 with some extra spares and was immediately able to get on the track and go racing after the installation of the drop floor and new seatbelts.  The big question I have people ask me is why did you get a SM?  The real answer is the level of drivers in the class.  At any sanctioned race event weekend there are always SM and someone to race against and I have personally known several drivers go into SM a novice and come out the other side in pro racing.  To win at SM you have to have your shit together.  To be the best you need to compete against and beat the best so here I am.

 

Owner: Barett
Model: Mazda B2600i
Mileage: ?

Modifications: Solid axle swap with Toyota running gear, 4.88:1 axle gears, rear locker, 3 feet of articulation, 8000lb winch, high bolstered seats, 35×14.5R15 Super Swamper Bogger Tires, “lots of f*ckery fabrication.”

Barett’s Comments: This was my first real vehicle, and it taught me lots about owning a vehicle, modifying a vehicle and I have more memories with this beast than I can come up with right now. I beat the SH*T out of this truck and it’s always put away wet.

 Owner: Rich
Model: 1988 Mazda Rx- CONVERTIBLE

 

Modifications: Turbo engine swap, Apexi Power FC, CS Border Style body kit, CS front mount intercooler, CS turbo back exhaust, many other mods.

Rich’s Comments: The Rx-7 is kept in the garage and it’s mainly a fair weather/weekend car except during the summer. I take it out for special occasions or to just show off every once in a while. It’s a nostalgia piece for me. 

 

Not Pictured:

  • 2016 Mazda 3 Sedan. Derrick’s 2nd racecar. Caged, stripped, 2.0L AT converted to 2.5L MT.
  • Mazda RX-7 FC. Owned by Derrick.
  • NA Mazda Miata. Parts car for Derrick’s Spec Miata
  • Mazda 5. Derrick’s wife’s car.
  • Mazda CX7. Kelly’s daily driver.

For those keeping score, that’s 22 Mazdas in the CorkSport garage. The cars have come and gone over the years but one thing will always stay true: our cars will be fun to drive because they are Mazdas. Here’s to more Mazdas finding their way into the CS (and your) garage.

 

Oh and if you have any questions on the above cars, please let us know down below, we’ll be sure to pass on your question to the car’s owner.

 

-Daniel

Why no AWD?

Mazda has recently said they would like to have AWD in most models, but the current generation has some space/packaging constraints. I was scratching my head over this statement trying to figure out why the existing model Mazda 6 is offered in AWD in Europe with the Skyactiv diesel engine and Mazda is saying they cannot get it to fit.

I think I may have stumbled onto the answer after having a conversation with a friend recently. It is no secret Mazda is working on offering the diesel Cx5 to the US market, but it has been held up in government regulations with the EPA courtesy of VW and FIAT cheating on their engine mapping and emissions. Mazda has the setup which will pass and get the power they want to offer but here lies the problem.

Say you were going to offer a Mazda 6 diesel model that now meets the US emissions with the urea injection. Where are you going to put the tank to hold in the car? In the Cx5, which has more space to put something like a urea tank, it is not as much of a problem with packaging to find a spot. The Mazda 6 doesn’t sit off the ground as high and allow you a space to get everything to work out and be able to still fit the transfer case, drive shaft, and rear differential.

Why doesn’t Mazda offer both? This is a question I wish I could sort out. It wouldn’t be the first time Mazda would have models with different floor plans. Mazda has done this in the past with the 323s and Protégé, so I don’t think this is the reason why. This could be a possible play on the overall strategy with North America and only offer the AWD as a diesel model. This goes against what we have already with the Cx5 2.5 gas engine and the Cx9 gas 2.5 turbo motor, so I don’t think this is it which leaves this question for me to puzzle over a bit longer.

With the announcement of the Mazda/Toyota plant in Alabama and the statement by the chief of Mazda saying Mazda is going to build something different, this could be the queue that they will find a way to give us AWD turbo fun again. If anything the announcement of the new plant will finally get the EPA to give the green light to the Skyactiv diesel engine.

Overall Mazda desire to give us AWD still has me hopeful for the 2.5 Skyactiv gas turbo with all-wheel drive, but all the current signs say nope. Please Mazda, I don’t mind being wrong on this one.

-Derrick

The Mazda 3 Rear Motor Mount 2.0: Back & Better

2014 Mazda 3 rear engine mount upgrade

We here at CorkSport are proud to announce the relaunch of the Mazda 3 Rear Motor Mount.

Yes, you read that correct, this is a re-launch. At CorkSport we push ourselves to design and develop new and interesting products every day, with that, we try new and innovative manufacturing designs and methods in an attempt to create exceptional, competitive, cost-effective products for our loyal customers.

Sometimes those new and innovative manufacturing methods end up not being as awesome as we originally expected. This is just part of the designing and learning process. Let’s get into the details.

The original, let’s call it V1, Mazda3 RMM used a new-to-us manufacturing method of applying the polyurethane to the billet aluminum body called vulcanizing. The billet aluminum body and the steel sleeves are mounted in a fixture then liquid polyurethane was poured into the assembly and cooled until the polyurethane had set to the final hardness.  This process appeared to be very promising; each part was set up identically, it was nearly impossible to have any missing parts not sent to you, and most importantly the polyurethane was adhered to the billet aluminum body and therefore could not fall out.  More on that last bit later.

We moved forward with the manufacturing method and had a few samples made with various polyurethane durometers ranging from 60A to 80A.  After various testing, we determined that 70A was the best compromise of response and NVH (Noise, Vibration, Harshness) experienced by the driver. We continued testing for a few months to verify long-term durability and found no issues.  Hooray! We moved forward with production to get this new great Mazda6 RMM out the door to you.

Unfortunately, it appears that our testing period just wasn’t quite long enough.  Eventually, the polyurethane would fail but fail in a style we had never experienced before.  Long story short, polyurethane has excellent compression strength compared to the tensile strength.  The polyurethane was being pulled/split apart due to the forces of the engine.  

Now we had a few options of how to redesign the Mazda 6 Rear Motor Mount after going through the failure analysis.  

  • We could have simply stuck with the same design and just increased the stiffness of the polyurethane.  Increasing the durometer rating of the poly increases the tensile strength, but this would have resulted in an unsatisfactory driving experience for you which was unacceptable.  
  • The other option was to start from scratch again to create a new design that did not compromise the driving experience or the durability; with challenge comes innovation.

Again we went through many different designs, with the greatest challenge coming in the form of retaining the polyurethane pucks.  Typically the polyurethane pucks are retained by whatever the mount is bolting to, but with the Mazda motor mount, the steel sleeves extend far past the outer edge of the polyurethane pucks.  This leaves the pucks free to slide out of the billet aluminum body and cause a major failure.  

Using the conventional polyurethane puck style, we developed a design that would work, but more than doubled the number of parts needed which increased the chance for something to go wrong and drives up the cost.  This design is shown below:

 

The red arrows show the direction the conventional polyurethane puck would slide out of the body.  The red circles show the puck retention system to hold the washer and pucks in the body.  This retention design required many parts to be successful.

With the cost going through the roof we had to go back to the drawing board. There had to be a better way… and there was.  

The third major iteration shown above solved the problems of the V2 design and got us away from the vulcanized polyurethane of the V1 design.  Things were looking good.  With the V3 design, the polyurethane pucks are pressed into the billet aluminum body.  The pucks have ribs, shown with the red circles that are just large enough to keep the puck in place, but small enough to let the puck be pressed into the body.  

With this, we were able to make some clever designs to the RMM to keep it centered in the engine and chassis brackets on the vehicle.  The smaller diameter puck extends out to the ends of the steel sleeves; this keeps the entire rear motor mount centered.  The large diameter puck retains itself in the body and allows the associated steel sleeve free to slide for easy installation; shown with the red arrows.

Now… does it work? YES! Pretty fantastically, we might add!  

We have had this design on a handful of vehicles, one of those being the CorkSport Mazda 3 Racecar during the SCCA Run-Offs at Indianapolis Speedway.  Other than some dirt and grime, the tested RMM looks great.  

You were probably expecting this blog to be all about the details and reasons you should buy this performance RMM for your Mazda 3, Mazda 6, or CX-5.  All those details can be found on our website, and I invite you to check them out.

What we really want to get across here is this:

First and foremost, we will always do the best we can to take care of you and your car if there is ever an issue or concern with your CorkSport part.  

Second, if you are a driving enthusiast, if you go driving for the sake of just driving, then you need this RMM in your life. It will completely change and improve your driving experience, plain and simple.  

-Barett, CS Engineering

 

Introducing: The CorkSport Performance Polyurethane Exhaust Hanger Kit

The exhaust system on your Mazda is a loved and cherished part of your car’s character and performance.

It emits glorious sounds that keep you entertained and smiling from ear-to-ear, but if you can believe it, is only attached to your Mazda by a few soft rubber hangers.

Yes, your hard earned stainless steel exhaust is ONLY suspended by small pieces of rubber…

Here at CorkSport, we think it’s time that you show your exhaust system some love… it’s time to take the rubber off.

We present to you: the CorkSport Performance Polyurethane Exhaust Hanger kit.

This kit replaces the four rubber exhaust hangers that would otherwise be used to mount and suspend your CorkSport Performance Exhaust System; the two rear hangers on the axleback section and the two mid-pipe hangers.

But why is polyurethane better?

Well there’s a few reasons:

  • First, polyurethane is more durable and heat resistant than rubber so the hangers will perform better for a much longer period of time.
  • Second, and most important, the polyurethane used in the CorkSport Performance Kit uses a stiffer compound compared to the OE. The polyurethane hangers have 75A durometer stiffness vs the OE rubber at as low as 50A durometer. The increased stiffness helps minimize the movement of the exhaust while still providing the necessary flex between the car chassis and the exhaust system.

All-together, this means your performance exhaust system for you Mazda 3, Mazda 6, or Mazda CX-5 will not be able to move around under the car during spirited driving such as back roads, auto-crossing, or whatever motorsport event you prefer.

Keeping your exhaust system in places reduces your chance of damaging your beloved Mazda or the exhaust; it’s a win/win.

-Barett @ CS

PS: In addition to these hangers, we also carry the following other exhaust hanger options:

CorkSport Headlight Leveling Link

It’s fair to say that we all love the look of a lowered car, especially when it’s your car right? However what we don’t love is lowered headlights, but sadly that’s a result of your ride’s new look. There are less desirable ways to fix the new lowered headlight issue and there are correct ways. Here at CorkSport, we wanted to provide you the correct method to get your headlights back in line.

Light Leveling Kit | CorkSport

Continue reading “CorkSport Headlight Leveling Link”