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-   -   5th-gen Camaro + road course / HPDE events? (http://www.camaro5.com/forums/showthread.php?t=208603)

Cap'n Pete 03-10-2012 05:08 AM

5th-gen Camaro + road course / HPDE events?
 
Hey gang,

Quick background: I'm new to Camaro5, but not new to Camaros or Camaro forums ;) (I've been a long-time member on CZ28.com, Corvette Forum, etc.). Previously had an '02 Z28 (bought new in 2002) then traded up to a C6 a couple years ago. Got into road racing / HPDE events with both the Camaro and the 'Vette.

Now, I have a baby on the way in a few weeks, and suddenly the 2-seater Z06 isn't looking so "practical" anymore! :iono: So I'm thinking a Camaro MAY be the answer ..... 4-seater and all :thumbsup:.

A couple questions:

1) How are the new Camaros working for people on the track?? I'm not looking at getting into heavy mods or running for money ... just simple HPDE's, Time Attack (time trial) events, etc.

2) Any concerns with things getting HOT? (engine oil? tranny fluid? diff? steering?) Do they come equipped with factory power steering and/or engine oil coolers? Or is the aftermarket the only place for those items?

3) Anybody running with the 6-speed AUTO, w/tap-shift?? Any issues? Do they stand up to a little abuse? (the 4L60E in my '02 Z28 didn't take well to the road course, so I ended up swapping in a T56).

4) Wheels & tires: anybody know if base C6 wheels might fit the Camaro? (I still have a spare set from my 'Vette). 18 x 8.5" fronts, 19 x 10" rears. Offsets may be wrong?! :iono:

5) Any other "issues" or concerns that I might want to be aware of?

Appreciate any/all advice or feedback you guys may have! No decisions have been made yet, but depending, I could easily see myself back in a Camaro again. Would like to do a little bit of "homework" first though :thumbsup:.

Thanks! :cool:

Pete

michael's maro 03-10-2012 07:18 AM

Brakes are 1 of the biggest things you should look into, SS brake lines, high temp brake fluid, and some good brake pads.
Stock tires are good, not great but good, I ran about 11 track events on stock tires, replaced only my fronts last november, still have factory rears 20,000 miles on them.
I also have a set of Toyo's R888 285's that I run GREAT TIRE..

Good luck with your car, lots of info out there.
The camaro will never handle as good as a vette will, I have both.
P.S remember what works for some people may not work for you, do lots of homework
Michael

Cap'n Pete 03-10-2012 07:31 AM

Thanks for the quick response, Michael!

I guess tires and brakes are sort of the obvious "consumables", esp. depending on the level that I push the car to. Up 'til now, I've run various compounds from both Hawk and Carbotech on my cars, and I'm pretty confident all the same stuff is available for the Camaro? Good point about the SS lines ... they were one of the first (and only!) mods I did to the Z06 (fortunately, it's "blessed" with being a perfectly track-ready car, right out of the box). And for tires, I've run everything from daily street tires, to Toyo's/Nitto's, upto Hoosier R6's. For now, I'd likely stick with the OEM tires (until they're shot) and upgrade to something a little softer (but streetable) like Nitto NT05's, or something of that sort.

Obviously I wouldn't expect quite the same level of handling/performance as the 'Vette, but I'm sure the SS is still a fun and capable track car, with the right tires and driver? ;)

My "goal" is to be able to attend at least the occasional track day, albeit, not nearly as frequently as I've been getting used to WITHOUT the responsibility (and time consumption!) of having kids ;). BUT, I don't want to have to pour a bunch of money into the car to make it "track ready", if I don't have to? Hence, I want to make sure that (left "stock") they're capable of running a few track days without risking self-destruct????? (ie: over-heating, etc.).

Any oil starvation issues with the LS3 in the Camaros? I know that has been a bit of an issue with them in the C6....... Any history of motors going "boom" with anything stickier than street tires??

Thx!

stratman2SSRS 03-10-2012 08:17 AM

Hey Pete, I've been out with you at a few Apex days at mosport.
After my first time at the DDT, I upgraded the sway bars, and lowered the car.
That improved the handling alot.
Check into Pedders. I've thrown a bunch of their bushings on the car, and now it handles awesome, and keeps up with the Z06's and Porsches. The supercharger helps too.
Stainless lines on the brakes, slotted rotors, and upgraded pads work really well.
It will be nice to see another Camaro out there.

Bad@ssCamaro 03-10-2012 10:31 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Cap'n Pete (Post 4621314)
Thanks for the quick response, Michael!

I guess tires and brakes are sort of the obvious "consumables", esp. depending on the level that I push the car to. Up 'til now, I've run various compounds from both Hawk and Carbotech on my cars, and I'm pretty confident all the same stuff is available for the Camaro? Good point about the SS lines ... they were one of the first (and only!) mods I did to the Z06 (fortunately, it's "blessed" with being a perfectly track-ready car, right out of the box). And for tires, I've run everything from daily street tires, to Toyo's/Nitto's, upto Hoosier R6's. For now, I'd likely stick with the OEM tires (until they're shot) and upgrade to something a little softer (but streetable) like Nitto NT05's, or something of that sort.

Obviously I wouldn't expect quite the same level of handling/performance as the 'Vette, but I'm sure the SS is still a fun and capable track car, with the right tires and driver? ;)

My "goal" is to be able to attend at least the occasional track day, albeit, not nearly as frequently as I've been getting used to WITHOUT the responsibility (and time consumption!) of having kids ;). BUT, I don't want to have to pour a bunch of money into the car to make it "track ready", if I don't have to? Hence, I want to make sure that (left "stock") they're capable of running a few track days without risking self-destruct????? (ie: over-heating, etc.).

Any oil starvation issues with the LS3 in the Camaros? I know that has been a bit of an issue with them in the C6....... Any history of motors going "boom" with anything stickier than street tires??

Thx!

I think a ZL1 would be a good fit for you :thumbsup:

Cap'n Pete 03-10-2012 03:31 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by stratman2SSRS (Post 4621379)
Hey Pete, I've been out with you at a few Apex days at mosport.
After my first time at the DDT, I upgraded the sway bars, and lowered the car.
That improved the handling alot.
Check into Pedders. I've thrown a bunch of their bushings on the car, and now it handles awesome, and keeps up with the Z06's and Porsches. The supercharger helps too.
Stainless lines on the brakes, slotted rotors, and upgraded pads work really well.
It will be nice to see another Camaro out there.

Hey,

Not sure if we got introduced or not?? Were you there with your Camaro when I was there? I've only seen a couple of them up there so far.

Well, depending how things go with the "new arrival" in the spring, hopefully I can still get out to the track a couple times this summer ... here's to hoping! :thumbup:

Cap'n Pete 03-10-2012 03:37 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Bad@ssCamaro (Post 4621852)
I think a ZL1 would be a good fit for you :thumbsup:

No kidding! The car looks amazing, and would ABSOLUTELY fit the bill ..... but at the moment, looks like my wife and I will be doing a complete vehicle rotation, getting rid of the Z06 and my truck, AND her car, and getting a pair of new vehicles to better suit the "family needs". Money-wise, a ZL1 just isn't in the cards at the moment :( (although I would love to get one!! ..... one day, maybe! :thumbsup:).

I'm definitely curious how well the 6-speed auto stands up to a little track abuse, since I may be talked into getting an auto instead of manual, so the wife can drive the car if necessary :rolleyes:. I know the old 4L60E was NOT up to the task, but I believe the newer 6-speed (6L80E?) is a beefier unit? :iono:

stratman2SSRS 03-10-2012 04:01 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Cap'n Pete (Post 4622966)
Hey,

Not sure if we got introduced or not?? Were you there with your Camaro when I was there? I've only seen a couple of them up there so far.

Well, depending how things go with the "new arrival" in the spring, hopefully I can still get out to the track a couple times this summer ... here's to hoping! :thumbup:

Congratulations on the new baby.
The ultimate sacrifice, getting rid of a Z06 so the new arrival can sit in the back seat.
The Camaro is a great choice for a new dad!!

We did talk at the track, I remember your liscence plate Cap'n Pete.

I had the silver camaro with black stripes. Either I had problems with a rear axle seal that day, or you had a problem with your car?? I can't remember?

calbert1999 03-10-2012 05:10 PM

Considering you're just starting out with a C5 Camaro; I'd say get a ZL1, otherwise you'll break the bank upgrading the SS for the track for cooling, brakes, more power (it needs more than 400hp. for 4k/lbs.), strength (diff., axles, tranny), suspension (springs / coilovers, sways, end-links, bushings, et al), wheels, tires, clutch (stock sucks), ..... the list goes on and on.

General Lee 03-10-2012 07:37 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by calbert1999 (Post 4623324)
Considering you're just starting out with a C5 Camaro; I'd say get a ZL1, otherwise you'll break the bank upgrading the SS for the track for cooling, brakes, more power (it needs more than 400hp. for 4k/lbs.), strength (diff., axles, tranny), suspension (springs / coilovers, sways, end-links, bushings, et al), wheels, tires, clutch (stock sucks), ..... the list goes on and on.

Have you even run your car on a track??
All he needs is bigger sway bars to get started. You don't have to break the bank to have fun.
He's having a new baby, and said a ZL1 is out of the price range.
Any camaro is better than no camaro.:thumbup:

Cap'n Pete 03-10-2012 09:22 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by calbert1999 (Post 4623324)
Considering you're just starting out with a C5 Camaro; I'd say get a ZL1, otherwise you'll break the bank upgrading the SS for the track

What I've learned, it doesn't matter WHAT car you get, it's easy to start throwing money at them regardless ..... even my Z06 could use a couple track-oriented bits and pieces to make it "perfect"!! :rolleyes:

As for the things you pointed out, I can immediately rule out a couple of them as non-issue:

- more power (it needs more than 400hp. for 4k/lbs.)
- suspension (springs / coilovers, sways, end-links, bushings, et al)
- wheels, tires
- brakes

The way I see it, power is what it is, and more isn't always better. As it stands, I am NOT using all 505HP of the Z06!! I've been at this for a few years, so I'm beyond the "novice" stage, but realistically, ~400 HP is probably a perfectly safe (and useable!) power level for me.

Suspension is not important to me at the moment. If you could see how I drive my Avalanche, you'd understand, ANYTHING with less body roll than that is just fine! Even my '02 Z28 was still "fun" to run, before I got into modding the suspension (basically, had a full Strano setup in it).

Wheels/tires are just part of going to the track, and not specific to a higher or lower end car.

Brakes will be consumed on ANY car that is taken to the track, so again, non-issue.

The couple things I AM concerned about, and would like to hear as much real reports of that I can, are the other things you mentioned:

- strength (diff., axles, tranny) - are they not any stronger than a 4th-gen Camaro, with the p.o.s. 7-1/2" 10-bolt? Are the trannsmissions equally as prone to puking under moderate abuse?

- cooling - specifically, what? Brakes? Engine? Steering? What coolers does the factory already have in place, and do they not work well enough for maybe ~2 or 3 lapping days a year??

Cap'n Pete 03-10-2012 09:33 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by stratman2SSRS (Post 4623047)
We did talk at the track, I remember your liscence plate Cap'n Pete. I had the silver camaro with black stripes.

Yeah, I just had a closer look at your avatar picture ... I do recognize the car, and more specifically, the wheels! :thumbsup: It's been quite a few months since, and my brain has been spinning lately, trying to pull together a major kitchen reno, just in time to get prepared for the baby on the way!! My wife has been complaining about feeling spaced out lately, and I think I'm right there with her! lol :drinking: (oh yeah, I'm sure we'll be great parents though!! ;):popcorn:)

Anyway ............

... do you think the axle seal issue was just a random problem, or do you think it's something that may be a recurring track-related issue? :iono:

Again, just trying to get a handle on what to expect. Even with the 'Vette, I thought I did "most" of my homework going into it, but then found out that there were things I hadn't considered fully :rolleyes:.

I'm also not expecting to hit the track as often as I used to (typically try to hit about ~10 track days a year if I can), so I'm thinking for maybe a couple "easy lapping days" (if I could ever really learn how to take it "easy" out there :rolleyes:) the Camaro would survive without having to invest too much time/money/mods. ......................... down the road is a different story :cool:.

stratman2SSRS 03-10-2012 10:16 PM

1 Attachment(s)
The axle seal was due to an issue with some aftermarket axles that I installed. Nothing to do with the stock ones, which work great at mosport.
Nothing on the stock car will break at mosport.
What group were you driving in? I was either advanced or intermediate depending on how many guys were there.
Here's a picture of the car stock before sway bars, and mods.
It was leaning over alot more than the Z06.

Cap'n Pete 03-10-2012 11:21 PM

I don't want to sound like this guy (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5sKnY...eature=related) but usually I run in the advanced group ;).

Good to know that there's no issue with the stock axles/seals .......... so it begs the question, what did you "upgrade" for anyway?! :D


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