We first saw this car when James brought it to us for mapping the original engine and ECU on throttle bodies. It was running a crate 'duratec' engine on OMEX with throttle bodies. The car has the Type-9 gearbox and a Sierra LSD. We brought her up to a respectable 200bhp at the time. James has been using the vehicle for various track days for a year, and been relatively fault free.
He gave us a call about supercharging the car. We came up with some various options for him, at various power levels. All based around a Rotrex Supercharger. As with many projects, it soon evolved!
First up, ,remove the bodywork from the front of the vehicle, and remove the throttle bodies. At this stage we need to start test fitting relevant hardware. All the brackets etc for the supercharger. We knew we would have to cut the vehicle about at little.
Naturally, there are many things that we need to change and sort. Cooling, cooling and cooling are some major concerns here. The fronts of these vehicles don't lend themselves to this type of conversion usually. The frontal area is not ideal.
You can see above, the various cuts we had to make to the chassis in order to make the supercharger work. I plan on leaving all the cuts until I've finalised every part of the build, then entirely strip the areas i've cut, ie engine removal etc, and TIG weld and strengthen where relevant. The engine mount of course will need to be moved to allow the inlet to be functional. You can see lots of the wiring that needs to be removed, renewed.
The original direct to head throttle bodies were obviously no good for the new setup. Most of the inlets available to us for the Duratec are fitment specific for transverse engined vehicles, such as the ST150 fiesta. It became clear fairly quickly that the ideal solution would be a designed and fabricated here inlet. You can see above the Jenvey inlet manifold I used to base the new inlet/plenum on. Freshly water cut from drawings we supplied, by Atom Fabrications in Chard. Highly recommended.
Above are the parts we ended up with to build the Plenum. It was also decided to go FBW (Fly By Wire), and use a Bosch Motorsport throttle body mounted to our new plenum. This is for many reasons, including torque control, and traction control. This will all be run using the fantastic MaxxECU race.
Above you can see me mocking up the throttle body, being sure it will miss the pulley arrangement I have set up for the supercharger. As you can imagine, space is of a premium.
Above shows the complete manifold, with as much of an ideal size as we can get. Using basic computer airflow models, this is the best shape we can get in the vehicle and on the Jenvey runners. We've included internal trumpets not shown. All welded up by the boys at JEK Fabrication. We can now supply this manifold as an off the shelf part. Feel free to give us a call or E-Mail for prices and current availability. Ideal for Caterham, or Westfield Duratec Supercharged applications also. With standard fittings for the the Bosch Motorsport throttle body, but can be drilled for any that quit your requirement.
Next thing to get sorted is main cooling radiators. Water coolant radiator, and charge air cooler. Air to air in this case. We dropped the car down to the lads at JEK Fabrications in Chard for their full works package. I'm a great believer in letting people who specialize do the things they specialize in. There are far too many people trying to fit everything under one roof these days, and it's just not viable in my opinion. We ran through the specifications and requirements and left the car with them. A couple weeks later, we have now an expertly made, and fabricated cooling package. A1.
Above, part way through trimming the nosecone to accept the new cooling package. This is definitely a function over form build, although I have to say, I love the look so far!
Next up, we are hoping for around 400bhp. The Type-9 is well out of it's comfort zone at the power it was running at 200bhp. We want to double that, so the Type-9 is just not a viable option. We explored a few different options that I won't go into here, but ended up using the 2.0 2007 onwards MX5 gearbox. This decision was made due to many factors. Great power handling as standard, same bellhousing pattern as the Duratec, leaves us open to using standard fit parts. For instance a Stage-4 clutch is easily available to support levels of 480 bhp. 6-speed is a bonus.
We kept cutting the tunnel and bulkhead until the gearbox physically fitted into place. It's shy of the original selector hole by approx 50mm. This isn't a problem in our case. We will fabricate a new gear selector to bring the shifter back further.
You can see us above cutting the original tunnel out. We only had to trim out the above parts. We fabricated a new tunnel out of stainless, and TIG welded it in. The Quantum is completely built from stainless.
Above the new tunnel being welded into the vehicle. We've lost no internal space that we need to worry about in the vehicle. The new shifter hole is visible.
Gearbox mounts are fabricated to the gearbox in the same fashion as the Type-9 was mounted. Using Vibratechnics mounts.
Space is at a premium on the vehicle. I've got to find space for oil coolers, a different breather system, not to mention the whole fuel system. I decided to go for a smaller battery, and use a stainless battery box, to give me some more mounting surfaces.
A new battery box is fabricated and again, TIG welded into the old position, but gaining us 60mm of useful space. It also locates the battery in a more direct failsafe manner.
Here you can see i've started wiring the engine bay. We are using the MAXXECU Race on this duratec powered supercharged beast. I've used VW Bosch coils, with internal amplifiers. They fit perfectly into the Ford coil holes onto the plugs. We are running now a later fuel rail designed for external regulation with new 660cc DEKA injectors. The rail also features a better inlet fitting to suit the Aeroquip system I halve planned for the rest of the vehicle. There are all now wired back to the ECU location in the vehicle passenger area. The original vehicle ran batch fire injectors, and wasted spark. We will run fully sequential with the MAXXECU.
MAXXECU Race, pictured above.
So i've got the vehicle up and running now. A custom pickup setup within the MaxxECU is allowing us to run full sequential without any major problems.
A quick video on our Youtube channel here:
We are presently only revving to 6000rpm, and power is capped at 260. I'm now waiting for a new exhaust system to be built, which is booked in to be done at JEK Fabrications. All the MX5 transmission seems to be working perfectly so far though. James, is going to take it out and do a bit of driving around with it as it is, and try to iron out any little niggles we may, or may not have. Video below, of our progress thus far, more updates soon. 🙂
Below is a quick walkaround, of me talking about the car and what I've got up to so far: