How do you show from 2002 to 2012
Here is the first picture I took of the P5… Stock Height, Silver Tint, Decals for items that had not yet been installed…
The Protege Project started because of my fascination with a Jetta. My friend James had bought a VW Jetta GL, it was a nice car but pretty slow. He had taken it to Roch Cyr in Plantagenet Ontario who is Turbo Yoda. Roch whipped up a 10 psi turbo kit out of some old TDI parts, added an SDS EIC2 fuel controller, and a Turbo XS RFL Blow Off Valve.
James let me drive the car for 10 Minutes… The rest is history.
I thought I knew what I was getting myself into, I thought I knew about cars, I thought I knew everything I needed. I was Effing Wrong. I started to read… anything I could. Engine Basics, EFI For Dummies, Maximum Boost, Haynes Manuals.
I went looking for a platform, I looked at Honda, Hyundai, Nissan… nothing impressed me… Then I saw a White 2002 Mazda Protege5. A Wagon? Why the Hell not, It looks awesome, the engine is 2.0L, the intake was against the firewall… and it’s not a Honda! I needed to get away from the bolt on, I needed to have something that was new, I wanted to learn the hard way. Car selected and paid for, with the most minimal warranty I could… I was a happy person. The car came with Silver Tint and the 18″ Rims arrived before I picked up the car. In 2002, 18″ Rims were unheard of and as stupid as they look on stock suspension, I knew it was a matter of time before I lowered it 2″
One week later, I went to Roch with James and left with some parts. 1x GT28rs, 1x Blow Off, 1x Tial Wastegate, 1x SDS EIC2 with Injectors. Looking back now I think to myself, What the Hell did I think I was doing?
That winter, the car was not driven and I started to make plans. I needed to find a fabricator because nobody made any parts for this car, and it was not going to build itself.
I was told that Steve Blok who was the owner of TD Products was who I needed to contact. I went to meet him and after 10 minutes I was confident that he was the man for the job. The plan was for him to scratch build a custom manifold, he would let me use his shop to build the project during the evenings and he would fabricate. I did not appreciate how skilled he could weld with a mig at the time. No carbon, rolled nickels on every join. Solid and Unique.
I have to laugh at the humble pictures of the first year of the MP5T. I thought it was “The Shit” when really it was Shit… The Spring was 4 PSI, it made some interesting noises, Suspension… Not Done, Check Engine Light… ON! None of that mattered, I called it a win for Brian and loved driving the new creation.
Finally bought Suspension… TEIN-SS.
MEETING OF MAZDA – FALL 2004 (TORONTO)
The first time I participated in Meeting Of Mazda. TOProtege hosted that year and I had a blast. I had just joined the forum and I knew nobody. I met Jason (YP5TO) who had a sick Yellow P5. It had, ICE, Turbo, Interior, Awesome Rims. It was great to meet other people who decided to modify a Protege. My wife and I had a great time at MOM 2004.
Fall 2004 – BOOM!
So I found the limit of what a Mazda FS engine can handle. I folded a connecting rod in half and it made an air cooled Protege Engine. I would not build it stock, It would be built forged. The busted engine came out, I got a used engine and the parts started to come in during the winter. CP Pistons 8.5:1. Olliver Rods, Carbon Hood, New items in the A-Pillar, HID Headlights, AWR Suspension Goodies, Solid Motor Mounts, New Radiator, New Fan, Adjustable Timing Gears, Sparco Seats, Sparco Belts. I spent the winter getting the information I needed and the shop that could do the work. I decided that the hood looked stupid in naked Carbon, so it was painted.
I assembled the engine and had the help of Steve to get it back in the car. It was a total shock, but the car started on it’s third rotation.
I was posted to Oromocto New Brunswick where I met a very close friend of mine… “Sneeky Pete”, I was such an ass to him the first time we met (I have major personal issues with first impressions) but lucky for me, we became good friends and he saw beyond my arrogant exterior. He had at the time a Cobalt SS/SC which he modified to Stage2, Lowering Suspension. The car sounded fantastic under load and was legitimately quick.
I also went to “Sport Compact Nights 2006″ (Quebec City) and got the opportunity to get some awesome shots of Misa Campo on MP5T. It was funny because in 2 minutes, more pictures were taken of MP5T than all others combined. People were following her as she walked around the show. From the perspective of a car owner… “A Truly EPIC Picture”
Had noticed that there was a lack of compression, I was loosing coolant and oil. Time for a headgasket and hopefully nothing more. Took the motor apart without removing it for the first time. Had the head milled for good measure and by this time, the downpipe being the lowest part of the car, was in pretty rough shape. I asked Steve Bloc to make me a newer one, with less restrictive bends.. A real work of art. Everything went back together without issue.
FALL 2008 – NAKED
I prepared the car for the spring by removing all traces of Mazda Wiring, including the ECU, Power Locks, Air Bags, Stock Speedometer.. Everything was out. I started to rewire the required items such as Hi/Low Beams, Brakes, Reverse Lights and made a custom circuit to flash the indicators. I still at this point had not decided on the EMS, I thought I was going to run a Haltech E8 ECU. The PS1000 had not been announced at that time.
This part of the build can be best described as running a marathon with a blindfold on... I told everyone that it was going to be fine, but it took everything I knew, I was genuinely afraid that I had fully bit off too much. Only my wife, close friends and family truly understand what I was able to do with the Haltech EMS. I bought Generation 1 of the brand new Haltech PS1000. I had the ECU before the software was released to the public. I did not have a way to make the ECU see Cam or Crank sensors. No Base Map, No Experience Tuning… Just like normal… well out of my comfort zone, forced to install or fail.
No Piggy Back ECU, The Haltech would control alone. This created a problem. The Stock ECU controls the Speedometer Cluster and regulates voltage on the Alternator. I decided to replace the Speedometer with a Racepak IQ3 resulting in a new problem, no fuel level gauge. Situation Normal… what sounds simple is actually complicated.. The stock ignition system was going to be replaced with GM LS1 Coils. The coils use a unique connector that would not let me use normal wires. After literally one month of research, I realized that the stock wires from a Mazda Tribute would connect to the LS1 Coils, but they were too short to reach the spark plugs in the protege engine. I had to modify the wires to reach. There was no way to mount the coils. I went through several designs made out of cardboard, then one out of 1/8″ Aluminum. Once I was happy with it, the part was remade out of 1/4″ making for a truly one of a kind ignition system. The stock cam gear has a very unusual trigger system. It uses a VR sensor to read three events, two are close and one is by itself. The Crank Sensor is more usual. a 36 tooth wheel with a blank at -76 Deg BTDC. So what I needed was a 36-1 +3 trigger, The Haltech could not be configured to operate this way. I spent weeks back and forth with ERIC GASH at Haltech HQ and we came up with a solution. I would need to make a custom cam gear with only one event. I could use a 36-1 +1 to generate the trigger required for Sequential Injection and Direct Ignition. The Cam Gear event needed to occur 5 teeth before the Crank Event. I did some basic math and found out at what angle the trigger needed to be on the gear and it worked perfect. The MP5T did not want to start the first time, I did not have the luxury of a base map and I had never calculated what the engine needed cold, only what it would need to run warm. I was shocked that it needed a full +76% Overall Trim to start at 20 Deg C. The car started and ran full rich within 5 seconds. I got it running and literally lowered the trim as the car warmed up to maintain AFR at 14.7. Once the car was up to operating temperature, I was able to make the area at -20 Vac and 1000 RPM run 14.7 AFR without any trim. I was so happy that I was able to make it start and run. It was the first time since the fall that I knew it would be possible to make the Haltech run my engine. The next morning, I was able to work on the Cold Start Map. The engine was cold and as I increased the Trim to get it to start, I took note of what trim percentage was required to start. Every 5 Degrees in temperature, I wrote down what the trim required was to hold AFR. Once the car was up to temperature, I shut it down and went inside to build a map with my notes. The next day with the new map, it fired up without any help. I was running the car on a battery and charger. I still did not have an alternator. The Stock ECU controls the voltage in the alternator by exciting the resistor pack with a duty cycle. What a pain in the ass! I heard rumors that the 1992 Mazda 626 used the same style of alternator, but that it was Old School and ran like a normal alternator with the voltage regulator in the diode pack. I found a shop in Ottawa that claimed that they could make me that part. I then needed to figure out how I could maintain the alternator field when the car was being switched off. I made a special wire with 3 Diodes that would prevent the circuit from back charging the ignition system. This isolated the alternator from the ignition key. It sounds easy, but I blew 3x$200 alternators to perfect this system. Once I had power, I could start to drive and tune the car. I got the base fuel map done, then throttle pump, post start enrich, finally T-AFR.
SUMMER 2009 – ICAR
John invited me to go to Mirabel Quebec for a Car Meet/Drift/Drag day. Many of the “Club Protege Quebec” members were there so I had a great day meeting them for the first time. Always with the dude dressed up in wrestling outfit on a super hot day… and LOL at the “STD Babe” (Standard Suspension). My wife thought the green Saturn was pretty cool, but she noticed that there was some carbon in the welds.
MEETING OF MAZDA – FALL 2009 (TORONTO)
Every Fall north of Toronto Ontario, the Toronto Mazda forums take turns hosting “Meeting Of Mazda” or MOM for short. I always have a great time and the meet is more like a BBQ with cars, than a car meet. It is nice to see the people you speak with and fight with a bit all year long. I hardly ever see my good friend Mike (Black Shirt, five pictures down) and as I said, just a fantastic day. It is always worth the 5 hour drive. I was voted “Best Protege 5” for that year which is great because it is voted by the members of the forum, not a judge.
On the way there with my good friend John (Focus), my cam gear literally disintegrated and almost took out the cam sensor. I was 3 hours away from home and I managed to break my car 700 meters from a truck repair garage that was closing in 10 minutes. They were nice and welded the gear so that I could continue to Toronto. Unbelievable luck. John was so pissed off that he commissioned his own replacement as a group buy.
The spring started out with a huge menu of modifications. 14″ Brakes, New Motor, Custom Gears, Limited Slip Differential, AEM CDI, New Suspension.
AEM CDI - I was experiencing a misfire all summer of 2009 in regards to boosting over 22 pounds. I was completely stumped, I played with Fuel, I played with Ignition, I wend bigger on the gap, I went smaller on the gap. I noticed that there was what looked like arcing inside the spark plug well. I looked closely at the wires and there was a minute hole in the wire jacket. Apparently, as the boost increases, there is more resistance in the spark plug. It is harder to make a spark, so path of least resistance turned out to be to let the voltage out to the head, rather than the spark plug. The solution was to replace the ignition system from the LS1 coil setup and run an AEM CDI. The unit is really simple to install. Power, Ground, 4 input, 4 output. I am running the system on multi strike which means that time permitting, there will be several sparks fired. for the duration of the 2010 season, it worked perfect.
14″ K-SPORT 8 PISTON BRAKES
When “Adding Fast” you need to add some “Slow” as well. The engineers at Mazda never planned this chassis to go the speeds or do the things I wanted to do with it. The stock brakes were inadequate and did not match with the ability of the other modifications. I started to research all options in regards to brakes. Simply changing the pads can greatly improve the braking power, but adding surface area has a much greater effect and usually results in brakes that can handle a constant pounding without being damaged. I decided on a set of 8 Piston 14″ Brakes. They are massive. They are so large that I only have 1mm of clearance between my rim and the caliper. Adding large brakes to the front will upset the balance between front and rear. It could severely upset how the car behaves so it is important to be able to return the car to a normal brake balance. I found out very quickly that I am terrible at bending brake lines. After several attempts, I decided to remove all of the stock lines and replace them with AN3 Teflon/Stainless Braided lines. I also installed a brake bias valve which would let me adjust the braking force between the front and rear brakes. I bought a set of Mazdaspeed 6 rear brakes from John which are a bolt on modification. They are much larger than the Protege rear brakes and more capable as well. I installed a Hydraulic Hand Brake which would let me lock the rear brakes with a light pull like a rally car. With the size and composition of the rear tires, it was impossible to lock the back brakes when the car was moving with the cable brake. With a front wheel drive car, it is possible to save a bad situation with a heap of “Le Drift”
The TEIN-SS suspension were getting old so I decided to change out the struts for a K-Sport dampener kit. I’m really impressed with them, they are much lighter than the TEIN and fully adjustable.
The American Domestic Market (ADM) model of this car has a much longer bumper than the SPORT-20, which is the JDM equivalent of the car. The bumper is 8″ shorter and much lighter because it is made differently. I never wanted a stupid body kit, however, when John said that he was importing a SPORT-20… I nabbed up the Front/Rear Bumpers and the tail lights. The First picture is how the car came imported from Japan. The bumper was in pretty bad shape… AAC Brackets (SAG FIX) are Required. Awesome Product, Awesome Quality.
This by far is my most favorite modification. The stock transmission is simply weak. The stock transmission normally fails quickly once pushed hard. With the power I run, it was a matter of time before I started to blow transmissions all over the road. I decided that it was the time to get serious. The solution is forged straight cut gears. A normal manual transmission has cross cut gears. The gears mesh on a 45 degree angle, because of this, they are quiet and reliable. The issue begins when you apply 4 times more torque to the transmission, because the gears are slanted, they literally push the layshaft through the transmission case, causing destruction. So the straight cut gears mesh at 90 degrees and result in a transmission that is able to transmit much more force to the wheels. There is a giant negative or all transmissions would have straight cut gears, they are very loud. There is a constant whine when the car is moving, the whine becomes louder and higher with increased speed. The whine sounds like taking a normal manual transmission in reverse and driving very quickly. Every forward gear in this car sounds like reverse. Rather than buy the straight cut gears at the stock ratio, I now had the chance to alter the ratios and fix an issue with the car. It is geared for a 100HP motor and geared really poorly. Simply driving down the highway at 100 Km/h results in a 3000 RPM engine speed. 130 Km/h is 4000, 160 Km/h is 5000… Basically anything close to 200 Km/h results in a blown motor. Not that it is really important to be able to go over the speed limit, but the stock ratios result in the car becoming less pleasant to drive on the highway. The gear ratio selection is critical. Poorly calculating the gears can totally ruin the driving experience. You need to select the gears so there is a good drop in revolutions at gear change, but it has to not put the car below the boost threshold. You need to choose such that the car is always able to build boost and power. You also need to balance the desire to go very tall with the gearing, but doing so will result in a slower acceleration, or not having enough torque to drive the ratio. I started to study many cars, their Horsepower and their gear ratios. I tried to study performance cars that I have test driven in the past. After one month of research, I triple checked the final numbers that I selected and placed an order with PAR in Australia, a company that machines nothing but ultra high performance parts for race teams. I knew it would take 6 months for them to be made and obviously this sort of service is very expensive.
Here are the updated ratios for Spring 2012 and their speed calculated on 215/35/18 Tires.
PAR Straight Cut Gears Set Specified Ratios
1st 2.500, 78 Km/h @ 7000
2nd 1.550, 126Km/h @ 7000
3rd 1.100, 178km/h @ 7000
4th 0.725, 265Km/h @ 7000
5th 0.625 325Km/h @ 7000
Final Drive 4.105
Because of cornering, a car needs a differential be be drivable. When a car turns, the inside tire has to travel less distance than the outside. If there was a solid shaft between the wheels, one tire would have to skid around the corner. The differential lets this happen without skidding. A normal “Open Diff” will not actively regulate traction, if you loose it because of road surface or driving hard… it’s gone. The Limited Slip Diff or LSD will keep the car under control during hard launches, hard acceleration in a corner or compression braking on wet or dirty roads. On a powerful front wheel drive car it is a critical part.
I bought these rims from a member of Toronto Protege. They are really desirable because they are very light weight. They are quite rare as well because they have a flat black finish from the factory which was a limited edition. When I changed the rims, I also changed the color of the tint, stripes and headlights to black. In general taking weight off of a car will make it Accelerate, Corner and Stop better. Taking weight off of the rims is even more effective. Think about two similar people on two bikes side by side. One Bike has spokes and the other has a 50 Lb Plate as a front wheel. Both set off, one can accelerate quickly and the other has to do more work to store energy in the front wheel. He has to overcome inertia to get to speed. Once they are both up to speed, the person with the heavy wheel will have no trouble maintaining a constant speed, whereas the spoke wheel person would have to try harder to maintain a constant speed (If that was important to him). Braking is the action of converting kinetic energy into heat to stop moving. It will take either more brake application or more distance for the heavy wheel bike to stop, the spoke bike will stop on a dime.
One of the rims had a slight warp from a pothole. I called up a WORK dealer in the US and he sent me to one of the executives in Japan. I was able to order a discontinued rim, in a discontinued color and have a 5th rim shipped to me. He said it would take 6 months to ship. I received it in the spring and bought a 5th tire for summer 2012. Now I have a full size spare for the car. It is impossible to put anything less than 18″ on the car making it difficult to find a spare.
John suggested I come to Montreal for Beach Party. Bimbos wearing nothing, Sand and Hot Cars… I had a great day and won best performance.
TEAM REFUGEE invited me to IMPORTFEST 2011 for the Weekend. The drive to Toronto was awesome, it was the first time I really got a chance to drive Highway 41 with the new gears. I left very early on Friday and there were hardly any cars on the road. Cool air, Dry Twisty Roads… A “Petro-Sexual’s Dream”. Spent the day setting up the venue and had a chance to see the cars as they arrived. Spent the day drinking Monster and talking to people about cars. I ended up winning 2nd best Protege to John who has a sick car. I have to laugh a bit, I have No Stereo, No Interior, No Suicide doors and still did very well… I guess that means that the stuff I do have is really good.
Once again had a fantastic time with the members of Toronto Protege. The weather was great and even Google Showed up!
I was approached by Eric who is an administrator on Toronto Protege and a professional photographer. He casually said, “We should shoot your car some day” I said, You give me Time and Place and I will be there. The pictures speak for themselves. Awesome.
I had originally bought silver rims, the car came with silver headlights, silver tint, so I did all the other accents in silver as well. When I bought the Black Rims I decided to go fully black on the accents. The Line, Tint, Headlights.
I entered and won with the support of the members of www.mazda247.com
The fall of 2011, I finally accepted what I knew for years, the GT28 was too small and I was not going to be able to reach my goals of 400 WHP Daily with it. Kyle and I studied the issue and we both came to the conclusion that the GT3071 .63 was the PERFECT turbo for the goal of +400WHP. It was the turbo that would compromise the least lag with the most capable volume delivery. I bought a T25 flanged GT3071 .63 and later found out that my manifold which had been the core of my turbo kit for ten years, was split. I decided to replace the manifold with a T3 flanged Steed Speed manifold, which meant I needed a new hot side.
MARCH 2012 – TEAR DOWN
I started work to get the engine and transmission out for the spring. As stupid as it sounds, I finally bought a hoist after 10 Years. Everything came out easy. At this time, I found out what I think I already knew, the awesome ten year old manifold had a significant crack in the weld. The crack was on the inside of the collector and the way that it was assembled meant that it would be impossible or at least not economical to repair it. At the same time, I knew that I was installing a new turbo so the downpipe would have to be remade. I decided to cut my losses and not focus on spending hundreds of dollars fixing and potentially days trying to make it work. It had the risk of failing again so I bought a Steed Speed T3 Manifold.
With the engine out, I decided to go a bit further and take everything out. I had damaged the pain in the bay over the years and it looked like hell. I ended up painting a sweet Carbon Fiber air dam white because that is what I do to Carbon Fiber. It is weightless but it does not need to be visible. I don’t think it’s good to showcase an engine bay with a ton of crap. You need to present the main point of the car.
The original tube manifold that was built has a T25 flange and was in horrible shape after ten years. It was not cost effective to cut the flange off and fix it to upgrade to the GT30 with a T3 Flange. The STEEDSPEED is machined in two halves and then welded together. It has the strength of a cast manifold, but is built like a tube manifold inside. It flows really well, is super strong and is ceramic coated both inside and out. It is a divided manifold with the proper mounting for a Tial MVR wastegate. The Steedpeed required longer ARP studs as the flange is very thick.
The interior received an updated set of Digital mounted parts
One problem was, there is no way that the GT30 Turbo would clear this. Something has to be made to fix this. Joe welded the shroud to the front. I undid the fan bolt and flipped them, then reversed the polarity on the motor. Works SOLID. The fans are controlled by the Haltech with a Solid State Relay. They don’t simply turn on and off, They are variable and come on soft based on a set target in the Haltech. You do not even know that they are running except for a 0.1 drop in voltage and a slight reduction in idle RPM.
Welding by Joe, He helped so much and is magical with a TIG. I had bought a thermal Cat Back, a Corksport DP Back and a DP From SPEED CIRCUIT. The DP was designed for a different turbo. The entire system had to be made even though it was supposed to be bolt on. Even my off the shelf parts are custom. The system is a 2.5″ Mandrell bend 304SS. Nice flowing bends, and nothing but pipe all the way out. There are three Wideband O2 Sensors (Two Close in the DP and one near the rear). Kyle (KY_Tuner) ponied up a DP Back that he had in his garage and without it I would have had to build something from scratch. What a time saver.
Super Lucky to get one of these. The 505 Intake is a independent runner velocity stack intake. It can accommodate an upgraded BBK Throttle Body from a V6 Mustang (Newer). WHAT A PAIN IN THE ASS to make this work. The Bolts do not line up with the OEM TB. New holes were drilled, a new seal was made. I put Hex head bolts through the holes and then with thread lock and lock washers, zipped it with a quick shot from an electric impact wrench, it caught and tightened without the need to hold the inside bolt head. The new Throttle needed a new TPS (Throttle Position Sensor). The TPS was bought from Ford Parts and totally fixed an issue that I had with the OEM Mazda sensor. When the sensor got warm, it must have expanded and the reading changed. If you set Zero Throttle parked cold in the morning, by the time you had driven 15 minutes, the sensor would be reading 1.5% when the throttle was totally closed. This meant that the Idle, decel cut and other functions that relied on knowing that the pedal was released, would not work. You would need to set the zero throttle warm, which made for complications with cold starting. The TB was $150.00 the TPS was $150 and you must have an aftermarket engine management. The 65mm Can Not be installed on a OEM ECU. Overall I am really happy with the modifications. I was worried that it would make the car difficult or even unpleasant to drive. I was worried that the throttle would basically turn on or off without modulation, but with the addition of the GT30, the car is responsive and easy to enjoy on the road. Decided to run ARP studs on the intake manifold.
NOTE: The 65mm TB does not Incorporated any form of auto idler. You must have an external bypass controller.
This year with the a larger more effective turbo, I decided to address the intercooler. The new intercooler is exactly the size of the lower opening in the car. The intake plumbing is DIRECT and it needed to be cut into the front radiator opening. Non structure metal.
Oil Temp Sensor
Speed Reference Sensor
PHOTO SHOOT – Ryan Winton 2013
Good Support from my friends and family.
A Win at Tuner Battleground Toronto!
I needed new shots for the Performance and Sound Magazine Piece that would be printed soon.
Ryan stepped up and became genuinely excited to shoot the car.
Here are some of the results of the shoot. There are more to follow.