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MazdaMatt 06-27-2008 08:57 AM

Ontario newb
Hey all,

I've been lurking on the forums for a while and generating some plans for my DD and working on my technique. So far i've not been tracking my mileage, just driving closer to ideal than before (jackrabbit starts, downshift passes, 140km/h on the highway).

I own a 2k2 Mazda Protege5 and I'd really like to talk to people that have done CHEAP aero mods. I plan on blocking up the front, adding a small lip and then thinking about undertray and skirts. I can't think of any way to reduce my wake in this car, though. I refuse to make it hideous, so wonderful creations like aerocivic just aren't inspiration for this work.

Also I own a 94 F350 cube van with a HUGE 20ft box and a 7.3L non-turbo deisel with a horrible 3-speed shift-by-rpm automatic transmission. This thing is HORRIBLE on gas. Primarily it is an aero-nightmare. It has a "bubble" on the front, but creates so much drag that it can slow in neutral faster than my protege can slow in gear off throttle.

Also, i drive a 93 Del Sol Si pure track car (which I haul to the track in the cube van). This is definately not where I"ll be saving gas, but i'll be using the aero techniques learned here to increase my top speed on the race track because my engine has poor power.


MetroMPG 06-27-2008 09:23 AM

Hi Matt - welcome to the forum.

MOST of the aero mods you see on this site are cheap. :) So I don't think you're going to have any trouble finding examples of those.

The cube van would benefit from wake reduction via simple panels like this:


Aerodynamic drag can be significantly reduced with trailer add-ons that reduce the wake and increase the base pressure. - Source: SAE 2000-01-2209

MazdaMatt 06-27-2008 09:26 AM

Thanks metro! That's fricken incredible! The best part is, because my cube is modified as a car-hauler, the door is a fold-down door. So i could add those mods onto the door and they would be absolutely no hinderance. The door already has a leg at the top, so i could affix a flap to that leg and match it on the other 3 edges... brilliant. You could have just saved me a lot of money.

Could you venture a guess at ideal angles to direct those flaps in from the sides?

MetroMPG 06-27-2008 09:29 AM

No greater than 10 degrees is the rule of thumb.

Blue07CivicEX 06-27-2008 09:31 AM

That's what we do here :-D, for your car, I have the same issue, no MAJOR modifications that will make it look terrible, what color is your car? Coroplast works well on the front end and you can paint it to match, my car is dark blue so I went with black on blue and it looks pretty good. If you want good looking wheel skirts you might want to use fiberglass, I have no experience with fiberglass but I'm going to give it a shot maybe this weekend.

PS. welcome to the forum!

MazdaMatt 06-27-2008 09:35 AM

Thanks for the greets :) Its a Midnight Blue 2k2 Protege5. It has black grills, so I'm going to get some black coroplast or black paint for my blockage on the front. I was looking at the "DIY Home Depot Lip" found on many modding forums for the front end. I won't do any extreme low-hanging facia.

SVOboy 06-27-2008 01:05 PM

Welcome to ecomodder!

Good thing the del sol isn't your FE-base car, horrible aero, :)

MazdaMatt 06-27-2008 01:10 PM

The del sol is a light-weight project. The motor is stock and I've tried to pull out all the weight that I can. This has really hurt the aero of an already poor aero car (removed side and rear windows). I plan on using some of the tech learned on this side to make up for that. ie, using lexan to make it into a fast-back and boat-tail it with coroplast or sheet alum. It already has a one-piece fiber front end (great for aero!) and it is LOW. I need to skirt it and add a diffuser and wheel spoilers and such. That car will benefit greatly from this site.

undertray is my first goal for that car.

SVOboy 06-27-2008 01:13 PM

It shouldn't be too hard to improve, luckily it's got a small frontal A. Since it's a track car you can go nuts on the aero, and I'd be really interested to see that, :)

MazdaMatt 07-04-2008 01:20 PM

First trip log is in the garage. 33mpg on a camping trip to Mosport Internation Raceway. Horrible friday night Toronto stop and go traffic so it took >6 hours to get there (only 4 hours to get home), plus I had to do a lot of first and second-gear uphill and downhill (no coasting) putting around the campground. PLUS my car was loaded top to bottom with camping gear.

No mods to the car. I have wider-than-stock tires with smaller diameter, a race-type alignment (caster and camber), a cracked front bumper with a chunk hanging down, and half of my front undertray was ripped off from running over a pylon in an autocross.

I don't EOC, i just tried to stay in first gear coasting through stop and go traffic (accordian), i tried my best to neutral coast, but i'm not that patient, so it usually ended up being engine-brakeing.

With my planned mods and a little more patience I could see getting 40mpg. Planned mods are, fix the bumper, block it up, full undertral and front lip.


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