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On the road again - Robb's Aston Martin Adventures

Discussion in 'British' started by Robb, Apr 28, 2018.

  1. JohnnyRay

    JohnnyRay Formula 3
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    Aston Martin Heritage Trust...
     
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  2. sandersja

    sandersja Formula Junior

    Jan 16, 2003
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    Hi Robb. Thanks for sharing your experiences and all the great pics. I am sympathetic since I have owned a 2006 V8V since new - also in Meteorite but with mixed Bison brown and black interior. It is an amazing machine and distinctly a different experience than a Ferrari. It continues to be a great car for me.
     
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  3. JohnsonsMedia

    JohnsonsMedia Karting

    Sep 14, 2009
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    great thread! The wife has agreed that the next car we add will be an Aston. My buddy has an 06 and every time I see it I want one even more (yes I love my F355)
     
  4. Robb

    Robb F1 World Champ
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    Vantage and F355 are a very compatible combo. Similar in size, different in experience. Both beautiful, exciting, and timeless.

    Robb
     
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  5. Robb

    Robb F1 World Champ
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    Today was a great time in the new garage. After a long time - crazy with work on the road this summer - I got to cross off one of the last boxes on the Aston.

    Installing the High flow 200 cell sport cats and free-flowing X-Pipe from Fabspeed.

    Robb

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  6. Robb

    Robb F1 World Champ
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    It was time to get started and get the car on the lift for the first time. The Challenger lift was great and performed flawlessly. Because of the lowered suspension on the Aston, we needed to use the rubber ramps to get us a little room to position and raise the car for the arms.

    Robb

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  7. Robb

    Robb F1 World Champ
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    The rubber ramps I had picked up (from the lift installer) were a little steep on the bump-up and I wished I had gotten them with a longer runup. So I may still look for a better pair.

    But lesson learned... on with the install.

    Robb

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  8. Robb

    Robb F1 World Champ
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    Started removing the factory cats and center pipes. The setup definitely felt like it was made to a budget target a bit on the lower side and the assembly on the line didn't leave a lot of room in there for work on removal or upgrades done later in the ownership. My car is very low mileage from the PA area but the bolt/nut hardware on the exhaust hangers and connectors already showed signs of rust and corrosion. I guess that area of the country does no favors even for lightly driven cream puffs... Was not a big problem though for this work.

    Robb

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  9. Robb

    Robb F1 World Champ
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    Did not need much PB Blaster to get all the nuts moving. I would not want to do this on original hardware at 40k miles...

    Ran into a few difficult ones connecting the cats to the headers and had to cut a few of the old bolts to attach new hardware and remove the old system.

    Robb

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  10. Robb

    Robb F1 World Champ
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    75 degrees and the garage doors open for a good breeze.

    Because my workshop side of the garage (vs the showroom side) also acts as the spots for our daily drive truck and e-class, I have the lift positioned to line up with my truck parking and stay out of the way of my wife's parking spot each day. So it is a little closer to the right wall and rear cabinets (which were added to the plan after we started going vertical.) But it just takes a little planning to know which end of the car needs to have more room and then you are good to go. If I used the lift on major projects all the time, I. might have dedicated a much larger space for it, but because I plan on using it only a few days / weeks a year, it had to work with the rest of daily life. Otherwise the project would have grown... and grown... you know the drill. :)

    I love the new garage and it's flexibility for lots of cars and keeping the workshop side a bit separate, understated, and stackable.

    Pardon my temporary mess on the rear countertop as I am shipping many things out this week...

    Robb

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  11. Robb

    Robb F1 World Champ
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    So back to the install...

    The existing cats were still a bit hot after starting the car and positioning it on the lift over 3 or 4 minutes so we put a fan underneath to speed up the cooling down period. Once they were a little cooler, we proceeded. The setup came out fairly easily. The heat shielding on the rear pipes was not part of the new fabspeed install. Fabspeed also in their design eliminated the middle hanger which is where their "X" pipe connection is located. That raised my eyebrow a little having not seen too many front engine setups without central exhaust hangers but on with the show.

    The angled adjustment pipe behind the passenger side cat was retained to allow fine-tuning and good seals of the new cats and the new x-pipe. So fabspeed did not include a nice shiny new pipe segment there... I had to use the old short segment.

    Robb

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  12. Robb

    Robb F1 World Champ
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  13. Robb

    Robb F1 World Champ
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  14. Robb

    Robb F1 World Champ
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    So for some reason, the central X pipe connector "ends" on the fabspeed design are a smaller diameter than the central factory pipes... Not sure if they did this to make install less of a ***** with how tolerances go... But it provided a less than ideal seal at the rear.

    Here is the factory pipe:

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    Here is the fabspeed ends:

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    I can't claim to be an engineer. But this caused a loose fit, and without a central hanger, I was worried about movement and slippage. The factory connectors did not allow this to tighten the fit.

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    So we went with option B... :)

    Robb
     
  15. Robb

    Robb F1 World Champ
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  16. Robb

    Robb F1 World Champ
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    #266 Robb, Nov 4, 2018
    Last edited: Nov 4, 2018
  17. Robb

    Robb F1 World Champ
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  18. Robb

    Robb F1 World Champ
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    Here is the old central hanger...

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    The new system was quite a bit lighter. I would have felt better with some way to keep the central hanger... but then again, I'm not an engineer. Everything was very tight up against the floor of the heat shielding on the underside. I can only hope it stays that way. I will be checking it from tine to time.

    Robb
     
  19. Robb

    Robb F1 World Champ
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  20. Robb

    Robb F1 World Champ
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  21. Robb

    Robb F1 World Champ
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    So we also took the old Aston Martin branded battery tender (which had failed to work properly after getting the car)...

    and harvested the connection end to use on a new Ctek charger. Now this adapter can work on any of my ctek chargers on all our cars to keep the Aston battery online and fresh all the time...

    Life was good...

    Robb

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  22. Robb

    Robb F1 World Champ
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    Now I just need to get those headlights aligned properly... and maybe add those glass switches that are so nice.

    Robb
     
  23. Robb

    Robb F1 World Champ
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    Ran the car up on a great drive after the cat and x-pipe install. I liked the exhaust with the fuse pulled just fine. But I liked the idea of a bit of added hp and tq. I also liked the idea of it being a bit louder but not obscene like a top fuel dragster... Some exhaust improvements get a little out of hand. I was not disappointed. The dyno at fabspeed says it adds 40 hp. But even if its only 20hp, I definitely feel it. Will have to dyno my car at some point.

    It was a bit louder and had more growl. Seems like the throttle response is better as well. The gear drops on the paddles were even more fun. The car really upped the good noise to 12 without any bad side effects.

    I also really noticed a bump in push and grunt. The tires def can break loose even easier now.

    So, we hit a tunnel or two during the drive. I will try to upload to youtube and post here. But the car is even better - and I loved it before this work. I really don't want to overdo the noise any further with a louder muffler. Lighter maybe, but the car is in that sweet spot. It is comfortable when you want it and can have a normal conversation cruising in 6th... but it is also an animal any time you need it. A true exotic muscle car in a three piece suit.

    Robb
     
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  24. JohnsonsMedia

    JohnsonsMedia Karting

    Sep 14, 2009
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    just amazing! and your garage is very nice. If you could, can you take a video. When I get mine Im taking note of yours.

    Whats are the glass switches?
     
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  25. pearsonhaus

    pearsonhaus Formula 3

    Jul 2, 2008
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    Really nice post Robb! You have nice setup! Love the lift.

    Hmmm..... what are the glass switches you mentioned?
     
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