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Old 26 Dec 2009, 01:16 am
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Posts: 18
Default Car Experts: Would a staged clutch and lighter flywheel greatly enhance performance in

a car with 170 HP? I have a 99 integra GSR (Dohc VTEC motor) that redlines at 8000 rpm. I read in car listings on craigslist people say that the cars they are selling have a stage 2 or stage 3 clutch with "insert number" lb flywheel. What exactely does a staged clutch do that a regular clutch doesnt that enhances performance? And what does a lighter flywheel do for acceleration too? I really dont know what a flywheel is to be honost.

Also, what is a good test to determine if a clutch is going bad? I dont think mine is as i dont feel slipping or anything but it does have 80,000 miles on it so im not sure how much longer of a life it has (this car is going to be with me for years).

3rd question: How do i take off fast from a stop with this car (5-speed manual). It seems that automatics are beating me off the line, but once i get into about 2nd-3rd gear I can pull ahead of them. Is taking off slow just one of the cons of driving a manual? Is burning the tires from a stop a good alternative? I never do that though just becuase im paranoid that ill damage my tranny (although i dont know if doing that does).

Serious advice please!
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Old 26 Dec 2009, 01:31 am
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Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 143

Changing the clutch might get you a better launch and/or faster shifts, but it won't make a huge difference.

The lighter flywheel won't improve acceleration, but it can have a big effect on throttle response because there is less rotating mass. If you were sitting in neutral and blipped the throttle, the rev's will change up/down more rapidly (think motorcycle).

If your clutch isn't slipping, it's fine. You'll know when it's going, you'll either notice slipping and/or smell it. 80K miles isn't a huge number on the original clutch, it depends on the type of miles it has. 80K miles would be a lot if the car was driven in town a lot, but on the highway it wouldn't wear at all.

As for the launch thing, a well driven manual should beat a comparably powered automatic off the line, no problem, but you do have to rev it up some and dump the clutch to do so. Doing so is tougher on both the clutch and the transmission, so I would avoid it generally.
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Old 26 Dec 2009, 02:01 am
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 99

A stage clutch determines grip. Stage clutches also can handle more power to the wheels. A lighter flywheel allows the car to rev up faster shaving time off of your 1/4 mile(not much). A good way to take off in a manual is to rev up to about 3000 and then take off. To do this push the clutch normally and push the brake with the heel of the other foot and push the gas with your toes. Its weird but it allows you to take of perfectly. When you are racing you do not want to burn your tires. When racing you want as much traction as you can get.
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