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...actually some friends here have said (with non-coyote motors) that the footbox gets REALLY hot in summer...
also, what about the trans tunnel? will the basic panel insulation be good enough?
What I said before. With now 10 seasons, thousands of miles each season, I've never had a heat issue from the footboxes. That's with full insulation on the inside and carpet. I happen to mostly use Lizard Skin, but that's just one choice. There are many others. There's basically ambient air through the transmission tunnel, so not a huge concern there. I use heat and sound on the entire cockpit, plus typically the trunk. But the trunk is optional. Some don't bother. Gives max heat protection everywhere plus an overall solid feel and sound. Not sure what your friends are doing. But my experience (and many others...) speaks for itself. This is all pretty well established territory. Don't overthink it. Agree 100% with Jeff's comments. Hot days the sun is going to wear you out long before the car has a chance to.
 

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Well damn here we go again Jeff, in agreement. Spending hundreds of dollar on insulation is pointless, as you said the sun is cooking you. I used insulation in the foots boxes on this car, not overly expensive, but the end results, NO improvement over my old car. Don't mean to say don't insulate, just the inexpensive will give the same result as the $300-400 stuff.
When I'm out driving, my bladder has to be emptied WAY before the gas tank is empty, I don't think one is going to spend 3-4 hours non stop in these cars. After a couple hours, a stop and stretch is needed. I have never needed more than the 15 gal stock tank, and our club does a lot of long cruises.
 

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Just my opinion. But you asked for opinions. I have to agree with JKleiner and edwardb about a lot of what they say. I wrote the stuff below before I read their posts.

The whole premise of a Cobra, is "A massive engine in a tiny lightweight car" - Carroll Shelby. I copied that right off of the T-shirt I am wearing. You seem to be trying to create a very heavy car, which is not what Cobra is all about. Less is more in these cars. Pare your list down to the "gotta have it" items.

Here is what I think is not needed:
A/C to start with - But, If you are doing A/C, you are going to need the premium soft top to make it useful.
FFMetal Firewall Forward Kit - unless you need it for the A/C
Radiator Cowl Cover Kit
ROADSTER FIREWALL SUPPORT
ROADSTER RADIATOR ALUMINUM PANEL
WINDSHIELD TRIM PLATES
PowerBrakeKit Whitby Power Brake Kit, Complete for Wilwood - Just not needed with Wilwoods
Boyd Welding Factory Five MK4 Stealth 340 Tank - I would go for the drop trunk any day. You cannot even put a helmet in the standard trunk. You will need a break at the two hr mark anyway. This is the worst thing on your list IMO.
Breeze Engine Compartment Battery Mounting Kit. This puts the weight right where you don't want it. Keep it in the rear where the car needs it for grip. Guys like this for serviceability. I have had to access my battery precisely zero times in five years / 24,000 miles.
Breeze Koolmat Insulation Kit for Mk4 Roadster Rear Cockpit Wall - No heat sources back there.
Dash steering hole trim ring - Do you really want to make a feature out of this hole? I am not a fan of emphasizing this or the shoulder belt holes with shiny trim plates.
CONSOLE Whitby Motorcars Center Console - Consoles look good, But they don't look right in a Cobra.
I also don't see any need for wheel well liners on these cars.

I am on board with good old hydraulic power steering. Especially if you want to autocross or track. Electric isn't there yet in my book.
A heater and heated seats are a great thing. I live in Florida and mine gets used a lot. Especially when heading to events early in he morning.
I didn't notice wipers on the list. You WILL get caught in the rain if you do more than polish and shows.
 

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Hi, Toadster. For sound deadening, I used Noico (Amazon) sound deadener throughout the entire cockpit and trunk. For heat insulation, I used Reflectix (Folsom Home Depot) on top of the Noico in the foot boxes (top, bottom, sides).
357003
357004
 

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Curious George
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Discussion Starter #25
When I'm out driving, my bladder has to be emptied WAY before the gas tank is empty, I don't think one is going to spend 3-4 hours non stop in these cars. After a couple hours, a stop and stretch is needed. I have never needed more than the 15 gal stock tank, and our club does a lot of long cruises.
LOL, that's a whole different level of tank fullness to deal with!
My thought is that for $300 over the cost of the 15-gallon tank, I'll get 50-60% more gas storage, albeit less trunk storage... my wife and I have done weekend trips in her Miata's so we're familiar with small storage spaces, getting my wife to pack less 'stuff' LOL

Here is what I think is not needed:
A/C to start with - But, If you are doing A/C, you are going to need the premium soft top to make it useful.
FFMetal Firewall Forward Kit - unless you need it for the A/C
Radiator Cowl Cover Kit
ROADSTER RADIATOR ALUMINUM PANEL
Breeze Engine Compartment Battery Mounting Kit. This puts the weight right where you don't want it. Keep it in the rear where the car needs it for grip. Guys like this for serviceability. I have had to access my battery precisely zero times in five years / 24,000 miles.
CONSOLE Whitby Motorcars Center Console - Consoles look good, But they don't look right in a Cobra.
I didn't notice wipers on the list. You WILL get caught in the rain if you do more than polish and shows.
  • A/C is definitely a 'nice to have' - otherwise, the cobra will be driven before 9am on weekends, and after the sun goes down... it's amazing what just a cool breeze can offer when it's blazing outside, other components will be dependent on A/C installed or not...
  • IMHO the radiator cowl cover kit and aluminum panel are more than cosmetic, it helps to channel the air across the radiator rather than scoot around it, again when it's 110F outside, getting as much cool air THROUGH the radiator is very important...
  • the center console - some have done a great job implementing them, others not so much, does it brace the bottom of the dash better than nothing?
  • I have wipers on my order sheet already, so it's not on my extra list :)
Reflectix
I should come check out your car! I forgot you're just an exit away :) I've used Noico and Reflectix before, easy enough!
 

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Curious George
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Discussion Starter #26
another item... footbox air vents


yay? nay?
 

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Living in sunny South Australia, I find anything around 90 degrees is extremely unpleasant in the full sun. Every surface of the car reflects the sun back onto you. My car is a grainy silver metallic. If the sun is high in the sky there is so much reflection off the dash cowl onto the windshield that it becomes very difficult to safely see where I am driving. (Akin to a fogged windshield)
Baseball cap still gets you thoroughly burnt. A full size hat just gets run over by the car behind you, don't ask. The only part of my body that doesn't get hot is my legs and feet as they are shaded by the dash. My Coyote runs very cool and I have fire wall insulation externally fitted.

Even on perfect days out, early mornings and evenings can be pretty nippy. I do have the FFR cabin heater fitted. It blows air into the foot boxes and does a great job of keeping everything warm up to lower chest level. I have high back seats with headrests and I'm fairly confident that these help with winter driving as well.
I have often wondered if an air conditioner would be able to do a similar job. I suspect it would be able to cool you from the heat generated in the car, but not from the radiant heat from the sun.

I have found the best compromise in hot sunny weather is to take the car out early in the morning and in the evening after dinner. No problem when the sun is lower in the sky and the warm air is just beautiful. Perfect!

Best of luck with your build 🙂

Regards Nigel in South Oz
 

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I only saw your first list, haven't read all the comments. I think you noticed the Breeze hood hinges when you stopped by. They are very nice!
 

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Another one to consider is upgrading the headlights. I drove for a few months and the standard kit lights fall under the category of “fine”. If you’re planning on driving much at night then you may want to upgrade, some guys go to better bulbs, some upgrade to LED. I just installed this week the LED kit from Breeze, as usual with breeze stuff, easy to install and looks like they’re going to make a big difference. See the photo attached, passenger side is LED, driver is stock FFR.

You also don’t have to kill yourself with all these options from the start, this is an example of an easy one to do later on a completed car if the billion dollar price tag of all the options above is too much at one time...

 

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Curious George
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Discussion Starter #31
Another one to consider is upgrading the headlights. I drove for a few months and the standard kit lights fall under the category of “fine”. If you’re planning on driving much at night then you may want to upgrade, some guys go to better bulbs, some upgrade to LED. I just installed this week the LED kit from Breeze, as usual with breeze stuff, easy to install and looks like they’re going to make a big difference. See the photo attached, passenger side is LED, driver is stock FFR.

You also don’t have to kill yourself with all these options from the start, this is an example of an easy one to do later on a completed car if the billion dollar price tag of all the options above is too much at one time...
are the LED headlights special? or just an LED with ballast, etc? I don't think I'd need new lenses or are they different from the ones that FFR sells with the kit? I do love light upgrades, pretty much every vehicle I have gets a lighting upgrade (y)

Yes, I'm trying to space out purchases that make sense for the build at this time - love everyone's feedback! I know there are tons of 'noob' questions in these forums, but hard to find details in all the content that is relative to modern builds...
 

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are the LED headlights special? or just an LED with ballast, etc? I don't think I'd need new lenses or are they different from the ones that FFR sells with the kit? I do love light upgrades, pretty much every vehicle I have gets a lighting upgrade (y)
The LED kit comes with new lenses as well as the LED lights and transformer. It’s plug and play directly into the RF harness and the ffr light buckets and adjusting rings. Really easy.


 

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Curious George
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Discussion Starter #33

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are the LED headlights special? or just an LED with ballast, etc? I don't think I'd need new lenses or are they different from the ones that FFR sells with the kit? I do love light upgrades, pretty much every vehicle I have gets a lighting upgrade (y)
The kit comes with sealed beam halogen headlights. So there's no chance to use the existing glass. The Breeze upgrade (from Watson's Streetworks BTW) comes with new glass and the LED bulb with power supply. They fit the kit provided buckets and rings and plug into the existing wiring with no modifications required. An excellent upgrade I highly recommend. I've had LED headlights on two builds. One these exact ones. Also an upgrade that's easy to add later.

are the new lenses better than the ones provided in the FFR kit? I can get LED headlight bulbs and transformer for way cheaper!
Agreed, you can buy LED bulbs for less. There are a huge number available. Just be careful. In my experience, you get what you pay for. There are a number of on-line reviews. Do your homework. I tried some cheaper ones in my Coupe, and quickly returned them. Really bad lighting pattern.
 

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IMHO the radiator cowl cover kit and aluminum panel are more than cosmetic, it helps to channel the air across the radiator rather than scoot around it, again when it's 110F outside, getting as much cool air THROUGH the radiator is very important...
I live in Florida, have a pretty aggressive 500hp 347, street drive, including fairly long trips, autocross and track all in the heat of summer. My car never runs hot, even in stop and go traffic. Shroud - yes, absolutely needed. Top panel, just not needed unless you have a specific cooling issue. The only time you need air forced through the radiator is when you are sitting still. The fan and shroud take care of that.


the center console - some have done a great job implementing them, others not so much, does it brace the bottom of the dash better than nothing?
You said that you are doing an under dash panel. Great place to put lots of switches, USB ports (you did remember USB ports?), etc. The under dash panel is a complete side to side support. You now don't need a separate dash support and/ or a console for support.

And YES on the footbox vents. I had the plastic blast gates that are common to use. I never liked them, and then they started binding. I then used exhaust cutouts that I modified for manual operation. I love them. They are nice ad smooth to operate. Honestly, I have never cared for the fans. They are noisy. But, I have never found a good alternative.
 

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How are you planning on installing AC and still having a glove box? On my MKII, the heat exchanger takes up all of the space where the glove box would go. I drive my Cobra year round in all kinds of dry weather. Without the top on, the AC does not do much. Even when it is 100+, I leave it off when driving. I can say that when we drive to Paso Robles in June, we leave early in the morning. Not only does this avoid the heat, it is a better drive.

I was going to install USB ports, but went with the old 12v cig lighter plug. Since we are moving to USB-C and I have not found good USB-C only ports for cars or boats, I just use an adapter. Bonus is that we can charge the laptops also.

I also really like sound deadening in the car. You do not need to spend big money on it. If you have the time, just get a roll and cut and install it yourself.

I also have the Watson Street Works head lights. They are expensive at $300 something, but really they are just $45 7" Hella lens and $40 LED bulbs. I would not buy them again, not only to save some money, but they do not focus well with the LED.
 

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Curious George
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Discussion Starter #37
You said that you are doing an under dash panel. Great place to put lots of switches, USB ports (you did remember USB ports?), etc. The under dash panel is a complete side to side support. You now don't need a separate dash support and/ or a console for support.

And YES on the footbox vents. I had the plastic blast gates that are common to use. I never liked them, and then they started binding. I then used exhaust cutouts that I modified for manual operation. I love them. They are nice ad smooth to operate. Honestly, I have never cared for the fans. They are noisy. But, I have never found a good alternative.
I'll have to see how the 25th Anniv. Dash looks, it's a bit different than the regular FFR dash as it has a drop section in the center so the standard options may not work...


I'll also look at the footbox vents, seems like a no-brainer - a little more cost, but WAY harder to implement after it's put together!

How are you planning on installing AC and still having a glove box? On my MKII, the heat exchanger takes up all of the space where the glove box would go. I drive my Cobra year round in all kinds of dry weather. Without the top on, the AC does not do much. Even when it is 100+, I leave it off when driving. I can say that when we drive to Paso Robles in June, we leave early in the morning. Not only does this avoid the heat, it is a better drive.

I was going to install USB ports, but went with the old 12v cig lighter plug. Since we are moving to USB-C and I have not found good USB-C only ports for cars or boats, I just use an adapter. Bonus is that we can charge the laptops also.

I also really like sound deadening in the car. You do not need to spend big money on it. If you have the time, just get a roll and cut and install it yourself.

I also have the Watson Street Works head lights. They are expensive at $300 something, but really they are just $45 7" Hella lens and $40 LED bulbs. I would not buy them again, not only to save some money, but they do not focus well with the LED.
great input!
  • I plan on the FFMetal Firewall Forward kit to add an extra bit of space - it all depends on the Whitby setup, which I believe extends a bit into the engine bay, so it may not be an issue.
  • USB-C is something to consider, and with a regular 12V plug it can change over time
  • I've done sound deadening quite a bit, so yes, maybe save a few $$ by cutting it myself - it's not hard at all
  • good detail on the LED setup, I figured as much - I can save a bunch just by getting an LED kit
 

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You mention installing AC and footbox vents. If you do AC, mount some vents to blow in the footboxes, no need for outside vents. Mine stay cool even in the Texas summer. When the road you're driving on is 140+ degree surface temp I don't see vents doing much cooling. Also the AC helps a lot blowing on you while sitting still. Not so much when moving. I'd do AC again if I built another roadster.
 

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Now that I think of it. I have not serviced my AC in a long long time. I better go check my refrigerant levels. It has been in the 30s and 40s around here for the past couple of weeks so I will not be able to test the AC till it gets warmer.
 
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