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Newbie here looking for some help

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  • Newbie here looking for some help

    Whats up everyone Festy newbie here -
    i have a 93 1.3 , stick - it’s a strip-o not very many options. I bought it from a neighbor of mine with intentions of building a circle track car out of it - I’m looking to completely gut the dash out of the car and was wondering for those of you that have built autocross or drag cars out of these how much of the wiring can a get rid of? What do I have to keep and does anyone Performance flash ecms for these - thank you in advance for your help, I’ve always wanted to build one of these things because of the people that laugh at them - love to park this thing in victory lane laughing at everyone else

  • #2
    You can cut out all the wiring that does not have to do with the engine computer/ECM. However you need to keep brake lights, etc.

    I have done it and it isn't worth the weight savings to do - maybe you save 10-lbs. Getting rid of the headlights and their buckets, the turn lights, and reducing the rear brake lights to a single light will save a lot more weight than the 10-lbs, plus you keep all the functioning wiring.

    Getting rid of the dash, heater, instrument pod, radio and all the metal tube dash bracing will get rid of a LOT of weight - something like +50-lbs if I remember right.

    Getting rid of the side impact bar in each door gets rid of a total of 40-lbs.

    Getting rid of the rear seat and passenger seat is a big savings - and replacing the drivers seat with a lightweight racing seat helps too.

    It goes on and on what you can get rid of - but there is a point where is it really worth while.

    Think before you cut!!! Is it really worth while.

    If you can get to New Bern, NC, you can take a look at mine and see what all I took out. Easier to just talk in person while seeing what was done - makes more sense,


    • #3
      Like Doug said, it isn't really worth the effort to pick through the wiring to try and save weight. As far as performance stuff for the 1.3L there isn't much that you can get aftermarket. There are a set of Headers on but that is about it. You can have the cam reground to a more aggressive profile and you can do your own head work but that is about all that most people do.
      "The White Turd" 1993 Festiva 144k miles. (Winner of FOTM November 2016)
      "The Rusty Banana" 1990 Yellow 5 Speed Mud Festiva (Lifted with 27" BKT Tractor Tires)(Winner of "Best Beater Award" - Madness 12 - 201

      "Papa Smurf" 1992 Blue 5 Speed Shell
      "Cracker?" (name pending) 1992 White Auto Shell (Future BP Swap)
      "Green Car..." Scrap Car that Runs?!?
      "Red Car..." Complete Scrap Car

      "El Flama Blanca" 1993 Festiva 104k miles. (Lil Brothers Car)


      • #4
        Thank you guys - I guess I should’ve explained a little better. I’m planning on pulling the dash and I’m just wondering what kind of spaghetti mess I’m gonna ha e . Never pulled one of these cars apart before. Also if I run gauges is there spots on the engine to tap in (oil pressure/ water temp) -


        • #5
          I Used to run a festiva on the dirt track. It was my 3rd dirt track car and I always tried cutting as much weight as possible. But with the festiva I didn't even skin the doors . I did however remove the rear hatch. Car was very competitive first night out a guy put a clame on me and I had to scale my car to prove I was over the minimum. So if you have a weight minimum keep that in mind. With a good set of tires that car will be competitive . The dash only weights around 30 lbs. So you won't lose much. Good luck on your build I'd love to see you start a build thread.


          • #6
            If anyone could help me out with this also......
            I plan on running a fuel cell. I’m looking for an aftermarket fuel pump that would be comparable to the stock pump. I’ve looked up the stock gph fuel pump but it looks like there many options. Can anyone shed some light on this ? I’m starting off with running the b3 but have future plans of a engine swap in the future.


            • #7
              Welcome to the forum.
              Don't know how in depth you plan to go. The body is the frame and thus the strength. I would not cut it out for now. Just take the plastic
              dash cover off.
              There are a lot of posts for you to read. Start searching and you shall find a wealth of information.
              I hate being Bi-Polar, it's awesome.


              • #8
                You will save the most weight in the dash by removing all the ventilation system, fan, heater core, heater controls.

                I stripped out a lot of wiring from the whole car, for not much gain. It was tons of work to trace all the wires and read all the wiring diagrams I could get my hands on.
                It was only a few pounds of saving. The biggest advantage was having less wire in the car, and fewer dangling connectors in the engine bay.

                Another easy gain is the window winding mechanisms, they are surprisingly heavy. The windows save weight, of course.
                Removing the rear window, and replacing it with plexiglass or with nothing, is a big saving too.

                You can remove one of the temp sensors from the thermostat housing that the rad hose connects to.
                One goes to the gauge in the car, the other is used to trigger the electric fan. It is easier to replace the one for the fan, because it is bigger and you can put in an adapter to then fit an aftermarket sensor. But then yuo have to sort out if you want to set the fan to just run all the time, or on a switch you control.

                For oil pressure there is a stock electric send in the block, just above to the left of the oil filter. You need a BSPT to 1/8 NPT autometer adapter, and then put in your after market sensor.

                Most questions you have asked are answered in many posts here. Go to the build thread category, and start reading.
                Thricetiva replaced Icetiva as the new ride


                • #9
                  The first thing you need to do is get a copy of the rules for the track/s you intend to run on. I hate to burst your bubble, but unless you are running on tracks with a bunch of really poor drivers and junk cars, you won't see the winners circle. We raced a Festiva from 2003 to 2010 and pushed the limits of the rules. As an example, if the rules stated "any stock 4 cylinder front wheel drive car" we would stuff the biggest stock 4 cylinder motor in that would bolt up to the Festiva transmission. If the rules stated the car must be make, year and model stock, then you were screwed. That was one of the main reasons we got out of racing when they changed the rules. The new rules meant that a stock Cavalier pumping out 140 horses was "stock" and your puny make, year, and model stock Festiva wasn't even putting out half of that much. Granted the Cavalier is heavier, but not enough to make a big difference. We ran an engine that was putting out about 100 hp and could stay with a 140 hp Cavalier through the corners, but once the Cavalier hit the straight stretch, he was gone. We could pretty much catch him through the next corner, but with each straight stretch, he would get farther ahead. Here's a link to our racing web site:
                  Last edited by Festy46; 02-11-2020, 04:16 PM.
                  You gonna race that thing?


                  • #10
                    If you don’t mind me asking what engine did you run?
                    We are allowed swaps as long as they are from the same make - ford/ford - My plan is to BP swap it at some point


                    • #11
                      We ran the SOHC 1.8 L out of a Mazda Protege from the early 90's. With the SOHC engine, it doesn't look much larger than a 1.3 L. As a matter of fact, we once had a tech guy comment on how "small" our engine was. I guess he was used to looking at DOHC engines and the SOHC does look small compared to how wide the DOHC's are. You have to do some cutting to the back of the 1.8 oil pan for clearance, but the 1.8L bolts right up to the Festiva transmission. You also have to re-drill a hole for the bolt for the right side motor mount. All of this information should be found in older engine swap posts on this site. We have also run the 1.6 L 8 valve engine and the 1.6 L 16 valve engine from a Mazda MX-3. Here's a video of the first time we ever ran the 1.8 L in a heat race.
             a feature win:

                      There's also another side to the "fun". My son is the driver in these videos. We had a NASCAR Busch Series driver that used to live close to us. When my son told him he wanted to be a race car driver, he turned to me and said "take a pipe and beat the crap out of him because that's what it feels like to be a race car driver". Little did my son know how true that statement would be as can be seen in this video.
                      And a picture of the car after the wreck:

                      If you do nothing else, build a strong roll cage. In the picture the car is crushed around him, but the driver's area is protected.
                      You gonna race that thing?