2004 to 2020 Mazda 3 Forum and Mazdaspeed 3 Forums banner

21 - 24 of 24 Posts

·
Rubber side down
Joined
·
263 Posts
Thanks for sharing, that looks pretty awesome! Is that cylinder on your Miata or 3? Taking out the clutch pedal assembly might be going too far for me (time-wise), but I'd be willing to try a different compatible master/slave cylinder if it increases pedal feel. The 3's clutch is just too light for me, and I'm driving in city traffic all day. I did this on my previous car, using a different model car's cylinder (same manufacturer) to increase pedal effort & feel. If I can't get the shorter throw, at least I'll have a better feeling clutch pedal.

What was the cost for you to do all of that if I may ask (and if you're allowed to post it)?
That is mounted in my 2016 Mazda 3 sGT. I do not remember total cost, but it probably is not worth it to most Mazda 3 owners. Most of the cost is in my own labor: measuring, re-measuring, CAD design, hand cutting (caliper, center punch, drill, hack saw, and filing) the adapter plates for the Wilwood cylinder.

If you really want to feel more direct pressure from the pressure plate AND reduce pedal travel, this is the only proper way to do it. Using "spacers" to artificially change the resting height of the pedal, as has been warned in this thread, can cause issues. By changing the mechanical leverage between master and slave, you are still moving the clutch the same as oem components, just changing the "fulcrum" between the two.

The reason I used an old generation Miata slave cylinder is two-fold:

1. I do not like the idea of plastic components being used in hot, pressurized hydraulic systems like the clutch. The OEM Mazda 3 Slave and Master are both plastic parts. That bothers me. Yes, it works just fine, but it is more of a piece of mind issue to me. If I am pushing the car to its limits on a track day, I want a better margin of safety.

2. The OEM parts require specialized "quick" connectors on both the Master and the Slave hydraulic hard lines which is not something you can buy off-the-shelf or make custom. With the Wilwood master and older Miata slave, I am able to order a stainless braided, flexible clutch line with standard fittings on both ends (flared type), which can be made-to-order by any good race shop or custom brake line manufacturer for a reasonable price. You just need the required length, proper thread size and flare type. I doubt I will ever have to replace this part (PTFE liner, stainless braided jacket, pressure tested to loads built for braking), but if I do, it will be easy to get a replacement. I also have only two connection points with one single, reliable high pressure line direct from Master to Slave.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5 Posts
After re-checking the free play again today, I reduced the spacer to 1 nickel + 1 washer.. So about 4mm total instead of 6mm. That leaves me with BARELY 1mm of free play left, which is just on the edge of "safe" to me. That didn't drop the clutch as much as I wanted, BUT.....

I found an easier and 100% safer way to reduce the clutch pedal height. And it requires no effort at all: Take OFF the rubber pad on the pedal! Can't believe I didn't I think of this earlier... That shaves off 3-4mm at least on the clutch height.

That plus the nickel-washer spacer = about ~10mm? height reduction of the clutch pedal.. I never measured it, just a guestimate. I still prefer it a bit lower but it's better than it was before. Now it's almost even with the brake pedal.. sitting just slightly above it.

I added a couple strips of grip tape to the plastic pedal surface to give it more grip & protection from wear & tear.
I wanted to see if you stuck with that mod? Does it actually improve the shifting experience?
 

·
Rubber side down
Joined
·
263 Posts
I wanted to see if you stuck with that mod? Does it actually improve the shifting experience?
Yes it does, absolutely. I am still driving with the Wilwood master and Miata slave cylinder. It has not failed me yet. Simple, reliable, and robust. Aside from my dislike of the dual mass flywheel setup and the way it feels compared to a lightened single mass flywheel and sprung friction disc, shift engagement is much more positive and clutch feel is as good as you can get on the OEM clutch and flywheel. As long as you make proper adjustments so that the reduced pedal travel provides the same clutch travel (you have to take measurements of the clutch fork travel and adjust the Wilwood setup so that the pedal pushes the fork the same distance with the reduced pedal travel on the larger bore cylinder). If you do not make proper adjustments then you run the risk of over extending the clutch fork and thus over extending the pressure plate. This is bad. Make sure you take proper measurements and adjust accordingly. Other than that, it is a great setup.
 
21 - 24 of 24 Posts
Top