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Lowering suspension on 355?

Discussion in '348/355' started by Extreme, Mar 25, 2012.

  1. Extreme

    Extreme F1 Rookie

    May 26, 2010
    2,515
    Northern Utah
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    Erick
    #1 Extreme, Mar 25, 2012
    Last edited: Mar 25, 2012
    Need some guidance.

    I want to lower the suspension on the front of my 355. I've searched and read the different threads regarding lowering, it's just that none of them give the details regarding my issue.

    I have the wrenches required for the lock collars on the struts, although after loosening the lower collar I can’t get the bigger collar to turn as there is pressure on it from the spring. I am trying to do this with the struts still on the car. Is this wrong, do I need to remove the assembly and compress the spring in order to adjust the collars? I borrowed a spring compression tool from AutoZone however it will not fit on the springs with the struts on the car.
     
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  3. James-NZ

    James-NZ F1 Veteran

    Jun 26, 2007
    5,760
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    I've not done it my self, but the struts will need to be removed to adjust the spring platform. There is a very informative thread here from a while ago that gives the formula for the number of threads relating to how much lower the car will sit. Worth doing a search...
     
  4. tispkj

    tispkj Karting

    Sep 26, 2011
    54
    UK
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    Paul Jennings
    Hi Guys, not done myself on a 355 but very unlikely you need to remove the strut or suspension unit, you do need to take the load off the strut though to help.
    A good soaking of WD40 (duck oil) or similar beforehand will help.

    Regards
     
  5. pourquoi_ne

    pourquoi_ne Karting

    Mar 16, 2006
    224
    England
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    John
    I'd think long and hard about lowering your car! Mine was lowered when I bought it. I lived with hitting the underside of the front bumper and sometimes the underpanels for long enough then put the car back to original settings. May depend on condition of roads, weight of the occupants, amount of luggage in the boot etc but the anticipation of when more damage was going to get done was way too stressful for my liking! Even at the standard ride height I occasionally hit some things! Just my opinion and experience.
     
  6. Extreme

    Extreme F1 Rookie

    May 26, 2010
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    Yeah I have been thinking about rather or not to lower it. I like the way it handles now, I just don't like the large wheel gap with the front fender.
     
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  8. F355Bob

    F355Bob Formula 3

    #6 F355Bob, Mar 26, 2012
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 7, 2017
  9. Extreme

    Extreme F1 Rookie

    May 26, 2010
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    The 1" drop in the front really helped clean up the look.
    The huge brake rotors help out also. :)
     
  10. junglistluder

    junglistluder F1 Rookie
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    Mar 23, 2007
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    #8 junglistluder, Mar 26, 2012
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 7, 2017
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  11. Rob'Z

    Rob'Z Formula 3

    Mar 29, 2008
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    Two things:

    Our cars don't have struts they have coilovers with upper and lower control arms.

    You don't need to remove the coilovers to adjust them but it may actually be faster if you can't get your hands on a low profile spring compressor.


    Be sure to disconnect the anti-roll bar from one side while lowering and then reconnect when both sides are finished. This will relieve the tension from side to side and make quicker work of the process.


    Rob
     
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  13. Extreme

    Extreme F1 Rookie

    May 26, 2010
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    Very Nice!

    Can you recommend a low profile spring compressor that will fit the front coilovers.
     
  14. cactussed

    cactussed Karting

    Mar 12, 2008
    166
    Oddly, I did this last weekend as I fitted some new springs and the ride height was all voer the place.

    To save you wondering, I couldn't get a spring compressor to fit in the miniscule gap either. I also have the c-spanner and it doesn't fit in the gap either.

    What I had to do was undo the nut from the top of the shock and then undo the shock at the bottom (ie, remove the bolt from the wishbone) so the whole unit is basically free of the chassis. This releases the tension on the springs and you can then turn the adjuster rings by hand to the height desired.

    That's the easy part.

    Getting the shock back into place is harder as the bottom mounting bolt (including all the spacer washers) is a bit of a bugger to get in place.

    All in all, totally DIY'able but a lot of effort just to alter ride height.
     
  15. gothspeed

    gothspeed F1 World Champ

    May 26, 2006
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    Interesting thread as I was just thinkin of how to sscrew with the front suspension on mine :) ................. if I were to go lower ...... I would only go about 1/2"-ish lower all the way around :eek: ............ and as F355Bob said ........ one just has to be a little more careful ... :)

    Not to hijack but .......... but does anyone know if the H&R 355 springs are stiffer than stock?
     
  16. Extreme

    Extreme F1 Rookie

    May 26, 2010
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    I was about to give up on lowering the car as I couldn't get a spring compressor to fit. Your idea sounds simple enough. Honestly I'm still trying to decide if lowering it is what I really want to do. As I have enough trouble as it is getting into some driveways.
     
  17. yelcab

    yelcab F1 World Champ
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    Nov 29, 2001
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    Mitchell Le
    Since you have gone through all this trouble, you might as well slide the strut/spring combo out from under the wheel well, put it in a bench vise, and mes with the adjustment all you want with lots more space.
     
  18. bobzdar

    bobzdar F1 Veteran

    Sep 22, 2008
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    They are, I have them on my car. Unlike most 355 owners, I run my suspension on comfort mode all the time and it rides well. It's harsh enough in sport mode with the H&R's that I don't bother. My car is about 1.5" lower than stock with the front adjusted all the way up and the rears set to match at about 2/3 max height.
     
  19. Monteman

    Monteman Formula 3
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    Feb 9, 2006
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    #16 Monteman, Mar 28, 2012
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 7, 2017
    I've gone pretty low on mine and I would venture to say too low. Lots of issues trying to navigate normal city streets, driveway entrances, etc. I'm not sure I would do it again but I do like the look.
    Image Unavailable, Please Login
     
  20. CRAIGF355

    CRAIGF355 Formula 3

    Nov 13, 2005
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    Me too!
     
  21. Mitch Alsup

    Mitch Alsup F1 Veteran

    Nov 4, 2003
    7,568
    I am at stock ride height and scrape the underside and nose rather regularly. How anyone could get by with an even lower car just boggles my mind......
     
  22. Extreme

    Extreme F1 Rookie

    May 26, 2010
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    I decided not to lower the car for this same reason. I like the look of lowered 355's I just don't want the difficulty of navigating around town, it's hard enough now getting into some places.
     
  23. gothspeed

    gothspeed F1 World Champ

    May 26, 2006
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    Thanks for the info ......... so correct me if I am wrong but with H&R springs up front, you have them adjusted all the way up and the car is still 1.5" lower than stock?

    I was hoping to only stiffen the front but adjust the springs to stock height ........ :eek:
     
  24. st4rk

    st4rk Formula Junior
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    Dec 7, 2011
    447
    I'm wondering if my car was lowered from stock, I bottom out ALL the time if I'm not careful. Granted, most of the times it is my own dumb fault for not being careful.

    [​IMG]
     
  25. gothspeed

    gothspeed F1 World Champ

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    If I am not extra careful I would bottom out a lot more than I already do :eek: ......... but I think some of that can be remedied by stiffer front springs ....... IMO the front of the 355 (at least on mine) seems far too anxious to bounce downward at every dip ..... :(
     
  26. mad dog

    mad dog Formula Junior

    Jan 5, 2006
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    suffolk uk
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    andrew
    I've found removing the shock makes it far easier to adjust it. Not a difficult job, espec as I don't have a slim spring comp.

    But what I think a lot of people forget is the roll bar adjustment and corner weighting. Just reconnecting the roll bar puts an unusual load on the car because its set to ordinary height. OK there is adjustment on the splined arm but that is too course. It really needs adjustable links.

    The corner weighting is also thrown out. Having that right makes a major difference to handling. Of course not relevant if not driven to limit I have known several 355s return to stock height due to effect on handling.
     
  27. gothspeed

    gothspeed F1 World Champ

    May 26, 2006
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    So can one get stock ride height from H&R springs?
     
  28. Extreme

    Extreme F1 Rookie

    May 26, 2010
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    From the picture it looks stock to me.
     

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