Suspension and Brake Upgrade Time

Discussion in 'Technical Q&A' started by Mike C, Nov 24, 2004.

  1. Mike C

    Mike C F1 Veteran
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    Aug 3, 2002
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    Mike Charness
    I'm later to the party here than some, but my parts are all in and an install fest starts Dec 6. I've already done ES 3101G polyurethane bushings a year or so ago (what a wonderful difference that made!), but now ES bushings are also going to be added to my steering rack, and we're putting in new shocks & springs, bigger stabilizer bars, and a Brembo GT front brake kit.

    Against the trend, I decided to get black calipers on the Brembo kit, as a sort of "stealth" upgrade behind my stock QV wheels. I'm very impressed with the quality of the components out of the box. Great price from Elite Auto out of Canada... $2075 USD plus shipping.

    The adjustable shocks are from Varishock, and are similar to QA1's specs but have better/more robust mounting heads and easier adjustment for ride-height when on the car. The springs are 10.300# fronts and 12.250# rears and are from QA1 (Varishock doesn't make 10-inchers). Less than $1100 total.

    The 3-way adjustable stabilizer bars are made by Saner Performance and are zinc-plated 1.0" (25mm) front and 7/8" (22mm) rear, with red urethane bushings and fully adjustable end-links. Around $500

    Thanks to all who have been through some of this before me and posted their findings and those who answered my PM questions... it's much appreciated. I'll report back when it gets installed and I try some back country roads, but of course the real enjoyment should come at the Spring track events!
     
  2. Schatten

    Schatten F1 World Champ
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    Very pretty Mike. I also dig the heim end links. Keep the pictures coming with the install. Heck, if you were any closer, I'd have to come over and join in the fun.
     
  3. pma1010

    pma1010 Formula 3
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    Mike
    Make sure you get the collars from John for the ARBs
    Philip
     
  4. Mike C

    Mike C F1 Veteran
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    What "collars"? Other than the end links and brackets with urethane bushings I show in the photograph, I'm not sure what else is needed.
     
  5. pma1010

    pma1010 Formula 3
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    Attach to the ARB to stop it sliding horizontally
     
  6. Mike C

    Mike C F1 Veteran
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    Other than the midsection bushings, these didn't come with anything other than the endlinks. I'll call on Friday, and I do see a listing for "2-pc split collars" on www.sanerperffab.com/prod04.htm but I'm having trouble picturing them and how they'd be fitted. I don't suppose you have a photo...? Is this something considered optional which is why it's not in the standard mounting hardware package?
     
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  8. PerryJ

    PerryJ Formula 3

    Jun 5, 2003
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    Mike, are you gonna do the work yourself ?
     
  9. pma1010

    pma1010 Formula 3
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    Either inside or outside the delrin mounts.
     
  10. Mike C

    Mike C F1 Veteran
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    Ah, just some kind of clips to keep the bars from sliding sideways through the midmount bushings! Thanks. I didn't realize that was much of an issue.
     
  11. Mike C

    Mike C F1 Veteran
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    I'll have Mike Gettemy at International Motors do this stuff for me.
     
  12. PerryJ

    PerryJ Formula 3

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    I was hopeing you were gonna to it so I could get a up close a person look at how it's done.

    How long will it be down, are you having anything else done while its there ?
     
  13. Mike C

    Mike C F1 Veteran
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    I make appointments in advance so he sets aside time to work on it without having to keep it too long. I normally take the car in on a Monday, and pick it up by the end of the same week, regardless of what's being done. In this case, the only other item he'll be working on is to change out one of my CV joints that's just starting to go bad. I've already got the parts.

    He doesn't mind people stopping by and looking around if you don't keep him from working. In your case, as a future owner, he's probably the guy you'll take your car to for stuff you don't do yourself.
     
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  15. chrismorse

    chrismorse Formula 3

    Feb 16, 2004
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    Mike,

    How is your mechanic going to establish corner weights?

    What ride heights are you going for F/R? The collar wrench looks like it will work much better than the POS i bought from Summit.

    What alignment settings are you going to use?

    This should be a real transformation. Looking forward to hearing about the results.

    best,
    chris
     
  16. Mike C

    Mike C F1 Veteran
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    I think we're going to leave it alone (stock) at this point. For my style driving, I don't see the necessity.
    Yes, that wrench really catches the adjustment ring nicely, one of their claims to fame. I plan to take it down 3/4" from stock for starters, perhaps going to 1" lower at some point.
    That's going to be a matter of feel. The shocks have 16 adjustment positions. They suggest starting at 3 clicks off of soft, but I plan to start at mid-range and adjust from there for my everyday driving trying to first duplicate the "feel" of my previous stock springs and shocks, then move towards being a bit stiffer. On track days, I'm sure I'll go stiffer yet.

    What's nice about these shocks is that the adjustment for both ride height and stiffness is quite easy to reach so I can play with it.
    I expect so too. What I've been told is that the most change actually will come from putting on the heftier stabilizer bars, and if I wasn't doing the whole suspension system, just do those. But with all of this, I should be able to outhandle most other 308s, and more important than that, enjoy my aggressive driving even more than I already do!
     
  17. Owens84QV

    Owens84QV F1 Rookie
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    Mike,

    Your new hardware looks fantastic. I've got my good list ready to purchase. I want to get my suspension completed this winter as well.

    A couple of questions...
    1. I've already got replacement Koni shocks, I opted to buy new versus having them refurbished. Do you know if the QA1 springs will work with the Koni shocks?

    2. How did you choose your springs (e.g. length and spring rate)?

    I'm looking forward to additional posts and pictures.

    - Greg
     
  18. Mike C

    Mike C F1 Veteran
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    The QA1 springs are narrower than our stock ones... that's one of the advantage to going to aftermarket shocks and springs, so that wider wheels can be fitted at some point if desired.

    As far as spring rate, I've talked to a number of folks such as Nick at NicksForza.com, and have gone through a lot of previous threads here on FChat, looking for the "optimal" spring rate for an aggressive street and mild track driver. I think this combo is going to work out well. I could go stiffer springs for more aggressive track driving, or milder springs for more comfortable long-trip driving, but having adjustable shocks let's me do almost the same thing.
     
  19. Mike C

    Mike C F1 Veteran
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    Stock ride height on my USA 308QV is 26 5/8" front and 26 5/16" rear measuring from the ground to top of the fender opening when car is “settled” Is it odd that it has a slightly reversed rake?

    I'm thinking of setting the new ride height flat to 25 5/8" front and 25 5/8" rear, essentially lowering it one inch. Any suggestions/opinions? I know Steve Rochlin lowered his about an inch and a half but on rare occasion gets fender rubbing.

    I'll be posting pics of the assembled setup in a few days.
     
  20. enjoythemusic

    enjoythemusic F1 World Champ

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    A day late and a dollar short. Yesterday the 308 went to the shop for dry winter storage until March or so, therefore i can not measure. BASICALLY the car was lowered so that there is about 1/2 inch or more (rake forward) between the rear and the front. This was determined by FIRST setting front height so the Euro deep aero was 2.75 inches off the ground at the lowest (front) point. Then the car was corner weighed for balance and that decided the end result.

    IMPORTANT, make sure the car is wet with about 1/2 tank of gas and ALSO have them use sandbags (or the like) equal to your weight and place that in the driver's seat BEFORE they do corner weighing to set the heights. This way the car is balanced as you dive it :)

    Hope this helps and my apologies the car is not here. Below is a pic if that helps any????
     
  21. Steve Magnusson

    Steve Magnusson F1 World Champ
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    It's odd from a "style" point of view IMO, but a very commom situation on 308s IME -- dropping the front coachwork of a 308 1" should be standard practice ;).
     
  22. enjoythemusic

    enjoythemusic F1 World Champ

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    Agreed ;)

    i think the problem is that they made the rake WITH spare tire in the well. When you remove said tire the front shoots up a bit.
     
  23. pma1010

    pma1010 Formula 3
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    Here's what I've learned and use. Works well on the track. See Classic Motorsports article (Nov 04) by Burt Levy for his comments. HTH.

    Set rake 1 1/4 inch, F -> R.
    Set initial ride height from chassis rails, not fenders.
    Corner weight target about 30lbs delta, L->R with driver, 1/2 tank, tire pressures you will run hot (say 34 F, R with DOT competition tires)
    Body work will look mis-aligned.

    Front:
    Toe - none
    Camber 3 - 3.5
    Castor: stock

    Rear:
    Toe: stock
    Camber 2 - 2.5

    ARBs (25/22)
    Shock settings (full hard)
    Spring rates (2x stock)

    For road:
    Set it up to look visually pleasing!
    Same alignment specs as above.

    Philip
     
  24. Mike C

    Mike C F1 Veteran
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    My stock reverse rake is WITH the spare tire in place!
     
  25. enjoythemusic

    enjoythemusic F1 World Champ

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    YIPES! Run away, run away NEEE NEEE!

    Philip: EXCELLENT ADVICE! i THINK about 1-inch is about where i am at, but for the life of me i can't find the data as i moved a few weeks back and that stuff is still buried in a box :(
     
  26. Mike C

    Mike C F1 Veteran
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    I know that one!
     
  27. Mike C

    Mike C F1 Veteran
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    Philip: For aggressive street and occasional track, what setting would you suggest for the ARBs? The Saner Perf ones I got have three mounting holes on the ends to select from.
     

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