How do I get my car closer to neutral? - TCCoA Forums
 
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-13-2010, 03:53 AM Thread Starter
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How do I get my car closer to neutral?

I've read tons about springs, shocks and sway bars, alignment, ect... My ride is still 100% stock with the exception of aftermarket strut rod bushings. I bought a set of factory bushings that will soon go back in.

Before the aftermarket bushings went south the alignment was set 100% to the "aggressive" specs listed in the tech articles. The car ate up the twisties, but the nose plowed like a fat cow if I pushed it too hard. Front tires barking and complaining all the way. I know most of this is because the car is nose heavy. I'd like to get my car closer to neutral if not just a little tail happy in the twisties.

I want to revamp the suspension in one shot. Springs, shocks, sway bars and wheels & tires. I'm looking for a firm ride with lots of feedback. If I run over a pebble I want to know about it. I don't want to lower it more than 2" This car will see 1/2 mile of dirt road about twice a year. Strictly highway street machine.

Right now I'm running BFG 235/60/15's on the stock wheels. I plan to go to 18's on all four, I want to run as wide as I can in the rear and the front (the only tire rotation I ever do is with the loud pedal)

Suggestions please? What can I expect from setting the rear to to closer to 0 or a slightly positive toe?

Mostly stock...

For now...
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-13-2010, 04:44 AM
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  • Vogtland springs - 1.6" Drop
  • 99-04 Cobra Bilstein Sport Shocks in the rear and Koni shocks in the front or Koni Shocks all the way around
  • 1.25" ADDCO Anti-Sway Bars Front and Rear (or just rear)
  • Relocate the Battery to the trunk (Right rear corner - opposite of the driver)
  • Swap the engine for the lighter and more powerful PI Explorer motor
  • 18" x 9" rims with 285/40/18's in the back and 255/45/18's in the front
You do know that aftermarket strut rod bushings are frowned upon here? OEM Ford bushings are the only way to go on the strut rods. It's to bad you wasted your time and money on the cheap aftermarket crap. I just noticed you have the OEM bushings ready to go on the car.

You'll be amazed at the night and day difference in the suspension with these changes.

Keep in mind that to do this you're looking to spend 5 to 6 Grand or more. (or 2 to 3 times as much as the car is worth.) LOL Welcome to MN12 modding!

Mods? Yea, I got mods ...
Air silencer delete, warp drive, dilithium crystals, flux capacitor, Slingshot Rubber band power adder, Moonshine & Gas, Leaf Blower Supercharger, Hamster Wheel & Hamster, Energizer Bunny generating 1.21 gigawatts, Mr. Fusion Home Energy Reactor, hover conversion and a sextant celestial navigation system (The original GPS)
Best 1/4: 1,320 nanoseconds @ 670,616,629.2 miles per hour

"There isn't that much difference anymore between spacecraft, aircraft and modern automobiles..." - Keith Henry, NASA's Langley Research Center
See a list of my real mods and pictures of my car HERE. The true performance of my car was made possible by the Carolinas Crew Chief, RobertP at Rob's Tire & Auto

Last edited by Trunk Monkey; 04-13-2010 at 04:54 AM. Reason: Noticed new OEM bushings
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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-13-2010, 07:25 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Trunk Monkey View Post
Keep in mind that to do this you're looking to spend 5 to 6 Grand or more. (or 2 to 3 times as much as the car is worth.) LOL Welcome to MN12 modding!
Thanks for the $.02 I already knew I was wayy over what it was worth. My plans are a KB supercharged Dohc 93 Mark VIII pushing this tranny.http://www.summitracing.com/parts/CMG-TUET8274/
OT is off the hook at my workplace. 10% of my base hourly Goes to 401K My base wage still leaves me with a lot of "chump change" after I pay the bills. Add the "mad money to the OT and you have project "bad bird"

I'm picking up the motor soon. I don't expect things to be a night/ day swap however I'm looking for $.02 before I spend $.02

Mostly stock...

For now...

Last edited by Kaptn' Obvious; 04-13-2010 at 07:32 AM.
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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-13-2010, 09:10 AM
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Don't run staggered tire sizes if you want the car neutral handling. It is front heavy, so wider rears will only aggravate the understeer.

And you don't need nearly as much camber as shown in the aggressive alignment specs, especially once the car is lowered, which gets the suspension in to the part of the travel where the camber change is greater. I ran my car on the street and many track days per year with less than 1 degree of negative camber. It worked just fine, and didn't chew the insides of the tires during street driving.


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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-14-2010, 04:14 AM Thread Starter
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No staggered tires? You're killin' me... I'd like my cake with a fork please? I say this because IMHO steam rollers out back just looks mean.

My main gripe is on a highway that I know the car handles like a dream. On unfamiliar territory if I overcook it it plows like a beast. When I get more grunt under the hood I hope to be able to remedy part of that with a bit of throttle. I'm not looking to build a drift car, but at speed it's much easier to deal with a bit of drift than it is to repave the road in front of you.

Mostly stock...

For now...
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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-14-2010, 09:29 AM
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All I'm saying is that staggered tires will make the understeer worse. It could partially be compensated for by running a larger rear stab. bar than normal, and front tire pressure 3 - 5 psi higher than the rear. I ran 255 front / 275 rear on the last wheel & tire combo on my 95 SC, Konis and Eibachs, stock front stab. bar, early SC rear bar. By playing with the shock and tire settings I was able to get the car working to my satisfaction.


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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-19-2010, 10:39 AM
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Ed is correct here. For autocross and track days, I ran 275-40R17 all around.

My suspension setup:

Quote:
1989 1.20” SC front anti-roll bar, high durometer bushings
ADDCO rear 1-1/8” anti-roll bar, high durometer bushings
Suspension Techniques linear rate springs, lower and stiffer
Koni “yellow” single adjustable dampers
Front suspension poly bushings (strut rod)
Rear knuckle poly bushings from FFR Cobra
Chassis bracing: front shock tower brace, lower engine/suspension cradle bracing
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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-19-2010, 10:42 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kleckner View Post
Ed is correct here. For autocross and track days, I ran 275-40R17 all around.

My suspension setup:
Will those clear the spindle in the front? I thought the largest that would fit in front without clearance issues was 255.

Mods? Yea, I got mods ...
Air silencer delete, warp drive, dilithium crystals, flux capacitor, Slingshot Rubber band power adder, Moonshine & Gas, Leaf Blower Supercharger, Hamster Wheel & Hamster, Energizer Bunny generating 1.21 gigawatts, Mr. Fusion Home Energy Reactor, hover conversion and a sextant celestial navigation system (The original GPS)
Best 1/4: 1,320 nanoseconds @ 670,616,629.2 miles per hour

"There isn't that much difference anymore between spacecraft, aircraft and modern automobiles..." - Keith Henry, NASA's Langley Research Center
See a list of my real mods and pictures of my car HERE. The true performance of my car was made possible by the Carolinas Crew Chief, RobertP at Rob's Tire & Auto
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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-19-2010, 11:45 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Trunk Monkey View Post
Will those clear the spindle in the front? I thought the largest that would fit in front without clearance issues was 255.
I had no problem with any rubbing on the knuckle or the inner fender, but that will depend upon wheel offset and how much the car is lowered. My wheels were the Steeda Ultra-Lite 17x9 built for the SN95 Mustangs.
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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-19-2010, 02:25 PM
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When I had dedicated track tires and wheels, I ran 275/40/17 all around as well. They were on 9" +30 offset wheels, so no rubbing on the spindles, but they did stick out of the front fenders a bit ... part of that was because they were Hoosier race radials, which are about 3/4" wider than most 275/40 tires, and also a bit shorter, so no fender contact either.

Personally I wouldn't have run a setup that size on the street. Most I would ever try to squeeze under the front is maybe a 265.


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Ed N.

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post #11 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-20-2010, 02:22 AM Thread Starter
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265's ought to be enough to make me happy.

At the moment my rear upper inner bushings are in need of replacement. If squat with my toes at the bottom of the tire, grab the top of the tire and rock back. I can get just a little bit of play. That little bit turns into a rather unsettling thunk in the rear of the car entering a corner. however, once settled into the corner the car handles much better than it did before the bushings started heading south. Thus my arse dragging in replacing them. As the years go by it's starting to get to the point of annoying being annoying, & a little bit spooky at times.

Getting back to my rear alignment question. I'm curious to know how much better or witch direction to head towards with camber and toe to get closer to where I want. A car with slight positive to behaves very badly. I would think this would also translate to the rear. Maybe once I get things put together a little trial and error might not hurt?

I bought Firestone's lifetime alignment about 5 years ago. They've lost money on me, might blackball me when I start bolting on parts...


Mostly stock...

For now...
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