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coilover suspension ?


aaronsti
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I was talking with some people at the track and they were saying that unless you go with something like a 5000 dollar coilover its not worth getting a coilover. is this true? I was thinking of getting a set of kw v3's with the race spring or ground control coilovers. these are mid 2000 dollars. the main reason for me switching to coilover is im going to be getting more tire and I need more suspension to handle it. thanks

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i run in the advanced group de 3/4. its a 2006 Subaru sti. I plan on running 305x18 nitto nt01's. currently i'm running hankook rs3's in 225x17. i'm also going to be adding some aero to it in the form of a front splitter and possibly a wing. and yes I know that is a damn wide tire but that's what i'm going with. and I have already addressed safety gear. not quite sure what the car weighs but i'm guessing somewhere around 3200 the way it sits before I go out with me in it.

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I'm not aware of a firm price point between crap and good and really nice dampers, but, they're not something you'll want to half ass if you're looking to build a fast and easy to drive car.

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I agree with not wanting to half ass, but i'm not bill gates and can't afford a $10k dollar set of motons. I should add, i'm not looking to do wheel to wheel racing, and probably not tt. also I do a lot of track days ever other to every weekend. it is a track car that just logistically gets driven to and from the track.

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I should add, i'm not looking to do wheel to wheel racing, and probably not tt. also I do a lot of track days ever other to every weekend. it is a track car that just logistically gets driven to and from the track.

 

My opinion as a fellow driver not an official: with no plans to compete, why waste the money? Buy whatever fits your budget and makes the car ride & handle how you want. I don't know Subarus but on a BMW that would be something like a Koni/Ground Control setup with the softer spring rates... which is under $2k including camber plates.

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i run in the advanced group de 3/4. its a 2006 Subaru sti. I plan on running 305x18 nitto nt01's. currently i'm running hankook rs3's in 225x17. i'm also going to be adding some aero to it in the form of a front splitter and possibly a wing. and yes I know that is a damn wide tire but that's what i'm going with. and I have already addressed safety gear. not quite sure what the car weighs but i'm guessing somewhere around 3200 the way it sits before I go out with me in it.

You plan on running 305mm wide tires on an STI....are you sure lol I assume you are doing an insane widebody conversion right?

 

If you're not competing do what you can with what you got. Don't buy cheap junk coilovers though. Stick with KW, Tein, HKS, ect..

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I should add, i'm not looking to do wheel to wheel racing, and probably not tt. also I do a lot of track days ever other to every weekend. it is a track car that just logistically gets driven to and from the track.

 

My opinion as a fellow driver not an official: with no plans to compete, why waste the money? Buy whatever fits your budget and makes the car ride & handle how you want. I don't know Subarus but on a BMW that would be something like a Koni/Ground Control setup with the softer spring rates... which is under $2k including camber plates.

 

 

that's what I was leaning towards. do you think reliability of the koni damper would differ from the kw? to be honest I've driven a couple non subarus with kw v3's and I have had a crush on them since, so when I heard people say that they aren't good my heart sank. ground control make the same kind of set up for the Subaru but the kw is actually around 300 dollars cheaper..... and I have been approached about instructing and plan to do that next year.

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i run in the advanced group de 3/4. its a 2006 Subaru sti. I plan on running 305x18 nitto nt01's. currently i'm running hankook rs3's in 225x17. i'm also going to be adding some aero to it in the form of a front splitter and possibly a wing. and yes I know that is a damn wide tire but that's what i'm going with. and I have already addressed safety gear. not quite sure what the car weighs but i'm guessing somewhere around 3200 the way it sits before I go out with me in it.

You plan on running 305mm wide tires on an STI....are you sure lol I assume you are doing an insane widebody conversion right?

 

If you're not competing do what you can with what you got. Don't buy cheap junk coilovers though. Stick with KW, Tein, HKS, ect..

 

I know its crazy. its the little bit of ricer that is in every sti driver but yes i'm building my own fenders to fit the tires and running a offset to fit it and playing with the geometry of the suspension to get it right. (note this is a winter off season plan but i'm starting to organize and get my ducks in a row before I start purchasing things)

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I am in DE2, hoping to move to DE3 soon, with no real plans to W2W or TT (this car at least). I went with a ~$2K set of BC Racing ER series coilovers for my G35. I increased the spring rate a good bit over stock. Some may classify these as "cheap crap" and maybe they are, but I realized a vast improvement over the stock suspension. The ER series has adjustable compression and rebound and an external reservoir at each corner. It also lets me get pretty close to stock ride height.

 

My G is a "sport" version, so I had some increased suspension bits from OEM, but other than that, I have no good reference point other than the seat of the pants feel. I have been running 245/45/17 summer tires, and plan to run 275/40 R1's for the first time this August at RA.

 

My car is mainly a track car now, that I do sometimes drive to events, but it rides pretty stiff and is not fun as a daily driver. YMMV.

 

Mike

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The KW v3s are a decent coilover. They won't perform at the same level as a much more expensive setup, but they will certainly be an improvement over stock. Since you aren't competing, get what you can afford that is stiff enough to deal with that wide of a setup. Obviously, that's way too much tire for the stock setup, and I don't think you'll get there with a Koni setup, either. The KWs (or RCE's T2s, which are rebalanced v3s) will get you a lot closer to how stiff you'll want to be. I personally think the stiffer rear spring rate bias that RCE and TiC use in their custom coilover setups make the STi feel much less understeery.

 

When I first upgraded to coilovers, I was using 245 width Star Specs, and I got the RCE T0s (rebalanced KW v1s) with the standard spring rates (7k/6k). When I had to rebuild, the suspension also needed to be replaced, and I decided to go with the AST 4100s in order to get the 1-way adjustment, and I wanted to bump up my spring rates to 8k/7k (standard is 8k/6k, but TiC does 7k/6k). I am on 235 width Star Specs, and I can get the rear light enough under braking to engage the ABS at the lower end of adjustability (street settings of 2F/5R or 3F/6R, in clicks up from soft). It's not an issue at stiffer settings (6F/9R or higher on track). Also, note that I am on stock sway bars. I love the way my car handles now, but since I do a bit of street driving, I would like to eventually drop to 7k/6k rates and upgrade the sway bars. If it was a track only car, and I was sticking with these tires, I'd just upgrade the sways.

 

I definitely noticed an improvement in the high-speed damping between the RCE T0 (v1s) and the ASTs, even though the setup is stiffer overall now. I wouldn't say the difference is major, but it is distinguishable. You'll almost certainly worsen the response of your suspension more just by going to 305s. With the amount of grip you'll have, I'd certainly be looking at the biggest sways out there, and I don't think I'd go with anything less than 8k/7k (assuming you aren't doing a significant amount of commuting in the car). With an adjustable damper, you can bump up the spring rates a little before you need custom valving, which is notable cost adder.

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I was thinking something around a 600lb spring give or take. what makes you say the response will worsten with that tire? I didn't even think of that.

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The entirety of your wheel combo is unsprung weight, so when you travel over bumps and yumps, your suspension has to work harder to get the heavier combo back onto the tarmac, or to maintain contact. With the size and weight difference you are talking about just in the wheels, then add in the tires, you will have less contact over bumps, and more contact everywhere else. That said, it sounds like you are planning to go quite stiff to account for all the extra grip you'll have, and it's hard (at least for me) to say how much of an effect one wheel combo will have compared to another on your setup. But, I think you will be past the point of diminishing returns on tire width in 305s.

 

Also, if you're looking into something that can handle 600lb springs, I'm not sure the off-the-shelf KW v3s will get the job done. You should be able to get them custom-valved to handle that much. You should also consult with someone who really knows what spring rates will work. RaceComp Engineering certainly knows their KWs, since they developed all of their custom coilover setups out of them, and they have a good bit of experience with Subarus on track.

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