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Suspension Upgrade Advice


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I have been reading a lot of threads about suspension. As I am nearing the end of my floor work I would like to start thinking what I need for the next upgrades: brakes, steering & suspension. My plan is to have a street driver that may include some sporadic radical driving. I am torn between stock replacement parts and performance. However, some of the performance parts are beyond what I want to spend. I am not going after OEM look, but I don't want the car too appear visually radical either.

 

I have already purchased some items, such as:

-Front Wilwood disc brakes kit that include bearings.

-Rear disc brake conversion kit from Right Stuff

-Steering gear and pump upgraded by Lee

-All new steering components (OEM style)

-Moog LCA

-PUR bushings (except strut rod - read below)

-Installed Tin Man subframe connectors

 

My car already has front and rear sway bars (1 1/8 and 7/8) and Kyb gas shocks.

 

That said, here are my open questions:

-UCA: Either Scott Drake, Dynacorn or Open Track Racing?

-Spring saddles: Scott Drake?

-Springs: I doubt I have the original ones so I assume they were replaced when the car was last restored in 2002. Any idea how to know if the springs are good?

-Strut rod: options ranging from

http://www.pacificthunderperformance.com/collections/1971-1973-mustang for $269 to

http://www.streetortrack.com/Street-or-Track-Adjustable-Strut-Rods-pr-16135.html for $399 - there are other at this higher price range.

-Lower arm camber kits: there are several for around $70, any suggestions here?

 

Based on my points above, the only performance addition to the suspension would be the strut rod and camber kit. Does this combination sound right to you guys? Am I investing in the right place to gain a small performance edge?

20160929_171923_edit2_small.jpg

 

1971 M-Code Mach 1 w/Ram Air, 408 stroker, 285/291 0.558" roller cam, Blue Thunder intake, TKO600, Hooker headers with electric cut-offs, FiTech EFI w/ RobBMC PowerSurge pump

Strange center section with Truetrac, 3.5 gear and 31 spline axles, 4-wheel disc brakes

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I have been reading a lot of threads about suspension. As I am nearing the end of my floor work I would like to start thinking what I need for the next upgrades: brakes, steering & suspension. My plan is to have a street driver that may include some sporadic radical driving. I am torn between stock replacement parts and performance. However, some of the performance parts are beyond what I want to spend. I am not going after OEM look, but I don't want the car too appear visually radical either.

 

I have already purchased some items, such as:

-Front Wilwood disc brakes kit that include bearings.

-Rear disc brake conversion kit from Right Stuff

-Steering gear and pump upgraded by Lee

-All new steering components (OEM style)

-Moog LCA

-PUR bushings (except strut rod - read below)

-Installed Tin Man subframe connectors

 

My car already has front and rear sway bars (1 1/8 and 7/8) and Kyb gas shocks.

 

That said, here are my open questions:

-UCA: Either Scott Drake, Dynacorn or Open Track Racing?

-Spring saddles: Scott Drake?

-Springs: I doubt I have the original ones so I assume they were replaced when the car was last restored in 2002. Any idea how to know if the springs are good?

-Strut rod: options ranging from

http://www.pacificthunderperformance.com/collections/1971-1973-mustang for $269 to

http://www.streetortrack.com/Street-or-Track-Adjustable-Strut-Rods-pr-16135.html for $399 - there are other at this higher price range.

-Lower arm camber kits: there are several for around $70, any suggestions here?

 

Based on my points above, the only performance addition to the suspension would be the strut rod and camber kit. Does this combination sound right to you guys? Am I investing in the right place to gain a small performance edge?

To be frank NO the above will give you some gain but not much your still stuck with what is in essence the stock suspension geometry plus a mish mosh of unmatched parts. The brake stuff swaybars steering box are all good. The best money you can spend would be to do the entire street or track coilover conversion for the front. 1" lowering leafs in the rear (street or track) heavy duty shackle kit, bilsteen rear shocks..Your car will drive like a 2016 Handle amazing ! Don't waste your money spend it twice Do it once do it right. It may be a little bit more up front but well worth it. What I have outlined is tried and true I have it installed on both my cars..Best money I ever spent on suspension stuff. All the other stuff I've ever bought same as what your looking to do was a waste of my time and money been there done that. I can get you the street or track stuff for less than whats list on their site.

LOVE OF BEAUTY IS TASTE..THE CREATION OF BEAUTY IS ART

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Q is telling you the truth, he has been through this and knows what he is talking about, in fact, if and when I am able to rebuild mine, Q and I are going to talk about his setup and how to apply it to a vert.

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Okay, I understand what you are saying and I take your word for it. The problem is that I can't afford $2,700+ in suspension at this time. However, that said, what i could do is just do the minimum to have the car running for a year or two, save some dough, and then make the big SOT upgrade. I can keep my current UCA and replace the ball joints only (which I already have). Change the bushings of the saddles, or just buy new saddles since they are cheap. Keep the current strut rod - maybe replacing the bushings for rubber ones. With this OEM setup I guess I can live without the camber kit for a year or two.

Q, just for my amusement, can you please PM me with your price for the SOT kit? Is the SOT coilover conversion stock height, or lower?

20160929_171923_edit2_small.jpg

 

1971 M-Code Mach 1 w/Ram Air, 408 stroker, 285/291 0.558" roller cam, Blue Thunder intake, TKO600, Hooker headers with electric cut-offs, FiTech EFI w/ RobBMC PowerSurge pump

Strange center section with Truetrac, 3.5 gear and 31 spline axles, 4-wheel disc brakes

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Okay, I understand what you are saying and I take your word for it. The problem is that I can't afford $2,700+ in suspension at this time. However, that said, what i could do is just do the minimum to have the car running for a year or two, save some dough, and then make the big SOT upgrade. I can keep my current UCA and replace the ball joints only (which I already have). Change the bushings of the saddles, or just buy new saddles since they are cheap. Keep the current strut rod - maybe replacing the bushings for rubber ones. With this OEM setup I guess I can live without the camber kit for a year or two.

Q, just for my amusement, can you please PM me with your price for the SOT kit? Is the SOT coilover conversion stock height, or lower?

The Sot is fully adjustable for height the proper term would be drop..I would say just install stock control arms with roller spring saddles along with the other stuff you already have. I would add the camber kit its cheap. What The camber kit does is to prevent the lower control arm from moving out of alignment under heavy load. I'd also install a monte carlo bar you're going to have to mod the bar though I've yet to see one that they advertise for our cars fit right out of the box.

LOVE OF BEAUTY IS TASTE..THE CREATION OF BEAUTY IS ART

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Okay, I understand what you are saying and I take your word for it. The problem is that I can't afford $2,700+ in suspension at this time. However, that said, what i could do is just do the minimum to have the car running for a year or two, save some dough, and then make the big SOT upgrade. I can keep my current UCA and replace the ball joints only (which I already have). Change the bushings of the saddles, or just buy new saddles since they are cheap. Keep the current strut rod - maybe replacing the bushings for rubber ones. With this OEM setup I guess I can live without the camber kit for a year or two.

Q, just for my amusement, can you please PM me with your price for the SOT kit? Is the SOT coilover conversion stock height, or lower?

The Sot is fully adjustable for height the proper term would be drop..I would say just install stock control arms with roller spring saddles along with the other stuff you already have. I would add the camber kit its cheap. What The camber kit does is to prevent the lower control arm from moving out of alignment under heavy load. I'd also install a monte carlo bar you're going to have to mod the bar though I've yet to see one that they advertise for our cars fit right out of the box.

 

You mentioned the Monte Carlo bar, do you have one? I wonder if one can make one that goes behind the engine following the tower braces. It will look less intrusive.

I guess I can purchase the SOT camber kit and then reuse it once I upgrade.

In regards to roller perches, I think I will stick with stock perches. If the plan is to eventually upgrade to the SOT suspension the money spent on the roller perches will be wasted, specially that they are expensive compared to the stock ones unless you have a cheap option. I think it is $200 vs $40, roller to non-roller.

20160929_171923_edit2_small.jpg

 

1971 M-Code Mach 1 w/Ram Air, 408 stroker, 285/291 0.558" roller cam, Blue Thunder intake, TKO600, Hooker headers with electric cut-offs, FiTech EFI w/ RobBMC PowerSurge pump

Strange center section with Truetrac, 3.5 gear and 31 spline axles, 4-wheel disc brakes

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Okay, I understand what you are saying and I take your word for it. The problem is that I can't afford $2,700+ in suspension at this time. However, that said, what i could do is just do the minimum to have the car running for a year or two, save some dough, and then make the big SOT upgrade. I can keep my current UCA and replace the ball joints only (which I already have). Change the bushings of the saddles, or just buy new saddles since they are cheap. Keep the current strut rod - maybe replacing the bushings for rubber ones. With this OEM setup I guess I can live without the camber kit for a year or two.

Q, just for my amusement, can you please PM me with your price for the SOT kit? Is the SOT coilover conversion stock height, or lower?

The Sot is fully adjustable for height the proper term would be drop..I would say just install stock control arms with roller spring saddles along with the other stuff you already have. I would add the camber kit its cheap. What The camber kit does is to prevent the lower control arm from moving out of alignment under heavy load. I'd also install a monte carlo bar you're going to have to mod the bar though I've yet to see one that they advertise for our cars fit right out of the box.

 

You mentioned the Monte Carlo bar, do you have one? I wonder if one can make one that goes behind the engine following the tower braces. It will look less intrusive.

I guess I can purchase the SOT camber kit and then reuse it once I upgrade.

In regards to roller perches, I think I will stick with stock perches. If the plan is to eventually upgrade to the SOT suspension the money spent on the roller perches will be wasted, specially that they are expensive compared to the stock ones unless you have a cheap option. I think it is $200 vs $40, roller to non-roller.

Agreed if the rollers are that much just use stock for now..Everybody should be running the camber kit it fixes a known weak link in the suspension stock or not ..There are pictures in my build thread http://www.7173mustangs.com/thread-green-72-fastback-former-429-460?page=12 of how I modded the monte carlo bar post #118 I could fabricate mod one for you if needed.

LOVE OF BEAUTY IS TASTE..THE CREATION OF BEAUTY IS ART

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The Sot is fully adjustable for height the proper term would be drop..I would say just install stock control arms with roller spring saddles along with the other stuff you already have. I would add the camber kit its cheap. What The camber kit does is to prevent the lower control arm from moving out of alignment under heavy load. I'd also install a monte carlo bar you're going to have to mod the bar though I've yet to see one that they advertise for our cars fit right out of the box.

 

You mentioned the Monte Carlo bar, do you have one? I wonder if one can make one that goes behind the engine following the tower braces. It will look less intrusive.

I guess I can purchase the SOT camber kit and then reuse it once I upgrade.

In regards to roller perches, I think I will stick with stock perches. If the plan is to eventually upgrade to the SOT suspension the money spent on the roller perches will be wasted, specially that they are expensive compared to the stock ones unless you have a cheap option. I think it is $200 vs $40, roller to non-roller.

Agreed if the rollers are that much just use stock for now..Everybody should be running the camber kit it fixes a known weak link in the suspension stock or not ..There are pictures in my build thread http://www.7173mustangs.com/thread-green-72-fastback-former-429-460?page=12 of how I modded the monte carlo bar post #118 I could fabricate mod one for you if needed.

 

Okay, so you now have me scratching my head trying to better understand how the Monte Carlo bar increases the stiffness of the front end. I was more concerned about in which direction the front end becomes stiffer. So from what I see the bar stiffens the front end along the car's "width" direction. I can't see clear in your picture, but I assume it attaches to the aprons.

Our cars also have the brace that connects the shock tower to the firewall. I know they sell stiffer one-piece braces for older Mustangs, "export braces", such as Scott Drake. Are there stiffer braces for our cars? Basically, I am trying to figure out a way of stiffening the front end w/o a bar crossing the middle of the engine bay. I guess that a stiffer brace made out of one piece should increase the stiffness. Not to the level of the MC bar but close. Has anyone seen such a stiffer brace for our cars?

20160929_171923_edit2_small.jpg

 

1971 M-Code Mach 1 w/Ram Air, 408 stroker, 285/291 0.558" roller cam, Blue Thunder intake, TKO600, Hooker headers with electric cut-offs, FiTech EFI w/ RobBMC PowerSurge pump

Strange center section with Truetrac, 3.5 gear and 31 spline axles, 4-wheel disc brakes

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I have one from MPG Heads but I am not certain it adds substantial stiffness. They have spherical rod ends at the attachment points and to me that allows twist.

 

I am working on having PTP (Pacific Thunder Performance Engineering) work on a one piece tubular design that is like the Maeir Racing units for the 70 Mustang. It's a one piece tubular Monte Carlo/export brace design.

 

A few years back I contacted Maier Racing but they weren't interested. :(

image.png.4631500eb8cc48d14d749bc3382f8a1f.png

image.jpeg.15dd6a6d73fc8af1e52628ebfd3bee52.jpeg

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I'm in the no budget boat and I replaced all front suspension with Dorman

and Moog parts from Rockauto.

 

I just needed a driver that was safe. Plus you cant beat the prices.

 

Wish I had the coin to upgrade to coilovers!

 

Paul

73 Grande

351C 2v

Now 4v Carb/Cam/headers/T5

 

Gasoline is for washing parts.

Alcohol is for drinking.

Nitomethane is for racing!

 

 

Work in Progress photos here:

Last Update: 4/23/16

 

http://s1270.photobucket.com/user/therocket366/library/?sort=3&page=1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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I have one from MPG Heads but I am not certain it adds substantial stiffness. They have spherical rod ends at the attachment points and to me that allows twist.

 

I am working on having PTP (Pacific Thunder Performance Engineering) work on a one piece tubular design that is like the Maeir Racing units for the 70 Mustang. It's a one piece tubular Monte Carlo/export brace design.

 

A few years back I contacted Maier Racing but they weren't interested. :(

Your correct spherical rod ends allows twist. I hope your one piece design works out. Would be nice to have that ready made for out cars..I would incorporate some sort of locking turnbuckle arrangement to allow for adjustment since most have had aprons replaced etc. And most likely won't be 100% in spec to the factory unibody dimensions.

LOVE OF BEAUTY IS TASTE..THE CREATION OF BEAUTY IS ART

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I saw the Global West export braces for the 70- mustang and they look very cool and beefy. I wonder if these can be adapted to our cars. Do our cars have the towers at the same location than the 70-?

 

1971 M-code Mach 1

20160929_171923_edit2_small.jpg

 

1971 M-Code Mach 1 w/Ram Air, 408 stroker, 285/291 0.558" roller cam, Blue Thunder intake, TKO600, Hooker headers with electric cut-offs, FiTech EFI w/ RobBMC PowerSurge pump

Strange center section with Truetrac, 3.5 gear and 31 spline axles, 4-wheel disc brakes

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Okay, so you now have me scratching my head trying to better understand how the Monte Carlo bar increases the stiffness of the front end. I was more concerned about in which direction the front end becomes stiffer. So from what I see the bar stiffens the front end along the car's "width" direction. I can't see clear in your picture, but I assume it attaches to the aprons.

Our cars also have the brace that connects the shock tower to the firewall. I know they sell stiffer one-piece braces for older Mustangs, "export braces", such as Scott Drake. Are there stiffer braces for our cars? Basically, I am trying to figure out a way of stiffening the front end w/o a bar crossing the middle of the engine bay. I guess that a stiffer brace made out of one piece should increase the stiffness. Not to the level of the MC bar but close. Has anyone seen such a stiffer brace for our cars?

Heres a very simplified explanation It's a newer mustang and they use the term strut tower brace we call it a monte carlo bar In a ideal world ours would be mounted like the design 4mm posted up but till that's available the closest your going to get is a monte carlo bar http://www.americanmuscle.com/suspension-tech-guide-part2.html

LOVE OF BEAUTY IS TASTE..THE CREATION OF BEAUTY IS ART

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