: Catera SPORT w/ GTO Springs



CateraMV6
09-06-09, 03:32 PM
I had to replace the front control arms and as a result I decided to throw in some of the GTO springs that I had...

I only swapped the 2 front springs and as a result I noted a 1" drop, from 27" to 26"

The rear is at 26.5" and so I didn't bother to change them, maybe in the future but before that I have to get some bushings.

Here are some of the pictures.
The wheels are MODA R1 w/ 245 45 17 tires...

I think the car looks amazing, maybe a bit too low, but the ride is no different then before but the steering feel is amazing, the new bushings on the sway bar helped a lot, and the front end feels like new.

http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n50/CateraMV6/DSC03589.jpg
http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n50/CateraMV6/DSC03586.jpg
http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n50/CateraMV6/DSC03587.jpg
http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n50/CateraMV6/DSC03592.jpg
http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n50/CateraMV6/DSC03591.jpg
http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n50/CateraMV6/DSC03594.jpg
http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n50/CateraMV6/DSC03593.jpg

http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n50/CateraMV6/DSC03597.jpg
http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n50/CateraMV6/DSC03603.jpg

JRomano
09-07-09, 12:50 AM
did you get your control arms from rock auto?
i just got mine from there, got the two new front control arms with bushings and ball joints installed, and both tie rods, shipped from england was $218 total including shipping, just specd it out for opel omega, cant wait to install

then i got monroe rear air shock kit and monroe front struts and strut bearing/bushing and dust boot

I think I might do a pic install and post it up here

the car looks great!

R-Caddy
09-07-09, 07:58 PM
Nice upgrade ;)

CateraMV6
09-08-09, 12:42 AM
I swapped the rear springs as well, and they were somewhat shorter then the OEM Catera springs and a bit stiffer so as a result the car sits at about the same level as before, but the ride is still extremely smooth and tight, not bouncy or anything... seems to not squat as much on acceleration.

Swapped back to my 18s... and now the front does not look as slammed as the rear... it looks slightly higher although I thought the diameter of the wheels was the same..

Here is a pic of what they look like now.

I will wash her tomorrow and I will see if I can find a nice spot to take some new pictures...

http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n50/CateraMV6/IMG00837.jpg

Matera97
09-08-09, 11:03 PM
Looks like you got new sway bar drop-links as well

CateraMV6
09-09-09, 02:35 AM
Yes sir... new drop links, new control arms, new bushings, and springs all around, total cost was around 250 and that includes the price of the springs...

TitanCTS
09-09-09, 02:01 PM
No issues with the level control system or did you disable that too?

Matera97
09-09-09, 04:12 PM
Level Control System from what I know only effects the rear shocks. Shouldn't have anything to do with front end.

Matera97
09-09-09, 04:13 PM
Wow man great prices for a great upgrade, good job dude! Did you do the install?

CateraMV6
09-09-09, 06:26 PM
No issues with the level control system or did you disable that too?

I have a fix for this and I will try to describe how I did it...

The ALC system has a sensor and its attached through a ball joint to the control arm.

Now in the OEM position the car knows exactly where it is based on how tilted that level arm is.
When you lower the car the arm is pushed up higher by the control arm by 2-3mm.

With that the system assumes that there is a lot of load in the rear seat/trunk and pumps up the shocks to try and level it.

To avoid that condition you have to realign the arm to the OEM position but with the new settings.

As a result I took the OEM mount which is located on the right side drop link for the sway bar....

I unbolted it, and found out that there is a locating key which is nothing more then a bent tab that fits in a square hole on the bracket.
That position retains the OEM setting.

I flattened the tab and now that allowed me to rotate the bracket down just far enough to where the compressor would not kick in under the new lowered setting.

Tightened the bolts and as soon as I sat in the rear seat the system reacted and brought it back to the preset level...

After the spring swap and adjustment on the suspension I noted that the Front sits at 26" and the Rear is at 26.25" from the ground to the highest point on the fender curve.

This way you can adjust the sensor setting for any amount of drop/lift. Another way to do is to bend the arm that connects the sensor and the control arm but that in most cases will be much more difficult to adjust.

I hope this helps, the picture below illustrates the tab that I bent.

Here is the car in the final stage... Note that the fuel tank is on E so once that gets filled up I expect another 1/4" Drop...

http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n50/CateraMV6/ALC.jpg

http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n50/CateraMV6/DSC03632.jpg
http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n50/CateraMV6/DSC03636.jpg

http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n50/CateraMV6/DSC03622.jpg
http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n50/CateraMV6/DSC03619.jpg
http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n50/CateraMV6/DSC03623.jpg
http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n50/CateraMV6/DSC03624.jpg
http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n50/CateraMV6/DSC03630.jpg

CateraMV6
09-09-09, 06:29 PM
Wow man great prices for a great upgrade, good job dude! Did you do the install?

Thanks man, yep it was me and my dad and a rental tool from autozone...

Wasn't hard but it was time consuming as we were very anal about everything...

I will post more pictures later of the alignment and the new settings....

Vesicant
09-09-09, 07:03 PM
Looks fantastic. Nice change.

CateraMV6
09-09-09, 08:41 PM
Here is an actual picture of the bracket and how I moved it... Notice where the old hole used to be!?

http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n50/CateraMV6/IMG00841.jpg

JRomano
04-05-10, 01:59 AM
So were the GTO springs just the oem stock springs or were they aftermarket GTO lowering springs? I just want to be sure before I spend money.

CateraMV6
04-05-10, 02:56 AM
Stock GTO springs provide a minimal drop if you go with something like 1" drop GTO springs then you will end up with more then 1.5 on the catera...

JRomano
04-05-10, 11:45 AM
Okay, thought so, thanks for clearing that up.

wyse18
07-26-10, 06:27 PM
what did you use to bend the tab flat...i just got koni adjustable shocks installed and my leveling light comes on flashing frequently. im not an experienced mechanic but i think i could do this myself.

wyse18
07-26-10, 06:48 PM
I have a fix for this and I will try to describe how I did it...

The ALC system has a sensor and its attached through a ball joint to the control arm.

Now in the OEM position the car knows exactly where it is based on how tilted that level arm is.
When you lower the car the arm is pushed up higher by the control arm by 2-3mm.

With that the system assumes that there is a lot of load in the rear seat/trunk and pumps up the shocks to try and level it.

To avoid that condition you have to realign the arm to the OEM position but with the new settings.

As a result I took the OEM mount which is located on the right side drop link for the sway bar....

I unbolted it, and found out that there is a locating key which is nothing more then a bent tab that fits in a square hole on the bracket.
That position retains the OEM setting.

I flattened the tab and now that allowed me to rotate the bracket down just far enough to where the compressor would not kick in under the new lowered setting.

Tightened the bolts and as soon as I sat in the rear seat the system reacted and brought it back to the preset level...

After the spring swap and adjustment on the suspension I noted that the Front sits at 26" and the Rear is at 26.25" from the ground to the highest point on the fender curve.

This way you can adjust the sensor setting for any amount of drop/lift. Another way to do is to bend the arm that connects the sensor and the control arm but that in most cases will be much more difficult to adjust.

I hope this helps, the picture below illustrates the tab that I bent.

Here is the car in the final stage... Note that the fuel tank is on E so once that gets filled up I expect another 1/4" Drop...

http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n50/CateraMV6/ALC.jpg

http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n50/CateraMV6/DSC03632.jpg
http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n50/CateraMV6/DSC03636.jpg

http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n50/CateraMV6/DSC03622.jpg
http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n50/CateraMV6/DSC03619.jpg
http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n50/CateraMV6/DSC03623.jpg
http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n50/CateraMV6/DSC03624.jpg
http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n50/CateraMV6/DSC03630.jpg
what did you use to bend the tab flat...i just got koni adjustable shocks installed and my leveling light comes on flashing frequently. im not an experienced mechanic but i think i could do this myself.

Matera97
07-26-10, 10:32 PM
Probably just vice grips or pliers

wyse18
08-29-10, 05:46 PM
i raised the key a bit and flattened the tab like instructed. should that be the last of my leveling light problems? lets hope so. thanks for the help guys