: Lowerd the V today



wildwhl
06-26-05, 06:07 PM
with FG2 and the Nivomat/front strut mods I've listed before. Haven't driven her yet, but did take some pics.

I'm late for lunch (it is 3:00) so I'm going for a drive and then to a concert tonight with the wife. I'll try to post some results before then, with a full write-up and how to for the .faq this evening or tomorrow.

:woohoo:


She looks really good...and I "think" about 1" net in front with slightly less than that in the rear. I'll measure before I leave and then again when I get home to see if the Nivomats pump up or not.

Before driving:
Front 26.5"
Rear 27"

After driving
Front 26.5"
Rear 27.125"

Ride? Can't tell a difference - which is GOOD! I'll keep everyone posted, but man, this go cart looks so much better cutting that little bit out of the wheel wells. Can't wait until the widened rims get back for the rear :banana:


Wild :burn: out

urbanski
06-26-05, 07:16 PM
you're a tease :p

ace996
06-26-05, 08:44 PM
Good for you!!! Nice to hear you did it. Were you able to measure the free spring length? We await your impressions.
Ve good,
ace966

wildwhl
06-26-05, 08:50 PM
Only for you, Urby. Here's some pics, and a few specs.

:banghead: I forgot to measure the front springs when I had them off :nono:

The rear springs, from memory (I left the notes at work) were 13" height (off the car) with 4.5" OD and a pigtail on one end that is 2" ID. There are 8 complete coils counting the end coils (a total of 8 winds). I did not measure the spring-wire OD.

By the way, the driver's side spring was OUT OF THE POCKET when I went to remove it...wondery why :hmm:

I cut off slightly over 3/4 of a coil - you can see in the pics. I lowered the "pillowblock" 3/4". I have driven the car quite a bit now, and can tell you that I got lucky and it appears my first guess was currect as how much to cut the spring (at least in terms of height). The car rides at 27" in the rear and stays there. When I posted above 27.125" I was incorrect (too much dirt on the car :histeric: ).

You may find this hard to believe - but wheel hop has lessened. Mine was getting pretty bad again, and I just did three 1st gear speed shift into 2nd gear burn-out/launches with very little hop on only one of the launches (the first). I am pleased.

The ride seems to be EXACTLY like it was before to me. Now, remember, I had the FG2 rears on but the stock fronts on still. I do notice that the FG2 fronts are a slight more firm - and I might have a very minimal bounce in the rear - but I think that is me over anal-yzing things :)

I'm pretty sure you'll find this mod does not decrease performance, possibly increases performance and handling, and most certainly increases the beauty of the V.

Credit where credit is due. Dreamin - it was meeting with you that started the gears turning on this idea...thanks man :worship:

The photos in front of the boxing gym, the one where the car is cleaner (last photo) is before lowering. Nice and subtle, just like I wanted here.

Got my Yngwie shirt on - time to go to the show :spin:

HDMLNIUM
06-26-05, 08:59 PM
Looks and sounds great, definitely a to-do mod..

Enjoy the show...

Bill

wildwhl
06-26-05, 09:02 PM
I will do a full write-up complete with lathe instructions for anyone that is interested.

Also, I realized while I was doing this, for only a couple more bolts I could have swapped the roll bars as well. About 4.5 hours start to finish (including scratching my head for 30 minutes on whether to cut, heat, or ??? the coil springs - die grinder won in the end). Really pretty simple - after you get the struts modded on a lathe - which also turned out to be very simple.

I'll probably throw some sort of spacer kit together for those that are interested here in the near future. Need to make sure my secret materials are up to snuff by driving her for a while first :sneaky:

odysseus
06-26-05, 09:32 PM
You are Da Man! The Nivomat mod applies to us CTS guys too, who have Eibach springs as an option, so do write it all up! 3/4" sounds just about right, as the V (per a previous poll) sits about 1/2" lower than a CTS. With the Eibachs (for a CTS) lowering 1.2", your mod is right about at the same height, and probably the maximum amount of suspension travel to give up.

It's too bad Eibach doesn't make a kit for the V that's only 3/4" lower. 1.6" is just too much to give up. This is better, though, since you get to keep your fixed rate springs (and it's basically a free mod . . . my favorite).

talalhz
06-26-05, 10:46 PM
It is not safe to cut the springs, the shocks are tuned for a specific spring rate! I have seen it done to Hondas as a cheap mod, what ends up happening is that the vehicle becomes like a shopping cart at speeds (unsafe)..... My 2 cents.

StealthV
06-26-05, 11:02 PM
Got my Yngwie shirt on - time to go to the show :spin:

Yngwie Malmsteen? I'm having 80s flashbacks.

knockout_tx
06-26-05, 11:32 PM
Off topic.....Stealth I ordered the Skip from your site today.....will I have it before Thursday(Houston).

BTW I sure like that drop.:worship:

StealthV
06-26-05, 11:35 PM
Yes, it should be there by Thursday at the latest.

Dreamin
06-26-05, 11:44 PM
It is not safe to cut the springs, the shocks are tuned for a specific spring rate! I have seen it done to Hondas as a cheap mod, what ends up happening is that the vehicle becomes like a shopping cart at speeds (unsafe)..... My 2 cents.

It's not that simple... The Honda guys cut 2 or 3 coils (2-3"), trying to get that slammed look... spring rate goes WAY up. With soft shocks to start with, they end up with a very under-damped suspension... thus the pogo stick affect.

WW cut 3/4 of a coil... 3/4"... I calculate the spring rate increase at 11%. Also the FG2's are very stiff shocks... over-damped for the stock springs.

Stiffening up the spring rate would be a better match with the FG2's!

thebigjimsho
06-26-05, 11:48 PM
It looks like you have a little bit of negative camber that inherently comes with lowering. I always seemed to get much less hop with a couple guys in the back seat. I thought that was the added weight. But adding negative camber may be what's helping reduce wheelhop.

What that does for handling, I don't know. How safe is the remounting of the strut bolts? Would stress over time break anything that was done?

Dreamin
06-26-05, 11:49 PM
Credit where credit is due. Dreamin - it was meeting with you that started the gears turning on this idea...thanks man

Ideas are cheap... it's all about the execution... :worship: :worship:

wildwhl
06-27-05, 02:44 AM
It looks like you have a little bit of negative camber that inherently comes with lowering. I always seemed to get much less hop with a couple guys in the back seat. I thought that was the added weight. But adding negative camber may be what's helping reduce wheelhop.

What that does for handling, I don't know. How safe is the remounting of the strut bolts? Would stress over time break anything that was done?

bigjim -

the method will handle the stress for sure, but the materials are in question. Ideally, they should be aluminum (aluminium for the Europeeeons). I must say, that the material I've chosen was because it was on hand and simple to manipulate. For this reason alone, I'll keep a VERY close eye on it. I seriously doubt it would fail, but in a "retail" situation would likely sub it with something else.

TALTALHZ - To those with concerns about cutting springs - they are correct - cutting a significant amount of the spring is in fact unsafe. "Tuning" a spring by heating, cutting, welding, clamping, shimming, strapping, kerning (wait, that's typography) with significant knowledge of the physics involved of the aforementioned tweak is - in my book - American, and as safe as I elect to be.

My car, my book - tickets aren't for sale - and if they were - they'd be without refund, warranty, replacement value, guarantee, etc.

Frown as you will, this IS American ingenuity in an AMERICAN car...F the Honda's and their inability to understand low-can-be-slow and roll, trip, and bind are issues to consider.

How do you suppose a spring is made (shit on a rock and hatched by the sun?)?

:mad: :thumbsup:

:eek: Where's my :drinker

Besides, after doing no less than eight 360's at over 100 mph in my homemade 1,050 lb 120+ hp 3wheeler - I venture to guess that I have a better firsthand knowledge, though not through training, of the physics hitherto.

wildwhl
06-27-05, 02:53 AM
Yngwie Malmsteen? I'm having 80s flashbacks.

Oh Rick :nono:

Yngwie Fin' Mamsteen to you...but admittedly by my wife an myself - the best song of the night would be Hell's Bells by no less than the voltage that runs our lives....

AC/DC - during a break of course... :shhh:

Still, it did give me a fantastic idea for the wrap up of the calendar (yes it DOES exist at this point - bindery and cover remain...with a tat or two to come)

ctsvett
06-27-05, 08:36 AM
wild,
Do a write up and e-mail it ot me and I will post on the FAQ for all to see.

I didnt know it but I'm a poet...

(oK, I hav ebeen up for 24 hours on planes and trains.. I really need sleep... sorry..)

Reed

Dooman
06-27-05, 09:05 AM
Sits about perfect!

urbanski
06-27-05, 09:57 AM
i have no idea what you are talking about :)
but I'd vote for 1/4-1/2" lower in teh rear :)

urbanski
06-27-05, 10:06 AM
yo WW
OT i can't tell you how many times I've seen yngwie mayhem play :D

back ON topic...
AlexWS6 photo'chopped these of my car....you should aim for this look :cheers:

wildwhl
06-27-05, 11:45 AM
Urby -

I admit that looks quite cool...but fear the ride and clearance would be terrible around these parts. With the Eibach springs and the Nivomat mod...I bet you would be close to those pics.

urbanski
06-27-05, 01:32 PM
i dont' want to kill my handling man :)

hey...any plans to nibble a bit more off the springs? just to see what happens?

edit: my arse is at 27" right now, same as yours. what gives? lol

wildwhl
06-27-05, 01:40 PM
Urby -

That's a good question. I noticed in the old thread about measure your ride height that you seemed to be sitting lower than some others as well.

What is the overall diameter of your wheel/tire combo (I forget)? How about any subs or anything in the trunk?

I don't think I'll modify it from here - I really like the way it sits and the way it rides and handles.

urbanski
06-27-05, 01:57 PM
26.5" tire diameter now....same as stock....however I should measure myslef again.
There is junk in my trunk :p Spare 61Lb runcrap, jack, wrench, various tools, all of which fit into the well. No amp or anything else.

how much are new springs? i think you nailed the front...you could buy new rear springs, cut them a wee bit more and see what happens. LOL it's easy for me to spend your money isn't it :D

wildwhl
06-27-05, 02:18 PM
Urby -

New rear springs are like $50 a piece or so. I'm hoping to actually find something else :sneaky:

I don't really want to dial in the rear until I get the 275's on the widened wheels back on there to check it all out.

wildwhl
06-27-05, 07:56 PM
OK - Just did a little "mountain run" in the V. I would have to say the new ride is perfect...:woohoo:

I'll finish the write up soon!

wildwhl
07-02-05, 06:04 PM
Just a quick update after a week.

1) Sorry, I haven't done the write up...too many beers and opportunites to play I suppose :hide:

2) The car has settled in some, and is actually about 1/4" lower all around. So...

3) The rear coils should only be cut 1/2 coil, in my opinion -and- the front strut mod should be done at 3/4" lower.

I am trying to purchase some replacement rear coils now.

I've also developed a "clunk" in the passenger rear and can't seem to figure it out. It only happens on very sharp transitions/potholes. It sounds like something in the trunk going clunk...but I can't find it. (I'm too lazy to take all the crap out of the trunk right now).

It could be the B&B exhaust hitting the BMR cross bar again...and if so...out comes the BMR and in go the Specterworks or KARS...frickin' addictive car this V is :rolleyes:

urbanski
07-02-05, 08:07 PM
got it
1/2 coil
I'll pay your ticket here if you come do this for me :)

ace996
07-02-05, 08:39 PM
I too have a clunk in my passenger rear, after the Specter Bushings. I'm hoping its just the diff clunk, as it happens while on brakes and hitting a small lip/bump.

Any new impressions with the set-up????

HDMLNIUM
07-02-05, 09:36 PM
wildwhl,
I am really watching this thread, I just got a set of the FG2's coming to me and want to lower her at the same time. Any more pictures of how the car looks now with it settled? Also interested in a hardware kit for the mod with write up from you..:yup:
Your car looks great at that height, very nice...:thumbsup:

Bill
http://photobucket.com/albums/v466/HDMLNIUM/th_front-1.jpghttp://photobucket.com/albums/v466/HDMLNIUM/th_engine-yeah.jpghttp://photobucket.com/albums/v466/HDMLNIUM/th_rear-1.jpg
05 CTS-V--- Light Platinum
3M Clear Bra and Tinted windows, LS6 Emblem, Stealth-V z06 fuel rail covers, Lasstss Billet interior pieces
Westers, B&B Headers-high flow cats-and 3" resonator exhaust, Lingenfelter CAI, UUC shifter, Full BMR
Online Photos http://photobucket.com/albums/v466/HDMLNIUM/

wildwhl
07-03-05, 04:12 AM
Bill -

If my materials survive during my 1000 mile test cycle (or sooner, I'll probably pull the rear seat next weekend and check them out) I'll be happy to cut and supply VERY INEXPENSIVE kits :yup:

I'm not in the V product business...and I'll make no guarantees, for off-road use only, etc :)

The front strut mod is quite simple. When you have one in hand and start looking at it, I'm sure you'll quickly figure it out just as I did. All you need is a lathe to do it correctly, and I'm sure there are some more crude methods that would work as well.

I have my eyes on a set of stock height springs, and I intend to replace the 3/4 coil cut ones with 1/2 coil versions...and leave the front alone. I'll try to take more pics soon - but it really does look cool. There is negative camber, but I haven't had the car aligned so some of that might go away...still a great improvement IMHO.

wildwhl
07-06-05, 09:16 PM
As The V Settles...

OK, now things have all settled in. I still have the clunk...but think I've found what it is.

Also, the V now sits at 26.5" all around...and since I prefer a slightly raked appearance, this doesn't work for me.

The solution? As stated before, 1/2 coil is probably the correct amount to cut the coils. The mod of the Nivomats at 3/4" drop would better match this arrangement.

The process for lowering is quite simple, but I have a couple of cautions:

1) For track guys, this may not be ideal. The rear definately has a tendency to "step out" at 9/10's driving and I think this is partly to blame for cutting too much coil spring out. My next approach will likely not cut the springs at all, but use localized heat to rebend the bottom coil. We'll see what happens.

2) Personally, I'd like the front struts to have been a slight bit higher (nit picking here). I wish I had made the grooves at 5/8" below stock...so will pull them off and do so. Please note, if you do this method, the "rings" on the struts need to be sort of glued back in place for safety - examine the stock arrangement before proceeding.

3) The "materials in question" are no longer in question :D Want an adjustable lowering kit for your Nivomats? PM me...but I make NO GUARANTEES whatsoever as to their use. For off-road use only, of course :yup:

WW

lasstss
07-06-05, 09:58 PM
I ordered a shock mounting pad from a BMW today. Looks exactly like the rear shock top mount. I want to see if its the same and if it locates differently on the shock. Should have it next week.

wildwhl
07-06-05, 10:16 PM
Marty -

PM me your address...I'm going to send out a few free trial kits...and it would be good if you could compare the two.

Per usual, I'm looking to make a killing on these (aka no-charge) :D

VELOSE
07-07-05, 03:40 AM
Posting on here to get the latest and greatest on your R&D for LCL(Low Cost Lowering).:)

seanr56
07-07-05, 03:47 AM
That looks great but it looks dangerously low. Do you ever have problems with the tires scraping inside the wheel well? If not then do you have the suspension bottom out? Or is it just that stiff?

HDMLNIUM
07-07-05, 08:08 AM
wildwhl,
I am interested in one of these trial kits, would love to lower the V all around.
If you are going to be changing the grove height on the FG2's I could just send you my brand new set for the ones at 3/4".. Just an idea, no lathe here. And while your at it the springs too...:yup:
Let me know what you think, as I like the level look..:2thumbs:
Bill
http://photobucket.com/albums/v466/HDMLNIUM/th_front-1.jpghttp://photobucket.com/albums/v466/HDMLNIUM/th_engine-yeah.jpghttp://photobucket.com/albums/v466/HDMLNIUM/th_rear-1.jpg
05 CTS-V--- Light Platinum
3M Clear Bra and Tinted windows, LS6 Emblem, Stealth-V z06 fuel rail covers, Lasstss Billet interior pieces
Westers, B&B Headers-high flow cats-and 3" resonator exhaust, Lingenfelter CAI, UUC shifter, Full BMR
Online Photos http://photobucket.com/albums/v466/HDMLNIUM/

jspridge
07-07-05, 09:59 AM
I'm also interested in a trial kit, but for some reason I cannot PM. If you wouldn't mind - please send me an email and I'll reply with my address and any other needed info.


Thanks!

wildwhl
07-07-05, 11:04 AM
That looks great but it looks dangerously low. Do you ever have problems with the tires scraping inside the wheel well? If not then do you have the suspension bottom out? Or is it just that stiff?


Sean -

I have had no rubbing or bottoming out as of yet. The streets where I live are considered to be some of the most terrible in the nation - we are currently the orange cone capital of the world :o

wildwhl
07-09-05, 07:10 PM
Clunk resolved...must remember righty tighty, lefty loosey :dammit:

Also did a tweak to the rear springs today to "simulate" 1/2 coil being cut instead...man...my belief is this is perfect. Sits at 26.75" in the rear (approx). Also installed the .2" wheel spacers just for looks, if nothing else. Lawfive has his widened wheels back...so I hope mine are on their way. Fred Groeske(sp?) of www.wheelspacers.com does excellent work. I have 3 more pair if anyone is interested (weren't cheap, but they are most certainly right). I get 6 full turns of the lugs to snug them up by hand, and then another 3/4 to 1 full turn when torquing...so they're perfect IMHO. THANKS DREAMIN!

My trial materials seem to be holding up fine. I laser cut 90% of 12 kits today....I'll ship them Monday. I also have a box full of sample materials coming from McMasterCarr early this week...Delrin, Polycarbonate, etc... The kits are adjustable for the Nivomats (just a bunch of precisely cut spacers, shims, and rubber gaskets) so you can adjust the topmount to your liking - in other words to match whatever you decide to do with your rear springs.

I emailed www.bluecoilspring.com and gave them some specs out of curiousity...asked for a 4.5" od, 12.25" long with pigtail to match the stockers and a 425 lb rate...just curious what they'll say.

Still have one very big problem though. If it were a website, we'd call it www.notraction.com :histeric:

VELOSE
07-09-05, 07:23 PM
What would it cost if you were up to it, to get a whole new set of springs already cut by you, new FG2 shocks/struts, and your kit? I'm thinking of having this as a lowering kit. When I have the need to go back to stock, I'll have that option.

Thanks,
Frank

wildwhl
07-09-05, 07:32 PM
Frank -

This is something I'm considering - offering front struts on an exchange basis, spring installed. I haven't committed yet :)

Remember, everything done is reversible. The struts just need to have the springs compressed and the ring moved back to the original location - and the front suspension is back to stock height.

The rear, however, would require new springs if you cut your existing springs. One could use clamps...but I don't think that's very wise. The Nivomat mod is 100% reversible in about 45-60 minutes (time it takes to pull the shocks, and swap the parts back in place).

Do you have access to a lathe?

VELOSE
07-09-05, 08:48 PM
Bill,
I don't have access to a lathe. However, seeing how only the rear springs need to be cut, this might not be all too hard to do. I mean, I'll still need the springs cut by someone but, doesn't look like too much was altered to get the look.

Also, what if I just bought the Eibach springs and used just rears for your kit? Could I do that with your kit?

wildwhl
07-09-05, 09:46 PM
Frank -

the lathe is how the front struts are modified. The "kit" so to speak, is just a series of spacers to allow you to retain your rear Nivomat shocks (FG2 or otherwise) while lowering the rear of the car by cutting/replacing/heating the springs.

Bill

thebigjimsho
07-11-05, 12:55 AM
Hey wild, how long did you say it takes to replace all 4 struts? I've got the FG2 and I was contemplating how long it would take to do myself. I've replaced struts before but that was a LONG time ago and wouldn't want to poop it up. But if I can do it in a night, I'd give it a try.

wildwhl
07-11-05, 12:58 AM
BigJim -

Took me about 3-4 hours the first time - I could do it again in under 3 I'm sure. Long evening and you should be able to handle it. Make sure you have a coil spring compressor on hand.

WW

lasstss
07-11-05, 11:18 AM
Bill, on the rear shock, dont you have to lower the top mount to make the nivomat think its at the right height? A spacer would make it worse.. or redrill the lower mount above the existing holes..??

odysseus
07-11-05, 12:22 PM
Bill, on the rear shock, dont you have to lower the top mount to make the nivomat think its at the right height? A spacer would make it worse.. or redrill the lower mount above the existing holes..??

That's exactly what Wildwhl did! You need to cut or remove the existing rubber spacer UNDER the pillow top mount, reinstall the mount, which will now be ~1" lower, and put the spacers on TOP of the pillow top mount so you can bolt it all back together. Very ingenious discovery . . . as is machining a new groove to lower the clip for the fronts, IMHO.

I will be implementing this on my regular CTS, when I install the Eibach springs, soon. I want to keep the Nivomats.

urbanski
07-11-05, 12:29 PM
Bill > *
:)

wildwhl
07-11-05, 01:22 PM
lasstss and the rest.

Kits are cut...you'll understand when you receive them :)

Basically, we're taking spacers from below the mount and moving them to above the mount.

VELOSE
07-11-05, 01:35 PM
Where do I order my kit? :D

kimcheejeegae
07-11-05, 02:06 PM
For the V's that don't have the "performance strut package" (FG2s) are the rears still self leveling?

odysseus
07-11-05, 02:27 PM
For the V's that don't have the "performance strut package" (FG2s) are the rears still self leveling?

Yup. All V's with the upgraded FG2 and the stock FE4, and all CTS Sport (FE3) have self leveling nivomats.

Normally, all of these cars would have to change to the non-self leveling CTS sport shock. I'm fairly certain that the self-leveling feature is not for performance, but for the Xenon headlights (so as not to blind oncoming traffic). The non-self leveling CTS sport shocks have the same damping as the CTS nivomats, which is something like 25% less than the stock CTS-V (FE4) rates.

wildwhl
07-11-05, 03:01 PM
Velose -

PM your address to me, if you haven't already.

ace996
07-11-05, 10:50 PM
WW,
Any word on the BlueSprings?? I need 100lbs more to battle the M3s at the local autoXs.
And, if I haven't said it yet...you da man.
Ve good,
ace996

wildwhl
07-11-05, 10:53 PM
ace -

No response from bluecoilspring.com as of yet :(

I've cut 1 dozen trial kits that will be sent for free to those that are interested. I believe 9 are spoken for. PM me your mailing address if you're interested...usual disclaimers apply, and of course, you'll have to get the lathe work done on the front struts on your own.

I am considering offering this service on an exchange basis, but am not willing to accept any liability should something fail on the car :hmm:

DansCTSV
07-11-05, 11:00 PM
Hey WW,

I think its time that I go this route to lower my V. Do you plan to post some more details on this? For the front shocks, do you have any tips? Do you think any machine shop with a lathe could cut the new grooves for the clip rings? And for the rears, exactly what did you do to modify the top mount? Do you think it could be lowered a bit more? Also, how much of the spring did you cut? The more details the better.

I appreciate any info you can offer.

ace996 is right, you are da man!

Thanks, Dan

ace996
07-11-05, 11:05 PM
WW,
PM sent.

Imagine this if you would...FG2 kit with custom spring rates...all appearing very stock....and the total cost of this???? THOUSANDS less than any other option (I don't consider the CTS sport shocks an option...).

You may have something here, WW. Something that the CTS world would like too, and how many of them are there???

If you build it, they will come....

wildwhl
07-11-05, 11:13 PM
A very full write up will come soon...as soon as the widened rears get in and I finish the details.

Short answers - yes, the way I'm doing it you can adjust the "WWNivomatMod" in 1/4" increments (or 1/16", actually), up or down, for a total of about 1.125". So, in a sense, you can tune them a bit.

The front strut mod can be handled by any competent machinist on a lathe - and in my case - by a not so competent machinist (me).

Life kicks my ass every day - and I have way too much on my plate - but this is my idea. For a very modest fee and a whole lot of liability release on your part - I think I could supply FG2 and non-FG2 V series struts and Nivomat rear shocks already modified, with stock front springs installed to your specs, on an exchange basis. For arguments sake, the price is $1 - so I charge you $1,001 per Paypal to cover my set of shocks/spring and when you get yours back to me, I refund $999.99 or some crazy shit like that. Remember, I'm not here to make money...only help the V community. Besides, the idea can be ripped off (and will be) any moment now.

By doing this, you would simply put your V up on jackstands, pull all 4 wheels, pull the back seat (see the .faq on FG2 instructions, but you likely won't have to remove ANY trunk panels. My V does not have the upper seat trim inside the trunk that is referenced...so look first and save yourself some hassle), drop the rear lower control arms, unbolt Nivomats, cut 1/2 coil off rear springs, bolt-in new pieces, slap in springs, reassemble, pull front strut assemblies and box up all 4 shocks to ship back to me. Install new front struts and enjoy :)

My wife is going to kill me...and now I'm going to buy a lathe too :nono:

ace996
07-11-05, 11:52 PM
I've been wondering...

If you're taking rubber away from underneath, that should firm-up the mount...taking the "whatever level of jounce" away from the rubber mount...
Pray tell...have you experienced any decline in "hop"?

The STi boys have all sang praises for stiffer strut mounts, as the stock rubber mounts added some unwanted give on expansion joints and such.

The stiffer mount should allow the shock to do its thing instead of a piece of rubber, even if it is for an inch or so...

Also, WW, please elaborate on the balance of the handling. With the rear spring cut and the front stocker left untouched, I'm assuming that a rise in rear rate would allow some oversteer to surface. IIRC, you stated that the car is a little tail happy??? I'd hang myself if I changed the balance...oversteer would be great at the autox but close to suicide on the track. Competition Mode can't do everything for me, you know??

Thanks,
ace996

wildwhl
07-12-05, 12:01 AM
ace996 -

My V is tail happy - but that is probably more the Maggie/Headers/CAI/Tune than the lowering. I'll confess that with the 3/4 cut coil it is too much - and there is added oversteer. This is precisely why I haven't done the full write up yet. I have 2 pair of springs inbound from GMPartsDirect - hopefully this week - for further experimenting.

I am not a track guy, and Dreamin knows I need to get my arse to a track ASAP to learn more of this stuff. As to aggressive street driving - well - 16 points still hang over my head :). The wheel hop was lessened - but not significantly I don't think. I have the BMR AWH kit as well.

Finally, the method I'm using does remove the big fat rubber spacer below the mount, but replaces that with (currently) four 1/16" fabric/rubber spacer washers that I cut out of another convenient material (remember, I'm a commercial printing business owner - oh yeah - if anyone gives a shit - the calendars are complete printed and embossed - off to the trade bindery tomorrow for completion). I'm rambling. The method does firm up the shock mount - and it rides EXACTLY like I want it to now (99%). I believe the spring swap will get me to perfection, nirvana, blah, blah, blah :histeric:

ace996
07-12-05, 12:27 AM
Nice, I'm sure the Maggie/ect. does a fine job of adding oversteer;)

I'll take the pieces to Unorthodox Racing and see what can be done...although aluminum may be overkill, I've always liked overkill...and from your engine mod list, it appears as if you do,;) ;) too.

The rear mout tower seems to have some heavy reinforcements, so I'm not too concerned with taking the softer material out of the equation. BMW E36s are famous for cracking/punching through the rear tower with pillowball mounts...I don't see that happening to us.

I've checked the specs of the Eibachs and can live with the drops of the springs, but am not happy with the rates. I hate to be as paranoid as I am with this subject, but without any adjustability of the suspension pieces, keeping a neutral handling balance is paramount. Oversteer in a parking lot at 50mph is nice...at 120-130mph on a track, its time to clean the seat. Staggering the tires may offer some resolve to oversteer, but its a crap shoot.

Your solution to our problem is perfect, I just need springs. Something that will stiffen the fronts and rears enough to make it worthwhile...50-100lbs. If that's not enough, sways could be used. But I really believe that the damping would be better balanced with stiffer springs and may lead to an even smoother ride.

I can't even imagine the damage that a properly dropped/sprung FG2'd V would do on a road course....well, I meant one without the big wing and graphics and hood vents....you know what I'm saying...

Ve good,
ace996

wildwhl
07-12-05, 01:02 AM
ace -

you clearly know more than I do about spring rates. I guess the easiest solution, at the moment, is to simply cut both the front and rear springs in your case :hmm: This would in fact increase the rate, does it not (sorry if this is a stupid comment - but I believe this to be the case).

Aluminum will truly be overkill - since you're replacing RUBBER :histeric:

Delrin is a good solution and I should have that material in hand soon enough.

WW

ace996
07-12-05, 01:33 AM
WW,
Sure, cutting the front springs would also increase rate, so I wouldn't need to lower the front-lower spring seat.

Wait a minute....

H&R Springs lists the V's part number as 50781, different than the CTS's part number of 50780. Front/rear drop is 1.2/1.0...a little pricy at +400 but its a start...now I need to call to see if they even exist or if it is vaporware.

The delrin would be the deal, and would eliminate any question of longevity. And, please, accept a modest payment for your work. There is no doubt of your commitment to the V community and I'm sure many would compensate you for your efforts/passion/contribution.

I'm looking forward to the evolution of this "system". I'll make a call tomorrow to HRSprings. Should they have good news I forsee some very tortured tires on my V and some higher numbers on my gmeter...my favorite :bouncy: :bouncy:

Stay the course,
ace996

Edited: http://www.drivewerks.com/catalog/shopcart/PERF/POR_PERF_HANDRS_pg7.htm Lookie here....

ace996
07-12-05, 01:52 AM
And more to go completely nuts over...it spells it out for us here:

http://www.autoweek.com/news.cms?newsId=101057

I just about shit myself after reading this...how it handles is anyone's guess but I'm sure it ain't too shabby.

Fuschnickered,
ace966

wildwhl
07-12-05, 08:31 AM
ace-

The fact that the H&R's are still vaporware is exactly why I set out to find my own solution ;)

ace996
07-12-05, 09:11 PM
You're right...I called and they said in a few months...if even. Seems as if they need to do some more testing...I figure they're trying to figure out a way to make them work with the springs.

WW, perhaps you can "sell" your design to them...I'm going to send them a detailed email with our issues and how you solved the Nivomat pump-up problem. As it is, if the springs are ready...we're good to go. Maybe we can "test" the springs for them.

CTSV05
07-12-05, 10:35 PM
So why not modify the rear uppermount, then cut 1/2 a coil out of the front struts?

Won't this accomplish your ride height desires? As well as keep the Nivomats at full function?

Obviously this will be a limited lowering, but it seems would keep much of the stock handling in tact.

Or are you convinced lowering the front spring perch is the better route? It just seems this will lose some spring rate, or did I miss a detail on that?

ace996
07-13-05, 12:00 AM
Lowering the front spring perch, similar to dropping a collar on a coilover, will not diminish front spring rate but it could create a loose spring on full-extention. I haven't taken the fronts apart so I can't comment on the amount of pre-load on the front spring but preload doesn't increase rate on linear springs...progressive springs are a different story...

IIRC, the front springs are flat...top and bottom. Cutting the front spring would not be something I'd do, as it may not sit correctly in the seat. Also, without a spring-dyno, I couldn't be sure of the rate increase with a cutting.
I'd rather stay stock before a compromise of the neutral handling attitude, I believe that the 'Ring tuning does hold some value...

My main goal with WW's mod, is to better match the springs to the struts. The FG2s are, without doubt, overdamped in regards to the stock springs. I'd be really guessing as to what the "optimal" matched rate would be, but even 50lbs/in. should lead to an improvement in ride quality. Heck, even replacing the stock rubber underneath the mount(with something less compliant) should improve the initial "hit" experienced on expansion joints.

If I can snag a set of proper springs that would allow WW's mod, I'd be very happy. I need to make some calls...and perhaps send a set of stock springs to someone so proper fitment can be made.

Ve good,
ace996

CTSV05
07-13-05, 09:00 AM
As you can see, my knowledge here gets limited.

Would raising the front struts top mount point accomplish the goal while maintaining all the good characteristics of our suspension?

And then spring rate calculations become a moot point?

ace996
07-13-05, 05:28 PM
CTSV05,
You are absolutely correct, as raising the front shock mounts would lead to the same effect. The resultant issue would then be a mis-match of the front stock spring rate with the higher-than-stock rear cut springs. One could then mount..say...a 275 tire in the rear to help balance the oversteer, but it may not be enough.

Time will tell, as this story surely is not over.

Ve good,
ace996

CTSV05
07-13-05, 06:00 PM
I know how to make a car go straight fairly well, so I'm now anxious to learn the inuendos of cornering ands suspension adjustments.

wildwhl
07-13-05, 07:08 PM
Lowering the front spring perch, similar to dropping a collar on a coilover, will not diminish front spring rate but it could create a loose spring on full-extention. I haven't taken the fronts apart so I can't comment on the amount of pre-load on the front spring but preload doesn't increase rate on linear springs...progressive springs are a different story...

IIRC, the front springs are flat...top and bottom. Cutting the front spring would not be something I'd do, as it may not sit correctly in the seat. Also, without a spring-dyno, I couldn't be sure of the rate increase with a cutting.
I'd rather stay stock before a compromise of the neutral handling attitude, I believe that the 'Ring tuning does hold some value...

My main goal with WW's mod, is to better match the springs to the struts. The FG2s are, without doubt, overdamped in regards to the stock springs. I'd be really guessing as to what the "optimal" matched rate would be, but even 50lbs/in. should lead to an improvement in ride quality. Heck, even replacing the stock rubber underneath the mount(with something less compliant) should improve the initial "hit" experienced on expansion joints.

If I can snag a set of proper springs that would allow WW's mod, I'd be very happy. I need to make some calls...and perhaps send a set of stock springs to someone so proper fitment can be made.

Ve good,
ace996

The front spring rate remains unchanged, as the spring is not cut or modified in any way. There is still enough preload that you need a coil spring compressor to assemble the struts back together - or a friend to push down with 150lbs force or so (my light weight friend didn't weigh enough). So, on full extension, the spring cannot come loose...and in the car with the preload of vehicle weight - all is well.

Unless you plan on jumping the car, I doubt you could ever create a problem with this method of lowering the vehicle.

Ace - the front feels very well balanced to me...even better than in the stock position (I've now driven under both scenarios). The rear is a slight more firm than at stock height with stock, uncut springs, as expected. Cutting the springs has firmed things up in a good way. New materials are in a box to my left...will be cutting Delrin tomorrow with some different isolator examples. Some of the kits have shipped - the others will have some of these materials for each of you to try out
:bonkers:

wildwhl
08-03-05, 10:00 PM
OK, so I've driven this for a while now - and am VERY happy with the results. At first, with the FG2's, 3/4 coil cut rear springs and F1 tires I thought it was a bit too firm. Now with the widened rear wheels shod in 275/40/18 GSD3's and 245's in front to match - as well as only 1/2 coil cut - I think the ride is PERFECT :D

I've promised pics - but still don't have any that are very good. Here are a couple.

Also, it is currently the annual Hot August Nights event here in Reno - I can't believe how many :thumbsup: I get on the car (and it is even dirty to boot!).

I have on hand two complete sets (one brand new, one used) of stock V front and rear shocks, and two pair of rear coil springs - both factory new and unadulterated in any fashion for those interested in lowering their V with this method.

I'll be turning the front shocks (along with HDMLNIUM's - thanks for your patience) this weekend with .5", .75", and 1.0" lowering grooves - PM me if you're interested and we'll hash out numbers.

:sneaky: Plus I retained my license today :histeric:

DansCTSV
08-03-05, 10:24 PM
Just PM'd you...

t294403
08-04-05, 07:42 AM
Wildwhl,

I would also like to acquire all the parts and pieces required for this mod, but don't have PM privileges. How can I contact you?

Dooman
08-04-05, 09:16 AM
That V looks awesome! You consider the new, STS-V Supercharged emblems?

urbanski
08-04-05, 09:23 AM
OK, ...:
WW, hate to tell ya
but your car peed on your driveway :hide:
http://www.cadillacforums.com/forums/attachment.php?attachmentid=12176

wildwhl
08-04-05, 09:45 PM
She marks her territory - must have a Panhead in her ancestry (unlike your V, Urby, which has a Knucklehead in the driver's seat) :histeric:

Good thing Urby or StealthV hasn't parked next to my V - then we'd have a pile of :eek: where their cars mark their spot :rolleyes:

Better shot of wheelgaps.

HDMLNIUM
08-04-05, 10:01 PM
wildwhl,
Your car looks great at that height, what is that drop there?
Looking forward to dropping mine some... ;)

Bill

kd7895
08-04-05, 10:40 PM
WildWhl,
Could you email me at mwaller@alltel.net? I can't PM on this board for some reason.

Thanks Mickey

Staxxin
08-06-05, 12:38 AM
WW -

Could I get the same lowering effect by going with a Eibach PRO kit? BTW, The car looks great!!!! :thumbsup:

wildwhl
08-06-05, 12:59 AM
Staxxin -

Yes, you can use the Eibach springs and get even lower than what I've done (I'm about 1" lower all around). Only problem is, unless you change the spacers on top of the Nivomat (which is no big deal - I have some spacers cut if you need some) you'll have to ditch the rear shocks and go with base CTS Sport Shocks.

WW

t294403
08-06-05, 08:53 AM
Wildwhl,

Would you email me at thom.thornbury@sbcglobal.net. I would also like to acquire all the parts and pieces required for this mod.
Thanks
Thom

chip123
08-16-05, 04:21 PM
Please e-mail me @ nadi@ctaz.com. I can't PM you. Interested in your spacers

HDMLNIUM
08-16-05, 09:25 PM
wildwhl,

The Fedex man dropped off a box today...:yup:
I am going out in the garage to see what I have to do, and to get started a little. After I get home from work tomorrow I hope to get it all lowered the wildwhl way and to have another lowered V on FG2's out there...:2thumbs:
I will get pics up as soon as I finish her up..
Thanks again,

Bill

HDMLNIUM
08-16-05, 10:48 PM
wildwhl,

OK, well I know I am slow...lol But I think I have the idea now..
I lowered one of the rear shocks, about to do the next one.. Just hoping I did it right... haha
This is what I did..
Remove the factory spacer under the mount, take out the metal sleeve and put it back in the mount..
insert 2 of the small spacers into the void around the steel sleeve..
Use one of the rubber washers between that and the shock on the metal sleeve..
on top of the mount around the sleeve goes 1 hard plastic, 1 rubber, 1 hard plastic and that covers the the sleeve, then 1 thicker rubber, and then the factory top plate and nut...? Well that is how I did them so I hope that was right.. haha Going to cut 5/8's of a coil off the rear springs and use the bottom ring groove 1" for the front.. I can't wait to see how she turns out... If I am doing anything wrong, let me know, I will check this post a couple times tomorrow before I get home to tear into her....
More Pics to come...
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v466/HDMLNIUM/Lowered-FG21.jpg
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v466/HDMLNIUM/Lowered-FG2.jpg

Thanks again.....:yup:

Bill

DeVillish
08-16-05, 10:49 PM
Are the FG2's really worth the 1000 bucks? Iam looking into getting V parts on my base CTS when i get it and it looks like i can get the full stock V shocks and springs for around 500 bucks and just the FG2's are like 1200, all from GMParts. Iam also guessing that the FG2 kit does NOT come with springs...so i would have to buy those on top of the 1200 for the shocks right? And how much lower is a stock V then the base CTS? about an inch?

wildwhl
08-17-05, 12:02 AM
Bill -

You're close. Two suggestions.

Use ALL of the smaller inside diameter rubber washers below the Nivomat top mount. Depending on which version of spacers you received, this will be between 2 and 4 rubber discs per shock (probably 2).

I recommend the top groove on the front shocks (.75") as this will net about a 1" lowering (slightly over).

5/8 coil or 1/2 if you're gun shy (won't make a real big difference). Alternatively, you can cut the coil at the 5/8 location about 90% through bend up a little to create a new "flat" on the coil, and reweld in place. Then, remove about 1/4 coil off the tail (the part that will now be pointing "up" and no longer the coil flat). Make any sense?

I'm going to actually RAISE my fronts with a 1/8" spacer so that I'll be netting the .75" groove I speak of above (I grooved my FG2's at .875") This should effectively raise the front about 3/16" - I know I'm nitpicking here - but I'm really trying to fine tune this thing in :thumbsup:

HDMLNIUM
08-17-05, 05:45 AM
wildwhl,

Thanks for the reply... Top ring groove .75" it is..
Add another rubber disc before the top mount, is that before the top metal disc and nut or under the mount itself where I removed the big factory bushing? Sorry, it is still early.. On the coil, I will have to think about that for a few minutes, but I think I understand... haha
Anyway, running a little late, need to get to work..

Bill

wildwhl
08-17-05, 10:18 AM
Bill -

You want more rubber below the mount where you removed the factory bushing. You should have about 1/4" of rubber discs there (or more, because they compress).

HDMLNIUM
08-17-05, 09:03 PM
All right just finished the wildwhl lowering kit with the FG2's.. I have to say I really like it and I think your measurements are right on.. I set the front on the top groove .75" and the front looks perfect. And I cut the rear springs 5/8's a coil I still have my drag radials on the back so I won't get the true look until I put the F1's back on. Might hit the track Friday night so I left the Drag radials on. But I might bring the F1's up from my basement and through them on for a couple pics tomorrow..

Anyway, here is a finished pic, I know it is dark so I will get better pictures tomorrow. It took me about 3 and a half hours to do it, not too bad considering I let the paint cure for about 20 minutes where I cut the springs.
More pics tomorrow.. Thanks again wildwhl, you da man...:worship: ;)

Bill

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v466/HDMLNIUM/-wildwhl-styles.jpg

wildwhl
08-18-05, 01:48 AM
I'm just glad to see someone else was brave enough to try :)

How do you like the ride?

HDMLNIUM
08-18-05, 07:17 AM
I like it, not as stiff as I thought it was going to be with the FG2's.

I will throw on the F1's on in the rear tonight and get some better pics..
Like I said wildwhl, you da man..... Thanks..:yup:

Bill

Rey
08-18-05, 11:16 AM
Talked to TPIS recently. They are introducing QA1 adjustable shocks. www.tpis.com. Google QA1 and you will see that they bought Carrera. No word on exact pricing, but the should be competitive with GM Parts Direct FG2 price. I think I will go with these QA1s. Like the adjustability feature, with being able to easily change adjustment for autocross or drag racing. I am not dazzled by the Nivomat technology. Sure it is self-leveling, but what else is it? Would go with the CTS sport shocks with Eibachs before retaining the Nivomats (which are also in the FG2 package). I can still adjust my headlights, and weight in rear seat does not materially affect headlight height.

itbdby
09-01-05, 02:13 PM
wildwhl, I would like the "kit". Please email me angelomicciche@yahoo.com. Thank You

DeVillish
09-01-05, 05:41 PM
Rey where did you see the QA1 shocks for the CTS? Those sound very cool.