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Road / Track Suspension Discussion

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mkshelton View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote mkshelton Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26-March-2017 at 11:52AM
I think I might get the ball rolling this way. I used to autocross datsuns in stock class 15 years ago. Thing is, I'm not sure what to do to get this thing at all capable. I have stock, worn out suspension, ball joints, brakes, 15" wheels. Obviously I would repair the broken stuff, but would stock components be up to the rigors of changing direction hard? I'm pretty sure that even in prime condition, my car would not be competitive in stock form, I think it would be in F stock class. Which would pit it against Foxes and other much lighter, quicker cars, (with 5 speeds!) So I may as well prepare it so it's fun for me, without spending much cash that is.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Billy C Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26-March-2017 at 12:47PM
AutoX isn't very crazy. The runs are quick so heat doesn't build up like a road coarse. If you run pretty normal tires you should be well within the design limits of a completely stock car. Get fresh tires, fix the suspension stuff, get good front pads and new rotors, high temp brake fluid, fresh engine fluids, and let it rip. I might not be super competitive but it will be a blast.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote lynchster Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26-March-2017 at 1:45PM
A baffled oil pan might be a consideration.
Chuck
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Billy C Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26-March-2017 at 1:53PM
^^ ya, that's a awesome suggestion. 

If you aren't trying to do all that work, adding a quart of oil over full just for track day would probably solve any oiling issues with street tires. I ran my old 460 big block a quart over by default for over a year with countless times spent hitting the rev limiter. I pulled that motor in running condition.


Edited by Billy C - 26-March-2017 at 1:53PM
-Billy Conturo
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote lynchster Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26-March-2017 at 2:22PM
Originally posted by Billy C Billy C wrote:

adding a quart of oil over full just for track day would probably solve any oiling issues with street tires.


Not a bad idea either sir.
Chuck
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote MrSmog Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26-March-2017 at 3:10PM
I believe thats all they did with the boss 351's, the dipstick was just etched for 6 qts to show full. I don't think the pan held anymore capacity over a non boss pan. so its good to run it that way all the time.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote BackInBlack Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27-March-2017 at 2:46AM
Originally posted by mkshelton mkshelton wrote:

I think I might get the ball rolling this way. I used to autocross datsuns in stock class 15 years ago. Thing is, I'm not sure what to do to get this thing at all capable. I have stock, worn out suspension, ball joints, brakes, 15" wheels. Obviously I would repair the broken stuff, but would stock components be up to the rigors of changing direction hard? I'm pretty sure that even in prime condition, my car would not be competitive in stock form, I think it would be in F stock class. Which would pit it against Foxes and other much lighter, quicker cars, (with 5 speeds!) So I may as well prepare it so it's fun for me, without spending much cash that is.


The other guys gave good advice.

It wont take much more than a clean stock rebuild of the suspension.  I would use rubber bushings on the front strut arm (the big rubber doughnuts) and rubber bushings in the rear control arms.  They weren't designed for the rigid mount a poly bushing provides.   You could get away with poly in the rear control arms.   I have boxed/welded rear control arms with poly installed that I'm willing to sell. (I have tubular arms now)

Good tires a must, clean rebuild (ball joints, steering, bushings, etc) with poly bushings in the suspension except where mentioned above, good seat belts to keep you from sliding around,  and you will need bigger sway bars and/or fresh springs cause the body lean is pretty bad in stock form.

Not to expensive if you keep it stock with a few hundred dollars more for simple upgrades (excluding wheels/tires). 

If your running a cleveland that isn't a boss there are numerous fixes that are needed to the oiling system to run it hard.  Keep it below 5500 rpm.   Even low rpm usage causes excessive bearing wear.   Clevelands really need lifter bushings, restrictors, that all require pulling the motor which are worth doing if your pulling hte motor for a rebuild.


-John
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote mkshelton Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27-March-2017 at 5:55AM
My car is a 76 Elite with 351w, c4. Thanks for the oil advice, I was concerned about that issue, but never thought about over adding the oil. This motor only has 8k on it's rebuild. 
If anyone has seen the car in the project thread, you've seen that it's already about 200 lbs lighter up front. I'm going to have to cut the springs down as it sits with the nose up now. Any advice regarding that? Still the crown vic springs?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote 72FordGTS Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27-March-2017 at 6:34AM
CVPI springs seem to be the goto for most on here.  Most stock replacements are pretty soft.  You'll have cut them to your desired stance though.  Addco makes 1 1/8" front and 7/8" rear bars. 
I agree with John's advice, but I'd run the strut rod bearing from Little Shop Mfg.  I installed these in my car and the really made the front end much more solid.  They are expensive, but ensure that your control arms stay in proper geometry.
 
 
 
Vince

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote MrSmog Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27-March-2017 at 8:07AM
Originally posted by mkshelton mkshelton wrote:

My car is a 76 Elite with 351w, c4. Thanks for the oil advice, I was concerned about that issue, but never thought about over adding the oil. This motor only has 8k on it's rebuild. 
If anyone has seen the car in the project thread, you've seen that it's already about 200 lbs lighter up front. I'm going to have to cut the springs down as it sits with the nose up now. Any advice regarding that? Still the crown vic springs?


I missed that you ran a 351w, should be fine to go a qt over, but may want to check as I know its fine and encouraged to do on the 351c, but not positive on the windsor series engines. I'd double check just to be sure.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote mkshelton Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28-March-2017 at 5:33AM
Another question is the rear gearing, I currently still have the stock 2.75? gears and I'm thinking that 3.5 would be best.
As anyone autox an automatic? If so, did you run in 1st gear mostly and kick it to 2nd on the straight? Usually these are at the end of the course. If I kept it in 1st gear, maybe the 2.75 rear gear would be okay?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Big Bird Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28-March-2017 at 8:58AM
IDK about autocross, but I used to put 3.55 rears in my 80s Crown Vics, and they were WAY more fun that way. Takeoff from a dead stop was an excuse for tire destruction.
City driving was FUN!!!
The above post should be read in a "Grumpy Old Man" voice.
Almost forgot: "Get off my lawn!!!"
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Rockatansky Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28-March-2017 at 10:03AM
Originally posted by mkshelton mkshelton wrote:

Another question is the rear gearing, I currently still have the stock 2.75? gears ... If I kept it in 1st gear, maybe the 2.75 rear gear would be okay?
 
you're trying to play a Jedi mind trick on yourself, a 2.75 gear is a 2.75 gear is a 2.75 gear as the day is long. the car always starts out in 1st gear and 2.75 gears sCryck
 
you might want to bump that gear quite a bit more than 3.5 for track work, 4.5, 5.3?
 
the rear gear is the single most responsible component for how a car performs, i doubt you'll run out of rpm constantly turning L & R,
 
what's the expected top speed in the straight?


Edited by Rockatansky - 28-March-2017 at 10:07AM
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Billy C Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28-March-2017 at 12:42PM
You should get the car out on the track before you decide on a gear. See how the gears you have perform and if you find yourself shifting in uncomfortable spots decide where you want to be and gear it that way. Deep final gears are a quick solution to get out of hole quick with some good ol fashioned torque multiplication but no torque multiplication will make more hp. When you do decide on what gears, go all out and build or buy a limited slip setup.

I did a good bit of data logging with my auto but only had it on the street. Always had that in first with the 3.25 final gear.

With the tko and 3.25 I had courses that I stayed in first the entire time and when I hit the straight i was hitting the limiter at the very end and it would have hurt time more to shift so I just kept it to the limiter unil the box.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote mkshelton Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28-March-2017 at 1:50PM
That's what I was thinking, Billy. In my Datsun, I would have to shift for the straightways, but that was a 4 speed. You only get to 40, maybe 50 mph max. I don't know at what speed my car would reach as it sits now, but it sure feels sluggish from a stop, even in first gear.
Rock, what I was talking about was leaving the shifter in 1st, and as Billy said, letting it wind all the way up for the whole run.
This car has the quicker Lares steering box but that's about it.

By the way, I apologize if we have come too far from the intended discussion on road/track suspension.
To get back on topic, is there a way to simply build some new upper control arms that are located more in line with the LCAs and use a link to locate the axle? Would that be worth it? I've not driven one of these cars at their limits as mine has some serious suspension concerns.
The reason I'm considering more radical changes are that I need to address suspension repair right away, want to autox it hard, keep it from doing anything unexpected when driven to the edge of reason, have a good welder, and experience in the offroading side of fabbing.(but definitely more of the run it till it breaks and then weld it up with twice the metal kind) 

Also, how necessary is it to keep the rubber body bushings, would solid mounts help?

Thanks for ya'lls input!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote mkshelton Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13-April-2017 at 9:17AM
Hi all, I was wondering if we know of a supplier for taller upper ball joints. I know it was discussed, but does anyone know who sells them?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote BackInBlack Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13-April-2017 at 9:59AM
I acquired the last stock Howe Racing had a while ago; they may have 1 or 2 left in stock.   You can give them a call to see what they have.  Unfortunately most cater to Chevy setups with the 4 bolt upper.   

-John
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote BackInBlack Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13-April-2017 at 1:58PM
I figured out another way by welding in a adapter sleeve in the lower control arm which allows using a Chrysler k727 screw in ball joint. This would also lower the car without lowering springs. Beware if you go beyond 1 inch this could cause binding in the upper ball joint.
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