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Experts only please :) Coilovers / Springs / Spacers / WALK / ARB's

Discussion in 'A3/S3/Sportback (8P Chassis)' started by TDI_TIM, May 23, 2014.

  1. TDI_TIM
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    TDI_TIM Top Gear

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    Guys,

    I have been chatting to Damian at DPM and have some quotes for items etc.. but I am unsure what to go for so some help would be appreciated!
    I have an A3 2010 2.0 TDI 140 CR Black Edition - remapped (custom) with DPF gutted and EGR delete running approx 190-200bhp (yet to go on RR so don't all hate on estimated figures!) also running S3 brakes and I've put the 170 rear valance and twin tip exhaust on too, plus S3 pedals etc.. http://www.audi-sport.net/vb/a3-s3-...di-readers-ride-build-thread.html#post1964784

    Next is handling - so my questions is what setup to go for?
    Setup1: H&R Lowering springs, Front and rear ARB's (not sure on sizes yet) and spacers (thinking 12mm front and 15mm rear?)
    Setup2: AP Coilovers and spacers
    Setup3: H&R Lowering springs, Front and rear ARB's (not sure on sizes yet) and spacers (thinking 12mm front and 15mm rear?) and WALK (whiteline anti lift kit)

    Circa £600 allocated to spend - not going to go on a track with this car but I enjoy spirited driving and wish the handling to be improved.

    Iv had lowering springs before on my Leon Cupra R (280bhp) and they were great and the ride height was useable on the daily etc.. but I never got around to fitting ARB's or spacers on it.

    Ideally answers from people who have similar set ups present or past as this is a serious post and I'm looking to place an order in the next week or so.
    #1
  2. leeds2592
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    leeds2592 When I grow up, I want a 964!

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    Totally depends how picky you are with the ride height IMO.

    If you want it to look exactly how you want it, go for coilovers. Loads of people that have got springs, aren't happy with the drop so replace them with coilovers which costs more in the long run. I've got AP's on my A3 and for the money, they're brilliant! My only gripe with them is that I wish they went a bit lower, but that's just me.

    If you're after some spacers, I've got a set of 8mm and 12mm H&R Trak+ spacers and bolts for sale at the moment. Ping me a PM if you're interested.

    Can't really comment on ARB's as I've never had any experience with them.
    #2
  3. S3_Jacko
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    S3_Jacko Active Member

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    For that budget i'd go with the springs and ARBs... More than enough for your setup and you'll notice a massive difference in the handling even at that...

    Spacers.... Depending on the ET of your wheel.. 10mm front and 12mm rear seem to be the most commonly used setup
    #3
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  4. Mr. B
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    Mr. B English...not so good

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    Just cut the springs, it will handle like a dream. Trust me, I'm an expert... :ninja:
    #4
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  5. RedDejavu
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    RedDejavu Active Member

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    dont go whiteline get superpro instead, better and less prone to splitting. Coilovers + Super pro ALK would be best option here.
    #5
  6. Sayam
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    Sayam Member

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    I'd go for Eibach Sportline springs. I had them on my car previously and they are excellent. H&R springs tend to be a harsher ride in my experience.

    I have no experience with any of the other stuff you mention. Other than that all I'll add is make sure you take it for a decent 4 wheel alignment when all the work has been completed.
    #6
  7. TDI_TIM
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    TDI_TIM Top Gear

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    Cheers for the replies guys, I have the OEM 7spoke titanium 18" RS4 wheels (2010 black edition, 2011 changed to rotars)

    I was thinking about going 10mm front and 15mm rear for spacers then remove the rear arch screw to avoid any sort of rubbing!

    I like the idea of coilovers (adjustable height etc..) but when I had the lowering springs before (cupraR) I felt it sat just about right. Im looking to close the wheel arch gap but still maintain practicality. I would imagine a further 30mm drop then what I have now (standard Sline height)

    I heard that getting a rear ARB is worth it to help with the handling - so would be interested in hearing peoples views on these as the car does "roll" when turning sharply and could do with being supported on that under/oversteer!
    #7
  8. s3_trev
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    s3_trev Member

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    If you want to improve handling, I can, from my own experience, advise against lowering springs with OEM dampers. Makes the ride awful. You dont seem to have even considered upgrading dampers, so on that note Id have to go for setup 2 from your list of options.
    #8
  9. smurfworth
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    smurfworth Well-Known Member

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    +1 been there done that decent, coilovers worked out better, and even at the lowest was never unusable.
    #9
  10. Compkiler
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    Compkiler Member

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    Sorry to bombard on your thread fella but i have a bit of a question also with this... :)

    Ive just got back from the Audi garage as i have heard a slight grating noise coming from the front left of the bonnet when i turn my wheel...
    Apparently after a lot of examining, they have said its the front left spring rubbing at the top on the top mount. Its going to cost me about £230 to get that one spring replaced with an OEM one and a new top mount.

    Shall i bite the bullet and get a set of coilovers now or just pay for them to fit this new spring to stop the creaking?
    If so how much and which ones do people recommend here? I dont want to pay to much as ive just spent out a lot already atm. I need to know how much its going to cost me in total...
    My mate said he would fit them for £50 quid!!
    #10
  11. Muzza80
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    Muzza80 Member

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    Dont go for cheap coilovers, you need to be spending from close to a grand upwards for a decent set imo.
    #11
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  12. Compkiler
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    Compkiler Member

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    #12
  13. smurfworth
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    smurfworth Well-Known Member

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    Ap's are a favourite on this forum. Made by KW so it's good stuff. I've had them and loved them.
    #13
  14. thesmileyone
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    thesmileyone Member

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    I would much rather have top of the range spring and damper set than bottom of the range coilovers!
    #14
  15. mechanic69
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    mechanic69 Member

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    Ditto, Bilsteins and Eibach springs
    #15
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  16. TDI_TIM
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    TDI_TIM Top Gear

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    Why would upgrading dampers and springs be any better than buying coilovers?
    #16
  17. s3_trev
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    s3_trev Member

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    Where did I say that upgrading dampers and springs is better than buying coilovers? My point was that you should not have an upgrade option of springs and not include upgraded dampers as well. Not when your goal is handling. For example choice A should be coilovers and choice B should be springs and dampers. Your option with the springs, has no dampers. Do you understand what I mean?
    #17
  18. s3_trev
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    s3_trev Member

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    Yip. Billy B8s if it was me. H&R springs are also a good choice, again with the B8s.
    #18
  19. mechanic69
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    mechanic69 Member

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    B8s too
    #19
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  20. Compkiler
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    Compkiler Member

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    #20
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  21. TDI_TIM
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    TDI_TIM Top Gear

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    Dude that was a question from me don't take it the wrong way! LOL I'm asking why would springs n dampers be better than coilovers?
    #21
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  22. Sevv
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    Sevv Pushing the limits..

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    id go for b8's and H&R springs too , plus id only do the rear sway bar .. if you do the front you'll negate the effect of the rear sway bar as it becomes stiffer on the front and the car well will like all audis understeer so leave the front untouched and get a rear H&R sway
    #22
  23. S3_Mat
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    S3_Mat Member

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    For that money i would get matched springs dampers, both front and rear ARBS that are adjustable - set the rear bar to hard the front bar to soft - add an Anti lift kit and also adjustable ball joints which super pro offer.

    Ball joints are overlooked i feel on the A3 platform and because geometry plays an important part in how the car handles and there is a large difference between OEM Camber on the front (-0.5deg) to the rear (-2deg). Adjustable ball joints and a small drop should enable you to run more camber at the front which will help to negate understeer, improve turn in and corner exit allowing you to get the power down earlier. This is especially important in front wheel drive cars, but would also be great upgrade for Quattro cars.
    #23
  24. s3_trev
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    s3_trev Member

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    Sorry if it came across the wrong way. Was just explaining myself. I dont think that one option is necessarily better than the other. A good spring and damper set up is great, as are good coilovers. Just the obvious things like being able to adjust the ride height with coilovers etc. I think you have made a good choice with the APs as smurf has a great opinion on them as do a few others I think :)

    edit: whoops it wasnt you that went for the APs LOL
    #24
  25. TDI_TIM
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    TDI_TIM Top Gear

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    No worries :) oh and I will be going for the AP Coilovers / if I buy coilovers they are my option of choice.
    #25
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  26. TDI_TIM
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    TDI_TIM Top Gear

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    Cheers for the advice guys. I am toying between springs n dampers or coilovers.

    Going to get spacers - what do people think are the best option? I'm thinking 10mm front and 15mm rear?

    ARBs - I will just get a rear one as most people think that's the best option.

    ALK - white line or super pro?

    Camber - front or rear, what degree?
    #26
  27. S3_Mat
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    S3_Mat Member

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    You can't adjust front camber without ball joints or top mounts bear that in mind. Although lowering the car will give more negative camber its still fixed. Anything up to -1.5deg at the front would be ideal and you shouldn't get too much increased wear.

    Superpro ALK is the superior one and if your on standard wheels 10mm front 12mm back will be OK with a modest drop without rubbing.
    #27
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  28. mechanic69
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    mechanic69 Member

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    I was advised these settings

    [TABLE="width: 270"]
    [TR]
    [TD]Conservative Street Setup[/TD]
    [/TR]
    [TR]
    [TD]Between 1/16 and 1/32 TOE IN front and 1/32 TOE IN rear[/TD]
    [/TR]
    [TR]
    [TD]Ride height at 25.875” front and 26.000” rear[/TD]
    [/TR]
    [TR]
    [TD](–1.0 camber front)[/TD]
    [/TR]
    [TR]
    [TD][/TD]
    [/TR]
    [TR]
    [TD]Aggressive Street Setup[/TD]
    [/TR]
    [TR]
    [TD]Between 1/32 and 0 TOE IN on all four corners[/TD]
    [/TR]
    [TR]
    [TD]Ride height at 25.500” front and 25.625” rear[/TD]
    [/TR]
    [TR]
    [TD](–1.5 to –1.75 camber front)[/TD]
    [/TR]
    [/TABLE]
    #28
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  29. TDI_TIM
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    TDI_TIM Top Gear

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    Cheers guys!!

    Just bought some 2nd hand AP coilovers from eBay for £300 only 12000 miles - do I need new top mounts?
    #29
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  30. smurfworth
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    smurfworth Well-Known Member

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    I didn't on mine and never had an issue, was on for around 6k miles and no issues with top mounts.

    You'll be happy with them as a daily but they aren't stiff enough if you plan on using it on a track all the time. Makes great comfort for daily driven though!
    #30
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  31. Sevv
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    Sevv Pushing the limits..

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    would be advisable to get top mounts and bearing get the TTS top mounts they are stiffer..... thats what i went on my wreck...
    #31
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  32. Meejaman
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    Meejaman Member

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    You can see the handling set up of my car below, it's covered nearly 90,000 miles with it now. It totally transformed the car, my wife even commented that she no longer has to slow down for corners.

    Just do it, you won't regret it.
    #32
  33. markm,
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    markm, Member

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    Have to agree with this , dropped cars in the past and by far the best I've ever had is the Eibach Pro's but depends how low you want it LOL
    #33
  34. tcardio
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    tcardio Member

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    h&R or bilstein coilies
    rear h&r bar
    front 034 topmounts
    rear TT perch mount
    superpro
    done
    #34
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  35. Compkiler
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    Compkiler Member

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    Don't the eibach pros only come as a front pair tho? What about the back?
    #35
  36. TDI_TIM
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    TDI_TIM Top Gear

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    What about drop links? worth replacing them at the same time? especially if I am fitting a rear ARB and coil overs all round?

    My shopping list consists of;
    AP Coilovers (Bought)
    10mm front spacers (to buy)
    15mm rear spacers (ti buy)
    Rear ARB (whiteline as I can buy it separately - to buy)
    Superpro ALK (potentially)
    top mounts (front) stock A3 or TTS as quoted above? (to buy)
    drop links (both front and rear)

    What else will I need to buy or think about?
    Bearings for the front mounts? (or do they come with new mounts / when purchased?)
    Specific tools?
    Spacers too big? Rubbing etc..? or is 15mm rear ok?
    Last edited: May 27, 2014
    #36
  37. TDI_TIM
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    TDI_TIM Top Gear

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    Whiteline rear ARB arrived today,
    10mm spacers and 15mm spacers bought
    AP Coilovers bought

    Cheers for the advice guys, think for now I will pass on the ALK. I will get all of it fitted and then get 4 wheel alignment sorted too.

    Will of course post pictures :D
    #37
  38. mechanic69
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    mechanic69 Member

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    Yeah, just drops the front. the rears are stock. Takes away the negative rake where the front rides higher than the back
    #38
  39. Compkiler
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    Compkiler Member

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    Ok thanks for the reply Mechanic69
    #39

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