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Time to sort the suspension. Ess_Three Imola etc..

Discussion in 'A3/S3 Forum (8L Chassis)' started by Markb, Dec 27, 2004.

  1. Markb
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    Markb Active Member

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    [Dec 27, 2004]
    As subject I've finally had enough of the poor handling. So I'm going to do something about it and I want to get it right first time. The only problem is that I want to keep the good ride quality /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/crazy.gif


    I was looking at buying the Eibach pro kit that is for sale on the forum and matching them with Eibach ARBS, S3 strut brace and new suspension bushes.

    The Eibach kit consists of -30mm Eibach springs and Sachs shocks. I know the Eibach springs are quality from past experience, but the Sachs Shocks are a bit of a concern /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/confused.gif I've been reading up on them and they are not known as 'Performance' shocks. Anyone know anthing about them? Any good?



    If I don't go for this kit I will be going for Eibach springs matched with either Bilstein or Koni shocks, Eibach ARBS, S3 Strut brace and new suspension bushes.

    Which would you recommend? Koni or Bilstein? Also what about ride quality? As I had Koni's on my old Corsa and it handled like nothing I've ever driven, but it didn't do much for you teeth LOL It was that hard.

    Finally how much would I be looking at paying for Koni/Bilsteins? Which model? Finally where from?


    Cheers Mark /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/beerchug.gif
    #1
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  3. Markb
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    Markb Active Member

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    [Dec 27, 2004]
    Oh yeah I forgot to mention I've already got the Eibach Springs in my garage as I was going to fit them on their own, but if I am going to do something I have to do it properly /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/wink.gif
    #2
  4. Markb
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    Markb Active Member

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    [Dec 27, 2004]
    I am hoping Ess_Three and Imola will be able to put their 2p's worth forward /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/wink.gif
    #3
  5. Ess_Three
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    Ess_Three Active Member

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    [Dec 27, 2004]
    [ QUOTE ]
    Markb said:
    I am hoping Ess_Three and Imola will be able to put their 2p's worth forward /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/wink.gif

    [/ QUOTE ]

    I'll be back...just have to pop out...I'll give my thoughts as soon as I can...
    #4
  6. Markb
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    Markb Active Member

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    [Dec 27, 2004]
    [ QUOTE ]
    Ess_Three said:
    [ QUOTE ]
    Markb said:
    I am hoping Ess_Three and Imola will be able to put their 2p's worth forward /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/wink.gif

    [/ QUOTE ]

    I'll be back...just have to pop out...I'll give my thoughts as soon as I can...

    [/ QUOTE ]

    Fantastic I will await your return chap /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/beerchug.gif



    Oh yeah I can't edit my first post, but I forgot to add the following:

    How will the uprated suspension bushes effect the ride quality?

    Also can you uprated bump stops for the shocks?
    #5
  7. recomdos
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    recomdos Member

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    [Dec 27, 2004]
    [ QUOTE ]
    Stuart_A3_Turbo said:
    Next up - Strut brace which will be purchased very soon, well as soon as Recomdos gets off his arse and gets me some pics of what it looks like. /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/laugh_roll.gif

    [/ QUOTE ]

    alright - alright! /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/wink.gif

    [ QUOTE ]
    Markb said:


    I am waiting for them pics as well LOL

    [/ QUOTE ]

    sheesh!

    heh - ok, I will go and take some now, not sure how good they will be in the dark, but I will also take some in the daylight when I get a minute!

    Rob
    #6
  8. Ess_Three
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    Ess_Three Active Member

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    [Dec 28, 2004]

    Righty Oh...


    [ QUOTE ]
    Markb said:
    As subject I've finally had enough of the poor handling. So I'm going to do something about it and I want to get it right first time. The only problem is that I want to keep the good ride quality /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/crazy.gif


    [/ QUOTE ]

    Keep the ride quality?...that's not going to happen...you ARE going to loose some of that!


    [ QUOTE ]

    I was looking at buying the Eibach pro kit that is for sale on the forum and matching them with Eibach ARBS, S3 strut brace and new suspension bushes.


    [/ QUOTE ]

    You could do worse I guess...but you could also do better.
    I prefer to buy springs from spring specialists and dampers from damper specialists as the individual parts tends to bew better than their hotch-potch kits.
    The exception often being coilover kits...


    [ QUOTE ]

    The Eibach kit consists of -30mm Eibach springs and Sachs shocks. I know the Eibach springs are quality from past experience, but the Sachs Shocks are a bit of a concern /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/confused.gif I've been reading up on them and they are not known as 'Performance' shocks. Anyone know anthing about them? Any good?


    [/ QUOTE ]

    Sachs are a decent maker...but not in this application.
    I would avoid.
    Go for a damper with pedigree...Bilstein or Koni would be top of my list.


    [ QUOTE ]

    If I don't go for this kit I will be going for Eibach springs matched with either Bilstein or Koni shocks, Eibach ARBS, S3 Strut brace and new suspension bushes.


    [/ QUOTE ]

    Bingo!
    Bushes - OK. But that will also make things harsher.
    Strut brace - no difference unless you are very hard and very stiff (oo er) and running pretty aggressive settings - and even than it's addition is of questionably worth. It can't do any harm...but it'll not fix any problems - despite what many will convince themselves!


    [ QUOTE ]

    Which would you recommend? Koni or Bilstein? Also what about ride quality? As I had Koni's on my old Corsa and it handled like nothing I've ever driven, but it didn't do much for you teeth LOL It was that hard.


    [/ QUOTE ]

    Konis tend to be harder than Bilsteins.
    Bilsteins give - generally - good ride comfort but can be a bit on the soft side for press-on stuff...now, on an S3 it's ideal as you want to keep all 4 wheels on the tarmac, driving forward all the time...on a FWD it's a different philosophy.
    The rear wheels are castors...you want them to follow the front, doing no work...and who cares if you cock the outside wheel up in the air on a FWD car?
    It doesn't matter...my Golf does it!
    On FWD it's fine...on 4WD...not so fine as you are wasting drive.

    OK...back to your set up:
    I would be tempted to run Eibach springs and ARBs with Koni dampers.
    This way you can run the front dampers just off minimum, keeping reasonable ride quality, and proportionally stiffen the rear to get the back to rotate easily.
    This would give fine handling when set up correctly, and with the tyre pressures optimised to suit.

    Changing bushes beyond this WILL tighten things up...if you need them. If you do trackdays and want the nth degree of handling...if it's a road car, I'd be tempted to keep the rubber bushes at the front and isolate a lot of the noise and hershness.

    Rear beam bushes are a worthwhile change though...they improve the turn in, no end!

    The Bilstein dampers in this set-up would also be ideal...probably a little softer, giving a better ride...but you won't have the adjustibility of the koni set up.


    Front strut brace...if you want. Can't do any harm...won't make any difference either, if I'm brutally honest...not on 'normal' tyres, suspension settings etc.


    If you want the next step...go for really decent quality coilovers. Avoid the cheap rubish...as they are just that - cheap and nasty, and you will be better off with seperate spring / dampers from the decent makes....that is if you want handling.
    If you just want to dump it in the weeds and have awful ride quality...the cheap [censored] will suffice.

    Personally, I'd look at coilovers from Koni, KW or Bilstein....but the price goes up each step of the way.
    The Konis are fantastic...but harsher than their dampers when used with Eibach springs or similar. Be aware.

    Either spring/damper combinations or coilovers will give massive increases in handling...but will reduce comfort...
    The gains you get will be proportional to the time you spend setting up the suspension geometry / damper settings though.


    After springs/dampers or coilovers I'd look at tyres and tyre pressures...then wheel weights / sizes...then strut braces.


    Suspension is all about compromises...
    For a nice fast road set-up retaining reasonable ride quality and at reasonable money, I'd go for:
    Eibach (Or H&R) springs
    Koni dampers (over Bilstein's as they are adjustable)
    Eibach ARBs (they just work)
    Uprated rear beam bushes
    Decent suspension settings / tyre pressures


    Next step would be:
    Koni coilovers (hard but brilliant and adjustable)
    Eibach ARBs (they just work)
    Uprated rear beam bushes
    Decent suspension settings / tyre pressures


    Next step would be:
    Koni coilovers (hard but brilliant and adjustable)
    Eibach ARBs (they just work)
    Uprated rear beam bushes and front lower arm bushes
    Uprated engine mounts
    Lightweight / different sized wheels
    Decent suspension settings / tyre pressures


    Next step would be:
    Koni coilovers (hard but brilliant and adjustable)
    Eibach ARBs (they just work)
    Uprated rear beam bushes and front lower arm bushes
    Uprated engine mounts
    Lightweight / different sized wheels
    Decent suspension settings / tyre pressures


    Next step would be:
    Koni coilovers or better (Bilstein or KW)
    Eibach ARBs (or Neuspeed with an adjustable rear bar)
    Uprated rear beam bushes, front lower arm bushes, and crossmember bushes
    Uprated engine mounts
    Lightweight / different sized wheels
    Decent suspension settings / tyre pressures
    Strut braces
    Sticky tyres

    Of course, these are my views...many will disagree.
    These will work though /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/tongue.gif

    #7
  9. Markb
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    Markb Active Member

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    [Dec 28, 2004]
    WOW cheers for the essay Ess_Three /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/laugh.gif

    Sounds like I am going dowm the right road then. I was thinking of Coil overs, but it's quite a jump in price. I'll have to have a look again though.


    At the moment I am heading towards this setup though:

    Eibach springs
    Koni dampers
    Eibach ARBs
    Uprated rear beam bushes
    Decent suspension settings / tyre pressures
    (Front strut brace, just for the hell of it)


    When you say uprated rear beam bushes do you mean Powerflex ones?

    Also how would I go about adjusting the pressures? Is it just trial and error until you find one that works?

    Also running the front dampers just off minimum?


    Cheers again I knew I could count on your input /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/wink.gif
    #8
  10. imported_fingermouse
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    imported_fingermouse Guest

    [Dec 28, 2004]
    makes good reading this /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/smile.gif one day i will alter my standard setup but as ive only had the S3 4 months i`ll wait and add new life to her in a year or 2.
    #9
  11. Markb
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    Markb Active Member

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    [Dec 28, 2004]
    [ QUOTE ]
    ashs3 said:
    Don't want to hijack this thread but...

    Ess_Three I take it Bilstein Sprintline shocks and Eibach Pro springs are a good combo for the S3 then?

    (That is what I had on my 328sport)

    [/ QUOTE ]

    I would say so from what has been said in this thread and from reading this
    #10
  12. Ess_Three
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    Ess_Three Active Member

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    [Dec 29, 2004]
    [ QUOTE ]
    ashs3 said:
    Don't want to hijack this thread but...

    Ess_Three I take it Bilstein Sprintline shocks and Eibach Pro springs are a good combo for the S3 then?

    (That is what I had on my 328sport)

    [/ QUOTE ]

    Can't see why not...but the H&R springs I feel are slightly more complient and I think the S3 benefits from that.
    I had H&R springs and Bilstein dampers along with Neuspeed ARBs and simply could not fault the handling. It was sublime (for an S3!)
    #11
  13. Drill
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    Drill Member

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    [Dec 29, 2004]
    As a matter of fact, not 2 hours ago I ordered the H&R Sport Springs and Bilstein B8 Sprint dampers /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/grin.gif

    /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/beerchug.gif
    #12
  14. Markb
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    Markb Active Member

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    [Dec 29, 2004]
    I think I had better get my Koni's ordered tomorrow then /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/laugh.gif

    Got the Eibach ARB's on order, just need to get the uprated rear bushes.

    Anyone know the best place (I.e cheapest) to get the Koni's and the bushes from?

    Cheers /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/laugh.gif
    #13
  15. olekvi
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    olekvi Member

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    [Jan 9, 2005]
    [ QUOTE ]
    Markb said:
    I think I had better get my Koni's ordered tomorrow then /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/laugh.gif

    Got the Eibach ARB's on order, just need to get the uprated rear bushes.

    Anyone know the best place (I.e cheapest) to get the Koni's and the bushes from?

    Cheers /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/laugh.gif

    [/ QUOTE ]

    Sorry, no. But where did you order your Eibach ARB's?

    regards
    Ole Bendik
    #14

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