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Old 01-21-2013, 02:59 PM   #1
sam.u.el
 
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Upgrading stock suspension comparable to 1LE?

I have an LS3 equipped camaro with its stock suspension. After reading and watching so many good things on how amazing the handling is on the 1LE I can't help but feel like my SS is just 'Meh' now. Although I Love my car, I have an itch for wanting a 1LE now but I do not want to take a loss and trade. So instead what I want to know is, what ingredients of suspension parts do I need to come up with a recipe that will make my car Handle as good if not better than the 1LE? All my knowledge on cars (which isn't a lot ) is mainly engines so I apologize if you may need to explain things to me as if I were a child.

Any help and advice is greatly appreciated and I thank you all very much in advance for your time!
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Old 01-21-2013, 03:07 PM   #2
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You need this.....

http://www.camaro5.com/forums/showpo...4&postcount=16

Should be available around May through Chevrolet Performance Catalog, no word yet on price......be patient "grasshopper"!!!
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Old 01-21-2013, 03:12 PM   #3
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You can have a car that handles better than a 1LE relatively easily. Springs, sway bars, and a few key bushings will get you there.
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Old 01-21-2013, 03:13 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blazzin1 View Post
You need this.....

http://www.camaro5.com/forums/showpo...4&postcount=16

Should be available around May through Chevrolet Performance Catalog, no word yet on price......be patient "grasshopper"!!!
Ahh yes! I think I've seen a few posts like that about the package being available for non 1LE cars but lurking around somewhere I read you can probably get better performance going aftermarket, and maybe even saving a few bucks knowing how expensive GM parts are. I'll be keeping an eye on it for sure just in case though. Thanks for the reply!



EDIT: Just saw Apex's post. See what I mean? I see it every where haha.
Thanks Chase. Is there a package that sells all those items?
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Old 01-21-2013, 03:17 PM   #5
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Thanks Chase. Is there a package that sells all those items?
I would recommend a Pfadt ZL1/FE4 Spec Stage 2 or 3 package. We could also do a custom package somewhere in between the two. A Stage 2.5 if you will.
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Old 01-21-2013, 04:22 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by sam.u.el View Post
Ahh yes! I think I've seen a few posts like that about the package being available for non 1LE cars but lurking around somewhere I read you can probably get better performance going aftermarket, and maybe even saving a few bucks knowing how expensive GM parts are. I'll be keeping an eye on it for sure just in case though. Thanks for the reply!



EDIT: Just saw Apex's post. See what I mean? I see it every where haha.
Thanks Chase. Is there a package that sells all those items?
You are wrong about the price!!! The 1LE package will be significanly less than what you will pay for aftermarket stuff. You can buy much of the 1LE kit already....if you buy all the parts separately, and the prices are much less than aftermarket. Go on the 1LE section and snoop around there for a while, you'll find 'em.
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Old 01-21-2013, 05:00 PM   #7
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Just get what apex chase was saying. You will have a better suspension than the 1le and it is all in one package.

Dont forget that the 1le has upgraded drivetrain as well. The transmission is different and the rear gears are different. You would have to get the close gear ratios from rpmtransmissions or somewhere. You als0 need to install some gears. Either 3.73:1, 3.91:1, or 4.10:1.
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Old 01-21-2013, 07:18 PM   #8
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If you want 1LE-like performance, like you said in the first post, you can get it VERY affordably. Don't get me wrong Apex Chase is a great guy and I have bought plenty of stuff from him. If you are going to buy aftermarket, then by all means, buy from Chase. However, just so you are aware of your options, take a look at just the sway bars....

You can buy both 1LE sway bars for $200, see here:
http://www.camaro5.com/forums/showthread.php?t=259466

Or, yes, you can certainly have better-than-1LE performance by getting the Pfadt ZL1-Spec sway bars (as Chase suggested) for $525, see here:
http://www.pfadtracing.com/catalog/p...roducts_id/269

Most of the other suspension parts are priced very similar to these sway bars. It all depends on your budget. Like I said, if you want 1LE performance....you can get it very affordably. If you want more....be prepared to give up some cash. Your choice!!!
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Old 01-21-2013, 09:12 PM   #9
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Don't believe the bs that you can make a SS as good as a 1LE with springs, sways and a few bushings...I have had a 10SS that had springs/sways/subframe connectors/BMR adjustable toe rods, trailing arms, end links, 19" wheels and NT-05's, it was not even close to what my stock 1LE suspension is without adding anything...needs a little lowering....but you cannot believe the difference that the 1LE suspension, trans and gearing make versus a regular SS....so I get adding suspension parts to make your SS better, don't listen to someone telling you it will be as good as with a couple of aftermarket parts....
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Old 01-21-2013, 09:56 PM   #10
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Don't believe the bs that you can make it as good as a 1LE with springs, sways and a few bushings...I doubt that is going to be the same as all the added parts on the 1LE, not to mention the trans and gearing makes a huge difference compared to my old Camaro...the 1LE is better stock than my prior 10 Camaro that had all the added suspension from the aftermarket...


Like apex chase said, its easy to to make a car handle better than 1le. Just find the parts list and get better ones. Not too many parts to get.
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Old 01-21-2013, 10:06 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by So Cal Camaro View Post
Don't believe the bs that you can make a SS as good as a 1LE with springs, sways and a few bushings...I have had a 10SS that had springs/sways/subframe connectors/BMR adjustable toe rods, trailing arms, end links, 19" wheels and NT-05's, it was not even close to what my stock 1LE suspension is without adding anything...needs a little lowering....but you cannot believe the difference that the 1LE suspension, trans and gearing make versus a regular SS....so I get adding suspension parts to make your SS better, don't listen to someone telling you it will be as good as with a couple of aftermarket parts....
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Like apex chase said, its easy to to make a car handle better than 1le. Just find the parts list and get better ones. Not too many parts to get.
I guess the confusion here is that the 1LE is more than a track pack on a SS. The 1LE has different drivetrain components, but handling is fairly easy to attain through a variety of means. If you want to handle like a 1LE but are happy with your drivetrain, you can probably go a few ways.
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Old 01-21-2013, 10:14 PM   #12
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At a minimum, add the 2013 LCA's and Pedders ZL1 style sway bar...you won't acheive 1LE performance without some coilovers, as I've had drop springs...they won't do to match the 1LE suspension....you'll need more parts than the 1LE package costs...and don't forget some lighter weight wheels....
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Old 01-22-2013, 01:06 AM   #13
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Thank you everyone for your responses! I guess I should've clarified that I knew the 1LE had different gearing, wheels/tires, etc. The_Blur would be correct in assuming I'm happy with my current drivetrain (for now haha). I'm just wanting my SS to handle well enough to where I wouldn't feel like I HAVE to buy a 1LE for great performance. My knowledge on suspension is pretty non existent which is why I started this thread for advice and info. I tried searching and lurking here and there to read up on different parts but was confused on it all.
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Old 01-22-2013, 09:00 AM   #14
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Good thing is you already have the FE4 suspension so you don't have to convert that over. Get you some ZL1 spec bars from either Pedders or Pfadt. Get you some coilovers. Get some bushings for the cradle, inserts will probably be good enough if your under 500hp. Add a good Agressive Street alignment with specs from Pedders or Pfadt. That right their will improve you alot.

If you have the money then go ahead and do Trailing Arms, Toe Rods, and more bushings like the differential and radius rod bushings. A set of lighter wheels will help alot as well.

Gears really give the car alot of get up and go as well.

As you can see I have pretty much all of those except for the wheels. Will mine out perform a 1LE? Maybe not....but at this point I feel like my car will out perform what I'm willing to push it to.

If you were buying new or willing to take a trade in hit then yes....start off with the 1LE. If not, you can get your car to feel a heck of a lot better.
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Old 01-22-2013, 12:05 PM   #15
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Vehicle Dynamics is a college-level program all by itself, so don't feel bad. College-level textbooks are available through the SAE bookstore, at what I assume are college-level prices.

But there are a few softcover books that provide a decent introduction. Fred Puhn's "How To Make Your Car Handle" is arguably the best of those.

Ultimately - or perhaps first and foremost - handling comes down to your tires and wheels. An autocrossers' mantra goes something like "seat time, tires and wheels, everything else". In that order.

A few thoughts.
A 1LE with 2SS wheels and tires will not match a 1LE with the "proper" rolling stock.
A 1LE with 1LE tires on 2SS wheels still won't match a true 1LE. It might be close enough to not matter to some or even many folks, but it'll still be coming up short.
You'll probably need at least 1LE-level tires and wheels to make a 2SS equal to or better than a 1LE, no matter what else you do.


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Old 01-22-2013, 01:02 PM   #16
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The Pfadt stage kits are awesome packages. We run the ZL spec sway bars on our JDP track spec Camaro and love them. The car feels very balanced with almost no body roll. We have been proving their performance time and time again at Miller Motorsports park.

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Feel free to Call PM or email me with any questions. We have a lot of package options and can help you decide what is the right package for you.

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Old 01-22-2013, 08:54 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by The_Blur View Post
I guess the confusion here is that the 1LE is more than a track pack on a SS. The 1LE has different drivetrain components, but handling is fairly easy to attain through a variety of means. If you want to handle like a 1LE but are happy with your drivetrain, you can probably go a few ways.
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Old 01-22-2013, 09:33 PM   #18
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OP, the Camaro has a very rigid chassis and you already have the improved FE4 suspension. I think if you set some moderate goals you can noticeably improve the handling of your SS without spending a ton of $$.

If all you are looking for is a better handling car you can go with a set of differential, cradle, trailing arm, and front radius rod bushing inserts. Then add a set of aftermarket front and rear sway bars. You can save a ton of $$ by installing all of this yourself.

This will greatly reduce understeer, wheel hop, rear step out, and improve steering accuracy. Your Camaro will drive like a different car. Then if you want more look at a lighter wheel, stickier tire set up. 18s are the best here if you are okay with the look.

With all that your SS will be in the same ball park as a 1LE. And if you ever want to try Autocross, track days, or the drags, your SS will be ready.
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Old 01-22-2013, 10:08 PM   #19
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Tires, Tires, Tires. Wheels and Tires. You'll need these foremost.
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Old 01-22-2013, 10:19 PM   #20
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Start with bushing inserts, add a set of coilovers and ZL1 sway bars plus a good alignemnet after the install.

Look at the Pedders Pace Car package
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Old 01-23-2013, 12:02 AM   #21
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Tires, Tires, Tires. Wheels and Tires. You'll need these foremost.
What are the best tires to upgrade to if keeping stock 20" SS wheels? (For handling not drag)
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Old 01-23-2013, 09:53 AM   #22
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What are the best tires to upgrade to if keeping stock 20" SS wheels? (For handling not drag)
Michelin Pilot Super Sports are well reviewed with respect to the handling, dry and wet traction, and wear compromise.

The stock SS wheels are very heavy. Even the expensive 1LE SSX style wheels are not much lighter. 20 inch wheels are for SUVs. Smaller diameter aftermarket wheels (look for lowest weight) will make a big difference in handling, feel, and even acceleration. Or so I have read. I do know unsprung weight is the enemy of handling.
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Old 01-23-2013, 10:18 AM   #23
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Some of our top Auto X'rs out here have been playing with the 19's and use NT05's or invo's. The Michelin Pilots are good to
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Old 01-23-2013, 11:28 AM   #24
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What are the best tires to upgrade to if keeping stock 20" SS wheels? (For handling not drag)
I'd be strongly tempted to source another pair of 9" wide wheels.

And then run Michelin Pilot Super Sports in 245/45-20 or possibly 255/45-20. I suppose you could stagger those two sizes but I don't think I'd do that myself.

Otherwise, trying to find both stock sizes in the same "top-shelf" make & model tire may prove difficult, and the OE 8" & 9" wheel widths are both relatively narrow for the tire sizes chosen anyway (which generally sacrifices cornering/handling goodness for ride quality).


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Old 01-23-2013, 12:13 PM   #25
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If you're going to get serious about road tracks and autoX, you're going to want some wheels/tires just for those activities. Why?

1. You're going to mess up those pretty wheels and tires quickly. Leave the good looking stuff at home when you go out to play.
2. Many more options for HiPo tires in smaller diameters. Cheaper too.
3. Performance benefits!

Here's what I went with. I had CCW make me some 18x10's front and 18x11's rear in a simple shotpeened finish. Mounted with Toyo R888's 315/30/18 and 335/30/18's.
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