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Old 09-18-2010, 10:42 AM   #1
Bourgui
 
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Question Expers opinions wanted on suspension setup

Hi All,

I've been following this thread, which has a lot of nice information. I have some slightly different needs/wants, so I figured I'd start a different thread.

I have a V6 RS that I've started taking to the track. I sometimes like to drive "spiritedly", but that's not as much of a concern to me.

I've noticed 3 main things (suspension-wise) at the track - in no specific order):
1- a bit too much body roll
2- some understeer, especially in the tight turns
3- under hard braking, I seem to "max out" the front suspension

Now, two factors that may come into play:
1- I'm new to car-racing (and car modding). I seem to pick it up nicely, but I don't have years of experience to get me out of a tight spot, so if there is such a thing I'd probably go with more "forgiving" setups, that won't get me in the wall if I make a slight mistake
2- I don't have deep pockets, so I'll probably for the "best for the price" solutions (like for example springs vs coilovers), and proceed in stages.

Oh, and the car is my daily driver!

Thanks for the input!
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Old 09-18-2010, 10:52 AM   #2
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I would suggest Pfadt lowering springs, sway bars, and end links to take care of the understeer and body roll. Rear subframe bushings would probably be the next step if you plan to be hitting the track. Hit me up if you have any questions.

Last edited by Apex Motorsports; 09-18-2010 at 11:17 AM.
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Old 09-18-2010, 10:55 AM   #3
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Thats a great thread to start with ....but really I feel your pain as I too had to keep cost in mind. One big factor in the cost equation is if you will install yourself or you have to pay someone to do the install.

I say this becasue if you don't have to pay for the install you should probably do it piece by piece that way you can see the changes each specific mod may make.

For instance you could start with sub-frame inserts which are relatively cheap to do and seems to be the most basic suspension mod you can make and you may find that it makes a huge difference and you don't need anything else. Or you may say "that took care of handling and ride feel but I still have some body roll" Then you could go to a front or rear only sway bar and so on and so on....

But if you have to pay to have each one of these steps done than it may be better to get everything installed at once, but then you have to be sure that what you get does the trick for you.

What I did in my build was great as a daily driver at a reasonable cost but don't know how it would do at the track. I'm sure it would be an improvement over stock but not sure how "forgiving" it would be when that wall is smiling at you!

Just my .55 cents worth....good luck with your selections.
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Old 09-18-2010, 04:59 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by JProberts View Post

For instance you could start with sub-frame inserts which are relatively cheap to do and seems to be the most basic suspension mod you can make and you may find that it makes a huge difference and you don't need anything else.

What sub-frame inserts are your referring to? I was looking at the Pfadt sub-frame inserts, and they're over $600!!! Not exactly what I would consider "relatively cheap"!!! I'm sure they're kick ass, but not exactly cheap in my book! Did you use a different brand or something? I would think sway bars would be the most basic and first upgrade you should do to your suspension, at least that's gonna be my route.
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Old 09-18-2010, 06:35 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by blazzin1 View Post
What sub-frame inserts are your referring to? I was looking at the Pfadt sub-frame inserts, and they're over $600!!! Not exactly what I would consider "relatively cheap"!!! I'm sure they're kick ass, but not exactly cheap in my book! Did you use a different brand or something? I would think sway bars would be the most basic and first upgrade you should do to your suspension, at least that's gonna be my route.
Well I have the Pedders rear sub-frame inserts and I believe they were about $250. They have a street 1 package on their cite for about $300 and with that you get the front radius rod bushes I think along w/the rear sub-frame inserts, check it out.

I guess there are cheaper suspension mods but from what I can tell and what others have said the sub-frame inserts seem to be the best bang for buck suspension mod that you can do. Can get a good deal of improvement doing just this mod. I guess sways are in the same ballpark but then you may need to spend more right away on end links for the new sways.

This is all just my opinion on the topic and I am by no means an expert so please talk to the experts about specifics. I''m just trying to point out some different approaches one may want to take when doing suspension mods.
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Old 09-18-2010, 07:24 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blazzin1 View Post
What sub-frame inserts are your referring to? I was looking at the Pfadt sub-frame inserts, and they're over $600!!! Not exactly what I would consider "relatively cheap"!!! I'm sure they're kick ass, but not exactly cheap in my book! Did you use a different brand or something? I would think sway bars would be the most basic and first upgrade you should do to your suspension, at least that's gonna be my route.
The Pfadt units definitely not cheap and they aren't bushing inserts like other use. They are a full replacement for the soft stock set up.

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Old 09-18-2010, 08:59 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by Apex Chase View Post
The Pfadt units definitely not cheap and they aren't bushing inserts like other use. They are a full replacement for the soft stock set up.
I really like the Pfadt units. I hope that someday I can afford them! But gonna start with some sway bars as soon as I'm ready to give up the warranty on my suspension.

Chase, do you carry, or can you get, Spohn Performance stuff?
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Old 09-19-2010, 07:27 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by blazzin1 View Post
I really like the Pfadt units. I hope that someday I can afford them! But gonna start with some sway bars as soon as I'm ready to give up the warranty on my suspension.

Chase, do you carry, or can you get, Spohn Performance stuff?
In regards to not wanting to give up your warranty, read this. Sway bars tend to not require warranty work as they have no moving parts so you are pretty safe.

We do not currently carry Spohn but we are adding new product lines all the time. Sometimes a customer wanting to order a product we don't carry is what spurs us to add one. What Spohn parts are you looking at?
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Old 09-20-2010, 11:01 AM   #9
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Thanks for the responses guys!

I have a question however: those are pretty much the same upgrades that were mentioned in the "other" thread, but people mention several times that different applications would mean different upgrades - which is why I started this thread. I guess, even though I'm more concerned about the track, that what we're looking for is similar enough?

Also, could someone explain in more details exactly what it is that subframe inserts/bushings do? I've seen the videos and all, but how do they work exactly, I'm not clear on their function...

Thanks!
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Old 09-20-2010, 01:10 PM   #10
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Bourgui,

You note three items in your OP.

1- a bit too much body roll
2- some understeer, especially in the tight turns
3- under hard braking, I seem to "max out" the front suspension

Items 1 and 3 are related. Your 6 cylinder ride heights contribute to both of these. Because they are taller than the SS there is more room to lean and roll as well as dive on braking. While sway bars would address the lean and roll they would do nothing to help with the dive on braking.

The vast majority of drivers will brake and or let off the accelerator the moment they start to slide. If the vehicle is in understeer mode, either action or both will improve the situation. If the vehicle is in an OVERsteer mode either one or both will make the situation worse almost instantly. That is why GM and GM most other automobile manufactures design in understeer.

The first thing you can do doesn't require you to buy any parts. Get your alignment checked and reduce your rear camber to the lowest possible negative setting. By reducing the rear camber in relation to the front camber you will reduce understeer. I suggest the following specifications.

Front
Camber -1.2 you will reduce tire wear some, but you are wearing them in some light track days anyway.
Toe bring it to 0 to improve turn in with almost no change in tire wear.

Rear
Camber as low as you can get it but no less than half the front camber -.6
Toe it in just a bit with a 0 Thrust angle.

As soon as you add sway bars or lowering coils you will notice the rear end step out that is built into every Camaro that rolls off the assembly line. We have discussed this in detail in the other thread. The solution that is most cost effective will be Pedders EP1200 inserts. They do NOT require the OE bushes to be removed, are very effective based on user input and not my opinion and can be self-installed or cost effectively shop installed. The parts are $256 and save 2/3s or more the cost of installation over full replacement bushes.

It is Pedders opinion that sub-frame inserts are the single most important upgrade that can be made to a 5th Gen. The reasons are straight forward. Lowering coils and sway bars will only raise the speeds with which you corner. The faster you corner the worse the rear end step out will be. It is the essential foundational modification.

To address the lean and roll you should start with lowering coils because of the budget constraint. Bringing down your center of gravity and taking some air out of the rear ride height is critical. You'll notice the Pedders Camaro sits low in the rear end. This is to reduce weight transfer on braking. Combine ride heights with higher spring rates and your vehicle will remain flatter / more composed on braking.

The FINAL element of suspension setup is sway bars. Changing the ratio of the front to rear bar is what is needed to alter the understeer you are experiencing. Pedders has adjustment in the front bar and the rear bar. Setting the front 27mm bar to the softest setting and the rear 27mm bar to the hardest setting will dramatically alter the balance of your Camaro. For road racing we make a C Solution / competition rate bar. The massive 32mm bar with the 27mm front bar is the most aggressive setup and creates a smooth transition into oversteer. We refer to it as velocity induced over steer.

The OE endlinks are the weakest links if you have added aftermarket sway bars. Pedders sway are sold with HD endlinks to resolve that.

Now when you roll up your needs and budgets my recommendation is straight forward. You can get the biggest bang for the buck upgrade on your 6 cylinder with EP1200 sub-frame inserts and a tight spec alignment. The result will be a more controllable car because the sub-frame stability has increased with better balance and turn in because of the alignment. When the budget allows you can adds lowering coils or even better coilovers since you see the track and like to do it in the corners. Finally add sway bars, again as the budget allows.
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Old 09-20-2010, 05:41 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bourgui View Post
Hi All,

I've been following this thread, which has a lot of nice information. I have some slightly different needs/wants, so I figured I'd start a different thread.

I have a V6 RS that I've started taking to the track. I sometimes like to drive "spiritedly", but that's not as much of a concern to me.

I've noticed 3 main things (suspension-wise) at the track - in no specific order):
1- a bit too much body roll
2- some understeer, especially in the tight turns
3- under hard braking, I seem to "max out" the front suspension

Now, two factors that may come into play:
1- I'm new to car-racing (and car modding). I seem to pick it up nicely, but I don't have years of experience to get me out of a tight spot, so if there is such a thing I'd probably go with more "forgiving" setups, that won't get me in the wall if I make a slight mistake
2- I don't have deep pockets, so I'll probably for the "best for the price" solutions (like for example springs vs coilovers), and proceed in stages.

Oh, and the car is my daily driver!

Thanks for the input!


Most of the companies on here make parts that work for both street and track, so many of the street handling threads will be relevant for you.

When people start talking about "track only" set ups, that usually means, more money, less comfortable ride and reduced tire life!

It's incredible how much track driving you can do with a modern "street set-up".

The issues you mention specifically can be addressed with normal street-friendly components. Even just a performance alignment and a set of sway bars can dramatically help with the body roll and understeer.

I think someone else mentioned that the braking issue could benefit from lowering the car.

Hotchkis has a full Race Pack, but all of the components are available individually so you can get race-ready bit by bit.

We'd suggest starting with the sways and springs.

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Old 09-21-2010, 03:16 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bourgui View Post
Hi All,

I've been following this thread, which has a lot of nice information. I have some slightly different needs/wants, so I figured I'd start a different thread.

I have a V6 RS that I've started taking to the track. I sometimes like to drive "spiritedly", but that's not as much of a concern to me.

I've noticed 3 main things (suspension-wise) at the track - in no specific order):
1- a bit too much body roll
2- some understeer, especially in the tight turns
3- under hard braking, I seem to "max out" the front suspension

Now, two factors that may come into play:
1- I'm new to car-racing (and car modding). I seem to pick it up nicely, but I don't have years of experience to get me out of a tight spot, so if there is such a thing I'd probably go with more "forgiving" setups, that won't get me in the wall if I make a slight mistake
2- I don't have deep pockets, so I'll probably for the "best for the price" solutions (like for example springs vs coilovers), and proceed in stages.

Oh, and the car is my daily driver!

Thanks for the input!
Hi Bourgui,

There are a couple of items that can be upgraded to solve the handling characteristics that you are experiencing. First and foremost, as any chassis engineer will tell you, sway bars are the best bang for the buck upgrade to reduce body roll, and correct the notorious understeer that the 5th gen is known for. Pfadt has really done the engineering development necessary to completely solve these problems. This is the correct way to address front and rear roll resistance. Lowering coils are a great addition but do little to affect roll resistance as a properly engineered lowering coil will have a spring rate that works with the OEM damping curves. You can not increase the spring rate much at all, before getting into the unacceptable street quality range, where the dampers can not keep up. Pfadt spring rates are only increased 50lbs and 60lbs, F & R respectively. This equates to little added wheel rate, especially in the rear of the car, due to the motion ratio of the suspension. Sway Bars and Spring upgrades do all of this and ADD overall grip to the car, as opposed to removing overall grip by reducing camber in the rear. That only subtracts from the overall equation, as opposed to adding to it, and correcting the balance.

With that said, lowering springs do have more benefits than just looks. They will help with handling over OEM, and more importantly, will aid in the overall balance of the car, with out affecting ride quality in a negative way. They will firm up the ride a bit, without making it harsh in anyway. We are suspension engineers that know what works on street cars.

Here is a video showing exactly what you can expect from our Stage 2 Performance Package, which includes the 1.25" Lowering Springs, as well as the Sport Sway Bars. When you couple this with endlinks, you get a package you can count-on, that is easy to install and requires no drilling out of OEM suspension parts.




This package wins on the track too, when put up against the competition. Just ask Erik from Torque, who runs away from competitors in every event they enter. Just a quick video of how this exact package performs, and wins, at the Camaro5 Fest Autocross.




This is really the best value for a street car, that performs on the track. We have your experience in mind when we engineered this package, because it is the same as our experience. You will not believe what these quick upgrades can do to transform the 2010 Camaro into a sharp and precise machine for the street and track.
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Old 09-22-2010, 08:24 AM   #13
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How much are you wanting to spend to meet your goals? I think springs and sways should get you what your looking for. At less than six hundred bucks. Pm me and ill help you out.
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Old 09-23-2010, 04:28 PM   #14
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Pedders = COMFORT and CONTROL and very fast on the track.



We don't post data in a vacuum and say look how fast we are. We take our cars to the same track and document the performance of our modified vehicle against the OE version and RACE CARS. We do it on street tires with no cages in full street cars so what you see is what you get.

We detail our builds on the forum and show you how to get the most out of your Camaro. We tell you exactly how to setup your car to get the same results. Then we let you decide which company makes the best suspension parts for your Camaro or American Muscle Car.




Last edited by JusticePete; 09-23-2010 at 08:53 PM.
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