Past Director Region 13, Senior Member
Any experience / thoughts on best 5th Gen suspension improvements for a daily driver - without breaking the bank? I'm wondering about tubular control arms and coilovers. Thanks
Before you spend money , read. It'll save you oney, and call him after you've read it if you have questions.
Savitske Classsic & Custom
How to Make Your Muscle Car Handle: Revised Edition Revised Edition
I haven't read that one and I'm sure you are correct about saving a lot of cash,SC&C knows their stuff. I bought my rear control arms from them. The reason I like the Ridetech package is the progressive wound springs and adjustable rebound shocks. I feel it will be a bit smoother on the street, and I will only lower the front by 1". SC&C basic package is cheaper and a good choice for starters, they even offer Ridetech shocks as an up-grade.
This is just my opinion and honestly there is no one size fits all package. That's what is great about this forum. Lots of ideas and reasons to choose what will make us happy!
That's a good point. I posed pretty much this same question a while back and got some great input. I put some KYB shocks and a new UMI rear sway bar and instantly felt the difference! For some that might be all the improvement needed. I just wanted a bit more, so I got some roto-joint control arms for the rear and now the front end and springs need attention. Seems to be a non-stop ride. Hopefully after I save up enough to get my suggestion installed I'll be happy enough to stop! Of course I'm also replacing the steering box(Lee 800 series as suggested on another thread) and the rest of the steering linkage not in the package!Think about Bilstien Shocks, and adding a rear sway bar. The rear bar really makes a difference. I don't think you will see much improvement on a DD with the coilovers and tubular control arms. You can also upgrade the front sway bar to the hollow 36mm version. Just make sure the rear sway bar is smaller than the front.
I mentioned stiffening the frame but forgot to mention the F41 braces. Anything that helps reduce flex will help with handling. I'm saving for the G-body kit from UMI that has the front braces, rear control arm braces and shock tower brace all in one package. I'm rapidly getting to the point that my suspension is beginning to rival the price of the LS swap! Oh well, I'm having fun!I'm surprised no one on here has mentioned the G body F41 suspension bits yet. I have the full kit on mine along with new KYB shocks and Moog springs and the car handles pretty well now. All of the stuff was pretty inexpensive.
Upper and lower rear control arms are a good bang for buck mod as well but I mainly replaced mine to fix some pinion angle issues.
Great book. I'd also recommend this one: GM G-Body Performance Upgrades
I won't go into too much technical detail, but the principle behind sway bar balance between front to rear, termed "roll couple", is to control which end of the car breaks loose first when at the limits of lateral acceleration. Too much rear bar and the rear can snap loose, sometimes violently, depending on corner speed and severity of the turn. I've run the stock 1" front bar in my Camino with the factory G-Body rear bar and it was a bit tail-happy at the limits, good for tossing the rear around a tight autocross course at relatively low speeds, but not for the street or track. Going up to the 1.25" front bar made it a lot more neutral cornering.Im not currently running a rear sway bar. I'm curious why smaller in rear? Can you recommend size (thinking 1.25" for front) for front and back?
Solid, hollow? What are the benefits of hollow...weight savings? Definitely will buy one...air bags and new rear shocks too.
I drove that National Pike south of Uniontown 30 years ago on a Valentine's Day weekend, back before it had a median barrier. First time I ever saw road signs directing truckers that they WILL pull over halfway down and inspect their brakes. Less than 4 hrs later I'm caught in a big blizzard with black ice in western Ohio. I shudder to think what would have happened on that Uniontown hill.Our roads here in Western Pennsylvania are very steep and twisty,
it does have a lot of power and gets over the 100 mph mark very quickly.
I actually got time today to install my new rear control arms! Spohn UCA with Del-sphere joints and UMI roto-joint LCA. The difference is amazing. The first up-grade with shocks and rear sway bar (UMI) made an instant difference! After the control arm change the entire rear changed attitude and now gives back traction and a feel of the road that it never had until now. I feel the rear is pretty much under control now except for some minor tweaking. My next big purchase will be the Ridetech street grip package. This will probably be another 3-6 months and I'll have a slightly used rear sway bar for sale on the cheap. Again, this sway bar and shocks made a world of difference. The control arms finished the squishy feeling my rear had. If nothing else, start there, it's pretty unbelievable how much difference it made!That's a good point. I posed pretty much this same question a while back and got some great input. I put some KYB shocks and a new UMI rear sway bar and instantly felt the difference! For some that might be all the improvement needed. I just wanted a bit more, so I got some roto-joint control arms for the rear and now the front end and springs need attention. Seems to be a non-stop ride. Hopefully after I save up enough to get my suggestion installed I'll be happy enough to stop! Of course I'm also replacing the steering box(Lee 800 series as suggested on another thread) and the rest of the steering linkage not in the package!