Coil spring choices? - Chevelle Tech
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post #1 of 52 (permalink) Old Nov 14th, 19, 7:14 PM Thread Starter
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Dennis
 
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Coil spring choices?

My 66 has Full Hotchkis suspension front and rear. All 4 springs are (supposed to be) 2” drop.
The front springs are rated at 500 lb/in and the rears are rated 124-159 lb/in.
Besides the fact that the car sits taller than stock (I also have 2” dropped spindles in the front) it rides like there is no suspension whatsoever. Hard as a rock. I feel every bump or crack in the road.
While my car has a weird engine the front/rear weights are amazing similar to what they were supposed to be when new with a 283 and a power glide.
Front is 1,760 lbs and the rear is 1,500 lbs. These weights are with a full tank of fuel but without me in the car so maybe 100 or so lighter.
The stock springs in the car when new were rated at 250 lb/in front and 130 lb/in rear.
Have I got to stiff of springs for an everyday driver?
Do I need stiff springs with the big sway bars I have?
I want to get this right this time because I don’t want to have to do this a third time.
What are you guys running?

66 Chevelle hardtop - LFX 3.6 liter V6/6L50 6 speed auto trans, 3.07 10 bolt, full Hotchkis suspension, Wilwood 4 wheel discs, white with red interior, cowl hood.
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post #2 of 52 (permalink) Old Nov 14th, 19, 9:32 PM
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Re: Coil spring choices?

I have a 1 1/8 front and 7/8 rear solid sway bars and went with Moog and they are very reasonable. Car sits nice.. I also went with Bilstein shocks to help control bounce. Your car would probably just use SBC with no AC for a decent ride. Everyone sells them but I think I got mine from Summit. .
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post #3 of 52 (permalink) Old Nov 14th, 19, 9:48 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Coil spring choices?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Billdini View Post
I have a 1 1/8 front and 7/8 rear solid sway bars and went with Moog and they are very reasonable. Car sits nice.. I also went with Bilstein shocks to help control bounce. Your car would probably just use SBC with no AC for a decent ride. Everyone sells them but I think I got mine from Summit. .
The springs I have are for a small block car, not sure about AC. I looked at Moog online but don’t see that they offer lowering springs. I also looked at Eibach but they only offer 1” lowering and don’t give a lot of data as to the spring rates. How does your car sit height-wise?

66 Chevelle hardtop - LFX 3.6 liter V6/6L50 6 speed auto trans, 3.07 10 bolt, full Hotchkis suspension, Wilwood 4 wheel discs, white with red interior, cowl hood.
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post #4 of 52 (permalink) Old Nov 14th, 19, 10:00 PM
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Re: Coil spring choices?

There are many different opinions on what works and what doesn't. In the end what makes you happy is what is right.

what shocks do you have in the car now? Are they adjustable?

while 500 lb (not in/lb) is a heavier spring, it's not the heaviest. When you have two inch lower spring you need to increase the spring rate to help to keep it from bottoming out.

In my opinion two inch lower spring and two drop spindles is a recipe for dissatisfaction. Generally it's one or the other. I would keep the drop spindles and put a stock height spring in there.

The sway bar has no effect on ride comfort in a strait line, the sway bar is just rotating in the bushings, no load.
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post #5 of 52 (permalink) Old Nov 14th, 19, 10:06 PM
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Greg.
 
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Re: Coil spring choices?

I would think the 500 lb. Front Springs are for a V8 BBC Engine

so yes they are way to Stiff for the V6 you have in it now

Usually the Shocks are what gives a comfortable Ride
and the Springs are for Ride Height

For my Street/Track car I have Moroso Front Trick Springs # 47195 = 250 lb. with Comp Eng 3Way Shocks# 2610 Set at 80/20
with a 1” Rubber Spacer under Bottom of Coil Spring / Stock Spindles
and the car surprisingly rides okay

My Rear Springs are Moog # 5385 which are suppose to be Stock Replacements
Comp Eng Rear 3Way Shocks # 2720 + set at 50/50

For your car to ride better on the Street you should look into Stock type Springs and Shocks

Lowering Springs tend to make the Car ride much more Harsher IMHO
so the car does not Bottom out on any pavement dips and humps etc...

Front https://www.jegs.com/i/Moog/719/5244/10002/-1

Rear https://www.jegs.com/i/Moog/719/5385/10002/-1

Shocks
# 1 Choice = https://www.umiperformance.com/home/...dy-shocks-umi/

# 2 Choice = https://www.jegs.com/c/Steering-Susp...ear=4294829712

67 Chevelle Malibu SS Cdn
Born 283 / PG / A51
468/TH400 2,500 stall/ S60 3.70 Gs
Prev Best on M/T ET S/S #3454 street Tires/Dress 2018/05/20
60' = 1.664
1/8 = 7.532 et / 91 mph
1/4 = 11.814 et / 115 mph
NEW Best with 3,500+ Stall TC 2019/09/08
60' = 1.547
1/8 = 7.311 et / 91.76 mph
1/4 = 11.595 et / 114.28 mph


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post #6 of 52 (permalink) Old Nov 14th, 19, 10:07 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Coil spring choices?

Quote:
Originally Posted by senna View Post
There are many different opinions on what works and what doesn't. In the end what makes you happy is what is right.

what shocks do you have in the car now? Are they adjustable?

while 500 lb (not in/lb) is a heavier spring, it's not the heaviest. When you have two inch lower spring you need to increase the spring rate to help to keep it from bottoming out.

In my opinion two inch lower spring and two drop spindles is a recipe for dissatisfaction. Generally it's one or the other. I would keep the drop spindles and put a stock height spring in there.

The sway bar has no effect on ride comfort in a strait line, the sway bar is just rotating in the bushings, no load.
My shocks came with the Hotchkis system and are labeled Hotchkis. I understand they are made for them by a Fox but I’m not 100% sure.
I would normally agree about 2” dropped springs and 2” dropped spindles being too much when used together but I’ve got both in their now and my car is higher than stock in the front and WAY higher than stock in the back.

66 Chevelle hardtop - LFX 3.6 liter V6/6L50 6 speed auto trans, 3.07 10 bolt, full Hotchkis suspension, Wilwood 4 wheel discs, white with red interior, cowl hood.
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post #7 of 52 (permalink) Old Nov 14th, 19, 10:55 PM
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Troy
 
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Re: Coil spring choices?

Quote:
Originally Posted by 67_LS1 View Post
My shocks came with the Hotchkis system and are labeled Hotchkis. I understand they are made for them by a Fox but I’m not 100% sure.

I would normally agree about 2” dropped springs and 2” dropped spindles being too much when used together but I’ve got both in their now and my car is higher than stock in the front and WAY higher than stock in the back.
Are the shocks adjustable?



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post #8 of 52 (permalink) Old Nov 14th, 19, 11:06 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Coil spring choices?

[QUOTE=senna;11178976]Are the shocks adjustable?

No, they are not adjustable.

66 Chevelle hardtop - LFX 3.6 liter V6/6L50 6 speed auto trans, 3.07 10 bolt, full Hotchkis suspension, Wilwood 4 wheel discs, white with red interior, cowl hood.
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post #9 of 52 (permalink) Old Nov 14th, 19, 11:12 PM
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Troy
 
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Re: Coil spring choices?

[quote=67_LS1;11178982]
Quote:
Originally Posted by senna View Post
Are the shocks adjustable?



No, they are not adjustable.
You could remove the shocks and take it for a drive and see if the harshness is gone.

This would need to be done with some care. But would probably not be a big deal. I would not do any high speeds or quick maneuvers.

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post #10 of 52 (permalink) Old Nov 14th, 19, 11:35 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Coil spring choices?

[quote=senna;11178988]
Quote:
Originally Posted by 67_LS1 View Post
You could remove the shocks and take it for a drive and see if the harshness is gone.

This would need to be done with some care. But would probably not be a big deal. I would not do any high speeds or quick maneuvers.

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I could but this seems much more harsh then a shock issue.
It seems to me that doubling the spring rate in the front with the same weight on the front end is too much for the street.
I’ll see if I can get the shocks out this weekend and drive it a bit.

66 Chevelle hardtop - LFX 3.6 liter V6/6L50 6 speed auto trans, 3.07 10 bolt, full Hotchkis suspension, Wilwood 4 wheel discs, white with red interior, cowl hood.
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post #11 of 52 (permalink) Old Nov 15th, 19, 9:37 AM
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Jeff
 
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Re: Coil spring choices?

Make sure you have the front springs fully seated in the frame. I went for the longest time thinking mine were, then got a look and they were not. My car sat at stock level with 2" drop spindles installed. I had Moog 6200 stock springs installed and cussed Moog every time I looked at the car only to figure out I was in the wrong.

This is looking up into the frame pocket, the stock stop is at 7 o'clock, my springs were sitting @ 4 o'clock (notice witness mark in dirt), reason for the 2" height difference. For GM cars it's a 1 to 2 ratio, 1" of coil spring is worth 2" of ride height. Good luck!


*Jeff*

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post #12 of 52 (permalink) Old Nov 15th, 19, 10:35 AM
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Re: Coil spring choices?

Quote:
Originally Posted by 67_LS1 View Post
The springs I have are for a small block car, not sure about AC. I looked at Moog online but don’t see that they offer lowering springs. I also looked at Eibach but they only offer 1” lowering and don’t give a lot of data as to the spring rates. How does your car sit height-wise?
Dennis as my car still needs the convertible top and interior which will add some more weight I am very happy with the stance and have received many compliments how she sits. However I like the stand up stance over the lowered look. Take a look at my garage to see some current pics. My front springs were 17 inch free standing. Moog offers a lot of different height springs but not specific to lowering exactly 2 inches. If needed I can dig through my paperwork for my front and rear exact springs. I do know that SBC with AC is the same spring as BBC without AC for the front. Rears are based on body type. I am sure Summit can help with spring choice or any other high performance shop..
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post #13 of 52 (permalink) Old Nov 15th, 19, 11:25 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Coil spring choices?

Jeff, the springs are sitting correctly in their seats. I know because one was off when I first set it down and I had to address it then.

Bill, the stock front springs for my car we’re 18.6“ free height and 12.59” working height @ 1510 lbs. The deflection rate is 1” per 250 lbs of weight so the free vs working heights seem correct.
The Hotchkis springs have a free height of 14.250”. They don’t list a “working height” but the deflection rate is 1” per 500 lbs so my guess is that the working height should be approx. 3” lower. Call it 11.250”. Which is an inch lower than the stock spring working height which may work out to 2” lower at the wheel. Sounds semi legit but I’m not sure how to do that calc.
Although with these springs AND 2” dropped spindles my car is at stock height.
I think the ride quality and height issue are related. Is 500 lbs/in to stiff for an everyday driver? Am I thinking correctly with my math?

And I know sway bars don’t affect the ride height but could they affect the ride quality? If one tire hits a bump and the other doesn’t, does the sway bar contribute to ride harshness?

66 Chevelle hardtop - LFX 3.6 liter V6/6L50 6 speed auto trans, 3.07 10 bolt, full Hotchkis suspension, Wilwood 4 wheel discs, white with red interior, cowl hood.
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post #14 of 52 (permalink) Old Nov 15th, 19, 11:35 AM
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Re: Coil spring choices?

[quote=67_LS1;11178992]
Quote:
Originally Posted by senna View Post



I could but this seems much more harsh then a shock issue.

It seems to me that doubling the spring rate in the front with the same weight on the front end is too much for the street.

I’ll see if I can get the shocks out this weekend and drive it a bit.
While it makes sense that doubling the spring rate would offer a harsher ride you don't know for sure if it is all springs or all shocks or 50/50. Or maybe another factor, but not likely.

By removing the shocks you're eliminating one factor, less quess work this way. If you drive it and its firm but not harsh, maybe a little bouncy, you've learned somthing.

I read the description for the shocks on Hotchkiss site. It said custom tune, to who's satisfaction? You know you have a 500 lb. Spring but you don't know what a custom tune means.

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post #15 of 52 (permalink) Old Nov 15th, 19, 11:50 AM
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Re: Coil spring choices?

Quote:
Originally Posted by 67_LS1 View Post
Jeff, the springs are sitting correctly in their seats. I know because one was off when I first set it down and I had to address it then.

Bill, the stock front springs for my car we’re 18.6“ free height and 12.59” working height @ 1510 lbs. The deflection rate is 1” per 250 lbs of weight so the free vs working heights seem correct.
The Hotchkis springs have a free height of 14.250”. They don’t list a “working height” but the deflection rate is 1” per 500 lbs so my guess is that the working height should be approx. 3” lower. Call it 11.250”. Which is an inch lower than the stock spring working height which may work out to 2” lower at the wheel. Sounds semi legit but I’m not sure how to do that calc.
Although with these springs AND 2” dropped spindles my car is at stock height.
I think the ride quality and height issue are related. Is 500 lbs/in to stiff for an everyday driver? Am I thinking correctly with my math?

And I know sway bars don’t affect the ride height but could they affect the ride quality? If one tire hits a bump and the other doesn’t, does the sway bar contribute to ride harshness?
Sounds like you have a handle on it, but you replaced an iron headed, iron block v8 with an all aluminum V6 then doubled the front spring rate? I'm assuming the V6 is set back too?

I would go back to stock spring rate and see if you like the ride. I've got an iron block/aluminum head LS motor set back to the firewall and am running stock Moog springs, car handles great and rides really well. At some point I may bump up the spring rate to stiffen it up, but not as high as 500.
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