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Discussion Starter #1
I have a 66 daily driver. I want it to handle much better, I have power steering, but it seems so slopy. The entire front end has been rebuilt using stock bushings and springs, KYB Gas Shocks are the only modification.
CHP just did a story on bolt on suspensions to make a Camaro/Nova handle like a new car. What options do we have for Chevelles?
Has anyone tried Power Rack and Pinion? Is it worth it? I am getting ready to put disc brakes on my car, I want to make sure everything is compatable. Thanks for any help....
 

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First thing, lose the stock bushings. Put PolyGraphites in front and rear. Next, put a heavy roll bar (1 1/8 to 1 1/4") in the front and a 1" in the rear, using poly bushings. You'll want to get the high setting '66 down to the ground. I cut the front springs (new TRWs) but now there are a number of different springs that will lower you car without cutting. As a bonus, most are progressive and will give a better ride than the cut springs. KYB shocks will work fine. I don't know about rack & pinion steering but there are quick ratio steering boxes that can replace the slow steering in your car. I'll leave the details to someone else. If you want to go farther, there are complete setups from Hotchkis and Global West that can really do the trick. They are pricey, though.

You will want to put wide tires both front and back. 235/60/15 is about as wide as you can fit on the front, you can fit wider on the rear but for carving canyons I'd stay with the same size front and rear. You can also go to bigger diameter wheels but, personally, I don't like the look (trash can lid with a rubber band around it), it's your choice.

Disk brakes are a definite plus for any early Chevelle. If you use aftermarket upper control arms, you can fit late second gen Camaro spindles. This will allow using larger 11" or 12' rotors.

As you can see there are a lot of options available. The question is how far do you want to go and how much do you want to spend. I'm sure other will have some ideas, too.


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Pat Kelley
66 & 67 El Caminos

[This message has been edited by Pat Kelley (edited 09-01-99).]

[This message has been edited by Pat Kelley (edited 09-01-99).]

[This message has been edited by Pat Kelley (edited 09-01-99).]
 

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rpm66 I would like to dito Pat's post. I did these changes to my 64 except I kept the stock spring height. Used a steering box from a Trans Am. Good handeling starts with tires. Someone may correct me on this, The Chevelle is a front steer and most Racks are for the rear steer cars and are not worth all the Mods you would need for the Chevelle. I think you would be much better off putting your $$ elsewhere. Bob J.
 

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I would also tell you to not go with a rack and pinion setup. If you want a new car ride, contact Hotchkiss performance or Global West (if they're still around) and they'll tell you exactly what you need for your particular ride.

-Joe Y
 

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My car was all over the road last year right after I bought it. Mostly when hitting bumps in the road and taveling at highway speeds. Front end was already rebuilt and it looked like stock parts. Had Poly Glass tires on it and the rear lower control arms were in terrible shape. Put a set of BFG radial TA's (P215/70R 15 on front and P235/70R's 15's on rear if I remember correctly) and replaced rear upper and lower control arms with a set of Hotchkiss Performance box style from Summit Racing and the car handles like a dream now. (No power steering or power brakes) I know this isn't very scientific and maybe it is just because it handled so poorly before, but the difference the car handles now on the freeway is like night and day.

Hope this helps some

Had to edit this message ...guessed on tire size from work and missed by a couple sizes

[This message has been edited by RLS67SS396 (edited 09-01-99).]
 

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rpm66ss;

Go to the "technical reference" section of this site and see the "tall spindle" conversion page. (I wrote it)

I've got the Global West upper arms, tall spindles and rubber bushings. 235/245 15" Goodyear "GT" radials. Sway bars front and rear. I had the power steering "blueprinted" and the ratio changed by Lee manufacturing (variable ratio, not as fast as the "trans-am" box, but they could have done it should I have wanted). It's a 64 2 door wagon.


The car is extreemly pleasant to drive and handles very well in the canyons! (it's a wagon, and as such, I don't race Porsches)

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Wes. Vann
Technical Reference & Wagons sections
Gold Member #5
 

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Do you mean you want to have a car that handles tight and not sloppy like a new car. Or do you want to have a canyon carver.

I don't agree with using progressive springs for performance. They are more for half-azz attempts at handling. Just look at real race cars or real factory performance cars. You will never see a progressive spring on one of those. Just think about it. How can the car handle flat if the spring's initial travel is soft to preserve ride quality. You can't have both.

My car has the polygraphite frontend with a 1-1/8 sway bar. Hotchkis front springs 500lbs, and MOOG HD rears, KYB shocks and stock unboxed rear arms. I have made corners on the 405 freeway in Southern cal that would made your skin crawl. It is not a Vette, my friend has one of those with coil overs, so I know what good handling is. But the difference over stock is amazing with what little I have done so far. And I plan on taking it further in the future. You can get a lot for less than a grand if you do your shopping
 

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Have you looked at your body bushings or the rubber that the body sets on the frame? The ones on my 67' were coming apart. If these are worn this will contribue to this rolling into the corners. I have heard that using the poly-grafite impreg bushing will change this to almost to stiff.

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Thanks In Advance!
John Corbin
67' Chevelle Malibu Sleeper
San Antonio, Texas



[This message has been edited by John Corbin (edited 09-02-99).]
 

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One of the biggest improvements you can make for handling, braking, etc. would have to be tires. I recently changed from 235-70r-15 to 245-50r-16 tires on 16x8 Iroc wheels and the difference is amazing. Ride quality suffers and the noise level increased, but it sticks like glue in the corners, looks a bunch better too. Help a lot to get the ride height down too. tom
 

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Discussion Starter #11
All my bushings and mounts are new. I have 245/60/15s on the car and like the rally wheel look so I will keep the 15" wheels.

You guys have given me a lot to think about. I pulled up the Global West site, they seem to have some good products. I was looking for a new car handling like my 94 Z28, but I am not made out of money.

Not sure exactly where I will start, but obviuosly writting here was the correct first step.

Thanks for everyones response.....rpm66ss
 

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Subscribe to Popular Hot Rodding Magazine. That's what they're all about (at the moment). You might be a little late, though, because they did a 1970 Red Line Oil Chevelle feature about 3 months ago. They redid the whole suspension and drivetrain.

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Mike
formerly known as gotapileof70Malibu
'70 Malibu
'70 Malibu convertible
North Vernon, IN
 

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Super Chevy and High Proformance Chevy have both dealt with this problem in the last few months.
I am going with drop spindles,ploygraphite
and a late model steering box. The close ratio box will have you smiling again.
At least that's what I read and it makes since to me.
 

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rpm66ss

Another thing is if you are saying that you have a lot of play in your steering & have not adjusted the lash on st. box, this can make a day & night difference!
 
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