[200q20v] Strut rebuilding, was Lowering Springs?

Bernie Benz b.m.benz at prodigy.net
Mon Apr 30 12:23:37 EDT 2001

Hi Chris,

I don't know what you mean by "altered upper spring mounts", but If you are
sticking to the stock strut-spring system there is only about 1/8"
additional available beyond the adjustment limit before the upper spring
mount is against the strut tower.  A little filing on the stock adjustment
plate mounting holes will easily achieve this.

In Mcpherson struts it is the piston wear ring and the rod bushing that wear
because they take all the transverse cornering and braking loads.  These
bushing clearances are parallel leakage paths with the valving in the
hydraulic design in the shock, so this wear alters, defeats the damping
characteristics.  Wear compensation was Koni's principle reason for
designing in a rebound damping adjustment, IMO.  The rod bushing is the
critical seal in rebound damping and its replacement is the primary wear
related reason for rebuilding.  The piston wear ring is easily renewed by
adding paper shims under it to eliminate the clearance.  The piston and foot
valving are easily disassembled and cleaned.  ATF is a great replacement
fluid.  Usually, the rod seal/scraper does not need replacement.  If the
shock has lost enough fluid such that the chrome plated rod is badly scored,
don't bother with it, replace.


> From: C1J1Miller at aol.com
> Date: Mon, 30 Apr 2001 10:03:16 EDT
> To: <b.m.benz at prodigy.net>
> Cc: <200q20v at audifans.com>
> Subject: Re: [200q20v] Lowering Springs? - or better idea agains side wind
> impact
> A track car, while fun, isn't what I'm after.  Track days are for me to learn
> to drive my car better on the street.  The compromises in ride quality, IMO,
> are fairly low, based on driving/driving in several other (similar) cars with
> modified suspensions...
> Any details on rebuilding Konis?  I assume parts are available from Koni
> directly?  The shock inserts I've got are koni yellow, and have some miles on
> them; might be nice to start out fresh.
> I don't think I'm wanting to move to a solid front strut/spring; want some
> suspension movement, thanks.  The stock suspension allows pretty severe
> compression on hard turns; lowering and stiffening may keep the suspension at
> a higher point during the same turn...
> or at least minimize the upset from weight transfer side/side/ or front/back.
> If I keep the same bump stops and I'm not hitting them in cornering, then I'm
> probably still in the designed suspension travel...  I do plan to correct the
> limits on camber tuning with altered upper spring mounts.
> Chris
> In a message dated Mon, 30 Apr 2001  9:44:06 AM Eastern Daylight Time, Bernie
> Benz <b.m.benz at prodigy.net> writes:
> << IMO the type 44 chassis is not and was never intended to be a track car
> choice, just a great family cruizer.  The suspension tuning objective should
> be to place the full range of suspension travel at the range of minumium
> bump steer.  Stiffer springs reduce the range of suspension travel, thus
> allowing a range of lesser bump steer, if so tuned.  The limit in this
> direction would be to replace the spring with an approperate length of 4"
> pipe, no bump steer!  Even with puese colored shocks.
> In my Lancia days, wanting to lower a car but retain the same spring rate, I
> have partly stress relieved springs by fully compressing them and soaking
> them in a 500F oven for several hours.  An incrimental, trial and error,
> irreversable experiment that accomplished the desired result.
> I prefer orange Konis.  I also concur with comments of Koni unreliability,
> but they are rebuildable.  Lancia and Lotus days again, I've had the
> internal rebound bumpers in Konis disintegrate and particles therefrom
> plugged the valving.  The shock became a solid rod, no motion.
> Bernie
>> From: C1J1Miller at aol.com
>> Date: Mon, 30 Apr 2001 07:52:06 EDT
>> To: <fundsaloracing at yahoo.com>, <pos at theinternet.de>, <b.m.benz at prodigy.net>
>> Cc: <200q20v at audifans.com>
>> Subject: RE: [200q20v] Lowering Springs? - or better idea agains side wind
>> impact
>> Oops, the konis are yellow; only the rear are visible; should I repaint the
>> front strut towers yellow? Factory was grey front (hidden inside) and black
>> (visible) rear; should I repaint to match?
>> Bernie: have you driven one of these cars with altered suspension, or driven
>> your stock-setup car on the track?
>> What do you do when you've loaded up your cars with people/things, and
>> compressed the springs to a lower ride height?  Any chance your stock springs
>> have sagged a bit with age?
>> Chris
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