[s-cars] Suspension work done - finally!

Sean Douglas quattro20v at telus.net
Thu May 11 01:55:29 EDT 2006

Well after 5 long days, its finally done. I have pretty much overhauled
my entire suspension. For 3 of 5 days, I had a helper, I figure at least
60 man hours not including the preparation work I did of pressing in /
out bearings / bushings and painting up the parts.

I pretty much changed everything;

Springs (euro-sport), Boge turbo gas shocks, wheel bearings, tie rod
ends, bump stops, dust boots, strut bearings, strut mounts, control
arms, front and rear stabilizer bushings, subframe bushings and mounts,
trapezoidal arm bushings, rear toe bushings, rear upper track arms, V8
differential, diff mounts, diff seals, engine mounts, transmission
mounts, 8 CV boots, transmission fluid, differential fluid, plus all
associated hardware, nuts and bolts. All in all my list was over 200

A few things that set me back was a broken brake hardline, I broke both
rear outer CV joints trying to get the joint off and all 4 ABS sensors
were rusted in the wheel housings and I broke all of them. I thought I
saved 3, but the VAG says otherwise.

So after some frustrating times, I installed a new rear brakeline,
picked up a set of used axles and have the ABS sensors on order.

After getting it all back together, I took it to the shop for alignment
on Monday. Wheel alignment was perfectly within spec according to the
shop, and they said it was one of the easiest to align. Which makes
sense as everything was pretty much new.

The ride is nicely firm, actually a little more stiff than I expected.
Gone is the floatiness of the old suspension and its nice and tight. I'm
glad I went with a mild setup, I don't think I could live with a more
aggressive one. I haven't done any real aggressive driving, I want to do
a week or so of a shake down and put it up on a lift to double check

The one thing that surprised me is that it did not lower the ride height
very much. I measured before and after and it dropped approx 10 mm -
that's it. I'm OK with this as clearance is an issue for me, but looking
at my car, it does not look lowered. So its still the "rancho" look.
Honestly, this doesn't bother me, but I'm sure others it would.

Special thanks to Scott Mockry for all the new parts, Gabriel Caldwell
for lending me a bunch of parts and providing a pair of rear axles and
Bob Pastore for the V8 differential.

All in all, I'm very happy with the setup, but I'm not sure if I would
tackle a big job like this again, given some of the pitfalls I
encountered. Also, my body is still aching!

Some pictures can be seen here:




Sean Douglas

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