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noddaz
noddaz SuperDork
9/16/16 10:24 a.m.

I was wondering what happened to the car on the other thread... Now I know. Glad to hear it is being fixed...

Apexcarver
Apexcarver PowerDork
9/21/16 11:08 a.m.

Hey Jav, I finally got video in mine last weekend. Let this be proof that they CAN actually turn with some light mods.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/gu0RdwWkBz0

This has springs/shocks (H&R race/Koni), poly front bushings, camber plates, and an addco front bar. On 255 RS3-V2/17x9 wheels. Stock rear geometry!

Javelin
Javelin MegaDork
9/21/16 11:17 a.m.

In reply to Apexcarver:

Nice! Thanks for the video. Yours looked pretty neutral with just a bit of lean. Audio made it sound like you were losing lateral grip through a few of the corners. I started ordering parts on Monday for mine. New FR500's in 17x9 and 17x10.5 for the Nitto NT05 275/40/17 and 315/35/17 tires, new Eibach Pro Street coil over kit, new QA1 tubular front LCA's, and a new Steeda bumpsteer kit. Leaving the rear end alone for now.

Apexcarver
Apexcarver PowerDork
9/21/16 11:46 a.m.

I softened up the shocks a little bit for the bumps in the lot. It is very neutral. The biggest gripe I have had with the car is limited slips. A rebuild on the stock one does not last long, I rebuilt mine 3-4 events ago and I can already tell a difference. That is with the carbon packs. I will probably upgrade to a trutrak or a torsen sometime down the road. I tried an Auburn in the past and it only lasted 2 years.

As far as loss of grip, at least on the RS3's, it seems to like just a hint of slip angle and the times have reflected that. It is very neutral, so as long as you approach the turn well, the most subtle of 4 wheel drift is possible and desirable. Challenge is feeding it into the turns, as it will not stand on its nose. This is an artifact of the roll axis inclination (front roll center low, rear high) and the weight distribution (~57%F). Its tuned out the best it can be with the setup, but geometry fixes could help it. (panhard, X2 ball joints, or a new front crossmember)

Javelin
Javelin MegaDork
9/30/16 10:53 p.m.

Well it took 2 weeks, but the mechanicals are mostly fixed. We had to replace the steering rack, Steeda bumpsteer kit, and the wheels just to baseline the alignment. The rear axle is pushed forward on the left, back on the right, and crabs by 0.9 degrees, so the rear control arms are bent. The LF still has -2 dgrees of camber at full upright position on the C/C plate after changing the strut, so the spindle is bent. We ordered up everything and buttoned the car down as well as we could for the last autocross this weekend.

We had to hammer the snot out of the LF fender and ditch the fender liner and zip tie the bumper and headlight back on. It seems to not rub, but I'll bring the big stick anyway. We didn't touch the rear quarter panel, since it is out of the way and the bodyshop is saving it.

So I put about 35 miles on it today including banging around my favorite mountain road, and it seems to be okay. It hunts a little on the freeway, but it also has 275/315 tires and 1/4" of toe out for autocross, so if the rear end is unhappy I can't tell. There's only one glaring issue...

The wheels are blue. They aren't supposed to be blue, they are supposed to be Anthracite, which is a fancy way of saying "gray". But these are ice blue, or fabulous blue, but not grey. I'm not okay with this.

Javelin
Javelin MegaDork
9/30/16 10:55 p.m.

I'm all ready for tomorrow's autocross. Fingers crossed it even makes it there...

Javelin
Javelin MegaDork
10/13/16 11:27 a.m.

Made it!

So, how'd we do? Well, okay. The car made it down and back fine and actually seems pretty stable on the freeway. It hunts in ruts, but on smooth road it goes straight. Autocrossing on the other hand was brutal! It has tremendous forward grip but loses lateral grip mid-corner in the most bizarre ways. It also will understeer like a pig on really sharp corners, no matter the speed. I was able to wrangle it to a 47.804 to win CAM by 3 seconds over the season champs, and 35/63 raw. However, the car was unstable and almost undriveable when pushed. During the fun runs I looped it twice with no warning, and on post-race teardown we found metal shavings on the course where I spun.

Needless to say, I packed up and booked it home and right back to my buddy's alignment shop.

See all the rubber? Turns out at full suspension loading, the front tires were rubbing the coilovers, which was causing the front end issues, and the rear tires were rubbing everything including the quad-shocks, which caused the spin as the right side one was actually rubbing wheel.

We replaced the LF spindle since I already got one, and good thing as suddenly the alignment specced out the same side-to-side. We also put 1/4" spacers all the way around and then replaced the front LCA's with QA1 tubular ones:

Yes, that means the only stock Ford part in the front suspension is the actual spindle.

We were able to dial in -1.5 degrees of camber, 4.5 degrees of caster, and 1/4" total toe-out and squared the rear as best we could. The left upper control arm is bowed, so I need to make some rear suspension decisions (help!).

So, now what? Well, we are waiting to hear back from the vendor on the blue wheels. They did admit to a bad batch of them, but I'm not holding my breath. I'm considering having them powdercoated. The car is also ready to go to the bodyshop for the full repaint. I'm paying extra to do the whole car, including all the jambs. We are going for a full re-color, and some body mods. I have a pretty trick idea for the back...

Apexcarver
Apexcarver PowerDork
10/13/16 12:09 p.m.

1.5 isnt enough, you want closer to 2.5 for autocross, if you can get 3 you want it. (I adjust mine at the event, with the MM plates its pretty easy, you just mark the street position, max the camber for racing, then return it for the drive home. You only need to jack it at the end of the day) I know I can get ~2.5 out of mine though.

I run closer to zero toe, but I do have stock sized poly bushings and when you add camber, it moves the toe negative. So I am sure I have some toe out for the race alignment.

Front end plow is the eternal struggle, especially in the tight stuff. The staggered setup isnt going to be much help on it. MORE CAMBER and you want the front end pretty stiff. (hence my massive Addco bar) Even then, you really need to consciously feed the car into those elements carefully so it does not break loose.

Some unpredictability is inherent to the rear suspension design because of how the upper control arms are tasked. Getting something else in there to take the lateral loads is a good idea. This will also help with the rubbing in the rear as the stock setup allows more than an inch of lateral movement through bushing compliance (that is needed so that the UCA's doing two jobs dont bind and tear your floor)

Not to say that the spindle and rubbing wasnt at fault. I'm sure that made things much worse.

Mad_Ratel
Mad_Ratel Dork
10/14/16 7:57 a.m.

watts link time? Or will that fubar your classing?

Apexcarver
Apexcarver PowerDork
10/14/16 8:42 a.m.
Mad_Ratel wrote: watts link time? Or will that fubar your classing?

Hes in CAM, so he can drop over $10k on a SLA front suspension conversion without it affecting. Rules are pretty much 200tw tires, 3100lbs, has interior.

Mad_Ratel
Mad_Ratel Dork
10/14/16 10:10 a.m.

yup watts link time!. (rear suspension.)

:P

http://www.fays2.net/

Javelin
Javelin MegaDork
10/18/16 11:40 a.m.

On the rear suspension, I am thinking of going with the Maximum Motorsports Panhard bar kit. It's priced pretty well and should locate the axle way better than the factory UCA"s do. Do I still run UCA's with a panhard?

Mad_Ratel
Mad_Ratel Dork
10/18/16 11:52 a.m.

I would not know. Our 2012 gt had a panhard and it still was a pita and did not drive properly to me, wandered over bumps etc. My research and the result I got from three seperate well known mustang shops was that it's Watts link or nothing. Then torque arm if you are at the upper reaches of skill.

Apexcarver
Apexcarver PowerDork
10/18/16 1:09 p.m.
Javelin wrote: On the rear suspension, I am thinking of going with the Maximum Motorsports Panhard bar kit. It's priced pretty well and should locate the axle way better than the factory UCA"s do. Do I still run UCA's with a panhard?

Yes, you will still need something up there. The MM solution to drop the UCA's is the Torque Arm. You can potentially remove ONE of the two UCA's, which is commonly referred to as the "Poor Man's 3-Link", but I dislike it for the stress on the floorpan.

The UCA's do two jobs, one of the jobs is lateral location. The other is a constraint from axle rotation (which also defines the Anti-squat/etc). They dont really do either job the best due to the compromise of doing both jobs. The Panhard does the job of lateral location well enough that the Lateral Location element of the UCA's doesnt really get out of the bushing slop that they have (and need to prevent bindind, even without the PHB).

The Steeda 5-link replaces the UCA's with ones that link to brackets on the axle tubes and removes all lateral location functionality from them. They also improve the geometry for the rear suspension (anti-squat and such) for better traction and braking. The lateral location is then taken over by a panhard included in that kit.

The MM Torque arm + Panhard does the same thing, but with the torque arm taking the place of the redesigned UCA's/axle side mounts. So there is no more need for them.

Cliffs Notes you need at least one UCA with a panhard. I suggest keeping both, but running one has been done. UCA has jobs other than lateral location that must be done by something.

Apexcarver
Apexcarver PowerDork
10/18/16 1:12 p.m.

Note on this diagram that the axle can rotate about the link from the lower control arm to the axle and it will make easy sense.

You start to see what I mean about the two jobs of the uppers, neither of which are done well.

I still run this setup on mine.

Apexcarver
Apexcarver PowerDork
10/18/16 1:17 p.m.

Here you see a overly basic that shows some of what the UCAs are needed for with a comparison of upper control arms with a torque arm.

This is the upper control arms for the Steeda 5-link (below) you can see it replaces the axle side mount. This is done for both UCA's(L&R).

Javelin
Javelin MegaDork
10/18/16 3:51 p.m.

$1300 is king of a lot to swallow! That said, the Steeda 5-link does look like a good possibility. Does MM do a UCA/Panhard combo, or just the Torque Arm?

Apexcarver
Apexcarver PowerDork
10/19/16 8:07 a.m.

MM just does the torque arm. The torque arm also requires subframe connectors, as thats what the arm ties to (it would rip the floorpan, this is also why you dont see torque arm ESP mustangs).

So, all sold separately... the MM setup is PHB($385), Torque arm ($450), and Subframe connectors ($160).

You would also have to change your rear spring rates after that, with your coilovers I would Guess something like $80 a spring? (running off memory of buying for my Miata several years ago, not sure on this number)

So all that added up, you are at $1155 before shipping all of it, but you might save some from shopping the package deals on their site. http://www.maximummotorsports.com/Packages-C1.aspx

Note that the Steeda setup would also probably need new springs as well for the rear. Plus, the 5-link isnt really compatible with tail pipes, so you have to dump or side exit as I recall.

Apexcarver
Apexcarver PowerDork
10/19/16 8:09 a.m.

Basically, both the 5-link and the torque arm solve a problem. They have differing compromises in how they do it, but both work. The jury has always been somewhat out as to which one is that last Nth better.

Javelin
Javelin MegaDork
10/19/16 8:26 a.m.

I already have dumps, so at least there's that!

loumash
loumash New Reader
10/19/16 9:38 a.m.

I'm running the MM torque arm and panhard. It's light years better than the factory setup.

jstein77
jstein77 UltraDork
10/19/16 10:01 a.m.

Your description of the torque arm doesn't seem far removed from what JG is running on his Mustang.

Gab
Gab New Reader
10/20/16 9:18 a.m.
Javelin wrote: On the rear suspension, I am thinking of going with the Maximum Motorsports Panhard bar kit. It's priced pretty well and should locate the axle way better than the factory UCA"s do. Do I still run UCA's with a panhard?

Javelin,

My '98 Cobra is currently equipped with Steeda weight jacker RLCA and OEM uppers, and I added the MM panhard bar - what a difference in rear handling! It's still not the best (I have no rear grip in turns), but the rear end is much more stable, with no snap oversteer. I kept both OEM uppers and haven't noticed an issue. The car will get the MM HD torque arm this winter, along with MM torque arm springs.

-Gab

Javelin
Javelin MegaDork
10/20/16 11:17 a.m.

I went down the rabbit hole of looking at 99-04 IRS setups...

Javelin
Javelin MegaDork
11/30/16 11:41 a.m.

I got tired of waiting for my regular shop to paint the Cobra, so I brought it to my buddy Gil's (Toyland Speed & Restoration). Here's a preview:

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