Rear Coil Overs and Shock Length on a Fox T-Bird - Ford Mustang Forums : Corral.net Mustang Forum
 
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post #1 of 12 Old 09-15-2009, 10:47 AM Thread Starter
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Rear Coil Overs and Shock Length on a Fox T-Bird

I installed my coil over kit, new axles, lower control arms, and Cobra rear brakes on my T-Bird a couple of weekends ago. The install went well but I am really leery of how low it is appearing the car will be. The springs are 200 lb units and the dampers are the Koni SA's (30 6325's) with a six inch stroke. With the car on the four point lift in the shop there is not much droop in the rear suspension. There is about a 1" gap between the top of the tire and the fender lip. I am running 275/40/17's for reference. I am leaning towards returning the Koni's and getting the seven inch stroke units (30 7325's) as this car is driven on the street. The car still has the UCA's in it so no Watts, Torque Arm, or Panhard bar.

Does anyone here have any knowledge on the T-Birds? I have read on the net that the stock rear dampers are longer on a T-Bird than a Mustang. My problem with that is everything on the net is true so I trust most of that information about as far as I can throw it.

Darren


'83 5.8L TKO'd T-Bird on the bottle
'93 5.4L Mustang coupe that beat your mom's LTD
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post #2 of 12 Old 09-16-2009, 07:42 AM
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Did you pitch the stock units?

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post #3 of 12 Old 09-16-2009, 09:22 AM Thread Starter
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No. I still have them...damn that is a good idea! Guess I could just go down to the local parts store and have them pull a shock for a Mustang and one for a T-Bird and measure. Sometimes you just have to step back from a problem and breath a little I guess.

I did talk to Bruce Griggs on the phone (was shocked I actually talked to him directly - the man is super busy) and he told me that they switched to the 6" stroke dampers a couple of years ago as some customers were having problems with bottoming out the seven inch stroke dampers. Granted these are race cars and mine will be on the street so I am leaning towards the seven inch dampers. Bruce told me to get the car back down on the ground and set the ride height to their numbers. If I am uncomfortable with it after that then pull the six inch stroke dampers and he will exchange them for the seven inch dampers. That has me feeling better about the whole deal so now I am pretty anxious to get back up to my family's shop and get the car on the ground. I just don't want a car that is so low its not fun to drive.

Darren

'83 5.8L TKO'd T-Bird on the bottle
'93 5.4L Mustang coupe that beat your mom's LTD
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post #4 of 12 Old 09-18-2009, 07:48 AM
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The Tbirds use a longer damper and longer springs than the Mustangs as you have found out. What most of us have done to remedy the issue is either flip the lower shock mount, or get ahold of this guy and ask about his lower shock mounts. They're built well, and raise the shock mount to get some more droop travel out of the shocks.

http://turbochuck.com/ is the man to talk to. I have a set of his mounts, I just haven't installed them yet.

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post #5 of 12 Old 09-18-2009, 11:23 AM Thread Starter
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I checked his site and emailed him inquiring about a set. My other solution is to get the 7" stroke dampers from Griggs. Thanks for the info!

Darren

'83 5.8L TKO'd T-Bird on the bottle
'93 5.4L Mustang coupe that beat your mom's LTD
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post #6 of 12 Old 09-19-2009, 08:03 AM
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What length rear springs are you using? I've done some trial and error figuring out what length fronts, but I haven't gotten around to the rear coil overs yet.

1988 Thunderbird Turbo Coupe.

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post #7 of 12 Old 09-19-2009, 11:01 AM Thread Starter
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I am running 10" X 2.5" 200lb springs on the rear and 10" X 2.5" 400lb sprins up front. Difference up front for me as the 351W probably out weighs your 2.3L setup. Call Maximum Motorsports and tell them you want a recommendation for springs and they will help you out.

Darren

'83 5.8L TKO'd T-Bird on the bottle
'93 5.4L Mustang coupe that beat your mom's LTD
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post #8 of 12 Old 09-21-2009, 02:05 PM Thread Starter
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I just flipped the brackets on the rear end and I am good with where it is sitting now. I would post some pictures but for some damn reason I cannot get them to upload...even deleted all my other pics and still no go. Anyhow, flipping the lower bracket like Tbird232ci suggested moved the damper up about 1.5" which was just about perfect.

Darren

'83 5.8L TKO'd T-Bird on the bottle
'93 5.4L Mustang coupe that beat your mom's LTD
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post #9 of 12 Old 09-21-2009, 07:56 PM
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Thanks for the numbers, I've got my rates figured out for the most part, but I had no idea where to start on the length of the rears.

I'm not trying to push a sale or anything, but I would highly suggest Chucks mounts if you can. The factory lower mounts leave me feeling uneasy, especially supporting all of the weight of these big birds, granted yours is a few hundred pounds lighter than mine.

1988 Thunderbird Turbo Coupe.

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post #10 of 12 Old 09-21-2009, 08:31 PM Thread Starter
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I was on the wall on that issue myself while driving back home (5 hour drive so I have lots of time to mull things over). Went to Maximum Motorsports site and found these:

http://www.maximummotorsports.com/st...roducts_id=610

I emailed that guy on Friday but he has not responded so far. I just emailed him again so hopefully he will get back with me as I am going back up there next weekend and would like to finish this up.

Darren


'83 5.8L TKO'd T-Bird on the bottle
'93 5.4L Mustang coupe that beat your mom's LTD
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post #11 of 12 Old 09-22-2009, 08:06 AM
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Yeah, those would work for you--if they fit a T-bird. Are the T-bird shock mounts like the Mustang ones?
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post #12 of 12 Old 09-22-2009, 08:18 AM Thread Starter
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They are identical in my case...rear end is out of an 89 GT. Only thing about the MM shock mounts is that when you flip them they would not bolt up like the stock ones. The stock mounts have that finger or tab that goes in the alignment hole up top. When you flip them you have to bend it back the other direction so the bracket will lay down right. If you look at the bracket on the rear end you can see that the lower hole (the one the bolt one the bracket goes in) and the alignment hole are not on the same plain. Hard to explain but if you crawl under a car you will see what I am talking about. The MM unit is far to rigid to do that with.

I did look under my 93 Coupe last night as it is a full MM car but I still have the stock shock bracket on the passenger's side. The left side mounts into the Panhard bar bracket. I do have Griggs coil overs on the car so I am going to get with a friend who sold me all the stuff (Griggs and MM dealer) and see why I did not get a bracket for the right side like the MM unit.

Darren

'83 5.8L TKO'd T-Bird on the bottle
'93 5.4L Mustang coupe that beat your mom's LTD

Last edited by d brune; 09-22-2009 at 08:20 AM.
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