Adjustable vs Non Adjustable LCA's - Ford Mustang Forums : Corral.net Mustang Forum
 
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post #1 of 15 Old 09-07-2011, 06:43 PM Thread Starter
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Adjustable vs Non Adjustable LCA's

Sin'ce I'm focusing on the rear suspension on the La Poitrine first. I was wondering about Adjustable vs Non-Adjustable LCA's (thinking about getting MM's Pan Hard Bar kit first). I am planning on going Coil Over at some point, so I'm thinking about the Non-Adjustable. I know this is gonna be another "underprepared" C-Prepared car.

In my case, would there be a real benefit on getting the adjustable LCA's at this point? I figure Coil Over's kinda make the adjustable LCA's useless....


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post #2 of 15 Old 09-07-2011, 07:35 PM
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I went back and forth on this issue once I installed front C/Os, especially since I had been running MM's non-adjustable RLCAs for a few years. The price point for the C/O kit with the required shocks is a bit steep, even assuming a new set of shocks is required. Ultimately, I went conventional spring with the MM adjustable RLCAs because of tire clearance issues and anticipated ride quality (I run a PM3L so there is no bind from the uppers). Even with the lowest recommended C/O spring rate (175#), the wheel rate was going to be pretty high for my primarily street driven car. The adjustable LCAs provide almost all the benefits of C/Os without some of the negatives.

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post #3 of 15 Old 09-08-2011, 01:02 AM
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As stated, the CO cost of entry is steep. I kick myself for not getting adjustable LCA's years earlier than I did.
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post #4 of 15 Old 09-08-2011, 03:25 AM
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I think to the average/above average guy you really can't tell a difference. I'm running an adjustable rod ended LCA with C/O's simply because I hadn't invested that much money in the shock/LCA dept already and had a buyer for those parts when removed.

If going to that type of setup, i'd take into consideration "bushing bind" when picking your spring rate. With nothing but rod ends and a torque arm controlling my axle articulation, a 350 spring rate was needed. Compared to the 550 or so conventional rate I was running.

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post #5 of 15 Old 09-08-2011, 07:52 AM
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According to MM, the rear wheel rate with a conventional spring is about 50% of the advertised rate whereas with a C/O it's about 110% of the rate. On my car, with zero bind suspension (rod-ended PM3L, MM's PHB, adjustable LCAs and adjustable sta-bar), my H&R Super Race conventionals average about 140# wheel rate. If I had run the 175# C/O, the wheel rate would be about 192#. Given how it rode with the stock binding suspension and "C" springs (average wheel rate of 125#), I believed a 192# rate to be too high for my primarily street driven car. I think the bind adds some serious wheel rate but I don't know the amount. Where is Jack when you need him!

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post #6 of 15 Old 09-08-2011, 05:41 PM Thread Starter
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Ok, so the message I'm getting:

Adjustable LCA's, hold off on Coil Over's for rear, het H&R springs.

Deal with the Front H&R Springs when I upgrade the front suspension in about 2 years......
According to MM website, coil overs are required for the forward offset Lower Control arms in the front.

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post #7 of 15 Old 09-08-2011, 05:44 PM
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They're required of all MM A-arms because none of them have a spring perch.
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post #8 of 15 Old 09-08-2011, 06:20 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MFE View Post
They're required of all MM A-arms because none of them have a spring perch.
But that doesn't have anything to do with my mustang, I'm keeping the front stock for a while with H&R Springs. Then going coilover and forward offset.....

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post #9 of 15 Old 09-08-2011, 07:15 PM
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You're confusing yourself, and probably some other people with your "goals". And if you're confusing yourself, then you most likely will be wasting money that could be better spent learning to drive the car instead of emptying the bank account on parts that will only require short term usage and replacement.
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post #10 of 15 Old 09-08-2011, 07:50 PM Thread Starter
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I'm not confusing myself. I've had the car for a few years now and been in H-Stock. Just putting a stock 302 into my Mustang bumps me up in classes, because a Mustang didn't come with a 302 in 1980 or 1981. It was a gutless 255ci v8.

I have my Ford Steering and Suspension Specialist Certification (a few classes in Seattle to get my Chassis Master)

I know the major problem is the rear suspension with snap over-steer. That's what I'm focusing on now. So the front suspension is out of the question for now.

My question is answered, go with Adjustable LCA's in the rear and and H&R Springs. Coil-Overs have no real noticeable benefit and not really needed, unless I go compete at the National level. It the local level, all the Prepared are PAX'd together (2 FP Nissans, and 1 EP Civic)

I was just saying that in the future, 2-3 years from now, I'm gonna focus on the front suspension, offset A-arms (which are called Lower Control Arms also at the Dealership), and coil overs. What MFE stated, I already knew, and the other (front) LCA's don't matter to me.


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post #11 of 15 Old 09-08-2011, 11:28 PM
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Well according to MMs torque arm page, you need rear coilovers to get a stiff enough spring if you plan on running stiffer than 325lb coilovers up front. Of course MFE and a few others on here are running stiffer than 325 up front with factory location springs in the rear and seem to be happy with their setups. I don't see why you couldn't run the factory location springs and compensate with a huge rear bar if need be. Of course factory location springs + the MM rear bar costs as much as coilovers. I bought non adjustable LCAs because I planned on rear COs, then bought factory location springs with my TA because I didn't want to drop 900 dollars at once. I also want to run a 400lb+ front spring so I'm not sure what to do. And now I'm done rambling my thoughts...

What front springs are you running/plan on running for the time being?

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post #12 of 15 Old 09-09-2011, 10:18 AM
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I got my MM/Bilstein rear coilover kit on e-bay. Lightly used on a street car and I think I paid around $150 with springs so I was lucky.

Really, the cost isn't that much more for coilovers vs. conventional.

The RLCAs are $380 for adjustable and $250 for non-adjustable so you're saving $130 towards the coilover kit just on the arms.

Then you don't have to buy the rear springs so you're saving another $125 there.

Take the $255 off the $450 coilover price and the difference is $195. That's a drop in the bucket when you're modifying your car and as stated above, you may run into some scenario in the future where you run out of wheel rate with conventional springs.

Just food for thought.

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post #13 of 15 Old 09-09-2011, 10:37 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MJ91GT View Post
I got my MM/Bilstein rear coilover kit on e-bay. Lightly used on a street car and I think I paid around $150 with springs so I was lucky.

Really, the cost isn't that much more for coilovers vs. conventional.

The RLCAs are $380 for adjustable and $250 for non-adjustable so you're saving $130 towards the coilover kit just on the arms.

Then you don't have to buy the rear springs so you're saving another $125 there.

Take the $255 off the $450 coilover price and the difference is $195. That's a drop in the bucket when you're modifying your car and as stated above, you may run into some scenario in the future where you run out of wheel rate with conventional springs.


Just food for thought.
That was the reason for the question in the first place...... Over all the prices are pretty much the same one way or the other....

The shock/strut package are pretty much the same price whether they are coil over "ready" or not. The coil overs are a little bit more than springs, and the Non Adjustable Package is cheaper.

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post #14 of 15 Old 09-09-2011, 06:52 PM
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If you are going to play with anti-squat / instant center / roll-steer by lowering the control arm pickup points on the rear axle, then get the adjustable LCA's.

On an auto-X car that sees tight turns and very brief opportunities for straight line acceleration, optimizing anti-squat / instant center / roll-steer pays off huge. Even more so if the car is lowered.

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post #15 of 15 Old 09-10-2011, 02:45 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RcodeStang View Post
What front springs are you running/plan on running for the time being?
That's another issue. Doing just rear coilovers means I'd still have to buy a "set" of springs (both front and rear) just to get springs in the front to some what match the rear set-up.

Thanks for all the great info so far guys. What I'm starting to see here is it's better to not even think about coil-overs until I'm ready to do the front.

With conventional springs (H&R Race series springs), sway bar, and Bilstein HD grooved struts (for a coil over conversion later on, only $50 more), I'd have a more balanced suspension package. It may not be the best setup, but balanced is still better than unbalanced.

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