is it possible to make a coilover setup for a 1st and 2nd gen - Page 2 - Suspension and Brake Forum

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Re: is it possible to make a coilover setup for a 1st and 2nd gen
Sunday, January 25, 2015 10:15 AM
darknstrange cavie wrote:

cahill-I like the way you set up the rear The old one with afco adjustable perches was ok but this looks like it would ride a bit better and allow more adjustment?


It always had adjustment at both ends, I just ended up needing a higher rate spring to counter understeer. The only 5" ones short enough were the Eibachs, so I needed to cut down the lower perches. I don't think I've ever adjusted the lower perches, so they were probably never needed and a 4" ring welded to the spring pad would've worked fine.

96S1 wrote:

James - that setup looks really beefy. Nice job! I was thinking the same thing about the additional bracing. The plates are a great idea for the mounting area but it does seem like it would need to transfer the load some how.

How is your application for a street driven car? Sounds like it would be pretty good for a daily driver because of the ability to adjust the travel that much.


I try not to use "street driven" in the same sentence as my car. While it's awesome to drive, being a 2400lb go kart, it's nowhere near comfortable. This setup works great for what I intended to do with it (autocross), but it ended up being even better for track use. I didn't do it to be able to change ride height, I did it for the ability to corner balance it, so while it's extremely adjustable, I've probably only ever used about 1/2" of adjustment after I set the initial ride height. Suspension travel is pretty short, maybe an inch at most because of the spring rates.

Rob Dotterer wrote:

Anyone try cobalt parts as they have a similar setup?


I seem to remember someone on V6 did. I don't remember what came of it.




Re: is it possible to make a coilover setup for a 1st and 2nd gen
Sunday, January 25, 2015 2:13 PM
I contacted stance coilovers once to try and get just the rear parts from a cobalt to attempt using in my 93 but they never got back to me after I explained my plans.

Cobalt are really close as well but if you study the cobalt forums you'll see that they are just removing the adjusters and using the smaller springs to get a large drop.

Cahill- your setup is beyond impressive. I can only imagine how well it handles on the track. I couldn't imagine havino such little travel for street duty...


There was a ph1 2nd gen cavalier on stanceworks a few years ag...he claimed to use bmw coilovers to slam it. But never showed any pictures of the setup. Was a nice looking car on widened steelies


R.I.P darknstrangecavie
Re: is it possible to make a coilover setup for a 1st and 2nd gen
Monday, January 26, 2015 5:55 AM
James Cahill i love the setup and i am using it for daily use tho but idk it might ride about the same as my brothers crx did....and what springs did you order for the setup im very interested to learn about your setup and thanks everyone for the help its been a big help for me on this build but idk what the best rout to go i love James Cahill's idea tho its amazing and then i dont have any tire clearance issues

I'm new to the scene ... I'm 18 and i have a 1985 Pontiac Sunbird sedan...
Re: is it possible to make a coilover setup for a 1st and 2nd gen
Wednesday, January 28, 2015 5:23 PM
The fronts are whatever GC specs for 3rd gens at 525#. The rear are 5" diameter 500-1000# progressive rate "pull bar" springs. A pull bar is like a sprung panhard bar. Check out Speedway Motors. The rest of the parts I either built or sourced from various circle track suppliers, basically whoever had the best price. They're all pretty universal.

To make this type of setup streetable, you're going to really have to play with rates and lengths. Just FYI, most of the aftermarket lowering springs are around 250#.



Re: is it possible to make a coilover setup for a 1st and 2nd gen
Thursday, January 29, 2015 6:47 AM
thanks james and what circle track parts did you use this is going to help me the biggest and im sorry for asking you all these questions but i have NO knowledge on these cars and im trying to learn what would help and benifit the build ive decided i also want to build a turbo 3400 and put it in there and im super interested in your setup ....... another question can a irs setup be put on a first gen??


I'm new to the scene ... I'm 18 and i have a 1985 Pontiac Sunbird sedan...
Re: is it possible to make a coilover setup for a 1st and 2nd gen
Saturday, April 18, 2015 2:05 PM
i also autocross my 1988 z24, for around 18 years now. this thread is interesting and has alot of good ideas, i may be looking more into this (working on some hp now)
but for the guy that started that thread brian morgan.
if your car is to be a street car and not a track / autocross car then you really do not need to spend all that money trying to do a coilover setup that is not a plug and play thing. trust me i just built a coilover setup using factory bilstine shocks for my 95 supra. i have spent way more than i wanted to and now i still need to play with spring rates till i get it to handle right. which means more money.
i have been running the eibach lowering kit with koni adjustable shocks for 17 years on the cav and trust me when i say it is all you will ever need, and the koni shocks are rebuildable. i have been super happy with this setup and have Manny autox trophies to show it does work fine.

i am not trying to talk you out of doing a coilover set up, done right it will be better. but if you are not trying to win races is it really worth the money and hassle. just something to think about
Re: is it possible to make a coilover setup for a 1st and 2nd gen
Monday, May 04, 2015 7:53 AM
thanks brian anderson that helps alot and by the most i really wanna build a streetable daily track car out of my 1985 sunbird sedan. but that was were i was questioning the fact of coilovers because ive found it hard to find springs there not as common as once before and i mean thats what i am having the hardest time and with coilovers that leaves no room on the wheel wells to fit a decent size tire i was thinking about james cahill's setup and trying it on mine because of the hard time im having finding spring for my car.


I'm new to the scene ... I'm 18 and i have a 1985 Pontiac Sunbird sedan...
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