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Hello all,

Until now, I haven't had to work Saabines suspension too hard due to the old P6000 tyres (rears already have age cracks
), but I'll be upgrading her shoes to something new and far more aggressive in time for the season. I'll probably go for more aggressive front camber (1.3 - 1.4 deg negative) , castor (2.75 deg positive) and toe-in (as little as I can get away with) settings at the same time And as the Dutch MOT equivalent is due for the end of next month, I thought I could sneak in the odd upgrade while I'm at it.

The only blatant weakness I've been pointed at so far is that, despite the new Koni's that were set a click (or two?) stiffer before installing them, the front seems to be underdamped. Good news - I thought it were the springs being too hard that made the front end a bit lively over bumps - tech tells me the springs are OK, but the damping too soft. I'll have the front shocks set at full hard, then. The shocks have poly bushes all round - except for the lower monuting points on the rears that weren't available then. All other suspension bushes are OE.

The rear torsion bar that was put on at the same time as the new shocks (luckily I still had a receipt for he rears - Koni lifetime warranty and all ) with new OE bushings. There is no torsion bar at the front.

As I think the front end would get rather too harsh with poly wishboe bushings and I've got my thoughts about the bang/buck ratio anyways (250 euro for bushings and 4-5 hours labour for install) I think I will concentrate on the rear for finetuning the cars behaviour.

Feeling through the crappy tyres, I'd say the fore-aft balance is pretty well nailed (BillJ- any input?) but I could do with a bit more precision especially on turn-in.

From what I gathered about poly bushes:

The upper rear axle link bushings (that Elkparts have in their online shop) make for better stability under braking as they stop the axle from rotating under brake force

The Panhard rod bushings (from Speedparts, but not in the Elkparts catalogue - still available from Elkparts, then?) make for better turn-in response (yay!)

The torsion bar bushings merely make the bar behave like a stiffer (bigger) one.

Based on this, I would go for the Panhard rod and upper rear link bushes, as they should be easy to install, too. 'Upgrading' the rear bar and getting more grip at the front by ways of more neg camber would probably make Saabine a bit too tail-happy, I think?

Any flaws in my logic?
 

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I'd agree with Mark about the tyres. Assess the car's handling on new tyres and go from there. Squishy sidewalls can play all sorts of nasty tricks with the handling and hide the real characteristics of the chassis. Pity I didn't get a chance to really push Saabine hard through some corners, but I've since had the chance to drive a C900i for a few weeks and really liked the handling compared to the 9000. I believe that car had no front anti-roll bar either and its turn-in was very nice. It could have done with even less understeer, though, like it seems you're heading for with Saabine.

On the Konis, my experience on the 9000 is that they soften after a while so tweaking them up a bit stiffer now sounds a good idea. I'd be wary about going to full stiffness as my suspension is almost rock-solid with them about 3/4 stiff, and probably actually a bit too hard for good handling on normal roads (well, UK roads - NL roads seem to have a better surface). Great for a fast track venue like Goodwood, though. I assume that all four dampers, like the rear dampers on the 9000, need to be removed for adjustment?

On the 9000, which has almost the same rear suspension as the C900, I found replacing the rear anti-roll bar bushes with poly to make a nice difference to the balance, with much more precise turn-in and a lot less understeer.
 

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Originally posted by BillJ:
[qb]I'd agree with Mark about the tyres. Assess the car's handling on new tyres and go from there. Squishy sidewalls can play all sorts of nasty tricks with the handling and hide the real characteristics of the chassis.  [/qb][/b]
This is true. From my own experience, what I thought to be the ARB bushes worn out transpired out to be under-inflated P6000s.
 
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