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Kirkham Motorsports

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Old 06-19-2020, 08:32 PM
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Default Front spring question

I just inherited a CR from my father. According to the paperwork, the front springs were supplied by CR. The car has a big block ford engine and the car rides like a brick. It also has the monstrous sway bar still in place. Every bump is harsh. I added some QA1 shocks up front on 3rd click but the ride is still harsh. I haven’t unhooked the sway bar yet as DV mentioned in prior posts. Can anyone tell me what the spring rate of the CR springs are and if there is anyway to make the ride a little more plush without going to coil Overs? Sway bar, tire pressure, different settings on the shocks? Thanks

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Old 06-20-2020, 06:28 AM
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My first Cobra was a CR with a small block and solid axle rear. The ride was pretty harsh. Changing shocks was a good first step. You'll have to remove the springs to see what you have. It's usually engraved on the top/bottom of the spring. If you decide to change them, use Eibachs. Makes a huge difference.

Tire pressure should be around 22psi

Disconnect one end of the sway bar and drive it around a little. I doubt that it will make much of a difference.

Also, check for binding in the suspension. Poly bushings are famous for binding up over time. That makes a Really harsh ride.
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Old 06-20-2020, 08:05 AM
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I too brought a unfinished CR kit (Poly bushing), years ago, and found the same thing. As I discovered at the factory as a roller(Less Motor & trans) they tighten everything to specs. on the A-arms, etc. When you install the Motor, etc the bushing will bind, just put it up a hoist, loosen all front sup. bolts and let everything "Relax" then retighten all bolts to spec. Hope this helps Cheers TommyRot.
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Old 06-21-2020, 05:39 AM
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Many years ago, Classic Roadsters had their own forum. A lot of good information was lost when that disappeared. Back then, they always recommended Pro Shocks which were hydraulic. I don’t have the part numbers any more but they were adamant about not using gas shocks. Said the ride would definitely be rough.
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Old 06-21-2020, 07:50 AM
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I used conical spring coil over shocks with 500 lb springs on my CR and it has a smooth ride while still handling very well. The large CR provided sway bar is also used. I don't have any complaints in the ride quality area with this setup.





The real value you get from these is being able to raise/lower the ride height for whatever wheel/tire combination you decide to use. The main extra cost is replacing the low control arm to one that accepts a coilover shock.
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Old 06-21-2020, 11:53 AM
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The most effective way to soften the ride is to soften the springs. Shocks only dampen the motion. Sway bars only increase the spring rate when cornering. I dropped the spring rate from 550 to 450 front. I dropped rear by 100 lbs as well. Just doing the front did not solve the seat of pants feel. I tried a 50 lbs. drop, but it wasn't enough. Tire pressure will help a little. Rubber bushings a very little. Sway bar diameter none. Softer compression setting on shocks some. Shocks rebound very little. Tire aspect ratio some. My 2 cents worth.
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Old 06-21-2020, 01:25 PM
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I can tell you from experience that you need a soft spring rate in the front because these cars are so light. I installed camber plates and 350Lb Eibachs and they are too stiff. I will be swapping them out for 300 or 275 lb springs. The racing suspension shop that did the alignment and weight balancing told me to go to progressive rate springs.
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Old 06-21-2020, 07:31 PM
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My 92 buildhad a very bad ride , the rear spring spring jack bolts would bottom out in the top spring pocket.these were original springs hat were weak replaced all rear control bushings with energy suspencion bushings and 325 pound rear Iebach springs ride is greatly improved.do need to go with the pro shocks I think haven't done anything to front set up but ddidtake off sway bar it is just to big for these low weightcars in my opinion
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Old 06-23-2020, 06:30 PM
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C5GTO. You mention that a change to coil overs can happen with a lower control arm change. Is that all? Is the upper shock tower strong enough to handle the forces of a coil over setup?
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Old 06-24-2020, 07:43 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gbalko View Post
C5GTO. You mention that a change to coil overs can happen with a lower control arm change. Is that all? Is the upper shock tower strong enough to handle the forces of a coil over setup?
Yes, that's the only change I had to make. The upper part of the spring still uses the same spring mount/seat as a regular MII spring. It's a conical spring so the spring width tapers from larger at the top to smaller at the bottom. I've seen several sources for this type of "coil over" for MII suspensions. I suggest you shop around to find which would work best for your situation.
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Old 06-25-2020, 08:50 AM
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I needed to shorten the upper shock mount when I installed QA1 Coil overs and tubular upper and lower A-Arms for MII.

See the lengthy posts "Kirk...were under attack"
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Old 07-13-2020, 10:15 AM
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I have a Ford 427 FE. Can anyone suggest the correct spring rate. It came with the option springs from CR in 1991 when the kit was purchased.
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Old 07-13-2020, 02:25 PM
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So I spoke with QA1 here was their suggestions. Let me know if you disagree. The car weighs 2820. Front end is #1440. The say I can use the existing upper and lower control arms and that the bolt going through the lower control arm on Mustang II is strong enough to support the assembly. They recommended a 8 inch 500# spring and GS507 shock (9.5 to 14.5" range from compressed to fully extended.)

What do you guys who have been down this route before think?
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Old 07-13-2020, 06:31 PM
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The QA1 GS507 shocks are 2" longer (compressed) than the MS301 shocks on my car - 9.63" vs 7.625". I'm somewhat shocked (excuse the pun) they would be that much longer, especially as we're both running Mustang II front ends. Mine is an original MII front end - is yours, or is it aftermarket?

The GS507 has a tie bar mount on the bottom, whereas mine uses a spherical bearing and 1/2" bolt that passes through holes in the LCA. Maybe that's a clue you're running a different suspension.
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Old 07-13-2020, 07:01 PM
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I am pretty sure I have a stock mustang II front end with stock upper and lower control arms. The car came with really old unidentifiable shocks that didn't uses a pressed bearing at the bottom. Where the shock mounts on the lower control arm, it uses a bolt covered by a tubular shim that fits snug in the eyelet hole of the shock. I think the difference between us might be the upper tower on my car, where the shock mounts, is another 4 inches above where the top of the spring is perched out. It looks very similar to what C5GTO has in his pic above. I am not sure if that is a design that was consistent with all of the CR's made. Your setup definitely wouldn't work on my car. With the suspension unloaded My shock length is 14 inches and yours maxes out at 11.
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Old 07-13-2020, 07:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gbalko View Post
I am pretty sure I have a stock mustang II front end with stock upper and lower control arms. The car came with really old unidentifiable shocks that didn't uses a pressed bearing at the bottom. Where the shock mounts on the lower control arm, it uses a bolt covered by a tubular shim that fits snug in the eyelet hole of the shock. I think the difference between us might be the upper tower on my car, where the shock mounts, is another 4 inches above where the top of the spring is perched out. It looks very similar to what C5GTO has in his pic above. I am not sure if that is a design that was consistent with all of the CR's made. Your setup definitely wouldn't work on my car. With the suspension unloaded My shock length is 14 inches and yours maxes out at 11.
Very different upper mount. Mine looks like this, though it has QA1 coilovers, of course:



Edit: Photo of my car: https://www.amazon.ca/photos/share/I...5x6fU49l7rYwDd
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Last edited by cycleguy55; 07-13-2020 at 07:24 PM..
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Old 07-13-2020, 08:39 PM
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Way different! QA1 recommending 8 inch 50 pound spring. Does that sound reasonable?
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Old 07-14-2020, 07:54 AM
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My CR has 500 lb springs and the ride is firm but still very comfortable. There's one data point on the QA1 spring rate recommendation. Shock valving can also a factor in the ride quality. Mine has Carello shocks which I think that brand was bought by QA1 as I don't see them advertised anymore.
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Old 07-14-2020, 09:06 AM
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Quote:
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Way different! QA1 recommending 8 inch 50 pound spring. Does that sound reasonable?
500 lbs/inch is only a bit firmer than mine, which are 465 lbs/inch. I find them firm, but not too stiff. The difference is your car will 'settle' a bit less when weight is on the springs. Regardless, the 18 step adjustment of the QA1 shocks should allow you to dial in how firm you want the ride to be. Mine are normally 4 clicks from softest, but they're installed so I can easily firm them up.

My car had Monroe Sensa-Trac shocks on the rear when I got it. Not only were they too soft, they weren't adjustable. I took advice of QA1 tech support and put adjustable shocks (not coilovers) on there. Big improvement.

Edit: I believe mine are the 8" springs - they just ride lower on the shock body than yours will.
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Old 07-14-2020, 12:54 PM
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Hey C5GTO. You mentioned that you changed your lower control arms. QA1 is telling me that the 1/2 inch bolt that currently supports the bottom of the shock is strong enough to support a coil over system. What do you think?
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