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Old 12-06-2016, 07:07 PM   #29
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Moto-P also says :

"Soft + mid-height -20~30mm (or plenty of stroke built into coilver) + medium grip street tire = FUN, Fairly quick, easy to handle, and close to original setup."

This could/would be a route I'd like to go with .
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Old 12-06-2016, 07:36 PM   #30
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Yes Moto-P wrote "is the only way to NOT ruin a great car", but not that it won't change the character.

With "Soft compliant suspension and mild drop and healthy set of fairly grippy tires", the car is not ruined - but it is changed.

Whether or not the change is considered "good" can be divided in subjective opinion and a measured time around a track. With "not ruin" Moto-P is referring to the latter.

"Fairly close" to stock setup, is again a subjective size. How close is "fairly"?

Again personally for the street, I preferred the car stock over my "fairly soft coilovers, 1 1/4 inch drop and Yokohama AD08Rs. I do like all the changes I made when I have the car on track though. But driving the car on anything near the limits on the street or feeling the car giving "playful" feedback and I nearly sh!t myself. The car goes like it's on rails now, and I do not feel like intentionally trying to derail it! Hence, no "extra bashes" on the throttle to feel it move a bit more anymore.

It seems you have made up your mind, so there is no point trying to convince you to stay on stock suspension. And also you might like the change... Just be aware of the fact that it WILL change.
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Old 12-06-2016, 09:01 PM   #31
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Tor: out of curiosity, your AD08Rs are of what width? I wonder if maybe stock sized yokos, or even of 205 width might be less like on rails when DD?
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Old 12-06-2016, 09:41 PM   #32
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I can say: with RCE Yellows on OEM struts and MPSS in OEM size, the car handles very well. It's pretty neutral, sticks to the ground well, but I can still get the rear end out with power oversteer or trailing throttle oversteer as I see fit. With OEM power, at that.

However, the FRS, especially 13-15, is a little more tail-happy than the BRZ is, due to different OEM spring rates. So once you change the springs, that goes away and is replaced by the characteristics of whatever spring you install. RCE designed their Yellow springs to work with the OEM struts and produce neutral handling. So if you put them on an FRS, that's what you'll get. The tail-happiness goes away and is replaced by neutral handling.

I put close to 30K miles on my springs and OEM tires before I replaced the tires with MPSS. The difference in ride comfort between OEM springs and RCE Yellows on the OEM tire is minimal, but handling was much improved. Going from the OEM tire to the MPSS, with its much stronger sidewall, was a noticeable decrease in comfort level, but handling improved even further over the old tires. Everything has tradeoffs; it just depends on what negatives you're willing to accept in order to get the positives you want.
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Old 12-06-2016, 10:41 PM   #33
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Tor: out of curiosity, your AD08Rs are of what width? I wonder if maybe stock sized yokos, or even of 205 width might be less like on rails when DD?
They are 225/40R18.

It was less pronounced with less grippy Pirelli. But still, the car is more planted and skipped less around. The skipping about or dancing, in a controlled manner, is in my opinion what makes the car special. The feeling of going 10/10ths when in reality you are not.

Before getting coilovers, I had the Pirelli on stock suspension. It didn't make nearly as much difference. Looking at pictures from that, the wheel gap didn't look too bad either (pics in the 1st post in my build thread, see signature). I think a lot can be done by choosing the right rims, and that would by far be my recommendation for anyone seeking optical improvement without wanting to change the handling significantly.

Don't get me wrong, I am quite happy with my suspension and tire choice for the use the car sees. But to be honest, it doesn't feel that special driving it on backroads anymore, because even if I push it doesn't feel like you are more than 7/10ths. And I wouldn't want to get much higher on the scale on public roads anymore in any case. Sometimes it's outright annoying (like when a female companion gets carsick from driving with me because of the suspension).

I bought the car to be a vehicle of transportation. And I enjoyed taking 3 hours drives Sundays on backroads "bashing the throttle a little too much" in the in the corners, in the words of Chris Harris. Now it has become a hobby and I drove it once the last 2-3 weeks. I just put a charger on it today, to ensure the battery won't go flat and spent 5 mins looking for the key because I was that long ago I had it last that I couldn't remember where I put it. Next time I will drive it, it will probably be to test out something i made on it.

The itch to just take it out for a spin has gone (and also I don't want to take my precious belonging out on the salty winter roads). Sometimes I wish it was "just a car".

This is just a warning, I know others who modded their car similarly as I did and who felt exactly the same as I did.

Ok, I didn't want to be that negative sounding! But just to let the original poster know, what potential path this could lead down.

If he or anyone else in his situation (no track, DD) insists on lowering the car for optical reasons, I would go for something as soft as possible. And without camber plates with spherical bearings. Sometimes less is more.

If you want to change the handling to a more "racecar-like" feel, the by all means... just know what you are getting into.
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Old 12-07-2016, 06:04 AM   #34
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where progressive springs are matched with the gas strut as they are tuned for each other/compliment each other , ??!!??).
This is from a theoretical view. That is, in real life this is probably not relevant especially if you are mainly concerned with street driving.
Progressive rate springs are another compromise. The valving has to cope with different spring rates.

Another personal rant: I would never consider progressive springs for my car just as a matter of principle.
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Old 12-07-2016, 06:22 AM   #35
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I don't hear many forum users saying much about the Tein Mono sport.... but on paper /specs they look solid.
Have you seen the spring rates for the Mono Sports? 8k/9k is a crazy upgrade if you are wanting close to oem.
OEM is something like 2.3k/3.8k.
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Old 12-07-2016, 06:26 AM   #36
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Echoing what @Tor said, I also feel that stock suspension with stock size wheels/tires is more fun. I used to have RCE Tarmac 0 coilovers, 17x9 Enkei RPF1, and 245/40/17 Dunlop Z2 Star Specs; pretty good quality stuff for raising the limits and cornering fast. However, this did not make the car more fun. In fact, it made the car less agile.

If you absolutely feel like you need to lower your car, I would only recommend RCE Yellow springs or STI Pink springs. Both are engineered to work well with the stock dampers and emphasize performance over looks. The RCE yellows offer a 20mm drop and the STI Pinks offer a 15mm drop. For a purely street driven car, I don't feel there is a need for coilovers, unless you're after a drop of over 25mm (1 inch) or being competitive at the track.

Personally, I'm going to try swapping to OEM BRZ front springs and a slightly larger front sway bar (probably Cusco 20mm) with the stock rear suspension next year. I've heard great things about this combo. It should sharpen turn-in and dial out some of the push/understeer with the increased front grip.
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Old 12-07-2016, 01:08 PM   #37
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Have you seen the spring rates for the Mono Sports? 8k/9k is a crazy upgrade if you are wanting close to oem.
OEM is something like 2.3k/3.8k.
Thanks for pointing out that important factoid. I must have been smoking something when I was reading Tein literature.

I will look into RCE yellow springs. That might actually just be the ticket, a nice coil spring that has a softer spring rate... better matched to the FR-S.

If I went coilovers, is there a coilover set up out there with a softer spring rate around 2.5k/4k ? Most of what I've read on is higher (progressive spring Bilstein , or linear spring set up). KW V1 is close (pretty sure) but a bit higher rates.
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Old 12-07-2016, 01:14 PM   #38
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FWIW I have the Monosports (and a bunch of other suspension goodies) and I don't find the ride too harsh. Of course everyone's definition of harsh will be different.

I've got the dampers set to full soft for the winter but usually ride with them set mid-stiff in the summer.
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Old 12-07-2016, 04:10 PM   #39
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Responding here for @Adam_L

Tire choice is the #1 variable to consider. Like others have mentioned, putting a very sticky tire on the car really changes the character of the car. I won't say better or worse, but it's different. Obviously for some more absolute grip is the goal but if you're not chasing lap times, more grip might = less fun. The car will of course have higher cornering limits even with stock suspension, but it will feel a little sloppy due to excessive roll and movement. A sticky tire will make the car want stiffer springs, which will require firmer dampers, and if you want firmer dampers that don't beat you up you have to spend some real money. On top of that you'll want to start thinking about replacing OEM bushings with something firmer since the flex from OEM bushings will be more apparent and you might add camber plates for more aggressive alignment to take advantage of the grippier tires and....I think you get the idea of the rabbit hole.

For a street car, a tire that has consistent and reasonable grip is the ticket IMO. Michelin Pilot Super Sports are a popular choice for a good reason.

If I were building a fun, reliable, reasonably fast, simple and budget friendly BRZ/FRS suspension tomorrow (and I do think about this all the time), I would do:

1. RCE Yellow springs
2. Bilstein B6 dampers
3. camber bolts and rear LCAs with good alignment (-2 deg camber front, -1.8 rear, 0 toe front, tiny bit of rear toe in)

After that, I would consider RCE front and rear RCE swaybars OR just a take off OEM 16mm rear bar. Or keep bars stock. Also maybe a few key bushings (especially if you got some mileage on your car).

This handles and rides very well, will last a long itme, and be FUN.

I do mostly like the Bilstein B14, but I don't like the soft progressive springs very much. It's a good quality damper though, which is why I generally prefer Bilstein over some other options.

The Bilstein B6 dampers are actually a great match to our RCE Yellow springs (and for that matter a handful of other springs out there as well). We've tested them together and examined shock dyno...it's a good quality shock and better than what's in many coilovers. I don't recommend any spring that lowers more than an inch. Our RCE Yellows are a mild/medium drop with carefully chosen spring rates and include replacement bumpstops so you get back some of the travel you get from the mild drop.

A lot of people assume coilover = better but that is not always the case.

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Old 12-07-2016, 04:24 PM   #40
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Also wanted to add...my list there for a fast/fun/reliable street car is what I would do for myself for pretty much any budget. We could do custom built 4 way JRZ coilovers for more than 10 grand and spend a week tuning them just right and it will ride + perform better...but the Bilstein/RCE Yellow combo will last longer and just be way more simple.

And you could still track and auto-x the car and have a really good time. If you were doing that often and wanted to be competitive, you might want to consider a firmer (and more expensive) coilover system.

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Old 12-07-2016, 05:22 PM   #41
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Andrew,

Would you also recommend B6 dampers on stock springs if one wanted stock ride height, or is improvement over stock dampers minimal with the stock springs?

Thanks

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Old 12-07-2016, 06:20 PM   #42
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Also wanted to add...my list there for a fast/fun/reliable street car is what I would do for myself for pretty much any budget. We could do custom built 4 way JRZ coilovers for more than 10 grand and spend a week tuning them just right and it will ride + perform better...but the Bilstein/RCE Yellow combo will last longer and just be way more simple.

And you could still track and auto-x the car and have a really good time. If you were doing that often and wanted to be competitive, you might want to consider a firmer (and more expensive) coilover system.

- Andrew
Hi Andrew,

Thank you for your responses. This is exactly the info I was looking for!!!

On the Bilstein B6 strut/shocks , are they rebuildable ? I didn't see any mention of it on their website.

Also, that is pretty much the tire choice I'd go with (Michelin Pilot super sport) when I go to do everything. I'll enjoy the stock set up for now, but also save everything (springs+ struts) , in case I ever want to transform the car back to stock.
Thanks again
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