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PostPosted: Sat Mar 17, 2012 12:22 pm 
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The time has come to cut springs on my 1994 GT

Rather than cut the springs that are currently on the car I pulled some donor springs from a Mk4 1.3 SOHC and one front one from a Mk4 G10--I can get the rest from that car if I screw up, so I should be set.

I am going for about 1" or 3 cm all around so my best guess, looking at all of this is that 1.25 F and 1.25 R from the Mk4 springs on my Mk3 GT should give me enough less than the 1.75-2" drop described by N1tr0 and T3 Ragtop on stock springs to be close to the 1" level I am looking for--can anybody that has done this confirm that I am in the ballpark?

There's a lot of information in the sticky, so I went back through and made a matrix of results applicable to Mk3 cars for reference:

N1tr0 recommends 1.25-1.5 F, 1-1.25 R for 1.5-1.75" drop (for either Mk3 or Mk4 using stock springs)

T3 ragtop 1.5 F, 1.25 R for 2" drop Mk3 Swift springs on vert (note, does not quite reconcile with above)

FASTRAKR 1 F, 1 R for "not much drop" but improved handling Mk4 springs on Mk3 metro

Georacer 2 F, 2 R for "too low for a daily driver" using Mk4 springs on Mk3 (assumed to be a metro)

Dan White 0.5 F, 0.75 R for a 1" LIFT on a 94 metro using Mk4 springs

mijerseyswift 1.5 F, 1 R Does not describe drop, Mk4 in Mk3 Geo but "front is too high"

obaja 1 F, 1.5 R "rear too much front not enough" mk3 metro stock springs

dentprone 1 F, 1 R "leaves front a little high" mk3 (geo?)

And finally, Superf1y as moderator says he cut 1F, 1R and car "handles great"--not sure it this is the same Mk4-Mk3 spring swap thread he references though, because the old pictures are broken and he appears to have been originally going for a lift for rallycross purposes?

Something I noticed along the way is that the right side front spring is slightly longer than the left side spring, which makes me wonder if I need to compensate for that somehow when I cut:

Image

The springs are, in order, from a Mk4 g10 car left side, Mk4 SOHC 1.3 car left side, Mk4 1.3 right side. I keep thinking the 3 cylinder spring looks a little skinnier, but it might be an optical illusion--I can't see any difference with the tape measure, but then again that's probably not the best tool. Also there would appear to be a code here. Note that there are green and red paint marks on the L side springs and blue and red patches on the R spring. Both springs that are still on the Swift are blue and red though, so I don't know.

I'll post pictures as I make progress with the project.

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PostPosted: Sat Mar 17, 2012 2:12 pm 
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All the front springs year to year after 95 are all the same. Before that, they're all over the place. Some say the the sedan has longer rears.

My car was my 89 . Stock springs were cut 1 front, 1 1/4" back

Image

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PostPosted: Sat Mar 17, 2012 3:36 pm 
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Superf1y,

That's pretty much what I'm going for, but I assume I have to cut a little more from the Mk4 springs to get there. If I had both sets out of the car it would be easier because I could find the same point on the Mk4 spring corresponding to 1 coil from a Mk3, but that's kind of a pain to arrange--I may do it eventually anyway just because I want to get it right.

I'll let everyone know how everything works out and take before/after pictures and measurements.

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 23, 2012 9:18 am 
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Update and some questions.

First of all, the good news is that after cutting Mk4 springs 1.25 coils in an attempt to get a similar result to cutting the slightly shorter stock 94 GT springs just one coil was a tremendous success. It looks like I got just about the 1" drop I was looking for and even without cutting the back springs the car now magically corners almost flat. Ride is slightly firmer, but mostly just "better"--no harshness, no bounciness, no funny behavior, even on stock OEM shocks.

For anybody else doing a similar project, here's a picture of an uncut Mk4 front spring on the left, and my 94 GT springs on the right, with the coils I removed from the Mk4 springs that are now on the car in front.

Image

Notice that the cut pieces are not exactly the same--the Mk4 springs were not quite symmetrical left to right, with a slightly longer bottom coil on the left-hand spring out of both Mk4 parts cars. The bottom coils are bent flat to seat the spring, so I don't think the longer spring is a different length, but it is worth noting and I adjusted my cut to get the same spring height rather than the same amount removed. The GT and Mk4 springs are the same diameter and have roughly the same number of coils, but the Mk4 springs are a tad longer and must therefore not be coiled quite as tight. The GT springs also don't have the extra length on the left-hand side.

So, on to the back. Here's the uncut rear springs side by side, Mk4 on the left with a piece of tape marking where I intended to cut.

Image

I had a tough time deciding how much to cut, because the car already seemed so much better and it's clearly better to err on the conservative side. Superf1y's car looks great with 1.25 coils cut from stock rear springs, but I thought at first I would try to back off just a hair just because it is not hard to cut more, impossible to go back. Then when it came time to cut, I went with a hair more than 1.5 coils off the Mk4 springs hoping to match the height of 1.25 off stock. I guess I was thinking that I needed to get at least as much drop from the back in order to keep from decreasing caster and to make sure I get a higher spring rate to keep the car balanced.

Here is the stock spring on the left and the cut Mk4 on the right.

Image

Now here is the spring installed in the car at full droop:

Image

It's just barely hanging in there and I can flip it around easily. It won't fall out, but it would clearly shift if the car was unweighted. I don't generally catch air in the car on purpose, but it's not impossible and I would prefer if my springs didn't get out of whack if it happened.

1. Is this normal for conservatively cut rear springs? It looks like 1.25 off stock would have the same trouble. Or did I cut too much--1 coil off stock/approx. 1.25 coils off Mk4 looks like it might stay in.

2. If this is normal, what's the best way to make a spring retainer to make sure the springs don't flop around if the car is unweighted--even changing tires will be a bit of a pain to make sure everything is seated correctly.

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 23, 2012 3:14 pm 
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Basically your shocks are too long, the spring is now shorter and stiffer, beleive me in an autocross those springs will move around as the cars weight shifts around very quickly.

If you had koni's then I would suggest knocking the retaining tab off the rear shocks and mount them 1' lower down in the clamp, but since you have kyb's which are pressurised and single skinned, bashing a flat part for the bolt to go through is a bit risky.

Your only real option is to get the shock shoulder machined down 20mm which will keep the spring captive which is what I did with my kybs, just have to make sure you have your bumpstops in there because you'l have a 135mm shaft and still 155mm of travel, you do the math :lol: if the shock shaft ever got fully compressed the new 'shorter' shaft could travel past the top seal and get stuck, pretty unlikely though.

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 23, 2012 4:16 pm 
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It all becomes clear. I don't know why using the shock travel to keep the springs in didn't occur to me.

Actually, the tab on my KYB's would be pretty easy to knock off with a screwdriver--I found the blade of mine starting to get underneath it when I was tapping them in.

For now, however, I went back and cut a single coil off my stock springs and they stay. That's an inch off the spring height, which should be ever so slightly less than that in ride height. We'll see how it feels--also have my caster bushings so that will help. There will be plenty of tweaking, for now just trying to get everything together and drivable by Sunday morning.

If it needs to be lower, I've got the springs already cut--mostly I would be paranoid about getting the shocks exactly the same distance further on both sides.


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 23, 2012 9:05 pm 
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Results:

On a 1994 Mk3 GT I cut 1.25 coils from Mk4 front springs and 1 coil from stock springs in back.

Before picture (with my new magnetic autocross numbers):

Image

After.

Image


I drove it around the neighborhood--can't really push the car, but a couple of curves are tight enough that even at the speed limit gross rubbing or funny handling would be apparent. And there is none. I am surprised, particularly as the 195/50R15's had been catching my left rear fender very randomly and infrequently at the stock ride height until I rolled it just a tiny bit with a baseball bat . The car is significantly stiffer, but still not jarring or jouncy.

When I autocross on Sunday I will follow up on how the drop affected the handling balance. Given the cost (next to nothing) this is a huge improvement.

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 09, 2012 10:12 pm 
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i need some ideas..
i got a 2000 metro n have 16in american racing rims on it but everytime i hit a bump i hit both my rear fenders :( n it cracked my puddy job

should i get stiffer springs??? uhh idk im lost

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 09, 2012 11:56 pm 
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sweetnlow wrote:
i need some ideas..
i got a 2000 metro n have 16in american racing rims on it but everytime i hit a bump i hit both my rear fenders :( n it cracked my puddy job

should i get stiffer springs??? uhh idk im lost


you have to go to a shop and ask to have your 'fenders rolled' . they use a special machine hooked into the wheel hub that does the job properly. you can have luck looking in your yellowpages under car body shops or someplace that does customizations for riced out cars.

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PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2012 9:40 pm 
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So I just wanted to follow up on my spring cutting adventures:

1. Because I was too chicken/practical/lazy to cut more than one coil from the back springs after finding I would need to rig some kind of strap or mess with my shocks to keep them in afterwards, I developed a rather nasty push. The car is almost dead level, but that is sacrificing some caster and stiffness in the rear from the optimal setup, which is a little lower in the back. However, I now found that I could remove the front sway bar entirely and everything is even better balanced than before.

2. The car rides even smoother than stock on the cut springs, even with stock shocks, if there is enough stuff in it.

Image

3. "Phonis" using 20wt BelRay fork oil in front make the car ride really well even when it isn't full of stuff.

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 18, 2012 5:48 am 
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TheSilverBullet wrote:
sweetnlow wrote:
i need some ideas..
i got a 2000 metro n have 16in american racing rims on it but everytime i hit a bump i hit both my rear fenders :( n it cracked my puddy job

should i get stiffer springs??? uhh idk im lost


you have to go to a shop and ask to have your 'fenders rolled' . they use a special machine hooked into the wheel hub that does the job properly. you can have luck looking in your yellowpages under car body shops or someplace that does customizations for riced out cars.

There is nothing like that near me so im fucked..

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 18, 2012 7:18 am 
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I am a little worried that your putty job is gonna crack when you roll your fenders anyway so I don't know if that's the answer--at some point wide/lower offset wheels just aren't going to fit in there.

But you don't need a fancy machine to roll your fenders! I wasn't sure what people were talking about "rolling fenders" so it took a while to figure out what that meant--but I had a slight rub on the left rear only (still don't know why) and had to fix it.

Try a really tiny crescent wrench--adjust it so it just slides on to the inner fender lip and then gently bend up the lip a little bit at a time. Once its going good you can use a wooden baseball bat between the tire and fender to smooth it out.

I am not responsible for any further putty cracking/fender ripples/etc... but I thought I would pass along some wisdom.

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 18, 2012 8:23 am 
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Teeth wrote:
I am a little worried that your putty job is gonna crack when you roll your fenders anyway so I don't know if that's the answer--at some point wide/lower offset wheels just aren't going to fit in there.

But you don't need a fancy machine to roll your fenders! I wasn't sure what people were talking about "rolling fenders" so it took a while to figure out what that meant--but I had a slight rub on the left rear only (still don't know why) and had to fix it.

Try a really tiny crescent wrench--adjust it so it just slides on to the inner fender lip and then gently bend up the lip a little bit at a time. Once its going good you can use a wooden baseball bat between the tire and fender to smooth it out.

I am not responsible for any further putty cracking/fender ripples/etc... but I thought I would pass along some wisdom.

im gonna post a pic of what it did, i think they are 16inx7in idk i wish i had smaller rims but can find any out by me
n im not gonna pay a arm n leg for rims from a shop . haha thts my i got my rims for 50$:) my buddy was parting out his honda prelude n they fit:) but i think ima find a stiffer springs.

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 18, 2012 8:35 am 
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its hard to see this everyday lol


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 18, 2012 8:47 am 
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sweetnlow wrote:
its hard to see this everyday lol


That needs to be painted anyway, so just take a hammer and roll those guards.

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 18, 2012 8:54 am 
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well i dont mind painting anthing thts not the prob. i just dont wana do body work...

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 18, 2012 9:25 am 
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sweetnlow wrote:
well i dont mind painting anthing thts not the prob. i just dont wana do body work...


Well either do it yourself or have someone else do it, it's your choice :)

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 18, 2012 2:16 pm 
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I'll do it my self I'm wayyyyyyyy To cheap lol

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 18, 2012 2:49 pm 
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nice rust patch job.....

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 18, 2012 4:12 pm 
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VR4 wrote:
nice rust patch job.....

thnx bro, it was till my rim cracked it

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 18, 2012 10:24 pm 
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hi guys,

i recently cut the springs on my barina, i used the stock springs out of my 1997 Swift 4 door parts car (Australian if that makes any difference)

i cut 1 coil off the back, before:
Image

after:
Image

before:
Image

after:
Image

then i cut 1.25 coils off the front, before:
Image

after:
Image

before:
Image

after:
Image

and heres a comparo of the springs, rears:
Image

fronts:
Image

it handles much better now and even though they are stiffer its still quite comfortable, i might take an extra 1/4 off the fronts though because it still sits a bit high for my liking


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PostPosted: Sat Apr 21, 2012 3:42 pm 
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can anyone please tell me the diameter in mm of the top rear springs? :huh:

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PostPosted: Sat Apr 21, 2012 4:10 pm 
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Inside, outside, or wire diameter?

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PostPosted: Sun Apr 22, 2012 1:53 pm 
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suprf1y wrote:
Inside, outside, or wire diameter?


inside and outside diameter please......................

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PostPosted: Tue Apr 24, 2012 1:16 pm 
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swift1.0 wrote:
suprf1y wrote:
Inside, outside, or wire diameter?


inside and outside diameter please......................

can anyone help me with these ?thanks in advanced :D

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