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      11-08-2010, 05:22 PM   #1
jahmed78
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Coilovers with or wtihout adjustable dampening?

I'm looking to get coilovers for my e90 and my budget is up to $1500 new and up to $1000 used. I've looked at H&R, KW, and FK Street lines. KW and FK have versions for a little bit more than the base versions which offer dampening adjustment as well as height, whereas the base versions are height only. The super premium coilovers (KW 3) are out of my price range.

Question is: how important is dampening adjustment? Is it worth the money? This is my daily driver and will be sitting on 19" Linea Corse LC818s. Not planning on taking the cat to the track. I'm hoping to keep close to the same ride quality as my current sport suspension...maybe a little stiffer in the turns.
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      11-08-2010, 05:37 PM   #2
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bump!
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      11-08-2010, 06:37 PM   #3
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if you aren't tracking the car, you won't have any need for damping adjustment.
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      11-08-2010, 06:45 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mike-y View Post
if you aren't tracking the car, you won't have any need for damping adjustment.
In that same line of thought, if you aren't tracking the car, you won't have any need for coil-overs either. Just get lowering springs.
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      11-08-2010, 07:55 PM   #5
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I track my car and have adjustable dampers. I've never touched the settings ever, but that being said they were custom valved and set by Dinan. You'll only really need to adjust them if you compete on multiple tracks and are chasing tenths.
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      11-08-2010, 08:50 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The HACK View Post
In that same line of thought, if you aren't tracking the car, you won't have any need for coil-overs either. Just get lowering springs.
im considering coil overs because i like the fact that i can fine tune ride height and i have been told the ride on lowering springs with shocks degrades over time. i welcome any insight into this...
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      11-08-2010, 09:03 PM   #7
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I cant believe what Ive read in this thread... Just because you dont track does NOT mean you dont need damping adjustment. Being able to adjust the damping gives you the ability to fine tune the ride/handling trade off the same way you want to fine tune the drop and "create" the car you want. Its not about changing it all the time, its about getting it where you like it.
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      11-08-2010, 11:10 PM   #8
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Fraggy, didn't you change multiple suspensions on your car because you couldn't quite find a setting you liked? Sometimes having adjustments for the sake of having them is more trouble than it's worth.

The bottom line is damping adjustments aren't required for his application, and aren't worth the extra cost, since he is on a budget.
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      11-09-2010, 12:24 AM   #9
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Yea, I prefer the coilover kit that's need tested with the car you have rather that trying to frankenstien it and tune it yourself. It's sound cheesy, but that's why I went with Dinan.
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      11-09-2010, 08:47 AM   #10
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I have KW Street Comforts on my car and I'm glad they have a damping adjustment. In fact, I went with the SCs because I wanted my car to ride softer than OEM which it does at the lowest setting possible (I know - they're not at the last click - 1 click firmer than that per KW's instructions not to set them at the absolute softest or stiffest) which is where I think I'm going to keep them set. With the addition of H&R sways my car corners very flat but rides quite a bit better (i.e. softer and not crashing over every little road disfiguration) than OEM. It doesn't feel floaty to me at all at this setting and for my style of driving (I'd categorize it as "slightly spirited") it works perfectly. If I decided to track the car I have the option of making it quite a bit stiffer, but I don't think that's going to happen as I don't plan on doing any racing with it.
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      11-09-2010, 12:01 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jahmed78 View Post
I'm looking to get coilovers for my e90 and my budget is up to $1500 new and up to $1000 used. I've looked at H&R, KW, and FK Street lines. KW and FK have versions for a little bit more than the base versions which offer dampening adjustment as well as height, whereas the base versions are height only. The super premium coilovers (KW 3) are out of my price range.

Question is: how important is dampening adjustment? Is it worth the money? This is my daily driver and will be sitting on 19" Linea Corse LC818s. Not planning on taking the cat to the track. I'm hoping to keep close to the same ride quality as my current sport suspension...maybe a little stiffer in the turns.
A coilover suspension basically gives you a matched lowering spring and shock absorber combination with the added benefit of adjustable ride height and spring rates through a moveable spring perch or perches. Coilovers are to your car's advantage by reducing unsprung mass, increasing suspension travel, and allowing the car to be corner balanced.

It really comes down to what your goals are for the car. If you're looking for damping adjustment, I would recommend that you check out either the KW V2 or KW Street Comfort systems. Both of which give you the ability to adjust the height of your vehicle as well as the rebound damping characteristics.

Rebound adjustment, with the exception of specified vehicles, can be performed with the kit installed via an adjustment spindle on the end of the piston rod. The rebound damping primarily, controls pitch and roll of the vehicle, especially in the low speed damping range which directly influences handling and comfort. Therefore vehicle can be adjusted to the needs of the driver, making the ride variable from comfortable to sporty and stiff, both with improved road handling.

I'll shoot you over a PM with more details!

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      11-09-2010, 12:56 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fraggy View Post
I cant believe what Ive read in this thread... Just because you dont track does NOT mean you dont need damping adjustment. Being able to adjust the damping gives you the ability to fine tune the ride/handling trade off the same way you want to fine tune the drop and "create" the car you want. Its not about changing it all the time, its about getting it where you like it.
No it doesn't.

Having the ability to adjust rebound only affects how quickly the springs UNLOAD. Hence "rebound." To truly be able to adjust and fine-tune the suspension to do exactly what you want it to do, you'll need to be able to adjust HIGH SPEED COMPRESSION, which does not come "standard" on most basic coil-over kits, since high-speed compression is usually part of a 3 way adjustable system that cost an arm and a leg (I've yet to see a good 3 way adjustable coil-over go for less than $5,000),

Add the fact that MOST height adjustment requires taking off the wheels, loosen and adjust the height of the collar, put the wheels back on, put the car back on the floor, and rocking it back and forth for a while to get the springs to settle means NO ONE actually goes and fine-tunes their ride height after the first weekend. And to be honest? Every time you "fine-tune" your ride height you need to re-align the car. This is the kind of stuff that is best left to professionals. I'm pretty competent at this and I still have to pay someone else $300 for the ride height adjustment...And at the end of the day? The car currently rides about 1/4" lower than factory.

The ONLY reason to get height adjustable coil-overs is for the ease and ability to properly corner balance the car. The actual height, you just set it once and forget. So in that regard, if you're not getting the coil-overs for it's track performance potentials, you are much better off just getting lowering springs and a new set of sporty shocks like Konis or Bilsteins. The "other" reason would be that most coil-overs allow you to lower the car much lower than your typical lowering spring, some poorly designed ones will allow you to lower the car way past the magical "roll center" which dramatically decreases the car's actual ability to corner but looks dope dropped.
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      11-09-2010, 04:16 PM   #13
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whats the cost for lowering springs and new shocks roughly?
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      11-09-2010, 04:30 PM   #14
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about 1-300$ less then coilovers depending on which you want.

If you can afford it, get coilovers. they dont have to be pressure adjustable but height adjustment is awesome, and in turn does adjust the ride a little if you raise the car up/down.
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      11-10-2010, 01:24 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The HACK View Post
No it doesn't.

Having the ability to adjust rebound only affects how quickly the springs UNLOAD. Hence "rebound." To truly be able to adjust and fine-tune the suspension to do exactly what you want it to do, you'll need to be able to adjust HIGH SPEED COMPRESSION, which does not come "standard" on most basic coil-over kits, since high-speed compression is usually part of a 3 way adjustable system that cost an arm and a leg (I've yet to see a good 3 way adjustable coil-over go for less than $5,000),

Add the fact that MOST height adjustment requires taking off the wheels, loosen and adjust the height of the collar, put the wheels back on, put the car back on the floor, and rocking it back and forth for a while to get the springs to settle means NO ONE actually goes and fine-tunes their ride height after the first weekend. And to be honest? Every time you "fine-tune" your ride height you need to re-align the car. This is the kind of stuff that is best left to professionals. I'm pretty competent at this and I still have to pay someone else $300 for the ride height adjustment...And at the end of the day? The car currently rides about 1/4" lower than factory.

The ONLY reason to get height adjustable coil-overs is for the ease and ability to properly corner balance the car. The actual height, you just set it once and forget. So in that regard, if you're not getting the coil-overs for it's track performance potentials, you are much better off just getting lowering springs and a new set of sporty shocks like Konis or Bilsteins. The "other" reason would be that most coil-overs allow you to lower the car much lower than your typical lowering spring, some poorly designed ones will allow you to lower the car way past the magical "roll center" which dramatically decreases the car's actual ability to corner but looks dope dropped.
Youre right, but I didnt think he needed all that. Maybe my mistake. I was taking a midline approach.
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      11-10-2010, 01:28 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mike-y View Post
Fraggy, didn't you change multiple suspensions on your car because you couldn't quite find a setting you liked? Sometimes having adjustments for the sake of having them is more trouble than it's worth.

The bottom line is damping adjustments aren't required for his application, and aren't worth the extra cost, since he is on a budget.
But thats just my disease, Im a fiddler. If it felt a bit rough today Id adjust, tooo soft tomorrow, Id adjust again. It was a never ending cycle for ME. I almost posted that in my post to him so thanks for pointing that out. I should have included it. Others arent like that.

I missed the budget part too, my apologies.
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      11-10-2010, 01:29 AM   #17
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I have V1's and I wish I got a set of adjustables. I feel like the current ride is too soft, can't really get around it without switching up though.
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      11-10-2010, 04:35 PM   #18
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thanks for all the input guys. it sounds like if budget isn't a huge concern then something like KW v2s are the way to go. nice to have the flexibility if needed. especially considering i got an aggressive offset on my rear 19x10s (+22) and i dont want to roll my fenders, i might be doing a lot of tweaking int he beginning.
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      11-10-2010, 06:42 PM   #19
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      11-10-2010, 06:46 PM   #20
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can u adjust damping on the H&R street performance or height only? how much?
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      11-10-2010, 07:33 PM   #21
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Quote:
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can u adjust damping on the H&R street performance or height only? how much?
The H&R Street Performance Coilovers are height adjustable with pre-set damping. I'll shoot you over a PM with more details!

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      11-10-2010, 10:34 PM   #22
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When you get right down to it, whether or not you should get an adjustable coil over really depends on whether you are the sort of person who likes to constantly tweak their set up or whether you are willing to leave well enough alone.
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