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I have a 2013 5.0, its a DD but will see a lot of the strip. Not worried about road racing here. Currently it's full bolt-on's but I will be going to a TT set-up in the next 6 months. I want to lower the car too but want good weight transfer also. Do I basically have to go to a coil over set-up?

Please feel free to tell me what you have and what you do and don't like about it.

Also is a watts link good for drag racing? I don't know too much about them.

Thanks
 

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you'll have to narrow it down some more.

how much power,
stick or auto,
how serious are you about the track & how much will you be willing to comprimise street manners for it,

those answers will be a start.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
you'll have to narrow it down some more.

how much power,
stick or auto,
how serious are you about the track & how much will you be willing to comprimise street manners for it,

those answers will be a start.
Good questions.

Stick and I don't really plan on going auto even though I know I'll get flamed.

Total RWHP goal is 1200-1300. I will start by simply adding the TT's with stock internals. This will occur in 6 months. I'll roll with this for a while I save up for a built bottom end. It will be a stroker also if there is a good enough out at the time. Once I do the bottom end I can boost more. That will take another 6 months. After built bottom end will come full ported heads, custom cams and probably an intake, Boss or sheet metal depending on whats the best for my application and if anything new comes out.

SO short answer is 600-700rwhp in 6 months for 18 months then 900-1000rwhp after that, then 1200-1300 as final goal.

My last DD car was a full tubular K, coilovers, 90/10's and manual rack in front. That got old after a year or 2 so to help answer the question, I want a nicer ride than that but I'm willing to do some compromising. For example maybe more street friendly struts or like an adjustable strut.
 

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At the Apex pulling 1.28g
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I have a 2013 5.0, its a DD but will see a lot of the strip. Not worried about road racing here. Currently it's full bolt-on's but I will be going to a TT set-up in the next 6 months. I want to lower the car too but want good weight transfer also. Do I basically have to go to a coil over set-up?

Please feel free to tell me what you have and what you do and don't like about it.

Also is a watts link good for drag racing? I don't know too much about them.

Thanks
First suspension modification should always be tires. I would buy a set of lightweight 15's with some slicks or DR's on them. You can go all the way and do a big and little set up.

Do you need a coilover set up, no. I would really recommend that if you want adjustability in your shocks/struts to use adjustable damping shocks/struts and not the full coilover system. The benefits of a coilover system will NOT be utilized by the average enthusiast. Do you NEED height adjustment? Do you NEED common spring sizes to fine tune spring rates? Do you NEED the ability to custom valving? Koni Sports offer the ability to do custom valving with user adjusting of the rebound setting of the shocks/struts without the height adjustment at a drastically reduced price for a much higher quality piece then the inexpensive coilovers out there. I'm NOT sure about drag racing "coilovers" but generally you get what you pay for.

A Watt's link serves two primary functions:
1.) Lateral location of the rear axle - Specifically removing the side to side motion of the axle under suspension travel. This is probably the only advantage of a Watts link for drag racing as it does allow the use of wider tires without rubbing during launch.

2.) Rear roll center location - The pivot bolt on a watts link's propeller defines the rear roll center. This is extremely powerful because it fixes that point relative to either the axle (if it's axle mounted) or the chassis (if it's chassis mounted). Higher roll centers REDUCE weight transfer across the rear tires (side to side). Lower roll centers INCREASE weight transfer across the rear tires. Higher roll centers REDUCE body roll (assuming the CG doesn't change) whereas lower roll centers INCREASE body roll.

Changing the weight transfer across the rear wheels allows you to fine tune how much load is placed on the outside tire in cornering. This allows you to change the grip level at that tire as grip level will increase (to a point) as weight is added up until the point where you have too much weight on that tire and it will then start to lose grip. The roll center functions similar to the way a swaybar works in cornering.

The body roll increase is due to the change in the length of the arm between the roll center and the center of gravity. The longer the arm, the more body roll which is why for any car, a higher roll center will have less body roll then a lower roll center. This can be a useful tuning tool if your car experiences roll steer issues where reducing rear roll steer is beneficial.

What does that mean vs a PHB? The PHB geometry induces some interesting side to side movement during vertical suspension travel due to the arc it forces the rear axle to move through. Over bumps this can create an extremely uneasy feeling. More importantly is that the rear roll center is defined as half the bar's length. You can see that the roll center changes with the suspension travel. This can introduce some weird handling characteristics in sudden transitions (think slaloms or dodging a cat that ran in front of your car) as the rear axle plants and unplants tires during the direction changes. A watts link wont do this since it has no handling bias.

You also have different effects if the watts link pivot is axle/differential mounted vs chassis mounted but the differences are pretty minor.

Here are my thoughts:
-Tires - This should be obvious, everything that you do is translated through 4 contact patches. Running aftermarket suspension on stock all seasons will help some but not nearly as well as if you have the proper tires to go with it.

-BMR Lowering Springs - Probably the softest set of lowering springs I've seen, 1" front drop, 1.25" (I think) rear drop. This is going to allow you to launch and have weight transfer from front to rear while maintaining a good ride.

-Koni Sports (Yellows) - Adjustable, revalvable, rebuildable, and very high quality. They may not be the most ideal shocks/struts for drag racing but they will work. Really though, you can use any set of shocks/struts that will properly damp the movement of the springs, I just like Koni

-Adjustable PHB - You will need this to recenter the rear axle under the car.

-BMR FIXED LENGTH lower control arms and LCA relocation brackets - This will remove wheel hop and allow you to tune antisquat to help launch the vehicle at the strip.

If you still have wheel hop then invest in an adjustable UCA and a mount to go with it and that should cure any remaining hop.


There is one other thing you will need right away when lowering the car and that is a replacement upper strut mount. I personally do not like the GT500 mounts, my own experience has shown that they are more of the same stock crap that came on my car and not anything significantly more durable so I will continue to recommend the Steeda HD plates at a minimum. This will also allow for some camber adjustment should you feel uncomfortable with running the added negative camber that lowering the car will produce. The Steeda HD mounts come in two variants, the 2011+ which require 2011+ shocks/struts and 2005-2010 style for 2005-2010 shocks/struts. If for whatever reason you still think the GT500 mounts are more than enough, then you are required to run 2005-2010 struts. 2011 struts will NOT work with GT500 mounts.

On camber bolts, I'm not a fan, truly... the subject has been covered numerous times by myself and a few others. You can make up your own mind. Look in the previous two or three pages for any posts related to suspension and I'm sure the topic has been covered by myself on there at least once. I would rather you invest in the HD plates and adjust camber that way (the proper way) then use camber bolts.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
First suspension modification should always be tires. I would buy a set of lightweight 15's with some slicks or DR's on them. You can go all the way and do a big and little set up.

Do you need a coilover set up, no. I would really recommend that if you want adjustability in your shocks/struts to use adjustable damping shocks/struts and not the full coilover system. The benefits of a coilover system will NOT be utilized by the average enthusiast. Do you NEED height adjustment? Do you NEED common spring sizes to fine tune spring rates? Do you NEED the ability to custom valving? Koni Sports offer the ability to do custom valving with user adjusting of the rebound setting of the shocks/struts without the height adjustment at a drastically reduced price for a much higher quality piece then the inexpensive coilovers out there. I'm NOT sure about drag racing "coilovers" but generally you get what you pay for.

A Watt's link serves two primary functions:
1.) Lateral location of the rear axle - Specifically removing the side to side motion of the axle under suspension travel. This is probably the only advantage of a Watts link for drag racing as it does allow the use of wider tires without rubbing during launch.

2.) Rear roll center location - The pivot bolt on a watts link's propeller defines the rear roll center. This is extremely powerful because it fixes that point relative to either the axle (if it's axle mounted) or the chassis (if it's chassis mounted). Higher roll centers REDUCE weight transfer across the rear tires (side to side). Lower roll centers INCREASE weight transfer across the rear tires. Higher roll centers REDUCE body roll (assuming the CG doesn't change) whereas lower roll centers INCREASE body roll.

Changing the weight transfer across the rear wheels allows you to fine tune how much load is placed on the outside tire in cornering. This allows you to change the grip level at that tire as grip level will increase (to a point) as weight is added up until the point where you have too much weight on that tire and it will then start to lose grip. The roll center functions similar to the way a swaybar works in cornering.

The body roll increase is due to the change in the length of the arm between the roll center and the center of gravity. The longer the arm, the more body roll which is why for any car, a higher roll center will have less body roll then a lower roll center. This can be a useful tuning tool if your car experiences roll steer issues where reducing rear roll steer is beneficial.

What does that mean vs a PHB? The PHB geometry induces some interesting side to side movement during vertical suspension travel due to the arc it forces the rear axle to move through. Over bumps this can create an extremely uneasy feeling. More importantly is that the rear roll center is defined as half the bar's length. You can see that the roll center changes with the suspension travel. This can introduce some weird handling characteristics in sudden transitions (think slaloms or dodging a cat that ran in front of your car) as the rear axle plants and unplants tires during the direction changes. A watts link wont do this since it has no handling bias.

You also have different effects if the watts link pivot is axle/differential mounted vs chassis mounted but the differences are pretty minor.

Here are my thoughts:
-Tires - This should be obvious, everything that you do is translated through 4 contact patches. Running aftermarket suspension on stock all seasons will help some but not nearly as well as if you have the proper tires to go with it.

-BMR Lowering Springs - Probably the softest set of lowering springs I've seen, 1" front drop, 1.25" (I think) rear drop. This is going to allow you to launch and have weight transfer from front to rear while maintaining a good ride.

-Koni Sports (Yellows) - Adjustable, revalvable, rebuildable, and very high quality. They may not be the most ideal shocks/struts for drag racing but they will work. Really though, you can use any set of shocks/struts that will properly damp the movement of the springs, I just like Koni

-Adjustable PHB - You will need this to recenter the rear axle under the car.

-BMR FIXED LENGTH lower control arms and LCA relocation brackets - This will remove wheel hop and allow you to tune antisquat to help launch the vehicle at the strip.

If you still have wheel hop then invest in an adjustable UCA and a mount to go with it and that should cure any remaining hop.


There is one other thing you will need right away when lowering the car and that is a replacement upper strut mount. I personally do not like the GT500 mounts, my own experience has shown that they are more of the same stock crap that came on my car and not anything significantly more durable so I will continue to recommend the Steeda HD plates at a minimum. This will also allow for some camber adjustment should you feel uncomfortable with running the added negative camber that lowering the car will produce. The Steeda HD mounts come in two variants, the 2011+ which require 2011+ shocks/struts and 2005-2010 style for 2005-2010 shocks/struts. If for whatever reason you still think the GT500 mounts are more than enough, then you are required to run 2005-2010 struts. 2011 struts will NOT work with GT500 mounts.

On camber bolts, I'm not a fan, truly... the subject has been covered numerous times by myself and a few others. You can make up your own mind. Look in the previous two or three pages for any posts related to suspension and I'm sure the topic has been covered by myself on there at least once. I would rather you invest in the HD plates and adjust camber that way (the proper way) then use camber bolts.
Thanks for the detailed response.

I have wheels and tires covered. (I'll have slicks (28) and skinny's)

Totally understand ya on the Watts and that is basically what I have read about on the Watts. What I haven't read about is how the Watts relates to drag racing which you addressed.

You all might be wondering why I don't just copy my last cars set-up and the answer is because it's complicated. It was a complete mixture of stuff. I had Eibach drag launch rear springs, boxed nonadjustable UCA's and LCA's, with fully adjustable Koni yellows. That rear set up worked great. I cut low 1.5's high 1.4's all day.

So the PHB is a new element for me but I now understand how it works. I think I'm liking the idea of the adjustable Koni's. They have been great for me in the past. I played with the Koni's a lot and they truly felt different when I would adjust them.

I am a lucky 2013 owner and do not get wheel hop. The only thing I have changed is that I have SVE drifts with 555's all the way around.

I don't know much about the strut mount but I have read that I have to change them out. Good to know about the GT500 ones. I'm like you, I don't put stock stuff (GT500) back on my car unless it's superior to aftermarket.

When you mention steeda HD plates, are these caster camber plates? Or are these just a certain type of strut mount?

Also I read that 2010 front springs have a higher spring rate (stiffer). Do you know if this is true? If it is then I am going to stay away from 2010 stuff.

Do you happen to know the spring rates on the BRM lowering springs VS stock VS maybe a different spring like FMS or something?

I felt like I've always preached to guys wanting to go fast in the quarter mile not to put lowering springs on their cars due to less weight transfer but I'd like to know more details on our cars. I was born and raised in the fox - SN-95 world. Still learning S-197 like a lot of us.

Thanks
 

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Premium Member
Joined
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9,751 Posts
Good questions.

Stick and I don't really plan on going auto even though I know I'll get flamed.

Total RWHP goal is 1200-1300. I will start by simply adding the TT's with stock internals. This will occur in 6 months. I'll roll with this for a while I save up for a built bottom end. It will be a stroker also if there is a good enough out at the time. Once I do the bottom end I can boost more. That will take another 6 months. After built bottom end will come full ported heads, custom cams and probably an intake, Boss or sheet metal depending on whats the best for my application and if anything new comes out.

SO short answer is 600-700rwhp in 6 months for 18 months then 900-1000rwhp after that, then 1200-1300 as final goal.

My last DD car was a full tubular K, coilovers, 90/10's and manual rack in front. That got old after a year or 2 so to help answer the question, I want a nicer ride than that but I'm willing to do some compromising. For example maybe more street friendly struts or like an adjustable strut.
those are pretty lofty goals but are manageable.

the first thing you'll need to do is to get together with a good chassis shop in your area & get a full cage in the car.

I mention the cage first since even on the first step of your goals low 10's will be possible & the ultimate goal will see 8's potentially so you may as well start with the weight/etc of the cage, seats, safety equipment, etc in place while you do the susp.

the BMR springs should be ok but you'll need quite a bit more than just LCA's to get that kind of power hooked up (arb,etc) the best thing you can do for yourself is make friends with Kelly @ BMR 2005 - 2012 Mustang GT Packages, Suspension, Chassis, Miscellaneous, Bushing Kits, Driveline, Brakes | BMR Suspension Products & Parts to help you get the susp. together from the start.
 

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At the Apex pulling 1.28g
Joined
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6,578 Posts
Thanks for the detailed response.

I have wheels and tires covered. (I'll have slicks (28) and skinny's)

Totally understand ya on the Watts and that is basically what I have read about on the Watts. What I haven't read about is how the Watts relates to drag racing which you addressed.

You all might be wondering why I don't just copy my last cars set-up and the answer is because it's complicated. It was a complete mixture of stuff. I had Eibach drag launch rear springs, boxed nonadjustable UCA's and LCA's, with fully adjustable Koni yellows. That rear set up worked great. I cut low 1.5's high 1.4's all day.

So the PHB is a new element for me but I now understand how it works. I think I'm liking the idea of the adjustable Koni's. They have been great for me in the past. I played with the Koni's a lot and they truly felt different when I would adjust them.

I am a lucky 2013 owner and do not get wheel hop. The only thing I have changed is that I have SVE drifts with 555's all the way around.

I don't know much about the strut mount but I have read that I have to change them out. Good to know about the GT500 ones. I'm like you, I don't put stock stuff (GT500) back on my car unless it's superior to aftermarket.

When you mention steeda HD plates, are these caster camber plates? Or are these just a certain type of strut mount?

Also I read that 2010 front springs have a higher spring rate (stiffer). Do you know if this is true? If it is then I am going to stay away from 2010 stuff.

Do you happen to know the spring rates on the BRM lowering springs VS stock VS maybe a different spring like FMS or something?

I felt like I've always preached to guys wanting to go fast in the quarter mile not to put lowering springs on their cars due to less weight transfer but I'd like to know more details on our cars. I was born and raised in the fox - SN-95 world. Still learning S-197 like a lot of us.

Thanks
The Steeda HD plates are a set of camber plates (no caster adjustment) that have more in common with the stock strut mounts then a set of camber plates do. Instead of a spherical bearing like most plates use, it uses a rubber bushing instead of the spherical bearing. It doesn't have a lot of camber adjustment (about half a degree in either direction) but it will be enough to get back to the middle of Ford's extremely open alignment specs and it is built like a tank. Keep in mind that Ford's spec is 0º to -1.5º so you can run up to -1.5º and Ford is convinced it wont add any additional wear and tear to the tires and from my personal experience, they are correct.

The BMR springs are 165 lbs/in front 160lbs/in rear. I have no idea what the 2011+ springs are but the 2005-2010 springs are around 140lbs/in front and rear so they aren't a whole lot stiffer than the stock springs. Just stiff enough to keep the suspension from bottoming out in daily driving.

I know you said you don't have wheel hop, by the time you add relocation brackets it will most likely be there. I recommend people stick with the same LCA brand as their relocation brackets to remove potential fitment issues but when you drop that LCA angle there is a good likelihood it will show up. Better to nip it at the bud IMO.

On the Watts, I really, really, really like mine but I'm not sure that it is something you will necessary want or need. Money is better spent elsewhere IMO.
 
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