Chevette budget suspension set up

After some researching, measuring, and theory crafting, I’ve put together what I think is a nice budget suspension set up for the Chevrolet Chevette. I’m not sure If it will work for all the variations of the T-Body but it should be applicable to them all. Upon tearing it apart, I found that my car had cut springs(and a set of blown shocks). After installing the set up, it was the same height as it was before. I would say it would lower a stock Chevette maybe 1.5″ to 2″. Do note this is a budget set up. You can always improve/get better parts than what I have. anyways..

Front Set up:

Shocks: Bilstein AK5555F – W/ proper lower bushing installed.

Seems like these shocks had the most reasonable valving of the “AK” series of shocks from Bilstein and their sizes matched my set up. Length can be an issue without lowering ball joints. Stock:15″ Bilstein: 13″

Springs: Monza front Springs  Moog #CS-6490 w/ 2 coils cut (estimated spring rate: 7 kg/mm)

Rodney Dickman Fiero 1″ lowering ball joints – These allowed me to use the Bilstein shocks because it pushed the upper control arms up by one more inch. Stock Shock :15″ // Bilstein + Lowering Ball Joints: 14″  Plus, without the lowering ball joint my front height would be too high for the rear so another coil would have to be cut or a different spring would have to be used.

Slotted upper ball joints – For camber. – Gives camber adjustment to correct the suspension from the lowering ball joints. Modifications could be made for more static camber. 

Prothane Fiero front urethane bushing kit. (not installed) – It looked like it would fit.

Rear set up:

Shocks: 1976 Ford Thunderbird rear KYB Gas adjust. KYB #KG5519 

Springs: Chevette front springs. 2 coils cut. (estimated rate: 5 kg/mm) – a better spring could easily be used.

S10 19mm sway bar. 

UMI Monza adjustable rear panhandle par. (Not installed. It’s 3 inches too long)

Total: Roughly $350 in parts.

Notes: An additional coil can be cut from the front and proper springs + camaro agx or qa1 shocks in the rear would give you another .5″ or so but can get you into the F: 8 kg/mm  R: 6kg/mm range. 

Front shock mounts need to be changed and springs need caressing to fit properly. Upper control arms need to be modified for more camber out of the slotted ball joints. Lower control arm, where the ball joint is, needed to be ground down to clear the brake disk during suspension movement. GM ball joint separator tool highly recommended.

Rear sway bar mounted like the camaro. Sway bar link mounts were fabricated and nissan quest front sway bar links were used. The difference was huge. Sway bar, however, may be too large. Thunderbird Rear shocks fit on the stock cantilevers on the axle axle. 

Overall the set up was phenomenally good compared to the cut spring/blown shock set up in the car before. The suspension inspired a lot more confidence during braking, and initiating turns. 

Stay tuned for a August 16th Reno drift event update. The suspension was definitely tested there :)

 

 

 

Chevette Auto-x recap and a Gemini, Vauxhaull, Chevette photo dump

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Vomit bags located in the seat pocket…

Reno SCCA holds autocrosses at the Stead Airport in Stead fairly often.  The airport is 15 mins away from my house in Reno. I’m used to events that are 45 min+ away from my house. It’s a nice change to have something so close. It was short as well only lasting 4 hours for my group. They even had free runs after 4 pm. Such a club up here. Small gallery set:

I’m still having troubles with my fuel cutting out, vapor locking, and overall killing the driving experience. Made some mods since the last drift event to help but it still seems to not be enough. I have an interesting solution coming soon… I did get a new battery. XS Power 680. Its basically a copy of the odyssey batt. Works for me. The car starts consistently every time now. 

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Size matters… yata yata…

I’ll be installing some new suspension on the chevette soon. There’s another Reno drift on August 17th. Gotta get it straight by then. For the front, it looks like I will have some issues with the sway bar and steering arms. Lowering in general also scres me because of how low the torque arm is mounted… Something might have to be done there. Everything else looks straight forward. Stay Tuned on these upcoming mods!  Gallery: 

Now.. Some of that there inspiration.

Chevette+Racing1105124775 6ZxmILH Chevette 34696925 wdcchevettecjt---1 01182008002 6780696209_e0109c87d3_b chev_02673l goochev 10426238_10203373712136729_1809510125383936699_n Exif_JPEG_PICTURE 27370709 6782258265_570b6b4f67_b Chevette Chatfield IMG_0978 httpwwwjasonlepleymotorsportcoukHSR0 024jpg learn2drift img0000bh7 chevecoke opcheve3 tougegemi 90bd384cb5bc038684cf4959076aa3f7_zpsd63f621b chevettefrontsusp chevlol chevettered1 chevettehsr httpi31photobucketcomalbumsc399StephenDray2008 winter rebuildDSCF5471jpg opchev2`

So many styles, varieties, and flavors. There is no set path. I don’t think too many cars have that about them. 

THE America, Independence Day, Super Drift Style Update!

I’ve been working on getting the Chevette drift ready. Given it is a Chevette, I’m trying to build it up as cheaply yet effectively as possible. Remember the goal is to keep it as fun, streetable and ‘Merica as possible.

 

First was provisions for a “tire explosion guard” The Chevette’s fuel tank inlet is right next to the driver’s rear tire and unprotected. If a tire exploded while drifting it would most likely take out the fuel inlet.

Next was a welded diff. What’s drifting without some sort of diff? I was told that I had a posi-trac….It doesn’t. After looking at positrac and after market prices. I decided to just get it welded. I could work on getting a better geared rear-end in the future.

Reno Drift’s first event this season was out at Fernley-Reno Raceway on the 29th. It wasn’t a large event by any means but the showing at this event was huge! The Chevette continues to

Chevette Update *VIDEO CONTENT*

The weather has been nice enough (lazy *ahem*) to make a walkthrough video. This has been something that I have been trying to do since I got the car. Everyone loves videos… So here it is! (I’ll try to get more videos going)

Also, I am preparing for the first Reno Drift coming up on the 29th. I picked up a set of drift spares last week. They are nothing special; some 17×7’s +42 universal 4 lug (meaning: look for these on the Z as well). I have this set of 4 and the 13’s that came with the car as well which equates to four sets of tires. I should be good.

 

I kinda like how the 17's look

I kinda like how the 17’s look

So fitted. Such Underflush

All I need now is to figure out my differential situation and I’ll be set. I also may have some plastidip action coming soon.

Stay Tuned!

All your patents are belong to us.

Elon Musk is a monster. An innovative genius.

the bos

Who? Who in the tech/innovative industry would surrender their “competitive advantage” for the “greater good”? Especially with the threat of that kind of information finding its way into the eyes of companies(and countries) who would/can do it cheaper/possibly better (China).  Companies get sued for billions of dollars for things like this. (See Samsung and Apple). Its like an open invitation fort tech companies to “challenge” Tesla and even Elon Musk himself or maybe even help him finish the journey that he is already on. From a tech stand point, open sharing of information inspires growth and  innovation. From a business standpoint, I’m sure there are people who have money in Tesla that are squirmy from this news.

From the man himself:

http://www.teslamotors.com/blog/all-our-patent-are-belong-you

He may have started something very interesting …or may have thrown away a lot of money.