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Unexpected poor handling with Konis

7879 Views 30 Replies 7 Participants Last post by  AlanBDahl
I ran my first event of the season yesterday with my newly-installed Konis and the results were poor. I'm now trying to figure out what to do next.

Setup: 2014 ST with Dirizza ZII 225/45-16 on OZ wheels. Porterfield R4S brake pads. Koni yellows front and rear.

1st run: Shocks full stiff rear, 1/2 turn from soft front. 38 psi front/42 rear.

Car was all over the place, I could not keep the rear end planted. All I can do to make it through the course with just one cone. 3 seconds behind Des in his ST.

2nd run: Shocks the same, pressures 38/38.

Much better to begin with but still eager to rotate. Entered a fast three-cone slalom with a short braking area into a right-hander. Car snap spun on me and sent me off course into the grass and a side taxiway. Day over per our 4-wheels-off rule with a DSQ on the score sheet.

From my perspective the common wisdom of Koni shock settings is way off. I'm thinking the middle setting rear and half-way to 3/4 front. Am I right and everyone else is wrong or did we goof up our install some way?

Des does have a Cobb front bar but that doesn't explain the 4 second difference between us. I road with Des and his car had very good turn-in but tended to loose grip in hard sweepers. My goal is the best of both worlds, high grip with good turn-in. I think it's doable, it's just figuring out how...
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We removed and readjusted the Konis last week. I was quite surprised at how much of a difference even a quarter turn down from full stiff made. We went with a half turn down as an experiment and on the street at least handling (and ride) is much improved. We will see how it works this weekend (at a location with a lot more runoff, just in case :).
Reduced the pressure in my rear tires this weekend at the event and the car was great....going to hold off on softening the settings until I get a few more events in. But I immediately dropped 1 second...and if I did not cone away my fastest time would have been much higher in the standings. That aside, I felt much more confident in the car and have a good feeling about where it can be. So still happy with the Konis
My car was much better this last weekend. I played around with the settings a lot and I'm still not complete dialed-in but getting there. I might try changing the rear shocks from -1/2 to -1/4 but I want to get another event under my belt before I do that. I drove Des's car for one run and I'm not convinced yet that the front bar is needed but I'll keep that in mind as I move forward with my setup.
38F/47R seemed to work best at this last event on asphalt at 70 degrees
That is close to what I used to the last even I tried to run 38F 35 R and immediately picked up over .5 seconds. It did not feel like I wanted it to, but it was definitely a bit quicker for me. When I ran it 38 45 after the Konis were installed it was a bit nervous in the slaloms. I am going to try the new pressures again this weekend and see if I still see good results.
I am running the rears in the mid to upper 30's as well. I have also found the rear stepping out in the slaloms seemed to steal more time than helping the car rotate elsewhere which I have been able to minimize to a larger extent now that I am getting better with left foot brake timing/trail braking and throttle inputs. The first run out on the Rival S really required patience with the high speed slalom on the first run out in Blytheville as the rear was even more eager to step out of line. The highest speed elements came right after so any time lost was magnified too.
Trev, did you put a front bar on? That's where I found it most useful.
No, got it the afternoon before I left for Arkansas. I should have it on for Spring Nationals though and hopefully one local event before than to get a feel for it.
To back up what Des said, 4 of us (Me, Josh, Navid, Chris/Pam) all put on larger (Eibach) front bars between the Crows Tour and Crows Pro (Des had the Corksport larger bar both weekends).

Plus : car is WAY more stable/drivable/confident in slaloms. Especially true in higher speed slaloms. Car is (a lot) less likely to bicycle.
Con : it does wheelspin more, and MIGHT be a negative in sweepers on the clock.

Gut feel is if it were a VERY tight course that was all about 25 MPH digs (i.e. local small lot course), you might want the stock front bar. Otherwise, just accept there will be more wheelspin and the front bar will be faster. On most "National" style courses I've driven, I'd take the bigger front bar.

Other note we found : be sure you have the bar bushings as far towards the REAR of the car as you can before tightening them down. Really helps to have one person tighten while another holds the bar in place (i.e. pushing it towards back of car). Otherwise, the Eibach bar will "clunk" on the subframe. Not an issue with the Corksport as it is bent differently and won't be anywhere close to the subframe.
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I’m still not sold on the front bar for asphalt though for concrete like Crows it might be just the ticket. Des’s car understeered a fair amount at Packwood compared to my car on the one run I took. However Des and I have very different driving styles and what works for me might not work for him or vice-versa. Also I like to take a slow approach to setting a car up so although I may get there eventually for now I am content at attempting to maximize the set up as-is.
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