How to fix the nose up issue.

Discussion in 'Discussion Forum' started by autox19, Jun 14, 2019.

  1. autox19

    autox19 True Classic

    Location:
    East Lansing, Mi
    Like other x19s mine is nose up. About 1.5 inches higher in the front behind the wheel than it is in front of the rear wheel.
    My issue lies with the front air dam. Right now it is about 4.5 inch clearance. I am worried if i just drop the front that would make it a road kill scraper. With 4 coil overs i have choices of ones over a $1000 (hard to hide from the wife), less expensive 4 coil overs with mixed reviews. Or just lower the front with decent coil overs and hope the air dam clearance isnt as bad as i think.

    Thoughts? And how low is realistically too low for a non daily driver.

    Odie
     
  2. Eastep

    Eastep True Classic

    Location:
    PA
    My car is on coils, and is 42inches tall at the top of the targa bar. My chin spoiler (NA big bumpers) is something like 4-4.5 inches from the pavement. I think the early cars metal spoilers are a bit lower. I don't have experience with Koni or Bilstein coilovers, so I can't speak to how low they adjust, but being that those are really geared towards racing; I'd say they don't adjust to a super low setting. Vicks coils (which I have) are a performance improvement, but also aimed at looks. They have around 3-4 inches of adjustability. Be warned they are a rough ride. I believe this is due mostly to the fact that they have solid spherical mounts. When dialed down, they ride like a Chuck wagon. I'm also using Bigfoot strut doublers, so that may play some effect (doubtful).
     
  3. Dr.Jeff

    Dr.Jeff True Classic

    Location:
    Sin City
    This has always been my delima. I like really big deep air dams and really low cars. The spoiler (dam) always gets damaged eventually. Especially fiberglass ones. The molded urethane ones are more flexible and do not get as much physical damage, but the paint on them does (if it doesn't get scraped off, then it chips off as the urethane flexes). Several years ago I started playing with air suspensions instead of coilovers. That way the ride height is adjustable on the fly, as opposed to the static setting of a coilover setup. Saves the front spoiler/dam most of the time (until you forget to raise it in time for a driveway dip, etc). But not easy or cheap to do a air system on some cars. I designed a air suspension for the X chassis and had planned to build one of my X's with it. But then I came across a set of new Konis so decided to build a custom set of coilovers instead. I may change my mind again because I bought the same fiberglass front dam that you have on your car. And I know it WILL get damaged.

    In regard to your question, how low can you go. The definitive answer is...it depends. The condition of the roads, the driveways, the speed bumps, the dips, how you drive, and how often you want to repair the lip on the spoiler. The spoiler you have sits a slight bit lower than the stock one (especially at the center point), so keep that in mind if comparing to other cars. But to me 4.5" is a lot of ground clearance. I typically have closer to 2", but that isn't practical for most people. Fortunately I have different cars for different occasions, so the really low ones are mostly for special events.

    Another project I have planned is to make a little protection for the spoiler lip. Basically a metal edge along the bottom of the spoiler to act as something of a skid plate. It will have to be rather strong and rigid.

    You may find interference with the front tires and fenders/flares when you lower it more. Front suspension geometry does funny things to clearances when you lower it (especially when turning the wheels). The X does not have a ton of travel in the front. When it is lowered the available travel gets less and bottoming out will happen. Check that you have proper bump stops in place.
     
  4. carl

    carl True Classic

    Location:
    Virginia
    AS the doctor says, it depends on your street environment. Here they are doing a lot of repaving and that means a week or more of the road having a grinding done with manhole covers sticking way up before thee repaving is done, not to mention the general crappy shape of roads in the DC area.

    I wish someone could make disposable chin spoilers that come in a ten pack and you just throw them away when they get trashed....maybe held on with Velcro! Or go for the rally look and leave the front end and just jack up the rear....or go with airbag suspension.
     
  5. JimD

    JimD Waiting for Godot... Moderator

    Location:
    Missouri, USA
    My preferred method for lowering the nose: Fill the frunk with ice and beer. :cool:
     
  6. Dan Sarandrea (Phila)

    Dan Sarandrea (Phila) Waitin' On Parts...

    Location:
    Philadelphia, PA
    Depending upon one's perspective, it's not that the front end is high, it's that the back end is low.

    Series II UK cars for sure (and maybe all Euro cars, or all other exxies period, dunno) have a different part number for the rear struts. Their struts are about 1-1/2 inches taller, so that when installed, the car is level. If you look at the offerings from Eurosport in the UK, it appears that UK 1500cc aka Series II cars had taller rear struts to level the car.

    From their listings for USA cars and UK 1300cc cars: "Note: The dimension between the strut lower spring mount and the upper hub carrier bolt hole is 18cm. Check this is the same as your existing struts to ensure the same ride height."

    From their listing for UK 1500cc cars: "Note: The dimension between the strut lower spring mount and the upper hub carrier bolt hole is 21cm. Check this is the same as your existing struts to ensure the same ride height."

    So for some as yet undocumented reason, FIAT decided to raise the rear of its 1500cc offerings in the UK and maybe R-O-W. Aesthetic, practical, regulatory---????

    As much as I would like to lower the nose on my car for visual appeal, I have to contend with the condition of the roads in and around Philadelphia--absolutely horrendous.
     
    autox19 likes this.
  7. A keg will fit in the frunk.
     
  8. Dr.Jeff

    Dr.Jeff True Classic

    Location:
    Sin City
    I don't believe you. You will have to bring a full keg over here and prove it me. :D
     
    Daniel Forest likes this.
  9. autox19

    autox19 True Classic

    Location:
    East Lansing, Mi
    does the hose reach to the passenger seat?

    Odie
     
    Daniel Forest likes this.
  10. autox19

    autox19 True Classic

    Location:
    East Lansing, Mi
    that is my exact thought on why I might not want to go with just the fronts. if I got 4 wheel adjustable I could (hypothetically) raise the rear 1 inch and lower the front only 1/2. instead of lowering the front 1.5

    Odie
     
  11. Dr.Jeff

    Dr.Jeff True Classic

    Location:
    Sin City
    I remember going way back to my early Ferrari days, having the nose repaired and/or repainted was a regular ordeal for many guys in the owners club. Some of the body shops that specialized in those cars were making a killing off of the "more money than brains" owners who insisted their cars were kept looking new. They would have those shops redo the underside of the nose constantly, at a huge cost. For that reason the aftermarket developed a small air ram that installed on the front struts of some 'exotic' cars. It had a switch on the dash that allowed the nose to be lifted a couple of inches in order to clear driveways, etc. Then the manufacturers of some 'supercars' started installing that type of system on their cars from the factory...which many still do.

    On the other side of my collection was the Porsche crowd. 911's had a similar issue, but in that camp the thinking was to protect the underside of the nose with a skid plate. The aftermarket developed add-on kits with a metal plate (much like a "splitter") that fit under the nose.

    Oddly it was my buddies in the 'custom pickup truck' crowd that developed air bag suspensions. The initial goal was to allow the entire vehicle to be lowered literally to the ground ("laying frame"). But also be raised for actual driving. A side benefit is you could raise the nose further to clear steep driveways, etc. It was fairly easy to make a air suspension for a truck due to it having a box tube frame and simple suspension design. The whole air suspension thing has really developed into a very interesting product with computer controlled systems that offer a very good compromise of handling, comfort, looks, even high performance, in a practical and reliable package. And for many types of vehicles (including motorcycles).

    I've never been into the Japanese car scene. But I see their solution is to make the whole front bumper quickly removable with 'elastic bands' holding it on. When they get to a driveway they get out of the car and remove the bumper, then reinstall it after crossing. Seems like a poor answer to me. But I guess it is simple, cheap, and easy to make.

    So this issue is certainly nothing new. And lots of creative ideas have been developed to get around it. But we are a little more limited in options with the X. I think the ultimate answer is a air suspension; as mentioned it has been developed, but not easy nor cheap (figure about $3000 minimum, and can go much higher with options). However if you go with coilovers then I would recommend getting all four, not just the fronts. Not only for the adjustability but more so for a balanced handling package. As to how much you spend (which ones you choose), that may depend on your goals, budget, and planned future for the car. The 'affordable' ones have definite drawbacks in my opinion. I consider them as a cheap but very compromised answer (low quality, poor ride, short lifespan, etc). However the 'good' ones are very expensive. For most other vehicles there is enough demand that you will have a wide selection of options, including a midrange package. But as I said we are more limited with the X. Consider the total value of your car, how long you intend to keep it, how you drive it, and how much your wife will allow you to spend. :D
     
    speedy fiat, Bjorn Nilson and autox19 like this.
  12. Dr.Jeff

    Dr.Jeff True Classic

    Location:
    Sin City
    I remember back in high school a guy with a Mustang and a drinking problem. He converted his windshield washer bottle to hold rum, and plumbed it to a port on the dash. That way he could go to the drive through and buy a Coke, add his rum to it from the dash, and drive off. I'm sure he died decades ago.
     
    Bjorn Nilson, nichol01 and autox19 like this.
  13. JimD

    JimD Waiting for Godot... Moderator

    Location:
    Missouri, USA
    And yet he lives on in your retelling of his tales of adventure. Not exactly a traditional Homeric hero, but you gotta give the guy props for alcoholic ingenuity. :rolleyes::D:p
     
  14. Dr.Jeff

    Dr.Jeff True Classic

    Location:
    Sin City
    Isn't there a saying something like "addiction is the mother of invention"? :D
     
  15. Next time I drive my X to Vegas!
     
    Dr.Jeff likes this.
  16. Dr.Jeff

    Dr.Jeff True Classic

    Location:
    Sin City
    Let me see, a long hot drive across the desert in your X. I think the keg will be empty by the time you get here. But I will refill it for you so come on over anytime. :cool:
     
    dllubin likes this.
  17. Jefco

    Jefco Low Polar Moment

    Location:
    Portland OR
    So you're saying road trippers with empty kegs are welcome? :rolleyes:
     
    autox19 likes this.
  18. Dr.Jeff

    Dr.Jeff True Classic

    Location:
    Sin City
    All are welcome at any time. :cool:
     
    dllubin likes this.
  19. I once used the frunk in my X to transport two 429cu heads to the machine shop. They may have weighed more than the car's entire engine. It did give it a nice rake, come to think of it.
     
    autox19 likes this.
  20. Thanks for the hospitality. In 1982, I was having a big party and went to pick up a keg. My other car was a 1981 Audi Coupe (Slightly longer FWD non turbo version of a Quattro), and it had a very large trunk. When I got to the liquor store and went to put the keg in the trunk, I quickly found out that the keg was wider than the trunk opening due to the fastback styling. The X was then put into service. All I remember is that it was a whole lot easier getting the empty keg in and out.
     
    Dr.Jeff likes this.

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