2nd Generation GE8 Specific Suspension & Brakes Sub-Forum Threads discussing suspension and brake related modifications for the 2nd generation Honda Fit (GE8)

GE8 suspension for STF

  #1  
Old 06-30-2014, 10:10 PM
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GE8 suspension for STF

Hello Everyone,

There was a thread for the GD3 on STF in general, but not for the GE8 so I figured I'd start one. Do want it to stay focused on suspension though

First off I've been having a blast in my first season autoxing my DD and have been somewhat locally competitive although it depends what group on what day. I have been competing with DC Region SCCA and Philly Region and won in Philly but mid pack in DC region. Maybe I need to move to Philly :P haha.

I also have been doing events with the local BMW club and actually placed 5th in PAX class and 18th in the event PAX. At the last event.

I have been doing some iphone data logging. Feel free to watch on my Youtube Channel ge8basefan. Still have to upload from my BMW club event yesterday.

So onto the thread topic. For this season I am probably gonna remain on stock suspension with my only mods being wheels and tires, a set of camber bolts for the front upper mounts, and progress rear sway bar. Oh and that one mod called the driver working on that lol. Perhaps for the end of this season or more likely for the beginning of next I was planning on doing Coilovers.

At this point I was looking at the Mugen Suspension or the Redshift Koni/Eibach kit that had its own thread (would order a set from the next batch in September). If anyone has purchased one of these kits and would like to chime in on what it is like please do.

Feel free to chime in what you use, but I am interested in track performance not really lowering. Just interested in full coilovers not springs or dampers only.

Now there is at least one constraint for ride height. I have a pretty steep dropoff between my driveway and the street so going 1.5" drop would be pushing it. It does also snow occasionally in Maryland so snow can be a concern.

I have read that paying extra for an adjustable suspension may not be worth it if you cannot tune it properly. Do you think going for an adjustable suspension is worthwhile over a non adjustable system? I don't have the equipment to tune it, but people have told me they just crank the shocks up to max hardness for autocross anyway.

Money is not an issue but I am no expert on assembling suspension would prefer to stick with a preassembled kit I can take to a local shop and say install this. You get what you pay for is what I have heard.

I like the mugen suspension ($1250) because of its moderate drop ~1" no ground clearance and theres no screwing up the dampers because I trust Mugen has some idea of what they are doing. Kind of feel bad being a honda fan boy lol

The springs aren't as stiff as is desired for autocross from what I've read in the GD3 suspension post, at ~15% more then stock (115F/100R OEM, 125F/115R Mugen), but it would be a safe bet.

The RedShift Koni Sport Full Coilover setup ($1450) (can get custom eibach spring rates they recommend the 350F/350R or 400R for fun track use which I would probably go for if I went that route and if that is pounds/inch that would be 3x stock.

Seems like a big difference though from stock spring rates. For a DD is that too extreme? The fit isn't exactly the smoothest thing stock lol. And its not like I used to riding in anything much smoother then an accord so hard doesn't bother me a lot. Or will the good Koni dampers (or I assume good koni dampers) make up for the stiffer springs?

Heard once you can always make dampers stiffer but you can't make springs softer

I like this option because theres more room to grow once I want to learn how to tune them a bit. And as I mentioned briefly you can adjust the single adjustment damper reponse to suit the needs of autocross vs DD possibly.

The drop is 0-2.5" so no worries about ground clearance issues I can set it conservative initially.

And the stiffer springs would allow for more drop with less risk of rubbing.

Let me know what your thoughts are and suggestions for coilovers and I'll keep replying.
 
  #2  
Old 07-01-2014, 12:16 PM
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I would skip the Mugens, they are not stiff enough to give you any increase in body control and transition speed (what I find to be the two biggest issues with the GE8).

I am debating between the bisteins (trying to figure out what kind of spring rate they are using on those, though it is progressive, not linear) and the redshift konis. If you really want to be competative, just spring for the reshifts. You will probably end up settling somewhere between 300 and 500lb springs.

As far as the ride getting worse, I have a Miata I run in STS. Stock spring rate was 164/97 (f/r) and it is now running 342/228 with Koni Yellows. The ride is actually better over the small road imperfections, the only time you notice the stiffness is over larger potholes and such where it runs out of travel.

Learning to adjust your suspention is fairly easy. The Koni's are only adjustable for rebound and height. Though you could play around with spring rate as well.

Also, I need to make it down to philly again sometime. I enjoy running at warminster.
 
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Old 07-01-2014, 02:00 PM
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If you want to play with and swap spring rates, get the Koni.

If you want set it and forget it just get the Bilsteins.


I would skip the Mugen on price alone. For an extra couple hundred you could just go straight to the Koni. Honestly, you shouldn't really need to play with shock settings too much, that should really be used to tune when you change spring rates. I never really understood "TURN THE DAMPERS ON FULL HARD FOR TRACK!" mentality... I don't like over-damped cars at all and think they feel like crap, but that's just my opinion. Once you find a shock setting that works well with your springs and tire selection, just leave it alone. You don't particularly need any equipment to tune it, the human body and it's sensory inputs are a pretty good tool if your balance is good and you are aware of how your car is behaving beneath you. What is the "fastest" setup might not be the fastest setup for YOU, there are a lot of variables involved.

Do not compare ride comfort of an aftermarket setup to stock. IMO the stock fit dampers are not paired well with the spring rates and they are damped too harshly which makes it feel choppy paired with the short wheelbase.
 
  #4  
Old 07-01-2014, 02:06 PM
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Actually, the adjustable rebound damping is a handy tuning tool. You can use it to adjust the over/understeer bias of the car during turn in. You also end up adjusting them based on the condition of the lot you are running in. A.nice smooth lot, you can turn them up higher than usual and use them to jack the car down during the run. Turning them full stiff for track/autocross is just ignorant people giving bad advice.

For being competative, you want the adjustment, for set it and forget it fun, the bilstein is probably fine, but again, I would like to know the spring rates first.
 
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Old 07-01-2014, 02:40 PM
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Yeah, it's probably just me. I always tried adjusting the shock settings depending on course and just ended up putting it back to the way it was when I drove there This is with HTS and AGX though in the past.

OP I may be a weirdo. Ignore me.
 
  #6  
Old 07-01-2014, 02:44 PM
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Originally Posted by Wanderer. View Post
Yeah, it's probably just me. I always tried adjusting the shock settings depending on course and just ended up putting it back to the way it was when I drove there This is with HTS and AGX though in the past.

OP I may be a weirdo. Ignore me.
Dunno about HTS, but AGXs only have a couple of settings, spaced too far appart to make useful adjustments with.
 
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Old 07-01-2014, 02:51 PM
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My AGX had 8? HTS just had clicks, I have no idea how many, it was a lot.

I mean I felt a difference, I just never liked it. I drive my car the best the way I drive it every day, however that is. That's what I mean really by ignore that.

The only way I actually liked when I made changes was when I changed spring rates.
 
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Old 07-01-2014, 03:07 PM
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Originally Posted by Wanderer. View Post
If you want to play with and swap spring rates, get the Koni.

If you want set it and forget it just get the Bilsteins.
Actually,I think I already find a way to change springs on Bilstein coilover for Honda Fit,
I will try to do this soon (related to my other plan for the brake)...
as soon as my budget got approved
 
  #9  
Old 07-01-2014, 03:40 PM
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Alright so the Mugens are out.

D2 racing makes a reasonably priced 3 adjustment kit (height, rebound, and compression) but bit warey of the sub $1000 price tag. You get what you paid for comes up and they don't discuss spring rates.

Wow $1800 for the Bilsteins gosh and they don't tell you the spring rate.

If you do a random search 400lb/in (70N/mm) comes up but that doesn't necessarily apply to the fit. I'll contact them and see if I get a response. They are progressive rate springs though which is better for track when you don't have super fast transitions.

The konis come with linear rate springs which tend to be better for autocross. As far as the spring rate I was thinking 350F/R or 350F/400R since the fit tends to naturally understeer a little stiffer in the rear probably doesn't hurt. Although there is less weight in the back especially when autocrossing as I usually remove the spare tire, etc. So having the extra spring rate may be unnecessary.

The GD3 chatting just may have ingrained 400 in my head haha. When I contact redshift I will ask what they think. I figure it would be good to check if they have all the mounts for the brake lines, etc properly placed.
Does kind of suck that the Konis don't have a warranty :/ being not directly sold by Koni.

As far the tuning goes since I posted last night I did read someone's guide to tuning shocks and although really meant for track it said start at the softest setting and adjust it like a 1/2 turn or a few clicks I guess after each run or two until it gets to the stiffness that is just enough. In the article it discusses doing several laps (runs). So ideally this would be done at a test and tune day. I could see it being location dependent. I also have heard of what you suggest x_25 that you can use it to tune understeer/oversteer. Instead of having stiffer springs just turn up the shock stiffness slightly more.
 
  #10  
Old 07-01-2014, 03:47 PM
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The bilsteins are $1,099 at tire rack.

Yeah, the D2 would scare me.

I actually found it was more helpful when learning to run the whole car full soft for a run or two, then full stiff, then do one end full stiff, the other full soft, then flip that. It is interesting.

And it isn't instead of adjustjng the springs. You adjust the springs and sways for steady state cornering, then use the shocks to adjust the transitions.

For road use, I found that finding a whoopy road and getting the rear shocks adjust right (the car should bounce once, then stop) and then adjusting the front to balance it out, was the best way to go. Turning after that was done in little bits to get the balance worked out.
 
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Old 07-01-2014, 03:57 PM
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Originally Posted by x_25 View Post
For road use, I found that finding a whoopy road and getting the rear shocks adjust right (the car should bounce once, then stop) and then adjusting the front to balance it out, was the best way to go. Turning after that was done in little bits to get the balance worked out.
This is what I always did. If you can set the shocks up well to work at autocross or canyon* it will be a breeze for them on circuit since the track surface is generally much smoother and there are less abrupt transitions.

Or just find an empty parking lot*

*behave on public roads disclaimer
 
  #12  
Old 07-01-2014, 04:59 PM
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Now that I think about the dynamics you are correct. The springs set the are taking the loads from the car's motion and the shocks dampen out the noise due to surface imperfections and make the load transitions as smooth and as quickly as possible. The dampers shouldn't be acting as springs

The bilsteins didn't show up earlier but they are there now. That is not a bad price and they actually come with a lifetime warranty haha, but as you say the spring rates are not mentioned.
 

Last edited by rhop; 07-01-2014 at 05:05 PM.
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Old 07-02-2014, 02:14 AM
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Originally Posted by rhop View Post
Now that I think about the dynamics you are correct. The springs set the are taking the loads from the car's motion and the shocks dampen out the noise due to surface imperfections and make the load transitions as smooth and as quickly as possible. The dampers shouldn't be acting as springs

The bilsteins didn't show up earlier but they are there now. That is not a bad price and they actually come with a lifetime warranty haha, but as you say the spring rates are not mentioned.
Bilstein Spring Rate:

 
  #14  
Old 07-02-2014, 08:04 AM
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Originally Posted by BMW ALPINA View Post
Bilstein Spring Rate:

Sweet. Thanks! So it is 145lb/in to 252lb/in in the front and 134lb/in in the rear. Those sound like very good daily driver rates. For autocross I would go with the Koni still.

This is going to be a hard choice for me though, since my car is a daily, and I don't mind a slightly stiffer susspention. The bilsteins are a little softer than I was hoping to go, since I do like to throw the car into the corners sometimes. Hmmm...
 
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Old 07-02-2014, 08:57 AM
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Originally Posted by BMW ALPINA View Post
Actually,I think I already find a way to change springs on Bilstein coilover for Honda Fit,
I will try to do this soon (related to my other plan for the brake)...
as soon as my budget got approved
Yah man.. let us know.

If I ever finish the mods I've been working on I plan on getting the Bilsteins by mid-late summer. The streets around here are way too bad for anything much more stiffer. But wouldn't mind the possibility of swapping springs for the track.
 
  #16  
Old 07-02-2014, 09:03 AM
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Originally Posted by FitStir View Post
Yah man.. let us know.

If I ever finish the mods I've been working on I plan on getting the Bilsteins by mid-late summer. The streets around here are way too bad for anything much more stiffer. But wouldn't mind the possibility of swapping springs for the track.
I am not sure how swapping springs on a non adjustable shock will go. You would have to stay fairly close to the spring rates they were designed for. Though it would probably work just fine tossing on a spring that is about the same as the highest rate on the progressive? Experimentation would have to be done.

You could also run the Konis, they should be able to be turned down for a fairly soft spring. I know on my miata, at their lowest setting, they are valved correctly for stock springs.
 
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Old 07-02-2014, 09:19 AM
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Originally Posted by x_25 View Post
I am not sure how swapping springs on a non adjustable shock will go. You would have to stay fairly close to the spring rates they were designed for. Though it would probably work just fine tossing on a spring that is about the same as the highest rate on the progressive? Experimentation would have to be done.

You could also run the Konis, they should be able to be turned down for a fairly soft spring. I know on my miata, at their lowest setting, they are valved correctly for stock springs.
I'm curious as to what Alpina's got in mind... he's usually got pretty good ideas.

I thought about the Koni's, I was one of the first to show interest in Chris' thread, but I think the Bilsteins will be better for my needs. Both are top notch, so the decision between the two is not easy, you really can't go wrong with either.
 
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Old 07-02-2014, 09:21 AM
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Originally Posted by FitStir View Post
I'm curious as to what Alpina's got in mind... he's usually got pretty good ideas.

I thought about the Koni's, I was one of the first to show interest in Chris' thread, but I think the Bilsteins will be better for my needs. Both are top notch, so the decision between the two is not easy, you really can't go wrong with either.
Oh yeah. The quality is making it hard. The biggest issue, and the thing stopping me from just springing for the Koni is the lack of warentee. If it weren't for that I would have a set already.
 
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Old 07-02-2014, 09:59 AM
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Originally Posted by x_25 View Post
Oh yeah. The quality is making it hard. The biggest issue, and the thing stopping me from just springing for the Koni is the lack of warentee. If it weren't for that I would have a set already.
iirc, I thought there was a limited warranty for the Redshift setup, and a lifetime warranty on the actual Koni's?

If I was tracking every weekend, I can see the need for Koni's, but I'll be lucky to make 2 annual trips - one to the Glen, and one to the NJ track for some un-paced action. I'm not doing any STF, AutoX, etc, etc.., but I am keeping the car for a very long time so I like the Bilstein warranty as well.
 
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Old 07-02-2014, 10:02 AM
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Originally Posted by FitStir View Post
iirc, I thought there was a limited warranty for the Redshift setup, and a lifetime warranty on the actual Koni's?

If I was tracking every weekend, I can see the need for Koni's, but I'll be lucky to make 2 annual trips - one to the Glen, and one to the NJ track for some un-paced action. I'm not doing any STF, AutoX, etc, etc.., but I am keeping the car for a very long time so I like the Bilstein warranty as well.
Redshift says that the koni warentee is void since the shocks are not designated for this application.
 

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