front end height and shocks.

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Re: front end height and shocks.

Postby Kris Courtney » Thu Aug 01, 2019 9:16 pm

That's what I was thinking about Koni's.What about Koni's shock length and compressed. I would like to know those numbers its hard to find .
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Re: front end height and shocks.

Postby RBP » Fri Aug 02, 2019 7:30 am

Kris, Did you find the part # or specific item identifier? I'd expect they are specified as post 66 beetle for ball joint front end. Do they say they are adjustable for compression?
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Re: front end height and shocks.

Postby DannyP » Sat Aug 03, 2019 1:44 pm

Rudy, Koni are only adjustable for rebound, the compression valving is set/not adjustable. I got a set from Greg that were on the shelf for years, he mailed them to me. I had to paint them they were scratched so bad, but they were clearly unused. The new Konis have a built-in dustboot. The ones I have(from 1973) need the separate stud extension/bumper/dustboot that stock VWs used back in the day. Fortunately I was able to get a set from CIP1.com.

So I looked around a bit to address your problem.

I've been looking at QA1 shocks for your FRONT issue, because I have them on the REAR(Proma Star) with 275 pound springs. They are double adjustable with 18 steps and one knob, and adjust compression and rebound at the same time. If anyone wants to run them on their Vintage, part number is DS-401 and DS-402(one has two rod-ends, the other has two poly bushings). You swap the parts as you need to to get poly bushings up top and rod-ends down by the swing-arm. I run mine inverted for sprung/unsprung advantage. I bought 10" springs to get the spring rate I wanted, they had to be slightly compressed to install them(Kind of a pain in the butt). Get the High Travel springs so you can choose your rate.

I think I paid around $450 for the pair back then, but that was before Greg offered the Bilsteins. I got the shocks, springs, spring seat bearings, and spring seat adjustment wrenches.

They do have adjustable front shocks in various mountings top and bottom and different lengths, but nothing specifically for a VW beam. They have a single knob shock, and one with separate knobs for compression and rebound. You'll need to know compressed and full length, and obviously a stud on top and an eye on the bottom. Take a shock off and measure compressed and extended length, then get back to me.

I'm happy with my setup front and rear, and the QA1s have been trouble-free for about 35000 miles. I have them about 9-10 clicks from soft, so a little over halfway into the full adjustment of 18 clicks.
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Re: front end height and shocks.

Postby RBP » Sun Aug 04, 2019 5:16 am

Hi Danny, Thanks for taking the time to look into things, I appreciate it. I'm good in the back end, I have Bilsteins and the wrenches to adjust them. I don't believe they adjust for compression and rebound, just height and as a result camber. The problem is up front. I talked to Greg and he told me that my problem was likely that I have new leaf packs for torsion and what I need is the old original leaf packs out of a VW. He said he would send me them. So after a few years I resigned myself to the fact that he won't be sending me these. I then looked into stiffer, leaf packs, something like this

https://swayaway.com/product/torsion-le ... 5-stiffer/

I never did get around to ordering them and getting them in. Bad thing with this is if they are too stiff I can't adjust. I'll checkout what I have for shocks in front as soon as I get my lift back. I have another car on the lift and might need to drop the engine again to fix an oil leak. Just did a top end rebuild and put the engine in. If its leaking where I think the only way to fix it is dropping the engine.
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Re: front end height and shocks.

Postby DannyP » Sun Aug 04, 2019 8:33 am

I understand you are good in the back, I was merely pointing out my satisfaction with my rear shocks.

I was wondering if QA1 might be able to help you fit some adjustable front shocks. So if you know open and closed length they may have a solution for you.

I think you may need some more spring rate. As Greg suggests, if you could find some good used spring packs that may be your best option.
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Re: front end height and shocks.

Postby RBP » Tue Aug 06, 2019 5:06 am

Danny, Do you have the full leaf pack in each beam? Many assembly manuals suggest removing some of the leafs from one of the leaf packs. So use the 4 large out of the 10 in one of the beams and the full 10 in the other.
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Re: front end height and shocks.

Postby Kris Courtney » Tue Aug 06, 2019 5:39 pm

Found this Product from Germany.Dont need to cut lower beam just oval out hole for adjuster and weld on teeth .Should be a lot easier .Anybody else try this product ?
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Re: front end height and shocks.

Postby Kris Courtney » Tue Aug 06, 2019 6:17 pm

Saw this article on line.Finally found some length and compressed numbers for these Koni's.Sounds like you can cut the foam stopper for it to not bottom out on fenders.But I think the 10.7 is were the fender and shock will bottom out at the same time.Should try to talk to a sales rep. next.
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Re: front end height and shocks.

Postby DannyP » Wed Aug 07, 2019 2:38 am

Rudy, as far as i know I've got all ten leaves in both tubes. I did on the old car, but I haven't had the new car apart to know. I'd have to ask Greg.

Kris, that is the adjuster That I have on my beams, both new and old. Your'e right, you just need a hole/slot rather than cutting the beam in half.

Also, those compressed/extended numbers sound correct for a Beetle shock, but I'll have to measure mine and get back to you.
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Re: front end height and shocks.

Postby RVosari » Fri Aug 09, 2019 4:35 am

Beck spyders are different…according to Carey they have always used a full stack on the bottom tube and a “short” stack on top, removing all of the thinner bars from the upper pack….employing... OEM VW parts.

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Re: front end height and shocks.

Postby DannyP » Fri Aug 09, 2019 5:01 am

I talk to both Carey and Greg on a regular basis. I get parts and advice from both. The frame and rear torsion tube are the biggest differences between Beck and Vintage, but the front beam is the same. I've driven and worked on multiple cars from both vendors, 3 or 4 from each.

OEM parts must be old parts, but I agree that the spring leaves were definitely made better in the old days. I prefer the extra/higher spring rate of all the leaves in place. That would definitely help Rudy who keeps bottoming out. I think Rudy has a combo of low ride height and slightly different(larger) tires in the front wells.

My new car has a 2" shortened beam, and I have zero ride height/rubbing/spring rate issues. Your point Rev? Beck better than Vintage? I find them both to be well made with good handling and ride.
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Re: front end height and shocks.

Postby RVosari » Fri Aug 09, 2019 6:03 am

Here’s what we do know… Beck built in Brazil cars used brand-new components at time of manufacture!

I have no idea what vintage does or did !

However it is patently obvious that the Beck top tube uses a different configuration of torsion leaves than the bottom tube does…

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Re: front end height and shocks.

Postby albaran » Fri Aug 09, 2019 11:27 am

My Thunder Ranch body suggested 4 large leaves on the top tube and the full pack of 10 ( 4 large and 6 small) for the bottom tube which has worked ok for me.
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Re: front end height and shocks.

Postby Kris Courtney » Sun Aug 11, 2019 10:01 am

Greg told me to remove all the small leaves out of the top tube too.But I like the feel of the full leaves in both beams.Seems like it would be real soft and the rubbing issue would happen more.
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Re: front end height and shocks.

Postby RVosari » Mon Aug 12, 2019 4:22 pm

Something you can easily do at home to check your front suspension movement and shock extension. After driving park the car on a flat surface, get out walk around the car and apply upward pressure on the front driver side fender lip (as if you were trying to pick-it up). You will hear the shock hiss and the fender will move up a half inch or so…and stay there.

After a while it will sink back.

So if you could place 3 fingers between the tire and fender before…now it is 4.

The same thing on the passenger side, but it may be stiffer unless you have a regular passenger.

This is not “slop” in the trailing arm/torsion bar complex as such, but merely the torsion bar leafs at their end-travel, where they really don’t do much.

If there is no upward movement your shocks may have insufficient rebound travel…

Poorly paved man-hole covers are an excellent suspension test because they are large diameter surfaces.

If you are traveling at 30-35 mph and hit one; your trailing arms and shock will droop…and then react sharply when you hit the other side. If you had a beetle with bump stops, you would feel the compression, but since most Spyders are missing those, you will have a good measure of how stiff your suspension is both from a torsion bar as well as a shock-absorber perspective.

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