940 springs and suspension review

Discussion in 'Volvo 940' started by Tony, Sep 29, 2008.

  1. Tony

    Tony Guest

    just thought I'd share my suspension upgrade experiences.

    1995 940 2.3 SE Turbo estate

    I needed to replace the front shocks and top bushes as one had popped
    out hitting the bonnet. I already had Bilstein sport shocks in the
    back and Ventura standard springs for a saloon (resulting in a
    uppointing front, a mistake from ECP).

    After 2 failed attempts to deliver the top bushes by ECP (aftermarket
    parts) with bearings or in a decent quality they eventually delivered
    the correct parts. On the other hand Europerformance provided the
    expensive front Bilsteins and all round Cobra springs (progressive,
    uprated and lowered by 40mm) quickly and efficiently. I would recommend
    them but noticed their T&C seems to infringe the Sale of Goods act,
    saying that all warranties are with the manufacturer (a common web
    company problem these days).

    The Bilsteins are impressive units with the shaft about 95% the width of
    the outer body, and very stiff.

    The replacement work was straight forward. On the fronts I used a pry
    bar/jemmy to seperate the bottom ball joint and plumbers shifters to
    undo the shock retainging bolt and do up the new one. Otherwise very
    similar to 340/360 shock replacement. The rears the main difficulty was
    getting the jacking points onto axle stands as you are lowering the
    suspension while trying to lower the car onto the axle stands. The car
    tends to move on the front wheels (maybe some wheel chocks would help
    next time), and the axle stands tend to tip over as the weight transfers
    onto them. The rear spring retaining bolt was difficult as usual
    needing a deep socket and the stud tends to come out as the end and bolt
    are rusted together.

    now the performance;
    The new springs and shocks are impressive for fast driving, this is now
    one of the tightest cars I have ever driven, and it really takes the
    corners. I havn't been brave enough to really try the limits yet, needs
    return of the GY F1 to the rear, which is under respray for
    corrosion/leakage the Pirelli on it now from the spare is not as good.
    Having said that I have over commited on speed once and been badly
    positioned on the road comming up to a corner and met another car
    suddenly, the car now responds immediately to swerves and corrections
    without large tail slides.

    The down side is the car is definately not a practical load carrier now
    (unless the load is not fragile), and loaded up with people does scrape
    the mud flaps occasionally. It doesn't look too low, still a reasonable
    clearance, but the progressive bit of the springs is very short,
    especially at the rear. On dropping the car to the ground the rear
    springs are binding at the bottom (but this maybe a design intention).
    Ramps are not too bad on the entrance, but comming out it really seems
    to crash onto the road. Previously the car was under damped and under
    sprung, but now overly so, much more than my partners 323i which I
    called a go-kart when she got it. I would have loved this in my 20s,
    but that was some time ago.

    I'm thinking a more inbetween spring on rating and lowering might be a
    more reasonable compromise, anyone tried any other sports springs.
    Tony, Sep 29, 2008
  2. sounds nice Tony...on my 93 940t (300k miles) I
    did the IPD upper and lower chassis braces, the
    stiffer belstein (sp?) struts and a wide radial...the
    940 handles like its on rails now...its a nice 4 door
    set up....
    ~^ beancounter ~^, Sep 29, 2008
  3. Tony

    Tony Guest

    It has actually settled down quite a bit now, not crashing after ramps
    and general comfort has returned. Wonder did the oil need to settle in
    the shocks or the valves break in?
    Tony, Oct 7, 2008
  4. Tony.....that might have been it...let "things settle" into
    one another...
    ~^ beancounter ~^, Oct 7, 2008
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