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      04-08-2013, 12:53 AM   #1
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Lowering springs bad for your car?

Hey guys I just recently purchased the kw sleeve kit that's height adjustable, but before putting them on my mechanic said it would not be good for my car. Is this true and why? The sleeve is not the full coilover just the springs that uses the oem shocks. Appreciate the insight guys!
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      04-08-2013, 01:29 AM   #2
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You will probably get some premature wear on the shock, since they weren't designed for the rate on aftermarket springs. Theoretically, some increased stress on the CV joints, but for mild drops ~1", I doubt this is a major concern. The ride may become bouncier/rougher. You should expect to lose warranty coverage for your suspension components and parts of the drivetrain impacted by the drop, depending on how strict your dealer is.

I'm a believer in going with upgraded shock/struts when changing springs - only reason I haven't is because my car has EDC. I don't like the idea of using a module to work around the issue, so I'm sticking with stock.
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      04-08-2013, 09:13 AM   #3
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You'll be fine. As stated above, your shocks will likely wear faster.
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      04-08-2013, 09:54 AM   #4
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Don't worry about it too much. I researched this extensively before buying a set. Kw is a leading suspension company. Countless hours of R&D go into every kit they sell. Other members haven't described bounce after installing the sleeve kit.

Will the life of the shock be affected? I'm guessing so but we are talking minimally.
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      04-08-2013, 10:50 AM   #5
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yes, premature wear, likely not measurable unless you're keeping your car beyond 100k or so...

The real question is, can you live with the suspension mods as a DD?

On my last car (Evo 8), I did full coilovers and a 25mm rear sway bar. Yeah, it looked great, handled well, but not measurably better...and the mods battered my brain inside my skull for the 2 years I drove in that car in the city. Never again...

IMO, the M3's 3 EDC settings are perfect balance of sport and comfort. The stiffest is just stiff enough not to come out of the car with a smashed skeleton, but still capable for a novice on a track. If you must lower the car, I would maybe go with OEM ZCP springs, though the drop is not noticible...
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      04-08-2013, 11:00 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Flyswift View Post
Hey guys I just recently purchased the kw sleeve kit that's height adjustable, but before putting them on my mechanic said it would not be good for my car. Is this true and why? The sleeve is not the full coilover just the springs that uses the oem shocks. Appreciate the insight guys!
Speaking from experience of the exact same set-up...note, I tracked my car a lot, so my wear rate was higher. My car (jerez blk as well!) suffered from damper wear towards the 60k mile mark (after 30,000 miles of KW Sleeves). This was most apparent on track and more thrashing on sharp road bumps. Would I recommend them? Yes, only if the roads in your area are relatively smooth. If you drive on bumpy, pot hole likely, roads... then think twice for sure.
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      04-08-2013, 11:02 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SROC5 View Post
Speaking from experience of the exact same set-up...note, I tracked my car a lot, so my wear rate was higher. My car (jerez blk as well!) suffered from damper wear towards the 60k mile mark (after 30,000 miles of KW Sleeves). This was most apparent on track and more thrashing on sharp road bumps. Would I recommend them? Yes, only if the roads in your area are relatively smooth. If you drive on bumpy, pot hole likely, roads... then think twice for sure.
yeah, totally agree on the last point. IMO (and I will take a lot of shit for this on this forum), suspension mods just for cosmetic purposes is just a big waste of money if you DD your car...
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      04-08-2013, 11:06 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mdosu View Post
yeah, totally agree on the last point. IMO (and I will take a lot of shit for this on this forum), suspension mods just for cosmetic purposes is just a big waste of money if you DD your car...
You won't hear grief from me, that's for sure. Do the cars look better dropped? Sure. Am I putting it high on my priority list? No.

I'm already scrapping in weird places (I have CF splitters) and I love the way the car currently handles (I have EDC). If I become REALLY desperate, I'll add spacers (not 100% sure how I feel about them still) to get that bulldog stance. When it's time to rebuild my suspension, I'll probably just switch over to ZCP parts.
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      04-08-2013, 11:07 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mdosu View Post
yeah, totally agree on the last point. IMO (and I will take a lot of shit for this on this forum), suspension mods just for cosmetic purposes is just a big waste of money if you DD your car...
I'm case in point, after going back to OEM ZCP, I am very wary of going back to just springs again. If ever, it might be KW DDC coils.

Although, the springs that recently popped onto the market that might try are Swift Spec-Rs. The marketing BS is pulling me in ... (new metals, thinner coils, like OEM streetability, etc.)
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      04-08-2013, 11:12 AM   #10
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Quote:
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You won't hear grief from me, that's for sure. Do the cars look better dropped? Sure. Am I putting it high on my priority list? No.

I'm already scrapping in weird places (I have CF splitters) and I love the way the car currently handles (I have EDC). If I become REALLY desperate, I'll add spacers (not 100% sure how I feel about them still) to get that bulldog stance. When it's time to rebuild my suspension, I'll probably just switch over to ZCP parts.
in addition, a lot of these "out of the box" suspension mods do not increase performance, rather they change the handling characteristics of the car adversely, especially if you don't know what to adjust.

with my past car, I've noticed that the best way to approach suspension mods is to do track days. Learn the car, then make minute and relatively balanced changes to the suspension (camber plates, slightly thicker sway bars) before doing the full hog-wild independently adjustable coilovers, etc...
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      04-08-2013, 11:15 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SROC5 View Post
Although, the springs that recently popped onto the market that might try are Swift Spec-Rs. The marketing BS is pulling me in ... (new metals, thinner coils, like OEM streetability, etc.)
don't give in! it's all the same marketing BS, stiffer and lower ride without giving up the subjective "streetability"...etc etc etc...it's all the same concept, stiff and lower spring to grind your pelvis down to dust while driving your car, while giving you the fake tinsel of "high performance".

Last edited by mdosu; 04-08-2013 at 11:23 AM.
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      04-08-2013, 11:18 AM   #12
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Have you maximized the potential of your stock set-up, I.e., are you able to drive the car to the limits of the stock suspension? If not, why "upgrade"?
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      04-08-2013, 11:58 AM   #13
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Have you maximized the potential of your stock set-up, I.e., are you able to drive the car to the limits of the stock suspension? If not, why "upgrade"?
The answer for most people would be "Needs a drop"... purely for looks.
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      04-08-2013, 12:08 PM   #14
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Yea, that gaps gets to me sometimes. It's less on the ZCP cars, but on purely stock E9x's, it horrendous!
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      04-08-2013, 12:38 PM   #15
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The answer for most people would be "Needs a drop"... purely for looks.
Yea, I can understand that.
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      04-08-2013, 01:04 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mdosu View Post
yes, premature wear, likely not measurable unless you're keeping your car beyond 100k or so...

The real question is, can you live with the suspension mods as a DD?

On my last car (Evo 8), I did full coilovers and a 25mm rear sway bar. Yeah, it looked great, handled well, but not measurably better...and the mods battered my brain inside my skull for the 2 years I drove in that car in the city. Never again...

IMO, the M3's 3 EDC settings are perfect balance of sport and comfort. The stiffest is just stiff enough not to come out of the car with a smashed skeleton, but still capable for a novice on a track. If you must lower the car, I would maybe go with OEM ZCP springs, though the drop is not noticible...
Quote:
Originally Posted by mdosu View Post
don't give in! it's all the same marketing BS, stiffer and lower ride without giving up the subjective "streetability"...etc etc etc...it's all the same concept, stiff and lower spring to grind your pelvis down to dust while driving your car, while giving you the fake tinsel of "high performance".
It sounds like you had a bad experience with the aftermarket suspension on your EVO which is leading you to have strong opinions about the aftermarket M3 options. I'm not sure that it's completely fair to assume they are all bad after you had your experience on a completely different car with a completely different suspension system...

I can speak from experience on the following suspension options, Stock EDC, Stock non-EDC, Stock EDC with Eibach springs, and KW Clubsport 3-way Coilovers. I have not found that the Eibach springs or KW Clubsports "grind your pelvis down to dust while driving your car". I have found the ride of both the springs and KW's to be stiffer but not unbearable in any way.

Since the clubsports are adjustable it has allowed me to tune my ride height and ride quality to a level that I find completely livable day to day. In fact I love how it has transformed the car. I do live in CA where the roads are relatively smooth (despite what the CA natives think).

I went through 3 winters on Eibachs in MN where there are real potholes and road problems. I would certainly do it again without hesitation. The ride was barely stiffer than stock and the ride height was much improved. I never took the car on the track so I can't say that the performance was actually improved.

In addition... I did have Bilstein PSS9's on my former Porsche 996 C2. I was not happy with the ride in that car. It had suspension rattles and was simply uncomfortable. Thankfully I didn't let that experience prevent me from trying coilovers on my M3. I have been more than happy with the results.

I don't have personal experience with the KW sleeve-over kit so I can't comment on that.
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      04-08-2013, 01:24 PM   #17
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If the looks of a lowered car are important to you then go ahead and lower it. But if ride quality is more important stay away from lowering.
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      04-08-2013, 02:09 PM   #18
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My experience of Eibach springs on EDC is that the ride (up to 77K) is better than stock, and with a little less roll, more fun in the corners. It looks better too.

As for the track, I switched relatively early in my track career, so I cannot tell if it made a difference or not.
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      04-08-2013, 02:41 PM   #19
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My experience of Eibach springs on EDC is that the ride (up to 77K) is better than stock, and with a little less roll, more fun in the corners. It looks better too.

As for the track, I switched relatively early in my track career, so I cannot tell if it made a difference or not.
Just got the eibachs to drop my non zcp. Really pumped to install them. Hopefully by next Friday.
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      04-08-2013, 03:12 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by slicer View Post
It sounds like you had a bad experience with the aftermarket suspension on your EVO which is leading you to have strong opinions about the aftermarket M3 options. I'm not sure that it's completely fair to assume they are all bad after you had your experience on a completely different car with a completely different suspension system...

I can speak from experience on the following suspension options, Stock EDC, Stock non-EDC, Stock EDC with Eibach springs, and KW Clubsport 3-way Coilovers. I have not found that the Eibach springs or KW Clubsports "grind your pelvis down to dust while driving your car". I have found the ride of both the springs and KW's to be stiffer but not unbearable in any way.

Since the clubsports are adjustable it has allowed me to tune my ride height and ride quality to a level that I find completely livable day to day. In fact I love how it has transformed the car. I do live in CA where the roads are relatively smooth (despite what the CA natives think).

I went through 3 winters on Eibachs in MN where there are real potholes and road problems. I would certainly do it again without hesitation. The ride was barely stiffer than stock and the ride height was much improved. I never took the car on the track so I can't say that the performance was actually improved.

In addition... I did have Bilstein PSS9's on my former Porsche 996 C2. I was not happy with the ride in that car. It had suspension rattles and was simply uncomfortable. Thankfully I didn't let that experience prevent me from trying coilovers on my M3. I have been more than happy with the results.

I don't have personal experience with the KW sleeve-over kit so I can't comment on that.

i wouldn't say i had a negative experience, just the cost/benefit wasn't there for me.

But I'm glad you spoke up, b/c it's detailed reviews like this that allows potential buyers a good preview of what to expect.

BTW, my Evo coilovers (Zeal/Endless) were even stiffer than the "out of the box" Bilstein PSS9 versions for the Evo.
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      04-08-2013, 04:33 PM   #21
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Quote:
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i wouldn't say i had a negative experience, just the cost/benefit wasn't there for me.

But I'm glad you spoke up, b/c it's detailed reviews like this that allows potential buyers a good preview of what to expect.

BTW, my Evo coilovers (Zeal/Endless) were even stiffer than the "out of the box" Bilstein PSS9 versions for the Evo.
Wow I ran Zeals on my old S2000 and they were a good set up with Swift springs but nothing beats my old Aragosta/Tuned by Top Secret setup I had for the track/SCCA and I also had Ohlins and Mugen. Good stuff.
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      04-08-2013, 07:54 PM   #22
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Aside from more wear on shocks and increased likelihood to scraping, no real harm. Feel and performance are another story. Being that they're adjustable is nice. Give 'em a shot and see what you think.
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