If you could design a spring.... - Off-Road Forums & Discussion Groups
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post #1 of (permalink) Old 03-21-2003, 10:03 PM Thread Starter
 
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If you could design a spring....

Saw a guy yesterday I used to race RC cars with, he's working at a big commercial spring company now, they're big in 18 wheeler leaf and air springs. Anyway, he's working in a department that designs springs for automotive uses..like National, and they actually manufacture the springs right here. Never knew that. He thinks he can get custom spec springs made up for the Zuk! Does anyone think it's possible to get a smooth(er) ride and lift with the stock length springs or is a longer spring absolutely necessary for better suspension action? I've read that OME springs are really nice, what's different about them compared to stock? This looks like an opportunity! [img]images/graemlins/40BEER.gif[/img]
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post #2 of (permalink) Old 03-22-2003, 12:06 AM
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Re: If you could design a spring....

OME generaly have a teflon pad between the springs which allows a smoother contact surface so there is less friction, but to get a nice ride you have to go longer. I just dont think you can do it with a stock length and get lift and ride. my 02
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post #3 of (permalink) Old 03-22-2003, 12:15 AM
 
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Re: If you could design a spring....

At one time, I thought a good riding, good flexing spring had to be long, and have many thin leaves. Recently though, I found out that GM uses long thick leaves(2 thick leaves), based on the fact that they'll ride better if there is less friction between the leaves because theres fewer of them. I really don't know which is better.
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post #4 of (permalink) Old 03-22-2003, 12:57 AM
 
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Re: If you could design a spring....

toyguy,

Generally a longer spring is needed to make significant improvements. The longer a spring is the more even
the pressure though out its range of flex. This is due to the tension buildup. Leaf springs are measured and
specified for the first inch of travel. Every inch past that increases the storage of energy. A long spring
can simply be compressed further with less buildup.

GM also built early blazers with a single leaf. That was done, I am sure, to reduce the friction coefficient.
Friction and espesially rust, do add to a springs stiffness, but very erratically.

Improvments can be made by using the teflon pads mentioned. You could also use a thin sheet of teflon
or HDPE to improve flex. We used to use teflon on race cars springs, but it didnt wear well. HDPE should
wear better. I always clean the leaves and grease them with Blue marine grease.

You might play with a softer stock length, and a higher arch to maintain ride height, but I doubt you will see
much gain with that configuration.
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