Worst car modifications: Suspension Clamps
When it comes to modifying a car, either for power gains, handling improvements, practical reasons or styling changes, there's often two choices. Do it right. Or do it cheap. This article won't tell you how to do it right. But it will tell you why you shouldn't do it cheap. This week we're exploring the dark world of suspension clamps.
When someone in a Mid-West auto parts store first explained to me many years ago what these were, I thought it was a joke. Surely nobody, no matter how desperate they were to achieve that oh-so-desired lowered stance, would resort to putting what amount to glorified u-bolts around their coil springs in order to crush them into submission.
But apparently there's enough people out there willing to decimate their car's ride quality and handling characteristics, to warrant turning what should have been a moron's delusional idea, into an off-the-shelf product.
Now clearly the price of a full set of Eibach adjustable coilovers is vastly more expensive than a $9.99 set of suspension clamps. But perhaps there's a reason for that. Properly set up coilovers can do wonders for a car's handling. Suspension clamps - no matter what your buddy tells you - will do nothing to improve the driving experience. In fact quite the reverse. It'll throw the damping and rebound rates into turmoil - giving you unpredictable handling at best, make you the joke of the day every time it's in the shop, and also cause other suspension components to wear out prematurely.
If after that short 'n sweet explanation you still want to fit them, go ahead, you're beyond help. Otherwise leave your poor car alone, or save up and do it right.
In the States of Oregon and Washington in the USA, these are illegal.
Obviously they are no good if you just randomly collapse some portion of your springs, but with care and considerate set up they ca be good. Let me explain, in my experience most cars are overdamped, especially if you fit lighter wheels or remove unneeded weight, like backseats, sound insulation etc. And overdamped suspension is only good if you have surfaces that are smooth as ice, otherwise the wheels will not be able to follow the little bumps and your car will just loose traction. But carefully positioned clamps can give you an chance to tune the length and the strength of the springs, and if you use two sets per wheel than you can stiffen up springs. So you can stiffen springs without lowering the car and destroying the suspension geometry and angles, it is especially important with a multilink suspension where it is designed for a certain ride height. So bottom line they are cheap, but tuning is not just about money, but greatly brains. If you do not have the brains it is better to pay someone who does, because money won’t make your car faster. And yes well designed sand set up coilover kits are expensive because someone had to put a lot of brainpower into developing them.
Im sure money will make a car faster
Done right, they work.
you seem to be missing half the point, these where designed to raise or lower the back of a car for towing a caravan. Fitting these would be just the same as fitting lowering springs on the standard suspension
Ermmmmm? Aren’t these used to REMOVEt he original springs in order to be replaced by lowered ones?? Or just to replace with original? Looool I have never heard of anyone using them PERMANENTLY!! LoooooL
No. They are not spring compressors.
Unlike coilovers, the clamps use original springs that have proper numbers. Remember, when you go over a bump, your springs compress. Thats all the clamps do.
True well made lowering springs and or coilovers do a better job by far. But any time you lower a vehicles center of gravity it will improve the handling. Now if one snaps while conering, well that can be an experience in and of it self. Do what your comfortable with and dont be a know it all snob. You would probably shite your pants if you went back to the 50’s and 60’s and saw how they achived their modding. Primitive cavemen.
Glad I cam across this article before clicking the “buy it now” button on Amazon hahaha. I was literally that close. My only question is … why do they make and sell crappy products like this if they don’t operate and work well..?