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Street Touring Hatchback (STH) discussion/setup

DerHase

Autocross Champion
Location
Hampton Roads, VA
Car(s)
2019 GTI Rabbit
I've run Redshift (BC style) coilovers on a 2200lb Mazda2 and never had issues with clanking noises. With 12k front and rear springs with 0.97:1 M/R front and 0.96 M/R rear. (I ran with no sway bars and had no LSD and this worked best).

Where are your bump stops at ride height? What kind of bump stops? I replaced the stupid hard stock ones with some soft, progressive Ground Control bump stops. Makes a massive difference.

Preload will not do anything with noises. Real motorsport ($10k+ Penskes) do not have preload.

This is probably the best video to visually show the effects of preload. All it does is trade bump travel and droop travel in relation to the shock shaft. With really soft spring rates you do need to have preload, because if not the shock will be almost fully compressed at ride height leaving no bump travel.

I set up "fully threaded" coilovers like in the video... adjust the body height with the spring removed so that the bump stop limits wheel travel right before something interferes, then use the upper collar to set ride height with the spring. Preload be damned. With high rates, chances are the springs will be loose when jacked up. You'll never unseat them while driving because the sway bar will keep the inner spring retained. With lower rates, you may need a bunch of preload to get a reasonable ride height. If it requires a ton of preload (like 5mm+) then your springs are either too soft for your setup, or your shock body just doesn't have enough travel.



I understand this basically flies in the face of what most people say to do... but I challenge anyone to explain why you want a shock body that has unused shaft travel (body extended to get a reasonable not-too-low ride height), or a shock body that is shorter and may risk cutting a tire on the chassis or whatever else may be hitting.

edit: You can see how I set my shock body length on my Mazda2 here... Used a floor jack under the LCA, no springs installed, with a 15x9 and 225/40R15 tire to fit into that tiny car's fenders. I ran actual ride height about 2.5in higher than pictured IIRC.

 

Roald

Go Kart Champion
Location
Ohio
Car(s)
GTI mk 7 2017
I'm really surprised at your situation.

The issue could be related to the top bearing. Was it easy to articulate/move by hand before instillation?

If so, the bearing could just have loose tolerances.
I can't tell for sure, but the plates are the one thing so far that hasn't changed. My guess is that it is the bearing. With such soft rates.. what else is there right? It sounds like solid metal to metal contact. - I'm also fighting myself here because I 100% screwed up my last attempt at this install...I made a thread. It's dumb. I'm dumb. I was tired and dumb...☠️
I've tried with the front sway connected and disconnected and I get the same noise.


It is super easy to move around. Almost zero resistance. When you uncouple it so that it's just the top mount connected and not the knuckle or control arm or steering link connected the thing just swings and always falls back to plumb.
 

Roald

Go Kart Champion
Location
Ohio
Car(s)
GTI mk 7 2017
I've run Redshift (BC style) coilovers on a 2200lb Mazda2 and never had issues with clanking noises. With 12k front and rear springs with 0.97:1 M/R front and 0.96 M/R rear. (I ran with no sway bars and had no LSD and this worked best).

Where are your bump stops at ride height? What kind of bump stops? I replaced the stupid hard stock ones with some soft, progressive Ground Control bump stops. Makes a massive difference.
This is the part that keeps getting me.
I'm getting these delivered to me in a way that one of the guys at redshift has them on his own MK7. And I can't tell if he's having the same noise/sound or not. I've asked and the reply was something like "most strut based cars are kind of annoying/loud with this style of pillowball..."
Then folks say stuff like "I've had this with zero noise or issues". I don't understand. I followed all the process and videos and instructions.

Were you getting any noise at all? I understand that a ride will be more or less comfortable depending on springs, but here I have practically stock like springs and am still having noise issues. The overall ride is fine, but bumps and imperfections in the road cause a definite slam. It 100% sounds like hitting a huge pothole at highway speeds, where you assume Something has to be broken.

I'll have to check the bump stops. I can't likely tell you what kind they are, but maybe I can get a pic.

The biggest hurdle I'm facing currently is that this is my DD. So I'm having to pull shit apart every time and it's time consuming. I'm going to try pulling it apart this afternoon and get as many photos and videos as possible and see what I can post. There HAS to be something.
 

DerHase

Autocross Champion
Location
Hampton Roads, VA
Car(s)
2019 GTI Rabbit
This is the part that keeps getting me.
I'm getting these delivered to me in a way that one of the guys at redshift has them on his own MK7. And I can't tell if he's having the same noise/sound or not. I've asked and the reply was something like "most strut based cars are kind of annoying/loud with this style of pillowball..."
Then folks say stuff like "I've had this with zero noise or issues". I don't understand. I followed all the process and videos and instructions.

Were you getting any noise at all? I understand that a ride will be more or less comfortable depending on springs, but here I have practically stock like springs and am still having noise issues. The overall ride is fine, but bumps and imperfections in the road cause a definite slam. It 100% sounds like hitting a huge pothole at highway speeds, where you assume Something has to be broken.

I'll have to check the bump stops. I can't likely tell you what kind they are, but maybe I can get a pic.

The biggest hurdle I'm facing currently is that this is my DD. So I'm having to pull shit apart every time and it's time consuming. I'm going to try pulling it apart this afternoon and get as many photos and videos as possible and see what I can post. There HAS to be something.

My BC top hats were very stiff. They loosened up a TINY bit over the course of a bunch of miles, but they were never what I'd call floppy/loose. It might well be your camber plates with loose tolerances.

I've built my own coilovers and top hats before as well and used NHBB sphericals. Those things are amazing. I put something like 40k miles on them and they were just as tight as when I built them. They're still on some other guy's track Mazda2 out in California. If the camber plates take a standard size bearing, that might be an option. These were recommended to me by a lot of SCCA racers and a few guys who build custom bearing adapters for OEM control arms etc.
 

Roald

Go Kart Champion
Location
Ohio
Car(s)
GTI mk 7 2017
In addition to the thread linked above that i've updated with literally every photo and video I can think of...
I've done what you said about removing the spring, checking bump stop engagement and interference.
What stood out to me was interference. Though I would have expected to see rub marks somewhere already. And indeed there is zero interfence.
Video description....

https://youtube.com/shorts/3BUxwd2eFJM?feature=share


What is this noise? And you can feel it. Its extremely harsh.
It has to be the plates right? Is this a normal camber plate thing?
 
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00Zero

Go Kart Newbie
Location
Pittsburgh, Pa
Andrea from HP academe had an article /or podcast it may have been the newest one with the kw engineer) where he mentioned the factory adjustment procedure for BC and others being wrong. (idk what redshift says)

You need to set the preload so you have the balance of bump and droop you want at static load then set the ride height at the bottom of the shock.

If you always set 5mm of preload then set your height at the bottom of the shock then the length of travel to the bumpstop will change as you change the spring rates. So the harsh ride could be riding the bumpstop or in @Roald case maybe the end of the droop travel .
 

bfury5

Autocross Champion
Location
CT
Andrea from HP academe had an article /or podcast it may have been the newest one with the kw engineer) where he mentioned the factory adjustment procedure for BC and others being wrong. (idk what redshift says)

You need to set the preload so you have the balance of bump and droop you want at static load then set the ride height at the bottom of the shock.

If you always set 5mm of preload then set your height at the bottom of the shock then the length of travel to the bumpstop will change as you change the spring rates. So the harsh ride could be riding the bumpstop or in @Roald case maybe the end of the droop travel .
It's worth mentioning as well that the *correct* way usually also involves helper springs and/or low rate springs to manage the split between bump and droop, without needing to reduce the primary spring rate. With only a single linear spring, your springrate and corner weight will be the only two factors that influence bump and droop.

The compromise with a lot of these kits is you trade overall suspension travel for ease of ride height adjustment, and most only include a single linear sprig. Sort of a "that's the way the cookie crumbles" type of thing.
 
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mkvii.717

Ready to race!
Location
Harrisburg PA
Car(s)
2020 GLI Autobahn
Hey, I just wanted to thank all the crew in this thread. I started Autox and STH last year and spent all winter reading these threads and harassing members had my first event last weekend and took home a class win. It may have not been the deepest competition but felt good to be on the right track and appreciate y'all.

Youtube Fastest run (no sound)
 

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xXDavidCXx

Autocross Champion
Location
AZ
Car(s)
2017 GTI SE DSG
Hey, I just wanted to thank all the crew in this thread. I started Autox and STH last year and spent all winter reading these threads and harassing members had my first event last weekend and took home a class win. It may have not been the deepest competition but felt good to be on the right track and appreciate y'all.

Youtube Fastest run (no sound)
Glad I could help!
 

Roald

Go Kart Champion
Location
Ohio
Car(s)
GTI mk 7 2017
Sorry for the lack of updates. Wife and I were on vacation for two weeks. Honestly it was nice to get away from this mess for a bit.

First event is this weekend. I'm going into my first STH attempt with just a tune, IC, fsb, rsb and objectively not great 200tw tires in 615k+. 🤡

At this point I'm just happy to get out and go race.

Redshift is sending out new lower bearing plates for the camber plates and new lower spring seats.
Not entirely sure when I'll see those parts or install again.
 

xXDavidCXx

Autocross Champion
Location
AZ
Car(s)
2017 GTI SE DSG
Sorry for the lack of updates. Wife and I were on vacation for two weeks. Honestly it was nice to get away from this mess for a bit.

First event is this weekend. I'm going into my first STH attempt with just a tune, IC, fsb, rsb and objectively not great 200tw tires in 615k+. 🤡

At this point I'm just happy to get out and go race.

Redshift is sending out new lower bearing plates for the camber plates and new lower spring seats.
Not entirely sure when I'll see those parts or install again.
Progress at least.
 

mkvii.717

Ready to race!
Location
Harrisburg PA
Car(s)
2020 GLI Autobahn
Sorry for the lack of updates. Wife and I were on vacation for two weeks. Honestly it was nice to get away from this mess for a bit.

First event is this weekend. I'm going into my first STH attempt with just a tune, IC, fsb, rsb and objectively not great 200tw tires in 615k+. 🤡

At this point I'm just happy to get out and go race.

Redshift is sending out new lower bearing plates for the camber plates and new lower spring seats.
Not entirely sure when I'll see those parts or install again.
Just have fun my first 3 STH events I had all season tires, CAI, rsb, and springs
 
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