Ridetech G-Body "Tru-Turn" & Coil Over Install

scot w.

GNSperformance.com
Feb 19, 2005
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We received Ride-Tech’s NEW G-Body Tru-Turn & Single adjustable coil over conversion kit today.

We are installing this on our 1986 Buick T-Type which will give us a great A / B test. The GNS test car already has aftermarket rear upper and lower arms, sways bars, but this car only had regular gas replacement shocks which under heavy breaking caused our car to “Nose dive/rear end hike” thus the reason for going adjustable coil over. So with all this done, we should get some driving impression testing right away and then we will bring it to 2013 RTTH Pro-touring event in September for some real world performance testing.

With Ride-tech’s G-body “Tru-Turn” The upper & lower A-arms have Delrin bushings and moved the lower shock mount outward (towards the wheel) to lower the front spring rate, dropped the lower shock mount for more shock travel. They also corrected the ball joint locations @ +5 caster, went with tall ball joints to improve camber gains, added caster slugs to the upper cross shafts. The outcome?
Bump steer numbers that are just incredible! For the G-Body, the total variance through 5" of suspension travel is right at .064"...(less than the thickness of a house key!) The proof is in the numbers!


We will also weigh the front A-arms so people have an accurate weight difference between the stock vs. Ridetech.

Let’s start this by showing you what the Ridetech “Tru-Turn” looks like when they are un-boxed. Nice heavy construction, nice powder coating! (I got antsy and installed the front ball joints and tie-rod ends into the adjusters before taking these pictures) They will come un-assembled.
RT Suspen 005.jpg


Note: The Ridetech G-body “Tru-Turn” was designed for the use of a stock style spindle.


Here is the passenger lower “Tru-Turn” A-arm. Notice the dropped shock mount for more shock travel, the Delrin bushings and the stock style sway bar mount.
RT Suspen 007.jpg




Lower control arm weight.
RT Suspen 010.jpg



Here is the passenger upper A-arm. Notice the caster slugs, they are in the correct place for (Center) with the holes offset to the outside, also notice the arrow on the cross shaft which helps eliminate installation on the wrong side. Note: The offset of each bushing is towards each outside edge of the cross shaft, this Must be like this in order for your cross shaft bolts to fit properly in there stock mounting location. Also the holes in the caster bushings may sometimes require slight modifications due to manufactures bolts varying slightly. One easy way around this is to replace those 4 cross shaft bolts with 7/16” Grade 8 bolts, nylock nuts & washers.
RT Suspen 018.jpg



Upper control arm weight. Note the Tall ball joint.
RT Suspen 013.jpg



Here is a close up of the Ridetech "Tru-Turn" Tie-rod adjusters & Tie-rods.
RT Suspen 009.jpg



Tie-Rod adjuster & tie-rod. = 1 lb. 4 oz.
RT Suspen 014.jpg



Here is the Drivers side installed. It may be tight between the cross shaft bolts and the steering shaft but mine was able to slide between the bolts and the shaft by making sure the flat spot on the shaft was facing towards the wheel. Torque the cross shaft nuts to 45 ft lbs. (or stock specs.) The upper ball joint to spindle nut torque to 65 ft lbs. (or stock specs.)
20130619_115928.jpg



Here the Drivers side lower is installed with the new Ridetech S/A coil over. The lowers are going to be a tight fit but that is how they’re supposed to be. I found the best way for these to go in, was to go in with the a-arm level and push it in to where you can get an alignment awl in the holes for easier fitment of the bolts. Wasn’t too bad after the first one. Torque the lower a-arm to frame mounting bolts/nuts to 65 ft lbs. (or stock specs.) Note: Make sure you do not over tighten these bolts! Torque the lower Ball joint to spindle nut to 90 ft lbs (or stock specs.)
20130619_123907.jpg


Here the spindle is bolted on and the sway bar end links are bolted onto the Ridetech lowers.
20130624_135843.jpg




.
 
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scot w.

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After your spindle is installed, it’s a good time to install the Ridetech Tie-rod adjusters with the supplied tie-rods, jam nuts.Tighten the top tie-rod first so the tie rod is held into the spindle, this allows you to tighten the lower lock nut without the whole thing spinning.
20130624_142639.jpg


Then we lowered the car onto some slide pads and got the toe as close as possible before taking it to the alignment shop.
20130624_141658.jpg

Also measured from the rear..
20130624_141634.jpg


Next it's off to the alignment shop. Below are Ridetech's recommended alignment spec's.

Camber: -.5 to -1.5 [within .3 from side to side]
Caster: 4 to 7 deg. Positive
Toe: 1/16” to 1/8” Toe in

(Feel free to experiment with alternative alignment settings that may be more appropriate for your driving style.)
 
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scot w.

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Feb 19, 2005
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Here is the install of the Ridetech single adjustable coil overs..

The included instructions for everything are very detailed with pictures and diagrams along with instructions on proper shock tuning procedure, Ridetech done a fantastic job!

The Ridetech coil over shocks come with a leading 1,000,000,1 warranty!

The swivel end at the top of the shock is pure genius and eliminates any side loading of the shock shaft as the arm goes through it's travel. For the rear the G-bodies, Ride-tech made a complete new lower shock mount which relocates the shock for better articulation.
Here is a video from Ridetech owner Brett Voelkel to cover more about their coil over shocks





Here are the Ridetech coil overs taken out of their main shipping box...Meticulously packaged!
Misc pictures 001.jpg


Here they are un-boxed and ready to be assembled.
Misc pictures 004.jpg


Here they are fully assembled and ready to be installed. Note: the trunion style mount on the bottom of the front shocks is for a stock installation, if you have or plan on going with Ridetech’s “Tru-Turn” a-arms they will come with aluminum thru-bolt bushings instead.
Misc pictures 007.jpg



Now let’s move onto the weight of these shocks. Here is the Front coil over. Note: The rates of the coil springs DO make a slight difference in weight! Here is the weight of a 900 lb spring. 7 lbs. 11.8 oz.
Misc pictures 011.jpg



Here is the weight of a 750 lb spring. (Both are 8” coil springs) - 7.11 VS 7.2 Not that it will make that much difference, I just wanted to post it for reference. 7 lbs. 2.6 oz.
RT Suspen 016.jpg



Here is the Rear coil over. 6 lbs 12.9 oz.
Misc pictures 013.jpg


** The rear mounting hardware and upper & lower mounting brackets weigh a total of 5 lbs. 8 oz.


Let’s begin with the install of the Ridetech rear coil overs. Once you have them all assembled it's good to turn the lower coil spring retainer (height adjustment nut) to put some pre-load on the springs, I like to measure the same distance from the bottom of that spring retainer to a fixed point on the shock and make them the same so you basically have the same to amount to adjust when your setting your ride height later. These were a very easy install that bolted right on and the ride height adjustments were very easy to get to with their spanner wrench.. Here is a view of the upper mounting bracket in place See the included instructions for proper fitment; on my car it only fit one way. There was also plenty of room between the coil spring and the ATR dual 3” exhaust.
RT Suspen 003.jpg




Here is the shock mounted to the lower bracket, which is also very easy to install. There is plenty of room to adjust the ride height of the car. Two grade 8 bolts hold the lower shock bracket to the rear axle, which is plenty strong to hold the force of the car. The pinch bolt on the spring retainer is great so the threads don't get screwed and it makes for seamless repeated adjustments!
RT Suspen 001.jpg



For right now I am still dialing the shocks in but I will report back with my preferred settings for Street, autocross and drag racing..
 

scot w.

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Feb 19, 2005
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You should have the front coil overs assembled now and the top adjuster knob (if yours is equipped with one) adjusted to full stiff (all the way clockwise). Now it's time to install them into the car.

First you will need to drill out the upper shock mounting hole in the frame to 3/4" for the lower Delrin ball sleeve to fit into. Get rid of any burrs or shavings...

1) Take the top adjustment knob off with a #9 Torx.

2) Remove the nylock nut and the TOP portion of the silver aluminum cap and the top Delrin ball. Leaving the Bottom portion of the Delrin ball and cap on the shock!

3) TEST FIT, Holding the bottom of the coil over simply slide the top of the shock up into the spring pocket and upper mounting hole, while holding it there now install the lower Delrin ball and the aluminum cap, screw on the nylock nut (may need a small wrench to hold back on the top shaft so it does not spin while tightening the nut). Tighten it pretty good but make sure the shock still swivels around in the Delrin ball and there is no bind OR that the shock is Not hitting the old spring keeper tabs up in that spring pocket! This is Very important because if the shock hit's those keeper tabs it could ruin or break the shock!

On my car I did not have any interference with the old spring keepers hitting my shock and I have recently drove the car several times and nothing is hitting!
Misc pictures 005.jpg


Once you determined that the shock fits okay without obstructions you can bolt it in at the top forst and get that tight to where the shock still swivels at the Delrin ball.

Then if you have the Ridetech lower a-arms you will install the aluminum bushings into the lower bolt hole of the shock (and if you have stock lower a-arm you will have already installed your trunnion mounts), then lift the lower a-arm up and bolt the shock in.

Lower Stock style Trunnion mount for a stock Buick lower a-arm
Misc pictures 008.jpg


Here is an image of the coil over installed before the spindle goes back in place. In this picture you will see the upper shock shaft coming through the frame and also how the lower shock is mounted to the Ridetech lower a-arm with their aluminum bushings.
with text.JPG


At this point you can install the spindle. I start at the bottom ball joint, install the nut, then pull the upper into place and install the nut on the upper ball joint than you can torque them both down and install the cotter pins.
Again here are the torque specs:
Upper ball joint to a-arm = 65 ft. lbs or stock specs.
Lower ball joint to a-arm = 90 ft. lbs. or stock specs.



Weight Comparison Chart: Ridetech vs Stock

Suspension Part ------------------------------------------ RideTech -------- Stock
* * Calculations are done by "Per Side"

Front UCA ---------------------------------------------------- 8 lbs. 14 oz. ------- 10 lbs.
Front LCA --------------------------------------------------- 15 lbs. 4 oz. ---------18 lbs.
Front Coil Over vs Stock Coil Spring & Shock-------- 7 lbs. 2 oz. ---------14 lbs. 12 oz.
Ridetech Tie-rod Adjusters w/ Tie-rods ----------------- 1 lb. 4 oz. ----------- 1 lb. 14 oz.

Rear Coil Over VS Stock Coil spring & shock -------- 6 lbs. 6.4 oz. ------- 9 lbs. 9 oz.




SHOCK TUNING & SETTINGS


Ridetech wants you to set each adjustment knob to the "full stiff" position which is the knob turned "clockwise" all the way in and then you can work counter clockwise out from there to your desired ride setting.

The front of the car will require a stiffer setting cause of the weight up front so the rear will have more clicks in due to less weight back there.


Below is a copy of the shock tuning guide supplied with each Ridetech adjustable coil over shock.
RT tuning guide.jpg

RT Tuning guide pt2.jpg


For right now my shock settings are at:
4 clicks out on the front
6 clicks out on the rear




Here it is with the new stance. I might lower it a tad bit more in the front... With the Ridetech coil overs I was able to lower the rear another 1/2" and raise the front 1/8" - 1/4" to level the car out better. The "ride quality" is much better, feels more "planted".... Before the coil overs with 2 people in the car, the rear tires would rub slightly hitting a large dip in the road, with these new coil overs it has eliminated that rubbing cause you can adjust the shocks stiffer.. Results are VERY nice!
Photo by TurboDave
DSC_0097.JPG
 
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qws2000

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Scott, is there a special order to put the kit in, as I would like to do the Sway bar first..... What to do you think......Talk to you later AL
 

scot w.

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Scott, is there a special order to put the kit in, as I would like to do the Sway bar first..... What to do you think......Talk to you later AL
Al,
You got the rear set up from us right? What I do here is I drop the old coil springs & shocks and remove the sway bar, then I replace the uppers first doing them one at a time and then I move onto the lowers and once those are on I move onto the sway bar and coil overs.
 
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qws2000

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Jan 12, 2012
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Scott got everything from you, and once this is finished I am ordering the ridetech for the front..... Im shocked you don't remember me!!!!!
 

DavidM

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Looks good Scot, looking forward to the ride comparison and details/measurements on ride height adjustment.
 

Rafs-T-Type

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Here is the passenger upper A-arm. Notice the caster slugs, they are in the correct place for (Center) with the holes offset to the outside, also notice the arrow on the cross shaft which helps eliminate installation on the wrong side. Note: The offset of each bushing is towards each outside edge of the cross shaft, this Must be like this in order for your cross shaft bolts to fit properly in there stock mounting location. Also the holes in the caster bushings may sometimes require slight modifications due to manufactures bolts varying slightly. One easy way around this is to replace those 4 cross shaft bolts with 7/16” Grade 8 bolts, nylock nuts & washers.
View attachment 193297


Upper control arm weight. Note the Tall ball joint.
View attachment 193298


.


Which way is the arrow supposed to point? Front or rear? Also why is the arrow point to the right in the first picture, and then again pointing to the right when it is up-side-down?
 

scot w.

GNSperformance.com
Feb 19, 2005
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What spring rates were used F&R and how is the ride?
750 front & 200 rear but you really can't go by that because Ridetech moved the lower shock mounts outward towards the tire so they could use a lower spring rate in front. So that spring rate will more likely be too less on a car using stock a-arms! 900 lb front coil over spring is what they use for a regular stock a-arm. 200-250 should work fine in the rear....

The ride is Great! but I have adjustable coil overs so I can adjust the ride quality.
 

ttypewhite

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Great write up Scot, thanks for the info. I have a question for you regarding the rear coil over installation. When talking to Mike @Trz, I was inquiring about the Acfo BNC stock replacement coil over, and he informed me that when replacing a factory style shock with a direct replacement coil over that I should take it to a chassis builder and reenforce the upper perches. Reason being is because he said he guarantees it would rip out under load due to the new spring location. What is your experience with this?
 

scot w.

GNSperformance.com
Feb 19, 2005
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Great write up Scot, thanks for the info. I have a question for you regarding the rear coil over installation. When talking to Mike @Trz, I was inquiring about the Acfo BNC stock replacement coil over, and he informed me that when replacing a factory style shock with a direct replacement coil over that I should take it to a chassis builder and reenforce the upper perches. Reason being is because he said he guarantees it would rip out under load due to the new spring location. What is your experience with this?
Thanks Mike,

BTW: Your cars "new look" is looking fantastic!

So far DSE & Ridetech have had no problems at all using the factory upper mounting holes and I have never heard of them ripping out under load, nor have I ever had any customer that had that happen so judging from past experience with it, I think they are just fine!

Ridetech & DSE make their own new upper coil over bracket but still use the factory mounting holes with grade 8 bolts....To me it would have to literally "Rip" the frame steel in order for it to be Ripped out under load! I personally, along with many friends thrash our cars at autocross events and speed/stop challenges with all of them running coil overs mounted to the factory location and never a single issue.. I have begun some testing with my car and in Sept is a large pro-touring event that I am competing in, we'll see how it does there!
 
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