EP3/DC5 Suspension Tuning Basics/FAQ's (As told by Mustclime) - Page 2 - Honda-Tech


EP3/DC5 Suspension Tuning Basics/FAQ's (As told by Mustclime)

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Old 11-10-2009, 08:52 PM   #26
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Default Re: ep3/dc5 suspension tuning basics

I just bought my 04 type S and it is also my DD. I live in iowa and see some mean winters, i think im going to go with a set of s drives for new tires on the factory rims. I would like to do some suspension work but the budget is tight. Are there other options to the koni yellows on factory struts that might be more budget friendly. any help would be great and im a new member, so this is kinda a first for doin this. lol poppin my cherry
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Old 11-12-2009, 05:03 AM   #27
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Default Re: ep3/dc5 suspension tuning basics

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I just bought my 04 type S and it is also my DD. I live in iowa and see some mean winters, i think im going to go with a set of s drives for new tires on the factory rims. I would like to do some suspension work but the budget is tight. Are there other options to the koni yellows on factory struts that might be more budget friendly. any help would be great and im a new member, so this is kinda a first for doin this. lol poppin my cherry
koni's = around $750 f&r
a-spec kit = $650 f&r

If these are out of the budget.....just get some front koni's for like 350 and do the rears when you can swing them.....btw....the s-drives are going to suck in the snow bigtime! I am a Big fan of using winter tires in the winter and summer tires in the summer.
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Old 11-22-2009, 11:15 PM   #28
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Default Re: ep3/dc5 suspension tuning basics

I'm glad I stumbled upon this thread. Looking at the diagrams I think I now see the advantage of the "roll center adjusters". They are spendy though so maybe down the road. I would like to improve my car for auto-cross over the winter. This is also my ski car so handling is an "all-year" benefit. I have all stock bushings except for poly swaybar frame bushings. I'm lowered 1.5" in front and rear on fairly "stiff" springs with "good" stock struts. Also picked up a 19mm rear bar. From what I gather, I should replace the front compliance bush with enrg.susp. Now for the rear the lower front C.A. bushing should also be replaced? Another concern. I'm running 2 camber bolts on each side up front. Approx. -2.5 to -3 degrees each side. I've been meaning to change one bolt out of each side for winter, but haven't done so yet and see no wear problem on my winter tires (yet). Rear camber is stock & I don't see any reason to change that even for racing. Anyway, your input would be greatly appreciated as a guidline for incremental improvements on a tiny budget.
Sorry for the rambling...
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Old 11-24-2009, 06:24 AM   #29
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Default Re: ep3/dc5 suspension tuning basics

autox cars should be biult to the rules of the class you want to run. If you want to be compative, your best bet is to run in the stock class but you are out of there with the springs,bushings and sways. My advice is to get a rule book for the club you are going to race with and pick your class. Once you do that, you have your mod path layed out for you.

All that being said.....If you want my advice on making the car handle? Get the car back up to stock ride hight....good suspension angles > a lower center of gravaty imo. Decide on your buget, then we can work out where you want to go from there.
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Old 11-25-2009, 01:02 AM   #30
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Default Re: ep3/dc5 suspension tuning basics

Thanks mustclimb. Appreciate your input. FYI -ran in ST this last season. Partially by mistake (having sri intake) but now plan on staying in that class. Thought about going back to stock but I did very well and like not needing R compounds to be competitive. I have raised my car up a little after playing around w/ Nuesp race springs. I'm a little higher and stiffer than I was and like the ride/performance and am too vain to go back to stock height. Beside springs I found a 19mm rear bar that helps a lot. Neg. camber on front only and decent Azzenis/ Brdg. 050's. I really have no budget and am picking up parts as I go. I now have a Megan shorty header and OBX (WS2 copy) muffler - both were almost free. I still have yet to get a professional alignment but it's pretty close with driveway measurements. I kept the front toe at zero all summer - never got around to dialing in a little toe out. Now looking at bushings. Which ones would have the greatest improvement? Hoping Santa gets me a full E.S. set, but will most likely get them a few at a time. Anyway, I appreciate the diagrams in this thread - excellent visualization. Makes a little more sense now and hope to learn more!
P.S. read mustclimb's auto-x setup thread after posting this. Don't bash me for asking stupid questions I should have read beforehand!

Last edited by Cheep3; 11-25-2009 at 01:57 AM.
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Old 11-29-2009, 01:30 PM   #31
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Default Re: ep3/dc5 suspension tuning basics

man i just pickked up 215 55 16 for my junky rota slips and on h&r racing springs with stock struts. im getting buddy club coil overs, but can decide that or megan racing. any thoughts?
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Old 11-30-2009, 05:45 AM   #32
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Default Re: ep3/dc5 suspension tuning basics

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man i just pickked up 215 55 16 for my junky rota slips and on h&r racing springs with stock struts. im getting buddy club coil overs, but can decide that or megan racing. any thoughts?
Is there a question? If its Megan or Buddy Club....sorry, no contest, buddyclub is a much better product imo.
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Old 11-30-2009, 03:32 PM   #33
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Is there a question? If its Megan or Buddy Club....sorry, no contest, buddyclub is a much better product imo.
i though so so i had alot of people tell me that either one or the other one was better but i want the best
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Old 12-01-2009, 05:20 AM   #34
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i though so so i had alot of people tell me that either one or the other one was better but i want the best
best for what? Track days or ridding ricer low making sparks over speed bumps?
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Old 12-01-2009, 04:15 PM   #35
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best for what? Track days or ridding ricer low making sparks over speed bumps?
track. im getting another car for a beater
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Old 12-02-2009, 05:07 AM   #36
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Default Re: ep3/dc5 suspension tuning basics

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track. im getting another car for a beater
Ok....some basics.....the grip of your tires set your spring rates, your spring rates set your damper because your dampers job is to control the spring rebound. Sways are just for fine tuning....If you are looking for a off the shelf coilover set that is going to make you dc5/ep3 into a track killer....sorry, noone makes one because a car that is fast on the track is tail happy. Tail happy cars have a bad habbit of skidding off the road backwards in the hands of a rookie or ricer on the street and that = law suits....
That being said, pretty much any "off-the-shelf" coilover set you are going to get will be under spring in the rear so you have a understeer set up. You can offset this a little by using wider tires( more grip) in the front and a larger sway in the rear....Since you have not told me what size and type of tires you are going to run, I have no way of working out your spring rates....you have also not told my the total weight of the car with yourself in the car and wether you will be running with a codriver....( track days beginers need instructors in the car).
One other bit of info for you.....back in the 60's, you could buy a off the showroom floor sports car and show up to a race and compete, then drive the car home. Now days this is prettymuch impossable....do you know why? Its the tires....back in the 60's, tires had no grip so car makers could ruin low rate springs and even with these soft springs the cars just drifted through every turn on the hard no grip tires. Now days, tires have huge amounts of grip, so to keep the car from flopping over on its bumpstops in a turn, you have to run huge spring rates to keep the car flat in the turn. The more the grip, the stiffer the springs needed. Ok, say you set up your car for some 275mm wide race slicks at the track, you then pull off the slicks and mount some street tires on the car and drive it home from the track....well your springs are going to be about twice has stiff as they should be for your street tires so you are goinng to be sideways/ snow plowing at any speed

All that being said If you are going to be running grippy street tires, think about the buddyclub rsd or the tien MONO flex......do not get the tien flex, they are crap like all the cheap tien kits.....the mono flex is a good set thought and so are the other high end tiens.....Another option is a custom tuned set of koni's and some custom ground control springs and sleeves....morton and penski are also up there is you have the bucks.

hope that helps some.
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Old 12-02-2009, 03:31 PM   #37
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Ok....some basics.....the grip of your tires set your spring rates, your spring rates set your damper because your dampers job is to control the spring rebound. Sways are just for fine tuning....If you are looking for a off the shelf coilover set that is going to make you dc5/ep3 into a track killer....sorry, noone makes one because a car that is fast on the track is tail happy. Tail happy cars have a bad habbit of skidding off the road backwards in the hands of a rookie or ricer on the street and that = law suits....
That being said, pretty much any "off-the-shelf" coilover set you are going to get will be under spring in the rear so you have a understeer set up. You can offset this a little by using wider tires( more grip) in the front and a larger sway in the rear....Since you have not told me what size and type of tires you are going to run, I have no way of working out your spring rates....you have also not told my the total weight of the car with yourself in the car and wether you will be running with a codriver....( track days beginers need instructors in the car).
One other bit of info for you.....back in the 60's, you could buy a off the showroom floor sports car and show up to a race and compete, then drive the car home. Now days this is prettymuch impossable....do you know why? Its the tires....back in the 60's, tires had no grip so car makers could ruin low rate springs and even with these soft springs the cars just drifted through every turn on the hard no grip tires. Now days, tires have huge amounts of grip, so to keep the car from flopping over on its bumpstops in a turn, you have to run huge spring rates to keep the car flat in the turn. The more the grip, the stiffer the springs needed. Ok, say you set up your car for some 275mm wide race slicks at the track, you then pull off the slicks and mount some street tires on the car and drive it home from the track....well your springs are going to be about twice has stiff as they should be for your street tires so you are goinng to be sideways/ snow plowing at any speed

All that being said If you are going to be running grippy street tires, think about the buddyclub rsd or the tien MONO flex......do not get the tien flex, they are crap like all the cheap tien kits.....the mono flex is a good set thought and so are the other high end tiens.....Another option is a custom tuned set of koni's and some custom ground control springs and sleeves....morton and penski are also up there is you have the bucks.

hope that helps some.
thanks man just gain some knowledge. and as for tires i got 16 inch rota slips with a 40 offset and 225 50 16 kumo tires for now. and as my weight i dont know. i have my rear gutted beside the battery so far. no spare wheel or rear seats. panels are still in. under the hood no battery just a cai. a megen 2.5 midpipe with stock axle back.
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Old 12-03-2009, 05:28 AM   #38
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Default Re: ep3/dc5 suspension tuning basics

kumo makes all kinds of tires...the XS's are great, the neo's suck butt....Are you going to be driving the car to the track or is it going to be on a trailor....is the car going to see any street use? What car is it, ep3 or dc5? btw, with the rear gut and no spare tire, you are looking at around 130-140lb weight reduction from around 2800lbs + the driver.
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Old 12-03-2009, 04:49 PM   #39
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Default Re: ep3/dc5 suspension tuning basics

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kumo makes all kinds of tires...the XS's are great, the neo's suck butt....Are you going to be driving the car to the track or is it going to be on a trailor....is the car going to see any street use? What car is it, ep3 or dc5? btw, with the rear gut and no spare tire, you are looking at around 130-140lb weight reduction from around 2800lbs + the driver.
street use and track, its a ep3
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Old 12-03-2009, 09:25 PM   #40
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Default Re: ep3/dc5 suspension tuning basics

what is the best set up for a dc5-s as DD and Autocross ?
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Old 12-04-2009, 05:08 AM   #41
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street use and track, its a ep3
so Ok, without flares, you are pretty much limited to 225mm rear tires and not much more than that in the front. Your best bet may be the buddy club rsd if you do not mine a beating....go with the progress if you are going to give your mom a ride and do not want to brake her hips on a bumpy road....with the ep3, your real issue is going to be brakes...the stock ones can be run but you will need some racing pads and to loose the spash gaurds in the front....your rotors will only last a couple track days though....you are going to need to look into a bbk, thats what I did.





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what is the best set up for a dc5-s as DD and Autocross ?
for autoX, you biuld to class.....stock is always best( cheapest)....the typs-s is in gs, that means you will be racing the minicooper-s and they have a 200lb advantage and room for tires that are around the same size as yours. They also have way more castor than you will ever have.
For the stock class in a type-s, I would look at a set of koni's, some crash bolts from acura for some front negative camber( a preformance alinment, lighter wheels with the same size and offset as stock, some stickie tires that are as wide as you can go for on the rim and then work on the loose nut behind the wheel......
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Old 12-04-2009, 03:12 PM   #42
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Default Re: ep3/dc5 suspension tuning basics

ok as of right now i only have hawk pads and honda rotors. i was thinking of progress aswell but for street it will hurt over bumps right? my clutch is out now so im pulling the trans out and motor for the 6spd and a2 swap hope to be done by march.
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Old 12-05-2009, 12:54 PM   #43
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ok as of right now i only have hawk pads and honda rotors. i was thinking of progress aswell but for street it will hurt over bumps right? my clutch is out now so im pulling the trans out and motor for the 6spd and a2 swap hope to be done by march.
Yea, hawk pad (hp or hp plus) are not going to cut it for a track day session....you can try it, god be with you....progress will be fine for dd....stiff but fine....
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Old 12-05-2009, 01:27 PM   #44
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Yea, hawk pad (hp or hp plus) are not going to cut it for a track day session....you can try it, god be with you....progress will be fine for dd....stiff but fine....
thanks for the tip.
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Old 12-05-2009, 03:43 PM   #45
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Default Re: ep3/dc5 suspension tuning basics

dam u should hella start ur own suspension company.
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Old 12-06-2009, 09:23 AM   #46
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dam u should hella start ur own suspension company.

who,me?....I understand a lot about suspension setup but by no means am I a suspension engeere. I've just been messing around with cars longe than a lot of the people on this board have been alive. Setting up suspensions can be a "black art". There is always give and take. "Tuners" these days like to just buy parts and through them at a car and hope they work well. The problem is The parts makers know this.....take tien as a example, they sell the basic and superstreet to the kids that are just going to through parts at a car with no idea what they are doing...they are just buying a name....Don't get me wrong, Tien does sell some nice kits, that how they got their rep. The problem is they start getting good at the mono flex and HF kits...think like $2800 and up bucks.

Thats all I am trying to do here, get tuners to understand there is more to making a car handle dropping it to the ground and hanging some discount parts on their cars.
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Old 12-06-2009, 07:37 PM   #47
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who,me?....I understand a lot about suspension setup but by no means am I a suspension engeere. I've just been messing around with cars longe than a lot of the people on this board have been alive. Setting up suspensions can be a "black art". There is always give and take. "Tuners" these days like to just buy parts and through them at a car and hope they work well. The problem is The parts makers know this.....take tien as a example, they sell the basic and superstreet to the kids that are just going to through parts at a car with no idea what they are doing...they are just buying a name....Don't get me wrong, Tien does sell some nice kits, that how they got their rep. The problem is they start getting good at the mono flex and HF kits...think like $2800 and up bucks.

Thats all I am trying to do here, get tuners to understand there is more to making a car handle dropping it to the ground and hanging some discount parts on their cars.
i think we should name u a suspension OG lol i been trying to understand suspension and you put it in a hella good way that i can understand like sway bar. never really new the function of that how bout strut bars and so fourth ? mind explaining those ?
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Old 12-07-2009, 06:15 AM   #48
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i think we should name u a suspension OG lol i been trying to understand suspension and you put it in a hella good way that i can understand like sway bar. never really new the function of that how bout strut bars and so fourth ? mind explaining those ?
RULE ONE: SUSPENSION IS ALWAYS ABOUT GIVE AND TAKE.

EXAMPLE: Swaybars, also known as anti-roll bars....Have ever thought about how they REALLY work? First off, for the total n00bs what is a sway bar(sb)? A sb is a "U" shaped peace of metal that attaches the drivers side of the suspension to the body,then goes across the car to the attach to the body again and then to the passenger side suspension. This metal can be solid wire, hollow tubing or a multi part thingie that is "U" shapped. A lot of people like to think of them as spring helpers. Why would they think about them like this? Well what does springs do? Simple, they hold the car off the suspension bumpstops. A lot of people buy a car, throw it into a turn and the car leans over and feels like its going to fall over.....Soooo they buy a sb or 2, hang them on the car and go into the same turn and the car stays flat! WOW! what a cool thing they think...BUT! remember rule one.....How is the car staying flat In a turn? To understand this think about it like this, what happens as the car goes into a long right turn.

1) The driver turns the wheel, the tires bite and the cars starts turning right.
2) The mass of the car still wants to go strait, so the load shifts to the outside suspension, the springs not being a high enough rate to hold up the car start to compress, the car starts to lean to the left....

Ok, this is the important part....
3) as the car's body starts lean, the lca moves upward with the compression of the spring, the left side(out side wheel) of the sway bar that is attached to the lca is pushed up.....now, what does the sway bar do to the right/ inside lca?.......It pulls it up!!!!!........think about that for a second. If race cars use down force to increase grip( pushing tires into the ground), how is lifting the inside wheel( up force) transfering grip???????????????????????????????????

All you are doing is reduceing grip on the inside tire for the sake of keeping the car flat in a turn...why would anyone want to reduce grip of a car that is being autoXed? Car makers use sways to offset the soft springs and under damped shocks in their cars. To many "racers"( me included until a while ago) go on the mind set that if car makers put a swaybar on the car, We must make it bigger with a race car...WRONG!!! You want stiffer springs to hold up the car in a turn and as little sway bar as possible.

Strut bars/braces: What they are....they are used to brace or stiffen unibody car to keep all the suspension mounting points where they are supose to be.....do you need them?....well, if you are on allseason tires that are suspose to last 60,000 miles....no, you do not need them, your tires do not have enought grip to load the unibody so save our money. If on the other hand you have ultra grippie tires and a fully tuned suspension then they may improve your cars handling....braces should pretty much be the last thing you add to the car after you have gone to stiffer suspension bushings. Bracing a unibody with stock soft bushing is just dumb.
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Old 12-08-2009, 01:03 PM   #49
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Default Re: - Official DC5/EP3 Suspension FAQ/Information Thread -

Merged with Mustclime's thread as to keep the number of stickies down. Keep the questions comin'!

Last edited by josh's ep3; 12-08-2009 at 01:12 PM.
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Old 12-08-2009, 01:18 PM   #50
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Default Re: EP3/DC5 Suspension Tuning Basics (As told by Mustclime)

ok with the coil over question in hand. will i want my car at even height or front lower then the rear or whats up,?
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