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Old 07-23-2008, 09:50 PM   #1
Spitfire80
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Default Rear leaf spring / 1980 vette....

Gents
1980 vette.

At this time, I have a standard rear metal leaf spring. I also observed flattened spring link bushings. I think they've had it

Urathane or rubber replacements ?

Now I'm looking for the monospring kit etc...
Not too familiar

Looking at few springs on the market I've noticed they are available for 300lb-330lb-360lb up to 420lb....
What's with the lbs ? Stiffer ride ? Smooth at 300lb and stiff like hell at 420lb ? can anyone explain this ?
What should I go for regarding the lbs ?

Anyone can provide me with info on recommended good rear susp kits for my 1980 vette ?

Suggestion please

Phil

Last edited by Spitfire80; 07-23-2008 at 09:53 PM.
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Old 07-23-2008, 10:30 PM   #2
AimHigh
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Your '80 came with a higher rate spring so I would think at least 340 rate.

A composite spring will improve your ride and handling....you won't regret the purchase.

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Old 07-24-2008, 07:58 AM   #3
The Money Pit
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I've been running the VB&P 360 lb spring for about 12 years, and like it. I also changed the front coils to the 550 lb and replaced the rear sway bar with a 3/4" bar. I like the flat out cornering, but have to admit the ride is stiff on rough roads. More of a sports car type ride,which is what you'd expect.

Click the image to open in full size.

I drive the Lincoln more than I'd like,and that rides like it's floating on a cloud.
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Old 07-24-2008, 09:08 AM   #4
jb78L-82
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Phil7755 View Post
Gents
1980 vette.

At this time, I have a standard rear metal leaf spring. I also observed flattened spring link bushings. I think they've had it

Urathane or rubber replacements ?

Now I'm looking for the monospring kit etc...
Not too familiar

Looking at few springs on the market I've noticed they are available for 300lb-330lb-360lb up to 420lb....
What's with the lbs ? Stiffer ride ? Smooth at 300lb and stiff like hell at 420lb ? can anyone explain this ?
What should I go for regarding the lbs ?

Anyone can provide me with info on recommended good rear susp kits for my 1980 vette ?

Suggestion please

Phil
I have a 78 L-82 4spd that originally game with the sport suspension. First thing you should determine is if you have the F-41, gymkhana suspenison. I believe, if my memory is correct, that the base suspended corvettes had a composite spring from the factory, the first year it was used. The F-41 cars still had the 7 leaf steel spring. Also, the base suspended cars do not have a rear bar only the F-41 cars. With that said, my 78 has new 550lb front replacement springs versus the 460 lb front springs on the base cars. I also have the stock 1 1/8 in front sway bar with poly mounting bushings and poly end link bushings. For the past 25 years, I have had the original delco shocks, koni oil shocks, KYB Gas-A-adjust shocks, and the last few years and currently on the car, Bilstein Heavy duty shocks in the front, which are far superior to anything else I have had. Note that Bilstein offers two shocks for C3 vettes, Heavy duty and Sport (30% stiffer than H.D.).

In the rear, for the last 23 years I have had a 360 lb fiberglass spring replacing my 7 leaf steel spring. The composite spring is far superior to the steel in terms of ride and responsiveness plus it will not sag like steel. If you have a 7 leaf steel spring I would not go less than 330lb rear spring to match the 550lb front springs. It is critical that you buy the correct shock to go with the composite rear spring. I have had KYB Gas-A-adjusts (2 sets since I thought it was too bouncy with the first, changed under warranty), Bilstein HD's (great ride but still too bouncy, for my taste) and recently switched to Bilstein sports in the rear only which are terrific riding and handling, the perfect shock for the 360lb spring. Incidentally, anyone interested in 2 Bilstein HD's with less than 1,000 miles on them for $80 plus shipping?

Finally, I run a 3/4 in rear OEM style bar with poly mounts, poly cushions on the rear spring, and poly strut rod bushings. In the front I also have poly upper and lower control arm bushings. The car certainly handles much better than any stock C3, hands down! with 255/60/15 tires. I tried to give you the whole deal for a better understanding of improving the suspension. Ask if you need more info.

Generally speaking the glass springs offer a much superior ride and handling to their steel counterparts. A 360lb glass spring will ride much better and handle better than a 360lb steel spring. You need to be careful about comparing apples to apples since it is not really the case due to the different characteristics of steel versus composite materials. IMHO, if you have a 300 or less base steel spring, going to a 330lb composite would control suspension movement better and ride better than steel. I could not believe that different riide characteristics of my original F-41 7 leaf steel spring and the 360lb composite replacement rear spring.

Last edited by jb78L-82; 07-24-2008 at 09:18 AM.
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Old 07-24-2008, 02:28 PM   #5
Spitfire80
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Default Tks JB !

Good stuff JB !

Is there a way to confirm the make and model of my rear leaf spring.
The vette was recently purchased and its my 1st summer.

Didn't know I had to change the shocks

Is there a kit/package for the rear suspension on the market ?
If so, can anyone point it out for me ?
Buying a kit is cheaper than buying seperatly ?

Phil
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Old 07-24-2008, 02:41 PM   #6
Spitfire80
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Default Is this a good package ?

Need input on that one.....

CORVETTE CENTRAL has a Suspension Upgrade Kit for $439
C3 catalog P.163

It includes a Fiberglass rear spring with DELCO front & rear gas shocks.


Are DELCO shocks a good brand ?
Doesn't seem to have a "make" brand on the fiberglass spring. Should I be looking for a better quality brand ?

Phil
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Old 07-24-2008, 04:16 PM   #7
jb78L-82
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Phil7755 View Post
Need input on that one.....

CORVETTE CENTRAL has a Suspension Upgrade Kit for $439
C3 catalog P.163

It includes a Fiberglass rear spring with DELCO front & rear gas shocks.


Are DELCO shocks a good brand ?
Doesn't seem to have a "make" brand on the fiberglass spring. Should I be looking for a better quality brand ?

Phil
Phil,

I like corvette central and Vette brakes and products (VB&P) stuff. I didn't see what you are referring to for $439 but did look at their grand touring suspension package for $1,200 with the 330 rear spring, Bilstein sports, and 1.25in front and 7/8 rear bar. This package would certainly tighten up the handling. I also know Ecklers and Midamerica offers suspension packages. I have heard good things about the Delco performer shocks but have no real world experience so difficult to comment. Maybe someone else can chime in about the Delco's. Whole packages are good since they are designed to work together and save money. Much of the pros and cons on these packages is determined on what exactly you are looking for, soft ride for comfort or handling improvements. I was always looking for the ultimate handling with a decent ride.
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Old 07-24-2008, 05:48 PM   #8
DocktorQ
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I put the Glass Mono Spring on my 79 along with the matching kby shocks. I got the kit from ecklers. It's the best upgrade that I've done to the car. It rides great.
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Old 07-25-2008, 08:45 AM   #9
rclinton
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Phil7755 View Post
Gents
1980 vette.

At this time, I have a standard rear metal leaf spring. I also observed flattened spring link bushings. I think they've had it

Urathane or rubber replacements ?

Now I'm looking for the monospring kit etc...
Not too familiar

Looking at few springs on the market I've noticed they are available for 300lb-330lb-360lb up to 420lb....
What's with the lbs ? Stiffer ride ? Smooth at 300lb and stiff like hell at 420lb ? can anyone explain this ?
What should I go for regarding the lbs ?

Anyone can provide me with info on recommended good rear susp kits for my 1980 vette ?

Suggestion please

Phil
I have added the front monospring suspension and a rear 330# rear spring to my 80 L82, replacing the gymkana suspension originally installed. Set up for weekend driving. I did add the recommended matched G2 shocks from VB&P.
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Old 07-26-2008, 02:10 AM   #10
RIJVETTES
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I have an 80 with a 330lb glass mono spring and rubber bushings. No rear sway bar, and KYB G2 shocks. The spare tire and carrier have also be removed to eliminate unnecessary weight and clean up the rear. I Like the ride. The spring feels perfect.
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Old 07-26-2008, 08:47 AM   #11
Spitfire80
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Default Thank you gentlemen !

The investigation is ongoing !

Phil
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Old 07-26-2008, 08:47 AM
 
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