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Using c4 chassis for electric buggy

 
Old 05-20-2019, 08:42 PM
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jeff katzman
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Default Using c4 chassis for electric buggy

Coilover shocks have been done a lot on this forum, so one of you may have an answer. The problem is weight...I donít have any. The whole car is so light as an electric buggy and no fiberglass that the original 1984 front leaf spring feels like a go kart(no suspension). 84s were stout but Iím missing 800lbs up front. If I delete the spring, are there coilovers that will be light enough to make it driveable? Or just an adjustable shock that is strong enough without a coil?
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Old 05-21-2019, 06:50 AM
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One advantage of coilovers is that you can use a spring of whatever spring rate you want. So yes, that could solve your problem.
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Old 05-21-2019, 08:40 AM
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Originally Posted by jeff katzman View Post
Coilover shocks have been done a lot on this forum, so one of you may have an answer. The problem is weight...I donít have any. The whole car is so light as an electric buggy and no fiberglass that the original 1984 front leaf spring feels like a go kart(no suspension). 84s were stout but Iím missing 800lbs up front. If I delete the spring, are there coilovers that will be light enough to make it driveable? Or just an adjustable shock that is strong enough without a coil?
A Shock is just a dampener...making sure your nomenclature is correct. A coilover Shock includes a spring and would do what you want so long as you can set the spring pre-load low enough...Four of them go on a vehicle they expect to weigh 3400 lbs or so....or 850 lbs per corner. If your buggy weighs 1200, can you adjust the coilover to handle 300 lbs a corner? Dunno...that's a call to the spring manufacturer. What I would NOT do is just blindly by 'coilover shocks for a C4 Corvette' as there's a better than average chance you'll have a bad time.

Further, you currently have fiberglass springs that are expecting 3000+ lbs, and a chassis that doesn't have a Roof or doors...that's gonna mess up all kinds of handling. Will it kill ya? Probably not. Mess up your back? Hard to say. Make you competitive in Solo 2? Absolutely not!
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Old 05-21-2019, 09:02 AM
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There are load bearing shocks like these that might work.

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Old 05-21-2019, 01:28 PM
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Use OEM motorcycle coilovers. Grab some used ones on Ebay, you should be able to get a full set under $200.

They work great.
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Old 05-21-2019, 04:01 PM
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Default Load bearing shocks/motorcycle coilovers

These are good suggestions,Iíll see if I can find a ride height that will work with those.
The issue is two fold: 1)most coilovers are meant for double or triple the spring rate I need. 2) the shock cradle in 1984 was crazy small.
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Old 05-24-2019, 10:10 AM
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I used qa1 and there were tons of spring options. I started off too soft but I don't remember the rate off hand. It's been 12 or 13 years.
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Old 05-24-2019, 11:22 AM
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Originally Posted by jeff katzman View Post
These are good suggestions,Iíll see if I can find a ride height that will work with those.
The issue is two fold: 1)most coilovers are meant for double or triple the spring rate I need. 2) the shock cradle in 1984 was crazy small.
Coilovers are available with an almost infinite number of spring rates. I have coilovers on my C4 (rear). I have changed springs 3 times to get the spring that works well which happens to be a 170 lb spring. A rough rule is to figure out how much the spring is compressed when in use. For instance, a 14" spring rated at 170 if compressed 4" will support a weight of 680lbs. The spring height is easily adjustable with a coilover. In my case, a spring with a lower rating ended up working the best. I tried a 190 and a 210 spring and the rear of the car was too stiff and the tires wouldn't plant on launch. You are right, the front shock cradle in an 84 is small. A few member here have worked around that problem. Do a search.
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Old 05-24-2019, 03:40 PM
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Originally Posted by jeff katzman View Post
These are good suggestions,Iíll see if I can find a ride height that will work with those.
The issue is two fold: 1)most coilovers are meant for double or triple the spring rate I need. 2) the shock cradle in 1984 was crazy small.

Cut it and reweld it. I suspect the resale value impact due to that mod will be small.

(Just FYI: I'm not being a smartass. I just redid the coilover mounts on my '69 w/C4 suspension.)
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Old 05-24-2019, 03:54 PM
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Electric conversion sounds pretty cool. How bout a battery pack from a Prius to cover the engine? Electric motors don't need much maintenance.
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Old 05-28-2019, 09:37 AM
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The battery is 20x Nissan Leaf modules in a series. 168V max. Prius cells would have worked as well.
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Old 05-29-2019, 12:59 PM
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I'm finding the whole "vette cart" thing wildly entertaining and this is a point even more off the curve. What a friggin hoot.
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Old 05-29-2019, 01:38 PM
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It doesn't seem like fabrication is much of an issue for you.

I'd still go motorcycle shocks. Cut off the upper shock cradle completely and make your own, or do remove mounted shocks (way easier than it sounds).
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Old 06-11-2019, 10:49 PM
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Default Done...


Motorcycle coilovers. 270/345 progressive. Thank you to all that chimed in!
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Old 06-12-2019, 08:47 AM
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Are you documenting this project somewhere? I'd be interested in seeing your progress
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Old Yesterday, 05:31 PM
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Yes I'm curious also. Why a corvette? I would expect a small pickup truck would be a better platform. What motor? How does it bolt up? Is it a car for transportation or just a buggy/cart for a local shuttle?
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