Volume III, Issue 12, Page 28


The latest in dampers for stock suspension systems


12/16/2008

There is a simple truth in making a fast, small-tire, (drag or otherwise) stock-style suspension car work. That truth is the shock absorber.  The better you can control wheel motion, then the better the control of the dynamics of the entire car.  In the world of the drag racer, this boils down to "hook."  It also means that tuning capabilities are amplified.


Front dampers that Strange built for our Buick project (they’re off-the-shelf bits anyone can buy).  A street-strip car or a Stock Eliminator car presents it's own dilemmas for a shock manufacturer (stock mounting points, etc.), but in this case, everything pretty much falls neatly into place. 

Certainly there are cases where worn-out stock front shocks or outdated non-adjustable 90-10s could be used, but how well does that particular car really work? In the old days, a loose front shock (worn out stocker or 90/10) was used to get the nose up quickly, transferring as much weight as possible to the back wheels.  It was simple because there was virtually no rebound force at work (the “10”) coupled with a whole bunch of bump at work (the “90”).  With 90/10s up front, the nose remained in the air, seriously messing with the aerodynamics. 

What happens when the track conditions change and you’re stuck with 90/10 technology?  How do you compensate for damping forces when you venture away from your home track (where the car works), and race at that rough old backwoods strip down the interstate (where the car doesn't work)? 

That’s precisely where the adjustable types enter the equation.  And typically, as the prices for shocks increase, so does the adjustment range (you can get inexpensive three-way adjustable shocks that range from 90/10 to 70/30 and perhaps, 50/50 or there about). 

Here's What's New!