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Alignment and Noise after Installing Coilovers

Hi everyone. Got the Z as my first sports car about a year and a half ago and just now started getting into mods. I've tried searching around and found

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Old 06-18-2017, 04:03 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Alignment and Noise after Installing Coilovers

Hi everyone. Got the Z as my first sports car about a year and a half ago and just now started getting into mods. I've tried searching around and found some good info, but I'm still unable to fully figure out exactly whats going on.

The first issue I'm having is the alignment. After a friend of mine installed Top Speed Pro 1 coilovers and rear camber arms, I took it to a local NTB next door to get it aligned. They were able to the toe back to spec, but even with the new adjustable camber arm, the tech was convinced that they couldn't do much with it at all. From what I've read, typically you want to stay in spec regardless. However the tech said the cambers fine given that its a lowered car. This is my first time getting into the mod scene so I have no baseline or prior knowledge. Thoughts on this? Facts? Attached my alignment results for reference.

The second issue I'm having is that after installing the coilovers, I can hear sounds coming from the rear. The sound is like hearing the car drive over gravel, but its constant. Has anyone had experience on how to fix this or what could be causing this noise? The friend that installed it with me double checked for things to be tightened, but maybe he missed something?

The intake and full CBE was fun, but the suspension so far has been more of a pain. I'm inclined to sell these coilovers and just go back to stock and save for Tein's, BC's, or KW's instead.

Thanks for anyone's help in advance!

-Matt
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Old 06-18-2017, 08:27 PM   #2 (permalink)
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The alignment tech is an idiot!
You got way too much rear camber unless you do trackdays daily. Or like wearing the inside of your tires out.
Take it to someone else who does lower cars.
What camber arms you have?
The noise you hear could be a spring binding up. Or something is rubbing.
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Old 06-18-2017, 10:20 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Yeap, that alignment guy is an idiot. You need to find a quality shop. That ain't it. As far as the noise in the rear. The most common issue is you did not put enough preload into it. Sounds like you need to tighten up on the shock and make it shorter to correct the issue.
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Old 06-18-2017, 10:44 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Op, a few of places I've used are Cobb Plano (now called Growler Motor Lab), Bobby Garett's Frame and Alignment, and last but not least Dallas Frame and Alignment. The last two are old school type places.

Not all alignment techs are equally skilled. Gotta go to guys that deal with highly adjustible parts.
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Old 06-19-2017, 12:01 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Thanks guys! I don't know what the hell I was thinking going to an NTB for something like this. I'll give Cobbs a call and see what they can do for me. Always awesome to see a local opinion.


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Old 06-19-2017, 07:28 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Some of these guys do not know the proper procedures in aligning a car. A dead give away is if the tech doesn't set the tire pressures before starting. I actually had a tech argue with me that he knew what he what doing. Needless to say that was the end of the alignment at that shop.
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Old 06-19-2017, 09:37 AM   #7 (permalink)
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FWIW, you may need to add new toes bolts with your new camber arms.
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Old 06-26-2017, 10:34 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rusty View Post
The alignment tech is an idiot!
You got way too much rear camber unless you do trackdays daily. Or like wearing the inside of your tires out.
Take it to someone else who does lower cars.
What camber arms you have?
The noise you hear could be a spring binding up. Or something is rubbing.
Hey Rusty, was re-reading this thread and realized I never answered your question. This is a link to the ones I have:

Nissan 370Z Z34 09-17 Rear Adjustable Camber Arms (Harden Rubber) - Top Speed Pro 1 Performance

Not sure if I just need these arms, but I don't know if I need just these adjustable arms, or if I need anything else.

Took ya'll's suggestion and set up a time to go to Cobb's here pretty soon. Really appreciate you all stepping in and steering me in the right direction.
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Last edited by MXVII; 07-10-2017 at 12:31 AM.
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Old 07-06-2017, 11:17 AM   #9 (permalink)
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I'm guessing you already got this resolved. In any case.

Did you adjust the height of the springs at all? The grinding noise sounds like it could be coming from the springs like rusty said, but most likely because there is very little pre-load on the spring. This with addition to the fact you could possibly have the dampers adjusted to tight (stiff setting). If the damper in the rear was not re-torqued properly either after a quick drive, its possible they are loose and shifting around on the bolts.

For future readers with similar issues ^^^^

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Old 07-06-2017, 11:30 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MaysEffect View Post
I'm guessing you already got this resolved. In any case.

Did you adjust the height of the springs at all? The grinding noise sounds like it could be coming from the springs like rusty said, but most likely because there is very little pre-load on the spring. This with addition to the fact you could possibly have the dampers adjusted to tight (stiff setting). If the damper in the rear was not re-torqued properly either after a quick drive, its possible they are loose and shifting around on the bolts.

For future readers with similar issues ^^^^


Hey man sorry it's been a whirlwind of a couple weeks.

Quick update: Took the car to Cobbs and they said it was essentially the shitiest pair of coilovers they've ever seen. They had a suspension specialist on it for 5 hours and only charged me half they felt so bad. I'm gonna go back to stock now and save for some solid BC's or another quality set.

Thanks to everyone for the advice!!!


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Old 07-06-2017, 12:09 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MXVII View Post
Hey man sorry it's been a whirlwind of a couple weeks.

Quick update: Took the car to Cobbs and they said it was essentially the shitiest pair of coilovers they've ever seen. They had a suspension specialist on it for 5 hours and only charged me half they felt so bad. I'm gonna go back to stock now and save for some solid BC's or another quality set.

Thanks to everyone for the advice!!!


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5 hours? for what? It shouldn't even take that long to properly corner balance the car and do an alignment. With the advertised spring rate for the kit, it doesn't look like they would have a problem with spring sag or incorrect height adjustments. Did they attempt to adjust the height at all? If the lower camber links are threaded all the way in and still over -2.5 degrees of camber, it simply sounds like the car is sitting way too low. I can't argue about quality considering it's price, but even if the dampers were made of Swiss cheese, the height adjustability and design alone shouldn't warrant alignment problems. If anything i would blame that on the camber arms. Are they longer than factory at the shortest length?

It doesn't really make much sense in either case though. Judging by the decreased caster values you must have even a smidgen of forward rake. Unless the front springs are even lower than the rear.
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Old 07-10-2017, 12:33 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MaysEffect View Post
5 hours? for what? It shouldn't even take that long to properly corner balance the car and do an alignment. With the advertised spring rate for the kit, it doesn't look like they would have a problem with spring sag or incorrect height adjustments. Did they attempt to adjust the height at all? If the lower camber links are threaded all the way in and still over -2.5 degrees of camber, it simply sounds like the car is sitting way too low. I can't argue about quality considering it's price, but even if the dampers were made of Swiss cheese, the height adjustability and design alone shouldn't warrant alignment problems. If anything i would blame that on the camber arms. Are they longer than factory at the shortest length?

It doesn't really make much sense in either case though. Judging by the decreased caster values you must have even a smidgen of forward rake. Unless the front springs are even lower than the rear.
5 hours for trying to figure what the sound was. I've taken it to everyone I can trust and no one can figure it out. Those coilovers are back in their box now and my car is back to stock suspension. The only bad part is that the front stock suspension doesn't have the brake bracket anymore....so my friend had to ziptie for now. I will likely have to buy new coilovers that are rated comfortable for DD and street driving soon here since I'm not comfortable with just zipties. I know some people do that, but I figure if brake brackets exist....there's probably a good reason why its solid metal haha.
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Old 07-10-2017, 01:52 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by MXVII View Post
5 hours for trying to figure what the sound was. I've taken it to everyone I can trust and no one can figure it out. Those coilovers are back in their box now and my car is back to stock suspension. The only bad part is that the front stock suspension doesn't have the brake bracket anymore....so my friend had to ziptie for now. I will likely have to buy new coilovers that are rated comfortable for DD and street driving soon here since I'm not comfortable with just zipties. I know some people do that, but I figure if brake brackets exist....there's probably a good reason why its solid metal haha.

I don't know if it was asked/answered already. But did you get adjustable endlinks for the ASB's?

And what exactly was the sound and feeling you were having? Jittering, popping over bumps, clicks and pops during turns?

I'm not sure you are ever going to find a kit "rated comfortable" for the street. This will purely be determined by the potential spring rating at a suggested height, the lower you plan on having the height, the more convoluted and difficult this is going to be. For potentially "comfortable" ride quality, you'll need about 3-4.5 inches of compression travel from static ride height. This will be a frontal spring rating between 350ib/in and 700ib/in depending on the spring length and ride height. The lower the rating the longer the spring will need to be and higher the ride height. This is just a base. It can become extremely more complex and more expensive from here if you truly want to ride in supreme comfort and lower ride heights.

Your coilover kit can be upgraded to accept these modifications if you don't want to spend another grand. Any either case, new springs is going to cost between 300-800 dollars.

Unless a shock dyno has proven the dampers to be intolerable, they can probably be salvaged. good luck.

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Old 07-10-2017, 09:32 AM   #14 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MaysEffect View Post
I don't know if it was asked/answered already. But did you get adjustable endlinks for the ASB's?

And what it exactly was the sound and feeling you were having? Jittering, popping over bumps, clicks and pops during turns?

I'm not sure you are ever going to find a kit "rated comfortable" for the street. This will purely be determined by the potential spring rating at a suggested height, the lower you plan on having the height, the more convoluted and difficult this is going to be. For potentially "comfortable" ride quality, you'll need about 3-4.5 inches of compression travel from static ride height. This will be a frontal spring rating between 350ib/in and 700ib/in depending on the spring length and ride height. The lower the rating the longer the spring will need to be and higher the ride height. This is just a base. It can become extremely more complex and more expensive from here if you truly want to ride in supreme comfort and lower ride heights.

Your coilover kit can be upgraded to accept these modifications if you don't want to spend another grand. Any either case, new springs is going to cost between 300-800 dollars.

Unless a shock dyno has proven the dampers to be intolerable, they can probably be salvaged. good luck.

I did grab a pair of rear camber arms....from the same place I got the coilers lol.

Yea if I want to drop the ride height, the comfort level will never be the same. But for now, I'm honestly just fine with the stock ride height. I'd want the new coilers just for brake brackets. For whatever reason they had removed them from the front suspension parts during the original install.

Instead of reducing roll with lowered ride height, I'll probably look into a sway bar kit instead. I hear good things about both Hotchki's and White Line.
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Old 07-10-2017, 11:21 AM   #15 (permalink)
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You can buy new brackets from Nissan.

I'm not talking about the camber arms. I'm talking about the endlink's that attach the sway bar to the control arms. The source of your noise/handling problems could be coming from this. The camber issue is a separate problem.
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