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springs for a 90 325is

Discussion in 'E30 (1984-1993)' started by ricco39, Dec 24, 2008.

    ricco39 guest

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    hi just bought a 90 325is. first bimmer ever owned. am putting some time into restoring her . just did alot of front end work and will be replacing springs and shocks. want to add sway bars and stres bars too. would like an opinion on vogtland springs if anyone has used them and how do they compare to h&r and eibach also are koni shocks the best or is it bilstein. all replies will be greatly appreciated to this newbie

    Devilsown guest

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    I have heard of vogtland springs, but I thing it was like once... I really dont know anything about them, I THINK eibachs are trash (and Im sure others will say otherwise just my findings pointed me to h&r), and to me H&R is your best be they make some of the best suspention products out there. I would get some Bilstein shocks over koni they are both great shocks but once again my prefrace is Bilstien. I have koni yellows with h&r spings on my 93 rx-7 and it is a great setup, and have rode in a 318 with bilstiens and h&r's and was once again a great ride also. I currenty have a Mini with H&R spings, stock struts (going to get bilstien struts) or some PSS9 coilovers, and a rear H&R sway bar and love it. H&R makes springs and sways for your car http://www.hrsprings.com/scripts/appguide.php?Mode=Make Guide&SubMode=Find3&MakeID=4 and I do belive both bilstien and koni make shocks for you auto. A little bird once told be that Dinan springs are in fact H&R's with a diffrant spring rate, and Dinan also uses Koni.

    e30edward guest

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    I would have to agree with the post above me.
    Eibachs aren't that great and are too soft.
    An H&R/Bilstien combo is pretty good for a daily driver.
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    Brian A

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    Search these BMW CCA Forums too for threads regarding spring/shock combos. There have been several long threads debating the merits of various set ups. Its a bit like discussing Religion or Politics though.

    An important issue is that springs and shocks work together to give a certain ride quality. Eibach OR H&R springs with Bilstein OR Koni shocks are reknown combinations. Having said that, Dinan is one of the few places where you can buy a model-specific spring/shock combo.

    Sure Dinan sources materials from bigger manufacturers, but it is the magic they create (...oh, oh, I just made a political/religious statement...) in the application of these materials that is how Dinan adds huge value.

    Devilsown guest

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    Blastfimy! :D just had to...
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    az3579

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    The most common combination I have seen is H&R springs with Bilstein Sports or Bilstein HD shocks/struts. Not only is it the most combo I've seen, but almost everyone who I read about that had this combo loved it, which is why I got this combo (H&R Sport springs and Bilstein Sports) and I'm 110% satisfied.
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    CRKrieger

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    There is absolutely nothing wrong with Eibach springs.

    They have different rates, that is all. You might not like their rate in a particular application, but that does not mean that no one else will, nor that there is anything wrong with the springs. You can be opinionated about your preferences, but that is no excuse for trashing other perfectly good products.
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    MGarrison

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    I'll ditto that - I don't much recall H&R's being marketed back in the early-to-mid 90's, presuming they were on the scene then. Eibach's were, and were a very popular choice, and presumably remain so today. I know any number of people using Eibach's successfully, & w/ no problems, myself included.

    cramartin guest

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    Botond,

    You have a beautiful car. How would you describe the H&R springs in terms of stiffness relative to Eibachs (if you're familar with them) and OEM? How harsh over bumps, potholes, pavement irregularities? Do you use the car for track at all?

    Thanks. Craig
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    eam3

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    I had that combination (H&R with Bilstein Sports) on two cars: 1990 VW Corrado and 1990 BMW 325is. Transformed both cars into real corner carvers. It was, by far, the best money I spent on those two cars.
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    CRKrieger

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    It is not hard to do a Google search for E30 "spring rates" and hit lots of discussions as well as some actual rates to compare.
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    Brian A

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    My two cents are documented in http://bmwcca.org/forum/showthread.php?t=4840 . It seems to me that the shock/spring interaction is more important than spring rates alone. There is internet discussions on that too, but probably the best way to get a feel is to come out to autocross, find a few people with set-ups your interested in and hitchhike a ride to see how it feels.
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    stevehecht

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    I've got Bilstein HDs and M3 stock springs on my car. I like it a lot but I don't have much to compare it to. I'm curious if anyone has any experience and/or opinions about this set-up.
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    MGarrison

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    I have Eibach's & Koni adj. sport shocks. The Eibach's are progressive rate, and with the shocks on the 'softest' setting, it's still a pretty firm ride. The ride quality of any H&R/Eibach/Sport Bilstein/Sport Koni is likely to be fairly similar, in other words, there's some compliance, but it's going to be firm. A Dinan setup is probably a pretty good handling/ride quality combo, relatively speaking. Steve, your setup I would suspect yields a totally tolerable daily-driving ride quality, and still perfectly fine for track & auto-x, but might be less than ideal for a serious track junkie.

    Craig - what's you're intentions for the car? Track usage? If you're thinking of tracking your cabrio, doublecheck your chapter's regs for convertibles, many disallow convertibles completely, some may allow with a substantial roll bar (that possibly has to be far enough over one's head that you wouldn't be able to close the top). Of course, if it's for a hardtop car other than you have pictured, moot point.

    Anyway - point is, decide what you want to accomplish, and you can tailor a plan for mods or whatever to achieve that.

    cramartin guest

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    Springs for E30 Cabrios

    MGarrison

    Thanks for the reply.

    I'm a middle aged family man and businessman. My intentions are to have an appreciating "classic" that's also a daily driver that will handle corners and off/on ramps well, that I can drive fairly fast in the twisties and have it look good. I will never take to the track (except for driving school once or twice). I no longer enjoy fillings-loosening stiffness. (I had that with Eibachs/Bilsteins on my 2000 Audi A6T. Spectacular look but painful ride.)

    Here's my what my research on springs for e30 Cabrios yielded. These are listed from least aggressive to most aggressive on a scale of #1 (softest/least drop) to #5 (firmest/largest drop):

    PLEASE WEIGH IN, FOLKS!

    1. OEM - #1 soft; okay for crusing and not getting over one's head in corners.


    2. Bavarian Autosport Performance Springs (BAS) - #2 firmness, but pretty compliant; "Lower your BMW without sacrificing comfort" you feel moderate to bad pavement irregularities; improved handling; poor design which leaves the car slanted forward too much, resulting in too much oversteer. Not recommended.

    HTTP://www.bavauto.com/shop.asp


    3. Dinan Performance Spring Set -- #3 firmness, 1/2" drop; firmer than OEM and BAS, but still comfortable on highways and city streets; not for serious track work. High scores from fellow Bay Area e30 nut.

    http://www.dinancars.com/store/product.php?productid=3324&cat=313&page=1


    4. H&R Sport Spring Set - Between #2 or #3 firm according to Turner Motorsport; okay for around town; drop f/r = 1.4" drop Front, .75" Rear

    http://www.turnermotorsport.com/html/detail.asp?PRODUCT_ID=50407


    5. Eibach -- #4 firm? drop f/r 1.75" in the front and .8" in the rear; for "reduced body roll when cornering, more precise steering and a lower, more aggressive appearance. Ideal for autocross, driver's schools...wherever the driving is intense and performance expectations are high."

    HTTP://www.bavauto.com/shop.asp


    5. H&R Race Spring Set #5 firm - for the track NOT FOR CABRIO - USED FOR COMPARISON ONLY; drop f/r = -1.6" / -1.5"

    http://www.turnermotorsport.com/html/detail.asp?PRODUCT_ID=50404-88

    Hope this info can be useful to other Cabrio pilots out there!

    Craig
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    granthr

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    Congratulations on buying such a great car! You won't be disappointed!

    I have H&R sport springs with Bilsteins and H&R sway bars on my 84 318i. I really like this set up and will do it again on my next E30. (I plan on buying my brothers 325ix next week :cool: And no I am not selling any! :D )

    The handling is great and it gives the car a nice lowered stance. I cannot speak for other brands.
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    az3579

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    I can vouch for the H&R sport springs.
    My current setup is H&R Sport springs with Bilstein Sport shocks+struts.

    Today I had my first day at the track with the new setup. I've been to the track a couple of times before with the stock suspension, so I have a pretty good idea of the differences between the two.

    Stock setup - pretty bouncy whenever you hit corners, but not too much. Lots of body roll, but not as much as a stock E21. This makes the car a bit unstable when changing direction quickly, which occurs at one particular point at our local track (Lime Rock Park - coming out of the left-hander going into the right-hander.

    H&R Sport/Bilstein Sport setup - the ride isn't compromised too much. Handles bumps and other imperfections in the road well. You can feel these imperfections but it is never uncomfortable unless you hit a huge pothole (also known as craters where I live), in which case it feels rather painful to know that your car's suspension just took a big hit. On the track, body roll is significantly reduced and is much more manageable when quickly changing direction. I felt the car as being more predictable when on the limit because you know that when you are exiting a turn, the body won't snap back to its normal state causing sudden weight transfer. Center of gravity is obviously lowered so it's much better. Lowering isn't extreme, but it does give the car a much more "I'm dead serious" look if you look at it from any angle. Before my car looked like a wannabe (with cool wheels and black trim but really high stock ride height) and now it looks like a track competitor. No rubbing issues with optional stock sizes (205-55-15) and I don't think there'd be any issues running 16's.

    If I bought another E30, I would give it the same exact setup I have now.
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    stevehecht

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    That looks great! Are those 14" or 15" wheels?
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    az3579

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    He's got the same wheels as me. Those are 15's.
    Same wheels as you, for that matter (winter wheels).
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    stevehecht

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    My summers are 15" too (Ronal LS). Sorry to hear about your wheel! Stop daydreaming about Suzie S50 and your wheels will be better off.:p

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