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Thinking Of Further Modifying My Suspension - Gth

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At 49K miles, my GTH has already been through some questionable miles. Who knows what the previous renters (20K+ miles) did to the car as well as the first private owner (20K+ miles). The "100% stock" deviation path was already chosen for me before I purchased the car (had Whipple installed) and I took it further with a custom paint job and GT500 rear wing. I have since replaced the very tired/loose front LCAs with beefier GT500 versions as well. My car rides like a lumber wagon. I have not yet gotten used to it, and it is not comfortable at all on any roads. It's not a race car, and I want it to be more usable on the street. Perhaps my shocks/struts are worn out at this point (I'm thinking they are), but I know the stock suspension has always been on a rough side from what I've learned from others. I don't have any "fresh" cars to compare it to, but I think I will enjoy my car more with a smoother ride. I will not give up the sweet ride height from the K springs, though.


I've been doing some research and it sounds like the Koni Yellow struts/shocks along with the GT500 strut mounts have been used successfully with the K springs and such. As I honestly evaluate what I will do with this car (street, not track) my belief tends to be that I would likely set the Konis to all the way "soft" to get my desired ride and then leave it alone. I base this on what I've read others to do with similar setups. Furthermore, if I do that, it seems reasonable that I could save a lot of money and simply get the Koni orange shocks that aren't adjustable. I'm told they are the same as the yellows set to "soft". I'm strongly leaning toward this direction, but I have a few questions/opinions I am seeking.


1. Has anybody tried the Konis with the K springs and remainder of the FRRP suspension? What differences/improvements have you noticed?


2. I'm not in love with either the orange or yellow color of the Koni pieces. Would it be possible to simply paint them to match the FRRP original blue components? Or, should I proudly display the Konis...afterall, most of the original '65/66 GT350s had Koni shocks. Perhaps I should embrace the heritage there!?


3. I'm still not confident that the new Koni orange shocks would offer considerable improvement over the stock FRRP ones our cars originally came with. I never got to drive my car with fresh suspension, so I don't know if my car is simply wearing tired suspension parts or if these Ford struts/shocks are a rough as I'm feeling now compared to new. If the FRRP and Konis were comparable (I don't think they are), I would prefer to stay stock. But I'm not putting inferior stock parts back on my car just for the sake of originality. I'm already passed that...


4. Do I have to further look into/consider rear upper and lower control arms, or are those application strictly for racing? Are the stock bushings serviceable?




Edited by ITHERTZ66
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I bought my 07 SGT new and it's been my DD since day 1.


I liked the looks of the lowered springs, but wanted a "better" ride. I replaced the originals with Bilsteins, and have loved the ride ever since. It's perfect for its life as a DD, but still handles very well.


In 2004, I bought a new Mach1. It too was my daily driver. I put lowering springs and 5 way adjustable Tokico struts/shocks on it. The ride always seemed a did harsh, regardless of what position I turned the adjustment to. I put Bilsteins on that car, and really liked the ride.


So for both cars, the Bilsteins offered a firm, but not harsh ride.


MY 2 cents.


Good luck.

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Troy, I have to ask what your previous cars were. A stock Shelby GT might seem quite harsh compared to others you've experienced.


I have had a couple of S197 coupes with Koni Sports (the yellow, adjustable ones) and found the adjustable feature useful only on the autocross course and the road course. It seemed to me the "soft" end of adjustment was a bit harsher than the standard shocks. In one case "standard" was the GT/CS 2009 suspension; the other was a Brembo-optioned 2013. I am not going to put the yellows on my current car, that has the standard GT convertible "girly-car" springs, which are designed to run with 50-series tires for maximum comfort.


I have a set of 40-series and a set of 35-series tires on 18- and 19-inch rims, respectively. They make a lot of difference in perceived harshness, and you might want to consider the effect of tires on your situation. It's not easy separating the sounds and inertia sensations when talking about ride quality.


The 2009 car was on FRPP "P" springs that lowered it a half or three-quarters of an inch, and were a bit stronger than stock. That configuration with 2007-09 GT500 wheels (9.5x18) and the 285-40 Goodyear F1s rode pretty well, but not as comfortably as stock. A decent compromise, but noticeably rougher than I'd prefer.


If Bilsteins ever come into stock, I'll put those on and call it good—I hope.


In your situation I'd first try swapping wheels and tires with someone, just to solidify the sensations in that regard. Then I'd do the Bilsteins. If you can stand your car to be a half-inch higher, the "P" springs might work.


Everything is a compromise. You have to pick your target and get as close to it as you can without sacrificing too much of something else.

Edited by Frank S
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I'm currently running the stock 17" wheels and Cooper Tires. Can't see it getting any more comfy than that (: I do want to go with 18's, but I'm scared the ride will suck really bad. I had 20s for a very short time when I got the car, and didn't notice much/any improvement going to the 17s.


For reference, I most recently drove a friend's 1992 Fox body 5.0 convertible. Notoriously known for their terrible rides. Went up and down the same roads back to back with my Hertz and my Hertz was a lot HARSHER than the Fox!


I've driven my friend's 2011 GT500 with the SVT package....all stock. Very comfortable in comparison. I could seriously easily live with that ride combo. Also drove a friend's GT500 40th anniversary convertible. Again, very plush in comparison. I don't have much else to compare against other than my Superformance Cobra and my '66 K code convertible Mustang. Both those cars are a lot less firm/bouncy than the Hertz.


I really need to drive a fresher low mileage SGT coupe to figure out if there is something off with my suspension....



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Just switched the stock SGT shocks/struts for Koni Yellow with the springs that came on the car. I set the rear to 1/2 turn from full soft and the fronts to 3/4 turn from full soft and I love the ride. It took some of the harshness out of the ride and I still have the ability for track days to stiffen it up. I had 50k on my stock struts/shocks.

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