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Another Ohlin's DFV Review

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Old 03-15-2015, 05:54 PM
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Ohlins Review

Alight, the time has come to add another Ohlins DVF review. I ordered through Patrick at Urge and like others have said, he was extremely easy to deal with. I don’t think there is much more I can say than others on here already have, but if you are considering these I don’t know why you would get them anywhere else. When I had an assembly question I called the number on Urge’s website and Patrick picked up the phone! I know that probably seems like a minor thing, but I find in this day and age good customer service is rare, and when dealing with small company like Urge it is nice to be able to jump on the phone and talk to the actual person you have been emailing back and forth with.

Before I get into the meat of the review, a little background on my car and my experience with aftermarket suspensions. Car is an 2003, used mostly now for HPDE’s. I do use it some on the street but in the last few years I am probably doing less than 2500 miles a year, with a good amount of those being track miles. Car was previously on stock shocks (probably original, I purchased the car with about 85k miles, and it has about 115k now) and Swift Sport springs. Car was also on stock AP1 wheels with factory tire sizes. I loved how the car drove on track, at the limit it is fairly adjustable, and with those little tires under it you could really feel it moving around under you at the limit, which I think is essential to learning how to drive on the track. I finally reached the point where I really wanted to run faster times, and to move from the intermediate group into the advanced group. Track time locally is pretty awesome, with small run groups and little traffic. But I still found myself as the fastest two or three cars in my group, and long clean runs weren’t super easy to come by. I noticed how little my enjoyment of sessions was effected by having to let faster cars by, versus how frustrating it was being stuck behind a group of 3-5 slower cars and wasting a few laps getting by everyone. But mostly I just wanted to go faster.

Install was very straight forward. I assembled the coilovers in my living room without much difficulty, and installing them on car was pretty straight forward. If you are hesitant to try this yourself I would not be afraid to give it a shot. I had previously put the swift springs on my car, which involved spring compressors and was much more tedious. A couple of things I did that I think made things a little easier:

1)I removed the ABS line from the A arm in an effort to stretch it as little as possible. It is just two extra bolts I think and very easy to do.

2)To load the suspension for torquing everything down, I measured the distance from the fender to the wheel center before I started, then just used my floor jack under the lower A arm to compress the suspension until the distance from the fender to the center of the hub was about the same.

3)Once you remove the rear spring/shocks you can’t install the new coilovers because the sway bar prevents the suspension from dropping fully. I simply used a scissor jack, and a piece of thin wood on top of the hub. I then extended the scissor jack in the wheel well, pushing the whole suspension assembly downward. You need to be careful using this method, if the scissor jack slips out the whole assembly will return upwards quickly, and if your head is in the wheel well...this could obviously end badly. Use this method with caution. Edit: thinking back I had to do this to remove the factory spring/shock unit. The new ones are almost short enough that you can fit them without doing anything extra, but I think I had to force things down slightly to get the lower bolt in.

4)If you are running really wide wheels in the back, I would suggest you use the bolts for the bottom shock mount facing towards the front of the car. These bolts are fairly long, and if they are facing rearwards it looks like they could POSSIBLY interfere with the wheel. Can’t say for sure, but I added new 17x9 +49 Wedsports after the install and it was close.

Ok, the important stuff now, driving impression. The install was done in my parents shop, who live in the country. The roads near them are pretty smooth. I didn’t push the car at all, just cruised around briefly before having to drive about 3 hours home in (Portland to Seattle). Freeway cruising feels great, maybe except for sharp undulations in the road, like expansion joints. Car feels much more controlled and like others have said, the dampening simply feels ‘expensive’. I know thats probably not the best way to describe it, but compared to the other few cars I have driven on coilovers (Tein’s in a GSR and a drift setup 240sx) this feels miles ahead. Had them about 12 clicks from full stiff and I haven’t played around with those settings yet.

I will say that in the city it feels noticeably stiffer to me. But to me that doesn’t mean its worse. In the city the low speed ride is what you notice and IMO its harsher. There is plenty of construction where I live and the roads seem pretty bad to me. Large expansion joints or places in the road where there are quick ups and downs makes you remember that the spring rats are much higher then stock. That being said I hadn’t had the car where I live in the city now before and its likely it isn’t much harsher than stock. Keep in mind my old dampers probably had 115k on them and were likely pretty worn. As speeds pick up enough to allow the dampening to actually work it is very nice, and settles down quickly.

Due to about 7 months of crappy weather in the PNW, I haven’t had a chance to get out and drive any fun roads. The car is back to having more work done to get it ready for the track season. I will update this when I get more seat time, and will post a track review in the competition forum once the car finally sees the road course again.
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Old 03-25-2015, 07:30 PM
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Love the detail on the install. Everyone has their own tips and it all helps..

7 from full still is more of a track setting or for stiffer springs if you ever upgrade. On the street I would run ~10-12 from soft and you will probably get into the super high speed valving which can reduce harshness.
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