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Thread: Spec .01 Front End (Suspension and Steering)

  1. #1

    Spec .01 Front End (Suspension and Steering)

    Side plan of Ed Uding bracket with backing washer:

    Photo of Uding bracket with backing washer:

    Photo of Uding brackets with Byrne Heninger's lower control arms (Luke Sandel's car -- note missing backing washers, since added):

    Byrne's lower control arms discussed futher (with pics):

    Borgeson stainless DD lower column with vibration reducing U joint:
    Part numbers:
    Do *NOT* forget to drill recesses in the DD shaft for set screws to snuggle into (see Figure D:

    Crappy DMCToday forum software limits you to 5 attachments per post, so that's that.

    Bill Robertson

  2. #2
    Seeing Byrne's offer in the Giveaway thread prompts me to bump this one:

    My DeLorean used to suffer from "DeLoreanitis" -- funny front end vibrations transmitted through the steering wheel, most noticeable at high speed on very smooth pavement. Louie Golden, who has ridden in many DeLoreans over the years, assured me "all DeLoreans do that -- even VIN 5000."

    I never was satisfied with that answer, but didn't worry too much about it until I upgraded my front end for durability reasons, and discovered that DeLoreanitis went away as a fringe benefit.

    The reasons for DeLoreanitis:
    1) Lower control arms are held in fore/aft alignment by the swaybar -- imminently unsuited for such a task, especially given its shape
    2) Lower control arms are thinnest on a horizontal plane where they pivot
    3) Lower control arms are made of folded 16 gauge sheet metal

    Result is LCA's wiggling foreward/backward while the car travels at high speed, particularly noticeable when there are no pavement imperfections to mask the condition.

    (Effect at the steering wheel is exacerbated by the lack of steering column isolation -- every sensation experienced by the LCA's is transmitted without isolation to the steering wheel).

    Mike Loasby -- Bill Collin's replacement -- recognized the problem and had a set of lower wishbones fabricated as an experiment to fix it:




    These custom lower wishbones still exist to this day on Rob Grady's personal car (pictured).

    Ed Uding's bolt on brackets emulate Mike Loasby's lower wishbones, using stock dimensioned and mounted lower control arms. Some pontificators and purists, one of whom promised mass production lower wishbones several years ago but has yet to make even a prototype, preach from their soapboxes that Ed's brackets are not true wishbones. While that may be hair splitting technically accurate, they are extremely close: like 99.8%.

    Please note that any LCA that uses the original mouting points alone and depends upon the swaybar for horizontal alignment will still suffer DeLoreanitis, no matter what it is made of -- even Byrne's heavy duty models. Boxing an OEM control arm, or upgrading to Bryan/Byrne/Josh's, will only mitigate the propensity to rotate around the pivot bolt. The only way to eliminate fore/aft movement is to triangulate the LCA with true thrust arms (which Ed Uding experimented with before opting for his current design), or transform the LCA into a lower wishbone.

    Where Byrne's LCA's come in is durability. They are hands down the heaviest duty control arms available. There have been reports of OEM LCA failures at the ball joint end, which can't be boxed in. Spring perches also rust away. And they are easily bent, especially by tow truck drivers. None other than Dave Swingle has told me that at some point in the distant future, after the rest of my car has returned to the dust from whence it came, my LCA's will still be here.

    For the record: Byrne's LCA's are made of 1/8" thick alloy steel (spring perch is 1/4" thick, ball joint pad is 1/2" thick). Ed's brackets are made of 1/4" thick alloy steel.

    The crowning touch for steering wheel vibration reduction is to isolate it from the rest of the front end. This is a time honored technique, typically done with an inline rubber coupler, that even the lowly VW Bug had. Again, pontificators and prevaricators preach against steering wheel isolation, typically arguing that it will ruin handling, which is utter nonsense considering that contemporary Porsche's and BMW's had inline steering couplers. Clearance issues prevent us from using a traditional coupler, but Borgeson sells stainless steel U joints that include built in vibration reduction (DMCH and DMCNW steering columns are Borgeson units, albeit without vibration reduction).

    Bill Robertson
    Last edited by Greasy DeLorean Mechanic; 10-07-2013 at 05:39 PM.

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