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View Full Version : Difference in GC coilover kits? Not sure what to get!


woptang22
Thu, Oct-21-2004, 01:05:55 AM
OK I have talked to Dan Law a few times about the $1699 GC coilover kit. Well I am ready to buy but Im just not sure if I need that kit. I am not going to track the car at all. Just a daily driver. So I looked into the kit for $999. If I got the kit for $999 I would also add the rear shock mounts. But what are the major differences between the two kits? Would the kit for $999 be good enough, or do I need the other kit that has camber plates? I am worrired about tire wear. I dont want to change tires every few thousand miles. Would everything align fine if I used the $999 kit without camber plates? Possibly people with the $999 kit can comment and let me know how they like it and if there is any problems.

M3DON
Thu, Oct-21-2004, 02:25:06 AM
Sent you a PM, hope it was helpful...

bren
Thu, Oct-21-2004, 02:31:21 AM
Why not just get springs and shocks? What do you need with a coil-over for a street car?

SG_M3
Thu, Oct-21-2004, 05:18:25 AM
Why not just get springs and shocks? What do you need with a coil-over for a street car?

I would a agree, a spring/shock combo would suit your needs.

You don't need camber plates, or DA front shocks. The basic single adjustable street kit would be fine.

woptang22
Thu, Oct-21-2004, 04:20:40 PM
I would a agree, a spring/shock combo would suit your needs.

You don't need camber plates, or DA front shocks. The basic single adjustable street kit would be fine.
The reason I wanted to go with a coilover kit is because I want to be able to change ride height if necessary. The winters where I live are snowy and not good. So I dont want to get stuck all the time or use the front end as a plow. Im working on getting a beater car for the winter but not successful yet. But Thats the main reason I wanted coilovers, just so I know I can change the height if I want to. With the springs shocks Im stuck or SOL if I need it higher. But does anyone else have any info for me as to which GC kit would work well for my needs? I would like to go with the kit for $999 and rear shock mounts, but thats only if it will allow the alignment specs to go back to stock or close so I have no tire wear. Any suggestions will help. thanks john

jonam
Thu, Oct-21-2004, 04:35:58 PM
the factor is how much you lower your car.. since lower you go, more negative camber/toe out you end up with..With OEM rear lower control arm, I got -1.9 camber which is no harm for the tires on the street.. regarding fronts, I do not know how much stock M3 has adjustability in terms of camber..but my guess is you should be fine. Just do an alignment after the installation.
Again, if you ever sell your coilover kit later, 1699 kit should be easier to sell due to the camber plates. If you don't care and want to save some money, it's not in definite need.
$999 kit with top adjustable rear shock and rear shock mount should work for you nicely. Be sure to get the right springs in length and rate :thumbsup:

M3DON
Thu, Oct-21-2004, 05:01:03 PM
Have you spoken to Jay Morris at GC yet? Maybe if you tell him exactly what your needs are, he can lead you in the right direction. The $999 kit, which GC refers to as the "Gentlemen's Kit" is probably what you need. The front is still technically a coil-over, since the spring goes over the strut, unlike the rear. You just won't have the adjustability of raising or lowering your front springs. As long as you take your car to a good alignment shop, and they dial it in right, you really shouldn't have to worry much about tire wear.

Once again, I think you should talk to someone at GC to find out what will suit you best.

Dan Law
Thu, Oct-21-2004, 07:28:55 PM
I appreciate everybody trying to help out but please allow me to give a little background.

1. I work closely - VERY closely - with the Jay, Dale, Mark, Ben etal at Ground Control. We have been working together on the E46M3 now for over 2,5 years. In fact many of the parts you now see available were beta tested by me, certain parts modified were a result of my feedback and some parts you may see in the future were developed at my request. Jay is an absolute genius and I have and continue to learn alot from him!

2. I have both sold and installed GC kits on a multitude of E46M3s - I would guess installed at least 25 kits of varying types - and sold at least as many more without installing. Thus, I have a pretty darn good idea of what works. Also, the drivers have ranged from racers to very conservative older drivers just seeking a look.

3. I would hope that I never reach the point in life where I would recommend something to a customer or even casual board surfer based on a desire to maximize profitability. Frankly, if I cared for money, I would return to the back stabbing world of corporate management (which I may be forced to do soon due to financial concerns). The point being I don't make a lot of money doing this. I do it because I love the industry and the manual work is therapeutic to a guy who in corporate life really never got to see the nuts and bolts of something from start to end - just sat in an office planning, meeting, dictating, and analyzing the work of others.

In particular for Woptang: I am recommending what I have based on what he has stated are priorities and what he has stated as planned usage for the auto. I would be very much surprised if asking Jay the same questions resulted in different answers. He11, Jay and I are even in line on spring rates - which is a big area of dispute amongst even the most knowledgable of people.

Dan Law
DERMotorSports@gmail.com
de_law@bellsouth.net

Dan Law
Thu, Oct-21-2004, 07:48:28 PM
One more thing. I generally prefer people to get camberplates with their kits. Why, you may ask. From my experience:

1. People who purchase the Gentlemen's kit - which I will NOT sell without Upper Rear Shock Mounts for safety reasons BTW - in all but 1 case have later purchased the camberplates. This resulted in having to pay to get the plates installed (at least $200 more than just doing it with the suspension install) AND having to pay to get the auto cornerweighted (again at least $200 more).

2. Anyone even remotely suggesting they may do a driver's education or HPDE will completely destroy a set of front tyres in 1 day without camberplates. The cost of a one time purchase of camberplates pays for 1 track day without them.

3. Even for street drivers who are very conservative, the ability to get a degree of POSITIVE camber over the stock settings may increase tyre life. Lowering the auto to Euro - which is to state "design" - ride height will result in more negative camber than at US ride heights.

All this not to rag on those who may disagree but to demonstrate what my customers have taught me over the years.

Some forums might have deleted any who disagree with the Mods or Sponsors. One of the reasons I became involved with the M3Forum is their policy of not attacking fellow forums - NOTE: the lack of the word "competing" - and policy of allowing alternate views to be expressed as long as the debate doesn't deteriorate into name calling &c.


Dan Law
DERMotorSports@gmail.com
de_law@bellsouth.net

woptang22
Thu, Oct-21-2004, 08:24:46 PM
One more thing. I generally prefer people to get camberplates with their kits. Why, you may ask. From my experience:

1. People who purchase the Gentlemen's kit - which I will NOT sell without Upper Rear Shock Mounts for safety reasons BTW - in all but 1 case have later purchased the camberplates. This resulted in having to pay to get the plates installed (at least $200 more than just doing it with the suspension install) AND having to pay to get the auto cornerweighted (again at least $200 more).

2. Anyone even remotely suggesting they may do a driver's education or HPDE will completely destroy a set of front tyres in 1 day without camberplates. The cost of a one time purchase of camberplates pays for 1 track day without them.

3. Even for street drivers who are very conservative, the ability to get a degree of POSITIVE camber over the stock settings may increase tyre life. Lowering the auto to Euro - which is to state "design" - ride height will result in more negative camber than at US ride heights.

All this not to rag on those who may disagree but to demonstrate what my customers have taught me over the years.

Some forums might have deleted any who disagree with the Mods or Sponsors. One of the reasons I became involved with the M3Forum is their policy of not attacking fellow forums - NOTE: the lack of the word "competing" - and policy of allowing alternate views to be expressed as long as the debate doesn't deteriorate into name calling &c.


Dan Law
DERMotorSports@gmail.com
de_law@bellsouth.net
Thanks again for the help. You suggested the $1699 kit for me at first which I was going to purchase. But then I came to thinking if I needed that kit. I figured I would save some money and get the $999 kit with rear shock mounts. I just didnt know if everything was necessary since I will NEVER track the car. Just an everyday driver. I more or less want a kit that I can change ride height if necessary, but also avoid tire wear. And is that possible without the camber plates?

herkdriver007
Thu, Nov-04-2004, 05:03:35 PM
Dan- we've briefly conversed via e-mail and i'm curious, how do the rear shocks adjust (obviously the optional top-adjust shocks)? i'm curious to see if you have any pics of the installs you've been thru/seen. how does it look in trunk of the car? Thanks!! :thumbsup:

Dan Law
Thu, Nov-04-2004, 07:24:08 PM
We are doing an install in about a week wherein M3Forum is going to post DIYs with Pics AND create a VideoTape Series aimed at DIY mods.

Stay tuned.

Specifically, the rear top adjustable is identical to the front. Simply create an access hole using a holesaw of the proper size for the adjuster needed.

Dan Law
DERMotorSports@gmail.com

M3DON
Thu, Nov-04-2004, 11:31:16 PM
Dan- we've briefly conversed via e-mail and i'm curious, how do the rear shocks adjust (obviously the optional top-adjust shocks)? i'm curious to see if you have any pics of the installs you've been thru/seen. how does it look in trunk of the car? Thanks!! :thumbsup:

I have some pics... If you're interested, send me a PM w/ your email addy and I'll send some pics of the rear suspension install...

Btw, as one of Dan Law's customers, I must say he's a great dude... Very helpful in setting-up what was right for my car...

Peace...

DaveydM3
Fri, Nov-05-2004, 12:23:20 AM
The $1699 kit uses the shortened Konis. The car sits pretty low in front even at the highest setting (I have CC plates). Since you are worried about snow, the $999 kit uses the longer Koni SAs so you may be able to get a little more ride height up front. I'm sure Dan Law can get more specific. I just thought I would mention the shock length issuse since you are concerned about snow. Dan, please correct me if I'm wrong.

Also note that you will have to get an alignment every time you change the ride height.

I have the $1699 kit and love it on the street since I went with pretty soft springs 375/450. The Eibach sways and the CO kit make the car handle GREAT. Easily as good as my C5. BTW, do the RTABs while you are at it.

Fly'n DuthhMan
Fri, Nov-05-2004, 01:20:22 AM
I appreciate everybody trying to help out but please allow me to give a little background.

3. I would hope that I never reach the point in life where I would recommend something to a customer or even casual board surfer based on a desire to maximize profitability. Frankly, if I cared for money, I would return to the back stabbing world of corporate management (which I may be forced to do soon due to financial concerns). The point being I don't make a lot of money doing this. I do it because I love the industry and the manual work is therapeutic to a guy who in corporate life really never got to see the nuts and bolts of something from start to end - just sat in an office planning, meeting, dictating, and analyzing the work of others.


Dan Law
DERMotorSports@gmail.com
de_law@bellsouth.net

*pppffffeeewww*...I never seen you get this emotional about coilover supsension before... are you suggesting we'll all gain some social credits and be in better standing with our maker if we buy from you?

What your telling us is that buying the parts from you would be almost like a charitiable contribution in the sense that we'll be providing emotional support and a therapeutic outlet to a victim of the corporate rat race.

This is a novel new approach to internet sales, I have to admit.

Dan Law
Fri, Nov-05-2004, 02:17:07 AM
Flying Dutchman:

Now that was a great way to make friends.

I was referring to a post on another forum suggesting I make a significant mark up on this stuff and some subtleties that I base my recommendations on profit margin.

Those who have read my posts over the years will see that I do not base recommendations on what is most profitable nor even on what I sell. I will vocally suggest against a product in the lines I sell if it fails to deliver value. Conversly, I do often tout the benefits of value added products I don't carry.

As to your business, and any who feel as Flying Dutchman, please purchase elsewhere.

Dan Law
DERMotorSports@gmail.com

Fly'n DuthhMan
Fri, Nov-05-2004, 03:45:58 AM
Just getting your goat...not a flame.

Actually on the contrary I've enjoyed reading a lot of your input on the GC stuff. And it nice to see someone confirming my ideas on the different systems.

Keep up the good posts.

Flying Dutchman:

Now that was a great way to make friends.

I was referring to a post on another forum suggesting I make a significant mark up on this stuff and some subtleties that I base my recommendations on profit margin.

Those who have read my posts over the years will see that I do not base recommendations on what is most profitable nor even on what I sell. I will vocally suggest against a product in the lines I sell if it fails to deliver value. Conversly, I do often tout the benefits of value added products I don't carry.

As to your business, and any who feel as Flying Dutchman, please purchase elsewhere.

Dan Law
DERMotorSports@gmail.com

jonam
Fri, Nov-05-2004, 04:49:53 AM
*pppffffeeewww*...I never seen you get this emotional about coilover supsension before... are you suggesting we'll all gain some social credits and be in better standing with our maker if we buy from you?

What your telling us is that buying the parts from you would be almost like a charitiable contribution in the sense that we'll be providing emotional support and a therapeutic outlet to a victim of the corporate rat race.

This is a novel new approach to internet sales, I have to admit.
Believe me, it works out quite well :D... I have witenessed it since I got to know Dan. ;)

One question regarding your sig. Don't you adjust your camber/sways/spring settings at different tracks with different conditions accordingly? or do you drive only at one track?
I'm just curious. :roll:
I like your track wheel setup, BTW.

Fly'n DuthhMan
Fri, Nov-05-2004, 11:08:50 PM
Believe me, it works out quite well :D... I have witenessed it since I got to know Dan. ;)

One question regarding your sig. Don't you adjust your camber/sways/spring settings at different tracks with different conditions accordingly? or do you drive only at one track?
I'm just curious. :roll:
I like your track wheel setup, BTW.

I race mostly(85%) Buttonwillow and Big Willow Springs here in Socal, both tracks are pretty similar. Flat, fast, easy on brakes, no real tight sections. I had Jay set the intial set up for Buttonwillow, which requires a little more spring rate because you bang off the berms alot. I have a picture attached of the car on two wheels going through the S's at Buttonwillow. You can how much travel is being used up.

For example ...what I could do for Big Willow Springs, is set the car up to turn right better by raising the ride hieght on the left side etc, because all the turns that matter are right handers.

Before moving to Socal, I would do Laguana Seca and Sears/Infineon Raceway exclusively and I would probably adjut the set up for that track.

jonam
Sun, Nov-07-2004, 03:34:06 AM
I race mostly(85%) Buttonwillow and Big Willow Springs here in Socal, both tracks are pretty similar. Flat, fast, easy on brakes, no real tight sections. I had Jay set the intial set up for Buttonwillow, which requires a little more spring rate because you bang off the berms alot. I have a picture attached of the car on two wheels going through the S's at Buttonwillow. You can how much travel is being used up.

For example ...what I could do for Big Willow Springs, is set the car up to turn right better by raising the ride hieght on the left side etc, because all the turns that matter are right handers.

Before moving to Socal, I would do Laguana Seca and Sears/Infineon Raceway exclusively and I would probably adjut the set up for that track.
Living in southeast, I go to 5 different tracks. that's the ones I go often... CA is nice, but in terms of # of tracks around you, CA can't beat Southeast :D

what offsets are you running on your race and street wheels respectively? with what size of spacers? and what size of tires?
Currently looking for 10" all the way around wheel setup to run 265-285 tires..The offset seems getting very tricky as well as spacer size combo...I'd appreciate your input.

bee0818
Wed, Nov-17-2004, 10:07:20 PM
I have used set available for sale if you're interested:
http://www.m3forum.net/m3forum/showthread.php?t=47340