Drag Racing Suspension? - Mustang Evolution

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Old 04-23-2016, 08:45 PM   #1
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Drag Racing Suspension?

Hey guys - new to the forums here, first post . I looked and searched around, but didn't find the answer to exactly what I was looking for.

Basically what I am looking for, is an outline of all suspension parts which should be upgraded / added / modded for hard launches at the drag strip. I am curious what something like an 8-9 second car's suspension entails to handle 1000+ HP. I am currently no where near the 1000 HP mark, but I'd like an idea of what it takes to build a suspension of that nature, as I can apply the same concepts to my GT over the next couple years.

And please, refrain from using acronyms when describing specific parts. Thanks in advance for any replies.
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Old 04-24-2016, 12:57 PM   #2
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The more traction you build combined with power equals broken parts. When you launch from a dead stop on a prepped surface a lot of energy is transferred through the crank, transmission, u bolts and drive shaft, rear differential, axles, hubs, and finally the tires. Just imaging hitting the parts as hard as you can with a sledge hammer. You will find weak links (even in the best parts made) and things will break.

That said; if you are serious about racing be ready to invest a lot of money into clutches, gears, and anything that is affected by torque. I'm not telling you this to discourage you. I am telling yous this because I want you to be prepared and have a good time.

Tires are the final contact your car has with the tarmac. You want a soft compound tire that is as wide as possible for your application. More rubber on the ground equals more traction. You will have to play with the air pressure in order to find out what gives you the best results. Most guys are running between 12 - 20 lbs depending on the power being put down. You have to find the perfect compromise because low pressure tires affect rolling resistance after the launch.

Assuming you have the gears you want, and the rear drive train is solid, you need to remove the factory suspension. The stock components are not designed for racing. You are going to want a bit of absorption that will allow the car to shift as much weight as possible to the rear. Fully adjustable coilovers are your best option. You will want the ability to raise or lower the car in half inch increments (sometimes less). You also want to ability to adjust spring stiffness and rebound. You do not want the rear of the car to squat and immediately return to pre launch height. You want the springs to slowly and progressively return to their unloaded state.

Still concerning the coilovers: The shocks will also need to dampen the launch without becoming solid, which will attribute to wheel hop that will lift the car off the track. You will quickly lose traction if any hop is present.

Now that you have a car that transfers weight properly it is imperative that you address the rear suspension (how the rear axle attached to the frame). You do not want to go with parts that are stamped metal or cheap. Cheap parts break, and cars crash. It sucks to slingshot into a wall because you wanted to save a few dollars. Spend more now and save money later. I like Fully adjustable, custom made four link systems. In my opinion you need to be able to adjust each and every bar. If you are a 1/16 of an inch out you will not launch or track straight. If you have to fight the car down the track you will lose valuable time. You will also destroy you car, and possibly your opponent's if you cannot adjust things to compensate for how your car reacts to the track. Every track surface is different. Every lane is different.

Now that I have given you a general idea of what you need, tell me where you are with your car. What are you running now? How much power are you putting to the ground? How is the car reacting? With that information other members as well as myself can tell you what to address first, and the best part to go with for your application.



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Old 04-24-2016, 12:59 PM   #3
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...and an 8 second car is going to do a wheelstand without wheelie bars or good clutch and throttle control. You cannot get around physics. Some things are inevitable.

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Old 04-29-2016, 01:58 PM   #4
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**edited - if you don't have a 2005-2014 S197 chassis, you can ignore my post **

using the cobra jet mustang as an example, it's a pretty simple suspension setup: https://performanceparts.ford.com/cobra-jet/#cj-2008

springs http://www.summitracing.com/parts/fm...0-ra/overview/

strange single adjustable front struts
http://www.summitracing.com/parts/st.../model/mustang (consider upgrading to GT500 strut mounts while you're in there)

lightweight radiator support (remove front sway bar and bracket)
2005-2011Tubular radiator support. (Eliminates front sway bar and mount)

strange single adjustable rear shocks
http://www.summitracing.com/parts/st.../model/mustang

upper control arm (w/bracket) + lower control arms + anti-roll bar
S197 Team Z designed the CJ suspension setup, and this kit is almost identical to what goes into the solid axle CJ builds.



adjustable panhard bar
Pan Hard Bar, S197 Mustang, Team Z, PErformance Suspension, 2005-2014 Mustang, Suspension

drag wheels/tires of your choosing and you're just about done.

Ford puts 9" rear ends in CJ's, but an 8.8 can suffice if built/braced properly. At a minimum you'll probably want to upgrade the differential (eaton truetrac, or full spool) to handle hard launches. Consider a differential cover with load bolts to help keep things in place too (LPW makes a low profile one for ford 8.8 rears that clears the panhard bar https://www.lpwracing.com/Ultra_FORD/Ultra_FORD.html)

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Old 04-29-2016, 03:12 PM   #5
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What year is your car? This will be the first step to determining your suspension.

You'll need a good angle finder and a good tape measure. Most important tools when it comes to suspension.

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Old 04-29-2016, 03:25 PM   #6
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We know nothing about your car but you want recommendations? Typical.
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Old 04-30-2016, 01:59 PM   #7
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I guess my question was more geared to hard core drag racing suspensions in general, not necessarily to my specific vehicle, reason I left that information out. Thinking further, the suspension would differ per each car chassis... was a poorly formed question - my fault.

Anyways, here is my current suspension setup:
2013 GT S197
J&M Adjustable Panhard Bar
J&M Extreme LCAs
SR Springs
Eibach Pro Damper Shocks / Struts
Swarr 8.8 Differential / Axel Brace

@lindertw that is a fantastic set of info. Using the CJ setup as a model, that will give me a great foundation to start building upon. This is essentially what I was hoping to get out of my post - thank you.

@Revv thanks for the intuitive and welcoming post. Glad I chose Mustang Evolution.
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