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Does Anyone Track a 1st Gen Without Tri-Link/Panhard?

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Does Anyone Track a 1st Gen Without Tri-Link/Panhard?

Old 03-28-12, 11:18 AM
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Does Anyone Track a 1st Gen Without Tri-Link/Panhard?

I'm interested in hearing from anyone who has or still does track a 1st gen with the stock watts setup. I'm potentially buying an IT7 project that has the stock setup and was curious if it's possible/safe to run it that way with springs, sway bars, and shocks for a while before I go the tri-link/panhard route.

I've read tons of stories, some say it's fine, some say you will die, I have never driven either on track so have no idea.

If you DO or DID run this way, what was your setup? Just looking for a mid pack reliable car right now to get seat time in, so I know it wouldn't be competitive, just looking for general input.
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Old 03-28-12, 12:52 PM
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Pro7 was huge in the 90's and they ALL ran the stock watts, per the rules.

the rear is simple in those, its just 175# springs (ground control sells them with some dead coils at the top, so you can adjust ride height, Respeed does height adjusters), pull the sway bar off, add tokico illumina shocks, and done.

the front is a 350 spring, with coilovers, camber plates, big sway bar, and Mr2 illuminas.

the stock rear makes life interesting, but its totally trackable. there are plenty of threads about the problems with the stock rear, but i can summarize.

the watts has a high roll center, and its a fixed point, whereas the front roll center drops as you lower the car. the panhard kits, lower the roll center, primarily. even the competition parts from 1979 lower the watts pivot.
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Old 03-28-12, 06:20 PM
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I used to see all kind of them before the trilink became popular. If you look at the Racing Beat front bar, its size was based on the fact you needed to lock up the front suspension to match how f*cked up the rear is stock. And you know what, they were pretty fast that way for years.
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Old 03-29-12, 07:18 AM
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Very trackable with the stock linkage in the rear! Our POS-7 runs in IT7/PTE/Chumpcar now going on 4 years. We are running single adjustable Konis for rear shocks and no rear bar. Front setup is camber plates, double adjustable Konis, 375# springs, and an ST sway bar. We freshened up all the rear Watts linkages and control arms with new before we started. Its been real fun and incredibly reliable.

Nothing to be worried about. It handles very neutral with just a hint of understeer. We can tune that easily with tire pressure depending on track conditions.
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Old 03-29-12, 05:50 PM
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We had 2 break during a 12 hour enduro once. Not sure why. The first one had seasons of sprint racing on it. The following year we changed the rods to heim joints and did not have a problem
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Old 03-31-12, 11:00 PM
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My spec7 is using the stock rear suspension (just diffrent springs, shocks and sway bar) only problem I have with it is that if you get on some agressive curbing (big bumps/waves) it can pick the entire rear end up but thats probbly more to do with the live rear axle then anything else.
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Old 04-04-12, 07:43 AM
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I have the Mazda Comp ITA kit on my formerly ITA 7. Which as listed above is the Ground control, eibach spring Tokiko shock setup.
I added the harder bushings to it front and rear.

Daytona Turn 1 down into the infield.. Its horrrrrible if you take the turn properly. If all goes well and you nail it perfectly, high speed steady state, and zing through there... about halfway into the turn, possibly 2/3 It is as if the driveline has a huge crowbar wedged into it, and it is holding the car. Its amazingly painful to try to drive because it DOES completely bind up the car. The enging lugs, and the car sorta groans.

On Sebring as in the clip below, the two factors the car has that are bad are evident....

Bump Steer
Binding of the rear to a minor extent.

If you watch in turn 1 on the two different laps, watch my hand on the wheel. Its a constant fight turning in and out of the corner over the massive ripples/bumps. (Its a former B-17 training base from WWII.. my dad actually learned to fly B17s there, and the concrete was wavy back then he said)
The car gets nicely loose and tight alternating over bumps.. so it makes turn 1 really exciting.

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Old 04-04-12, 12:01 PM
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I haven't tracked my car, but I do autocross it regularly. The biggest challenge is getting control of the "snap oversteer" that comes along with the stock suspension. This is the point where the suspension moves as far as it can, and then binds.

If you lower the car a bit, and use high quality swaybars (like hollow Respeed on front), then you can limit the amount of body roll, which in turn limits the overall movement of the suspension. I run the stock Watts link setup, and have no issues with it. In fact, I've had a Trilink/Panhard setup sitting on the shelf for a few years now, but haven't seen a need to install it.

Gforce is one of the original places to produce stuff for our cars, and they know their stuff. They are, however, moving away from 1st gen stuff.

My preference is www.re-speed.com They helped me set my car up the way I wanted it, products were great, and customer service outstanding.

Hope this helps.

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Old 04-04-12, 10:52 PM
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I think a lot of factor. is how many HP you get , for a almost stock HP with DOT tires, you can pretty much get away with it, and it can consider fun to drive

but with 200HP+. the car pretty much very edge to drive......
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