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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello, I recently acquired a '78 alfetta gtv. The initial driving experience was great, but I did notice a bit of body sway or roll when taking corners. The car is riding on koni shocks, and I was wondering if anyone had any suggestions for tuning the suspension? Also, will GTV6 springs fit on the alfetta?
 

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early gtv6 torsion bars will fit (they are the longer ones that go into the steel bolt on brace, not the short ones that fit into the body cross member) and will be a good street improvement - are about 25mm from memory. 27 29 and 30 are available sometimes, but are a bit big for a 4cyl street car

front anit roll bars can be obtained from 75/milano - std is 20mm and 22 24 and 26(?) is available 27 and 29 are aftermarket options but require chassis stiffening or they will rip your mounts off - no ****

rear springs you can get from almost anywhere - stock gtv6 or alfetta or 75 or 90 or... will fit but may require some mods for height - plenty of aftermarket options as a bit more rear rate makes these things much more fun to drive.

rear anti roll bars are a bugger to change (drop the trans) so tend not to be changed much, but bigger ones might be available from the later 75's ?not sure thou

koni shocks (either yellow or red) should work OK with all of that, if in good nick.

bushes and ball joints are important as is wheel align - note zero toe or some toe out is important to make these things turn, along with a bit of camber (-1 to -2, depending on how racy you are) and a lot of castor (3 to 4).

oh, and finally, a very important mod to making these things nicer to drive is to extend the steering column (eg use a spacer behind the wheel - at least 60 mm or so), drop the seat down as far as possible and bend the gear lever backwards - then you can get comfy behind the wheel and really enjoy the beautiful chassis balance inherent in the 116
 

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I took our Alfetta on a road called Highway 9 this weekend and the experience was amazing. It was the first time I drove the car at 10/10ths for a prolonged amount of time. Where the V6 cars would hesitate a bit on turn-in, the Alfetta just jumps to it. Also, the V6 cars seem to be a balancing act between understeer and corner speed, still enjoyable, but definitely lacking the actual balance of the 4 cylinder powered cars.

I have the full Shankle Sport kit (installed a loooong time ago on the car I think). It consists of 25.4mm torsion bars, 27mm F. sway bar, matching "sport" springs and a 25.4mm rear sway bar (which doesn't cause inside wheel spin because there's not enough torque for that to be a problem). This is a very comfortable ride that is still fun in the twisties. (As an aside, I essentially had the full Shankle SuperSport kit on my Milano and I was not a happy camper. Some people said it was neutral, I didn't feel that at all. It's possible there's something different in my situation I suppose).

If you want the most from your Alfetta, spend the money and get the full Shankle Sport kit, with decent tires I can assure you the Alfetta will hang in there with some much more modern machinery. I wouldn't recommend RSR for Alfettas, I can confirm that the sheet metal is in fact thinner on these cars than the later GTV6's in the drive shaft tunnel area, and the GTV6/Milanos already seem stressed a bit when using the coilovers.
 

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`61 Giulietta Spider, `65 Giulia Ti 1750, `69 GT junior 1600, `73 Spider 2000, `74 GTV 2000, `98 156
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Whats wrong with a bit of roll ? 116`s stick, there is no roll oversteer but they do settle from a car with quite strong understeer to a more neutral state as they lean more. Have you noticed what a good rider a 116 is on the std 70 series tyres and std suspension settings? Learn to trust it. For real life roads with bumps in corners, potholes and undulations the suspension works really well.
I`ve upset many a low riding stiffly sprung modified whatever on our roads because I`ve been able to hold my lines due to wheels still being on the tarmac and when really pushed a trusty no vice chassis which is not going to snap suddenly into oversteer or ultimately understeer so badly it won`t make it around a bend. Trust me you won`t land on the roof and you will get used to the lean. The harder you push this chassis the better it becomes-all they lack is power.
 

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Dont forget the basics. Its very easy (cheap) to dial in about 1 1/2 deg of neg camber in the front by spacing out the lower wishbones. Also dont go too low if changing the ride height. It makes the roll worse and rides harsh against the bump stops.
Drive and enjoy.
 

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`61 Giulietta Spider, `65 Giulia Ti 1750, `69 GT junior 1600, `73 Spider 2000, `74 GTV 2000, `98 156
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One lesson I`ve learnt over the years is to go back to perfect base first. As the cars have aged progressively bushes, joints ,and even springs ,sometimes age and deteriorate. Very seldom are we experiencing how the car actually came brand new from the factory. It is also a good base for improvement if you want to go that way because you have got the perfect base to measure against. In most real life situations though , where the car is used on the road, a perfect factory setup will open your eyes. You have to remember even the youngest 116 coupes sold in `87 are 22yrs old and the car is in conception a late `60s design when a lot of vertical wheel movement was designed into the suspension and the suspension was less reliant on a grippy low profile sticky tyre. A certain amount of controlled slide was designed into these cars rather than pure grip as in newer performance cars and the high profile tyre was also part of the suspension/ride equation. A 116 is in essence the ultimate in vintage chassis design but it is what it is an extremely good old school car like a Ferrari Daytona (which also rolls) Would you change that?
 

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"the GTV6/Milanos already seem stressed a bit when using the coilovers".

what are you basing that on? just coil overs in general or the RSR kit??
Sorry, I mean RSR coilovers, not coilovers as a general term.

Going at an angle into medium raked driveways you can hear/feel the chassis groan and creak on entry and exit. They're fantastic on the track though.
I've only had experience in Louis' coilovers, which are like 12kg and 7kg in the rear. I'm personally using 11kg fronts with dropped spindles and varying rates in the rear. I don't know if this is true or not, but on the freeway I think I can see the front end flex upwards when I hit a large dip at speed!
 

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On my milano I have 27mm torsionn bars and performatek rear sprinngs, and the rest is pretty much stock. It is not too stiff to drive fast on bumpy roads or to be comfortable on the freeway, although it seems the front is slightly too stiff for the koni shocks, as it is a little bit more bouncy than it was before.
 

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If you are not going to the track, the stock suspension is a great way to go. Go for good but not too stiff shocks (they overpower the relatively soft suspension). Make sure all the bushings, motor mounts and transaxle mounts are good. Try to find a decent set of 7x15 wheels with proper offset and a good set of modern tires - you can stuff in 205/55 or even 225/50. Lower the front a bit with some negative camber, perhaps 1.5 degrees, get a great alignment (zero toe, 3 degrees castor, 1.5 degrees camber as a starting point with 225/50 tires). An issue is low clearance for the front exhaust head pipes - get a sump guard or build up under the frame rails with steel plates. I had a 78 alfetta set up this way which was great fun to drive on real roads. The biggest improvement in FEEL and turn-in came when I ditched the stock bumpers - first with fabricated steel tubes and then true Euro bumpers - losing that weight (bumpers and the bumper shocks) at the ends made the car come alive. {OK, engine had a lot more grunt with webers and a very nicely done head, cams with Euro exhaust manifolds, no cat., but that stuff came after the car already felt great with the minor suspension mods and tires. You can get usable performance improvement with the European style exhuast or tube header, no cat, better cams, and more agressive cam timing if local emissions are not an issue - without ditching the SPICA system if yours works well}.

I currently have a GTV6 set up with the traditional old-school "supersport" suspension, 28mm bars, stiffer/lower rear springs, sway bars, yellow konis, poly bushings, lsd, 3.0, s cams, no cat, fiberglass bumpers. I think the Alfetta still "felt" better, especially on rougher secondary roads. I'm thinking of ditching the "supersport" suspension set-up since I can't seem to get to the track these days. Don't have the time or money for the RSR stuff!
 

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Sorry, I mean RSR coilovers, not coilovers as a general term.

Going at an angle into medium raked driveways you can hear/feel the chassis groan and creak on entry and exit. They're fantastic on the track though.
I've only had experience in Louis' coilovers, which are like 12kg and 7kg in the rear. I'm personally using 11kg fronts with dropped spindles and varying rates in the rear. I don't know if this is true or not, but on the freeway I think I can see the front end flex upwards when I hit a large dip at speed!
Wow, thats interesting? mine doesn't behave like that at all. I have RSR front kit and 30mm front roll bar, on medium spring rate. Its lowered about 35mm. It's lowered only a little on the torsion bars themselves, so as not to make them too ineffective. The groaning and creaking will more likely be far too much poly installed. Mine behaves herself impecably, without any flexing or groaning, creaking at all. How far did you go with the torsion bars?? I have been in other GTv6's before where too much lowering was done on the torsion bars, before the coilovers were installed. Result was too much torsion was taken away from the bars, and I think the car tended to be very harsh, since the coil overs were directing all of the dissipated energy through the body and chassis, instead of the torsion bars still doing a fair bit of the work, ALONG with the coil overs.
 

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What chassis do you have? Milano/GTV6?

For instance, I remember holding my arm out the window and placing my hand on the roof and top of the door frame while my buddy pulled into a parking lot driveway. Not only could I hear the flexing, the door moved in my hand a noticeable amount! This is in a Milano, I don't know if the GTV6 is significantly more rigid?
 

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Just open the 75's door, and push it towards the a-pillar, you can see the sheet metal where the door mounts to flex. Louis and I were talking about this like 10 years ago at an APE Swap meet. We've since resigned to that fact...

The roof sheet metal and the "reinforcement brace" is a total joke, a bad italian joke. This is for a non-sunroof car. Maybe cars with sunroofs are slightly stiffer due to the extra sheet metal meant for the sunroof's mount.

Compare this to the E30, which has a MUCH more rigid chassis. Only thing is the E30 is much more twitchy and less fun as a whole.

But who cares, as a package, the 75 is still a great car.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Wow...busy weekend, and haven't been on alfabb...Just wanted to thank everyone for their replies! Driving the car, I've begun to realize that the car does have a certain amount of roll, but its neutral, its not gonna get loose in the corners. I guess I'm still getting used to it, and i've just got to learn to "Trust it". I don't think i'll be investing in a fully adjustable suspension, as it's not a track car. Time to start enjoying the Alfetta!
 

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I may have some uprated Shankle suspension to sell you if you are interested. They are the aforementioned 25.4mm torsion bars and matching springs if you are interested. You can PM off the boards if you want to talk.

Otherwise, enjoy your Alfetta, I sure have been enjoying ours =)
 
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