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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I am planning a new suspension for my 74 GTV. I am looking for something that is "better" than stock, but something that is tried & true by many. My requirements: nice street performance, reasonable ride, ride height that won't scrape my sump guard on street dips and a reliably "good stance" without a bunch of spring spacer trial and error.

I've read through a fair number of threads...seems to get complex quickly with spring coil counts, rebound rates, etc. I just want something tried and true that I can install and be happy without a lot of tinkering. I'll be running 65 or 60 profile tires.

To that end it seems a pretty standard setup is:
  • Centerline springs
  • Koni Reds in front
  • Koni Yellow in back
  • OEM sway bars
Is anyone running this suspension? Do you think it meets my criteria above?

Thanks!
 

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I would think Reds front and rear. Front 1/2 way and rear full soft. If I was to do my springs I would consider Eibach, I have heard good things about them.
 

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If you drive on mainly smooth roads then you may be happy with those stiff springs.
 

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check out either Alfaholics or Classicalfas offerings, usually involves removing rear sway bar, by all account not a bad way to go. I have the CA version on my 74 GTV, but haven't had the chance to drive it yet since the restoration is awaiting a few shakedown miles.
 

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All of the aftermarket "fast road" springs will give you much improved handling, but at a definite price in roughness, and poor clearance over speed bumps and the like. As an earlier poster noted, quite nice on smooth surfaces. For everyday driving, you'll get tired of getting kicked around, and hearing scraping noises.

I recommend finding regular Euro springs to replace the US springs that were longer to meet bumper and headlight height requirements. Then, red Konis, all full soft. I'd leave on the rear sway bar with this combination.

The result will be noticeably better handling, comfortable ride, and everyday clearances over real-world roads.

I did the fast-road conversion on my Montreal. Thrilling on smooth roads. It got to where I wouldn't take it out if I was just driving around town, because of the speed bumps, driveway berms, less-than-perfect road surfaces, and so on. Any mod that makes you NOT want to drive your car should be considered closely.

But yes, taking it through the Sierras on great roads was brilliant.
 

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The Centerline springs are similar to the old IAP springs. They were designed back in the day when the most popular wheel/tire set was a 205/60x14 or 185/70x14 with soft sidewalls. They work on a racetrack, but I found them to be much too stiff for poor quality roads.

They were replaced with a set of Alfaholics fast road springs which provide a much more comfortable ride while still be significantly stiffer and better handling that the stock setup. You can get the Alfaholics springs in different ride heights.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
@brad fischer - yes you are right...Koni reds on rear and yellows up front...I wrote it backwards above.

OK - so it sounds like many find the Centerline springs a bit harsh. This is what I really needed to know. Seems shocks and keeping the OEM swaybars are a pretty straightforward decisions for a "fast" street car. It's the springs that require some thought.

@DPeterson3 - I had same scraping issue with my 69 Spider. Go where it really took the joy out of driving it as I was always scanning the road for a dip that would cause a bottom out. Put in some spacers and mostly solved it. Agree - don't want to be there again.
 

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Springs will affect the ride and handling more than shocks. Red and yellow Konis are not that different when they are set on full soft. SPAX shocks are good, they are easy to adjust and they have a wide range of adjustment.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I have SPAX on my 69 Spider. Came with the car. I'm not a huge fan of gas shocks, but I actually like them a lot.
 

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My GTV came with red Koni's front and rear, Shankle silver springs, Shankle front swaybar (oversize bar with plate steel ends) and stock rear swaybar. I replaced the Shankle springs with Centerline yellow springs, kept the red Koni's but set them 1/4 from full soft, and kept both swaybars. The car rides much better but still feels like a sports car and corners like a go-kart. I have been very happy with the setup and I don't find the ride too harsh. However, it all depends on how you want the car to handle and ride. In the end if it is a car meant for the street, there will always be handling compromises, it should be setup to your liking.
 

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I had a Shankle front swaybar and I removed it. It is now on Richard Jemison's new race car. My Spider handles much better on bumpy roads with the stock bar. I had to dial in more rebound on the front shocks after the change. I have no sway bar on the rear.
 

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Koni reds should be in the rear and yellows in the front .... but the SPAX low pressure gas shocks that you got on your Spider are better.

Springs. Stiffer in the front regardless of source will protect your sump even if lowered. However try not to lower too much ... use shims to avoid front lower A-arms from pointing upwards ... otherwise your now subterranean roll-center will require spring rates or a front bar that will not work well with rough roads.

I am planning a new suspension for my 74 GTV. I am looking for something that is "better" than stock, but something that is tried & true by many. My requirements: nice street performance, reasonable ride, ride height that won't scrape my sump guard on street dips and a reliably "good stance" without a bunch of spring spacer trial and error.

I've read through a fair number of threads...seems to get complex quickly with spring coil counts, rebound rates, etc. I just want something tried and true that I can install and be happy without a lot of tinkering. I'll be running 65 or 60 profile tires.

To that end it seems a pretty standard setup is:
  • Centerline springs
  • Koni Reds in front
  • Koni Yellow in back
  • OEM sway bars
Is anyone running this suspension? Do you think it meets my criteria above?

Thanks!
 

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I was also curious about this. Can you run the Eibach springs front and back with everything else standard?
Maybe just upgrade to Red Koni shocks.
 

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As another data point, I’m running Centerline Performance springs with Koni reds on my otherwise bone stock 66 Giulia Sprint GT Veloce. I have a front anti-sway bar but none on the rear with stock 15” steelies and 155/15 Pirellis. I absolutely love the way the car steers and handles. It doesn’t have the grip of wider wheels and rubber, but it just feels right, and the ride is comfortable and compliant.

-tj in the Cruz Mtns

I am planning a new suspension for my 74 GTV. I am looking for something that is "better" than stock, but something that is tried & true by many. My requirements: nice street performance, reasonable ride, ride height that won't scrape my sump guard on street dips and a reliably "good stance" without a bunch of spring spacer trial and error.

I've read through a fair number of threads...seems to get complex quickly with spring coil counts, rebound rates, etc. I just want something tried and true that I can install and be happy without a lot of tinkering. I'll be running 65 or 60 profile tires.

To that end it seems a pretty standard setup is:
  • Centerline springs
  • Koni Reds in front
  • Koni Yellow in back
  • OEM sway bars
Is anyone running this suspension? Do you think it meets my criteria above?

Thanks!
 

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I put the Centerline springs in 91 Spider years ago ……… probably same as they sell today. Changed nothing else. It definitely improved handling with little change in comfort. But they also definitely lowered the car …….. you have to be much more careful about bottoming out changing road surfaces (i.e. turning off street into a parking lot) ………….. I keep thinking about adding shims to raise it back up; but don't get it done.
 

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Hi, I have just ordered new springs/shocks and bushes from Classic Alfa for my 1967 S2 stepfront junior.....I have attached their recommendation:

Hi, I'm looking for your thoughts on updating my 1967 S2 Stepfront GT Junior.
The car still has (To my knowledge) original suspension components and steel wheels with the exception of some bushings and track rod ends that I have replaced.
I am looking to fit new springs and dampers (Konis Reds or yellows or a mix ??) and perhaps also new alloy wheels and tyres, the car is for road use only.
I would quite like to have a lower ride height but not firm up the ride too much, hence going for 14in rather than 15in wheels.
The car feels a little loose at the rear end and quite crashy/jolty over poor surfaces.....I suspect that's most likely due to worn components and age.

Classic Alfa response:

I’ve attached a quotation showing the parts I recommend. You can type those part numbers into the search box on our website to see more information.

I included springs (Eibach and Koni Reds all round.) which are slightly stiffer and lower but still softer than our most popular handling kit. I included uprated bush kits which use rubber where this is best and polyurethane where the standard bushes are known to be too weak. The car should ride better than new, without being over-stiff.

I included 6 x 14” wheels. The key is not to go too wide with the tyres as this can spoil the steering feel.
 

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Crackie...I've got Centerline springs, Koni reds at full soft. Been running these for a long time. i have no complaints.

Observations:
- The car does sit low...with the sump protector on, I bottom out on a soda can (USA) laying horizontally.
- The car handles like a go cart.
- I recently (yesterday) replaced my aged Yokohama 205/60/14 summer performance tires with some General 195/60/14 grand touring tires - that has made a difference. Considerably softer than the ride was with the Yokos. not quite as "go cart" as before, still fun though.
- I drove 200 miles on backroads yesterday and noted that there is slight understeer. I'm running 32 psi front/30 psi rear. I'll play with the air pressure and report back.
 

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As another data point, I’m running Centerline Performance springs with Koni reds on my otherwise bone stock 66 Giulia Sprint GT Veloce. I have a front anti-sway bar but none on the rear with stock 15” steelies and 155/15 Pirellis. I absolutely love the way the car steers and handles. It doesn’t have the grip of wider wheels and rubber, but it just feels right, and the ride is comfortable and compliant.

-tj in the Cruz Mtns
Well that's good to hear, as this will be essentially my Duetto setup when finished. I have the yellow Centerline springs and all new bushings. The '67 had no rear bar and I've always wondered about that.

Thanks!
 

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Having run both the "Centerline style" set up, and the "Alfaholics style" set up I will chime in with my $.02 worth...
I will echo two things from previous posts that I think are most important to consider. First, how do YOU want your car to handle? And, what are your expectations for both where u will drive, and what you want your car to be capable of.
When I was running the Centerline type set up, I was very happy with with it, and I will concur with the description used by others here, that it was like a go kart. However, by that I mean it was very stiff, and the suspension did not move much, so the majority of the handling feel was a result of tire grip, and much less from suspension compliance. On a smooth road, with grippy tires, it felt great, and cornered very flat. However, even slightly rough roads were rattle going slow, and upset the car going faster. Since the factory suspension had much more lean in cornering, the stiffer suspension with flatter cornering just seemed faster, especially when paired with modern grippy tires.
I read an article later about different approaches in suspension between North American tuners, and those in Europe that got me interested, and I sourced and installed the fast road kit from Alfaholics, along with koni fellows all around, as well as their recommendations for bushings, and removal of the rear sway bar, (however, I waited to remove the rear bar until I installed everything else, and tried it out with ). The most noticeable difference was how much more lean there was dialed back into cornering. However, not nearly as much as factory, and in spite of the lean, it felt grippy, but more tossable. it felt smooth, but when the rear sway bar was removed, it seemed even more smooth, and definitely improved feeling here when transitioning corners. Further, this set up was simply more compliant, letting the suspension "work" more, and therefore even lowered about an inch the same as with the Centerline set up, bottomed out less and was less harsh over rough roads.
Being lowered, both setups were challenged over speed bumps.
I don't race, and haven't autocrossed in years, so I have no idea which setup was numbers quicker, but they both felt better and faster to me than factory, but just in different ways.
 
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