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Discussion Starter #1
Hi,
I know that you probably get tired of answering repeat questions, every time a "newbie" joins the site, but here goes:

'88 Milano Verde - stock standard - 80K miles;

What is the optimum suspension setup for mostly street use, but some track days - usually pretty aggressive driving all-round? I don't want to rattle my teeth out, but I do like a firm setting. I want bigger - maybe 17" - wheels (eventually) but I am running standard wheels right now. I want to do away with the "darty" ball on center/wandering feel (at higher speed) and the Town Car-style wobbling in the sweeper corners...

I have some 27mm torsion bars headed this way - yes/no? Some don't like the "jacked-up" look in the rear of the Milanos, I know, so a lower ride-height would be OK, but not a must. (Will I be screwing the pooch with lower ride-height when I get bigger wheels?)

What shocks in rear? Can I do coilovers front/rear? (I don't realy need adjustable for what I'll be doing...) What would be esential to replace on the DeDion setup at this stage? What else should be replaced front/rear to tighten things up? Who do I buy from? What brands? What should I NOT do...?

So please, tell me, tell me: Where can I find the Holy Grail?
 

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This is a good topic, and you will get lots of responses on this one. The problem is, it's not a black and white thing. What you consider "teeth rattling" could be perfectly OK to someone else (hard to believe, I know).

I've been down this road too many times, and eventually settled on the suspension setup by Beninca Motors in Australia. They sell a whole kit consisting of a pair of torsion bars, springs, and a full set of Koni yellows tuned to their torsion bar rate/spring rate.

The result is a marvelous handling 75/Milano while not punishing on the street.

OK, what prompted me to tell the conclusion before the story this time around is because I've learned something valuable over time. And that is, unless you are equipped to do the job right, mixing and matching suspension components rarely gets you the right combination. Your mileage may vary of course, but my requirements started out very similar to yours and I never gave up when my setup was "close enough" to what I wanted. This led me through various Shankle torsion bars, Spax adjustable shocks, Koni yellows, Koni reds, Sparco rear progressive rate springs, and other stuff. Needless to say, I did not find comfort nor performance in the aforementioned. So I kept looking (in fact, I have a set of Bilsteins on eBay right now if you want to try it out, it's going for less than $100 for the pair as I type this!)

Good luck in your endeavour, it's going to be a long journey.
 

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Heh - it looks like I'm the only one who's unhappy about my Milano's handling! Sorry bud, I'm all you have!
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks for your reply

I appreciate the input.

I was surprised that none of the guys responded who have done the major conversions on these cars... I guess that the kind of R&D that went into say, Chip's car for instance, is considered proprietary?
I can handle that...
 

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Well you are certainly not the only one. If so, there wouldn'e be so many milanos with aftermarket suspention pieces.

I doubt 17" will work with milanos, you'd be left with a rubberband on a rim, and expect to spend another gran fixing the wheels in the next few years before tires wear out. 16s are probably as big as you wanna go if a street car it s. You really have to consider using some really light weight wheels as I see the tiny wheel bearings probably won't last very long with very large and heavy wheels...

I certainly agree about what nizam sez about mixing match suspention pieces. I've had my shares, but I think a driver's driving style also have something to do about "best" suspention setup.

Currently I have shankle sport front torsion, shankle sport front sway bar, shankle sport rear springs (with spacers to raise the height) and stock rear bar (used to have shankle sport rear bar too). Koni yellows all around. I find the car very nice to drive comfortably so I am sticking with it. In comparing to what Beninca's setup, mine's in the same direction as Beninca's. I think it's a safe bet to go with beninca's.

have fun playing with suspentions.

Jess
88 Verde
95 LS
 

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I have all the secret answers to Milano suspensions....


I could tell you, but then I'd have to kill you! ;)

Just kidding :D

My car has Shankle Supersport 27.3mm torsion bars, 143 lb/in rear springs, Verde front swaybar, Koni sports (yellow) and poly bushings everywhere. It handles very well, but it's also very firm. Not harsh really, but nice and tight feeling. It was kinda harsh at first, but after trimming the bumpstops and some messing with the rebound adjustment on the Konis I am pretty happy with it.

Some things I've not been very happy about in the past:
- SZ DeDion spherical bushing: fine at first, a little harsh... but then after a while it started making all sorts of horrible noises.

- Alfa Heaven eccentric upper A-arm bushings (Camber adjusters): They eliminate the bushing completely and replace with solid metal... very harsh.

- Ricambi/Shankle supersport front swaybar: Too stiff I think. The mounting points are weak so you have to weld in reenforcement plates and then they still crack.

I recommend buying as much poly as you can. It makes such a huge difference compared to the squishy 14+ year old rubber crap. Between Performatek and AlfaBill you can replace pretty much all of the rubber under the car with poly. People also seem to forget about tires and alignment settings, and they both have a huge impact on the car's handling. I always see people with bunches of money into suspension and "Defender" brand tires or something cheap and hard. Sticky tires on a mildy modified suspension will outhandle a car with lots of mods and all-season touring tires.

I'm currently putting together a new Milano project for my daily driver and it's going to have 17x7.5" wheels with 225/45/17 tires. Ask me in a month and I'll let you know if they hold up or not ;) Luckily the roads around here aren't too bad. I ran the 17's on my last car (Subaru WRX) with the same size tires and they seem to have held up well to the occasional pothole abuse. Performance tires with a 45 profile or less don't do anything good for ride comfort however.

Nizam seems to be very happy with his Beninca setup. I'll have to try that some day. I had thought of putting it in this new Milano project, but it's even stiffer than the Ricambi Supersport stuff. When I put my racecar back together it'll have the Beninca goodies.

Your mileage may (WILL!) vary.
 

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My setup:

Front:
AVO Coilover with 150 lbs/in springs
Stock torsion bars
3.0 sway bar
Powerflex castor rod bushing

Rear:
Shankle Sport springs
SPAX gas shocks
stock sway bar
Powerflex dedion bushing


You can also try out rsracing.nl for a good coilover setup. I think I may go that route soon. I just need the front coilover setup.
 

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There are many different answers to the Milano/75 handling issues as you can see. Based upon my experience with my two Milanos and those of many others, I would have to say that it is very much a "buyer beware" regarding the available upgrades.

The complete setup from Beninca or RSR are good because they look after the entire package. You would be well-advised to ask them (if you were to buy their kits) what tire/wheel package they recommend.

Here in the USA, the Shankle company produced the set-ups and systems now widely available. They had three packages: sport. super-sport and race. Unless you are building a race car (in which case there's a lot of stuff you can do to improve handling), you are almost always better off changing your entire suspension system, than changing only one or two items.
 

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I emailed Joe Beninca about a month ago and these are the prices he gave me:

Prices are in AUS dollar excluding duty & freight.

Torsion bars (28.7mm) - $580
Rear springs - $180
Custom valved Konis - $900 (full set of four)
Rear adjustable swaybar - $500
Rear roll center lowering kit - $300
Front uprights higher roll center kit - $750

Around $300-400 for shipping to the US.

So that comes out to be almost $1300 US Dollars for the t-bars, springs & shocks... or $2300 if you get everything including the swaybar and the front & rear roll center kits.

Not cheap, but supposedly worth it (according to Nizam).
 

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Thanks Chip...hmm...do you know how much that whole kit will lower the car? I kind of like it at the stock ride height. My old Verde had cut springs, and I later went to the Shankle Super Sports (from JessL ;) ) and the height was ok...still probably a bit too low.

Ted
 

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Here's a pic of Nizam's car that I took at Willow Springs last year. It should give you an idea of the ride height with the Beninca stuff.

You know it's not hard to get the ride height you want. If it's too low then you can add spring spacers in the rear to get it where you want it, and of course you can adjust the front height by turning the torsion bars.
 

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Zamani should post here how he feels about the Beninca setup on my car. I can (and have) written about how it feels, and suits my driving style. It's the perfect compromise for street and track, IMHO.

Worth every penny, even at today's exchange rates. You just have to get over the price, which after installation, I quickly forgot. Yes, it's that good.
 

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rear ride hight can be easily adjusted, get spaces from APE etc. Front hight takes A LOT to adjust...

So, right now we have the following flavors:

1. Beninca - Nizam
2. Shanke sport / Koni yellow (and a lot spacers) - Jess
3. Avo / shankle - 75evo
4. Shankle super and mix - Alfaracer75

junglejustice, are you getting confused?! :)

Jess
 

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You can also contact Ron Simons at: [email protected]
Ron Simons races a Ferrari and an Alfa GVT6 24V. He has a huge amound of experience on the transaxel setup and has develloped new transaxelparts for the Alfetta GTV and Alfa75 / Milano.

He can give you all the info on suspention!!

A visit from the members of the Alfa75Register at RSRacing - Eindhoven NL: http://www.alfa75.info/RSRacingMeeting.html

Best regards,
Ram6

PS. I`m new to this BB.
Ciao Alfisti, my name is Ramses and my car is an Alfa75 3.0 V6 QV.
 

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Wow, those look really cool. I must have that set up for my race car!

I like Beninca's setup, don't get me wrong, but the allure of coilovers is just overwhelming!

Thanks Ramses!

BTW - if my car looks 'tall' in the pic above, it's because I was running 205/45/16 tires which are shorter than my usual 205/50/16's. The 50-series tires fill out the wheel well more.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Thanks;

Wow! You guys are all really cool; thank you so much for all of the feedback. I still don't know how the thread "jumped" back to the top after I had posted it so long ago...?

Any way, thanks.

So, here's a question: Which suspension set-up is best for the Milano? (Just kidding guys...)
 

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Very strange this discussion, seems like depending on the continent you get very different answers.

I got Bilsteins Sport/sprint all around and rear springs from MT-Motor (in Sweden) which they call Steg 2 (stage 2) haven't had the time to change the bars yet but the plan is 30mm from MT, I have driven a lightened TS with this setup and I was amazed when I felt how firm and nice the front was. I thought it would be MUCH harcher but I was wrong. :)

Lots of poly in the suspension as well and of course the ball joint in the caster-rod (which is the best upgrade ever IMHO, NO drawbacks and the feeling in the front is now fantastic, great feedback and absolutely no extra vibrations or noise.

The Koni shocks is in my opinion utterly useless, positively NO damping in the compression direction but you can set rebound from "bicycle-pump" to "steel rod" but can you get them the same all around without a shock-dyno? I don't think so.
The Bilsteins may feel a bit stiff when you drive slow, like below 30Mph, but when at speed they are REALLY nice with a nice rate in both bump and rebound. The MT springs/bars are designed to work with the Bilsteins so that might be the trick.
The konis tend to be very "jumpy" when you give them a high rate spring to work with. They also leak too often...
There's also a race version of the Bilsteins which are shorter for lowered cars. I use drop-stop wires in the rear now to keep the springs from falling out when lifting in the body.
 

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Well I'm almost ready to get the coil over thing happening on the75 2.5, using avo shocks unless there are cheaper options...

. I'm keeping the orignal torsion bars but i'm unsure about the rate of the springs and the length of the shock to get. 150 lbs were mention but for a twin spark.

Evo 75, what's your setup/experience if you dont mind me asking?

does anyone use smaller diameter rear shocks? how do you mount them on the top at the rear?

thanks,
Martin in Sydney
 

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Hi,

Have there any pictures about ideas to get roll center upper?

Beninca had a set for that but what kind of thing that is?

"Front uprights higher roll center kit - $750"

Cheers,

Kimmo
 
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