All Lowering Springs Are NOT Created Equal
There are two primary reasons most people install lowering springs on their vehicle – they want to improve the overall handling and performance of their vehicle or they want that “just right” appearance that a lowered vehicle always seems to provide.
What most people do not know is that all springs are not created equal and that there is a right way and a wrong way to lower a vehicle. Oftentimes vehicles are lowered to such a degree that the overall performance and handling of their vehicle is not optimized, or substandard springs are used that deliver performance that is not maximized or which results in a rough, bone-jarring ride.
At Steeda Autosports we take suspension systems very seriously and take absolutely no shortcuts in the design, development, tuning, and manufacturing of our spring sets. We are the ONLY aftermarket company to have partnered with one of the largest OEM spring manufacturers in the world to deliver to the discerning performance enthusiast the best performance product available.
This Tier 1 Supplier manufacturers their springs in the USA, has been in business 4 times longer than Brand “E” or Brand “H” — and — they supply more Formula 1, Indianapolis, and NASCAR Teams than all other spring manufacturers combined! Think about it – would you really want springs made for your American performance vehicle by an offshore supplier or by a supplier whose main business is centered on supporting foreign vehicles? At Steeda, we are an American owned company dedicated to enhancing the performance of Ford vehicles – your guarantee of an undying commitment to excellence.
Before you buy any springs, it is important that you understand just some of the technology and engineering that goes into their creation. Following are highlights of some of the engineering criteria and efforts that go into every set of springs that we put our name on:
- All Steeda suspension springs are designed to properly fit the original configuration and location of the OEM suspension coil and we pay particular attention to how the spring fits into the O.E. spring seat. In addition we look to precisely reproduce the loading characteristics of the O.E. spring both laterally and longitudinal with the use of a Wolpert 7 axis / load coil scale testing equipment. This type of testing is usually only performed by O.E. Manufacturers.
- Both hot and cold forming CNC controlled equipment is utilized. This gives the flexibility necessary to produce nearly any suspension coil configuration. On the late model Mustangs for example, our design incorporates a pigtail configuration that matches the O. E. spring whereas many other aftermarket manufacturers use a cold-formed part that does not match the rear trailering arm properly. This is caused by the cut-off process on a cold coiler and causes the spring to bow when installed in the vehicle.
- Due to our HOT forming process our materials are “centerless ground” so the optimum material size is within .001 of an inch. Currently our competitors have material increments of .010 of an inch. This tighter tolerance allows us to produce the lightest part for a given spring package.
- In the design/engineering process we pay particular attention to the proper amount of loads at rebound, static height, and jounce (bump). This is why we favor producing a progressive spring to achieve the appropriate load characteristics. The initial rate is designed to provide the O. E. pre-load, while the final rate provides the necessary bump load characteristics.
- We use proprietary spring materials that have higher silicon content than our competitors. While others use a lesser grade of spring wire to reduce their costs and improve their profit – we insist on only the best spring wire available. Better spring wire makes for a better coil spring!
- All of our springs are employ MICS (Mass Inertia Control System) technology to provide non-compromising ride characteristics. By using this technology the un-sprung mass of the vehicle is controlled and the inertia of the suspension component does not exceed the springs capacity to control the jounce loads, hence eliminating the requirement for excessive spring rates. The progressive spring characteristics permit the ride frequencies to stay within acceptable limits, but provide the added spring rate to achieve bump load capacities equivalent to the O. E. springs.
- The optimized spring calibration of our springs reduces the pitch of the vehicle under heavy acceleration or braking. The reduced longitudinal pitch of the vehicle during heavy braking improves the overall braking efficiency because the higher rate of the front springs reduces the amount of load transfer to the front tires. This causes the load on all four tires to be more evenly distributed providing additional traction to the rear tires. The additional gain in rear traction usually results in reduced braking distances.
- The proportionate increase in spring rate also reduces body roll, which limits adverse suspension movement. This confines the suspension geometry to stay within parameters that enhance the tires contact patch with the road. The result is improved vehicle cornering and handling, because front and rear tire loading is more evenly distributed. Therefore, higher cornering limits can be achieved because the built-in understeer characteristics are reduced and provide for a more neutral yet safe handling vehicle.
To the novice performance enthusiast all of the above engineering elements can be very confusing – especially when you consider that there is much more to creating a proper set of springs for your car than chopping off 1” from their length. Rest assured that at Steeda Autosports we go the extra mile to instill superior engineering into every spring set we offer so you can be assured and have confidence that we provide the finest products available for your Ford vehicle.
While some manufacturers brag that their products are made according to certain standard levels, the performance springs sold by Steeda Autosports are made under the highest, latest and most stringent ISO and TUV Standards in the world today using only the finest materials available anywhere – absolutely no shortcuts are taken because our performance heritage and DNA demands that our springs are the best money can buy.
Steeda – Speed Matters