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1970-1995 Range Rover Classic
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Sorry for the title — how else was I going to get you? ;-)

My RRC LWB is mainly used for on-road DD work. I want to make it handle a little better under normal city driving. Right now the body roll is a bit lumbering for me, but the ride is nice enough on the stock EAS to stock coil conversion. What I'm wondering is what is the best combination of tires, wheel sizes, shocks, springs, and other suspension changes to make it still ride smoothly but be a little more stable in the corners? Are those two things mutually exclusive?

I've already pulled the trigger on a proper conversion from my stock 16x7 wheels to modern RRS 19x9's. maybe I should have asked this questions first!

Things I'm thinking about are:
1) firmer shocks (TerraFirma, Bilstein, Koni, OME)
2) firmer springs
3) maybe even lowering 1/2" or so. I hate to do this though
4) tighter Steering ratio
5) address my loose steering issue

My idea with the wheels is the same thing I did to my old Subaru- upsize the wheels to get less sidewall flex and a cleaner look, and upsize the tires on the up sized wheels to retain some bump absorption while filling in the wheel wells a bit more. Worked like a charm, but I know the RRC is a very different beast!

I don't know very much about suspension tuning. What do those Germans do to make a ride so smooth yet still corner?
 

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1970-1995 Range Rover Classic
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368 Posts
Firm bushings. Put a poly set in. It will tighten things up. Cornering? Not sure about that. Have you seen the movie Anger Management with Adam Sandler and Jack Nicholson? They put a 1995 around a very hard turn and it didn't roll.
 

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1970-1995 Range Rover Classic
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Any specific bushings or just all if them? What do I search for?
 

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1970-1995 Range Rover Classic
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I would advise staying away from polyurethane bushings. They are harder than the rubber OE bushings which may help marginally in handling, but at great compromise. Poly will be loud as it transfers road noise to the chassis. It will give a harsh feel as the rubber bushings do a great job of absorbing small sharp impacts, which poly doesn’t (think pavement sections in a concrete road). Poly is also short lived, and will need to be serviced/replaced on a much more frequent basis. Rubber bushings are designed with the rubber bonded to the inner and outer sleeves, so during suspension travel there is no relative movement between any of the parts and the rubber acts as a compliant mechanism in between. With poly the bushing is pressed into the outer, and then a steel sleeve is inserted into the center. The inner sleeve is captured where it is connected to the axle/chassis, so that during suspension travel there the inner sleeve rotates relative to the poly bushing, this causes wear on the pushing and sleeve, which you do not have with the rubber. This can also lead to squeaking as the sleeve rotates in the poly.

The best things you can do to improve cornering stability while not degrading ride is to lower the CG (lower the ride height). The next thing to improve cornering feel is stiff anti-roll bars (sway bars). Yours would have originally had anti-roll bars which may or may not still be in place after the coil spring conversion. If they were removed, put a set back on, or if they are still in place look for a stiffer set. This will greatly reduce body roll and make the vehicle feel much more stable. As it is a solid axle rig body roll doesn’t affect contact patch so it won’t have a huge influence on cornering traction, but will make a huge difference in feel.
 

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1970-1995 Range Rover Classic
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I would advise staying away from polyurethane bushings. They are harder than the rubber OE bushings which may help marginally in handling, but at great compromise. Poly will be loud as it transfers road noise to the chassis. It will give a harsh feel as the rubber bushings do a great job of absorbing small sharp impacts, which poly doesn’t (think pavement sections in a concrete road). Poly is also short lived, and will need to be serviced/replaced on a much more frequent basis. Rubber bushings are designed with the rubber bonded to the inner and outer sleeves, so during suspension travel there is no relative movement between any of the parts and the rubber acts as a compliant mechanism in between. With poly the bushing is pressed into the outer, and then a steel sleeve is inserted into the center. The inner sleeve is captured where it is connected to the axle/chassis, so that during suspension travel there the inner sleeve rotates relative to the poly bushing, this causes wear on the pushing and sleeve, which you do not have with the rubber. This can also lead to squeaking as the sleeve rotates in the poly.

The best things you can do to improve cornering stability while not degrading ride is to lower the CG (lower the ride height). The next thing to improve cornering feel is stiff anti-roll bars (sway bars). Yours would have originally had anti-roll bars which may or may not still be in place after the coil spring conversion. If they were removed, put a set back on, or if they are still in place look for a stiffer set. This will greatly reduce body roll and make the vehicle feel much more stable. As it is a solid axle rig body roll doesn’t affect contact patch so it won’t have a huge influence on cornering traction, but will make a huge difference in feel.
Thanks very useful! Will stick with rubber bushings. Are there specific ones to replace or just all of them?
 

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I've mentioned before that my 90 is a bit like a sportscar with better cornering than my 81 Corvette. The trick is the 4 wheel drive. Don't be a little girl sliding around the corner. Put the throttle in and let the tires pull you thru the corner. Body roll is lurid and alarms the boring cars around you just adding to the advantage as the onramp straightens into the merge lane. SO MUCH FUN!
 

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I've mentioned before that my 90 is a bit like a sportscar with better cornering than my 81 Corvette. The trick is the 4 wheel drive. Don't be a little girl sliding around the corner. Put the throttle in and let the tires pull you thru the corner. Body roll is lurid and alarms the boring cars around you just adding to the advantage as the onramp straightens into the merge lane. SO MUCH FUN!
COuldn;t agree more! Yea they roll around like a hooker on fleet week, but as long as you have your foot in it you'll pull through jsut fine. Obviously this is AFTER you have gotten used to your rig.
 

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Some stiffer rear springs do wonders, I think I had 90 HD springs fitted.

The tyres will let go long before you roll it 8)

Put some padding on the door and lean into the roll :lol:
 

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1995-2002 Range Rover P38A
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My 1990 is bog standard including factory fitted diff whine and running Michelins. I get the tyres squealing going around the elbow up Bulli Pass and the body roll doesn't seem a big deal to me, but maybe I got used to it plus I've driven trucks a bit. So I guess my advice is if you can't hear the tyres squeal, then man up and go a bit harder.

If the steering is loose, I'd certainly adjust it, it's a ten minute job and makes a difference.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Great insights guys. I'm coming from an Audi S4 - can you tell? ;-)

What is this ten minute steering wheel adjustment?
 

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1995-2002 Range Rover P38A
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Jack up the front, have a look on top of the steering box, there is a lock nut which you loosen and a set screw. Wobble the steering wheel from side to side, there should be no more than 9.5 mm of play. If it is more than this, then turn in the set screw a bit and test the wheel again. Don' t forget to tighten the lock nut when you finish. You need some play in the wheel otherwise it won't self centre when you go around corners so don't overtighten it. If that doesn't fix the steering, the slop could be in the wheel bearings or in the swivel bearings. You can check that by grabbing a front wheel while its off the ground and rock it to see if there is any play. The other place you can have slop is in the steering ball joints and that will be quite evident when you rock the wheels. You won't take any of this lash out by adjusting the steering box.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Jack up the front, have a look on top of the steering box, there is a lock nut which you loosen and a set screw. Wobble the steering wheel from side to side, there should be no more than 9.5 mm of play. If it is more than this, then turn in the set screw a bit and test the wheel again. Don' t forget to tighten the lock nut when you finish. You need some play in the wheel otherwise it won't self centre when you go around corners so don't overtighten it. If that doesn't fix the steering, the slop could be in the wheel bearings or in the swivel bearings. You can check that by grabbing a front wheel while its off the ground and rock it to see if there is any play. The other place you can have slop is in the steering ball joints and that will be quite evident when you rock the wheels. You won't take any of this lash out by adjusting the steering box.
Thanks for the tip. I will do this soon. 9.5mm seems like a lot of acceptable play, welcome to the truck world I guess ;-)
 

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it's 3/8" - just make sure you are checking the play at the steering box and not trying to adjust out wear in the linkages etc
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Man, I need like a foot long extension to get any leverage in there!
 

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I hope you are talking about the lock nut, the screw should be quite light. Put a ring spanner on it and give it a belt with a hammer if you can't loosen the lock nut.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
I hope you are talking about the lock nut, the screw should be quite light. Put a ring spanner on it and give it a belt with a hammer if you can't loosen the lock nut.
Yep - talking about the lock nut. I'll pickup a rubber mallet and see what I can do.


Sent from AutoGuide.com App
 

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Just use a carpenters hammer and a short spanner - take the weight on the spanner and then give it an extra belt - it'll free up pretty quick - make sure you are going anticlockwise.
Also it might start leaking a bit once you disturb it - a bit of hypolon under the lock nut will fix it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Just use a carpenters hammer and a short spanner - take the weight on the spanner and then give it an extra belt - it'll free up pretty quick - make sure you are going anticlockwise.
Also it might start leaking a bit once you disturb it - a bit of hypolon under the lock nut will fix it.
Are you doing it from under the car or above? No way I'm getting a hammer down there from the top.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
I've mentioned before that my 90 is a bit like a sportscar with better cornering than my 81 Corvette. The trick is the 4 wheel drive. Don't be a little girl sliding around the corner. Put the throttle in and let the tires pull you thru the corner. Body roll is lurid and alarms the boring cars around you just adding to the advantage as the onramp straightens into the merge lane. SO MUCH FUN!
I was wondering what the hell was going on there!

I'm used to my old Audi S4 which rides like its on rails. When I first drove my RRC I was wondering why it felt so 'stuck' to the road - it was the last thing I was expecting. I love the grip it seems to have. Unfortunately I feel like I'm going to fly through the passenger window when I do it! Maybe I'll stick some Marmite on my seat so I don't come unstuck. Or else get a 5-point harness ;-)
 

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Can't remember - it should only need a tap
 
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