DIY Coilover
03-19-2013, 04:13 PM
Post: #1
DIY Coilover
Looking to convert my standard ae86 struts to a coilover unit, read a few different ways people have done it but left with a few questions.

What is the purpose of using a spacer at the bottom of the strut?
How do you determine the size of spacer required?
Can the coil sleeve be welded to the strut or is a perch necessary.

I intend on using :
AE92 Koni inserts (yellow 8641 1145sport)
NRCA - 35mm


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03-19-2013, 05:20 PM
Post: #2
DIY Coilover
The spacer in the strut is to make sure the short stroke shock works exactly like a long stroke would. Without the spacer the compression of the shock would be comprimised resulting in bad handling. Don't shoot me if it's not exactly right, this is how i learned it.

long stroke vs short stroke

[Image: AEU86 AE86 - DIY Coilover]


[Image: AEU86 AE86 - DIY Coilover]
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03-20-2013, 03:04 AM
Post: #3
DIY Coilover
Rule of thumb is shorten the strut by 40mm and use a 20mm spacer.
Cutting 60mm out of the strut is generally considered to put the car too
low with no possibility of adjusting it higher. Steel sleeve can be welded
straight on to the strut without a perch.

Pretty good walkthru here...

Cheers... jondee86
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03-23-2013, 12:11 AM
Post: #4
DIY Coilover
Cheers guys.

In terms or the 20mm spacer to be used at the base of the shock...

The base of the Koni damper has a nose on the end:
<a href="" title="2013-03-22 21.40.20.jpg by mightyjcb, on Flickr"><img src="" width="500" height="374" alt="2013-03-22 21.40.20.jpg"></a>
<a href="" title="2013-03-22 21.38.35.jpg by mightyjcb, on Flickr"><img src="" width="500" height="373" alt="2013-03-22 21.38.35.jpg"></a>
Fairly narrow in relation to the circumference of the actual insert diameter:
<a href="" title="2013-03-22 21.39.04.jpg by mightyjcb, on Flickr"><img src="" width="500" height="374" alt="2013-03-22 21.39.04.jpg"></a>

Is it safe enough to make my 20mm spacer out of washers with an outer diameter of 20mm?
How have others done it/any recommendations?

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03-23-2013, 11:15 PM
Post: #5
DIY Coilover
You might want to consider a solid spacer along the lines of this thread...

Also, check that your gland nuts are big enough inside to fit over the top
of the insert. Sometimes the OEM nut has to be opened up on a lathe after
you remove the rubber seal. Do a trial assembly before you finalise the
size of the spacer, as when the gland nut is tightened, you want maybe
3mm of thread showing.

Cheers... jondee86
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03-24-2013, 11:56 AM
Post: #6
DIY Coilover
I have seen a few front inserts ruined because of the lack of
some sort of bump stop, Koni's included. Some slip over
bump stops might be a good investment especially given the state
of the roads in the U.K

An analogue brain in a digital World
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04-01-2013, 10:52 PM
Post: #7
DIY Coilover
Thanks for links guys.

Looking at the Tokico spacer (image courtesy of DJexor), it is machined to fit into the recess on the base of the damper.
[Image: AEU86 AE86 - DIY Coilover]

As a spacer for the koni damper, i think a simple flat (20mm dia and 20mm depth) piece of steel round billet should be fine - base of the Koni damper is flat.

The OEM gland nuts do fit over the damper...but with a couple of millimeters to spare unfortunately. The gland nuts that came with the koni dampers have a tight fit (but are too small to thread into the ae86 strut).
Without having my strut casing modified to its new short stroke length, i dont know if this is a major issue. Anyone got a suggestion for this? Could it move when its all torqued down? Can post a pic to help illustrate.

Some of the roads around my way are awful, a set of bump stops is definitely a good suggestion! I think Camberley Autofactors are a distributer for Koni stuff in the UK, so i've pinged them a mail.

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04-01-2013, 11:00 PM
Post: #8
DIY Coilover
Or could do something like this, but may be overkill:
<a href="" title="ae86_DIY_Coilover_Koni.jpg by mightyjcb, on Flickr"><img src="" width="500" height="291" alt="ae86_DIY_Coilover_Koni.jpg"></a>

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