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Author Topic: Modifying Strut Towers  (Read 127 times)

EShepherd

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    • 1991 Capri XR2, 1991 Capri XR2 Rusted out Shell
Modifying Strut Towers
« on: August 04, 2021, 11:32:13 AM »

So I ran across pictures of some guys build on Reddit, where he converted a VW Golf into rear wheel drive. The pictures gave me inspiration to try something out, and seeing as I have a spare chassis now, I think I'm going to go ahead with my idea. I wanted to gather a bit more information first though. Maybe someone here has tried this, or knows of someone who has tried it, or whatever. Anyways, on his Golf, he had chopped up his front and rear strut towers, and rebuilt them to accept S13 coilovers. Seeing as there is a total lack of even factory replacement struts for our Capri's, let alone aftermarket coilovers, this gave me the obvious idea. Why not try to do something similar, modify the strut towers to accept coilovers from a more common platform, with a more robust (ie existent) aftermarket? Hell, while it's under the knife, I could likely build or integrate in some sort of strut tower bracing.

So the questions I've got are: Anyone know of a car with a similar suspension setup, so that the modifications wouldn't need to be too extreme or complicated? My initial thought was to try and use Miata parts, but perhaps there is something that is closer. Does anyone know if there are any shortfalls in the factory suspension setup? I haven't driven the thing yet, so I have no way to be sure. However, it'd be pretty easy to modify both caster and camber while I'm changing up where the strut mounts to the chassis. I'm looking for performance gains here, not stance bro life. But if the car has a tendency to under/over steer, or if the steering is slow to self-center on corner exit, anything like that, let me know. Has anyone tried this, or seen someone try it? If so, any advice?

If anyone has spare coilovers kicking around for a different car, can I borrow them? Or at least get measurements? I need something to test fit with while I do this, and I don't want to spend a bunch of money on a part I may never get to fit properly.

Other than that, anyone have any advice, ideas, or suggestions? I'm open to whatever. This is just an idea I got, that I feel would be a huge benefit to any other Capri owners who are discouraged by our lack of go-fast-parts availability.
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Rocketman

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    • 91 BPT AWD Capri & 1991 XR2
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Re: Modifying Strut Towers
« Reply #1 on: August 04, 2021, 10:34:08 PM »

Using the OE upper strut mount, you can jam many different struts into them, modifying the strut tower isn't really necessary.
It's finding something that will fit the knuckle/hub. The rear of the Capri is tough, because the strut extends down past the rear knuckle and the rear trailing arm bolts to it. This is fairly uncommon, finding something else that will do the same is going to be tricky if not impossible

Options I have seen done in the past:
Hollow out the OE strut and modify to accept a slightly smaller universal strut cartridge
Custom fabricate a housing similar to OE design to house a strut cartridge, universal or from another car (usually for coilover use)

This lets you pick from a wide selection of aftermarket struts. You need to know some of the basic parameters of the stock strut though to get you in the right range

The Miata has a dual rear a-arm rear suspension and the parts design is completely different
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1.8L Turbo All Wheel Drive Capri... the "GTXR2"


EShepherd

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    • 1991 Capri XR2, 1991 Capri XR2 Rusted out Shell
Re: Modifying Strut Towers
« Reply #2 on: August 05, 2021, 05:40:09 AM »

Using the OE upper strut mount, you can jam many different struts into them, modifying the strut tower isn't really necessary.
It's finding something that will fit the knuckle/hub. The rear of the Capri is tough, because the strut extends down past the rear knuckle and the rear trailing arm bolts to it. This is fairly uncommon, finding something else that will do the same is going to be tricky if not impossible

Options I have seen done in the past:
Hollow out the OE strut and modify to accept a slightly smaller universal strut cartridge
Custom fabricate a housing similar to OE design to house a strut cartridge, universal or from another car (usually for coilover use)

This lets you pick from a wide selection of aftermarket struts. You need to know some of the basic parameters of the stock strut though to get you in the right range

The Miata has a dual rear a-arm rear suspension and the parts design is completely different

Yeah I realized that its not McPherson in the rear of a Miata after posting this. Shouldn't it be possible to weld an ear onto a different coilover housing, drill a hole through it, and use that to bolt the trailing arm to it? Same with the two control arm mounts back there? Won't be pretty, but I don't see why it wouldn't work. Would just need a coilover of similar height and spring rate, right?
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greywolf27030

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    • 1991 XR2, 1992 XR2, 1993 XR2
Re: Modifying Strut Towers
« Reply #3 on: August 05, 2021, 09:00:13 AM »

I've wondered about using the Festiva Store adjustable strut mounts for the Festiva.
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Jack Byrd