R8 steering

Toolman

New member
40 years ago , I put a lot of effort into honing a R10 . My earlier attempt [ successful ] to get more negative camber to the front end was to slightly oval the large round hole in the top wishbone and rotate the ball to facilitate drilling new bolt positions .
I didn't like slotted holes that could allow movement if impacted by a bump .
Top wishbone bushes need to be in top condition as even new , are quite pliable .
In a later car , I left the top wishbone un molested and redrilled the lower wishbone 4 holes after welding up the old holes . A movement of around 8mm to achieve the negative camber that I was looking for .
The biggest area that I felt needed attention was the engine / gearbox mounts . Apart from spacing the gearbox lower to get more negative camber at the rear , I modified a pair of holden gearbox crossmember mounts to stabilise instead of the side thrust mounts that used to sag and shear . The central trailing arm bushes never seemed to wear and I kept the standard engine mounts [ but in good condition ]
Never had to chase caster too much , just wound on what was available .
I made other significant changes that allowed me to turn in hard on a trailing throttle without rotating .[ that I won't elaborate on today ]
 

JohnW

Too many posts!
1000+ Posts
40 years ago , I put a lot of effort into honing a R10 . My earlier attempt [ successful ] to get more negative camber to the front end was to slightly oval the large round hole in the top wishbone and rotate the ball to facilitate drilling new bolt positions .
I didn't like slotted holes that could allow movement if impacted by a bump .
Top wishbone bushes need to be in top condition as even new , are quite pliable .
In a later car , I left the top wishbone un molested and redrilled the lower wishbone 4 holes after welding up the old holes . A movement of around 8mm to achieve the negative camber that I was looking for .
The biggest area that I felt needed attention was the engine / gearbox mounts . Apart from spacing the gearbox lower to get more negative camber at the rear , I modified a pair of holden gearbox crossmember mounts to stabilise instead of the side thrust mounts that used to sag and shear . The central trailing arm bushes never seemed to wear and I kept the standard engine mounts [ but in good condition ]
Never had to chase caster too much , just wound on what was available .
I made other significant changes that allowed me to turn in hard on a trailing throttle without rotating .[ that I won't elaborate on today ]
Fun. There's a bit of a story with those upper wishbone bushes. Renault used "Fluidbloc" bushes, in which the rubber is lubricated (I use silicone grease now) and rotates inside the outer steel part of the bush for the R8/10/Caravelle with larger Silentbloc bushes for the lower wishbones. The current replacements that are available for the upper arms are now "Silentbloc", so they work as rubber in shear, giving slightly firmer suspension I imagine. The new ones reportedly behave but my research shows their dimensions to be close to the sensible limit for Silentbloc-type bushes (of course their size was based on being Fluidbloc-type). I also read that Porsche decided against using Fluidbloc bushes on the 911 on grounds of robustness/ongevity or something, probably correctly. Sometimes the original Fluidbloc bushes appear on Ebay France as NOS but they are rare now.
 

Frans

Member
1000+ Posts
40 years ago , I put a lot of effort into honing a R10 . My earlier attempt [ successful ] to get more negative camber to the front end was to slightly oval the large round hole in the top wishbone and rotate the ball to facilitate drilling new bolt positions .
I didn't like slotted holes that could allow movement if impacted by a bump .
Top wishbone bushes need to be in top condition as even new , are quite pliable .
In a later car , I left the top wishbone un molested and redrilled the lower wishbone 4 holes after welding up the old holes . A movement of around 8mm to achieve the negative camber that I was looking for .
The biggest area that I felt needed attention was the engine / gearbox mounts . Apart from spacing the gearbox lower to get more negative camber at the rear , I modified a pair of holden gearbox crossmember mounts to stabilise instead of the side thrust mounts that used to sag and shear . The central trailing arm bushes never seemed to wear and I kept the standard engine mounts [ but in good condition ]
Never had to chase caster too much , just wound on what was available .
I made other significant changes that allowed me to turn in hard on a trailing throttle without rotating .[ that I won't elaborate on today ]
I like Toolman's ideas in getting the results you require. I'm not sure that this "rubber" idea brought soft riding to autos. My dad had a '64 Chevelle and it was furnished with double wishbones in the front. It had brass bushes on the swivel of the wishbone. I am 100% sure of that because I serviced the car and that was one of the grease points. That car had a superb ride and there wasn't any road noise nor road vibrations coming from there.

The race car has the solid Nylotrol bushes in so that there is no flex going around corners and altering the camber to positive when you have set it at a negative figure. The car is so noisy that I believed there will be road noise if you could hear it above the mechanical noise.

Then 4 years ago when Ross and I went on the Classic Alpine Tour with his R8, I drove half of the 4000 km and the car felt normal and drove beautifully when afterwards I found out that he removed the Dauphine's Nylatol bushes (the one he rolled) that I made him, and fitted it to the R8.

That is why when I recently replaced the ball joints on my streetcar, I made more of the Nylatron bushes and got rid of the rubber ones that JohnW is mentioning. My car's front end is now stable and the camber will never change due to saggy bushes and it will never squeak again when driving slowly into a car show and embarrass me.

On the photo is a bush that was a trial one (for explanation) with grooves in for a lubricant, then I found out that there is no lube required at all, never ever. The race car bushes have of-set holes, top and bottom, to adjust the camber. The 2 holes in the sample bush have the same distance between them for an angle-grinder spanner to fit and then to rotate to the desired camber. The streetcar bushes have the holes drilled centre.

On the gearbox mount, I used a Holden suspension bush as well thinking that if the bush is good enough to carry part of a Holden with its Cast iron block, then it will be strong enough for the gearbox to hang off. I've mentioned it before that it boggles my mind that engineers could design the R8/R10 mountings, gearbox and engine, to have a shearing type of mount. It will not last and cannot last and it will always sag and tear as everybody has seen with these cars. In the photo is the top gearbox mount that I made for my streetcar. The race car has similar but on the LH and RH sides for added stiffness. In my case Toolman, I lowered the mount to lift the gearbox so that I could lessen the rear camber because it was a little too much.

PS. Nylatrol is the equivalent of Vesconite that was recently mentioned in a thread. Just brand names.

Regards, Frans.


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dauphproto

Member
Like those mods Frans. The important thing to remember on rear engined cars is that, as there is no weight up front, it is very sensitive to change of any kind, so the solution involves removing any and all extraneous movement. My old 8G had a crazy brake pull when I first got it and after trying all the usual suspects and getting nowhere, I went to my local MOT station and got them to check the front axle on the brake tester. No fault, like a 2% imbalance said the proprietor, I asked him to drive it down the road, he came back ashen faced saying "I see what you mean" The fault was soft bushes in the top wishbone on the offending side, swapped these out for nylon/stainless bushings and never looked back.
For what it's worth with homemade bushings a tip I got was to make the inner steel tube as big in the diameter as possible and slightly longer than the Nylon bush This means that the Pin bolt and steel bushings and crossmember lock up and do not rotate, the only movement is between the inner diameter of the nylon bush and the outer face of the inner bushing giving a massive increase in bearing area with the added benefits of less slack and much less wear. My bushings lasted 20 years in the 8 and were as good the day I sold it, as the day I made them. It did pick up on rough road surfaces and very occasionaly the wheel could Sizzle in your hands, but the feedback was immense. and it was super stable. I can't get the Dauph to behave as well, but it is 100kg lighter and running big rubber making it feel every grain of sand on the road. It is truly written " you can't win 'em all"
 
I like Toolman's ideas in getting the results you require. I'm not sure that this "rubber" idea brought soft riding to autos. My dad had a '64 Chevelle and it was furnished with double wishbones in the front. It had brass bushes on the swivel of the wishbone. I am 100% sure of that because I serviced the car and that was one of the grease points. That car had a superb ride and there wasn't any road noise nor road vibrations coming from there.

The race car has the solid Nylotrol bushes in so that there is no flex going around corners and altering the camber to positive when you have set it at a negative figure. The car is so noisy that I believed there will be road noise if you could hear it above the mechanical noise.

Then 4 years ago when Ross and I went on the Classic Alpine Tour with his R8, I drove half of the 4000 km and the car felt normal and drove beautifully when afterwards I found out that he removed the Dauphine's Nylatol bushes (the one he rolled) that I made him, and fitted it to the R8.

That is why when I recently replaced the ball joints on my streetcar, I made more of the Nylatron bushes and got rid of the rubber ones that JohnW is mentioning. My car's front end is now stable and the camber will never change due to saggy bushes and it will never squeak again when driving slowly into a car show and embarrass me.

On the photo is a bush that was a trial one (for explanation) with grooves in for a lubricant, then I found out that there is no lube required at all, never ever. The race car bushes have of-set holes, top and bottom, to adjust the camber. The 2 holes in the sample bush have the same distance between them for an angle-grinder spanner to fit and then to rotate to the desired camber. The streetcar bushes have the holes drilled centre.

On the gearbox mount, I used a Holden suspension bush as well thinking that if the bush is good enough to carry part of a Holden with its Cast iron block, then it will be strong enough for the gearbox to hang off. I've mentioned it before that it boggles my mind that engineers could design the R8/R10 mountings, gearbox and engine, to have a shearing type of mount. It will not last and cannot last and it will always sag and tear as everybody has seen with these cars. In the photo is the top gearbox mount that I made for my streetcar. The race car has similar but on the LH and RH sides for added stiffness. In my case Toolman, I lowered the mount to lift the gearbox so that I could lessen the rear camber because it was a little too much.

PS. Nylatrol is the equivalent of Vesconite that was recently mentioned in a thread. Just brand names.

Regards, Frans.


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You can buy very similar devices off the shelf for a lot of cars. THe ones I have on the 240Z have an eccentric bronze insert in the plastic, rotateable by spanner just like these.

They work well and have given no grief, although do not give vast amounts of camber adjustment

V. envious of those with the skills to make for themselves

Andrew
 

schlitzaugen

Member
1000+ Posts
The skill involved is minimal.

What you need is a lathe, (even a crappy one) and you could even get by without a four jaw (independent) chuck. Much easier with one, but hey, you need to start somewhere.

Plastic/bronze/brass machine like soft cheese.

Some means to measure with some decent accuracy and you're set to go.

Regarding bushings on R8/10/the likes, the original rubber bushings on the front have the inner sleeve longer so that is pinched by the mounts by design. My old R10 would drive and brake straight as an arrow with the OEM suspension.
 
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dauphproto

Member
The skill involved is minimal.

What you need is a lathe, (even a crappy one) and you could even get by without a four jaw (independent) chuck. Much easier with one, but hey, you need to start somewhere.

Plastic/bronze/brass machine like soft cheese.

Some means to measure with some decent accuracy and you're set to go.

Regarding bushings on R8/10/the likes, the original rubber bushings on the front have the inner sleeve longer so that is pinched by the mounts by design. My old R10 would drive and brake straight as an arrow with the OEM suspension.
That's the primary problem with this type suspension, the bushes twist in operation and are an active part of the suspension, as the bushes wear and weaken the front spring rate alters, I prefer to turn these points into proper plain bearings. If you jack the Dauph up and remove the shock, spring and anti-roll bar you can lift the complete front hub up to the stop with one hand, when you let go it falls slowly under it's own weight to full droop, it will last a lifetime (impacts aside) and requires no maintainance, other than careful lubrication on assembly. @Toolman. would love to hear about the mods reqd to keep the tail in under braking, did it cause any understeer on power out of the corner??
 
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