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DIY Classic Mini Suspension Articles

Adjustable rear anti-roll bar kit, C-AJJ4008 (Technical Information)
 This kit contains:-                         1    3/4" diameter bar                         2    alloy sliding blocks                         2    spacer tubes                         4    5/16"x5/16" female rose joints    &n...
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Better Handling for Road, Track or Autocross (Technical Information)
An Excerpt from Motoring - Getting the Maximum from your New MINI  Better Handling for Road, Track or Autocross by Gary Anderson and Don Racine In the second section of this book, we were particularly complimentary regarding the MINI’s stock suspension, noting that it will reward a good driver and can be well down the priority list of things to work on for improved perform...
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C-AJJ3360 FITTING INSTRUCTIONS (Installation Instructions)
Mini Spares has now further improved it's quality one-piece forged adjustable bottom front suspension arm to be on-car adjustable and accept all types of non-rod-end (Rose joint) bushings by including a purpose-forged trunnion. Safety critical, the one-piece forging is of the highest quality; far stronger and with ultimate integrity compared with the now-ancient method of cutting/welding on of...
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C-AJJ4004 New road-use front anti-roll bar (Calver's Corner)
Terminology - Anti-roll bar - Sway bar This bar has been developed to complement those road cars fitted with post 1990 rubber springs. Being the softest compound yet used on the Mini in an attempt to improve comfort, they allow more body roll, thus compromising the sublime grip and cornering capability the Mini was endowed with at it's concept. Particularly where the fashionable 13-inch wheels ar...
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C-AJJ4006 ADJUSTABLE FRONT RACE ANTI-ROLL BAR (Technical Information)
The mounting blocks are to be fixed at each end of the bar under the front of the subframe where there is a double thickness of metal close to the forward tie-bar brackets. Loosely assemble the blocks to the bar, one positioned between the locating rings - offer the bar up to the lower front edge of the front subframe. Mark their positions through bolts hole in mounts, ensuring the bar is not toug...
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C-AJJ4009 Fixed Rear Anti-Roll Bar Fitting Instructions (Technical Information)
  C-AJJ4009 FIXED REAR ANTI ROLL BAR FITTING INSTRUCTIONS This kit contains –                 1 ½” bar and blades assembly                 2 pairs alloy mounting blocks       &nbs...
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Choosing a Sway Bar for your Mini Cooper or S (Technical Information)
This is a subject I should never get started on; I will try to give you the short story!   For any of you that don’t know I have been racing Mini Coopers for over 30 years. And on this subject of I have some very definite experience. Before my later years in Road Racing I was national Autocross champion in a 1966 Hydrolastic Mini Cooper “S”. And while I have not road ...
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Dampers - Fitment data (Calver's Corner)
Following the various articles I've done on suspension modifications and vehicle lowering, the most often asked question is 'do I need shortened dampers?'. This is impossible to answer confidently for all cars since lowering a car by a certain measurement is a relatively inaccurate description. It all depends on what the car ride height was before lowering took place. Simply stating it was 'stand...
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Fixed negative camber bottom arms, C-AJJ3364 (Technical Information)
 These are a direct replacement for the standard bottom arms and will add 1½° of negative camber to whatever the car has as standard - quoted by the manufacturers as being 1° positive, + 1°. If the car has 1° positive, fitting the negative camber arms will give ½° camber. Measuring what the car has with standard arms will help determine what camber setting will be achieved b...
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Front bump stop kit, C-AJJ4007 (Technical Information)
 FITTING INSTRUCTIONSRemove existing bump rubber completely. The smaller hole of the new bump rubber should be fitted over the retainer on the bracket, using hand soap or brake fluid on the rubber if necessary to ease the fitting.Holes will have to be enlarged slightly in the bracket if the shock absorber kit C-AJJ3362 is fitted, as per instructions in that kit.Contents:C-STN246&nb...
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Front Suspension Assembly (Restoration)
All of our ancillaries were rebuilt, so it was time to assemble our front subframe. Our goal was to do this completely so that we could then pop the engine and transmission back in, put fuel into the carburetors, and run the engine. More on that later. We got our subframe straightened out and powder coated, plus powder coated any parts that didn’t have critical tolerances. (Powder coat...
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Heavy duty adjustable tie-rods (Technical Information)
? FITTING INSTRUCTIONS 21A1091   HEAVY DUTY ADJUSTABLE TIE RODS These rods have been produced to improve car stability when cornering and braking, and facilitate easy adjustment of castor angle. Manufactured from a high grade material in a much bigger diameter, they are less susceptible to bending than the standard items. The standard castor angle is 3° + ½°. ...
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KONI Shock Absorbers (Technical Information)
    KONI Superiority KONIs are not the average shock absorber, they feature a number of standards that make them unique: ADJUSTABLE  KONIs are adjustable, which means that you can influence the behavior of the car to meet your preferences (ride comfort, handling balance, etc.). It also means that wear can be compensated. (However,...
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Mini coil over conversion kit, CK17 (Technical Information)
 Mini Conversion KitThis kit has been designed specifically for road use with the view to limited tarmac competition events. If used for  off-road purposes, strengthening modifications will need to be made, as failure may be a possibility.All wheels and tire combinations fitted to the vehicle should be inspected as it is essential that there is enough clearance between the wheel ...
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Mini MKIV front and rear subframe assemblies (Technical Information)
British Motor Heritage has added two more major components to its growing list of Mini classic parts - front and rear subframe assemblies for the MkIV Mini. The 'dry' suspension subframes are fully assembled and supplied ready to fit into the bodyshell. Delivered complete with all suspension components, brakes (with brake pipes), hubs and steering arms, these assemblies ensure that either recondi...
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Mini suspension, steering and handling data (Technical Information)
The data on this page relates to all Minis unless specified. Major changes to suspension and steering are limited to the introduction of a new steering rack and steering arms for Mk2-on models. Mk2 steering arms have two `ears' to aid in the use of ball joint splitters; this is how they may be differentiated from Mk1 steering arms. Very early Mk1 Minis (to around 1960) were made with ...
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MS73 fitting instructions (Installation Instructions)
More acute attention to suspension geometry, particularly in motorsport use, has at long last been recognized as giving generally bigger increases in overall car performance than vast sums invested in the search for greater engine power out-puts.To facilitate full experimentation in this area, the MS73 kit has been developed to allow accurate adjustment of rear wheel camber AND track. Adjustm...
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Powdercoating the Suspension (Restoration)
Powdercoating the Suspension May 27, 2013 Dissassembled suspension & under- carriage pieces, ready to go off to the powder coater. Can you tell the difference between a powder coated part and one painted satin black?  With everything cleaned and disassembled, it was time to powder coat all our black pieces. While these pieces were originally painted i...
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Progressive rear bump stop kit, C-AJJ3313 (Technical Information)
 This kit is suitable for all hydrolastic Mini s. It can be fitted onto dry suspension cars to give improved handling characteristics during motor sport events, provided the rear radius arms are changed to accommodate them. Relocate brake flexible hole by clamping under the arm using a suitable jubilee clip. Chisel off anchor rivets and finish grind flat. Drill and tap a 5/...
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Rebuilding the Hydrolastic Displacers (Restoration)
Rebuilding the Hydrolastic Displacers May 23, 2013 Our Mini rolled into our shop like this, its suspension all gone bad.   The inner rubber displacer unit is molded to an outer metal shell.  Usually, these units aren't damaged. The problem with these units  are the line brekas, which render them useless.   The final step is to pressu...
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Rehabbing Subframes and Suspension (Restoration)
Rehabbing Subframes and Suspension April 3, 2013 Rear subframe was slightly tweaked. We hammered & dolly it straight again before it could go to the powdercoater.  We have everything ready to powdercoat. We have thrown some other parts like the air cleaner into the mix. With everything clean, we could begin disassembling our subframes. Norm...
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SHOCK ABSORBERS (DAMPERS) (Technical Information)
  SHOCK ABSORBERS  (DAMPERS) By Keith DoddTechnical lowdown on dampers (shock absorbers), what to look for and what to buyHaving introduced the fairly unknown Kayaba (KYB) range to the Mini market in 1997 I am still amazed how gullible people are when buying cheap dampers. I have tried every type popular type available in the last 35 years: Armstrong including their adjustables,...
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SPAX frequently asked questions (Technical Information)
  Frequently Asked QuestionsHow do I adjust my rear telescopic dampers?There is a knob or a screwdriver adjustment at the bottom of each damper. If you turn the adjuster fully anticlockwise it will be on the lowest setting, then turn the adjuster clockwise - On our newer dampers there will be 28 points of adjustment and on our older dampers 14. You need to count the clicks, as once the...
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SUSPENSION - Basic Priorities (Calver's Corner)
Suspension - Basic priorities (See end of article for useful/relevant part numbers). Having studied the Suspension - Terminology article you should now have a ‘job description’ understanding of previously possibly un-comprehended words associated with suspension control. Now - what to do with it? The first thing we need to establish is an order of priority before distributing hard-ea...
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SUSPENSION - Basic set-up method (Calver's Corner)
(See end of article for useful/relevant part numbers)Time to arrange all those agonised over, carefully selected and applied suspension components to give of their best.This is one of those subjects viewed as a ‘black art’, largely because of lack of understanding and confusion. The confusion part is because folk encompass the whole suspension set-up deal with suspension arra...
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SUSPENSION - Converting from wet to dry (Calver's Corner)
The steady decline over the past several years of readily available hydrolastic displacer units has prompted an escalation in the number of folk asking how to go about swopping from hydrolastic (‘wet’) suspension systems to the far more wide spread ‘dry’ set-up. As in all things, with enough skill, enterprise, facilities, and money - anything is possible. Being all too ...
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Suspension - Corner Weights and Bump-Steer Basics (Calver's Corner)
Now we're getting down to the real nitty-gritty of suspension refinement. A surprising number of racers still avoid dealing with them, as with geometry in general they're seen as another 'black art'. Not at all alleviated by the sight of the well-to-do single seater teams producing computer controlled, highly accurate scales to make last minute corner weight adjustments or slipping wafer-thin shi...
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Suspension - Fitting Hi-Los and similar derivatives (Calver's Corner)
Elsewhere on in Calver's Corner I have covered lowering the Mini by modifying the standard existing components, and the essential problems to look out for. However, most folk don't want the aggravation of messing about cutting cones and the possibility of repeating the process should the result not be what they want. The easiest solution is to fit an adjustable cone - to all intents and purposes a...
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Suspension - Heavy Duty adjustable tie rods 21A1091 (Calver's Corner)
  These rods have been produced to improve car stability when cornering and braking and to facilitate easy adjustment of caster angle. Manufactured from a high-grade material in a much larger diameter than the standard items they are far less susceptible to bending - both in use and where poor workshop practice is observed. The most common fault here is jacking the car up with a trolley jack...
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Suspension - KPO; Adverse Effects of Fitting Wide Wheels (Calver's Corner)
Terminology used: KPI - King Pin Inclination KPO - King Pin Offset LSD - Limited Slip Differential In the 'Suspension - Terminology' section, I covered what KPI is, as it is an ancient but still oft-used term despite being pretty redundant. Not that it isn't attendant in current cars - it has to be. It's just that the mass car manufacturers have settled the angle at which it is set down to a fa...
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SUSPENSION - Lowering the standard dry set-up (Calver's Corner)
Possibly one of the most asked questions by new mini owners since not only does lowering the car improve it aesthetically - giving that 'mean low' look - it also further improves the Mini's already phenomenal road holding. Lowering the car reduces its centre of gravity, which helps to reduce body roll. However, just how low you can go needs to be sensibly considered to avoid a number of problems, ...
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SUSPENSION - Shock absorbers (dampers), basic knowledge (Calver's Corner)
During 1997 I penned (typed) a number of articles encompassing suspension andbrake modifications carried out by you innumerable and fanatical Mini owners. Throughout those discourses, I frequently alluded to the necessity of damper [shock absorber] changes to maintain the status quo of the Mini's formidable 'handling'.Consequently your collective curiosity has been pricked into action as can beatt...
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SUSPENSION - Terminology (Calver's Corner)
The Mini has consistently more than proven its capability in competition with very limited and cost-effective modifications based on the standard equipment fitted. Having first ensured the bodyshell (in reality little more than a complex bracket to hold suspension and driver securely in place) is well sorted out by removing all cruddy or rotten metalwork and into something like straight, square a...
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Sway Bar Information and Theory (Technical Information)
A car has "neutral" steering when while turning in tight circle at moderate speed the car will complete the circle at approximately the same position across the diameter of the circle.A car has "understeer" when turning on the same tight circle at the same moderate speed the diameter of the circle is increased because of the front wheels "pushing" out.A car with "oversteer" will have a tendency ...
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TOOL10 - Instructions for Camber/Castor Gauge (Technical Information)
  CASTOR/CAMBER GAUGE INSTRUCTIONS For all intents and purposes, this gauge can be considered a finely graduated plumb line - as that is exactly what it is! Before proceeding with any measuring for each factor, make sure the vehicle is on reasonably level ground without any wheel being in/on a significant dip/bump. A perfectly smooth, fl...
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