Monday, September 5, 2011

BC Racing BR Series Coilover Suspension Installed

Like my brakes me coilover shocks were also installed @ Northern Garage. Before installing I took some measurements of my ride height with the Nismo S-Tune shocks. Measurements were taken from fender to ground as stated in the Nissan FSM. Fronts were 640mm while rears were not equal at 650mm left and 640mm right. In comparison the B15 ride height is stated in table below

Installation was relatively painless. Picture below of the front coilover compared to the Nismo S-Tune shock. Weight for both were surprisingly the same give or take a couple hundred grammes.

Picture of the installed front. Rears are 1 kilo lighter than the Nismo S-Tune (4kg vs 5kg).

Picture of the rears compared to the Nismo S-Tune.

The front damping adjustment knob.

Rear installed.

Took quite a while to find the rear damper turret top as it is in a place where the sun don't shine. At one point had nearly all the carpeting and seats removed to locate the turret top. Once done it was a synch to bolt the damping adjustment extenders to the coilover damping adjuster knob.

Had to make slot holes in the carpet trim to be able to reach the damping adjustment extender knob without having to remove the carpeting.

Ride height can be adjusted without removing the front wheels but you will have to remove the rears (to adjust ride height). I settled for a 645mm front ride height while rear was set at 640mm after alignment. This is about 1.5-2cm lower than stock with 17" rims with 215-45 series tyres. Picture of the Slowtra with this ride height. Will go lower for track days but going lower for daily driving is just looking for trouble unless you don't do multi-story car parks nor have an abundance of speed bumps at your work place.

Damping was initially set at 6 clicks from full soft and then 5 as the damping settled. I also tried 7 and 8 clicks and while the Slowtra handled better my old butt preferred 5 clicks for daily driving especially with the abundance of pot holes in Penang and mainland roads.  At 5 clicks I would say the BC Racing BR is feels about 15% stiffer compared to the Nismo S-Tune. Haven't tried full soft but wouldn't be surprised if it ends up feeling softer compared to the S-Tune. With the stiffer springs I am having going full soft might not dampen the spring sufficiently during high speed though I have yet to try. I would say the BC racing BR does very well in terms of vibration and harshness. Even at 5 clicks there is very little dive during hard braking compared to the Nismo S-Tune. Body roll is minimized. Damping is very controlled with little hint of harsheness despite much stiffer springs. The rebound action is pretty quick and the car doesn't bounce around when riding over road undulation/uneveness. Corner turn-in is faster and the Slowtra's agility is really transformed.

Noise unfortunately is problem due to the abundance of metal to metal contact especially with spherical bearing top mounts. The rears in particular is prone to squeaking especially if the coilover is not kept clean. I am also getting something akin to a scrape sound when going over steep speed bumps from the front right (driver's) side. A call to Daniel from BC Racing Malaysia on this problem came with the recommendation that I should use Autosol on the piston rod. Errr.. The sound does not seem to impact damping hence at this point I'm still observing for further if there are other issues.

I would recommend the BC Racing BR RH series if you are primarily concerned with handling but have no grouch with noise. There is always the ICE to help :) The external build quality is as good as it gets (even better than the Nismo S-Tune) and likewise the damping with little evidence of low speed harshness compared with lets say early gen Hot Bits coilovers I was using once upon a time on my first car. One can feel the difference even with one click change in damping adjustment. The only problem is the noise though going to rubber top mounts would lessen it. Just don't expect stock like no sound. Can't have your icing and cherry to go with the cake.


hmph said...

Thought of the RCS ones? I heard good feedback about them

jun wen said...

Looking GOOD!

Andrew Saw said...

Hi Hmph,

Yes I did contemplate RCS but the cost is pretty high even for the non-adjustable and the double adjustable is close to five figures. Furthermore there is no application currently for the N16 hence will have to do the development which is not easy with me being in Penang and RCS in the Klang Valley. Am not discounting them though hence might try at a latter date if there is an opportunity. Am also looking to RCS for some tie rod ends to dial out bumpsteer and for corner weighing and alignment. Might even get them to cut out the stock front suspension turrets and weld in plates so that I can fit camber adjustable top mounts like the Dog III.

Andrew Saw said...

Thanks Bro Jun Wen!

triniboirajiv said...

Hey, i love the work being done on your car dude, but i got a quick question, i see that your car is the M1, does it carry the same suspension as the N16? reason i ask is because, I want to get a set of coilovers for my car, i got a nissan almera which i think its also call the N16. recently i bought some teins springs for it, but i dont really like the ring i get from it, so i was wondering if you can link me the web address for a set of those coilovers or even give me the part number so maybe i can get a set. Oh and one other thing, have you install the coilovers yet? i want you know how does it ride.

Andrew Saw said...

Hi Triniboirajiv,

I am not sure what M1 is but all N16 use the same suspension. Web links, installation and ride assessment is provided in the blog article. Pls do read it.

Conrod said...

Mr Saw,
Do you have a contact number for the local representative for BC racing in Malaysia ? Thinking of getting the BR series coilover.

Andrew Saw said...

Dear Mr. Conrod,

Pls contact Daniel @ 017-8923633

SKY™ said...

Hi there,

Nice ride there. I have a little question in mind though. Are the wheels being cambered after changing to the BC Coilovers compared to stock? or is it still at 0 camber after changing to the BC. There are no camber adjustments for the coilovers right?

SKY™ said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Andrew Saw said...

Hello Sky,

Front camber is adjustable as the lower bracket bolt hole is actually a lengthened slot so there is some room for adjustment there. Rear camber is fixed. N16s do not come with 0 camber btw. Camber is always slightly negative.

SKY™ said...

I didn't know it wasn't at 0, visually, it seems 0. I'm looking into change my suspension as the stock one makes me feel like i'm riding a boat. =)

So, am I right to say there won't be a change in cambering after changing the coilovers for both front and back compared to the stock?

Greatly appreciate and thanks for the info anyway =)