Have you ever thought about how the correct rear axle ratio affects your Corvette’s performance? First, learn what ratio you have hidden away in the differential housing. Early Corvettes (1960-1970) may have many different ratios; later Corvettes had fewer choices, in an effort to boost fuel mileage, and by the mid-80s performance gear ratio options were rare. (more…)
Shock absorbers are considered a consumable product with a limited lifespan here’s why…
The C5 Corvette shock absorbers and C6 Corvette shock absorbers are both Mono-tube design. Mono-tube shock absorbers construction begins with a single cylinder (tube) filled with hydraulic fluid. Another piston is used to separate the gas charge from the oil charge. Together the hydraulic oil and high pressure gas with proper valving dampen suspension oscillations. The rod that protrudes out of the cylinder is connected to a piston with seals to keep fluid in check. Another seal is used at the end of the cylinder where the connecting rod comes out to keep the fluid and gasses in while trying to keep debris out. One of the major benefits of mono-tube shocks is the pressurized gas is separated from the oil via a piston. The constant gas pressure on the hydraulic oil minimizes aeration of the hydraulic oil preventing foaming. Foam affects shock absorber performance because it can be compressed while fluid cannot, in turn; the shock reacts quicker with predictability. Overall suspension performance is enhanced with quicker reaction times with the tire on the pavement as much as possible. (more…)
Once all the original bushings are pushed out and the parts cleaned up bushing installation can begin.
There are a couple of things to be aware of before the first bushing is installed. The bushing bore must be clean and free of any snags of metal that may have been raised during the bushing removal process. Powder-coat or paint may also be in the bushing bore and should be removed to ease bushing installation. A raised area, whether it be paint, powder-coat or gnarled metal, causes the bushings inner sleeve to drag on the urethane, preventing smooth suspension movement. Unlike rubber bushings, urethane bushings should rotate smoothly throughout their suspension range of motion (one of the major reasons for the change to urethane). Too much clean-up of the bores is also a concern: the bushing should require effort to push in. You should be able to squeeze your hand and force the bushings in. (more…)