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Lay posi
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1,219 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
All,

It's been a while since I've been on the site, but I thought I would share this in case anyone is looking to improve their ride quality. I took a great deal of time last fall researching shock options for the car and I found a company that would make me some custom computer controlled shocks. This spring I completed the installation of a Tractive Suspension semi-active shock package on my MKIII. The ride quality improvement on my car with a 3-link rear and front and rear sway bars is significant and the system maintains good handling. The system offers 4 parameters that are adjusted with a touch screen or they can be adjusted with a remote knob (although that's a little tricky without the screen in view) which includes front stiffness, rear stiffness, pitch, and roll. I have the knob located on a pigtail wire that I can hide under the seat or rest and use near the shifter. The system also offers 5 user programmable memory presets. I mounted the touch screen in the trunk and the controller with the built in accelerometer behind the driver's seat (the wires exit the rear of the cockpit just above the rear left lower control arm). The system cost including 4 shocks, springs, controller, wiring harness, touch display, and shipping (excluding the 3% U.S. customs duty) was 5415 Euros (keep and eye on the exchange rate for USD). If you are interested in having a greater control of the shocks, DSC Sport offers a controller that will integrate to Tractive's shocks (no need for Tractive's controller or screen) and you can program a G table to fine tune the shocks which would probably be better for track use than Tractive's controller as DSC's solution allows the user to tune each shock individually for breaking while turning in or accelerating while turning out as well as accelerating, turning, and braking only. Tractive will sell the shocks separate. My goal was just to improve the ride quality on the street and the Tractive controller is a little less expensive than the DSC Sport controller. Attached are a few pictures. If you would like more information about the system feel free to reach out to Julian Van Dijken at Tractive Suspension (Please note that I am in no way affiliated with Tractive Suspension or Julian Van Dijken). One really nice thing about the shocks designed for my application is that they are all small body shocks and will fit on my car with 94 donor rear disk brakes without having to relocate the calipers to the front side of the rotor. They are all also the correct length and stroke, and properly limit the travel at full droop and compression.

The shocks have an internal servo controlled valve that actively controls the compression and rebound. The valve can react within 6ms.
IMG_2149.JPG screen.jpg controller.jpg screen_in_trunk.jpg
 
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Snake Farmer
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10,299 Posts
Wow..over 5000 Euros. :oops:
It sounds pretty impressive, but was you cars handling really that bad beforehand, to warrant that kind of investment?
 

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Lay posi
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1,219 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
It was the opposite. It handled fine but did not ride great. It was very bouncy. I previously had the VPM carrera shocks on the rear with 225 lb/in springs (down from my first installed rear 250 lb/in springs) and Koni single adjustable fronts with 400 lb/in springs. I don't enjoy feeling every imperfection on every concrete surface, but that's just a personal preference. I'd rather have the suspension move over the imperfections instead of having the car bounce around. After this suspension upgrade, the car feels a lot more planted and stable at high speeds on the interstate as well.
 

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Lay posi
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1,219 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
I'm actually so impressed that I'm planning on having Tractive Suspension build me a set for my 33 when I get to a point in the build where I can measure all of my corner weights suspension parameters under full load with all of the parts on the car.
 
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