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View Full Version : Phantom Auto Works suspension upgrade



royvaldez
08-31-2005, 01:53 PM
Hello, I would be interested in hearing any comments concerning this upgrade. I would like to upgrade my 1950 Starlight Coupe. But Phantom advertises that it is made for 1951 and up. Has anybody done it on a 1950 champ.

Roscomacaw
08-31-2005, 02:26 PM
It wouldn't begin to fit.:(

Miscreant at large.

1957 Transtar 1/2ton
1960 Larkvertible V8
1958 Provincial wagon
1953 Commander coupe
1957 President 2-dr
1955 President State
1951 Champion Biz cpe
1963 Daytona project FS

Mike Van Veghten
08-31-2005, 02:32 PM
Looks more hot roddy (if that's a word), may remove a little unwanted weight, but doesn't fix the control arm geometry and doesn't do a lot toward fixing the steering geometry.

Of course...in my lightly-schooled opinion.

Roscomacaw
08-31-2005, 05:17 PM
There were significant differences betweent the 50 & 51-up cars. (In fact, the '50 model Studes stand alone in suspension/steering geometry from anything BEFORE or AFTER 1950.) That's why Phantom says this only fits to 51 & later. It's made as a bolt-on replacement insofar as the A-arms are concerned and affords using rack & pinion steering as well.
Since it's not DESIGNED around the '50 models (and Commander and Champion had different suspension that year), you'd be starting from scratch, using an expensive set-up that was designed for something else. You might do better to sub-frame it with something from under a later model, Brand X.:)
Of course, you could call Phantom and ask them. I've never laid eye's on anything but their ads for these in TW.

Miscreant at large.

1957 Transtar 1/2ton
1960 Larkvertible V8
1958 Provincial wagon
1953 Commander coupe
1957 President 2-dr
1955 President State
1951 Champion Biz cpe
1963 Daytona project FS

N8N
08-31-2005, 05:49 PM
I would be curious to know, does the Phantom setup have a different caster angle than stock, and also what's the track width and scrub radius?

Mike, when you say "fix" the control arm geometry is the above what you were thinking of, or were you thinking of something else?

I suppose I could just ask Rene, but I'm not really in the market to buy, more just curious.

nate

--
55 Commander Starlight
62 Daytona hardtop
http://home.comcast.net/~njnagel

Alan
08-31-2005, 06:27 PM
Track width is from the center of one front tire to the center of the other so it will change depending on the rims you use. Scrub radius is the measurenent of the line drawn through the king pin to the ground and the center of the tire so the more you move the rim out to get a wider track it increaces the scrub radius and makes steering harder move the rim in and it gets easier to steer but once you get past zero it gets squirley, most front wheel drive cars are like that, with their high struts and deep dish from the inside wheels.

N8N
08-31-2005, 06:42 PM
Alan, I guess I should have specified "as compared to the stock suspension" - basically if I were redoing the suspension I would probably dial in a little positive caster to provide some self centering, and also make sure the scrub radius was zero or very small (now whether it should be negative for stability or positive for feel is open to debate...) possibly narrowing the hub-hub width (and subsequently the tie rods) to allow for wider wheels might be desirable for some people as well...

nate

--
55 Commander Starlight
62 Daytona hardtop
http://home.comcast.net/~njnagel

Mike Van Veghten
08-31-2005, 06:59 PM
Nate,
Yea...sorta. You're right, there is somewhat of a caster-camber adjustment built in, but as I recall, it's a small adjustment.
But the upper control arm mount is so high, the wheels go through a lot of funny and incorrect motion as the suspension "works" when cornering.
To work correctly the upper arm "mounting" point needs to be at least on the same plane, but much better if it's below the "ball joint center". The tires maintain a much better contact with the ground when cornering.

Alan,
Wheels, rims and tires....the rim on it's own, has little to do with the scrub. Most don't have their wheels made up to fit the car, so as you say, the offset of the wheel as a whole needs to be taken into account. The tire tread location on the ground has the last say as to the scrub radius. A low pressure tire or bias belted tires will be worse off than a properly filled or slightly over filled radial tire.

Alan
08-31-2005, 07:29 PM
http://www.aligncraft.com/terms/terms.html#Scrub Radius


Try this.

N8N
08-31-2005, 07:54 PM
I think a lot of people are driving around in studes with less than optimal scrub radius just for the simple reason that Stude wheels have more offset than most RWD wheels and most nice looking aftermarket wheels - 1" offset or more, whereas a lot of aftermarket wheels have a standard 3" backspace which on a 6" wheel gives zero offset. I know I fall into that category on my one car. If you have a really huge positive scrub radius you get better road feel but also bumps or hard braking can make the front end do really weird (generally not good) stuff. It really comes down to driver preference - my Porsche has a positive scrub radius and it certainly feels like it, razor-sharp reflexes but you have to keep your hands on the wheel. For a "cruiser" you would probably want the exact opposite. But in any case, the thought process I was going through was that narrowing the hub-hub distance and playing with the kingpin inclination could allow for a decent scrub radius and the use of more common aftermarket wheels at the same time.

nate

--
55 Commander Starlight
62 Daytona hardtop
http://home.comcast.net/~njnagel