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Spitfire MKIV handling


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Hi all, I picked up my MKIV spitfire a few days ago, today was the 1st time I could take her for a proper drive. I have noticed that when I get up to 60 Mph the car becomes difficult to handle. The front steering feels very light and the rear of the car feels like it is weaving left to right. When I got home I have noticed the drivers side sits approx. 1” lower than the passenger side. 

Would the height difference cause the symptoms I have described?

 

 

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its probably got lots of tracking errors on

have a look at this idea,

if in bedfordshire can you pop to sunny Luton and we can see whats going on???

leans are often due to a bent antiroll bar , disconnect one end see if its all out of line .

what  tyres are fitted  what pressures do you use ????

Pete

 

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I found in  my Spitfire 1500 at 70+ on the Autobahn the steering wheel was pointless, fitting stiffer and slightly lower front springs made a HUGE difference. 

The lean might be a saggy spring on one side, or as Pete says, maybe the ARB has acquired a permanent twist?

 

 

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4 hours ago, Pete Lewis said:

its probably got lots of tracking errors on

have a look at this idea,

if in bedfordshire can you pop to sunny Luton and we can see whats going on???

leans are often due to a bent antiroll bar , disconnect one end see if its all out of line .

what  tyres are fitted  what pressures do you use ????

Pete

 

Yeah im about 25 mins away from Luton. Looking to replace all four tyres for the same brand. 

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Might be worth checking that both rear half shafts are the same length. Later cars should have the longer shafts and more negative camber on the rear wheels. One MkIV that I bought had one of each - though it was only a parts car, so I didn't experience what it was like to drive..

John.

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15 hours ago, ScottMk said:

Hi all, I picked up my MKIV spitfire a few days ago, today was the 1st time I could take her for a proper drive. I have noticed that when I get up to 60 Mph the car becomes difficult to handle. The front steering feels very light and the rear of the car feels like it is weaving left to right. When I got home I have noticed the drivers side sits approx. 1” lower than the passenger side. 

Would the height difference cause the symptoms I have described?

 

 

Obvious stuff first. Have you checked the tyre pressures? 21F 26R is the book figure I have, but find 25psi all round works very well.

How old and what condition are the tyres? If over 7 years old (there should be a 4 digit date stamp on them, 3412 would mean week 34 2012 etc) they need replacing.

And then tracking, which is not difficult to do/check at home if you have a fairly level surface to park the car on and a tape measure. Pete has posted links above.

Re odd heights at the front. Measure the spring length with just the bonnet up. Nothing complicated, bottom pan to the top pan both sides and compare. Some shocks have the bottom pan at different heights which causes issues with ride height, and odd shocks are possible. Then again Pete has posted about front ARB, simple check. 

Next check, jack the rear up under the diff (assume you have a trolley jack, if not, you WILL need one, and some axle stands) and see if the spring lengths at the front are now even. MAny problems start at the other end of the car!

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10 hours ago, clive said:

Obvious stuff first. Have you checked the tyre pressures? 21F 26R is the book figure I have, but find 25psi all round works very well.

How old and what condition are the tyres? If over 7 years old (there should be a 4 digit date stamp on them, 3412 would mean week 34 2012 etc) they need replacing.

And then tracking, which is not difficult to do/check at home if you have a fairly level surface to park the car on and a tape measure. Pete has posted links above.

Re odd heights at the front. Measure the spring length with just the bonnet up. Nothing complicated, bottom pan to the top pan both sides and compare. Some shocks have the bottom pan at different heights which causes issues with ride height, and odd shocks are possible. Then again Pete has posted about front ARB, simple check. 

Next check, jack the rear up under the diff (assume you have a trolley jack, if not, you WILL need one, and some axle stands) and see if the spring lengths at the front are now even. MAny problems start at the other end of the car!

Hey again, checked the front springs and they are both approx. 8”s in length. 
 

checked the tyres and they all range so I am getting them all replaced on Wednesday then off to see Pete to check the tracking. 
 

Haven’t taken the front anti roll bar off yet. 

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On 11/07/2020 at 18:08, Colin Lindsay said:

Isn't that why they fitted a front spoiler to later models? They used to lift off at the front...

Yep.  I've also got a MkIV and in original form 70MPH on the motorway was...unnerving.  I fitted a 1500 spoiler years ago now and the car's every bit as planted doing 40MPH as it is doing 80MPH on a French autoroute.

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