Insanity Racing

An Amateur Cross Country Racing Team

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Insanity Too
The winter rebuild Part two

The suspension

The suspension rebuild.

    After talking to various people about the suspension behavior and discussing the best way to overcome the issues with things like hydraulic bump stops and/or new dampers etc. The one recurring piece of advice became apparent and that was to upgrade the shock absorbers from the current Millner Varidamps (with the standard 82 of travel) to 2.5" remote Fox's (with 12" of travel).
Again I must reiterate that the Varidamps are very good and simple to fit etc. (as they use the stock mountings) the Varidamps make a good cost effective upgrade to any land rover style suspension, however, the travel limitations and the mounting methods constrain just how much they can do on really fast & rough surfaces.


One recurring piece of advice became apparent:
That was to upgrade the shock absorbers from the current Millner Varidamps (with the standard 8" of travel).
These have proven to be very good shock absorbers, however the conditions we are using the car in require something a little more.... Aggressive.
The plan is to fit new 2.5" remote fox's (with 12" of travel)
SO; after much deliberation the checkbook was found and these where the result, and yes that's a 12" rule for scale these new sock absorbers are huge and definitely do not fit the standard land rover mountings. Getting these under the bonnet was going to be a challenge as one of the main aims was not to disrupt the profile of the car.

A little bit of a comparison between;
The new Fox, (on the left).
a standard  Land Rover fitment  (Centre).
The Varidamps that where removed (on the right).


Tornado Motor sport provided the frames and brackets to be able to relocate and mount the new shock absorbers, as the intention was to mount the rear shocks in a vertical format and the new larger shocks need a different mounting solution.

With the engine out of the way for the rebuild, the planned installation of the new shock absorbers could be started.
There where several parts to this mini project.

One of the front hoops welded to the chassis using some reinforcing plates and bolted through the steering bolt holes for good measure. These are not going to move if we have anything to d with it.

Front hoop fitted and additional struts fitted to stop any movement or flex.   
  Rebuilding new inner-wings to accommodate the new shock absorbers and hoops.  
The new Diff pan in place (and painted).
This photo was taken with the axel jacked up against the chassis with bump stops removed to test and check that contact with the engine is avoided! It's very close, however we are working on the principle that if things do get this close in normal running conditions we probably have a bigger problem to deal with?

The spring seats on the front axel have been cut and modified to accept the bottom rose joint to maximize the available shock length whist keeping everything under the bonnet.
A new bracket has been built within the spring seats and the bottom spring plates have been welded in place.
  This shows everything in place!
The image gives some impression of just how much difference 4" makes in terms of the additional "drop" on the axel, this is still being constrained by the bushes on the radius arms etc.
Note the reservoir located on the front of the hoop as we where unable to find any space inside the engine bay now!

A similar arrangement was used on the rear but fitting the hoops etc. was comparatively easy as there was a lot less concern about keeping it all within the body panels.
The new fuel tank can be seen in the background.

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