Helpful ReplyHot!997.1 C4S Suspension "Upgrades"

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angusc
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2015/05/05 22:25:40 (permalink)

997.1 C4S Suspension "Upgrades"

Well I don't get to say this very often....... if at all actually, but I have won a competition for a complete suspension upgrade of springs, shocks, anti-roll bars and wheel spacers. My dilemma is that my 997.1 has PSAM as standard and I'm wondering what possible benefits a suspension upgrade would actually give? I do not track drive or race my 997 and if I activate the PSAM then it is only for short periods as the wife and kids all complain about the harder ride! I also would not want to lower the ride height if it also stiffens (hardens) the ride as does the PASM.
So what are your thoughts about changing the suspension components and geometry of a 997.1 and what might I expect to gain from this modification?
Lancerlot
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RE: 997.1 C4S Suspension "Upgrades" 2015/05/06 12:07:27 (permalink)
Although you don't give mileage or age of your car, a Gen 1 is likely to have worn suspension parts that will need replacing.

Your best bet would be to book it in with Chris Frankyn up at Center (sic) Gravity for an assessment. He may decide the updated kit would be beneficial or that, for your purpose, replacement with standard components is your best bet - in which case you have the new bits to sell to recuperate the cost.
Hope this helps
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angusc
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RE: 997.1 C4S Suspension "Upgrades" 2015/05/06 15:48:02 (permalink)
That's the second time in two days that I have heard his name 😉 so I guess I need to talk to him.

Still interested in hearing if any other 997 owners have done any aftermarket suspension stuff.......
tscaptain
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RE: 997.1 C4S Suspension "Upgrades" 2015/05/06 17:27:58 (permalink)
Alex L has Bilstein PSS 9s on his Gen 1 turbo and a few other bits and bobs from memory - he'll probably be along to tell you about it soon! I only have uprated ARBs on mine (3 way adjustable) However, if your car hasn't had a proper geometry set up in the last few years, if at all, then that in itself will transform the car before you even get near fitting aftermarket fangly dangly components. And, as Clive says, CG's the place

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garyw
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RE: 997.1 C4S Suspension "Upgrades" 2015/05/06 22:20:59 (permalink)

ORIGINAL: tscaptain
Alex L has Bilstein PSS 9s on his Gen 1 turbo and a few other bits and bobs from memory -

I'm sure Chris fitted them for him..

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Alex L
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RE: 997.1 C4S Suspension "Upgrades" 2015/05/06 22:51:53 (permalink)

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angusc
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RE: 997.1 C4S Suspension "Upgrades" 2015/05/06 23:28:13 (permalink)
Thanx Alex L, very informative if a bit over my head of understanding. So you removed PSAM shockers and replaced with manual type? Did that require PCM reprogramming to stop fault lights coming on? My main fear of lowering the car are those bump B roads and massive speed control bumps around Cambridgeshire......
Alex L
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RE: 997.1 C4S Suspension "Upgrades" 2015/05/07 07:21:12 (permalink)
B16 dampertronics are PASM. Porsche fit bottom of the range Bilsteins in the factory. I just got the top of the range Bilsteins instead so my PASM button works just fine. The ride is a lot 'creamier'.

Give Chris Franklin a call to discuss - he will provide you exactly what you want.

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ralphmusic
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RE: 997.1 C4S Suspension "Upgrades" 2015/05/07 07:26:09 (permalink)
As I found with my old GTS, standard Bilstein dampers manufacturing spec allows +/- 15% variation so you can have wide variations in performance yet be told "the dampers are OK sir.."

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okellyt
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RE: 997.1 C4S Suspension "Upgrades" 2015/05/07 23:44:48 (permalink)
I had PSS9's (B16's) same thing fitted when my C2S dampers died. It works with PASM and as Alex says is the top end Bilstein and the only upgrade they recommend for Porsche 997's+ with PASM.

Improved damping, road holding, the lot. However the ride was stiffer especially at low speed but more compliant at 50mph+ and more comfortable on motorways than standard car.

Had to give definitive answers as I had also fitted GT3 anti roll bars, The full GT Braking system (380/350mm Brembo upgrade) including cables, ducts the works. The C2S as it was powerkit had the turbo master cylinder so that did not need upgrading. And the car ended up considerably lighter than standard. At that point sub 30mph was pretty uncomfortable for passengers but 50 plus was remarkably comfortable, more so than standards but with less roll.

So not sure you want the whole hog given your earlier comments (I'd forgotten the rose joints and racing tailing arms etc).

I am with Alex though if your shocks are shot PSS9's on normal roll bars etc make a nice upgrade to handling.

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angusc
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RE: 997.1 C4S Suspension "Upgrades" 2015/05/08 06:42:49 (permalink)
Thank you for all the details replies, certainly helps to paint a clearer picture for anyone thinking about this type if changes. I still have to speak to CG about my options but think upgraded shocks sound interesting if they take nothing away from the original feel and functionality ofif the car, but improve overall ride. I wouldn't want anything that makes the ride uncomfortable and especially not at sub 30mph speeds, the roads around where I live are ask B class with bumps and pot holes as standard.
angusc
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RE: 997.1 C4S Suspension "Upgrades" 2015/05/13 13:42:40 (permalink)
Just an update, i called C.G. On Friday and had a 1 hour discussion with Chris, to say that he knows his stuff and made me feel very confident in undertaking these upgrades would be an understatement.
So looks like I will be going with the Bilstein B6 DampTronic shocks and upgraded springs and anti roll bars (not Bilstein). The car is booked in for mid June and I'm really looking forward to attending the workshop.

I will post update and photos towards the end of June.
post edited by angusc - 2015/05/13 15:31:33
angusc
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Re: RE: 997.1 C4S Suspension "Upgrades" 2016/01/15 10:18:34 (permalink) ☄ Helpfulby Tinners1983 2019/03/15 19:55:49
I know that this update is way way late and over due!  I have had a hectic second half of 2015, so much so that I was hardly home to drive the 997.1 but I have managed to drive her on a few outings since the suspension upgrades and can really feel the improvements that the suspension overhaul made. So below is the summary of events from June and July last year when my car was dropped off at 'Center of Gravity' workshop (as a reminder my car had 90K on the clock at the time of visit):
 
I collected the car from 'Center of Gravity’ workshop on Monday, 29th June due to the rather larger than expected amount of associated suspension parts that needed to be changed out before the workshop could properly setup the car. Initially this was rather surprising to me as the ride had always seemed very tight and "perfect" every time I drove the car.
 At the time I had owned my 997 for about 18 months and I had been very happy with the cars road handling before taking it to 'Center of Gravity' for the road test and geometry checks. In fact one of my initial concerns when I was advised that I had won the suspension upgrade competition was that  I did not want to change the overall ride and feel of the car, nor make the ride feel like we were on a race track, all hard and bumpy. I use my 997 for the family outings and have two young children who sit on booster seats in the back. We have driven around Europe and the UK and frequently go on camping outings in the car. This is my daily driver when I’m home to enjoy it. 
 
After being informed that I had won the competition and having the concerns of not wanting to change the feel of my car from a road user to a racing track driver, I called Chris Franklin to discuss about the prize and his views and my concerns.  He spent over an hour on the phone with me asking various questions to better understand my driving habits and requirements and what I wanted to get out of the suspension upgrades. After talking at length about my concerns he put them all to rest and I was very confident that he knew exactly what I wanted.  I dropped the car off with him in mid June and was taken out on a test drive with Peter, he put the car and myself through our paces and demonstrated that the car was currently drifting to the left and then pulling to the right when applying the power.  I had never noticed this before, I suppose that I have become accustomed to this and drove to compensate it. 
 
The standard Porsche was set up within Porsche tolerances and was a very “safe” car to drive, this means lots of under steer so that the drivers initial response is to back off the throttle if the car started to get away from him.  While I headed back home by train, Peter set about inspecting the car with an initial geometry checks and testes of the suspension components. The car had passed its MOT in February with only an advisory about the OS steering rack inner link having some slight play.  However Peter found that there were several suspension components with wear and also that many of the elastomers had started to un-bond from the metal bushings. Looking back I guess this is to be expected with a 9 year old car and 90K on the clock.
 
The Porsche life expectancy of the dampers is 100K so with this in mind I asked Chris to recommend a set of aftermarket shock absorbers that would complement the Eibach Pro Suspension upgrade kit.  He recommended Bilstien B6 which were compatible with my factory PSAM system, he advised me that Porsche actually installed Bilstien B4 units as standard to the car so the B6 units were a sort of upgrade to the original units. Using the Bilstien B6 units meant that the PSAM button still worked and has no error output when the car connects to the Porsche PIWIS system.  The B6 and the Eibach springs were built up and the various suspension parts installed and aligned on the laser. 
 
Just over a week later I went back to collect the car and was again taken out on the same test drive by Peter.  This time the car ran perfectly true with no drifting what so ever.  Cornering was very tight and the car genuinely feels like its on rails when cornering or going in and out of roundabouts. One the way home, I was a little concerned that the back end was a bit firmer over the bumpy B roads and that the family might not like the new Porsche ride, but after taking the family out to the Silverstone F1 (complete with tent and sleeping bags) there were no complaints. In fact i just couldn’t help myself throwing her around the corners and through the many roundabouts and no complaints from wife or kids!  The ride height has dropped slightly on the front and a tad more on the back.  The Eibach Pro wheel spacers add to the aesthetics and the car look stock but tighter with the Sport wheels protruding just a little more than stock and filling the wheel arches. 
 
My Conclusion:  At first I really didn’t think you could improve on the feel and handling of the Suspension of the 997, but how wrong I was!  The final result is a brand new car feel, tighter cornering and steering control. Going over the many B road pot holes and sleeping policemen that we have around Cambridge was absolutely no problem for the new refined setup and while before I would just scrape the lower spoiler protectors, now even with the lowered ride height this is not the case on the road. I would thoroughly recommend anyone with a higher mileage car to seriously consider having their cars suspension geometry checked at Center of Gravity, I found Chris and Peter to be totally knowledgeable about all things Porsche and they have a huge Porsche recognition with many customers coming from all over the UK to attend their workshop in Leicester, so much so in fact that they have a 4 week waiting period to get booked in!  If like me your car has high mileage then you may need to replace a few more parts than just the Suspension springs and shockers so be prepared, but the final results will not disappoint. The list of parts that had worn and required replacing were as follows:
 
    Front right top mount part de-laminated/torn and creaking/noisy
    Front left top mount part de-laminated/torn and creaking/noisy
    Front right bump stop de-laminated/perished
    Front left bump stop de-laminated/perished
    Front left inner track rod end worn/knocking
    Front right diagonal control arm worn/knocking
    Front left diagonal control arm worn/knocking
    Rear right diagonal control arm worn/knocking
    Rear right track control arm inner bush de-laminated
I also elected to replace the Rear left diagonal control arm and the rear left track control arms so as to have all the rear suspension items replaced as new to see the next few years and xxx miles of road fun.
 
post edited by angusc - 2016/01/15 10:59:16
Tinners1983
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Re: RE: 997.1 C4S Suspension "Upgrades" 2019/03/15 19:57:21 (permalink)
Thanks for your posts Angus. I'm at a similar point with my 2006 987 CS. I've also been speaking to Center Gravity and have been recommended a similar setup. Looks like its the place to go. Have you considered adding the DSC controller (and gyro) to try and ease off on some of the rear bumpiness?
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