Triple S Coilover Springs – Does it Make a Difference?
Many coilovers in today’s market offer a product that is focused on lowering your vehicle and not so much on ride quality. In the ISC price range/market, most of the manufacturers use a fairly inexpensive spring that gets the job done, but could certainly be better. Like most manufacturers, when trying to fit in a specific market, there are likely some compromises made to get there……springs are one of those easy “compromises”.
As mentioned above, these springs get the job done, but may not offer a superior ride or the ride characteristic(s) that the driver is after; whether driving on the street or on a track. Typically this is attributed to a low ride height. As the height of your vehicle drops, the manufacturer increases the spring rate to keep the vehicle from bottoming out, or at times, keeping the damper from bottoming out. To solve these issues, there are multiple higher end springs on the market; from H&R, Eibach, Swift, Hyperco and now Triple S!
So what can you expect from our Triple S springs and why are they better than these other compromises/springs? We’re glad you asked!
Below is a quick diagram that provides some vital data as to what makes the Triple S spring better than those “other springs” that typically come on your coilovers. First and foremost, the weight of the Triple S spring is, at a minimum, 20% lighter than most standard springs. This is important because less mass means the spring, and suspension in whole, can be more responsive. Less mass is typically referred to as less “unsprung weight”. This is always something that a manufacturer or more importantly a race team is looking for. Second is the amount of pitch between each spring. Pitch can be described as the distance throughout compression between coils. To a certain extent, the more pitch a spring has, the better is can react, whether on the compression stroke or the rebound stroke. With the Triple S spring, we’ve found the pitch to be increased by more than 70% in most comparisons! The last big difference between our upgraded Triple S springs and most standard coilover springs is the stroke of the spring. Throughout the R&D process the engineers found that the Triple S spring stroke was typically 10% more than most standard springs when comparing the same spring lengths. How is this possible? This is due to to what we chatted about earlier, spring pitch. Due to having more spring pitch, the Triple S typically has less coils than most springs. Less coils and more pitch combine to give the spring more travel…..aka more stroke. The benefit to the customer is that the Triple S spring can be the same length and same spring rate, but offer more comfort due to all 3 of the advantages mentioned above; less weight, more pitch and more stroke!
Most Triple S springs utilize a linear rate design. This design is used to keep the spring rate the same throughout the stroke of the spring. There are typically 2 different spring designs that you’ll find on the market; progressive rate springs and linear rate springs. Each of these designs generally have their own place in the market. What’s the difference? The progressive rate spring means that as the spring is compressed the spring rate increases. There are certainly pro’s and con’s found in this design. One of the pro’s is that the initial compression of a progressive rate spring is usually pretty soft. This means that when driving down most streets, the small imperfections in the road don’t “jar” the suspension and can give a pretty comfortable ride overall. Over larger bumps/more compression of the spring, the rate increases quickly to prevent the damper and/or car from bottoming out. So, the larger the bump, the higher the rate and maybe the more uncomfortable the ride. But, you’re highly unlikely to constantly be driving over large bumps causing a spike in spring rate. The large majority of manufacturers use progressive rate springs when designing a vehicle. The downside/con of a progressive rate spring is that the spring rate is essentially “infinite”. The reason this is a con is typically more surrounding performance oriented vehicles and drivers needing to know how the suspension is going to react in certain situations. With the progressive rate spring, there is an “unknown” in your suspension. So what about the linear rate springs typically seen throughout our Triple S line-up? Again, there are going to be pro’s and con’s. The con is going to be that you give up some of that cushy ride from a progressive rate springs initial compression. Given that the linear rate spring is the same rate regardless of compression, in most applications, the spring has a higher rate. So, again, you give up a little ride comfort, but you gain predictability and generally more performance and confidence in your suspension. That’s the pro! You’ll find that most performance oriented suspension will have linear rate springs which give the suspension 1 rate throughout the complete travel. This gives the driver confidence in how the car is going to react.
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