Project 180. Stage 4

subframe0Project 180SX was in desperate need for a suspension upgrade to help put the power down as much as possible. An S15 rear subframe was acquired, reinforced and a whole heap of solid aftermarket goodies were installed to help minimise squat, maximise track and help align this monster! I’ll let Nic continue this, enjoy! 🙂
Being an ’89 model, naturally my rear sub frame bushes were thrashed. This past year I have been putting off changing them by running some poly pineapples in there to try and prolong it but the time has come to scrap them and run something more solid. Then the little voice in my head told me to f*ck it and go s15 and while I’m at it upgrade whatever I can while it’s out. So I haemorrhaged quite a bit of cash and sat back and waited for the parts to be delivered.
I ended up with:

  • Custom oem S15 subframe + bracing to stiffen the rear and provide more anti-squat suspension geometry.
  • Solid subframe offset bushes to allow this S15 subframe to bolt up to a S13 chassis.
  • Solid differential bushes to hold the aggressive 2way.
  • Rear driftworks drop knuckles to correct suspension geometry while still allowing a 2inch drop.
  • Adjustable traction arms to allow alignment adjustability.
  • Adjustable toe arms to allow alignment adjustability.
  • Adjustable camber arms to allow alignment adjustability.
  • Fresh oem S15 lower control arms + polly bushes.
  • Adjustable s15 swaybar + links to a tight rear end feeling.
  • Rebuilt 4.36 r200 differential with cusco 2way, higher ratio to pick up the rb26 n1 turbo slack.
  • 15mm stub axel spacers for the extended track the r33 axels will battle

Without really putting much thought or research into it I snapped up a cheap pair of rear driftworks knuckles. After the fact, research has lead me to believe that keeping my current r33 handbrake setup will lead to the mother of all fuck arounds. No fear GDL will give it a crack I thought. How hard can it be?
The sub frame had some surface rust but that’s to be expected so last week I welded some reinforcement tabs in and cleaned it up.
Then gave it a quick coat of por15 to seal the deal. That shit is potent, I still have it on my hands…
Tapped these frozen puppies in. Crisp solid diff bushes will make diff howl in the cabin.
Now the hard part, while they chill in the fr
eezer the GDL crew figure out the best way to align the offset without going the full hog. Our aim
is to place them in (a few cm) to what we think should line up, drop the current sub frame and raise this one in and give it a looksee. Adjust the rotation if needed then bash the pricks in when confirmed. Then have that icecream split.
From the little internet research GDL did; we will need to “massage” the diff hump section and use a couple spacers on the
subframe1 front bushes to clear the necessaries. Then we’re home free to bolt the sucker up and attempt the knuckles…
And we did it:

Surprisingly easier than we thought, Dannie had a few tricks up his sleeve and we aligned the subframe without a hitch.
Some modifications to the rear to fit the new Driftworks knuckles included:

  • Trimming down the hub bolts to clear the r33 drum brake assembly.
  • Mounting the r33 drum brake assembly on opposite sides & upside-down.
  • New mounting brackets for the handbrake cables.
  • massive spacer for bottom hub bolt *protip Landcruiser rear subframe bush center shafts work a treat.
  • Swapping camber arm sides to run away from the axle boot.
  • New exhaust hanger mounts (2)
  • Trimming Trac arm mount to clear axle boot under load.

Sitting there with the angle grinder on fresh arms felt so wrong.
But the fitment was so right.
All in a days work at GDL.

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