Cutting springs/spring applications. Post your experiences.
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Author:  suprf1y [ Thu Aug 10, 2006 4:31 pm ]
Post subject:  Cutting springs/spring applications. Post your experiences.

If you've cut your springs, used the 95+ springs in your 89-94 car, used springs from another application, or even performed some other spring magic, post it up. I'll go through it later, clean it up, and make a sticky, so we have all the info in one place.
If you want to display your ignorance by disputing this as a legitimate modification, please follow the link provided by Lihtan. Post it here, and it will be deleted.
Thanks to everybody for your contributions.

My 95-93 spring/strut swap with pics ... &highlight

This car has the stock springs cut 1 coil front/back. It handled, rode great Pic in my gallery


On the 98 car, while trying to correct a serious oversteer problem, I pulled the rear springs, and replaced them with a set from a 92 GT. The wire diameter was the same, but the free length was approx. 3/4" shorter. This leveled the car out front to back, and fixed the weight transfer/oversteer problem.

Author:  larry griffith [ Thu Aug 10, 2006 5:07 pm ]
Post subject:  heated

i've heated the coils on a few of my Geo's . if done right at the base of the coil . then it will drop down about 1 inch onto the seat. this drops the car about 4 inches . the trick is to keep the rest of the coil from getting to hot. heat a small spot on the coil and spray a fine mist of water on as soon as the spring drops.
once the 2nd coil sits down onto the base coil it can't sag later on.

Author:  Lihtan [ Fri Aug 11, 2006 3:57 am ]
Post subject: 

When I got my MK2 GTi, the suspension wasn't in very good condition. Stock springs, and shot factory shocks. The car was scary to drive. I remember my buddy's 2nd gen Dodge Caravan handling better than my car. I first used a hacksaw to cut the front springs, and a while later used an angle grinder to cut the rear springs. When using a hacksaw, heat build up won't be a problem due to the time it takes to cut the hard metal. With the angle grinder, I kept a container of water and a rag nearby, and would quench it frequently as I was cutting through it (the hottest the metal ever got was "very warm"). 1 1/4 coils each was cut from the front, 1 coil each from the rear. Despite the crappy shocks, the car handles well now. As far as the stance goes, the car is pretty low now. I can just squeeze two fingers between the stock 14" tires and the fender lip. Re-oiling the shocks is still on my todo list, but I'm pretty happy for now.

Author:  FASTRAKR [ Fri Aug 11, 2006 8:21 am ]
Post subject: 

My 93 rolled all over the place in the corners so I took suprf1y's advice and got the springs from a '95 4 door trunk car and cut roughly a coil off using my grinder and it made a world of difference. Didn't really drop the car much, but the handling went through the roof! And cutting with a cut off blade in the grind put zero heat into the spring for anybody that is worried about that.

Author:  metro freak [ Fri Aug 11, 2006 1:06 pm ]
Post subject: 

I am in the process of this right now. I have taken a pic of the front drivers side tire showing the tire/fender clearance and may have some other ones that will show the fender clearance of the rear wheel too.

When I post next it should be with the BEFORE/DURING/AFTER pics of what I did to my springs.

There will be pics of the springs before and after cutting. I need to measure the overall length of them and see what the drop at the spring is and see how it affected total drop.

There will also be a picture of what the Metro looks like on the ground with NO springs at all.

I will also try to have some pics of it with 12", 13" and 14" rims. All steelies. I will also put some aluminum rims on there that are 13" X ?? and some that are 14" X ??. I will post rim width later.

These rims will also have different sizes of tires on them too.

Author:  Dattman [ Fri Aug 11, 2006 5:16 pm ]
Post subject: 

Well I have found that 65mmID race springs fit surprisely well onto Mk1 struts but you will need a new upper spring seat, I tried a couple of different springs and ended up with 175lb 250mm free height springs, the 250mm length springs are the best length because you can use a couple of small spacers between the top spring seat and strut top to fine tune your ride height. I tried the 300mm springs and had too much preload for my ride height.

Author:  n1tr0 [ Fri Aug 11, 2006 10:50 pm ]
Post subject: 

on both my mk3 gt and my mk5 ga swifts I've gone with roughly 1.25-1.5 coils front and 1-1.25 coils rear with the stock shocks, this gives roughly a 1.5-1.75" drop and the same height/ride/feel as H&R sport springs.

I have no experience with gas charged or aftermarket shocks, but the stock non-charged shocks I've used so far have been more then enough to handle the increased spring rate.

Author:  black_striped_GT [ Tue Aug 15, 2006 2:47 am ]
Post subject: 

I am using crx coilovers springs and sleeves on modifly drilled stock struts, with stock springs at the back, wit 1 coil chopped off, the car is level all the way around it handles amazing sticks to the road like its on rails.

I have also use chopped springs all around b4 on another swift works well just don't go cuttin coils like crazy 1 coil max.


Author:  Lihtan [ Sun Aug 27, 2006 5:56 pm ]
Post subject: 

This post is a reply to a now deleted posting about the "dangers" of cutting springs.

Spring cutting has a very high success rate with Suzukis. I've had the benefit of having personally driven GTis both with aftermarket lowering springs, and cut springs. Do you know what difference I noticed? None. Aftermarket springs will have a few extra dead coils to hold your suspension under tension should it become unloaded, but I also don't drive the car to the point that the wheels leave the ground.

More discussion of the realities of spring cutting in this thread:

Author:  Kinslayer [ Fri Sep 22, 2006 1:04 am ]
Post subject: 

How much drop can you expect with a lack of one coil? I don't want to start rubbin' the tires.

Author:  suprf1y [ Fri Sep 22, 2006 9:24 am ]
Post subject: 

What year car?
Look at the blue 3tech car. Thats one coil (maybe 1 1/4 rear).
I always say go 1/2 coil at a time. The 95+ cars require more than the 89-94 cars, because they sit so high.

Author:  Floggolf [ Sun Oct 15, 2006 3:34 pm ]
Post subject:  94 GT vs. 98 Swift wire diameter: The SAME!

I measured the diameter of the spring wire on my 94 GT at 12.15 mm front and 13.3 mm rear (includes paint thickness). I really doubt the previous owner swapped springs from looking at the pile of reciepts I got w/ the car and the type of work he paid for.

I got a set of springs off a bone yard 98 Swift and the wire diameter is the same, though they do have one or more additional coils. Like 5.5 coils rear on the GT vs 6.4 on the Mk 4

:( I read the Mk4 had .5 and .75 mm thicker wire diameter. Must be for a different model/ generation.

I was hoping to stiffen up my GT by cutting the 'thicker' Mk4 springs, but not drop it much. Plans change, unless I can use dead coils to space it up...

Author:  suprf1y [ Sun Oct 15, 2006 4:30 pm ]
Post subject: 

There are a few different springs used in the Metro/Swift, etc. It looks like the 92+ all have the heavier wire springs, same as the swaybars. Like you said, though, they are wound differently, so the 98 springs may still stiffen it up. You'd have to caompare springs out of the car.

Author:  t3 ragtop [ Sun Oct 15, 2006 10:00 pm ]
Post subject: 

a turn and a half off the fronts and a turn and a quarter off the rears using mk3 swift gt springs gave me a full 2" drop on my blue vert. they made the car handle like it was on rails.

i didn't pull the urethane bumps stops off the struts and cut them down until several months after i cut the springs. removing the factory bump stops and trimming about 1" off them is really something that you should do when you first cut the springs. i did a lot of miles on my bump stops when the springs were compressed, the whip lash gets old real quick. :razz:

Author:  chippy [ Tue Oct 17, 2006 9:47 pm ]
Post subject:  Cutting springs

I have a 2000 and I cut 3/4 of a coil off mine and it lowerd it about 1.5". I haven't hit the bump stops yet, but I drive on pretty good roads. Look in my gallery at the difference. Soon to have 15" Enkei's on it :D

P.S. Yes the 13x5.5 Prolines will be for sale after the Enkie's are on :D

Author:  autobahnen [ Sat May 05, 2007 7:01 pm ]
Post subject: 

After you cut the springs, don't you have to square them? If so, how?

Author:  GEOGEE [ Sun May 06, 2007 12:26 am ]
Post subject: 

i lowered my 94 metro , the other day ,, it was easy ... i posted pics in my gallery ..

Author:  autobahnen [ Sun May 06, 2007 9:16 am ]
Post subject: 

Did you square the springs at all after cutting them? Of so, how?

Author:  GEOGEE [ Sun May 06, 2007 9:02 pm ]
Post subject: 

I did the process twice .. the first time i did it i installed coilovers . and that was .. cool .. ( i have pics in my album ) it looked cool but i didn't want to run large wheels ( 15 16 17 .. i wanted 13 x 5.5 rims ... so it had to come down lower ..
so i removed them and reinstalled the stock springs , but cut off a coil and a quarter . i used a highspeed air cut off wheel .. and just cut it off and then laid the springs down flat ( yes i did both at the say time .. that way they would be the same . i then took the cutoff wheel and took about a 20degree corner off the bottom so they would sit in the strut seat . i used a spring compressor to get the springs back into the strut . and reinstalled , them .. the ride is soooo much better than the stock height . really ... this is one of the best mods you can do to your metro for no cost ..

Author:  geo racer [ Mon May 07, 2007 9:50 pm ]
Post subject: 

Well I have the cut 96 springs (I cut them two full coils and wouldn't recomend that much for a daily driver as it is rather low and rough riding on the city streets) and the 96 swaybars on my 93 and just out hanlded two sti's, two rx7's and a m3 on a 2.2 mile road course in salt lake. I would say it works pretty well. All I need now is brakes and I would have done quite a bit better.

Author:  Dan White [ Sat Jun 23, 2007 12:08 pm ]
Post subject: 

Here's what I've done and I've found out so far. I got the front and rear springs from a '96 4-door metro and installed them in my '94 metro. The late four-door rear springs were about 3/4" longer than the two-doors', and the front springs were the same length. Coil winding/spacing was mostly identical. Wire diameter was .025" larger with the four-door springs, both front and rear. I always figured that the early Geo's were undersuspended in both springs and wheels. When I was done moving all the springs over, I didn't like how it looked. Here's why:

89-94 Metro 2-door ride height (distance between center of wheel and top of fender arch), is 13 1/2 inches, front and rear.

95- Metro 2-door ride height--14 1/2 inches

My Metro with the 4-door springs' ride height--16 1/2" rear, about 15 1/2" front.

Additionally, the rear camber angle went to around +5 degrees, which aint no good from a handling/tire wear perspective. Additional fiddle factor on ride height is the fact that I installed KYB GR-2's (same as factory Swift GT units) which being gas charged, tended to raise the ride height some as well.

What I Did:

I pulled the springs out and cut 3/4 of a coil from the rear spring and 1/2 of a coil from the front spring. This resulted in a ride height of 14 1/2" rear, and 14 3/4 front. Might trim about 1" off the front spring to even things out, or I might not bother.

I also installed the rear control arms AND the rear toe adjusting rod from a '96 into my car, and that brought back the rear to a 0 camber condition, where it needs to be. The rear control arm is about 3/8" longer 95+ than the 94- ones, and the toe adjuster is 1/2" longer as well. Got to install both or you'll be sorry. Similar problem with camber on front with more springs, too. Even with half a coil out of the front spring, I still had +3 degrees positive camber. Test bolt in of extra '95+ front a-arm, which is about 3/8" or so longer than the '94 and earliers', reduced this to +1 1/2 degrees, which is better. Getting camber to where it needs being--around 0 sez my front end man--is going to require some alteration (ovalization) of bolt holes in strut assembly. Don't think it possible to move 3 degrees of camber out that way, but generally moving a degree to a degree and a half is possible without excessive metal destruction.


Pull the complete suspension out of a '95+ four door, cut the springs as described, and install everything--bigger rear spindles, brakes, bearings; bigger front brakes, 13" wheels all the way around, longer control arms front and rear into your earlier Geo for the best handling/braking/payload improvement per dollar you can do. It aint that much work--these are easy cars to work on.

Author:  geopat [ Tue Aug 21, 2007 9:49 pm ]
Post subject: 

first off, mk5 with h&r springs for a mk2/3, rides nice i dont find it to harsh on the crappy roads around here.
had some rubbing in the rears, had to trim part of the bummper and roll the lip.
stock hight
sitting on the H&Rs
some comparision pictures of some springs from different models/years

mk3 gt on top mk1 on the bottom, front struts

mk3 gt rears at left and mk1 rear on the right.

mk5 rears on the left mk3 gt on the right

mk5 front, H&R and mk3 metro spring. didnt have a gt spring at the time

ill update this with a pic of the H&Rs with a stock gt spring when they come off my car in the winter.

Author:  GEOGEE [ Thu Aug 23, 2007 1:21 am ]
Post subject: 

good lord ! are those struts out of your car ? cuz geeez ,, them damn things are ruuuusttteeeey ! wow ! ... you guys out there in canada must drive on salt treated roads .. ? wow ... the car looks sweet slammed in the picture . cool ... :)

Author:  f1refli [ Tue Aug 28, 2007 3:22 pm ]
Post subject: 

I removed the coil spacer from the front of the strut, that loweres the front 2 inches, keeping the stock suspension the same but 2 inches lower..

then simply cut 2 inches of the rear springs, gives the car a nice stance.
and not extremely too low.
Rides much nicer too.

And dont forget to do a wheel alighnment after you modify the suspension.
cars tend to pull to the left when the suspension is lowered without re-alighnment.

I borrowed your picture of your strut, hope you dont mind!.


Author:  supertres [ Sun Mar 09, 2008 8:20 pm ]
Post subject:  A little help

Let me know if I'm correct:

After reading all post about cutting springs and replace calipers, I'm trying to place all pieces togheter but I'm lost and confused and before to doing I want be sure:

1. the car ins not a swift GTI, it's a Geo XFI

2.- donnor car is a 95 swift founded in a junk yard

To improve the Geo I need in a few words:

A) Cut springs 1/2 turn to low about 2" (both front and rear)

B) Swap rotors for GTI improved discs (As is for sale in ebay)

C) Found refurbished '88-91 CRX calipers

D) buy the blue one?, the green one, the right pads.

NOTE: the Geo is a work car-everyday commute running in highway and I want better brakes and less bouncing. any comment is appreciated.

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