or “shocks and springs” for US readers. I.e. the whole enchilada as far as wheel control goes (aside from torsion/anti sway bars).
While the car was being prepped, I had the new dampers re-valved. Öhlins dampers have the feature of being able to be tweaked and tuned to any specific response curve desired. By changing the metal washers that regulate oil flow they can make them super stiff for racing, or very relaxed and soft for cruising. On top of this, there is a click adjuster on each damper that allows it to be tuned within a wide range determined by the internal valving.
Mine had been set up a bit too harsh, and the click adjuster didn’t allow enough adjustment to soften up the ride, so it was back to the bench to re-valve the units.
The guru himself gave a quick introduction to how these dampers work and what makes them so much better than anything else out there, as well as why a range of sports cars are delivered with Öhlins as standard.
After the new valves are configured for the desired response, the dampers are filled with a special oil and then put on a dyno to test. Mine turned out a response curve that perfectly matches the OEM dampers, yet can be tuned via the click adjuster to offer a much firmer or softer ride, whichever is preferred. All of this while the damper is on the car, simply by reaching a hand under and turning the adjuster wheel one way or the other.
Back on the car, and the ride was completely transformed. Previously the front and rear end felt almost like two different cars due to the difference in response, now the car felt like one solid whole and the front matches the rear perfectly.
Last thing to do is to dial in the ride height, done by adjusting the spring preload. If you look at the picture above you can see the spring seat is actually a threaded ring that can be adjusted along the length of the damper tube, and is used to fine tune ride height and spring preload. My car is riding a bit too low at the default setting.
If you have a QP3 and are interested in a set of dampers like these, let me know and I’ll see what I can arrange :-).