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Discussion Starter #1
Hey guys. Used to have a 500 Abarth that I loved. Decided to get back into the Abarth game and picked up a 124 Spider Abarth. Shortly after buying it I noticed that something was wrong with the suspension, it leaned over to the driver's side of the car. I brought it up with the dealer and in an attempt to fix it they've replaced front and rear springs on the driver's side of the car, and one strut that was leaking on the driver's side rear corner. That also appears to be where 90% of the lean is coming from. These repairs have made the problem better, but not fixed it.

I'm wondering since the spring and strut have already been replaced and the problem persists, what else could possibly be done? I have no idea how the suspension setup is on these cars. Can the springs or struts be adjusted?

For reference it looks like the previous owner damaged the vehicle. I'm guessing they hit a huge pothole and messed up the suspension on that side. So I don't know what other replaceable parts might be damaged there.

Thanks in advance for any advice. I hate my first post on a forum to be asking for help.
 

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Welcome to the forum ! I don't know much about suspension. Could it be that you need things to settle for, say, a few hundred miles to see if it balances out ? Or, if the car has done a reasonable amount of milage since new, is it not normal practice to change both sides of the axle when fitting new shocks ? Also, have you measured the difference (say middle of wheel arch to ground)..... I had a Triumph TR7 convertible many years ago that had a difference of 2cm left to right and had to live with it as it was within the manufacturers "tolerance" ! Failing that, I suggest and independent geometry specialist give it a once over..... shouldn't be to expensive for peace of mind. Good Luck, and once again welcome.
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
Welcome to the forum ! I don't know much about suspension. Could it be that you need things to settle for, say, a few hundred miles to see if it balances out ? Or, if the car has done a reasonable amount of milage since new, is it not normal practice to change both sides of the axle when fitting new shocks ? Also, have you measured the difference (say middle of wheel arch to ground)..... I had a Triumph TR7 convertible many years ago that had a difference of 2cm left to right and had to live with it as it was within the manufacturers "tolerance" ! Failing that, I suggest and independent geometry specialist give it a once over..... shouldn't be to expensive for peace of mind. Good Luck, and once again welcome.
The new parts are on the low side, so I don't imagine they'd settle and go higher, but I'm also not a mechanic so I won't say that's not how they work..

The car has 19k miles, so the old suspension parts aren't very old. I definitely should go measure it. I've been doing some imprecise measurements just to verify that they're not the same.

Edit: it's kind of hard to measure due to the geometry of the fender. It looks like the rear is about 0.5 inches lower (~1.3cm) on the driver's side in the rear, and slightly less than 0.5 inches on the driver's side in the front. Also measuring with a little over half a tank of gas. Not sure if the tank sits centered or off to one side and if that would impact the measurement at all.
 

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New parts on the lower side ???....... good point, I missed that !!! Given the history re previous damage, I'd be inclined (pardon the pun) to take it to a specialist geometry /tracking/suspension outfit. A visual comparison with another 124 may put your mind at rest..... I can "see" a difference with my car although it measures ok. Once seen it cannot be un-seen !!!
 

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There is a certain tolerance and it is normal for each corner of the car to be of different heights. The best way to measure ride height it to make sure all your tires are evenly inflated and nothing is in your trunk. Then measure from the bottom lip of the rim through the center of the hub and up to the bottom of the fender. Then subtract that number by the radius (diameter of the rim divided by 2). This puts the measurement exactly online with the center of the wheel. For a stock car you should be getting a ride height of about 14.5" +/- 1/4".
 

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Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
There is a certain tolerance and it is normal for each corner of the car to be of different heights. The best way to measure ride height it to make sure all your tires are evenly inflated and nothing is in your trunk. Then measure from the bottom lip of the rim through the center of the hub and up to the bottom of the fender. Then subtract the diameter of the rim divided by 2 to get the radius. This puts the measurement exactly online with the center of the wheel. For a stock car you should be getting a ride height of about 14.5" +/- 1/4".
I'll check the tire pressures later and get a more accurate measurement. The pressure gauge on my air pump is broken and I guess it's time to bump that to the top of the to-fix list.

Edit: without touching the air pressure I'm measuring 15.25 inch ride hight on the lowest corner, which seems a bit odd unless I totally fail at using a tape measure.
 

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I'll check the tire pressures later and get a more accurate measurement. The pressure gauge on my air pump is broken and I guess it's time to bump that to the top of the to-fix list.

Edit: without touching the air pressure I'm measuring 15.25 inch ride hight on the lowest corner, which seems a bit odd unless I totally fail at using a tape measure.
I've attempted to create a template of all four locations using Chainringtattoo's directions, and please forgive me as I don't have a CADD app on this machine so did this using Microsoft Word (yes, painful). From the attached sketch, X being the bottom lip of the rim to the bottom of the fender well, and Y being 1/2 rim diameter. I've then noted the stock distance as noted by him, so hopefully this can assist you in figuring this out, and if nothing else give you something to mark up when you take your measurements after your tire pressure check. Maybe use the timer function on your phone's camera to take a shot of the tape measure in place from outer edge of the bottom of the tire rim to the understide of the fender wheel well on each side of your car.

74888
74889
 

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I've attempted to create a template of all four locations using Chainringtattoo's directions, and please forgive me as I don't have a CADD app on this machine so did this using Microsoft Word (yes, painful). From the attached sketch, X being the bottom lip of the rim to the bottom of the fender well, and Y being 1/2 rim diameter. I've then noted the stock distance as noted by him, so hopefully this can assist you in figuring this out, and if nothing else give you something to mark up when you take your measurements after your tire pressure check. Maybe use the timer function on your phone's camera to take a shot of the tape measure in place from outer edge of the bottom of the tire rim to the understide of the fender wheel well on each side of your car.

View attachment 74888 View attachment 74889
Brilliant!
 

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Got about 30 Miatas here for installs of various things...pretty much every one of them lower on the driver's corner. Most of the time these cars are driven with just 1 person in the car, so the most weight is in the driver's corner, and the most settling is in the driver's corner. We can 'fix' that with coilovers that allow us to adjust car perfectly level. But if we use the coilovers to do an actual corner balance the funny thing is that we will end up again with driver's corner low for best balance. My point is that it is both normal and not worth worrying about.
 

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Got about 30 Miatas here for installs of various things...pretty much every one of them lower on the driver's corner. Most of the time these cars are driven with just 1 person in the car, so the most weight is in the driver's corner, and the most settling is in the driver's corner. We can 'fix' that with coilovers that allow us to adjust car perfectly level. But if we use the coilovers to do an actual corner balance the funny thing is that we will end up again with driver's corner low for best balance. My point is that it is both normal and not worth worrying about.
Brian, I really think I feel some benefit from the offset of weight provided by the System One Hemholtz chamber on the rear passenger side. It could just be in my head. Really happy with the exhaust, and appreciate all of your support via email.
 

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Brian, I really think I feel some benefit from the offset of weight provided by the System One Hemholtz chamber on the rear passenger side. It could just be in my head. Really happy with the exhaust, and appreciate all of your support via email.
Anything going to the right rear has to help. This car is ridiculously heavy on the left front. This was my first measurement when I corner balanced my car. The total weight of the car is with me and 3/4 tank of fuel. For those wondering that would give an empty weight of around 2,400 pounds. Not bad.

74890
 

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Is the car on stock suspension or lowering springs? I recently traded in an Abarth that had been in an accident on the drivers side rear corner. I wonder if you got mine.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Is the car on stock suspension or lowering springs? I recently traded in an Abarth that had been in an accident on the drivers side rear corner. I wonder if you got mine.
It's stock. Looks like it was just a giant pothole or something. No evidence of a collision. It's a 2017 I had shipped in from Dallas after trying to buy a new one and getting jerked around by the Fiat dealer.
 

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Hi Guys.....First thing that I picked up on is...if I read the thread properly, the dealer changed the RIGHT SIDE springs front and rear ? Having recently changed my owns originals out for Eibach Pro links I am pretty sure that I read somewhere (and it seems logical to me) that you should change IN PAIRS ...Back axle/Front axle anyway though why the car sits lower on the two new springs appears to indicate that he fitted the wrong size springs anyway, or, as everyone is saying here "Alignment" so a Vehicle Engineer / Inspector may be your "safest" bet before you risk damage to yourself, others and the cars suspension/tyres (UK spelling).
It took about 1.5 hours per corner to change out my springs on my own so you will have some idea of time/garage charges should you decide to go that route, Good Luck and I hope it turns out to be something really basic that we all missed, Cheers
ron
 
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