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Discussion Starter #21
Sorry to be asking so many questions but again, I am not a pro and if I do this I only want to do it once and do it right.

I've been reading through this old thread about YYZ springs and it is basically saying ANY Cobalt FE5 spring will need a conversion kit to work on a Redline (and hence, my ION) http://www.redlineforums.com/forums/wheels-tires-brakes-suspension/51565-put-powell-yyz-springs-my-redline-10.html

From what all of you have been saying so far is that as long as I use the upper mounting hardware from my stock onto the new struts I should be alright. This seems contradictory. Am I missing something?

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No, for that you need the shims also, I believe, since the springs are for Cobalts.

I haven't really been following the latest Powell parts, though, so a simple phone call to CED should get you the right stuff. They know what's up.
 

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Discussion Starter #23
Man....as much as I want to go as far as FE5s like the rest of you, I'm thinking I might need to scale it back and just do FE3 to ensure compatibility.

Of course I would want the furthest evolution for our platform but I don't know how to go about modifying with conversion kits and shims. I just need a simple plug and play unless the conversion is REALLY easy. And I need to see what is involved.

Youtube has shown me how to do rear shocks and springs, and front struts and springs as long as you are replacing with stock. Beyond that I don't have any resource for further modification to make Cobalt FE5 fit in my original FE2 housings without a detailed walkthough. Anyone have a link to this conversion kit I could look at?

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No, for that you need the shims also, I believe, since the springs are for Cobalts.

I haven't really been following the latest Powell parts, though, so a simple phone call to CED should get you the right stuff. They know what's up.
Call them say you want the complete set for the ion. They supposedly took the ion set off for a few but you might be able to get it by phone.
 

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FE5 is not the problem. The spring you choose is the problem.
 

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Discussion Starter #26
But that's the further problem 1313, CED doesn't SHIP to Canada so I can't even contact them.

Chicken man - from what everyone is saying, YYZ is apparently the best and if I'm going to spend money I'd prefer to get the best I can. If I don't go YYZ, what would you recommend as an alternative?

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But that's the further problem 1313, CED doesn't SHIP to Canada so I can't even contact them.

Chicken man - from what everyone is saying, YYZ is apparently the best and if I'm going to spend money I'd prefer to get the best I can. If I don't go YYZ, what would you recommend as an alternative?

I mentioned before if you would like you can ship them to me and I'll re ship them to you, just a thought.

YYZ, Pedder, SSC, everything else are pretty much a drop spring = slammed and horrid ride. Pedder are cobalt springs so ya need new top hats and the shim kit from Powell, think they like 15$. I think the SSC springs are ion drop springs for the regular ion with a huge drop but when put on a redline it's only like a 1.5 from stock. They don't need the shims.

Just remember no matter what spring you go with you will need top hats cause they are prone to rust and most likely won't come apart nicely. I just took mine apart today to replace my struts and they were rusted up. Local part place had new ones luckily so got them back together hopefully get my stage2 axles in tomorrow, driver side done passenger side bein a pita.
 

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Discussion Starter #28
Thanks 1313. I think I'm just going to go FE3 stock. As much as I'd like to do FE5 I know FE3 will slip right in no problem. The money saved can go toward front and rear sway bars I guess.

A bit of a let down seeing as I got my hopes up after all the cool stuff I heard about FE5 but skill ad logistics seem to be against me so I'll just revert to my original plan of trying to turn my ION3 into a factory Redline. Good enough I guess.

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Youre still missing it. Fe5 shocks and struts will bolt right up. Its the SPRINGS you choose that cause the extra work. Yes, youre going to need new top hats, regardless. Yyz and pedders will require the extra work to make the SPRING fit.
Like I stated before, I use the SSC springs that were designed for ions. It will be a drastic drop for your car. For my redline it was 1.25 front, 1.5 back. But the redline sat lower then a base to start with.
I bought my redline in disappointment that I couldn't boost my 03. And didn't know crap about anything other than changing a tire and my oil. It really isn't hard to do this stuff if you just pay attention to what youre doing and do your research.
Were all here to help each other out. If you want yyz's with fe5s, just take our advice.
 

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Thanks 1313. I think I'm just going to go FE3 stock. As much as I'd like to do FE5 I know FE3 will slip right in no problem. The money saved can go toward front and rear sway bars I guess.

A bit of a let down seeing as I got my hopes up after all the cool stuff I heard about FE5 but skill ad logistics seem to be against me so I'll just revert to my original plan of trying to turn my ION3 into a factory Redline. Good enough I guess.

Like goal said it is the spring that requires the shim kit not the fe5 update, the fe5 parts are a direct swap. The shim kit isn't a big deal. All it is is 2 big washers that sandwich the top hat bearing. You will want new top hats anyway so it's no big deal putting them in.

You will want
fe5 strut new
Spring retainer old
Spring new
Spring top old
1 shim from kit new
Bearing new comes with top hat
Other shim from kit
Center hat rubber from top hat
Old strut nut, fe5 nut won't work use stock nut
Top hat cover bolt it down
Stick it in car done
 

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Discussion Starter #31
Alright, I know I am really slow in getting this but like I said, I'm an amateur.

So first, thanks 1313 in pointing out what I would need and what the conversion kit would entail. I would have to first find one and second, find a way to get it. So for slow, basic me, could you please point out in this diagram using the numbers, explaining exactly what from the conversion kit would go where? (eg. the washers go between #this and ##this, etc.)



Second question for Mr. conservative me playing it safe: If I were to get FE5 shock/struts and FE3 springs - would ANY additional hardware be needed or could I just reuse all my hardware from my stockers (top hats, everything else)? The FE3 springs would fit on FE5 struts, correct?

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Alright, I know I am really slow in getting this but like I said, I'm an amateur.

So first, thanks 1313 in pointing out what I would need and what the conversion kit would entail. I would have to first find one and second, find a way to get it. So for slow, basic me, could you please point out in this diagram using the numbers, explaining exactly what from the conversion kit would go where? (eg. the washers go between #this and ##this, etc.)



Second question for Mr. conservative me playing it safe: If I were to get FE5 shock/struts and FE3 springs - would ANY additional hardware be needed or could I just reuse all my hardware from my stockers (top hats, everything else)? The FE3 springs would fit on FE5 struts, correct?

The shims go one both sides of 17 if you buy Pedder springs. If you can find a set of redline springs you wouldn't need shims but you will need new top hats because I can guaranty yours will most likely not come apart well. They are about 50$ for the set. If you do fe5 struts/shocks you can get it all from Amazon and just go with the SSC or used redline springs and new top hats.



Just did mine these are 2 years old had to cut 2 bolts

New ones

 

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Discussion Starter #33
THAT'S the kind of completely obvious walkthrough I was needing 1313, thank you my friend!

Okay, so route 1 (conversion) - it's just two washers that sandwich #17 in the diagram? Are you guys using the terms "conversion kit" and "shim" interchangably? Because I liken a shim to a spacer, and that seems to be what you described.

Route 2 (FE5 shocks/struts & FE3 springs) - Completely fit together and no additional hardware needed? In the case that my top hats DO come apart nicely from my stock FE2 setup, would I even need to buy anything new aside from the shocks/struts/springs? I will if I need to but just want to know.

Thanks for the pics!

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Getting an idea of what you want this is what I would suggest if you don't go with the YYZ setups.



x2

X2

Amazon.com: Sachs Strut Mounting Kit: Automotive x2

SSC Lowering Springs - Suspension & Brakes

Doing all new is the way to go. Your parts are going to be bad that is why you are replacing them.......why do half and half
Everything is on amazon cept the springs. Sign up for a 30day amazon prime trial and you get free shipping then wait a few weeks and cancel it.
 

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Discussion Starter #35
Look at you 1313 - going the extra mile and even finding links for me. And going even FURTHER to show me how to be a weasel and get free shipping lol! XD

Once again, those prices won't apply to me as I cannot order from amazon.com, I have to use the Canadian site amazon.ca and they likely won't have the parts but I will look. Also, I had NO intention of or idea that I'd need to do anything with the Sway Bar Links if non-stock springs were going to be installed so I think that just about seals it for me. I'm going FE3 springs with FE5 shocks/struts - all stock. I know, I think a bunch of you were rooting for me to finally do my first major aftermarket upgrade but hey - even THIS upgrade with all stock OEM components is way better than what I currently have so I'll be happy. I'll be lower and handle better, and that's what I was after.

Really appreciate all the help everyone. I'll start ordering tomorrow and everything will likely arrive in a few weeks to a month. I'll keep you apprised of my progress and also post if I have any further questions.

One last bit - While I'm doing all of this I'm planning on getting a front strut bar from ZZP and a Powell Triple X Rear Sway Bar unless anyone suggests I go with something different for those two.

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Look at you 1313 - going the extra mile and even finding links for me. And going even FURTHER to show me how to be a weasel and get free shipping lol! XD

Once again, those prices won't apply to me as I cannot order from amazon.com, I have to use the Canadian site amazon.ca and they likely won't have the parts but I will look. Also, I had NO intention of or idea that I'd need to do anything with the Sway Bar Links if non-stock springs were going to be installed so I think that just about seals it for me. I'm going FE3 springs with FE5 shocks/struts - all stock. I know, I think a bunch of you were rooting for me to finally do my first major aftermarket upgrade but hey - even THIS upgrade with all stock OEM components is way better than what I currently have so I'll be happy. I'll be lower and handle better, and that's what I was after.

Really appreciate all the help everyone. I'll start ordering tomorrow and everything will likely arrive in a few weeks to a month. I'll keep you apprised of my progress and also post if I have any further questions.

One last bit - While I'm doing all of this I'm planning on getting a front strut bar from ZZP and a Powell Triple X Rear Sway Bar unless anyone suggests I go with something different for those two.

You don't need end links they were just on my list but they aren't a bad thing to replace while ya under there. Check yer brakes too. I would worry the redline springs might not be enough drop for you. You might wanna do SSC if ya ordering from zzp anyway.
Strut bar is almost worthless, rear is supposed to be worth it but I'm goin with the zzp one cause I can't bring myself to pay 325$ for a metal bar.
 

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Discussion Starter #37 (Edited)
It's $325?! Dagum. Okay I might just do the ZZP one then too. I'll still pop for the front one though, it's pretty cheap. As for the springs, it'll be okay. There will be a drop from where I am so that's good enough. I still want a nice ride and don't know if SSC is just going to drop me and run harsh. FE3s for sure won't seeing as they're factory.

Already did my front brakes last year, was in the initial post of this thread. StopTech slotted rotors and Hawk HPS pads. Haven't done the rears yet (in case you didn't know - ION 1-3 have lameo drums lol). Going to open them and see how they're doing. Shoes tend to last a while. ZZP has a disc conversion kit for the Sonic, wish they had one for IONs :(

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It's $325?! Dagum. Okay I might just do the ZZP one then too. I'll still pop for the front one though, it's pretty cheap. As for the springs, it'll be okay. There will be a drop from where I am so that's good enough. I still want a nice ride and don't know if SSC is just going to drop me and run harsh. FE3s for sure won't seeing as they're factory.

Already did my front brakes last year, was in the initial post of this thread. StopTech slotted rotors and Hawk HPS pads. Haven't done the rears yet (in case you didn't know - ION 1-3 have lameo drums lol). Going to open them and see how they're doing. Shoes tend to last a while. ZZP has a disc conversion kit for the Sonic, wish they had one for IONs


Ya for me the hardcore was 265$ and the 3X was 285$ plus 52$ shipping.

ZZP is 185$ plus 15$ shipping and is equivalent to the hardcore.
 

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