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Changing Suspension Setup


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#1 Moggyman60

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Posted 07 April 2019 - 10:50 AM

Hello everyone,

My name is andy and i have a mk2 1968 cooper that has the  hydrolastic setup, however pretty soon i would

like to get some bodywork done on the car which of course will mean draining the fluid, i have no real knowledge

of the hydro system so am going to find it difficult to take the system appart.  I am also thinking of changing to a dry

suspension setup afterwards.......maybe fitting hi lo's, my first question is will this affect the current value of the car

as it is a matching numbers vehicle with loads of history?  If not i would then be willing to sell on all the displacers

and pipe work from the car to help pay for the new bits, would anyone have any ideas please?

cheers andy :unsure:



#2 Minigman

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Posted 07 April 2019 - 11:13 AM

I’ve had a hydro mk1 and loved it!

I’m not sure the value would alter too much currently as a lot of cars have been changed to dry. But long term originality will achieve a higher value.

I used an old school garage who had a hydro pump to unpressurise the system.

I think it’s a marmite situation - some love it most will hate it (and many will hate it having never been in a hydro mini). I’d keep them personally. Lovely ride. Easy to alter the ride height.

But when they go wrong it can be costly to sort out. My mk1 needed two refurbed ‘bags’ and a length of pipework. If I recall that come out at near £500. I’ve heard of higher bills than that.

Original gets my vote. Dry set ups are common and easy to achieve any time. Once the hydro is gone it’s gone and a lot harder to get going again.

Edited by Minigman, 07 April 2019 - 11:17 AM.


#3 KTS

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Posted 07 April 2019 - 11:15 AM

Hi Andy

 

i may be wrong here, and i'm sure more knowledgeable people will clarify, but i think the hydrolastic setup is supposed to provide a better ride than the dry.  the downside is obviously the added complexity and cost, which is why they switched to the dry setup as standard

 

for a matching numbers car with history, i'd think maintaining originality would be key to retaining its value - that said, it doesn't necessarily mean you should not switch to a dry setup, but if you do it might be sensible to keep hold of the hydrolastic components so you could revert back to the original setup in the future if you wanted to sell the car



#4 Ethel

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Posted 07 April 2019 - 11:17 AM

I would think it'll hit the value if it's in good original condition, hard to say how much as every car and buyer is individual. There's also a bit more to changing over than swapping displacers for cones, the top arms are different and your helper springs have different fittings to rear dampers.



#5 Minigman

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Posted 07 April 2019 - 11:22 AM

Hi Andy

i may be wrong here, and i'm sure more knowledgeable people will clarify, but i think the hydrolastic setup is supposed to provide a better ride than the dry. the downside is obviously the added complexity and cost, which is why they switched to the dry setup as standard

for a matching numbers car with history, i'd think maintaining originality would be key to retaining its value - that said, it doesn't necessarily mean you should not switch to a dry setup, but if you do it might be sensible to keep hold of the hydrolastic components so you could revert back to the original setup in the future if you wanted to sell the car


The ride is far nicer on bumpier roads. A set of front shock absorbers helps the dipping feeling you get under heavy braking. Some think the handling is sloppy on hydro but it’s just slightly different. Having owned cars with both hydro and dry I can achieve same cornering speeds with both, although with hydro yet get slight more body roll which is a tad unnerving at first until you get used to it.

#6 Moke Spider

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Posted 07 April 2019 - 12:05 PM

If the Hydro gear is basically in good order, I'd suggest for a few reasons sticking with it.

 

It's not that complex, but the ride it gives is very good, dry doesn't come close to it. While the ride is very good, the handling too, isn't too bad at all.

 

Working on it isn't really any more difficult that dry, only that for some operations you need to drain and refill the system. While I understand, this may appear on it's own a turn off, keep an eye open for a proper old school hydro pump, they seem to come up often and none too dear.

 

If you are still thinking of going to dry, then can I suggest perhaps giving some consideration to moving the car on to someone who does want a Hyrdo car as they are becoming less and less. They are a collectable too. Converting it to dry will detract from it value. If you were to move it on, I'm sure you would find a 'lesser' dry model for reasonable money that isn't as collectable and won't loose value as a result.



#7 DeadSquare

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Posted 08 April 2019 - 01:31 PM

I would think it'll hit the value if it's in good original condition, hard to say how much as every car and buyer is individual. There's also a bit more to changing over than swapping displacers for cones, the top arms are different and your helper springs have different fittings to rear dampers.

 

I seem to remember (but maybe wrong) that dampers can not be fitted to the 'helper spring' attachment point on the rear radius arms.



#8 Ethel

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Posted 08 April 2019 - 03:24 PM

Anything is possible, but since "dry" arms were so abundant it was never commercially viable. Replacement or engineering your own solution is the only option. Nicklouse did something similar with the Metro arms on his racer.



#9 Moke Spider

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Posted 08 April 2019 - 06:00 PM

 

I would think it'll hit the value if it's in good original condition, hard to say how much as every car and buyer is individual. There's also a bit more to changing over than swapping displacers for cones, the top arms are different and your helper springs have different fittings to rear dampers.

 

I seem to remember (but maybe wrong) that dampers can not be fitted to the 'helper spring' attachment point on the rear radius arms.

 

 

Yes and not just that, but the helper spring is needed to keep the nose of the car off the bump stops.



#10 jomaoliveira79

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Posted 08 April 2019 - 08:46 PM

If you have someone who can charge it nearby (if you don't know anybody ask your mini club or older enthusiasts) and your Hydrolastic units are in a fair condition, keep Hydro and just change the unions and maybe the front to back pipes. You will gain a better car ride (not race intended) and a more valuable vehicle.
PS: An Hydro to Rubber cone converted car owner.

Edited by jomaoliveira79, 08 April 2019 - 08:48 PM.


#11 Moggyman60

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Posted 12 April 2019 - 07:30 PM

Thank you everyone for all your replies, however one thing i'm not happy about is the ride height with hydro, it was mentioned that with a hydro

setup you can adjust the ride height but on my mini the back end sits up and the front end down,so my question is how do i get the car to sit level

on the road??

Thanks Andy



#12 cal844

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Posted 12 April 2019 - 09:34 PM

Thank you everyone for all your replies, however one thing i'm not happy about is the ride height with hydro, it was mentioned that with a hydro
setup you can adjust the ride height but on my mini the back end sits up and the front end down,so my question is how do i get the car to sit level
on the road??
Thanks Andy


look at any factory fresh mini, they are all higher on the rear

#13 Moggyman60

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Posted 14 April 2019 - 01:10 PM

Thanks



#14 whistler

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Posted 14 April 2019 - 03:03 PM

I’ve had a hydro mk1 and loved it!

I’m not sure the value would alter too much currently as a lot of cars have been changed to dry. But long term originality will achieve a higher value.

I used an old school garage who had a hydro pump to unpressurise the system.

I think it’s a marmite situation - some love it most will hate it (and many will hate it having never been in a hydro mini). I’d keep them personally. Lovely ride. Easy to alter the ride height.

But when they go wrong it can be costly to sort out. My mk1 needed two refurbed ‘bags’ and a length of pipework. If I recall that come out at near £500. I’ve heard of higher bills than that.

Original gets my vote. Dry set ups are common and easy to achieve any time. Once the hydro is gone it’s gone and a lot harder to get going again.

Ian Kennedy can rehose and test hydro units for around £85 each. He's just done 6 for me.



#15 whistler

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Posted 14 April 2019 - 03:09 PM

Thank you everyone for all your replies, however one thing i'm not happy about is the ride height with hydro, it was mentioned that with a hydro

setup you can adjust the ride height but on my mini the back end sits up and the front end down,so my question is how do i get the car to sit level

on the road??

Thanks Andy

If the ride height really bugs you there's always the old fashion method of lowering; remove the 'trumpet' tubes and shorten them. There's a formula for calculating the amount to shorten to result in lower height. Not sure if it's 1 to 5 for the rears. Remove 5mm to drop by 25mm or something like that. Used to do it the opposite to raise ride height back in the 60's. We added body washers to the balljoint pin. Mind you don't bottom out though.






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