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Lowered my car this morning with adjustable links: Key steps that ensure precision

lolachampcar

Well-Known Member
Nov 26, 2012
6,126
7,571
WPB Florida
Just out of curiosity, you may want to pull a rear tire and place the upright on a bit of wood that holds the upright at something close to its normal position. Cycle the air up and down then check the angle of the link to potentiometer arm. Normally you would want this somewhere around 90 degrees so that suspension movement is turned into potentiometer shaft rotation with the best efficiency. When things get out of whack too far, the suspension can move a lot with very little input to the potentiometer shaft making accurate ride height control difficult.

I speak from experience having built suspension lowering modules that "fooled" the suspension control module by offsetting readings from the potentiometers. Links allow you to maintain the correct geometry while the spoofing approach does not. I ran into situations where too much offset hurt the overall system's ability to accurately manage ride height.
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Cowby

S E X C R
Jun 2, 2015
605
130
ATL, GA
Hi Guys

We have now got the new shorter front links manufactured a ready for dispatch.

The new front linkages at there shortest are approximately 1mm longer than the original linkages and will now allow a greater range of lowering without the need of an adapter or the need to modify the adjuster as per the previous longer adjusters.

We will advertise the revised kit on both our website and a large auction site known to you all.

I am not sure how to createa 'Group Purchase' offer but I am hoping the forum administrators can advise meas to the process if the forum members would like me create such an offer.

View attachment 80497

Here is a picture of therevised kit depicting both the front and rear linkages -

View attachment 80498

please PM me as I'd like to buy a set as well
 

BigCity

Member
Nov 18, 2015
239
59
Avon, IN
I haven't researched, but could you set the Lowest LOW setting to something super aggressive so it looked mean when parked or if you were only rolling down on a road at low speeds but only have it activated when you manually did it. Seem to remember you can set a speed for this LOW setting to be actiaveted or to have it ALWAYS set to low, just wasn't sure if you could override it to have it never activated. then you could set it really really LOW for looks on the LOW setting and then have it at the stock LOW setting for the standard setting height? If that makes any sense?
 

artsci

Sponsor
May 10, 2012
6,267
3,321
Timonium, Maryland
I haven't researched, but could you set the Lowest LOW setting to something super aggressive so it looked mean when parked or if you were only rolling down on a road at low speeds but only have it activated when you manually did it. Seem to remember you can set a speed for this LOW setting to be actiaveted or to have it ALWAYS set to low, just wasn't sure if you could override it to have it never activated. then you could set it really really LOW for looks on the LOW setting and then have it at the stock LOW setting for the standard setting height? If that makes any sense?

If I recall correctly, to do what you want you set it to never and it stays on whatever level you've set. Of course to get a super aggressive low stance for the conditions you've described, the low setting would have to be so low that a normal driving setting would be the equivalent of high or very high.
 

Bignikk

Member
Mar 14, 2014
65
3
Toronto
Hi Everyone. After 2+ years I have finally pulled the trigger on a set of 22x9 and 22x10.5 Niche Surge double dark tint directional wheels with Nitto Invo 245/30/22 and 295/25/22 rubber. I will be taking this opportunity to install adjustable lowering links to get a seriously aggressive stance.
My question is, how low can I go with air suspension before causing too much stress on various suspension components or causing the car to bottom out? Although I want the lowest possible suspension setting I would like to apply it at a "safe" height considering all aspects of the car.
***I remember lowering my friends 1986 olds Cierra by clamping the springs together with exhaust clamps in my garage to make it sit lower.
***I then owered my 1996 Sunfire with Eibach lowering springs
I definitely don't want a repeat of either of those.
And finally, I would like to know if anyone has alignment geometry/setting I Can provide my alignment specialist to adhere to with the new shoes + height.
Thanks so very much.
Nick from Toronto
 
This is a great thread with lots of great information on lowering links. Thank you for the detailed information and pics!

Since it has been a while since you guys have lowered your cars, any feedback on response/reactions from the SC and/or suspension wear or warranty claims? I know most of the lowered cars are within Tesla's specs (at least for the low setting), and the current software version also gives us the option to have the car always be on low, regardless of speed. With the damage disclaimer out of the way, it seems that Tesla isn't too concerned with warranty issues with the car riding that low either.

The unfortunate thing is that we can't just take it to the SC and ask them to calibrate the ride height to our desired setting. My rear is lower than the front as well and their response was "we checked it and its all within spec". I remember having my Phaeton adjusted this way with the VAG software.
 

artsci

Sponsor
May 10, 2012
6,267
3,321
Timonium, Maryland
This is a great thread with lots of great information on lowering links. Thank you for the detailed information and pics!

Since it has been a while since you guys have lowered your cars, any feedback on response/reactions from the SC and/or suspension wear or warranty claims? I know most of the lowered cars are within Tesla's specs (at least for the low setting), and the current software version also gives us the option to have the car always be on low, regardless of speed. With the damage disclaimer out of the way, it seems that Tesla isn't too concerned with warranty issues with the car riding that low either.

The unfortunate thing is that we can't just take it to the SC and ask them to calibrate the ride height to our desired setting. My rear is lower than the front as well and their response was "we checked it and its all within spec". I remember having my Phaeton adjusted this way with the VAG software.

No problems with the SC and no issue with increased tire wear or anything of the kind. My normal setting is the old Tesla low setting, so I'm basically riding on low all of the time. And I lower further at 50mph.
 
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Cowby

S E X C R
Jun 2, 2015
605
130
ATL, GA
Hi Everyone. After 2+ years I have finally pulled the trigger on a set of 22x9 and 22x10.5 Niche Surge double dark tint directional wheels with Nitto Invo 245/30/22 and 295/25/22 rubber. I will be taking this opportunity to install adjustable lowering links to get a seriously aggressive stance.
My question is, how low can I go with air suspension before causing too much stress on various suspension components or causing the car to bottom out?".... Nick from Toronto

This is my exact setup with the wheel sizes, except I have a modified 22" Wald Portofinos with Continental DWS 06 instead of Niche and Nitto. May I ask what are the offset on the Niche rims? You will need the aftermarket upper links to pull the camber out (could not get to lolachamp's specs for Camber and Toe, but I don't think we can with 22" wheels) and the lowering links to trick the SAS to allow the car to go lower. I have my height set to Standard with the car lowered (can always hit the Low button to get a bit more lower). Warning, u will get a slight rub in the front when reversing the car, and no I did not roll my fenders.
 

Iwan

Member
Dec 15, 2014
199
40
Netherlands
Better remove and replace them for OEM before any service appointment concerning the wheels, drivetrain and suspension. They tend to recalibrate everything thru software which causes your 'aggressive' stand to be 'standard' again. Replacing OEMs prevents the need for making the links even longer or to calibrate again after service.
 

lolachampcar

Well-Known Member
Nov 26, 2012
6,126
7,571
WPB Florida
Also, it is good to keep in mind the geometry of the suspension arm, link and potentiometer arm. There is a non-linear relationship throughout the range of travel and allowing a recalibration of ride hight with the adjustable links installed puts the static position of the system at the start of a very non-linear travel range. Subsequent suspension movement exacerbates the problem and can even result in binding. Do take care.

The above said, I can not imagine the alignment tech would not simply stick her/his head in the wheel well, see the links and choose a ride height setting on the screen that provides close to the desired ride height for setting the alignment. Alternatively, you could ask the tech to set front camber/caster with your desired lower ride height to improve front tire wear :)
 

artsci

Sponsor
May 10, 2012
6,267
3,321
Timonium, Maryland
Hey, what is the diameter of the balls used by Tesla for the ball sockets on each end of these links?

Are they 10mm or 8mm?

I am making my own lowering links, and maybe you can save me having to pop the wheel off to measure with calipers..(? pretty please... if you know)

I'm not sure but I did save the original links. As I'm away on business so I can't measure them until Thursday but perhaps someone else knows.

Rick
 
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scottm

Legacy account
Jun 13, 2014
3,070
2,349
Canada
Is it a bad idea to lower the front of the car and raise up the back? For an aggressive stance?

I have my rear jacked up 3/4" higher than front at the moment... first thing I noticed was headlights don't project as far down the road on low beams... I guess I could adjust the headlights up a bit if I wanted to stay this way.

But this was just an experiment, I'm going back to a flat ride soon.
 
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scottm

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Jun 13, 2014
3,070
2,349
Canada
Hey, what is the diameter of the balls used by Tesla for the ball sockets on each end of these links?

Are they 10mm or 8mm?

I am making my own lowering links, and maybe you can save me having to pop the wheel off to measure with calipers..(? pretty please... if you know)

The answer is 10mm balls.

Also, the stock front links are 50mm ball-to-ball (on center)... and the rear links are 70mm ball-to-ball center.

I ended up making a set on 3D printer, over here 3D printed lowering links
 

scottm

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Jun 13, 2014
3,070
2,349
Canada
Can someone explain how to remove the stock end links? They are in very tight and Im afraid to break something if I use too much force.

I modified a clip fastener removal tool (pry fork) to get around the ball, and popped them off using this.

You don't want to go ape on the green sensor arm side of that link pulling off the ball cup, for fear of snapping the green plastic.

First, I pulled the car suspension arm side of the link. That ball is solidly screwed into the car. Used my tool on that end.

Then, with that half of the link freed up... I grabbed the sensor arm and held it firm as I pulled the link off this ball, as if I was opening a beer bottle and the link was the bottle opener. Yep, swing that sucker in a perpendicular arc ... and pop the hard rubber cup off its ball. Your'e holding the green arm firmly in its position as you do this... (as you would the beer bottle to prevent spillage) so it doesn't get mangled, twisted, or something snaps... that you don't want to have snap.
 
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scottm

Legacy account
Jun 13, 2014
3,070
2,349
Canada
scottm, I've been wondering the same thing. I'm guessing that you would probably get slightly less mileage (but only a very slight loss in efficiency), and an increased downward force on the rear wheels (much like the effect of adding the spoiler). If you want to be the guinea pig & report back to us, that would be great!

So I'm running with links set a bit higher in the back end so the car is not flat. I haven't done any high speed stuff to know if driving dynamics are affected. Just the headlight aim issue.... it's only a bit noticeable and only if you really paid attention to before/after illumination pattern and distance would you know something is different with the headlight reach.

One "reason" for doing this might be for people who want lower fronts only and get a more aggressive looking stance, and may be concerned that squatting the rear end might have a bad effect on suspension geometry, camber, and tire wear .. etc who might want to leave that alone with stock rear links.

Here's some findings:

It is possible to do just a half of the car to affect that end and not the other. I learned strangely that doing just one corner lowered with an adjustable link does nothing... the computer ignored the dialed in lower setting and the whole front end finding its balance at the original ride height. As being told by the remaining stock link on the front. Or, the computer was using a timed amount of air pressure and was temporarily ignoring (what it thought might be suspect faulty) the funky new feedback it was getting on just one corner. It was only until I did *both* links on the front did the front start responding to my dialed in height. Weird hey?

In the process of installing links, I found my car had one rear corner height badly calibrated. I had been riding with stock links all around and left rear corner was lower riding at Normal height than the rest of the car when Low was selected... In fact, I had to RAISE that corning using my lowering link just to get harmony and balance restored. (I could have had Tesla recalibrate the corner... but I'm days from the nearest SC).

But the thing I wanted to tell you about was ... drum roll.. I've got perfectly even tire wear on my factory 19" wheels after two years of wear. The lower corner did not have an impact on inner edge wear. I do rotate front to back a couple times a year.... and swap out sets for winter on different rims.. but all my tires are worn squarely and evenly across the tread. I run at 45psi.
 
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