Koni Red vs. Koni Yellow vs. Bilstein on 105 series - Alfa Romeo Forum
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(Post Link) post #1 of 15 Old 24-06-10 Thread Starter
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Koni Red vs. Koni Yellow vs. Bilstein on 105 series

OK boys & girls, i will be uprating the suspension on the GTJ but need some opinions & feedback;

This car will not be used on the track or even for track days. Road use only.

Thus far it will have a Harvey bailey Handling kit put on it. But, what shocks ?

As far as I can ascertain;
Koni Red adjusted to 50% stiffness can be equal to a Koni Yellow set at full soft - it would seem they have a 50% overlap.
Bilsteins, when i fitted these to the Spider, I always found them a bit harsh & "crashy".

Apparently Bilsteins come in 2 versions, normal Bilsteins & specially valved versions sold to EB spares, I bought my spider ones from EB spares.

Whos fitted what ? & how do you find them ?
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Good question

There are a few 105/115 0wners here in HK with various setups. Here's what I have heard and experienced.

I am currently running Alfaholics fast road "b" with Koni reds on my GT junior. Go stiff at the front and quite soft on the rears.. feels good BUT.. polybush everything as I inherited a mix of bushes and the normals went off quickly - T-bar especially. Alfaholics didn't recommend my red/lowered kit and said that yellows were better - I think that they are probably right but ....

Some others I know have gone Yellow but hate the rough ride.

From my limited and not expert view it depends on the roads you are driving. Smooth track and A roads the yellows are ideal but on b-roads and undulating surfaces I'm not sure. If you are driving the A303 from London to the west country go yellow, if you are tracking on smooth stuff go yellow.

Horrible bumpy hilly roads with drains etc at the side I may offer an alternative .

However chat to your supplier as they probably know best - in my experience all the usual UK suppliers are really good at offering advice and tips.

I haven't tried MR R. H-B's suspension on older Alfas but his shocks for the 156 are a revelation!.
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Overall I am very happy with my uprated suspension. The stance of the car is excellent and the ride is good.

Again, in my uneducated opinion, tyres also have a big effect. They, are part of the suspension. Running "rubber band" 60/55 tyres are too hard. I try to get 70's but usually have to take 195 or 185/65s.

I recommend the Alfaholics springs but shoccks... [I] leave it for a forum debate!
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I have Koni Yellows on an alfaholics fast road / track suspension. They are very, very hard on a lot of english roads with imperfections, potholes etc. But handling is very flat and grip much improved. And on track it grips very well with little roll. Its OK and I do use the car a lot on the roads but you find yourself preplanning a lot to avoid bumps.

Bottom line I think is that if the car is mainly road use then red is probably the choice to make. And if you have a partner who you would like to take out then they would appreciate the extra softness. My wife hates the harsh ride.

Don't know how the lowered suspension works with red shocks because obviously part of the harsh ride is down to shorter, stiffer springs. I do love the stance of my car on lowered suspension though.
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those of you with yellows, what settings do you have them on ?

do you think a mixed setup might be best ? eg reds on full hard for the rear & yellows on full hard for the front (if combined with a HB stiifer spring kit). Only reason I ask this is the consensus seems to be that you need to put the rears on full soft & the fronts on full hard, which ever shock. But with people suggesting that UK B roads might find koni yellows to hard, then I'm wondering if this mix might overcome the issue people are talking about .
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I have yellows with a full handling kit on my spider. The rears are out of the box minimum setting and the fronts are on one click. The ride quality is good apart from very poor surfaces. I will probably adjust the fronts just one more notch as initial turn in is not as controlled as I would like.
I have used bilsteins but don't like the fact that you cannot adjust them, as part ofa HBE kit they were excellent however. On a DIY set-up not right even after I had them re-valved.
 
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I have Alfaholics spring kit, ARB, race spring platforms, Bilsteins and new polybushes....on my GTAm replica, quite a rough ride but perfect for track days!!
What makes a huge difference is to put negative camber on front wheels for which you need the top adjustable arms.....
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gone for reds on the rear & yellow up front, will let you know what its like when i fit them in autumn.
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I know this is an old thread but intregued to know if the yellow and red combination worked.
I'm looking to upgrademy S2 spider 2000 and use for track days. Its currently bog standard suspension and feels very sloppy and not up to the power upgrades. Was looking to install the Harvey-Bailey from Classic Alfa but unsure about the Yellow Konis all round.
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while this has come up again, does anyone know the spring / rollbar dimensions of the various handling kits? my Spider appears to have been modified sometime in its life, but the rear suspension is still very soft, albeit low. before I go replacing things, Im first hoping to find out what I have.....
thanks!
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It's best to keep the rear soft, it helps traction. The fronts of the various suspension kits tend to be three times as hard as the rears. I think there's a table of spring rates somewhere on Alfa BB the American forum. Though the manufacturers like to keep the info to themselves for obvious reasons.

edit..
it's here

The 105 Suspension Bible - Alfa Romeo Bulletin Board & Forums
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thanks!
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Having had the red yellow combo on the car for some time I feel it's an ideal setup for fast road.

Tho probably need a couple of extra harder turns on the rear...... Had both front and yellow set at mid point.

My mate who has set up many a historic racing Alfa said he really liked the way it handled.

I think the addition of an LSD would add to the fun, as it's still compliant enough to get the backend out safely.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by karlssondesign View Post

I think the addition of an LSD would add to the fun, as it's still compliant enough to get the backend out safely.
Yes, I can confirm that'll help and it also saves those embarrassing wheelspins in wet weather when pulling away. I invested in one of the gripper diffs and it really has helped.

But you see what's happening here? All of a sudden you're rationalising spending considerable amounts of dosh....... for small performance gains on your second vehicle - it's a disease.
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its not about large amounts of cash for small performance gains.
its about large amounts of cash for huge sideways grin factors.
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