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Discussion Starter #1
I know what little aftermarket these cars had is all but gone now, but I'd really like to somehow firm up the suspension on this car. I dont have any leaky struts, but this thing rides more like my buick lesabre than my cb7 accord. It's a pile of fun to drive with the 2.5/5spd, but cornering is not its strong suit, and when you get into the triple digits on the speedo it gets pretty wavy over any dips or bumps in the road. I dont care about ride height, if it ends up sitting lower than so be it. I'd just like it to ride more like the honda than the buick. Damn thing weighs less than both of them!
 

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3s-gte in a Camry?!?
'89 Camry Alltrac
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8,420 Posts
How custom are you willing to go? How stiff do you want it?

Celica stuff crosses over with modifications... Or you can do strut inserts and coilover sleeves. Etc.

-Charlie
 

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1990 Toyota Camry LE
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244 Posts
Not sure if any swaybars exist online anymore (if you can find one its a worthwhile upgrade), but you can upgrade the bushings to poly (whiteline and nolthane make em still). Also a suspension refresh if its all pretty old.

Celica coils can be modified to fit, and geckoracing makes coils as well. I think some companies can do custom (I've heard yellowspeedracing and bc potentially).
A strut brace may help a tiny tiny bit as well (off an es250 or you can probably make one).
 

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Discussion Starter #4
How custom are you willing to go? How stiff do you want it?

Celica stuff crosses over with modifications... Or you can do strut inserts and coilover sleeves. Etc.

-Charlie
Custom isnt too much of an issue, I'm more worried about keeping costs down. Stiffness isnt a concern either so long as its properly dampened. How in depth is it to adapt the celica parts? And what are strut inserts and coilover sleeves? And any idea if the kyb excel G struts are much of an upgrade over stock? They're cheap on amazon and a lot of the escort guys seem to like them on budget builds
Not sure if any swaybars exist online anymore (if you can find one its a worthwhile upgrade), but you can upgrade the bushings to poly (whiteline and nolthane make em still). Also a suspension refresh if its all pretty old.

Celica coils can be modified to fit, and geckoracing makes coils as well. I think some companies can do custom (I've heard yellowspeedracing and bc potentially).
A strut brace may help a tiny tiny bit as well (off an es250 or you can probably make one).
I don't think anyone makes sway bars for these anymore, if I happen to come across a whiteline I'll definitely jump on it. The strut tower brace i can build myself, and will probably be the last thing I do. Poly bushings are definitely on the list though. I've seen the geckos, they look like a pretty nice product, and if I end up putting a motor in this thing I'll be buying a set. But right now it's a $400 2vz car with 206k miles on the clock, so I'd preferably not spend more than double that amount on suspension right now.
 

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88 Camry Alltrac
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754 Posts
I've got Ground Control coilover sleeves on my car. It was a good amount of work, but if you're comfortable making your own strut brace you can probably handle it.

Anyway, rough outline of the job: I cut off the stock lower spring perches, ground them flat, welded on steel support rings for the coilover sleeves, and then epoxied the sleeves to the struts (otherwise they'll spin if you try to put any preload on the springs). Before I did all that there was a lot of measuring, thinking about spring ratings and ride height, shock travel, etc..

If you're just interested in firming the damping up then some replacement inserts, struts, or quick struts will probably make a huge difference.

edit: Sorry, these are coilover sleeves:

They slide over your modified struts and let you use standard 2.5" (or whichever size sleeve you buy) coils from Eibach etc
And strut inserts:

Some(?) of the OE Camry struts have big nuts on top which hold a shock cartridge inside. Instead of replacing the whole strut, you can put new cartridges in.
 

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3s-gte in a Camry?!?
'89 Camry Alltrac
Joined
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8,420 Posts
The Excel-G struts are slightly stiffer than stock (probably a fair amount stiffer than your ~30 year old stuff) but not what I would call performance. Alltrac/V6 front swaybar is 25mm instead of 24mm, and you likely also already have the rear swaybar (base Camrys didn't for some years).

My situation is a bit special, having an Alltrac and buying my Tein coilovers many years ago (rear suspension is different than the FWD Camry, and they don't make that application anymore).

Knowing the approximate budget would help... and fab skills.

FWD Celica front coilovers are a very close fit, the rears require modifying the lower ears for the knuckle bolt spacing.

-Charlie
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I've got Ground Control coilover sleeves on my car. It was a good amount of work, but if you're comfortable making your own strut brace you can probably handle it.

Anyway, rough outline of the job: I cut off the stock lower spring perches, ground them flat, welded on steel support rings for the coilover sleeves, and then epoxied the sleeves to the struts (otherwise they'll spin if you try to put any preload on the springs). Before I did all that there was a lot of measuring, thinking about spring ratings and ride height, shock travel, etc..

If you're just interested in firming the damping up then some replacement inserts, struts, or quick struts will probably make a huge difference.

edit: Sorry, these are coilover sleeves:

They slide over your modified struts and let you use standard 2.5" (or whichever size sleeve you buy) coils from Eibach etc
And strut inserts:

Some(?) of the OE Camry struts have big nuts on top which hold a shock cartridge inside. Instead of replacing the whole strut, you can put new cartridges in.
Right on, that's a whole new world to me, but sounds like well within my abilities. Do you have to modify the top hat at all? Or will the 2.5" springs sit fine in the stock one. Or is that what the little cone piece is for in the pic?
The Excel-G struts are slightly stiffer than stock (probably a fair amount stiffer than your ~30 year old stuff) but not what I would call performance. Alltrac/V6 front swaybar is 25mm instead of 24mm, and you likely also already have the rear swaybar (base Camrys didn't for some years).

My situation is a bit special, having an Alltrac and buying my Tein coilovers many years ago (rear suspension is different than the FWD Camry, and they don't make that application anymore).

Knowing the approximate budget would help... and fab skills.

FWD Celica front coilovers are a very close fit, the rears require modifying the lower ears for the knuckle bolt spacing.

-Charlie
Excel G's are cheap cheap on rock auto, and I can price match it at autozone. Like $25 each. I do have the front and rear sway bars, and being a v6 I reckon I have the big front bar too. Body roll is honestly not bad at all, its just a squishy and floaty ride, even compared to my old 3s/5spd camry. If all it takes for celica coilovers is a little massaging with the die grinder or refilling a couple holes, that's well within my abilities. It feels like it could use another 60-80lbs spring rate with 4x the dampening
 

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Right on, that's a whole new world to me, but sounds like well within my abilities. Do you have to modify the top hat at all? Or will the 2.5" springs sit fine in the stock one. Or is that what the little cone piece is for in the pic?
The little cone piece sits at the top of the spring, and then the top hat above that.

I'm not sure whether to recommend the Ground Control sleeves I have. I think they work better with a decent bit of preload on them. The rear lower perches move around a bit on the sleeve. They haven't loosened up on me, but you can hear it when you drive over something rough. The fronts don't do it at all - but I've wound in a lot more preload up there. I think the twin-locknut setup for the lower perch might be better (like on the BC Racing coilovers for instance)

For any sleeve kit you'll have to select spring rates and lengths to give you the spring rate, ride height, and suspension travel you want.
 

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1990 Toyota Camry LE
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You might also be able to find an es250 rear swaybar in a salvage yard if you're lucky. They're 1mm thicker than the rear bars on the camrys.
 
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