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Discussion Starter #1
I have 80,000 miles on my car and feel that the suspension is getting tired. It has somewhat of a mushy feeling. I have begun looking at options for replacing the suspension. The options I have been looking at are Dinan stage 1 with rear sway bar, Bilstein pss9 or pss and ground control.

I am not looking for an overly aggressive track oriented setup. I want the car to still be comfortable but with a more neutral, sure footing, tight and taught feeling.

If you have experience with any of these setups I would greatly appreciate your review and opinion of them compared to stock.
 

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I have 80,000 miles on my car and feel that the suspension is getting tired. It has somewhat of a mushy feeling. I have begun looking at options for replacing the suspension. The options I have been looking at are Dinan stage 1 with rear sway bar, Bilstein pss9 or pss and ground control.

I am not looking for an overly aggressive track oriented setup. I want the car to still be comfortable but with a more neutral, sure footing, tight and taught feeling.

If you have experience with any of these setups I would greatly appreciate your review and opinion of them compared to stock.
I have been very happy with my Dinan Stage III suspension for 10 years (adds camber plates to Stage II). Car has over 100k on shocks/springs, and there does not seem to be any ride deterioration. Ride is surprisingly good. Better than most of my non high performance cars. I would expect the car to be a little undersprung for track work ( a bit too soft), but otherwise a good compromise. I did add 9.5x 18's up front. Based on COST, PSS might be your best setup since you can acutally corner balance the car.

Regards,
Jerry
 
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I'm running essentially the Dinan Stage 2 and have the square setup like Jerry. I like it. Little firmer than stock but not harsh. Just the right ride height IMO. I'm sure someone will opine that the Dinan setup is a POS. To each their own, but your stated goal would be satisfied with it. I don't know jack about the coil over systems but when I was looking into them, they sounded like more track oriented / lowering compromise than I wanted.
 

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I did it budget with some Koni Yellows, H&R springs up front with a half coil off the OEM rears, Eibach rear sway, Ground Control camber/caster plates up front. Total was around $1,300 and rides just as you described your ideal setup. Squared 9.5's too. Highly recommend.
 

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Love the Dinan setup. I'm running the stage 1 springs & shocks, monoball (wonderful upgrade), and camber plates, plus an Eibach rear 18mm sway bar. Stock front sway bar. Staggered 18" stock wheels with PSS. A little firmer than stock, vastly improved steering feel and turn-in (what I was after), stable in the high speed corners. Been on the car for 5K miles, about a year now.

I have a used set of Dinan shocks and springs if you want to go that direction - PM me if you're interested.
 

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Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
Thanks for all the feedback!
It sounds like Dinan would accomplish what I am looking for. The only thing I am not sure of (never having driven an m5 with Dinan suspension) is if the Dinan has a chance of being underwhelming? Just throwing that question out there to get as much info as possible. But from what you all are saying it sounds like Dinan is a really good balance of improving on stock but not being overly harsh.
I do hope to improve steering feel and turn in.

As well: I am running stock staggered setup with new Michelin PSS.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I have been very happy with my Dinan Stage III suspension for 10 years (adds camber plates to Stage II). Car has over 100k on shocks/springs, and there does not seem to be any ride deterioration. Ride is surprisingly good. Better than most of my non high performance cars. I would expect the car to be a little undersprung for track work ( a bit too soft), but otherwise a good compromise. I did add 9.5x 18's up front. Based on COST, PSS might be your best setup since you can acutally corner balance the car.

Regards,
Jerry
Thanks for your input Jerry! I agree that bilstein pss are the best bang for the buck. Right now I am not basing my decision on cost. I am trying to find out what setup will get me the driving characteristics I mentioned... Then ill start thinking about cost ouich
I have read plenty about going square. How did the driving experience change when you went from staggered to square?
 

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I would also look into Bilstein B8's with Intrax (lowering) springs. This is a plug and play setup since the B8's aren't adjustable, but it was just what I was looking for--- a little firmer than stock but very streetable and comfortable. At the suggestion of numerous people on this board, I also added the Dinan rear sway bar with Powerflex bushings and Beastpower brackets. All in all, a killer setup unless you're a road and track guy.
 

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Thanks for all the feedback!
It sounds like Dinan would accomplish what I am looking for. The only thing I am not sure of (never having driven an m5 with Dinan suspension) is if the Dinan has a chance of being underwhelming? Just throwing that question out there to get as much info as possible. But from what you all are saying it sounds like Dinan is a really good balance of improving on stock but not being overly harsh.
I do hope to improve steering feel and turn in.

As well: I am running stock staggered setup with new Michelin PSS.
There's no question with the Dinan springs/Konis and rear sway bar that you'll feel a much improved turn-in, less roll, sharper response overall. It's hard to know your expectations since those are subjective for all of us. I've had the Dinan springs/Konis/rear sway bar/monoballs/Ground Control camber plates/9.5-275 square setup for close to 10 years also. If the car came like this from the factory, few would have complained (well, that is if you take out the monoballs and GC plates since those together added a lot of NVH over rough aggregate and high frequency bumps like Botts markers).

That said, the car is still softly sprung overall with the Dinan springs...much more so that my E90 M3 for example which is significantly stiffer sprung and damped than the Dinan spring/Koni combo on the M5. If you plan to do any track and/or autocross driving, you'll find the Dinan springs are very soft compared to something like a GC coilover setup; but if you like to travel the interstate in nice comfort, the Dinan setup is a much better choice...

If you want to get an idea of how much the car moves around with the Dinan springs, I took some video with a GoPro at a BMWCCA autox at the Performance Center a couple of years ago with the camera aimed at the left front tire -- watch the change in gap between the wheel and fender: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b5JqbFQ84TY&list=UUcOxrigqDwQSDxDBWHep_Lg This will give you a good idea of the compliance of the Dinan springs since this video shows maximum acceleration up to 90+mph, maximum at the limit cornering and braking all throughout. FTD run btw. :)

Here's a view from O'fest 2005 when I had the M5 at VIR, this is on the "Roller Coaster" downhill turn 15 right at the limits on R-comps...not much travel left. :) :eek:

Regards,
Chuck
 

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I have 80,000 miles on my car and feel that the suspension is getting tired. It has somewhat of a mushy feeling. I have begun looking at options for replacing the suspension. The options I have been looking at are Dinan stage 1 with rear sway bar, Bilstein pss9 or pss and ground control.



I am not looking for an overly aggressive track oriented setup. I want the car to still be comfortable but with a more neutral, sure footing, tight and taught feeling.



If you have experience with any of these setups I would greatly appreciate your review and opinion of them compared to stock.

I ultimately ditched the Dinan suspension on my 2003 M5-S3 due to ongoing problems with the shocks. I went to a GC coil-over setup and never looked back.

--Ray
 

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Chuck is absolutely right. Dinan is a great street suspension. My passengers never ask, "What's wrong with your car?" like they have in other cars I've modified.

I only do track events a few times a year but the weakness really surfaces there. FWIW I have the full Dinan suspension including JRZ shocks and monoballs.

.
 

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I've never owned a M5 with stock suspension but I never felt my Konis were harsh or uncomfortable ever.
A few M5 owners with stock suspension were impressed with my suspension setup.
One felt is was more comfortable than his stock suspension.
Lugnuts ended up buying Konis for his M5.
I believe Koni might still have them on sale.
 

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Koni is running a sale? Through where? I just scored some 20K mile rear Koni's so need a pair of fronts to go with them. I am going to run them with the stock springs. I also plan to upgrade to the monoballs and new rear bushings too, and maybe a get bigger rear sway bar if I feel it needs it after all of that. I was also thinking about going to a 255 tire in the front next time tires are due. I am fine with the staggered set-up, but maybe that minor tweak would balance the car slightly more.
 

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a 255 tire on the stock 8in front wheel is too wide and can actually hurt the handling. Heck the 245 is pushing it on that size wheel. I cant for the life of me figure out why M division didn't go with a 9 inch wheel up front. Then we could have ran the common 255/285 combo which would have been perfect.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Is there any difference between Koni yellows and Dinan Konis? What does anyone think about just replacing struts and leaving stock springs?
 

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Is there any difference between Koni yellows and Dinan Konis? What does anyone think about just replacing struts and leaving stock springs?
Dinan says there is a difference. The general consensus when I researched was that there isn't. You can find the Dinan Koni tuning specs from this post.

http://www.m5board.com/vbulletin/e39-m5-e52-z8-discussion/346609-yellow-koni-setting-needed.html#post4383257

The setup you mentioned has been done by a number of people and they have had no issues. I had another E39 M5 that I put the Dinan suspension on. It handled fine, but I wasn't a fan of the 1/4" lowering. The roads where I am are horrid and it felt jarring sometimes. I'm planning to go to a Koni with stock spring setup sometime next year.
 

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Is there any difference between Koni yellows and Dinan Konis? What does anyone think about just replacing struts and leaving stock springs?
In another Koni application that I'm familiar with on the E46, Koni uses different part numbers for shocks with different damping curves. Specifically, Ground Control rear E46 top adjust shocks have a different part number than the TC Kline rear top adjust shocks as both have custom damping curves specified by GC and TC Kline. Hence it should be a simple task to see if the "Dinan Konis" have the same part number on them as the Konis purchased elsewhere...I've just never taken the time to look at them.
 

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Koni is running a sale? Through where? I just scored some 20K mile rear Koni's so need a pair of fronts to go with them. I am going to run them with the stock springs. I also plan to upgrade to the monoballs and new rear bushings too, and maybe a get bigger rear sway bar if I feel it needs it after all of that. I was also thinking about going to a 255 tire in the front next time tires are due. I am fine with the staggered set-up, but maybe that minor tweak would balance the car slightly more.
I've mentioned the sale on here before several times earlier in the year.
I don't know if its going on, check here : http://www.koni-na.com/cat_search.cfm?mt_id=1&my_year=2002&mak_id=6&mod_id=184&submit=Search&as_sfid=AAAAAAXKcIkmZQ+59bJ1VWQ4y0lDGIh+w70JIWbfo1Tg0pDCN4NFF43M8a6PI4ODPB+R+MMqCmfywXFi1qKrcwer4nq6kcZw8BMiuoJn+fryHKk6NA==&as_fid=LDx9hNdc1VOdLlVswlw4
 

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I had the Dinan stage 1 with Dinan rear sway bar and front and back strut bars. They felt awesome. I thought they were getting worn due to clunking so I changed to the PSS with ground control camber plates. If i were to do this over again, i'd go PSS9 with ground control camber plates. PSS feel good on the streets, but with some uneven pavement, the compression gives it a much bumpier ride due to the progressive springs. 19 inch rims probably don't help with the bumpiness.
 
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