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Old 03-27-2005, 10:37 PM   #1
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Default A Bonneville is best when...

...pushed close to it'* limits.
I have noticed since I started driving the Lesabre how much of a different vehicle they are.
The Lesabre is best just idling down the road -no fast corners, no hard accelerating, and no high speeds (over 85 mph as she starts to wander).
All of my Bonnevilles (1992 SE -fully optioned except no leather or steering wheel controls, 1993 SSE, 1994 SLE, 1998 SSE, and 1999 SSEi) were at their best when put through a spirited run. Cruising was okay, but they felt their best when let loose.

Mods so far that have helped the Lesabre feel more like a Bonneville have been STB, CAI, 16" rims with 215/60/16 Goodyear Eagle GT II'*, and 99 L67 coil and ignition module -all have been improvements. The STB has been by far the best improvement, but it'* still no Bonneville. Hopefully my power mods I have planned and the suspension mods do the trick -just have to be patient now since I'm working on two cars at the same time -not too easy on a thin income.
I hope with the swap of the FE2 sway bars with Poly end-links, and fixing the torque steer I have in 1st gear (no it'* not a traction problem -it'* a steering problem) and under hard accelleration at freeway speeds will really help to give the feel of Pontiac 'Excitement'.

Let'* just say there'* no excitment driving this car the way it is, much less the way it was stock, after having driven performance oriented Bonnevilles for the past 5 yrs.
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Old 03-27-2005, 10:41 PM   #2
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My car floats too much to be considered sporty - I guess it'* the price I pay for having middle-grade KYB struts up front (they weren't exactly cheap either, I forget the name of it, somebody enlighten me, they cost around couple hundred bucks for both in late 2001. I'd be severely pissed if these were GR2'*) and middle-grade Monroe air shocks in the rear put in last summer.

STB did wonders, but it still ain't a performer.

It'* not so much the grip, but the about of confidence it inspires. Even 80km/h highway ramps can sometimes be a tricky proposition.




edit: I think a good point of improvement is going to be in the shocks/struts...
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Old 03-27-2005, 10:43 PM   #3
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No kidding. My car kinda floats when its cruising. But when I push it, it stiffens up and everything feels tighter and in control. I like to take clover leafs at 45 mph vs. 30mph because it actually feels sturdier. Oh yea, the trans shifts a lot smoother when I punch it vs. light throddle cruising.
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Old 03-27-2005, 11:03 PM   #4
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ya i think the biggest problem that i have is the Roll in the corners. I have the nice soft FE1 that is GREAT when i have to drive home or to school (500 miles one way) but for taking it in town it needs to be stiffened up a bit.....lowering springs, endlinks and FE2/41 sways will help this alot
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Old 03-27-2005, 11:40 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 1993 SLE
ya i think the biggest problem that i have is the Roll in the corners. I have the nice soft FE1 that is GREAT when i have to drive home or to school (500 miles one way) but for taking it in town it needs to be stiffened up a bit.....lowering springs, endlinks and FE2/41 sways will help this alot
You should be thankful that the FE1 stabalizer/anti-sway bars on the 1992+ cars are substantially larger than on the prior FE1 cars. This Lesabre has FE1 suspension, but the rear sway bar couldn't be as large as those large black pencils I had in pre-school/1st grade. I was looking at the sway bars on a 1994 Olds 88 at the slavage yard on Friday and they are definitely larger. Still a far cry from FE2/F41'*.
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Old 03-28-2005, 01:15 AM   #6
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I was thinking of going to the wrecker in the next couple of days to pick up a STB. What are the main improvements you felt once you installed it?
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Old 03-28-2005, 03:32 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by captainmiller
I was thinking of going to the wrecker in the next couple of days to pick up a STB. What are the main improvements you felt once you installed it?
The strut tower bars will help stiffen up the front end... You have to actually install the STB to understand what it does... You'll feel it the first time you drive the car after the install...


Now lets get into the sway bars..

Some of the older FE1 bonnevilles( 87-91 ) actually came with 14mm rear sway bars and either a 28 or 30 mm front bar... If you had the FE2 or F41 than you had a 32mm front bar and 18 mm rear bar...

Now for the 92-99 bonnevilles things change a little.... Stock for the FE1 was 30mm front bar and 18mm rear bar...

The FE2 and F41 used a 32mm front bar and 21mm rear bar...

I installed the rear 21mm bar on my 95<----- woah what a diffrence... Now I want the 32mm front bar for both cars and another 21mm for the 91...lol

What I ended up doing was installing the 18mm bar from the 95 onto the 91<--- and again, Woah.... What a diffrence.... Now if I could get the funds back up for the struts for the 91... After I fix the 95 ofcourse..

Every little thing I do seems to make them more fun to drive

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Old 03-28-2005, 03:47 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jr's3800

Every little thing I do seems to make them more fun to drive
isnt that the reason why we mod our cars??
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Old 03-28-2005, 03:53 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by captainmiller
I was thinking of going to the wrecker in the next couple of days to pick up a STB. What are the main improvements you felt once you installed it?
When you turn your car, the body flexes slightly, and the suspension is designed to move, and the body be absolutely stiff. If you don't have an STB, your strut towers will flex in and out slightly, this is also a major suspension point, so it has an effect on handling. If you put a girder (STB) in there, you stop it from moving in a few ways.
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Old 03-28-2005, 06:57 PM   #10
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When I was at the Gm dealer the last week getting part #'* for the stabalizer/anti-sway bar center links they asked if I had a 32 or 34mm front bar. I was like So I gave them the VIN to my old 1998 SSE and 1999 SSEi (yes I still have the old ins cards in my wallet) and they said both of them would have had the 32mm bars. So I that'* what I got part #'* for.
So what would have gotten the 34mm bars?
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