lowered mini question - North American Motoring

Suspension Springs, struts, coilovers, sway-bars, camber plates, and all other modifications to suspension components for Cooper (R50), Cabrio (R52), and Cooper S (R53) MINIs.
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Old 01-14-2018, 11:43 AM
Kyle Lopes
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lowered mini question

Purchasing BC 1 pieces for my 2003 mini cooper. I'm new to the mini community and just wondering how low these cars can go without dealing with problems? By problems I mean breaking axles and what not.
 
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Old 01-14-2018, 03:45 PM
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Several threads here on lowering, one in particular said he went through several axles and decided to raise the car back up.

In stock form the MINI is a good curve cutter, put on a rear sway bar and is is even better. When you are on the Tail of the Dragon and most of the Corvettes/Mustangs/Camaros all pull over and then try to keep up, what more needs to be said.
 
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Old 01-14-2018, 03:54 PM
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vetsvette
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Don't know about 1st Gen cars, but I've been running NM springs on my F56 for 1 1/2 years with no problems. Lowered 1.5" all around and handles even better than the OEM Sport suspension mine came with. Of course I also have the NM RSB and end links too, among other suspension mods.
 
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Old 01-21-2018, 12:47 PM
daviday
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I believe I'm the person referenced in the above post. I jumped in to lowering with out doing the proper research and have paid for it. I lowered the car, assumingely on the original axles at 90k miles. I don't recall exactly how low I had it but basically there was no wheel gap. The axles in there lasted maybe 10k miles. The first to break was the driver side, I replaced with aftermarket. The second was the passenger side, taking out the oil filter housing which was fun. I replaced both, again, with FEQ, the passenger side broke again as I was pulling in to the alignment shop. Replaced both again with two I had gotten from a salvage yard - same exact thing. I raised the the car, stripping the megan shock bodies in the process, replaced all of the motor mounts tie rod ends, sway bushies, etc, for the second time and have put roughly 20k miles on the car since. The aftermarket axles are on their way out now as they've started to click when making very tight turns. My parts distributor offers a lifetime warranty on their axels so it hasn't exactly cost me anything, other than the salvage yard set, but my time.

I suggest, taking a very thorough look at your car as a whole. I'm convinced I broke three sets of axels because my top motor mount failed in the middle of my ordeal. Additionally, my halogen headlights are falling apart because of the abuse from the stiffness in the ride and my shock towers, WITH the megan pillow ball mounts, look like Sloth from the Goonies. These cars were designed very tightly and adjusting any of the measurements that very educated and skilled German and British engineers have made WILL have collateral consequences. Anyone who tells you otherwise is either lying or mis informed. There is a line though. My car is not quite at stock height and I believe with OEM axels and corrected and reinforced strut towers, it could go slightly lower. Whether or not you want to deal with everything mentioned above, or if you even have to, will be unique to you and your car.

My little R50 looked awesome low. I just wasn't willing to blow the money on custom axles - I couldn't justify it with the car having as little power as it does. There are number of guys on here that have lowered their cars and have had little to no issues, I salute them. Combining my luck with NYC roads - I may be reverting everything back to factory or getting rid of the car this week. I can tell you one thing, while the picture below is funny knowing what was broken, it was certainly not fun....
 
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Old 01-24-2018, 07:50 AM
Derek86
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Originally Posted by Kyle Lopes View Post
Purchasing BC 1 pieces for my 2003 mini cooper. I'm new to the mini community and just wondering how low these cars can go without dealing with problems? By problems I mean breaking axles and what not.
Minis are getting cheap, here we go.
 
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Old 01-30-2018, 08:21 AM
Subw00er
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David, which megans are you running? EU? You have them at max height now and are still having axle issues? It should only be a .6" drop from stock at max height on the megans.
 
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Old 01-30-2018, 12:34 PM
N2MINI
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Here is a side view of mine with Megans with camber plates and added adj, rear suspension to be able to keep camber some what in check. I did run quite a bit of camber for auto crossing but was a 16,000 mile a year DD as well. Put these on at 40,000 miles and had to replace both axles at around 100,000 but drove another 60,000 without issue so can't say for sure that lowering was the problem of course.


 
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Old 02-02-2018, 05:01 PM
daviday
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Originally Posted by Subw00er View Post
David, which megans are you running? EU? You have them at max height now and are still having axle issues? It should only be a .6" drop from stock at max height on the megans.
I don't want to hijack this gentlemans thread but I believe this is relevant and will hopefully help him realize that he's asking a very open ended question. I'm currently running the EZ streets. Every car I've owned prior to this - I've only installed lowering springs on. Mainly because I think I actually listened to people more when I was younger. As odd as that sounds.

This is where the car is sitting now and where the coilovers are set. Even after soaking all four corners with just about a can of PB Blaster prior to adjusting - I managed to strip the shock body and destroy the locknuts. I won't make that mistake again....I bit the bullet and new coils will be going in this coming week, along with a 23mm rear bar and strut tower defenders (after getting them straight). I'll be coating the new set with boeshield or some marine equivalent if I can't find it.
 
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Old 02-02-2018, 06:01 PM
Subw00er
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I dont quite follow your first paragraph.. Are you saying you dont like the megans and wish you just did springs?

Wow, after how many miles did the seize up like that? When I asked megan about torque on those nuts, they said basically hand tight with the wrench, then a little tap with a hammer on the wrench to snug them up. Is it possible you over did it there?

You car looks really low! How much more could you have raised it? I'm hoping that the EU's I have going on will give me just a tiny drop - .6"

You could try some anti-seize on them before tightening?!
 
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Old 02-03-2018, 11:55 AM
daviday
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Originally Posted by Subw00er View Post
I dont quite follow your first paragraph.. Are you saying you dont like the megans and wish you just did springs?

Wow, after how many miles did the seize up like that? When I asked megan about torque on those nuts, they said basically hand tight with the wrench, then a little tap with a hammer on the wrench to snug them up. Is it possible you over did it there?

You car looks really low! How much more could you have raised it? I'm hoping that the EU's I have going on will give me just a tiny drop - .6"

You could try some anti-seize on them before tightening?!
I'm saying that by installing coilovers, I jumped into something that I wasn't very educated in. Suspension tuning. The Megans were on the car for a NY winter before I raised them to where it is. I really thought I cleaned them as good as possible but they were still extremely difficult to adjust. The lock rings seemed very soft to me to get damaged in the way that they did as well. However, a lot of people are running this set and have not had any of these issues so I definitely seem to be in the minority.

The car was very very low before I raised it and I never did get the car back to even. The rear is definitely much lower than it should be. I intend to keep the car relatively high when the new coils go on and then have it dialed in and corner balanced in the spring after installing adjustable end links.
 
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