GET­TING GREAT HAN­DLING

QA1 and Ea­ton Detroit Spring of­fer af­ford­able sus­pen­sion up­grades for first-gen Ca­maros

Chevy High Performance - - Contents - ✜ TEXT & PHO­TOS: Jim Smart

It seems most of us want lots of power from our first-gen­er­a­tion Ca­maros. While power can be some­what easy to come by these days, know­ing how to man­age it wisely is an­other mat­ter en­tirely. We put the cart be­fore the horse and in­fuse a lot of power into our rides with­out enough at­ten­tion paid to the sus­pen­sion and brakes. When you have a lot of power cou­pled with poor brakes and sus­pen­sion and a small tire con­tact patch it be­comes down­right dan­ger­ous.

QA1 and Ea­ton Detroit Spring want to make the drive safer and more en­joy­able for 1967-’69 Ca­maros, with plenty more on tap for other gen­er­a­tions of Ca­maros to fol­low. Few things com­pare to a clas­sic Ca­maro with its hooves solid on the ground in a hard cor­ner with the right sus­pen­sion sys­tem. QA1 sports a gen­er­ous line of high-tech ad­justable shocks, in­clud­ing Cus­tom Mount Shocks, Stocker Star Non-Coilovers, Front Stock Mount Struts, Front Pro Coil Shock Sys­tems, Front Pro Coil Struts, and fi­nally, Rear Pro Coil Shocks for clas­sic and late-model Ca­maros alike.

If you have a stock ve­hi­cle that has not had any sig­nif­i­cant al­ter­ations to the orig­i­nal sus­pen­sion de­sign, QA1 of­fers stock mount op­tions (both coilover and non coilover) that bolt in place of your orig­i­nal shocks. If you have al­tered or mod­i­fied the sus­pen­sion, such as a four-link, lad­der bar, or in­de­pen­dent sus­pen­sion, then a Cus­tom Mount Shock is what you want.

COILOVER OR NON COILOVER?

If you’re look­ing for ad­justable ride height, QA1 has a va­ri­ety of dif­fer­ent coilover op­tions for many makes and mod­els that al­low for easy ride height ad­just­ment for ei­ther stock ap­pear­ance or slammed. If you’re com­fort­able with your car’s ride height and don’t need to ad­just down or up, QA1 has non coilover units as well.

All QA1 high-per­for­mance shocks and struts are built with a three-step seal­ing sys­tem, which fea­tures a hard an­odized alu­minum seal­ing gland, a buf­fer O-ring, an ad­vanced aerospace dou­ble lip seal, and low-drag wiper seals. This ap­proach elim­i­nates seal drag and dirt in­tru­sion, and keeps the oil in­side.

QA1 of­fers a wide va­ri­ety of ad­justable and non-ad­justable shocks. Sin­gle-ad­justable shocks of­fer you si­mul­ta­ne­ous com­pres­sion and re­bound ad­just­ment on one knob for per­for­mance street driv­ing,

au­tocross­ing, or for drag rac­ing in the rear. Dou­ble-ad­justa­bles give you truly in­de­pen­dent com­pres­sion and re­bound ad­just­ment. Non­ad­justa­bles give you no-brainer fixed com­pres­sion and re­bound valv­ing with­out ex­ter­nal ad­justa­bil­ity. There’s noth­ing to think about but driv­ing.

QA1 of­fers three lev­els of sus­pen­sion kits for clas­sic Ca­maros, from a very ba­sic bud­get Level 1 to the full com­ple­ment Level 3 where you get the works. If you don’t want to make the full in­vest­ment in your Ca­maro right away you can build your sus­pen­sion in stages us­ing the QA1 parts list as a road map to get to the level of per­for­mance you want at that par­tic­u­lar time.

Ea­ton Detroit Spring brings up the rear with fac­tory blue­print leaf- and coil spring pack­ages for all Chevro­let car lines. Be­cause Ea­ton Detroit Spring has been man­u­fac­tur­ing springs for 81 years in the heart of down­town Detroit, you get OEM-style qual­ity, stance, and ride.

With QA1 work­ing hand-in-hand with Ea­ton Detroit Spring, you get ride and han­dling like never be­fore. And be­cause the Nova and Ca­maro share the same plat­form, ev­ery­thing we’re show­ing you here ap­plies to the time­less 1968-’74 Nova, as well.

Mar­lon Mitchell of Marlo’s Frame & Align­ment aligned the front end and took the Ca­maro out for a lit­tle canyon cut­ting. “The car han­dles very well. It hugs the cor­ners roar­ing through the Santa Su­sana Pass just above the San Fer­nando Val­ley. I am very im­pressed with it and I am sure the cus­tomer will be, too.” CHP

02 | Here’s the rest of the Level 3 kit with ev­ery­thing you’re go­ing to need to com­pletely out­fit a 1967-’69 Ca­maro or 1968-’74 Nova. Dif­fer­ent spring rates are de­signed to max­i­mize per­for­mance while main­tain­ing a smooth, com­fort­able ride. QA1 gears the spring rates toward av­er­age weight small-block and LS-pow­ered Ca­maros. QA1’s Level 3 han­dling kits of­fer stiffer springs to get the best cor­ner­ing per­for­mance.

05 | The top shock mount has been re­moved us­ing a 9/16-inch deep well socket. Two fine-thread bolts at the bot­tom have been re­moved with a 9/16inch socket as well. The shock drops out through a hole in the bot­tom of the con­trol arm.

06 | The coil spring is se­cured with a re­tainer tool to keep it con­tained and safe dur­ing re­moval. The up­per and lower ball joint cas­tle nuts have been loos­ened. We’re us­ing a pickle fork to sep­a­rate the ball joints and spin­dles.

01 | The QA1 com­plete sus­pen­sion kits in­clude up­per and lower con­trol arms, sway bar, and all hard­ware. There are three lev­els of sus­pen­sion kits. Depend­ing upon bud­get, it’s all in what you want to spend and what you need.

03 | The outer tie-rod ends are the first items busted loose to gain ac­cess to the brakes and con­trol arms. Whack­ing the steer­ing knuckle with a 5-pound sledge typ­i­cally gets the tie-rod end loose.

04 | The caliper bolts are re­moved next to free up the caliper and then the brake hose is dis­con­nected to get them out of the way.

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