What is this "hose mod"?:
The hose mod simply consists of slipping rubber tubing over the top coil of your rear springs, allowing you to ditch the large rubber isolator that comes on the car from the factory. It normally provides a very small drop in rear ride height.
Cutting springs was not an option, and 1LE springs are near-impossible to find. I went with LT1 springs which I thought had the highest spring rate for all OEM 4th gen F-body springs, aside from 1LE springs. Unfortunately this was not the case, as they were very soft. OEM springs are not only cheaper than aftermarket springs, they are also a taller ride height than any aftermarket springs available. Moog Cargo Control rear springs are even softer than stock V6 springs, so that was not an option. I have since switched to Hyperco Hypercoil rear springs using the same isolator combo as described below.
I have a '99 V6 which has some pretty soft springs. My goal is to retain a reasonable ride height yet maximize cornering abilities.
1999 Pontiac Firebird. Full tank of gas, no rear seats.
1996 LT1 Z28, 78k miles, with isolators: free
GoodYear 1/2" heater hose: $3
- Drivers side has LT1 rear spring, 1/2" heater hose around top coil
- Passenger side has LT1 rear spring, LT1 factory isolator.
I initially did the hose mod to both sides, but the normal F-body "gangster lean" caused the passenger side to be extremely low - so much that it looked bad. So, I de-hose-modded that side and put the factory LT1 isolator on it.
My car is dirty as hell. My parents and I just moved my dads business and our residence in town to the desert house, so we are still sorting stuff out.
The LT1 springs and rear isolators are different heights than my '99 springs and isolators. The LT1 springs are not only shorter than my '99 V6 springs, the isolators are also shorter! Don't believe me? Look at these pics:
Above: The LT1 spring/isolator combo is on left, '99 V6 is on right. When sitting in the isolators, the V6 spring is still a taller spring when uncompressed.
Below: a closeup of the isolators. '99 V6 isolator is on left, LT1 is on right. Huge height difference. Could probably lower the car a bit just by switching isolators!
P.S. the Firehawk wheels are in storage. Don't want to put too many miles on my rear NT555R's.