Mazda CX-3 Forum banner
141 - 159 of 159 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
116 Posts
Update!

Installation
  • Installed new lower springs. I originally had DK5AW DK5AWUK, but then decided to lower the car down a bit by purchasing the DK5FW DK5FWUK coils (+25-+35mm for the front and back). DK5AW DK5AWUK give a lift of +40-50mm front and +35-45mm on the back. Installation at the shop went smooth as expected. They did notice that the new coil spring was actually longer (I had one extra loop), but I told that the spring is a lot softer so it should lower the car a bit.
  • Installed Hardrace adjustable front end links using it at its shortest setting (280mm).
  • Installed Tema's rear shock 30mm extender.
  • I did not install the shift knob extender because I forgot one. The shop did express concern that using the shift know extender might not be a good idea because it is made of 6061 T6 aluminum. I don't see a problem with that type of aluminum it is a strong aluminum and the extension was only going to be for 1 inch. Anyway, I forgot the part. (https://www.amazon.com/Racing-Extension-Shifter-M12X1-25-Extended/dp/B074CY7LXQ).
  • Aligned the car after a few minutes of driving.
Pics (the last picture with the AKRON background is the BEFORE picture. All others are AFTER)
Tire Wheel Land vehicle Vehicle Automotive tire Tire Wheel Wire fencing Automotive design Vehicle Horse tack Pack animal Tire Wheel Vehicle Land vehicle Automotive design Grey Nut Fastener Silver Synthetic rubber Yellow Photograph Line Light Measuring instrument Yellow Concrete Synthetic rubber Composite material Gas Yellow Photograph Red Line Amber Synthetic rubber Tread Composite material Gas Nail Tire Wheel Motor vehicle Automotive design Automotive tire

Thoughts
Well, by the looks of it, my car is now lowered more on the back than on the front. And this is with 1/4 tank and not luggage. I guess the AWD components do weight a significant portion. I think I only gained half an inch on the back. I forgot to take before measurement! I like having a 30+ lift in the front though. The last picture I added (AKRON background is the before picture). I don't think the front lowered much. The ride does feel a bit smoother, specially on the front going over bumps, the back does feel a little heavy, I think the springs are too soft. That leaves me to believe that it was the endlinks that was causing the top out, not the lack of down travel on the strut.

Future plans
  • I do think I will install the front extenders I will only do 1 inch (same as the back), plus the shorter the extenders are the less likely to break or bend. That will allow the struts to sit closer to their natural and neutral position.
  • I will install back the rear coils only and leave the fronts. The new softer only gave me 1/2 inch, and with them being softer, once the car is loading with a kid, my wife, cooler full of ice, full tank of gas, I will sag a lot. The previous rear springs will bring be back to a height of 30s and I do like the fact that they were stiffer.
  • Purchased a set of 12mm spacers for the rear wheels. I think visual optics are playing a part in the sense that a shadow is casted on the top of the rear wheels because the offset is not optimal. That shadow blurs the gap between the wheel and the fender.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
586 Posts
Discussion Starter · #142 ·
Yea theres definitly a sweet spot for when lifting and everything else around it including tires types make an incredible difference whether for good for bad.

If you are gonna go the front strut spacer/extender route for the struts to accommodate for a more natural oem travel of the suspension, buy a spare set of that oem rubber top piece with the oem bolts preattached even if you never plan on going back to stock. I think I mentioned it way back then but once you hammer out the oem bolts that from the rubber piece that bolt through the engine bay, theres no putting the old ones back in to the same capacity they originally were. I learned this the hard way and had a nerfed front suspension when going back to stock after removing the spacers and it was borderline ready to fail until the replacement parts came in lol.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
116 Posts
Yea theres definitly a sweet spot for when lifting and everything else around it including tires types make an incredible difference whether for good for bad.

If you are gonna go the front strut spacer/extender route for the struts to accommodate for a more natural oem travel of the suspension, buy a spare set of that oem rubber top piece with the oem bolts preattached even if you never plan on going back to stock. I think I mentioned it way back then but once you hammer out the oem bolts that from the rubber piece that bolt through the engine bay, theres no putting the old ones back in to the same capacity they originally were. I learned this the hard way and had a nerfed front suspension when going back to stock after removing the spacers and it was borderline ready to fail until the replacement parts came in lol.
Is this what you are talking about?
23669


" including tires types make an incredible difference whether for good for bad." Even though the front doesn't bang as bad as before, I wouldn't be surprised if 50% of the harshness comes from the tires.
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
586 Posts
Discussion Starter · #144 · (Edited)
Yea thats the part. and considering how I got used to the ko2 ride, literally anything else feels like a cloud to me now haha.

On a side note, I ended up putting the roof basket back on since ironically it gives me more stability at high speeds in the wind, I feel less likely to get blown around by a rouge gust but forgot how much noise it made. Back then the ko2s were the absolute noise makers of all my mods and when I took them off, I took the basket off too so went from loud bumpy to quiet oem overnight with regular tires and no mounts. Ironically now I want all the mods to weigh and slow down my car since the new area I moved too has an extremely high deer population and I already had a collision in the family sentra with one of them. Sucks that it caused front end damage to the nissan but the new house indoor garage is wonders for having a car bay for repairs.I hope I never have to repair the cx3 in general but going slower and being weighed down more should help lessen my chance of hitting one even if only slightly lol.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
116 Posts
Hi guys,

Sorry for not posting sooner! I do have a few updates:
  • Even though the car rode smoother with the longer end links and softer springs. The problem did persist when going off-road. The front suspension would max out on every dip or after every bump. Also, the rear would collapse so easy because of the softer springs and because of less uptravel taken away with the rear spacer.
  • So I installed back the rear springs that I have before, but only the rears. Now the cars sits level, and it the back doesn't sag, and it doesn't feel as soft as before with the softer (and taller) springs. The rear strut now sits in the middle under no load.
  • I did not install the shift knob extender that I had purchased to level the front strut because the shop said the aluminum might break under load. I went to a machine shop and them made from the same steel the strut is made of and to the same specs. The extensions where minimal, it was the length of the tread in the strut (about 1 inch).
Ohhhh boy!!! that inch made a world of difference. The car now rides so smooth, almost like factory. It is night and day difference. It took me weeks or months and days of research and many trips to the shop (I purchased 3 sets of struts to see if they would bolt on, but none fit). I am so happy with the results, and such as easy mod to do. I will by hyperextending my wheels an inch when I am on the air, and I hope I don't damage a CV axle, but at least I can enjoy the car again.

I don't have any planned mods for the car besides getting a new seat covering (I'll make a post about that later). After the rear shocks wear, I will install longer universal shocks. In the meantime, Zoom Zoom!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2 Posts
So I gave my car a quick overview of the suspension components since I finally got it back from the dealership on its final warranty "repair" and I am a little concerned about the mounting points of the rear shocks. In my experience there is usually a way to get to the top mounts of the rear suspension shocks through the trunk since presumably the mounting bolts would go through. Now unless mazda changed this to be an underside mounting position only, there are no visible signs of the mounting components through the interior of the trunk even after taking everything that was removable off. The only thing left to remove was the side panel of the trunk area which leads to the side corner of the rear seats and is a pretty large part with a high change of breaking something if not removed perfectly. This is the only thing I could think of possibly blocking access to the shock mounts if they exist.

So before I set off to strip the entire rear of the car apart and make no progress, does anyone have any information on this? Possibly people who have installed aftermarket coilovers/springs etc that could chime in on their experience with what is happening in the rear suspension area. Ideally factory service manual pdfs would be greatly appreciated but those are hard to come by :/

--
I found this guy's youtube video of him doing spring swap. He skips alot of steps especially in the rear but it will give everyone an idea of whats involved if you are curious. The spacers would go on top of the front strut assembly, and rear spring and strut pieces go on top of the rear components.


Sadly no info on the rear upper shock mounting yet. I emailed a few online mazda part sellers and am awaiting a reply. There is a good chance the side paneling has to entirely come off of the trunk/backseat area.
Sadly, access to the top bolts on the rear shocks is behind all that panneling. Go slow, and becareful. It all comes apart eventually. Still, no fun to do but better than paying someone else to do it for you
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
116 Posts
I don't think those Coilovers would fit the Cx-3. I have seen coilovers for the cx-3, but all the ones that I've seen are for lowering the cx-3, not raising it. I haven't had any problems though after adding the strut rod spacer, but I am knocking on wood that I don't have to replace my axle prematurely. (Axles are cheap and easy to replace though).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
I don't think those Coilovers would fit the Cx-3. I have seen coilovers for the cx-3, but all the ones that I've seen are for lowering the cx-3, not raising it. I haven't had any problems though after adding the strut rod spacer, but I am knocking on wood that I don't have to replace my axle prematurely. (Axles are cheap and easy to replace though).
What about the brackets from the kit instead of the coilovers? just to give another bit of lift
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
116 Posts
The issue is that the Miata is RWD with solid axle (or limited slip), not AWD. The Tanabe spring will give you more than enough lift for any off-road enthusiast, unless you want rock climbing. Lack of lift is not the issue, the issue is that anymore than 1-1.5 lift, the angle is too aggressive and you encounter other issues. You could install the Tanabe springs, and then install the Amazon spacers for more lift. You can't install those spacers in the back though. They are not safe.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
586 Posts
Discussion Starter · #151 ·
I remember when this video came out and got so triggered when he explaining the 'lift' to be gained from the new tire size which is so incorrect lol 3" different is not 3" lift and if anything its 1.5" since only bottom portion is doing anyheight difference and to top it off unless the tires are overfilled to near bursting its going to sag so maybe 1.2ish if that from the wheel with considerable psi and that 5" number he has at the end is temporary once the coilovers adjust to the weight overtime.

But yea the front struts of the miata are basically similar to how the cx-3 rear struts are only a single bottom bolt hence why he could use spacers designed for it. Very few front struts are like this from my experience. I believe in ours it holds the brake assembly/rotor (cant think of the name off the top of my head for somereason) with 2 bolts which cant be 'spacered' up. Using coilovers for a lift is really an actual moneypit mod which even manufacturers dont usually recommend if they can even achieve a higher height. The spring setup we have now (add extra top spacers in the front only for more bootleg height) is the best were gonna do here for now.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
586 Posts
Discussion Starter · #152 ·
Another point is while bigger beefier tires may seem like a interesting and easy thing to do it comes at a severe tradeoff of unspring weight that will put more strain on the entire drivetrain components. Some cars can handle it better than others and hence why big tires are more doable on trucks/jeeps since theyre rated for high towing capacity and can handle more abuse. Just something to think about when going down that route. Not that the cx-3 could handle much larger tires anyway since the fenders arent trimmable without ripping out the black plastic side paneling anways.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4 Posts
Had to make an account to share my experience after using the info here to lift my CX3.
I am a truck mechanic by trade so wanted to share my findings

So I am currently running the Tanabe UP210 2” lift spring, with 225 55 18 Falken AT Trails, which will be the biggest tire you will fit stock due to clearance between the tire and front spring perch, I have almost zero rub, the only rubbing I get is the odd time they touch my rock blocks mudflaps as they stick out from the fender more, but this is very minor and usually only in parking lots, as mentioned the stock shocks are 100% the issue with this setup on potholes and off-road, they max out when travelling downward, and cause a loud banging when they do as they don’t have internal bump stops, this will quickly destroy a shock.

I will be running the premade 30mm rear spacers and modifying a set of factory front strut tops by cutting out the mounting point with a hole saw and extending them downwards 35-40mm with some thick wall pipe, as this is much stronger and safer then running extensions on the shocks as the top of the shock in this setup is what secures your hub and wheel to the car on the top side, if the extensions come loose or break this would be bad news, and likely cause an accident at speed.

I also managed to find a company called Ceika who makes coil overs for the CX3 and they offer rally spring rates as well as custom lift height, dual spring option and camber adjustable top hats for the front, it also looks as though we may be able to fit bigger tires with this kit up front as the tires might clear the lower spring perch as the springs are a smaller diameter, for anybody who wants to cut fenders and run bigger tires.

They offer lower range 1M and higher range 2M setup the higher end ones include external reservoirs, and more damping adjustment, I will be purchasing the more basic setup in the near future.

Will update once I have my shock spacer setup done for the current springs as well as once I have the lift coil overs later this year.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
586 Posts
Discussion Starter · #157 ·
Its like looking at my fancier twin lol. That looks amazing makes me want to go higher but Im worried about longevity of the angles its putting onto the axles and joints.

Would you mind elaborating on what it came with and what specs you ordered? I feel like the term custom height is a doubled edged sword since we always want to add more but while the part can handle it the cars life expectancy says otherwise especially since the cx-3 is a more 'budget' car of the mazda lineup.


- the only rubbing I get is the odd time they touch my rock blocks mudflaps as they stick out from the fender more,
Since you already have the hardware of the rb flaps, you can use a set of the universal Rallyarmor Urethane flaps which are the flexible rubbery kinds that bend and actually 'flap' and use the hard rb flaps as a template to drill holes and it will fit with their hardware (can confirm as Ive had that for years now with no issues). I like the idea rb went with but the hard flaps should only be used on trucks not on cars where it literally ends up lowering the overall clearance behind the tire considering it will rip off anything its attached to if hit hard enough. ..On second thought after looking at the prices idk if its worth it anymore. I had a spare universal set from a cancelled past car mod lieing around but I probably wouldnt buy these at this price now.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4 Posts
This is the same trim as your cx3 I believe, it’s a GT which is the highest trim in Canada, running the same roof basket but an OEM Mazda roof rail and bar.

After emailing the company about the coil overs, I was looking to get a 2" overall longer shock with the same spring rates as the tanabe springs, but they emailed me back saying they can not make anything over oem height for the CX3. So tanabe springs with shock extensions seems to be our limit here without having custom spec coilovers built and that gets pricey.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
586 Posts
Discussion Starter · #159 ·
Ooh ok I thought the pictures posted above were with the kit installed, i had a million questions on standby haha
 
141 - 159 of 159 Posts
Top