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MSTE 320

MOTORSPORTS DESIGN I
SPRING 2016
SUSPENSION DESIGN PRIMER I
CHRIS FINCH
15 – SUSPENSION PRIMER I

SUMMARY
• Lecture Material
– Introduction
– Independent Suspension
– Suspension Design Terminology

• Lecture Objectives
– Everyone has a basic understanding of some of the suspension design evolution and
terminology

• Reference Chapter in Textbook: 16

• Assignment
– Delay HW003 Turn-In
– HW004 Released After Spring Break

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DISCUSSION POINT

• Quote
“Give me six hours to chop down a tree, and I will spend the first four
sharpening the ax.”
Abraham Lincoln

• What is the significance to this statement?


– In other words, How does it apply to us designers?

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DISCUSSION POINT

• Front Rocker Failure


– Old Style Rocker
• Thinner Webbing
• Newer Style Available
– Thicker Webbing
– Life Mileage
• Deemed Acceptable
– Oval Only Application

• Who is at Fault?
– Dallara
– Team

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INTRODUCTION

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INTRODUCTION
Primary Functions of a Suspension System
– Provide vertical compliance so the wheels can follow the uneven road, isolating the
chassis from roughness in the road
– Maintain the wheels in the proper steer and camber attitudes to the road surface
– React to the control forces produced by the tires: Longitudinal(Braking, Acceleration)
Forces, Lateral Forces(Cornering)
– Resist roll of the chassis
– Keep tires in contact with the road with minimal load variations
• 7-Post
– Contact Patch Load Variation

Reference: Thomas Gillespie, “Fundamentals of Vehicle Dynamics”, (1992) p. 237

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INTRODUCTION
COMPLIANCE
“In the final analysis, every engineering material is rubber”
Sir Henry Royce

Where Does it Come From?


• Elastomeric suspension pivots
• Rubber mounted crossmembers
• Rubber mounted steering racks
• Hard parts that deflect under load
– Suspension links
– Steering links
– Chassis mounts
How Do We Account for It?
• Installation Stiffness
– Suspension is Generalized as a Spring
• Hub to Hub Twist
– Included as part of the deflection of the tub/suspension assembly
What are we Going to Do About It?
• Assume Infinite Stiffness
• Be conscious that it occurs
• Eventually Try to Quantify
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INTRODUCTION
BEAM AXLE

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INTRODUCTION

• Early Suspension Design


– What was the goal?
• Keep the wheels on the car
• Nothing to do with tire behavior
– Typical Design
• Beam Axle
• Beam Axle Front Suspension
– Tilts both wheels in bump
• Influences camber of opposite tire

– Increases Un Sprung Weight


• Influences the spring/damper system
• Needs Control Over Bumps and Dips

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INTRODUCTION

• Beam Axle Steering Fight and Kickback


– Due to gyroscopic precession
• http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Precession

– Bumps cause both wheels to steer together


• Extra steer angle causes more tilt, one wheel comes off ground

– Upon return to ground, precession ensures it will make contact with toe out
• Self-aligning torque wants to steer opposite way when contact ground

– Early suspension target was NO camber change due to concern over gyroscopic effect
• This changed with increased understanding of
tire performance and optimization

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INTRODUCTION

• Beam Axle Rear Suspensions (Section 17.7 of the Book)


– Production Cars
– NASCAR
– Sprint Cars
– GT Cars
– Drag Racing

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INTRODUCTION

• Examples Beam Axle Rear Suspensions (Section 17.7 of the Book)

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INTRODUCTION

INDEPENDENT SUSPENSIONS

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SUSPENSION DESIGN TERMINOLOGY

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• SAE Conventions

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• Vehicle Weight (W=mg)


– Un-sprung Weight (Wus)
• Mass of the part of the vehicle that is
not carried on the springs
• Wheels, axles, brakes, half the
suspension
• That which is not attached to the
chassis solidly

– Sprung Weight (Ws)


• Essentially the rest of the car as not
outlined above

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SUSPENSION DESIGN TERMINOLOGY

Suspension Travel (6 Degrees of Freedom)


• 3 Translations
– Vertical
• Compression/Jounce
– Movement of the wheel in the
upward direction
as if due to a bump
• Some refer to this simply as bump
• Rebound/Droop
– Movement of the wheel in the
downward direction
– Longitudinal (Fore/Aft)
– Lateral
• 3 Rotations
– Steer Axis
– Camber (Inclination)
– Wheel Axis

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SUSPENSION DESIGN TERMINOLOGY

• Suspension Dimensions
– Track Width, t
• Distance, as viewed from the front or back, between the left and right tire centerlines
• A car with the same overall width but wider rear tires will have a narrower rear track due to
the more inwards position of the tire centerline

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SUSPENSION DESIGN TERMINOLOGY

• Wheel Angles
– Static Camber, (Also known as: Inclination Angle)
• Angle of the wheel relative to the ground or chassis
as viewed from the front or back
• Positive: Wheel Inclined Outward is Positive

– Static Toe (degrees or inches)


• Per SAE: It is the difference in the transverse distances
between the wheel planes, taken at the extreme rear
and front points of the tire treads (Racing typically
measures to a known position on the rim face)
– Specify the distance between measurement points
– Indycar is 15”
• Positive: Toe-in, i.e. front of wheel closer to chassis

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Kingpin Geometry

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• Steering Geometry
– King Pin Inclination Angle or (KPI)
• Angle, as viewed from the front, formed by the
upright pivot axis and a vertical line

– King Pin Offset


• Scrub Radius
• Distance from pivot axis intersection with ground to
the wheel center
• KPI and camber are independent of each other

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• Steering Geometry Cont.
– Caster Angle
• Angle formed by the upright pivot axis as viewed from the side
• Line drawn through UWB outer joint and LWB outer joint relative to a
vertical line
• Upright need not be angled as you see in the illustration
• Positive: Sloped upwards and rearwards
• Creates the Self Centering “Action” on the Front Steering System

– Caster Offset
• Defined as Caster Trail
• The Greater the Trail the Greater the Effort-WHY???
• Ties into Pneumatic Trail

– Camber Gain from Steering Geometry


• Change in camber angle as derived from a combination of caster and
king pin angle
• Units: Degrees per degrees of steer (wheel steer not steering wheel)
• High caster with low KPI equals high camber gain
• High KPI with low caster equals high camber gain
• Equal caster and KPI equals low to no camber gain

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SUSPENSION DESIGN TERMINOLOGY

• Suspension Component Names


– Upright [URT]
– Lower Wishbone, Upper Wishbone, Forward/Rearward [LWBF, LWBR, UWBF, UWBR]
– Track Rod [TR], Pushrod [PR]

ROTOR

DISC BELL

UPRGHT

HUB

CALIPER

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• Suspension Components Pushrod Front

Pushrod Spring/Damper

ARB Droplink

Steering Rocker
Arm
Steering Rack

ARB/Swivel
3rd Slider

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• Suspension Components 3rd Spring/Damper

Damper Rocker

Torsion Spring

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• Suspension Components ARB’s

U-Bar T-Bar
(Req’d for Swivel)

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• Front Suspension Assembly

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• Front Rocker Assembly

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• Rear Suspension Assembly

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• Suspension Upright Components Steering Arm

Upright Axle

Hub

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• Suspension Drive Components Outer Drive Flange(Inclusive to Hub)


Note the included wheel speed triggers
Upright
Tripod

Inner Drive Flange

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• Front Upright Assembly

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• Half Shaft Assembly

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• Alternate Front Suspension Design Mono Shock


Guess what this is

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• Formula 1 Rear Rocker Assembly Up Close


Speculate what this is doing

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• Principles Don’t Change if We Go Sporty Car Racing


What is this again

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• Imagine Designing a 6 Wheel Race Car Front Suspension

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ROLL CENTER CONCEPT

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ROLL CENTER CONCEPT

Instant Center Concept to Roll Center Concept

Basic Definition
Location at which lateral forces developed by the wheels are
transmitted to the sprung mass.

SAE Definition
The point in the transverse vertical plane through any pair of
wheel centers at which later forces may be applied to the sprung mass
without producing suspension roll.
Note: Roll Center as defined above, constitutes an idealized
concept and does not necessarily represent a true instantaneous center of
rotation of the sprung mass.

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ROLL CENTER CONCEPT


Further Investigation
1. Derived from the fact that suspension
possess a roll axis
1. Roll Axis is the instantaneous axis about
which the unsprung mass rotates with
respect to the sprung mass when a pure
couple is applied to the unsprung mass
2. Located at the intersection of the
suspension roll axis with the vertical
plane through the centers of the two
wheels
3. Height is measured from the ground
reference plane
1. Be careful, read the manual
4. Roll Axis is defined as “Instantaneous”
1. Location is only accurate in the absence
of body roll
2. Concept is valid for establishing where
the forces are reacted on the sprung
mass

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ROLL CENTER CONCEPT


• A-Arm Suspension Geometry
– Three Basic Types
• Positive
• Neutral
• Negative

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ROLL CENTER CONCEPT


• McPherson Strut

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ROLL CENTER CONCEPT


• Hotchkiss Rear Axle

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ROLL CENTER CONCEPT


• Four Bar Link Axle Rear Suspension
– Parallel
– Non-Parallel

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ROLL CENTER CONCEPT


Additional Thoughts
• Can be referred to as front view swing
arm geometry, fvsa
• Location is the designers preference
• Controls
– Camber Change Rate
– Tire Lateral Scrub
– Weight Transfer (Previous Discussion)
• Remember this is an “Instant Center”
– Vehicle Roll Changes the Position
• Asymmetric Suspension moves the Roll
Center Off Vehicle Centerline
– Depending on amount, may average
back to centerline
• Kinematic Study that assumes the
wheel is pinned to the ground
– We know is not true
• Force Based Roll Center versus
Kinematic Based Roll Center
– More advanced study

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ROLL CENTER CONCEPT


FVSA and Camber Change Rate
Camber Change Rate
– Camber Change is based on the length
of the FVSA

– Upper Control Arm Length impacts


the Camber Change Curve
• Short Arm Directed at the Same
Instant Center can/will reduce the
Camber Change Gain

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