I decided to skip out on the BC racing hype and wasn't up for buying fortunes or feals, so when black friday came around last November I pulled the trigger on a set of Ceika 1M's. How I have them specc'd out is:
- standard spring rate, standard valving (sport)
- pillowballs with front camber plates
- helper springs
They contacted me after I made my order and asked about my build intentions with the car, and likely picked their valving and spring rates that reasonably matched my needs from their internal catalog.
Inital impresions were OK. They are heavy. I installed them at a friend's place on "coilover day" (friend's buddy had an evo getting ohlins at the same time) and compared them to the other set that was there. The ohlins were pretty darn light. the OEM spyder shocks on my car were pretty darn dead (203k miles). Installation quirks:
- the bolt holes for the strut to bolt onto the knuckle are tight. not too small but tight.
- there's a slotted bolt hole for the bottom bolt
- the tabs for mounting the ABS line bracket and brake line brackets don't seat naturally. the metal edges are bent towards the mounting face instead of away, making it just feel awkward to bolt them on, but it fits and it's not problematic. I did cringe a bit but I cringe at many things that sometimes aren't even cringeworthy. By contrast, the evo getting ohlins had zero such fit and finish uneasiness.
I set my preload a tad higher based on the one datapoint i found here on spyderchat regarding compression travel.
I clocked the tophats for caster increase, and added camber bolts for camber correction.
So upon driving on these, it felt pretty good to me compared to the ride in my buddy's BC-coilover BRZ and the horrendous ride in my raceland coilover tiburon, but knowing I didn't have a ton of experience with coilovers, I asked around and had people test drive and such.
From the 4-ish people who did drive it (FC rx7 enthusiast, celica altrac enthusiast, another mr2 spyder owner, and alignment shop tech) I got the impression that the performance and ride was not too shabby compared to the well known brands.
The coilovers seem to be above the halfway point between BC and Fortune Auto in terms of overall performance/ride. take that how you will
on stock oem bushings, having all the dampers set to their softest settings felt just right.
after going to Battleversion arms (and getting rid of my 203k mile stock parts), i had to up the damping by 3 clicks in the rear and 2 in the front to get back that same feel. my caster is now significantly higher than stock with the combination of the BV front LCA's and tophats clocked for combination camber/caster. it gives me a bit more highway centering, and i don't feel nearly as much tramlining.
New (don't worry, those spacers are not going onto the car.):
Overall, I'm fairly satisfied with the performance of these, even though the fit and finish is a little bit meh. It handles big diagonal highway bridge joints (that change elevation by about 2-3 inches) pretty natually (settles quickly) without oscillation after the major compression and rebound. The springs do pop a bit on steep speedbumps if you don't take them gently.
I'll update this as time goes on if I find anything new.