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Old 01-12-2019, 07:10 PM   #1
Aggie1998
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Hotchkis Stage 1 TVS or Ridetech Street Grip

I'm considering both of these kits kits for my 70 C10. I've looked around and don't see much information on either kit. Do any of you have any experience with them? I don't intend on racing this truck but I want it to handle well. I'm leaning toward the Hotchkis kit with 2" drop springs and drop spindles. Any thoughts would be appreciated. Listed below are the links to each kit:

https://www.hotchkis.net/product/tvs...k=&yr=&md=&sm=
https://www.ridetech.com/products/su...etgrip-system/
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Old 01-13-2019, 11:46 AM   #2
Rickysnickers
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Re: Hotchkis Stage 1 TVS or Ridetech Street Grip

I used to own a Dakota R/T. I realize you are asking about a your C-10. I installed a Hotchkis kit on that truck. It was a nice kit, however, it was a pretty stiff ride. It was stiff enough that my wife didn't really like riding in it. I don't know if that's a deciding factor for you or not, but something else to think about. Everything fit fine and seemed to be well engineered.

You might want to talk to one of the Ride Tech guys. There's one on here, John I think. Pick his brain a bit and see what he has to say.
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Old 01-14-2019, 09:49 AM   #3
68Stepbed
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Re: Hotchkis Stage 1 TVS or Ridetech Street Grip

Of the two mentioned, I'd personally go with the Ridetech system, since it comes with the drop spindles and control arm parts.

However, you didn't specify if your truck already had disc brakes, etc., so I'm assuming you still have drum brakes, so you still need to buy rotors, calipers, brake lines and bearings. Next, you'll probably want to upgrade ball joints while rebuilding the stock control arms and replace the worn out pitman arm, idler arm and inner/outer tie rods. Also, you'll still be using the stock power steering box(if equipped), which may be ok, but the stock pre-73 boxes are wide ratio boxes, so a quick ratio box or 73-up variable ratio box would be a good upgrade.

By the time you add all that up, you won't be far off from a whole suspension kit like this. https://totalcostinvolved.com/produc...o-touring-ifs/
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Old 01-18-2019, 11:43 PM   #4
Aggie1998
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Re: Hotchkis Stage 1 TVS or Ridetech Street Grip

I guess neither of these kits are used much on these trucks. I see that the ECE 4/6 drop kit is highly recommend. Does it noticibly improve handling? Would the ECE kit with front and rear sway bars improve the cornering? Again, Iím not looking to race this truck but I would like it to handle well.
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Old 01-19-2019, 08:58 AM   #5
Jrainman
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Re: Hotchkis Stage 1 TVS or Ridetech Street Grip

the hotchkis TVS system is more geared for handling , So you will most likly feel a stiffer ride , I am about to pull the trigger on the ridetech street grip system for my daily driver for a few reasons, the first is ridetech claims increased handling with maintaning a comfortable ride , the other factor for me is they also claim no payload loss with there system. and I do like the drop/stance that the c/10s ive seen witht he street grip installed, and if you already have a disc brake conversion you can deducted the price of those parts from the street grip system.
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Old 01-20-2019, 09:58 PM   #6
BossHogg69
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Re: Hotchkis Stage 1 TVS or Ridetech Street Grip

Quote:
Originally Posted by Aggie1998 View Post
I guess neither of these kits are used much on these trucks. I see that the ECE 4/6 drop kit is highly recommend. Does it noticibly improve handling? Would the ECE kit with front and rear sway bars improve the cornering? Again, Iím not looking to race this truck but I would like it to handle well.
I have the better part of the full Hotchkis TVS kit on my '69. Their springs, front & rear sway bars, upper & lower A-arms & swivel max trailing arm bushings. I did not use their panhard bar setup or shocks.

Their sway bars are great and I liked their springs too, but their rear springs were a little too stiff for my combination @ 380#/in. I believe thats the rate of the factory springs, but I have not personally tested a factory spring to determine that - if anyone knows for sure, please post it up. I'm running a big block with over 700#/ft of torque, and the stiff springs just blew the tires off at any speed. But, you could sling it into a turn (and I don't cut my truck ANY slack) and the front tires planted with no problem. It was just that I couldn't power out of turn with much throttle. I had a set of rear springs custom wound with a lower rate and the same 6" drop, but have yet to drive the truck since I installed them. They may not be any better, but I had to try something else to try and get the rear tires to hook.

The quality of the Hotchkis stuff is very nice, and I'm sure the RideTech stuff is very nice as well. Please keep us posted on whatever you decide and let us know how it drives.
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Old 01-20-2019, 11:10 PM   #7
slowcpe
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Re: Hotchkis Stage 1 TVS or Ridetech Street Grip

Quote:
Originally Posted by Aggie1998 View Post
I guess neither of these kits are used much on these trucks. I see that the ECE 4/6 drop kit is highly recommend. Does it noticibly improve handling? Would the ECE kit with front and rear sway bars improve the cornering? Again, Iím not looking to race this truck but I would like it to handle well.
The Ridetech kit hasn't been out but a couple of years so that may be why you don't see too many right now.

My kit came in last week but I blew my knee out so I haven't had a chance to swing by and pick it up. If all goes well I will be starting on it next weekend.
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Old 01-21-2019, 02:00 PM   #8
68Stepbed
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Re: Hotchkis Stage 1 TVS or Ridetech Street Grip

Quote:
Originally Posted by Aggie1998 View Post
I guess neither of these kits are used much on these trucks. I see that the ECE 4/6 drop kit is highly recommend. Does it noticibly improve handling? Would the ECE kit with front and rear sway bars improve the cornering? Again, Iím not looking to race this truck but I would like it to handle well.
The reason you don't see either of these kits as often is the cost of each system compared to the lower cost of standard drop kits. Keep in mind that most lowered truck guys here are mainly into cruising/car shows, or just want to ride around in a good looking truck. Very few of us are actually into the handling (autocross/road racing) scene. So, if there's no intention in major handling, there's no need in dropping $2K+ for suspension when a $500-800 drop kit will fit their needs.

That said, an ECE 4/6 drop kit with proper shocks and good sway bars will handle quite well for spirited back road driving, but will have limitations in a true "performance handling" situation like autocross. In fact, from what I've witnessed, and from one-on-one conversations with Bret Voelkel, the Ridetech StreetGrip and the Hotchkis kit will have the same limitations due to the basic geometry of the stock control arms and steering box.

The StreetGrip system is designed for giving the popular 4/6 drop that many desire, but with improved ride quality using dual rated springs and upgraded delrin bushings and control arm hardware for increased suspension stability(no mushy rubber bushings). It is NOT designed to transform a truck to an autocross beast. That's what they make the coilover set for.
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Old 01-21-2019, 02:19 PM   #9
Aggie1998
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Re: Hotchkis Stage 1 TVS or Ridetech Street Grip

Thanks for all the responses. For now I'm going to use the ECE 4/6 drop kit. I'll probably add a front sway bar and hopefully I will like the way it handles.
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Old 01-21-2019, 02:23 PM   #10
68Stepbed
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Re: Hotchkis Stage 1 TVS or Ridetech Street Grip

After reading some more, I noticed you have THIS THREAD going also. As I mentioned before, keep track of your costs, and add everything up before making any decisions. By the time you buy the ECE brake kit, and the Ridetech kit, you're already in $3300+ and haven't even bought ball joints or steering linkage rebuild parts.
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Old 01-21-2019, 06:05 PM   #11
BossHogg69
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Re: Hotchkis Stage 1 TVS or Ridetech Street Grip

Quote:
Originally Posted by Aggie1998 View Post
Thanks for all the responses. For now I'm going to use the ECE 4/6 drop kit. I'll probably add a front sway bar and hopefully I will like the way it handles.
If you do NOT add a sway bar you might be disappointed with the handling after spending the money to lower your truck. Just my $.02. A quality lowering kit (like ECE), good shocks and a front sway bar goes a long way on these trucks for good street handling. It will still feel like an old truck, but it won't be as scary as a stock height truck with wasted shocks, old springs, no sway bar and drum brakes!
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1969 Chevy CST/10 stepside, Dart Big M 532"BB/TREMEC Magnum Extreme
1965 Chevy Bel Air Wagon (daily driver), 350/TH350, factory a/c - and it works!
1961 Chevy Bel Air Sport Coupe, ZZ454/M21/4.10's (date night cruiser)
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Old 01-22-2019, 09:31 AM   #12
68Stepbed
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Re: Hotchkis Stage 1 TVS or Ridetech Street Grip

Quote:
Originally Posted by Aggie1998 View Post
Thanks for all the responses. For now I'm going to use the ECE 4/6 drop kit. I'll probably add a front sway bar and hopefully I will like the way it handles.
Quote:
Originally Posted by BossHogg69 View Post
If you do NOT add a sway bar you might be disappointed with the handling after spending the money to lower your truck. Just my $.02. A quality lowering kit (like ECE), good shocks and a front sway bar goes a long way on these trucks for good street handling. It will still feel like an old truck, but it won't be as scary as a stock height truck with wasted shocks, old springs, no sway bar and drum brakes!
Just adding a front sway bar to stock suspension is the single best upgrade you can make for improved handling. Go ahead and add it while lowering and the difference will be astounding!
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