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#1074540 - 07/22/22 04:14 PM Re: Front sway bar project [Re: mmc427ss]  
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SSLance Offline
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Honestly, I could get better and place higher just by fixing the driver. laugh

This is proven by just how many times others have beat me in my own car...


Lance
1985 Monte Carlo SS Street Car
#1074549 - 07/23/22 01:44 AM Re: Front sway bar project [Re: mmc427ss]  
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Exactly!!!!
The reason i take my son with me to run the events now. He's 20+ years younger. About 6 years ago I ran an autox in Maple Grove pit area. At the driver's meeting looking around at the ages i quickly knew me and all the 60+ driver's could sit at the one picnic table. Now at 71 years old the kids are still in their 30s and wear "No Fear" t-shirts. Me I try to figure out how to stay planted in the seat.

Point is besides the car the driver is a huge part of the fix. Unfortunately for me time has slowly, sometimes quickly used up the "no fear" ego. Now just happy to see if the car is better than i remember from last year. Good thing is memory isn't what it used to be either.

Lance you forget to mention Aaron finished 2nd to that Nova above. Couple years ago at UMI KOTM I got several rides in Aaron's car. Can attribute those ride-a-longs partially to why a couple upgrades were done to my car.

As we see this sway bar project has morphed into what in now more about the rear suspension. Funny, because the rear suspension problems is what started the front sway bar project.

Thanks everyone for all the input into the rear suspensions ills and fixes. From years of reading anything chassis useful, looking for truely informative with practical application and not just theory has always been difficult. I truely appreciate the conversation this post has opened up. You will be hard pressed to find this level of discussion anywhere on the web these days.
The only conversations that I've seen come close are on the 1/12 scale R/C car forums were every aspect of chassis tuning is discussed and 4 shocks can cost more than Bilsteins.

Have been running, driving, my 86 for the past 3 or 4 weeks on very soft shock setting just to get a feel of how the new higher rate front bar reacts to all the different road condition I encounter normally. Weds put about 25 miles just cruising around with the A/C cranked, it was 90+ that day. I'm shopping for a new daily driver to get me to my mid 80s.
Anyhow will be cranking up the shocks to autox settings and them looking to see how the car behaves when i push it harder. May even crank the rear sway bar up just to get a taste of what happens then. Next autox is Aug 20, 4 weeks away and plenty of time to play with different rear setting.
One good thing is it's so stinking hot here right now it can't be any worse in mid Aug, can it?

One point really worth noting is Mark's about "street manners". And I 100% agree that in my case the street manners do and will always take precedent to the track manners. I put about 2K miles on my car a year, of which is maybe four 1/4 mile passes and this year hoping 32 runs, maybe 48 if all go well autox runs. So at the most 2% of that 2K miles is racin'. Making changes to improve that 2% have always been secondary to not destroy the car's "just another G-body" identity. But have never been afraid to make a change if need be.

Hoping this rear suspension discussion continues long enough for me to yea or nay the mods. I may have one good, long, hard, project left in my blood to do yet. I can say when I heard "bolt in" associated with Bernie's it did light a little spark in my brain. The first time i ever saw anything close to being a better mouse trap back there.
Bob

Yes i did see Chuck Trimbles Mailbu at KOTM a couple years ago, and did take a peak at his 3 link under there. He makes appearance at Harrisburg occasionally.
Couldn't find a video of his rear anywhere but remember seeing it years ago somewhere.

#1074562 - 07/23/22 05:04 PM Re: Front sway bar project [Re: mmc427ss]  
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This thread is a goldmine of information!!!!

#1074587 - 07/25/22 02:45 AM Re: Front sway bar project [Re: mmc427ss]  
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Man it was hot at Eastwood show, we only lasted two hours in the shade, near 100 degrees. At shows i always look for the vehicle that has the most novelty, engineering or just off the wall way cool done. A pretty blue 1967 Toyota Land Cruise, top chopped maybe 2", a custom frame on air bags, cycle fenders on large front rubber and a 12 cyl BMW under the hood. Well actually the intake's 12 polished ports and center cover was cut into the hood and visible with the hood closed.
The 77 year old owner and the 40's car builder were sitting there. I will be looking for this car again to get a much closer look at someone's craziness. I must add I asked the owner about A/C, he snickered and pointed to the small kick panel air door and the vent wing windows and said it wasn't comfortable on the drive to the show, guess not.

Monte, 50 miles this weekend on a 100 degree day. After the grandkids getting overheated at the show, next at 2 pm was load the wife and her walker in my 86 and go for an indoor picnic with friends. A/C working well, temp gauge very happy and no "complaining" from the wife about the ride quality or even air temp in the car. And believe me she's the critic.
So at this point in time and the current shock, spring, sway bar rates, adjustments I'm tickled with the way it drives. With softer shock setting and going straight ahead down the road ride quality i feel is very satisfactory, not objectionable. But of course that is always a personnel opinion, just like beauty is in the eye of the beholder.
When you call on the car to make a fast turn at speed is when you notice that big front bar coming into play. With it's double my previous rate of 550 and solid links instead of 4 poly cushions on each side of course the car reacts to steering input MUCH, MUCH faster.
I have an XH steering box which I rebuild several years ago and tuned the flow and system psi, and with all the other mods up front nets super fast steering. The box ratio, pitman arm length and shorter steering arm length all contribute to final ratio, With the adj steering stops adjust to prevent any front tire touch at full lock L or R after the sway bar upgrade steering is now 2 turns lock to lock. Yes the steering stop adjusting will reduce how far the steering wheel can be turned but that impact was marginal to the end product. Steering is faster and very responsive as a result of the new bar.

Next time on my turnplates I'll see how many degrees of turning angle is possible, L - R, on the current setup. And as we know that angle translates into turning radius. It was near 30 degrees before the caster improvement project a couple years ago, less afterward. Adjustable spindle turning stops on the LCA were done to keep the fat new 275/40 tire off the rear side of the LCA after that mod. Lost a little radius from that mod.
Can grab the 100' tape measure and make another trip to a parking lot and check radius again. Through all the mods the guess is near 43' radius now, Stock SS is like 37.1' curb to curb. You measure the tires contact path OD Some will list the radius as wall to wall, that''s the fender/bumper touch OD, stock SS would be 44' .
Turning radius isn't a big problem in my case. A clutch, lots of low end torque and you can modify a turning radius instantly. I do that all the time at the autox, not wanting to.
More turning radius isn't even an 86 problem when driving normal. My daily driver Astro is 44' radius.

Need for the stifling outdoor temps to get a little cooler and need to get the daughter's GTP front R hub replaced, new rear pads and rotors and the heater core put in bypass this week coming. Then it's back to having time to look at some tuning changes in the 86 for the coming autox in Aug.

The Feds or maybe it's the State with Fed money have been blacktopping several of the local highways around here. There are a couple high speed cloverleafs that look like they may be worked on. I've used cloverleafs to find balance on some of my other rides over the past 50 years. The 86 scares me a little because the mph when you find which end is going to give up first is a tad faster than previous rides. Run off areas are nice to have, usually not available around a cloverleaf.
Bob

#1074624 - 07/27/22 04:59 AM Re: Front sway bar project [Re: mmc427ss]  
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Hi Bob,

Anything that would increase the car's stiffness in roll, whether by springs and/or by sway bars, front and/or rear, will quicken the car's transient steering response. And as I mentioned twice before, that quickness of response has real value for driving the car transiently. But that's just one aspect of what your sway bar is doing to change the car's behavior.

When you go to that parking lot to check minimum turning radius, is there enough room to do the understeer/oversteer test I described? I like a circle of roughly 200' diameter since Ackermann becomes less of a factor in the results compared to a smaller diameter.

Last edited by MAP; 07/27/22 05:00 AM.
#1074625 - 07/27/22 05:24 AM Re: Front sway bar project [Re: mmc427ss]  
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Mark if you remember I mentioned when but a child build tethered 049 engines on prop driven cars, and control line airplanes, both needed a fairly small space, radius to crash them in.
A search for some place to drive 60 mph around a 100' radius that i would paint a circle in someones parking lot always has eluded me. But believe me I look all the
time for just that place.
And always looking for a place my local SCCA could run an Autox closer to home.

Today these cell phone people now have apps on their phones where if they see something out of the norm these just press a button and report it. Without proper permission I'm most certain I'd be fighting in court to keep my license if caught. And we know if you're going to test, you don't need to be bothered by a black and white.

And we know to be safe a 100' radius needs twice that to be safe. Hard to find good pavement, no light poles and level in that size.

Our green guy in town just had all the parking spaces counted and the percentage that is blacktop within our boro limits. Roads and parking lots is 24% of the boro area with 44,222 parking spaces. Like the old saying, water, water everywhere but not a drop to drink.
Bob

#1074632 - 07/27/22 08:34 PM Re: Front sway bar project [Re: mmc427ss]  
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Hi Bob,

It's exactly the same out here. Despite more empty square miles of sand than anyone can measure, obstacle-free asphalt acreage is still at a premium. The search continues, but I don't know where. Mare Tranquillitatis?

#1074633 - 07/27/22 08:48 PM Re: Front sway bar project [Re: mmc427ss]  
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I have a hard enough time trying to find a car trailer to ferry a broken car home from the track. Getting one to the moon. not.
Did I mention this is a black car that hates dust?
Bob

#1074634 - 07/27/22 09:41 PM Re: Front sway bar project [Re: mmc427ss]  
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Launching cars into space has happened before... Getting them back seems to be the bigger problem.

I miss my high school days in an oil-bust town. There were plenty of massive, flat parking lots where one could do donuts galore (I mean... Science Experiments...). I'm sure I've told the story of my S10 pickup attempting this maneuver. It stuck very well until seems like about 30 mph, where the inside rear tire would lift and spin, but the front tires and the outer rear stayed planted. Tire would spin, truck would slow, tire would drop and make slight contact again, speeding it up and lifting the tire further. It was a ton of fun, and after 4-5 revolutions, it left a nice, perfect black circle on the pavement. Pretty sure a stiffer sway bar would have made an impact on that truck...


Shawn

'85 MC with budget 5.3L swap, TH350 with stock 2.14 rear end
It ain't much off the line, but it's nice on the highway
#1074635 - 07/28/22 04:29 AM Re: Front sway bar project [Re: mmc427ss]  
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Hi Hunter - Yes, the heavier the front end, the heavier the front sway bar it would seem!

#1074643 - 07/28/22 11:04 PM Re: Front sway bar project [Re: mmc427ss]  
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Always thinking about venues to run certain types of events, I've been looking at possible places for a long time. My son ran autox and rallyx, Lemons and hillclimbs on and off and myself was usually somewhere to be found in the event pits. Back them we would scout for rallyx fields and parking lots for autox and between the two over the past decade a few dozen different type races. Me just the past 6 years or so running just the autox, 10 times.

One of his autox events about 10 years ago was in the parking lot of what is now the Classic Automall. That mall was closed for years and the blacktop eroded, I cringed as I watched him shred the rubber off his autox tires. I wasn't autoxing back then and said I would never run that lot with my car. My street tires would not be happy!!!

Now fast forward to 2022. Many of the parking lots our three local SCCA groups used are no longer. Blue Mountain only does hill climbs now, no autox. Susquehanna lost Hershey Park and the big lot at the Farm Show and is relegated to the smaller lot up on the hill. Philly region I've run a few times, and just don't care to make that trip East, close to the big city. Never liked the old runway they use at Warmister Park.

Classic Automall has an enclosed trailer they tote to car shows to promote the business. I've parked across from it a few time at our downtown show and have tried implanting the idea that the big parking lot could be used as an autox event again. No luck so far. Both Blue Mountain or Susquehanna could run events there, plenty big enough. The rich guy that owns the Classic Mall and the Oaks Convention Center could afford to black top that back section of the Morgantown lot to make me happy.
About 7 seconds into their ad video is the parking lot.
https://www.classicautomall.com/

In their video you can see the far corner of that lot, that's where my son ran years ago, the whole rear section facing the PA Turnpike.
Don't know when the next car show is in that parking lot but very soon will drive my 86 out there to survey the far back corner of the lot. Will take my 100' tape and do a turning radius measurement on the car just for S&G. Will also see if there is some way to use a small piece of that lot to do donuts at 100' radius.

This thinking about that lot has been going on for years, ain't just a whim of the week.
When my wife's boss, a business owner and the big gun supervisor in the township where Liberty Bell Motorsports Park was supposed to be build fought the construction of that race track for a decade. It's less than 10 minutes from here. After millions and years being spent to do the paper work the Lawyers got the funds once the track finally got through the courts, and Bob never got to drive around that track. Investors dried up On the main road at the would be entrance to the Park the signs still say "coming soon". That track would have got a lot of my tire rubber, it was what type of driving I wanted to do, open track.

So soon make a trip to Classic to look at the lot for driving around in circles.
Bob

#1074644 - 07/28/22 11:20 PM Re: Front sway bar project [Re: mmc427ss]  
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Bob,

You might consider taking it to Watkins Glen NY once? You won't be able to race, but I think you can dig into it a bit as long as you don't pass the pace car. A fella I know took his R8, he laid back on the start and used the room to WOT the car for a some pulls. He said it was a good experience with the elevation changes and corners.

https://www.theglen.com/

Last edited by 1 Slow SS; 07/29/22 12:08 AM.

Enjoy life, family first!
#1074647 - 07/29/22 04:42 AM Re: Front sway bar project [Re: mmc427ss]  
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Once three older couples were cruising the wine stops in the Finger Lakes, my 8 passenger 95 Astro was still a sweet ride back then, and the friends don't allow friends to drive drunk was me. So when i made a left hand turn up the hill to get a view of Watkins Glen no one objected.
I've watched many events on the tube from there, the best i could do later was peeping over the fence.

The Glen, NJ Park, Pocanos would all require you have not only a backup plan to get home but a plan to get the car there and back. Have been down the broke mode a couple times in my car. Once at Maple Grove when I had a catastrophic water pump explosion at a 1000' out. Left it sitting in the pits overnight, trailered home the next day. Once at Cecil County drag racing, minor, lost the alternator voltage regulator. Drove it home 80 miles nursing a voltage gauge.

Always said the car would never be a trailer queen, never has been, but worry when we are beating on a 15 year old engine build.
I do have a "i think i could rescue you and your car with my truck and open trailer" friend. But who needs to bother them.

Monte:
Jacked the rear up tonight, even put jackstands under #4 bushings and chocked the front tires. Gettin old and not as lucky.
Removed the rear sway bar links and cleaned/inspected them, the links still look great even at 13 year old . The bar is a Spohn 919 adjustable Pro-tour with a lot on my personnel touches to improve upon it.
As an adjustable rate bar I ran it full soft for 99% of it life, move it to full strong only when i would drag race the car. Adjusting the rate is simply changing the bolt holes in the bar and changing the bolts hole in the frame bracket, four bolts.

While under the car took measurements on the Spohn bar, been a long time since that install, need to recalculate the rate of the bar again. Using this calculator which i find easy to use and very accurate this rear bar has these rates:
http://www.gtsparkplugs.com/Sway-Bar-Calculator.html
At 8 1/4", it softest setting, 309 lb/in'
AT 7 1/4", medium, 407. About a 33% increase over soft.
At 6 1/4" , it firmest setting,556 a 80% increase over soft.

Don't ever remember running on the medium bar setting on the street. But ran several miles on the firmest bar setting in combo with LCA IC setting and can say I didn't like the way the car felt, drove, on the open highway.
So now link sets to medium, car on the ground, will drive it at medium rear bar rate for a while. I doubt i will notice a difference around town and cruising. Just need to see if I can feel any change.

Mecum is in Harrisburg this week at the Farm Show stadium. Tonight was was watching the open hours of the aale and they showed the parking lot we autoxed in a few years ago. They are allowing the Dodge Boys to drift cars around the parking lot. What the hell!!!!!
Bob


Last edited by mmc427ss; 07/29/22 04:44 AM.
#1074652 - 07/30/22 05:44 AM Re: Front sway bar project [Re: mmc427ss]  
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Between spritzing rain on and off today took the 86 out for some fuel and a measurement. A piece of white chalk attached to a steel rod with some good old Scotch 33 long enough so I won't even have to bend over to mark the tire's point on the blacktop. That marker and the Lufkin 50'er in another old abandoned section of one of our decaying mall parking lots and a new turning circle number is had.

Today 44' 2" and that's pretty accurate, and a curb to curb. Side wall of each tire, not the tread.
And the steering wheel was turned full lock to the left where the left spindle hits the steering travel stops on the left LCA, the car turned 180 degrees around the circle.

Specs I've found is an 86 SS has a turning circle at 37.1' curb to curb. If so all the mods done to the front suspension incurred a 7' loss of diameter, that's a significant loss of circle, 16%.
A front track width change, a wheelbase change now 1" longer, alignment parameters changes, steering linkage changes, wheels, tires, and ultimately tire rub dictate turning circle diameter that my car can live with. I'm ok at 44' on the 86, my 95 AWD Astro is 44'

In addition to checking turning circle diameter this test today was also to check tire to new sway bar rub I was experiencing earlier on the right side arm only. Today when making that 1/2 of a circle turn the steering was at a firm full lock on the wheel, so that right side tire was turned inward it's max possible. And when I checked that right sway arm back in the shop it had another light rub on it. The verdict is still out on what to do. Black permanent marker paint fix again and out for more testing will be the route for now. The rub on that right arm is superficial and it only happens at very slow speed, but it just bugs me.
The left side spindle stop is what determines that clearance on that right side arm. I've tweaked it several times already. Guess i gotta look one more time and add some more steel to the stop's cam. Huh.
Soon enough will be back on turnplates and will then be able to do full L and R turning angles to see if they deviate that much. The steering linkage in a G is not mirrored L and R and can cause "deviates".

A while ago replaced the pinch bolts on the arms, new are ARP moly with Jetnuts allows 45 torque, more crush on splines I hope. So far neither side has moved. They are white paint marked so easy to tell if they move.

A note on the my thoughts after the 15 miles today with the rear bar now set 33% stiffer on medium. Can say i didn't have enough time on roads to get a true feel for that setting. Somehow i always find myself on the same test 1/2 mile stretch of country road, the place with two 90s, they are 90s, not sweepers. For years they are the oversteer testers. Today the rear tires did what they were told,drove around the corner and didn't complain. Will be out there several more times in the coming weeks and up the anti.
Soon will crank up some shock setting back into the car, will start with last autox settings.

Autox 2 weeks away, second event of the year. Hope to learn something next time out. Hope to get quicker next time out.
CG seat belt lock modified, tested and ready for a trial run.
Even have a state of the art tire water sprayer for the hot day I'm expecting.
Bob

#1074654 - 07/30/22 09:06 PM Re: Front sway bar project [Re: mmc427ss]  
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Hi Bob,

Two thoughts: 44' sounds reasonable to me too. Chances are you're down to this diameter only when going slowly in parking lots or three-point turns and such. A light rub on the arm should be tolerable as long as you don't start to fret the sidewall. However, that rub will probably get a bit worse as you increase speed.

About more rear roll stiffness: you're shifting the car's balance somewhat from understeer toward oversteer. The rear will thus feel "looser" to use the parlance here and the car may actually feel nimbler at lower speeds. But the real test is when you push the car to near 10 tenths. Does the inner rear tire lift? On a flat course with a given path/speed profile, the answer will be a simple binary yes/no. But on the street with bumps at various speeds and along various paths, the answer will be statistical (e.g., 99.96% no and 0.04% yes (a camera would help).) You'll then have to define your limit of comfort according to that statistic.

My suspicion is still that if you had devoted as much effort to shifting weight balance toward the rear as you did to fab that front sway bar, you would have made more progress in your quest to improve handling. And to return to a theme I haven't mentioned in a while, it would have helped if you had increased the car's longitudinal torsional stiffness. You wouldn't have needed as much front bar for the same F/R distribution of roll stiffness, and the shocks could have done a better job of dampening front suspension motion. Transferring front roll compliance to the chassis mechanically short-circuits the front shocks.

This is not to knock all the good you've accomplished with the sway bar, but it is to advocate for a more systemic, holistic approach to cure the car's ills.

Last edited by MAP; 07/30/22 09:48 PM.
#1074672 - 08/01/22 04:31 AM Re: Front sway bar project [Re: mmc427ss]  
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Yes, the 44' turning circle is not a problem. Just needed to know that it had grown a little more ever time a change is made to the front suspension. The new sway bar project was partly driven from the fact a larger section width tire can not go where the original sway bar was located without making a huge increase in tire rub, or a much larger turning cycle to prevent the tire from rubbing a huge bar in the stock location.

Out at the traffic light on the 4 lane there is a left turn lane to turn into my neighborhood. Often a car sitting in that lane will do a 180 to go back the direction they came from. The other evening an 80s full size Blazer tried to make that maneuver drove the right front tire/wheel into the curbing, I could see, hear, the Blazer take the hit, OUCH!!!

As far as that rub on the sway bar arm i know it superficial and isn't a big deal. I'm just a little anal when it come to tire rub, zero touch anywhere is always what I strive for. When the new wheels and tires went on the back of the car a spacer was need to compensate for the 12mm offset of the new wheels and centering the tire in the well. When I was under the car the other night adjusting the rear sway bar you can do a visual on tire touch on the frame at the rear of the tire. Both sides have just a touch, again it's insignificant, only happens when the car is pushed real hard in the corners and is merely a touch. Hindsight now says when i vacillated between a 21 and a 22mm spacer and chose the 21 because it was smaller the 22 would have probably zero rub and it just a silly one mm thicker, .0394".
Go figure.

As far as that longitudinal torsional stiffness b/s there is only so much you can do, it a two piece system and each has it's weak points. I do feel you would have a hard time finding another A or G that is as well connected as this car. Several on my car friends have remarked on how tight the car is. Doing anymore to improve it would mean welding the body to the frame to improve upon that.
It isn't a unibody, will never be a unibody and it will never lose it's rigidity as fast as a unibody that is not designed to beat heavily on. Unibodies decay from weather, I've got three now that the door gaps have changed.
I'll take a frame vehicle over a unibody any day for long term use. One of the reason for owning and pouring money into this car with a frame. You can always throw the body away and start over with a frame suspension.

A little tied up Sat and Sun doing repairs to my daughter's GTP, RF hub replaced, F pads and rotors, oil change and 10 grease fittings, rotate tires and check rear brakes, and most of all see if the heater core is junk or is there another cooling problem. Well heater core is junk so put that in bypass mode (a U hose ), a thermostat change and check the entire system.
Sat the 86 was the parts runner and Sun found time for another 10 miles around the block. The same 90s on that back road, just a tad faster, working my way up in speed but still haven't found the oversteer point yet.
But i can see without thinking about it that the rear release, jump, hook behavior of the rear tires was eliminated when the big bar went on. I realized it as soon as the bar was installed and noted it months ago. But just been waiting as i play more in those corners to see if it reappear, but didn't happen again today.
Next trips through those corners will be working on inducing throttle oversteer. Normally I just drive through those corners, 3rd gear steady throttle state until mid corner then a little more throttle.

Should also note that I've been trying to relearn how to drive. Over the past 50 + years of driving you become the defensive driver guy on the street, always looking for that kid on the bicycle that runs the stop sign,or the hundred other possible calamities that will ruin your day. I'm always looking ahead for trouble. Out on the highway i drive lines around corners, always looking ahead for that line
Then you head off to an autox and your passenger is telling to keep you eyes up, look ahead and you realize between crappy belts and seat you're driving the next cone and not the course. I never "drive the cones" on the street, why be a moron and do that when on the autox. So since my last outing in June I'm working on "driving the course" on the street, hoping for a reboot of my course bad behavior.
But we all know about old dogs and new tricks.
Bob

#1074674 - 08/01/22 04:02 PM Re: Front sway bar project [Re: mmc427ss]  
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I always Apex corners on the street whenever I can, no matter what I'm driving. Heck, even hitting bumps on a high speed on or off ramp in my ZR2 keeps me up to date on how the shocks and suspension react under different loads. Instinctively knowing what your car is going to do BEFORE it does it is always helpful when trying to go fast.


Lance
1985 Monte Carlo SS Street Car
#1074676 - 08/01/22 09:57 PM Re: Front sway bar project [Re: mmc427ss]  
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MAP Offline
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MAP  Offline
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Hi Bob,

I admit I haven't thought about unibody in terms of environmental robustness. Out here, steel lasts basically forever, and plastic turns into UV-ravaged dust in short order.

The problem with unibody OEMs is that welds aren't usually as environmentally resistant as the steel they conjoin. Rust often starts there, and since welds are usually stress-concentrating features, things can go south quickly. Ironically, aluminum would fare much better.

But if we're converting an A/G body to unibody, the preferred way to join pieces wouldn't be welding but something involving fasteners. Just make sure the mating surfaces are thoroughly coated/plated against oxidation, and the joint shouldn't compromise chassis rigidity over the long term in a corrosive environment as welds would. Fastening instead of welding should render the bond equally immobile, but the first can be undone while the second essentially can't. This fact should permit separating a unibody into two halves, one frame-like and the other body-like. The separation may not be fast or easy but still doable. The disadvantages of fasteners are increased weight (possibly 20lb total for the unibody conversion aspect,) increased cost, and increased complexity. But I'd still opt for fasteners.

"I do feel you would have a hard time finding another A or G that is as well connected as this car." I completely believe you. Mine was similarly well-connected; possibly even more, because I significantly reinforced the frame side rails. And it was still a bowl of Jell-O by modern standards. The biggest defect is the area forward of the firewall. It was designed for crashworthiness and not rigidity since it completely lacks the triangulation that makes for a light, stiff structure.

I won't belabor unibody virtues further here since that belongs (and in fact resides) in other threads.

Last edited by MAP; 08/02/22 12:12 AM.
#1074690 - 08/03/22 11:22 PM Re: Front sway bar project [Re: MAP]  
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1 Slow SS Offline
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Small town KY
Now this brings in some cool innovation into the grip concepts.

https://youtu.be/57o5VXeMaZM


Enjoy life, family first!
#1074695 - 08/04/22 03:15 AM Re: Front sway bar project [Re: mmc427ss]  
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mmc427ss Offline
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Pretty neat, kinda comic book stuff, but then again Dick Tracy's wrist radio, whodathunkit.

Yesterday reset the front DA shocks from 6-6 up to 14-14 which i ran at the last autox. Did an inspection of the front suspension and in particular the new front bar and it's 43 parts, wow, just counted and WOW, lots of parts. The arms haven't moved on the torsion bar spline since installing ARP pinch bolts and more fastening torque. The link alignment is very good and they stay centered, cool. Could not find anything to note about the bars other than, done.

Something that does irritate me is a few years ago installed new Moog LBJ in both stockish LCAs, maybe 4k miles on them. The driver's side new Moog always pissed some grease out the bottom of the joint, made a mess that needed to be cleaned up occasionally. So to fix that I decided to install a new Moog on that left side and bought two in case i damaged the boot on the right balljoint. Both balljoints I removed before welding the sway bar link's mount to the LCA. So when the balljoints were reinstalled/pressed into the LCA i thought, might as well throw both new, new, Moog K6145T into each arm, they are laying on the bench. OK.
Well last night, laying under the front of the car cleaned up grease off both front wheels, splash guards, both joints are now, pissing.
Go figure.

Noted after the turning circle test earlier in the week the right sway bar arm was touched by the tire at full lock left. Pull the spindle stop off the left side, two bolts and fired up the MIG, added more meat to the cam where the paint was off. Another shot of my favorite black spray on the stop, the spindle where the stop touches and right touch area of that offending arm. Over the next couple weeks will show if that was the last time I will need to tweak that cam.

Today cranked the rear shock up to 4-4-6, CL, CH, R and made the 40 mile round trip out to Classic Automall this afternoon. Near 20 miles is a hilly, twisty country road with a little of everything, and virtually no traffic, A good test of just how the car behaves when pushed a little faster than posted. The one thing that is immediate is just how good the front of this car is, noticeably, and I've been driving it for 30 years. Although there was more than enough marked 25-30 mph orange arrows on the road you just overdrive them, cause you can without thinking about speed.

One noticeable thing: For the past couple weeks ran around with front shocks soft, 6-6 and 0-0-0 wear setting just to get a feel of the car at those soft settings. As noted my wife was in the car for about 10 miles and didn't b---- about the ride quality. So it was pretty good. You could comfortably go anywhere on those setting and not be irritated by the ride. The big sway bar up front would assist the front cornering and help compensate for less shock control of the front end.
And we know that the ride quality primarily is a result of the rear suspension. So the soft,0-0-0, settings on the rear shocks should make for a better ride for the wife, and did.
And today's drive with the shocks cranked up showed noticeable harshness in some road conditions, yep, noticeable. But tolerable, because that's what happens when you destroy ride for handling.

Will evaluate the current setup and will also take it to the autox in 10 days. Yes, currently have the rear sway bar adjusted a little stiffer and will most likely leave it set medium for the event.

That trip to Classic Automall today served several other purposes besides 55 mph down a country road.

About a 200' circle to do under or over steer, no good place there. In the 200' area i saw from the aerial pics is parked an Army Duck laying on it's side, go figure. And a drive around the parking lot and i can see again why I thought the lot sucked years ago when my kid autoxed it. Very course and missing blacktop, cracks, grass in the cracks and just torture on tires.

When I was at the Camaro Nationals a few weeks ago a walk through of the cars for sale and i saw this for sale, to replace my AWD Astro CL 8 passenger van, with 302K.
https://www.classicautomall.com/vehicles/3669/2003-gmc-envoy-slt
A week ago I made a trip out to the Mall to negotiate a deal for it and zero movement on price. I can buy a comparable Trailblazer SS for thousands less.

Today at the Mall I made the trip over to look at it one last time, say goodbye and know it's a one in 10000 that is way over priced.
Bob

#1074696 - 08/04/22 12:40 PM Re: Front sway bar project [Re: mmc427ss]  
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SSLance Offline
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It'll be interesting to me to see how you like the stiffer rear sway bar and stiffer compression on rear shocks on track Bob. For me, I typically didn't care for either until I put the 3 link in and I still run my rear shocks at full soft. The moment you start slowing down weight transfer to the rear you also slow down rear forward bite...which in my case anyway leads to tire spin. Lots of variables there though and your results may vary for sure.

Good luck at the races...


Lance
1985 Monte Carlo SS Street Car
#1074706 - 08/05/22 03:24 AM Re: Front sway bar project [Re: mmc427ss]  
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MAP Offline
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Hi 1Slow - interesting! Kind of close to a probably patentable idea I had some years back to make all four tires of the car vertical to the road no matter the car's roll angle (have to low-pass-filter out bump irregularities, though. Simple with some signal processing.) The fun thing is that my idea is simpler and cheaper than Hankook's. Bob - I wish you success in finding that magic turning area. The test is easy and gives you an immediate, qualitative answer. You do have to pay some attention to holding the steering wheel at a constant turning angle, however.

#1074712 - 08/06/22 03:21 AM Re: Front sway bar project [Re: mmc427ss]  
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mmc427ss Offline
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Mark turning diameter is just another number to me, and something that can change in any car as we change from the factory suspension design. Lots of things can effect it. When I increased the wheelbase from 108.1 to 109 is when I first thought I should measure it. Why did i do that, cause i had to.

Don't know how we would retro implement that Falken tire tech but is cool. If that tech tweaks your interest take a look at some of the active suspensions where they manipulate the roll and tire via a processor and optimize each corner, no springs or shocks or sway bars.

Not sure if you ever saw the direction that Viking was heading when they build, tried to sell, their Berserker shocks.
https://lateral-g.net/viking-performance-future-shocks/

GM introduced the Delphi magnetic shock 20 years ago and is partly the mainstay of most GM performance suspensions. Flip a switch on the dash and change the shock setting via a little electric ran through the shock oil, cool. China owns that shock tech today.

Another 20 on the car today to look at another Trailbrazer. I'm told I'm to picky. I want an XL (longer wheelbase), 4WD and the 5.3 LS engine, leather heated seats would be nice also. And low mileage, garage kept, and free would be a good number. Most all trailblazer are the 4.2L six cyl, at this point in my life I need to own an LS, just so i can say i owned one. My last daily driver should have one.
Bob

#1074714 - 08/06/22 10:19 PM Re: Front sway bar project [Re: mmc427ss]  
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MAP Offline
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MAP  Offline
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Hi Bob,

That sort of thing definitely tweaks my interest and not only because my former employer was at the vanguard of this with "Project Sound." I was actually involved at the very outskirts of that program, but since it wasn't acoustics transducer engineering, it was outside of my department. It was very top-secret at the time. They didn't try to compensate for roll; they eliminated it, and without resorting to a suspension with infinite roll stiffness. In fact, it gave the very best of handling and the very best of ride comfort in a single package. To this day, I've seen nothing on the market even come close to it.

Going fully active with the suspension opens possibilities that we could only dream about in the tiny, fixed, passive world we live in. For example, the purpose of this very thread would vanish if we went active, no matter F/R weight distribution.

I predict it can and will happen once we get NdFeB under around $0.10 per cc. Of course, we'd probably have to conquer China first to make that happen (!)
_______________________________

About that "Beserker" system: seems to be about nine years old. I couldn't find anything about its cost, but I suspect it's deep into four figures. Maybe five? Anyway, it's a variation on the magnetorheological shock system. This system uses variable valving to modulate flow resistance, while MR shocks use a magnetic field created by a solenoid with a fixed aperture to vary the fluid's viscosity. Both systems should work entirely equivalently, but MR, at least on paper, looks better because the modulation system doesn't have any moving parts.

This kind of tech is a good example of why aftermarket hotrodding is getting so expensive. Sophisticated, complex systems like this are most feasible to amortize across the big customer base available to a car manufacturer. But with the relatively tiny customer base available to the aftermarket vendors, the unit cost goes way up. As I've said many times, the handwriting's on the wall for the aftermarket as their base continues to shrink and unit cost continues to climb. It is already fast approaching being a hobby for the privileged, rich few.

Last edited by MAP; 08/07/22 01:26 AM.
#1074716 - 08/07/22 02:57 PM Re: Front sway bar project [Re: mmc427ss]  
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mmc427ss Offline
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mmc427ss  Offline
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I saw that Viking Berserker on their website more than 5 years ago, like $4k back then and think it just didn't appeal to the market place due to cost and skepticism of how well it would perform verses cost. UMI KOTM is in a couple weeks and Viking has been a contender the past three years I've attended the event. Chris, Viking owner, should be there again this year, will corner him and ask about Berserker.


Can't find the video i watched the other day on active susp, it was an F1 engineer who does a lot of informative videos on suspension stuff. But did run across this video you posted several years,:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z3gX2HwFf5I

Research and development of active is common place today. There are a couple new Supra that run at the autox where i run. Standing 50' away as a worker as they run the slalom you can see the direct advantage. The driver can almost be stupid through the slalom and the car fixes his path, just not fair to the antiques that run the course.

Kinda like the drag racer guy i talked to the other week. He has three S10s that run 8s and 9s in the 1/4. For his daily he has a new Tesla Plaid. It runs mid 9's. I jokingly asked how much rubber does it burn when he launches it, i got the dumb face look until he realized I was playing with him. They burn zero rubber, the processor does everything for you. This is where we are going, driver's that can be just plain stupid and go fast via tech.

I just hope all this new tech becomes reliable. I do appliance repair as a side gig for 30 years. Everything the past 10 years has move to solid state and touchpads, last week replaced a touch pad for 300 bucks in a Maytag washer and had a coin op Speed Queen dryer blow the soldier joint off the processor PC board at the 30A relay. Depend on where you would buy that SQ processor it's 400+, if you can find one. I repaired it, new relay and soldiered in a copper wire to replace the extensive board damage at 1/3 the cost.
Half the repairs i do anymore are tech problems on appliances, our transportation may be a little more reliable, but I fear the worse is yet to come.
The shop had a power outage the other day, SURGED, fried the the surge protector on the TV and the Keurig. Had a surge in my neighborhood a few years ago, i was able to keep my cost pretty low, three temp controls on the bedding, a microwave, a TV surge, and the power supply on my PC, fixed all for cheap but my neighbors got hammered. Can't wait for the grid to be more reliable, never.
I just love high tech.
Bob

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