Suspension Brakes 1st Gen Front Sway Bars?

Discussion in 'Tuning and Performance' started by wzabrouski, Aug 2, 2010.

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  1. wzabrouski

    wzabrouski Active Member

    May 5, 2009
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    How many people are running a bigger front sway bar?


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  2. BThayer23

    BThayer23 Well-Known Member

    Jun 12, 2009
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    Not very many. It's a pain in the butt to install.
     
  3. TGS91

    TGS91 New Member

    May 8, 2009
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    Got the JCW one and it was $ to install
     
  4. TGS91

    TGS91 New Member

    May 8, 2009
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    PS-I understand the TSW X Brace is easy to install and would give you a nice bang for the buck. Check out WMW web site
     
  5. Steve

    Steve Administrator
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    Apr 23, 2009
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    Opinions are all over the board on front sway bars. Depends on the application I suppose and your driving style and the kind of balance you want. I even read about one successful auto/x driver disconnecting at both ends and running without.
     
  6. minimark

    minimark Well-Known Member

    Jun 24, 2009
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    Normal rule of thought is that you use a larger/stiffer swaybar on the end you want to loosen up and when thinking of a front wheel drive car and its inherent push/understeer a stiffer front bar seems counter productive. Of course the first rule is.......there is no rule. 2 cents
     
  7. BThayer23

    BThayer23 Well-Known Member

    Jun 12, 2009
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    Agreed.

    Generally you're going to be looking at a very stiff car before you need to stiffen the front sway bar, and even then it might not be to your advantage if you've started to strip weight from the car.
     
  8. ScottinBend

    ScottinBend Space Cowboy
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    +1

    As was mentioned, some very good drivers have disconnected the front bar and stuck with the stock SS rear bar.
     
  9. minimark

    minimark Well-Known Member

    Jun 24, 2009
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    ......and in the chase for the ever elusive best balance for a particler situation would you be better to stiffen the front with the swaybar or the springs? Decisions...LOL
     
  10. maacodale

    maacodale Club Coordinator

    May 7, 2009
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    Running Legends cars, we always used the mantra "Stiff end slides first". With the push (understeer) FWD vehicles have, bigger front bars would be counter productive I think.
     
  11. Way Motor Works

    Way Motor Works New Member

    May 4, 2009
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    A front swaybar is a great mod. Unfortunatly it is overlooked by alot of MINI owners cause of the internet. No it isn't a mod for everyone. It does have alot to do with suspension setup and use. If you don't have a rear swaybar don't think about a front. Also using coilovers? Or even lowering springs and a rear swaybar adding a front swaybar can make your car the ultimate in handling. A front swaybar can really improve the front tire plant when cornering, this is even more important if using an LSD. That way you can get that power to the ground better.
    I exclusively use the Hsport front swaybars.
    This is just a simple reasoning why it can be good. Again not for everyone, but when building the ultimate car definetly go for it. Do yourself a favor and install new control arm bushings at the same time, since you already have them unbolted.
     
  12. Nitrominis

    Nitrominis Banned

    May 9, 2009
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    Answering your question, I run a bigger bar.

    The smart thing is to replace your front bushing and other serviceable parts when doing an install then you accomplish many parts to your benefit.

    The question needs to be expanded a bit. Are we talking about a street car, race/track car or a fun weekend back road worrier?. As well as what driving style for the street and if track what type of coarse?
    Also the sway bar is not alone and needs the careful thought of other suspension parts to make the package work. Tires, end links, poly bushings etc.
    Personally where I live I enjoy a tight fast steering suspension because of the number of twisty mountain roads where I live. I can live the seldom highway jaunts where my MINI is twitchy in character.

    There is a great article in one of the past MC2 issues all about the explanation of suspension components and how they work with regards to MINI's that is.
     
  13. Nitrominis

    Nitrominis Banned

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    #13 Nitrominis, Aug 3, 2010
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2010
    You are recommending Hsport??? That ugly bar that looks like it belongs on a FORD? What are you talking about?

    Oh wait that is what I use..............LOL

    :Thumbsup:

    But I powder coated mine RED for the extra HP.;)

    [​IMG]
     
  14. Mike

    Mike New Member

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    Just to throw in another "vote", I run an H-sport front bar. I run it on the softer of the two settings.
     
  15. Dr Obnxs

    Dr Obnxs New Member

    Jun 11, 2009
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    My neighbor...

    just went BACK to stock struts/shocks/springs but kept the stiffer bars front and rear. Wanted a softer ride with little lean. Front bar alone? Forgettaboutit. Front bar as part of a system? Sure! Have at it!

    Front bars affect roll stiffness. So do springs. Ride height affects roll center and hence roll coupling. If none of this makes any sense, then get a suspension book as a good place to start.

    FWIW, it's the total roll stiffness front to rear that affects the understeer/oversteer relationship. Running a looser front (undoing one end of the front bar) changes the ratio with an overall decrease in roll stiffness. This may or may not be what you want. If you have stiffer springs that have increased roll stiffness already, it may be just the thing!

    Matt
     
  16. Batrugger

    Batrugger New Member

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    Kelli has an Eibach front bar on that was given to me. It sat around for a long time and when it came time to install new front bushings, we had it installed when everything went back together. We also have the Alta bar on the rear and the two together really make the car feel nice and planted. I got to take it for a run session at Streets of Willow and it handled awesome. It felt really neutral and I didn't experience any understeer.
     
  17. MNCRYSS

    MNCRYSS New Member

    Mar 27, 2010
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    One of the first mods I did Hsports bars front and rear then Koni coilovers all around. First thing after some autocrosses I snapped the stock end link. Totally impressed the guys at the dealership who wanted to keep it. Talk about some fun!
     
  18. Alan

    Alan Active Member

    May 6, 2009
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    Absolutely Agree!

    Anybody "upgrading" the front bar on their R50. I'll take the stock one off your hands. It will fit on an R53, right?
     
  19. CarlB

    CarlB Active Member

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    I would like a little help with this please. I have started autocrossing this year. The driving style is so much more violent than what you would do on a race track I think I need some help. In general on a race track I would want as much roll stiffness as possible on the rear to counter the front wheel drive. The limits are keeping the 4 tires on the ground and the car off the bump stops. Play with front bars and springs to get as soft on the spring as possible to help get off the corner. Use front bump and rear rebound to help corner entry. Last weekend the autocross was very fast, and on 180 degree sweepers I couldn’t put the power down until the wheels were straight. I have a limited slip differential. I understand how a sway bar loads the unloaded wheel, but my car is very balanced. I have TSW –V3, 400 lbs springs, TSW rear bar all the way stiff. At most autocrosses I am adding bump to the shocks to get it to turn. Last week I was lowering the rear air pressure to get more grip. Do you all think a bigger front bar would help? I haven’t really measured my spring travel, but I do not believe I am on the bump stops. I have been too busy trying to learn how to autocross than spend lots of time tuning the car. My problem might be bad driving, and nothing would help, but my first run was spectacular with smoke like a burn out coming off the front inside tire. Real slow!!! Next three I got the wheel straight before giving it any gas. Can you say push.
     
  20. Mike

    Mike New Member

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    CarlB, as a sometimes road racer who then went autocrossing, I feel your pain. For me, the tuning conventions learned at the racetrack tended to get in the way when I attempted to tune my car for the cones. With a setup similar to yours, I tried a really stiff front bar to minimize front roll. I loved the ultra-quick steering, but the car tended to unload a front wheel even more, and only the Quaife LSD saved me (sort of). This is why the autocross guys go for thinner front bars from justa-coopers, or even delete or disconnect the front bar.

    I absolutely hate the way a highly-tuned autocross car (not a do-all track day machine) feels on the road. To me, at speed the car feels dangerously loose and stiff at the back, and strangely disconnected at the front. I never did tune up my MINI as a perfect autocrosser because it was also my daily driver AND track-day car at the time.
     

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