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View Full Version : Frame/Springs conversion to 1 inch sway bar (from 1/2 inch bar ) -- any un-due stress on frame ?



63looks59
10-23-2018, 10:41 PM
Hello All---- just wanted to inquire if switching from a 1/2 inch sway bar to a one (1) inch bar
can cause , over time, the frame to crack ??

sals54
10-24-2018, 12:57 AM
I've run a 1-1/4" sway bar under the front of my 54 Coupe for many decades without ever experiencing any undo stress on the frame or elsewhere.

Mike Van Veghten
10-24-2018, 10:07 AM
Like Sal, I also had a 1-1/4" bar on my 59 Lark wagon. I put it on shortly after I bought the car, and removed it 14 years later to put it on the 54 wagon I'm working on now.
Any yes, the 59 was my daily driver, in fact for many years, my only car.

No visible frame damage. No creaking, or odd sounds coming from the front of the car.
All is good.

Mike

sals54
10-24-2018, 10:23 AM
And just to add another observation... This is with the mounting of the larger sway bar in the stock location. That being on the weakest part of the frame horns out in front of the cross member. And still no problems.

RadioRoy
10-24-2018, 11:06 AM
You will gain significantly better handling by installing a REAR sway bar. Easy to install once you find one.

motorbyke
10-24-2018, 11:11 AM
Can anyone tell me what rear sway bar will fit a 59 Lark?
Thanks.

RadioRoy
10-24-2018, 01:52 PM
53 and up Studebaker rear sway bars are the same, except for the ones on the "super" cars.

Good sources for many rear sway bars are 53 and up Land Cruisers and President sedans. You will have to get the mounting plates for the rear springs. Some time around 57 or 58, Studebaker eliminated the rear sway bar mount from the mounting plates.

Probably saved them three cents per car. :(

super car
with beauty and grace
as swift as can be
watch it flying through the air
it travels in space
or under the sea
and it can journey anywhere
supercar

64V-K7
10-24-2018, 02:38 PM
I put a 1" bar on the rear of my Avanti / First trip around the block, it ripped the mounts from the frame at the wheel well arch / after refitting with 3/8" grade 8 bolts vs tack welds, everything's fine.

rockne10
10-24-2018, 02:46 PM
Do Studebaker vendors no longer stock the rear sway bar kit? :ohmy: I got mine from Dave Thibeault.

Studebakercenteroforegon
10-24-2018, 03:15 PM
Studebaker International current catalog page 271....

Mike Van Veghten
10-24-2018, 07:06 PM
An 1-1/8" to 1-1/4" front and a 3/4" to 11/16" rear should be a good balance.

If you have a big bar on the front and no rear, or vice-versa...be VERY careful driving in wet (rain), or fast on freeway off-ramps.
A big front, no rear, will allow the rear to be loose, that is, to loose traction first.
A rear only will allow the front to be loose.

A balanced chassis, will drive and handle nicely.
You can keep the fishbowl stable with a balanced suspension..! You have to be old to know what I'm talking about..!

Mike

P.s. - These big bars we are talking about are "G"- bodied General Motors cars and Camaro/Firebird bars. There is a LOT of different diameters to choose from between those chassis. While they have slightly different bends, the main attachment points (4) are all very close. Close enough to be considered the same.

(S)
10-25-2018, 01:22 PM
I have not compared the 'big' aftermarket bars handling to the slightly larger later Stude bar. Has anyone else?

64V K7 , did you have a sway bar already? the new one is noticeably better?


I have put late style slightly larger bar on the front of older ones and noticed a difference. I have them in stock. The late brackets are a nice upgrade too.

t walgamuth
10-26-2018, 06:48 AM
An 1-1/8" to 1-1/4" front and a 3/4" to 11/16" rear should be a good balance.

If you have a big bar on the front and no rear, or vice-versa...be VERY careful driving in wet (rain), or fast on freeway off-ramps.
A big front, no rear, will allow the rear to be loose, that is, to loose traction first.
A rear only will allow the front to be loose.

A balanced chassis, will drive and handle nicely.
You can keep the fishbowl stable with a balanced suspension..! You have to be old to know what I'm talking about..!

Mike

P.s. - These big bars we are talking about are "G"- bodied General Motors cars and Camaro/Firebird bars. There is a LOT of different diameters to choose from between those chassis. While they have slightly different bends, the main attachment points (4) are all very close. Close enough to be considered the same.

Sorry to disagree Mike but I believe you have mis stated. a bar on front and none on rear will want to push or understeer at the limit. A bar on the rear but none on front will tend to make the rear break loose at the limit or oversteer. Adding a rear bar must be done with care because you don't want an oversteering (loose) car on the street.

64V-K7
10-26-2018, 07:02 AM
.....64V K7 , did you have a sway bar already? the new one is noticeably better?


Avantis came with ( I think) a .75" on the rear, 1.0" front. I changed to a 1.125" front and a 1.0" rear. Quite a difference

Mike Van Veghten
10-26-2018, 10:38 AM
t -

The bars act on opposite ends of the car.
More front bar, loosens rear.
More rear bar, loosens front.

Mike

56GH
10-26-2018, 11:16 AM
53 and up Studebaker rear sway bars are the same, except for the ones on the "super" cars.

G good sources for many rear sway bars are 53 and up Land Cruisers and President sedans. You will have to get the mounting plates for the rear springs. Some time around 57 or 58, Studebaker eliminated the rear sway bar mount from the mounting plates.

Probably saved them three cents per car. :(

super car
with beauty and grace
as swift as can be
watch it flying through the air
it travels in space
or under the sea
and it can journey anywhere
supercar

My former 1957 President Classic had the factory-installed rear sway bar and those unoique mounting plates you're talking about. I took it out and installed it in my 1956 Golden Hawk! Since the long-wheelbase frames were probably the same, even the frame mounting holes were present in the 56J!

t walgamuth
10-26-2018, 04:42 PM
t -

The bars act on opposite ends of the car.
More front bar, loosens rear.
More rear bar, loosens front.

Mike

I disagree.

Maple Leaf
10-26-2018, 11:03 PM
Gentlemen! In a roundabout way I think both of you are trying to explain the impact of Anti-Roll Bars or Sway Bars on handling balance, in a different manner, but with similar impact. I like Mr. Walgsmuth's traditional explanation better. I understand Mike's thinking; but let me try a further explanation.
It is difficult to get too big a front bar if it is properly balanced with the appropriate rear bar and spring rate in the rear, but when unbalanced to the extreme, the front will loose grip, (push out/understeer), require more steering input and/or less power to maintain the desired path. Too quick a correction, can result in a twitchy loose rear.
In my view, a rear sway bar that is too big/stiff, will cause an out of balance condition where the rear of the car looses grip first, causing the car to oversteer, requiring less steering and or less power to maintain the desired path. Most cars are designed to under steer, as inexperienced drivers going too fast, simply scare themselves, lift and correct their steering path, and proceed. A short wheelbase car that is slightly loose can be twitchy and difficult to drive. A powerful long wheelbase car can be slightly loose, but still easy to drive fast.

My 66 Commander with a full Pro-Touring chassis, requires 425 pound coil over front springs with a 1.250" sway bar and 250 pound coil over rear springs with a .750" rear sway bar to provide a balanced set up. Both the front and rear sway bar is adjustable, with the front usually set stiff with the arms in a short position, and fine tuning done with the rear set medium on big fast tracks, and stiffer for tighter tracks or auto crossing, where some (power) oversteer can be useful. My shocks are also fully adjustable, but I only make basic changes between street and track.7660876609

t walgamuth
10-27-2018, 06:17 AM
Thanks Maple! That is a very handsome car you have there! I see you have the wheels that Cobra Replica owners seem to prefer too.

jpepper
10-27-2018, 09:31 AM
Gentlemen! In a roundabout way I think both of you are trying to explain the impact of Anti-Roll Bars or Sway Bars on handling balance, in a different manner, but with similar impact. I like Mr. Walgsmuth's traditional explanation better. I understand Mike's thinking; but let me try a further explanation.
It is difficult to get too big a front bar if it is properly balanced with the appropriate rear bar and spring rate in the rear, but when unbalanced to the extreme, the front will loose grip, (push out/understeer), require more steering input and/or less power to maintain the desired path. Too quick a correction, can result in a twitchy loose rear.
In my view, a rear sway bar that is too big/stiff, will cause an out of balance condition where the rear of the car looses grip first, causing the car to oversteer, requiring less steering and or less power to maintain the desired path. Most cars are designed to under steer, as inexperienced drivers going too fast, simply scare themselves, lift and correct their steering path, and proceed. A short wheelbase car that is slightly loose can be twitchy and difficult to drive. A powerful long wheelbase car can be slightly loose, but still easy to drive fast.

My 66 Commander with a full Pro-Touring chassis, requires 425 pound coil over front springs with a 1.250" sway bar and 250 pound coil over rear springs with a .750" rear sway bar to provide a balanced set up. Both the front and rear sway bar is adjustable, with the front usually set stiff with the arms in a short position, and fine tuning done with the rear set medium on big fast tracks, and stiffer for tighter tracks or auto crossing, where some (power) oversteer can be useful. My shocks are also fully adjustable, but I only make basic changes between street and track.7660876609

Nice car. You also have a roll bar in the car which stiffens the chassis somewhat making your adjustments more effective. I do like it. What is in it for a powertrain?

Maple Leaf
10-27-2018, 02:28 PM
Thanks, Mr Pepper. The old SBC 283" grew a little to 421" with 500+ HP & Torque. Transmission is a Tremec TKO 600 close ratio 5 speed, connected to a 9" Ford with 3.50 gearing.

sals54
10-27-2018, 06:38 PM
Thanks, Mr Pepper. The old SBC 283" grew a little to 421" with 500+ HP & Torque. Transmission is a Tremec TKO 600 close ratio 5 speed, connected to a 9" Ford with 3.50 gearing.

I love your car. Has it ever been street driven in this trim? Or is it strictly a racecar now?

Maple Leaf
10-27-2018, 09:14 PM
7663076631My '66 Commander is has spent many more days on the street than on the track, including some long distance touring. It is just as happy to cruise along at 70 MPH, (while getting 20 MPG), or hitting 140 MPH, lap after lap, on the back straight at Mosport. At the OHIO Mile in 2016, we were restricted to 155 MPH (5600 RPM) due to the lack of an onboard fire suppression system, but we achieved that level by the 3/4 mile marker, with enough RPM left to achieve at least 165 MPH. During the Ontario 1500 (similar to One Lap of America), we pulled a trailer with all our spare parts & tools, travelling track to track, competing at each day at several tracks, returning home once for repairs, racking up more than 1000 miles in one week.

t walgamuth
10-28-2018, 10:31 PM
Impressive!

tomhoo
11-15-2018, 02:29 PM
Too much front bar will cause car to push. But this is SAFE. If you go into a corner and realize the front is not coming around, the natural instinct is to BRAKE. This transfers weight onto the front axle causes the car to turn in more - hopefully enough to get you around the corner.

If you have a beautifully balanced car and you do this, you'll hear it every time when a F1 car spins out and the commentator said, "He must have lifted."

This means if you lift or brake, you will plant the front axle and unplant the rear and you WILL have the rear come around.

I once put a rear bar in a 62 GT Hawk that was stock and the back end would spin out in a parking lot if your mom was driving it. Car was undriveable.

Also beware if you have installed stiffer springs since his increases roll stiffness and is like adding bar all by itself.

I bot the big from and rear bars for my R2 Lark and found it very loose. What could have happened? No one else had this problem. Then I realized I had an extra leaf built into my rear springs for drag racing - I had increased the rear axle roll stiffness without realizing it. I'll be putting a stock rear bar in it.

Oh, one final tip: put your worn tires on the front. Why? When they begin to hydroplane you will feel it in the steering (it will lighten up) and again, as you instinctively brake, the fronts will bite more and the rears will have enough tread to deal with the unloading (of course if your car is set up neutral, you're screwed.) Conversely, if the bad tires are in the back, if the back starts to come around, first you cannot correct with steering (other than following the rear axle off the side of the road) AND you touch the brake - you're really toast.

GrumpyOne
11-15-2018, 10:19 PM
Some years ago when I was "floating" in front/rear stabilizers I opted to install 3/4" front bar and the standard rear stabilizer that came standard on the early long wheel base sedans onto my '56 Power Hawk. Simple bolt on front and rear and a marked improvement in handling roadability. I still have the old ones that were standard fare...

Buzzard
11-16-2018, 02:01 PM
Maple,
All cool race cars have trailer hitches!