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Discussion Starter #1
Both the front sway bar mount brackets to the frame are completely ripped open for the second time in as many years. I have the f body front bar with a HA rear bar. I used the Energy Suspension brackets with the zerk fitting both times and I refuse to buy another set of these cheap strap pieces. Does anyone make a beefier bracket for the f body and perhaps have a GM part number available? Thanks

Milt
 
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Discussion Starter #2
Where did your's fail?? I have considered making an improved version of this "strap" because I have had trouble also.
 
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Discussion Starter #3
This is going WAY back...
2 10288551 1LE Sway bar bushings(these have a liner so they don't need to be greased.)

Not sure what the PN for the brackets are but they will be the ones for the '93+ Camaro.

Unless you have already replaced the bolts with non-prevailing torque ones;
4 15959689 Bolts
 
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Discussion Starter #4
Agree with Chris' question : is it destroying the bracket or ripping it out of the frame?

I'll admit I'm perplexed by that, as I have been running those same brackets for 4+ years now (with the same front bar) and I dare say I use the car a bit harder than you do ;)

Of course, after the incident last night I am gonna be under there checking out all kindsa crap like that just to be SURE it is ok!
 
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Discussion Starter #5
I might know a possible cause, saw something on mine when I installed ES front bushings and endlinks awhile back. I noticed before that the front sway bar was kissing the frame by the sway brar brackets when suspension was compressed, I made spacers to go between frame and sway bar brackets out of 3/16" flat stock when I installed the ES parts.
Looking at someone elses B body last week theirs also had signs of contact in same place so I dont think mine is an isolated case. Maybe the F body bar shape agravates frame contact.
 
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Discussion Starter #6
The new GM non-prevailing bolts I bought back when look like new. The frame is fine too. Just those Energy Suspension straps ripped apart like they went throught the kitchen disposal!


Drivers side


Passenger side
 
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Discussion Starter #8
Milt : if I had to guess....

Those silver washers under the bolts, you added them right?

If so, DON'T. Just put the bolt straight onto the bracket, using ONLY that brass-colored (smaller) washer if necessary.

I think what happened here is those silver washers aren't getting truly "flat" on the bracket but rather are going slightly into the bend. When you crank it down, it's putting stress into that bend.

Over time, it makes the bend a lot weaker than it otherwise would be.....until it snaps the bracket


I'll look carefully at mine next week (when I'll finally get a chance to get under the car) and let you know what I find.

Also forgot to mention : I am using those brackets on the back of my Subaru as well, no issue. And that car had a WELL known issue with the OEM bar brackets.....so much so that Subaru themselves revised the bracket (to a design more like what ES is using, albeit rubber bushings and not greasable) starting with the 04 WRX/STI despite the fact that they didn't change the bar size in those years!
 
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Discussion Starter #9
I just replaced my factory ones on one of my SS's. It busted the drivers side, I bought some energy suspension ones that look just like those.
 
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Discussion Starter #10
Originally posted by AutocroSSer:
Milt : if I had to guess....

Those silver washers under the bolts, you added them right?

If so, DON'T. Just put the bolt straight onto the bracket, using ONLY that brass-colored (smaller) washer if necessary.

I think what happened here is those silver washers aren't getting truly "flat" on the bracket but rather are going slightly into the bend. When you crank it down, it's putting stress into that bend.

Over time, it makes the bend a lot weaker than it otherwise would be.....until it snaps the bracket


I'll look carefully at mine next week (when I'll finally get a chance to get under the car) and let you know what I find.

Also forgot to mention : I am using those brackets on the back of my Subaru as well, no issue. And that car had a WELL known issue with the OEM bar brackets.....so much so that Subaru themselves revised the bracket (to a design more like what ES is using, albeit rubber bushings and not greasable) starting with the 04 WRX/STI despite the fact that they didn't change the bar size in those years!
Ed
Thats how I had it originally. In fact I think you helped me put it on at Tully's house. The first set of these ES bracket I bought were mounted as you stated, without any washers. Just the new factory GM non-prevailing bolts. The bolts pulled right through the bracket holes in a much shorter time than these did. Then I put some grade 8 washers to try and spread the load over a larger area.This obviously did'nt work for me.
Sorry. :(
 
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Discussion Starter #11
Those Tawain made suspension hardwares are really not reliable.

Jesse
 
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Discussion Starter #12
Originally posted by jz57_cn:
Those Tawain made suspension hardwares are really not reliable.

Jesse
Really? Kind of a blanket statement, eh?
 
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Discussion Starter #13
I might believe the washer theory above. Here's why:

I had Energy Suspension mounts on my car (with a stock bar)and just took them off the install a Hotchkis front bar.

The brackets that come with the Hotchkis setup are far better quality components than the ES ones.

In addition to being better brackets, the washers supplied by Hotchkis are cut on one side (so that the washer looks like flat tire and will fit perfectly flush against the bracket). So, it looks like Hotchkis put some thought into this to perhaps avoid the washers cutting up the bracket.

-- Dan
'95 9C1
 
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Discussion Starter #14
Wayne & Ed
Thanks for your valued input on this delemma.Are the GM brackets any thicker than straps from Energy Suspension? Thats one thing I know will help the other is I will machine a 1/8 inch backplate to lower the bar a bit. My car is at stock ride height and maybe the bar is at a stressed angle to the frame. :confused:
Most people around me that have the F body bar have also lowered their cars just a tad. That may be why their brackets last ok. Just a thought as I am clutching at straws here as you can tell.

DAN MRVOS

Do you happen to know the part number for those Hotchkiss brackets bt chance?? Those sound better built than these ES sheet metal brackets. Thanks!
 
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Discussion Starter #15
FWIW Milt, for 3 of those years my car was at stock ride height (GW front springs, but at the time they were uncut and those springs uncut are within 1/4" of stock height). And it definitely got "used and abused" during those 3 years
 
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Discussion Starter #16
Sorry, don't know the Hotchkis part # for the brackets. They came with the bar.

I think if you call the Hotckis 800 number (find it at http://www.hotckis.net), they will sell you the individual parts you need. They did this for me when I needed just the rear UCA bushings that fit into the differential.

Be advised, though, that the Hotchkis front bar is 1 7/16" in diam. and the overall profile of the poly bushing it contains is larger than the E.S. bushings I had with the stock bar. Don't know how they will work for your application.

I can take pictures and measure both if it will help you out. Let me know.

-- Dan
'95 9C1
 
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Discussion Starter #17
Here are the pictures of the bushing / bracket supplied by Hotchkis vs. the Energy Suspension bushing / bracket that I had on my stock 9C1 bar.

Hotchkis on left, E.S. on right. The E.S. bushing is seated more fully in its bracket because it had been installed on my car. When the picture was taken, the Hotchkis bushing had never been installed.

Aside from being beefier, most of the dimensions of the Hotckis brackets are the same as the E.S. brackets. Biggest difference is that the Hotchkis brackets are made to accept a much wider bushing. I don't think they could be used with E.S. bushings -- they are too wide for the channel in the E.S. bushing.

Pictures could show better comparison points, but my digital camera's batteries died after I took these few.





 
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Discussion Starter #18
I believe they are both ES pieces - I think Hotchkis buys all their bushings from ES. It is a universal application bushing - note how the bolt holes are elongated on the Hotchkis one to accomodate different applications, while the other one's holes are bolt-sized.

Originally posted by jz57_cn:
Those Tawain made suspension hardwares are really not reliable.

Jesse
The ES brackets are not made in Taiwan - nor any other Asian country, for that matter.
 
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Discussion Starter #19
Originally posted by So FaSSt:
The ES brackets are not made in Taiwan - nor any other Asian country, for that matter.
And besides, there's a lot of quality hardware coming out of the Far East nowadays. The use of it may be debated from a political standpoint, but from a technical standpoint, I'm more concerned about the merits of the part and not the geographical location from which it came.

I'm also inclined to believe that the washers are causing the problem. FWIW, I'm my fifth year of running the F-body front bar and 1LE bushings with the stock bushing straps (and the 15959689 bolts), and have yet to see a problem. I use the car hard enough to have nearly killed the current set of RE730s in under 10,000 miles.
 
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Discussion Starter #20
I think the easiest solution would be to have a machine shop make a billet cap for the ES swaybar bushing. I can't see the cost to be that expensive if you got a bunch of guys together to make a dozen or so sets.

Something to think about.
 
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