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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Working on getting the Imp back into action after several years of slumming it in the garage.

I've had a used 2nd gen F-body front sway bar and end links in the corner of the garage that I've moved 3 times in the past 10 years or so, but no rear bar. I was not able to find a HA/HO rear bar at the time.

Now it is coming time to seriously look at working up a suspension combo for her. I just picked up a BMR standard length upper and lower rear arm set for her. I also plan to get a sway bar brace for the front end, but it may be before or after the new bar combo.

Is it worth my time to try to:
1) search around to find an original (used) HA/HO rear bar?
2) find a different rear bar to pair with the f-body front bar I already have?
3) say to heck with it all and go in on a Hotchkis front/rear bar combo and sell the front bar to maybe offset some of the cost?
 

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Personally I'll be pulling my rear hotchkis off in favor of a stock bar to see if it helps plant a little more around turns. The front is more important to me for turning. I'm also in on the GP for the brace bar...
 

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I agree with Timmay.... I Autocross and Road Race my Impala with the stock sway bars. My buddy put on a thicker rear bar and now has problems applying power out of the turns. It is nice on the street, but not so good in an AutoCross or Road Racing.

Just ask Ed Runnion and the others that regularly race their Impalas.

Later,
Michael
 

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Suspension Package

It all depends on how you plan to use your car. For a nice street set-up the Hotchkis package will work very well. A Torsen posi. or one of the geared units will allow you to put power down to both rear wheels and will reduce under steer without the need for huge sway bars.

The Herb Adams bars were designed for a stock suspension and drive train. IMHO they are too stiff for a car with other suspension mods. My car is neutral to over steer on the track. Not a problem if you do not Lift in a corner, but I am thinking of putting my stock rear bar back on to make the car a little more forgiving.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I'm not looking for a track car at this point, it will be 99% street driven, at least for the foreseeable future. It is currently stock all around, but I'm making future plans for probably next year as I already have plenty of stuff to install that is currently sitting around. It is looking toward a fall/winter mod, but I want to start planning early.
 

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I use a Torsen T2 posi unit. My buddies car also has the Torsen T2R, but has problems putting down power with a thick sway bar. We put on a smaller sway bar, but I truly feel that he would do much better with the stock sway bar.

Michael

It all depends on how you plan to use your car. For a nice street set-up the Hotchkis package will work very well. A Torsen posi. or one of the geared units will allow you to put power down to both rear wheels and will reduce under steer without the need for huge sway bars.

The Herb Adams bars were designed for a stock suspension and drive train. IMHO they are too stiff for a car with other suspension mods. My car is neutral to over steer on the track. Not a problem if you do not Lift in a corner, but I am thinking of putting my stock rear bar back on to make the car a little more forgiving.
 

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Torsen T2R

Roger,

I have a Torsen T2R in the car. As you know it is a geared unit. The T2R has a 3 to 1 torque bias. For example if the inside rear wheel is starting to lose traction the differential can put three times as much torque to the outside wheel as it allows to the inside wheel. That allows you to get on the gas sooner and harder. With power to both rear wheels you get out of the turn faster and the car wants to turn in better.

FWIW I have a set of the smaller Smoky Bears sway bars and some Dodge Truck springs in front. Stock springs with Air Lift Bags in back.
 

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Hotchkiss front and stock rear bar here.
The Hotchkiss rear resulted in wicked oversteer in my car on stock springs and stiff bushings in the rear UCA's and LCA's.
I still can't put power down out of the turns.
Going to 800 lb/in front springs this year and may experiment with more rear bar again.
 

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I am running the Moog 7268 front springs(748lbs) and some true coil rear springs(200lbs) from Speedway motors with the stock front/rear sway bars. I am pretty happy with the handling of the vehicle.

Michael
 

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For me I find the degree of Over Steer is directly related to my right foot coming out of a turn. Could I be more hammer foot with a softer rear bar, IDK. I find that "driving" the set up I have as hard as I can involves controlled use of the right foot.
 

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This is probably basic knowledge to some of ya but I'm a bit confused by this statement I've seen on a few places online.

"A stiff sway bar will tend to unload the inside tire in a turn." Which is what I think is happening in my case and why I've seen more than a few b-body guys keep the stock rear bar.

But isn't the point of the sway bar to prevent the inside tire from unloading, wouldn't going to a softer bar cause the inner tire to unload even more? I can't seem to find this part of the explanation explained well as to why a stiff rear bar causes the inner tire to unload when all the definitions online mention the purpose of the bar is to prevent that in the first place.


Automotive parking light Car Vehicle Automotive tail & brake light Tire
 

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Sway bars are trying to keep the front and back wheels parallel to the body. In normal drive, that's flat to the ground too. But when pushed hard, you can see in your picture, in that case, the imaginary line from the rear left and front right tire is like the fulcrum the body is pivoting around. The front left is compressing so much, it's rotating and raising the rear right. All the while the rear sway bar is trying to keep it parallel to the body/frame. So the tire to is trying to be lifted to stay parallel to it too. A softer bar would lift less.
 

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Ahh that makes sense, I guess that explains why it becomes so snappy since it's planting the rear inner tire down but once the front side rolls hard enough the inner rear just gets unloaded fairly quickly and boom. Damnit why did I throw-out my old bar....
 

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Ed Runnion was one of the Impala SS autocrossing icebreakers.
At the rear axle, he preferred OE rear springs and rear swaybar over everything else.
 

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Yep, Chicagoareabmx also told me the same thing, big bar up front, stock sway bar in the rear. Only thing is his car is quite a bit lighter.

Josh at three pedals does not run a rear bar on their project wagon and I think one of their other coil-over converted cars however they do have the adjustability to make up for it.

Since the rear stock bar is fairly cheap I'll find one locally and try it out and hopefully get some pictures of it in action.
 

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So I found a stock rear bar and threw it in, didn't feel great in the session today.

And for one primary reason, I was getting tossed again. And trying to get the car to rotate nicely is a lot more difficult when your physical self can't stay stationary.

I'm sure if I ran some racing seats that strapped me in it would be fine.

But since I'm running the stock seat going to throw back in the big bar, wish I had something that was half way in between but that's enough money spent for me.
 
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