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The thickest Ford swaybars came on Marauders and Crown Victoria Sports. Quite a bit thicker than the P71 Police parts I think. Also a quick ebay search shows plenty of aftermarket bars in various sizes larger than stock and in the $100-130 range.

As far as the effectiveness it all depends on the length of the lever arm, the material of the bar, and the geometry of the bar (length, diameter, tube vs solid etc). From a design standpoint the Ford bar has the advantages of not stressing the lower control arms and their bushings and mounting points. It only exerts vertical force on the axle tubes (which can take it) and vertical force through the end links into (a pretty beefy part of) the frame. The fact that those cheap hardware store 3/8ths inch probably grade 3 u-bolts have held up and not slipped at all is a pretty good testament to the fact that nothing is binding and its working as it should.

The best design is the bar that mounts in bearings mounted to the frame and has adjustable length lever arms going to endlinks that drop to the axle. Serious drag racers use those a lot. They have the additional advantages of adjustability, the ability to preload, and less unsprung weight. But for the B-body crowd in my opinion the Vic bar is as slick as it gets, especially for us wagon guys.
 

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Cory, The Ford bar eliminates the need for aftermarket control arms. You spend 120 on the bar and $5 at tractor supply for u-bolts.

Bill, Yes, the only drilling is the 2 holes you put in the frame for the end links.
 

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A stock 9C1 bar will not bolt to a wagon without special aftermarket lower control arms. IMO the Crown Vic bar is a better option and also happens to be cheaper.
 

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The design really is better, Bill. I agree, though, that the stock Panther bar probably isn't ideal for real spirited driving. The aftermarket ones should be more than adequate though. I drove a Marauder when it was brand new and it cornered pretty much dead flat and the aftermarket bars are even bigger than that had.

As far as the muffler clamps holding up it looks like so far so good. The thing that makes this design no superior is that the load on the exle tubes is purely vertical. Only under extreme articulation will there be any compoenent of force trying to spin the clamps on the tubes. Think about how much vertical force gets transferred through the 3/8ths or 1/2" diameter endlinks on a front bar (a lot more than the rear will see for sure). That said I'd at least use 1/2" diameter leaf spring u-bolts since they're cheap enough anyway.

The issue with the Hotchkis bar is not that it doesnt function but that it was designed for wagons is that its still based on the GM design which dates back to the A-body of 1964 (or maybe even older in other platforms?). Bolting the bar to the LCA's works but putting all those loads through 2 pairs of bushings and the long lever of the LCA's into a somewhat flimsy mounting point on the frame just isn't a great way to get it done. The Panther bar puts the load directly through the endlink into the frame and endlinks and bar bushings can be stiff poly without causing binding unlike poly control arm bushings.
 

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If one is really concerned about the frame braces the endlinks mount to you could bolt through a length of u-channel. It should have sufficient section modulus to keep from bending and will spread the load on that brace. Judging from the Panther frame and Jay's fun bit of trivia I would be comfortable with it. And Jay is right; I'd rather kink that brace (no-one has yet) than wreck a lower control arm (not unheard of).
 
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