Moparts

torsion bar recommendation

Posted By: mgoblue9798

torsion bar recommendation - 12/31/21 04:37 AM

I have a 71 Challenger convertible with a small block and 518 trans. I have a new set of the old Edelbrock shocks I will be using. Will be running the Year One 17" aluminum rally wheels and a performance tire. Car is currently lowered 2 inches by torsion bar adjustment in the front and lowering blocks in the rear. What size/ brand torsion bar is the best compromise between handling and ride quality? I'd rather go too soft than have too much spring rate. Thanks for any advice in advance.
Posted By: AndyF

Re: torsion bar recommendation - 12/31/21 04:51 AM

You can go with a bigger bar if you use a good shock. The Edelbrock shock is not a good shock so if you stick with those shocks then you should stay with a stock size bar. If you use a good shock (Koni or Bilstein) then you can use a larger bar and still have a nice ride. I have a 1.06 bar in my Coronet with Koni shocks and a 1.25 anti-sway bar and it is a very nice ride. It absorbs the small bumps but doesn't sway in the corners or float down the road. It is a modern feeling ride rather than a 60's feeling.
Posted By: mgoblue9798

Re: torsion bar recommendation - 12/31/21 04:59 AM

Andy I bought the Edelbrocks a while ago as they had good reviews mostly as being a good compromise between ride and handling. I know it is somewhat apples and oranges, but I installed a set of the yellow Bilsteins on my 2002 B1500 van a year ago. They are a little harsh for my taste around town but great on the highway and towing. It is a coil spring front end though. Would the Biltsteins or Konis be more forgiving on my Challenger?

Failed to mention car has factory sway bars front and rear.
Posted By: AndyF

Re: torsion bar recommendation - 01/04/22 04:52 AM

Only way to find out is to try it. In my experience, the only shocks that work with big torsion bars on an older Mopar are Koni shocks. Your mileage may vary. Try the Edelbrocks, if they suck then buy a set of Koni shocks.
Posted By: mgoblue9798

Re: torsion bar recommendation - 01/04/22 05:23 PM

Thanks Andy for your input.
Posted By: cudazappa

Re: torsion bar recommendation - 01/04/22 09:12 PM

On my small block Challenger (w/ aluminum heads, fiberglass hood) I run 1.18 bars with qa1 single adjustable shocks and shaved bump stops and the ride is better than when I had 1" bars and RCD Bilsteins. I have a feeling the 1" bars were too soft when lowered and bashing the bump stops.
Posted By: Kern Dog

Re: torsion bar recommendation - 01/06/22 03:22 AM

I had MP 1.0 bars and KYB shocks in my Charger,,,,Then swapped to 1.15s and Bilstein RCDs and the ride improved, brake dive went away and the car felt better overall.

Attached picture Folsom 2.JPG
Posted By: AndyF

Re: torsion bar recommendation - 01/07/22 04:14 PM

I am a very dedicated follower of the big bar + good shock crowd. Once I switched to Koni shocks I changed my mind about big bars in Mopar street cars. The difference was so amazing that I completely changed my mind about what was possible to do with these older cars.
Posted By: Mopar Mitch

Re: torsion bar recommendation - 01/07/22 08:12 PM

As Frankenduster indicates, the "dive" is an important factor... thus... stiffer TBs are advantageous to prevent such diving.

Many years ago, I progressed up to 1.24 TBs, along with red Koni D shocks.. later finding that the Konis were too soft (speaking fronts)... and per Koni's suggestion, I had them stiffened up some more by their technical service department... much better! Yes, as most of you know, I am heavy into autocrossing and road course events, but its also street/highway driven the majority of the time (local events, say, within a couple hundred miles driving).

Also, the Konis aren't that easily adjustable vs the common new design of double-adjustables (QA1, Viking, etc)... simply turning the knobs on those double-adjustable shocks. So, you should consider that as a purchasing factor.


Many years later, as of the past couple years, I've changed to QA1 double-adjustable shocks up front... much better than the Konis for my ride purposes (autocross and track events, as well as local highway cruising. (I may be changing to front Viking double-adjustables as they have a wider range of shock models for various purposes.)

My rear shocks are still Koni Red D -- I've played with the twisting adjustment -- recently set at 75% full stiffness (and, my rear leafs are fairly stiff at 225#/inch... 5" uncompressed arch). I'm to change to the Viking "Biserker" new model of double adjustable rear shocks, per their recommendation. The rear Konis were good for me for many long years... I simply want further options to fine-tune the ride per driving purposes.... simply turning the knobs vs partial removing and twisting the Konis.

I recommend double-adjustable shocks IF you're willing to fine-tune your ride.

And... further for ride comfort, don't overlook the tire PSI, along with the sidewall aspect ratio (60, 50, 45, 40, 35, 30) -- those factors will also make a difference in ride quality. Taller sidewalls allow more bump absorption, shorter sidewalls have progressively less bump absorption. Higher PSI = more bumps felt in the ride; lower PSI less feel of the bumps.

Spend time with various changes to see what you best like.
Posted By: Sniper

Re: torsion bar recommendation - 01/07/22 09:20 PM

This being the handling forum, it needs pointing out that taller sideways will flex more in a turn. Which is generally not a good thing.
Posted By: moparx

Re: torsion bar recommendation - 01/08/22 05:28 PM

if i'm not mistaken, don't radial sidewalls flex more than bias ply sidewalls ?
beer
Posted By: Sniper

Re: torsion bar recommendation - 01/08/22 07:01 PM

This being the handling forum, it needs pointing out that if you are running bias ply tires you're in the wrong forum
Posted By: AndyF

Re: torsion bar recommendation - 01/09/22 03:24 AM

I drove a bias ply tire car a while back and it was scary! I used to drive them all the time and never thought about it but going back to one after 30 years of radial tires was eye opening. Car just felt like it was wiggling the whole time.
Posted By: JP8

Re: torsion bar recommendation - 01/10/22 04:12 PM

Originally Posted by Mopar Mitch

Many years ago, I progressed up to 1.24 TBs, along with red Koni D shocks.


Do you still run those big bars? I have 1.24 bars from Firm Feel and was having second thought about putting them on. The chassis is stiffened, Fox shocks, big tires. Was thinking abut stepping down to 1.12 or 1.14.
Posted By: Mopar Mitch

Re: torsion bar recommendation - 01/10/22 05:17 PM

JP8 -- What's your intention of usage with the car? Those 1.24 TBs are great for improved handling (along with complimenting other items -- shocks, rear suspension/leafs, etc. The 1.24 TBs are the l;argest that ill fit through the common factory stock hex opening of 1.25". I personally suggest those larger bars IF you want to be more serious about handling, especially if you'll be doing it fairly often and for timed competition runs (pylon autocross and/or road course events). Also, consider the pavement you'll be driving on... smooth pavement can be more friendly to larger TBs; rough bumpy roads would not be so friendly... I personally avoid rough roads or simply drive slowly over them.

Stepping up to anything larger in diameter from the factory TBs, even the T/A-AAR/HEMI-Six-Pack bars (relatively weak by today's standards and barely any noticeable change)... will give progressive increased handling... but you still need to improve the shocks, leafs and other components respectively... to some incremental change.

Could you use the 1.24 TBs on a regular street car? Highway is better than street.. YES you could, but consider the tire sidewall's profile, as well as PSI of the tires... all for ride quality.

Don't be afraid of larger TBs.

TBs from 1.12-1.18 (commonly available from Firm Feel) are good compromises for improved handling and ride comfort.... I tried many different setups many years ago... and have stayed with my 1.24 TBs... would never go lower... again... per my driving intentions/setup and usage of the car. BUT, you will likely ... eventually say and realize ... that you could have and should have gone stiffer... say, at least 1.18. you are fortunate to have the 1.24 TBs.. try them and adapt to your driving style/habits.
Posted By: JP8

Re: torsion bar recommendation - 01/10/22 07:28 PM

Thanks, Mitch.
My car will primarily be trailered to events. Highway driving if I do drive. I have other cars to cruise on the street. This car is going to be a dedicated auto-x car and track day car.

The front suspension is oem based but all the goodies thrown at it like stiffened k-frame, Delrin LCA bushing, 11/16 tie rods, jointed strut rods, SPC UCA's, adjustable Fox's. Currently, a 3-link is being fabbed up in the rear and using a full floating 9". Big brakes. Roll bar. Chassis stiffening.

Just picked up my 510hp 416 from IMM and and fitting the hydraulic TOB to my T56 Magnum right now.. Front wheels will be 18x10.5, rear 18x11.5. 315/30-18 & 335/30-18. I already have the wheels but they are 18x10's. They are 3 piece Forgeline's so I'll be rehooping them to fill in the fender mods.

If you remember the purple Valiant (Tom's Valiant), I have the same fender mods done by the same guy Tom used. Using such a large front tire is what led me to the decision to buy the 1.24's. Since purchasing everyone has told me that I'll hate them, but then again, nobody I know is running an 18x10.5 front wheel.
Posted By: 68rrunner

Re: torsion bar recommendation - 01/11/22 04:29 AM

I really liked my 1.18 bars for Autocross and driving with the Full Hotchkis setup. While I was still working with them I had a custom front sway bar bent up that allowed me to step down to the 1.10 T-bars and the thing rides AWESOME on the street and still is a monster on the track.
Posted By: JP8

Re: torsion bar recommendation - 01/11/22 04:55 AM


Quote
I really liked my 1.18 bars for Autocross and driving with the Full Hotchkis setup. While I was still working with them I had a custom front sway bar bent up that allowed me to step down to the 1.10 T-bars and the thing rides AWESOME on the street and still is a monster on the track.



Was it a custom diameter sway bar or like a NASCAR style sway bar or something that allowed that?
Posted By: Mopar Mitch

Re: torsion bar recommendation - 01/11/22 09:46 PM

JP8 -- Your car sounds awesome! Are you building it to follow any particular club's rules? I always advise to follow a club's rule book so that you don't end up being over or under modified for a racing class that you'll compete in.

I've recently installed 18x11 front and rear ET-Team-III mini-lite rims with Yokohama Advan AO52-series 295-30-18 200TW tires (may eventually run 315-30-18 tires) ... This is the first time running this setup for me... quite impressive and grips great on autocross courses (see MOPARTY 2021 event pics... lots of pics of my car on various pages and articles that further continue with more pics). The 200TW is the key factor in my choice (per class rules).

You will not regret the installation of the 1.24 TBs ... and you may even wonder if something stiffer is possible. BUT.. be certain to make the car a "package"... rear suspension needs to be stiffened; sway bars need to be selected; balance the 4-corners and re-align the steering; tires and PSI;. then re-learn driving the car... that will take some time at different events to eventually get mostly satisfied.

Good luck with the overall project!!! MOPOWER to ya!
Posted By: 68rrunner

Re: torsion bar recommendation - 01/12/22 12:14 AM

Originally Posted by JP8

Quote
I really liked my 1.18 bars for Autocross and driving with the Full Hotchkis setup. While I was still working with them I had a custom front sway bar bent up that allowed me to step down to the 1.10 T-bars and the thing rides AWESOME on the street and still is a monster on the track.



Was it a custom diameter sway bar or like a NASCAR style sway bar or something that allowed that?


Thicker bar using the CNC tubing bender we use for all the production pieces. It was done during a prototype run.
Can't find the video we had of how we made them, but here's a cool one on how we test them!
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nxS4l31p5V4
Posted By: JP8

Re: torsion bar recommendation - 01/12/22 04:48 AM

Originally Posted by Mopar Mitch
JP8 -- Your car sounds awesome! Are you building it to follow any particular club's rules? I always advise to follow a club's rule book so that you don't end up being over or under modified for a racing class that you'll compete in.

I've recently installed 18x11 front and rear ET-Team-III mini-lite rims with Yokohama Advan AO52-series 295-30-18 200TW tires (may eventually run 315-30-18 tires) ... This is the first time running this setup for me... quite impressive and grips great on autocross courses (see MOPARTY 2021 event pics... lots of pics of my car on various pages and articles that further continue with more pics). The 200TW is the key factor in my choice (per class rules).

You will not regret the installation of the 1.24 TBs ... and you may even wonder if something stiffer is possible. BUT.. be certain to make the car a "package"... rear suspension needs to be stiffened; sway bars need to be selected; balance the 4-corners and re-align the steering; tires and PSI;. then re-learn driving the car... that will take some time at different events to eventually get mostly satisfied.

Good luck with the overall project!!! MOPOWER to ya!


NMCA Autox 200TW class. Like SCCA CAM-T but a little more liberal. I think CAM-T requires you to have stock suspension attachment points? In NMCA there is now restriction on suspension design or power adders. I'll check out the Advans.

Thanks
Posted By: Mopar Mitch

Re: torsion bar recommendation - 01/12/22 07:58 PM

Interesting... that's the first I've heard of the NMCA Autocross series... perhaps only WEST? I'm glad to see it happening!

CAM is mostly unrestricted... 3000 pounds minimum, supposed to be licensed/registered and insured (maybe that has changed).

SCCA Street Prepared (E/SP was once the super-hot pony car class in the mid 80s-90s-early 2000 years) requires original suspension mounting points and has various other limitations within its class rules... sadly, that class is declining in popularity... but the CAM class is exploding. I'm in-between those two classes (CAM and E/SP)... but also campaigning with another club -- MCSCC (hi-speed solo road course events) that has another set of rules and classes here in the mid-west states. See www.mcscc.org for viewing their hi-speed autocross rules/classes, etc... very active with W2W racing, as well.
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