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Old 07-23-2006, 02:24 AM   #1
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Hey, im new and I dont know a whole lot. My miata handles like a dream to me and all it has are some coilovers and im thinking the roll bar might stiffen it up but im not sure. The size of my tires are 215/40/17 and i bought them for 250 total on ebay but im thinking I got a good deal becasue they grip so much better then my old expensive ones. ok anyways I wanted to know if I should even bother with strut bars or sway bars?
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Old 07-24-2006, 01:31 AM   #2
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what is your goal for the car? do you plan on autocrossing drifting? or just spirited driving? sway bars will make the car more responsive and more readable. strut tower bar will make it more solid in the front end.
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Old 07-24-2006, 02:02 AM   #3
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spirited driving
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Old 07-24-2006, 02:07 AM   #4
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weigh them rims first, then ditch em
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Old 07-24-2006, 02:18 AM   #5
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ok but are the any cheap lightweight rims?
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Old 07-24-2006, 02:46 AM   #6
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Old 07-24-2006, 04:13 AM   #7
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Best bang for the buck I found is a good alignment. I used the FM alignment and it made a world of difference on my car.
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Old 07-24-2006, 08:43 PM   #8
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sawys are ot nesscary, I have FM sway bars and found they improved my suspension very little compared to my spring/shocks. Racing beat springs with kyb agx shocks. Strut braces are for macpherson strut cars, they don't make much of a difference on double wish-bone suspensions.
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Old 07-24-2006, 09:36 PM   #9
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hey thanks, I got bilsteing coilovers should i get the bilstein struts or something else
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Old 07-24-2006, 09:57 PM   #10
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the coilovers don't come with shocks? Well it depends, personally i like the agx's, they are adjustable and they feel very tight on one end and nice and smooth on the other. I have heard of ppl geting dud kyb's though, one shock quits at 10k ect ect...
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Old 07-24-2006, 10:13 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dc2696
sawys are ot nesscary, I have FM sway bars and found they improved my suspension very little compared to my spring/shocks. Racing beat springs with kyb agx shocks. Strut braces are for macpherson strut cars, they don't make much of a difference on double wish-bone suspensions.
Uh... you realize strut braces and swaybars are 2 different things right?

Swaybars will make significant changes to both Mac and 2xWishbone suspensions. Its all in the setup and designing it for what you wish to do.

Strutbars can help on most cars, although minimally. Its a structural brace for the chassis.... has nothing to really do with the suspension. I fail to see how you can even say that they are "for macpherson struct cars"....

Swaybars can be the single simplest and biggest upgrade to the suspension. The shocks/springs (coilovers)/sways and chassis stiffening all work together to complete a formula. Yes you can do them individually and see nice gains... but a complete system will typically be a combination of ALL.
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Old 07-24-2006, 10:31 PM   #12
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lol^^^They way the MacPherson strut system works makes them deflect alot more when cornering compared to the superior wish-bone set-up. Thus in a Macp set-up strut braces will improve handling a great deal, expect minimal gains from them on miatas is all I'm saying.

As for sway bars, you'll find alot of ppl don't upgrade there stock bars (or remove their rears when equipped with upgraded fronts) as stiffer bars don't help the miata a great deal (for regular driving/spirited driving).

lol and yes I know what they are as I've done both on my miata plus more...
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Old 07-24-2006, 10:56 PM   #13
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hehe, had to ask.

Strut braces are really a structural thing though. Both suspensions create flex in the chassis. I'd say it depends more on chassis design than the suspension and its forces. Then again... I also agree that strut braces are minimal... noticeable ... but minimal. I've seen much more significant stiffening effects from rollbar/cage

For swaybars though... for daily and such I'd agree that stock is probably fine. But for really pushing the car hard... upgraded bars can compliment a shock/spring/coilover combo very nicely. For the autoX crowd, they LOVE their huge front bars and little to no rear bar.... others seem to like to do swaybar sets and upgrade both. Personally... I'm still feeling that aspect out, but from my experience with other chassis and also dual wishbone.... a good swaybar combo can really really finish off a nice suspension setup.
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Old 07-25-2006, 10:11 AM   #14
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Drive the car at its limit and you'll have an appreciation for any increase in structural rigidity.

MacP suspension uses the strut mount as a fixed upper control arm- the brace transfers the load over to the other strut tower which is stabilized or counter acted by the G force in the turn. It works a lot like a sway bar- making one side of the car control the other. Without it the font end twists and you get a greater dynamic change in alignment. The best strut brace to add is one that triangulates to the fire wall.

The goal is close all the "open boxes" to increase rigidity. On the Miata that's the opening of the engine bay, the transmission tunnel ( and front subframe), the opening under the rear subframe, and the biggest opening - the open interior. Basically all the stuff you see sold in the Miata aftermarket.

I agree- sway bars make a big difference for a Miata that's driven hard. - rob
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Old 07-25-2006, 11:11 AM   #15
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Try this worksheet:
http://www.fatcatmotorsports.com/FCM_MSDS_v6_2.xls

If you are replacing the shocks and not the springs go with a Front and Rear solid bar.

If you are replacing the shocks and installing higher rated springs, go with a Tubular Front bar only and either keep the rear oem bar or ditch it.

You want a good amount of front roll couple (60-70%), this will keep more weight towards the front of the car in the corners. Too little FRC and you'll loose the rear easier.

Also like m2cupcar said, closing up the boxes will also help out. But I've found that sways/shock/springs are the most noticeable changes in butt dyno dynamics.
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Old 07-25-2006, 12:06 PM   #16
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Agreed- you'll get more return on the suspension changes for hard driving. I'd actually recommend all the chassis bracing for street driving first- since it's going to increase rigidity for open top driving. I cringe every time I drive over a big bump in my 90 top-down after having the hard top on for so long. I forget just how much flex there is in the old cars.
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Old 07-25-2006, 12:58 PM   #17
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You have bilsteins? Sell them to me

I think bilsteins are great shocks.
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Old 07-25-2006, 01:14 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dc2696
sawys are ot nesscary, I have FM sway bars and found they improved my suspension very little compared to my spring/shocks. Racing beat springs with kyb agx shocks. Strut braces are for macpherson strut cars, they don't make much of a difference on double wish-bone suspensions.
Careful making blanket statement based on limited experience.

Your original shocks were likely worn out. The big improvement you felt was replacing those. The RB springs are junk, these are the one's you got from Richard? Did you know that one of the springs was sagging? Maybe you replaced it already.

I've got a pretty solid setup on my car. GC/AGX, FM rear mounts, RB solid front and rear bars. I started out by replacing my worn out shocks with the AGX (wish I had bought Koni). Drastic improvement! The next season I put in the coilovers and sway bars. WOW. Car was like a go-kart. I've had occasion to change the sway bars around, and I can tell you with out a doubt that sways make a HUGE difference in respect to turn-in and transitional response.

This year the only change I made was putting in an Greddy shock tower brace (exactly the same as the FM unit). It made a difference in cowl shake, a lot more than I thought it would. Did it actually help with how the car handles? I doubt it.

You should try autocross, if for nothing else than to experience the Miata REALLY working. Sure you can drive fast on the street, but it won't compare. Also check out the Solo1 school runs at RaceCity in the spring, a different experience all together but still will show you what the car can do.

Jay
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Old 07-25-2006, 03:54 PM   #19
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Absolutely agree on the AutoX as a proving grounds. Ran my fully stock car with worn/dead shocks and fresh azenis/alignment and it was a BLAST. Nothing like pushing a car to its limits legally
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Old 07-25-2006, 03:57 PM   #20
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Well my car seems to bottom out when i hit a bump should I just get some better springs?
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