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Old 11-30-2009, 09:22 AM   #1
55Designs

 
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Who manufactures the strongest and thickest front sway bar?

Just curious if someone out there is making an ultra beefy bar for the front.

I was looking at my friends 2010 GT500 and those OEM bars are HUGE in comparison to these aftermarket bars for the Camaro.
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Old 11-30-2009, 08:46 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by 55Designs View Post
Just curious if someone out there is making an ultra beefy bar for the front.

I was looking at my friends 2010 GT500 and those OEM bars are HUGE in comparison to these aftermarket bars for the Camaro.
The biggest issue with Camaro handling is that the car understeers badly. Fitting a Mustang sized front sway bar would only increase the amount of understeer. The ultra beefy bar should be mounted in the rear on a Camaro.

Mike has written a white paper on this subject. http://www.camaro5.com/forums/showth...light=sway+bar
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Old 11-30-2009, 08:49 PM   #3
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For all of your suspension questions, I would refer you to member dms from Pedders. That guy knows his stuff and has posted some of the most scientific material I've ever seen on suspensions. The goal is to have the "best" part as opposed to the "biggest."
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Old 11-30-2009, 09:24 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by 55Designs View Post
Just curious if someone out there is making an ultra beefy bar for the front.

I was looking at my friends 2010 GT500 and those OEM bars are HUGE in comparison to these aftermarket bars for the Camaro.
You need to educate yourself on sway bars and how they affect the Camaro. I have written a rather good paper on on sway bars and the Camaro. There are comparitive data on 5 bars. Here is a link:

http://www.camaro5.com/forums/showthread.php?t=52392

Please read it and ask any and all questions.

thanks
mike
dms
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Old 12-02-2009, 07:41 PM   #5
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This is something that I wrote in another post on this subject. In case you got bored halfway through the half truths and spin of mike's post, this might give you some actual information on how swaybars relate to you the user.

Buy your swaybars from a company that actually develops and tests on the Camaro, not a Holden Commodore. Our Pfadt bars are proudly made in the USA.

Oh, and a personal peeve of mine, beware of a company that tells you that you can not handle a set of swaybars because they are only for 'racers'. Cars handle well or they don't. You would not hesitate to buy a ZR1 Corvette just because you are not factory driver Johnny O'Connell would you?

To the OPs point of why do you not see giant front swaybars for the Camaro, the answer is down in the middle of my post. It has been completely neglected by the other guys, but it is very important.

-Aaron

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Let me introduce myself in case you do not know me. I'm Aaron Pfadt, the owner and chief engineer of Pfadt Race Engineering. I got my engineering degree from Rochester Institute of Technology and then started my career working at GM Powertrain in Detroit. I worked there for 5 years and then went to Chrysler (then DaimlerChrysler ) and eventually left there to start my own suspension company. I had been road racing for 10 years or so and decided to put my knowledge and love of cars into my own business.

Fast forward to Pfadt making 2010 Camaro suspension. I'd like to throw out my 2 cents on swaybars. Swaybars, more properly called stabilizer bars or anti-roll bars are used to help the handling on any car. Most production cars now come with at least one in place, generally on the front. The Camaro in all of its forms comes with both a front and a rear. The reason that they are used is to limit body roll in the turns. This make the chassis more responsive. The cornering forces go into accelerating the car rather than into body roll. It is important to keep in mind that you can achieve roll stiffness through sway bars, but you can also achieve the same thing through your springs. They both contribute roll stiffness. The reason that the auto manufacturers rely on the sway bars is because they have much less negative consequences in terms of ride quality than achieving a certain level of roll stiffness through just springs. The sway bars are not active in situations where both front or rear wheels are doing the same thing. For example, in the case of a large heave in the road, the sway bars will have no effect on how the cars feels going over it, because both front tires will go over it at the same time and the bar will just rotate in its mounts. If you hit a pothole with one tire the sway bar stiffness will have an effect on the amount of disturbance in the car. The bottom line is that a large amount of roll stiffness is used on 'sporty' street cars because it has a good balance of handling versus ride quality.

For us in the aftermarket, we tend to want to expand on that principle and increase the roll stiffness even more for better handling. The increase in handling comes in three main forms.

1. increase in responsiveness
2. better tire grip due to less roll and an improvement in contact patch
3. improvement in vehicle dynamic balance

The responsiveness comes from a net increase in roll stiffness in the car. That can come from the front or the rear, but generally is done with a combo of both. The better cornering grip comes from reducing the amount of tire contact patch loss that is associated with body roll. In the case of a Macpherson strut car like the Camaro, there is almost no camber recovery from the suspension, so any body roll is tire roll and loss of contact patch. That is why you see such crazy amounts of negative camber dialed into Macpherson strut equipped race cars. They will often run 4 or 5 degrees of negative camber to compensate for the body roll. The rear of a Camaro has reasonable camber recovery, but you still lose camber with body roll so reducing roll is important for maintaining contact patch.

The third and most complicated component is the balance. This manifests itself in oversteer and understeer. Roll stiffness overall is important but the balance of front roll stiffness to rear roll stiffness is of critical importance. To calculate that, you need to know not only the sway bar stiffness but also the stiffness of the springs, because like I described earlier the roll stiffness is generated by both the springs and swaybars. The desired amount of front roll stiffness versus rear roll stiffness is a function of a whole lot of things - tire size, front rear weight distribution, aerodynamic balance, etc... - but it can be calculated. The bottom line is that we make some calculations, compare them to some known information from testing and then test ourselves. The Camaro is well known on these forums to have a large bias towards understeer from the factory. It is also important to note that even with the stock suspension, the majority of the roll stiffness (well over 50%) comes from the sway bars. This means that even with a radical spring change, the roll stiffness balance is going to be hard to shift in a meaningful way. If you want to fix the understeer, you need to start with the sway bars.

At Pfadt we did just that. We came up with a swaybar package that we know adjusts the balance of the Camaro from understeering nightmare to a nimble track machine. I won't get into a lot of meaningless numbers to confuse you, but I can tell you that we added a reasonably large amount of rear roll stiffness to do this. We also added some front stiffness, but the rear is the key. You can see that by looking at the diameters of our bars. An interesting note on that, you will notice that our rear bar is 35mm in diameter. That seems huge, especially in comparison to the front at 26mm. That is a function of the differing motion ratios of the front and rear sway bars. The roll stiffness imparted by each is very similar, but the rear bar hooks to the control arm very far inboard and therefore is subject to a lot of leverage (ie Motion Ratio). The front bar on the other hand hooks directly to the strut and is very close to a Motion Ratio of 1 which means that it is more effective and can be smaller and achieve the same roll stiffness for the car.

By getting this basic balance in place, we can than put on springs of a wide range and the car will still keep it's inherent balance. We can then specify our springs to meet the needs of the customer. A dedicated track car is going to be able to stand a lot more spring rate than a dual purpose car or even a street only car. We also put some adjustment in our swaybars to allow the end user to tune for different tire combinations, track conditions and driving styles.

Our bars increase overall roll stiffness to help response and contact patch, but most importantly they impart a handling balance to the Camaro that it lacks from the factory. I could tell you how to calculate sway bar rates and roll stiffnesses, but that does not really mean anything on it's own. What matters is that we have the capability to do the analysis and then put our products on the track to test them so that you have a handling package that will take whatever you throw at it.

-Aaron
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Old 12-02-2009, 08:06 PM   #6
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PFADT sways FTW!!!
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Old 12-02-2009, 08:19 PM   #7
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[QUOTE=Aaron Pfadt;1239867]This is something that I wrote in another post on this subject. In case you got bored halfway through the half truths and spin of mike's post, this might give you some actual information on how swaybars relate to you the user.

Buy your swaybars from a company that actually develops and tests on the Camaro, not a Holden Commodore. Our Pfadt bars are proudly made in the USA. Now Aaron, lets be gentlemen about this. You are referring that we did not test the Camaro. I would bety we did a serious amount more testing on the Camaro than you did and the proof is on utube. You were there, and saw how well the Pedders Camaro performed at Optima. Getting it to handle like that was not luck in any way. Now in case members of this community have not seen the Pedders Camaro in action, here is a short video of our Pedders Camaro at the Optima Challenge with a ZR1 as a chase vehicle:


Now we also are experts in ZETA platforms. Pedders R&D in Au has been working on them for 6 years or so and we have done a serious amount of R&D on the G8. There was a lot that we learned about the G8 that directly applies to the Camaro, and this was verified by how well the Pedders Camaro performed. We also learned what a significantly different animal it is from the G8. Even you cannot deny us the Pedders Camaro handled extremely well. So to say or refer that we did not do testing on the Camaro, is totally bogus on your part!!


Oh, and a personal peeve of mine, beware of a company that tells you that you can not handle a set of swaybars because they are only for 'racers'. Cars handle well or they don't. You would not hesitate to buy a ZR1 Corvette just because you are not factory driver Johnny O'Connell would you? We have found the large bars such as yours, and even more with ours since it is stronger than yours, can generate oversteer if setup incorrectly. We care about the safety of our customers and just need to discuss the oversteer potential with them prior to them buying it. This is good business and shows that we care. Plus, Optima showed our bar sets with our total package was right on target and optimum!! Plus this has nothing to do with a ZR1, which by the way our Pedders Camaro outhandled the chase ZR1

To the OPs point of why do you not see giant front swaybars for the Camaro, the answer is down in the middle of my post. It has been completely neglected by the other guys, but it is very important. I think the thread that I made on sway bars was well thought out, accurate, and easy to understand for the novice. It was still hard for some to understand, based on the phone calls I have taken to discuss it with them

If you think there are any errors that I made in my sway bar thread, then tell me. If you give me your wall thickness, on your hollow tubes, and the thickness of your bars at your bends, and with your permission, I would be glad to do a tick for tac comparison with your 3 sets of bars to hours. If you do not want your wall thicknesses published on a open forum, you can email them to me, and I promise I will not publish them, but will use them to make the metal strength comparisons.


Now I will tell you that Pete and myself have great respect for you and your company. Neither Pete or myself have an engineering degree and neither one of us have a NASA or SCCA license such as yourself. But Pedders is the largest suspension manufacturer in Australia with sales over $130,000,000 a year in Australia alone. They have engineers there with hundreds of years collectively, of experience. As for the driving, my experience is limited to a driving school, years of autocrossing in my younger days, and about 75 collective laps at Laguna Seca, Infineon and Willows Racing in California. But have never done fender to fender driving. This is why we hire pro drivers, and use 3 of them. And on critical tests, such as Gingerman, we had all the electronics in to car to monitor all data and compare. So we are perfectly capable of evaluating, enhancing, and changing suspension systems for improvements. In fact, since we are not pro drivers such as yourself, we might have an advantage based on having a better grip on the average Joe who owns a Camaro.


dms

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Old 12-02-2009, 08:26 PM   #8
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Old 12-02-2009, 08:53 PM   #9
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So I wonder if the pedders sways are as bad as there crappy bushing kits. Several customers whom have bought them have complained and only gotten thats standard for them. Pfdat keep up the good work.
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Old 12-02-2009, 09:27 PM   #10
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So I wonder if the pedders sways are as bad as there crappy bushing kits. Several customers whom have bought them have complained and only gotten thats standard for them. Pedders you stink go back to Aussie. Pfdat keep up the good work.
I love the Pedder's set up on my car. And it's just good competition on the forums here. How's your turbo car running?
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Old 12-02-2009, 09:28 PM   #11
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Stronger than every brother. Ran road atlanta this weekend. Should of seen the look on those exotics and vettes when I blew by them. Amazing how much 628 rwhp is.
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Old 12-02-2009, 09:33 PM   #12
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Stronger than every brother. Ran road atlanta this weekend. Should of seen the look on those exotics and vettes when I blew by them. Amazing how much 628 rwhp is.
Thats awesome!! I wish I was closer to run a Road Atlanta or a Luguna or something like that. I will someday. We have a 2.2 mile track up here but the weather will keep that from happening until April. Rock on!!!
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Old 12-02-2009, 09:55 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by lawdogg149 View Post
So I wonder if the pedders sways are as bad as there crappy bushing kits. Several customers whom have bought them have complained and only gotten thats standard for them. Pedders you stink go back to Aussie. Pfdat keep up the good work.
You know, I normally avoid ignorance, but I have to respond to your childish post here. The Camaro you are mentioning, the bushings were not installed correctly, plus it appears the included lubrication was not used. I can tell the differential bushings are installed incorrectly because of the post picture.

I will also tell you not all the bushings that were installed in his back end were Pedders!!

So I would request that before you make a blatant statement like you did, at least educate yourself to the point were you can back up your statements!

mike
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Old 12-02-2009, 10:12 PM   #14
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ANY Camaro owner that is in any way dissatisfied their Pedders bits should contact their Dealer immediately. If they are not satisfied with the results of working with their Dealer they should call me at the office or my mobile. If there is a problem with ANY Pedders bit our Dealers, Staff and I will work with the customer to make it right. If we can't I will personally see to it they receive a refund for their parts. If the problem is urgent and cannot wait for normal business hours call my home phone.

Office 248.522.8021
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To date the only issue I am aware of with Pedders bits for the Camaro is our inability to keep them in stock. I may be mistaken, but this post should bring any problems I am unaware of to our attention immediately.
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