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Old 04-16-2010, 06:49 PM   #1
2010 Bumblebee

 
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Chassis stiffeners and strut braces.

Hi I'm looking for some bolt on ideas, options, opinions for braces and stiffeners for my stock 2SS/RS A6

I'm not interested in springs and sway bars at this time. I just want to keep the chassis tight, and not void my warantee.

For under the chassis I was looking at this:

http://www.hotchkis.net/2010_camaro_...max_brace.html

What about a bolt on strut tower brace? No drilling. Any yellow ones ?

http://www.stillen.com/product.asp?i...WR1&c=SU&m=all

http://www.ws6project.com/user_stor/...oducts_id=3626

Your opinions, links, and experiences are valued, don't be shy !!!

I'm looking for bolt on parts only. I don't want to drill.

Tell us what you are using and why.
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Old 04-17-2010, 03:36 AM   #2
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I just had the BMR sub frame connectors and tunnel brace (also trailing arms) installed after much back and forth between that and the Hotchkis. The hotchkis ties the front sub frame to the rear end carrier not the rear subframe. It looks like a more traditional connector but in reality the BMR ties to the actual rear subframe and also ties the left and right side sub frames together while stiffening the tunnel as well. I plan on installing either poly or billet carrier bushings (hotchkis) which will then make the carrier more rigid into the body. Not dogging Hotchkis in my book they are top shelf but to me the BMR design made better sense for my use.

The strut brace pictured in the link you gave is the BMR 2 point (which I've ordered) not the 4 point stated in the description. If you aren't supercharged the 4 point is a better arrangement. I have a Vortech so the BMR 2 point was the only one made I'm aware of that would fit with the supercharger. Hope this helps!
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Old 04-18-2010, 10:15 PM   #3
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The Camaro chasis does not need frame stiffeners or upper strut tower bracing. Your Camaro is built seriously well. There is a reason she is a little heavy.

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Old 04-23-2010, 02:00 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2010 Bumblebee View Post
Hi I'm looking for some bolt on ideas, options, opinions for braces and stiffeners for my stock 2SS/RS A6

I'm not interested in springs and sway bars at this time. I just want to keep the chassis tight, and not void my warantee.

For under the chassis I was looking at this:

http://www.hotchkis.net/2010_camaro_...max_brace.html

What about a bolt on strut tower brace? No drilling. Any yellow ones ?

http://www.stillen.com/product.asp?i...WR1&c=SU&m=all

http://www.ws6project.com/user_stor/...oducts_id=3626

Your opinions, links, and experiences are valued, don't be shy !!!

I'm looking for bolt on parts only. I don't want to drill.

Tell us what you are using and why.

This has been a pretty active topic recently. It really depends on what you do with your car. If you're looking for the optimal combination of handling, traction on launch, and a comfortable ride, we feel like our brace is the way to go. The 5th Gen platform is very stable, it doesn't really need subframe connectors that just connect front to rear. What it does need is a way to cut lateral movement in those big rear bushings. Using a small subframe brace and stiff bushings will solve the problem, but also give you a pretty rough ride.

Through both acceleration and road course testing we found that the problem with the 5th Gen Camaro is not subframe flex, it's the massive bushings in the rear cradle used by the factory to isolate NVH (noise, vibration and harshness) originally designed for some of the other Zeta platform cars. Those big bushings are great for creating a soft cushy ride, but terrible for performance since they allow the rear suspension cradle to move longitudinally & laterally, hurting both launch from a standstill and overall handling.


Here's a visual of the problem:





The Hotchkis Sport Suspension Chassis Max Brace reduces chassis flex and improves traction during hard launches and high-speed cornering by triangulating the rear sub frame to the chassis frame rails. The beauty of the brace is that it stiffens the platform but still allows the bushings to articulate in the vertical axis, so ride quality is not diminished. You get a stable footing and harder launches without the punishing ride of some of the other solutions. It took hundreds of R&D hours and several versions to come up with a brace we were happy with, which is why it works so well.


So, with our brace you improve chassis stiffness, launches and overall handling. Plus it’s easy to bolt on, as you can see here:


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Old 04-23-2010, 02:36 PM   #5
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other than the music - I am liking the brace...
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Old 04-23-2010, 05:42 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2010 Bumblebee View Post

What about a bolt on strut tower brace? No drilling. Any yellow ones ?

http://www.stillen.com/product.asp?i...WR1&c=SU&m=all

http://www.ws6project.com/user_stor/...oducts_id=3626

Your opinions, links, and experiences are valued, don't be shy !!!

I'm looking for bolt on parts only. I don't want to drill.

Tell us what you are using and why.
Unfortunately there is just no way to do a bolt-in brace for the 2010 Camaro using existing bolt holes. All three braces on the market require drilling and bolting. As for yellow, we do offer all of our products in bare form, if needed, to allow custom color matching.

Quote:
Originally Posted by BLWN SS View Post
I just had the BMR sub frame connectors and tunnel brace (also trailing arms) installed after much back and forth between that and the Hotchkis. The hotchkis ties the front sub frame to the rear end carrier not the rear subframe. It looks like a more traditional connector but in reality the BMR ties to the actual rear subframe and also ties the left and right side sub frames together while stiffening the tunnel as well. I plan on installing either poly or billet carrier bushings (hotchkis) which will then make the carrier more rigid into the body. Not dogging Hotchkis in my book they are top shelf but to me the BMR design made better sense for my use.

The strut brace pictured in the link you gave is the BMR 2 point (which I've ordered) not the 4 point stated in the description. If you aren't supercharged the 4 point is a better arrangement. I have a Vortech so the BMR 2 point was the only one made I'm aware of that would fit with the supercharger. Hope this helps!
Thanks for your support! You've already made my job easier by answering most of the questions posted above. Your logic is exactly how we viewed the situation when developing our frame connectors. Some people just want bushings, some want frame ties, some just want a stiffer tunnel brace to reinforce the driveshaft carrier bearing mount. We specifically developed them each individually to provide options. We designed a poly bushing replacement for the rear cradle (that will be available soon) and a Delrin cradle bushing set for heavy duty testing purposes (these will be available later this year). Both of these eliminated the cradle movement by themselves.

Our subframe connector ties the front and rear subframes together with a third connection at the driveshaft carrier bearing location. Connecting these together with our driveshaft tunnel brace further reinforces
the chassis. Our first design subframe connector tied into the rear cradle also. When we were considering this design we had plans to include solid cradle bushings with the subframe connectors because in our opinion the cradle needs to be "locked down" to prevent the subframe connector from fatiguing over time and cracking welds. With one end locked solid and the other attached to the cradle mounted in rubber, the amount of "flex cycles" transmitted into the connector was considered to be too much of a liability concern. It may very well be fine but it is the reason we didn't go that route.

The subframe connectors can easily be installed in less than 2 hours. The 2 Point brace takes about 2 hours as well, and add another hour for the 4 Point brace...
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Old 04-23-2010, 05:45 PM   #7
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The 4-point BMR brace is awesome. I have one installed on my car in the Black Hammertone finish and I am VERY happy with it.

I hope to have some pictures up soon.
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Old 04-24-2010, 12:23 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2010 Bumblebee View Post
Hi I'm looking for some bolt on ideas, options, opinions for braces and stiffeners for my stock 2SS/RS A6

I'm not interested in springs and sway bars at this time. I just want to keep the chassis tight, and not void my warranty.

For under the chassis I was looking at this:

http://www.hotchkis.net/2010_camaro_...max_brace.html

What about a bolt on strut tower brace? No drilling. Any yellow ones ?

http://www.stillen.com/product.asp?i...WR1&c=SU&m=all

http://www.ws6project.com/user_stor/...oducts_id=3626

Your opinions, links, and experiences are valued, don't be shy !!!

I'm looking for bolt on parts only. I don't want to drill.

Tell us what you are using and why.
This is a 5th Gen monocoque. It is solid from the factory. The factory guys ran the box stock Camaro around the Nurburing in one hellofa hurry without any braces or suspension mods. The Camaro culture grew up with the earlier versions needing all kinds of aftermarket parts to be solid and reliable. That was then. This is now.

The rear sub-frame attaches with four bolts. Two of the bolts have large pilots to center the sub-frame when it is bolted into place. The front sub-frame uses six bolts and has two pilot pins. The monocoque they bolt to is one of the strongest designs on the market. It is a toss up between a new CTS and the Camaro for the most solid offered by GM. These are really well built solid automobiles.

The chassis will stay tight without ANY braces. Keep in mind that Pedders manufactures and sells aftermarket suspension parts. I would love to tell you you need all kinds of braces and upgrades, but you don't. You can go over to the G8 forums which is a ZETA chassis (the Camaro is ZETA II). We do make a strut tower bars for the G8. Does it really make any difference, probably more in the driver's mind than anything anyone could measure. The Camaro ZETA II is a much more robust front clip. Take the front fascia and fenders off a G8 and there is no real structure in front of the strut towers. Take the front fascia and fenders off a Camaro and you will see more structure.

If you want to improve on the handling of a already very good automobile I would be more than happy to answer any questions you would like to ask -- but you don't NEED to buy anything to keep your 5th Gen chassis tight.
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Old 04-24-2010, 12:41 AM   #9
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We have a video being edited as we speak showing just how much the chassis flexes. The video conveniently puts a value on this. Clearly some manufactures are adressing it, and some are denying it becuase they don't have any solutions, or data to back up claims. As with everything we do, we show our customers the real deal resuts. Stay tuned! Hope to have it finished on Monday.
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Old 04-24-2010, 01:22 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by PfadtRacing View Post
We have a video being edited as we speak showing just how much the chassis flexes. The video conveniently puts a value on this. Clearly some manufactures are adressing it, and some are denying it becuase they don't have any solutions, or data to back up claims. As with everything we do, we show our customers the real deal resuts. Stay tuned! Hope to have it finished on Monday.
The OP clearly states: I just want to keep the chassis tight, and not void my warranty.

What do you think the chances are of GM putting in writing that all of the suggested modifications in this thread will not in any way alter the OP's new car warranty?

If a Camaro enthusiast wants to build a race car the place to start is with a body in white just as Pedders is doing with Circle Track magazine and Project G.R.E.E.N. Triangulating structure on a build like this makes a world of sense. No one would argue that. On a street car, that is a different animal.

We can watch video and pile up data until we go blind and an OE spec Camaro will still be a fantastic automobile with a solid monocoque that is 'library quiet', while being virtually squeak and rattle free. A 5th Gen Camaro does NOT NEED anything from any suspension company to meet this standard. GM delivers that right off the Chevy Dealer's lot.
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Old 04-24-2010, 11:10 AM   #11
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A picture's worth a thousand words. I'm looking forward to Monday
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Old 04-25-2010, 04:34 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PfadtRacing View Post
We have a video being edited as we speak showing just how much the chassis flexes. The video conveniently puts a value on this. Clearly some manufactures are adressing it, and some are denying it becuase they don't have any solutions, or data to back up claims. As with everything we do, we show our customers the real deal resuts. Stay tuned! Hope to have it finished on Monday.
I know GM engineers are pretty proud of this monocoque... Haven't seen any posts regarding cowl shake or stress cracked windshields, I'm with Radz... Pass the

... But I still agree with Pete's philosophy on structure stiffening, by the time you NEED a strut brace on this car, you're probably pricing roll cages.

Give me a large enough cheater bar and I can flex a 12" I-beam.
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Old 04-27-2010, 05:47 PM   #13
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Hey guys, sorry for the delay! Below is a video we put together showing low speed flex on the front of the chassis. 2010 Bumblebee, I know you were looking at not drilling. The truth is, and all the manufacturers who produce similar braces will probably agree, there is absolutely no where to use any existing bolt locations to structurally tie the front strut towers together. It is our opinion, that an effective engineering solution to the problem, requires drilling in one way or another. Not all of us do it the same way, but from what I have seen, we all do it. If you have any questions, please contact us! We have to re-iterate, this is definitely a product geared towards racers, as they are the ones who are concerned with chassis flex! It is VERY easy to install this brace.

Unfortunately our track time didn't line up well with the production of this video, so we couldn't do any high speed testing in the video. But as you can imagine, seeing this much deflection at low speeds, will only increase as cornering grip is increased (as in a high speed corner situation). The same would be true for autocross cornering, where you are REALLY trying to grip with high steering angle inputs around cones!


Last edited by PfadtRacing; 04-27-2010 at 07:02 PM. Reason: Typo
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Old 04-27-2010, 06:17 PM   #14
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I wonder what a Camaro can do in lateral Gs without any chassis braces? I wonder how it would compare to a Corvette? Oh yeah, Pedders did that testing last year -- without ANY chassis braces.





What was the limiting factor for the cars on track -- tires. They all would have pulled even higher G loads with race tires. What this tells the Camaro community is that there is no need for any kind of chassis brace on a 5th Gen Camaro unless you are building a dedicated race car. You certainly don't need them to pull 1.384 Gs. You don't need them to equal the performance of a Z06. You don't need them to out handle a base Corvette. A BOX stock completely OE Camaro was good for over 1G in the hands of a skilled driver so you don't need a chassis brace to reach a G on a road course.

There are many Camaro owners that will want to personalise their car. There are many that will add RWHP, bigger brakes, wheels and tires. Others will do cosmetic mods to make their Camaro singularly special. One thing that we can all enjoy and know is that a completely stock Camaro fresh of the Chevy Dealer's lot is a very well made automobile that ran the Nurburing and ran it very well without a single modification. There is a HUGE difference between wanting to add a part and NEEDING a part. I am not interested in arguing the merits of triangulating structure on a race car. That would be a debate for an idiot. I will debate anyone that claims you NEED a chassis brace to enjoy your Camaro, that your Camaro will rattle without a chassis brace, that something bad will happen to your car without a chassis brace and just about anything short of the point you convert your daily driver 5th Gen to a dedicated race car.
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Old 04-27-2010, 06:32 PM   #15
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My 4th gen vert would have made it move around like a dashboard hula dancer
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Old 04-27-2010, 06:36 PM   #16
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My 4th gen vert would have made it move around like a dashboard hula dancer
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Old 04-27-2010, 06:38 PM   #17
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That video is quite revealing...
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Old 04-28-2010, 02:45 AM   #18
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My 4th gen vert would have made it move around like a dashboard hula dancer
There is no doubt the previous generations needed some assistance. But the Gen 5 is vastly superior

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Old 04-28-2010, 02:32 PM   #19
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There is no doubt the previous generations needed some assistance. But the Gen 5 is vastly superior
That may be true, but you have to agree that there is room for improvement.

-Funk
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Old 04-28-2010, 02:35 PM   #20
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That may be true, but you have to agree that there is room for improvement.

-Funk
That video was pretty graphic, IMHO.
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Old 04-28-2010, 02:47 PM   #21
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I believe I see two things here:

1. JusticePete I dont think you make a point either way regarding a chassis brace. The stock OE camaro can pull over 1G, so. How does that translate into any sort of arguement for a chassis brace? If you had one how much better could you have done?

2. Pfadt is that really chassis flexion or is it a brace anchored at two points with the other two free to vibrate move around? I dont see that as flexion I see that as vibration.

I am not sure if what I am trying to iterate is coming across as I am not elequont enough but I believe I see what both manufacturers are saying I am curious as to their individual takes.

Also in regard to a brace if you have a U shaped item doenst it make sense to complete the circle with a brace making it that much stronger/better?

Cheers
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Old 04-28-2010, 03:11 PM   #22
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I believe I see two things here:

1. JusticePete I dont think you make a point either way regarding a chassis brace. The stock OE camaro can pull over 1G, so. How does that translate into any sort of arguement for a chassis brace? If you had one how much better could you have done?


2. Pfadt is that really chassis flexion or is it a brace anchored at two points with the other two free to vibrate move around? I dont see that as flexion I see that as vibration.

I am not sure if what I am trying to iterate is coming across as I am not elequont enough but I believe I see what both manufacturers are saying I am curious as to their individual takes.

Also in regard to a brace if you have a U shaped item doenst it make sense to complete the circle with a brace making it that much stronger/better?

Cheers
K
You bring up interesting points

1) I believe Pedders' stance is more about leaning toward making a street car as good as it can be before crossing the line and making it into a race car. It seems to me Pfadt is more race oriented, however, do not give up on making sure the car doesn't get so bad one wouldn't enjoy driving it on the street. Both have demonstrated they aren't going to make products they don't think will bare any improvement in performance; this specific product is a good example for Pedders, and the SFCs are a good example for Pfadt (Pedders doesn't make SFCs either). I won't comment on how much better it could be because I think than can just fuel a debate that will never have a clear winner, since they don't produce one.

2) It's, again, my opinion that maybe it seemed less like flex because they didn't have access to a good course, instead of just a parking lot. I bet if they could sustain higher Gs, for longer, it would've proven their point better. I believe I'd want to keep all that movement to a minimum, regardless, though.

I LOVE products from both of these companies and love reading what their engineering/thought processes are regarding why they do what they end up doing
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Old 04-28-2010, 04:23 PM   #23
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Thank you radz! I was hoping something somewhat intelligent came out of what I was trying to say!

I agree I enjoy reading both insight from each company as suspension is what I am reaching for slowly but surely.
Cheers
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Old 04-28-2010, 04:29 PM   #24
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Thank you radz! I was hoping something somewhat intelligent came out of what I was trying to say!

I agree I enjoy reading both insight from each company as suspension is what I am reaching for slowly but surely.
Cheers
K
You came across clearer than I do
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Old 04-28-2010, 05:28 PM   #25
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Quote:
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..........If you had one how much better could you have done?

K
That's a good question

In my opinion, stiffeners are a carry-over from previous generations, and folks assume if it was good then it must be good now. This new monocoque was designed from day one with stiffness as a top priority. THAT'S why the engineers wouldn't budge on the 'B' pillar.

The vert, may be a different story, we'll see.
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