Hotchkis hollow swaybar q's - Team Camaro Tech
Brakes, Suspension & Steering Conversion questions, Steering & Handling

 
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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old Nov 27th, 01, 10:45 AM Thread Starter
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Just curious on The Hotchkis 1 1/8 front swaybar. first would it last as long as a solid swaybar? second do you guys think that it being 6 lbs lighter than a ordinary 1" solid would be worth the extra price? Also for those who have it. How is it?
thanks!
-pat

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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old Nov 27th, 01, 11:10 AM
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David Pozzi
 
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I have one and it should hold up OK. I don't have it on yet so don't know about how it will fit and work, but have heard no complaints on the net.
There should be no functional difference between it and a solid 1" bar, just the weight. I had the money so I went for it.
If you are on a tighter budget, I doubt the weight difference would matter.
David

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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old Nov 27th, 01, 11:13 AM
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I have it and it is installed. A very nice piece. It fit well although it required some slick maneuvering to get it in, just like it required a lot of work to get the old one out. It is very light and I did notice some difference in body roll as compared to the stock bar, even with my pathetically low rate stock coil springs. I would recommend it.
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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old Nov 27th, 01, 12:14 PM
 
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Go for it. I have the bar and the front springs. TREMENDOUS difference!
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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old Nov 27th, 01, 04:17 PM
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The main point is that it is stiffer than the original. Because it is made out of stronger material they can make it lighter by going hollow as well. Hotchkis has a web site where they indicated they basically took a 1 1/8 bar and tried different thickness until they got the best strength/weight that provided the best performance. I'm asking for one for Xmas from the wife. Last year I got a Grant steering wheel so you never know. I did see a tech article in Chevy High Performance where they put one in a Nova and it talked about dropping a lower control arm and unbolting an engine mount to get around the balancer, but the Hotchkis on-line directions for the F-Body sounded like manuver it in and bolt up. Is that what anyone has found on a 68 small block???
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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old Nov 27th, 01, 04:40 PM
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I don't believe that material stiffness is an issue. The steel is basically the same for most manufactures.

A 1" solid bar is a nice balance between handling and ride comfort. A 1 1/8" x 0.120" wall tube (a standard size, hence no special tooling or lot sizes) has almost exactly the same spring rate as a 1" solid bar.

I agree with David. If you have the bucks the Hotchkis bar is the way to go. If you are on a budget and also need ball joints or other suspension/safety items your money is better spent there.

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[This message has been edited by CarlC (edited 11-27-2001).]
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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old Nov 28th, 01, 12:30 PM
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I'm not an expert, but I thought that a stiffer bar reduced the body roll keeping the weight centered and thereby improved cornering. If what you say is true about both bars having the same flex, than I don't understand why just making it larger in diameter would improve handling? I thought the idea was that it was stiffer and using stronger alloy allowed it to be hollow so there was weight savings as well.
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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old Nov 28th, 01, 04:13 PM
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It comes down to torsional rigidity. By making the same metal thicker, you get more resistance to bend. The hotchkis bar couldn't do their bar in the 1" size, so they had to go larger to achieve the optimal resistance to torque.

Does that make sense, or am I simply compounding the problem?

Jon
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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old Nov 28th, 01, 04:35 PM
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Think how a lever arm works. The longer the arm, the less force is required to perform the same task as a shorter arm.

A larger diameter bar also acts as a larger lever arm. The only difference is that it is acting in torsion.

There's some math involved, and if you would like the formulas I can post it, but suffice it to say that small changes in diameter make large differences in torsional ridgidity.

The torsional ridgidity of the Hotchkis 1 1/8" diameter bar is equal to a 1" solid bar. That's a big change in weight but a small change in diameter.

From a handling improvement aspect, the only advantage of the Hotchkis bar over a solid bar is the weight. Oh, and the trickness factor

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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old Nov 29th, 01, 06:38 AM
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I checked out the Hotchkis web site last night www.hotchkis.net they indicated that the reason it works better is stiffer and less weight. Unless I'm over simplifing torsional ridgidity as just the fancy name for stiffness, I'm confussed. I think what you are saying is that both bars are the same and the only difference is the weight. If that's true, then Hotchkis is telling a fib. In their FAQ/Q&A they focus on the stiffness and go into detail about how you can go too stiff (which can cause the inside wheel to actually lift off the ground and rough ride). From reading their narative they seem to throw the weight savings in as more of an added bonus at the end rather than the only difference. Do you think they are just puffing their products by saying they do more than they actually do??? I think the bottom line is it helps somehow, but I want to make sure its my car that ends up getting the stiffy - not me!!!
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post #11 of 12 (permalink) Old Nov 29th, 01, 08:12 AM
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[This message has been edited by bretcopsey (edited 11-29-2001).]
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post #12 of 12 (permalink) Old Nov 29th, 01, 08:46 AM
 
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It's the difference between a solid bar and a hollow bar. All they did was do a stress analysis to see what diameter and wall thickness hollow bar would have the same stress as a 1" solid bar to come up with some weight savings.

It's something like Stress = T x C/J, where both C and J have rod radius in them. J, if memory serves me right is to the cube and to subtract out the hollow, it's J1 - J2 or something like that.

I need my Machinery Handbook, here so bear with me. pdq67



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