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Topic Review (Newest First)
12-05-2012 07:14 PM
Richard Bridgette
Stiffen rear sway bar

Here is an idea that is a cheap way to make a stock Focus rear bar slightly stiffer. My 2003 wagon came stock with a 20 mm bar. The flat ends of the bar were long enough for me to drill new end link holes in the bar that are 3/4 inch in toward the straight center portion of the bar, shortening the arms of the bar from 7 inches to 6 1/4 inches long. To compensate for the shorter arms, I bolted 3/4 inch thick aluminum spacer blocks under the sway bar-to-chassis mounting clamps. I also mounted the bar in Energy Suspension poly bushings and installed poly end link bushings. These changes took virtually all of the understeer out of the cornering ability of the car, making the vehicle's handling much more neutral when cornering. The length of the end links has no effect on the stiffness of a sway bar, but using heim joints on each end of the end links and attachiong the end links farther outboard on the lower control arm will stiffen the effect of the sway bar. Hope these ideas help. Richard Bridgette, Huntersville, NC 704-948-9415.
12-04-2012 03:55 PM
c03morrison thanks guys i will check with a guy i know to see if he has an svt rear sway. i know my lca's are not reinforced because i have gone through the process of actually looking for svt arms when i needed to replace my bushings. it was a fail as all the arms i checked out off of svt's were already cracked which i was surprised by. im just going to reinforce them myself as this summer when i hopefully get a chance to take the whole subframe out and clean and paint it up nice.

so any idea on if the length of the links will change stiffness? cus if i can get a svt one it will be for real cheap and i need to upgrade my links and bushings so if i can increase the stiffness a little more i will just do that.
12-04-2012 02:33 PM
wrc_fan ^^ this is all excellent advise.

Check your currect LCAs, they may already have the material. I also think the 22mm bar is great option for the focus.
12-04-2012 01:56 PM
rambleon84 Try some polly bushings for the sway bar and endlinks. That will stiffen up the feel and response.

Check your control arms, seems later models added the svt style arms that had the extra metal on them. Depending on what syspension you are running now, you shouldnt increase the size drastically. Used SVT bars (21mm) or even Steeda/Progress (22mm) are a good size and increase. Check the buy/sell sections here, normally there is one for sale. You cant really go wrong with a used bar, number of miles on them dont really make a difference.
12-04-2012 01:26 PM
c03morrison
increase rear sway stiffness

so ive been browsing and trying to figure out ways to make the stock sway a little stiffer without upgrading to a bigger size. ive seen kids drill added holes on the inside of the stock holes where the endlinks mount. for the rear i noticed you cant do this cus there isnt enough space in the flat stock section. another idea was increasing or decreasing the size of the endlinks but not sure if that will do much. what do you guys and gals think.

By putting a bigger or smaller endlink bolt which will make for a softer or harder feel on the sway.

my goal is to eventually get a bigger bar but i want to hold off till a warmer month cus i will want to add metal to the control arms so they wont break on me.

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