Sway bar settings - LotusTalk - The Lotus Cars Community
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post #1 of 22 (permalink) Old 06-19-2013, 03:48 AM Thread Starter
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Sway bar settings

I posted here after I found a thread through search:

https://www.lotustalk.com/forums/f3/f...11/index2.html

...but the Solo forum was probably the place to post.

Here's my question:
I autocrossed my car last year with the stock bar, this year I'm using the BWR "hardcore" bar with a new alignment...I have a little bit of toe out in the front, and neutral toe in the rear. I'm running in the local tire index (think RTR in terms of national classes)...this year I'm using the Dunlop Z2's.

I've got the bar on the softest setting, and it does seem to keep the inside rear tire down better exiting sharp corners. However, in sweepers (which our local course designers will usually incorporate into their courses) I feel like I'm waiting, waiting, waiting to get back to the throttle because the front end wants to wash out. This tendency to understeer with the stiffer front bar isn't a big surprise, but I'm looking for ways to get the car to rotate a little better...it was much easier to rotate with the stock bar. I'm going to try some things with tire pressure at the next event, specifically running rear pressure much lower that my usual settings.

Anyone have advice on tire pressures?

Would it be easier to get a nice balance in the car with the "street" bar when using non-R-comp tires like mine? Anyone having success at big events with the "street" bar, or does it just allow too much wheelspin?

Thanks,
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post #2 of 22 (permalink) Old 06-19-2013, 03:12 PM
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I just went through the same thing last year, but with A048's. I knew I was going for SS and talking with BWR, the hardcore bar IS what you need with stock springs. But, to use the bar to its full potential you need adjustable shocks. I was not able to get my car to rotate with the LSS shocks (except for when I did something stupid and caused snap oversteer). Since my ohlins upgrade, I can dial in a neutral car with 175/225 AD07's or 205/245 A6's. I'm still working on my set-up to make it as fast as possible.

If you are going to stay with stock shocks, I would go with the street bar if possible.

Also, the stiffer bar is to correct for the inside wheelspin coming off the corners and it also helps with transitional response. This is at the cost of understeer in sweepers. If you set up the corner exit properly you can get on the gas sooner, and allow the car to push out to where you want it to be, working around your problem.
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post #3 of 22 (permalink) Old 06-20-2013, 05:52 AM
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Yep, you can tune it one way or the other. A friend once told me to be careful tying to get sweepers right. The Elise is a transitional monster, don't lose what the car does best. My experience says it's best to stiffen that bar and drive around the understeer.

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post #4 of 22 (permalink) Old 06-22-2013, 06:23 AM
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What's your camber / castor set at?
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post #5 of 22 (permalink) Old 06-22-2013, 02:58 PM
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That's my plan. After putting the hardcore bar on, I set it to the 4th hole 91 from full stiff) Will go to town in the transitions, and will just set up differently for the sweepers. We'll see....first real AX test next weekend!!!
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post #6 of 22 (permalink) Old 06-24-2013, 04:49 AM
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It'll be fun to hear about your findings, Pat. My prediction is that will be too much bar for street tires and you won't be able to drive around that much push.
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post #7 of 22 (permalink) Old 06-24-2013, 06:59 AM
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It'll be fun to hear about your findings, Pat. My prediction is that will be too much bar for street tires and you won't be able to drive around that much push.
Have mine on second-stiffest now for both Hoosiers and Star Specs. Seems to work. I can still reset with a quick lift.

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post #8 of 22 (permalink) Old 06-24-2013, 04:28 PM
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It'll be fun to hear about your findings, Pat. My prediction is that will be too much bar for street tires and you won't be able to drive around that much push.
Very possible....I will have tools and jack stands ready so I can change it between runs.
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post #9 of 22 (permalink) Old 06-25-2013, 08:27 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Subparpunk03 View Post
What's your camber / castor set at?
Don't have my alignment specs with me right now, but camber is maxed out (no shims, just ABS brackets)...I think I got about 0.7 deg on one side and 0.5 on the other.

That actually reminds me of another question, though...if camber is such a big deal (and it seems like when people can adjust it, they usually go to something like 2 deg)...does anyone offer upper A-arm "blueprinting" services? Machining length to the bottom of the factory limit? Maybe that would allow us stock class cars to get a little more camber. I have no idea how to get ahold of a factory drawing for the A-arm to find out what the min is, what is used for a datum surface, etc., but has anyone looked into this?
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post #10 of 22 (permalink) Old 06-25-2013, 08:50 AM
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re: Camber

It is not the A-arm. It is the attachment to the steering arm and hub. These can be machined, although factory parts have odd shapes. It looks like factory did not build-in too much camber as street alignment would call for too many shims and shims tend to loosen up and fall out...

Changing A-arm length will change the camber gain curve. No the best way.

Camber is critical to keep the tire planted on the road i.e. maintaining the tire at the optimum angle to the road.

All stock cars suffer from low camber and poor camber curve. (Both keep people from complaining about rapid tire wear ) How much you can do and what is not 'cheateing' is the question...

Anton


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Originally Posted by mister2dood View Post
Don't have my alignment specs with me right now, but camber is maxed out (no shims, just ABS brackets)...I think I got about 0.7 deg on one side and 0.5 on the other.

That actually reminds me of another question, though...if camber is such a big deal (and it seems like when people can adjust it, they usually go to something like 2 deg)...does anyone offer upper A-arm "blueprinting" services? Machining length to the bottom of the factory limit? Maybe that would allow us stock class cars to get a little more camber. I have no idea how to get ahold of a factory drawing for the A-arm to find out what the min is, what is used for a datum surface, etc., but has anyone looked into this?
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post #11 of 22 (permalink) Old 06-25-2013, 08:52 AM
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Don't have my alignment specs with me right now, but camber is maxed out (no shims, just ABS brackets)...I think I got about 0.7 deg on one side and 0.5 on the other.

That actually reminds me of another question, though...if camber is such a big deal (and it seems like when people can adjust it, they usually go to something like 2 deg)...does anyone offer upper A-arm "blueprinting" services? Machining length to the bottom of the factory limit? Maybe that would allow us stock class cars to get a little more camber. I have no idea how to get ahold of a factory drawing for the A-arm to find out what the min is, what is used for a datum surface, etc., but has anyone looked into this?
It is not your wishbones...it is the steering arm. Just machine off the mounting face and no one will know. You can even machine off a little off the uprights to split the difference and make it even harder to detect...
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post #12 of 22 (permalink) Old 06-25-2013, 09:55 AM
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Good thing you are not a part of the auto-x community.
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post #13 of 22 (permalink) Old 06-26-2013, 02:55 AM
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Now why would you assume that?
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post #14 of 22 (permalink) Old 07-03-2013, 10:04 AM
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I ended up on the second hole from softest. Transitions were awesome at stiffer settings, but understeer was pretty bad. Softest setting got the car upset in fast slaloms. (Of course, I did not really know how the car liked to be driven on Saturday.) Sunday, I figured out the "secret handshake" on Sunday and lead a 52 car class most the day. (Coned off the winning run, and was nipped by 2 tenths on the last run.) Learned that you need to wheel these things much differently than I had thought!!! Fun though!!
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post #15 of 22 (permalink) Old 07-03-2013, 12:18 PM
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Now why would you assume that?
Well, *MY* autocrossing community requires 8" numbers on cars.

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post #16 of 22 (permalink) Old 07-03-2013, 12:19 PM
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I ended up on the second hole from softest. Transitions were awesome at stiffer settings, but understeer was pretty bad. Softest setting got the car upset in fast slaloms. (Of course, I did not really know how the car liked to be driven on Saturday.) Sunday, I figured out the "secret handshake" on Sunday and lead a 52 car class most the day. (Coned off the winning run, and was nipped by 2 tenths on the last run.) Learned that you need to wheel these things much differently than I had thought!!! Fun though!!
Does the phrase "one-armed crack monkey" ring a bell?

Phil Ethier Minnesota USA
1973 Triumph Stag LE22439UBW "uncle jack", Sapphire Blue
2004 Suburban 8.1, Sport Red
2005 Lotus Elise, Bordeaux Red Pearl
2017 Ford Fusion (wife had to stop driving manual due to shoulder problem), Oxford White
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post #17 of 22 (permalink) Old 07-03-2013, 04:45 PM
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You can even machine off a little off the uprights to split the difference and make it even harder to detect...
sigh.

Pat - what's the secret handshake?

Jury is out for me, but I'm thinking the Toyo R1R is not the right tire. Feels good, fun to drive, but, well, um.....timer is broken?



Iain
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post #18 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-18-2013, 08:25 PM
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It is not your wishbones...it is the steering arm. Just machine off the mounting face and no one will know. You can even machine off a little off the uprights to split the difference and make it even harder to detect...
I just came into some new information! You don't have to machine the steering arms nor the uprights... just buy the 2-eleven upper wishbones (A-arms) and steering arms. Even though the 2-eleven has the same chassis as us, it has shorter front A-arms. All the other suspension arms have the same P/Ns. This will allow you to get more camber and/or adjustment. The other change is the steering arm. The 2-Eleven is designed better and does not have nearly the bump steer of all the other Type-111s.

So, just order:
Steering Arm, LH 2-Eleven C127C0003F
Steering Arm, RH 2-Eleven C127C0004F
Wishbone Assembly, upper, LH 2-Eleven A127C0005J
Wishbone Assembly, upper, RH 2-Eleven A127C0006J
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post #19 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-18-2013, 10:13 PM
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JJ................Dood.............That is serious G2!

Tires A6's............

Autocross = make the car dance. Track = smooth. Major hella difference between the two as I am learning. Training my mind to differentiate the two is the hardest part. The stiffer my suspension in autocross the better. The better balanced on the track the better. Once the car starts to hop in autocross your on the edge but you are grabbing traction instead of sliding, tune it out. Hop on the track is deathly and you are way to stiff.

JJ........Chime in here if I am wrong.

Phil.........Your AX community requires 8" numbers, check his location......SCCA in KSA - haven't heard of it! Reminds me of when I went to the HOG rally in Korea and a guy in Daytona told me that doesn't count.

I'm not an expert and im drinking beer. Just my two cents. And I need another beer!

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post #20 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-18-2013, 10:57 PM
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JJ................Dood.............That is serious G2!
I must be getting 3 old... What do you mean G2?

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Autocross = make the car dance. Track = smooth. Major hella difference between the two as I am learning. Training my mind to differentiate the two is the hardest part. The stiffer my suspension in autocross the better. The better balanced on the track the better. Once the car starts to hop in autocross your on the edge but you are grabbing traction instead of sliding, tune it out. Hop on the track is deathly and you are way to stiff.
Pretty much...and what you learn on the Auto-X course is applicable to the track...as far as feel goes.

Hey! And don't make fun of me that I'm playing in the sand...
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