Educate me guys - Anti Roll Bars

S550VertCS

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So while I am a car guy because I absolutely love cars and love my Mustangs, I am not a wrench in any way. So I depend on you more knowledgeable folks for advice and knowledge. I have a 2020 GT Vert. I am going to purchase the Eibach Pro-kit lowering springs. While browsing the Eibach site, I saw the anti roll bar kit for $495, and they combined it with the springs for $7xx.xx, forget the exact amount. But the springs were out of stock on their site. So I did a google search, landed on a site that has both the springs, and the combine springs and antiroll bar kit in stock. The combined kit is on closeout for $529 which if I subtract 295 for the springs, I would be getting the antiroll bar kits for over $200 off retail. Question is, do I need or want them?

My style of driving, not a track guy, nor much of a racer, but am very much a "spirited" driver who seeks out twisties. The Dragoon is in my future plans.

So what would these bars do for my car? Thanks guys.





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JakeLethal

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So while I am a car guy because I absolutely love cars and love my Mustangs, I am not a wrench in any way. So I depend on you more knowledgeable folks for advice and knowledge. I have a 2020 GT Vert. I am going to purchase the Eibach Pro-kit lowering springs. While browsing the Eibach site, I saw the anti roll bar kit for $495, and they combined it with the springs for $7xx.xx, forget the exact amount. But the springs were out of stock on their site. So I did a google search, landed on a site that has both the springs, and the combine springs and antiroll bar kit in stock. The combined kit is on closeout for $529 which if I subtract 295 for the springs, I would be getting the antiroll bar kits for over $200 off retail. Question is, do I need or want them?

My style of driving, not a track guy, nor much of a racer, but am very much a "spirited" driver who seeks out twisties. The Dragoon is in my future plans.

So what would these bars do for my car? Thanks guys.

So, to my understanding the anti roll bar kit would minimize "body roll" when taking corners at faster than normal speeds.
 

Mikthehun1

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So, to my understanding the anti roll bar kit would minimize "body roll" when taking corners at faster than normal speeds.
In addition, a convertible is not as stiff as the coupe. I only drove the s550 vert for a quick test drive, but it didn't seem like it needed anything for just cruising. For hitting the twisties though, you would definitely benefit. I'd also recommend the Ford Performance strut tower brace if you don't have one already.
 

MaskedRacerX

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Antiroll bars, aka, swaybars, reduce - per @JakeLethal's comment - body roll, and attempt to keep more tire-to-ground contact. Like if you're taking a big sweeping turn, as the car leans, the bar transfers that downward force of the outside wheels to the inner wheels, twisting to increase their downward force (since you want all your tires making as much contact as possible).

Anyway, your car already has them, the difference is in the construction, diameter, etc., and how they're connected to the suspension, so the endlinks, the bushings, etc.

While larger, more stiff bars, with more solid connection points improve handling, they can also introduce a non-trivial amount of NVH - you can start getting "cross talk" from them, so you get a sort side-to-side shimmy, especially on uneven roads (vs. a racetrack). I had a Z51 Vette that was reasonably pleasant on the street, added T1 spec bars/links, upgraded bushings, yikes, it was fun at the track, but went from a A/B+ on the street to a solid C-.

So it's a careful balance of improvement vs. ride quality.

You might also consider a set of factory spec, but upgraded bars (like from a PPx car, a GT350, etc.)

Same thing with the springs, be aware of the rates, how much they lower the car, whether there's any concerns about riding on the bump stops - and make sure they're designed to work with your "base" shocks/struts (many are designed for the PP setup).
 

Norm Peterson

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So while I am a car guy because I absolutely love cars and love my Mustangs, I am not a wrench in any way. So I depend on you more knowledgeable folks for advice and knowledge. I have a 2020 GT Vert. I am going to purchase the Eibach Pro-kit lowering springs. While browsing the Eibach site, I saw the anti roll bar kit for $495, and they combined it with the springs for $7xx.xx, forget the exact amount. But the springs were out of stock on their site. So I did a google search, landed on a site that has both the springs, and the combine springs and antiroll bar kit in stock. The combined kit is on closeout for $529 which if I subtract 295 for the springs, I would be getting the antiroll bar kits for over $200 off retail. Question is, do I need or want them?

My style of driving, not a track guy, nor much of a racer, but am very much a "spirited" driver who seeks out twisties. The Dragoon is in my future plans.

So what would these bars do for my car? Thanks guys.
Especially for a street driven only convertible, I'd suggest going no further than bars (with great preference for them being adjustable) and shocks/struts. Convertibles are inherently less rigid than coupes, so with some long-term thinking in mind it's probably best to "stiffen lightly" here.

The bars will flatten the cornering out some - but don't get carried away trying to eliminate all roll. Better dampers will generally improve cornering composure, which becomes more important in street driving as you start to dial your driving enthusiasm up a few notches.

Bars can be used to tune your car's handling balance to better suit you, provided that you have some adjustability. You're not looking for adjustability just to keep playing with the adjustments all the time, so just leave them alone once you've found settings that work for you.


Just so you know, most of the track days I've run my '08 GT at were with it still on its OE springs (which are softer than S550 springs). Somewhat firmer bars, better dampers, a little improvement in rear axle locating, and a mildly aggressive front wheel alignment was it. Those techniques are general in nature, not car-specific. It's really just the details that vary a bit between the S197 and the S550.


Norm
 

NoVaGT

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I'd be looking into stiffening the structure of the car first.

Aren't there kits for convertible S550s to stiffen the structure?
 

MaskedRacerX

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I'd be looking into stiffening the structure of the car first.

Aren't there kits for convertible S550s to stiffen the structure?
Yeah, there's a K-brace (PP cars have this standard), strut bar (these have a pretty minor affect, but cheap and super easy to install), verts have some additional rear bracing so some of the kits (from like BMR) have components that won't fit, so I think it's better to pick and choose.

Steeda and BMR are great sources for this stuff, and OP, you might want to search in the convertibles area about this, a few threads, and it'll be more applicable to your vert.
 

NoVaGT

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Yeah, there's a K-brace (PP cars have this standard), strut bar (these have a pretty minor affect, but cheap and super easy to install), verts have some additional rear bracing so some of the kits (from like BMR) have components that won't fit, so I think it's better to pick and choose.

Steeda and BMR are great sources for this stuff, and OP, you might want to search in the convertibles area about this, a few threads, and it'll be more applicable to your vert.
I was more thinking of something under the car. Like some large bracing that better ties in the front and rear sections of the vehicle.

Like the old-school sub-frame ties.

S550s have to have something like that, right?
 
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S550VertCS

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I'd be looking into stiffening the structure of the car first.

Aren't there kits for convertible S550s to stiffen the structure?
There may be. I did not seek the anti roll bars, was just looking at the springs, and saw they offered a kit with both in it, then found the same kit insanely cheap, so figured, if its a good addition to the car, then I wont pass up the sale price. But if I really dont need them and would be better off with something else, I will just go ahead and start with just the springs. The intent of the springs for me is to eliminate the wheel gap while retaining close to stock feel, dont want it too stiff. And everything I read about the Eibach Pro Kit Springs seems to be exactly what I am looking for.
 

MaskedRacerX

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I was more thinking of something under the car. Like some large bracing that better ties in the front and rear sections of the vehicle.

Like the old-school sub-frame ties.

S550s have to have something like that, right?
Yep! Lots of options in that capacity, in fact ... paging @Copperhead73

(He's got a killer vert suspension setup)

From his sig:

Steeda dual rate MagneRide ultimate handling springs, rear control arm spherical bushings and alignment kit, G-Trac Extreme K-member brace, vertical links
 

TopJimmyCooks

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There may be. I did not seek the anti roll bars, was just looking at the springs, and saw they offered a kit with both in it, then found the same kit insanely cheap, so figured, if its a good addition to the car, then I wont pass up the sale price. But if I really dont need them and would be better off with something else, I will just go ahead and start with just the springs. The intent of the springs for me is to eliminate the wheel gap while retaining close to stock feel, dont want it too stiff. And everything I read about the Eibach Pro Kit Springs seems to be exactly what I am looking for.
Lots of good advice here. Since you will never track, you probably just want to stiffen the chassis a little and limit roll. I’d do K-brace, strut-tower brace, and sway bars. Drive that for a while, you will probably be happy. If you still need more then get into springs and shocks. Probably Ford Performance or Steeda. I did a whole bunch of upgrades at once. They are all great now...but I wish I had slow-rolled it and felt each upgrade on its own.
 
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Copperhead73

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Yep! Lots of options in that capacity, in fact ... paging @Copperhead73

(He's got a killer vert suspension setup)

From his sig:
Thanks for the compliment! Like TopJimmy, I did everything at about the same time, and I didn't get a chance to push the car very hard before doing the work and between, but I can tell from reduced cowl shake over local wash-boards that the bracing helped a lot and the overall stiffness is much improved.

Anyway, for what the OP intends, I don't know that the spherical bushings and rear alignment kit I installed would be worth the time and money.

The J&M Jacking Rails that I installed are very long compared to the other brands I looked at, and approximate the old Sub-Frame Connectors we would use on SN95/New Edge cars. They are also under $200. The Steeda G-Trac brace was also cheap and easy. I added it shortly after the rails and noticed it tightened the car up further. Neither of those pieces add much weight and are very good bang-for the buck for the verts.

I can't comment on the springs since mine is an MR car, but the Steeda springs I went with are stiffer than stock...close to the GT350. I can push it really hard through some sharp turns, and while I get a decent amount of body roll, it isn't enough to where I hear the tire squeals at all. Of course, the Pilot Sport 4S tires are amazing. I don't think I am going to mess with new anti-roll bars. If I do, I would likely go with what MRX recommends and stick to something used on factory cars already, like GT350 bars.

I can say that with all the work I did, including the bushings and alignment kit, the car still rides VERY well in Normal Mode and is much more responsive and "precise" than before. I didn't pick up any significant NVH. Below is a pic through a hairpin on the dragon. I was pushing hard that day. You can see the body roll. I wish I hadn't lost a picture of the same turn in my 04 Cobra from 15 years ago. It was a coupe that I had that fully suspension modded, and it looks like it is about to roll over in the same turn at about the same speed. The S550 is a terrific car.

EDIT: I recall my best Lateral G the day the below pic was taken was around 1.1g on the built in PP meter. I don't know how accurate that thing is, or if that number means what it used to. 25 years ago a street car pushing 1g through a turn was a big deal, IIRC. It may be as common as rain these days.

'12637638-129Slayer.jpg
 
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NightmareMoon

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Chassis stiffening is going to help more with cowl vibration and experiential stuff than it's going to help with handling. These modern chassis cars are already very stiff compared to cars from 10 or 15 years ago.

Swaybars are a double edged sword. The car transitions better for lane changes and extremely tight switchbacks (the kind you're probably only going to see on a road like the tail of the dragon).

The downside is that faster response means your inputs matter more and the car may require faster reflexes to catch it if something does go wrong (it may take a bit to learn the new handling feel and how to correct for mistakes). The increased coupling of the left and right side wheels also makes the ride harsher over bumps. Where a bump would have mainly only upset one wheel, now the other side gets jounced more too (through the swaybar). Body roll is also a very useful signal about what's happening with the forces on the car. Flatter cars give less feedback to what's going on.
 

Excelerater

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I junked all my stock sways about 2 months ago and replaced with aftermarket ,id say the rear bar was the biggest difference in size but new shocks/struts will also be needed to take advantage of the sways..I added both,car rides harder,so be ready if u do the mods
 

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