Honey Badger's Completely Off-the-Rails Build and Adventure Thread

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The BMR rear arms don't have a threaded link like the ones from FTBR and Steeda and so on. It's a billet aluminum part with a double-threaded sleeve that does the adjustment. Overall, it's a lot stronger than the "turnbuckle" style adjusters, but in the end it still comes down to the strength of the threaded steel rod on the spherical rod-end.
The main thing is that the threads are loaded in tension and compression with very, very little bending. Loaded that way, pretty much any threaded steel rod in that size range will live forever with the loads coming through there.

These and the SPC are both good designs for a much easier adjustment than a stock link in the subframe slot.
 

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The main thing is that the threads are loaded in tension and compression with very, very little bending. Loaded that way, pretty much any threaded steel rod in that size range will live forever with the loads coming through there.
I'm not sure what you are saying here. Are you saying that the threaded rod that failed on Honey badger must have had a manufacturing defect? What are the loads on that steel rod?

My SWAG is that the failure point of the rod would always be loaded in tension due to the jam nuts.
 

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I'm not sure what you are saying here. Are you saying that the threaded rod that failed on Honey badger must have had a manufacturing defect? What are the loads on that steel rod?

My SWAG is that the failure point of the rod would always be loaded in tension due to the jam nuts.
No, I'm saying if you load something like that in bending (which in the FTBR, Steeda, UPR designs, they are), it's going to fatigue at the threads. Threads become big stress risers when loaded in bending or shear. This is far from the first failure of this type of adjustable camber arm that I've seen. Most have been UPR but I've seen the others too.

The cornering loads that come through the knuckle into the camber arm are parallel to the wheel axis of rotation. The SPC is great because it's basically an OEM design with a proper adjustment method. The BMR is good too because the rod end threads are positioned so that they are loaded in tension and compression, not bending. From high impact bumps, these loads don't really affect the camber arm much, as it pivots about the inner point.
 

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Nice looking part. I like the bolt design, though I'm a bit bummed to see the rubber bushings in that part. Right now, I'm leaning towards FTBR bearings inside some OEM arms
I went out and looked at the SPC parts. The "rubber" is a 45mm diameter ring bushing about 1/8" thick between the arm and the steel core. Less play than OEM, could be similar to poly, hard to know.

There's something to keep in mind in your selection process. Any S550 UCA has to have a non-spherical bearing at one end or the other to hold it upright so it can't pivot on the bearings and hit the half-shaft. BMR puts a poly bushing (with a zerk) on the inboard end, FTBR's modified OEM part has a Delrin bushing (with a zerk) on the outboard end.
 

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No, I'm saying if you load something like that in bending (which in the FTBR, Steeda, UPR designs, they are), it's going to fatigue at the threads. Threads become big stress risers when loaded in bending or shear. This is far from the first failure of this type of adjustable camber arm that I've seen. Most have been UPR but I've seen the others too.

The cornering loads that come through the knuckle into the camber arm are parallel to the wheel axis of rotation. The SPC is great because it's basically an OEM design with a proper adjustment method. The BMR is good too because the rod end threads are positioned so that they are loaded in tension and compression, not bending. From high impact bumps, these loads don't really affect the camber arm much, as it pivots about the inner point.

Never looked into this suspension part but after reading your description of how those companies build this amazed they are designed this way.

I think someone just applied the rules for making that part in compression/tension and applied it to a part that has to take a moment instead.
Same type of engineering oversight that led to the hyatt walkway incident in the 80's. First glance it seems like it would be fine to until you diagram it out.
 

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On a another note,. This motor is INSANE. It's an unhinged, wailing V8 banshee. It's completely unreal how insane this thing sounds. Sounds like no other voodoo I've ever heard.

And the top end. Good god the top end. It just sings. It's so damn smooth up top I kept forgetting to shift at 7600. It was just so so so smooth. I know the dyno graph doesn't show it, but this motor feels noticeably better up top. I wonder if I had data logged a lap on the previous motor if we would have seen some deflection in the VCT because it didn't feel nearly this smooth. I truly feel this motor could sit above 6500 for hours and hours and be fine. It's that smooth and happy up there.

I didn't really miss VCT once I re-calibrated my shifts. You'll notice I'm in second at T11, T12, T15, and T20 now. Fortunately, the lockouts actually makes it easier to put power down because the curve ramps up. I never used to be able to use 2nd in those corners with any real benefit unless I was on slicks because it would break the rear loose. Overall, what a blast. I can't even imagine what it's going to be like with new slicks on it.
I might be imagining it, but it seems like your motor rips from 5500-redline much faster than a stock one. You can definitely tell a difference in the rate at which the revs build from 4500-5500 and from 5500+ in the video. Extra shifts cost time, but that looks really promising for overall speed. And it sounds amazing. Count me as very curious to see what lap times look like on fresh tires. Of course there is one other, bigger variable - you, and your extra Miata seat time. Driving slow cars makes you faster, and I guarantee that's going on here too.

Oh, and it shoots flames.
Always a bonus!
 

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I think someone just applied the rules for making that part in compression/tension and applied it to a part that has to take a moment instead.
I'm more mystified why the designer thought it needed such a ridiculous range of adjustment.
 

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Never looked into this suspension part but after reading your description of how those companies build this amazed they are designed this way.

I think someone just applied the rules for making that part in compression/tension and applied it to a part that has to take a moment instead.
Same type of engineering oversight that led to the hyatt walkway incident in the 80's. First glance it seems like it would be fine to until you diagram it out.
Hmmm... thinking back on it, when I first bought the BMR parts in 2019, I looked at the various designs and I liked BMR's because the adjusting screw was dead in-line with the bushing at the far end. The only bending moment on it would be from flex of the billet aluminum bar, which is likely "not much". The real moment in the design is on the assembly that goes from the knuckle to the spherical bearing. It's a big stainless piece with the same bolt through it as Ford uses, so presumably it's strong enough.
 
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honeybadger

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I might be imagining it, but it seems like your motor rips from 5500-redline much faster than a stock one. You can definitely tell a difference in the rate at which the revs build from 4500-5500 and from 5500+ in the video. Extra shifts cost time, but that looks really promising for overall speed. And it sounds amazing. Count me as very curious to see what lap times look like on fresh tires. Of course there is one other, bigger variable - you, and your extra Miata seat time. Driving slow cars makes you faster, and I guarantee that's going on here too.


Always a bonus!
I think a 4.11 gear would fix the shifting issue. Keep third usable and just barely top 5th on the back straight--especially with the taller Pirellis. But not sure it's 100% needed, my shifts have gotten fairly good and there's still room for improvement. With super grippy tires and the mellow-er power deliver, I might be able to put the power down in 2nd more easily.

I was being pretty light on the brakes this weekend because I was running out of vacuum and having a hard pedal after extended WOT every couple of laps. Need to run a test on the motor to see what we're pulling for vacuum - might be an unintended consequence of the lockouts.

I can unequivocally say after this weekend I don't miss VCT. The motor is still stupid strong and it's more fun to drive, IMHO. I wouldn't recommend this change for everyone (it seriously sucks on the street/pits), but at WOT it's an absolute hoot.

And agreed on the Miata time. I was in slip angle a lot more than before. It's really helped me on turn-in. Check out turn 6 and 7. I'm on power way earlier in 6 and managing a 4 wheel drift in 7.

 

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These and the SPC are both good designs for a much easier adjustment than a stock link in the subframe slot.
I designed a set of subframe slot lockouts with 0.1 degrees of camber change from piece to piece to use with the OEM UCA. Basically a flat plate with an island that fills the slot with a hole through for the UCA mounting bolt. Then I got the BMR's instead. I'm still thinking about making them, although if I install the SPC's I don't need them. The BMR's are great for adjusting (which is torture because it's cross-linked to toe so you have to adjust both together) but they get noisy pretty quickly. The noise doesn't bother me, but noise = wear and that does.
 

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I designed a set of subframe slot lockouts with 0.1 degrees of camber change from piece to piece to use with the OEM UCA. Basically a flat plate with an island that fills the slot with a hole through for the UCA mounting bolt. Then I got the BMR's instead. I'm still thinking about making them, although if I install the SPC's I don't need them. The BMR's are great for adjusting (which is torture because it's cross-linked to toe so you have to adjust both together) but they get noisy pretty quickly. The noise doesn't bother me, but noise = wear and that does.
I wonder if that's my rear clunk/thunk noise....
 
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honeybadger

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Got my SPC replacement camber arms today. Pretty nice piece of hardware with some really nice design elements. The adjustment approach is particularly nice. I like how it locks out the OEM slot on the rear subframe, so there’s no movement capable there. And then on the knuckle, instead of a bolt, it uses a sleeve, so it shouldn’t move when you tighten the bolt down. Nice strong hardware too.

They do seem a bit physically bigger than OEM (arm for scale since I didn’t have the internet's ultra-precise banana). Does anyone have any OEM pieces they can measure? Curious about size and weight.


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Thanks @JAJ for the recommendation.

I’ll post some more info when I go to install them
 

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Got my SPC replacement camber arms today. Pretty nice piece of hardware with some really nice design elements. The adjustment approach is particularly nice. I like how it locks out the OEM slot on the rear subframe, so there’s no movement capable there. And then on the knuckle, instead of a bolt, it uses a sleeve, so it shouldn’t move when you tighten the bolt down. Nice strong hardware too.

They do seem a bit physically bigger than OEM (arm for scale since I didn’t have the internet's ultra-precise banana). Does anyone have any OEM pieces they can measure? Curious about size and weight.


0CD6707C-CFC3-4B62-81D2-E36CAEB591BA.jpeg
EC5275CC-050F-4706-B941-EA16F4C2AA6E.jpeg
B3E37952-5FAB-4BFE-A928-B6FDF6F686A0.jpeg
3D56C3DE-84FD-493A-BDF6-4AACCEED74C7.jpeg
B2B7222A-869B-4977-9CBA-56A85F037A0F.jpeg
9FBD388B-9BAA-4455-BA05-382D0DC2ADA5.jpeg
E2BD6684-08C9-42D7-BD82-D23D3FFA41B0.jpeg
F8570413-00FB-4468-80D9-C094DF3E5301.jpeg


Thanks @JAJ for the recommendation.

I’ll post some more info when I go to install them
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