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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Installed VST strut tower bar this weekend and all I can say is WOW what a difference! Steering feel is much improved and heavier, does not feel diconnected anymore. I have driven many M3's and in the front mine feels the closest to the way an M3 feels with this mod. I have also driven a few CTS-V's and most of the comments you here about them is when you move the steering wheel the front tires bite NOW, well mine feels like that now. You really have to pay attention when driving as the front tires bite right NOW to the smallest of steering wheel movement. This mod really helped. My front setup is stock springs, Evolve upgraded front sway bar and bushings, Evolve H5 19x9 Axis wheels, PS2 245/35-19 tires (leaves no room for upgrade of springs).

Oh and it looks awesome too!
 

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Re: WOW VST Strut Tower Bar (Tigers81)

I couldn't agree more.
And your right about the looks.
Sure glad IPD has decided to carry this product.
 

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does the car seem to corner any flatter or does it just help steering feel / turn in?

i installed a front brace on a car once (prelude SH) and I remember thinking the turn in was a lot sharper/crisper. and the car seemed to hold it's line through turns better....but i don't reember thinking it cornered flatter...not like a sway bar..

but it did wonders for the feel of the car.

i imagine this is the same.

i've got to get one!!
 

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Re: (23109VC)

What does this bar do that the existing bar does not do? Strange...
 

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Re: (Short Circuit)

Can someone with an engineering background pipe in on the value of this type of set-up. I've felt the benefit of better strut braces in a number of cars but this one appears a bit different from more traditional braces.

For example, it looks like the bulk of the force on the VST bar is being distributed between the offset attachment points rather than the strut towers themselves. No? Wouldn't it be better to replace the original bar with a new stronger one in lieu of a piggyback type of solution that is offset from the actual strut tower?

-Eric
 

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Re: (Short Circuit)

Quote, originally posted by Short Circuit »
What does this bar do that the existing bar does not do? Strange...

The R does not come with a strut tower bar stock. That big black thing that most people think is a strut tower bar serves only as the upper engine mount point. Hard to believe, but true. It's mounted on rubber joints at both ends, and thus has no effect as far as tying the top end together.
 

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Re: (Sue Esponte)

The "original one" is not a strut brace bar. They sit on rubber mounts so it has nothing to do with stablizing the rigidity of the struts.

As far as the contact points, I am not sure, but they should be secured around the strut location. On my Accord, I had adjustable struts that I could adjust from the engine bay and my strut brace bar secured around the struts.

Hope that helps. IPD even stated this misunderstanding in their newsletter. I just forgot what exactly they stated.

regards
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Re: (23109VC)

Yes, on my car with the combination of the upgraded sway bar in the front and the strut bar boy does it ever!
 

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Tiger-

do you have the EVOLVE rear sway bar? I think you ought to add it if you don't. on a car that is mostly FWD (like the R) a stiffer REAR end will induce oversteer and make the car drive MORE like it's rwd. if you add a front bar only, I think you're likely to make the car plow even more if you push it.

the rear bar is easier to put in and wouldn't cost much to get installed..you could probably even do it yourself.
 

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Re: (pie_ya)

Quote, originally posted by pie_ya »
As far as the contact points, I am not sure, but they should be secured around the strut location.

Okay, so since the black bar isn't a strut brace, does the fact that it is where it is preclude the use of a straight brace between the two towers?

The VST bar does appear to connect to the strut towers, but the actual brace itself isn't directly between the towers. I'm not an engineer, but it seems like the towers are exerting force against the sides of a slightly "U" shaped bar rather than directly against a straight bar. I know the sides aren't that long (just long enough to create an attachment) but it still seems a bit inefficient nonetheless...no? Then again, since the black bar isn't a brace, I suppose it's better to have SOMETHING than nothing!

-Eric
 

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Re: (pie_ya)

Quote, originally posted by pie_ya »
The "original one" is not a strut brace bar. They sit on rubber mounts so it has nothing to do with stablizing the rigidity of the struts.

As far as the contact points, I am not sure, but they should be secured around the strut location. On my Accord, I had adjustable struts that I could adjust from the engine bay and my strut brace bar secured around the struts.

Hope that helps. IPD even stated this misunderstanding in their newsletter. I just forgot what exactly they stated.

regards

So if the black bar isn't really a brace, what does it do? Is it some kind of vibration damper? And if you have the VST brace (or something like it) doesn't that a minumum replace what the black brace is doing? What I'm getting at is this: can the black bar be removed and replaced with a better bar mounted over the strut towers instead of on the side? I'm not an engineer, but an architect w/ 2 years of structural engineering behind me. The strut bar mounted directly over the towers will transfer loads more efficiently than on the side. That's not engineering, just logic.

Still, if you can feel the difference then the bar is definitely doing the job. Conversely, it may be exerting unnecessary torsion back into the strut (or at least the strut connection). I don't really know- my two years of engineering aren't enough to answer this with confidence but I'd be interested to hear what others have to say about this.
 

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Re: (not2blu)

Conversely, it may be exerting unnecessary torsion back into the strut (or at least the strut connection).

Interesting statement - I never thought about that possibility. My "sense" is that this does happen, but in the end, does not matter as it is really probably enhancing the ideal design of the car...meaning no deviation of the struts & towers in their mounts. I think more positives than negatives here.

In pricing strut braces for other cars via Google, it seems that this particular VST solution for our cars are about DOUBLE what it costs others. Most others with similar looks & capability are going for $200.00 and under...

Do we have any alternatives other than VST?
 

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Re: (not2blu)

Quote, originally posted by not2blu »
So if the black bar isn't really a brace, what does it do? Is it some kind of vibration damper? ... can the black bar be removed

It's a motor mount, with vibration damping. If you remove it, you'll have to put back some kind of support for the top engine mount, probably back to the firewall like the earlier 5-cyl arrangement. Or you could affix to a solid strutbar, but either one will be harsh.

The add-on bar makes a direct link between the top of the two struts, bolts straight onto the strut and strut tower. That's a good solid link and obviously tightens up the flex. This improves turn-in and hard cornering by clamping the geometry.

I have a much lighter (tubular) Volvo bar on my V50 and it makes a nice difference. These things don't generally have to be totally rigid heavy duty assemblies to work, just a stiffener to square the box from lower crossmember to upper strut mounts. The VST looks overbuilt, frankly, but that seems to be kinda the point. Nice. http://********************/smile/emthup.gif

Tom.
 

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Re: (Razzle-D)

Quote, originally posted by Razzle-D »
I do not see this on IPDs website. Link?
Cost?

You have to call them. They are special-order parts and are not listed on their website.

Their price is $395, but they only had a couple left back in Dec, so they might make another order because they are shipped from Japan (I think)

Their number is 1-800-444-6473 or 1-503-257-7500 if local.

Paul
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Re: (23109VC)

I have the upgraded Evolve swaybars and bushings on both front and rear. They made a difference when installed, VST strut bar helped a little more, TME 5/8" drop springs in the rear will help a little more on top of that.
 

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Re: (tmtalpey)

Quote, originally posted by tmtalpey »

The add-on bar makes a direct link between the top of the two struts, bolts straight onto the strut and strut tower.

It's not quite a direct link... it has a few offsets and zigs... I had a actual direct design almost proto'd when by design buddy (the CAD guy) got cancer and the project got set aside. I am staring at the end brackets as I type this. When he is done with chemo, maybe I'll rekindle the project.
 

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Re: (JimLill)

I was just about to say that this could be a neat TrackR product.

More importantly, I hope your buddy gets better!

-Eric
 
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