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Yellow Jacket

Which Strut Tower Brace Would You Get?

60 posts in this topic

I've narrowed my choice of Strut Tower Brace to either

 

this:

Speedlogix Strut Tower Brace 05-12 Challenger, Charger, 300, Magnum

 

or this:

Petty SRT Strut Tower Brace - Petty Challenger

 

They are very similar, except the Speedlogix one replaces the existing firewall brace, and the Petty one bolts right to it. Other than that, I'm not sure of any major differences.

 

Which is better?

 

This forum is smarter than the other one, so I expect better answers.

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Just from the pictures it looks like the Speedlogix brace has more supporting structure on the rear of the brace and I like the design appearance more. Probably the SX one for me.

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I agree with Stevo, I like a little bling in my stuff as well. The shop hemi on looks very much like the Techco one I have and it looks nice IMO.

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I know I am bias :)

 

But for the most performance - you want the most connections to the body of the car. Like our bar does - all the other bars bolt to a bar that bolts to the car. I say remove the middle man - bolt right to the car lol!

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Good point Mikey! Still waiting to see how the yellow looks against the Stinger Yellow on Lisa's dad's car. If it's close enough, I'll take it. But Petty will color match to the paint code.

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srt8eb1.jpg

 

wasn't looking for show bling, don't go there much, but the SpeedLogix/REM bar is strong construction, light and looks great too. This bar replaces the box crossmember completely and installs and fits nicely, about a four beer install so better the the rear too to finish off the six pack. :D

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It's for none of the above. Well, bling sort of. But I've been reading about all these people getting sheet metal dents, and the current theory is body flex. I want to stiffen up the body to possibly avoid this rippling or denting effect. Also, I hear it's a better ride.

 

So anyway, that's why I was looking at the ones that bolt to the firewall. I figure they're stiffer.

 

--Howie

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that's a great question. I think all three would be good reasons and could give a frameless body some help in some stress points even on every mans streets. Iv'e heard some even are struturally welding in braces at certain areas on the body due to large hp/torque loads. IDK I mean what if you got into a high speed chase :D could happen ya know

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Light, strong, and color-matched are the reasons I like the Petty brace too. However, Speedlogix is also light and strong. As far as color, I'm waiting to find out whether their yellow is close enough to Stinger Yellow that it would look okay.

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I can't comment on which product is better than the rest - all 3 are good and all 3 will look sharp as well as stiffen the front structure up some. Here's some generic strut tower thoughts, though.

 

There are two main deformation types that occur in a car chassis: torsional and longitudinal (looking at the car from the side, the frame/body bowing up or down in the center). Of the two, torsional has the greatest impact on the ability of the suspension to consistently and precisely do its job and is directly addressed by strut tower braces. Automakers go to great lengths to add torsional stiffness, but their ability to do so is limited by many factors - notably door sizing for ingress/egress. When you read about new supercars, they often tout a "lb-ft per degree" or "newton meter per degree" figure that is higher than the next guys; that's torsional stiffness they are bragging on.

 

I always like to give extreme examples to help people visualize the issue as this one is not entirely intuitive. Imagine a small model car about a foot long consisting of only a front and rear independent suspension, nothing connecting them; just suspension and wheels. Now, add a 2x4 piece of lumber connecting the front to the rear - this represents our perfectly rigid example. If you lift up on the left rear suspension, you expect weight to transfer towards the right front (mostly), and some to the right rear, and probably a little bit to move off of the left front, correct? And that's exactly what would happen.

 

But now cut the 2x4 in the middle (separating front from rear) and install a rotary joint such that the front and rear can rotate independently of each other; this represents a perfectly NOT rigid example. Again, lift up on the left rear tire, but now it simply picks up, shifts its weight only to the right rear tire, and the front never really knows what happened.

 

Now imagine you add large anti-roll bars to the 2nd car with the rotary joint... Not a whole lot accompished there other than making it easier to break traction!

 

The point is that the less rigid the chassis is in torsion, the less able the suspension is to react properly to the "big picture" of what's going on dynamically with the car. Obviously these cars (and any cars really) are closer to the 2x4 car than the hinged one, but the jist of it is the same. Anything that you can do to add stiffness to the chassis gets you closer to the 2x4 model and will noticably change the feel of the car even with no other suspension modifications.

 

Front strut tower bars should add torsional stiffness by triangulating forward load-bearing points (strut tower tops) with something more rigid - ideally the firewall. In doing so, you effectively shorten the length of the chassis that is able to flex and thus, reduce the overall torsional flex of the vehicle.

 

On the GRAND-AM car we built, if you placed a floor jack behind the front tire to jack the car up, the rear tire would come off the ground when the front tire was less than 1" off the ground - that's the kind of stiffness that can only be achieved with a full cage, but you can't imagine how different the car feels when things are tied that tightly together.

 

I haven't heard about the body panel dimpling issue mentioned earlier, but it seems entirely plausible as I know these chassis can flex an amazing amount. They are long, heavy cars with long, heavy doors (and the large openings to accomodate them).

 

So, pick the strut tower brace that you like best and go for it. Some do a better job of others of adding stiffness, but any of them will make the front stiffer and improve the situation.

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Wow, thanks for that tutorial! Best explanation I've ever seen. Once again, I love this forum. You guys are actually knowledgeable, as opposed to just talking out the ass. But actually, now you raise another question. It sounds like subframe connectors or tunnel braces would be a better choice for stiffening up the car's torsional rigidity. Would you recommend those over the strut tower braces to prevent sheet metal rippling?

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You guys are actually knowledgeable, as opposed to just talking out the ass.

 

Make no mistake about it - I spend plenty of time talking out my ass, I just have to cherry pick when a topic comes along that I can contribute to!

 

But actually, now you raise another question. It sounds like subframe connectors or tunnel braces would be a better choice for stiffening up the car's torsional rigidity. Would you recommend those over the strut tower braces to prevent sheet metal rippling?

 

If you were building a track day toy, I'd recommend doing front, rear, and subframes all at once. For a daily driver(ish) car that you want to tighten up, you will definitely feel the most bang for the buck with a front strut tower brace. After that, when you're ready to spend more money, I would probably do subframe connectors before I'd do a rear strut tower brace. That gives you more stiffness (I expect subframes add more stiffness than a rear bar, but that's a guess not a fact) and keeps your whole trunk usable.

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