Late sway bar to early A?

Suspension, Steering and Chassis

  1. flingdingo

    flingdingo Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    402
    Likes Received:
    328
    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2017
    Location:
    El Lay
    Local Time:
    12:33 PM
    So I'm finally getting around to making some improvements to my wagon. We've been too busy driving it since we bought it. We've taken it on a few family trips, and while the car rides great when empty, load a family of five and a week's worth of luggage into it, and it is scary at freeway speeds. So, the first round of improvements are in the brakes and suspension.

    This car doesn't need to out-stop or out-corner a Porsche, I just want it to be a nice driver. I have a '73 Scamp in the garage that is getting upgraded suspension and brakes, so I've got a lot of factory parts to use, if possible.

    My plan for the wagon is to use the V8 torsion bars from the Scamp, and the anti-sway bar if possible. I know the later cars are wider, but will the sway bar work on the early body? If not what are my options? Was there a factory bar on the early cars? I've done a bit of research, but I haven't found anything other than massive aftermarket bars, which I don't want for this car.
     
  2. 65 Dartman

    65 Dartman FABO Gold Member FABO Gold Member

    Messages:
    12,616
    Likes Received:
    4030
    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2006
    Location:
    Strasburg, VA
    Local Time:
    3:33 PM
    I serious doubt The sway bar from the 73 will not fit since it’s designed to go through the K Frane abd the early A K Frane would require much work to make it workable. Yes there was a factory sway bar for the 65/66 but generally hard to find and can be spendy if you find one. Yes the aftermarket bars are pretty big but IMO worth it. I’ll Be using a Helwig 1 & 1/4 hollow bar designed for the early A- lightweight compared to the solid bars and do the same job. just MHO!
     
  3. Plymouth 65

    Plymouth 65 Floorable Deplorable

    Messages:
    1,657
    Likes Received:
    1600
    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2016
    Location:
    Mich
    Local Time:
    3:33 PM
    In order to install a sway bar your going to need lower control arms with the mounting tabs. 65'
     
    • Disagree Disagree x 1
    • 65 Dartman

      65 Dartman FABO Gold Member FABO Gold Member

      Messages:
      12,616
      Likes Received:
      4030
      Joined:
      Sep 24, 2006
      Location:
      Strasburg, VA
      Local Time:
      3:33 PM
      Or the shock tabs that are included in most all the kits.
       
      • Agree Agree x 2
      • brian6pac

        brian6pac Well-Known Member

        Messages:
        5,627
        Likes Received:
        3986
        Joined:
        Nov 15, 2016
        Location:
        N.E.Ohio
        Local Time:
        3:33 PM
        You just need to make your own mounting tabs and weld them to the control arms.
        Then you can use any sway bar you want.
         
        • Like Like x 1
        • Disagree Disagree x 1
        • flingdingo

          flingdingo Well-Known Member

          Messages:
          402
          Likes Received:
          328
          Joined:
          Apr 26, 2017
          Location:
          El Lay
          Local Time:
          12:33 PM
          I have the tabs for the LCA's. I forgot about the through-the-Kmember mounting.

          Anyone have a picture of a factory early swaybar?
           
        • RedFish

          RedFish Well-Known Member

          Messages:
          25,295
          Likes Received:
          3630
          Joined:
          Sep 5, 2007
          Local Time:
          2:33 PM
          Wouldn't it be nice if the entire 73 suspension would bolt under the early A ?
          There is pic of a pre 73 sway bar in a recent for sale post.
          [FOR SALE] - MOPAR A-Body Firm Feel Front Sway Bar '62-'66 A-Body $215
          These pre 73 bars route around the front of the K. OEM had large low hanging triangular forward mounts with a bushing captured in it. Bolt ears easily broken, grind away welds to R&R the bushings, just not a great design.
          I haven't searched it but I would think Addco or some mfgr offers a close to OEM grade sway bar for your application.
           
        • 66fs

          66fs FABO Gold Member FABO Gold Member

          Messages:
          6,000
          Likes Received:
          2551
          Joined:
          Sep 9, 2009
          Location:
          Greenwood, South Carolina
          Local Time:
          3:33 PM
        • 65 Dartman

          65 Dartman FABO Gold Member FABO Gold Member

          Messages:
          12,616
          Likes Received:
          4030
          Joined:
          Sep 24, 2006
          Location:
          Strasburg, VA
          Local Time:
          3:33 PM
          67-72 sway bars are to wide. The link ends on the bar end up under the ball joint on an early A
           
        • Commando66

          Commando66 She's a beaut Clark!

          Messages:
          2,017
          Likes Received:
          494
          Joined:
          Dec 2, 2007
          Location:
          Gig Harbor, WA
          Local Time:
          12:33 PM
          Use an aftermarket sway-bar and be done with it. I have used the Firm Feel solid bar on several early a-bodies. It makes a huge difference. Also, gas shocks. I've used both KYB and Bilstein.
           
          • Agree Agree x 2
          • brian6pac

            brian6pac Well-Known Member

            Messages:
            5,627
            Likes Received:
            3986
            Joined:
            Nov 15, 2016
            Location:
            N.E.Ohio
            Local Time:
            3:33 PM
            I was referring to aftermarket sway bars and any sway bar that is close to the correct width.
            Just because you can't fabricate doesn't mean I can't, I can make anything work as long as it's close. Bbody front sway bar on my 64? It's already been mocked up.
            How about this guy that put a Jeep rear sway bar on his fish. Tell him you can't do it !
             
          • cosgig

            cosgig MoBro Inc. FABO Gold Member

            Messages:
            11,708
            Likes Received:
            5186
            Joined:
            Jul 20, 2008
            Location:
            Pinckney, Michigan
            Local Time:
            2:33 PM
            Early A still installed, 67/72 on the floor. Early A front and rear under the bench.

            478F73F5-F35B-42FA-B85B-892D87F86156.jpeg

            7784EA1D-8567-4A82-97A6-0B5CCD15BF6C.jpeg

            F329EE89-470F-4D43-A21E-BDA548825DF4.jpeg
             
            • Agree Agree x 1
            • flingdingo

              flingdingo Well-Known Member

              Messages:
              402
              Likes Received:
              328
              Joined:
              Apr 26, 2017
              Location:
              El Lay
              Local Time:
              12:33 PM
              Both of these are in the works. The Scamp rear springs are worse than the wagon's, so I'll be buying those new. New shocks are waiting to go in, just Gabriels for now, but I plan to upgrade to Bilsteins in the future.
               
              • Like Like x 1
              • 66fs

                66fs FABO Gold Member FABO Gold Member

                Messages:
                6,000
                Likes Received:
                2551
                Joined:
                Sep 9, 2009
                Location:
                Greenwood, South Carolina
                Local Time:
                3:33 PM
                I think wagons rear springs were +1 in from the factory.
                 
              • Jim Lusk

                Jim Lusk Well-Known Member

                Messages:
                5,230
                Likes Received:
                1621
                Joined:
                Mar 8, 2006
                Location:
                Fresno, CA
                Local Time:
                12:33 PM
                I have held a 73-76 sway bar up to an early A-body. It's close enough that it MIGHT work. It is narrower than the 67-72 bar. You will need to fab up some frame brackets. I would start by mounting it to the control arms to see where it needs to be on the k-member.
                 
                • Agree Agree x 1
                • kesteb

                  kesteb Well-Known Member

                  Messages:
                  231
                  Likes Received:
                  90
                  Joined:
                  Feb 6, 2015
                  Location:
                  washington
                  Local Time:
                  12:33 PM
                  Years ago when I update the suspension on my '65 Dart, I used the suspension from a '75 Dart Custom. Everything swapped over. When I was done the only remaining '65 stuff was the kmember, cross link, idler, pitman arm and steering box. I even used the '75 Sway bar. This required cutting the kmember where the bar ran across and welding in new metal. I have been running this setup for 10 years now, works great.
                   
                  • Like Like x 2
                  • JDMopar

                    JDMopar Well-Known Member

                    Messages:
                    4,278
                    Likes Received:
                    3255
                    Joined:
                    Jan 19, 2012
                    Location:
                    Candler, NC/Myrtle Beach, SC
                    Local Time:
                    3:33 PM
                    Got any pics of where you cut the k frame and welded in new metal? Sounds like a pretty good swap!
                     
                  • DionR

                    DionR Well-Known Member

                    Messages:
                    2,648
                    Likes Received:
                    572
                    Joined:
                    May 7, 2008
                    Location:
                    Spokane, WA
                    Local Time:
                    12:33 PM
                    I narrowed a late a-body k frame to use in a 63 Valiant for multiple reason, one being the later sway bar. Got to mess with it twice because I didn’t realize the change in wheel base between the early and late cars meant the k frame moved under the motor meaning my motor mounts were off.

                    I did bolt up the way bar and it all looked to work fine. But never drove it.

                    Car is gone, but I still have the k frame.
                     
                  • kesteb

                    kesteb Well-Known Member

                    Messages:
                    231
                    Likes Received:
                    90
                    Joined:
                    Feb 6, 2015
                    Location:
                    washington
                    Local Time:
                    12:33 PM
                    Welcome to kesteb.us
                     
                  • JDMopar

                    JDMopar Well-Known Member

                    Messages:
                    4,278
                    Likes Received:
                    3255
                    Joined:
                    Jan 19, 2012
                    Location:
                    Candler, NC/Myrtle Beach, SC
                    Local Time:
                    3:33 PM
                    That looks like it worked well. Thanks for posting the pics!
                     
                  • 68Cummins

                    68Cummins Well-Known Member

                    Messages:
                    48
                    Likes Received:
                    55
                    Joined:
                    Nov 22, 2017
                    Location:
                    Kentucky
                    Local Time:
                    3:33 PM
                    I can tell you it doesn’t appear that a Hotchkis 22385 sway bar is going to fit a 66 Barracuda without fab work. It’s close but not direct fit.
                    Their web site shows it as an option when you shop by vehicle but it does say 67-72. Looks to be a little wide as mentioned above. I have read here on FABO that the Firm Feel sway bar may cause interference due to it mounting outside the strut rod to the lower shock mount hole. Also if you want a hollow bar Firm Feel is not making them right now due to material problems. I just ordered some parts from them and was talking to them about buying a hollow bar.

                    20CD9F1A-C843-4920-821B-BC769846ADB2.jpeg
                     
                  • briwill70

                    briwill70 Well-Known Member

                    Messages:
                    128
                    Likes Received:
                    47
                    Joined:
                    Feb 2, 2020
                    Location:
                    Portland, Oregon
                    Local Time:
                    12:33 PM
                    Did you ever get this sorted out? I'm planning to order a 22385 bar for my 65 Dart with QA1 Control arms.
                     
                  • brian6pac

                    brian6pac Well-Known Member

                    Messages:
                    5,627
                    Likes Received:
                    3986
                    Joined:
                    Nov 15, 2016
                    Location:
                    N.E.Ohio
                    Local Time:
                    3:33 PM

                    How wide is your bar link to link ?
                     
                  1. This site uses cookies to help personalize content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
                    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.