Torsion Bar Options

Discussion in 'Suspension, Steering and Chassis' started by ConValiant64, Jul 17, 2017.

  1. ConValiant64

    ConValiant64 Well-Known Member

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    I have a 1964 Valiant convertible that was originally a 6 cylinder and now has a 318. The front end sits noticeably lower than the rear. Upon inspection, the torsion bars were 'maxed out', so there is no way to raise the front end any further. What are my options? Do any companies make longer torsion bars.? Also, do they make front/rear sway bars for this year/model vehicle? Any input would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.
     
  2. 65 Dartman

    65 Dartman FABO Gold Member FABO Gold Member

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    "Longer" bars would be for a B/E Body. What you want is a thicker in diameter A Body torsion bars. I forget what a stock 64 with a slant would have had so an upgrade would certainly help. A lot of members run .92 and higher bars which really helps in the ride and handling department. I would do a little research as everyone will have their own recommendations. I personally am going with 1.0 inch torsion bars from PST on my wagon.

    Original Front early A sway bars show up occasionally for sale. You will need the LCA's with outboard sway bar tabs to run original sway bars. They show up for sale as well. 67-72 LCA's with the sway bar tab also work on early A's with the stock sway bar.

    Helwig makes a beefy 1 & 1/4 inch (I think) hollow front sway bar that is light weight compared to a solid sway bar. Although not a true bolt-in, it's pretty close and can be used with original LCA's with the tab. It will also bolt to a tab that is attached to the shock bolt as well. The Helwig is what I will be using.

    Hope some of this helps!
     
  3. mopar_nocar

    mopar_nocar Well-Known Member

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    You don't want longer torsion bars, but larger diameter. Best deal I have found:

    1.03" Torsion Bar - A Body

    Mopar Performance makes some as well:

    https://www.summitracing.com/parts/dcc-5249150/overview/

    Sway bars, I suggest Hellwig:

    https://www.summitracing.com/parts/hel-55914/overview/year/1964/make/plymouth/model/valiant


    You may find that in addition to this fun performance stuff, the car needs basic stuff like a front end rebuild. I am doing the same thing to the same car myself right now. This, along with the mods, makes the cars handle pretty well....

    Incidentally, what are you doing for brakes?
     
  4. ConValiant64

    ConValiant64 Well-Known Member

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    Thank you. That information was very helpful.
     
  5. ConValiant64

    ConValiant64 Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the sites. I've got some research to do. Current brakes are 9-inch drum.
     
  6. mopar_nocar

    mopar_nocar Well-Known Member

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    I would strongly encourage a brake upgrade, at least to the dual pot master cylinder....I am putting disc brakes on mine from a 73+ a body. Lots of options on brakes, but a must in my opinion.

    sb
     
  7. ConValiant64

    ConValiant64 Well-Known Member

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    Thankfully, the car came with power brakes and a dual pot m.c., but an excellent recommendation. Not sure I would tolerate manual brakes for long at my age. Thanks again.
     
  8. ConValiant64

    ConValiant64 Well-Known Member

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    Just wanted to thank you again. Ordered the PST torsion bars you recommended. 1.03 inches at that price is about the best I could find.
     
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    • PST

      PST Marketing Manager FABO Vendor

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      Glad to hear you made the purchase. If you need assistance once you received them please feel free to contact me.

      Thanks
      James From
       
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      • pishta

        pishta I know I'm right....

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        power brakes are still nice on an old cruiser. You may find the bars a little stiff with your soft old shocks. Most run Bilstein or better.
         
      • ConValiant64

        ConValiant64 Well-Known Member

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        Thanks for the tip.
         
      • ConValiant64

        ConValiant64 Well-Known Member

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        BTW-Any particular series of Bilstein? Which company has the best price, in your opinion?
         
      • pishta

        pishta I know I'm right....

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        cant answer that, I run softer 340 bars with KYB's. Some current big bar/Bilstein user could answer that
         
      • 72bluNblu

        72bluNblu FABO Gold Member FABO Gold Member

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        The bilstein shocks are Bilstein RCD's. You can't actually buy them through bilstein, RCD buys them and reworks them. You can get them from PST, with the FABO discount they're probably one of the better prices anyway.
         
      • ConValiant64

        ConValiant64 Well-Known Member

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        Thanks for the info. BTW-I didn't realize there was a FABO discount. I already purchased torsion bars from PST, but don't remember seeing a prompt on the ordering web page that acknowledges FABO. Any idea how I can apply for that discount post-purchase?
         
      • 72bluNblu

        72bluNblu FABO Gold Member FABO Gold Member

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        Not sure if you can do it post-purchase, kinda doubt it. And you have to call and ask for it, it's not on the website as far as I know.
         
      • ConValiant64

        ConValiant64 Well-Known Member

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        James,

        I have a PST product question: Why is the 1.03 torsion bar for my 1964 Plymouth Valiant so much cheaper than the negligibly smaller .980 or .870, etc? Just curious. Thanks.

        Doug
         
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        • Korican

          Korican Newb

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          I wondered this too but figured the 1.03 may not be as popular as the smaller sizes. So that might be why the 1.03 is cheaper to buy.

          Those that ordered their Bilstein shocks from PST... Did you get new hardware or just the shocks?
           
        • 72bluNblu

          72bluNblu FABO Gold Member FABO Gold Member

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          The 1.03’s from PST are cheaper because they only make one size. So, their production numbers are higher and the result is a lower per unit price because they use a forger that does large production runs. Most of the companies making larger bars (Firm Feel, for example) sell a bunch of sizes, and basically custom make small batch runs of the bars. Which is the more expensive way to do it. The smaller bars, stock size bars are more expensive because Mopar Performance charges a fortune for everything. And most Mopar folks will pay a fortune for anything that looks original, even if it means having lousy performance.

          The Bilsteins come with new bushings and sleeves, but not new washers or nuts.
           
        • PST

          PST Marketing Manager FABO Vendor

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          72bluNblu is correct. We do large production runs of the 1.03" because originally when we first introduced them we did do small runs, but than they started to out sell the other smaller bars in some cases 3 to 1 or more. So it came down to simply supply and demand. As we sell more we can have larger runs made which drives production cost down and we pass that along to the customers. These bar are made here is the USA.

          Thanks
          James
           
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          • Korican

            Korican Newb

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            Ah I had assumed that more people would have preferred the less aggressive bars so good to know.
             
          • 72bluNblu

            72bluNblu FABO Gold Member FABO Gold Member

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            "aggressive" isn't the right term to use about the larger bars.

            These cars were massively undersprung in the front from the factory. The stock bars were for use with bias ply tires and shocks that are mediocre (at best) compared to todays standards. With a set of radial tires and good shocks you can double the stock spring rate and still have a car that isn't "aggressive" feeling as far as ride or handling is concerned.

            I ran 1" bars from Just Suspension on my Duster with 225/60/15's. It was still what I would consider "soft" for ride quality, and it still had a ton of body roll. Those bars have a wheel rate of around 200 lb/in, which is double the rate of the smaller stock bars. Now, the 1.12" torsion bars I installed after that probably fit the "aggressive" bill for a lot of folks, but really even with those bars the wheel rate is on par with a lot of modern vehicles designed for sportier handling.
             
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            • MileHighDart

              MileHighDart Well-Known Member

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              I just ordered the PST 1.03” bars today. Used the PRES18 10% discount code for Presidents’ Day weekend sale. It’s good through tomorrow. Saved around $24.
               
            • PST

              PST Marketing Manager FABO Vendor

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              Being a member of the ForAbodiesOnly you are always eligible for 10% off your order of $200 or more. See the PST section of this forum for details.

              Thanks
              James
               
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              • MileHighDart

                MileHighDart Well-Known Member

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                Good to know if I need anything else