Torsion bar ifs - How do I get more flex & droop?

Springs, shocks and all things between your chassis and diffs
jacnden
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Re: Torsion bar ifs - How do I get more flex & droop?

Unread post by jacnden » February 22nd, 2014, 7:23 am

just had a look at MI,s build thread and it is very impresive.

now peter and mydmax i have one last question after looking at what MI has done. my cv,s are lower than the diff leading to a slight angle and a pretty extreme angle at full drop. if i lower the diff more to have them coming out straight will that put it all closer to the centre of the movement range?

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Re: Torsion bar ifs - How do I get more flex & droop?

Unread post by Peter Aawen » February 22nd, 2014, 8:46 pm

Re MI's question about wedges

Check the legislation & ADR's on it MI; but once again, I think you'll find that if you want to do it legally then installing wedges, shims, blocks, bushes or packing, welding, or changing the OE mounts for the ball joints in any way, including ball joint flips, are all mentioned in there as being verboten! You are allowed to use wedges on your leaf springs to correct caster/camber angles, but I believe that the only place you can use wedges or shims on an IFS suspension is between the chassis mounts and the inner ends of the arms where the arms bolt onto the chassis, in order to correct camber - & even then the amount of correction is limited.

Still, if you can find an engineer who's prepared to do the calcs and sign on the dotted line that what you propose to do/change won't kill anyone, you should be OK - but it does need to be one of those listed 'Approval Engineers for Suspension/Steering Modifications' that your State's rego Auth should be able to provide you with, and it might entail some testing too, all of which adds to the cost....

Jacnden, re the post above:
Not necessarily - but it will reduce the angle the CV's are going to be working on as and when they are stressed the most!! As far as your question is concerned, the torsion bar & the position of the arms in the total travel range is separate from the diff, driveshafts, & CV angles, so dropping the diff won't substantially change where in the travel range the arms are sitting. And that means that if you've wound the torsion bars up too far already & you've got too little droop, then you'll still hafta wind them back down to get them into that middle third & give you enough droop to make it safe to drive, even if by dropping the diff the CV's aren't at such a risky angle anywhere in the full range of travel.... make sense?? ;)
An Ex-Service person is someone who thought enough about their country & how great it is, how lucky we are to live here, to write a blank cheque made out to 'The People and Commonwealth of Australia' for the value of 'Up to & including my Life!'

jacnden
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Re: Torsion bar ifs - How do I get more flex & droop?

Unread post by jacnden » February 23rd, 2014, 8:52 am

thanks mate

jacnden
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Re: Torsion bar ifs - How do I get more flex & droop?

Unread post by jacnden » March 3rd, 2014, 4:01 pm

peter and mydmax if I am a PITA you can say so :) but I came upon this article http://www.4crawler.com/4x4/ForSale/Doc ... tion.shtml.
if I put in ball joint spacers or to a lesser extent ball joint reversal and the wind back the torsion bars do I keep my lift and increase my down travel ?

thanks guys

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Re: Torsion bar ifs - How do I get more flex & droop?

Unread post by Peter Aawen » March 3rd, 2014, 4:41 pm

While putting in a ball joint spacer or doing a ball joint flip (putting it under the arm rather than on top of the arm) will give you an increased static ride height, it doesn't extend the length of the arm in any way, so while that article is correct in telling you that it can provide lift by adjusting the torsion bars or playing with ball joint spacers or flips it is NOT TRUE that it will increase the total travel in any way! This bit is wrong: "The first improvement ball joint spacers make is that because they increase the overall window of travel 1.5", the vehicle can gain 1.5" of lift without sacrificing down travel. The other reason is that they increase the effective radius thus increasing suspension compliance." The ball joint is always going to be inside the ends of the arm, and unless you move it further out the arm, ie extend the length of the arm, the overall window of travel is not going to increase, altho the change in angles after a flip can mean the compliance is increased.

Effectively, the ONLY way you can increase the overall window of travel is if you to move the ball joints further out the arms, and seeing they are already on the ends of the arms, that means you need to extend the length of the arms!! You can do that by adding length to the outer end, ie increasing the wheel track, or by changing the inner pivot point while retaining the existing wheel track, ie leaving the wheels where they are but moving the pivots closer to the centre of the car and effectively extending the arms inwards to increase their total length, but those are the only real ways that you'll increase the overall window of travel on an IFS suspension while they rely on arms of a set length with fixed pivot points, no matter where you put the ball joints!

So winding back your torsion bars will mean your lift is less but it still won't vary your total travel at all - and keeping your static ride height within that middle third is what it takes to keep the ride/handling safe (& the vehicle basically legal - in this country anyway!) You can sometimes find that the shocks limit access to the full range of travel allowed by the IFS arms, and that's not always hard to remedy (altho you want to be careful that you don't limit compression by putting on shocks that open long enough to avoid limiting extension :( ) but the only (legal) alternatives you have for increasing ride height are to adjust your existing torsion bars (& stay within that middle third of travel range); fit heavier torsion bars that will resist twisting more under the existing load/weight of the vehicle and so hold it higher within the existing range of travel, but that will also give you a harsher ride; or do a diff drop so that the lower pivot point is further away from the upper pivot point so you reduce the CV/driveshaft angles, and if you also fit a longer spindle between the ball joints, you can increase the ride height a bit more - but you still can't change the total travel without varying that radius imposed by the inner pivot point & the length of the arm. :(

Think of a blank page with a couple of 'centres' marked on it one an inch or so above the other, and a geometry type compass that has a fixed radius set - if you can't change/move the centres marked on the page, there is no way you can change the diameter of the circles you draw unless you change the fixed radius; and if there are fixed & immovable upper & lower stops to the travel of either radius line as well as the fixed centres, neither can you change the sweep covered by an arc of the circles between the upper and lower stops if they are drawn with that same compass unless you change the fixed radius - Your IFS suspension has a fixed radius (the length of the suspension arms) and fixed centres for them, AS WELL as the fixed upper and lower bump stops!! So unless you change the LENGTH of the arms (& therefore the radius of the swept arc) you aren't changing the diameter of the circles or the sweep of the given arcs, which means you CAN NOT change the total travel of your suspension!

Make sense??
An Ex-Service person is someone who thought enough about their country & how great it is, how lucky we are to live here, to write a blank cheque made out to 'The People and Commonwealth of Australia' for the value of 'Up to & including my Life!'

jacnden
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Re: Torsion bar ifs - How do I get more flex & droop?

Unread post by jacnden » March 3rd, 2014, 5:10 pm

i mentioned earlier that i only had 70 mm droop which i presume is because i have wound up the torsion bars bars up 40mm and that in stock condition i should have a lot more. what i found appealing on this article was that the lift increase came from the ball joint spacer and not the torsion bars which would allow for the droop to be back near original?

i know we are just tinkering round the edges ? but every little bit helps

last thing on those calmini upper arms. i believe they are made in such a way that gives the same effect as a 11/2" ball joint spacer
i really appreciate the input

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Re: Torsion bar ifs - How do I get more flex & droop?

Unread post by Peter Aawen » March 3rd, 2014, 5:29 pm

Yeah, that is true, with the ball joint spacer you can return the torsion bars to a better position and yet retain a higher static ride height - and Yes, the Calmini arms are made so that you get the same effect as a 1.5" ball joint spacer without any of the weaknesses or risks associated with fitting a spacer, cos the ball joint ends up being bolted to the arm in the same way it is bolted to the OE arm, so that's a good thing as far as the Approval Engineers etc are concerned!

The other thing about the Calmini arms is that if you decide you want to go further later, you can do the diff drop, the (relatively minor) steering mods, & the replacement spindle so you can push the height up significantly and yet retain almost stock CV/Driveshaft angles as well - there are 5" lifts out there that can & have been approved without major engineering issues because the Calmini mob have done the right stuff at the design/engineering stages, cos they don't stuff around with dodgy or even suspect mods, & cos they've addressed all the issues their bolt-ons raise. Sad the complete Calmini kits are so expensive, but they've got all the right gear & done the hard yards, so I guess someone hasta pay! ;)
An Ex-Service person is someone who thought enough about their country & how great it is, how lucky we are to live here, to write a blank cheque made out to 'The People and Commonwealth of Australia' for the value of 'Up to & including my Life!'

jacnden
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Re: Torsion bar ifs - How do I get more flex & droop?

Unread post by jacnden » March 3rd, 2014, 5:57 pm

i won't ask anymore stupid questions....... for awhile :)

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Re: Torsion bar ifs - How do I get more flex & droop?

Unread post by MasterInnovator » March 3rd, 2014, 5:59 pm

^^^ no such thing as stupid questions...only stupid answers

Peter Aawen
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Re: Torsion bar ifs - How do I get more flex & droop?

Unread post by Peter Aawen » March 3rd, 2014, 6:02 pm

Well... No MI, there is a stupid question, it's the one you DIDN'T ask when you had the chance! ;)





Or is that just a stupid answer... :p :sillywink:
An Ex-Service person is someone who thought enough about their country & how great it is, how lucky we are to live here, to write a blank cheque made out to 'The People and Commonwealth of Australia' for the value of 'Up to & including my Life!'

Timmo
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Re: Torsion bar ifs - How do I get more flex & droop?

Unread post by Timmo » March 3rd, 2014, 6:19 pm

A lot of info here doesn't make sense to me based on the IFS torsion bar front end design on my vehicle. For my vehicle, ball joint spacers don't give you any ride height increase on their own, nor do they allow you to wind back the torsion bars and retain your lift. They move the upper arms away from the down travel bumpstop which gives you extra down travel or allows you to wind the bars up further for more lift (at the risk of CV's). My torsion bars act on the lower arms not the uppers. You need to check how yours is setup before making a decision.

Lift is governed by the torsion bars, you wind them up and the vehicle goes up. You wind them down and the vehicle goes down irrespective of whether you have done a ball joint flip or fitted spacers. If you fit ball joint spacers or flip the balljoints on the upper arms of an IFS vehicle and do not adjust the torsion bars at all, it will still be sitting at the same height it was prior to the balljoint flip/spacer (if the bars attach to the lower arms like mine). So if you fit spacers or flip the ball joints then wind down your bars, your car will drop in ride height, lower than what it was prior to the change. Simple as that.

For my Challenger, the ball joint spacers (or balljoint flip) are fitted on the upper arms and the torsion bars act on the lower arms. All the balljoint flip does is give you extra down travel by moving the upper arms further away from the down travel bumpstops.

My IFS vehicle has the up travel bumpstops acting on the lower arms and the down travel bumpstops acting on the upper arms. So if I were to flip the upper ball joints on my vehicle, the distance between the lower arm and the up travel bumpstop would not change. The distance between the upper arm and the down travel bumpstop will be increased by whatever amount I gain by relocating the balljoint (or the spacer width)therefore increasing the range of travel.

Long story short, ball joint spacers or a flip do nothing except increase down travel if all other aspects remain the same, at least on my vehicle anyway. The only exception to the rule is if your torsion bars act on the upper arms not the lower arms. I'm not sure on the setup of your vehicle (or others) but that is how it works on my Challenger (and other Mitsubishi's). Torsion bar location is what determines how a ball joint flip will perform for you on your vehicle.
Last edited by Timmo on March 3rd, 2014, 7:11 pm, edited 3 times in total.
Cheers,

Nathan

jacnden
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Re: Torsion bar ifs - How do I get more flex & droop?

Unread post by jacnden » March 3rd, 2014, 6:45 pm

timmo, did you read the 4crawler link?

Timmo
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Re: Torsion bar ifs - How do I get more flex & droop?

Unread post by Timmo » March 3rd, 2014, 6:55 pm

Had a quick breeze through it. At the start it says it applies to Toyota IFS torsion bar front ends. Can't say I am familiar with how they are setup, I am just going off how my vehicle is setup (Mitsubishi) and others that I have seen that share a similar design. That article says that Toyota IFS torsion bars act on the upper arms which would then make sense to what others have been saying in their posts (and that article). In a Mitsubishi front end they act on the lower arms which is a whole different ball game. That article must be referring to the early IFS Hilux's as i'm pretty sure the 100 Series Landcruiser IFS Torsion bars attach to the lower arms.

Yours may be the same, maybe not. I am not familiar with what yours is. Maybe post up a pic of one side showing control arms, ball joints and the like to see.

Do your torsion bars attach to the lower or upper control arms? That really is the determining factor as to whether all this applies to you or not. It seems there are a few different torsion bar setups used by different manufacturers over the years.
Cheers,

Nathan

jacnden
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Re: Torsion bar ifs - How do I get more flex & droop?

Unread post by jacnden » March 3rd, 2014, 7:23 pm

well thats an interesting twist. yes mine does attach to the lower control arm

http://tigrovod.users.photofile.ru/phot ... 059503.jpg

http://tigrovod.users.photofile.ru/phot ... 059498.jpg

http://chinamobil.ru/bb/files/111_921.jpg
these are pics of a great wall with the calmini arms. its from a online contact in russia and he claims? it acheives what we have been discussing.
i believe this front end is very similar to an RA rodeo

Timmo
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Re: Torsion bar ifs - How do I get more flex & droop?

Unread post by Timmo » March 3rd, 2014, 7:36 pm

That setup is very similar, almost identical to the Mitsubishi torsion bar front end except for shock position. A ball joint flip/spacers/aftermarket arms on that setup will give you extra down travel, which will then be limited by the length of the shock absorber. A longer shock will definitely be needed if you are already at the limits of your existing ones.

In that last pic with the aftermarket arms, have a look at the nasty CV angles. A diff drop would be a necessity to minimise CV damage.
Cheers,

Nathan

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