New 18mm H&R rear sway bar fitted (A couple of questions)
Hi guys, I have a 2003 MINI Cooper with almost 55,000 on it. I have the standard sports suspension with upgraded Alta lowering springs and upgraded 18mm H&R rear sway bar with two adjustable settings. When I installed the sway bar I put it on the setting that is closest to what I am assuming is the back of the bar. (Where the bar comes together) My question is: Is this the soft setting or the stiff setting because the car only felt slightly different? Also there was a good amount of body roll on sharp turns and the ride was really bouncy over big bump and bad roads. The car seemed very skiddish. With this issue bothering me I decided to switch the sway bar to the hole towards the front of the bar. WOW!! what a difference. The car is a lot more balanced on turns and the body roll is decreased. Also the ride has improved a lot with an tremendous improvement in the path of direction the car is going in. I GUESS THIS IS THE STIFF SETTING!!
You're right about the stiffness setting, but I'm totally baffled by why the car would be skittish in the soft setting.
I have the same bar, the 2 holes do make the car drive quite differently, but I have no problems with the car being skittish or bouncy. I'm thinking maybe its your lowering springs with the stock dampers thats giving you problems.
I've got the 19mm H&R rear sway bar set to stiff and it's dead neutral. The car stays very planted even during spirited driving while in tight corners in the wet! Maybe it's the combination with the Koni FSDs? Anyway, my confidence in corners went from 7 to 9 with the shocks and sway bar. I'm very happy.
2005 MINI Cooper S2007 BMW 530i SMG on order1997 Ducati 748 (sold )
Agreed. The hole closest to the bar is the stiffest. This would have decreased body roll compared to the soft setting. But not by much. I don't understand thinking the body rolls less on the soft setting. Just doesn't make sense.
I have the 22mm Alta bar on the soft setting and it's fine.
Did you keep the stock drop links?
xtremepsionic, Yours being a heavier MCS might make a difference as well.
Nono, I have a normal Cooper :P And yes, it does roll every so slightly more in the soft setting. To be honest its very hard to feel. Whats noticible for me is high speed cornering, the car is willing to rotate almost to the point of oversteer (but never really crossing that line) at the stiff setting, while the soft setting, the Mini will scrub the front tires if you turn in too quickly.
The car will and do roll more with softer/smaller sway bars, the soft setting makes the bar's twisting rate lower, thus you do get more body roll.
I have the 18mm H&R and a cooper with the SS suspension.
Thanks guys, the car feels better so i guess it is all good!! When I mean the car is skiddish I mean the tires seem to be tramling (grabing the road a lot) Since I ajusted the sway bar this seems to be eliminated.
alright, heres more from Mr. never stops babbling about his MINI:
One of the best thing about the H&R sway bar is the teflon coated bushing. Even in super cold weather (down to -25C) it doesn't make a sound. I had sway bars with polyurethane bushings on another car before, and you've got to keep them well lubed every 3-4 months or they'll start sqeaking. Usually squeaks are much worse in cold weather.
Just for kicks, here is a picture of a very dirty 18mm H&R bar installed on the stiff setting on my MINI.
Depends on what tires you're running and how hard you drive. I'm on 15" holies with the 175/65/15 conti tires, they have very soft sidewall, so I use higher than "normal" pressures. 38psi front and rear.
Rotated the tires twice 9300kms, tire wear is very even across the tread (about 6/32 inch left), so its a good pressure for my driving style. However tires are already half worn, .
That's too low.
You should be at least 32 in the front.
I run 35 but have an MCS so it's a bit heavier in the front. I run 37 in the rear but I carry wife and daughter quite a bit. I'd lower that if the car were always carrying just me.
Tire wear is very good. I rotate every 3-4K miles.
I tried 30 front 34 rear before, but the car seemed to be really senseative to the road and the steering imputs are real glassy like. I am running 205/50/15 Falken Ziex on 15x6.5 rota wheels that are 12 lbs each. Could this be the problem? Also my steering imputs change a lot. One time I might be driving the car and the steering is nice and sharp (light)
Another time the steering might be not so sharp (heavy).
I think it is the tires because I have almost 20,000 miles on the tires.
What you guys think?
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