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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
UPDATE: go to page 4 or 5 of this thread to see pictures and review of the items that are now installed on my car


Hello everyone!

Is there ANYBODY who has experience with AutoEXE structural stiffening accessories for our 3rd Gen Mazda 6s???

I am about to pull a trigger on a Tower Brace Set and a Floor Bar. I (and I'm sure there are others) who would like to hear some feedback of those who've encountered these accessories:

AutoExe:ENGLISH

AutoExe:???????


Please, anyone with actual experience or links to other people's experiences. I've searched all I could, there is really no information out there by other Americans.

I've only found this, with good pictures of how it looks installed on the car, but it is for an RX-8, and dates back to 2005:

DIY: AutoExe Member Brace - RX8Club.com
 

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do they even make any for the 3rd gen?
 
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Absolutely YES!!! They seem to concentrate on MAZDA only! They have all sort of stuff for our 3rd Gen Mazda 6s:

AutoExe:ENGLISH

Price in YEN needs to be divided exactly by 100 to convert to US dollars
 
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Discussion Starter · #6 · (Edited)
If you go to the last page of that thread (DIY: AutoExe Member Brace - RX8Club.com ), you'll see how those stiffening accessories look 5 years later. The OP posted pictures of them after 100k miles and 5 years.

BY THE WAY, don't you all notice body shivers on our Mazdas??? I've had mine for 8 month and have 8.5K miles on the odo, I drive n in LA not particularly hard, no track, and I can hear body "breathing" via all 4 doors and under the floor, and somewhere in the nose. ANYONE?
 
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Tanabe has the strut tower ($139) and under chassis brace ($118).

Tanabe USA Inc. - Chassis

Tanabe...hmm, Unc Sam's refund is a-coming. :lol:
Their's is not a all-weld piece - it has bolts, and they literally adapt the same design to a multitude of models from a multitude of carmakers. AutoEXE is Mazda only (it seems). All-weld piece is more rigid(!!!) than TANABE design.
 
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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
So I've got a quote from AutoEXE's US distributor (only 1 in the whole of USA) for Strut Tower Brace Set (front and rear tower braces), and a Floor Cross Bar. Parts + Shipping from Japan is $775. I'm pulling - no, squeezing - the trigger!
 

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So I've got a quote from AutoEXE's US distributor (only 1 in the whole of USA) for Strut Tower Brace Set (front and rear tower braces), and a Floor Cross Bar. Parts + Shipping from Japan is $775. I'm pulling - no, squeezing - the trigger!
Is that from Mazmart? Autoexe stuff is very nice, but highly overpriced and if the upper strut towers are on the firewall like the earlier models I wouldn't expect it to make a damn bit of difference. The rest of the pieces, though, might help mildly.

If you're looking for less body roll and a more rigid handling vehicle, lowering the vehicle on a set of coilovers or at the very least, lowering springs, will make a bigger difference than any bracing will do.
 

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Their's is not a all-weld piece - it has bolts, and they literally adapt the same design to a multitude of models from a multitude of carmakers. AutoEXE is Mazda only (it seems). All-weld piece is more rigid(!!!) than TANABE design.
Point taken..But $775 for chassis braces?! The practical and "value" side of me says..no.

But then sometime this year...I'll be taking a much needed vacation to the "Old Country", near Japan where orig JDM mods, for any Japanese brand can be had (with some reasonable haggling, much cheaper) rather easily. We have AutoExe on these places where my dad and I used to buy auto accessories/mods to "soup-up" your ride. I'd gladly hand carry these back to the US...For now, no rush. :D
 
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Discussion Starter · #11 · (Edited)
Is that from Mazmart? Autoexe stuff is very nice, but highly overpriced and if the upper strut towers are on the firewall like the earlier models I wouldn't expect it to make a damn bit of difference. The rest of the pieces, though, might help mildly.

If you're looking for less body roll and a more rigid handling vehicle, lowering the vehicle on a set of coilovers or at the very least, lowering springs, will make a bigger difference than any bracing will do.
Yes, Mazmart. That it ships from Japan, via a distributor, makes it pricy. But like I've answered to another poster on this thread, their crossbar is an all-weld design, where as that Tanabe bar is not an all-weld design.

The AutoEXE front strut tower brace for our Mazda is attached via 10 points - 5 on each side. 3 points on each side are right on top of the strut towers (for a total of 6), and 2 on each side (for a total of 10) are right next to strut towers, but not really on the fire wall. Here, if you scroll to page 2 you can see the mounting points for the bar:

http://www.autoexe.co.jp/support/manual/towerbrace/MGJ480.pdf

By no means am I looking to make my suspension harsher, my sole intent is to increase structural rigidity, for less flex. Most of the stress goes into strut towers, so connecting them to spread the stress between two towers is an obvious solution. I understand that the difference is not going to be very significant, because, it's not like strut towers flex 1 inch under stress, so it's not like the strut tower brace will eliminate 1 inch of flex. I do get that.

And the car's structure does shiver and breath. I sense it through all 4 doors, quarter panels, B-pillars, and somewhere in front, when the road impact is harsh (common occurrence on LA's roads). So no lowering of the car, or anything like that for me
 

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The strut towers look pretty much on the firewall like on the earlier versions, but I hope it gives you the 'feel' you're looking for. And from where I'm coming from - I threw all the bracing on my first gen and it didn't do much. Bigger sways and coilovers helped a ton, but the bracing itself really just looks pretty (and also all rigid pieces, no pivoting links).
 
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Discussion Starter · #13 · (Edited)
The strut towers look pretty much on the firewall like on the earlier versions, but I hope it gives you the 'feel' you're looking for. And from where I'm coming from - I threw all the bracing on my first gen and it didn't do much. Bigger sways and coilovers helped a ton, but the bracing itself really just looks pretty (and also all rigid pieces, no pivoting links).
I like your sensitivity to my naivety:)) No need for that, though I'm relatively thick-skinned, not do not shy from criticism, and being proved wrong. But, for the sake of the argument, look at this picture (full screen):

http://www.mazda-news.eu/wp-content/uploads/2011/06/SKYACTIV_Body_2011_01.jpg

everything in red color is the actual uni-body that is designed to bear the stress; or in engineering speak all parts colored red are the "carrying structure". On the picture, if you are viewing it full screen, you can actually see those 5 points on each side to which the strut bar mounts: 3 points on each strut tower, and two more on each side of the red cross-brace that goes from side to side above and forward of the fire wall. That red brace is actually a carrying structure.

ALSO, as you can see, the strut tower is supported by the red rail below, and red top ring structure of the front of the car. The strut tower is sort of sandwiched between them. When strut towers are stressed, THAT STRESS IS TRANSFERED to the uni-body structure of the car, thus CAUSING BODY TO SHIEVER and interior trip to rattle

THEREFORE, I think, by connecting two strut towers via 10-pont-attachement strut tower bar thus spreading the stress will reduce body shivers!
 
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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
$775 puts you in reasonable reach of a proper mild roll cage, if you're that worried about stiffness. Go all out!
Key word here is "reasonableness". The parts I've ordered do not affect the interior's parameters. Roll-cage will. But you knew that, didn't you))
 

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A mild roll cage, if done properly, will only minimally affect the interior's "parameters". If you're so concerned with the opportunities for improvement in rigidity that you're willing to weld on chassis bracing, you should be more than willing to accept the small sacrifice associated with a mild integrated cage.
 
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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
A mild roll cage, if done properly, will only minimally affect the interior's "parameters". If you're so concerned with the opportunities for improvement in rigidity that you're willing to weld on chassis bracing, you should be more than willing to accept the small sacrifice associated with a mild integrated cage.
No, it wont do it minimally, because there will be a roll cage in the saloon.

Chassis bracing will not be welded on. It's bolt on. Although the design of the front strut tower brace is all-weld, it is still attached via 10 bolts to strut towers. There are strut tower braces, where the brace itself is not an all-weld design.
 

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I understand what the bracing 'does' and I'm not trying to criticize, I just don't think you will notice anything but placebo from the tower bar and I'm sad to see members throw money away on unnecessary parts. On the lower front - I'll agree those definitely help to expunge some creaks and moans, but everything else won't make much difference (at least on a FWD car with strut towers braced by a solid firewall. If the chassis design was different I would be all for them). I'm still hoping this does what you want it to, but IMO it's a waste. /participationinthistread
 
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Discussion Starter · #19 · (Edited)
I understand what the bracing 'does' and I'm not trying to criticize, I just don't think you will notice anything but placebo from the tower bar and I'm sad to see members throw money away on unnecessary parts. On the lower front - I'll agree those definitely help to expunge some creaks and moans, but everything else won't make much difference (at least on a FWD car with strut towers braced by a solid firewall. If the chassis design was different I would be all for them). I'm still hoping this does what you want it to, but IMO it's a waste. /participationinthistread
I only welcome counter-arguments, because I'm interested in truth, and not being proved right.

Now, counter this: I do clearly notice that when I hit broken pavement/potholes/creases etc. often times the impact goes "through", and it reverberates all the way from the strut towers into the B pillars, and I also sometimes feel it under floor below my feet. The strut tower that took an impact transferred it to the uni-body via the lower rail on which it rests and through the upper ring structure to which the strut tower is attached at the top. The strut towers on 3rd Gen Mazda 6 are not braced by a firewall, it is braced by the pieces of the uni-body structure, and fire wall - as can be seen from the picture I've sited in the previous reply is NOT part of the uni-body.

Therefore, with the strut tower brace, when one wheel impacts a harsh pavement, the strut tower to which the wheel's suspension is attached will not be the only one bearing the load, it will then be transferred to the uni-body. With strut tower brace some of that load will be transferred to the opposing strut tower and the parts of uni-body structure that braces it on that side, thereby reducing overall structural quivers because the load is no spread over a wider area - i.e. less concentrated

Please, show me where my thinking is flawed. I really want the truth.

Here's the picture of M6's uni-body again. Look closely at it again, and what braces the strut towers (the red colored structure parts):

http://www.mazda-news.eu/wp-content/uploads/2011/06/SKYACTIV_Body_2011_01.jpg
 
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