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I see your point, the front feels plenty solid now so won't bother with front strut bar.
I've noticed when I throw it hard around a corner it is the backend that tends to break loose, though it straightens out fine especially with some acceleration. So I am planning on adding a rear sway bar at some point... though I will probably do Injen intake and ECU re-programming first.
 

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I see your point, the front feels plenty solid now so won't bother with front strut bar.
I've noticed when I throw it hard around a corner it is the backend that tends to break loose, though it straightens out fine especially with some acceleration. So I am planning on adding a rear sway bar at some point... though I will probably do Injen intake and ECU re-programming first.
Hey man, did you end up doing this and how did it help with auto-x?
 

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Yes, I did, and it made a decent little difference, but noticed that after some time I was under the car and noticed that some of the material had come out. Though I think enough is still in there reducing the pliability of those bushings keeping it a little less wiggly in the steering.
That being said, it's not nearly as much of a difference of a strut bar.
 

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Yes, I did, and it made a decent little difference, but noticed that after some time I was under the car and noticed that some of the material had come out. Though I think enough is still in there reducing the pliability of those bushings keeping it a little less wiggly in the steering.
That being said, it's not nearly as much of a difference of a strut bar.
Did you do a strut bar?
 

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Did you do a strut bar?
Yep, I went cheap and got the Megan strut bar from Amazon for $90 after initial install I didn't notice as much. Then noticed it came with instructions that specify jacking front of car up partially, tighten strut bar, then put it back down. After re-doing it per the instructions I noticed I could no longer wiggle the bar at all when just grabbing it, and it really helped initial turn-in on corners. Makes it feel a little more stable, but not very noticeable if you never corner hard :)
Also, I assume a more expensive solid bar would be better, but for the money I'm extremely happy with my strut bar (plus it is just raw aluminum which looks nice IMO).
240433
 

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As an aside when I installed a strut bar on my AE102 wagon I had that little bit of movement from not pre-loading it and it was enough to bend the 10mm mounting bolt. I had to cut them to get them off. Now admittedly the chassis was significantly less stiff on that old corolla.

Nice work so far.
 

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Yep, I went cheap and got the Megan strut bar from Amazon for $90 after initial install I didn't notice as much. Then noticed it came with instructions that specify jacking front of car up partially, tighten strut bar, then put it back down. After re-doing it per the instructions I noticed I could no longer wiggle the bar at all when just grabbing it, and it really helped initial turn-in on corners. Makes it feel a little more stable, but not very noticeable if you never corner hard :)
Also, I assume a more expensive solid bar would be better, but for the money I'm extremely happy with my strut bar (plus it is just raw aluminum which looks nice IMO). View attachment 240433
Its odd that without adjustment threads you noticed any change. Also, since the strut towers seem to be tied into the firewall im more surprised you had a noticeable difference. Interesting nonetheless.
 

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First, I apologize to OP for diverting thread

Its odd that without adjustment threads you noticed any change. Also, since the strut towers seem to be tied into the firewall im more surprised you had a noticeable difference. Interesting nonetheless.
Actually I had no plan to put a strut bar based on the look of the strut tower tied into the firewall, but a friend that knows much more about cars than I (and he is a mechanical engineer by trade) assured me that it takes very little deflection of the strut tower to affect handling (look at serious sports cars and just how much is done to make that part super rigid).
 
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First, I apologize to OP for diverting thread


Actually I had no plan to put a strut bar based on the look of the strut tower tied into the firewall, but a friend that knows much more about cars than I (and he is a mechanical engineer by trade) assured me that it takes very little deflection of the strut tower to affect handling (look at serious sports cars and just how much is done to make that part super rigid).
Do you think an X brace style would help or would it matter?
 

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Do you think an X brace style would help or would it matter?
X-brace connecting what parts? You have to think about load paths and how they relate to the rest of the chassis and suspension - stiffening one area will put more force through another, and so on. I just threw a front subrame H-brace on my lady's RAV4 to reduce some body flex/quiver, the first thing I noticed (and didn't think about before installing) is that it puts power down better when turning from a stop - I'm not driving it hard and it's only a 2.5L, but it was immediately apparent and shows how even a small amount of flex affects regular driving.
 

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Strut tower was the subject.
Gotcha. X-brace would be 4 point, what other 2 points are you thinking of connecting to? Some vehicles have two point braces from the strut tower to the firewall (my ATS has these), the only 4 point strut/shock tower braces I can think of are the Viper's X-brace or the M3's weird V/U brace.
 

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How far? Tires off the ground or just the susp unloaded? Trying to figure out how much preload for when i make one.
I did a few inches to unload it, with the wheels still on the ground. Also I pushed the bar down/inward and held it there while tightening the bolts. Compared to initial install, where I could get some movement out of the bar when grabbing and wiggling, now it doesn't budge and you can feel that it is under tension.

Also, I've thought about other chassis bracing, but the next money I spend needs to go into the suspension (I'm still just running Godspeed springs with stock struts).
Just finished helping my son install coilovers on his 2012 Mazda 3 Skyactiv and now definitely want some for my car (interstingly they were cheap Ebay coilovers which were harsh on initial install, but he got some swift springs with lower spring rate in the front and now it feels amazing, firmer than stock yet still comfortable).
 

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I did a few inches to unload it, with the wheels still on the ground. Also I pushed the bar down/inward and held it there while tightening the bolts. Compared to initial install, where I could get some movement out of the bar when grabbing and wiggling, now it doesn't budge and you can feel that it is under tension.
The tower bolts, or the bar bolts?

Also, I've thought about other chassis bracing, but the next money I spend needs to go into the suspension (I'm still just running Godspeed springs with stock struts).
Just finished helping my son install coilovers on his 2012 Mazda 3 Skyactiv and now definitely want some for my car (interstingly they were cheap Ebay coilovers which were harsh on initial install, but he got some swift springs with lower spring rate in the front and now it feels amazing, firmer than stock yet still comfortable).
Yea i was thinking of doing my own subframe brace too. Do you have a link to the CO's? Im going to see if i can put the H&Rs from my 6 on the 3 so i can save a few bucks. Eventually ill get the rear camber arms and camber bolts for the front till i get CO's.
 

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Yea i was thinking of doing my own subframe brace too.
I was thinking an actual X on the towers, vs a straight bar. But im wondering if the center point would be weaker than not having one since you couldnt really cross them over easy enough.
Sounds like a lot of work, but if you're fabbing your own go for it! :) I can't imagine the difference between a x'ed or a straight bar tying the strut towers would be noticeable - pairing a strut tower brace with a subframe brace should be noticeable though, creates a tighter box. There are quite a few underbody brace sets out there for your 3, since most work on the 6 and CX-5 too.
 
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