Category Archives: suspension

Midwest Tour

So I’ve been travelling the Midwest the past few days to visit some of our manufacturers.  First, I went to see our suspension parts being made.  They have a large facility with a lot of CNC 3 and 5 axis machines, lathes, mills, benders, water jet, and welding stations.  This is only about 1/3 of the whole shop floor.

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IMG_8242They can do just about anything you can think of

IMG_8239Being able to do MIL-spec work, they are certified in just about every material, which shows in the stock they have

IMG_8243I have been discussing with them the idea of building our radiators and oil coolers.  They showed me the Denso core we would end up using for the FR-S/BRZ/GT86.

IMG_8245Then I went to visit our in autoclave composite manufacturer.  The tool for our SEW V2

IMG_8317Their large autoclave is 10’x20′, and is one of the largest in the country.

IMG_8312They work with teams at the highest levels of racing in the US as can be seen here

IMG_8326Since they had a bunch of defense projects laying around, I wasn’t able to take more pictures due to security reasons.  Then, I got to catch up with some of my old college friends and was told they were going to a 7 post rig test at ARC, so I watched that as well.

20130516_144147ARC also has a wind tunnel testing facility, but the team I was visiting didn’t have any wind tunnel time booked, so I didn’t get to see that.  Because the body panels were off the car and the guts were exposed, I couldn’t get any pictures of the car on the rig.  Sorry.  It’s been a very enlightening last few days, but I can’t wait to get back home tomorrow.

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New Partnerships

We believe computer simulation is only one side of the coin, real world testing is the other.  We are just as careful of selecting our testers as we are in designing our product.  We choose people that will really push our products to the limit and put them in the conditions they were designed for.

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Robert Fuller, owner of Robispec, most well known for suspension setup, tuning and component development for Evos and STis, will aid us with development.  He actively competes in time attack and NASA time trials and has one of the fastest FR-Ses on the west coast.  He will be testing the full gamut of our suspension components customized to his specifications and providing us with feedback for further improvements.  To stay updated with Robi’s FR-S, please check his build thread here.

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For those without race cars and that want to see its road-worthiness, Edmunds.com will be testing our control arm on their long-term test car.  Their goal is to create a pure dual-purpose car that is just as comfortable and livable as OEM, but outperforms it at autocrosses and track days.  They are very selective of their modifications and will be making small changes at a time to see how each modification affects the vehicle.  To stay updated with their long-term test car, you can check out their website here.

Abused

We build our parts to take abuse and to keep asking for more.  This weekend AJ was at No Star Bash putting the toe links through its paces.  On the way there, I rode up with AJ and we ran over road kill (we think it was a doe) and surprisingly, other than cracking his week-old lip, there wasn’t any other damage.  He did a full two days drifting the car

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Both he and our friend Josh also tandemed their twin BRZs.  Both cars have less than 3000 miles on the odometer.  These guys are nuts.

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Thanks to Fan Photography for the pics.  Check out his Facebook page

 

Rear Anti-Roll Bar

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We’ve been developing anti-roll bars for the BRZ/FR-S/GT86.  Unlike other anti-roll bars on the market, we’ve developed our rates based on driver feedback and reviews.  It seems as though the car has adequate roll stiffness from the factory, and once coilovers are installed, the ARB rate is sufficient.  This ARB is meant for cars with upgraded dampers and springs because the ARB that retains the OEM rate.  In the middle setting, the OEM rate is achieved, by shortening the moment arm, you can stiffen the roll stiffness rate, and by elongating the moment arm, you can even soften the rate.

So what good is an ARB that keeps the factory roll stiffness?  Our design utilizes a high-strength stainless steel, so we were able to utilize a tubular design with a very aggressive wall thickness.  Due to the material, we are able to make the entire assembly (including our aluminum end links) as pictured about 4 lbs.  This makes it the lightest ARB on the market. Another key design feature we’re utilizing is that the blades are separate, so if a different rate is desired, we can make custom bars that can be quickly and easily swapped out.

Anti-Roll Bar End Links

 

The end links are completed and we will begin to prototype and test them.  The front end link:Aluminum Front End Link

 

 

The end link is all aluminum to resist corrosion.  The turnbuckle and spacers are made of 6061-T6 due to this being a low strength application.  The rod ends and jam nuts are made 7075-T6.  The end link can be adjusted on the car.  We were able to increase stiffness by over 300% vs. OEM while shaving off a few grams in the process.  We also have a wide range of adjustment, being able to set it from around 9.5″ (OEM length) to 8.75″.  The entire assembly as pictured should weigh around 1 lb.  The socket head cap screw and nylon lock nut are made of stainless steel.

This is the rear end link:

Aluminum Rear End LinkUnfortunately, because the end link is so short, we could not make it adjustable on the car without making custom rod ends, we’re sorry, we tried.  Like the front end links, the spacers are made of 6061-T6, the rod ends and jam nut are 7075-T6.  The socket head cap screw and nylon lock nut are stainless in this application as well.  The assembly should weigh about .35 lbs.

 

Fruits of Labor

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Here is an excellent shot of AJ Gillette’s BRZ sporting Hancha toe links. I’d like to personally thank AJ for allowing us to use his BRZ as our test mule.  A few hiccups aside, the toe link fitment is spectacular and we have heard nothing but positive performance reviews from AJ.

This is just a fraction of what we will offer for the BRZ/FR-S. Stay tuned as we continue to upgrade more parts (just kidding AJ… but seriously.)