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Thread: Bugeye antisway bar advice

Discuss the Austin Healey Sprite and the MG Midget. Two different but similar cars sometimes referred to collectively as the Spridget.

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    Obi Wan
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    Bugeye antisway bar advice

    I am getting very close to the end of my total restoration on a 60 Bugeye. I have kept it as stock as possible. The front suspension is currently off the car and totally dismantled. I am considering putting in an antisway bar in the front. I have a number of questions: 1) Did these cars come with an option for an antisway bar, and if so, what was the thickness of the bar? 2) Does the antisway bar make much of a difference in the ride in these cars? 3) Is it possible to fit an antisway bar while the front suspension/steering is still in pieces? 4) Is this something that should be attempted by an amatuer? 5) What, if any, are the problems with having an antisway bar? 6) Does anyone have a recommendation for a source for an antisway bar? Answers to any of these questions would greatly be appreciated.

    Kevin

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    Jedi Trainee Hairyone's Avatar
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    Re: Bugeye antisway bar advice

    Hi Kevin, I had the same question a while ago. I've hot driven the car yet with it, as I started on the front & am nearing completion on the back.
    Check out my posting "anti-roll bar"
    What are you doing here?
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    Member GrahamP's Avatar
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    Re: Bugeye antisway bar advice

    Hi Kevin, I'm not sure if the anti sway bar was offered as a factory option but it was certainly a common after market addition.
    If you look underneath the two chassis rails, and you are lucky, you will find tapped holes designed to take the mounts for the bar. Also assuming you have fitted recon wishbones you should find holes already in position for the end mounts.
    As for, does it make much difference? Yes, thats why they were/are so popular! Regarding amatuer fitting, if the holes are present then it shouldn't be a problem. Otherwise captive nuts need to be fitted into the chassis rails and the wishbones will need drilling in the correct position to take the end mounts.

    Hope that helps a little,
    Graham.

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    Obi Wan
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    Re: Bugeye antisway bar advice

    I did have the wishbones reconditioned by Apple a while ago. There are no holes in the wishbones, and I wasn't even thinking about that at the time. Would I be better off to just put in the antisway bar after I put the suspension and steering back together? My car is bolted to the top of a 2x4 right where the tapped holes might be. I seemed to remember holes being there and couldn't figure out what they were for at the time.

    Kevin

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    Yoda bugimike's Avatar
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    Re: Bugeye antisway bar advice

    IMHO the only way to mount a sway-bar is with the suspension installed! I have a '59 that has the mounting holes already there, so they should be there on a '60. The improvement is well worth it!!
    Mike

    59 Bugeye "OBI"
    69 Sprite

    To gain respect, first give it

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    Re: Bugeye antisway bar advice

    I have the sway bar from a later midget but the A arms have the holes.
    There was a sway bar option for the bug. If I recall correctly, the early sprite option used a sway bar and drop links from a Big Healey. Two holes are drilled in the A arms. I have seen them a few times.
    The bug drives better with a sway bar.

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    Jedi Warrior mrsprite's Avatar
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    Re: Bugeye antisway bar advice

    Quote Originally Posted by Bugzy59
    The bug drives better with a sway bar.

    Yes it does! My BE came with an aftermarket front sway bar fromthe Winners Circle and when one of the mounts broke I removed the bar to quiet the clunking. The handling and driveability went waaaay downhill and I hurried up and fixed the mount.....it drives so nice now.

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    Re: Bugeye antisway bar advice

    My A arms didn't have the holes in them. I drilled them out, but made backing plates to put up inside to keep from weakening them. The ones that come with pre drilled holes have strengthening plates welded in. I made a template out of cardstock then cut and ground them to fit. I did it with the suspension ON the car. With the Arms in hand the backing plates will be easy to fit.

    The idea of the sway bar is to help control the tendency of the cars to oversteer, (loose in nascar parlance). Too big a bar and you'll wind up with understeer. I've hears that the ideal size for stock suspensions is the 9 16" bar. just enough to control it. too big and you'll want a rear bar as well to get the "balance" back. It doesn't really affect the ride, but it does affect the handling and directional stability.

    I AM an amateur. YOU can do this.
    Bill L.

    1966 Sprite MK III - "the red thing"
    HAN8L49403

    President, Pacific Northwest Chapter,
    Sprite Midget Club, USA
    (Excepting Greater Seattle)

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