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 Old 04-07-2018, 08:48 PM   #1
 
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Default Review of JBR Front and Rear Swaybars

I wanted to improve the handling of my new to me 2010 MS3. After researching what was available, I decided to go with the JBR Tru-Torsion .125 adjustable front and rear swaybars. I was able to install myself. JBR swaybars are quality products, nice finish and comes with all the necessary hardware and bolts you will need for the installation.

I installed the rear swaybar first. My MS3 has about 80K miles so I decided to replace the stock rear swaybar links, replace the stock swaybar brackets with JBR billet swaybar brackets while installing the new swaybar. The JBR instructions were clear, basically you're unbolting the old swaybar and bolting in a new swaybar. Besure to use plenty of synthetic grease on the poly bushings. The swaybar has 3 holes for soft, med. and stiff settings. I set mine at the med. setting.

Test drive: made the rear end stiffer and made a moderate improvement in the handling and cornering of my MS3.

After reading the directions, I decided to give myself a whole day to install the JBR front swaybar. Warning: this is NOT an easy install! No fault of JBR, it's the fault of the Mazda engineers who designed the MS3 front suspension so you have to partially drop the front sub-frame, loosen both the left and right front suspension components just to remove the stock front swaybar. While underneath the car you have to turn, twist and snake out the front swaybar and then do it again to install the new swaybar. The most difficult and time consuming part of this project was getting all of the suspension components to lined up and bolted back together. Without a floor jack, it would be almost impossible to get the front suspension components lined up. Scale of 1 (easy) to 5 (most difficult), I would give this project a definite 4.

Test drive: JBR front swaybar made a big improvement in the precision of the cornering and overall handling of my MS3.

Bottom line: even with the big improvement in handling would I install another aftermarket front swaybar again; "NO".
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 Old 04-08-2018, 06:28 AM   #2
 
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If you ever leave the speed platform and come back with a stock one, you'll do it again. You'll hate every second of the install, but you'd do it anyways. That's just how it goes.
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 Old 04-08-2018, 08:47 AM   #3
 
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Originally Posted by Fstrnyou View Post
If you ever leave the speed platform and come back with a stock one, you'll do it again. You'll hate every second of the install, but you'd do it anyways. That's just how it goes.
True fkn story!
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 Old 07-11-2018, 09:27 PM   #4
 
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I inserted the front sway bars backwards come to find out that not all holes didn't align when trying to bolt everything back together. I had to force the bar out and then reinsert it once more back into the car. The hardships of wrenching on your own car. Destroys your hands with the many cuts I've gotten but builds character/confidence.

I personally didn't see (feel) much difference with the front sway bar. I admit the car transformed 20% better with the rear sway bar. I don't regret doing the front but didn't feel much difference. If I had to do it again, I would but for the peace of mind but still don't feel any difference.
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 Old 07-11-2018, 11:49 PM   #5
 
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I HATED that install, but the real improvement comes in steering response. If you center the wheel and simply nudge it, it's enough to change direction. I can also absolutely shred hard corners with zero flex in the front suspension. The rear, on the other hand, even set to the maximum stiffness, still feels like a god damn station wagon. lol If I could do it all over again, I would have gone with the Tru-Torsion.250 for the rear.

Edit: Hell, I still might if I have enough money left over from my engine build...
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 Old 07-12-2018, 08:21 AM   #6
 
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The JBR front swaybar definitely increased the responsiveness in the steering. I agree with Solarsurge going through corners now, it's like my MS3 is on rails.
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 Old 07-16-2018, 11:02 AM   #7
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Just remember that response and grip are significantly different beasts. Just because something responds faster doesn't mean you've improved the overall grip.

The MS3 doesn't need more front bar, and not a lot more rear bar, to improve grip.
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 Old 07-16-2018, 12:42 PM   #8
 
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Originally Posted by phate View Post
Just remember that response and grip are significantly different beasts. Just because something responds faster doesn't mean you've improved the overall grip.

The MS3 doesn't need more front bar, and not a lot more rear bar, to improve grip.
Who made you suspension guru?

Oh ya...MS6 Suspension Data & DIY Bilstein Coilovers
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 Old 07-16-2018, 01:02 PM   #9
 
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Default Review of JBR Front and Rear Swaybars

Originally Posted by phate View Post
Just remember that response and grip are significantly different beasts. Just because something responds faster doesn't mean you've improved the overall grip.

The MS3 doesn't need more front bar, and not a lot more rear bar, to improve grip.

Iíll tell you what makes grip REALLY difficult... and thatís your car being on its roof because of all your grip and too much body roll lol


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 Old 07-16-2018, 02:42 PM   #10
 
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Originally Posted by phate View Post
Just remember that response and grip are significantly different beasts. Just because something responds faster doesn't mean you've improved the overall grip.

The MS3 doesn't need more front bar, and not a lot more rear bar, to improve grip.
^This

A stiffer rear bar, and a minor drop will make the car feel like its on rails, with the right tires.

A front bar will do nothing but empty your wallet, and waste however much time it takes to install.
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 Old 07-16-2018, 03:42 PM   #11
 
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Iím just curious if people chiming in on the front bar being useless are coming from a place of real experience or are stating opinions based on their internet research. I have had one for 2+ years. My experience has been that with a stock front bar, a rear .125 bar makes a substantial difference. With a .125 pair in the front and rear it was not my fav. I found a tighter front with similar characteristics of rear roll to stock. The .250 bar in the rear makes a huge difference to balance out the front .125 bar and I like it better overall. When you start seeing corners at 60+ MPH, the rear end REALLY likes to roll. The JBR .250 rear bar was used on the #85 All Out Motorsports car for a reason.


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 Old 07-17-2018, 04:45 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by Solarsurge View Post
Iím just curious if people chiming in on the front bar being useless are coming from a place of real experience or are stating opinions based on their internet research. I have had one for 2+ years. My experience has been that with a stock front bar, a rear .125 bar makes a substantial difference. With a .125 pair in the front and rear it was not my fav. I found a tighter front with similar characteristics of rear roll to stock. The .250 bar in the rear makes a huge difference to balance out the front .125 bar and I like it better overall. When you start seeing corners at 60+ MPH, the rear end REALLY likes to roll. The JBR .250 rear bar was used on the #85 All Out Motorsports car for a reason.

Nope, no experience, here.


Set your car up as you see fit, that's what it's all about.
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 Old 07-17-2018, 04:56 AM   #13
 
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Originally Posted by phate View Post
Nope, no experience, here.


Set your car up as you see fit, that's what it's all about.
100% agree there. I think it all comes down to the application and the preference of the driver. But I will say that if you do put .125 front and rears in, it's probably best to put front on the weakest setting and rear on the stiffest setting otherwise you'll feel like a school bus entering corners lol
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 Old 07-17-2018, 07:02 AM   #14
 
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Originally Posted by phate View Post
Nope, no experience, here.


Set your car up as you see fit, that's what it's all about.
Guys, if you read some of Phate's posts in various suspension threads (only one of which is linked above) you will see that he is extremely well versed in the subject and has a vast amount of competition track experience. If there is such a thing as a suspension guru here, he may be it. He is a hard core Mazda racer.

He was either extremely modest or a little sarcastic about blowing off his suggestion that we don't improve handling by increasing the stiffness of the front bar while greatly benefiting from slightly beefing up the rear.

While high post count and rep value does not always equate to knowledge, in his case it does.
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 Old 07-17-2018, 07:14 AM   #15
 
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I know his car is wildly not a "street car", but what front bar is he running. Granted, it's a 6, not a 3.
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Versatuner, 3-bar MAP, ITV22's
CS Turbo/DP/RP/HPFP/BPV/R-DiffMount
White Widow F-DiffMount, Whiteline RSB
Russian Bushings in Back, Magnaflow CBE
JBR Tru-3.5/3-port EBCS/EGR-D
Damond RMM/PMM/Stage 2 OCC
Puppy Power tuning temporarily suspended.
Forged build ongoing. Manley H-Tuff & 2618, King Bearings

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2004 Olds Alero ECOtec 2.2 - Broken (since Christmas 2015)
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2008 GSX-R 1000 - Stolen (With several runs past 180, I'd probably be dead by now if it wasn't stolen. So, in a way, I'm thankful.)
1988 RX-7 TII - Sold (Megasquirt, streetport, filter-on-turbo SRI, custom TBE, 20psi boost creep on OE turbo, OE TMIC on ice, 13.467 @ 105.44) apex seals said buh bye!
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 Old 07-17-2018, 07:17 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by Fstrnyou View Post
I know his car is wildly not a "street car", but what front bar is he running. Granted, it's a 6, not a 3.
My car is balanced for roll stiffness contribution between the bars and springs (~55% roll stiffness contribution from bars). I have significantly less roll stiffness from bars than an MS3 does, where they're upwards of 75% in stock form.


Overall stiffness between my car and others is not a good comparison. Same for the IMSA Speed3 - cars on slicks see significantly higher lateral g's than street tired cars do. The setup is a bit different.
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 Old 07-17-2018, 07:21 AM   #17
 
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Default Review of JBR Front and Rear Swaybars

Originally Posted by MSMS3 View Post
Guys, if you read some of Phate's posts in various suspension threads, you will see that he is extremely well versed in the subject and has a vast amount of competition track experience. If there is such a thing as a suspension guru here, he may be it. He is a hard core Mazda racer.

He was either extremely modest or a little sarcastic about blowing off his suggestion that we don't improve handling by increasing the stiffness of the front bar while greatly benefiting from beefing up the rear.

While high post count and rep value does not always equate to knowledge, in his case it does.

I donít doubt his experience or knowledge on any subject. I have studied his threads on many topics and relied heavily on his contributions for my own projects. My response wasnít intended to blow off his opinion. Iíve seen countless people who have never actually had them say how stupid it is and what a waste of money it is. I feel it is almost like a propaganda epidemic. Iíve legitimately tested the waters and have my own opinions. Iíve not been able to actually find other people who have had them to compare notes. That was the reason for my question.


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 Old 07-17-2018, 07:31 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by MSMS3 View Post
He was either extremely modest or a little sarcastic about blowing off his suggestion that we don't improve handling by increasing the stiffness of the front bar while greatly benefiting from slightly beefing up the rear.
I was mostly being sarcastic, but I am serious about setting the car up as you see fit. Until someone is setting up the car to seriously compete at whatever motorsport of choice, it's all about getting the car to feel whatever way you want it to feel. I have no problem with that.


The whole grip vs response thing is just a fun point in setting up cars. They're often equated, but are nuanced. It's a big balancing act.
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 Old 07-17-2018, 07:51 AM   #19
 
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I often carried a passenger during auto-x runs because it felt more balanced and my times were usually quicker.
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 Old 07-17-2018, 07:53 AM   #20
 
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Originally Posted by Fstrnyou View Post
I often carried a passenger during auto-x runs because it felt more balanced and my times were usually quicker.

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