DIY Rear sway bar for 88-91, a.k.a "Hollis bar" - D-series.org

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Old 07-01-2015, 08:24 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default DIY Rear sway bar for 88-91, a.k.a "Hollis bar"

Thought I'd do a write up on my experience building the "Hollis" rear sway bar that Andy lists on his Hollis Racing page here. Benefits of this setup is it's cheaper than buying the ASR bar and lighter than most other sway bar alternatives out there. This, paired with short arms and mounting as far out on the LCA as possible, give the most leverage.

Here's the parts list of what I actually used from his notes:

1" OD x .095" wall splined tube. Bought from Speedway Engineering
Splined arms for said bar.
Energy Suspension 9.5129 1" sway bar bushing/bracket.
Grade 8 3/8" bolts, nuts, washers (Tractor Supply sells by the lb)
3/8" steel spacers (Also, Tractor Supply)
Heim joint/spherical rod ends in 3/8", male and female.
2" x 3/16" flat steel for brackets.
Suspension Techniques sway bar brackets

Drill holes in arms:

I unfortunately don't have any pics from the night I drilled the holes in the arms. Andy recommends holes at 4.75", 5.25", and 5.75" from the bar center, but I thought they were a bit too close to each other so I spaced them out .75" apart instead of just .5" after the 4.75" hole.

After initial test fit, I had to cut the arms shorter since I'm using some custom Bilsteins that mount further inboard up top. The arm was contacting the sleeves and shock body, so I cut the arms down using a band saw to only the first hole and redrilled new holes closer to the bar.

I didn't exactly get the centers right from the first to second and the second to third :/, but I layed the first arm over the other in the drill press to match both arms up exactly the same off-ness lol.



Brackets for the LCA:

I got a foot of 2" x 3/16" flat steel and started by cutting it in half. From there, a hand torch, a vice and a hammer were all that were needed to bend them each 90*. Cutting wheel on an angle grinder shortened the brackets to where they needed to be. I also shaped them some to fit the flat spots of these 88 LCA's, and left the mounting part for the end link wide so I can have two attachment points. To keep the brackets from rotating, I drilled an 1/8" hole opposite the end-link side of the bracket through the bracket itself and the control arm and tapped in a roll pin. Lastly, before attaching, I painted them with whatever I had laying around so they wouldn't rust.

Not the greatest picture, but you get the gist of it. These LCA's already had brackets welded further inboard, but we want more leverage remember?


Attach everything:

Here's the ST bracket. You can make your own from 2" flat steel, but I was afraid of doing so (this was before I made the other brackets), so I got the ones from my old ST rear bar. I also added washers to the bolts after this pic was taken.



One thing to note, the holes the bar attaches to are too high up. You'll need to either slot them or drill new holes directly below to keep the bar from juuust touching the spare tire well. That or some massaging with a mini sledge...

I'd lubed and added the ES bushing to the bar. It's nearly all the way out on the bar to mate up with the existing holes on the ST brackets.



This pic again, bracket on about to install the splined arm.



Whoever drilled those holes must've been drunk! A 3/8" bolts with a lock nut holds the arm in place on the bar. I had to not flush mount the arm on the bar to clear the sway bar brackets, the bar is recessed just a touch into the arm. Tightened them to German torque specs, guten tight!



Last thing is the end links. I've got to add jamb nuts to these, and will probably relocate to the lower hole since the arms aren't quite level with the LCA. I also had to mount them outboard, and build spacers to both space it and give more movement to the heim joint. I used lock washers on the other side of them to give a bit more movement than regular washers or just a bolt...mostly just as thin spacers. Oh, the spacer are 1.25" long 3/8" ID sleeves that fit over bolts, I cut to the length I needed.



Hope this helps! If you don't buy a ton of bolts you don't need, don't get the McMaster bearing he lists that I didn't use, and build your own brackets, you can do all of this for $200-$250.
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Old 07-01-2015, 09:08 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Now you need a matching Hammerly Hitch
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Old 07-01-2015, 09:13 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Now you need a matching Hammerly Hitch
I've actually got a modified NA Miata hidden hitch from my brother in law's CRX. Never fitted it since we started trailering my car.
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Old 07-02-2015, 09:14 AM   #4 (permalink)
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DAMN that looks beefy as fuck.

Great job
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Old 07-03-2015, 02:49 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Sick write up man!

How much is retail on the bar, splined ends, and any approx spring rate or equiv to a solid bar diameter? Like, is it bad ass or soft? Haha.
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Old 07-03-2015, 04:19 PM   #6 (permalink)
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you don't want a solid bar....there are charts for the tube spring rates as well as thicker walled sections.
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Old 07-03-2015, 05:05 PM   #7 (permalink)
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that is awesome info to know
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Old 07-03-2015, 07:21 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Sick write up man!

How much is retail on the bar, splined ends, and any approx spring rate or equiv to a solid bar diameter? Like, is it bad ass or soft? Haha.
I think the bar was around $80, and the arms were $56 each IIRC.

Here's Andy's notes on stiffness as it relates to the Suspension Techniques 22mm bar:
"Cut arms to length and drill end link mounting holes as desired. We use holes at 4.75", 5.25", and 5.75" from the bar center, which equate to 2.4, 2, and 1.6 times the stiffness of an ST bar at full stiff (.875" OD solid bar at 7.5" arms)"

I'm using probably 6" arms, so even stiffer.
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Old 07-04-2015, 07:26 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Thats exactly what I was wondering. Sweet man I really like those style bars. They just look f'n sick plus they actually function.
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Old 07-04-2015, 11:00 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Thats exactly what I was wondering. Sweet man I really like those style bars. They just look f'n sick plus they actually function.
This is a WHOLE lot cheaper than buying the 32mm ASR bar which is basically the same thing but with longer arms and larger diameter bar. I was also able to squeeze 3" exhaust over it, where with the ASR everyone says you can't clear exhaust.
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