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BMW 3-Series (E90 E92) Forum > E90 / E92 / E93 3-series Technical Forums > Suspension | Brakes | Chassis > Sway bars or any suggestions to improve handling/cornering



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      04-23-2009, 09:36 PM   #1
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Sway bars or any suggestions to improve handling/cornering

Does it really make a difference?

Looking to do some upgrades on the sways..

Or

anyone recommend any other upgrades to improve handling, increase chasis stiffness.? i.e. Strut brace front and rear?

I dont track my car and I dont plan to in the near future.. just looking for some upgrades for some occational spirited driving.

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      04-23-2009, 09:49 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PNF View Post
Does it really make a difference?

Looking to do some upgrades on the sways..

Or

anyone recommend any other upgrades to improve handling, increase chasis stiffness.? i.e. Strut brace front and rear?

I dont track my car and I dont plan to in the near future.. just looking for some upgrades for some occational spirited driving.

Front/rear sways, chassis brace (upgraded from OEM) and a strut brace will supply the added performance you're looking for. I went with the Hotchkis sways and chassis brace (headed up a GB not long ago w/ HP Autowerks) but, have yet to install the parts. I have had the OEM aluminum strut brace installed for a while now but, without the other parts installed the effects are minimal.
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      04-23-2009, 10:22 PM   #3
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Front/rear sways, chassis brace (upgraded from OEM) and a strut brace will supply the added performance you're looking for. I went with the Hotchkis sways and chassis brace (headed up a GB not long ago w/ HP Autowerks) but, have yet to install the parts. I have had the OEM aluminum strut brace installed for a while now but, without the other parts installed the effects are minimal.
Right now, I'm thinking about the same Hotchkis sway and chasis brace..

damn, i missed the GB!!!

But I am still debating if I would "feel" the difference in performance and handling.. I have seen/read mixed results...
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      04-23-2009, 10:29 PM   #4
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Mr. 5 had a great thread not too long ago that turned into a discussion (I imagine you already found it) concerning the added benefits of the upgraded sways. I believe he had gone with the M bars.

I have been wanting to install the chassis brace ......... there's a HUGE difference in the construction of the aftermarket Hotchkis brace and what we currently have installed as OEM. I would imagine a person would feel some improvement with the stiffness of the chassis just with that installed.
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      04-23-2009, 10:42 PM   #5
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Mr. 5 had a great thread not too long ago that turned into a discussion (I imagine you already found it) concerning the added benefits of the upgraded sways. I believe he had gone with the M bars.

I have been wanting to install the chassis brace ......... there's a HUGE difference in the construction of the aftermarket Hotchkis brace and what we currently have installed as OEM. I would imagine a person would feel some improvement with the stiffness of the chassis just with that installed.

MR.5 have quite a few threads.. haha. I'm still reading his sports suspention one.

but yea, I found that thread, but interestingly, there are very very few thread in this suspension/chasis section on chasis/sway.. mostly its on shocks/springs...

whats the GB price diid you get the hotchkis sways for if you dont mind?
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      04-23-2009, 11:28 PM   #6
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MR.5 have quite a few threads.. haha. I'm still reading his sports suspention one.

but yea, I found that thread, but interestingly, there are very very few thread in this suspension/chasis section on chasis/sway.. mostly its on shocks/springs...

whats the GB price diid you get the hotchkis sways for if you dont mind?
The front and rear sway bars along with the chassis brace was $680 shipped. It came out to a savings of a little more than $200 and included free shipping.
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      04-24-2009, 12:09 AM   #7
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If your willing to buy sway bars, I would only do the rear. Front and rear strut braces are nice too. I would also play with tire pressures.

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      04-24-2009, 09:10 AM   #8
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If your willing to buy sway bars, I would only do the rear. Front and rear strut braces are nice too. I would also play with tire pressures.

Danny

sadly... I know I should have kept a closer eye on the pressure.. but I'm just lazy.. I even bought a "better" tire pressure reader.. and thought I would going to use it.. its still sitting in my garage.. lol

$680 for all of rear/front sway and chasis brace?? thats not too bad at all! I think the rear/front sways alone are like $480 + shipping!

So, I guess I missed the GB?
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      04-24-2009, 09:17 AM   #9
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M3 front control arm swap will give you the best bang for the buck.
http://www.e90post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=184925
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      04-24-2009, 09:19 AM   #10
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sadly... I know I should have kept a closer eye on the pressure.. but I'm just lazy.. I even bought a "better" tire pressure reader.. and thought I would going to use it.. its still sitting in my garage.. lol

$680 for all of rear/front sway and chasis brace?? thats not too bad at all! I think the rear/front sways alone are like $480 + shipping!

So, I guess I missed the GB?
Just so you know Kevin loves this setup and he's pushing me and Craig into buying it. He says the noticeable difference is big and you will love the handling. Unfortunately, i missed out on the GB as well
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      04-24-2009, 09:35 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by Alex@SupremePower View Post
Just so you know Kevin loves this setup and he's pushing me and Craig into buying it. He says the noticeable difference is big and you will love the handling. Unfortunately, i missed out on the GB as well
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Originally Posted by PNF View Post
sadly... I know I should have kept a closer eye on the pressure.. but I'm just lazy.. I even bought a "better" tire pressure reader.. and thought I would going to use it.. its still sitting in my garage.. lol

$680 for all of rear/front sway and chasis brace?? thats not too bad at all! I think the rear/front sways alone are like $480 + shipping!

So, I guess I missed the GB?
Yeah, it was a sweet offer and really didn't have many wanting on the deal. I had to end the GB mid-March. The turn out was pretty big for 1addicts GB ........ so much so that Hotchkis won't have ARB kits ready for shipping until the first week of May. I believe the chassis braces are ready to be sent out immediately though.

I am under the impression that Harold may still be making some deals with these kits ......... doesn't hurt to ask at any rate.
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      04-24-2009, 10:05 AM   #12
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yea, Kevin PMed me about that a little too...

you guys are bad influence man.........

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      04-24-2009, 12:40 PM   #13
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yea, Kevin PMed me about that a little too...

you guys are bad influence man.........

No such thing as a "bad" influence .....
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      04-28-2009, 07:47 PM   #14
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Does it really make a difference?

Looking to do some upgrades on the sways..

Or

anyone recommend any other upgrades to improve handling, increase chasis stiffness.? i.e. Strut brace front and rear?

I dont track my car and I dont plan to in the near future.. just looking for some upgrades for some occational spirited driving.

I'm going to tell you something you likely won't want to hear.

The BIGGEST improvement you can make to the 3 series handling is to tune the software behind the steering wheel.
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      04-28-2009, 08:05 PM   #15
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Agreed.

Common sense is a a phrase which has no meaning anymore.

1st thing - Learn how to drive. If people here had to take the euro driving test, I would guess more than half of US drivers would fail. You would be amazed at how many real life elements are left out in the High School Driving Class or even the ones you pay for. Best thing is to attend an HPDE event tru NASA or similar. Simple things such as heel and toe (if you drive a stick) makes daily driving more efficient and safe (and satisfying) IMO.

2nd thing - get to know your car - stock form. Knowing the limits of your car is priceless (controlled environment). Understanding controlled counter steering, throttle control, trail braking and how to put them all together will make you a good driver among many idiots.

3rd thing - Buy your upgrades one at a time (Except for springs and shocks) so you can adjust to the differences they have on your cars behavior. Tires and PSI makes the biggest differences to your car's handling. I thiink if you start with a nice car (BMW and the like) and learn how to drive, you will find not too much needs to be changed unless it's a personal thing or you plan on driving the "ring".

I've been at work all day and I'm brain dead, forgive me if I missed some other obvious things or mistated my post.

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      04-28-2009, 08:38 PM   #16
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I'm going to tell you something you likely won't want to hear.

The BIGGEST improvement you can make to the 3 series handling is to tune the software behind the steering wheel.

I know, couldnt agree with the statement more. I only wish there are fewer idiots on the road or better yet, fewer of them on this board... I'm amazed.
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      04-28-2009, 09:17 PM   #17
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2nd thing - get to know your car - stock form. Knowing the limits of your car is priceless (controlled environment). Understanding controlled counter steering, throttle control, trail braking and how to put them all together will make you a good driver among many idiots.
I would counter this in saying that the basic 3 series' limit is so far beyond most driver's skills, it would take someone with more experience than I to know the limit of the 3 series.

I would again like to counter that it's not the limit of your car you should be aware of. It's YOUR limit as a driver you must find. Most modern cars are so capable that it makes bad drivers look good. Finding out what you are capable of doing, then improving upon that limit, will go a very VERY long way in improving how your car handles, since however bad it's handling now, trust me, it's not the car. It's YOU.

I would lastly like to suggest, that the typical driver's training offered here in the States is woefully inadequate even for everyday commute, much less performance oriented driving. Instead of paying for swaybars and coil-overs to cure ills that the car doesn't really have, save that $$$ and invest in a couple of driving schools in your local area held in controlled environments like the track, or do half a dozen autocross and you'll very quickly find that your car is much more capable than you think it is.
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      04-28-2009, 09:34 PM   #18
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Hey bro, I'm just trying to help a fellow member, I'm not looking for the instructor of the year award. You win, no problem. I've attended HP driving school and all I was/am doing is help. I will bow out so you don't have to counter anymore.



Danny

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I would counter this in saying that the basic 3 series' limit is so far beyond most driver's skills, it would take someone with more experience than I to know the limit of the 3 series.

I would again like to counter that it's not the limit of your car you should be aware of. It's YOUR limit as a driver you must find. Most modern cars are so capable that it makes bad drivers look good. Finding out what you are capable of doing, then improving upon that limit, will go a very VERY long way in improving how your car handles, since however bad it's handling now, trust me, it's not the car. It's YOU.

I would lastly like to suggest, that the typical driver's training offered here in the States is woefully inadequate even for everyday commute, much less performance oriented driving. Instead of paying for swaybars and coil-overs to cure ills that the car doesn't really have, save that $$$ and invest in a couple of driving schools in your local area held in controlled environments like the track, or do half a dozen autocross and you'll very quickly find that your car is much more capable than you think it is.
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      04-29-2009, 12:03 AM   #19
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Hey bro, I'm just trying to help a fellow member, I'm not looking for the instructor of the year award. You win, no problem. I've attended HP driving school and all I was/am doing is help. I will bow out so you don't have to counter anymore.



Danny
oh snap! havent seen you post in a while.
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      04-29-2009, 11:32 AM   #20
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Hey bro, I'm just trying to help a fellow member, I'm not looking for the instructor of the year award. You win, no problem. I've attended HP driving school and all I was/am doing is help. I will bow out so you don't have to counter anymore.



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First off, no need to get butt-hurt about anything I have to say. Just trying to clear up the mis-conception that anyone here can actually find the limit of these great cars. I've been doing this for about 6 years and I can honestly tell you, that every time I hop into my BMW at the track I'm continually being amazed at where the limit of these cars are, bone stock. And just when I thought I've found the limit, I let my friends drive the car and find that there's a whole new limit to be found. At the end of the day it's the driver that's limiting what these cars can do, not the other way around.

And just pointing out that as you (and I) continue to improve our limits, the better the car will handle.
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      04-29-2009, 11:54 AM   #21
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First off, no need to get butt-hurt about anything I have to say. Just trying to clear up the mis-conception that anyone here can actually find the limit of these great cars. I've been doing this for about 6 years and I can honestly tell you, that every time I hop into my BMW at the track I'm continually being amazed at where the limit of these cars are, bone stock. And just when I thought I've found the limit, I let my friends drive the car and find that there's a whole new limit to be found. At the end of the day it's the driver that's limiting what these cars can do, not the other way around.

And just pointing out that as you (and I) continue to improve our limits, the better the car will handle.
While all of what you guys said are true, but none of you answered the question I posted.

The question is not to maximize the capability of the car, or my limit of driving? (I also took some, well, probably not as professional as you guys are, performance /defensive driving schools in the past).

The thread is about "how" or "what" can improve handling of the car and whether these upgrades would really make a difference. Obviously, I'm not a NASCAR driver and I dont intend to be one, but I am looking at possibilities of upgrading the car in the ways I like and hence my post.

Sure, you recommend that should probably spend my $1K on some 1-week professional driving lesson? Thanks for the suggestion, but I think I will spend the $1K on other upgrades.. so no need to counter and argue on whether average drivers have the "ability" to maximize the car's capability.
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      04-29-2009, 11:56 AM   #22
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While all of what you guys said are true, but none of you answered the question I posted.

The question is not to maximize the capability of the car, or my limit of driving? (I also took some, well, probably not as professional as you guys are, performance /defensive driving schools in the past).

The thread is about "how" or "what" can improve handling of the car and whether these upgrades would really make a difference. Obviously, I'm not a NASCAR driver and I dont intend to be one, but I am looking at possibilities of upgrading the car in the ways I like and hence my post.

Sure, you recommend that should probably spend my $1K on some 1-week professional driving lesson? Thanks for the suggestion, but I think I will spend the $1K on other upgrades.. :P
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