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Old 01-08-2019, 05:58 PM
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33 Willys sedan drag car

Our 33 Willys launches good and straight at present. Mid to high 11’s in ¼ mile. We are building a sbc with nitrous and are expecting eventually getting in the nines. Problem is that it lifts the left front and squats the right rear considerably. It has a 4 link ford 9”, 4:11 with coil overs all around but the coil overs do not have adjustable rebound or compression. We are thinking about stronger springs or a set of QA1 adjustable coil overs but not sure what way would be best or even what spring weight to consider. It is a track only car.


33 Willys sedan
Weight 3032 Lbs. 62% on rear
94” wheelbase
56” Rear Track
848 HP
1040 TQ
TH400
4:11 Rear Gears
MT 29.5x10.2x15 Radial slicks
4 link with coil overs no compression/rebound adjustment
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Old 01-08-2019, 06:41 PM
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Short wheelbase like that you need a rear anti-roll bar.

Going stiffer with the springs just hurts some other portion of the run, going to different spring rates side to side is a big no-no, and even with adjustable shocks setting them different side to side can cause some really squirrelly handling at the finish line when you jump off the gas and get on the brake.

You need to control the roll with a part made specifically to do so. Anti-roll bar
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Old 01-08-2019, 06:52 PM
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That car is only 94" wheelbase? Seems short for that car, my '30 Coupe is 100" and alot smaller than that car. Also, 800+hp?? With a small block? Is that including the nitrous shot?
Have you set the instant centers on the car, or at least measured side to side for bar length, rear is square with the chassis, the chassis itself is square?

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Old 01-08-2019, 11:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigMo View Post
That car is only 94" wheelbase? Seems short for that car, my '30 Coupe is 100" and alot smaller than that car. Also, 800+hp?? With a small block? Is that including the nitrous shot?
Have you set the instant centers on the car, or at least measured side to side for bar length, rear is square with the chassis, the chassis itself is square?

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Picture makes it look bigger than it is, as does the radical top chop, due to lack of scale provided by no other objects in the picture.....a '33 Willy's is a very small car, about 2/3 the size of a Model A coupe like yours.

About the same size as an Anglia, a little bigger than a Fiat Topolino or Austin Bantam.
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Old 01-09-2019, 04:10 AM
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Oh ok.....it does look much longer.

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Old 01-09-2019, 07:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ericnova72 View Post
Short wheelbase like that you need a rear anti-roll bar.

Going stiffer with the springs just hurts some other portion of the run, going to different spring rates side to side is a big no-no, and even with adjustable shocks setting them different side to side can cause some really squirrelly handling at the finish line when you jump off the gas and get on the brake.

You need to control the roll with a part made specifically to do so. Anti-roll bar
Thanks Eric, u da man! It's a real joy to have you and a couple other knowledgeable folks here!
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Old 01-09-2019, 08:22 AM
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A lot of factory Buick guys were (are?) running Wolf anti-roll bars. I've been out of that loop for awhile, but the site is still active and they do custom work...

Russ
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Old 01-09-2019, 08:31 AM
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TRZ has several good kits too.

S&W, Alston, ChassisWorks, Competition Engineering, and a bunch of others too.....I think everyone carries one now.
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Old 01-09-2019, 07:31 PM
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Here is a picture of the rear anti roll bar on my 41 Willys. This version has the adjustable links I made for softening it up on the street. Otherwise just a standard straight link works for racers. It took a lot of screwing around to come up with a strong enough die spring to work just right. Once I got it it worked perfect for what I needed. It has about 15k miles on it in this picture.

The anti rollbar attaches to the rear end rather than the chassis. It was just easier to make this way.

There weren’t many aftermarket anti roll bar kits and none would have fit without a lot of modification.

With a narrowed rear end like this you need a pretty stiff one that is adjustable. I was able to use 4130 tubing and I could simply change wall thickness or by using bushings I could change diameter and wall thickness again. I don’t remember the length but 24” rings a bell.

This entire system was designed on SolidWorks then run through SW stress analysis. This is generally not available to most but my engineering job was centered around doing stuff like this so when time came to make chips it was only a day’s work in the shop with minimal shop tools. I do my own TIG welding too.

Byron
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Old 01-09-2019, 10:37 PM
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33 Willys

My 33 Willys would do all sorts of gyrations without a sway bar. Got a bar from a T'bird, shortened it to fit and launches and turns were flat. Did wonders for handling.
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Old 01-10-2019, 08:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bentwings View Post
Here is a picture of the rear anti roll bar on my 41 Willys. This version has the adjustable links I made for softening it up on the street. Otherwise just a standard straight link works for racers. It took a lot of screwing around to come up with a strong enough die spring to work just right. Once I got it it worked perfect for what I needed. It has about 15k miles on it in this picture.

The anti rollbar attaches to the rear end rather than the chassis. It was just easier to make this way.

There weren’t many aftermarket anti roll bar kits and none would have fit without a lot of modification.

With a narrowed rear end like this you need a pretty stiff one that is adjustable. I was able to use 4130 tubing and I could simply change wall thickness or by using bushings I could change diameter and wall thickness again. I don’t remember the length but 24” rings a bell.

This entire system was designed on SolidWorks then run through SW stress analysis. This is generally not available to most but my engineering job was centered around doing stuff like this so when time came to make chips it was only a day’s work in the shop with minimal shop tools. I do my own TIG welding too.

Byron
Now that is impressive! Don't suppose you'd have any plans/blueprints? I especially like the small adjustable coil overs. Have you considered marketing this item?
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Old 01-10-2019, 08:34 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 39 master View Post
My 33 Willys would do all sorts of gyrations without a sway bar. Got a bar from a T'bird, shortened it to fit and launches and turns were flat. Did wonders for handling.
Could you please elaborate on the project?
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Old 01-10-2019, 09:34 AM
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Fang16. No plans to market this thing. I did have visions of something on that order but more on a custom per application. I’m not even sure I still have the CAD models as I’ve been through a couple of disastrous computer crashes since I made these. I took videos of the suspension movement as I worked on the four link adjustment. Then again as I worked with the anti roll bar. From this I had to make some assumptions as I designed the system. I kept thinking of the movie “ ET and more data” LOL. It was a lot of work but fun. I don’t know if I could do it again.

I did apply some of what I learned when I added the rear anti roll bar to my el Camino. Most use a control arm mounted one but these will cause a bind and stress on the pivots. I found a co. (Detroit Speed) that makes a link style anti roll bar for my el Camino. While not exactly a bolt on it did work perfectly and transformed the big car. Ironically the same ride characteristics appeared but much more moderated as there is more suspension movement available.

The reason the spring loaded links came up was that in order to control roll stiffness at the rear, the bar had to be quite stiff as it doesn’t take much roll to cause squirliness on high power short wheelbase cars. As a result street ride suffers. The anti roll bar provides excessive roll stiffness when going over uneven roads. For example going over a bump with just one side of the car. The motion is pretty choppy. Making the bar softer makes the ride better but now you have lost the purpose when you accelerate rather briskly. Not that I drive like a mad man but I often rode at the back of the pack cruising and sometimes I had to make tracks to catch up from stop lights etc.

So by creating flexible links to the bar it softened just enough. You could say well the bar is too stiff to begin with. Not so. I tried that first. It just resulted in a little less squirly car. Particularly noticeable when you upshifted. It took a lot of trial and error testing and a pile of die springs. Plenty of roadside adjustments too.

This car had a true four link rear suspension so with a little testing and the rear roll control I could get gat almost a dead hook even with the Hoosier Pro Streets. There wasn’t room for a lot of suspension movement so shock absorber control was limited. The steep angle of the coil overs was an attempt to help this. Most of these “kit cars” use parallel links or some kind of triangulated four bar systems. Few have good traction under hard acceleration and the often is a lot of bump steer caused by the rear end. I was trying to get around this.

I’ll grant some of the other suspensions rode better, smoother but simply don’t grab the road. This one worked quite well even in the rain.

The last part was to try and make the special links last a while without a lot of maintenance. For the most part all I did was wash them off when I washed the car. I did use a little dry moly lube on them too.
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Old 01-10-2019, 01:29 PM
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33 Willys

I build a frame for the Willys, rear suspension was triangle 4 bar on a Ford 9". On moderate to heavy launch there was lots of body roll and tried to pick up a front wheel. Found a straight sway bar from a T'bird and had to cut a bunch out to fit it to the narrow Willys body. To shorten it I just cut some out, Veed the two ends and welded it together. I figured if it worked I would get another and sleeve it. The stability was outstanding and I never did get around to making a new one.
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Old 01-10-2019, 08:02 PM
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Thanks for the info
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