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the sucker king

Clocking torsion bars (Gen 2)

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Let's have a great discussion about clocking tortion bars.  In reading Bentley's Manual and the FSM I have come to find out there are more possibilities here than I realized. For clarity's sake, we are not talking about using the adjusting bolt, but clocking the spines of the torsion bar.

 

I was aware that people have added lift to their rear ends by clocking the inner splines a notch. It should add about 2.5 inches for one notch. I have been told that this makes the rear end stiffer. I assume this is because of the angles of the outer arm. The closer to verticle the outer arm (or spring plate as Bentley's calls it) gets, the more force required to twist the torsion bar. I would assume then, that the closer to horizontal it gets, the softer your ride should get in the rear. Has anyone used clocking to lower their ride? I'm getting ahead of myself, read on....

 

What I learned that i didn't know before is that by clocking both the inner and outer splines in opposite directions, You can change the ride height in (roughly) quarter inch incriments. Got me thinking for my hatch....

My hatch has a 6 inch body lift in the front, 3 inch body lift in the back. This is a good set up in that I really like the way it sits pretty level (well at least with both front and back with stock adjustments all the way up). So I like the way it looks.

 

A couple improvements I could think of making to this set up

 

1. more body lift- another inch or two and I could mount a gas tank from a 2wd, which holds a few gallons more. But if I boost the rear with more body lift, would not sit level, could drop the adjustable to make it better. I like the softer ride with the suspesion adjusted all the way down

 

2. the car would look better with the rear wheel a little farther back (See pic below). I suppose clocking the torsion bar in a lowering fashion about an inch or two would move the wheel back a little, maybe not enough to really notice but it would certainly sit different. And that should also soften the suspension, right?

look at the rear wheel and how if it were moved back it would be better centered in the wheel well. There is only like a half inch between tire and body on the front side of the rear wheel. It doesn't rub on the trail, but it doesn't look good.

IMG_0390_zps59474032.jpg

 

So I started tinkering with an old rear end I have rusting behind the shed. removed the torsion bars from the crossmember. Here's what is inside your crossmember:

 

IMG_0506_zpsaaa8b143.jpg

 

So I can not get the outer arms and bushings seperated from the torsion bars. I assume they are just rusty rusty. My manuals just say to remove them without anything on how to remove them, which makes me think they should just pull apart. Anybody done this? They are soaking in PB overnight.

 

What I am thinking of doing to my car's rear is add another inch or two of body lift and lower it an inch or two via torsion bar clocking.

 

What i am hoping to accomplish by this would be-

Fit bigger gas tank

Car still sits level

Softer suspension in rear

Rear wheel sits back a little further

 

Who's got experience here? I would like to hear from anybody who has clocked the torsion bars, especially by rotating both ends in opposition to each other, and also especially anyone who has lowered their rear this way.

 

Here's some good reading, I hope you can zoom in and read. first is bentley's second is FSM

IMG_0504_zps3378e8f5.jpg

2ddda598-9093-4305-a4ce-d756147cd5d3_zps177a6315.jpg

Edited by the sucker king

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Thank you for taking the time to show this torn apart. I have a suspension rattle in the rear of my lifted Gen 2 wagon that I've never been able to find. I suspect it has to do with those bushings.

Edited by Crazyeights

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warning have done this caused to mucth load on bar and it broke they dont like to work well clocked like that broke two in a row

exactly what did you do, did you clock inside or both and how much?

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Carfreak85 has..  I think I am on his ignore list so can't ask directly..  looking to do something similar in a few months.

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on my 87 hatch I lowered a few years ago I used a generous amount of pb blaster and a rubber mallet, might have to hold the bar with a vice and hit on it till it gives up

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on my 87 hatch I lowered a few years ago I used a generous amount of pb blaster and a rubber mallet, might have to hold the bar with a vice and hit on it till it gives up

so it does just pull out, or does the arm go towards the bar. Youy are the first one to say they lowered a car this way. what did you do and how did it work?

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Yeah, the arm pulls off the end of the bar. It's possible to do it while still in the car as well. I did just reclock the outer side, not both like you are talking about. It rode pretty well, could have been better though but it was very livable. But I never had any trouble with it, and I drove the car as hard an one can an ea81 4 speed with cheapo tires.

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I believe that three inches is extremely wrong, I'd feel comfortable saying half that honestly. But it has been many years since I had that hatch. I think I did 2 notches on mine, and it was noticeably softer. It took some digging but here so a thread with before and after pics

http://www.ultimatesubaru.org/forum/topic/72369-my-87-hatch/

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Thanks man, I really miss that one,. By far the cleanest ea81 car I've ever owned, and also the last one. Hoping after I get the upcoming wedding paid for that I can get back to putting money in the fund for another one.

 

Sorry for the thread jack sucker, hope I've been of some help.

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No you've been most helpfull, good job on the lowered ride too!

I still can't get the thing seperated, I beat it with a BFH ( this is an old junk one I am experimenting with) will try heat sometime soon, putting it down for now.

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No I have not touched this since, I will at some point put heat on these to seperate these. I will rebuild my rear end after I figure these out, it's been put on hold for now. I wonder if you can still get those bushings from the dealer? didn't see them on rock auto.

I will definately update this when I tweek the suspension on my hatch. will be a while.

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Turns out you can still get the torsion bar bushings from the dealer. $44 per piece. You can not get the mustache bar bushings, which came pressed into the bar ans sold as a unit (no longer available). You can still get the rubberized washers that sandwich the m. bar bushings. I didn't ask about the trailing arm bushings, but I recenty used front control arm bushings and they worked fine.

 

So question for 86Bratman or anyone with an answer- you say you can clock the outer arms with the rear end still in the car. When the car looks like it does in the pic below, how do you disengage the outer arm from the splines? Just pull it? Did you get a prybar on it? I am not doing this yet, I am going to do it with another rear end while it is on the bench, but I just don't get something.

IMG_0595_zps3006d515.jpg

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I wish there was more progress on this I am collecting parts and replacing the bushings is going to be on top of the list followed by reclocking so I dont have my butt in the air while driving around.  And I like to see other peoples visions come to fruition also.

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I also wish there was more progress, but what can I say? I'm slowly getting my interior together and in the meantime I drive the car as is. If we keep this discussion alive , I suppose I am more apt to work on it here and there.

So look- nobody ever addressed the question in my last post in this thread (look at the paragraph just above the pic)- I still don't understand how you seperate this piece. The one on my bench sure as hell doesn't want to come apart, I am wondering how those who have done it while it is still in the car get them seperated.

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I think the ones that have done it are spending more time on their new gen rigs.. Are you asking about the plate that hangs down at roughly a 45? IF so I dont think it is supposed to come off.  It looks to me like it is attatched to the torsion inner so I think just pull or block and BFH. I wonder if something like a jack between both sides would help.. you know both side simultaneous.  Without a blown up diagram I can only speculate.

Edited by Mykeys Toy

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Well I completely missed the question from last July, but when I did this I used a rubber mallet and persuaded them off. Don't be alarmed if one or both of them come out of the inner side instead of outer, it will still accomplish the same result, just for the sake of not having to do it multiple times make some reference marks on the tube and swing are for this event.

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here's the stuff from the manuals, as I see the pics are no longer showing in the first post. so to refresh our memories, the idea here is to clock both inner and outer splines to create the appropriate lift and softness in the rear. first the FSM then the Bentley's info

2ddda598-9093-4305-a4ce-d756147cd5d3_zps177a6315.jpg

IMG_0504_zps3378e8f5.jpg

 

I think these should be good enough to zoom and read. So I have the two tosiion bars with outer arms still attached from a junk set up. till I seperate those I won't mess with my other sets. This weekend I'll really try to do something, heat it and beat it.

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I think the ones that have done it are spending more time on their new gen rigs.. Are you asking about the plate that hangs down at roughly a 45? IF so I dont think it is supposed to come off.  It looks to me like it is attatched to the torsion inner so I think just pull or block and BFH. I wonder if something like a jack between both sides would help.. you know both side simultaneous.  Without a blown up diagram I can only speculate.

yes the plate I would call the outer arm. It does come off, that's the whole point of clocking them against each other, inner and outer splines, you clock the outside one way, the inside the other, the spline counts are different so you can customize the amount of lift. I just cant get the outer arms off and don't understand why. probobly rusted on these ones.

IMG_1336_zpsf40d4611.jpg

Edited by the sucker king

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