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  #1  
Old 08-15-2013, 07:33 AM
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Strut tower brace

I have a 2003 R53 with the sport suspension package. I've already increased the size of the rear sway bar. So my question is will the car benefit with the installation of a front strut tower brace. I've installed M7's front shock plates and they will have to be removed to install the tower brace. Pro's and cons would be helpful
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Old 08-15-2013, 07:39 AM
submitaweasel submitaweasel is offline
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Front strut braces are a tricky fit. Do you have an aftermarket Intake? And all that you'll really feel fron a front strut brace is increased front end rigidity which will result in increased understeer.
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Old 08-15-2013, 07:46 AM
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I have an after market intake. And your right about the increased understeer. Not sure if that's a good thing or a bad thing. Or if it's worth the cost.
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Old 08-15-2013, 07:48 AM
submitaweasel submitaweasel is offline
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Some aftermarket intakes wont clear a strut tower bar. I have the alta intake with heat shield and theres no way I could ever fit a strut bar in there.

You said you have a larger rsb. Do you like the way it handles now? Or does the back end kick out too quickly/too often?
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Old 08-15-2013, 07:49 AM
tremperj tremperj is offline
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I snagged a Dinan bar for pretty cheap, brand new, on eBay.
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Old 08-15-2013, 09:34 AM
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IMO it does make a difference. You will be surprised on how it stops a lot of squeaks and rattles too. The RSB is one of the best mods to do to a MINI. I have never heard of anyone on dry roads or track ever spinning their MINI around because it was too stiff. I have a 22mm adjustable and I have it on the firmest setting and never had a spin out and trust me I drive aggressive.
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Old 08-15-2013, 11:29 AM
ashchuckton ashchuckton is offline
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I have an M7 front strut bar & Cabrio braces on the front. I respectfully disagree that they will make any noticeable difference in the way your MINI handles or feels. I'm sure they must add some rigidity to the MINI, but I can't feel it. No harm in putting one on & maybe it will make a big difference. ;-)
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Old 08-15-2013, 11:40 AM
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After talking to a friend of my whose a BMW mechinic I think I've decided against it. Won't make enough of a difference to justfy the cost. And according to him to much understeer is not necessarlly a good thing. For multiply reasons. Thanks guys for the input.
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Old 08-18-2013, 06:54 PM
WayMotorWorks WayMotorWorks is online now
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If you do decide to get one the M7 brace fits the best. Since you already have the plates your best bet would be to list them in the classifieds and get some of your money back on them.
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Old 08-19-2013, 12:30 AM
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See my mod list below... I have absolutely no understeer nor oversteer. The Dread Pirate is as neutral as any car I've ever driven.
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Old 08-19-2013, 03:45 AM
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I dont have any understeer or oversteer issues either.
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Old 08-20-2013, 04:27 PM
ashchuckton ashchuckton is offline
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My MINI is pretty darned neutral for a FWD car. The suspension mods have really helped. That being said push any front driver hard enough & you will find that understeer is still lurking.
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Old 08-20-2013, 04:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tremperj View Post
I snagged a Dinan bar for pretty cheap, brand new, on eBay.
The Dinan bar is nice but the round end plates are known to break rather easy, personally had 2 break. Got the M7 STB good solid pc.
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Old 08-21-2013, 03:38 PM
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Instead of the brace, I would spend money on front camber plates such as these:
http://www.waymotorworks.com/ireland...e-r50-r53.html
The plates will:
- Improve handling (reduce understeer)
- Combat strut tower mushrooming (thicker plate than OEM)
- Replace top rubber bushing that tends to crack/tear.
The only cons are that they cost money and will slightly increase (< 1/8") the front ride height due to the slightly thicker plate.
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Old 08-24-2013, 09:56 PM
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check out the OMP brace. It's one of the few, if not only, bars that adds pre-load.
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Old 08-25-2013, 03:05 PM
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I had a stb until I tested it on an autocross track. My times were better without it
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Old 09-13-2013, 07:33 AM
t-c-b t-c-b is offline
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you might be better off with an understrut brace (ie OMP, TSW) it's a cheap mod and adds perhaps more stiffness than the upper strut brace
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Old 09-13-2013, 10:17 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by t-c-b View Post
you might be better off with an understrut brace (ie OMP, TSW) it's a cheap mod and adds perhaps more stiffness than the upper strut brace
Do both...
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Old 09-16-2013, 11:11 PM
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I used to have a strut tower brace, and it was pretty neutral, when i had weight in the back, i had the rear seats and a subwoofer box that filled up the lower trunk area.

When i took off the rear seats, the weight balance changed and it translated into understeer, i took the brace off and boom, understeer was gone. In my opinion, the strut tower brace isnt worth it, it gives a harder ride and it really doesnt help handling

It does give you more front wheel feedback, but thats it. IMO dont buy this. Consider it when you have fully adjustable suspension in which you can correct the problems caused by the brace. If you dont have adjustable shocks/springs/swaybars dont even consider it

Oem shock valving is horrible. I recently bought some bc coilovers and the ride harshness just dissapeared. Yes it is way stiffer, but way smoother either way. And its only stiff because i set it up that way

Hope this helps
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Old 09-16-2013, 11:11 PM
 
 
 
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