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Discussion Starter #1
What do you guys think of these end links that I am considering carrying?:

http://www.gearheadsgarage.com/ForSale/Parts/endlinks.html



I contacted the manufacturer and asked him to compare his product to some of the other options on the market and here's what he had to say:



"The ISC ones are functionally similar to mine, but twice the
price. Those look like steel-race rod ends, which need regular
lubrication. One possible problem is if their spacers are
aluminum (can't tell from the photo but they're awfully white to
be steel) they won't last long. (I tried aluminum spacers first
because they would be much cheaper, but was not happy with the
results.)"




"The Miatamania ones have several issues: these are usually the
ones folks over at M.net are complaining about. I've taken
these off cars and replaced them with mine and the customers are
much happier."




"FM's are very pretty and they use a Teflon-lined joint, but
there's a problem with their mounting method and dust boots
don't work unless they are positively sealed/clamped to the
joint. I've tested different types of boots (including some
like FM's) and what I found they do best is let dirt & grit in
and keep it there. My original design links (Version 1.0) had
an O.E. style positive seal, but the cost of the parts meant a
pair of links retailed for $140. The market won't support that."




"Racing Beat's are nice pieces, but they have the same binding
problem that stock NA links have."




"The Mazda Motorsports ones are, I believe, the ones made by AWR.
From what I've seen, those are cheaper rod ends and a poor spacer
design that doesn't allow full articulation (meaning you can't
use all the holes in your adjustable bar). On a race car where
you'll be replacing them regularly, it's not so much of an issue. But street guys want something that will last them a while."


"Links are not a one-size-fits-all item. I currently have 4
models to cover all NA/NB cars, and am about to release a 5th
for NCs. My links are all Teflon-lined rod ends and all but
one model are LH/RH threads for on-car adjustment."
 

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Ill be watching this thread. At my first autocross someone came over and asked if I had them, and suggested I look into them because of how low my car is.

What are the benefits of having them/not having them?

Are they for front or rear or both?

Will they void my factory warranty? :shock:


The price seems pretty good.
 
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Discussion Starter #4
What are the benefits of having them/not having them?

Are they for front or rear or both?
I'll tackle this one, since I began the thread:

Miatas come from the factory front and rear sway bars with one bolt hole on each end and non-adjustable end links that connect ("link") the ends of the sway bars to the lower control arms, in both the front and rear.

Aftermarket bars have multiple holes on each end, permitting you the option to alter the angle of the bar end section relative to horizontal with the ground. These adjustable bars can be used either with non-adjustable-length factory end links or aftermarket adjustable-length end links which allow you an additional dimension of tuning.

When setting up your suspension, ideally you want to be sitting in the car while someone else sets the lengths of the end links so that the sway bars will be in a "neutral" (non-pre-loaded) position when at rest with your weight in place.

Some issues to consider when choosing your adjustable end links:

- orientation of the bushings such that they rotate smoothly through their range of movement and don't bind (pinch) at the extremes
- bushings properly sealed so dirt doesn't get inside and wear when movement occurs
- convenience of being able to adjust the length without disconnecting one or both ends from the car
- made of a material that won't rust from exposure to the elements

Any experienced racers, please feel free to add/correct!
 

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Hi guys,

I just found the site recently and have been lurking for a few days. Nice place you have here... I'd like to stick around.

Since I make those links Bill is posting about, I can add a few other points...

My original purpose for making these links was to reduce the NA's tendency for roll-oversteer (meaning the the more the car rolls the more the tail steps out.) Since then folks have found out about us and we've expanded our product line to meet our customer's requests.

If you look at a stock NA link you see it's got hard rubber bushings. In the rear it needs to deflect several degrees as the swaybar moves through it's range of travel (according to my measurements, it's about 7 degrees.) Take a stock link to your bench and try to measure the force it takes to deflect one of the stock bushings that much (first make sure your bench is bolted down!) I think you will be as surprised as I was at the result. Ever take a swaybar bolt out and see the threads through the bushing and bar pounded flat? (I've got a handful of those bolts in my junk drawer right now.) Now you know why.

All the energy it takes to deflect those bushings gets added into your rear swaybar, effectively increasing it's rate in a non-linear fashion, so now as your car rolls your overall bar rate goes up exponentially and the more sideways you get... and this is all before you get to your bumpstops.

Another problem is the binding of stock links pushes the sway bar left and right in it's mounts as you corner. This is especially a problem if you have one of the shiny&smooth powdercoated aftermarket bars: since you greased those urethane bushings when you installed it (nobody wants squeaks) this is even more of a problem. That's why those extra stoppers come with the aftermarket bars, and why with stock links they never seem to stay put. Way back when I first put an RB rear bar on my NA I kept finding the stoppers moved in by as much as 1 1/2 inches on each side... at that point you would hear the bar contact the chassis! On one side the link would end up at about a 90-degree angle, leaving the other one about 45 degrees. Which way does the next corner go? Can you say "unpredictable handling?" I'd clean the bar and put them back and they were moved again after the next drive. Since I put my links on that car the bar has never moved.

Steve
 

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Speaking of which, Steve, I need to get ahold of you probably in spring about a set.
 

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I like the last ones, but Im not to sure about the angle of missalingment they will allow........I need something that will really lean and not bind in order to use the stiffest settings on my sway bars. I've actually been thinking of getting some nice factory ones, bending them to the angle I need while still leaving the ends straight enough to not bind (may need 2 bends). I may need to make a small fillet/reinforcement tab(s) and weld it onto the end links to stop the end link from bending/flexing....now that I weakened it by bending it inorder to get the shape I want.......

hope someone catches onto what I was trying to say :wink: LOL!
 

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what about using a stock like link that uses pillow bushings like the nielex version?

That is a picture of two pairs of stock NB Miata rear links... I have a drawer full of them here at the shop. About $35 each at your local dealer. NC front links are a similar shape but use a blue-colored bushing material (the four little buttons on the back of the joint would be light blue.)

You could use those on both ends of an NA if the car has been converted over to NB lower arms and is not lowered much (or in front they would hit the upper arm.) They won't work with stock NA control arms because of the different mounting tabs.

Bryan, you've got my email so anytime you're ready just let me know.

Steve
 

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what about using a stock like link that uses pillow bushings like the nielex version?

these don't address preload at all. Which IMO, having driven several different endlinks, still think this is the biggest reason to replace the stock endlinks.

I definately think some are nicer than others, but I don't use a lot of sway bar in my car, I try and tune more with springs. If you use larger bars, I can see these being more of an issue.
 

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Interesting that this article would pop up today.
I installed my Tein Flexs' today and found that the stock endlinks did not fit in all four corners. I need options.
I installed the Flexes' as per their instructions and will be using the 90 Miata primarily for track days and occasional canyon blastin' until I see the need to get into Spec racing.

Any and all comments will be appreciated.

Regards,

Tom
Long Beach, CA
 

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Just curious- what exactly is the problem with the double heim-joint design like the Moss one? I've been using the Moss one for a few years and they seem to be holding up alright. I did lube them once or twice though.
 

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those look nice bill..... I personally have the RB links all the way around, and have had no issues with them as of yet....
 

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Bought Steve's the research and honesty in his products make it a no-brainer.
 

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you know you can make your own from mil-spec parts ordered from mcmaster.com. just need the stock ones for measurements and a little knowledge.
 

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what about using a stock like link that uses pillow bushings like the nielex version?

That is a picture of two pairs of stock NB Miata rear links...
no..its a picture of the nielex pillow endlinks.
Those may be sold by nielex, but that's a picture of off the shelf Mazda parts. I had a pile of those exact parts (along with NA and NC links) in front of me when I wrote that reply so I know what I'm looking at.

They won't allow you to remove preload from your swaybar or adjust for a lowered car. Those won't fit the front of an NB if that's what you've got (wrong angle.) Otherwise, if you have NB control arms (or have replaced the factory bracket or lower arm on your NA) they will fit as long as your car is not lowered much.
 

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you know you can make your own from mil-spec parts ordered from mcmaster.com. just need the stock ones for measurements and a little knowledge.
Almost... you can make something that is close. When I started out developing these I tried the McMaster parts: you end up spending about $80 for a pair and still don't have everything right so you'll have to modify or make a few bits.
 
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