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Discussion Starter #1
I see that traffic is dying down here a bit, but wanted to just throw this out there. i've not done (prolly not disciplined enough to make) a DIY/FAQ, but just wanting to see if there are any GD owners still interested in these things...
 

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Was there a significant benefit?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Was there a significant benefit?
Well, yes, i think so.

I've got a mildly modified GD (both engine and suspension), though i won't get in to all the details here/now.

My driving experience has been with a Whiteline Front Strut Tower Bar for the past 5+ years. If it matters, i think when i bought it, WL had 2 versions, and i bought the one that clears the big TMIC...even though i have a stock one LOL. I've daily driven with this bar and as my ahem age has advanced, it's dawned upon me that the ride is a little harsher than I want.

Looking at what STi has claimed as the benefits of the Flexible Strut Bar (and yeah, having gotten a bonus), I decided to see if it was a noticeable difference going from a solid Front Strut Tower Bar to the STi Flexible Strut Tower Bar.

I'll say, it was an immediate difference that I noticed upon driving my STi after switching over to the Flexible Strut Bar. Gone were the creaks from my front firewall as I went over speedbumps. Also, when there were large irregularities in the road (common to these California roads, and easy to feel especially going at the limit due to "shelter in place") with the WL bar, the chassis would "crash" into those bumps/dips/potholes...it was like a jolt to the car every time I encountered them. Now with the Flexible Strut Bar, the chassis feels a lot more at ease. The steering feels more relaxed, and hitting those very same bumps and dips on my commute do not upset the chassis anymore. Yes, I still feel them in the car, but it's not "on edge" or as jolting anymore.

Having said all the benefits of it in Daily Driving, I haven't had a chance yet to go up in the mountains. Even at my best, I probably would go max 7/10ths...not saying that I'm a good driver or anything, but hey--public roads--right?

My reasons for asking to post:
  • Would there be any benefit to the community to hear about it?
  • I didn't see anyone posting install video/post about installing the Flexible Strut Tower Bar yet on the GD chassis.
  • Lucky my wife is Japanese, and although she doesn't know car-speak, she was able to translate enough of the instructions to make sense to my shade-tree level a$$. No it's not rocket science, but there are some specific warnings and advice for installing on the GD that apparently doesn't exist for the GRs and VAs. I'm happy to share her translation/my interpretation
  • For someone in my stage in life, who doesn't necessarily need the most rigid chassis for everyday use, but would still like to stiffen up the chassis, while still keeping the ride supple and steering feeling engaging...I would recommend the STi Flexible Strut Tower Bar.
If it's a general feeling to post it, i'm happy to...
 

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I'd like to hear more about what your impressions are, if you push your car on twisties or the track. I would say I'm skeptical, and I wonder if it is the placebo effect. The only way I would believe someone's impressions would be if it was a blind test of cars. Certainly you can measure the effect with G meters and by noting roll. That doesn't necessarily translate into a person's preferences of feel or comfort.
When you put the Whiteline on did it make a huge difference and how did it feel different?

I have two '07's and one is a mildly modified, coilovers and sways suspensioned, DD. It came with a Perrin Strut Tower Brace so I left it on. My only other STI I drive is my GR and it's a pure race car so I can't make comparisons. In all the years of racing it I've never put a strut tower bar on it! It is naturally stiffer than GD's. It can do over 1.5 G's.
On my Street Sleeper build I constructed an absolutely straight brace out of one inch chromoly. I bought the end rings from TSS Fab. This puppy ain't flexing! I have yet to get it on the track.
I am an engineering type and I consider all of the bent aluminum braces to be junk. Loading is going to bow them so they give up a lot of rigidity in my book.
I want my cars stiffer and more responsive with instant feedback and predictability. A GD is a lot like a fancy go-cart compared to a lot of cars and I don't want it to feel like an SUV! Comfort, NVH, etc. is way down my list relative to handling. My DD has already been on Watkins Glen for three days... BTW, I'm 73 and still building and racing.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I'd like to hear more about what your impressions are, if you push your car on twisties or the track. I would say I'm skeptical, and I wonder if it is the placebo effect. The only way I would believe someone's impressions would be if it was a blind test of cars. Certainly you can measure the effect with G meters and by noting roll. That doesn't necessarily translate into a person's preferences of feel or comfort.
When you put the Whiteline on did it make a huge difference and how did it feel different?

I have two '07's and one is a mildly modified, coilovers and sways suspensioned, DD. It came with a Perrin Strut Tower Brace so I left it on. My only other STI I drive is my GR and it's a pure race car so I can't make comparisons. In all the years of racing it I've never put a strut tower bar on it! It is naturally stiffer than GD's. It can do over 1.5 G's.
On my Street Sleeper build I constructed an absolutely straight brace out of one inch chromoly. I bought the end rings from TSS Fab. This puppy ain't flexing! I have yet to get it on the track.
I am an engineering type and I consider all of the bent aluminum braces to be junk. Loading is going to bow them so they give up a lot of rigidity in my book.
I want my cars stiffer and more responsive with instant feedback and predictability. A GD is a lot like a fancy go-cart compared to a lot of cars and I don't want it to feel like an SUV! Comfort, NVH, etc. is way down my list relative to handling. My DD has already been on Watkins Glen for three days... BTW, I'm 73 and still building and racing.
I'll post up more my impressions after the next time i go do some mountain driving. With "commuting" or "around town" driving really the only thing i'm doing at the moment (amidst all these shelter in place orders), i've not really had the chance to push the car.

Thus far, for DD duties, the car is a lot more comfortable to drive in. To your point, the front chassis was definitely a lot more stiff/rigid feeling when i had the WL bar on there. But, if there is something that will give me the chance of a more supple around town ride, while still providing more stiffness/rigidity in turns/cornering, then I'm all for it. Having said that, i do not yet have my driving results from pushing the car yet.

As you say, I'd need some testing equipment and a repeatable environment to really find out the full truth. Could a flexible strut tower bar be "snake oil" and be no better than simply having nothing? I can't dispute that yet, but hopefully once things start to normalize, i'll be able to get more of an opinion of how it feels when pushing it. Maybe i can even disconnect it and drive it back to back, to get impressions.

By the way, i'd love to have a garage with multiple STi's. Sorry to say i only have room and money for one, so in my particular case, it comes down to me tailoring my car to be more of a 'jack of all trades' perhaps, then specializing it to its fullest. Hopefully the future will let me get closer to that...
 
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