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Old 05-06-2013, 10:48 AM   #1
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Sway bar disconnects

I'm still trying to get info about the SMB sway bar disconnects.

For those that have them, are they made custom by SMB?

Eye? Stud? Size?

I contacted some companies that make them and they said they wouldn't recommend using theirs on our vans. I may end up just fabbing something, but I'd still like to see what they use with such a heavy vehicle. A failure at speed in a turn could be a very, very bad experience, so I want to make sure I get it right.

And a source for 10.5" stud and eyelet end links would be appreciated.
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Old 05-07-2013, 01:06 AM   #2
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Re: Sway bar disconnects

Fairly sure SMB makes em. I've never had problems with the connection bars themselves but have broke the pins about 10 times. It's always been during heavy articulation, not cornering. But I'm one of those guys who takes my SMB on some rough trails. It breaks when I don't pull the disconnect(s). I'm guessing the pins are about 1/2". Big difference in ride when they're off but mainly it gives the SMB front end a bit more wheel drop.
I can get some measurements if you need.
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Old 05-07-2013, 10:06 AM   #3
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Re: Sway bar disconnects

Quote:
Originally Posted by daveb
Fairly sure SMB makes em. I've never had problems with the connection bars themselves but have broke the pins about 10 times. It's always been during heavy articulation, not cornering. But I'm one of those guys who takes my SMB on some rough trails. It breaks when I don't pull the disconnect(s). I'm guessing the pins are about 1/2". Big difference in ride when they're off but mainly it gives the SMB front end a bit more wheel drop.
I can get some measurements if you need.
You mean the pins are 1/2" diameter? Sheesh, my existing links are about that size. Or maybe Iím not getting how they're constructed.

I will also have to get the front end articulated to it's max to see if I will have anything bind. I suspect that the sway bar may limit travel enough that it never gets to its full articulation.
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Old 05-07-2013, 02:12 PM   #4
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Re: Sway bar disconnects

A poor pic of one out of my gallery



And yes they do seem small. I'll try to find a better pic
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Old 05-07-2013, 02:58 PM   #5
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Re: Sway bar disconnects

Hmm. Looks like 1/2" diameter links. I would think the links themselves would be strong enough, that the failure would be a cotter-pin. Some disconnects have such pins to attach the upper half of the link from the lower half. Others disconnect at the link's regular attachment points, and basically just substitute a hitch pin for a threaded bolt. A 1/2" pin should be able to take a lot of force, unless perhaps it gets leveraged out. But even then I'd expect it to just bend.

My links are different from yours in that the top is a stud; the eyehole in the sway bar is horizontal, not vertical like yours. Perhaps some side-to-side motion in the lower attachment point is stressing that bolt. Where to they usually fail?
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Old 05-07-2013, 03:45 PM   #6
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Re: Sway bar disconnects

Those pins are the hardest steel they can get. When they go they generally snap inside of the sway bar. The lower pin welded to the axle has never broke. There is no heavy strain on the keys that hold the bars on. Here are a couple of hazy pics:




The bars are 10" long probably 5/8 thick
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sway disconnect 001.jpg   sway disconnect 002.jpg  
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Old 05-07-2013, 04:26 PM   #7
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Re: Sway bar disconnects

Hmm. Maybe they get some twist; design seems pretty simple. Have you tried sticking a threaded bolt through and seeing if that makes a difference? But it looks pretty snug.

Here's mine (minus any disconnect):






Don't see why your's would snap but not mine, except for the orientation. With a stud and urethane spacers that rod can wobble around a bit and not stress the nut much at all. To fit a disconnect to a stud top most of the aftermarket disconnects seem to use a bracket that attaches at the top of the hole in the bar, with two ears that hang down, through which a bolt goes with the eye of link in the middle.

Maybe a heim joint would work better in your setup than that rigid eye.

Rob
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Old 05-07-2013, 04:30 PM   #8
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Re: Sway bar disconnects

When you disconnect the sway bars, do you remove the entire rod? Or do you just disconnect the bottom part and let it "hang" from the top?
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Old 05-07-2013, 04:47 PM   #9
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Re: Sway bar disconnects

Right now I don't have "disconnects;" I would just have to disassemble it. If that question is directed at those with SMB disconnects, I assume they remove the whole link and somehow tie up the bar? Looks like a hanging link might hit something.

Someone in a previous thread mentioned taking off the upper bolts and removing one of the links, then reattaching on the other side. It effectively disables the sway bar. I discovered when I broke loose the top of a link that this made the bar creep sideways a bit, and it was sweaty work to get it realigned.

Rob
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Old 05-07-2013, 05:36 PM   #10
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Re: Sway bar disconnects

Rob you have a different sway bar.

I pull my links all the way off. If you don't you'd need to make sure it's clear of anything that moves. Some owners only take one side off and that holds the sway bar but it also moves a hell of a lot more and I'd rather tie it up with a shock cord. I know some who have broke off the pin and they stick in a bolt but I was afraid of wallowing out the hole and in most cases anyway, you would have to drill out the sway bar because (at least on mine) it shears off inside the sway bar... there's no open hole.
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