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Mega Modding Braking, Suspension & Steering

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304-dude View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote 304-dude Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jul/01/2015 at 10:18pm
Added more pictures and info in the sway bar installation mod section.

Have yet to cut my pipe segments and obtain 2-1/2" long 3/8" bolts for further fitment tests and welding the perches.


71 Javelin SST body
390 69 crank, 70 block & heads
NASCAR SB2 rods & pistons
78 Jeep TH400 w/ 2.76 Low
50/50 Ford-AMC Suspension
79 F150 rear & 8.8 axles
Ford Racing 3.25 gears & 9" /w Detroit locker
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote 304-dude Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jul/02/2015 at 9:37am
I had a PM come in with questions since my updated info was posted... I realize that i have lots of info that may have aquired small changes to details and may confuse some.  Please feel free to raise question, if any do find issues big or small, and I will try to answer as best I can.

Here is my answer back in my PM reply...

The rack and pinion tie rod ends are from a 2008 XLR by Cadillac, and the axle nut is from a tractor supply shop. I will axle the nut welded to a cut section of pipe to be welded to the underside of the Mustang spring perch for reinforcement. The flanged nut has been grinded at the hex end to allow better hold with welding, the axle nut's flange side will act as a mounting face for the tie rod to seat, just like it would on a rack. Thus the tie rod can be removed and replaced when needed.

After weighing the cost of machining the tie rod, I figured the most cost effective way was to use proper sized bolts for the threaded end for the sway bar's mounting, and have them welded to the cut end of the tie rod. Some members here have the means to machine for themselves, and may opt to do that.

As for lack of cushioning... These rack tie rods at fairly stiff... No Ford tie rod I have worked with is as stiff with the ball action. The modded tie rods I have installed on the rack are almost as stiff but a bit more heavy duty in construction. Since this type has no nylon bushing and the cup is thick, the angle I will use will keep most of the shock of up swing travel in the cup where wear will not be a big problem.

Since I am keeping the factory style sway arm mounting at the arm ends, some cushioning will be in effect. In fact I can keep the poly bushings a wee looser than normal, as only two are used in each custom link and will allow for some angle when needed.

I thought this out the best I could, as if to install a shortened version of a factory link setup, would be very short and a wee complicated in having a bushing and nut at the mounting bracket to eat up needed length. I gave it my best shot with the strongest tie rod for its size.


71 Javelin SST body
390 69 crank, 70 block & heads
NASCAR SB2 rods & pistons
78 Jeep TH400 w/ 2.76 Low
50/50 Ford-AMC Suspension
79 F150 rear & 8.8 axles
Ford Racing 3.25 gears & 9" /w Detroit locker
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote 304-dude Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jul/03/2015 at 3:43pm
A quick wee update... Will be using 3" long 3/8"-24 hex head bolts and will cut the XLR tie rods at top of the grooved ring, pictured in the sway bar section.  Seems  as if that ring was properly located. Hehehehehehe!  I cut them a wee longer on purpose just to see how it would look without having to wait for the welding to be done.

As for the change in lenth for the 3/8 bolts... I measured the bushings compressed, before I removed the hardware. 

Will have a picture of the sway bar bushings installed with the bolt mounted with the tthreads up to show how the mounting angles between modded tie rod and sway bar hardware when I make alignment before I cut.

Note: the angle of the sway bar will need to droop a little, so about a 6-1/2" length from center of ball on the tie rod to top of sway bar bushing washer will be about right.  As the upper suspension pulls up and away, the sway bar cannot pull away when being lifted by the link. So, in having the sway bar level or pointing up will cause binding with the upper control arm as it pivots.


Edited by 304-dude - Jul/05/2015 at 2:39pm
71 Javelin SST body
390 69 crank, 70 block & heads
NASCAR SB2 rods & pistons
78 Jeep TH400 w/ 2.76 Low
50/50 Ford-AMC Suspension
79 F150 rear & 8.8 axles
Ford Racing 3.25 gears & 9" /w Detroit locker
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote 304-dude Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May/12/2017 at 10:36am
Modding Ford Power Steering

These mods are to place assist in low RPM use, with a 6.2500" underdriven pulley. As the Cobra R uses one in stock form. Many say the 00 Cobra R is the stiffest feel, and is hard to turn when at idle and below 1000 RPM. I will have to mod my pump's pulley with a Dodge pulley, as many Dodge trucks have about 6" diameter pulleys.

Any 2001 Mustang GT to pre 2003 Mustang Cobra rebuilt rack and pinion can use this mod.

Since my rack and pinion is already installed, pictures of my parts will have to be done later when I am able to remove it for some disassembly.

I just may endup using my existing rack as a core exchange for the Cardone 22-2000 rack. As prices are becoming reasonable.

The mods are very simple, no pictures are needed, just an explanation of what is to be done and how to remove the part.

To make the rack responsive to abrupt turns under demanding loads while using a 6.2500" underdrive pulley (Cobra R spec).

1a) Disassemble steering shaft coupler joint to remove rubber flex bushing to make it solid, and reassemble. Drilling rivets and to replace with fasteners will need to be done.



1b) Drive out the retaining pin (Number 25) from the steering input shaft of the rack.

2b) carefully shake and rattle out the torsion bar (Number 1) from the shaft and spool assembly. Everything else should stay in place as long as the circlip is in place (Number 24).



Once the torsion bar is removed. You can do a few different options.

1) Replace with a larger T-bar, there are some services who provide custom T-bars.

2) Obtain a used one from a wrecker. 0.2450" is the largest and may be found in a 2003 to 2004 Mach 1.


Part two... optional, as I am the only one using a Ford C-III power steering pump. This mod will work on all C-III pumps, as the internals are the same... outside of the restrictor.

This mod works for adding more volume for hydraulic brake assist, while increasing low RPM steering linearity (Makes 6" underdrive pulley feel less so at low RPM use).

1) Remove restrictor by removing the cap plug at the opposite end of the pressure line port.

2) Remove spring, and pressure spool valve.

3) If you have a 4 cyl pump, no mod is necessary as the spring is short to begin with. For v8 cut the spring to remove 2mm of its original height, by cutting one coil and sand the cut end flat, which is to be fitted to the pressure cap nut. If more boost is needed, a washer can be used to shim.

4) Drive out the restrictor using a 1/4" drive 5/16" socket and extension. Making sure the socket is just large enough to allow the tube end to fit inside.

5) Drill out the restrictor hole to 0.1250"

6) Increase one bleed radius to 2.5mm

Additional mods to keep a highly stable steering under extremes

Using modified heavy duty inner tie rods, listed in my specifications section will remove any flexing stock Mustang or Crown Vic tie rod may provide in heavy turns. Unfortunately the Mustang rack has no billows that fit such large tie rods. Though using the proper fit billows for the heavy duty tie rods only requires modification to the original Mustang billows as a step down coupler to the larger diameter billows for the modified tie rods.

Here are pictures of the mod.





I used 3M rubber adhesive and gasket maker to join the two together. To make a proper seal, I put a good bead in the inside diameter along the grooves for fitment on a rack end, and slipped in the cut off end while twisting. This made a fairly good fit and allowed for a good seal. Then I placed another bead along the mating edge along the lip for the retaining band. To make sure the seal was through and through I cupped my hand with the billows compressed and pulled to make suction, only to pull the bead in a wee bit, as the bead will shrink and conform to the shape of the area it adheres to.




Replace factory pump pulley with a 6.2500" underdrive pulley.



Since there is no direct fit 6.2500" pulley to bolt on, there are options, by modifying a 2000 Caravan V6 pulley (6.2500" @ 25% underdrive) or use an almost mod free VW pulley which is made of aluminum.

I will see about modding the VW pulley shown in the above picture, to fit the flange on my pump as to complete my Cobra R pump pressure and flow mod.

As an alternative the Ford part YL843A733BA is for an unknown to me, engine and year. I assume v6, but is just under 6 inches in diameter.


Edited by 304-dude - Jun/01/2017 at 9:04am
71 Javelin SST body
390 69 crank, 70 block & heads
NASCAR SB2 rods & pistons
78 Jeep TH400 w/ 2.76 Low
50/50 Ford-AMC Suspension
79 F150 rear & 8.8 axles
Ford Racing 3.25 gears & 9" /w Detroit locker
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote farna Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May/13/2017 at 2:12am
That torsion bar is a spring steel shaft designed to flex. I wouldn't weld it -- don't know how the heat will affect the bar steel. I understand the idea is to take the torsion/flex OUT of it, and welding should surely destroy the springiness, but it could adversely affect the metal and make it weaker. Have a solid steel shaft made or replace with a stiffer one.

I found mention of Ford racks with stiffer (larger diameter) t-rods, but could find no replacement or custom t-rod suppliers.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote 304-dude Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May/13/2017 at 8:13am
Originally posted by farna farna wrote:

That torsion bar is a spring steel shaft designed to flex. I wouldn't weld it -- don't know how the heat will affect the bar steel. I understand the idea is to take the torsion/flex OUT of it, and welding should surely destroy the springiness, but it could adversely affect the metal and make it weaker. Have a solid steel shaft made or replace with a stiffer one.

I found mention of Ford racks with stiffer (larger diameter) t-rods, but could find no replacement or custom t-rod suppliers.


Hi farna, ok about welding... I will remove that option. As for obtaining a T-bar, I had a link, and it is buried in a mess of history, which I am not sure on the date. I will search further on it. For the life of me, searching on the Internet, the forum link is not popping up as easy as I found it. Like ran into it more than once without difficulty.

Also I found some conflicting info on T-bar size, now the max is 0.2300 direct from cardon, while GT size is 0.2150. Many say you only get about 15% stiffer feel and is only better if you need to replace your rack or you get it dirt cheap.

Though I did update my rack install info to show obtaining cardon 22-2000 racks are the best option to obtain a 2003 / 2004 Cobra R rack at a fair price.

May have to change the title to Updated SN95 rack install. Would say Cobra R, but I installed a GT rack, and would be stating incorrectly.

I a starting to think for the money of obtaining a T-bar, it would be best served elsewhere. Like a constant pressure regulator, or 6" underdrive pulley, which I will add to the mods list.

Edited by 304-dude - Dec/04/2017 at 11:35am
71 Javelin SST body
390 69 crank, 70 block & heads
NASCAR SB2 rods & pistons
78 Jeep TH400 w/ 2.76 Low
50/50 Ford-AMC Suspension
79 F150 rear & 8.8 axles
Ford Racing 3.25 gears & 9" /w Detroit locker
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote 304-dude Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May/14/2017 at 6:43am
I have done some updates and clean ups... have a feeling more Is to be done. Though mostly noticable on my index on the beginning page of this thread. For now, whatever info you may be holding onto about Ford rack and pinion and the power steering mod, must be refreshed by going over those sections once more, even though they may look untouched, there is a mix of updates that cover my mods.

For now, until I actually place the wording completed on my topic, assume changes at any time, after all I expect some once I am able to road test everything. The info is to be taken as am good starting point, and refinement may be needed depending on how accurate I am with drawing board design
71 Javelin SST body
390 69 crank, 70 block & heads
NASCAR SB2 rods & pistons
78 Jeep TH400 w/ 2.76 Low
50/50 Ford-AMC Suspension
79 F150 rear & 8.8 axles
Ford Racing 3.25 gears & 9" /w Detroit locker
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote 304-dude Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May/14/2017 at 7:37am
Hybrid customized rear suspension

My mods are to work together more than to be singled out as a bunch of indepandant mods acting on their own. My front suspension mod is the exact same way. Until you look at how each Item works with the other then you can see the draw backs of most custom designs. Very few have each suspension component truly work together in form and function, with maximum simplicity for setup.

To have a dialed in mode active suspension, without computer controls or electronic toggle modes, I figured out a system using various tech to work together without fighting against each other in function, to meet both needs of track and strip. So far I am the only one to bring this to the table... and because it is untested, some work will need to be done once on the road.

Here is the run down.

Sliding rear shackles

A simple contraption to allow leaf springs to kick out in a true and secure channel. Plus you get no leaf spring back-end twist under extreme lateral loads, shown below.



Quad shock system



This was first seen by me back in the late 80s or early 90. On the SC Thunderbird. It consisted of two extra shocks mounted as torque links. AMC Torque links and rear sway bars, both have one draw back, as their swing radius does not match the wheel's travel on the leaf spring's slightly eliptical arc.

The shocks are to allow for the path to change under prolonged axle movement. When used with the above, the long end of the leaf springs will slide back while the lateral shocks will stabilise the axle from moving back as promptly. The two forces act like one to pull the axle vertical when springs are compressed by force.

The front section of the leaf spring acts more like a torque link, by the fact there is enough free action to the back to allow pivot to kick out not bind and wrap forward at one or both sides.

Widening spring perch distance

Since I am using a Ford truck axle, I am widening frame sections as part of the frame connector strategy. Will help with keeping the rear corners planted with 65" wide track.

Centered Torque Link

I may incorporate a tork link to allow better distribution of torque when launching and low to high RPM down shifts. I have a Ford 9 Inch pinion snubber, when mounted at the 6 o clock position and modified as a pivot for the tork link to be jointed at the tranny cross member. May use dual angle iron with diamond bracing to keep it light weight and serve as a drive shaft catcher instead of loops.

70 T/A Hotchkis Watts Link rear anti-roll setup

Well this just looks crazy cool, but has one feature that I like and will do the job. Will not limit like the Torque links and Pannard Bar, and does not need much to adjust on the track. Since I have done most everything Ford, might as well add that to the mix.

It's primary function is to remove lateral forces against the suspension without adding bind or negative forces in operation. Simple and the most effective way to do so.



So to sum up how things function, the front half (short side of the leaf spring acts as a mini torque link, with the help of a lateral shock to control forward shifting of the axle. By using the lateral shock at the rear, the wrapping forces are split, instead of being placed on to one local area. The sliding rear shackles will keep bind and wrap minimal, thus give a good even squat at take offs. The 70 Ford T/A Watts link anti roll setup will carry as primary lateral control, allowing the leaf springs to react properly to road conditions under heavy turning.


Edited by 304-dude - May/17/2017 at 6:27pm
71 Javelin SST body
390 69 crank, 70 block & heads
NASCAR SB2 rods & pistons
78 Jeep TH400 w/ 2.76 Low
50/50 Ford-AMC Suspension
79 F150 rear & 8.8 axles
Ford Racing 3.25 gears & 9" /w Detroit locker
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote 304-dude Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May/17/2017 at 3:47pm
I realized I missed including my Ford power steering mods in my index, and found some torsion bar info that should have been deleted, and corrected. Also added the Mustang steering shaft's rubber biscuit removal for solid feel and positive turning engagement. One other update, is my thought of including a center torque link later on, to assist in torque distribution, under demands.

I am sure there are other wee errors and updates needing done. Eventually I will get there.
71 Javelin SST body
390 69 crank, 70 block & heads
NASCAR SB2 rods & pistons
78 Jeep TH400 w/ 2.76 Low
50/50 Ford-AMC Suspension
79 F150 rear & 8.8 axles
Ford Racing 3.25 gears & 9" /w Detroit locker
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote amcenthusiast Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May/20/2017 at 1:00pm
comment deleted so my friend 304dude can work on his thread, his way


Edited by amcenthusiast - Jun/19/2017 at 11:58pm
Link to XRV8 Race Parts website: http://amcramblermarlin.1colony.com/index.html
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