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Old 03-02-2017, 07:01 PM   #1
djlicious
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Garagistic Strut Brace Question

I received a Garagistic front strut brace for Christmas, finally got around to installing this weekend on the 87 convertible. The bolt holes line up just fine, but the horizontal mounting plate doesn't sit very flat on the top of the strut towers, and when the mounting plate bends 90 degrees, there is a good 1/4" gap along the side of the strut tower. Basically, it bolts in place, but barely touches the shock tower. Every pic I can find online of this type of brace looks pretty snug, not "floating" like mine.

When I called Garagistic, they told me it was supposed to be that way, they used to make it tighter but people complained it didn't fit.

My question is: if the bar does anything worthwhile , shouldn't it mount firmly to the towers, or risk shearing the bolts holding the struts? Did I get a bad piece or are they correct?
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Old 03-03-2017, 12:01 PM   #2
SkiFree
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From a structural perspective you are absolutely correct. The plate should sit flush against the strut tower to be the most effective.

From a reality perspective, it's not that simple. The strut brace is a direct knock-off from IE (as are several of their parts) and Sparco. The reality is that even these braces do not sit flush against the towers in every instance because of two reasons 1) There was a very wide tolerance range between the shock towers when new. 2) As e30's have gotten older these positions have further changed through normal use. Just google threads regarding strut brace fitment issues, there are many.

Many strut braces are mounted to the strut mount bolts. Shoot, even the factory-built Porsche GT4 Clubsport race cars I work around even do it this way. Your worry there is unfounded.

In conclusion, while the bar is not perfect, it is still as functional as it can be, given the circumstances.

-Andrew
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Old 03-04-2017, 06:05 AM   #3
mjposner
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Mine is on order, will report fitment upon receipt.
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Old 03-05-2017, 01:55 AM   #4
rmdashrf
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When you bolt it down, it should push it down to the top of the towers, no?

Mine was snug over the bolts but got flat against the top of the towers with some file work; the 1/4" gap on the sides is the same as mine.

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Old 03-11-2017, 11:00 AM   #5
djlicious
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Thanks, Andrew. There are a lot of posts out there about the brace being too long or short, but I hadn't seen any about the angle being incorrect.

The X-brace made a big difference already, and since the tower brace isn't fitting great and pinches some brittle looking hoses, it may just reinforce a corner of the garage for a while

-Patrick

Quote:
Originally Posted by SkiFree View Post
From a structural perspective you are absolutely correct. The plate should sit flush against the strut tower to be the most effective.

From a reality perspective, it's not that simple. The strut brace is a direct knock-off from IE (as are several of their parts) and Sparco. The reality is that even these braces do not sit flush against the towers in every instance because of two reasons 1) There was a very wide tolerance range between the shock towers when new. 2) As e30's have gotten older these positions have further changed through normal use. Just google threads regarding strut brace fitment issues, there are many.

Many strut braces are mounted to the strut mount bolts. Shoot, even the factory-built Porsche GT4 Clubsport race cars I work around even do it this way. Your worry there is unfounded.

In conclusion, while the bar is not perfect, it is still as functional as it can be, given the circumstances.

-Andrew
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Old 03-11-2017, 12:07 PM   #6
amcp
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SkiFree View Post
From a structural perspective you are absolutely correct. The plate should sit flush against the strut tower to be the most effective.

From a reality perspective, it's not that simple. The strut brace is a direct knock-off from IE (as are several of their parts) and Sparco. The reality is that even these braces do not sit flush against the towers in every instance because of two reasons 1) There was a very wide tolerance range between the shock towers when new. 2) As e30's have gotten older these positions have further changed through normal use. Just google threads regarding strut brace fitment issues, there are many.

Many strut braces are mounted to the strut mount bolts. Shoot, even the factory-built Porsche GT4 Clubsport race cars I work around even do it this way. Your worry there is unfounded.

In conclusion, while the bar is not perfect, it is still as functional as it can be, given the circumstances.

-Andrew
The Mason brace installs using the same strut bolts and they say its the best brace on the market. While Im not an engineer, I'd think when bracing something you'd want as many points of contact as possible. But wtf do I know.
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Old 03-20-2017, 04:44 PM   #7
jjmtools
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junk

Quote:
Originally Posted by djlicious View Post
I received a Garagistic front strut brace for Christmas, finally got around to installing this weekend on the 87 convertible. The bolt holes line up just fine, but the horizontal mounting plate doesn't sit very flat on the top of the strut towers, and when the mounting plate bends 90 degrees, there is a good 1/4" gap along the side of the strut tower. Basically, it bolts in place, but barely touches the shock tower. Every pic I can find online of this type of brace looks pretty snug, not "floating" like mine.

When I called Garagistic, they told me it was supposed to be that way, they used to make it tighter but people complained it didn't fit.

My question is: if the bar does anything worthwhile , shouldn't it mount firmly to the towers, or risk shearing the bolts holding the struts? Did I get a bad piece or are they correct?
you buy junk = you get junk
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Old 03-25-2017, 07:09 AM   #8
mjposner
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Mine was a tight fit (had to jack and wrangle) but lays flat against the top. Let's see a pic of your issue. Has your car ever been in an accident?
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