Stiffen Your 'Stang! 2015 Mustang Strut Tower Brace R&D, Part 2: Initial Prototype Evaluation
Last time we covered the basic fabrication process needed to design our first mock-up prototype. This provided the basic dimensions of the brace so we could transplant our measurements into SolidWorks.
After some computer modeling work, we were able to construct an initial prototype of both design ideas presented in our first segment.
Our first prototype is a simple yet effective way to stiffen the front end of the S550. The material is thick wall steel, used for optimal rigidity. The bar is simply welded to the brackets, which attach to each strut tower. The brace is finished in a black powder coat with a small Mishimoto logo on the passenger side of the part.
Check out a closer look at the attachment point.
Prototype 1 Installed
Let's take a look at this first prototype after installation.
The powdercoated black finish makes this brace appear as though it was factory installed. If not for the logo, one would be inclined to believe this. Check out the fitment on the towers.
This is a great design and fit perfectly. We expect it to perform well and really tighten up the front end of this Mustang. Overall, we are very pleased with how this prototype turned out.
We designed this piece for additional convenience and aesthetics, which you may remember from our explanation of the prototype in part 1. The brackets attach to a CNC-machined component via mounting bolts. Below is a breakdown of the components.
This design is neat and slightly more complex, offering a level of intricacy that should please those looking for a unique strut bar.
Prototype 2 Installed
Once installed, the look is rather similar in terms of the brace route, with the only difference being the connection point around the strut tower.
Now we need to decide which design to offer our customers. We want to hear what you guys have to say. Do you prefer the welded one-piece design or the bolt-on setup?
Shoot us a message/comment and let us know what you think.
Coming Up - Testing!
Yes, we do have some awesome plans to test this component. We are assembling equipment to evaluate the impact this piece has on overall stiffness and handling. Check back for a look at our plans and results!
Thanks for reading!