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Author Topic: Inexpensive Rear Strut Brace DIY  (Read 1815 times)

cuttyman9

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Inexpensive Rear Strut Brace DIY
« on: January 07, 2015, 12:30:21 AM »
So for all those out there who liked the cheap front strut bar, here is a complimentary build.

As y'all probably know just about everything that I've posted is 5th gen celica related, so this is a mod for one of those, note that I have a hatchback.

I've devised a plan to build a cheap rear strut bar.
I've spent a few days trotting through various junkyards measuring some bits and pieces and I think I've found a winner!

So it turns out the front of a focus is very similar to the rear of 5th gen Celica's (and possibly 4th and 6th)

I measured the front of the focus and its within an inch of the width of the rear on the Celica, the bolt circle is within a half inch as well.

So I ordered one for the large sum of $40.52 (Cali sales tax, out of state is $37 shipped) which can be found on Ebay under 1998-2005 ford focus strut tower brace or use the link below.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/330772828246?ru=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.ebay.com%2Fsch%2Fi.html%3F_from%3DR40%26_sacat%3D0%26_nkw%3D330772828246%26_rdc%3D1
^above is the link for those who don't want to search.

As of late I'm waiting for it to arrive, hopefully I find time this weekend to see what it takes to make it work, hoping for a quick bolt pattern re-drill (which can be done by the DIY'er) and be done with it.

The front bar tightened up my front end so by the same notion this should tighten the rear end (no pun intended)

If this succeeds then the 5gc enthusiast can get both the front and rear brace for less than any company sells just a front brace.
Sure these aren't solid braces and sure they don't have the prestige of the big brands, but they work and for a daily driver and/or a street car who cares??

I'll post more as I get down to business.
Thank you for reading.

So now my rear strut brace is installed and it works quite well.
This one requires a few more tools and a bit more skill than the front brace but is still pretty damn easy and highly rewarding.

I started off with the 40 buck focus front strut brace.
I ended up removing 3/4" from each side of the bar itself and a half inch off the threaded sections (easily achievable with a hack saw, a file and a vice)

The end plates required some tweaking as well, I had to grind down the edge next to the tabs to clear the bit of metal in the way on the body, I also needed to tweak the flat side a bit as well.

The one hole nearest the tabs(actually in between them) needs to be elongated toward the rearward facing(in relation to the car) tab. two other holes need to be drilled.

Now in my case I have coilovers which have extended threads on the top so I bolted mine down to the top of the nuts beneath them(so it's technically a nut to hold the coilover to the car and a nut to hold the brace to the coilover) if on the stock stuff the studs aren't long enough try washers or changing the studs in the struts.

Lastly there are holes to be drilled in the plastic (dun dun dunnnnnn), I installed the plastic, marked the spot and used a wood bit that was flat and 1.5" in diameter.
the hole ended up being on the crease if you need a reference.

Then its time to toss the threaded bits on, put the bolts in the bar (which should need a bit of wrestling to get in but it's better that way) and tighten the nuts on the top of the strut and you are done!



The changes aren't like turbocharging the car where it is incredibly obvious something is different, but they certainly do tighten up these cars. Our strut towers are tall so the appear to be subject to a lot of flex.
Also note it does improve cornering a reasonable amount because the back is more rigid and definitely compliments the front bar.

so now you have a pair of strut tower braces for less than half (65 USD) of what one brace typically costs (139 USD) the Celica crowd and you can also be proud that you did these yourself.

If you pull this off do post your results so others can use it as a reference, especially if you pioneer this to other body styles/generations. Do note that I've seen a few all-tracs and the top of the rears do appear different, correct me if I'm wrong.


Thank you for reading.


^ what I ended up with after tweaking them.


^stock shock top nuts that I used on top of the ones supplied with the coilovers


^ finished end that I smoothed out with a file and deburred.


^ what I'm working with


^length of the coilover studs


^ Passenger side place


^Driver side plate


^after grinding down the weld a bit and notching right after the tab


^another view


^excuse the mess, this is after it was all bolted down






^drill bit used to make holes in the plastic, you could probably do smaller but fitting the bar with these on will be harder.

^location of the hole to be drilled, this style drill bit works really well.




^reinstalled and ready to go.






^clears all suspension bits and the factory system ten tweeters


^also clears the stock cargo cover and actually supports it so that it can be used as a shelf

Founder of "Official 5th Gen Celica" on Facebook
92 Celica GT 2gr
99 F150 4.6/t56
71 Cutlass 350olds/tr6060
75 Trans Am 455pont/t56
67 Chevelle 5.0/t56
66 C20 LB 478 v6/s6 650
36 Chevy Master Coupe
71 Triumph Stag
91 300zx TT
92 Subaru SVX
92 Stealth RT/TT
88 Corolla GT-S
92 Typhoon

Chong

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Re: Inexpensive Rear Strut Brace DIY
« Reply #1 on: January 07, 2015, 02:51:17 AM »
Damn good job, you can't beat that price  :D

Will86hendo

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Re: Inexpensive Rear Strut Brace DIY
« Reply #2 on: March 07, 2015, 05:53:44 AM »
I will be doing this very soon, thanks for the r&d as always bill.

cuttyman9

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Re: Inexpensive Rear Strut Brace DIY
« Reply #3 on: March 10, 2015, 07:35:57 PM »
No problem, scope out the  front brace too, it is great when used in conjunction with the factory strut brace
Founder of "Official 5th Gen Celica" on Facebook
92 Celica GT 2gr
99 F150 4.6/t56
71 Cutlass 350olds/tr6060
75 Trans Am 455pont/t56
67 Chevelle 5.0/t56
66 C20 LB 478 v6/s6 650
36 Chevy Master Coupe
71 Triumph Stag
91 300zx TT
92 Subaru SVX
92 Stealth RT/TT
88 Corolla GT-S
92 Typhoon

crymson

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Re: Inexpensive Rear Strut Brace DIY
« Reply #4 on: March 11, 2015, 01:35:11 AM »
Are there any advantages to running the brace with it's own nuts other than ease of removal?
1990 Celica GTS "Gracie" - sold :(
2001 Celica GTS "Hannah" - Because daily
1993 Celica Alltrac "Alexandra" - Because money pit

Toyota Syndicate NorthWest

cuttyman9

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Re: Inexpensive Rear Strut Brace DIY
« Reply #5 on: March 11, 2015, 10:24:28 AM »
The one issue that arose is that the top of the tower has a dome on it that it didn't clear.

I've had arguments with people over my method, but it's been fine since I've installed it (~2 years ago)

If one wanted to mount it underneath the other nuts it would take cutting the dome off (which may work if you were one of those people gearing up for the camber top plates) but this took a bit more work than the front brace did so I chose this solution.

If I do another one I'll search for something with a larger ID.
Founder of "Official 5th Gen Celica" on Facebook
92 Celica GT 2gr
99 F150 4.6/t56
71 Cutlass 350olds/tr6060
75 Trans Am 455pont/t56
67 Chevelle 5.0/t56
66 C20 LB 478 v6/s6 650
36 Chevy Master Coupe
71 Triumph Stag
91 300zx TT
92 Subaru SVX
92 Stealth RT/TT
88 Corolla GT-S
92 Typhoon

4WDtime

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Re: Inexpensive Rear Strut Brace DIY
« Reply #6 on: May 26, 2015, 08:01:50 PM »
Have any one try this for the Alltrac wondering if it would clear the stock a2a intercooler

cuttyman9

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Re: Inexpensive Rear Strut Brace DIY
« Reply #7 on: May 27, 2015, 01:21:56 AM »
The rear??
Founder of "Official 5th Gen Celica" on Facebook
92 Celica GT 2gr
99 F150 4.6/t56
71 Cutlass 350olds/tr6060
75 Trans Am 455pont/t56
67 Chevelle 5.0/t56
66 C20 LB 478 v6/s6 650
36 Chevy Master Coupe
71 Triumph Stag
91 300zx TT
92 Subaru SVX
92 Stealth RT/TT
88 Corolla GT-S
92 Typhoon

4WDtime

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Re: Inexpensive Rear Strut Brace DIY
« Reply #8 on: May 29, 2015, 02:44:00 AM »
I mean the front... I just notice that I posted it the wrong section lol

XLarge

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Re: Inexpensive Rear Strut Brace DIY
« Reply #9 on: June 01, 2015, 07:29:14 PM »
The stock rear strut brace from the ST205 fits the 5th gen Celica plug&play and isnīt expensive. Available under the part number 53605-20010 :   

http://www.japan-parts.eu/toyota/eu/1994/celica/st205l-blmvzw/3_252570_007_/body/6101_side-member#53605A

cuttyman9

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Re: Inexpensive Rear Strut Brace DIY
« Reply #10 on: December 29, 2015, 05:23:18 PM »
True, this at the time was before I knew that worked.
Founder of "Official 5th Gen Celica" on Facebook
92 Celica GT 2gr
99 F150 4.6/t56
71 Cutlass 350olds/tr6060
75 Trans Am 455pont/t56
67 Chevelle 5.0/t56
66 C20 LB 478 v6/s6 650
36 Chevy Master Coupe
71 Triumph Stag
91 300zx TT
92 Subaru SVX
92 Stealth RT/TT
88 Corolla GT-S
92 Typhoon

 

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