Strut Tower rip

Ken Keith auditude at
Fri Jan 28 11:38:53 EST 2005

On Fri, 28 Jan 2005 08:23:23 -0800, Bernie Benz <b.benz at> wrote:
> > From: Ken Keith <auditude at>
> <snip>
> >
> > However, I have camber/caster plates on my car and they are not coming
> > off.  I would like to increase the stiffness of the strut towers.
> > What I was wondering is if I put a BB on the car, does that increase
> > stress on the plates.
> What stress on the plates?  Knowing nothing of your plate system, how can
> one respond better than by ignoring an incomplete Q.

Knowing nothing?  You wrote this about it:

"1. The 2B plates provide no more camber adjustment than stock, unless you go
with a smaller diameter upper spring perch and springs.
2. The 2B plates do not provide independent camber and castor adjustment,
change one and you alter the other.  Poor design for the money!"

"4. It's all a matter of total system stiffness, Ken. To be effective, any
brace must be an order of magnitude stiffer when installed than is the
system it is stiffening.  Mine is, and light weight. I've never seen a tower
brace that comes close to meeting this criteria, even after removing the
isolator from the system, as 2B did."

"You could, 2B did, eliminate the isolation to obtain infinite stiffness of
this component."

What were you talking about when you wrote those, something you know
nothing about?  Did you not realize that I have them on my car and all
my questions are from the perspective of someone that has them on his

> > I was also curious if a sufficiently stiff
> > brace on the towers themselves would be effective *with the
> > camber/caster plates in place*, since the strut isn't permitted to
> > move relative to the top of the tower.
> You are implying that you have removed the top isolator?

Bingo!  There's a clue quoted in the message you replied to, above. 
"However, I have camber/caster plates on my car and they are not
coming off.  I would like to increase the stiffness of the strut

> It's not just the stiffness of the strut member, but rather the full strut
> system, including the attachment to the tower and the tower itself, and it
> must be on axis with the forces that the brace is transmitting.  You should
> be able to answer your own Q.

Sure, now I can.  I believe the answer to the question is that the
stress on the plates would be lessened by including a Bernie Brace.  I
also believe that a brace acting on the sheet metal of the towers
themselves, assuming it is as strong as the Bernie Brace is, would be
as effective at stiffening the structure, on my car since it has 2B
camber/caster plates, since there is no top isolator to allow the
strut to move relative to the strut tower.

You might think that I omitted the fact that I had the 2Bennett plates
on my car, but my questions were asking about a car with the plates on
it, so that doesn't matter.  Once you accept that the plates are
involved in the example being discussed, maybe the questions won't
seem so incomplete and we can begin to talk about the same thing.



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