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Chassis You Can Do It! DIYs

Ingalls 38725/38720 Rear Camber Kit Install Tips

NOTICE: As of around 2016 or so, Ingalls Engineering was bought out by Dorman products and the kits discussed in this article are no longer available. We have replaced these Ingalls 38725 kits with SPC 67291 camber arms and 67295 toe arms (one each of these SPC kits equals one 38725 Ingalls kit).

The Ingalls rear arm kits come disassembled. In each kit are two tubes and four bushings. Take note that one arm may be longer than the other, and the bushings are all different. There are wide- and narrow- bushing collars, and silver and black nuts (signifying right- or left-hand threads).

On 38720 kits for 1999-03 TL, 2001-03 CL, and 1998-02 Accord, the arms are the same length but there are different size bushings to pay attention to. Read the included instructions or compare to the stock arms to assemble correctly. On a 38725 kit (for the 2004-08 Acura TSX, 2004-08 TL, and 2003-07 Accord models) I remember this phrase when assembling: “Short and fat; tall and skinny.” This helps me remember that the wider bushings go on the short arm, and the narrow ones go on the long arm.

Screwing the bushings into the tubes is usually easy, but the threads can get hung up a but. A little extra turning force can be had using gloves instead of bare hands, but if that is not enough, you will want to inspect the threads.

We have seen threads come out of the box with pieces of slag that will prevent assembly. These bits are easily removed with a small pick.

If the kits are mishandled in shipping, a thread can become damaged. It will look like it is flattened or folded over a bit. A small file will reshape the thread and allow assembly.

If the threads on the bushings look fine, check inside the tubes for debris. You typically won’t see the damage here, but slag can be a problem. Again, pick out any visible obstructions.

Some people have cited corrosion causes the bushings to seize in the arms over time. We recommend a high-quality anti-seize lubricant to stave of rust.

When assembling the kit, we suggest putting the bar length to exactly the same length as the stock arms with the same amount of threads on each side of the bar. To do this, we suggest these steps:

  1. Install the threaded bushings all the way against the tubes.
  2. Put a bolt through both the stock arm and corresponding Ingalls arm on one side.
  3. Spin the Ingalls tube while holding the opposite bushing steady. This expands both bushings out at the same rate.
  4. Expand the tube until you can put another bolt through the opposing end.

Don’t tighten the jamb nuts before the arms are installed in the car. Also, we recommend doing one arm at a time. Remove and replace one, then another, then move to the other side of the car. If you remove both arms it can allow extra movement that makes it more difficult to install the Ingalls arms.

The short arm with wide bushings goes directly under the shock mounting, and the long arm with narrow bushings is the “Toe” arm that mounts on the hub-carrier’s rearward stud. If you’ve installed the bushings on the arms correctly, you can’t mix them up. Here are torque specs if you need them.

Once installed, make sure all are tight and head off to get an alignment!

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Chassis You Can Do It! DIYs

DIY: Progress Rear Sway Bar Tutorial, 2009-14 Acura TSX / TL, and 2008-17 Honda Accord

Install Tech : 2009+ Acura TSX (2009+ Honda Accord) : Progress 22mm Sway Bar (also applies to 24mm sway bar)

62.0105 22mm bar: Link Here!

62.0107 24mm bar: Link Here!

Anti-sway bars go by many names. Sometimes they are referred to as anti-roll bars, roll bars, or sway bars…but they all do the same exact thing: tie the left and right suspension together so that the car corners flatter.

The sway bar is basically a spring that mounts to the left and right suspension somewhere, then is secured to a solid part of the chassis. It works like a torsion bar, by twisting. Naturally, a larger bar is going to be harder to twist so it is desirable to upgrade the sway bar from stock size to improve handling.

The rear sway bar is the most commonly upgraded suspension part in a front-wheel-drive car, following shocks and springs. The rear sway bar helps make up for FF cars’ tendency to push, or understeer, into corners. Upgrading the rear sway bar noticeably improves handling on most cars without compromising ride quality. This part is easily the most bang for the buck you are going to get out of your Acura/Honda suspension.

We have felt that the stock 2009 TSX suspension is indeed very well set up, and the chassis is noticeably more rigid than the outgoing model. And while it feels balanced through turns there is a distinct feeling that the rear end is just following what the front of the car is doing. With the addition of a larger rear sway bar, the car feels flatter and more confident than before in turns. The rear seems to help “steer” the car around turns better. This is not the same experience we’ve had in the past, where a rear sway bar will “fix” a front-wheel drive car’s tendencies. Instead, this bar helps make an already nimble and balanced chassis feel even better!

The drill bit you’ll need for the next step is a 13/32″, or 10mm. We figure a 7/16″ bit should work just fine as well!

Here’s the point at which some people say “oh, I have to drill? I don’t want to do that for [insert lame reason here]. Is there a bar that doesn’t require drilling?” Yes, there are some. They are either too small to make much difference or will cause the bracket to tear off.

Don’t puss out; buy the bar and drill the hole! I can always tell a poser when they don’t want to open a hole up 2mm for the fear of making a permanent, irreversible change to their car. The reward is in the improved function of the car. Enjoy running laps around lesser TSXs!

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Drivetrain You Can Do It! DIYs

Installation Instructions: CT Short Shifter for TSX/TL/Accord

The CT Engineering (Comptech) short shifter adapters for 04-14 TSX, 04-14 TL, and 03-17 Accord are all the same, but they ship with different instructions. In the event you get a shifter with instructions for a different car, so use these links to download the correct PDF!

2004-08 Acura TSX

2009-14 Acura TSX

2004-08 Acura TL & TL-S

2009-14 Acura TL – Part fits, Instructions Unavailable

2003-07 Honda Accord

2008-12 Honda Accord – Part fits, Instructions Unavailable

2013-17 Honda Accord – Part fits, Instructions Unavailable

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Chassis Heeltoe Explains You Can Do It! DIYs

Welcome to last week: Sway Bar Bushings Go Bad If They Aren’t Lubricated

I know, I know. Many of the old school Acura people have been telling us for years that they have noisy suspension traced to worn rear sway bar bushings. I always figured it was an issue with installation or grease. And while I know for a fact I was right on some of them (primarily the ones where new installations were claimed to be noisy), the bushings themselves are prone to creating noise after extended periods of use.

I have had two customers come in after a few years in service with noisy bushings. And now I know what the problem is. The polyurethane bushings on popular rear sway bar upgrades can wear out if not regularly lubed and cause a noise.

These bushings require periodic lubrication. The bushings included with the popular Progress rear sway bars definitely do come with high-grade silicone grease. Likewise, Prothane bushings that many people buy to replace these bushings come with good grease as well. The bushings are designed with a ribbed pattern on the inner surface area that holds the grease to provide reduced friction and therefore miles of noise-free smiles.

But, the grease evacuates eventually. Depending on the climate, mileage, driving conditions, and driving habits, the grease ends up getting expelled at some point. Now, without grease, you’d expect noise. However, the noise does not set in right away! The groves provide an air gap between the bushing and bar. The friction is not maxed out at this point, so there is no noise.

What the grease REALLY does is prevent friction that causes wear on the bushing. The friction of metal against rubber or urethane…harder material wins every time.

The inside of the bushing gets polished and then you have full surface area contact between the bushing and the bar. This is a high-grip scenario and this is what causes the squeaking-squawaking noise. So, the key to preventing noise is to grease the bushings.

On this customer’s car, we replaced the worn CT Engineering bushings they had with some new Prothane ones and recommended they re-lube the bushings annually. This does require removal and reinstallation but thankfully it is pretty simple to accomplish. These bushings are spec’d out at 22mm ID but the bar itself is actually a bit larger (22.2mm or 7/8″, which is the case for Progress and CT even though they advertise their bars in metric). Get 7/8″ bushings for “22mm” bars, and 15/16″ bushings for “24mm” bars.

The installation is perfectly ok as many people do it, but you can see how the bushing doesn’t quite encapsulate the bar completely…

22mm bushing o a CT/Progress “22mm” bar that is really 22.2mm or 7/8″ in size.

And the best bet, provided you have a grease gun, would be to get a bushing with a zerk fitting on it to grease the bushing without removing anything. I think if this needed to be done at a more regular interval it would be worth considering, but given that they don’t need to be lubed all that often We think the regular bushings are just fine.

So, you guys told me so, the bushings do wear out and need replacing if the grease gets all squished out. However, simply re-lubing the bushings with the appropriate grease from time to time should prevent this concern.

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Drivetrain You Can Do It! DIYs

New Shifter Cable Bushings…Out With Solid Aluminum, In With Hybrid Racing!

The HT-Spec TSX has been running around with an HT-Spec Shifter package for about 4 months now, and initially, I was really happy with the shifting. The action was so solid and direct it felt as though I was reaching inside the transmission with my bare hand and moving the gears!

However more recently I have been driving around a lot more than I used to and had started noticing that I needed to force the shifter into gear quite a bit when shifting. When speed-shifting it was even worse and it started causing me to miss shifts. This shifter situation became a real problem for me. I knew it was not the knob of the short shifter causing the problem. However the solid aluminum shifter bushings we include in this HT-Spec kit seemed to be a suspect.

When you install these bushings, the tolerance between the actuating arm on the transmission, the bushing, and the collar on the end of the shifter cable all need to be quite tight. This makes installation a little tricky. Even worse is the fact that as the engine moves around between shifts the bushings bind up, causing the resistance to movement that I was feeling. It maybe doesn’t make sense reading it, but if you’ve ever installed them you’ll know what I am getting at. There just isn’t any wiggle room in the bushings and this makes the shifting pretty tough at times.

Hybrid Racing makes an excellent solution to the need for added shift feel and solidity WITHOUT increasing the effort. The following DIY Install Pictorial explains how!

Here they are. The big advantage of the Hybrid Racing bushings come in the form of a spherical bearing in the large bushing.

You can see the bearing a little better in this pic.

These bushings reside in the engine bay under the intake arm, as shown in this pic. First, remove the airbox lid and you’ll gain enough but limited access to work. Removing the lower box makes the job a lot easier.

Looking in from the side you can see the smaller bushing.

With the lower box in it is tough to see the larger bushing, but it is here in this pic. Come to think of it, removing the lower box really would have been a good idea for this DIY. Oh well, it’s a pita this way but you can do it.

Remove the cotter pin and washers off the shaft and put them aside. The cable bushing end will slide off the shifter arm.

To get the bushing out of the cable end simply stick in a screwdriver and tweak it. The rubber bushing will pop right out.

The little taper on the inside hole REALLY aids in installation. Again, the solid bushings don’t have this feature and it is a bit of a bitch to install without disconnecting the cables farther up the line.

Here I diverge from the HR install instructions a bit. They say to install the bushing flat side out. It made a bit more sense to me to put it flat side side in. It works either way, so it is up to you.

There is a special clip included with the bushings to hold them securely in the cables. These were a little tricky to install but it helps to see how they work, as in this pic. Start with one layer and work them on.

So far you’ve got this far. Lookin’ good!

I finished the install with another change to the HR instructions. I reinstalled the plastic and metal washers from the OEM assembly. This is completely not needed, but I felt the bearing in the other bushing would be more protected from debris, and there is slightly less play in the lateral direction this way. I don’t think it makes a difference on the feel at all, but I thought this method was best.

Here is the larger bushing. Installing flat-side down really did make it more sensible to re-install the washers. I never looked back!

My initial impression was, WOW AMAZING. Such a small change made such a big difference in feel. Without the bushings binding on the shift lever shaft I can flick through the gears with the twitch of a wrist. The same solid movement is there without an additional force. This bushing is now the more recommended one on our HT-Spec Shifter package. It does cost quite a bit more than the solid bushing option, but it is worth every penny!

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Chassis

2004-08 TL Front Camber Arms from Skunk2

UPDATE 6/11/10

We have just learned that the camber adjustment range of the Skunk 516-05-0004 kit on the 04-08 TL models is limited to 3-4 degrees positive and 1.1-1.2 degrees negative. For customers looking for more negative camber in the front, this kit must be modified in order to achieve the result. When you order this kit on Heeltoeauto.com there is an option for getting this modification done. Out of the box, we know the kit will correct negative camber you get from lowering the TL front end, but cannot provide adequate negative adjustment for extreme camber angles without modification.


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Ok, so despite my previous professing about how a camber kit is not technically needed to prevent excessive tire wear, I have sold an unprecedented amount of them. Ingalls rear camber kits alone have moved more than enough units to support our WD program with Ingalls direct.

However, the front end of the 04-08 TL is not usually found far enough out of spec to warrant adjusting camber unless extreme lowering is performed. And in the case of extreme lowering, we find that the Ingalls retrofit adjustable ball joint, while effective, is a major pain to adjust, and does not provide enough clearance to the inner shock towers. This usually results in contact between said camber kit and inner shock tower!

Skunk2 has resolved this issue by releasing their ever-popular and much-refined camber adjustable upper arm for the TSX. As per usual, the TL got no love, but and Heeltoe Automotive has the exclusive scoop! This camber arm fits the 04-08 TL as well!

Check out the following pics to see the height difference between the stock, Ingalls, and Skunk2 ball joints.

Stock on the left, Skunk2 on the right.
Ingalls on the left, Skunk2 on the right (take note of the difference in adjustment and how much easier the Skunk2 kit is going to be to adjust after being installed on the car!)

So with Skunk2 the inner shock tower clearance issue is a thing of the past. Also, here is the part installed on a 04-08 TL:

Here are two pics showing the clearance to the wheels house at max and min camber settings:

Here are two pics KINDA showing the visual difference of the wheel hub orientation at max and min camber settings. The steering wheel is not turned, the car just has a toe impact when the camber changes. Just pay attention to the hub face and how it goes vertical when adjusted with the Skunk2 arms: