High Perfomance Sidecars

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Making a Sway Bar or Anti Sway Bar.

By Bill McSheehy

This Page under construction. I need to get more pictures but I can't right now.


In my opinion, a sway bar is the most bang for your buck that you can add to any sidecar vehicle to add performance. It doesn't need to be that complicated expensive, or labor intensive. Utilizing simple manufacturing processes. I built my sway bar from a piece of 5/8 diameter 4140 that I bought at McMaster Carr, you can use either 4140 or 4130, the difference being 4130 you can weld to. You don't need separate arms for your sway bar. Bend the ends of material to create the rod arms, so its one piece. Using an arbor press and a v block and a piece of 1 inch diameter material between the press and sway bar, so you get a nice smooth bend. You do not have to use heat to bend this material.

SwayBarSample.jpg (9676 bytes)

My rod arms, if you will are 12" long. Use two automotive sway bar bushings, I used urethane, as the pivot for the sway bar, you can buy at an auto store or performance shop.

Fabricate two flat plates that the bushings will mount to, these will need to be welded to the sidecar frame. Place them as far apart as possible.

On mine one is welded to the frame of the sidecar and the other one is welded to one of the mounts close to the bike. The location I put mine on is aproximatly 10" forward from the center of each wheel, so the sway bar is actually on an angle.

SwayBarSample2.jpg (63903 bytes)

Use the material to keep them in line while being welded in place. Keep the arms of the sway bar parallel to the swing arms and the same length as each other, so in theory the sidecar wheel and bike wheel will travel the same amount.

You also need two sets of 5/8 rod ends also from McMaster Carr, use these as your link rods. I used two rod ends on each side of the sway bar with the eyes 90 degrees apart so it will pivot front to back on one end and side to side on the other. And four 5/8 split collars from McMaster Carr, these will hold the rod ends in place on the ends of you sway bar. You will then have to fabricate something to attach the other end of the rod ends to the swing arms. Before you bend the material make a template of what you will need.

Then have the bent material heat treated to RC65 and tempered to RC45. The sway bar will distort during the heat treat process, but that's OK because you have the rod ends for any adjustment needed.

Material $15.00
Sway bar bushings $35.00
Rod ends $60.00
Split collars $20.00
Heat treat $50-$100
Total $180-$230