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Jeffv333
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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
The Panhard Test!

Let’s begin by understanding this “panhard”.
The theory states it prevents lateral movement of the differential with respect to the frame. Or to better understand in the videos we will see the movement of the frame with respect to the differential that is fixed to the road.

I should note, the first time I did the test with the camera behind the differential housing, I did this in two days. 1st day without the Panhard, 2nd day with the Panhard so it was hard for me to remember the difference with and without.

Update: Very good link to read.
Panhard Job
https://www.lightningrodder.com/forum/14-gen-2-lightnings/80860-lets-talk-panhard-bars.html

Update 2: An even greater link to read.
https://web.archive.org/web/20160303203041/http://www.timskelton.com/lightning/race_prep/suspension/panhard.htm

What is lateral? Think of horizontal, what is horizontal? A line going from East to west, think of just that, an imaginary straight line running from east to west. Lateral means from side to side. We can imagine a point on a horizontal line that can move in a horizontal direction. It is “lateral”.
We are thinking of lateral movement, so a point moving horizontally with respect to something else. In the videos think of the point as the frame and the differential and road as the horizontal line.

If you know football, you know the play “lateral” which means a player(the passer) passes it across the field HORIZONTALLY to another player(the catcher), without the player(the catcher) gaining forward progress. Think of the football as the frame, and the field as the differential and road.

The differential moves lateral to the frame.
This is the panhard function: to prevent the differential from moving laterally to the frame. Now, you may think that the leaf springs, longbars, sway bars and shocks keep the differential pretty firm to the frame of the truck. Keep in mind, the Panhard is similar to the track bar, Watts link etc. Some vehicles require this extra suspension component because they are on independent rear suspension, or have a coil spring set up on the rear. Is it required for a rear leaf spring set up? I don’t think so. Does it make a difference on a vehicle with leaf springs? I don’t think so. Is it required for rear coil overs? Yes, absolutely. Well you be the judge and watch the videos.

The main question here:
Is the Panhard a good mod? Or a bad mod?
After tests it has been determined the Panhard is very helpful for handling. Keep in mind, this is for the rear end, not so much the front end of the truck.

Keep in mind, while filming these videos, I wasn’t autocrossing in the street. So please don’t tell me I wasn’t going fast enough. I can test some more when I go to the track. It was already dangerous enough trying to mimic sharp turns.

Swerve Test Without Panhard Bar

Sharp Turns Without Panhard Bar

Swerve Test With Panhard Bar

Sharp Turns With Panhard Bar


************UPDATE 04/13/19**********

I did two tests with and without the Panhard Bar. The sharp Turns and then swerves are in the same video. This time the tests were done behind the eye of the leaf springs. Keep in mind now, the differential is planted on the ground so that is our reference, and the way the GoPro moves clockwise or counterclockwise is the body roll of the truck/frame. You can absolutely see a difference!!! I am convinced, the Panhard Bar modification is a MUST for autocross and to make some sharp turns. It provides much better handling too.

Video Without Panhard Bar Sharp Turn and Swerve Test 1

Video With Panhard Bar Sharp Turn and Swerve Test 2


I want to give recognition to @chucksbp for suggesting to test the Panhard at the rear eye of the leaf spring. My tests were done in the wrong camera angle, providing false results. I’m glad Chuck suggested the correct angle view and helped prevent any false information to be spread. Thank you sir!

I went ahead and added some pictures of the set up. And also of how I mounted the go pro underneath. Zip ties and a metal bar.
 

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Honestly I'm not seeing a difference between the non-panhard videos vs the panhard videos. Interesting for sure as adding one to my truck has been on my to-do list.

I'm curious of the results from higher speed turns. Based off the street driving shown above, I'm thinking they are not needed for leaf springs.

In for more videos!

Edit:
Saw the rear leaf videos. Panhard bar is going on my truck. Thanks for the insight!
 

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Jeffv333
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Discussion Starter #3
@Painless Autoworks

Exactly! The leaf springs hold the differential pretty tight on there to prevent lateral movement. Now with coil over setups, that’s a different story. I will be testing at high speeds and take 2 wrenches with me to the track. Maybe you’ll even see some smoke out the tires lol
 

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My Jeep has coils front and rear, and Track (Panhard) bars front and rear. I drove without one once, turned my steering wheel and my axle shifted. Not doing that again with coil suspension.
 

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Member Senior
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Entertaining post for a Monday morning.
There is one key factor that you have not addressed yet... Why.

Sent from my G8441 using Tapatalk
 

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Jeffv333
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Discussion Starter #6
Entertaining post for a Monday morning.
There is one key factor that you have not addressed yet... Why.

Sent from my G8441 using Tapatalk
Posted in the thread lol
Is it worth to buy a Panhard and drill holes through the frame?
Is it a worthwhile mod? Does it work?

According to the video. Nope to all. Lol
 

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Wile E. Coyote, Super Genius!
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So you're drilling holes in the frame? At least Broncobeater's bar has a back up plate that goes on the outside of the frame. So the frame is sandwiched in between the bar bracket and the back up plate. I don't feel there is any sacrifice there.

Whether or not it works? Fine, maybe it doesn't. But there was something I never liked about my truck, don't know if others are the same, but I've seen it on other Lightnings. My driver's side wheel is tucked further under the fender than the passenger side. Noticeable amount. It's not any more, use the bar to preload the axle toward the driver's side. It's not a whole lot, and can be attained with hand twisting the bar, no tools necessary. Driver's side wheel no longer looks like it's hanging out in a cave. LOL

A friend was over with his black L last weekend, and his driver's side wheel was way in there. Passenger side wasn't.

Doesn't appear to cause any problems using the bar in this fashion. Been like this for several years. And in any event, NASCAR drivers can actually adjust their bar while on the race course. Pushing or pulling the axle to one side or the other on the fly. So it's not something new.
 

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Mount your go-pro back by the rear spring shackles, especially if they are drop shackles, I think you will see how much the panhard bar helps. also as cbxer55 has said it is a nice way to center the axel in the truck. As easy as it is to move the axle with only hand pressure on the panhard adjustment it tells you that the axle has some movement on it's own.
 

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Wile E. Coyote, Super Genius!
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Exactly. I did a before and after drive around my favorite stretch of curves. I felt the difference on that road. Feels just a tad tighter going around curves than before it was on.

I'm keeping mine. ;)
 

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Jeffv333
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Discussion Starter #10
Mount your go-pro back by the rear spring shackles, especially if they are drop shackles, I think you will see how much the panhard bar helps. also as cbxer55 has said it is a nice way to center the axel in the truck. As easy as it is to move the axle with only hand pressure on the panhard adjustment it tells you that the axle has some movement on it's own.
I can do that. We will leave that for this weekend.
On top or below of the leaf spring?

Another thing to note, I didn’t adjust any preload to the bar, I mounted it where it would be “loose” and tightened down the jamb nuts. Does it matter if I adjust preload on this? I don’t want it to pull left or right, I want it sitting exactly where it is, which is why I left it “loose”. So as I turn left, the body shifts to the right, and as I turn right the body shifts to the left, as it does this, the Panhard Bar then has force exerted on it. But at straight ways it should be “loose” as intended, no forces acting upon it.
 

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Jeffv333
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Discussion Starter #11
Exactly. I did a before and after drive around my favorite stretch of curves. I felt the difference on that road. Feels just a tad tighter going around curves than before it was on.

I'm keeping mine. ;)
See, that is why I wanted to prove it did make a difference! Because I felt a difference when I installed mine. It stuck to the road much better, and no body roll. But when I pulled the videos out, no difference :smt089
 

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Mount it to view the rear edge of the spring eye, that is where the most movement will be. My old truck had Belltech shackles with lots of miles and they would move a 1/2 inch on turns in the garage while positioning the truck to get on the rack, it was unbelievable to watch!!! i'm sure new spring and scackle busings would help but the panhard bar eliminates all the strain on the bushings. There is way more leverage when drop shackles are involved.
 

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Someone opened that spring clamp for some reason, Looks like all the leafs are there, I had a couple like that on my Harley truck not a big deal but can be a little hard to close on the truck without some heat. Those keep the leafs from moving out of position and your springs look fine.
I think normal driving will show you what you want to see in my opinion, Like I said I had one of my techs racking my old truck and couldn't belive the movement on the rear springs. I was behind the truck watching for clearance. I could not belive how much movement there was!!!!!!
 

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Sir,
Of the three most used differential locators, Watts Link, Wishbone, and Panhard, the Panhard is the "least" effective. As the differential moves up and down, the end of the bar connected to the housing travals through an arc, although minimal, it allows the differential to move in ans out. Panhard bars should never be used with leaf springs.

Leaf springs are tasked with supporting the weight of the vehicle and locating the differential. And they do so reasonably well. But this design has flaws, one of which is "roll bind". Depending on the load, the springs suffer from twisting in the springs eyes, especially when the rubber spring eye bushings have been replaced with poly or aluminum. When this happens, the spring becomes rigid and roll bind occurs. Any devise that allows side to side movement can contribute to the problem.

I have used the Watts Link and Wishbone in the past, and have found the Watts Link better for street applications and the Wishbone being better suited for track only vehicles. On the street the Watts Link eliminates the side to side movement, but does not offer aid in controlling axle wrap like the Wishbone.

Keith
 

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Don’t forget a torque arm if we are talking about all the ways to help locate the rear. While lower control arms are using inconsuction with this it is an excellent way to control pinion angle.
 

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Racer of the Jackstand Racing Team
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I'll put my .02 cents in.

I have a panhard bar on my truck. At first I could not tell a huge difference just rolling around town. But I knew a bridge that has a turn with joint mid turn. The truck would always hit the joint, bounce and the rear would hit and shimmy hard right (making a left turn).
Now with the bar installed, the truck would still bounce, but after the bounce the rear was just planted, no hit or shimmy.
I've never occurred any bind or any other suspension woes. I like it and have recommended it.


Chad
 

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Wile E. Coyote, Super Genius!
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I'll put my .02 cents in.

I have a panhard bar on my truck. At first I could not tell a huge difference just rolling around town. But I knew a bridge that has a turn with joint mid turn. The truck would always hit the joint, bounce and the rear would hit and shimmy hard right (making a left turn).
Now with the bar installed, the truck would still bounce, but after the bounce the rear was just planted, no hit or shimmy.
I've never occurred any bind or any other suspension woes. I like it and have recommended it.


Chad
We all have learned to take what Captain Crunch (Capt EKB) says with a really super large grain of salt. I mean, even Tim Skelton, who road raced a Lightning, had a custom made pan hard bar installed on it to handle the cornering forces. I for one, will not remove mine because he says it's a bad idea. Been on there too long, proving him entirely wrong.
 
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