Sway Bar Disconnects for Range Rovers

Fast Flex Link
Introduction
Classic Sway Bar Disconnect (Home Made)
P38 Sway Bar Disconnect (Adapted from Jeep Parts)
P38 "Fast Flex" Sway Bar Disconnect (Commercially Available)


Introduction
Before 1991, Range Rovers sensibly did without anti-roll or anti-sway bars, which are great for high speed cornering but reduce the ground contact force on a drooping wheel and therefore reduce traction in off-road situations. I leave mine disconnected all the time (try this at your own risk), but the ideal solution is to be able to disconnect them for trail use, then hook them back up again when you get back to the highway. The following designs enable you to do just that.

(Photo at top right: Justin Tiemneyer's "Fast Flex" link design, now being made available to fellow RR owners, see below.)


Classic Range Rover Sway Bar Disconnects (Home Made)
Ashfaq Ali made his own disconnects for the front and rear sway bars on his Classic Range Rover. He used hitch receiver pins with two washers to replace the bolts that are currently used for the sway bar bushings. He kindly supplied fabrication instructions and a photograph.

Swaybar Disconnect Assembly Steps
(Photo: Stock bushing and bolt at left; disconnect assembly steps at right)

Materials

The following parts are needed for each disconnect (four disconnects are needed to disable front and rear sway bars and get them out of the way).

(1)     6" x 3/4" round stock bend as shown
(1)     3/4" large washer, tack weld to the pin
(1)     5/8" large washer
(1)     Hitch pin retainer clip

Procedure

Purchase a 24" long x 3/4" round rod at a metal store and cut it up into 6" pieces.  Simply bend the 6" rods like a hitch pin using heat from a torch and tach weld a 3/4" washer as shown.  The eyes in the sway bars are 5/8" diameter so I had to grind the rod down to go in the hole. (If you have a lathe you can turn the end down before bending the rod). Drill a small hole for the hitch pin clips and voila!!!

Note: One can also use normal hitch pins for this, but there would be a little of bit of play due to the smaller diameter. The only trouble I'm running into is drilling 1/16" holes in the pins for the clips!!!  I don't have a vise for my drill press!!

Results

Ali reports that attaching/detaching the front swaybar on the passenger side requires a little patience.  The remaining connections are easy however.


P38 Sway Bar Disconnect (Adapted from Jeep Parts)
Brent Wilhelmi adapted a commercially available swaybar disconnect kit, intended for a Jeep, for his 2001 Range Rover 4.6 HSE. He kindly offers the illustration and instructions below.

swaybar disccnnect on Range Rover 4.6


1. The sway bar disconnect are manufactured by TeraFlex and are intended for use on a Jeep CJ. They measure 4.5” center to center and have a slight offset. In use, you simply pull out the spring clips (one on each end) and remove the entire link.

2. The kit come with two pegs that the disconnects will mount to. The top mount is a stud mount system. The hole on the frame will need to be bored out a slight bit to fit the new stud in the frame location. Using a tapered drill bit is the easiest way to do this. The stud is then mounted using a nylon ” fine thread lock nut (not included in the kit). I suggest using this in lieu of the included nut and lock washer.

3.The lower mount to the actual sway bar will also need to be bored out. The lower link is a threaded stud and you will need a grade 8 fine thread bolt 3” long to mount the stud. Apply red lock tight to the thread before you tighten the bolt.

4. The disconnects can now be greased and slid into place. The angle portion should point toward the outside of the vehicle.

New Commercially Available "Fast Flex" Disconnect for the P38
Justin Tiemeyer developed his own swaybar disconnect system for his p38 Range Rover and after the strong interest he has received in his manual air bypass suystem for the air suspension, decided to make the disconnect available to fellow RR owners as well. This makes Justin's version easily the most convenient for the average owner who does not want to do his own drilling and machining.

Fast Flex link

Link in place

Fast Flex system

Outside view of Fast Flex link in place


Justin is calling the new disconnect the "Fast Flex Link System". The link is fully adjustable (so it also works for lifted RR’s) and is much stronger than the original pieces. By pulling the pin and sliding the lower joint off the stud, you disconnect the sway bar. This allows your suspension to articulate as it should, and will really provide that extra droop for maximum traction.

The links install in the factory location and no modification is necessary. They actually bolt on the opposite side of the factory links. All components of the Fast Flex link are corrosion resistant or made from 303 stainless steel.  Installation is a breeze and only takes a minute. Importantly, the design is correctly engineered with a ball joint at each end to offer no additional resistance to flexing while the sway bar is connected.

Another view

Flexing

View of Fast Flex link from inner side showing easy-to-remove spring clip.

View showing ability of link to swivel during suspension articulation while sway bar is connected


Justin is currently taking orders for the new disconnect system at a low introductory price of $150. Check out his Carroll Rovers website and contact him by email, letting him know you saw his system on RangeRovers.net; Justin has kindly agreed to help sponsor this site based on the referrals he receives.



 

 

 

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Page revised February 1, 2012