In this video, Jason Fenske, the man behind YouTube channel EngineeringExplained, ...
In this video, Jason Fenske, the man behind YouTube channel EngineeringExplained, discusses exactly how disconnecting sway bars work. In many ways, the sway bar is one of the auto world’s most useful and ingenious creations for improving the handling of vehicles, specifically trucks.
When designing off-road trucks, engineers need to consider the amount of axle movement allowed versus the amount of body roll allowed. Having a stiff suspension translates to little body roll, but inadequate axle articulation. On the other hand, a soft suspension provides for greater axle articulation, but considerably more body roll.
Such issue can be addressed by using an electronic disconnecting sway bar for the front axle. When driving at low speeds with the sway bar disconnected, there is more twist on the front axle, without the rear tire coming off the pavement. This is important because on uneven terrain, the key is to keep the wheels planted on the ground to maintain traction.
Jason used a Ram Power Wagon to show how decoupling the sway bar provides for a difference of 26 inches of vertical travel between the center of the front wheels. At speeds in excess of 18 mph, the sway bar will automatically reconnect in order to decrease body roll. However, you can choose to turn it on or off below such speed. Watch the video below for Jason’s in depth explanation.
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