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Help the uninitiated with 4 link vs trianglated

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by dan sutton, Dec 18, 2010.

  1. dan sutton
    Joined: Oct 21, 2008
    Posts: 196

    dan sutton

    Ok...I understand the need and the geometry of a 4 link rear suspension. But ...after viewing many threads on this style of suspension connections, some fabricators use a very custom design in their "bars" in the shape of the overall system, some with parallel bars, others with links going in many directions. Believe me, I have looked at hundreds of posts. I just can't get my head around the reason for the different designs, if for no other reason than to be different. Do some designs handle loads better, some handle lowered rides better, etc???
    I admit I am ignorant! Don't slam me to hard!
  2. newsomtravis
    Joined: Jun 1, 2009
    Posts: 562

    from pville, ca

    just different setups, regualr 4 bar with parralel bars needs a panhard bar, hence an extra 5th link, where a triagualet 4 link needs no panhard bar, so, only 4 links, usually the upper links are the triangulated links and keep the axle centered, while the panhard does this on the parallel 4 link, both work well, just depends on packaging and what your plan is....
  3. ^ this is correct. triangulated top links work as a panhard. i myself am a fan of the regular 4 link with a pan hard. gives some adjustability
  4. chopt top kid
    Joined: Oct 13, 2009
    Posts: 959

    chopt top kid

    Although four link suspensions had been used in automobiles before, Pete and Jake Hot Rod Parts is largely responsible for introducing four bar suspensions to the hot rodding public. In an effort to eliminate torque in the round tube front axle that was popular at the time, Pete and Jake designed, built, and offered for sale to the public, their front four bar kit in the early '70's. They soon adapted it for use on the rear axle as well, but an additional panard bar was required to eliminate movement from side to side.
    Soon after this rear four bar suspension became popular, someone (not sure if this was P&J or TCI) decided that the triangulated four link rear suspension that had been used in GM automobiles for years could be adapted to hot rodding also. The triangulated four bar rear suspension eliminated the need for the rear panard bar. Some claim it offered more room for exhaust, fuel tanks, coil overs, etc. Both types of rear suspensions work well and have maintained their popularity for almost 40 years.
    I read this story in Street Rodder Magazine soon after Pete and Jake's hot Rod Parts was formed in 1973. I realize that was 37 years ago and my memory may not be as good as it once was, but this is my story and I'm stickin' to it...:D

  5. The different types of four links vary on application ..they sell kits and the easier of the two is a parallel four link with a panhard bar..set the panhard level at ride height. Triangular fourlinks are a little more complicated..uppers usually are at 45deg off the axle and the uppers and lowers you can set at 3 degrees down and 3 degrees up. And the length of the bars change also. Different degrees will make the car squat or raise on acceleration
  6. The parallel setup is handy for a car with airbags as the pinion angle doesn't change as you change ride height.

    There are a lot of mistakes made installing triangulated 4 link setups, mostly from trying to package them in low vehicles.
  7. farmer12
    Joined: Aug 28, 2006
    Posts: 7,717


    This is all correct. Changed mine from a parallel to a triangulated set up. This way I could lose the panhard and install bags on the rear of the axle.

    Attached Files:

  8. cain
    Joined: Nov 28, 2006
    Posts: 153

    from riverside

    we offer a 2 link system for 49-54 chevy pick ups. im use it will adapt to your year. 2 links seem to have better clearance and easier to install. any questions call JIMENEZ BROS CUSTOMS @951 781 1268
  9. RAY With
    Joined: Mar 15, 2009
    Posts: 3,133

    RAY With

    Well all the above is correct so why not throw a ladder bar/coil over in the mix? Again this is a tried and true uncomplicated controll for your rear set up that has been around since late 50's. If the coil over isn't your bag go with coil spring with seperate shock hook ups. I would say the ladder bar is the cheapest way to go and again very proven and road worthy..
  10. newsomtravis
    Joined: Jun 1, 2009
    Posts: 562

    from pville, ca

    truck arms all the way!
  11. 53sled
    Joined: Jul 5, 2005
    Posts: 5,818

    from KCMO

    next time I go the the Netherlands I'm gonna look you up. sweet mopar!


    check out 66-72 chevelle or 78-87 monte carlo/malibu for factory, triangulated 4 bar that works pretty damn well.

    edit: ^^^^ reported ^^^^
  12. wingman9
    Joined: Dec 30, 2009
    Posts: 804

    from left coast

  13. scottybaccus
    Joined: Mar 13, 2006
    Posts: 4,109


    Ignore the spam. It was already deleted.

    One thing that creates such varied shapes and angles is the space available to install the system. It's a totally different challenge to fit the same rear suspension into a 53 Olds vs a 27 T.
    I custom build every system. Each car/driver/use has it's own considerations. A triangulated 4-link installed with certain accomodations is one of the most versatile and adjustable systems available. It can be configured for drag racing one week, turn a few screws on the links and it goes road racing, change the angles and it goes dirt track racing. I go out of my way to have multiple setups designed in when the purpose is less than specific.

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