In this day and age everyone is on the go trying to squeeze as much valuable time out of the day as possible. Every day we rise out of bed and run around like a bunch of chickens with our heads cut off trying to accomplish as much as possible, which ironically turns out to be not near enough. If you don't believe that, then check out this undeniable proof that America has even sacrificed sitting down to eat. Look how many companies are making on-the-go foods such as Campbell's soup in a cup you drink like coffee. Or Kraft's Easy Mac, where all you do is microwave water for two minutes, then dump in the water, powdered cheese, and noodles, and bam! you have macaroni and cheese. Then there's our personal favorite, Go-gurt, yogurt that's like a push-up pop-it's brilliant.

The list goes on, but the unfortunate thing is, no matter how much time we slash and dash, we'll never have the time we'd like to dedicate to our trucks. Seeing as how many installs can take a few days, a lot of guys don't want to get started on something knowing they'll have to bail midway through, but at the same time they want to work on the truck. What we all need is some sort of project on the go that can be handled after work in the garage, and for cheap!

Of course, there are installs that require removing a few screws and replacing something that can be done in no time, but that's not exactly thrilling. What we really want is something that actually feels like a project, not maintenance. One install for '60-87 Chevy trucks that fits the bill is installing a Classic Performance Products front sway bar. You can tackle the install at home in your garage on your back with simple hand tools, a jack, and jackstands. The best part is, it'll only take about an hour and cost somewhere in the range of $150! Not to mention the install will actually benefit your truck's handling and overall drivability.

Sway bars, also called anti-sway or anti-roll bars, are one of the easiest-to-install and most beneficial suspension components on any truck. The performance gained from a sway bar is something you can feel on city streets, highways, and the track. Because of a truck's high center of gravity, it tends to suffer from extreme cases of body roll, which is caused when entering or exiting a turn. The inertia from the truck shifts the center of gravity beyond the truck's center, causing the body to roll. When the weight is shifted from the center of the truck to the right side, then back to the left side, the truck begins losing traction, more commonly referred to as understeer. A sway bar ties the left and right wheels together and helps keep the center of gravity vertically over the wheels. The sway bar accomplishes this by acting as a torsion spring between the two wheels, so when the body begins to roll the bar transfers weight from the outside wheel to the inside wheel, keeping as much of the tire's contact patch on the ground as possible. What it all boils down to is that sway bars increase handling in corners, but don't decrease drivability at all.

When Chevy built these trucks, they came with a front sway bar option. In fact, all the '73-87 chassis came with sway bar mounts pre-drilled, regardless if they were equipped with one or not. It was up to whomever purchased the truck to opt for the sway bar package, and many didn't. In the past, as we all know, trucks were seen as workhorses. No one cared how the truck drove or handled; as long as someone could fill the bed and tow a trailer, there were no complaints. But as the times have progressed, truck owners now want increased driving performance out of their rigs.

Classic Performance Products has the answer with their front sway bars for '60-87 Chevy trucks that directly bolt to the factory mounting positions if the truck was pre-drilled (such as '73-87 chassis), or if it originally came with the sway bar option. For those not equipped, it's a matter of knocking out a few rivets and drilling two holes. The CPP sway bar will enhance equipped trucks' and non-equipped trucks' performance. On the one hand you'll be upgrading the stock sway bar to a bigger, high carbon steel 1 1/4-inch sway bar (which will increase handling over a stock sway bar; the bigger the sway bar, the better the handling), and on the other hand you'll be installing a new sway bar that will give you the same results.

CPP offers a few different sway bar packages. For trucks with stock ride heights, CPP offers a taller frame mount, which is more or less a stock mount. However, CPP recommends that any truck lowered more than 3 inches should run one of their low-profile frame mounts. This mount performs the same as a stock mount, but it tucks the sway bar closer to the frame, preventing it from scraping dips and such. The second option is rubber or polyurethane bushings. Rubber is a stock replacement bushing that focuses more on ride comfort, and polyurethane is a high-performance bushing that focuses more on handling. Polyurethane is a stiffer compound that isn't as susceptible to bushing crush or give, which is a common factor with rubber bushings.

For our project we found a '74 C10 that wasn't equipped with a front sway bar, but because of its body style the chassis was pre-drilled with sway bar mounting holes. When it came time to choose the other options, we went on the performance side of things. Instead of stock rubber bushings, we opted for polyurethane bushings and better performance. We decided to enhance the performance side of things because the C10 was dropped on the ground, which increases handling over the stock ride height. Along with the new sway bar and bushings, we also installed low profile mounts.

Classic Performance Products
175 East Freedom Avenue
CA  92801
  • «
  • |
  • 1
  • |
  • 2
  • |
  • 3
  • |
  • View Full Article