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Discussion Starter #1
Good morning Everyone!

So I have spoken with several of the guys over at THMotorsports but so far have come up empty handed.

I am looking to see if anyone has a recommendation for a front upper strut tower bar that clears the engine cover.

Most of the ones I looked at (eg. Megan Racing, Tanabe) need to have the engine cover removed to be installed.

Any suggestions on a tower bar that does not require the engine cover to be removed? - It looks like JIC made one however I cannot find where to buy one anymore!

Thanks in advance! :)
 

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Cusco bar

Good morning Everyone!

So I have spoken with several of the guys over at THMotorsports but so far have come up empty handed.

I am looking to see if anyone has a recommendation for a front upper strut tower bar that clears the engine cover.

Most of the ones I looked at (eg. Megan Racing, Tanabe) need to have the engine cover removed to be installed.

Any suggestions on a tower bar that does not require the engine cover to be removed? - It looks like JIC made one however I cannot find where to buy one anymore!

Thanks in advance! :)
Hi, I just bought a Cusco bar off or an ebay vendor called Sparktec (I think?). It was the best price on ebay, shipped quick, and is a totally legit part from Japan. The bar definitely fits, clears the covers, and fits under the hood. I have it on my car. Because the bar was designed for the JDM cars, the instructions are in Japanese, and there are few things you have to retrofit. To fit the passenger's side bracket, the fuse box cover has the be unscrewed and lifted to fit the bracket in place...but then it does fit. However, the Daytime Running Light box will no longer fit in the stock location. I moved it forward towards the headlights. I was able to reattach it with one bolt and tucked the rest of the bracket under some wire looms. On the driver's side, there is another electrical box, and that needs to be removed to fit the strut bar bracket. Once the bracket is on, you use a nut that Cusco provides which is a smaller height, so the box can be bolted back in the same location. Super easy to do. I love the bar. It is my first suspension mod and definitely is noticeable. Cusco products FTW.
 

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I got the megan racing and it clears my engine cover. not sure how, but im not complaining. doesnt hit the hood and rattle at all either.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Great Info!

Hi, I just bought a Cusco bar off or an ebay vendor called Sparktec (I think?). It was the best price on ebay, shipped quick, and is a totally legit part from Japan. The bar definitely fits, clears the covers, and fits under the hood. I have it on my car. Because the bar was designed for the JDM cars, the instructions are in Japanese, and there are few things you have to retrofit. To fit the passenger's side bracket, the fuse box cover has the be unscrewed and lifted to fit the bracket in place...but then it does fit. However, the Daytime Running Light box will no longer fit in the stock location. I moved it forward towards the headlights. I was able to reattach it with one bolt and tucked the rest of the bracket under some wire looms. On the driver's side, there is another electrical box, and that needs to be removed to fit the strut bar bracket. Once the bracket is on, you use a nut that Cusco provides which is a smaller height, so the box can be bolted back in the same location. Super easy to do. I love the bar. It is my first suspension mod and definitely is noticeable. Cusco products FTW.
Great Info! Thanks! I just found them online this morning. Any pictures available? Love to see what it looks like!

Best!
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Really? I had no idea!

I got the megan racing and it clears my engine cover. not sure how, but im not complaining. doesnt hit the hood and rattle at all either.
Thats crazy! I heard none of the megan racing strut bars would clear the engine cover. Do you have any pics you can share?

Thanks!
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Well Everyone,

Just wanted to provide some closure on this topic.

So I followed the advice provided in this thread.

Went to the ebay vendor below "Sparktec"
Cusco Front OS Strut Bar 1999 2005 Lexus IS300 | eBay

Purchase the Cusco "OS" Front Upper Strut Bar for a total of $179.51 and couldn't be happier!
The unit came with free 2-Day Shipping too!

The upper strut bar fits perfectly, easy to install (10-15 minutes), clears the engine cover, and looks and performs great!

The notable difference was felt right away. I would suggest to anyone looking to improve their ride quality on a stock setup.

In closing, just wanted to provide some photos for anyone looking to make the investment.
Lastly, I DID look at the Megan racing strut bar originally for approx. $140.00 USD, however after having made the slightly more expensive investment on Cusco Brand @ $179.51USD, I believe it was a more sound choice. If I had to do it all over again, I would still go CUSCO. ( I have a megan racing down pipe, and the welds on the downpipe were no where near the quality of the welds on the CUSCO Bar) :0

Alas! Onto the next mods!
 

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Is this the only suspension mod so far? No upgraded shocks or springs or sway bars? I was thinking of doing this first but didn't know if I was better off doing the shocks and springs first.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
No Additional Suspension Mods Yet

Is this the only suspension mod so far? No upgraded shocks or springs or sway bars? I was thinking of doing this first but didn't know if I was better off doing the shocks and springs first.
As of today, this is the only suspension mod I have done. No upgraded shocks, springs or sways. (Standard Sport Design Equipment - I don't think there's any difference on a non SD edition)

Mine too, is going to need all new suspension soon. Looking into the Fortune Auto Coilover Kits. They seem to have great reviews.

To be quite honest, it definitely made the car "feel" tighter. Also, seems to eliminate a little bit of body roll.
- I wouldn't go so far as to say you can corner harder but it does improve the cars handling.

To be clear: I want to define "handling" as purely driver feel - not to be confused with "grip".

I'll admit, I have a problem of over doing things at first. I looked into buying all new sways, coilovers, lower control arms, upper control arms, the works. At the end of the day, I think its rather rewarding to see what each individual part is contributing before throwing on a ton of parts at once and having an entirely different feel.

Don't get me wrong, I am jealous of the full suspension set-ups; that being said however, for a less than $200.00 investment, it can surely make a notable difference in how the car handles.

Hope this helps!
 

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Glad you took my advice!

Glad you took my advice and had the same great experience that I did with that vendor.
I have always loved Cusco products and their quality. I actually just purchased the Cusco trunk bar from this vendor as well.
Prior to the trunk bar, the strut bar was my only suspension mod and I agree you can feel some difference from it alone.
There is another post asking about sways or strut bars...sway bars are definitely more influential, but also more money and more labor. The Cusco strut bar at that price is a great entry level mod in my opinion.
 
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