Watson Racing 4 pt. roll bar install

Discussion in 'How To Forum' started by Hermes, Sep 2, 2014.

  1. coboss

    coboss TMO Addict

    Likes Received:
    May 21, 2012
    So, help me out here. It looks like the front of this roll bar is bolted to a couple of plates screwed into the sheet metal with #8 machine screws? Am I seeing that correctly?

    What am I missing?

    TMSBOSS TMO Addict

    Likes Received:
    Aug 23, 2011
    Front is bolted in with 8 10m hardened bolts. The bolts attach to backing plates which you mount inside the two gusset plates.

    Rear bolt in a similar manner.

    Check out the Watson site.
  3. Viper1mx

    Viper1mx TMO Intermediate

    Likes Received:
    Jan 23, 2014
    EastBay Area Northern California
    Believe me it's well bolted in place and won't go anywhere - plumb vertical for the main hoop is pretty critical as it dictates where the rear bars land on the deck- when the main hoop is in it won't move more than 1/8" front or rear no matter how much you push or pull - it's planted on the gussets.
  4. Jimmy Pribble

    Jimmy Pribble TMO Addict

    Likes Received:
    Mar 23, 2011
    Austin, TX
    Oh, boy. I don't know how I got so many things so wrong, but this took way too much time and aggravation. I just could not get things to line-up. I'm a slow, meticulous mechanic, but I just could not get the main hoop/gusset/backing plate holes to line up for hours upon days of trying. I finally had to ditch the retaining rivets, because I needed to adjust the plates so much. Finally, after getting the main hoop installed, I thought the rear bars would be a breeze. That's when I ran into two problems:

    1. I still struggled with alignment of the rear bar backing plates, even after being very careful with the drilling of the holes. I would try to start a bolt and it just wouldn't go. I looked and the holes looked like they provided correct clearance. Finally, I pulled the backing plates and gave them a good hard look. Once I looked, it was obvious that some of the welded nuts were misaligned so badly that a bolt could not get started from the plate side. If I tried to run the bolt up from the nut side, it would stop cold when it got to the plate. This was true for three out of the eight holes!

    I wasn't struggling with alignment at all. It was a manufacturing defect. I can't help but wonder if the gusset backing plates had similar issues that were causing my frustration. (I'm not going to remove the bar to find out.) Anyway, the defects are obvious and if I had bothered to call them, I'm sure Watson Racing would have made things right. But I hate dealing with returns and this project had taken far longer than I had planned, so I just ran a tap through everything and called it a day. If the nuts had been aligned perfectly, a tap wouldn't do anything to the plate itself, but the picture above shows how far off they were. The left side had a partial interference, but the right side was clearly misaligned badly until I tapped it. Once this was done, the plates bolted in easily.

    2. The driver's side rear bar foot plate sits too close to the front of the car and the body interferes with the backing plate. So, I turned the plate 180 deg. so that the short lip was towards the front of the car. That was enough to allow alignment with the top plate. The "helper" bolt holes were now misaligned, but I didn't find them to be that useful in the first place, so I didn't use them.

    So, my PRO TIP is obvious: run a bolt through all of the backing plates before you do anything.

    Now that it's in the car, I'm sure I will be very happy with this roll bar. It's SOLID. Even without the rear bars bolted, I was yanking on it like crazy to try and get the bolts to go and it wouldn't budge. I'm glad. Because this thing is never leaving the car.

    Now I have to go make rear seat delete panels. Sounds easy. Right... :rolleyes:
    TymeSlayer likes this.
  5. VoodooBoss

    VoodooBoss Rick Moderator

    Likes Received:
    Nov 30, 2010
    90 Miles East of Sonoma Raceway
    @Jimmy Pribble glad you got the bar in. There are a few roll bar install threads and in most of the others we cover checking the threads before you start. Oh well at least it's in.
    Grant 302 likes this.

Share This Page