Traction Bars, axle wrap and wheel hop

Discussion in 'Lifted & Offroad Suspension' started by dsfloyd, Nov 29, 2012.

  1. dsfloyd

    dsfloyd Epic Member 5+ Years ROTM Winner 1000 Posts

    I am looking at getting some traction bars for my truck. I have always had an issue with the vibration at take off since the lift. I added the spacer on the carrier bearing and that had helped. Since then I went to a 5" block instead of the 4" block. For a while now the vibration at take off has been getting worse and I think may be leading to some of the driveline problems I have been fighting. I thought about a bigger spacer but I think the driveline angle looks pretty good and a bigger spacer I think would put to big an angle at the transfer case. So I am looking at traction bars.

    Procomp makes one but wants something around $500 and most other ladder bars are like that. Now tough country makes a lighter duty bar that goes on the leaf spring to frame (and is $130). I am not doing drag races so this would probably work with my driving. the question is with the 5" block does anyone think that this other type will still work since the bar doesnt attach to the axle per say. would it still allow axle wrapping?

    Here is a link to the one I am looking at.

    Last edited: Nov 30, 2012
  2. mfleetwood

    mfleetwood Epic Member 5+ Years ROTM Winner 5000 Posts

    Interesting issue is a little bump for ya.
  3. Pikey

    Pikey Moderator Staff Member 5+ Years ROTM Winner 5000 Posts

    Those look something like the load leveling kit that [MENTION=50075]SurrealOne[/MENTION] installed
    I don't know how effective they would be at stopping wheel hop. It may help some with wrap. But, with the bars being so short, and the mounting plate being so far away (5") from the axle, I think that you may have leverage working against you. I had the procomp with the duel shock kit on my truck. The mounting plate mounts right on the axle. I never had an issue with wheel hop or axle wrap again. They looked awesome and worked very well.
  4. dsfloyd

    dsfloyd Epic Member 5+ Years ROTM Winner 1000 Posts

    Thanks. the distance from the axle is my biggest concern with these trac bars being effective.

    I saw that thread by surrealone originally a while back, they looked good but I already have airbags and at the time of the write up wasnt thinking my issue may be wheel hop/wrap. I ordered the tuff country's yesterday so I will probably install them next Saturday (not tomorrow). I will post how they worked on the vibration (hopefully it works or the wife will be pissed :grrrrrr:. I can hear it now. "spending more money on the truck?":sign0020:). It definately wont do as much as ladder bars but if it does enough for the vibration then I'll be happy. Now the only thing I am worried about with fit is clearance from the airbags. They are fairly close to the spring pack, and the track bars will have a bolt there so there's always issues:no:.
  5. kburb

    kburb Rockstar ROTM Winner 100 Posts

    CHeck DIY4x for there traction bar or Off Road Design. you'll need to do some welding but they way cheaper than 500 and are probably better built
  6. tbplus10

    tbplus10 Epic Member Staff Member 5+ Years 5000 Posts Platinum Contributor

    I had a set of Rough Country Ladder bars on my 99 4x4 Tacoma (9" lift 36" tires, 410 HP 3.4ltr) after using the RAS system like Surreal has, on my 2011 Silverado (1500/2wd) I ended up swapping the Ladder bars for a set of RAS load levelers, the difference was extremely noticeable, in addition to getting rid of axle rap they also help with sway control and keeping the truck level when I hook up the boat or car trailers.
    As much as I liked the ladder bars a couple negatives they had were limiting articulation (yes the RAS limits articulation but not as bad) angle of approach on certain obstacles, and they didnt do anything for sway control or load leveling.
    The RAS provides a much better bang for the buck over a set of Ladder bars.
  7. Sierraowner5.3

    Sierraowner5.3 Epic Member 5+ Years 1000 Posts

    i may have to get a RAS system in my truck soon. all these things it helps with. i know im not running a big lift, but on occasion the rear end does a little shimy thing i have noticed.

  8. dsfloyd

    dsfloyd Epic Member 5+ Years ROTM Winner 1000 Posts

    the over leaf spring trac bars come in today so I will try to install them this weekend. Hopefully not a waste of money but we will find out.

    thanks for the sites. Welding is one of the things I have kicked myself for not taking in highschool (did wood and auto). One of the things I still want to learn how to do.
  9. SurrealOne

    SurrealOne Former Member ROTM Winner 1000 Posts

    Have fun! Oh, and pics, please?
  10. dsfloyd

    dsfloyd Epic Member 5+ Years ROTM Winner 1000 Posts

    So I finally finished installing them. Not too bad of a process. Directions were good but could have been a little better. Took my time, but I had work yesterday evening, so it took a couple hours yesterday afternoon and then about an hour to finish up this morning.

    This is the kit. Only a few pieces


    I had to disconnect the airbag bracket to allow the axle to drop. This was somewhat of a pain getting the jack stands on the frame high enough so I could eventually get the axle to fully lower.

    This is how the bracket is supposed to be installed, but the airbags are close to the axle and the upper bolt would have been in the way.

    So I flipped the bracket around. The lower holes in the bracke are centered so this just moved the bolt to the tire side where there is more clearance. this also offset the bar towards the outside of the spring than towards the inside. The minimal change I dont think will make a difference (but then again I am not paid to think:neutral:).

    A 7/8" hole needed to be drilled into the stock spring hangar. This is where flipping the bracket around made the hole a little closer to the outside edge of the spring hangar but there should still be enough metal as I tried to keep it as centered as possible.

    The threaded end had the nut, washer, bushing (on both sides of hole) just secured and not tightened and then greased and installed the rear bushing and crush sleeve. Installed and torqued the rear bolt. Part at hangar is still loose.

    At this point the axle and tire are lifted again to install tire (and to reinstall the upper airbag bracket).

    With the tire installed and the truck lowered and weight back on the tires, the front part of the track bar is finally tightened

    The instructions say to tighten the rear and front nut on the threaded part so I tried to equally tighten both sides by going back and forth until tight (directions said 45 lbs so I didnt crank on these one but they were tight).

    Final pic of the installed trac bar. We are going to take the truck out today when we do our shopping, so I will see if it fixes the vibration at take off (which was the whole reason I bought these).

    Heres to crossing my fingers and I will update later. I am supposed to retorque after 500 miles and then again every 3k.

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