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Suspension Tech General discussion of suspension for the Ford Ranger.

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Old 04-10-2008
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sway bars

does anyone drive their truck with the sway bar taken off? is it all that more dangerous without one? i seen on another site that i can get an inch more suspension travel with it disconnected.
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Old 04-10-2008
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With the front disconnected, the front end floats and gets pretty crazy around 50 MPH. Definatly good for off-road use, but not good for regular road use.
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Old 04-10-2008
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speaking of this...i actually busted my end links the other day...its better to keep it on it likes to pull under hard braking if u only have one end link..leme tell ya haha
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Old 04-10-2008
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thanks for the input guys, what if i just take off the end links, will the main bar interfere with anything with the added travel?
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Old 04-10-2008
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ull rub a little bit but it realli wont interfere...i realli wouldnt recommend driving like that though
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Old 04-10-2008
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What I have seen a couple guys do in the past, is make quick disconnects for there sway bars, so for daily driving there sway bars are connected, then when they get to the trail they pull two pins out and there sway bar is disconnected. Best of both worlds.
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Old 04-10-2008
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i heard of something like that for jeeps, i gotta look it up and see if i can make something up for mine. thanks for the help guys
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Old 04-10-2008
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I haven't had a sway bar on my truck for a couple of years now. Let me be the first to say that yes, it is noticable not having it connected. It leans more in turns. No big deal. I believe that anything that would flip a Ranger would flip it regardless of the swaybar being connected. I have yet to feel in danger.

I let my wife drive my truck without worry in fear my truck will somehow blow over, catch on fire while rolling, letting everyone stare at the scene wondering why that guy didn't drive with a sway bar.

I have never observed it floating down the interstate at speed. I've not observed it pulling under heavy braking. I've not observed abnormal tire wear.

The reason I took mine off was because of the improved ride quality both on and off road. Try it sometime. You'll immediately notice better slow speed comfort on/off road and a significant gain in front articulation. It's cool to see one tire buried up in the fender and the other one hanging... from the front!

I reccomend trying it sometime. It's not like it's hard to reconnect if you don't like it. And, it's free. That's something any truck enthuiast can appreciate.
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Old 04-10-2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by seminaryranger View Post
I haven't had a sway bar on my truck for a couple of years now. Let me be the first to say that yes, it is noticable not having it connected. It leans more in turns. No big deal. I believe that anything that would flip a Ranger would flip it regardless of the swaybar being connected. I have yet to feel in danger.

I let my wife drive my truck without worry in fear my truck will somehow blow over, catch on fire while rolling, letting everyone stare at the scene wondering why that guy didn't drive with a sway bar.

I have never observed it floating down the interstate at speed. I've not observed it pulling under heavy braking. I've not observed abnormal tire wear.

The reason I took mine off was because of the improved ride quality both on and off road. Try it sometime. You'll immediately notice better slow speed comfort on/off road and a significant gain in front articulation. It's cool to see one tire buried up in the fender and the other one hanging... from the front!

I reccomend trying it sometime. It's not like it's hard to reconnect if you don't like it. And, it's free. That's something any truck enthuiast can appreciate.
did you remove yours completely or just disconnect the links?
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Old 04-10-2008
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Originally Posted by kevinsranger View Post
thanks for the input guys, what if i just take off the end links, will the main bar interfere with anything with the added travel?
If you remove both links on a 98+ Ranger, the sway bar will drop right down in the steering tie rods - not cool. It should be possible to devise some way to fasten it up out of the way though.

Some people remove only one link to disable the bar. The problem there is that the free end of the sway bar may rub the tie rod occasionally or tear its rubber boot. Also, under the right conditions, the sway bar can shift to one side and cause the remaining link to bend or break.
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Old 04-10-2008
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i disagree on that...i drove around for a while with only one link and i have a 00..and im not talkin a couple hundred miles im talkin a good 5k at least
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Old 04-10-2008
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Drive it hard enough off road and the free end can hit the tie rod - no question. You might be able to get away with it on the street and for mild offroading.

Let the swaybar shift and it can break an end link. Ask John - it has happened to him more than once.
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Old 04-10-2008
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Originally Posted by kevinsranger View Post
i heard of something like that for jeeps, i gotta look it up and see if i can make something up for mine. thanks for the help guys
You can buy quick disconnects made by Warrior that will fit stock or lifted Rangers. The stock length QD kit for 98+ torsion bar Rangers and 95~01 Explorers is part number WAR85203 and is available from several off road parts houses for something like $80~100.

Even if you use QD's, you still have to come up with your own way to keep the sway bar up off the tie rods when they're disconnected. The kit doesn't include anything for that problem.

WAR85203
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Old 04-10-2008
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i broke my end link wheelin...i launched it, i drive my truck hard...ask the 4 transmissions ive trashed
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Old 04-10-2008
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I broke my end links and drove with the say bar completely off the truck for a few days, living in the Mountains, the truck got a little floaty in hard corning and leans like hell.
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Old 04-14-2008
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Where is the sway bar located and what exactly does a swar bar look like?
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Old 04-14-2008
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This is a pic of the Roush front sway bar, basically the same thing as stock. They attach to the front suspension, I don't know where though lol.

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Old 04-14-2008
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<front of truck ........................... rear of truck>
sway bar is the blue part furthest to the left.
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Old 04-14-2008
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I normally disconnect just one end link, and the free end has never contacted anything on the ranger or the sport trac. That includes full flex in both directions, and even catching mild air in the dunes. If the sway bar shifted a good distance to the side I suppose it is possible though.
I used to use the warrior disconnects up front, but I never found a good way to hold the sway bar in place with both end links off. A simple ziptie keeps the bar from drooping to the tie rod, but it can bounce up into the upper control arm. I still find that disconnecting one end link works the best for me.
The rear sway bar on my ranger was always disconnected, and I haven't connected the rear bar on my sport trac for months.
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Old 04-14-2008
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My truck hasn't had sway bars (front or rear) for over a year and a half. I am just used to driving it.

Just take it easy at first then you won't even think about it anymore.
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Old 04-16-2008
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Thanks for the response to my ?. :)
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  #22  
Old 04-28-2008
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i broke my linkage last night, prolly just gonna weld one on tonight
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Old 04-28-2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kevinsranger View Post
does anyone drive their truck with the sway bar taken off? is it all that more dangerous without one? i seen on another site that i can get an inch more suspension travel with it disconnected.

I did it for years and it takes getting used to. You might also want to get some different front shocks -- stiffer. I used Rancho RSX's which reduced body roll but still complied well when required.

But it can't be emphasized enough that your truck will NOT handle like it did. If you like to throw it hard through the twisties, you'll be unhappy. I long ago relegated my truck to basic street duty but an emphasis on offroad performance so it was fine with me.

If you decide to try it out, make sure you stay very aware of your trucks state and take it easy until you instinctively "learn" your trucks physics again.

One thing for sure: your truck will ride a LOT smoother without the sway bar and be more capable offroad if it's of interest. With the right shocks and a driver who knows how to use the truck it's a do-able combination.

The main problem is "creeping oversteer". As you start to corner, the body roll is not so bad but as g-force increases the truck digs in and leans an oversteer condition builds up rapidly. Part of the driver "re-training" that has to occur is knowing instinctively how to back off the wheel smoothly as you turn hard to keep the oversteer from getting you.
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  #24  
Old 04-28-2008
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Originally Posted by n3elz View Post
I did it for years and it takes getting used to. You might also want to get some different front shocks -- stiffer. I used Rancho RSX's which reduced body roll but still complied well when required.

But it can't be emphasized enough that your truck will NOT handle like it did. If you like to throw it hard through the twisties, you'll be unhappy. I long ago relegated my truck to basic street duty but an emphasis on offroad performance so it was fine with me.

If you decide to try it out, make sure you stay very aware of your trucks state and take it easy until you instinctively "learn" your trucks physics again.

One thing for sure: your truck will ride a LOT smoother without the sway bar and be more capable offroad if it's of interest. With the right shocks and a driver who knows how to use the truck it's a do-able combination.

The main problem is "creeping oversteer". As you start to corner, the body roll is not so bad but as g-force increases the truck digs in and leans an oversteer condition builds up rapidly. Part of the driver "re-training" that has to occur is knowing instinctively how to back off the wheel smoothly as you turn hard to keep the oversteer from getting you.
thanks for the input, i was thinking of taking the rear off for now and see how it goes, i want the flex. i have a 4" lift i am putting on in two weeks so then i will take the front off because i have new stiff shocks that came with the lift, the pics from wharton look great man, i wish i could have made it but i spent the day making a snorkel for my truck so i dont have to worry bout my engine as much
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