traction bars - Ranger-Forums - The Ultimate Ford Ranger Resource


Suspension Tech General discussion of suspension for the Ford Ranger.

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  #1  
Old 01-25-2005
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traction bars

does anyone know if they make traction bars for 01's. all i can find are 88 to 97s.
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Old 01-25-2005
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hi

Ok i found some but it says for 2 wheel drives.

http://go.mrgasket.com/pdf/Lakewood_2004.pdf

its on page 12 i think. could some one confirm if they would work on a 4x4
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Old 01-25-2005
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They should work, as the 4x4 amd 4x2's have the same rear leafs. You may want to call them, as the 4x4 is taller and those might not work.

In terms of off road traction bars, the best ones are the James Duff products. May members use them, and find them very helpful. They have a regular and heavy duty version.
http://www.jamesduff.com/broncoII/tracbar.html

They will fit the new Rangers with slight modifications. See Johns page.
http://www.cardomain.com/id/n3elz
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  #4  
Old 01-25-2005
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I have the JD traction bars on my 03 Edge. They just required some grinding to get them to sit properly.
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  #5  
Old 01-25-2005
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Same here. The James Duff bars work fine and they are dirt cheap.
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  #6  
Old 01-25-2005
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They will fit later trucks. The L-plates needed a little grinder time and the U-bolt holes had to be slotted for the larger Level II axle tubes. Also, the kinked front plate needed to be flattened. Not hard to do.
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Old 01-25-2005
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I didn't flatten it. I just swapped sides so the kink pointed down. Works great.
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  #8  
Old 01-25-2005
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waht are the main differences b/w the two sets? besides $200? I am thinking of fabbin my own.
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  #9  
Old 01-25-2005
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The Duff bars are unsuitable for very high horsepower and don't completely prevent spring wrap, just reduce it a LOT -- so much so that with my small engine it's no longer an issue, even offroad; actually ESPECIALLY offroad.

Long bars fasten in such a way that they virtually completely eliminate axle rotation. Look at how both sets mount, and run the geometry in your head of how they will respond and you'll see the cheaper Duff bars are gong to still allow some rotation.

However, unless you run a V8, or very enhanced V6, the Duff bars will give you probably 80% of the benefits, for 20 to 25% or so of the cost (depending on what you buy). I'm pulling that 80% number out of my...uhhh...hat and I mean it only to illustrate that the Duff bars make a BIG difference.
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  #10  
Old 01-26-2005
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What exactly do they do for you ?
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  #11  
Old 01-26-2005
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I want to know a few things about them, ONE are they a must have for 4x4ing, TWO wtf do they do, THREE how do they work?
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Old 01-26-2005
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When you accelerate, the spinning of the pinion gear in the rear end pushes against the ring gear. The ring gear resists with the inertial of the truck, and the force cause the pinion to "climb" the ring gear, rotating the nose of the differential (where the driveshaft connects) upward.

This "twists" the entire axle, and the front of the leave spring bends UPWARD, and the rear bends "downward". This is called "spring wrap". It's bad for your springs, and bad for your driveshaft, u-joints, and pinion bearings, just to name a few.

At some point, the force built up in the springs overcomes the friction of the tires and they slip and the axle untwists suddenly and violently. Usually it also jumps in the air as the it suddenly unwinds. This is called axle hop.

Traction bars have several designs, but what they do is resist the twisting in some way. The short James Duff bars work from a bracket that projects from the top of the axle. As the axle tries to twish, the bar resists it, and actually pushes up against the frame while doing it -- resulting in downward force on the axle and tires.

The result is twofold: the tires effectively get pushed down some as you accelerate, increasing traction, and the amount of energy that can get wrapped into the leaf spring is reduced, minimizing or eliminating axle hop.

On road -- better grip, little axle hop, and less wear on the drivetrain. Offroad, they really shine since when you dig in on some surfaces, axle hop can really be a problem. In sand and dirt it can cause some AMAZING hopping and pulsing in the rear as traction makes and breaks -- and it can impede your progress as well as jolting the heck out of the rear. On rocks, the surging form it can send you suddenly onto something hard and unforgiving.

So, overall, they prevent long term damage, increase traction, and increase predictability of how you "hook up".

Hope that helps a bit. You can actually learn all this online if you search a bit, and get better/more detailed explanations than this brief one.
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  #13  
Old 01-26-2005
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...you call that brief... Thanks i actually understood that well, and what is amazing is the price of those JD traction bars, $69 is cheap for somethingcan will reduce wear and tear on your springs and axle. But they say it will not work on set ups with helper springs, tha't basically your ad a leaf right cause if so. Then that RCD lift kit I actually plan on owning will not work with the traction bars.
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  #14  
Old 01-26-2005
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I plan on gettin those classic JD trac bars in the near future also..
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  #15  
Old 01-26-2005
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The only helper springs it doesn't work with are the kind that mount OVER the spring pack. The regular AAL's are an addition to the BOTTOM of the spring pack.

However, if you make your springs thick enough, you may need longer U-bolts to mount the brackets for the JD bars. I added a pinion angle shim maybe 1/4" to 3/8" thick (at the thickest part) to my stock spring pack in addition to the JD bars and I have not enough thread left to add something 1/4" thicker or more, most likely.

Therefore, if you have AAL's, it might be wise to order/purchase longer than stock u-bolts as well. You can often just get them at auto parts stores.
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  #16  
Old 01-26-2005
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my only problem is that I did the Chevy Spring Swap so my mounting points will be way off. I think I may jsut build my own, jsut finding the bushings and such may be a problem.
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  #17  
Old 01-26-2005
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Buy the JD bars, then cut and extend the "tube" that goes back to the spring bracket. Should still be cheaper and easier than any other solution.
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  #18  
Old 01-26-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by solodos
finding the bushings and such may be a problem.

http://www.rockymountainsusp.com/tractionbars.htm

contact them... they might can help you out...
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  #19  
Old 01-28-2005
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How much are a set of the the JD bars ?
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  #20  
Old 01-28-2005
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About $70 shipped. Maybe less. I got mine for a bit less.
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  #21  
Old 01-28-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by n3elz
About $70 shipped. Maybe less. I got mine for a bit less.
Or your could keep saving your lunch money and buy these when they come out....



They will retail for 6-700 when they are released so better get saving
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  #22  
Old 01-28-2005
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Well, for the power most of our Rangers have that is big time overkill and a lot of loss of clearance, especially if you don't have a lift.
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  #23  
Old 01-28-2005
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i say flatten the front plates john!!

seriously though, the only problem i had with my duff bars were they contacted and slightly bent the flange in the sheetmetal of the bed. notihng major at all, and i assume only happened during extreme flex. but a side note all the same
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  #24  
Old 01-28-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by n3elz
Well, for the power most of our Rangers have that is big time overkill and a lot of loss of clearance, especially if you don't have a lift.
I'd have to agree with that, they are overkill, which is probably the reason RCD hasnt released them yet. When I talked to a Rep back in August he said in the next months they would be producing/releasing and it hasnt happened yet.

But I'll tell you this, I'v done some crazy trails with them and the clearance hasnt been a major issue. I have drug them, but not bad. And they work better than anything I could imagine. They work so well my LS chirps like a locker when makeing turns, they keep the tires and springs FIRMly in place
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  #25  
Old 01-28-2005
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Well, my LS does that with the JD bars. Any effective bar really helps. NO QUESTION though that yours are more effective than mine!

I have the same dents in my bed from them. Someone pointed them out to me and I can't remember who. I hadn't noticed them. Not a big problem though. I haven't changed anything.
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