One Up Offroad Traction Bars Eliminate A Common Problem
Massive horsepower and torque is probably the biggest reason any of us drive diesel pickups. But putting that power to the ground effectively and having the stability to use it all while towing is something often overlooked when it comes to upgrading your truck. Bolting on a good set of traction bars can pay dividends to keeping your drivetrain happy by eliminating axle wrap and keeping the tires planted under heavy acceleration. The right rear airbags can really aid in towing performance as well, with a more stable feel under a heavy load, not to mention eliminating the annoying rear end sags from a bunch of trailer tongue weight.
Large amounts of low end torque can put a lot of stress on the drive line, u-joints and rear pinion that the rear axle will try and wrap itself downward as the tires are grabbing for traction. This axle wrap motion throws off pinion angles and can lead to binding of the u-joints which overtime can lead to premature failure. Another downside is aggressive wheel hop and tire slippage, which is an obvious pitfall when trying to get a heavy load moving or power planted at the dragstrip. To overcome these issues, One Up Offroad developed their Beside Frame mount Short Gusset traction bar kits available for GM, Ford, and Dodge applications that are a simple no-weld bolt in design.
The OUO tractions bars are unique in that the front mount does not use a typical heim joint, but a large bushing joint that allows the bar a full range of motion without binding and added noise under normal suspension travel. The short gusset bars work great on any height truck and the two-piece bar design allows the overall length to be adjusted to fit each application perfectly. As a complete bolt-in kit, the axle brackets completely replace the factory U-bolt axle clamp and house the new mounting location for the traction bar. The frame side bracket is bolted with 8 bolts per side, so there is some drilling required.
Air Lift Airbags
Since this particular truck has been slightly lowered already both front and rear, hooking up to just about any size trailer shows some pretty massive sag in the rear end and was putting the rear axle on the bump stops quite regularly. As anyone that understands suspension can imagine, smacking the bump stop leads to a harsh unwanted ride quality, so a set of rear air bags was the perfect resolution. For this application, the new Air Lift Load Lifter 5000 bags with their unique internal bump stop were going to be a perfect fit.
Installing between the axle and frame rails, replacing the stock bump stop the new bags allows you to run zero air pressure when unloaded so the ride quality will not change, but once loaded a quick air pressure adjustment will help handle that trailer and keep the rear suspension from bottoming out over rougher condition. As for the air pressure adjustments, Air Lift offered multiple options dependent on your needs and budget, from valve stems installed on the rear bumper, an on-board air supply kit with wireless remote or their automatic load leveling system that adds or removes pressure as required based off frame mounted sensors.
Often times truck owners focus on just bolting on horsepower and fancy wheel and tire packages for better looks and off-road traction. But all the horsepower in the world won’t get you anywhere if you can’t plant it to the ground efficiently.