Shop Talk with AK- Chaos Tip For Building Traction Bars

A Chaos Tip for building traction bars. AK (00:12): All right. So here’s a Chaos tip for building your traction bars. All right. So one of the things that happens when you take a lot of horsepower and you put it into a lift kit, not a suspension system, is that you get axle wrap. So if you take a look at the tire, the tire wants to rotate forward. The axle wants to rotate in the opposite direction. Anytime you add lift blocks underneath there, instead of doing the correct leaf springs, you’re adding to the leverage that this axle has. And when that axle starts to wrap, the pinion pushes skyward and the U-joint starts to bind up and it’ll snap. So if you’re going to use this type of lift kit versus one that has the correct leaf springs on it, or even better yet springs that go underneath the axle, then we’ve got to do something to mitigate that axle wrap.
AK (01:06): Otherwise, it’s pretty scary to drive and it’s all over the place. So what we did was we built a traction bar, but it’s one that’s off-road capable. A lot of times people will take traction bars, they’ll come off the bottom of the axle. They’ll mount them way up here to the frame. They’ll put their name on them. They’ll powder coat them a cool color, but it really limits the clearance that you have for off-road. So in this one, we’ve got a radius arm that comes up to a huge FK rod-end pine joint. And then there’s a shackle this right here. So when this axle starts to wrap, it’s pulling against this and it won’t allow this axle to roll up, but it will allow the axle to articulate side to side and drop out unrestricted. And it doesn’t take away from any of the clearance that you have in the axle.
AK (01:57): If you’re going to add a traction bar to this, especially if you’ve got like a 48.8, the 14 bolt rear ends are bad about it as well, but really any rear end that you have. If you’re going to put a traction bar on there that’s secured to the axle tube, if you imagine this center differential that wants to roll up, you have to weld your axle tube to the differential. There’s only plug welds that come in this from the factory and we see it all the time where this center differential will just rip loose from the axle tubes. And you start to drive, the differential will move, but the axle tubes stay where they’re at. So take the time to properly clean, heat up, and weld the axle tubes into the differential right around here.

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