Traction bars are used to prevent axle wrap on leaf-spring rear suspensions, particularly with trucks that make a lot of power. When power is applied through the driveshaft, the pinion rotates up and the springs get twisted up. This prevents all of the power from going straight to the ground, and can damage your suspension or driveline. People have been using traction bars or ladder bars for a long time, but unfortunately all of those setups make compromises. Most are built from cheap materials, using agricultural rod ends and pipe, with wimpy brackets on both ends. The higher-end traction bars are built really well, but they still kill ground clearance and most require that you weld to your frame and axle. Almost all traction bar setups bind the suspension, which causes it to ride worse - not what we want. There has never been a "perfect" traction bar system, until now.
Our goals for building a traction bar system were simple, but had never been done before. No loss of ride quality. No suspension binding. No loss of ground clearance. Easy install. And it still does it's primary job of preventing axle wrap, without any compromise.
Here's how we made it happen and what materials we are using:
1) 1/4" steel bolt-on frame mounted brackets, with 9/16" Grade 8 hardware. Simply drill four holes, and bolt these on. You can weld them if you want to. Locating the brackets on the frame is very easy.
2) 1/4" steel bolt-on axle brackets, that mount to our 5/8" U bolt flip. No drilling required. Brackets are held in place by the U bolts vertically and horizontally, as well as the center pin in your leaf pack. Because the arms are in a compression setup, the bracket pushes against the axle tube when power is applied. These can also be welded if you wish to do so.
3) 2" OD x .250" wall 1026 DOM tube bars, with precision-machined tube adapters welded at both ends. The tube is the same material we use for our control arms and long arms up front - it's basically indestructible. We bend the arms to provide more ground clearance than any other setup, and we reinforce the arms with welded gussets to prevent twisting or compression.
4) 1.25" shank forged Currie Johnny Joints at both ends of the bar, to provide plenty of misalignment to handle any suspension, while providing adjustment and preload. If you change your rear suspension up, you can easily adjust the traction bars to work without removing anything.
5) The traction bar setup is designed to follow the same arc as your axle, so there is no noticeable binding of the suspension throughout the entire range of travel.
6) All parts are powdercoated satin black for a quality finish. No bare steel, rusted up surprises when you open the box. And there is no need to spray paint after installing, like with welded-on setups.
If you do not already have our U bolt flip, you'll need to add that. This does not work with stock U bolts. No other changes need to be made to your truck or suspension for these to work. Fits all 2nd gen trucks from 4" lowered to 8" rear lift. If you have more lift than that, let us know when you order and we'll build you a longer set, no extra charge. Please note that the U bolt flip will not work if you have a stock height truck and your truck has the upper overloads - the U bolt plate will contact the frame.