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Old 04-10-2018, 01:59 PM   #1
M249cummins

Name: M249cummins
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lifted square body front traction bars.

why is it you don't see too many people run traction bars on the front? I have a 6in lift and got some pretty decent wrap and wondered why you never see bars on the front axle, why is that?
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Old 04-10-2018, 04:08 PM   #2
mhuggler

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I used to run those same wheels and tires on my big F250 many moons ago. Love 'em!
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Old 04-10-2018, 05:37 PM   #3
jasonc

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I've seen them used on mud bog trucks. They where a "Y" bar going from the front of the truck back to a single point on top of the axle.
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Old 04-10-2018, 06:57 PM   #4
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Do you mean traction or track (pan hard bar)?

They left a track bar off because of the steering box pushing fore aft vs laterally like newer trucks. You will definitely feel a difference in steering with a track bar installed. It'll be tighter.

If you're talking about a traction bar, I haven't seen anyone use one in the front, but I would assume it'd be similar to the rear. If you're just trying to control pinion angle, do a floating ladder bar, if you want to get full control, do four control arms/track bar/coils.
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Old 04-10-2018, 09:10 PM   #5
M249cummins

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I have them on my 2nd gen on the rear, welded mount to the axle and mount to my frame, kept angle same as driveshaft.

I mocked up some tubing and see no clearance issues. It would go roughly by the shock mount and 3.5' back by the transfer case. 2 up front and 2 in the back.
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Old 04-13-2018, 03:10 PM   #6
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HeartLand Fab on Facebook had a GORGEOUS old square body with a nasty 570-somethign inch big block in it and he ran bars front and rear. He fabricates and sells them for all makes and models.
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Old 04-17-2018, 10:50 AM   #7
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Suspension travel. If you put bars on the front the axle will not be able to move back when the axle moves up. If the shakles were on the front of the springs it wouldnt be a big beal. When the suspension compresses it moves up and back.
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Old 04-20-2018, 08:36 PM   #8
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look at an upper bar like a 84-85 toyota straight axle truck. they work really well.
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Old 06-08-2018, 03:36 PM   #9
RXT

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Quote:
Originally Posted by M249cummins View Post
why is it you don't see too many people run traction bars on the front? I have a 6in lift and got some pretty decent wrap and wondered why you never see bars on the front axle, why is that?
A little late for this one, but I think I have an answer. It's a bit unrelated but certainly dovetails into your question. When cars were first made back in the early 20th century. The original suspension systems were designed to articulate as the existing roads at the time were usually unpaved and usually in bad shape. The Model T featured large diameter tires, high ground clearance and traverse leaf springs. You can find old photos of Model T's with their axles all crossed up. But as paved roads spread across the country and cars could drive faster, those early suspension systems were inadequate, and the suspensions began to evolve for the higher road speeds. The traverse leaf spring was replaced by a pair of longitudinal leaf springs which was a huge improvement.

Longitudinal leaf springs have a few quirks that designers had to adapt to. To get a soft or smooth ride, you needed to use longer leaf springs. However when a leaf spring deflects, the length of the spring changes slightly. As the suspension travels up and down, half of the spring pivots from the fixed hanger end, while the other half of the spring moves fore and aft slightly. As a result, the axle also happens to move fore and aft a little too. It's acceptable to allow the rear axle to have a slight fore and aft motion when the suspension flexes, but the front axle controls steering and if one side of the axle articulates, it creates a slight tiller effect and the entire axle pivots and makes steering a lot more vague. At highway speeds this is unacceptable. So what the manufacturers did was to limit the front suspension, and they usually went with much shorter leaf springs in the front, which helped shorten the fore and aft movement of the axle during suspension movement and suspension travel was limited to a fraction of the rear. Then cars began to receive IFS

This short front leaf spring design concept was carried on to trucks and continued decades later. So if you happen to look at a typical leaf spring equipped pick up, you'll see that the front springs are shorter than the rear springs and the suspension travel was also much less than the rear. There probably wasn't ever a problem with the need for a front traction bar because short leaf springs take more effort to wrap up, or maybe engines were lower powered but fast forward to today and a lot has changed. Trucks are more powerful than ever before, tire size grew, gears ratios are deeper, suspensions are lifted, and now we have the need for a front traction bar. But then again, leaf springs aren't being used as much anymore either.

Theres no reason that you can't install a traction bar on the front axle. The same physics apply for a front leaf sprung axle as it does for a rear.
You can do a 4 link, or ladder bar if you want, but keep in mind that axles have to articulate so any traction bar you add, must not prevent the suspension from flexing. This will add complexity to your design, but it is doable and it has been done.

Ed

Last edited by RXT; 06-08-2018 at 03:41 PM.
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Old 06-28-2018, 11:50 AM   #10
M249cummins

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I don't know how but the rear axle moved soo much it literally pulled the bolts out of the bellhousing which is aluminum. sm465 was hard to shift one day and that's how I noticed it. never seen anything like it. I do plan on some in the future if I get around to it.

I also noticed while turning it also causes some wrap, I suppose 15x14 rims with 35x15x15 super swampers get some grip.
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Old 06-28-2018, 11:51 AM   #11
M249cummins

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sorry the pics are sideways, I'm dumb.
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