4WDrive - - Install -

1 Plas­tic slid­ers are of­ten used be­tween leafs in the pack to re­duce the fric­tion as­so­ci­ated be­tween them and al­le­vi­ate some noise. Not all leafs have them, and they are not al­ways the same. This one had enough of our shenani­gans and was jump­ing ship.

2 A few dif­fer­ent styles of leaf re­tain­ing plates can be seen. Higher end packs (like our Ru­bi­con Ex­press units here) use this U-bolt de­sign to keep the leaves aligned. Strap styles work as well but do not al­low free­dom of move­ment and are sel­dom re­us­able. The dis­turb­ing por­tion of this pic­ture is the bare me­tal show­ing. This means a few of our leaves have been try­ing to es­cape along with the slid­ers. This is not a “fix it later” find.

3 With the rig se­curely on jack stands and the sus­pen­sion at full droop, the old U-bolts need to be re­moved. Try un­bolt­ing them, but this is usu­ally a fu­tile at­tempt. We man­aged to un­bolt one side; the other re­quired a more force­ful tac­tic.

4 If you have to cut the U-bolts, make sure the dif­fer­en­tial is held in lo­ca­tion and you are well pro­tected as you cut the U-bolt in the cen­tre of its arc. They’re un­der a lot of ten­sion and will make a “bang.” We like us­ing a plasma cut­ter to keep our hands clear, but a cut­ting disc works as well. Safety first or you may never count to 10 with pants on again.

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