UP­PING THE STANCE

Diesel World - - Tech -

bet­ter han­dle our new horsepower and torque lev­els.

Now that we’re all up to speed, let’s get back to this month’s up­grades. In­stalling a front-end lev­el­ing kit on the 2011+ body style seems to be more rel­e­vant than with pre­vi­ous model years be­cause the 2011+ trucks sit taller in the back. Rather than hav­ing a 2-inch rake front to back it’s a 3-inch rake, which in our pro­fes­sional opin­ion doesn’t look that great. Since we wanted to swap out the wheel and tires for some­thing more ag­gres­sive-look­ing from Mickey Thompson, we had to ad­dress that low front end. The Stage 3 Lev­el­ing Kit from Kryptonite Prod­ucts of Di­a­mond Springs, Calif., was the per­fect an­swer.

This sys­tem can safely raise the front of your truck 2 inches with­out hurt­ing CV axle or ball joint an­gles, so it’s not rec­om­mended to go any fur­ther than this with­out do­ing a full lift kit, which would re­place the front steer­ing knuck­les and change the tor­sion bar mount­ing lo­ca­tions. With a 2-inch lev­el­ing kit the 2011+ trucks still won’t have a com­pletely lev­eled stance, so Kryptonite does of­fer a 1-inch drop shackle that can be in­stalled on the rear leaf springs to bring the back end down and give you that com­plete lev­eled look. It’s some­thing we’ll most likely be adding in the near fu­ture when we do some more rear-end work. For now, the 2 inches up front was enough to get the re­quired clear­ance for our new tires.

This truck is used mainly as a daily driver and will see a lot of high­way miles while tow­ing through the sum­mer months, but it will also get to see some off-high­way use, which may lead to a few muddy moun­tain roads. Liv­ing in Utah, it’ll also see snowy com­mutes to work, so a good all-ter­rain tire can of­fer much bet­ter re­sults for all-around use than the fac­tory high­way treads

 Key com­po­nents to this lev­el­ing sys­tem that will set it apart from cheaper kits are the re­place­ment up­per con­trol arms de­signed and built by Kryptonite. The laser-cut, made-in-usa con­trol arms will help pro­vide the proper an­gles in the sus­pen­sion...

 Af­ter re­mov­ing the front tires and in­ner fender lin­ers, we got our first real look at the front sus­pen­sion. The fac­tory up­per con­trol arm will need to be dis­con­nected from the steer­ing knuckle and the two cam bolts re­moved. The stock shock ab­sorber...

 Lay­ing the new Kryptonite arm next to the fac­tory piece clearly shows their dif­fer­ences. We’ll now have ser­vice­able ball joints and bush­ings with easy-to-ac­cess grease zerks where needed.

 It only took about 20 min­utes to get all the fac­tory pieces re­moved from the driver side and even less when we moved over to the pas­sen­ger side.

 The Kryptonite Prod­ucts Stage 3 lev­el­ing sys­tem in­cludes up­per con­trol arms, tor­sion keys, ball joints and Bil­stein 5100 Se­ries shock ab­sorbers for an ad­di­tional 2 inches of ride height up front.

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