Fixing the Fabritech SAS nightmare - Page 4 - Ford Bronco Forum
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post #61 of 167 (permalink) Old 09-03-2008, 03:04 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by reptillikus View Post
You mean you didnt take the springs apart and prime each leaf separately?




If those are old springs then i would take this opportunity to change the center pins, even if theyre only a couple years old. Once mud gets in there, they start to rust fast.
na, painting them was for pure asthetics....however, I ran into a little snag (one of the backing plates is bent on my rear) so Ill probably break the whole thing down now that Ive got some time.

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post #62 of 167 (permalink) Old 09-27-2008, 12:00 PM Thread Starter
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Well Ive been scrounging about trying to find a salvage back plate to replace my bent one. I finally found the right one and now the rear is bolted up.....


I went to work on the front and was able to pull the entire "kit" off as a whole......





After some grinding and banging, i got the buckets off.....


I was a little unsure when I read "move the buckets forward as far as they will go", but its pretty self explanitory here.......


So far, getting the buckets off is the one thing I never want to have to do again!!!
Its been VERY slow due to all the hold ups with the rear. Now that thats finished, things should start to pick up. More to follow....

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post #63 of 167 (permalink) Old 09-27-2008, 12:35 PM Thread Starter
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There have been a lot of questions about why exactly this kit is so bad, so here are SOME of the major defects I have found....

First, the trac bar setup...

1. It was too short, so I ended up lengthening it. I realized this when the trac bar disconnected from the upper mount while I was coming out of a parking lot. Without it, the axle just moves left and right instead of steering, so I had to push thru 4 lanes of oncoming traffic and park on the median. this was clue 1 that I may have made a bad choice...Also, there aren't any joints, just bushings at the ends...

Fabritech trac bar end...


vs CAGE trac bar end....


Next is the radius arm and bracket design....

1. To "pre-set" your caster, they drop the radius arms from the mounting brackets to run pretty much parallel to the ground. Its about 8'' of bracket hanging off of your frame, with a large stabilizer bar running between them. This sucks for rock crawling or anything else that requires clearance in general.

2. Look how the radius arm connects to the mounting bracket. THERES NO JOINT!!! Theres just one bolt straight through with rubber bushings on each side. Imagine the wear and stress that occurs when you try to flex your suspension. This is what I was talking about when I said this kit wears out quickly. Go off roading for a little bit, and it will drive loosely, death wobble, and everything else until you replace it all. This is very unsafe, especially if you have to take the highway to and from your favorite trail.

Here's where the mounting bracket connects to the radius arm. You can see the lack of clearance, strength, and overall performance with this setup....


and here's a different pic of the kit as a whole....


I got this thing about 5 years ago when I was still in college. I wanted something quick and cheap....and I got what I paid for. I hope this helps some people make a more informed decision......

More soon on the CAGE setup!!

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post #64 of 167 (permalink) Old 09-27-2008, 02:54 PM
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spring buckets go farther forward then you showed in that pic.
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post #65 of 167 (permalink) Old 09-27-2008, 02:55 PM
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post #66 of 167 (permalink) Old 09-27-2008, 02:56 PM
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post #67 of 167 (permalink) Old 09-27-2008, 04:38 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Crazed View Post
spring buckets go farther forward then you showed in that pic.
yeah, I noticed that it would go a little further if I notched the lip in front of the last rivet. Ill go ahead and do that then, since I havent bolted the buckets on yet. Thanks!!

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post #68 of 167 (permalink) Old 09-27-2008, 07:33 PM
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very good. Might wanna see if a mod would want to make this a sticky for up top. It's helpful in explaining some of the issues associated with the kit.

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post #69 of 167 (permalink) Old 09-27-2008, 11:14 PM Thread Starter
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Ok, made SOME progress today. The passenger side coil bucket was a BITCH, but I finally got it off. I notched the lip on the drivers side to allow the new coil buckets to slide forward a bit more, bot the buckets mocked up, painted the rest of the frame, and ground all the "extra" stuff off my D60.

Heres the drivers side bucket.....


and heres the passenger side. Its pushed all the way up to the rivet....


I also ground off all trac bar brackets and spring mounts and such off the axle. My 4.5'' grinder wasnt up to this task, so I ran to HF and grabbed a 9'' grinder....MUCH better This thing sure would have made getting the old TTB buckets off!


Thats all, hopefully, I can get the axle fully cleaned up and get everything mocked up in the front.

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post #70 of 167 (permalink) Old 09-29-2008, 12:03 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by muffinman944 View Post
and here's a different pic of the kit as a whole....

not that it matters now, but you had your radius arms on backwards.
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post #71 of 167 (permalink) Old 09-29-2008, 02:08 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 94bronco351 View Post
not that it matters now, but you had your radius arms on backwards.
haha oops

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post #72 of 167 (permalink) Old 09-29-2008, 11:22 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by muffinman944 View Post
2. Look how the radius arm connects to the mounting bracket. THERES NO JOINT!!! Theres just one bolt straight through with rubber bushings on each side. Imagine the wear and stress that occurs when you try to flex your suspension. This is what I was talking about when I said this kit wears out quickly. Go off roading for a little bit, and it will drive loosely, death wobble, and everything else until you replace it all. This is very unsafe, especially if you have to take the highway to and from your favorite trail.
Thats the same setup used from the factory, and by most of the aftermarket radius arm companys (solid or TTB). It transmits less vibration than the heim joints. It actualy works fairly well, and if maintained with good quality bushings, lasts quite a wile. But for true performance, the heims on the Cage arms are far superior.

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post #73 of 167 (permalink) Old 09-29-2008, 11:46 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gacknar View Post
Thats the same setup used from the factory, and by most of the aftermarket radius arm companys (solid or TTB). It transmits less vibration than the heim joints. It actualy works fairly well, and if maintained with good quality bushings, lasts quite a wile. But for true performance, the heims on the Cage arms are far superior.
the cage arm setup is far superior because of the allowable movement from the heim, BUT it also has good damping due to 1) C bushings, and 2) bushings from back of C to Cage arm. So nothing is really transmitted from heim to frame since the damping occurs at the other end of the arm. I honestly don't expect any issues, or will likely not need any heim or bushing replacement for a long time.

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post #74 of 167 (permalink) Old 09-29-2008, 11:53 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shadofax View Post
the cage arm setup is far superior because of the allowable movement from the heim, BUT it also has good damping due to 1) C bushings, and 2) bushings from back of C to Cage arm. So nothing is really transmitted from heim to frame since the damping occurs at the other end of the arm. I honestly don't expect any issues, or will likely not need any heim or bushing replacement for a long time.
I see what you mean about vibration and the C-bushings and the Cage bushings behind the C. I just intended to clarify for the original poster that the bushing design on the Fabritech "Kit" was not uncomon, unsafe, nor was it necassaraly a bad performer offroad.

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post #75 of 167 (permalink) Old 09-29-2008, 04:45 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 94bronco351 View Post
not that it matters now, but you had your radius arms on backwards.
no, they aren't.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gacknar View Post
I see what you mean about vibration and the C-bushings and the Cage bushings behind the C. I just intended to clarify for the original poster that the bushing design on the Fabritech "Kit" was not uncomon, unsafe, nor was it necassaraly a bad performer offroad.
Excellent point. Reading back, my original comments were pretty biased towards the negative side. I was addressing issues that would be encountered when subjecting it to alot of flex, since increased articulation is a big reason guys go for SASs in the first place. You are correct, for normal street use and mild offroading, this system is fine. Thanks for presenting the other end of the spectrum..

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post #76 of 167 (permalink) Old 09-29-2008, 06:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 94bronco351 View Post
not that it matters now, but you had your radius arms on backwards.
Quote:
Originally Posted by muffinman944 View Post
no, they aren't.
Compared to other extended arms that are "relieved for large tires" they sure would be backwards. I'm wonderin if that might have been some of your problem with the kit.

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post #77 of 167 (permalink) Old 09-29-2008, 06:30 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Joes93Bronco View Post
Compared to other extended arms that are "relieved for large tires" they sure would be backwards. I'm wonderin if that might have been some of your problem with the kit.

HMMMMMMmmmmmmmm.............
Ive been looking at it more closely too, and, honestly, its a valid question. The guys that installed it swore it was on the right way. Ive been searching for some pics of the kit installed on another vehicle, but havent been able to find anything yet. Im curious though. It would be pretty hilarious if they were!!!!! Whatever. All the more reason for doing it myself this time.

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post #78 of 167 (permalink) Old 09-29-2008, 06:30 PM
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no, they aren't.
Yes they are.

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post #79 of 167 (permalink) Old 09-29-2008, 06:35 PM
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Here's some pics of another Fabritech set-up I got from Spectre's Stoopidmoters:









Your arms were on backwards, Dood!!

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post #80 of 167 (permalink) Old 09-29-2008, 06:54 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joes93Bronco View Post
Here's some pics of another Fabritech set-up I got from Spectre's Stoopidmoters:









Your arms were on backwards, Dood!!
Boy do I feel stupid!!! Guess Ill make sure the new arms go on the right way this time. Thanks for the pics

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