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Ram1878
 
  It's our 11th anniv! Is a steering brace a good gift? - Posted: 06-04-2012, 12:54 PM
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Post #1

Eleven years ago today in Palatine, IL I wed my girl with the help of Feeny Dodge. Looking forward to many more years together!

Here's the question: what to get her?

I'm on a very limited budget as I am finishing grad school but something that has been on my mind lately is a steering brace. You know what this is-- began by Darin as the DSS or Windekker and now every Tom, Dick, and Harry is making them.

I have read all the forums including diesel ones regarding the topic. I would say over 90% agree it is a great addition to the truck. Some have poo-poo-ed it as being too stressful on the steering box and wearing it out prematurely. However, if it is good enough for the diesels and power wagons, which flex more than I ever will going in and out of driveways, it should work.

So which one? The original company seems to be gone. Now we have:
-BD
-DT
-Spohn Perf
-PSC
-Custom Diesel
-and more including chinese crap

Prices vary from $99 to $200+

Anybody recommend one? Not too many folks here use them but I trust your opinions. I am leaning towards the Spohn brand as it comes in red

Here's the ebay link to give you an idea of what's out there:
http://www.ebay.com/sch/i.html?_nkw=...ring+box+brace
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JackedDak03
 
 Posted: 06-04-2012, 01:39 PM
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Post #2

I just picked one up off ebay myself along with a borgeson steering box (from autoplicity.com - $347 shipped). My stabilizer was $114 shipped and says its made in the US. I haven't put it on yet but anything to help stiffen the front rails of these trucks is a plus in my book.

I have had great experience with Spohn as a company. I bought their track bar and it was made very very well. I couldn't use it because of my plow frame and they took it back no questions asked. I didn't realize they made the stabilizer or I would've purchased from them.

Long story short, do it!
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lightning79
 
 Posted: 06-04-2012, 04:08 PM
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Post #3

Happy Anniversary!
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Ram1878
 
 Posted: 06-04-2012, 04:35 PM
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Post #4

Thanks^^^

Yeah, my steering box is waaaaay over due but that is money I'm reserving for a move back north. Hoping to just eek out a few more miles from the stock one. It barely works and I have to return it to center both ways. I was always in the market for Redhead but now that the Borgeson is making news, maybe that's the way to go. That would be the deciding factor in which brace to get. Don't want to buy two.

In the meantime, how about these?:
http://www.spohn.net/shop/1994-1999-...2500-3500.html

My second right link is about done and should probably get the longer ones due to my lift. Thoughts?
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BigGreenV10
 
 Posted: 06-04-2012, 09:20 PM
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Post #5

They are about all the same as they use the same bearing I have a PSC though.
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spun360
 
 Posted: 06-04-2012, 10:19 PM
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Post #6

my vote the bigdoffroad brace.
i dont have that one specificly, but i love the brace i have!
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Ram1878
 
 Posted: 06-04-2012, 10:49 PM
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Post #7

So spun recommends the BigD brace which is different in design from the other boxed ones. It is a thicker metal all one piece bent to fit.

Here's somebody's review:
http://offroadpassport.com/forum/showthread.php?t=1886

Is this better then boxed? We could be treading into C vs. boxed frame waters here (Been reading too many chevy vs. ford diesel forums. )
I'm sure the thicker metal helps, but something tells me the box/weld design is sturdier?

There's also a brand that used a tube design instead of a box. Better? Worse? Oh, I should've bought one back when there was just one option...
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1999 Ram 1500 4x4 X-cab short box, 170,000+ miles
318 3:55 ASD
NV3500 w/ tow pkg
Cooper Discoverer ATP LT285/75/R16
3" SKYJACKER LIFT
Thuren 0-3" track bar
Spohn Stabilizer

Flowmaster Delta Flow 50 single/4" SS duals
Magnaflow Hi-flow cat
Hughes Plenum Kit
Hypertech PPIII
Stant 180 stat
Eddy 14x3" Air Cleaner
Window Tint
Sprayed liner
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LMC Dash
Pioneer 6x9x4 with Kenwood head
Fog and backup lights w/ relays
Smoke Pacer Cab lights
Recon Big Rig lights

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Ram1878
 
 Posted: 06-04-2012, 11:03 PM
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Post #8

Or should I wait for this?

http://www.dodgeoffroad.com/store_DORbrace2g.php
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1999 Ram 1500 4x4 X-cab short box, 170,000+ miles
318 3:55 ASD
NV3500 w/ tow pkg
Cooper Discoverer ATP LT285/75/R16
3" SKYJACKER LIFT
Thuren 0-3" track bar
Spohn Stabilizer

Flowmaster Delta Flow 50 single/4" SS duals
Magnaflow Hi-flow cat
Hughes Plenum Kit
Hypertech PPIII
Stant 180 stat
Eddy 14x3" Air Cleaner
Window Tint
Sprayed liner
Luverne Chrome Grille Guard
Westin Nerf bars
LMC Dash
Pioneer 6x9x4 with Kenwood head
Fog and backup lights w/ relays
Smoke Pacer Cab lights
Recon Big Rig lights

BLACK TRUCK CLUB #78

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Ram1878
 
 Posted: 06-05-2012, 07:36 PM
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Post #9

If there's no more opinions, I'm just gonna get the Spohn performance one because it comes in red. It will match my red springs and track bar.
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1999 Ram 1500 4x4 X-cab short box, 170,000+ miles
318 3:55 ASD
NV3500 w/ tow pkg
Cooper Discoverer ATP LT285/75/R16
3" SKYJACKER LIFT
Thuren 0-3" track bar
Spohn Stabilizer

Flowmaster Delta Flow 50 single/4" SS duals
Magnaflow Hi-flow cat
Hughes Plenum Kit
Hypertech PPIII
Stant 180 stat
Eddy 14x3" Air Cleaner
Window Tint
Sprayed liner
Luverne Chrome Grille Guard
Westin Nerf bars
LMC Dash
Pioneer 6x9x4 with Kenwood head
Fog and backup lights w/ relays
Smoke Pacer Cab lights
Recon Big Rig lights

BLACK TRUCK CLUB #78

CAN'T LAY SCRATCH CLUB #3

TRUCKS & GUNS CLUB #29

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BigGreenV10
 
 Posted: 06-05-2012, 09:10 PM
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Post #10

That looks ok the write up is on a 3rd gen though.
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JackedDak03
 
 Posted: 06-06-2012, 09:31 AM
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Post #11

I just double checked and mine is the one Spun recommends. Its from BigD offroad but I got mine for $114 shipped.
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Gone:
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Ram1878
 
 Posted: 06-07-2012, 10:40 AM
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Post #12

I just ordered the Spohn Performance brace in red from Coloradospeed.com for $149 with free shipping! Figured that was a good deal.

My second choice was the Big Dog but they didn't offer red. Another reason I went with Spohn is that it is designed like the original with detailed specs. I like specs.

Figure if the price range of a product is 100-200 I did pretty well splitting the difference. And it is the only brace on the market available in red.

As for the steering box, I will just go with Redhead like I always planned to when this one craps out. Borgeson is brand new and I remember both good and bad stories from early days of forums. Redhead has always had good reviews. Plus it's red
__________________
1999 Ram 1500 4x4 X-cab short box, 170,000+ miles
318 3:55 ASD
NV3500 w/ tow pkg
Cooper Discoverer ATP LT285/75/R16
3" SKYJACKER LIFT
Thuren 0-3" track bar
Spohn Stabilizer

Flowmaster Delta Flow 50 single/4" SS duals
Magnaflow Hi-flow cat
Hughes Plenum Kit
Hypertech PPIII
Stant 180 stat
Eddy 14x3" Air Cleaner
Window Tint
Sprayed liner
Luverne Chrome Grille Guard
Westin Nerf bars
LMC Dash
Pioneer 6x9x4 with Kenwood head
Fog and backup lights w/ relays
Smoke Pacer Cab lights
Recon Big Rig lights

BLACK TRUCK CLUB #78

CAN'T LAY SCRATCH CLUB #3

TRUCKS & GUNS CLUB #29

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BigGreenV10
 
 Posted: 06-07-2012, 11:15 AM
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Post #13

Well after reading the Borgorson box stuff I really would get one of those and I have a red head now. It is not bad but still has some factory play these damn Dodge. I am doing my cross over steering soon along with a new hub after less than 2000 miles.
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JackedDak03
 
 Posted: 06-07-2012, 11:28 AM
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Post #14

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ram1878 View Post
I just ordered the Spohn Performance brace in red from Coloradospeed.com for $149 with free shipping! Figured that was a good deal.

My second choice was the Big Dog but they didn't offer red. Another reason I went with Spohn is that it is designed like the original with detailed specs. I like specs.

Figure if the price range of a product is 100-200 I did pretty well splitting the difference. And it is the only brace on the market available in red.

As for the steering box, I will just go with Redhead like I always planned to when this one craps out. Borgeson is brand new and I remember both good and bad stories from early days of forums. Redhead has always had good reviews. Plus it's red
You'll be happy with it, they make nice products.

Quote:
Originally Posted by BigGreenV10 View Post
Well after reading the Borgorson box stuff I really would get one of those and I have a red head now. It is not bad but still has some factory play these damn Dodge. I am doing my cross over steering soon along with a new hub after less than 2000 miles.
There's a reason Dodge went to the Delphi design on the 3rd and 4th gen Ram's. I got my Borgeson in the back of my Jeep waiting to be installed - Made in USA, looks to be Connecticut to be exact.
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BHAF, PHP Hydra Tuned, 4" Straight Piped Exhaust
Gone:
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2004 Dodge Ram 2500 Quad Cab 4x4 HEMI
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2002 Dodge Ram 1500 Quad Cab 4x4 4.7
2001 Dodge Ram 1500 Quad Cab 4x4 5.9 V8
1999 Dodge Ram 2500 Quad Cab 4x4 5.9 V8
1997 Dodge Ram 1500 RegCab ShortBed Sport 5.9 V8


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Ram1878
 
 Posted: 06-13-2012, 09:42 PM
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Post #15

The Spohn brace came today and if its quality is anything like the way it was wrapped up, it should last a million years! Very nicely packaged. Bad thing is no directions. I know it is pretty much bolt on but it would be nice to know torque specs and such. Of course it came with a catalog for Spohn, but no directions. But it is a sweet piece for sure.
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1999 Ram 1500 4x4 X-cab short box, 170,000+ miles
318 3:55 ASD
NV3500 w/ tow pkg
Cooper Discoverer ATP LT285/75/R16
3" SKYJACKER LIFT
Thuren 0-3" track bar
Spohn Stabilizer

Flowmaster Delta Flow 50 single/4" SS duals
Magnaflow Hi-flow cat
Hughes Plenum Kit
Hypertech PPIII
Stant 180 stat
Eddy 14x3" Air Cleaner
Window Tint
Sprayed liner
Luverne Chrome Grille Guard
Westin Nerf bars
LMC Dash
Pioneer 6x9x4 with Kenwood head
Fog and backup lights w/ relays
Smoke Pacer Cab lights
Recon Big Rig lights

BLACK TRUCK CLUB #78

CAN'T LAY SCRATCH CLUB #3

TRUCKS & GUNS CLUB #29

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spun360
 
 Posted: 06-14-2012, 09:22 PM
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Post #16

i dont see it!
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$650: 5 ram 1500 RIMS & TREADWRIGHT TIRES SOLD :pm: ask about my retread experience http://www.dodgetalk.com/forums/show...78#post5474378
$125: 210lb double and dampener valve springs .550 lift
$20 : new, standard oil pump
$15 : new, super strength moog #377 frt axle hub universal w/ grease fitting
prices include shipping (for residence of the US)
cheep
shoot PMs my way
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BigGreenV10
 
 Posted: 06-14-2012, 10:24 PM
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Post #17

See what the box in the back of his jeep that would be because I beat ya to it.
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Ram1878
 
 Posted: 06-15-2012, 07:41 PM
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Post #18

Ok, this is getting frustrating. First, no instructions with the box so I have been spending hours online trying to find the right ones. Of course, every brace made today is slightly different. The Spohn one comes with all different size bolts than the DSS. It also is missing the lock washers and regular washers included in other kits. Of course, can't buy just a set have to buy a whole friggin box of the stupid things. Anyway...

So I soaked the pitman nut two days ago with PB Blaster and had a go at it today with a crescent wrench because I don't own a big enough socket. No go. Figures. I measure the nut with the wrench and compare it to the new extended nut shaft (haha) and went to the store again to get a 1-1/4" socket. Wrong size. Fits the new shaft but not the old nut. None of the instructions say what size everything is.

So, what's the size of the stupid pitman nut??? Since all my good tools were stolen last year (hate texas) I have to run to the store to buy what I need each time. I'm gonna give it another go tomorrow if I can get the correct size. Too late tonight. Help.
__________________
1999 Ram 1500 4x4 X-cab short box, 170,000+ miles
318 3:55 ASD
NV3500 w/ tow pkg
Cooper Discoverer ATP LT285/75/R16
3" SKYJACKER LIFT
Thuren 0-3" track bar
Spohn Stabilizer

Flowmaster Delta Flow 50 single/4" SS duals
Magnaflow Hi-flow cat
Hughes Plenum Kit
Hypertech PPIII
Stant 180 stat
Eddy 14x3" Air Cleaner
Window Tint
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JackedDak03
 
 Posted: 06-16-2012, 07:58 PM
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Post #19

I can check in the AM but i think its a 36mm. also be ready for a fight getting the pitman arm off i had to cut my original one off. since then i always coat it with anti seize when reinstalling .
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2002 Ford F350 CrewCab Short Bed 4x4 7.3 Diesel
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2003 Dodge Dakota Quad Cab 4x4 4.7
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2001 Dodge Ram 1500 Quad Cab 4x4 5.9 V8
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Ram1878
 
 Posted: 06-17-2012, 02:55 PM
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Post #20

Well, I got the stupid thing on. What a pain. The pitman nut was the biggest headache, not getting it off, but finding what size it was. I must've tried five or six different sockets at vatozone, running outside, crawling around, nope, back inside, etc. The weird thing is there wasn't a socket in either metric or sae that fit. The closest was 32mm which I had to hammer on. Took all my strength in both legs to press on the ratchet until it broke loose.

After that it went together fine.

Couple issues though with the Spohn kit:
1. No lock washers or washers
2. Bolts for the brace were the same length as stock which now with washers and the brace may be too short. (might remove washers)
3. Allen wrench included is wrong. Had to dig through all my various tools to find one that fits. How hard is it to give the customer the right tool?
4. One of the set screws stripped right out of the bearing without much effort.
5. Either not powder coated as advertised, or cheaply done as paint chipped off easily.
6. Bearing looks cheap and didn't spin evenly.

Other than that, the brace is fine. Welds look good, the bolts for the bearing are much larger than other brands, and it lined up nicely.

Effect: First impression was dismal. Didn't notice anything different. But today I took it on my regular commute and it is tighter, with less "lean" and straighter feel. The best improvement is over expansion joints as the truck tracks right over them as if on rails. There wasn't any play in my steering box before so the effects are minimal.

Not sure if I would recommend it. The gas trucks are much more forgiving on steering components than diesels. I remember my truck steering beautifully on stock components so save your money if everything else is good.

Here's a link to Spohn's website pics. Mine looks just like this.
http://www.spohn.net/shop/1994-1999-...2500-3500.html
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Luverne Chrome Grille Guard
Westin Nerf bars
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Fog and backup lights w/ relays
Smoke Pacer Cab lights
Recon Big Rig lights

BLACK TRUCK CLUB #78

CAN'T LAY SCRATCH CLUB #3

TRUCKS & GUNS CLUB #29

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