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Rough Country Lift Kit Installed On A 2004 Dodge Ram 1500 - Getting More Out Of A 2WD

Posted in How To on April 1, 2011
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Photographers: Jerrod Jones

Most prerunners are two-wheel-drive vehicles, and we've featured quite a few in our pages. The "2WD" tag isn't a forbidden acronym here at OFF-ROAD, and as such we aren't limited to 4x4 tech in the way our sister publications are. Sometimes, readers tell us that, although they don't need a prerunner-level build for their 2WD truck, it would be nice to have some extra clearance and all-terrain tires. In some cases, the aim is to outfit the truck for some light off-road exploring, in others, improved approach and departure angles (and better tires) allow a truck to get to a better spot to unload dirt bikes or other toys. With this in mind, we got our hands on a Rough Country Suspension 6-inch 2WD kit that allowed 35-inch tires to be mounted on a buddy's '04 Ram 1500.

Rough Country has been making suspension components since, well...forever, and we've had good luck with its lift kits in the past. Besides that, Rough Country is one of the few companies that offers suspension support for the pre-'06 2WD Dodge truck. In 2006, Dodge trucks went to a new strut suspension that is shared on both the 2WD and 4WD platform.

We took a crack at installing this Rough Country Dodge kit in less than a day at our very own Source Interlink Tech Center located in our headquarters. How'd it go? Read on for a full report.

1. We accomplished our install at our new Source Interlink Tech Center. Our company got a full supply of Snap-On tools and Direct-Lifts to let us do entire installations by ourselves, time permitting....

To match the Rough Country 6-inch lift we got for our '04 2WD Dodge 1500, we acquired a pair of tried-and-true 35x12.50R17 BFG All-Terrains.

2. Massive spindles were included to replace the stock units, burly sub-frame supports dwarfed the OEM cross-members, and the coil springs were totally replaced instead of adjusted with a spacer. New sway bar links with ball joints were an especially nice touch.

In the rear, we opted for a 3-inch block and new shocks. Total cost on this kit? Only $900.

Before and After
To show the difference the Rough Country Suspension makes, we shot before and after pictures using the same stock wheels and tires.

The kit didn't seem to lift our front end quite the full 6 inches-something that we were pleased about. We didn't want too much of a prerunner rake on the truck.

And since tire and wheel packages play an important part in suspension tuning, we were able to feel the difference that the Rough Country Dodge kit made by itself. Being 6 inches higher, the body roll was increased a little, but nowhere near feeling unsafe. It did feel a little tighter-most likely due to the brand new Hydro 8000 shocks that replaced the original stock ones.

PhotosView Slideshow


Rough Country Suspension
Dyersburg, TN 38024
America's Tire Company
Buy Wheels
Cincinnati, OH 45227

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