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Ballistic Fabrication Bushing Upgrades - Flex & Bend

Posted in How To: Suspension Brakes on June 26, 2013
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There is an ancient proverb that says something about being like bamboo instead of oak. Bamboo is strong but flexible, whereas oak is strong but inflexible. We’re not sure how this shrubbery mumbo jumbo relates to your life, but we can tell you how it should relate to your 4x4 suspension. Your suspension needs to be strong but supple. It must locate your axle under your 4x4 for the best power transfer to the ground, but it must also flex, twist, and dance over rapidly changing obstacles as you bounce down the trail.

The front four-link on our solid-axle Avalanche has four parallel links, and these all run a Heim at one end and a Ballistic bushing at the frame end with a 5⁄8-inch bolt. A four-link like this will bind with all Heim joints so at least one end of the link should have bushings. The track bar is built with a solid Heim joint for minimal movement side to side.

We are delving into one of the most basic suspension components: the bushing. A bushing is a flexible polyurethane or rubber fitting between two or more pieces of metal often found at the end of springs or link arms. We know that a lot of custom suspensions are built around big beefy Heim joints (aka rod end bearings) and they are great, but they can also be a detriment, especially if your suspension has more than four links. For example, one of our project trucks has a four-link front suspension that uses a track bar to locate the axle laterally. This design requires that at least four of the link joints have more flexibility than a Heim joint can offer. We recently upgraded to a set of Ballistic Fabrication’s forged bushing joints for both strength and flexibility.

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Ballistic Fabrication
Tucson, AZ

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