Click for Coverage
  • JP Magazine
  • Dirt Sports + Off-Road
  • 4-Wheel & Off-Road
  • Four Wheeler
Subscribe to the Free
Newsletter

Installing Icon’s RXT Ford Raptor Suspension

Posted in How To: Suspension Brakes on March 3, 2015
Share this

No matter how good something is, there’s always room for improvement. That was what the crew at ICON Vehicle Dynamics thought when they took a good look at the Ford Raptor.

They figured that the basic front suspension was pretty good, but it could be improved upon and they did it with their uniball-based upper control arm and 3.0 Performance Coil-Over Shock. Made from 6061 billet aluminum, the control arm features the stronger-than-stock PTFE-line stainless steel uniball and rod ends to increase action and adjustability.

The 3.0 Performance Coilover Shock features a remote reservoir and what ICON calls their “Compression Damping Control Valve,” which offers 10 compression settings. The shock also has an internal hydraulic system that covers the last 40 percent of shock travel, and works much like an external hydraulic bumpstop does. It also has an adjustable ride height that goes from 1-3-5/8-inch of lift.

ICON’s RXT System is as complete as they could make it. It comes with front and rear systems, a hydraulic bumpstop system and a new spring pack.

That’s on the front, but it’s the rearend where ICON has made the most improvements to the Raptor. Gone is the stock three-blade leaf spring and in its place is an eight-leaf, modular design pack (it can be configured in three different rates) that when combined with their new RXT shock, the give the rearend more travel than stock. The springs have friction separators at their tips and middle to make the action smooth.

The all-new RXT reservoir-equipped shock features a unique side-mounted upper eyelet that allows for 39 percent more shock travel. It actually travels up and past the stock upper shock mount, thus giving the Raptor more wheel travel than stock.

Then there’s the Rear Hydraulic Bumpstop System. It’s a crossmember that not only mounts hydraulic bumpstops over the axlehousing, it stabilizes the frame as well. The ICON Hydro-Pneumatic bumpstops are nitrogen filled, have 2.5 inches of travel and gives the rear suspension an added cushion when the going gets rough.

Hydraulic bumpstops are way better than the stock rubber unit when it comes to limiting travel, and the stock units actually bounce onto the area where the leaf pack mounts. The new ICON unit hits on a metal plate mounted to the side of the leaves, making it not only better, but there’s also less of a chance of damaging the leaf pack.

The ICON crew was busy working on two vehicles the day we were there. This kit is one that experienced home mechanics can install themselves or ICON will be happy to do it for you. For those of you with a Raptor and want to get all the fun out of it that’s possible, it’s an opportunity worth taking.

With its coilover-style Fox shocks, the stock Raptor is pretty good in the dirt, but the upper control arm could use some additional movement. With its coilover-style Fox shocks, the stock Raptor is pretty good in the dirt, but the upper control arm could use some additional movement.
The first steps in this install is to remove the spindle and pull the shocks out. The first steps in this install is to remove the spindle and pull the shocks out.
The stock upper control arm is next to be removed. The stock upper control arm is next to be removed.
In goes the new ICON control arm. In goes the new ICON control arm.
With its uniball and RSMX PTFE-lined rod ends and 6061 billet aluminum construction, the ICON control arm will give the front suspension greater ability to make use of the available travel and is much more easily adjusted. With its uniball and RSMX PTFE-lined rod ends and 6061 billet aluminum construction, the ICON control arm will give the front suspension greater ability to make use of the available travel and is much more easily adjusted.
The remove reservoir for the new ICON 3.0 shock is first fed up through the upper mount. The remove reservoir for the new ICON 3.0 shock is first fed up through the upper mount.
The shock is installed normally. The shock is installed normally.
With its mount installed, the reservoir is attached to the mount using worm gear–type clamps. With its mount installed, the reservoir is attached to the mount using worm gear–type clamps.
A little muscle is needed to get the spindle back into place, and the upper control arm is attached. A little muscle is needed to get the spindle back into place, and the upper control arm is attached.
That’s really all there is to the front end of the installation. That’s really all there is to the front end of the installation.
It’s the rear end that really gets the ICON RXT treatment. Notice that there are only three leafs in the spring pack. It’s the rear end that really gets the ICON RXT treatment. Notice that there are only three leafs in the spring pack.
With the rear suspension removed, the new ICON leaf spring is installed. With the rear suspension removed, the new ICON leaf spring is installed.
Using a different spring rate, there are now eight leaves in the pack, but they act in a smoother, more controlled way. Using a different spring rate, there are now eight leaves in the pack, but they act in a smoother, more controlled way.
With a small piece of the bed ribs removed using a cutting wheel, the centersection of the Rear Hydraulic Bumpstop System is in place. With the tension rods in place, the billet aluminum centersection will also give the frame additional rigidity. With a small piece of the bed ribs removed using a cutting wheel, the centersection of the Rear Hydraulic Bumpstop System is in place. With the tension rods in place, the billet aluminum centersection will also give the frame additional rigidity.
The outer brackets are installed onto the centersection. The outer brackets are installed onto the centersection.
The reservoir mount is attached to the frame. With the lines running smoothly, the reservoir is attached to the mount using worm-gear clamps. The reservoir mount is attached to the frame. With the lines running smoothly, the reservoir is attached to the mount using worm-gear clamps.
The reservoir mount is attached to the frame. With the lines running smoothly, the reservoir is attached to the mount using worm-gear clamps. The reservoir mount is attached to the frame. With the lines running smoothly, the reservoir is attached to the mount using worm-gear clamps.
Giving 2.5 inches of travel, ICON’s Hydro-Pneumatic bumpstops are nitrogen filled and gives the rear suspension added cushion and reduces possible rearend kick when hitting those big bumps. Giving 2.5 inches of travel, ICON’s Hydro-Pneumatic bumpstops are nitrogen filled and gives the rear suspension added cushion and reduces possible rearend kick when hitting those big bumps.
Unlike the stock bumpstop that hits the leaf springs the ICON bumpstop plate is attached to the axletube. Now the rear suspension is just as refined as the front. And gone is the stock’s tendency to harshly bottom out during big hits and possibly buck the truck to the side. Unlike the stock bumpstop that hits the leaf springs the ICON bumpstop plate is attached to the axletube. Now the rear suspension is just as refined as the front. And gone is the stock’s tendency to harshly bottom out during big hits and possibly buck the truck to the side.
The new RXT rear shock is an all-new design that gives 30 percent more shock travel than the stock system. The new RXT rear shock is an all-new design that gives 30 percent more shock travel than the stock system.
Unlike the stock bumpstop that hits the leaf springs the ICON bumpstop plate is attached to the axletube. Now the rear suspension is just as refined as the front. And gone is the stock’s tendency to harshly bottom out during big hits and possibly buck the truck to the side. Unlike the stock bumpstop that hits the leaf springs the ICON bumpstop plate is attached to the axletube. Now the rear suspension is just as refined as the front. And gone is the stock’s tendency to harshly bottom out during big hits and possibly buck the truck to the side.

Sources

Icon Vehicle Dynamics
Corona, CA 92880
951-272-4266
http://www.IconVehicleDynamics.com

Connect With Us

Newsletter Sign Up

Subscribe to the Magazine

Browse Articles By Vehicle

See Results