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Unread 04-03-2013, 12:18 AM   #1
brianjw
Registered User
2012 JK Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Hillsboro, Or
Posts: 1,364
Hey everyone, I'm only posting this since another member mentioned "upgrading" their older track bar (rubber bushing) with a 2012+ track bar with a sealed rod end on the frame side


It was implied that the 2012+ was stronger as it has a rod end vs bushing.

I bought a new 2012 rubicon unlimited in June. Within a few hundred miles the handling got more sloppy after every trip. Everything was torque frequently but it didn't help.

After a few thousand miles, I removed the front axle to have axle sleeves, c gussets, inner sleeves and synergy ball joints installed.

When attempting to reinstall the front track bar, I noticed that the frame side mount had already "ovaled" or "wallowed" out, despite constant torque checks. I attempted to reinstall the track bar, and found that the rod end sleeve on the track bar (frame side) had literally tried to squeeze out of the (now) slightly oversized hole on the frame side. I was installing synergy shouldered bolts and the "sleeve" actually squeezed into the now oval opening, pressing the sleeve onto the new bolt. I could not tighten or loosen the bolt at this point as it was actually pressed onto the bolt. My only choice was to cut the bolt out (both sides) with a recip saw. So I did.
I ordered a bunch of new synergy parts, but in the meantime I bought a used 2008 (I believe) front track bar to get the jeep home.

I noticed that the earlier track bar had bushings on both ends. Most importantly, the "sleeves" in my rod end side was very undersized. Compare the pictures below. The bolt is still inside where I had to cut it out. The top price is from the 2012 with the sealed rod end (partially cut up), notice the bolt still in the middle.


So the thinner sleeve proposes a big issue. An attempt to tighten the bolt literally pressed the sleeve into the new synergy shouldered bolt. The earlier track bar had a lot more material that wouldn't squeeze through the ovaled out track bar mount.

Beyond that, the factory track bar bends and flexes an unnatural amount with 35" tires, inadvertently steering the axle.

Also, the factory sends these things out with threaded bolts in the suspension components, where they should be "shouldered" or flat.
Here is a coupes of examples of factory workmanship. An 08 JK track bar and 2012 track bar with around 6k miles. The threads bolts allow slop as the track bar moves back as forth, the inner sleeves are destroyed and chewed up, allowing more slack.
Can you tell which one has 7k miles and is torqued religiously, and the one that is from an 08 with several dozen miles?








The control arm bushing/sleeves looked the same way on my low mileage 2013.

Upgrade those factory bolts ASAP,
And consider track bar upgrades soon too.

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Unread 04-03-2013, 12:25 AM   #2
brianjw
Registered User
2012 JK Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Hillsboro, Or
Posts: 1,364
Again guys, just a comparison. The new track bars are essentially the same, just with a different frame side pat. Which I think is essentially weaker.

My choice of upgrade was the synergy adjustable track bar, with frame side track bar brace (fixes wallowed out factory piece) and sector shaft brace.

Check out a video I took of my 2012 factory track bar around 7k miles, watch it bend and flex as it gently turn the wheel in my garage with 35" tires.

http://i462.photobucket.com/albums/q...8ABB364C5B.mp4



<a href="http://s462.photobucket.com/albums/qq341/choppedair/?action=view&current=B5131CC0-3A2C-4FB8-B69D-ECEDD0D5FEC9-2973-0000028ABB364C5B.mp4" target="_blank"><img src="http://i462.photobucket.com/albums/qq341/choppedair/B5131CC0-3A2C-4FB8-B69D-ECEDD0D5FEC9-2973-0000028ABB364C5B.mp4" border="0" alt="Photobucket Pictures, Images and Photos" /></a>
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Unread 04-03-2013, 06:43 AM   #3
Remmy18
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2012 JK Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Tampa, FL
Posts: 503
Great write up! The synergy bar and brace are on my list along with upgrading the hardware. It's now a priority. Thanks for taking the time and sharing.
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Unread 04-03-2013, 07:20 AM   #4
Waltjason
Registered User
2011 JK Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Waynesville, MO
Posts: 194
I found out the hard way when my track bar bracket broke off the front axle housing going 65 mph down the highway. I was able to get her to the side of the road safely. Had the synergy bracket welded onto the housing and had a Teraflex Monster adjustable track bar installed. Talk about a night and day difference. Rides a lot nicer now and I feel safer. No more Death Wobble.
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