Hydro... full or assist? - JeepForum.com
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post #1 of 3 Old 05-28-2021, 01:20 PM Thread Starter
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Grewe02's Avatar
1981 CJ5 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: San Diego
Posts: 5,492
Hydro... full or assist?

For starters, my rig is a trailer queen. I would one day like for it to not be a trailer queen, but I'm sure that is a very long ways away. I would hope this decision would help lead to it being less of a trailer queen.

I currently have an assist setup that works, but does not work well.

My last trip out was the last trip with this steering setup. The box is junk, it was taken off someone else's Jeep and left in the yard for an unknown amount of time. It has about 13 dead spots in it. The pump on the motor is original from the 98 Trans Am, it can barely keep up with fluid flow and is louder than my exhaust. Nothing wrong with the ram as far as I know, no leaks so I guess that means it's good.

For many years recently I was set on a whole kit from AGR, the owner is on facebook and is a nice enough guy, seems to always help people out with questions. However I recently saw a bunch of terrible reviews about the company and product both being pretty bad... So I started looking more into it and there are hardly any good reviews anywhere. So I guess that means I'm going with PSC.

So now the only question left is: keep it assist or go full hydro? Keeping it assist would be the easiest. I would just need to slap a new box and pump in there and keep on rolling. Full has been on my mind for awhile, I could move the alternator back to it's original spot on the lower driver side of the motor, which would give me easier access to the oil fill plug on the passenger side valve cover. However I've heard a lot of people say full hydro with a single ended ram works OK on the street, but leaves a lot to be desired. If I do go full hydro, it would be with a new double ended ram.

A new pump is $750 and a new box is $850. I'd likely get some new lines made as mine are really old and have a few small spots that have been worn down a bit.

A whole full hydro kit is only $1900... but would also require a whole lot of brackets and fab work. Which I'm not opposed to, just would be some additional cost and work.

Anyone have thoughts on which way to go?

Andy, KD8EIA
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post #2 of 3 Old 06-01-2021, 03:09 PM
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1974 CJ6 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Illinois
Posts: 5,447
Have you checked into West Texas Offroad? They seem to get decent reviews if you are wanting something cheaper than PSC. https://www.westtexasoffroad.com/

If you want to street drive, I would skip over full hydro, not the best for any road feel and not much if any return to center. No steering if you blow a line, with assist you can still disconnect the ram and have steering.

80 CJ-5, 74 CJ-6, 56 CJ-5
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post #3 of 3 Old 06-01-2021, 05:50 PM
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2004 LJ Wrangler 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Nashville
Posts: 5,418
I just spent the weekend with a group of guys who were all full hydro. I'm considering full hydro myself, and spent some time talking to those folks who had decent things to say about the road manners. Not great, but good enough. I run hydo assist right now, and it works great - very happy with it. But, I'm at the end of the line in terms of a front stretch, and I'm thinking about going bigger on tires.

'92 vegas YJ (Chris) and 87TPIYJ (John) both run full hydro and drive on the street. Hopefully they will weight in.

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