JLU steering upgrade

Nacho

President
Member 2022
VA4WD
Starting to think about upgrading my steering components and been doing some research and reading. One of the products I keep coming back to is one I am not familiar with so thought I would check to see if anyone here has any experience with (or heard of) Doetsch Off-Road?

Link to site

Also looking at Fusion, Rusty's or RPM, but a lot of good info available on those. Anyone here familiar with Doetsch or have another set I should throw into consideration?

Thanks

JJ2022 (2).jpg
 
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CookieMonster

Member 2022
VA4WD
It appears you are shopping aluminum drag links and tie rods. So my experience likely isn't helpful. I have Synergy and have been very happy with them. The double adjuster with pinch seam makes adjustments simple and easy. I also helped my buddy install Metal cloak drag link and tie rod. The MC jam nuts weren't as troublesome as I was expecting, so really, either are a great option. I believe @Jeepin_Donnie also has synergy HD steering.

It looks like you still have the stock steering stabilizer, and most HD steering kits require a relo kit, or a new stabilizer. I have the Fox TS (through shaft) and it works well, but i can't say it is any better or worse than another option. I will say I didn't love the axle side mounting solution that both synergy and fox utilize for the stabilizer (it uses a special track bar bolt). It relies on flex of a bushing to pivot with the tie rod. So I added a steersmarts bracket. Now both ends of the stabilizer can pivot freely as needed.

Installization of everything was fairly easy and I did my own alignment using a tape measure and some angle bars. Let me know if you need any help installing or aligning it.

Fox stabilizer mount:
IMG_6576.jpeg


Steer Smarts:
steer-smarts-79029001-yeti-xd-steering-stabilizer-relocation-bracket-jeep-wrangler-jl-main.jpg
 

Nacho

President
Member 2022
VA4WD
Thanks. I am looking aluminum for sure. I have been through a couple stabilizers, but every time I smash one, I am able to find a free one, so no real reason to upgrade....haha. I kind of figured I would need to change it when I do the other steering stuff, but it seems to work fine for what it does.
 

Jeepin_Donnie

Member 2022
Blue Ribbon Coalition
VA4WD
Thanks. I am looking aluminum for sure. I have been through a couple stabilizers, but every time I smash one, I am able to find a free one, so no real reason to upgrade....haha. I kind of figured I would need to change it when I do the other steering stuff, but it seems to work fine for what it does.
I have the Synergy steering set-up like @CookieMonster said, but like you are planning, definitely go aluminum! I've hit my tie-rod several times but thankfully not hard enough to bend it. I may be upgrading to aluminum at Christmas time.
 

CookieMonster

Member 2022
VA4WD
One thing I noticed, RPM appears to be using a castle nut, whereas Doetsch doesn't show one. The castle nut with cotter pin prevents the itself from backing off.
 

Nacho

President
Member 2022
VA4WD
One thing I noticed, RPM appears to be using a castle nut, whereas Doetsch doesn't show one. The castle nut with cotter pin prevents the itself from backing off.
Yeah, kind of thinking the fact that I cant find much is telling in itself. lol
 

OneArmedSaint

Member 2022
I second the thru shaft stabilizer. I added a Fox DTS stabilizer with my lift and tires and like that is easily adjustable to increase or reduce resistance to help fight wobble in the steering. Pricey but worth it.
 

itsalwayssunny

Member 2022
I am running the Doetsch 2.5 ton on my JKU. They do use castle nuts on all 4 ends (tie rod and drag link flip). I've had no issues other than the fact that I went a little cheap and used my Rancho stabilizer so it doesn't line up super pretty. It works fine though. They had great customer service. I ordered the kit and it sat in my garage for almost a year waiting for me to finish some other upgrades. When I went to unbox and install, I was missing the drag link flip sleeve and cotter pins. I emailed and they sent the items out to me in the super fast. My boxes had been damaged in shipping and I think the items had fallen out. They are no joke beef. Probably way overkill for my rig, but they look cool and I don't worry about breaking those parts on the trail in the least. I will try to find the pics of them installed. I posted them previously, but can't find them right now.
 

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R3

Member 2022
7075 Aluminum tie rod and drag link is the way to go. Flexibility but no DW. the tie rod will flex up to 8+ inches and return to straight. How do I know????? You funny.... :ROFLMAO: :ROFLMAO: :ROFLMAO: There are several compaines out there offering Aluminum tie rods. get the biggest you budget can afford. I run a 1.75 tie rod and it has been bulletproof. the rod ends are 1 ton chevy and readily available. When looking at upgrades think about replacement parts. if you can use a common rod end available in most auto parts stores when you break onthe trail the repair is possible. Special parts mean long lead times if things wear out or break. Also go big on rod ends they will last longer and take more abuse.

Another note shorter rod ends and longer center link will protect teh road ends a bit more. Long threaded rod ends ( unflexible can be bent and break even with an aluminum center link.
 

zuke

Member 2022
VA4WD
Wide open design is an excellent place to order that 7075 Tie Rod, I'm running a 1.75 rod from them, and they will cut it and thread it to any length you ask for, so you can minimize the amount of exposed thread on the rod ends.

They do up to 2" diameter, but it's harder to avoid interference with the diff cover the bigger you go.

 

Nacho

President
Member 2022
VA4WD
7075 Aluminum tie rod and drag link is the way to go. Flexibility but no DW. the tie rod will flex up to 8+ inches and return to straight. How do I know????? You funny.... :ROFLMAO: :ROFLMAO: :ROFLMAO: There are several compaines out there offering Aluminum tie rods. get the biggest you budget can afford. I run a 1.75 tie rod and it has been bulletproof. the rod ends are 1 ton chevy and readily available. When looking at upgrades think about replacement parts. if you can use a common rod end available in most auto parts stores when you break onthe trail the repair is possible. Special parts mean long lead times if things wear out or break. Also go big on rod ends they will last longer and take more abuse.

Another note shorter rod ends and longer center link will protect teh road ends a bit more. Long threaded rod ends ( unflexible can be bent and break even with an aluminum center link.
Thanks....had not thought about the common ends part. Appreciate all the advice from all.
 

R3

Member 2022
couple pictures of aluminummmmm steering gear on the Red Jeep.
 

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Fearless

Member 2022
Blue Ribbon Coalition
VA4WD
So, if you are running hydro assist and 40s.... get one with replaceable cartridges :p

I went with Fusion. Fingers crossed they arrive this week!

I may also have a "slightly" abused set of RPM/Steer Smarts running gear to give away for cheap :p
 
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BeardedYinzer

Member 2022
I would keep away from Rusty's I have their setup on my TJ. The passenger side tie rod end lasted one wheeling trip and 3K on the road. I had to make a temporary fix and re-thread the ball joint where it goes into the knuckle. It lasted through Doe Valley and Rock Run this past weekend. Plus the locking nuts come loose on every trip.
 
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