From UNSEALED 4×4
Don’t let your next trip end in tragedy… avoid these 10 easy mistakes.
For images and the full Unsealed 4X4 experience, read this on our digital magazine platform – http://www.unsealed4x4.com.au/issue024/#177
Getting stuck sucks. The adventure is over, forward progress is halted, and instead of seeing the next amazing sight or kicking back at camp with good friends and family you’re stuck on the business end of a long-handled shovel up to your knees in mud. Worse yet, in the wrong situation your 4X4 itself could be on the line.
The act of taking something that often weighs thousands of kilograms and is well and truly stuck and freeing it involves immense amounts of force. When things go right it’s a simple process and you’re back on solid ground. When things go wrong, those forces can come crashing down in catastrophic ways.
IT’S NOT A SPECTATOR SPORT
We’re putting this front and centre because it’s easily the biggest ignored rule in 4X4 recoveries that even the big names get wrong time and time again. A recovery is not a spectator sport. Any number of things can go wrong, from failed recovery points and snapped straps and cables through to vehicles suddenly gaining traction and launching into gawking onlookers all vying for the best Instagram selfie. Have as few people as possible within 50m of the recovery, stay seated inside the vehicle with your seat belt on, and have a plan of what to do if (when) something does go wrong.
TOW BALLS ARE FOR TOWING
Why are people still not getting this? A tow ball is not even close to strong enough to handle a recovery. You’d be far safer tying the winch rope or strap off to your mirror than a tow ball. Sure, it might be rated for 3.5T and regularly tow a 25-foot caravan around, but it’s doing that under constant down-load, and not shock side-load. Think of it like placing a brick gently on top of a ceramic plate, or throwing it as hard as you can at the plate. The actual weight of the brick isn’t changing, nor is the strength of the plate, but by adding momentum to the equation you’re asking the plate, and the tow ball, to do something they were never designed to do.
DANGEROUSLY JOINING STRAPS
A snatch strap can only reach so far before you’re holding one end in your hand while the recovery point is still a few short metres away. Logic would dictate the best option here is to join two snatch straps together and call it done. The problem is there are far more bad ways to join two straps than good ways. Straps can and do fail, so anything heavy like a bow-shackle is a potential missile and best left in the recovery kit. Other methods of joining the straps straight together, or using a rolled-up paper magazine, can result in the straps permanently fusing together. The only safe method is to loop two straps together with three small pieces of dowel between them (to pry them apart afterwards).
USING THE WRONG POINTS
You wouldn’t go skydiving with a parachute attached to the belt loops of your pants, so don’t perform a recovery off the factory tie-down points. They’re designed for nothing more than keeping your vehicle strapped down to the production line, or in transit; and they simply aren’t up for the task of a load-intensive recovery. When they break, and they will, you’ll be left with a kilo of metal flying through the air at fatal speed.
EASE UP ON THE SHACKLES
Your recovery kit can never have enough bow shackles, they’re among the most useful items at our disposal and the required number seems to always be one more than what you currently have; but for the love of god stop using them so much. They add needless complexity in most situations. They can be easily replaced by looping straps together or running a winch hook direct to a strap. They will carry enough force to turn a watermelon into fruit juice if they become airborne. Let that mental image sink in for a minute.
Common 12V recovery winches are amazing pieces of equipment. They’ve been used to right rollovers, build bridges, pull down dead trees and free millions of 4X4s over the years. But they’re not magic wands. They’re often rated just under 5.5 metric tons, or 12,000lb for countries that have been to the moon. Sounds like a large figure, but a 4X4 up to its chassis in mud could require much more than that pulling power. It’s no wonder winches often fail in the field. Your recovery kit has snatch blocks – which can reduce the load on your winch by orders of magnitude. Learn to love them.
USING DODGY GEAR
There’s an old motorbike saying: Buy a helmet that’s worth as much as your head. If you knew you were going to crash you’d buy the most expensive helmet money can buy, not the $100 eBay cheapie. It’s almost a certainty that with enough time on the tracks you will get stuck. When you reach for the snatch strap do you want the one that has been rigorously tested and engineered, or the one from the cheapest bidder on Alibaba?
RECOVER IN REVERSE
If you like your 4X4, don’t recover in reverse. It’s as simple as that. The engineers who designed it figured you’d spent roughly 95% of your time heading forwards so that’s where all the strength lies. It keeps the load on the stronger rear axle; puts less load on the CV joints; keeps the suspension loaded in the way it was designed to be loaded and applies force to the stronger side of your diff gears. Not only that, you can actually see where you’re going.
RUSHING THE RECOVERY
When you rush, mistakes happen. If your 4X4 is in bad enough shape that you feel you need to rush to get it back on solid ground, it’s in bad enough shape that you can’t afford for anything to go wrong. Slow down, calm down, and take a second (and third) look at everything you’re doing. Will that tree hold up to a winch recovery? Will you go rocketing forward and into a rock ledge if you get traction? If a strap snaps, who’s in the firing line? Being stuck sucks; don’t make it worse than it needs to be.
IGNORING SOUND ADVICE
In most situations off-road you need to tune out the background noise and focus on the task at hand. Twenty spotters yelling instructions won’t get you further than clear communication with one person you know and trust. But when it comes to matters of safety and a stranger is jumping up and down and telling you that what you’re doing is dangerous, it just might be worth listening to him. None of us have all the answers, and we rarely like to think we’re wrong… but if a strange man is telling you to stop, put the ego aside for a minute; he just might know something you don’t.
If you’re working in the 4wd suspension and wheel alignment field, and you’re not recommending or installing Upper Control Arms to correct the wheel alignment, and prevent outer edge tyre wear for your customer, it’s time to start!
Manufacturers have a wheel alignment specification for a reason, tyre wear, return to centre steering, tracking, high speed stability, it’s a geometry thing.
Well designed Upper Control Arms as a bolt in system will have 5 key points that make them worth the investment for you, and your customer.
When your customer drives away with the wheel alignment set to improve handling, steering response, and tyre wear, compared to being outside of the factory alignment settings without them, they will be far happier that you told them they were required, rather than tell them “it drives ok“.
Beware, if the customer leaves unhappy with the handling, and does his own research via his Facebook vehicle specific groups, forums, or through friends, and ends up sourcing them elsewhere, as you may now have an ex customer who wonders why you never suggested them, or worse, telling them they weren’t required.
The best thing you can do is have the information at hand, and express the features and benefits, so your customer can make an informed decision, based on your position as the experienced person they are relying on, to do the job for them.
With over 3000 known vehicle applications, and over 4000 individual lines, the Roadsafe chassis parts line-up is the most comprehensive in Australia.
All Roadsafe chassis parts are manufactured to Quality Standards, not price. All items are inspected and tested to ensure Roadsafe’s high quality requirements are maintained prior to release to the market place. Roadsafe have worked exceptionally hard over the past 30 years to build the brand, always keeping up with new technologies and manufacturing techniques, to build new and better features into both the products and ranges.
As manufacturing technology has improved, so too have the parts. The Roadsafe range of chassis parts has undergone some radical changes over the past 10 years, to build extra special features in during manufacture. The outcome being numerous benefits to ensure a superior, high quality, long life product.
Some of these features include the redesign of the Rubber Dust Boots to ensure the boot has a secure and neat fit, thus offering greater resistance to contaminants. Rubber Dust Boot material has also been updated to 100% CR neoprene rubber, offering greater resistance to contaminants and increased longevity. Ball Pins have all been upgraded to SCM435 molybdenum and chromium alloy steel, for superior strength. Ball Pins are Mirror finished to a radius tolerance of 0.0015mm giving the ball stud a superior surface and much smoother movement during rotation. Whilst also on the ball studs, Roadsafe have implemented a hardening process to 20-25 Rockwell with depth of .3-.5mm providing for reduced wear, longer component life and allowing the factory to offer a 3 year, 100,000km warranty on the majority of components.
All of these improved features work hand in hand to ensure Roadsafe chassis parts are at the forefront when it comes to quality and functionality.
The Roadsafe chassis parts line-up is under constant review, with new components added monthly. Recent additions have included European vehicle alloy Control and Caster Arms, plus a huge array of Roadsafe 4WD specific components including complete Patrol Radius Arms and Upper Control Arms to suit for various IFS vehicles.
With constant manufacturing upgrades, commitment to quality and ongoing range development the Roadsafe chassis parts range improves from strength to strength every day.
A vehicle is said to be an investment but once that is driven on road, one must be certain that it will start to succumb to wear and tear. Having a car comes with added responsibility and burden. You will have to bear the burden of cost associated with auto insurance and replacing worn out automotive spare parts. Although automotive spare parts are made to last longer, their life will be shortened if not used in proper manner or if they are not well maintained.
Maintenance of vehicle is a major concern because its engine requires daily, periodic and preventive checks or repairs to avoid a total breakdown. Some of these repairs may be minor or major and may range from topping the oil and hydraulics, to servicing of the engine, to body work and replacement of other automotive spare parts.
If you want to keep your car in a good shape, you require a competent mechanic who understands the working of your brand of vehicle. Maintaining your vehicle will sometimes require changing of bad automotive spare parts and replacing them with new and good ones. Therefore you need to buy these parts from a reliable company that deals in quality automotive spare parts. You need to note that there are a lot of fake and sub-standard parts available in the market. These sub-standard products will worsen the problem of your car and will place you in risk of an accident. So, you must keep way form the companies that deal in sub-standard automotive products. You must get a competent mechanic for your car and buy quality products that will provide long life to your car.
There are many websites on the Internet that provide references of companies that deal in automotive spare parts. You can virtually walk through these websites to know more about companies dealing in these products and services. These companies have implemented a range of service orientated initiatives to ensure premium customer service, including the most extensive and industry accepted suspension products catalogue and experienced staff with vast technical knowledge to assist customers with technical enquiries. They offer their customers a range of products at competitive prices. You can know more about their customer service by reading the online reviews of their past clients. Buying quality automotive spare parts from these companies will give you complete peace of mind.
Chassis is a term that is mainly used to denote the frame parts or basic structure of a vehicle. Chassis parts are considered one of the most crucial items if you want to keep your tires on the ground while you are making your way through busy right corners of a steep road at bullet speeds.
You will find many vehicles placed in recoup yards with almost all their original equipment chassis parts still on the vehicles. Most of them have worn out ball joints, steering racks, springs and other chassis parts that should have been replaced long ago but were not. A vehicle can experience worn chassis parts at the time of tyre wear, steering or handling problem or when a technician is doing a pre-alignment inspection. Many people either do not come to know of this defect or they just ignore worn out chassis parts fearing that it may cost them much to replace them. One must not ignore their failure because it can lead to deadly consequences. Most of them are built to withstand the rigors of everyday driving but they even succumb to wear due to the effects of potholes, jars and jolts over the years. The life of chassis parts depend on the size and weight of the vehicle, the type on which the vehicle is driven and the number of miles driven by the vehicle.
If you experience that the chassis parts or other automotive spare parts of your vehicle has worn out, you can buy them from a reliable company. There are many companies in the market that deal in chassis parts of vehicles. They have products and ranges to offer their customers for great coverage for all kinds of vehicles. These companies have the ability to respond quickly to customer needs and requirement. The companies dealing in automotive spare parts promise to provide reliable services and friendly advice to their customers. They have a team of knowledgeable professionals who are always ready to help their clients. They aim to use only the best suppliers to ensure that their products offer quality and a balanced range. They are focused on delivering the highest quality products and superior customer service and after sales care.
Suspension parts refer to a system of springs, shock absorbers and linkages that connect a vehicle to its wheel. They contribute to a car’s handling and braking for active driving, keeping the riders isolated from road noise, bumps and vibrations. Efficient suspension parts help in smooth movement of vehicles on roads. The suspension parts support vehicle’s weight and maintain correct vehicle ride height. They reduce the effect of shock forces and maintain correct wheel alignment. They keep the tyres in contact with the road and control the vehicle’s direction of travel. The suspension parts of a vehicle should be in good working condition .The main suspension parts include struts, shock absorbers, springs and tyres. The spring supports the weight of the vehicle, maintains ride height and absorbs road shock. Springs are a compressible link between the frame and body of the vehicle. The springs are a very important suspension parts that provide comfort to the riders.
Suspension parts of a vehicle must be sound to provide a smooth running of a vehicle. You may find many manufacturers who deal in suspension parts of a vehicle. These companies have extensive knowledge, resources and experience to ensure that you get the application that suits your requirements. The companies dealing in suspension parts respond very quickly to specific customers need and requirements. They build their reputation on quality and promise to provide highest quality components. These companies have knowledgeable and experienced staff that provides friendly advice and reliable services to its clients. The companies dealing in suspension parts deal with multiple suppliers or multiple deliveries. These companies have a range of service orientated initiatives to ensure premium customer service including, the most extensive and industry accepted suspension product catalogue and product training at store and online stores. These companies are focused on delivering the highest quality products and excellent customer experience and after sales care.
You can find these companies online as most of them have an online presence. Most of them have attractive websites that boast of their products and services that meet their clients’ varied requirements. You can read online reviews of their past clients to know more about their customer service. You can even ask your friends and family members about the good companies that they know of, which deal in quality suspension parts for vehicles.
It is a common belief that performance of a vehicle depends on the horse power and torque of an engine. But the power generated by a powerful engine is useless if the driver of the vehicle is not able to control the vehicle. This is the time when an efficient steering and suspension system is required for smooth working of a vehicle. The job of a good steering and suspension system is to maximize friction between the tyres and the road system to provide good steering stability and ensure the comfort of the passengers. The suspension of a car is actually part of the chassis which consist of all the important systems located beneath the car’s body. Steering and Suspension system is one of the major systems in any vehicle that supports weight, absorbs and dampens shock and helps maintain tire contact. Steering and Suspension enables the driver to guide and direct the vehicle.
The suspension system in a vehicle includes shocks or struts and sway bars. There have been significant innovations in steering and suspension, increased durability and quality of parts, advancements in tire design and composition that have made significant improvement in vehicle driving. A majority of suspension system of a vehicle is done by the springs. Under normal conditions, the spring would support the body of the vehicle, balancing it by compressing and rebounding with every little bump on the road. A suspension system alone cannot offer a smooth ride to a driver. One needs to make use of shock absorbers to absorb the shock of rebounding before it reaches the occupant of the vehicle.
There are a lot of reputable automotive parts suppliers on the Internet who deal in steering and suspension parts and you need to surf their websites to know more about their products and services. They offer millions of steering and suspension parts that have been manufactured keeping quality standards into consideration. If your car is not steering as it should be or your ride is tougher than usual, it may be an identification of an unknown defect in your car’s steering and suspension system. You must get your vehicle checked by an auto expert regularly to ensure that your steering and suspension system is working properly. The auto experts provide you valuable advice and services to ensure proper and safe functioning of your vehicle’s steering and suspension parts.
There are several ways in which you can troubleshoot your vehicle’s steering and suspension system and parts. If your car is difficult to steer, the fittings in the steering system might need lubrication. If the car squeals loudly, the drive belt on the steering unit might be loose and would need to be checked. If the steering system growls when turning, the steering fluid level must be checked.
Tyre edge wear, wandering, and loose or erratic steering are some other indicators of a problem with the steering and suspension parts. Usually, when the steering and suspension parts get worn out, loose or damaged, such vehicle symptoms are seen. If your car’s steering and suspension parts need to be replaced, here is a useful guide to help you make the best purchase.
Steering and suspension parts for different vehicle types and models are available throughout Australia. However, it is advisable to shop for them online. The Internet offers a comprehensive range of steering and suspension parts. You can find over 700 steering and suspension products under one roof! With a few clicks you can find products that best meet your individual vehicle steering and suspension requirements.
When shopping for steering and/or suspension parts, get complete details about their supplier. To enjoy longevity of your vehicle’s steering parts and get the maximum value for your money, look for a reliable and experienced supplier who offers quality products and services. Visit online forums, read suppliers’ reviews, and check their respective websites for customer testimonials to assure yourself of quality steering and suspension parts.
Yet another crucial point to keep in mind when shopping for the suspension parts is to check their manufacturing details. Good suspension parts are made using the latest technology and are thoroughly inspected to ensure highest quality standards, greater longevity, and minimum maintenance needs. Plus, quality steering and suspension parts promise safe and enjoyable driving experience to the vehicle users.
Compare the price of the steering parts and suspension parts before placing your order. Do not get attracted by cheap price tags and look only for quality products available at affordable rates. Check the payment procedure, shipment charges, delivery time, and return and exchange policy when buying the steering and suspension parts. Last but not the least, check the warranty of the steering and suspension parts carefully. Make sure that the supplier offers proper warranty and promises to replace faulty or defected products.
To buy premium quality steering and suspensionproducts at competitive rates, you may consider Roadsafe vehicle steering and suspension range. Visit www.roadsafe.com.au to know more about them.
The steering system in a car enables it to turn and its suspension system helps in smoothening out the ride. Any fault in the steering and suspension system can make the the steering difficult and the riding tough. As a vehicle owner you must understand your car’s steering and suspension system and parts well so that you can make timely repairs for enjoying smooth and safe car ride.
The suspension system in a vehicle includes the front and rear springs such as leaf springs, coil springs, air springs, and torsion bars. These springs come in a variety of types, sizes, styles, designs, and capacities. These are usually used in sets of four for each vehicle, paired off in different combinations and are attached with the help of different mounting techniques. The suspension system also includes shocks, struts, and sway bars.
The suspension system in a car plays a major role. It keeps the wheels of the car in firm contact with the road and provides a comfortable ride to the passengers. This function is performed by the springs. The springs help provide an even support to the body of the car by compressing and rebounding with every movement. The bouncing and swaying that is caused by the up-and-down movement is further reduced by the shock absorbers that are part of the steering and suspension system of a car.
In the past, the steering system served a simple role of turning the tiller that pivoted the entire front axle. But with the advancements made in the field of automobile industry, the role of a steering system has also evolved. Today, a car’s engine is moved to the front from the rear axle and therefore complex steering parts and steering systems like Tie Rod ends, Idler arms and Pitman arms, rack ends/inner tie rod ends, and many others are introduced to guarantee enhanced riding comfort and safety to the car owners.
If your car’s power steering system growls when turning or it does not turn when turned or it makes strong squeal, there are chances that your car’s steering and suspension system needs repair and maintenance. You must either get your car’s steering parts and suspension parts repaired or get them replaced with quality products.
Roadsafe steering parts and suspension parts for instance are made to the exacting standards to let car owners enjoy unparalleled improvement in their steering and suspension systems. Every single Roadsafe steering part and suspension part promises increased strength and durability and contributes to the riding comfort and safe driving. To know in detail about suspension arms, stub axles, rack ends, king pin kits, drag links, idler arms and pitman arms, ball joints, adjustable panhard rods, and several other steering and suspension parts, or to buy them, please visit www.roadsafe.com.au