Any good Jeeper knows about disconnecting your sway bar before hitting hte trail to help smooth out the ride by allowing the axle to float more when the Jeep is off-camber. I was informed of this trick my first time I went off-roading with the Jeep club, and quickly got sick of the sweat caused by undoing the bolts and nuts that make up the stock sway bar links. A little while ago I posted about some home-made disconnecting pins to save all you off-roaders a few $$. Well they have worked great for almost 2 years. Not a single issue while connected and pretty easy to remove when wheeling.
Now here’s the BUT….
if the zip ties holding the swaybars break while crawling up a boulder slide called “Godzilla” (I think you get the picture) you can come down on one of those sway bar links and bend the ever-loving poop out of it. then you have to drive home all floaty because you can’t line up the bent-ass link. So I went ahead and sprung for a nice new set of JKS “Quicker Disconnects”. Sure I could just by one side link from MOPAR to replace the bent one, but that’s not why we break parts, we break thing so we can have an excuse for our wife to force an upgrade.
I had heard great reviews of the JKS’s, and yes they were a little more expensive than some other brands, but I was sold on the grease joints, tapered pins, and the included studs to lock them to the frame while you are out wheeling, eliminating the need to keep zip-ties in my on-board tool box (not really, zip ties are handy, but now they are only there for “emergencies” – like making a handle for a beer can)
Install was supposed to be easy, take out a couple bolts, put them back in. Friend told me to gram a ball joint puller, which AutoZone had for like $7, and I picked up a mini-grease gun while I was there.
Step 1 – pull out those old hitch pins – EASY.
Step 2 undo the bolts on top of the sway bar and pull of the links – NOT EASY
I bent the puller (which I am now told was not the right variation of the then-unknown-to-me tool). Broke a hammer, muttered every curse word I know (out of earshot of my 11 year old helper), and lost some blood trying to pull the little ball joint out of the sway bar. I did find out slipping my cheater bar through a hole in the frame helped to hold it in place, but still no progress. Over an hour later It dawned on me to get my 18″ pipe wrench and lo-and-behold it twisted them right out. That complete it wasn’t much trouble to adjust bolt on and grease up the new Discos and I was rocking and rolling again. Best thing about this part…. Two words ….. Air Ratchet!!
Step 3 – Drill and tap the frame for the bolt-on studs that hold the links up and out of the way was not bad either.
Now all good to go.. Thanks JKS Manufacturing !!