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Discussion Starter #1
As if one major job wasn't enough. I'm installing a 144" skid from a Z1 touring sled in my '98 Tcat. I have the front arm in it's location. Please look at these pics and let me know your thoughts. The 2x4's are there to duplicate the Cobra track height that I will have in it. I can't put the front arm higher in the tunnel due to track clearance.

The first two pictures (rear of skid off the stud) represent the sled at the original ride height of the sled with a stock skid. I'd like to go this way if possible due to the ride height and how drop the brackets fit. Can/should I just suck up the limiter straps a notch (they're in the middle now) to compensate for this difference?

The second two pics represent leveling out the skid, but the ride height is 1.75" higher, and I don't like the angle of the brackets. If I HAD to go this way, I would.
 

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Discussion Starter #2
By the way, normally I would have drilled out a bunch of rivets and relocated the rear brackets. Thanks to Jeff (tcat446) for showing me the light with aluminum bars!! Not worthy:
 

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If you can’t raise front sled height then tightening limiters would be my choice. If you’re not moving brackets back, are you removing them to make room for new brackets? For brackets I would weld two flat bars to make an angle bar but horizontal piece would have to be bent to follow curve of floorboard before welding. If you don’t get what I’m trying to say I could draw it out.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
If you can’t raise front sled height then tightening limiters would be my choice. If you’re not moving brackets back, are you removing them to make room for new brackets? For brackets I would weld two flat bars to make an angle bar but horizontal piece would have to be bent to follow curve of floorboard before welding. If you don’t get what I’m trying to say I could draw it out.
I am better with pictures, lol. Based on Jeff's work, I'm going this route. These are 5/8" aluminum bars. Ignore the two black dots, they're from round one. I will use two of the holes on the existing bracket to hold this one in place. Jeff said they've held up on his, so hopefully they will on mine also. Should get them drilled tomorrow, and hopefully install tomorrow night.
 

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I am better with pictures, lol. Based on Jeff's work, I'm going this route. These are 5/8" aluminum bars. Ignore the two black dots, they're from round one. I will use two of the holes on the existing bracket to hold this one in place. Jeff said they've held up on his, so hopefully they will on mine also. Should get them drilled tomorrow, and hopefully install tomorrow night.
Following interesting thread

Sent from my SM-G930V using Tapatalk
 

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144" skid location question.....98 Tcat

Yep, pictures are worth a thousand words lol. I didn’t realize bars were 5/8” thick. So bars will bolt onto outside of current bracket to still have proper spread at torque links?
 

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On my 96 the front hole is in the old torque link mod location which (don't quote me on this) something like 2" forward and 2 1/2" lower than stock location. Is that were yours is?

The trouble with moving the limiter strap is that you are limiting travel and weight transfer. I went through this and opted for full movement of the front end with the crossfire skid for ride quality. I do understand you may not have a choice though.

If you can't go any higher on the front arm location, one other possibility would be to raise the front shock springs about 3-5 turns to lift the front end up. I don't think it will steer harder because you are just leveling the machine with the back suspension. I would keep track of the turns and adjust. You can always come back to the same spot if you keep track of them. Then see what the back end looks like in relation to bolt placement.

If you have to drop the brackets, later on down the road, I would have Al machine a nice looking bracket as long as it will be that visible. Maybe round the corners in a Bridgeport and make it look nicer.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
This is about 2.75" back of the stock location.

The Cobra track is not notched for the coolers. Down the road, if I switch to another track that's notched, I can raise the front arm. Another option is to notch this track myself, but I don't want to give up that much traction.

Once it's assembled, I'll have someone sit on it and see where things end up. It's possible that once I sit on it, the front of the skid will collapse just enough so none of this will be an issue.

Already ahead of ya...once I ride this and everything's ok, I'm going to remove the brackets, have them trimmed, and paint or wrap them in black.
 

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Bars will actually be inside the existing brackets. This skid's arms are about 1&3/8" narrower than the original Tcat arms.


I did not know that!
 

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By moving the front arm hole location down, this will allow the back holes to come up, and have some preload on the front arm aiding in transfer. That is an option as well, you will definitely need anti stabs for sure then. Just something else for you to think about.
 

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The rear arm location can be moved around quite a bit. I have moved them around using stock holes on newer sleds. I also have drilled holes in existing brackets. Just check track clearance in the tunnel at that location. You have a large enough bracket to try different hole locations. You can move the rear arm back to change the geometry on the front arm. I actually like having a little less steepness on the front arm. It is less harsh on initial engagement.
The skid you are using does have more travel than the stock skid. It will just take a little testing to get it right with that tunnel angle.
The heavy plates will make it easy to try a number of different holes. They might be tough to mount into the tunnel with normal fasteners and the thick material. Figure out the hole location first. You may end up making your own angle brackets out of lighter material. Many of the newer brackets are triangle braced. No reason you couldn't do that yourself to narrow the mounting width.

Good Luck! It is a cool build.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
The rear arm location can be moved around quite a bit. I have moved them around using stock holes on newer sleds. I also have drilled holes in existing brackets. Just check track clearance in the tunnel at that location. You have a large enough bracket to try different hole locations. You can move the rear arm back to change the geometry on the front arm. I actually like having a little less steepness on the front arm. It is less harsh on initial engagement.
The skid you are using does have more travel than the stock skid. It will just take a little testing to get it right with that tunnel angle.
The heavy plates will make it easy to try a number of different holes. They might be tough to mount into the tunnel with normal fasteners and the thick material. Figure out the hole location first. You may end up making your own angle brackets out of lighter material. Many of the newer brackets are triangle braced. No reason you couldn't do that yourself to narrow the mounting width.

Good Luck! It is a cool build.
10-4!!

Two reasons for doing this is to see how good of a ride I can get from this chassis, and hopefully a little more traction (I don't run studs). However, I believe the actual gain in track on the ground is about 2-2.5".

I only have 15 bucks in these plates, so this is an easy way to experiment. When done, if I don't like how these look, I'll have a template to make a more refined bracket, if needed.
 

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Am I missing something? Trying to figure out the gains from dropping the front arm location down further. That would really affect handling with a longer travel skid. Seems like moving the rear up at the same time would make it a wheelie monster. Is that the goal? Is this sled being used primarily for drag racing?
 

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Discussion Starter #16
100% trail sled.

Here they are installed. So far, so good. Unfortunately, it looks like I have to cancel my trip this coming Sunday, so I won't get to ride this until next year. ): I will probably remove them and have them trimmed. Gotta say I'm happy with the way this went so far.
 

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Am I missing something? Trying to figure out the gains from dropping the front arm location down further. That would really affect handling with a longer travel skid. Seems like moving the rear up at the same time would make it a wheelie monster. Is that the goal? Is this sled being used primarily for drag racing?
By dropping the front arm you then raise the springs on the front shocks which should allow for the rear to be bolted in up higher. On my sled the front suspension is not raised completely. Kinda like a car when on a lift. When raised, the wheels drop and then come off the ground. You are trying to balance the rear suspension in the chassis. You then try to control the wheelie monster with spring pressure.
 

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100% trail sled.

Here they are installed. So far, so good. Unfortunately, it looks like I have to cancel my trip this coming Sunday, so I won't get to ride this until next year. ): I will probably remove them and have them trimmed. Gotta say I'm happy with the way this went so far.
That doesn't look too bad really. Can you give us a shot of the sled at about 10 ft. away so I can see the front and back in the same pic.?

Be sure before drilling final holes in rear brackets that when sled is compressed all the way down in the back that the track once on, will not hit the upper tunnel. This is a common clearance problem on the non fastrack tunnels. Like on my 96.
 

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By dropping the front arm you then raise the springs on the front shocks which should allow for the rear to be bolted in up higher. On my sled the front suspension is not raised completely. Kinda like a car when on a lift. When raised, the wheels drop and then come off the ground. You are trying to balance the rear suspension in the chassis. You then try to control the wheelie monster with spring pressure.
Kinda what I was thinking. Thanks for the info.
It is funny how we all set up our sleds so differently.
I try to get full suspension travel by decompressing springs. I am a lighter weight rider and it is a challenge to get full use of the suspension. Riding bud can crank his suspension tight with his weight. He just hops on the sled and walla, the suspension is right in the middle of travel. My sleds handle like a brick on the trails with me on a highly compressed suspension.
TC1, it does help to pop the springs when you test the suspension travel. I have seen guys make adjustments and fix coolers later. That rear arm comes up further than many realize. Try full compression on just the rear arm without tension. You will have that rear arm fully compressed more than once on the trail.
Keep us updated. :biggrin_old: Should be a fun and unique sled.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Finally got some time to get this finished. It worked out nicely, but I do wish the track had some (more) slack in it...it's about as tight as it can be. I maintained the same front arm to drive shaft distance as the donor Z1 sled, so MAYBE it's just the fact of the track being new. I believe the guy I bought it from said it was a new take off, which I completely believe by looking at it. When I get a chance, I will ride it as is and see how much the track stretches.

The only thing I have left to do is buy 4 new bolts that hold the bracket to the tunnel. The ones I have are about a quarter inch too short.
 

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