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West Texas Offroad - Hydro Assist

Discussion in '1973-1991 K5 Blazer | Truck | Suburban' started by KRAZIE87K5, Sep 30, 2002.

  1. KRAZIE87K5

    KRAZIE87K5 1/2 ton status

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    Okay... its looking like it might be time to go the hydro route to once and for all bid the DW farwell! /forums/images/icons/mad.gif /forums/images/icons/tongue.gif Anyhow, I was wondering what everyone out here thinks of WTO. I gave em a call today, and got VM... so I was coming out here to check on the customer service side of things with them... /forums/images/icons/smile.gif

    http://westtexasoffroad.homestead.com/hydrosteering.html

    I would also like to know what the Stage II kit includes... their site only talks about reusing your existing box, and then it includes "the mounting hardware kit and rod ends." But they don't mention the ram or the hoses in that list anywhere... so is that another $195 ($150 for the ram, and $45 for the hoses) on top of the $450 stage II kit? /forums/images/icons/confused.gif

    I know a few folks out here have used WTO, and love their product. That is why I am out here looking at them today. If anyone has some info for me, please let me know your experiences with their company and their product.

    Thanks again all!

    -Dan
     
  2. Bullet

    Bullet 1/2 ton status

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    $399(with CK5 membership) that includes everything, ram everything you need. I have yet decided on the ram, but they are gonna re-build my box and covert it to 2wd for Cross-Over. Customer Service is awesome, Matt answered all my questions.
     
  3. BadDog

    BadDog SOL Staff Member Super Moderator Author

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    I don't care how you are looking at it; price, quality, service, dependability, whatever... you will not beat WTO IMO...
     
  4. KRAZIE87K5

    KRAZIE87K5 1/2 ton status

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    That sounds like a good experience! I already have a 2WD sector shaft installed in my 4WD box for the crossover I've been running for a long time, so I don't need any of that...

    On the ram... I've been talking to folks that have hydro on their rigs, and they all seem to say that if the truck will see the street at all, go with the 1.5" ram due to its quicker response times. The larger 2" ram has reportedly slower action on the street, and may not offer the good street manners (if that made any sense).

    $399 huh... Hmmm... maybe I will have to call that # again today! /forums/images/icons/smile.gif Keep the WTO experiences coming! So far so good!

    -Dan
     
  5. BadDog

    BadDog SOL Staff Member Super Moderator Author

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    Oh yeah, and $399 includes everything but the welder to weld the tabs onto the diff and tie rod. You can also get "clamp on" mounts, but not sure if Matt is making any.

    Anyway, I can honestly say that I have never had a better experience with a company. I had a few problems due primarily to my odd-ball rig setup, and he was great at coming up with a "new design" to address those issues. That "new design" is now his standard...
     
  6. BadDog

    BadDog SOL Staff Member Super Moderator Author

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    IIRC, Matt now uses a 1.5" ram on all the setups now. The 2" is slower, especially at low rpms.
     
  7. KRAZIE87K5

    KRAZIE87K5 1/2 ton status

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    BTW Baddog, what changes were made to his kit that you influenced?

    Also, I was thinking of using a bolt on block on the tie rod, to allow for easier adjustment. Something like the block that MO-Offroad makes... Think that would be a sound choice?

    -Dan
     
  8. BadDog

    BadDog SOL Staff Member Super Moderator Author

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    The original location for the taps was on the side of the box. But, I'm running 42x15x15 TSLs on 8" wheels with 4.125 BS and only 4" of lift. The axle is also moved forward 2". This combination caused my tires to hit the hydro lines to knock them loose and/or bend them. Even now, my tire actually polishes the side of the steering box at full lock! I’ll eventually do something, but I don’t have time or inclination right now to fool with something as complicated as what Stephen did on the ORD blazer to fix his steering issues.

    So, he tried a few different designs and tap locations to keep the lines clear of the tires. He even supplied an extra box so that we could save time on cross shipping. We eventually got a setup that worked well AND kept the lines clear of my tires. That’s what I run now, it’s also what they ran in TTC on the rig that Matt was spotting for. Due to the number of rigs that are going for ever larger tires on smaller and smaller lifts, Matt decided to make the relocated taps his “standard” arrangement. The original arrangement looked a little cleaner, but this new arrangement is much better IMO…
     
  9. KRAZIE87K5

    KRAZIE87K5 1/2 ton status

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    Do you have any pictures of the system installed? I would love to see some... /forums/images/icons/grin.gif /forums/images/icons/wink.gif

    Thanks,
    -Dan
     
  10. BadDog

    BadDog SOL Staff Member Super Moderator Author

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    Here is one that shows the new design. Notice the plug on the spool valve casing surface nearest the tire. It is just above the bottom tap. That is where the original tap (which interfered with the tire) was placed.
    [​IMG]
     
  11. MNorby

    MNorby 3/4 ton status Premium Member GMOTM Winner

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    dito here. I am contimplating the hydro assist too when I put the 60 in. Pics would be awesome /forums/images/icons/smile.gif
     
  12. kpanza

    kpanza 1/2 ton status

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    I just recently purchased this kit from Matt, and like has been said, the $399 includes everything you need (ram, hoses, your rebuilt box and mounting hardware)...it works very well and Matt is a great guy to deal with. I recommend him and his kit very highly. As a sidenote, I was very leery of welding the attachments on to my axle (everyone burns the axle seals out when they do this), so I made a call over to Steve at MOO. He made me a custom bolt-on clamp (just like his shock setup uses) for my D60 axletube. He welded the tabs on to perfectly fit my spherical rod end that Matt uses on the ram. It is super clean, strong and avoids any chance of having to go in and redo your seals! I think he charged me like $40 for it...well worth it. He was saying that he could also make one for the tie rod so that easy adjustability could be had in the future, but I had already welded the tabs on by that time...so it's a future "maybe" mod if I need it. As far as the ram size, I went with the 1.75" ram since I planned on running 38s or so. This is what AGR supplies with their kits, and it is fine on the street. I did do the mods that Matt has on his website, so can't tell you what it was like with a purely stock pump configuration - but with the modified pump and his setup, street driving is fine. It doesn't have any return-to-center anymore, but it actually helps keep the truck going straight down the highway, so I have no problems with it (it's almost like a "cruise control" for steering! /forums/images/icons/smile.gif

    I took my truck to Rubicon trail a few weeks ago, and the system worked fine until my high pressure hose blew...it cracked in two spots on the factory bend just beyond the crimped section, and it was a 2 month old hose...still trying to figure that one out. Gonna go with a custom braided line this time, with Aeroquip fittings and all...and carry a spare hose with me from now on - let me tell you, with the ram on there, steering without Power steering was a total b$tch!! /forums/images/icons/frown.gif No fun at all...

    Sorry for length, just trying to relay my experiences with the kit and give you ideas...
     
  13. kpanza

    kpanza 1/2 ton status

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    Oh yeah, I knew I forgot something - let me just say that the hydro assist is not a TOTAL guarantee of curing death wobble! I found this out soon enough, on the second cruise after I put the setup on. The culprit seemed to be the bushings from ORD - they had fallen apart AGAIN, and the death wobble was back. I was like "Oh Sh%t, give me a break!" I thought for sure my truck was cursed to a life of DW... So, make sure that if you have the ORD greasables, you check them very often! As soon as I swapped bushings AGAIN (like my eighth time), the wobble was gone and hasn't come back...so, as you might expect, if their is a component that is not up to snuff (bushings, etc), the hydro still won't be able to fully cure the DW...

    Just pointing that out...I found out the hard way. /forums/images/icons/smile.gif
     
  14. DPI

    DPI 1/2 ton status

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    Did the mounts look anything like this?
    [​IMG]

    or this?

    [​IMG]

    I think I called MOO the same day kpanza did. He said someone else called him about fabbing some mounts like these. Steve made the mounts and I welded on the tabs. So far they have worked great!
     
  15. kpanza

    kpanza 1/2 ton status

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    That is the exact same axle tube mount that he sent me, although I didn't get the tie rod mount...I just welded on the tabs directly to the tie rod. The setup is very clean and works well...much better in my opinion than having to tear the front end apart to replace the axle seals after welding the tabs on...
     
  16. BIGJ

    BIGJ 1/2 ton status Author

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    Dan, I got my WTO kit about three weeks ago. I ended up getting the 1 3/4" ram. It's a little more powerful than the 1 1/2" ram but not quite as fast. It's a good compromise between the bigger 2" ram and the smaller one. Also, I didn't get my box rebuilt because it was new, so that saved me some money along with the CK5 discount. My total was about $320.00 including shipping.

    Like everyone else, the service was great, and the turn around time was five days!

    BIGJ
     
  17. 84CUCV

    84CUCV 3/4 ton status Premium Member

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    The guy that made the bolt on mounts is he on here? Is there a website? I would like to buy a set for my k5.
    Thanks mike
     
  18. KRAZIE87K5

    KRAZIE87K5 1/2 ton status

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  19. Seventy4Blazer

    Seventy4Blazer 3/4 ton status

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    we got to many steves and stephens and all that on this site....
    anyway... i have talked with matt over at WTO a few times. GREAT guy. more than happy to buy his setup. i just need the money...
    grant
     
  20. Boss

    Boss 1/2 ton status Author

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    Hey man, not everyone burns their inner seals when welding the tabs on /forums/images/graemlins/smile.gif Welded mine on over a year ago and no probs...Maybe it's b/c...I'm the man!?? /forums/images/graemlins/cool.gif?? (j/k).
    Anyhow, totally agree with the no cure of the DW thing. But not much you can do when you have bad bushings...

    I do have return to center steer though.
    And the AGR uses 1.5" RAM, not 1.75".

    But I agree with everyone. Matt over at WTO is a really cool dude. Talked to him numerous times and he is very knowledgable when it comes to steering /forums/images/graemlins/smile.gif
    I just need some dough, and I'll be getting his 1.75" Ram to replace my AGR one... /forums/images/graemlins/smirk.gif
    Boss
     

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