Over the past year we’ve enjoyed cruising the coastal beaches and local southeast trails with our mildly built ’04 Chevy Tahoe. Though we wouldn’t consider our Bow Tie wheeler a hardcore crawler, it does serve as an excellent backwoods explorer and daily commuter. Overall, the Chevy has been “like a rock” in many ways, but we’ve been a little concerned about the factory IFS steering tie rod links. In the stock configuration the links are fine. It’s when you add the leverage of a meaty, oversized tire and rugged terrain that the thin links become a potential point of failure. A common failure point on the 1⁄2-ton GM’s factory steering link (top) is where the adjuster rod reduces to mate with the outer tie rod end. The CST Extreme Duty link (bottom) is comprised of a substantially larger forged steel body that maintains a consistent 1-inch diameter throughout the link.A common failure point on the 1⁄2-ton GM’s factory steering link (top) is where the adjust Sure, ditching the IFS setup altogether for a beefy solid front axle sounds like a great idea, but it would be an expensive and, in our case, unnecessary upgrade. Our 35-inch mud terrains put more stress on the factory steering joints. To help handle the added load, CST increases the size of the inner tie rod by 30 percent. Before bolting in your new links adjust them to approximately the same length of the link you removed. This helps speed up alignment.Our 35-inch mud terrains put more stress on the factory steering joints. To help handle th Fortunately CST Performance Suspension has created a simple steering upgrade for late-model GM pickups and SUVs. The CST Extreme Duty tie rod replacement kit comes with a set of complete (inner and outer joints) tie rod links that are designed to be twice as strong as the factory units. The CST links are easy to install, as they bolt in place of your factory links and will work with both stock and most aftermarket suspension systems. The install takes roughly an hour and doesn’t require any specialty tools, though you will need a torque wrench to fasten the outer joints to spec. For more information and to see a complete application list visit www.cstsuspension.com. The CST links bolted easily in place and didn’t require any modifications to our ’04 Tahoe. Each link end is also fitted with a grease fitting so you can keep your joints living longer.The CST links bolted easily in place and didn’t require any modifications to our ’04 Tahoe With the tapered rod end inside of the knuckle, we torque each to the recommended 60 lb-ft. It’s always a safe and smart idea to inspect and tighten your links after every wheeling outing or oil change.With the tapered rod end inside of the knuckle, we torque each to the recommended 60 lb-ft To make sure our Tahoe was tracking straight, we had the expert hands at Sears Automotive in Wilmington, North Carolina, retune the alignment. Since our SUV was sitting pretty level and driving straight prior to the install, all we needed was a minor toe adjustment and we were good to go.To make sure our Tahoe was tracking straight, we had the expert hands at Sears Automotive SOURCES Sears Hoffman Estates IL 60179 www.sears.com CST Suspension 14385 Veterans Way Moreno Valley CA 92553 951-571-0215 www.cstsuspension.com By Ali Mansour Enjoyed this Post? Subscribe to our RSS Feed, or use your favorite social media to recommend us to friends and colleagues!