Axle articulation is much sought-after for maximum off-road performance, especially for crawling over rocks. But the safety gurus have added sway bars and track bars on late-model solid front axle vehicles in the interest of better handling and improved street performance, which has resulted in a corresponding diminishment of dirt driving fun. Many companies offer sway bar disconnects that are quick and easy to use. On the other hand, many owners simply remove the sway bar when they install stiffer springs and they experience no handling differences. But disconnecting the track bar to get even better articulation is a different story. A track bar is used to control suspension side-to-side shifting, and on most coil-spring suspensions, the track bar is the only suspension component that keeps the axle in its proper place laterally. For instance, when older Broncos and Jeep Cherokees with coil suspensions are lifted, a longer track bar or extension brackets are installed to keep the axle in line and moving properly, while removing it would make the rig unsafe at any speed. Looking much like a high-tech spear gun, the JKS telescoping track bar is fitted with Teflon-lined Heim joints at each end for the utmost in on-road flexibility and stability. Should the ends ever wear out, they're replaceable. It's unlikely you'll ever need to replace them if you hose them off after grungy use.Looking much like a high-tech spear gun, the JKS telescoping track bar is fitted with Tefl On '87-'95 Jeep Wranglers, a track bar is used with the leaf-spring suspension to provide good road-handling characteristics by limiting side-to-side shifting of the soft suspension. And that same track bar limits the Wrangler's off-road articulation, while taking the bar off and putting it back on for road use is more of a pain than it's worth. The good news is that JKS Manufacturing has come up with a telescoping track bar for leaf-spring Wranglers to retain the good-handling characteristics on the highway and provide up to a 31 percent increase in axle articulation with the simple twist of a wrench. We went to Off Road General Store to check out the installation of the new slip-and-slide mechanism on a Wrangler, so follow along and see how easy articulation increases can be. The stock track bar pivots on big bolts at each end, one at the frame bracket (A) and one at the axle bracket (B). As the suspension cycles up and down, the axle moves sideways. Off-road, the extra axle and suspension movement allowed by a telescoping track bar greatly enhances articulation.The stock track bar pivots on big bolts at each end, one at the frame bracket (A) and one Removing the old bar is the most difficult part since the retaining bolt is a Torx-head style. On most lifted Jeep applications, a riser bracket (arrow) is included to reposition the track bar. These brackets often work loose and create a clunking noise and weird handling, and they're sometimes welded on to prevent this. With the telescoping length of the JKS unit, the bracket is unnecessary, so if an extension bracket is welded on, it will need to be cut off.Removing the old bar is the most difficult part since the retaining bolt is a Torx-head st The hole in the cast-iron axle bracket need to be drilled out to 1/2 inch so that the new bolt for the JKS track bar can be installed. The new bar comes complete with bolts and attaching hardware for a hassle-free installation.The hole in the cast-iron axle bracket need to be drilled out to 1/2 inch so that the new The frame bracket needs to have a spacer installed where the old track bar was so the bracket doesn't deform when the new bolt is installed. Simply slide the spacer into position and install the bolt through the Heim joint and into the bracket, then tighten the supplied locknut.The frame bracket needs to have a spacer installed where the old track bar was so the brac The new bar is installed to the rear of the bracket for proper clearance of the new assembly, rather than inside the bracket like the stock bar. The stock bar has a bend which clears the pitman arm and drag link but, because the new bar is straight, this rearward mounting position is needed.The new bar is installed to the rear of the bracket for proper clearance of the new assemb With the pinch bolt loosened, the lower axle bracket bolt is installed and tightened securely with the self-locking nut. The new bar clears all the steering components and is easy to install and service.With the pinch bolt loosened, the lower axle bracket bolt is installed and tightened secur After aligning the bushing ends and securing the jam nuts (arrow) on either end, tighten the pinch bolt with a wrench. The pinch bolt features a self-locking nut so it won't fall out on the trail when it loosens.After aligning the bushing ends and securing the jam nuts (arrow) on either end, tighten t The slip joint is also greasable for smooth operation and years of service. The grease zerk even comes with a protective cap to prevent intrusion of water and dirt, and it faces up for maximum protection against trail hazards. It's a good idea to grease the joint after water or mud crossings to force out contaminants.The slip joint is also greasable for smooth operation and years of service. The grease zer For off-road travel, simply loosen the pinch bolt so the track bar will move in and out as the axle articulates. Once you're back on the road, a quick flip of the wrench will secure the bar for better highway handling without sacrificing the Wrangler's off-road capabilities.For off-road travel, simply loosen the pinch bolt so the track bar will move in and out as SOURCES JKS Manufacturing P.O. Box 98 Alliance NE 69301 308-762-6949 www.jksmfg.com By Rick Péwé Enjoyed this Post? Subscribe to our RSS Feed, or use your favorite social media to recommend us to friends and colleagues!