I always wanted to add hydro assist to my Jeep but questioned the PSC kit’s price point. Being a simple system I figured others would work just as well or better. Enter Redneck Ram from West Texas Offroad.
I found myself once again calling my buddy Dirk to help lend his expertise with this somewhat complicated install.
This was a two day install, as we could only work nights.
First things first, we put the Jeep on the lift, removed the front driver tire/wheel, tie rod, and sway bar links. We also removed the pitman arm from the drag link (leaving the passenger side connected).
We disconnected the coupling from the steering box and drained the system fluid.
Remove the trackbar.
Remove two of the 4 steering box bolts, leaving two loosened but in place. With someone supporting the box from beneath, remove the final two bolts and the box from the frame. Keep the bolts!
Place the new steering box from Redneck Ram into place as well as the sector shaft brace. Run all 4 bolts (factory) through the brace, frame, and box. Tighten with a impact.
Thread the small bolt/washer/nut combination through the Synergy Trackbar brace and through the OEM TB bracket.
Do the same for the hole below.
Slide the sector shaft brace over the shaft and check clearances and alignment. If clear, use hex bolts and nuts to install the brace to the trackbar bracket.
Install the pitman arm.
Install the large nut on the sector shaft to hold the pitman arm in place.
At this point, the assembly should resemble the below, except for the hydro hose.
Install the hydro lines from the 2 ports on the steering box. One was easier to access from the top with the hood open.
At this point, the steering box is complete. Time to move onto the second half of the kit.
I ended up using a PSC steering clamp. The RNR kit includes steel tabs to be welded to the tie rod, but I did not want to weaken that component. So the clamp was my choice.
Install the steel tabs onto the passenger side of the ram.
Place the ram into place and thread the bolt into the clamp.
Hold the passenger side of the ram (assembled) to the mounting surface. I am using an Artec high steer kit so my setup may differ from yours. Ensure everything has a flush place to be welded.
Prepare the surface for welding.
Tack the plates into place.
To prevent the ram from being in the way, use calipers to measure the difference between the steel plates when installed on the ram. Using washers, create a spacer to simulate the ram. Remove the ram and set aside.
When ready, burn in the rest of the welds.
When cool, apply paint to the welded and prepped surface. Reinstall the ram.
Install the hydro lines to the ram.
The lines seemed to be pretty long so we got creative on some routing.
Reinstall the trackbar and all other suspension components removed in step 1.
Fill your steering fluid reservoir and burp the system. Keep it full. Reinstall the wheels.
Double check all fittings (I had a loose, leaking one) and torque on all bolts and nuts!