The story of Wobble…

Jeep makes this pretty amazing vehicle called the Jeep Wrangler. For the most part it is one of the most capable vehicles (stock) to go out into the desert/woods and ride some pretty sweet trails. Then we start up that road, yup that one ($$$), and you dive deep into the never ending world of jeep aftermarket parts.

Problem is, many of these accessories  are really intended for the “street” variety of jeeps, big light bars, blingy rims and fat tires. Most of the lower tier parts will let you down at some point, and that’s where my story begins…

A few moons back I too had a fresh newbie Jeep (2011 JKU), and wanted to run all the harder trails with the cool kids. So like most, while carrying that heavy New Jeep payment you weight out how much you can do on a tight budget. And mid-range budget was my goal, spend enough to do it well, but not race/competition budget. I took advice from many and made what I hoped to be good choices and I settled on Rubicon Express components to lift my Rig by 3.5″. For almost 4 years it has proven to be a pretty decent lift kit, until the “Death Wobble” started to sneak in. If you are not familiar with what death wobble is here is a  video that should help visualize how bad it can be.

Now the hard part, everyone is going to tell you why you have death wobble. Your tires are unbalanced, need a better steering stabilizer or Ball Joints, etc… etc… But it can be many different contributors to this issue.

So I did the smart thing and listened to none of them, except for Larry Nickell at Vegas 4×4.  Larry Identified the issue as a bad Track Bar. The tie rod and drag links ends are also starting to wear out, but the track bar had visible movement. After removing it you could see that one end had become elongated and the other end had cracks in it. This was a Rubicon Express Track Bar that was less then 4yrs old.

The replacement was a Currie Track Bar.

Moral of this story is that if you can when you are making some of your decisions early on in the Jeep Build, spend a little more ($$$) for quality parts or you are just going to have to replace, replacement parts down the road.

And yes, this did cure my death wobble! I am very happy about that and getting some awesome upgraded parts in the process. Now to replace the tie rod and drag link!


Just picked a Trasharoo from If you need a little more external storage for you next Camping trip and want to haul out your garbage and not have it stinking up your interior on the way out, check out this awesome bag. It has a great reputation among it’s users and really makes a lot sense when you need some extra room, like a great place to put you firewood!


I also have my license plate mounted to my spare tire, so I took my second plate and attached to the bag.

Back in Black

Update: Best advice on this technique is to make sure you use a quality ($$) heat gun, cheap gun makes the fenders “streaky”. And… the fade returns just the same (only lasted 3-4 months).So after tying this would I recommend this approach?

NO, avoid.


If you own a Jeep or any modern vehicle you know that those plastic parts like bumpers and fenders start out a real nice shade of black when you pull it off that dealership lot. But starting on day two, they start that journey to the grey side as Mr. Sun points his UV ray-gun at them every day punishing the pigments till they just can’t hold their blackness anymore… and you end up with grey parts.


So I started looking for the cure to going premature grey. My jouney took me out to the internets where I read countless forum threads and Facebook posts on what others have done to solve this modern dilemma. Two approaches where out three, first was chemical treatment either through strange home-brew concoctions or commercial products.


Commercial products work great except in the real world some us who actually wheel our rigs offroad  find out that these products are nothing more then dust magnets and double or triple the amount of deposit you would normally accumulate on an offroad trip. Also these products are only a temporary mask to the underlying issue of greying. Its like getting your hair dyed to cover the grey, sooner or later you are going to have to re-apply.


I have read articles of different home-brew techniques, by this I mean non-traditional products never intended for the application but reported to work. Exmaple would be individuals who reported that the product “De-Solv-it” worked great… I can report back to you and let you know this stuff does absolutly nothing…lol.


Another approach many people report using is Heat Guns to heat up the plastic wich turns it black again. This does work, but I have some warnings and recommendations. I bought a heat gun from Harbor Freight (yes the cheapo tool buying store), to try this theroy out. Be careful, and buy a better heat gun then the cheapo from Harbor The low end guns throw a limited heat pattern thats a bit small and can leave results that are a little “Streaky”. But if you take your time you can get okay results.



I took a two pronged approach as I used a heat gun to get the fenders 80% there and finished them off with some commercial product, Mothers Back to Black. Combined techniques make for very black fenders again.



If you have tried something that worked well for let me know, I would love the hear stories of success that I can pass along to others.