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Old 08-11-2017, 07:53 AM
  #31
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I prefer the buy once / cry once approach if it is at all possible. When I need ball joints it will be the value brand Dynatrac or the premium line Rare Parts. I would lean heavily towards the Rare Parts.

Dynatrac brakes are well worth the grand.

Dynatrac axles are pretty much unbendable unless your some sort of freak-of-nature!

Pretty much, when you buy a product that has the name Dynatrac associated with it, you expect that you are buying the best version of that product that is manufactured. The prand/products are priced accordingly, and I honestly doubt that they have issues selling products. Yep, they are that good
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Old 08-11-2017, 08:10 AM
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Originally Posted by larry0071 View Post
I prefer the buy once / cry once approach if it is at all possible. When I need ball joints it will be the value brand Dynatrac or the premium line Rare Parts. I would lean heavily towards the Rare Parts.

Dynatrac brakes are well worth the grand.

Dynatrac axles are pretty much unbendable unless your some sort of freak-of-nature!

Pretty much, when you buy a product that has the name Dynatrac associated with it, you expect that you are buying the best version of that product that is manufactured. The prand/products are priced accordingly, and I honestly doubt that they have issues selling products. Yep, they are that good
Pay once, cry once. Agreed. The comments on this forum as a whole never cease to give me the chuckles. Apparently trying to cheap out on parts that will ruin your day, your trip, or worse, is the thing to do. Axles are one that I refuse to skimp on as that's a life safety kind of situation should one let go, same thing with brakes, which I suggest upgrading when jumping up in tire size whenever that comes up, but to each their own. Insurance companies look for every reason to try and deny a claim and that would be a big one.

I understand the challenge to build a better mousetrap at a cheaper price point, but at what cost? Not to mention, should you ever decide to try and sell your Jeep, you have a better chance of getting more money out of it with quality parts than you ever will with a junkyard build full of pinball machine parts. How much is your time really worth? You've got a substantial investment in a Jeep, why cut corners and cob together some junkyard parts, which, if you read some of the posts here, really don't save you any money over a drop in axle from Dynatrac or another shop with a name and reputation behind them?

I also love posts claiming that shops charge too much and are just sticking it to the customer. If that was the case, they wouldn't be around long. Those same people obviously have no idea what the business model is, what R&D costs, what the insurance runs, along with all the other overhead costs. You see, if you're building axles and other components that, if they fail, will have the potential to cause severe injury, or death, you insure yourself to the max, because, in this society, if someone dies and you have parts on the vehicle involved, even if it's not your fault, you're going to be a party to the lawsuit. That's just the way it works.

Keep buying the cheap stuff and changing it out, or paying to have it changed out. Your mechanic appreciates you.
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Old 08-11-2017, 08:12 AM
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I was expecting someone to come in with the "buy once cry once" statement. Thanks for being "that guy" and seizing the opportunity Larry!!

If their ball joints were really a "buy once cry once" solution, then there really wouldn't be a need for them to be selling a $150 rebuild kit. Right? A rebuild kit that cost slightly less than complete TF replacements. Additionally, seeing as though Dynatrac is highlighting the fact that their joints are re-buildable as being a competitive advantage over the TF joints, that seems to additionally support the fact that they're not a "buy once cry once" solution. With those things in mind, I see them more as a "buy once, cry once and continue to keep on crying" solution.
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Old 08-11-2017, 08:24 AM
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The fact that you don't have to keep pressing the Dynatracs in and out of the axle is the benefit. Keeps the axle bores from getting damaged and having to get knurled joints or a new axle. I Have a modified Ram/Cummins and the rebuildable balljoints for those from a reputable company are 800-1000, but you rebuild them in place. Again some people may not need the best ball joints on the market. Budget verses quality is always a concern.
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Old 08-11-2017, 08:30 AM
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Originally Posted by akguy09 View Post
The fact that you don't have to keep pressing the Dynatracs in and out of the axle is the benefit.
The ability to rebuild is a plus, but the thing that is overlooked is how often? Yes, the purchase price is higher, and the rebuild kit isn't cheap, but if you only have to rebuild them once every 3 or 5 years, versus changing them annually or more often, which requires pressing in and out? That's a no brainer.
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Old 08-11-2017, 08:43 AM
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Originally Posted by Rednroll View Post
I was expecting someone to come in with the "buy once cry once" statement. Thanks for being "that guy" and seizing the opportunity Larry!!

If their ball joints were really a "buy once cry once" solution, then there really wouldn't be a need for them to be selling a $150 rebuild kit. Right? A rebuild kit that cost slightly less than complete TF replacements. Additionally, seeing as though Dynatrac is highlighting the fact that their joints are re-buildable as being a competitive advantage over the TF joints, that seems to additionally support the fact that they're not a "buy once cry once" solution. With those things in mind, I see them more as a "buy once, cry once and continue to keep on crying" solution.
The problem as seen from an engineering point of view is that no ball joint can be made that will last nearly a vehicle lifetime within the constraints of the D30/D44 casting. So your stuck with this small joint if you stay at the D30/D44 axle size, and the game in play is who can make the BEST, LONGEST LASTING ball joint for heavy oversized wheel/tire packages with joint killing offset that will fit within the OEM dimensions. In this game you have a number of players that are all competing for 3rd place, and third place is far behind 1st and 2nd place.

In 1st place you see USA made Rare Parts with a completely new and unique JK ball joint design that properly shares load between the upper and lower joint. Many OEM lower joints are subjected to 100% of the vehicles weight, the upper is essentially just there to keep shit in alignment while allowing a pivot. It's not an active part of the load bearing system. Rare Parts takes a portion of the lower ball joint load and takes it to the upper joint. So not only is the lower joint an enhanced design like many of the others, but it automatically will outlast them because it is not bearing 100% of the load. The upper is sharing it.

In 2nd place you have the USA made Dynatrac. While it does not utilize a load bearing upper ball joint, they have done all that they could within the size constraints to maximize the joint integrity for the longest service life of this style of load system, while also making sure that once the part has finally succumbed to the weight and load of your vehicle, you can swap out the wear parts quickly and easily compared to contestants 3 and on. The concept here is that you have a joint that is known and proven to last a good long time, and the ease of rebuilding means that when it is eventually time and you remove those 40" tires from your Dana 30 to do ball joints.... you can pretty quickly and easily swap those wear parts out.

Then you have the rest battling for 3rd, and the competition is fierce being that they are all very similar. I am currently using the Synergy as well because I did get a great deal on a Dynatrac axle built by North Ridge 4x4 that had them already installed. It was a deal I couldn't pass up. But I will not be replacing them with the same once they poo-poo out on me. I see G2/Alloy, Moog, Chinaflex, Synergy and any other similar as being pretty far behind contestants #1 and #2 and at the same time being only marginally better than the OEM ball joint. Yep, they are cheaper, but I like playing with my toy a lot more than I like working on it. So I'll likely go Rare Parts and one and done that S.O.B. when the time comes.

Remember, the OEM balls are not really BAD, in a stock Jeep they last a long assed time. My daughters Dana 30 has 130,000 miles on the OEM ball joints with 31" tires, her WJ has had oversized tires on it since the first tire replacement at around 30,000 miles. Her ball joints are still holding tough. So it's not that the OEM joints are total trash, its just that us goons want to run 35, 37 and 40" tires on these little D30 and D44 axles and the balls were never designed for that load. So in comes the aftermarket to play the game.... Who can win?
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Old 08-11-2017, 09:58 AM
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Great explanation!!! I think you really touched on one of the major reasons I chose to go with 35's and I went with a "smaller" size 35 at that with the BFG KO2's. Ball joint load was one of the major decision factors when I selected my tires and the size. The associated costs of going larger in tire size vs the benefits you gain, just didn't seem worth it.

I can live without the $500+ ball joint sets, the additional long arms systems, the high steer flip kits, higher lift springs/shocks. None of those items provide me better offroad performance, where it's the 37's and larger tires that give me slightly better performance than the 35s but not enough in my opinion to justify paying those additional costs to invest in all those additional items that don't. I rather focus putting that mod money towards adding axle traction devices and gears which will provide me more performance with my 35s, than moving to a 37 and 40in tires.
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