Dakar HELP!

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Feb 10, 2003
Rogue Valley
I've run into a problem istalling the OME Dakar Heavy springs on the back end. The spring seat and the U-Bolts are not lining up...about 3/4-1" off. See pix below.

We were trying to lift the spring to bring it up to the bolts, but it's not lining up. It seems that the spring needs to be pushed toward the back about an inch to line up the U-bolts with the holes in the spring seat. But, under compression to bring the spring seat up, we can't push the springs back.

Why isn't this lining up or what did I do wrong??

pix here: http://www.woolybuggerproductions.com/downloads/photos/
If I'm understanding your question & the pics correctly, you need the axle to come down and slide front/back, right? Use the bottle jack to push the other side up, the one you're working on will drop. Use ratchet straps to pull the axle in the right direction. That's what I had to do. Had to use two straps actually. I also had two helpers, one torqueing the shackle bolt which helped rotate the spring forward a little, and I tightened the bolts when it lined up.
Just a quick question for you. Did you remove the driveshaft? If you do you should be able to lower the axel and center it up real easy.

I've never done this lift, but maybe the springs need to be reversed.
did you remove the grease nipple from the driveshaft? it could be hydralic pressure in the grease inside the slip joint...
On second look at your pix I have another option for you. Place the axel on the spring before you bolt up the shackle. That how I have always done it.

I agree with Dynosaur. Bolt up shackle to spring after you get the U-bolts on.
Thank you! I will try the axel first, then spring idea. I was following the FSM, and have searched extensively on this, and haven't read about removing the driveshaft.
From the pics it lookes like its to the inside? and it wont line up front to right either?

Get the axle lined up on the center pin. (I had to use my bottle jack and a piece of wood horizontal, to push the springs out to let it line up.)

Is mainly agrivating and definately helps if you have a extra set of hands!
I never had to remove my drive shaft when I installed mine. Just used jacks with stands, did some pushing & pulling but that was it. It was pretty straight forward. Just used the FSM for the torque settings.

I would put some presure on the spring to get it moved up in line with the axle. As I recall I had to push & pull the axle a little to line it up but didn't ever move anything out of line.

Didn't help much probably so Good luck.
Technicaly you don't have to remove the drive shaft. However, it is a quick and easy (4 bolts) way to gain a whole lot of mobility on the axel.

I have a man-a-fre lift, not OME, but had alignment prob's like yours. I used a bottle jack to push my axle in two directions - front to back + side to side. Bottle jack plus a piece of 2X4 was the trick. Actually really easy once I figured out how to do it. In hindsight, rachet straps might have worked really well....wish I'd have thought of that...
Interesting. I did the Dakar lift with no problems at all. In fact, (not to rub it in by any means) it was actually one of the easier mods I've done so far. We were so impressed by the ease, we even posted a thread with pics on the process and finished product (around this time last year). Some good tips in here so give them a shot. I would like to point out that we were using two floor jacks (made it a lot easier). We may have even had a bottle jack at one point also. But seriously, it was by far the smoothest mod to date. Of course we also were doing quite a bit of pushing, pulling, stompin', hammerin', etc.. You'll eventually get them in place. :doh:
Cookiemonster said:
I never had to remove my drive shaft when I installed mine.

same here ..


put it in the axle before on shackles ..
When I put on my OME, I had this issue as well. Just used a come along (or you can use rachet strap) to pull axle into place.

Somewhere near Eugene, Oregon
umm, you are doing both sides at once right?
when i did the springs on my 55 i strapped a 2 ton hiost to my rear bumper and pushed the truck around as needed, left the rear axle sitting on jackstands.
good luck, carl
lowenbrau said:
Crushers is right.

The driveshaft has to get shorter with the lift at full droop. Probably shorter than it has been since new.

:confused: To me this statement seems backwards. Are you saying that as the axle drops lower the driveshaft shortens? Shouldn't full droop = longer driveshaft and full compression = shorter driveshaft?
In a spring under setup the drive shaft is the hypotenuse. As you lift the rig the distance from the t-case to the fixed spring hanger stays equal. (adjacent side) and the distance from the fixed hanger to the center pin of the spring pack stays the same (opposite side)

If opposite and adjacent do not change and but the angle between them is reduced, the hypotenuse must be reduced as well.

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