Warn XCL link issue

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Jun 1, 2005
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Any one out there have the Warn XCL suspension on their LC? I immagine this could pertain to any link suspension that uses bushings to support the end on the links.

Four years ago, Warn sent me a box with four new treaded ends for the four rear links. There was instructions for installing them, but no explanation as to why they were sent, and no indication that there was a problem. These ends of coarse are welded into the links, and their position determines the length of the links, so not the kind of thing the average home hobbiest would readily take on without a reason. And at the time I was intending the put a splitter box in the drive line, and these new ends would come in handy when I moved the rear axle further back so I could still have a drive shaft. Thank you very much.

Well, about a month ago, I found out why they send the ends. Luckily, I was slowly turning into a parking lot when there was this really ugly noise and feeling as everything swayed and jammed to a stop. I jumped out of the truck and saw my rear wheel jammed into the rear frame, and the lower link end in the road. I am counting my blessings on this one, at highway speed, it would have been real ugly, and on the trail, it would have been a real challenge to get the rig back home, as it would not even roll, and not likely to field fix or survive a night out in TSF.

The link broke at the first thread where the retaining nuts thread onto the end. As it turns out, the new ends they sent me four years ago are hardened, and the threads are rolled in, instead of cut in. For those who might not know, rolling the treads means that the threads are pressed in under pressure, instead of cut. No material is removed, and the bottoms of the threads form a U instead of a V; big difference when it comes to stress risers.

If you have links that enter bushings and the back end has a large washer and retaining nuts, the links working up and down with the suspension put a great deal of leverage on that washer, which in turn puts a great deal of force on the rod at those threads.

I will be adding a length of cable along side the links attached to the cross member and the axle housing, as well as a cable between the link and the frame. If they break again, the cables will keep the axle housing from pivoting back, and will keep the end of the link from reaching the ground. I did learn from this that when my drive shaft comes apart, neather of the halves can reach the ground, which is a good thing.

Being new here, and not sure how to work this thing, but if I figure it out, there will some pictures attached...

gary
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For your visual enjoyment, and further clarification...

Oops, I guess I'm already limited out on all the pictures I can post
 
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Well, I figure out how to fix that problem :)

here are a couple more pictures of this suspension...
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And one last shot, for those who migh be interested...

I got the suspension back together over the weekend, but I still have to add the cables I talked about.

gary
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woody

unhelpful spotter
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that's some nice driveway carnage! You'd think Warn would have at least given ya some idea to why they sent the parts tho....

How do you like the XCL setup? IIRC, they've discontinued it for the Cruisers....I was never sold on the "captured rubber" at the frame-side mounting...
 

SPRDAV

 
 
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Aug 11, 2003
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This is the first I've heard of any malfunction with the Warn set up. Maybe that's why they discontinued Black Diamond by Warn???

Glad to hear your OK Gary. Do you have pics from my RTI????
 
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Hey Gary, it's been a long time. How are you doing? :cheers:

Glad it came apart in a slow speed situation. I guess at least they did send you the new ends so you had something to fix it with. That's weird that they came with no explanation.
 
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Hello Brian, Dave and Cody,

Brian, I finally got onto your list. I had faded off the list again a while back, and was feeling the urge the get back on, thought about it, and desided I would sign in here instead. Much of the same crowd, and I like pictures :).

I like the xcl actually, I would do it again. Though this arm braking has instilled the first dark cloud for me. I will have to think about making jointed ends. I have made some changes to it to make servicing easier though (a must I think). Changes that I took full advange of to fix this breakage. The way it came originally, this would have been a LOT more work to fix than it was. And I've had one of the front brackets break off the housing at a weld, but that was do to a bad weld from the original installer. I welded it back on. Other then that, I've not had problems. On the trail, it is very nice, smoother ride, and just walk through sections others are twisting and lifting tires and rocking through. As far as exotics go, it is not too exciting, it will only ramp 1000 or a little more, not uncommon with a wide variety of home made suspensions these days, but it makes a much nicer ride both on and off road. It has been my daily driver with the xcl for about 6 years now.

Dave, I don't have any pictures from the ramp. I was waiting for pictures from you. Did I have my camera there? I should have, but I don't remember seeing any pictures, and I can't find any now.

Cody, it has been a long time, good to hear from you. Hope all is well with you. I think I live a charmed life, so much to be greatful for. When the front bracket came apart, I noticed the cracks and fixed it before there was a real problem. And the rear, I am so greatful for the timing, that I can not even get mad that it happened. Once this is completed, I need to replace the burned out actuator motors on the diffs, and make a trailer. Then I will drop in for a visit :). You may have noticed in the picture, after two years of waiting, I finally got the Orion. And then to shock myself further, I installed it in a timely manor. Actually, it arrived while I had the tub off modifiying the xcl to make it servicable. So the tub was off, and suspension was apart, what timing.

gary
 

LC_Hamma

The Anti-Leafer
 
 
 
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Who was the *authorized shop that did the install? Just curious. You gotta lot of goodies on that Cruzah besides the XCL kit - Warn FF & Orion. Did you see the yellow & green Cruzah w/ the XCL kit in the JUne 2005 issue of 4WD & Sport Utility? I fabbed a link suspension similar to the XCL kit using the skidplate to mount my lowers. I just couldn't find an area on the frame to mount them, so I remembered how the Warn kit looked & went from there.
 
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Alan,
Yep, it's me. Let me know if you head down this way again.

LC_Hamma, Yah, there was a time there when I single handedly tried to convince Warn there was a market for LC kits. It was when the high tech stocks were flying high, and I had a bunch of options. I figured Warn was quality, and customer oriented, and they warrenteed everything for life. So, I spent top dollar figuring I was setting the LC up well for when I retire, and I would not have to pay for anything below the frame again, other than tires and brake stuff. I got the birfield eliminators too. My dealings with them have shown they are quality and customer oriented, but , they dropped support for everything I bought :confused:

I also have the Toyota electric diffs, but both actuators are toast. Toyota wants $650 for each, so I'm looking for an alternative. Will probably go with a pnumatic replacement, but am hoping for a cable one. Seen any??

Don't want to name names on the install. Warn would not allow self installation, and I had more money than time back then (oh what a short period that was in my life, now I have neither). Making a long story short, I think he did a pretty good job on the install, all things concidered, but he was lead to believe that the front pinion could remain flat with this kit, which I had a hard time believing, and when it was done, I had to take it some where else to have the knuckles turned and do the front over again. And it was the second people's weld that came apart on the front bracket.

So, if you too are using this type of arm connection, you may want to concider the ends of the arms if the threads are cut. I will post the safety cables when I get them installed, I bought the stuff today. You might be interested in the changes I made to skid plate to improve servicability. First I cut the whole center out of the skid plate so I could get at everything above it. Then I cut what was left in half, so I could drop the front and or back independently without undoing the links. Then I added some cross members between the link connection points to make the brackets stronger and more ridged, and added more frame bolts, so six half inch bolts hold each half of the skid plate to the frame. Then I bent up and drilled out some 5/16" plate to form a new skid plate that wraps around and holds together like the original Warn plate. With some 1/4" bar stock added to counter sink the retaining bolt heads, and add more strength around the bolts.
Here are some shots...
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Joined
Jun 1, 2005
Messages
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Here is what the front bracket looked like, nearly all of the bracket lifted off the housing on both side. I cleaned it up and welded it back on.

As you can see, the original weld was pretty small, and kinda missed the actual joint in places, not much penetration. Hopefully my fix will last a little longer.
Incase you are interested in such things...
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CruisinGA

 
 
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coiled40gary said:
I also have the Toyota electric diffs, but both actuators are toast. Toyota wants $650 for each, so I'm looking for an alternative. Will probably go with a pnumatic replacement, but am hoping for a cable one. Seen any??
Downey apparently has a kit.

landtoy80 IIRC installed one in the rear of his 80. Might want to search the 80s section.

Good luck!
 
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