Installing a Rear Stabilizer Bar Chevy Truck (OBS/GMT400)

published on August 3, 2020

Greetings viewers eric the car guy thank you very much for tuning in today did you know that i have had this hellwing rear stabilizer bar for this truck pretty much since i started the build last year

I didn't install it because i was having that noise coming from the rear end and i finally solved that so now it's time to see if i can make this truck handle a little bit better with the addition of this hellwing

Stabilizer bar in this video i'm going to go over how to install it and we'll take a look at what the suspension does before the installation and also after see if it's worth the effort stay tuned

I did a little chicaning towards the end there but i think you get the idea of how the suspension operates normally without the stabilizer bar now let's install the stabilizer bar at least on the surface this appears to be

A pretty straightforward bolt-on affair just that picture alone tells me pretty much what i need to know all there really is is a set of brackets that go under the differential housing and uh some end links that attach to the

Frame before i get too far into this i'm going to peel back these retainers for the brake lines and also i have a zip tie over here that i'm going to remove there's going to be u-bolts

And an assembly that's going to get installed on both sides of this i suppose it would be good to know what's in the box and by the way this is not a sponsored video from hellwing i

Got this because well it was available for the truck anyway some packaging quite simple really a sticker the stabilizer bar and all the hardware which appears to be attached to the

Bottom of the box and i got this stabilizer bar from summit link in the description i let everything out on the bench here and how i believe it all goes together uh the upper end links require these

Bushings these sleeves these long bolts two locking nuts and four washers then there's the end links themselves for the bottom part of the end link

You're going to need four washers you're going to need there's two types of nuts there's a short and then there's a tall i believe the short one is going to be the locking nut for the upper

Or the big one honestly i don't think it really matters but you're installing a lock nut assembly here so that you can adjust up and down where you want the lower part of the end link to come in

You're going to need four washers for the bushings here for the axle tube two u-bolts two brackets two uh stabilizer bar holders then there's four washers

And there's gonna be eight nuts because you're gonna double up on the ends of the u-bolts to lock everything down and they provided some silicone paste to lubricate the inside of the bushing

To help prevent noise the instructions state to start by laying the stabilizer bar in its location which i believe to be about there so far so good what could go

Wrong i've removed these bushings from the bracket taken the supplied silicone and an entire tube in two of these in fact i even might suggest doing

A tube per side this is polyurethane and it gets really squeaky if it doesn't have proper lubrication so don't be afraid to lubricate the heck out of this now i'm going to take

These bushings that once again are liberally lubricated on their interior and install them on a stabilizer bar these are at the flat spots where it's going to attach next i'll take my

U-bolt my bracket make sure you go underneath the brake lines i hope that's obvious this only gets installed loosely for now looks like my parking brake cable

Routing might be an issue all right because i know somebody's going to ask about it how thick is that stabilizer bar eric looks like about 115 inches i think some of you may also ask how

Thick is the front stabilizer bar eric not much bigger this one's uh 1276 when i come in here with the stabilizer link it looks like it's going to live about here which yay interferes more with my parking

Brake cable that i worked so hard to make sure that i had now you have to be careful on the other side of this there is wiring for the tail lights and everything and also a brake line for the

Rear brakes so when you drill through the frame make sure that you uh aren't hitting anything on the other side that you can damage and that's only on this left side that

You have to worry about at the right side looks free and clear i'm not exactly ready to put this into final position but i sort of need to see where it lives on the axle so that i can correctly

Position it so i'm just going to run these down so i can sort of mock everything into place i'm trying to just sort of loosely position everything i actually should be

Measuring where the bracket goes because the u-bolt can slide back and forth this side seems to be happy about three inches there we are so i've gone from the edge

Of the axle housing here to the bracket and i've measured three inches on both sides so that they're even on the illustrations it doesn't show that this is sticking straight out it actually shows that it's

Angled up a bit so i'm going to do precisely that now i found out that if you don't where this comes down there's not enough length of the

Stabilizer bar to put everything together down here weirdly it seemed to have gotten a ride on both sides at about 65 degrees that'll go up in

Here like this i'll try to find the right spot for it and then i've got plenty of threading adjustment down here using the leaf spring as a reference i've measured over to make sure that the

Bar is somewhat centered and i'm about two inches away on both sides now they say to locate the hole to drill in the frame you want to make sure that this guy is

Straight up and down i'm going to fiddle around with this for a bit find the best place best place to drill and we'll check back in my approach to this i'm going to use the smaller nut as the

Jam nut my approach to this is going to be i'm going to assemble this oh sorry stabilizer link so this this always points towards the inside of the bar this little step here

I'm going to install this on the bar not with the lock nut on the bottom just with a regular nut um there's a couple of that are left over from the u-bolts so i'm going to sort of loosely install

This on there so that i have about that much of the threaded part of the stabilizer link hanging down then they want this mounted so that it is

So that the stabilizer bar is as parallel to the ground as possible and this link to be perpendicular so i'll have this mounted on the stabilizer bar on both sides when i lower it down

And then i'm going to position it so that it's parallel with the ground and then i'm going to make sure this is perpendicular and mark the hole to drill so that's how i'm going to find out where to drill the

Hole to put this in that's progress truck is now on the ground at ride height i already see some changes i should preface what i'm about to say

By saying that i have lowered the rear of my truck four inches uh so that's probably coming into play here but you can see that the angle of the stabilizer bar with the dog leg and everything that's

Up there is not working out at my 65 degree angle on the stabilizer bar so i'm gonna raise it up and then put that back to straight ahead measure everything make sure that those

Uh locations where i have it attached to the axle housing are even on both sides again lower it back down and see what i get as far as what this looks like

Hopefully it's not all bent over like it is here i didn't make them completely pointing forward i angled them up slightly and mostly that was to try to accommodate this

Parking brake cable so that i can make it the least obtrusive thing possible uh so they're angled slightly up but only slightly it's still not enough like for that dog leg to clear

And make this even it's still angled down and that's i'm certain because of lowering this truck i was hopeful until so angling the brackets in this way down slightly makes it so

That the stabilizer bar comes into contact with the top of the differential like this that is no bueno so i may have to come up with some kind of alternative mounting and setup in order

To make this work on my lower truck like if you've got a standard ride height truck you probably won't even have to deal with this but if you've lowered it like mine well be prepared to do some

Re-engineering believe i found a partial solution all right what i found was if the uh clamps on the differential are pointed straight forward when it's all the way up in the air and i try to

Position the stabilizer link on the frame the uh stabilizer bar hits the top of the differential up there just like i did before i've also found out that if i run these

All the way up to the top of the adjustment i'm pretty darn close what i'm going to do now i'm going to put this into position mark it put it up in the air

Try to put this in that same position just to see what the rest of the stabilizer bar does if everything looks good we'll call it a day i know i'm angled forward a little

Bit but i'm kind of okay with that because there's no stress here i like that i don't want to put this in a position of stress to start with so i may go against

Instruction and actually mount this in such a way to where everything clears up here but it is not necessarily perfect well it's perpendicular to the stabilizer bar but not perpendicular to the ground

How's that so this way when it's sitting at rest like this it's in a neutral position there's no stress on these bushings or anything you can see how it's angled forward a little bit there

When i try and position this where i had my mark while it's up in the air it's challenging it's gotta bend over quite far in order to make this mark the thing of

It is it's gonna be spending most of its time on the ground not up in the air like this so right about here is where the mark landed on the other side and there's no

Brake lines or anything behind this here's my final answer i used a silver marker so that i could locate it a little bit better this is left side here's the right the uh hole they want you to drill is 17

30 seconds i don't have a drill bit of that size so i'm just going to use this and size it to the bolt which is universal bit by the way

I'll do donkey that'll do and the only thing behind this hole is the shock tower or the hole behind the shock tower because this is bare metal i'm just going to add

A little bit of paint and i just use what i paint the frame to this truck which is this chassis roll bar paint i painted this whole frame and everything links in the description to

Additional videos now i'll remove the end links from the stabilizer bar now it's time for the end link assembly lubricate the bushing and spacer this

The bolt goes through the frame put a washer on it so it comes through the frame from the back the outside goes a washer and then

A lock nut you'll be able to see this better on the other side i also threaded it through the bottom of the stabilizer bars for when it drops down it can guide it where it's supposed to be much easier to

Do on this side then through the stabilizer link these will get tightened to 60 foot-pounds torque the u-bolt bolts to 35 foot-pounds

Do one a little bit and then the other not going to install the lock nuts on those they're locked nuts so i'm not worried i was concerned about the torque on those

All right i've rerouted and mounted the parking brake cable it's pretty much the same i just flipped this clip around but this is what i ended up with all right it says tighten the end links until

There's a little bit of crush on the sleeves i'm going to tighten these while it's on the ground oh yeah that's way better nice let's take it out drive it

See how it feels now and put a camera down there so that you can see i'm going to drive in the exact same place to see how the rear end reacts now well viewers i'm somewhat sad to report that it didn't quite work out as planned

Uh i drove the truck overnight uh with the new stabilizer bar in place uh not really spirited driving i mean it was nice to go around corners and it being kind of flat for a change that was that

Was cool flat meaning it didn't roll a lot uh but i came in this morning to you might have noticed that i forgot to tie the brake lines in the rear down again so i came in this morning to do that and

Add that to this video well let me show you what i found so i got it up in the air to find this if you haven't seen it already you might notice how this shackle is still where i left it whereas this

One has moved up significantly and the entire bar has shifted over here to the left so it moved over this far i need to try to to sort this

Now i don't know if that's because of the uh well the angle that i had on the stabilizer bar that i had to maintain i had a thought yesterday after the fact a couple of thoughts actually that i

I considered adding to this video today and one of those was i've got all this thread hanging down here and i thought about well i don't need it all so i could just cut it shorter

Then i also had the thought well if i was somehow able to move this whole assembly up in other words thread the rod further up here i could actually move this whole thing up

Cut this shorter and have that that angle of attack that i was looking for that parallel to the ground stabilizer bar and also the ability to hook everything up so

I don't know if i'll be able to achieve that or not i'm going to try but i just thought i'd be remiss if i didn't put this in the video that you know at least with me this happened now

I could spot weld these to the axle tubes if it came to that i'd rather not go there if i don't have to but if i do well i do and one of the reasons is is from everything i've read

Welding on axle tubes can cause issue because the metal can warp and warp the axle tube causing issues so i'm concerned about that but first i'll try and move it and see what i can

Sort out as far as getting uh this in here a little bit better i'll report back with what i find sorry i didn't roll camera i i wasn't really sure what i was up against but this was a lot easier than i thought

All i did was loosen the fasteners while i took off the lock nuts loosen the pad fasteners and just went in here with a pry bar and moved things around and i've got things back into position now i will admit that i didn't torque

These this time i just ran them down with my half inch impact until i felt that they were tight because i don't want them coming loose again and then i ran these down i also came back and tied down my brake

Line i used giant zip ties for this and i've used it in the past now on this side what i did was i didn't use this thing on the brake line here because i was afraid that if it moved it could pinch or break it

So basically i held it here and here so that if it did move it could move and it wouldn't hurt the line at all this side didn't seem to be a problem so it is staying where it is but this is

What i'll do i'm going to drive this around for a couple of days in fact i'm daily at now because i'm trying to break in the rear end gears i need 500 miles on these before i can start towing or doing any hot rodding or

Whatever with this so i'm driving this around on a daily basis at the moment i'll report back with what i find after a few days to see if that moved again all right i've been driving around for a couple of

Days and this has not slipped out at all however i'm not really happy with how the end link and everything is set up on this i don't like the angles i wish it were parallel to the ground

In order to do that i'm going to have to well sort of go off script so i'm going to do that see what i can figure out i'll take you along for the ride and we'll see what i end up with i'm

Beginning this process by removing the end links which i have already done i'm also going to take the rubber inserts out and the sleeves and all of this stuff off of here it occurs to me a couple of things i

Have a die and it's one half by 20 i believe is what these threads are i have a die that i could create threads up on this as far as i want so it looks like

What i what i'm going to try to do now is see if i can position the stabilizer bar correctly being parallel to the ground and sort of mock it up and see where these bushings would land in that

Instance and then put it up in the air at full drop to see where the stabilizer bar gets placed if it's even possible i'm going to start with that so right now when the truck is all the

Way up in the air the stabilizer bar comes to about here but if i raise it up on the links it's going to come up higher so it could come in contact with the top of the differential there

Which is my concern so i'm trying to figure out how high i can actually get these up at this angle and still make all this work because so what i drill another hole in the frame

Big deal that's not going to hurt anything so i'm just going to see if there's any way that i can do this and get it mounted on there correctly if not i'm going to put it all back

Together and call it a day i strip these end links down to their bare components and now i'm going to mock everything up on the truck with the stabilizer bar parallel to the ground to see if it also works with it

Up in the air here's a stabilizer bar on the ground in a neutral position i just no nuts or anything just put the bushing and the washer on top and i'm going to

Put these into here and mark on the frame where that hole is but i'm also going to mark on the stabilizer bar where this ends up so that when i mock this up like so when it's on the truck

I'll have an idea where everything sits while it's on the ground i'm going to do this on both sides and i'm going to mark these links left and right now it's up in the air so i'm going to

Take my right side and link and i'm going to place it you see that mark on the frame there i'll place the top here and i'm going to move the stabilizer bar up to the point where

This bushing and everything is compressed and see if it's able to move into that position if it is then i'll be able to move ahead if not then what i'm going to have to do is

Reposition these mounts further up so that this bar can come further to rest back on the top of the differential more like it showed in the instructions with this angle being about 65 degree or 60 degrees going this

Way right now i'm at about 10 there's no way it's ever going up that high it's quite far away all right so the stabilizer bar

Is positioned as high up as it can possibly go if we put this where it goes and put this bushing where it's supposed to go which is about there you can see there's

A substantial amount of space there like so a tune of about maybe three four inches that i'd have to move it in order to get it into that position beginning to wonder if i'll just go back

To the original setup because but it's i don't think i have enough adjustment in that stabilizer bar to bring it up that high and not hit the differential but it's hitting the differential now

So i'd need to go up substantially higher and i just don't see it happening but at least i looked into it and at least i tried here's what i ended up with i ended up removing the top lock nut and

That allowed me to move this nut all the way up to the top i didn't feel it was necessary because well this is backed up against the top of the threads it's not going anywhere i tightened everything when it was on

The ground not up in the air like this and it seemed to give me a better crush on these because this bar has to move up and down within these bushings so don't over tighten them

And i suggest doing it on the ground where they're not stressed as you can see up in the air they're stressed like this the final angle isn't horrible you know i wish it was better

I think this is good as i can make it on this truck but i mean you're going to figure out what's best for you and your application mainly what i was working against is the space between the top of the

Differential and the stabilizer bar here but i'm happy with the way it turned out for sure well i am happy to report that after two weeks of driving the stabilizer bar has not moved on the differential since i

Tightened it down last time and the truck is doing great i replaced every bushing every ball joint on this suspension every tie rod end and nothing has made more of an improvement than this rear stabilizer bar now i

Wanted to give you this angle i know i gave you some under the truck shots and stuff but i i can't stress enough how this has really changed the truck dramatically like i said out of all those things i

Did and i lowered it two inches in the front and four inches in the rear but just how stable it is now on the road it's fantastic i mean it was never this flat before i would be sliding back and forth on the seat

It would be an issue but not anymore and i am extremely happy so if you're considering doing this i say just do it now back to you eric i'm just going to come right out and say it

If you're considering doing a rear stabilizer bar on your gmt-400 or obs or whatever you want to call it truck do it just flat out do it this has improved the handling of this truck so much it's it's not even funny and

It's not even set up correctly if you will also you need to take into account that my truck has been lowered but i mean we saw that this rear stabilizer bar isn't that much smaller than what's

On the front and it does a tremendous amount as far as eliminating body roll in this truck it's it's kind of awesome i'm not sliding all over on the bench seat every anymore as i try to make you know the

On-ramps on the highway that kind of thing it's way flatter in those corners and i think ultimately it will also be safer when hauling loads and things like that so if you're considering this i i strongly

Suggest it take your time set things up i wish i would have been able to set this up more properly but even at these angles it's working really really good so do what you got to do to make it happen

But you know what you need to do i don't know if i mispronounced this earlier in the video but it's actually hellwig is the name of the company that produces a stabilizer bar i'll link that down in the description

Along with additional information that might be useful to you but once again don't hesitate if you're thinking about doing this because this has been one of the most significant improvements to the suspension on this

Truck bar none see what i did there anyway if you have additional questions or want to know stuff check the descriptions i always put stuff down there including a link to air at thecarguycom if you have

Automotive questions not covered here please be sure to like comment subscribe share the video with the world appreciate it when you do that be safe have fun stay dirty thank you so much for watching today and i'll see you

Next time

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