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Honest feedback on Stainless Uniballs and road salt

Discussion in 'Long Travel Suspension' started by jwarr, Jun 9, 2021.

  1. Jun 9, 2021 at 9:30 AM
    #1
    jwarr

    jwarr [OP] Well-Known Member

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    We are in New England and are thinking LT. Anyone have any real experience with the FK WSSX16T stainless uniballs in areas that heavily salt and sand in the winter? I see that the ball is 400 series and the race is 17-4 PH, both of which will rust under the right conditions.

    How do they hold up if daily driven through the winter months assuming reasonable attempts to keep them clean and lubricated (this does not mean rinsing and scrubbing them with a tooth brush after every drive in January when it is 5 degrees outside...)

    Any real world experience?
     
  2. Jun 9, 2021 at 9:41 AM
    #2
    littlefish

    littlefish Buzz, your girlfriend...

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    I don't have an real world answer for you. Common advice for us in the NE is to avoid uniballs and always get ball joints. Are there any LT kits that use ball joints?
     
  3. Jun 9, 2021 at 12:09 PM
    #3
    Shiryas

    Shiryas Member

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    I am eager to learn of first hand experience as well. While Colorado does not use a lot of salt (mostly its gravel with a small amount mixed in) we do use Magnesium Chloride a lot more. Its laid down pre-storm and during snow showers, one drawback is that its applied in liquid form and sticks to everything.

    Which means it gets into every crevice, thread, panel seam, and groomet, but does not powerwash out easily.

    My TC arms are currently BJ but i am lusting for the Uniball lowers to match the uppers.
     
  4. Jun 9, 2021 at 12:12 PM
    #4
    SR-71A

    SR-71A Define "Well-Known Member"

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    New England uses that a lot too. At least Northern regions. Its kind of synonymous. But yes, it is nasty shit and should not be used imo.
     
  5. Jun 9, 2021 at 12:14 PM
    #5
    Mark77

    Mark77 Well-Known Member

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    Have had Total chaos UCAs for ever on my Xterra. I only replaced them once because they got too squeaky. But the second set was beter for some reason, never made noise and nevwr needed to do much extra greasing.

    North East Ohio is 90 percent salt year round because of our winters.
     
  6. Jun 10, 2021 at 5:56 AM
    #6
    RonRon23

    RonRon23 Well-Known Member

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    Jd fabrication uses sealed uniballs for the pivots and ball joints that have boots as well for their long travel kits.
     
  7. Jun 11, 2021 at 5:42 AM
    #7
    jwarr

    jwarr [OP] Well-Known Member

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    Thanks, any other real experience in salt areas?
     
  8. Jun 13, 2021 at 10:58 AM
    #8
    tacomio877

    tacomio877 Active Member

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    I really dont think anti corrosion coatings get enough attention, cosmoline was developed for the military to preserve equipment, yet no one knows about it. I get that the joint has to articulate but under normal driving it wont really articulate enough to wipe off the coating, plus good old fluid film creeps so it might protect the joint even during deeper suspension travel. I dont know why 100% of people in the bad winter states dont know about fluid film/ cosmoline. my truck is 100% coated underneath and I live in a mild winter state. cosmoline is CRC corrosion prevention/Amsoil corrosion prevention btw

    Edit: also keeping the joint lubed with tri flow, I dont think enough LT guys lube the joint enough either
     
    SR-71A likes this.
  9. Jun 17, 2021 at 4:53 AM
    #9
    jwarr

    jwarr [OP] Well-Known Member

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    Do you know if they were the 1" SS versions? Is the xterra your daily? how long years/miles/winters did they go when they got squeaky? how did they look when you removed them? Thanks!
     
  10. Jun 17, 2021 at 6:15 AM
    #10
    Mark77

    Mark77 Well-Known Member

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    I honestly dont remember. Fhe Xterra was my daily for 16 years, with the tc ucas. Id not hesitate to buy them for my tacoma.
     
  11. Dec 3, 2021 at 12:19 PM
    #11
    concentric_killa

    concentric_killa Well-Known Member

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    I have been living in Utah since 2016. I seem to burn thru uniballs every 1.5-2 years. I am originally from SoCal and my first set lasted over 5 years. I have the Chaos +3.5 kit.
     
  12. Dec 8, 2021 at 7:54 AM
    #12
    clg

    clg Well-Known Member

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    Been through 3 northern Alberta winters with mine. We don't salt here, so can't comment on that but it gets hellishly cold and I've put a lot of highway miles on mine, most trucks are pretty rusted after a few years here. After 3 years of fairly diligent care I had one start to show some of the bearing lining, but otherwise they were in great shape. No corrosion, not clunking or squeaking. Overall I'm very happy.
     
  13. Jan 1, 2022 at 1:31 PM
    #13
    vanillion

    vanillion Well-Known Member

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    Where I live in BC we use a TON of salt and brine. I haven't had any issues with uniballs, my last lower set lasted me about 100,000kms, and uppers about 80,000kms. Just remember to clean them after wheeling and lube them with Tri-Flow or a similar Teflon lubricant.
     

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