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Many stock vehicles came from the factory with coil-spring suspensions. If you look closely at the links that attach the axle to the chassis, you wont see the spherical rod-ends like those used on many off-road vehicles. Instead, what you see is a simple bushing, like on a leaf-spring. The bushing has the ability to pivot, which will allow straight up and down axle movement, but it does have much ability to rotate/twist. Is it the rotating/twisting action of a spherical rod-end that allows a rock-crawler axle to articulate the way it does??? Lets face it, a stock vehicles can articulate to a point, but a "purpose-built" rock buggy can have insane amount of articulation! Is it the spherical rod-ends that allow for so much of this articulation????
 

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MonsterGM said:
Many stock vehicles came from the factory with coil-spring suspensions. If you look closely at the links that attach the axle to the chassis, you wont see the spherical rod-ends like those used on many off-road vehicles. Instead, what you see is a simple bushing, like on a leaf-spring. The bushing has the ability to pivot, which will allow straight up and down axle movement, but it does have much ability to rotate/twist. Is it the rotating/twisting action of a spherical rod-end that allows a rock-crawler axle to articulate the way it does??? Lets face it, a stock vehicles can articulate to a point, but a "purpose-built" rock buggy can have insane amount of articulation! Is it the spherical rod-ends that allow for so much of this articulation????
in a word: Yes.

But in reality there are alot of factors that contribute to how much articulation you get out of a suspension system. Also don't get cought up in the ramp champ craze... what looks cool isnt always best in the real world.
 

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bushings tend to stiffen things up a little, thus the factory use for them. suspention design is why buggies articulate so well, and yes in most cases the use of a rod-end or spherical type bearing which enables more of a rotating degree as the suspention cycles.
 

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The rate of the springs used also plays a big role in articulation. The springs on offroad vehicles are much softer than stock or stock-replacement springs. But the big articulation numbers such springs provide usually don't happen without the rod ends or some other means of freeing up bushing bind.
 
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