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Old 12-09-2019, 05:10 PM #1
Blue4Fun Blue4Fun is offline
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Southern Style Bumper and Bilstein Lift Experience

OK, so here is my recent experience with buying a new front bumper and having a lift done.

Bumper: Southern Style Slimline
Winch: Warn Zeon 10K S Platinum
Shocks: Bilstein 5160/6112
Front Springs: Bilstein 650 lbs
Rear Springs: Dobinson 1.5 Lift
Upper Control Arms: JBA High Caster

Bumper: This was a shit show from start to finish. I stupidly ordered from Vivid Racing. They told me I should have it by 8 weeks. When I finally checked it was told 8-10 by Southern Style. This became 10-12, and by the time they showed up it was 14 weeks from order to delivery. When the bumper showed up, their powder coat shop screwed up and then spray painted over the bumper. When it was packed by Southern Style, it developed markings from the wrapping all over the bumper and was sticky to the touch. I had to take it in to another shop and have them strip and re-powder coat it. That was an additional week without. Southern Style did refund $165. The cost of the powder coat was $220, so this cost me an extra 85 bucks. I also ordered their "premium" wire kit for the light bar. During the installation the shop told me that the on off switch plug's power wire and wire next to it had been crimped together. As a result when they wired it up the entire switch melted in my dash. I had to pay for a new wire harness, and that cost me another $50. Finally, when they put the bumper on, the drivers side fascia had about an inch of a gap between the bumper and the front fascia. The passenger side lined up perfectly. This could be due to a couple of issues. The bracket that attaches to the frame that they supply was bent at the wrong angle, is too long, or that the rear welds that attach to the bumper weren't lined up. I am going to see if they will send me a replacement bracket for the front left.

Bumper Summary: I still think its one of the best front bumpers on the market. I didn't have a winch with a clutch, so I thought it was lame to have a bumper with cutouts. I was disappointed that I went through Vivid to place the order. I was disappointed that Southern Style said that they make a bumper and that the powder coating is not their problem. I disagree. They make a product that their name is tied to. They also should have caught that before it shipped.

Shocks: Couldn't be happier. Drive like butter on the road, can still fill some of the classic smaller bumps, but it definitely eats up the imperfections. Have yet to test off-road.

Rear Dobinson Springs: I think that this was a little to confusing, but some of that is just due to the fact that its not really talked about anywhere. Their 1.5'' lift springs are actually 1.75'' in trucks without 3rd row. Its been raining heavily, but I swear it looks closer to 2''. I will go out and measure shortly. The reason this was overly stressful is because I was trying to figure out spring height for the front bilsteins as I was trying to maintain factory rake. Overall, like the feeling of the back end of the truck and excited about the increase of 10% in stiffness.

650lbs Front Bilstein Springs: This was funny. I called them and told them the weight I was adding and they suggested 650lbs. Also, after I bought them, apparently their springs say that they have an extra .5'' lift buried in their manual. This was screwing with me because again I was trying to maintain stock rake. I called and they said that the .5 increase would be if you didn't add the additional 130 lbs of weight up front from the bumper or winch. So the shop ended up having to go essentially to the second highest setting possible on my shocks because the front end was dropping so low. They had to take them back off and readjust the springs and then put them back on. Another reason why I was glad I paid someone with skills to do the work. I now wish I would have gone with the 700lbs springs because of the fact I still feel like I have the stock nosedive. I should point out that you have to buy these springs separately as they wont swap out the 600lbs springs that come with the 6112s. *I do have rubbing now with my front tires on the rear mudflaps. I thought this is odd because I have stock height tires Goodyear Duratracks.

JBA Upper Control Arms: These things are freaking awesome. Period. They handle fantastic on the road. I got to feel some of the increased articulation going to get the family Christmas Tree. Very happy with this decision and 3.85 degrees of caster.
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Southern Style Bumper and Bilstein Lift Experience-photo-1-jpg  Southern Style Bumper and Bilstein Lift Experience-photo-2-jpg  Southern Style Bumper and Bilstein Lift Experience-phto-3-jpg  Southern Style Bumper and Bilstein Lift Experience-phto-4-jpg 
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Old 12-09-2019, 07:47 PM #2
batex batex is offline
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Thanks very much for sharing your experience. Iím thinking about doing similar modifications to the off-road premium I just put a deposit on.
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Old 12-09-2019, 08:31 PM #3
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What model Dobinsons rear springs did you go with? C59-505ís? Just curious.....
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2019 TRD ORP Mag Grey - ADS Coilovers and Shocks w/Remote Resiís, Dobinsons C59-505 rear springs / UCAís / Upper and Lower Rear Control Arms / Panhard Bar, AMP Research Steps, Herty Fabworks Banshee Front Bumper, Baja Designs SAE Fog Lights / ONX6+ 20Ē Bumper Light Bar, Xenon Depot HIDís, Pedal Commander, Rokblokz Mud-flaps, USR Smoked Tail Lights / Front and Rear Canbus LED Turn Signals, Full LED Interior Conversion.... more to come!
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Old 12-09-2019, 08:41 PM #4
llDemonll llDemonll is offline
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So the bumper didn't fit, the powdercoat was screwed up, you had to pay extra money and time to fix all these things, and you still consider it one of the best bumpers on the market?

edit: and the "premium" switch you ordered was garbage

Last edited by llDemonll; 12-09-2019 at 08:49 PM.
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