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I have never seen a chainline like that before. What's the advantage of that? Beautiful bike, btw! Have fun ripping!
 

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Discussion Starter #523
I have never seen a chainline like that before. What's the advantage of that? Beautiful bike, btw! Have fun ripping!
It's called "HPP" (High Pivot Point). Unlike most F/S bikes, the main pivot on this frame is at the top of the rear triangle (not at the bottom near the bottom bracket like most F/S designs). When the rear suspension compresses, the rear wheel upward AND backward, so the wheelbase actually gets longer (not shorter like others). Because of this, the chain has to loop around the main pivot location to accommodate for chain growth.


If you understood that, great. If not, yeah... good talk LOL
 

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I hear ya cluckin'! I ride a Trek Fuel EX with a low pivot design (near the BB) which like you said has a shorter pivot-to-axle distance upon compression. But with the HPP, couldn't the rear der cage accommodate the increase in chainstay length? I might be missing something in picturing the suspension travel still...

It's called "HPP" (High Pivot Point). Unlike most F/S bikes, the main pivot on this frame is at the top of the rear triangle (not at the bottom near the bottom bracket like most F/S designs). When the rear suspension compresses, the rear wheel upward AND backward, so the wheelbase actually gets longer (not shorter like others). Because of this, the chain has to loop around the main pivot location to accommodate for chain growth.


If you understood that, great. If not, yeah... good talk LOL
 

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Discussion Starter #525
I hear ya cluckin'! I ride a Trek Fuel EX with a low pivot design (near the BB) which like you said has a shorter pivot-to-axle distance upon compression. But with the HPP, couldn't the rear der cage accommodate the increase in chainstay length? I might be missing something in picturing the suspension travel still...
Remember that a chain is a constant length. Your Trek has a conventional suspension design (low main pivot) and a conventional chain "route" - meaning the "upper chain" segment goes from cassette to crank/chainring, and the "lower chain" segment goes from crank/chainring to cassette (through the rear derailleur). When your suspension is compressed, the low pivot makes the rear wheel move up and forward. The "upper chain" distance gets shorter and the "lower chain" distance gets longer. The rear derailleur takes care of this by using more chain underneath, by taking up the slack from the upper part. Practically 99% of all full suspension bikes work like this.

But with HPP, when compressed the rear triangle moves upward and REARward. Because the wheelbase increases, BOTH distances of the chain (upper part and lower part) get longer. Since the chain is a fixed length, with a standard chain route you would basically snap the upper chain every time the suspension compresses. So to resolve this, the HPP design runs the chain so that it has not two segments, but three. The "upper chain" segment goes from cassette to upper idler gear. "lower chain" segment goes from crank/chainring to cassette. The third "front chain" segment connects the idler gear to the crank/chainring. In other words -they made the chain route a triangle shape... which coincidentally matches the triangle shape of the rear suspension! So no matter how you rotate the rear triangle, the chain goes with it freely - no chain kickback, even at full compression.

Also, I love talking bike tech. HAHA ::grin::
 

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Discussion Starter #527
Question about your Rigid LED fog lights... If I get the kit below, the only thing i'd have to do is shave off those 4 tabs you showed in your pictures?
https://headlightrevolution.com/rigid-industries-2009-2015-nissan-frontier-fog-light-kit/

From your pictures it looks like I could use these to really supplement my headlights, and $300 is alot less than $900 for projectors.
Yessir... well you also have to run the new wiring harness to the battery, and either splice into your OEM fog switch or run the new one.
 

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Discussion Starter #528 (Edited)
Did a quick test with a new gadget - a Nintendo Super NES Classic. The output is HDMI (which I have an HDMI input on my Kenwood head unit) and it is powered by a micro-USB cable, which I tested and found that it only draws a little over 2-amps, so it can be powered easily by one of the head unit's USB ports.

I'm planning on placing the main unit somewhere behind the center console for a stealth install, but it will have to wait until I get a pair of 8bitdo 2.4-Ghz wireless controllers (already pre-ordered them). The wireless controllers are required for the install because they have added a controller "shortcut" function to go back to the main game menu... without this, the only way to reset the console back to the main game menu is by physically hitting the "reset" switch on the console itself! I don't know why Nintendo didn't implement a controller-based "home" button or shortcut to get back to the main game menu. But anyhow, this mod will have to wait until December when the 2.4-GHz controllers are shipped.

UPDATE: Install completed, see here:
(#584) Super NES Classic Retro Gaming Console



The Super NES Classic is really small.


Main menu on my head unit screen.


Might be useful to decide arguements LOL
 

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Last weekend the nice UPS lady dropped of my brand new Rigid Industries D-Series LED Driving Lamps:


They say brighter is always better… when it’s dark.

After researching all the different kinds of lamps they have (and they have a lot!) I selected the DOT/SAE certified versions, which meet federal requirements to be used on the road. In other words: they’re street legal, which is what I was looking for since I was going to install them into the factory fog lamp locations. These lights have a wide angle and a sharp, flat cutoff at the top. They’re also pretty hefty - the aluminum housings have some weight to them, they feel really solid. One Rigid D-Series is more than twice the weight of the OEM fog lamp and the Morimoto fog lamp combined - makes sense seeing as the OEM and Morimoto are almost entirely made of plastic. Here’s a pic of the OEM Nissan fog lamp next to the Morimoto XB-Series Type-S LED lamp, next to the new Rigid D-Series:


Left to right: OEM Frontier, Morimoto XB Type-S, Rigid Industries D-Series

And now let’s get to the install. The first thing I did was remove the Morimoto XB-Series fog lamps from the truck (sold already, don't ask). Next, instead of using the included Rigid wire harness, I made my own custom length harness using 14-ga wire and a relay socket (no pics, it’s boring to look at) and made the necessary connections to be able to run the D-Series lamps off of my factory fog lamp switch. 12v main power and ground were hooked up to my BlueSea fuse block. With the wiring out of the way, it was time to install the actual LED driving lamps.

The kit included a Nissan Frontier-specific mounting bracket and hardware, but it’s not 100% bolt-on; some mild modifications needed to be done to the OEM fog lamp brackets. No problem - I used my Dremel and trimmed off the 4 guide tabs on the bracket. Doing this doesn’t affect the OEM fog lamp mounting, so if I ever want to go back to stock, I still can:


Trimmed fog lamp bracket on the left, stock bracket on the right.

Next was the actual D-Series lamp and adaptor plate, which attached to the OEM fog lamp bracket using the OEM Torx screws. The plate had a nice textured finish to it:


Metal adaptor plate attaches to the OEM factory fog lamp bracket.

Finally, the front trim plate. The installation of the front trim plate was simple but there was a noticeable gap between the trim plate and where the mounting screws go. If I tightened the screws too much, it would bend the trim plate. I first used a combination of the included metal washer and five 0.5mm plastic shims to get the spacing just right to where I can tighten down the mounting screws properly. Then I realized I was putting thin plastic shims up against an aluminum heatsink housing (not good!) so I took it all apart again. After a little searching in the garage, I found some 2.5mm aluminum spacers to resolve the issue.


Initially I used plastic shims, then realized the mistake and I replaced them with aluminum, heh.

With the whole thing put together, time to bolt them inside the bumper:


Rigid D-Series assembly installed into the front bumper. King reservoir cameo.

From the outside, they’re not that noticeable or flashy when the truck is just sitting there. The only telltale sign that these are aftermarket is the square lens shape inside a round bumper hole:


Squares in round holes. Okay.

Of course, if you actually look closely, you’ll see the Rigid brand name stamped into the aluminum frame:


They shaped the front trim plate so it won’t block the Rigid Industries name.


They turn on, so that meant the wiring was right, heh.

I still have to get the aim right, that evening after I installed them I fired them up for the first time and wow - they're really bright! However they were aimed way too high, so I'll have to properly aim them next. When I get the aim corrected, I'll post photos to show the end result. Side note: now I really have to do something about my headlamps, because the light color of the Phillips halogens don't look right with the Rigid 5500k LEDs!
::grin::

EDIT: After installing the D-Series LED driving lamps, I spent the next Saturday reconfiguring the wiring of my high beams, D-Series LED lamps, the Xterra Switch, and the PIAA 520 Lamps. Afterward, my front lights now work as follows:

- PIAA 520 Lamps activated by headlamp high beams only (no more dedicated switched control)
- Rigid D2 LED Lamps normally activated by OEM fog switch on the light stalk; AND
- Rigid D2 LED Lamps optionally activated independently using the Xterra Switch
- Headlamps, Rigid D2 LED Lamps, and PIAA 520 Lamps can all be on at the same time, if needed
- Xterra Switch now connected to a 12v switched power source
- Rigid D2 LED Lamps can be turned on at any time as long as the key is in ACC or ON

The last two I did as a safety - as long as the light stalk is on "OFF" and the key is out of the ignition, I don't have to worry about a dead battery if I accidentally leave the D-Series LEDs on.

Light output photos in post #438
Anymore details or pics on how you went about wring the fogs to both switches? Id like to set mine up the same way. Also, you convinced me to go with the rigids however, I might have to make custom brackets for them.
 

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Discussion Starter #531
Anymore details or pics on how you went about wring the fogs to both switches? Id like to set mine up the same way. Also, you convinced me to go with the rigids however, I might have to make custom brackets for them.
I'll whip up a diagram for you in the next couple days
 

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Discussion Starter #533 (Edited)

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Here you go... everything below the dashed line is in the cabin, everything above the dashed line is in the engine bay. I also added this diagram to the original Rigid Industries D-Series LED Driving Lamps post.

Thats awesome man, thank you very much! I ordered the actual rigid fog mounts from Hefty Fab and plan to get those D2's in a day or two!
 

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Discussion Starter #535
EZ-Down struts arrived, took a look at them and after some brainstorming I have some small ideas to ponder first. Per usual I'll post photos and stuff when I get a chance to do the install.
 

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Discussion Starter #536 (Edited)
How-To: Install EZ-Down Tailgate Supports (10.25.17)

​After seeing the EZ-Down tailgate supports pop up on the forums recently, I decided to give them a try. I bought a pair of kits off Amazon.com for $21-each. The part number to search for is "SG325900EZ".


I wasn’t sure one would do it, so I purchased two kits.

TOOLS/PARTS USED
Installation is fairly basic, and should take less than 20 minutes, without rushing. You will need the tools listed below (#1-4) for a standard install; if you get the extra items (#5-12) then you can install the EZ-Strut kit exactly as I did.


Tools required to install; everything here I already had in my garage.

Required Tools (shown above)
1. Ratchet and 10mm, 12mm, 14mm sockets
2. 5mm and 6mm hex wrenches
3. Phillips screwdriver
4. Medium-sized needle-nosed pliers

Optional Items (shown below)
5. 1/2” drive breaker bar (highly recommended!)
6. 1/2” drive 14mm socket
7. Regular automotive grease
8. Anti-seize grease
9. Shop rag
10. 3/8” I.D. neoprene washers, 10 pcs.
11. About 2” of heat shrink tubing, 5/8” I.D. (before shrinking)
12. Heat gun or blowdryer (just for the shrink tubing)


Extra stuff I used for the installation.

STEP 1: Following the included basic instruction sheet, remove the LEFT side safety cable and bolt using your ratchet and a 12mm socket. I found that instead of trying to remove the cable first, it’s easiest to just unthread the bolt as-is, once you get the bolt out it will easily separate from the cable eyelet.

STEP 2: Using a 6mm hex Allen wrench, thread the new bolt and metal standoff into the bed side (thick lip towards the bed). Before installing the bolt I put a small dab of anti-seize on the bolt threads, and only went hand-tight on the bolt once it was flush.


You can see a small dab of anti-seize just threading into the hole.


The blue hex wrenches I use in this how-to are ParkTool PH-5 and PH-6.

STEP 3: Next was to replace the lower brake lamp retaining bolt. This is o alsquick and easy using a ratchet and a 10mm socket. Like the cable bolt, I also put a dab of anti-seize on the threads of the new round head bolt, then installed it per instructions with a Phillips screwdriver.


Removing the OEM brake lamp retaining bolt.


OEM bolt on the left, replacement bolt on the right.

STEP 4: Now on to the EZ-Down mounting bracket. The plastic guide just pops onto the bracket, and then you have to remove the tailgate bolt.


Plastic guide just presses onto the EZ-Down bracket.

This is where I strongly recommend having a 1/2” drive breaker bar and 14mm socket - the tailgate bolt is on there really tight! Also, the left side bolt requires you to pull upward to loosen it - but if you try with a regular-sized ratchet handle, you’ll just pull the whole tailgate up. Instead of struggling I just sat on the edge of the tailgate and easily broke the bolt loose with my old reliable breaker bar.


Breaker bars are very useful.




OEM tailgate bolt up top, replacement flathead bolt below.

STEP 5: The curved part of the EZ-Down bracket goes around the tailgate hinge. Line up the EZ-Down bracket bolt hole with the tailgate bolt hole, and install the new flathead bolt with a 6mm hex wrench( don’t forget the anti-seize!). As you tighten the new bolt down, the coned portion of the bolt will align the EZ-Down bracket perfectly into position. If you have any trouble lining up the new bolt with the threaded hole in the tailgate, try lifting the tailgate slightly; this will help get the new bolt started in the threads.


Tighten until the EZ-Down bracket is flush up against the tailgate bracket.

STEP 6: Here’s where I deviate again from the standard instructions. I noticed that the metal retaining tab on the upper eyelet was just clamped on. I didn’t like the fact that I could pop the tab off with just my fingers:


This metal tab isn’t attached very securely to the strut.


You can push the tab out of place with just a push of a finger.

Before installing the struts I decided to use some heat shrink tubing to hold the little metal tabs in place. First I slid a 1/2-inch piece of 5/8” I.D. (inner diameter) tubing over the strut body until it was over the retaining tab, the I used a heat gun to shrink it. Then I added a longer 1-inch piece that overlapped the strut body for good measure.


Heat shrink tubing slid over the tab.


After two layers of heat shrink tubing, it’s ready to install.

STEP 7: With the strut ready, I put a small dab of grease on the upper standoff, then popped the safety cable back on followed by the upper strut eyelet. I like how the added heat shrink on the strut actually makes it match in appearance with the safety cable.





STEP 8: Now for the bottom part of the installation - attaching the EZ-Down strut to the tailgate. First I put a small dab of grease on the bracket pivot post, but before attaching the strut I slid a pair of 3/8” neoprene washers onto the pivot post.


3/8” washers are slightly undersized, so you have to stretch them onto the post.

The inner diameter of the washers are slightly smaller than the diameter of the bracket pivot post; this was done on purpose. Because they are stretched onto the post, the outer edges of the washers can be “flipped outward” to apply some slight pressure to the lower strut eyelet, keeping it from rattling around…



…which makes for a nice vibration/sound dampener. With the washers in place I then slid the lower eyelet onto the pivot point, and used needle-nosed pliers to snap the E-clip in place.


Lower strut eyelet goes on…


…followed by the E-clip.

BONUS LEARN SOMETHING FUN FACT: All metal E-clips are “directional”. One side has a rounded edge, the other side has a squared edge. To figure out what side is what, just pinch the e-clip between two fingers and move your fingertips - the side of the e-clip that catches onto your skin is the squared side.

That said, when you install the e-clip, make sure the rounded edge is against the strut (squared edge facing outward). The rounded edge will not grab like the squared edge, so the e-clip will less likely pop off on its own.

Here is a photo of how the lower parts look when assembled:



…and here’s a photo of the final result:



At first I only installed the left side EZ-Down strut, then checked the speed at which the tailgate came down and I didn’t think it was enough. Also, like the example videos showing how the EZ-Down works, the first 1/3 or so of the tailgate dropping open is at normal speed - then all of a sudden it slows down as the strut catches and does its thing. This sudden “jolt” also pulls the upper eyelet back into the groove in the standoff, which I suspect adds to wear and tear and possible strut failure. With that in mind I went ahead and installed the second EZ-Down strut on the right side (exact same steps as the left) and now the tailgate slows down much quicker and with no tailgate jolt.

Also, a quick note about the heat shrink mod: I did contact @Frontier510 through this thread for a pair of add-on braces (thank you again, sir) but this was after the heat shrink idea popped into my head, so I’m trying my idea first. Over time I’ll see if it lasts, but if not then I can install the add-on brace and revise my write-up above.
 

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Discussion Starter #538
I've never heard of heat spring tubing. Where can I get some?

Sent from my SM-N910S using Tapatalk
I don't know hat you're talking about LOL ::wink::
 

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Absolutely stunning write up on the EZ down tailgate install @raine. Love the parts lists pics with annotations and the creativity on the heat shrink.
 
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