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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I posted a thread about these last week looking for input and there were no posts so I decided to take a risk and ordered these to see what they were all about, this is my review thread of the unboxing and first few steps of the install. It will be a running thread with pictures as you read.

This is a link to the company's website but if you call you can get a better price, what's even more crazy is that these ship for free.

Side Protection Truck Champ Side Armor Part Number 16005 - TruckChamp

When these arrived the box was slightly beat up but the rails inside were really well packaged, tightly wrapped in foam and taped up with close to a roll of packing tape, I had to use a razor knife to cut through the multiple layers:







Once I got the wrapping all off and inspected the rails I was really impressed! The quality of the welds and powder coat was almost perfect I only saw a tiny mark on the underside of one of the rails that had a small bit of the powder coat rubbed off which probably happened during transit. The rails are E-coated before powder coat so there shouldn't be any issues with rust but if there is I will hit it with a shot of bed liner





At this point it was a little to late to begin the install so I figured I would start the next day... unfortunately a hot water tank replacement took priority so I didn't get as far as I wanted with the install.

These come with (16) 3/8" self tapping bolts but I being the engineer that I am wanted to change the hardware a little so off the hardware store I went to get some supplies.

I decided since I had to drill the frame for the install I would go with drilled and tapped holes with fine thread bolts instead of the self tapping bolts, are the self tappers bad? No... but I just feel more comfortable with threaded bolts. I purchased a Q sized drill bit and a 3/8-24 tap along with (16) 3/8-24 x 1" grade 8 bolts and flat washers. Cost me roughly $37 but it was worth the cost to do the install the way I wanted.

I got the side rails in place and clamped them with wide jaw vise-grips, fine tuned the spacing between the pinch seem and marked the holes. While they still in place I center punched the frame with my spring loaded center punch.

I Removed the rails and began drilling, I started small and bumped up to a 1/4" bit and then finally the Q bit, once I had all 8 holes on the drivers side drilled I got my tap and ratchet and started tapping the holes, This worked great and the frame is just thick enough to support threads.

Here is a picture of the frame that has been marked and drilled:





Unfortunately with most of the day lost with the water heater project it was starting to get dark so I called it a day with the install. I didn't install the rail since I did not want to drive around with only one side on.

I plan on getting back to this today after work or tomorrow depending on the weather.

This thread will be updated following the rest of the install steps, as well as finished pictures. I just wanted to share with the members here what was done so far.

For those of you looking for a beefy set of side rails for a very reasonable price, these could be what your looking for. Wait for the finished pictures and such but as of right now I am very satisfied.

These were purchased for $214.99 shipped to my door for those of you who might be curious. A steal in my eyes since shipping seems to run anywhere between $50-$100 for most other companies to ship side rails.

As stated this thread will be updated soon once I continue the install.

-Drew
 

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Very interested. Whats the weight?
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
They were listed on eBay for $229.99 shipped via eBay but I called in and talked o a manager with truck champ, they are the distribution company and sell under 3 different seller names on eBay. I didnt want to buy them through eBay so I Googled the company and called in, I must say that the customer service is also very good. I explained I would post a review on a few forums which could result in them selling a few more sets he agreed to give me an extra $15 discount making them $214.99 for me. Not sure if you can get them for the same price but here is the link to these on eBay listing for the $229.99 price.

ROCK CRAWLER Rocker Side Armor Rocker Rail JEEP WRANGLER JK Unlimited TEXT BLACK | eBay
 

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I don't think I'm a fan of that mounting method at all . . . . Most rails mount directly with the existing body mount bolts. Do the bolts here go all the way through the frame, or just through one side? Either way, doesn't seem like a very good option to actually support the weight of the jeep in the event in drops on something . . .
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
These are made over seas but the quality is very good. Not trying to be smart but it seems like a virus on this forum lately with the made in USA statement. Personally I don't care where my products come from... but that's just me.

This company has been in business for something like 30 years, and these come with a 5 year warranty..
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
As far as the mounting points, the bolts go in nly one side of the frame. There is no way to have the bolts go through atleast on the passenger side due to the gas tank skid being right against the frame rail. I too it upon myself and bumped up the mounting hardware to grade * fine thread rather then using the supplied self tapping bolts. My thought behind that is the fine thread will give more threads in the frame then a course thread bolt and resist pull out.

I'm not worried about these pulling out and if I lay the weight of the Jeep on these and something happens then I'll come up with another mounting solution when the time comes.
 

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Thanks for the info, you helped me make a decision. I will spend just a tad more for the Ace sliders, but glad you found some that work for you, at a good price.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Unfortunately I was not able to finish the install yesterday but I'm hoping I can get back to it today and finish this up. I will post back once these are all installed with pictures.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Well I got off work and headed straight home, I got the tools out and finished drilling and tapping of the 8 holes on the passenger side:



Once that was done I grabbed one of the rails and laid it across my legs and shimmied under the jeep, I got the mounting plates lined up and started a few bolts in each one and then laid down and tightened them all evenly:



After I got the rail adjusted ( I used the knuckle of my middle finger as a spacer) I torqued the bolts tight. I checked the clearance on the body and all of the mounts and while these are close they don't touch so the fitment on these is pretty good. Both sides are evenly spaced from the body mount washers and the rear control arm bolt.

I stood back to see how they look and I must say that I'm very happy with them :thumb: I stepped up on to the rail, grabbed onto the door and did a nice bounce and there was no movement at all, I'm a big guy at 250 so I have no doubt that these will be plenty strong for my tiny wife to use to get in and also with no movement these should protect the rockers.



I installed the Drivers side rail and everything lined up just right. Even tho these are made overseas they have the design right because all of the bends are in the correct spot and the fitment is really good, Grated alot of that come from the installer and how careful they are with the layout and marking of the holes.

While some of the guys here probably won't like the idea of drilling into the frame it's no different then cutting the pinch seem to clear 35's or even trimming the factory fenders into flat style flares. I was careful in the installation of these and I don't feel any regrets buying and installing these.

Here is a final picture of the rails and the Jeep from a distance:



Thanks for following this thread and feel free to post any feedback as I will try to answer any questions.

- Drew
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
And for anyone thinking that the Jeep looks lowered it's not I promise, I installed 1.5" wheel spacers and I guess now that the wheels/tires stick out further it makes the tires closer to the rolled edge of the fenders instead of them sitting in "under" the fenders.
 

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I don't agree with your sentiment that people promoting products and services that originated in their country of birth are propagating a virus of some sort....not keeping our own dollars in our country is what has contributed greatly to a the financial mess we are currently in.

However - I really DO like the attention to detail you took on your install, grade A my man. Finished product looks nice (even though they are commies ;) )
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
I don't agree with your sentiment that people promoting products and services that originated in their country of birth are propagating a virus of some sort....not keeping our own dollars in our country is what has contributed greatly to a the financial mess we are currently in.

However - I really DO like the attention to detail you took on your install, grade A my man. Finished product looks nice (even though they are commies ;) )
Thanks for the positive feedback about my install. I give alot of attention to detail to everything I do so that I can control atleast that portion of a job.

I do agree with you in regards to the financial mess statement and while I will usually choose products made in USA over imported products simply put in this particular case I couldn't pass up an absolutely great deal on what turned out to be a really well made product. There was a little spiff in the deal for me to get these rails and post some feedback.

When I said the Made in USA statement seems like a virus on this forum I in no way mean any disrespect. I just keep reading it posted and like I said I will usually choose American made over imported products however its at the point where we cant do anything about it except individually choose to purchase certain products over others to keep our money in the land of the free.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Love the look and prism structure. Just wish they would would make them mount like ace's or better yet, if Ace would make theirs like this with their mounts.
Thanks for your feedback, when I first saw these rails I was drawn to their design, the third (middle) support really completes the look and I was thinking that if I ever get into a hairy situation having that added support might keep the rails from bending.

As for the frame mounting plates rather then the boxed body mounts found on other rails I think they will work pretty much one in the same, the frame is probably the strongest part of the vehicle so I guess the weak link then becomes the hardware, to alleviate the fear of the bolts shearing off I chose to go with threaded holes and grade 8 bolts rather then the supplied self tapping bolts.
 
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