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  #1  
Old 10-02-2012, 09:06 AM
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Mopar Side Steps - No go for off-roading

If you intend to go off-roading, don't get side steps, if you have them, get rid of them. I lost both of them on a Grade C/B trail. The brackets supporting the side steps are quite strong and I had thought they would provide some measure of rock protection but I was wrong. The bracket flanges are so deep that they catch on rocks rather than slide over them. The slightest twist to any of the brackets causes the rail to just pop off. The first photo shows the bent side step bracket. The second photo shows the side step rails in the bin... where they belong! I lost both rails on the one trail but on different descents. The second rail came off without any noticeable damage to the brackets. I'm definitely getting rock rails.

But it gets worse. On one of the descents, I was in Low1, Rock Mode, Off-road II and with Hill Descent on. One of the side step brackets caught on a rock step and almost stopped the Jeep. I don't know if it was coincidence, a fault or a deliberate attempt of the system to free the vehicle but it suddenly jumped into neutral, not the gear stick just the system. The Jeep took off. There were people below taking photos scattering in all directions. I hit the brakes and the system instantly popped back into Low1 Hill Descent and we were back under control again. Conventional off-road wisdom says that when descending in Low1 one has both feet on the floor well away from the brake and accelerator pedals. Because of this I was not as quick as I might have been in applying the brakes. On reflection, with ABS and sophisticated traction control, there is no reason why one can't use the brakes on descents and this is certainly what I'll be doing in future. When I got home I put the scanner on the Jeep expecting to find a host of error codes but there was nothing. So the message is that off-road, side-steps are not only a waste of money but can be downright dangerous. Perhaps Chrysler should issue a warning on this and put a sticker on the side steps.
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File Type: jpg _A010886.jpg (311.1 KB, 182 views)
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  #2  
Old 10-02-2012, 09:17 AM
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Re: Mopar Side Steps - No go for off-roading

Your better off getting something like this

Jeep Rockrails / Rock Sliders / Rocker panel protection, ZJ, WJ, WK, WK2.

Rocks will always win over plastic.
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Old 10-02-2012, 12:47 PM
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Re: Mopar Side Steps - No go for off-roading

Yeah -- rocks will damage anything. No warning needed. I do regret buying my side steps as well, but I don't intend to go rock hopping.
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Old 10-02-2012, 01:17 PM
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Re: Mopar Side Steps - No go for off-roading

waiting for running boards to be produced, if those don't work out. The Rocky Road supersliders might be the next best thing.
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Old 10-02-2012, 04:48 PM
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Re: Mopar Side Steps - No go for off-roading

Quote:
Originally Posted by spyder873 View Post
Your better off getting something like this

Jeep Rockrails / Rock Sliders / Rocker panel protection, ZJ, WJ, WK, WK2.

Rocks will always win over plastic.
They sound good. Any idea how they compare to the Mopar rock rails?
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  #6  
Old 10-02-2012, 04:54 PM
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We have them on our commander and they are very heavy. D.o.m. tube bars. 3/16 supports. And the square tube is thick.
I have had some problems with rocky road. Namely on some OME shocks but i will tell you these are worth the money and they ship out quick.


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Old 10-02-2012, 04:56 PM
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As far as how they would compare, i would put this against any sliders out there.

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Old 10-04-2012, 01:50 AM
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Re: Mopar Side Steps - No go for off-roading

Mopar side step brackets are made out of 4mm plate but this is what they could look like after going off-roading.
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Old 10-04-2012, 07:45 AM
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Re: Mopar Side Steps - No go for off-roading

Trophys !!! Hang them in garage or hang a shelf with them . lol
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Old 10-04-2012, 07:54 AM
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Re: Mopar Side Steps - No go for off-roading

I had a '94 grand cherokee that I offroaded.... I did the same with my side steps. I got rock rails and would SLAM them, they were perfect. No issue.

now I wouldn't recommend rolling it into a tree... rock rails dont protect the top of the doors....
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Old 10-24-2012, 12:42 AM
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Thumbs up Re: Mopar Side Steps - No go for off-roading

Quote:
Originally Posted by BobT View Post
If you intend to go off-roading, don't get side steps, if you have them, get rid of them. I lost both of them on a Grade C/B trail. The brackets supporting the side steps are quite strong and I had thought they would provide some measure of rock protection but I was wrong. The bracket flanges are so deep that they catch on rocks rather than slide over them. The slightest twist to any of the brackets causes the rail to just pop off. The first photo shows the bent side step bracket. The second photo shows the side step rails in the bin... where they belong! I lost both rails on the one trail but on different descents. The second rail came off without any noticeable damage to the brackets. I'm definitely getting rock rails.

But it gets worse. On one of the descents, I was in Low1, Rock Mode, Off-road II and with Hill Descent on. One of the side step brackets caught on a rock step and almost stopped the Jeep. I don't know if it was coincidence, a fault or a deliberate attempt of the system to free the vehicle but it suddenly jumped into neutral, not the gear stick just the system. The Jeep took off. There were people below taking photos scattering in all directions. I hit the brakes and the system instantly popped back into Low1 Hill Descent and we were back under control again. Conventional off-road wisdom says that when descending in Low1 one has both feet on the floor well away from the brake and accelerator pedals. Because of this I was not as quick as I might have been in applying the brakes. On reflection, with ABS and sophisticated traction control, there is no reason why one can't use the brakes on descents and this is certainly what I'll be doing in future. When I got home I put the scanner on the Jeep expecting to find a host of error codes but there was nothing. So the message is that off-road, side-steps are not only a waste of money but can be downright dangerous. Perhaps Chrysler should issue a warning on this and put a sticker on the side steps.
This thread has saved me money. I have an Overland due for delivery next week. I had ordered side steps. I have now cancelled the order for the side steps and ordered rock rails instead. Thank you.
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Old 11-01-2012, 06:03 AM
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Re: Mopar Side Steps - No go for off-roading

I don't go off roading in my Jeep but I have those damned chrome side steps on there. It wasn't something I wanted but the dealership threw them in since I didn't ask for them. I like the way they look, but that's all they are good for. I'm 5'11 and have to hop out of my Jeep over those f'ers, but i will tough through it because of the way they look lol. But where I saw in the 14' Overland Summit spy shots where the side rails have the chrome insert in them, if these can be fitted onto a 12' model it will be off with those chrome side side steps and on with those rails. Like I said the chrome side steps are purdy, but to me they aren't functional.
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