Welcome to bulletproofrearsteer.com

Welcome to our website. First and foremost our steering system is intended for off-road use only. Installation should include a switch to turn the system off when driving on the road. We have taken 15 years of research and development from our sister company “AutoBacking Trailer technologies LLC” with our steering Trailer and have developed another industry first, a completely wireless self centering rear steering system. Our patent pending internally valved steering cylinder requires no electronics, for reliability that is unmatched in the industry.

Considering the fact that most off-road vehicles are in some very inhospitable environments, we found that being off road enthusiasts ourselves that a simple rock or branch in the wrong place can ruin your day. Rock Racing and off-road events have always been a favorite past time of our family, but we have seen more than once an off road vehicle with rear steering that should have had a huge advantage turn into a huge disadvantage when the system failed. Our truly bulletproof rear steering cylinder changes the entire game when it comes to reliability. Everything that makes our cylinder self center is inside the cylinder itself. No wires, no sensors, no relays, and no problems.

How it Works

This steering cylinder is unlike anything anyone has ever seen. The piston inside the cylinder is internally valved and actually moves hydraulic fluid through the piston when pressurized by the pump. This design is what allows it to self center once the pump pressure is turned off after making a turn. There are coil springs fixed to the ends of the steering cylinder that will not let it steer unless it generates a considerable amount of hydraulic force. The coil springs return the same force to make the steering automatically go back to center. Resulting in unparalleled safety and reliability. And of course a self centering steering system without any electronics.

Humvee Self Centering Rear Steer Kit

Our first version of our self centering double ended steering cylinder is for the H-1 Humvee/Hummer. Considering that our test vehicle is an H1 and it is one of the only vehicles that we know of that comes from the factory with a rear steering axle. This is the vehicle that inspired us to take on this project in the first place. The H1 cylinder will come with a mounting plate and cylinder ends to fit the factory tire rod ends of the Humvee. We have even found that when our cylinder is mounted with our Humvee mounting plate the factory tire rod ends will work. Just simply remove the factory bushing ends from the rear radius arms and replace them with Humvee tie rod ends. transforming them to tie rod bars.

All off road vehicles

Our second cylinder that we are offering will come with the industry standard off road clevis joint ends that accepts Heim joints commonly used in the off-road industry for offroading rigs.

Installation of rear steering on any vehicle should of course only be done by a professional. Therefore we will not instruct any forms of installation. This is due to the huge range of vehicles and axle components that may be used with our self centering cylinder. Our goal is to provide you with a self centering rear steering cylinder that is easy to install and more reliable than anything ever made. simply mount the cylinder, steering linkage, attach the two hydraulic lines and you’re ready to go.

Installation of Bulletproof Rear Steer

These instructions below are for the installation of the Bulletproof rear steering cylinder behind the rear differential.

Remove rear radius rod Assembly. Fig #1

Remove bushing ends.  Fig#2

Replace them with Humvee right hand thread tie rod ends. Set aside for later.  

Remove steering arm /covers. Fig. #3

 

Swap one side for the other and reinstall.

Jack rear tires of Humvee off the ground.

Remove the four lower half-inch nuts (of the six) from bolts in crossmember. Fig. 4 You will have to first cut the threads off of the lower two bolts so you can remove them without hitting the brake caliper. You will need to replace them with half inch longer bolts (Grade 8). Insert them in the other direction to attach the mounting plate and cylinder. This might take two people because the cylinder and mount together weighs 60 pounds. Place three (grade 8) washers behind the mounting plate on the top two bolts to make the plate level against the crossmember. Attach your tie rod bars to the end of the steering cylinder and to the steering arms that are now facing backwards.

You will have to purchase a double acting 12 V electric pump That has over 1 gallon per minute flow rate.  We recommend a pump with a two-button remote that can be unplugged and put away when on the street. Fig.5 We mounted our pump underneath the rear seat of our Humvee and drilled holes through the body for our hoses and electrical cable.

Run hydraulic lines to your steering cylinder and a 12 V source to your pump. Push the button on the controller and run fluid through your pump by holding the button down for 10 seconds in each direction. Let the system sit for a couple hours so the air bubbles can float out of the oil after the first pumping of oil through the steering cylinder.

Center your steering by moving it left and right until both coil springs are at equal length. Square up the rear tires with the fenders then measure between tires to make sure they are equal front and rear of the tires. Make sure tie rod strap bolts are facing away from the rims. Carefully cycle steering cylinder left and right and adjust tie rod bars until they are within a quarter inch of the rims at full turn or the cylinder stops bottom out. check and Adjust toe in alignment. Tighten tie rod bar tension straps. Install your steering stop bolts on the front side of the gear hub bottoms. Make them touch the same time the cylinder bottoms out on the stops. Make sure the tie rod bars are not hitting your rims or anything else. Professional alignment may be necessary.

We highly recommend the use of 18 inch or larger aftermarket rims if you are installing our steering cylinder behind the differential. If not, tie rod ends may scrape the factory rims and you may have to limit the turning of the tires to prevent it.

So naturally if you were running bigger tires you will want a high pressure high pump volume pump. Our system works best with a pump with a GPM of 2 gallons or more.

This should be a good project for someone who likes to spend a weekend in the garage like I do.

Fig 1. PST – Rear Radius Rod Asm; Hummer

 

Fig 2. Bushing Ends for Rear Radius Rod: Hummer

Fig 3.

Fig. 4

Fig. 5     3 Quart 12VDC Dump Trailer Pump

Specifications

  • Mode: Double-Acting Power-Up/ Power-Down
  • Tank Material: Plastic (Translucent)
  • Tank Capacity: 3L/ 3Quart/ 0.75 Gal
  • Flow: 2.0 GPM
  • Max. Relief Valve Setting A Port: 3200 PSI
  • Max. Relief Valve Setting B Port: 1500 PSI
  • Rated Speed: 2850R/MIN
  • Voltage: DC12V
  • Power: 1.6KW (Rated). 3.0KW (Max)
  • Duty: 3 Min
  • Traffic: 1.1 cc/r
  • Rotation: Clockwise
  • Connector: SAE # 6
  • Mount Position: Horizontal/ Vertical
  • Control: Solenoid and Handheld Pendant
  • Pendant Control Length: 15ft/ 4.5 m
  • Gross Weight: 29.1 lb (13.2 kg)

Steering Cylinder Specifications

  • Double acting, double rod
  • Bore x stroke 2.5″x 10″
  • PSI Max. 3,000
  • Rod Dia. 1.5″
  • Ports SAE 6
This is the tie rod angles of the rear steer when installed in red. Also a picture of the front steering linkage. Notice That they are almost exactly the same.

New Humvee fuel tank. The yellow line indicates the area that needs to be compressed.

Humvee fuel tank heated up and compressed

Required Fuel Tank modifications for front of differential installation

Stock fuel tank must be replaced with a bed mounted fuel tank or a new stock fuel tank must be purchased and modified to make room for the steering cylinder. This procedure should only be done on a new fuel tank. Once done it will allow the steering cylinder to be put in front of the differential. The goal is to get the 6 inches of clearance needed.

The heating and compressing process should only be done on a new fuel tank. We recommend heating The tank to 400° before compressing. And as always with any projects such as this proceed at one’s own risk.

Pump recommendations.

pump pressure (PSI) is always relevant, but with our self centering internally valve system pump volume is important too. So naturally if you were running bigger tires you will want a high pressure high volume pump. Our system works best with a pump GPM of 2 gallon or more.

Steering with Bulletproof Rear Steering.

Our system is more intuitive than most. You push and hold the button down for a turn, the longer you hold the button down the more it turns. when the button is released the system automatically returns to Center. The advantages to this is that it takes care of itself when forgotten. The self centering return time is around five seconds. this is a more natural steering movement, much like using a steering wheel and letting it slip through your hands as you come out of a turn. If you need it to return quicker than that, simply hit the other button for a second or so to return to center faster and it will finish the centering for you. You will find it fun and easy to use just as we did.
Before we installed rear steer on our Humvee, the outside turning radius was 45 feet. After installing BulletProof Rear Steer, our outside turning radius was reduced to 30 feet. We are actually able to run trails used by side-by-side ATVs With ease.

Price for our patent pending internally valved self centering
2.5x10x1.5 Double Rod Hydraulic Steering Cylinder with coil spring assist is
$1,849.00 for the Humvee. This includes the mounting plate and ends that accept the factory tie rod ends.

The cylinder for other off-road applications. No mount, and Clevis ends for use with Heim joints. $1,549.00

If you have any questions feel free to give us a call at 1-352-246-8567 we have a knowledgeable off-road enthusiast ready to take your call.

Please call us to specify  front or rear of diff mount when ordering

Bulletproof Rear Steer Kit with Cylinder
I would Like to thank Vince Kessler for taking the time to share his experience with his BulletProof Rear Steer on his Humvee

Vince writes:

I am extremely pleased with the Bulletproof Rear-Steer system. I use the truck not only for fun-cruising, but for pretty serious off-roading, both at parks (Kansas Rocks, SMORR, Hardscrabble, etc.) and Scenic/ Challenging Trails (Engineer Pass, Red Cone, Webster Pass, Moab)… I understand first-hand that it’s not the best off-roading rig due to the lack of articulation, the limitations of BTM (I installed F/R lockers to get around that), and the fact that the tires (even oversized ones) are nearly flush with the body… but mostly the width of the thing that makes it difficult to navigate the narrow and tight-radius trails. Could I have just gotten the right vehicle for off-roading (a Wrangler) and not needed to add rear-steer? Yeah… if I wanted to have the same vehicle as half the dentists and housewives on my street… but I wanted something with some character, something that would be memorable, something different… something I could work on myself with my kids… something timeless where you wouldn’t envy having the latest-and-greatest… something that I could walk past every day and say, “yeah… that was money well spent” just from looking at it. And, an HMMWV checks all those boxes. However, Rule #1 of off-roading, is “never go alone”… and that means you’ve GOT to wheel with Jeeps… and if your ride is an HMMWV, that means that you’re either going to have to wear out your steering system with endless Austin Powers turns on many trails, or ride passenger in a Chrysler product… so Rear Steer it is. And thankfully, the fact that the rear suspension and geared-hubs are nearly identical to the counterparts on the front makes a simple rear-steer system highly plausible. I looked for multiple systems… they’re harder to find than you’d think, and most are expensive and complex, owing almost entirely to the components needed to self-center and lock-centered.

As well, most of those components end up being in front of the control-arms and dangerously close to the bottom of the ground-clearance – which puts them in danger of trail-damage. And with systems that require control and/ or sensors to re-center, or systems where a loss of hydraulic pressure leaves you in a “fail as-is” situation (or wheels that then behave independently – trail damage may not just mean not finishing the trip, it can mean not getting home. This is not an option for me since I don’t trailer my rig.

Ron’s system appeared to eliminate all my major concerns about installing rear-steer.
– it’s affordable
– it installs easily (for the most part)
– it’s mind-numbingly simple
– components are durable and don’t compromise clearance
– mounted such that trail damage is highly unlikely (more to come on that)
– it returns to center under failure of any component

So… after interacting with Ron for several weeks, having him help me understand the details of the system, having worked together to confirm that it would work with my wheel/ rear-winch set-up, I pulled the trigger. All parts showed up exactly as agreed, and on-time. Instructions were simple and clear with videos online. The only major complication for me was that it took me 2x fuel tanks to perfect the art of getting it modified to not interfere with the cylinder. The first one I got too hot, and burnt a hole in it. Thankfully HMMWV fuel tanks are relatively cheap (Ron sent me one of his, gratis… but it didn’t work because his was from a gasser). In retrospect, I should have taken it to a plastic welder (most body-shops can do this) and just had the thing sectioned… but that was the hardest part. After that, install was smooth sailing.

A quick note on how the system self-centers… obviously the springs create the motivation to equalize – but there’s also a ball-point-pen size hole in the middle of the cylinder which equalizes pressure/ volume from one side to the other and allows the springs to do their thing and center the system with the pump off without hydrolocking. Now… the system does NOT have any sort of positive-lock to keep the rod centered… how mine is set-up (without the dual pilot-operated check-valves that Ron has since found & recommended), it relies on spring tension/ compression to stay centered, as well the resistance of fluid to move from one side to the other through that pinhole down the middle of the cylinder. When I first drove it down the street (25-45mph in the neighborhood) – I thought I’d made a horrible mistake. I couldn’t believe how much movement the rear-wheels still had despite the heavy springs and the tiny hydraulic flow-path. The truck felt super loose. My concerns went away after 15min… you realize that it’s not a lack of control, it’s just a strange sensation when the rear tracks just a bit. After a couple days, I can say with complete honesty that I no longer even notice. A buddy of mine took it for a few days while I was out of town to drive it in a parade or two… He said it felt different daily’ing it for a couple days, but nothing he thought to be concerned about or noticed after a few hours.

Now… I will say, that at highway speeds (over 60mph, RetiredWarHorses installed a 6.5T/4L80… cannot recommend enough, not just for the quality of the install, but all the help leading up to it, and continued guidance from Steven Kavanaugh in the years since), entering a sweeping turn will white-knuckle you at first because the rear wheels want to continue tracking straight. While I have gotten more used to that sensation… I haven’t completely acclimated to it at high speed like I have at low/ moderate speed… I definitely ease off the gas when the highway gets twisty. This is my single issue with the system. Bumps, potholes, and lane-changes (even at high speed) are super-stable… it’s just the high-speed sweeping turns where the fluid has time to move, and the gyroscopic energy of a fast-spinning wheel resists a change in plane-angle that the rear-wheels want to track just a bit. I’ll install the DPOCV that Ron recommends sometime in the next few months (it’s not such an issue that I feel the urgent need for it) and report back. My concern with that addition is that it may slow-down/ limit the self-centering of the system that makes me love it (not only for practicality/ high-speed stability sake, but now that I’m using it regularly, for the ease of use and fun-factor). I’m also gonna put some thought into some sort of comb-shaped “lock” that I can pin between the wraps of the spring to mechanically (not just hydraulically) lock it into place for extended highway use… but again, it’s not so urgent or concerning for me that I anticipate putting forth the time/ thought/ effort to do this anytime soon.

So, after installation and road-worthiness test, it was time for a proper shake-down. We went to the off-road park, and put it through its paces. I liked it immediately after install… I loved it offroad. I like to consider myself practical. Especially when it comes to tools and equipment, I’ll choose form over function any day. While I realize that those sentences appear incongruent with someone who bought a HMMWV instead of a Jeep for off-roading, I think most folks will understand that you still want to LOVE your vehicle more than you would LOVE a tool. All that to say, that I don’t consider myself one who shows-off. But that first day at the park… I just couldn’t help it… crab-walking and tight-turning are just so DAMN FUN that you can’t help but do it at every opportunity, even gratuitously… I still do even now, weeks later. It’s hard to explain, but it is just neat to drive with each hand on a separate vehicle control device and mess with different input combinations in a way that you just can’t do in any other vehicle. It’s fun the way operating a skid-steer is fun, using all your extremities for a different control-function. But, I digress… the system worked exactly like I had hoped off-road. There wasn’t a single trail that I couldn’t fit on with a little finesse. I didn’t have to three-point turn ONCE to get down a trail. And the Jeeps I was with were TRYING to best me. Being able to crab-walk saved me from likely mirror-mount damage (or at least some extreme Colorado Pinstriping) more than a couple times. Turning around when we found ourselves at the end of a spur (with a rock wall on one side, and a muddy slope on the other) we hadn’t intended to be on wasn’t easy… but at least it was possible. Without the rear-steer, I’d have been backing up the whole way… which is NOT fun in a slantback.

I also, unintentionally, tested the “bulletproof” moniker. Against my better judgement, I’m going to admit something significantly embarrassing, and describe what could have been one of the worst days of my life. After coming down an obstacle, which required 4L… I stopped on the hill, facing down, and got out to take a picture of the Jeep behind me coming down off the same obstacle I had just passed. I’m not a big picture-taker… but my dad (who was in the Jeep behind me) has a memory condition – and the experts say that the more pictures you can take, then practice speaking to the context behind them, is one of the best non-medical forms of therapy for folks with his condition. So… It’s a helluva obstacle, it’s gonna take a minute to get down, so I shut the engine off. Since the engine is off anyway, I put the transfer case into 4H since the next step in the trail was pretty low-key. I put the transmission into Park, and stepped out to take the picture. Unfortunately, I must not have gotten the TCase into 4H… it must have been in Neutral… because when I stepped out of the truck and took my foot off the brake – the truck rolled down the hill… and gained speed quickly. Thankfully, no one was in front of it as the truck went into a ditch probably 50 yards away at about 30mph and slammed into the embankment on the other side. Testament to the durability of the truck, besides some minor damage to the brush-guard,

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Florida,USA

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1-352-246-8567

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