Poison Spyder Rock Slider Install on Jeep Wrangler

Apr. 19, 2012 By Josh Burns
Poison Spyder’s Rocker Knockers offer serious trail protection for our TJ Jeep Wrangler.

Larger tires and bigger suspension may offer improved trail clearance for your off-road rig, but there’s always a rock or ledge waiting to inflict damage regardless of your vehicle’s equipment. That’s why skid plates and sliders are so crucial if you plan to tackle anything other than fire roads on that next off-road adventure.

For rocker panel protection on our TJ Jeep Wrangler, we turned to the Jeep Wrangler protection specialists Poison Spyder Customs to grab a set of its Rocker Knockers. These sliders are available for the CJ, YJ, TJ and LJ to provide rocker panel protection for those unexpected ledges or difficult obstacles that can cause serious body damage.

The Rocker Knocker’s are constructed of 3/16” steel. We opted for the optional tubular DOM slider step as well. The finished sliders are high-quality pieces of steel.

Poison Spyder Customs, located in Banning, California, is a well-respected company that focuses solely on Jeep Wrangler trail armor, bumpers, interior upgrades and more. Larry McRae purchased the business three years ago, and it continues to expand its high-quality products in its Wrangler-focused line. The company’s proven track record and sexy styling made it an easy decision for our trail protection needs.

The frame bolts need to be removed so the body can be lifted from the frame to slide the Rocker Knockers into place.

The Rocker Knockers are constructed of 3/16” plate steel that not only offer protection, but when ordered with the optional tubular slider (constructed of DOM structural tubing), it offers a compact, yet still useful, side step as well, which is reinforced to the frame with DOM tube spacers. Accenting the piece is the Poison Spyder logo cut into the side of the Rocker.

Before the Rockers were painted they were fit into place to mark the screw holes that need to be drilled.

The Rocker Knockers come from Poison Spyder unfinished, and we chose to just rattle-can paint them for now (we might powder coat and paint them later down the road). Included with the Knockers is all the necessary stainless-steel hardware. Installation is relatively straight forward, requiring a good lift and a quality drill – as holes will need to be drilled into the side of the Jeep to securely attach the sliders.

Once in place, the holes are marked for drilling.

For help with our installation, we turned to Road Race Motorsports (RRM) in Santa Fe Springs (http://www.roadracemotorsports.com/). Being in a time pinch with the Easter Jeep Safari quickly approaching, Johnny Rocha at Road Race Motorsports had the tools and resources to help us quickly install the Rocker Knockers. With a proper lift and a few hours, it’s a straightforward job for the garage mechanic.

A few coats of paint were applied to our Rocker Knockers. Although powder coating will offer more protection, we opted to simply rattle-can paint them for now. This paint method does make touchups simpler if the Rockers get knicked on the trail.

Although Road Race Motorsports does a great deal of work with rally cars and tuner cars, they have a great deal of off-road experience as well, as shop general manager Rocha is an off-roader at heart. RRM was one of the first shops to do a full build on the new 3.6-liter 2012 Jeep Wrangler (keep an eye out for a closer look at that vehicle on Off-Road.com), so Jeeps, sand rails, pre-runners and more are in the shop’s wheelhouse in spite of its road-focused name.

Our Poison Spyder Rocker Knockers looked clean with the added black paint.

Before throwing on a few coats of paint on the Poison Spyder Rocker Knockers, we went to work pulling off the stock plastics shrouds on the Wrangler. Our stock cabin steps were already removed from the exterior of the TJ, or this would’ve been the time to remove them as well. The Rocker Knockers will install between the Wrangler frame and body mounts, so the body mount bolts need to be loosened and the frame lifted (with the help of jack and a large 4x4 chunk of wood). The Rockers were put in place to mark the drill holes and then the holes were drilled.

With the marks properly measured, it’s time to drill the screw holes that will secure the sliders to the frame.

After a few coats of paint were dry on the Rocker Knockers, they were fit in place, attached to the body utilizing the flush stainless-steel bolts, and the Jeep body was tightened to the frame. Now our Wrangler has that added bit of protection for the trails, as well as a tight-to-the-body step for accessing our top and climbing into the rig.

As shown, the Rocker Knocker fits between the body and the frame.

Once installed, our Poison Spyder Rocker Knockers look great, but most importantly they will provide rocker panel protection on the trails and a compact step for climbing into our rig.

The Rocker Knockers not only offer peace of mind and protection on the trails, but they look great too. Photo: Jaime Hernandez

Poison Spyder Customs

Road Race Motorsports

Off-Road.com Newsletter
Join our Weekly Newsletter to get the latest off-road news, reviews, events, and alerts!