Broc Tickle Upgrades Chevy Silverado with Fox Shox, Total Chaos and More

Apr. 13, 2016 By Josh Burns
After injuring his wrist only a few weeks into the 2016 Supercross season, Broc Tickle parked his No. 20 RCH Racing Suzuki Factory Racing RM-Z450 and worked on getting his 2015 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 in order with the help of SoCal SuperTrucks, Fox Shox, Total Chaos Fabrication, KMC Wheels and Toyo Tires.

After a long, tireless off-season preparing for the 2016 Monster Energy AMA Supercross season, Broc Tickle didn’t exactly get off to the start he had hoped. Tickle only made two starts before breaking his wrist prior to the second Anaheim round earlier this year.

“It was bad timing, but sometimes an injury is a blessing in disguise,” he said. “Sometimes we get so focused on riding and training and doing all of this other stuff that we kind of get into that mode where we’re just doing it over and over but don’t have a purpose. I feel like I’ve regained that purpose now that I’ve been on the couch and have kind of regrouped a bit.”

Broc Tickle didn’t exactly love the chrome or the basic leveling kit on his 2015 Chevy Silverado, so he looked to upgrade the truck with a simple, yet purposely, set of upgrades.

His hard work in the off-season didn’t quite pay off on the track those first two races, but Tickle still feels good things are to come. In fact, even though his injury was in January, Tickle returned to action this past weekend in Indianapolis where he finished 14th in the 450 main event. Of course he would have preferred a podium finish, but making the main in his first race back is impressive nonetheless.

Aside from keeping himself in shape and rehabbing his injury, Tickle made the most of his downtime by getting his truck – a 2015 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 with factory aluminum suspension – in order. Originally from the East Coast, when Tickle first came out west he saw quite a few lifted trucks in Southern California, although he didn’t exactly embrace the style at first. After a negative experience with his 2007 Silverado due to a bad suspension setup that caused quite a few headaches, he changed his tune a bit.

The main components to improve the suspension performance of Tickle’s Silverado are shown here: Fox 2.5 Performance Series DSC coilover shocks, rear Fox 2.5 Performance Series piggyback shocks with DSC, and Total Chaos upper control arms.

“I had an ’07 Silverado and it had a big lift and small tires, and I just ran into so many problems with that,” he said. “The ‘off road’ look grew on me when I moved out here. Obviously there are off-road trucks and lifted trucks everywhere, so for me it kind of grew on me – but I wasn’t a fan at first.”

Tickle started out with a leveling kit on his new Silverado but didn’t care for how the truck handled overall, so he turned to SoCal SuperTrucks in San Bernardino, California, to help him come up with a better gameplan.

“As I sold that old truck and got my new one, SoCal SuperTrucks helped lead me in that path, and I’m stoked on it,” he said. “It’s good for the track, it’s good for everyday driving, and I feel like my setup is a good all-around package that’s not too crazy but it’ll get the job done.”

Although Tickle’s truck is still pretty trick (say that three times fast), it certainly isn’t fitted with an abundance of upgrades. Instead, this collection of parts provides lift, improved suspension performance and a customized look without breaking the bank.

Both the stock front coilovers and the stock upper control arms are removed from the Silverado so the new Fox and Total Chaos parts can go in.

One of the key components SoCal SuperTrucks added to the truck is a set of new Fox Shox, its new 2.5 Performance Series coilover shock with remote reservoir and DSC. Fox has offered a 2.5 coilover for quite some time now (in fact, we added some to our a 2012 Tundra a few years back), and these coilovers are a great option for many enthusiasts because they allow the truck to achieve up to 3 inches of lift to level the front end without needing a complete suspension lift kit.

The shocks were born of Fox’s off-road racing R&D and are still used in many race applications today, and that’s why the remote reservoirs comes in handy since they provide added suspension oil volume to help keep the temperatures down to reduce fade in performance during extreme use. Fox also updated the Performance Series reservoirs to a black-anodized body for a clean look that also holds up to the elements over time. So in effect, these shocks provide lift and a big improvement in performance all in one package. To complement the Fox DSC remote-reservoir coilovers up front, SoCal SuperTrucks also swapped out the rear shocks for Fox’s DSC piggyback shocks as well.

The biggest difference between this newer version of the 2.5 Performance Series shock compared to the one we installed a few years back is it features what Fox calls a DSC dial, or Dual Speed Compression. The DSC system consists of two dials atop the reservoir that offer easy adjustment of both low- and high-speed compression via a twist knob on top of the reservoir, making it fairly simple to find that ideal suspension performance without needing to break out the tool box.

The stock control arm (left) will be replaced with the Total Chaos UCA not simply because the 4130 chromoly part is beefier and sturdier, but because it will allow up to 2 more inches of suspension travel so the truck can take advantage of the additional travel provided by the Fox coilovers.

The Total Chaos UCAs are bolt-on replacements, but there is a minor amount of trimming needed for Silverado and Sierra applications (detailed information is included in the instructions). It’s pretty minor trim, though.

Although the Fox 2.5 DSC coilovers are pretty much a direct stock replacement, to function properly they do require the replacement of the Silverado’s stock upper control arms on the front suspension. Fortunately SoCal SuperTrucks didn’t have to look much farther than nearby off-road fabrication shop Total Chaos in Corona, a company fabricating off-road parts for enthusiasts and racers for more than 16 years. Total Chaos isn’t run by a bunch of poseurs either, as owner Nicole Pitell-Vaughan recently finished second at the 2016 running of the all-female off-road race the Rallye Aicha des Gazelles. Total Chaos has traditionally been known for specializing in Toyota parts, but it actually offers a wide variety of suspension options for just about every modern truck out there – and a few overseas models as well.

With the urethane bushings installed and greased, the Total Chaos UCAs are slid into place.

The reason the Total Chaos UCAs are so important to pair with the Fox coilovers is simple: they allow for up to an additional two inches of wheel travel compared to the stock arms, allowing the Silverado to actually take advantage of the additional travel the 2.5 Fox DSC coilovers provide. The bolt-on UCAs feature a larger-than-stock 1-inch uniball for additional strength and improved travel. Urethane bushings are used instead of the stock control arm’s rubber bushings to reduce deflection and improve performance. The control arm pivots thoughtfully feature zerk fittings that allow for greasing of the bushings and inner sleeves without needing to disassemble the part. To finish the look, the UCAs feature a two-stage powder coat complete with a clear coat to help withstand off-road abuse.

The lower control arm for the Silverado’s front suspension remains unchanged, and once the Fox coilover is bolted in place the lower arms can be bolted up as well.

With the UCA and coilover in place, the remote reservoir bracket was the next piece installed – and in an ideal location atop the strut mount bucket.

The Fox coilover's reservoir is secured in place, with the DSC adjustment screws easily accessible for tuning.

The stock upper control arm mount hole is tapered, so it gets bored out using a 9/16 bit to accept the larger bolt Total Chaos uses for its UCA.

The larger sleeve now slides in place to accept the bolt for the UCA.

Here’s a look at the final configuration of the front suspension modifications before the wheels and put back in place.

With new Fox shox both front and rear and Total Chaos UCAs fitted up front, Tickle then swapped out the stock wheels for a set of 20x9 KMC XD Series Grenade wheels. Since he’ll be hitting the dirt from time to time, SoCal SuperTrucks suggested a set of 305/55R20 Toyo Open Country ATII tires, a solid all-terrain tire that offers off-road performance but still retains great on-road handling characteristics. The increased height of the truck affords plenty of additional space for the larger 33-inch tires.

The chrome was removed from Tickle's 2015 Silverado and color-matched with the truck.

The final piece of the puzzle for Tickle’s truck is purely cosmetic, as he simply didn’t like the chrome and wanted it gone. SoCal SuperTrucks went to work stripping the chrome off of the front and rear bumpers and then painting them to match the truck’s color. The grille, inserts and Chevy bowtie also received the same treatment. The door handles and mirror caps were also color-matched, while the moldings and badges all around the truck were removed for a clean finish.

“A lot of people have looked at my truck and like the package,” Tickle said. “I know some of my friends aren’t big fans of chrome, and Casey Coughlin at SoCal SuperTrucks helped me get that cleaned up.”

Out back, the swap from stock to Fox piggybacks is even simpler. First, the upper and lower bolts securing the rear shock are removed…

… Then the new Fox DSC piggybacks are installed.

Looks aside, Tickle’s very happy with how the truck performs.

“For me, I’m stoked on my whole setup,” Tickle said. “I appreciate everyone who helped out with the truck, and honestly I think we’ll bring a little business to Fox, Total Chaos and SoCal SuperTrucks because I already have friends looking at my truck and wanting to get their vehicles done.”

Although Tickle is well versed on all things dirt bikes, his experience four-wheeling is very limited, and that’s probably why he’s extra excited he has a confident truck setup to have fun on his days off.

Tickle also has the benefit of experience on his side, as his truck was first equipped with a leveling kit that allowed him to do a back-to-back comparison of the difference between that setup and the upgrade he made at SoCal SuperTrucks.

The ease of high- and low-speed compression adjustment makes the Fox 2.5 DSC coilovers a simple shock to tune for practically anyone.

“My truck honestly drives a lot better than when I just had a leveling kit on it,” he said. “I know the Fox shocks are a little bit spendy for the average person, but I think it’s something that’s worth the money in the long run”

Tickle wasted no time testing out his truck when it was finished.

“There are some fire roads over by my house, and even the first day I got it back I went out and rode on some of the roads I’ve been on before and it really does handle a lot better,” he said. “The front end feels planted, and even on the highway the whole truck feels more secure and stable, and honestly even plusher, and that’s a win-win for me, so I was stoked as soon as I picked up the truck and took it home.”

Most might be surprised to know that the Supercross racer has very little four-wheel off-road experience, but part of the reason he wanted to upgrade his truck was so he could explore the desert more and enjoy four-wheeled off-roading. Now that he’s back on the bike, he’ll be looking to put a few solid finishes under his belt before the Supercross season wraps up and he looks ahead to the outdoor season. Now that he has his truck, he can venture out to the desert or the mountains anytime and know he’ll be able to tackle the terrain with confidence.

Fox Shox

KMC Wheels

SoCal SuperTrucks

Total Chaos Fabrication

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