N-Fab Nerf Bar & Running Board Comparison Guide

BY MICHAEL D.

The only difference between a nerf bar and a running board is the stepping area, whether it’s a straightforward, what-you-see-is-what-you-get tube type deal, or abetted by a stepping surface under every door. Running boards don’t have the step, while nerf bars do. We could run through the many pros and cons of running boards and nerf bars, but rather than build one up and break one down, we realize that the needs and tastes of every driver are different. Here, we highlight the product features that both distinguish one from another, and may make the difference for you as you undertake a search for new or new-to-you accessories.

We present six available applications from industry leader N-Fab. Based in metropolitan Houston, TX, the company leads the way in the realm of nerf bars, rock rails, light bars and other off-road equipment. Heavier-gauge steel construction is universal to their product line and suitable for both foreign and domestic vehicles, as is the zinc coating for maximum corrosion-resistance. Read on to find out more.

N-FAB NERF STEPS

Available in cab-length, bed-access and wheel-to-wheel measurements, these welded and non-modular nerf steps are made of high-strength steel and have been tested at a substantial 465 lbs with a 0.084” wall. They’re suitable for SUVs, flatbed trucks and trucks with campers, utility beds and side exhausts. Take your pick of a high-gloss black or textured matte-black (cab-length and bed-access) or polished stainless (wheel-to-wheel) finishes.

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N-FAB PODIUM NERF STEPS

These steps feature a main tube that’s 3” in diameter that fits close to your truck body for a clean, modern appearance. Fashioned from stainless steel construction that’s been welded from solid stainless steel, it proffers an expanded step plate — a perfect support for wider-soled shoes and work boots — and bolts right on for a minimal, stress-free installation process. It’s offered in cab-length and comes in pairs. Choose either a highly polished or black powder-coated finish.

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N-FAB RKR RAILS

These rails are wrought from 1.75” tubular steel with a 0.120” wall, just right for giving your truck, Jeep or SUV redoubtable off-road protection. Both the interior and exterior have been treated with a stylish, textured black powder coat to fend off premature wear and corrosion. To make the step up into your ride even easier, you might consider investing in a set of detachable side steps, but those are sold separately. As with the N-Fab Nerf Steps up above, these rails include the necessary installation hardware.

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N-FAB N-DURASTEP NERF BARS

The step may be 7” lower than some of these other bars, but the extra-wide stepping surface gives you a confident boost and each riveted platform offers steady traction in rainy weather. An unmistakable N-Fab logo adds a nice bit of decoration, but the underlying fully-welded, single-piece steel construction means they’re for more than just show. Get them in three-step wheel-to-wheel or two-step cab-length configurations.

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N-FAB ADJUSTSTEP ADJUSTABLE HEIGHT NERF STEPS

These industrial-looking steps are built around the brand’s patented mounting system with a 3”D main tube assembly that runs wheel-to-wheel. Vertically Variable Step (VVS) technology allows for up to 5.5” of height-adjustment for exertion-free entry and exit. The wide platforms are all-welded, and feature holes to let all manner of debris pass through without caking to the stepping surface. Give it bed accessibility with an extra pair of N-Fab Add-A-Steps (sold separately).

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N-FAB HARLEY BARS

Enhanced under-body protection is the point of these tubular steel rocker guards. Designed to bolt on, they’re meant for lowered pickups, or to make your stock-height truck appear lower, and providing a 3” drop without modifications. The mounts and brackets are already welded to the step bar for your convenience. Suitable for both long and short beds, Harley bars come in either a gloss-black powder coat (wheel-to-wheel) or color-matched to blend in with the rest of your rig’s paintjob.

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We hope this walkthrough proves beneficial as you try to narrow things down and make your rig the most accessible, off-road-ready it’s ever been. If it was, and you’re happy with the model you went with, let us know in the comment section below.