Rear Suspension... Bottoms out hard on minor bumps.
I was driving around on some back city roads (paved) that had a few minor pot holes (minor being less than 2 inches deep and at least 2 tire lengths long), and every time i hit them (doing less than 20 mph) I heard a loud thunk noise and felt the awful heart sinking feeling you get in your stomache when you bottom out your suspension... As I hit several of these, I noticed that my shocks didn't feel quite normal... I am wondering what would cause the suspension to bottom out on such mild road conditions. I should also mention I have an 89 Cherokee Limited that is bone stock (as far as I can tell... Have reason to suspect it might have different axles... no vacuum disco on front, and rear seams to be a LSD.)
Bad shocks wouldn't allow your suspension to compelely bottom out I don't think. You should be able to ride with no shocks and hit pot holes that size and not bottom out. Stock leaf springs on the XJ I think are pretty crappy. I just replaced mine and a few leafs had cracks in them. One side sagged 2 inches lower than the other. Needless to say they were shot. What size tires you running?
Lt235/75r15, and no lift, and I agree that bad shocks shouldn't be an issue... I have ran without shocks b4 on an old Willies Wagon without bottoming out... and those springs were even weaker than the XJ.... I am going to get under the jeep as soon as it warms up and look at the springs, and the bump stops... I am kind of leaning toward bad bump stops... the rear suspension didn't feel like it moved more than an inch or two... so something most likely has to be out of place
My driver side one, the eyes were actually sitting below the spring perch lol inverted i guess. That one had the cracks, you could see the crack in it when I took it off right where it sits on the perch. You could take the u bolts off, drop the axle just enough too look at the pack. That should tell you something.
i had the same problem....and my *** end was sitting real low....turns out i had 2 busted leafs in one side and one busted in the other side....a quick XJ/XJ bastard fixed that, i went from 4 leafs per side (some of which were busted) to 7 non-cracked leafs per side and it rides way better.....i was gonna get some new OEM packs but i did the bastards for about 1/4 the price.....
busted leafs and ****ty shocks is where i would look
Take a look at your rear shackles they are proly bottoming out on the box that they are bolted in. There isnt alot of room for travel for them in there anyway (in good shape) with you springs wore I would say that the inch or two of UP travel would be about right.
On another note I have a heavily moded set up with rusty's shocks. A copy of Eric's shackle relocater setup. Which I have alittle to soft. With anyone in the back seat after 2 or 3 bridge crossings (normal pavement) Mine will bottom out due to the rebound on the shock being slow. The shocks dont give the springs time to rebound and compresses again, which drives the springs down agian and bottoms out. Its fine when there is no one in the back seat.
yea I figured it was simple, since I drive that same stretch of road 2 times per day, and all of a sudden last friday night it started the clunking... and I could only feel the suspension moving a minimal amount b4 it came to a thunking halt. that is why i was leaning towards my bump stops...
Last Thursday we had warmer temps than normal, and we had a bad snow fall, I went snow drift bashing over at my friends house, then on Friday I had to push through a drift at work... then the temps dropped and every thing froze up...