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Unread 09-25-2012, 12:59 AM   #1
ErikTheRad
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A few questions before lifting my 93 ZJ

My 93 ZJ 5.2 is all stock with the NP249, currently on the factory directional aluminum 5-spoke wheels. I'm looking at the Iron Rock Offroad 3.5" lifts, they offer two kits--- one a complete budget lift without the track bar and one about $100 more that includes the track bar. So, do I need this track bar doohickey? I use my Jeep almost exclusively for camping/boating/trail driving. If it leaves the house, its usually pulling my 1995 Rockwood tent trailer (rather large and heavy as tent trailers go) or my 2001 Glastron 175 SX. It tows them both ok now, if underpowered on the steeps, but it does alright. I'm wondering if lifting the Jeep with either those kits will affect my ability to tow? How can I expect the handling to change? Will it drift around on the road without this track bar? Do I need stabilizer bars? Are the stock control arms long enough without issues? How about the driveshaft? Will it need mods?

I'd like to put a set of semi-aggressive 31" or 32" A/T's under it, mostly for good traction on the trails while still good for milage on the road. Will my 249 viscous coupler have any trouble with these tires/lift?

As you can tell, I'm a complete lifted-Jeep noob. Just want to know what I can expect before I decide to do this. Thanks for any help / advice!!

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Unread 09-25-2012, 01:01 AM   #2
ErikTheRad
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Oh yeah, one more thing..... are these lift kits something I can install at home with a floor jack and simple hand tools? How long should the job take, and should I recruit a second set of hands?

(I guess thats actually 3 more things..... ;-)
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Unread 09-25-2012, 01:03 AM   #3
Texas ZJ1
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You want the trackbar and the nest shocks if you are towing plus a front addco swaybar. If you are getting bigger tires, you may want to get different wheels with 3.75 to 4 inches of backspacing. With that in mind, the steeps will get worse unless you regear to something like 4.56s.

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Unread 09-25-2012, 01:24 AM   #4
ErikTheRad
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Swaybar, yeah, I think thats what I meant when I said "stabilizer bar". Ooops.

Is it a difficult job better left to a pro to change rear gearing?
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Unread 09-25-2012, 03:42 AM   #5
Texas ZJ1
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I had a pro do mine. While I had the pumpkins opened, I also added a locker and a limited slip. That may add some significant cost to what you want to do.
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00 4.7 Laredo...stock

94 5.9 Laredo 6.5 RE lift with 35 Maxxis Bighorns
and 33 Bridgestone Duelers
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http://www.kevinsoffroad.com/
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Unread 09-25-2012, 04:41 AM   #6
jtackerman28
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And you can't do just the rear
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Unread 09-26-2012, 12:52 AM   #7
ErikTheRad
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So thats it? Thats all the advice?
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Unread 09-26-2012, 01:54 AM   #8
Ray-Ray
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Well ill tell you i did money at work and i had a lift and all the tools i needed. And to get my springs in i had to stand on the axle hub and pull up on my fender to push the axle down enough while my buddy prayed it in my front and rear were tough. I had to take pretty much the whole axle out besides the track bars... There are rentable spring compressor but i was told that the off road springs are to stiff and you can't compress them with there weak tool lol.. So doing it in the garage will be a little bit of a task. Are you replacing the control arms and swaybar links?
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Unread 09-26-2012, 02:10 AM   #9
Ray-Ray
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Oh i have a 4.5" lift and with 33" tires there was some trimming and i still need more for complete flex. But the transfer case drop kit was about an inch and i have no drive line vibration. Now gearing the diffs is something i would let the pros do so that if they mess up they will have to fix it for free but i still have stock gears and its a dog going up the hills on the hwy. So i would get them done for sure. But if you have any other questions feel free to ask ill give ya what i got ha ha
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Unread 09-26-2012, 06:58 AM   #10
WhiteOut
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Transfer case drop isn't worth doing and is the wrong way to go an it doing things. Install the lift and then have the front driveshaft replaced with a U-joint shaft that is the correct length. Probably $30 for a junkyard shaft and $100 for a drive line shop to get it the right length for your lift. Maybe another $60 for new u-joints in it and a new centering kit.
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Unread 09-26-2012, 06:35 PM   #11
Ray-Ray
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yeah Im not saying its the right way i would love to get a sye kit or just replace my transfer case and get direct drive shafts but its all about money and time. But the drop kit doses the job for now.
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Unread 09-26-2012, 09:21 PM   #12
jtackerman28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ray-Ray
yeah Im not saying its the right way i would love to get a sye kit or just replace my transfer case and get direct drive shafts but its all about money and time. But the drop kit doses the job for now.
It doesn't need either.
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Unread 09-26-2012, 11:27 PM   #13
Ray-Ray
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Well you run the risk of if your pinion angles are not set up correct, to get a driveline vibration and to blow out your u joints. And if you go big enough of a lift you run the risk of over flexing and having your drive shaft fall out of your transfer case.... But that's with bigger lifts.
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Unread 09-27-2012, 02:25 AM   #14
ErikTheRad
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I'm only considering a 3.5" lift, nothing higher than that..... not even in the future. My wife has degenerative arthritis in her hips and getting in/out of vehicles is difficult enough without forcing her to climb in/out. I've looked at about a billion lifted ZJ pics and I really like the look of a 3.5" lift and some semi-aggressive 31" tires. This will be more than enough clearance to accomodate my mild-to-intermediate trail driving, we aren't serious "wheelers". My biggest concerns are with towing and stability. If my Jeep heads for the hills, it does so with a camp trailer or boat behind it with only extremely rare exception.

I don't think any of this transfer case drop stuff or driveline modifications will apply in my case. I just want a good, sturdy, durable ride. Taking from what I've read, 3.5" is about the limit for a lift without needing to upgrade/change/modify all sorts of other stuff. I plan to keep/use the stock control arms, rims, and everything else I don't reasonably need to replace. Am I good? Is this going to accomplish what I'm trying to accomplish? Thats all I need to know.
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Unread 09-27-2012, 02:56 AM   #15
two_much_talk
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why not just do a 2" budget boost and 30s or 31s then ??

won't change enough stuff to even warrant an alignment if you don't want to and will allow a slightly bigger tire. you basically said its not a show queen so you could cut the front fenders as needed and leave the sway bars alone, then you may be able to fit maybe a nice 31" all terain without too much trouble! your wife won't have to climb any higher than she has to then either. and if mild is your thing ... well, it sounds good to me
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