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Unread 06-27-2013, 09:59 PM   #1
xtreemlee
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My ride quality sucks, tires, lift and or shocks???

I know my tires are an issue they are Mastercraft Courser M/Ts and I think they are an "E" rated 10 ply tire. So Im looking for a more pliant sidewall tire. Should I invest in shocks first? I want to go with a 33" tire instead of the 35's I have, because I think the 35's are too much for the lift. I been looking at Yokohama Geolander's the only "C" rated tire I can find. They are directional and don't wear well according to reviews. Directional means I cannot rotate because the tires need to be removed from the rims each time (unless I go front to back only). I wonder if my spring rate is too harsh??? Any experts in the Boise area wanna help point me in the right direction? I only have soo much money and would like to have this thing be more comfortable. I know its a Jeep I just dont want to rattle my teeth loose over a railroad crossing.

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Unread 06-28-2013, 06:50 AM   #2
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Have you checked your air pressure? Those tires should be around 26 PSI
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Unread 06-28-2013, 11:10 AM   #3
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Most likely it is your shocks. In almost all cases it is your shocks. I also have 285 10ply tires and was experiencing the same harshness. Blamed it on my tires for years. I recently installed a set of Fox shocks I purchase from Savvy Off Road.They have their own proprietary tune and they have it correct. No more harshness. I can't tell you the difference this made in how my Jeep rides and handles all types of bumps, cracks, pot holes and every other condition found on the road. Amazing!! I haven't been off road with them yet so no report there but I am certain that it will be a good report.



Check this link for more inform on your situation as it is discussed in detail throughout it. You can also read my detailed opinion of the shock change.


http://www.jeepforum.com/forum/f9/sh...000xl-1526332/
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Unread 06-29-2013, 12:23 AM   #4
Charley3
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I own an XJ now. I owned an LJ for 6 years. I am familiar.

Start with tire pressure. I'll leave the details and recommended psi to others.

Load E tires are for 1 ton trucks, not 1/2 ton Jeeps. Of course it rides harsh. It'll never ride good with load E tires. Adding to your misery, Mastercraft Courser CT tires are commercial traction tires that are extra tough, which also means stiffer sidewalls (stiff even for E) and harsher ride (harsh even for E).

Load C tires and proper tire pressure would help a lot, and load C are plenty tough enough. The ideal ATs for you are BFG AT or Cooper Discoverer AT3 because those are tough (for AT) and they ride soft too. I know that from reading professional reviews, amateur user reviews on forums and tire websites, and because I have owned both those tires. I owned 2 sets of BFG AT and currently own a set of Cooper AT3. The Cooper AT3 is my favorite AT and it is only a medium price. So a great tire and a good value.

If you want a tire more agressive than those 2, then I suggest Duratrac. The Duratrac wouldn't ride as soft or quiet as the BFG AT or Cooper AT3, but the Duratrac would ride softer and quieter than Mastercraft CT or any MT.

Some Rancho RS9000XL shocks would help a lot, and not that much money. Set them on softest setting. I know these work, and they have adjustable firmness that you control. I tried them on my LJ. I have no experience Savvy's fox shocks, but I know Savvy and Fox are great companies. So I'm sure they are good and ride good.

Those are your first things to address and shocks are low cost, IMO.

---

When you have the money, have a Currie Antirock installed (after market front sway bar). It has 5 setting from soft to firm. Set on softest, or next to softest setting. This improves on and off road ride quality a lot, and improves off road articulation and traction. Make sure arms at proper angle (see Currie instructions).

---

Get Metalcloak Upper and Lower Control arms front and rear. They have Duraflex rubber bushings that ride better than stock bushings (and articulate great too). This will improve ride a lot. I just ordered some for my XJ.

The cost of Metalcloak arms is actually very reasonable for what they are, IMO.

If you already have aftermarket arms with Johnny Joints (Currie, Rokmen, Rubicon Express) you can have the Johnny Joints in your existing arms replaced with Duraflex joints. Then you only need new joints, and use existing arms.

---

If (after doing those other things) it's still to stiff/harsh riding, you can try to find softer springs, or add some weight (more skid plates, aftermarket bumpers, winch). The weight softens ride. Only add useful weight by adding useful items, and don't add more than 250 lbs (at most) above stock.

Ideal would be softer springs and a little more weight (150 lbs at most) in Savvy aluminum skids, bumpers, and a light 8000 lbs rated winch. If that isn't possible, then the springs you already have with steel skids, bumpers, and 8000 lbs rated winch. My preference for winch is Warn M8000.
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Unread 06-29-2013, 12:48 AM   #5
xtreemlee
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Charley3 View Post
The ideal ATs for you are BFG AT or Cooper Discoverer AT3 because those are tough (for AT) and they ride soft too.
So between the two the BFG's or Cooper what would you go with?

I'm sold on the shocks and I knew the tires where crap...

P.S. if anyone in the Boise area would like a deal on four 315/75R16 Mastercraft Courser M/T's barely used pm me :-)
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Unread 06-29-2013, 01:55 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by xtreemlee View Post
So between the two the BFG's or Cooper what would you go with?

I'm sold on the shocks and I knew the tires where crap...

P.S. if anyone in the Boise area would like a deal on four 315/75R16 Mastercraft Courser M/T's barely used pm me :-)
I prefer Cooper AT3. Love em.

Your load E Mastercraft CT tires are NOT crap. They are excellent tires for a 1 ton truck (such as a Ford Superduty), but are inappropriate for a Jeep.
Nobody in their right mind will buy your Mastercraft CT load E tires for a Jeep. However, those tires are very popular at 1 ton pickup truck forums (Ford Superduty forums, Dodge Ram forums, Chevy Silverado forums, competitive truck pull forums). You could easily sell them on Ebay, Craigslist, or forums for big 1 ton trucks and competetive truck pulls where (FYI) Mastercraft CT are very popular.

Sell your Mastercraft CT to someone with a 1 ton 4x4. It'll be an easy sale. The Mastercraft CT load E are very popular with 1 ton truck guys. That tire is very popular for competetive truck pulls between 1 ton trucks and also on 1 ton daily driver trucks. They are also very popular with loggers in my area who put them on their 1 ton daily driver pickups.
If you had load C Mastercraft CT they'd ride OK on your Jeep, but there are much softer riding load C tires to choose from.

My phone battery died during my last post, before I could finish it. Please reread my prior post for updated and more info.
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Unread 06-29-2013, 03:11 AM   #7
xtreemlee
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I meant crap for my Jeep, by the way they came on it when I bought it. The folks that owned it before me had made themselves a nice mall crawler and I'm actually using the thing. Thanks for the info.

Now I just need to figure out how much lift is on it to buy the correct shocks I would get them ordered tonight. Does anyone know what I can measure to figure out the lift? I'm kicking myself becuase I just met a guy the other day with a stock LJ and should have done some measuring then duh!!!
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Unread 06-29-2013, 10:46 PM   #8
Charley3
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Actually new springs aren't expensive. It's the labor installing them that cost the bucks, but even that's not to bad. $500 labor at local tire store here, plus alignment.

The softest lift springs you can get that work well on LJ are Rancho 2.5", which are really 3", IMO. Rancho are available in various spring rates. Get the 130 lbs/in front and 150 lbs/in rear. I had those on my LJ and they worked great with steel skidplates, aftermarket bumpers, but no winch. When I later added a winch, I had to also add a 3/4" poly coil spacer to get back some height in front.

Now if you plan to use a winch in front (with aftermarket bumpers and skidplates) then I suggest an OME Heavy Load TJ front spring. It's 140 lbs/in spring rate. Without a winch it sits 3" high in front, with a winch it sits 2.5" high in front.
(The OME TJ front light load spring is also 140 lbs/in, but it a shorter spring. So same spring rate, but less lift)
I don't think you'd want a heavier rear spring than the Rancho 150 lbs/in, but if you do, get the OME TJ rear medium load spring is 160 lbs/in and it a 3" spring.

For comparison: Stock TJ non Rubicon spring rates are (typically) 130 lbs front, 150 lbs rear. Stock Rubicon TJ springs are 140 lbs/in front, 160 lbs/in rear.

How do I know this stuff? I owned an LJ and I tried all those springs and all the other measures I mentioned and got a good ride at a 3" lift height.

Now here is a fact you might not like to hear, there are no soft springs available above 3" lift height. That's because when single rate spring is taller than 3" lift, it must have a stiffer spring rate to keep the spring and Jeep stable.

However, AEV, and some other company I forgot the name of, do make dual rate springs that offer more than 3" of lift. I forgot how much lift, but I think 4, 5, and or 6" of lift, and they offer a decently soft ride compared to cheap tall springs, but nothing will ride as nice as the Rancho 2.5" (really 3") that I mentioned. The OME come close and are almost as soft as the Rancho. But to get those softer rides, your lift height is 3" front and rear without a winch, or 2.5" front, 3" rear (though you can always add a 3/4" coil spacer if you have a winch to get front back to 3").

If lifted above 3" ride quality will be stiffer-firmer, even with fancy dual rate springs from AEV or any brand of dual rate springs. But the dual rate springs that are above 4" won't be as miserable as with single rate springs.

===

Rancho single rate springs are cheap (and excellent), but only offer 2.5" to 3" front, and 3" rear. (Though Rancho calls them 2.5" springs).

OME's springs are not cheap, but are not to expensive. They are excellent for 2.5" to 3" front, and 3" rear, if you choose the ones with appropriate spring rates.

AEV's Nth Degree Dual Rate springs are expensive, but are the best way I know of to get a somewhat tolerable ride front a lift taller than 3".

===

So your options for good riding springs are Rancho or OME, but your lift will be 3", which means you'll need to run 33" tires. Ideally some narrow 33s and some wide fender flares (good combo for clearance), or run some 32s, even then ideally run narrower 32s. By narrower I mean 10.5 ideally. Nothing wrong with narrow tires though. They are great, but you'd need 7" or 8" wide wheels for them. I prefer a 8" wide wheel for a 10.5" wide tire.

If you want to stay lifted high enough to run 35" tires, then get AEV's Nth Degree springs. They'll ride softer and better than whatever you have now, but they won't ride anywhere near as nice as the Rancho or OME springs I recommended.

===

Change of priorities here:

I suggest you make these decisions BEFORE buying shocks. Then you'll know what length shocks to buy. Regardless of what lift height and springs, I suggest RS9000XL adjustable shocks, or maybe those Fox shocks that Savvy sells, but talk to Savvy for some advice before buying the Fox (to make sure they really do serve your needs). I know the Rancho RS9000XL would serve your needs.

===

P.S. - I haven't tried AEV Nth Degree springs nor Savvy's Fox shocks, but I know them by reputation to be good. The only question is whether they are what you need. Possibly they are.

I have tried the Rancho springs I mentioned on my LJ, and also the OME springs too. I liked them both. Of the two, the Rancho are slightly softer. Both are excellent quality springs, and the Rancho are also a bargain price. I don't remember the part numbers for the softer Rancho springs I mentioned, so you'll have to figure that out, possibly call Rancho. Be careful to get the spring rates I mentioned whether you get Rancho or OME springs. Both brands make some terribly high spring rate choices that would ride really harsh, which you don't want. Also, don't let some technician talk you in to a firmer Rancho or OME spring than I recommended. I have a bad back and appreciate a soft ride, and I tried those soft springs on my LJ and they were very good. I also used the Rancho RS9000XL shocks and OME shocks. The Rancho RS9000XL shocks ride much softer than OME shocks. Since the RS9000XL are adjustable, you can set them at the firmness or softness of your choice, and they can be readjusted later if you add or remove a winch. Just make sure you get the right length shock for your lift height. That or try the Savvy Fox shocks.

I also did all the other things I suggested in my earlier post, and each thing helps. The combination gives a good ride. Don't under estimate how much a Currie Anti-Rock adjusted to a softer setting helps ride quality. It's a huge improvement.
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Unread 06-29-2013, 11:34 PM   #9
Charley3
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Here is another thought for you, instead of doing all those things to your current LJ, it might be easier and more cost effective to sell it, buy a stock LJ, and start over.

Then you wouldn't be wasting the (questionable) value of what's already been done to it by prior owner, and it's often easier to modify a stock Jeep than to undo other people's prior mistakes.

I guess that partly depends on how much a change of tires to some load C all terrains helps your ride. Unfortunately, there is no way to know that until after you've bought new tires.

It also depends on your front track bar. If you have the stock front track bar, then redoing your current LJ is feasible, IMO. If you have an aftermarket adjustable trackbar, then I suggest either keeping lift height similar to whatever it is now, or selling your LJ and starting over fresh with a stock LJ. Aftermarket adjustable trackbars usually won't clear the differ cover at lower lift heights (3" or less), and usually can't be switched back to a stock trackbar because the frame mount hole is (typically) drilled to a larger hole for the aftermarket trackbar. So once you have an aftermarket trackbar, you might not be able to go back to a stock trackbar, which might mean you have to stay lifted 4" or more.
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Unread 06-30-2013, 01:26 AM   #10
xtreemlee
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Thanks for all the info. I am putting on the rancho shocks and going to 33" tires. If that isn't satisfactory I'm going with the lighter springs you mentioned. I believe my lift is a 4" lift but I don't need all that so if I go to 3" spring no big deal.
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Unread 06-30-2013, 09:45 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Charley3 View Post
Actually new springs aren't expensive. It's the labor installing them that cost the bucks, but even that's not to bad. $500 labor at local tire store here, plus alignment.

The softest lift springs you can get that work well on LJ are Rancho 2.5", which are really 3", IMO. Rancho are available in various spring rates. Get the 130 lbs/in front and 150 lbs/in rear. I had those on my LJ and they worked great with steel skidplates, aftermarket bumpers, but no winch. When I later added a winch, I had to also add a 3/4" poly coil spacer to get back some height in front.

Now if you plan to use a winch in front (with aftermarket bumpers and skidplates) then I suggest an OME Heavy Load TJ front spring. It's 140 lbs/in spring rate. Without a winch it sits 3" high in front, with a winch it sits 2.5" high in front.
(The OME TJ front light load spring is also 140 lbs/in, but it a shorter spring. So same spring rate, but less lift)
I don't think you'd want a heavier rear spring than the Rancho 150 lbs/in, but if you do, get the OME TJ rear medium load spring is 160 lbs/in and it a 3" spring.

For comparison: Stock TJ non Rubicon spring rates are (typically) 130 lbs front, 150 lbs rear. Stock Rubicon TJ springs are 140 lbs/in front, 160 lbs/in rear.

How do I know this stuff? I owned an LJ and I tried all those springs and all the other measures I mentioned and got a good ride at a 3" lift height.

Now here is a fact you might not like to hear, there are no soft springs available above 3" lift height. That's because when single rate spring is taller than 3" lift, it must have a stiffer spring rate to keep the spring and Jeep stable.

However, AEV, and some other company I forgot the name of, do make dual rate springs that offer more than 3" of lift. I forgot how much lift, but I think 4, 5, and or 6" of lift, and they offer a decently soft ride compared to cheap tall springs, but nothing will ride as nice as the Rancho 2.5" (really 3") that I mentioned. The OME come close and are almost as soft as the Rancho. But to get those softer rides, your lift height is 3" front and rear without a winch, or 2.5" front, 3" rear (though you can always add a 3/4" coil spacer if you have a winch to get front back to 3").

If lifted above 3" ride quality will be stiffer-firmer, even with fancy dual rate springs from AEV or any brand of dual rate springs. But the dual rate springs that are above 4" won't be as miserable as with single rate springs.

===

Rancho single rate springs are cheap (and excellent), but only offer 2.5" to 3" front, and 3" rear. (Though Rancho calls them 2.5" springs).

OME's springs are not cheap, but are not to expensive. They are excellent for 2.5" to 3" front, and 3" rear, if you choose the ones with appropriate spring rates.

AEV's Nth Degree Dual Rate springs are expensive, but are the best way I know of to get a somewhat tolerable ride front a lift taller than 3".

===

So your options for good riding springs are Rancho or OME, but your lift will be 3", which means you'll need to run 33" tires. Ideally some narrow 33s and some wide fender flares (good combo for clearance), or run some 32s, even then ideally run narrower 32s. By narrower I mean 10.5 ideally. Nothing wrong with narrow tires though. They are great, but you'd need 7" or 8" wide wheels for them. I prefer a 8" wide wheel for a 10.5" wide tire.

If you want to stay lifted high enough to run 35" tires, then get AEV's Nth Degree springs. They'll ride softer and better than whatever you have now, but they won't ride anywhere near as nice as the Rancho or OME springs I recommended.

===

Change of priorities here:

I suggest you make these decisions BEFORE buying shocks. Then you'll know what length shocks to buy. Regardless of what lift height and springs, I suggest RS9000XL adjustable shocks, or maybe those Fox shocks that Savvy sells, but talk to Savvy for some advice before buying the Fox (to make sure they really do serve your needs). I know the Rancho RS9000XL would serve your needs.

===

P.S. - I haven't tried AEV Nth Degree springs nor Savvy's Fox shocks, but I know them by reputation to be good. The only question is whether they are what you need. Possibly they are.

I have tried the Rancho springs I mentioned on my LJ, and also the OME springs too. I liked them both. Of the two, the Rancho are slightly softer. Both are excellent quality springs, and the Rancho are also a bargain price. I don't remember the part numbers for the softer Rancho springs I mentioned, so you'll have to figure that out, possibly call Rancho. Be careful to get the spring rates I mentioned whether you get Rancho or OME springs. Both brands make some terribly high spring rate choices that would ride really harsh, which you don't want. Also, don't let some technician talk you in to a firmer Rancho or OME spring than I recommended. I have a bad back and appreciate a soft ride, and I tried those soft springs on my LJ and they were very good. I also used the Rancho RS9000XL shocks and OME shocks. The Rancho RS9000XL shocks ride much softer than OME shocks. Since the RS9000XL are adjustable, you can set them at the firmness or softness of your choice, and they can be readjusted later if you add or remove a winch. Just make sure you get the right length shock for your lift height. That or try the Savvy Fox shocks.

I also did all the other things I suggested in my earlier post, and each thing helps. The combination gives a good ride. Don't under estimate how much a Currie Anti-Rock adjusted to a softer setting helps ride quality. It's a huge improvement.
Didn't AEV stop production of TJ/LJ suspension products?
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Unread 06-30-2013, 03:52 PM   #12
Charley3
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Originally Posted by biffgnar View Post
Didn't AEV stop production of TJ/LJ suspension products?
I don't know.
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Unread 06-30-2013, 03:58 PM   #13
Charley3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xtreemlee View Post
Thanks for all the info. I am putting on the rancho shocks and going to 33" tires. If that isn't satisfactory I'm going with the lighter springs you mentioned. I believe my lift is a 4" lift but I don't need all that so if I go to 3" spring no big deal.
Would same length shocks that work for your current 4" lift also work for a 3" lift (if you later change to 3")?

You might want to check on that and think about it.

It'd suck to have to buy shocks twice. On the other hand, it might be worth the risk if new shocks now could salvage the rest of what you currently have. Think about these issues before proceeding.
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Unread 06-30-2013, 07:07 PM   #14
xtreemlee
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According to Rancho the shocks are for 2.5 to 3.5 inch lift. I shouldn't have any issues withe the current set up or if I go with a 3" spring. I've ordered 285/75's down from 315/75,s so my ride and throttle response should be great.
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Unread 07-01-2013, 07:42 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by Charley3 View Post
I don't know.
I believe they did. You might want to stop recommending them.
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