Would a set of lower adjustable control arms allow me to make a caster angle adjustment? Since I added my 2" lift, and new isolators, the jeep is pretty darn touchy to steering input, as compared to my wife's bone stock WJ anyway. Also, having the caster back would mean the jeep would have more "auto correct" right?
Yes, it would, but it shouldn't be too far out of spec as it sits now. Have you had alignment done to confirm toe is set correctly? A little toe-out yields a darty, sharp turn in, more so than the degree of caster you lose with a 2" lift.
Yes, I did have an alignment done immediately after the lift was put on. You will probably laugh, but I learned all my alignment basics from Radio controlled car racing- Caster/Camber/Toe all have a dramatic effect on a 1/10th scale car.
The jeep drives arrow straight, and it doesn't feel like it has toe out, I would say it is set to zero by "feel". I was thinking a bit of toe in would be more stable, but I bet that also has a pretty gnarly effect on the tires. (Both in and out would.)
The jeep does have "upcountry" springs, so I am closer to 3" lift then 2" I think.
Well you should have between 1/16 to 1/8 toe in for the alignment to be correct. Those that go to 4" seem to say they use .2 of an inch, (correction:this is 0.2 degrees not inches which is stock spec.) It doesnt wear your tires at stock specs. Also its my understanding that you use the adjustable front control arms to set pinion angle rather than caster. Unfortunately pinion angle and caster are in contention on a front axle and since bad pinion angle makes the front u joints make noise and not last, it usually trumps caster.
In other news, I have been pricing out building arms the way I want to using a combination of Johnny Joints at axle-end and RE rubber bushings at body end. Unfortunately, the best pricing I can find on builder parts doesn't actually result in much in the way of savings. I'd be in just over $100/arm for a single JJ rod end, a nice hex sleeve/jam nut, a weld-on bushing sleeve w/lubed bushing, plus the cost of the steel hollow bar stock. And I'd still have to design, cut, bend, and weld the assembly.
What was your best price and source you found on the actual JJ's? Also, the Iron Man 4x4 single JJ arms have the JJ on frame side. You would think the JJ on the axle side would be better. Wonder why they went frame side though instead?
It looks like Currie's pricing structure requires their dealers to match the prices (or exceed!) on builder parts. I've found several places, all offering the rod ends for $41.50 each, regardless of size, thread pitch, or handing. The tube nut I like (hex with a jam nut included) is $25, and the RE rubber bushings I like were $25 for bushing/sleeve assembly. Bam, $92 for parts before even getting to the tubing (or shipping charges). And it's not that I think the parts are overpriced! I was a machinist/machine operator for several years, I know the level of R&D it took to perfect it plus the machining processes needed. Plus molds for the urethane surrounding bushings, etc. It just works out that builder parts are just expensive enough to make pre-fab arms more attractive.
I was thinking JJs on the axle end too with rubber at the body end. I think they might have done it the opposite way because it doesn't really matter where the control arm pivots, and putting the JJ up higher, closer to the body puts it further out of the mud/water/debris that it will inevitably see. It also puts the lighter rubber bushing on the unsprung end of the control arm for lower unsprung weight.
No, the jam nut is supposed to stay tight to set arm length and strengthen the threaded section. If it is loose, the threads will see a lot of dynamic load. Standard 30° threads are not meant to be load-bearing like that. Maybe if you re-made the arms using Acme thread in a greased environment. That's probably how JKS does it with their freely-rotating arms (and could be part of why they are more expensive, Acme thread is a little tougher to machine).
Well, I've driven my WJ all of 5 miles in the last three weeks, been taking the VW everywhere since the mileage is so much better. And today, when I needed to go to my doctor's appointment, I get the angry clicking from the starter solenoid. Lo and behold my 1-year old battery has 10.5 volts and I don't have a battery charger.
This is the first time it's given me a no-start. Sad day. It's my fault for never driving it.
Nope, 2ga jumper cables inside the spare tire and no one to jump to. I'll have to wait till the wife gets home, jump it, and go for a drive. Which will be good anyway, she's all mad at me ATM and I need to blow off some steam too.
If i took a cruise every time my girl was mad at me I would need to be driving a the TDI jetta or go broke Oh well at least you don't have to go to the doctors Thanks for the quick answer on the arms, there is so much thread and its so beefy, youd think it could take it at trail speeds all greased up. I guess the most force would be under compression. and under a bit of angle from the free movement on the threads it would shear them off eventually
Latest in WJ news... hauled a bunch of bark in the back. With the seats folded down, it easily hauls 16 2 cu.ft. backs of garden bark. I would guess 25 bags is possible. Spent a lot of time doing yardwork; our mild winter + our organic gardening techniques made for some extremely fertile soil.
Also, today I helped out a Jeepforum member from the local section with some Jeep mods.
Installed an IRO adjustable track bar on a 95 Cherokee Sport as well as a new TRE on the drag link. 3" Zone lift with 31" Duratracs, JKS QDs. The JKS QDs were coming loose so we tightened them down as well. Nicely built, the Zone kit rides firm but not bad. Then I drove the WJ with the Bilsteins and it was like butter.
The IRO track bar didn't come with all the needed hardware and attempts by the owner to get them to send it were unsuccessful. WTG IRO! It was missing the Zerk fitting on the ball joint end (the XJs use a tapered mount ball joint on the body side, it looks like a big TRE) and didn't come with a replacement cotter pin. Little things, but WTF? It wasn't complete.