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RIPNBST 03-22-2013 11:43 AM

WJ Lift selection
 
Hello everyone, bit of a FNG here and to Jeeps but I am learning everything I can. I have been reading here and other forums sporadically for a couple weeks but lately really been reading heavily on WJ suspension specific tech threads. I am a previous modifier of turbo AWD imports, EVO and STi both, and now getting into the offroad stuff. I had a stock TJ in highschool and wheeled it very lightly, it was technically dad's so I couldn't get crazy. I now have an '04 WJ with the Quadratrac and I was amazed at what I was able to accomplish in a dead stock WJ with touring tires. I probably went around some mud I could have gone through and didn't try some rock faces I might have been able to get up.

I am looking at a BB in the very near future as a band-aid to use this summer and authentically lifting it next spring and researching and saving for the lift until then. The two I am looking at currently are the Rough Country and the Iron Rock Offroad kits.

Is Rough Country total garbage and should I forget they exist? A friend pointed me towards the RC 4" lift and I did some digging on here to find VERY mixed reviews. I suspect the good reviews are people who drive to their highschool in the morning, then down to the clubhouse for football practice, then home in the evening. (kidding, sort of) Let me know what WJ specific experience you all have had with RC if any.

I also found the 3" IRO kit and that kit seems to have little to no bad reviews, I haven't found a bad review yet.

Are the potential problems associated with the extra inch (4" RC v 3" IRO) worth the gamble of going RC? Should I really only be considering 4" lifts and not looking at 3" kits? What is the general consensus on running something like the IRO 3" kit with 1" BB to yield 4" total lift? I read Arlo's thread about if he did it all over again what lift he would put together, and it was very informative. I want to get more data points than just one guy and what he would do though. The cost difference between the IRO and the RC is minimal and I'm not going to squabble over ~$200 to get quality components. The reviews I've read about RC made me leery. Enough I am practically already dismissing it unless you guys can convince me otherwise. If there is another company I should be considering, point me to it. Rubicon Express components seem to be one of the lesser advertised but high quality companies that people seem consistently very happy with. Only I haven't found where they offer a WJ kit yet.... It seems there are a million and one suppliers of lifts so I don't want to overlook someone who maybe doesn't spend every dime to put their name on the back cover of every off road magazine ever but also makes quality components with good cust service.

I am of the "buy once cry once" mentality...to a point. Don't go recommending a Clayton LA kit on me, I don't plan to wheel that hard and this is my daily driver. So I need to keep it reasonable. If there is stuff I can't do off road well then there is just stuff I can't do. I am not sure how to convey what my target is exactly as far as what I'd like to be able to accomplish as where I offroad the trails aren't labeled. So I cant say "I am looking for a lift that would allow me to navigate a blue square trail" or anything like that.


The draw of the RC kit for me is it's "completeness" though the IRO kit if I bought it I would add the JKS sway QD's ($150) and upgrade to at least nitro shocks($25) as well as upgrade to the adjustable track bar ($20). Per Kevin's Off-Road, who seems to have lots of good info re: death wobble, which scares the hell out of me, I'd probably also get a Hard-KOR steering stabilizer. As much I dont want to think about the added cost I might get adjustable lower control arms too if you guys think I would need them.

With all of that I would hope to be able to install everything, drop the vehicle, go get an alignment, and be pretty much set.

Is there anything I am overlooking in my research?

lemiller 03-22-2013 12:20 PM

Hey welcome to the forum, sounds like you are on the right path to figuring out what you want. You would be surprised at how many post there on here asking what lift to get. One thing I would consider is what size tire you are running and if you are ok with trimming. 1in difference isnt alot but could mean you trim or dont trim. I personally will be going with the IRO 3" kit, adj track bar, moog super trail boss steering stabilizer (alot of guys on here highly recommend this part), I havent decided on shocks yet. I will also be purchasing new spring isolators as mine are wore out. In total this may give me 3.5-4in of lift over my current height. I personally dont care much for RC products, have had bad experiences in the past.

Also while your planning the lift I would inspect all the suspension components, if a TRE is wore out then might as well replace it so you only have to do one alignment.

Not sure if this helped at all, but best of luck choosing a lift.

fast540 03-22-2013 12:51 PM

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I think u may have it backwards. The poor reviews i see on the 4" xflex lift from rc seem to be from folks running another lift but they heard from "someone" that rc sucks. Every review I've read from guys that wheel confirms my experience that the x flex kit works great. Guys with lighter jeeps get a firmer than stock ride my rig is pretty heavy and my ride is slightly softer than stock. My wj gets driven occasionally as a dd (drove to work one day in two months) but it goes on long trips to wheel at least once a month and normally one or two day trips. It drives great and wheels better. Great flex and no rattles squeaks or bad road manners at all

fast540 03-22-2013 12:53 PM

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O shoot my bad. My comments were based on on the x flex kit I haven't used the base 4" kit. This is in a parking lot vs stock

RIPNBST 03-22-2013 01:33 PM

Well that just echoes what I've heard about RC. It sucks that one more inch of lift costs so much more money. But I understand why.

I bought my '04 with only 60k miles on it from a hospital manager and his wife who had it as their 4th vehicle. It was the wife's before she married this guy. To say it was babied would be an understatement. They sold it because they were moving and since they hardly drove it it wasn't worth putting in a truck to haul it 1,000 miles so they sold it instead.

Since I am saving for a year I may just go with the 4" IRO kit and pick up small stuff along the way, for instance the KOR HD steering stabilizer for ~$80, Adjustable control arms, etc and just amass a storage of parts until they are all ready to go on. I will be spending much more than I thought I was going to be but hey, I've got a year to save for it.

I very recently replaced my shocks (2 months ago) with KYB Monomaxx shocks and they are a significant improvement over the factory shocks. One in the front was blown and it was cheap enough so I just replaced all 4. Would I be able to run these shocks on a 3" lift? It would be nice if I could knock $100 off the price of the IRO lift right up front because I already installed my new shocks.

Red350ss 03-22-2013 02:10 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by RIPNBST (Post 15175735)
Well that just echoes what I've heard about RC. It sucks that one more inch of lift costs so much more money. But I understand why.

I bought my '04 with only 60k miles on it from a hospital manager and his wife who had it as their 4th vehicle. It was the wife's before she married this guy. To say it was babied would be an understatement. They sold it because they were moving and since they hardly drove it it wasn't worth putting in a truck to haul it 1,000 miles so they sold it instead.

Since I am saving for a year I may just go with the 4" IRO kit and pick up small stuff along the way, for instance the KOR HD steering stabilizer for ~$80, Adjustable control arms, etc and just amass a storage of parts until they are all ready to go on. I will be spending much more than I thought I was going to be but hey, I've got a year to save for it.

I very recently replaced my shocks (2 months ago) with KYB Monomaxx shocks and they are a significant improvement over the factory shocks. One in the front was blown and it was cheap enough so I just replaced all 4. Would I be able to run these shocks on a 3" lift? It would be nice if I could knock $100 off the price of the IRO lift right up front because I already installed my new shocks.

Shocks will definately have to be replaced with a 3 or 4" lift,......the cadillacs are Bilstein 5100's....look up Kolak here on the forum, best price and service on them.

its-me-B 03-22-2013 03:13 PM

well when you think you know what you want contact kolak( vendor on this forum)... he will get you great pricing, and has plenty of info about everything wj related.

RIPNBST 03-22-2013 05:03 PM

Welp, more research done and now I am thinking to scratch the idea of 4" lift and just go with a 3", still IRO. 4" is more hard core than I want to get into I think and appears to require more work/parts than I need for what I want to do. 4" seems about the limit on a WJ between long arm/short arm and I really probably could benefit from the 3" just fine. So it looks like my build will be:

Iron Rock Offroad 3" lift w/ JKS QD's and adjustable track bar $679.98
Kevin's OffRoad Hard-KOR HD Steering Stabilizer $79.97
Any other miscellaneous stuff I find that needs to be replaced budgeting $200
Air Intake + Exhaust call it $500

and then of course new tires, figuring about $800 for tires.

fast540 03-22-2013 05:51 PM

Unless u have something trick in mind skip the intake. Cold air intakes are a joke and stock flows really well

MWyatt 03-22-2013 06:08 PM

Instead of the KOR Steering stabilizer pick up a Moog Trail boss steering stabilizer from Kolak, it will be a little cheaper. Get Kevin's HD trackbar bushings if you want guaranteed Death Wobble resistance.

bradywgn71 03-22-2013 06:44 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by RIPNBST (Post 15176836)
Any other miscellaneous stuff I find that needs to be replaced budgeting $200

Might want to plan on adding more money here.

Starting out with a low mileage WJ is going to help, but be prepared to find things you didn't plan on while doing the lift. Spring insulators, unexpected rusted out and completely gone spring mounts that now need custom fabbed, control arm bushings rotted out, tie-rod ends, ball joints front and rear, driveshaft u-joints, double carden front driveshaft if you don't already have one standard, and rear extended sway bar links are some of the things that come to mind. These are not all from my personal experience, but have been experienced by just about everyone to some degree.

Not trying to discourage you from lifting. I'm just trying to let you know that whatever you think it's going to cost, prepare for more.

RIPNBST 03-23-2013 11:07 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by bradywgn71 (Post 15177312)
Not trying to discourage you from lifting. I'm just trying to let you know that whatever you think it's going to cost, prepare for more.

I really thought $200 would be enough. What do you think I'd be better budgeting for? $500?

I should probably get a pic of my undercarriage and show it to you guys. It's stupid clean. I'd be downright shocked if $200-300 wasn't enough for stuff I wasn't planning for specifically.

I was also thinking to maybe do the spring isolators which is part of what I was figuring the $200 would go towards. I was doing some more thinking about how much of a b!tch it was installing the shocks up front. Maybe I should add bar pin eliminators to my list, then again maybe not. I don't plan on taking it apart often and it would save me money.

Umbrella 03-23-2013 11:12 AM

I started this thread (LINK) asking about what extras I might need to consider with the IRO 3", got some good feedback.

Maybe it will help with your list and budgeting?

RIPNBST 05-21-2013 10:19 AM

Just wanted to update everyone. I ordered everything through Kolak but my Moog STB (found on amazon cheaper).

What I ended up ordering was:

-3" IRO lift with Adj Trakbar (No shocks) (Through Kolak, great pricing)
-Goodyear Wrangler Authority 265/70/17 (Walmart Duratrac knockoff) $170(Authority) v $250(Duratrac) a tire was too much money to not get them.
-Bilstein 5100's via Kolak (Great pricing)
Decided to add the JKS QD's at a later date since Kolak offers free shipping on all things JKS. I decided I'd rather put the money into the Bilsteins than the QD's at this time at Kolak's recommendation. I can do QD's later easily where changing shocks later is not so easy.
-ZJ windshield washer fluid reservoir($10 local u-pull it), just in case I decide I need to get that route after I get the QD's. I don't think I will need it at this point but may in the near future.

I still have some money budgeted for odds and ends. Installing this weekend.

SierraRipper 05-21-2013 10:41 AM

I got the same lift w/adj track bar, bilstein shocks, moog ss, jks qdiscos, also added the spring isolators as my current ones are f.u.b.a.r. :p all through kolak as well! Great vendor!

All i'm missing now is the iro lift, red shock boots, and the rear shocks, its been 2 weeks now! Why do they torture me like this :[
Then some bfg km2s hopefully in 2 months
How long did it take yours to ship?

Edit*** got my rear shocks + red boots in today!


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