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Unread 09-01-2013, 11:33 PM   #1
CJ7DAV
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Caster Questions???

Hey everybody!

This is my first post, but I have been using this forum for information for awhile now...you guys sure have helped me!

I have a 1978 CJ7 with what I think is a 2.5" ProComp Lift everything else is pretty much stock. I just put 33x12.5 inch tires on it and have a RC 4" lift on its way through the mail this week.

When I got the new tires aligned they said I only have 1.3* positive caster. They suggested shims, but after I read some threads on here I realized that shims aren't the BEST way to go. So here is my question...

If my shackles are stock, 3" bolt to bolt (They are), why is my caster so low?

I read on the forum that if all you add is a lift, the axle should not be angled differently from stock. So, what else could I have going on?

It actually drives well, but the steering is sensitive especially on the highway. I do like to drive it around town, but I'm building it for moderate trailing.

What do you suggest I do first to figure this out?

Thanks in advance!

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Unread 09-01-2013, 11:49 PM   #2
walkerhoundvm
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2.5" isn't a huge lift to affect caster that much. When you get the 4" lift on, that's the time to recheck caster and remedy it, as it will really be altered then and you'll have to come up with the best way to restore it then - shims or rewelding the perches. Your call, do you want temporary and cheap or permanent and more expensive?

Not sure why it's so off with just 2.5"
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Unread 09-02-2013, 01:22 AM   #3
Spieg8
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Given the 3" shackles and only 2.5" lift springs, your caster should not be that low. I would think that caster that low would be very noticeable when driving, so my first thought is that the alignment shop didn't take a good measurement. If it really is that low, the frame could be bent, or perhaps a PO had the spring perches and/or inner "C's" rotated for a different lift at some point in the Jeep's history (sometimes a shackle reversal with long shackles can require a reduction of caster). You might look closely around the spring perches for signs of grinding where the original perches may have been removed.
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Unread 09-03-2013, 04:03 PM   #4
CJ7DAV
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Thanks guys,

I took a look and I see no mods to the perches or anything. The frame looks straight too. I think I agree that it was mis-measured.
I'll put the lift on and see where it sits then.

Thanks...
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Unread 09-03-2013, 04:33 PM   #5
Matt1981CJ7
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Lift springs, alone, should not affect caster. Otherwise, caster would constantly change as springs sag, which it doesn't.

Lift springs do affect the angle of the connecting rod, however, which will cause similar driving characteristics as too little caster.

What does change caster are springs that are longer eye-to-eye than stock (ie: YJ springs on the front of a CJ), and longer than stock shackles.

Good luck,

Matt
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Unread 09-03-2013, 06:03 PM   #6
LumpyGrits
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Shims are fine IF they are STEEL.
Stay away from the alum, zinc, pot metal ones
LG
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Unread 09-06-2013, 07:52 PM   #7
CJ7DAV
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Found the problem?

Well I don't know yet if this is the problem...I just put the front springs on my jeep out of the rough country 4" lift. I put the front wheels back on and took it off of the jack stands, and this is what the shackles look like!
Have my shackles been moved forward? Would that be the cause of the low caster?
image.jpg

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Unread 09-06-2013, 08:00 PM   #8
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Those springs just connected at the front and laying on the ground ?
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Unread 09-06-2013, 08:25 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CJ7DAV
Well I don't know yet if this is the problem...I just put the front springs on my jeep out of the rough country 4" lift. I put the front wheels back on and took it off of the jack stands, and this is what the shackles look like!
Have my shackles been moved forward? Would that be the cause of the low caster?
Looks like the springs are too short. I seem to recall a while back some people received lift kits with springs that were too short. Don't remember if they were RC lifts but you may want to phone them to confirm what you have
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Unread 09-06-2013, 10:01 PM   #10
CJ7DAV
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jeepwhore

Looks like the springs are too short. I seem to recall a while back some people received lift kits with springs that were too short. Don't remember if they were RC lifts but you may want to phone them to confirm what you have
I'll give them a call...not really happy with the kit to begin with...one of the bags had been opened and a steel spacer was missing. The directions are very vague. And now I might have the wrong parts!

I've done two other lifts on other vehicles, but this one has been crazy.

Yes, that is with the spring attached at both ends, axle attached, sway bar attached, and tire/wheel installed...no shocks installed yet.

Thanks for the help!
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Unread 09-07-2013, 12:35 AM   #11
CJ7DAV
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Oh Crap!

Oh Crap, what did I get myself into!
Well it looks like short springs have been a problem with Rough Country 4" lifts, but usually on the rear springs. Looks like I'm going to be in Customer Service Hell this week.
Don't say it...should have bought the more expensive lift!

Here is the link to the rough country problems discussion

http://www.jeepforum.com/forum/f8/ro...roblem-996267/
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Unread 09-07-2013, 05:38 AM   #12
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Sorry to hear that, Dav. My CJ came with RC springs, and I've been pleased with them. Guess it makes a difference whether someone's already done the work for you or if you have to do it yourself.

If I were in your position I'd try to get all my money back and go with another brand. Send them the message they need to hear.
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Unread 09-07-2013, 06:40 AM   #13
Texian
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CJ7DAV View Post
Oh Crap, what did I get myself into!
Well it looks like short springs have been a problem with Rough Country 4" lifts, but usually on the rear springs. Looks like I'm going to be in Customer Service Hell this week.
Don't say it...should have bought the more expensive lift!

Here is the link to the rough country problems discussion

http://www.jeepforum.com/forum/f8/ro...roblem-996267/
Thanks for the link. It sure says a lot about RC service or really lack of it. What a crap product.
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Unread 09-07-2013, 09:04 AM   #14
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Just for reference the shackle angle should be the opposite of what it is with the bottom bolt forward of the upper.

Sorry for the situation you're in! RC needs to address this crap.
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Unread 09-07-2013, 09:29 AM   #15
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Did the shackle just get inverted with the suspension hanging from the jack stands, and lock itself in place? From the look of the spring, it doesn't look like it's sitting like it should be (the angle of the spring compared to a flat one). Looks like a 12" lift spring.

It may just need popped back into position.
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