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Unread 05-09-2014, 02:06 PM   #1
CrankyD
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OME YJ Front end on a budget.

I am thinking of upgrading my front end to OME cs037r yj leafs and doing so on a budget. I don't want to compromise on doing it right though. I run 31's and don't wheel it real hard, so I don't need overkill parts. My thoughts so far are;

Stock CJ rear shackle hangers (gusseted) moved forward by grinding the rivet off. (stock bumper and no steering brace). I an open to other suggestions here, I can't find the Crabtree ones does he still make them?

Stock CJ rear spring plates with a a sway bar mount welded on.

Cheap 2.5" CJ length shackles.

Cheap u-bolt kit.

New bushings

Two OME cs037r YJ springs

Am I missing anything before I start putting part numbers in my list? Do I need to fill the center pin hole and re-drill it doing it this way? or can I just grind the pumpkin a bit?

Once I get the front done I'll tackle the rear that should be pretty straight forward. Thanks for helping me think through this!

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Unread 05-09-2014, 02:37 PM   #2
skizriz
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That's basically how I did mine, with a few exceptions. I used the rear CJ shackle hangers on the front, with the rivit ground out and the hole used. I upgraded to 1/2" grade 8 bolts from the stock 7/16 to bolt them on to the frame with. I didn't gusset anything, and they are holding up fine so far. I think I paid $12 each for my hangers at Advance Auto.

The spring plates. You can't use CJ rear spring plates on the front because of the pumpkin, without work. The one U-bolt needs to be wider to clear it.
YJ front spring plates will work, and a sway bar bolt welded on as you mentioned.(the route I went)
For the CJ rear plates to work, you would have to weld shut two holes and redrill them to clear the pumpkin.

Shackles. Besrk makes great 3/8 thick shackles in different lengths. What makes his nice to use is the fact that they are just side plates, with the 1/2 holes in them, and you use your own hardware. They will fit any width spring or hanger. I have $75 invested in all four of my Besrk shackles. (can't beat the price)

As far as U bolts, NOT a place to go cheap. My local spring shop bends up nice ones for about $8 each. Well worth it for quality U bolts, IMO.

Remember, doing it this way will leave you needing CJ bushings and YJ bushings. One kit won't cover everything anymore.
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78 CJ7 258 TH400/Dana18 SOA/stock YJ springs 35" General Grabbers.
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Unread 05-09-2014, 02:48 PM   #3
CrankyD
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Good point on the bushings, I didn't get that far with my thinking yet. What info did the spring shop need to bend up new u-bolts? I'm not going to be cheap at the expense of being done right, I just won't be using ultra premium parts here. Only reason I'm considering upgrading the hangers is due to the obvious value of the Crabtree units. Thanks for the tip on Besrk's shackles!
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Unread 05-09-2014, 03:02 PM   #4
skizriz
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No doubt the Crabtree shackles are top quality. But they are a premium price. (I'd love to have a set some day). I think I read that he's making them again, he just isn't advertising any more.

I just took the spring plate with the odd ball hole in it with me. One U bolt for the odd ball hole, and three for the other.
Figure the axle tube is 2.5 tall,The perch sits up off the tube about 3/4", another 1" for the springs, and maybe 3/8 for the plate. Go too long, and the threaded part may not go down far enough, too short, and well, you know ....
If you have an old U-bolt (even if you cut it in half), take one along with you. Or at least take some careful measurements for the length you will need. The length from the bend to the point the threads start is the important part.
You can always cut the extra off, but need it to be threaded far enough to tighten up.

Keep me updated on how you like the springs. My stock YJ springs are shot, and I keep looking at the OME springs. Just not sure of which rate springs to get. I'm thinking the medium duty rear springs at all four corners.
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Unread 05-09-2014, 03:10 PM   #5
waterdowg
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You can make your own shackles by purchasing 1/4" flat stock, cutting to length and drilling holes. You can also get grade 8 bolts. This is what I did on my rear. Or if you have front stock CJ shackles you can grind off the bolt and just purchase new bolts. That what I did on my fronts. All for under $20.
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Unread 05-09-2014, 03:48 PM   #6
CrankyD
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I could fab them but Besrk's are $24 delivered, and they look better than my cobbled up crap! My existing shackles are part of the problem. I'm going with the CS037r spring at 188 lb/in rate 20mm less lift than the cs036r I cant comment on the light medium heavy that topic is too confusing. I hope for a good ride with not a whole lot of lift as I have a winch and rear bumper/carrier. I'm aiming for 1.5" over stock. I also have about 3/4" of body lift. I'll keep this up to date as I want to get this done before I drive it up to Butler for the Bantam show.

I just took a look at my spring plates and I have the shock mounted to the axle so I only need the swaybar mount stud. Factory YJ plates should work.


Budget right now (I will keep updated)

Springs- ARB cs037r ($200)
Shackles- Ground Pounder Fab ($35)
Spring Plates- Used Factory Yj ($20)
Swaybar bushing kit- Energy suspension 25101G ($25)
U-Bolts- $40
Shackle hangers-
Bushings-
Shocks-
Brake lines-

Total-$320

My head is getting light.
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Unread 05-09-2014, 04:25 PM   #7
Jim1611
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I'm Crabtree

Looks like you've got most everything lined up. On the u-bolts I had a local spring shop make mine and they were $8.00 per bolt. They had rolled threads instead of cut too and those are much stronger.

I'm not a vendor on here anymore so I can't advertise but I am still making the hangers. There was a time when I was going to quit making them but after getting contacted asking for them I decided to stay with it and even dive a little deeper. My website did have the links that showed the pricing until go-daddy screwed up and deleted it the other day and now I'm back to having my first website. We're working on fixing all of this.

If you decide to make your own hangers here's a picture that might be helpful. It's good in that you can see where things are supposed to be. If you need any help send me a pm and I'll do what I can


Edit. found another picture that might help you
1001177f.jpg   1001585k.jpg  
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Unread 05-09-2014, 04:34 PM   #8
skizriz
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Glad to see you making them again.
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Unread 05-09-2014, 08:17 PM   #9
CrankyD
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PM Sent! The parts list is filling out faster than the bank account though. Will the daystar bushings for a yj hanger work?


Springs- ARB cs037r ($200)
Shackles- Ground Pounder Fab ($35)
Spring Plates- Used Factory Yj ($20)
Swaybar bushing kit- Energy suspension 25101G ($25)
U-Bolts- $40
Shackle hangers-Pending
Bushings-ARB OMESB87, daykj02009bk ($60)
Shocks-
Brake lines-

Total-$370 and climbing.
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Unread 05-09-2014, 08:49 PM   #10
Jim1611
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Quote:
Originally Posted by skizriz View Post
Glad to see you making them again.
Thanks

Quote:
Originally Posted by CrankyD View Post
PM Sent! The parts list is filling out faster than the bank account though. Will the daystar bushings for a yj hanger work?


Springs- ARB cs037r ($200)
Shackles- Ground Pounder Fab ($35)
Spring Plates- Used Factory Yj ($20)
Swaybar bushing kit- Energy suspension 25101G ($25)
U-Bolts- $40
Shackle hangers-Pending
Bushings-ARB OMESB87, daykj02009bk ($60)
Shocks-
Brake lines-

Total-$370 and climbing.
The bushings I sold in the past were Daystar. They were standard size YJ bushings which is 1 1/4" diameter. The standard CJ bushings are 1". The larger bushings are a good upgrade because they allow the use of a spacer sleeve inside the bushing and between the shackle plates that acts as a crush sleeve. It's really not practical to do that with the smaller CJ bushings. My CJ/YJ conversion hangers are made for the larger YJ style bushings.
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Unread 05-10-2014, 06:50 AM   #11
bptactical
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Those hangers are a work of art Jim
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Unread 05-10-2014, 08:38 AM   #12
rixcj
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I did the YJ leaf spring conversion about 4 months ago, as part of a suspension upgrade / rear bumper, spare tire carrier installation/ new body mount installation project.

I could write a book on this experience. These projects had to be done together.

Here's the YJ leaf spring restoration...

http://www.jeepforum.com/forum/f8/yj...y-cj5-1492796/

Here's the bumper/ spare tire carrier....

http://www.jeepforum.com/forum/f37/a...build-1959754/

Long story short...I installed the leaf springs then installed the rear bumper. I figured that I'd see how the jeep sat.

The tub/nose (fiberglass)was higher in the front. So I leveled off the body with new custom cut-to length rubber mounts.

I couldn't get it to sit level without the rear of the tub set way too high.

So, I took off the front conversion shackles (5" ctc holes) and made my own 3.5" (ctc holes) shackles. This lowered the 1-piece tilt nose. Now, I was able to cut down all the rubber mounts and get the body to sit level.

The YJ springs lifted my jeep a couple of inches. This resulted in the caster angle, and rear pinion angle needing modification. That took several attempts to get right. I also had to order a new front drive shaft. The original was now too short.

The clutch pedal/firewall rod/bellcrank assembly also needed to be reconfigured.

None of these corrections were a first-time success. I have ungodly hours in this project.

The final result - Overall, I like the way the jeep handles (improved steering geometry). I like the fact that I have a spare tire. I never had one before. I like the way the jeep sits. It always sat a little uphill since I've owned it.

The ride quality of the YJ springs vs. the stock CJ leaf springs is minimal. I was slightly disappointed. I had read so much about how YJ springs were a HUGE improvement over CJ springs. Not so much, in my case.

I think it has to do with the fact that my jeep is so light.

Anyway...that's my story.

Rich
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There's a fine line between "hobby" and "mental illness".
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Unread 05-10-2014, 10:35 AM   #13
CrankyD
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I'm in a similar situation I have a pretty light jeep with the 4.2 and fiberglass tub. I went through all that stuff mounting the tub too.

Quote:
The ride quality of the YJ springs vs. the stock CJ leaf springs is minimal. I was slightly disappointed. I had read so much about how YJ springs were a HUGE improvement over CJ springs. Not so much, in my case.
I'm surprised that the ride isn't better do you know what your spring part number was?
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Unread 05-10-2014, 11:12 AM   #14
rixcj
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No, I bought them used . They are very healthy (no sagging, etc.). They are 4-leaf fronts and 5-leaf rears, if that tells you anything.

I believe that they are the lighter weight springs.I just think that my jeep is too light to flex them. I have Skyjacker Softride shocks.

Remember...I have a CJ5...I'll bet that it doesn't weigh much more than 2500 lbs. and much of that weight is below what the springs are lifting!

Rich
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'79 CJ5, AMC 360, t-18/d20 twin stick, dana 30/amc20(Mosers), Edelbrock Performer intake, Holley 600, ps/pb, DUI HEI, 'glass tub/1pc. tilt nose, 33x12.50 BFG AT's.

There's a fine line between "hobby" and "mental illness".
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Unread 05-10-2014, 08:38 PM   #15
VooDoo2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim1611 View Post
I'm Crabtree

Looks like you've got most everything lined up. On the u-bolts I had a local spring shop make mine and they were $8.00 per bolt. They had rolled threads instead of cut too and those are much stronger.

I'm not a vendor on here anymore so I can't advertise but I am still making the hangers. There was a time when I was going to quit making them but after getting contacted asking for them I decided to stay with it and even dive a little deeper. My website did have the links that showed the pricing until go-daddy screwed up and deleted it the other day and now I'm back to having my first website. We're working on fixing all of this.

If you decide to make your own hangers here's a picture that might be helpful. It's good in that you can see where things are supposed to be. If you need any help send me a pm and I'll do what I can


Edit. found another picture that might help you
I have a set of these and the only downside is the inability to use a bolt on lower part of the bumper/front bar. It can only be bolted at the top. A little more thickness and a threaded hole for the bumper would make a good product perfect.
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