JK springs/mix and match lift on 06 LJ
This could go in the "What have you done to your TJ today" thread, but I am so pleased with myself I wanted to make my own thread. Basically, I wanted some "right now" lift, but was afraid that my "right now" budget would mean cheap kits that would be so stiff my wife (bad back issues) wouldn't get in the Jeep again. I only wanted about 2-3 inches of space and a factory-style ride. I'd seen some discussion going around about JK springs and shocks on a TJ, and I gave it a go. Parts were cheap, lift was what I wanted, and it's just proof it can be done. With help from a good buddy, of course.
Before: Stock suspension, 265/75R16 Firestone AT tires. Measuring to the bottom edge of the body at front and rear I got about 19.25" up front and 19.75 inches in the rear.
After, measured a two inch gain up front and maybe 2.25-2.5" gain in the rear.
What I put on: JKU rear springs, numbers were 59s I believe. 2" Poly spacer up front and JKU Sahara takeoff shocks all the way around. I used Rough Country bar pin eliminators for front lower and rear upper mounts. If I did it again I would forget the rear upper BPEs. More hassle than they were worth.
So far, with highway driving up to 70 mph, I have no vibration, shimmy, or anything along those lines. It still rides like a Jeep, but there is instantly noticeable ride improvement. I mean NICE, like a new Jeep. Shocks had less than 14k on them per the previous owner. I need to get an alignment, but that's about it.
I did not use a rear track bar re-locator or a T-case drop, but am prepared to if needed. So far, so good! This is a temporary set-up to give me more space, flex capability and the look I want until I can afford a full blown set-up (leaning towards OME 2.5 lift- if only I had $900.00 I wasn't doing anything with...) I think all the parts ran me 225-ish, with the shocks being the biggest money saver. The springs were more for kicks, I have spacers for all four corners if needed. I'll be taking the hardtop off soon, and losing the weight may make the rake bad enough to make me swap springs for spacers. But, right now I am very happy with the results!:2thumbsup:
Anyway, comments? Suggestions? Opinions?
I have a buddy that has a JKU on spacers and her is planning to ditch them for full lift springs and he said I could have the leftovers cheap. I read about a similar setup and the OP said that he had to heat the upper coils of the rear springs to clear the bump stops. What was your experience with that? Looks good.
I bought the rear springs from a guy on the Jeep Wrangler Forum, and he had already put them on his TJ as an experiment. So, he had also already heated and expanded the bottom of the pigtail. I have read several posts where folks just cut the first loop off to get it to fit over the spring retainer/bottom bump stop/whatever. If you heat them, do it SLOWLY. Too much heat/flex too quickly will increase likelihood they break on you later.
The guy I bought them from said they lifted his standard wheel base TJ 3". Which makes sense because I got about .5-.75 less than that with the heavier LJ and hardtop. I got lucky with my guestimation math on how much lift I'd end up with. Cutting the pigtail off would just alter your final lift amount. I don't think there are any safety issues with just removing a loop, but I am not an expert by any means.
I will be getting them this summer. Can't wait. Thanks for the insight.
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