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Unread 10-23-2013, 02:17 PM   #1
jeepstrive
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Aftermarket parts install time check

Hello all here, first, thanks for all of the info on this site, I have used it extensively as a lurker to research my new jeep so thanks in advance.

I have ordered my jeep from the dealer a couple of weeks ago, 2014 JKUR - 6 speed manual. I'm expecting it to come in around Dec but still no word from the factory. Hoping to go offroad 1-2 times per month, we'll see how schedule permits.

The dealer here is going through the local 4 wheel parts store here to handle procurement and installation of all the aftermarket parts I have requested (I gave them a big list). I have then met with the 4 wheel parts guy several time to talk through the list and figure everything out with the aftermarket parts. I had to drop a couple of vendors and switch the parts for competitive vendors and/or order a couple of them myself which are currently en-route. 4 wheel parts will install all of these parts before I receive the jeep from the dealer - everything all wrapped up with a warranty and in one loan.

I'm posting here for two reasons, A to figure out a rough install hour based time frame so I don't get hustled by the 4 wheel parts store when it comes to install time costs (am guessing 30 hours but could be way off), B to see if I missed anything or the parts I have chosen are incomplete/incorrect. I'm not sure if this is the best sub-forum for this post, I apologize if it's not.

Here's the list:
- Rock Krawler 3.5 Inch X Factor Pro Mid Arm System
- fox shocks
- 5 Goodyear MT/R with Kevlar 37 inch tires
- 5 XD-797 Spy rims
- Regear to 4.88 or 4.56 (am leaning towards 4.88 based on research)(are there different part types for this?)
- Teraflex axle sleeve and gusset kit both axles
- needs paint (black) Front Bumper - Fab Fours lifestyle with pre-runner grill guard
- needs paint (black) back bumper - poison spyder - rock brawler with tire carrier
- needs paint (silver) front and rear fenders - poison spyder front and rear crusher fender flares
- needs paint (silver) skin - poison spyder body armor steel
- needs paint (silver) EVO rock slider (weld on)
- warn Zeon 10-S winch
- gobi stealth roof rack
- rigid industries 50 inch light bar (bolts onto gobi brackets)
- Trucklites LED main headlights (replace standard headlights)
- Rock hard bolt on under armor - transfer case, oil pan etc., fuel tank
- some small cosmetic stuff (gas cover etc. and some rubber mats for inside)

The parts I listed as needing paint the 4wheelparts store is actually subcontracting as well for painting then bringing back and installing. I'm guessing all of the install will happen at once over a couple of days time, likely a week. Hopefully all parts will be in house in the correct time frame so I don't have to take it back in afterwards to get bits and pieces added on.

So, what is a good time estimate for all of this in hours, install separate from paint time?

Did I miss anything major here? I owned a YJ back in the day but never did any mods at all so this is my first foray into the expensive aftermarket world.

Thanks in advance!

Cheers

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Unread 10-23-2013, 03:10 PM   #2
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Each part should have an estimated installation time. And the guys at any 4Wheel Parts store should be able to install pretty much anything in the minimum estimated time (one would think). Plus some of these can be installed in conjunction with one another, which would reduce install time (sleve, gusset & regear while doing the lift, etc). I honestly dont have a good answer for you. Dont forget about the potential deterioration of your driveshafts, ball joints, etc. when running 3.5" lift and 37" tires. And I would normally suggest that you do some of the work yourself to save a few bucks (outsourcing the powdercoating, installing lights & bumpers, etc.), but if its all getting rolled up into one car payment... why the heck not!

I want an invitation to Austin when you take her out on her first wheeling expedition.
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Unread 10-23-2013, 03:51 PM   #3
jeepstrive
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Yeah, I was thinking they should be fast at installation of each of these items as they should basically be at the expert level of installation of all these things. I still have no idea how long these things should take a novice vs an expert for each line item, I don't even know the extreme ends of the ranges so my 30 hour guess is a shot in the dark. I just don't want to be charged more than I should, not saying they would do that, but it helps to know what's reasonable at least when negotiating.

I don't have any real mechanical skills other than I used to change the oil on my cars way back, so some (probably most) of this stuff is definitely beyond me, the other thing, like you said, it's all done at once ahead of time and I drive it off the lot which is beneficial for multiple reasons, not the least of which putting it all in one loan is probably a lot easier than trying to convince my wife of the need for all of these items one at a time as I go along . The problem though is that I need to then do a lot of studying of how all of this works (beyond what I've done so far) so that if it breaks in the future, especially while off road, I can at least diagnose the problems and come up with a solution to allow for a limp in to a shop or home.

I was hoping with the regear and a good lift with extra parts to help maintain the correct geometry, wear on the driveshaft, joints, etc. would be minimized. Is there anything else I can do (additional parts or change to parts or anything else) to help prevent an earlier than usual breakdown of these components given the setup I've chosen so far?

You're welcome to join me in Austin for the first off road trip, besides quite a bit of offroading with ATV's as a kid, which wasn't yesterday, and a few very minor offroad excursions with my YJ, I have pretty much zero knowledge of offroading at this point so I'm going to need some help to keep me out of trouble. I know this vehicle will be WAY more capable than I am for quite awhile. I've been looking at a couple of local jeep clubs here in Austin, haven't picked one yet though, probably want to wheel with all of them to pick the right one I'm thinking.

Thanks for the advice, let me know if you think of anything else!
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Unread 10-23-2013, 04:07 PM   #4
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There labor estimates are usually generous. Id hope they can do them In that time. Hell im no mechanic and i could do it.
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Unread 10-23-2013, 04:39 PM   #5
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Quite a list there to occasionally off road....


Minor off road experience and you needed 37s and all that right off the bat? I would normally recommend running it stock and learning more but it's your money. The other downside of getting all of these things at once, is that if something doesn't go together right or vibration problems persist, you have no idea where the problem started.

I would have done some things different personally based on my experience. Doesn't make either right or wrong. I wouldn't have ordered the rubicon since you are taking everything off before you take delivery. You're re-gearing the axles, new wheels/tires and shocks, lifting 3.5".

If I was going to spend a bunch of money at once, I would have ordered a more basic jeep, and bought a prorock 44 front axle with the proper caster/pinion angle for a lift. Get it loaded with gears, bearings, arb locker, rcv axle shafts, synergy ball joints and Reid knuckles for around $5k. Re-gear the rear (you already are anyway) and install ARB locker and chromoly shafts. If you want a lower low range, install an atlas or something similar. You'd spend a little more but have a much stronger setup and alleviate some front drive shaft issues.

Oh and about the front driveshaft, you'll need an aftermarket dual cardan front driveshaft. If you're lucky you won't have to modify the exhaust. The front pinion angle should be zeroed out with the driveshaft, but it cannot be with the factory axle at 3.5" lift. So you'll likely inherent some vibrations from that.

I started with a rubicon as well and I'm running a sleeved/trussed/gusseted front axle on factory lockers, many of us are. It works but if I dumped a bunch of money right up front I would do it different, that's all.

I don't know what all is included with that suspension setup, but you will kill the ball joints quickly. Might as well install HD ball joints (synergy or dynatrac) after the sleeves and gussets are welded on. I'm sure the shop will melt them anyway. All of the factory steering/suspension parts AND mounts are weak. Bracing or strengthening what you can is a good idea. Steering in rocks on 37s can be a real ***** too. Definitely consider a front frame side track bar brace and steering box sector shaft brace. I have no idea what stuff is compatible with your lift.

Your list should also include a synergy (or similar) full suspension bolt kit and cam eleminator washers. The factory bolts are undersized in some holes, and they are threaded the full length installed of flat/shouldered where they slide through the metal sleeve in the bushings. This, in a short time, eats up the metal sleeves, creates slop and allows the joints to move and oval out mounting holes.

Also if you're actually going to off road if hard, the factory transmission crossmember is very weak and fragile. Drag it over a rock the first time and you'll likely end up with a bent cross member. Check out some heavy duty cross members and skid plates.

My thoughts about being concerned about getting hustled for labor? Well you're financing this all in, it is a ton if stuff, it's four wheel parts doing the work, marking it up, then the dealer marking it up. Oh and the paint work will be marked up by three vendors. Sounds like you're already getting hustled by setting it up this way.
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Unread 10-23-2013, 04:47 PM   #6
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For all the money of that lift with no shocks, they still plan on the user running stock tie rod ends. Fail.
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Unread 10-23-2013, 04:50 PM   #7
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I can't add anything more than what brianjw has already said. It'll be one good looking sucker when you get through with it.

One thing to add, do more research (which you are doing by asking here) listen to those that have gone before you and do it right the first time.
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Unread 10-24-2013, 08:12 AM   #8
jeepstrive
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Thanks guys for all of the feedback!

Up until about a week ago, I was only going to go with 35's and then eventually upgrade to 37's after some time. With 35's I wasn't going to do the regear and I think the Rubicon made more sense from that perspective with the 4.10 gears from factory. Then that little birdy in my head started telling me, why not just do 37's now and a regear since I'm going to get them eventually anyways.

Then too, I've had quite some time to shop for this so what started off as a pretty simple build has grown over time, I'm sure most everyone on here can relate to that

I'm hoping to go offroad a couple of times a month with some big trips as well.

Brianjw, you suggested a lot of things I had not thought about and prepared for already. I'm going to try to summarize the things you're suggesting if I stick with the basic build I have outlined. I'm going to call Rock Krawler today to talk through some of this stuff. It appears that their kits seem to have changed pretty dramatically since I was first looking at this lift. I now see a long arm kit for about the same price as the mid arm kit I was considering before.

Quick question, would a long arm kit take care of some of the problems you guys are suggesting and/or will it allow me not to have to replace some of the parts that have been suggested? I had originally wanted to avoid the long arm kits because it seemed like a lot of extra work and pieces I might not need and extra cost but the cost now is looking very similar so maybe I should go that route instead if it would help me cut down on extra parts to strengthen things that are now put in stress by a mid arm kit?

As soon as I figure out what is on the kit I'm looking at vs maybe one of their long arms, I'll post those on here to see if there's anything I'm missing.

Sounds like I will need a new front driveshaft, HD ball joints, front frame side track bar brace, steering box sector shaft brace, full suspension bolt kit and cam eliminator washers, and heavy duty cross member or multiple of these?

I think I have quite a few skid plates already listed, probably all I need?

Supposedly the dealer has indicated they don't mark up the price of all of the 4 wheel parts addons, that's what they told me, I was a little skeptical, but that's what they said. If that's true and I can keep the 4wheelparts stuff within reason and not overblown, I think I can avoid as much of the hustle as possible but that remains to be seen.

Thanks again to everyone who has chimed in with suggestions based on their experience, reading only takes you so far and I can't get the experience until the jeep actually gets here, I'm absolutely the person to want to do it right the first time by careful consideration of build and parts. Seems like I've already made a few non-optimal choices like ordering the rubicon itself instead of a sport that can't be reversed, but I want to get it right from here.
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Unread 10-24-2013, 08:33 AM   #9
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Long arms dont do as much on jks. It will have a better road ride on big lifts 4" plus and allow less drastic axle sweep. Essentially its just longer control arms. The mounts need to be moved or stretch wheelbase...
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Unread 10-24-2013, 09:27 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Maertz View Post
Long arms dont do as much on jks. It will have a better road ride on big lifts 4" plus and allow less drastic axle sweep. Essentially its just longer control arms. The mounts need to be moved or stretch wheelbase...
I think RK's mid arm kit I was looking allows you to move the rear axle back an inch. Is this what you mean by stretching the wheelbase?

So what are the advantages of a 3.5" long arm vs 3.5" mid arm kit, is it just better articulation only?
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Unread 10-24-2013, 09:46 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jeepstrive View Post

I think RK's mid arm kit I was looking allows you to move the rear axle back an inch. Is this what you mean by stretching the wheelbase?

So what are the advantages of a 3.5" long arm vs 3.5" mid arm kit, is it just better articulation only?
Yes essentially, but you cant move the wheel base much without doing alot of work. Easier to move the mounts via welding or bolton..

Long arm dies not effect articulation just how much the axles pull in when drooping. Picture a ball on a short strings circle compared to a long string... It doesnt pull in and under the vehicle as much
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Unread 10-24-2013, 11:45 AM   #12
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Yes essentially, but you cant move the wheel base much without doing alot of work. Easier to move the mounts via welding or bolton..

Long arm dies not effect articulation just how much the axles pull in when drooping. Picture a ball on a short strings circle compared to a long string... It doesnt pull in and under the vehicle as much
I think that makes sense, sort of like a triangle, the longer the top two connectors are, the less the other wheel comes off the ground when one wheel is at full droop?
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Unread 10-24-2013, 12:02 PM   #13
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heres a half assed picture showing it. Look at the path the tires would take. short arm the pull in alot quicker and reduce wheelbase

red=short arm
orange= long
blue=push axle (wheelbase increase)
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Unread 10-24-2013, 12:49 PM   #14
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Got it, that makes sense.
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Unread 10-24-2013, 12:59 PM   #15
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The one noticeable advantage you might see with along arm setup on a JK is better handling on rough roads. Due to the longer arms, the lower control arms remain more parallel to the ground. With shorter arms, they angle up toward the frame. So when you hit a bump with stock length arms on 3.5" lift, the force is pushing up on the chassis some, from the lower control arm.
Can't say for sure exactly how much difference it would make but it's probably negligible.

The trans cross member could be added any time later. Just pointing out another common weak spot. I would for sure use a suspension bolt kit for preventative measure. Same goes for the frame side track bar brace and sector shaft brace IF you find something compatible. The synergy track bar brace ($100) should work but I don't know the sector shaft brace will work with your track bar.
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