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Unread 07-23-2013, 07:06 PM   #16
MattJeep
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It won't go above 55 or be able to use 6th gear because it probably needs to be re-geared.

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Unread 07-23-2013, 07:20 PM   #17
ncb
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That lift is so far from complete you might be close to the cost of a legit 3.5" kit after replacing/adding parts. I don't know why anyone runs that RC lift. It has many issues.
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Unread 07-23-2013, 07:31 PM   #18
insaneinline
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Scrap the lift and go get a 2-2.5 inch lift from aev , rock krawler , or teraflex put the stock pitman arm back on it and get some 33s that would probably help alot

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Unread 07-23-2013, 11:49 PM   #19
brianjw
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Quote:
Originally Posted by insaneinline
Scrap the lift and go get a 2-2.5 inch lift from aev , rock krawler , or teraflex put the stock pitman arm back on it and get some 33s that would probably help alot

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I don't disagree. But the bolt kit can (and should) be reused, and the AEV 2.5" lift doesn't come with the brackets anyway.
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Unread 07-24-2013, 12:38 AM   #20
73azbronco
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dawgfan77 View Post
We are now the proud owners of a 2012 JKU (my wife's actually), which came pretty decked out. I had my reservations the 1 st few times I drove it, but I've always wanted one and I guess that swayed my judgement, so when I finally convinced her to get one(I love my truck and cant afford both) I jumped at the chance. She found and fell in love with a freshly traded Sport with ~4000 miles on the clock, 6 spd manual, Hard top, a brand new lift kit(Rough Country), 20x35x12.50 Trail Grapplers on Hostage wheels, Bushwacker pocket flares, rails, and a few other things. I say I had reservations only because the idea of a lifted jeep on 35's isn't really what I consider a "family vehicle" for her and my 2 daughters, but damn is it cool! Anyway, it drives fine around town, but we took it to the beach this weekend and I got to really stretch its legs for the 1st time.... and it scared me! I can't use 6th gear.... unless going down hill(no biggie)! It will not hold speed. 5th will hold whatever speed you want, but on anything less than a straight, smooth, newly paved 2 lane road, 55mph is as fast as I felt comfortable driving. It has no DW, but it skates around as if you are driving in a 30mph gusting crosswind. I had the alignment checked the day before we left and was told it was less than 1/2 degree out of castor (or camber, which ever one is the forward/backward pitch, i forget) which I'm sure is due to the lift. All else was tight and still new, currantly ~6000 miles. I have a set of factoy 17" wheels with brand new 285-70-17 Destination MT's that I put on it for a day just to see the difference. It was noticably better and they rode better than the trail grapplers, but still not factory handling. I already planned on regearing to 4.56's, but now I'm wondering if I should scrap the RC lift and buy a better one. I'm not even sure what exact size kit it has, but it has fixed upper and lower replacement arms, new springs, no spacers and the twin stabilizer set-up. Looks to be 3-4" of lift. Any ideas on what to look for? I will check today to see if the track bars are also after market or the original, and if they are adjustable. I feel like the wheels/tires have to go even though the wife loves them, but not sure about the lift. Is this the type handling I should expect if I want to own a lifted jeep? In case it's not obvious, this is a "mall crawler", so offroad performance is not really a priorty. Hate if you must, but I have a trail only rig that gets trailered to and from, so this one is just for cruising with the family. Thanks in advance guys.... and gals
Take it back and demand a four wheel alignment and get the printout. I took mine in twice the week after I bought with same issue. First trip was, Its fine, second after a 4 wheel alignment was, it was out, not much but enough. After that, straight as an arrow for 15,000 miles.
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Unread 07-24-2013, 08:08 AM   #21
SoK66
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An observation, from your pics of the front springs it appears you have a significant spring bow that suggests the axle isn't centered properly.

I'd just throw out one more suspension suggestion. Although I have a seriously built '09 (TF long arm, 37s, etc.) I recently installed a 2.5" AEV suspension with front LCA drop brackets on a club members daily driver. I was totally impressed with the end result and I highly recommend that kit for folks wanting to run 33s or 35s. With spacers or stainless front brake lines you can retain the stock wheels as well. No need to swap out driveshafts if you keep it under 3".

In your situation I'd first get the kit you have on there set up correctly, you have a quite a few issues that seem to be the result of a poor installation. An experienced shop that knows JK lifts can sort all that out for you.
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Unread 07-26-2013, 08:06 AM   #22
dawgfan77
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Thanks for all the input guys, after much thought, I am leaning towards a complete new lift. Thinking either AEV, Synergy, or MetalCloak, but I have a bunch more research to do 1st. I know I want dual rate coils and 3" lift, but that's it. The steering/handling is my 1st priority since this is the wife's and it will see very limited offroad time. 1 question though before I go back to searching, does anyone know the taper of the factory dragling axle-side hole or a source who carries the inserts(draglink flip)?? I have several spare MOOG 1-ton TRE's/steering joints and reamer leftover from old steering setups on my trail rig before I went full hydro. They are just collecting dust. I'm not sure right off hand how much larger they are than the factory JK stuff, but it sure would be nice if they were close. I can build a much stronger draglink for free than I'm gonna buy for $200-300.
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Unread 07-26-2013, 12:47 PM   #23
brianjw
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Is there a particular reason you're set on 3"?
I'd be surprised if you could eye ball the difference between 2.5" and 3", and most manufacturer's springs settle differently. 3" is sort of right on the line of making a decision to run a track bar bracket and high steer drag link.

What I'm running is AEV's 3.5" dualsport lift with a bunch of synergy steering upgrades. But this will require a new front driveshaft before long (I don't care what AEV says about that), and exhaust modifications. The 2.5" lift should be more friendly to the driveshaft and not require exhaust modifications. Without aftermarket bumpers, winch etc it will likely be closer to 3" anyway. Either way they are both great lifts, with triple rates springs (all four corners) and bilstein 5100 shocks that are custom tuned for AEV. They are well known for on road handling.

If I was in your situation where my wife was daily driving the thing, I'd probably have a good look at the following. I'm not trying to push certain products, these are just the things that I used and I'm extremely happy with my setup. If you've made the decision to swap lifts, still want close to 3" and keep the 35s, this will be a solid setup with great steering and handling. This is essentially what I have installed on my 2012, but with the 3.5" lift, plus the Synergy Ball Joints, and I've sleeved/trussed/gusseted the front axle. I've beat this thing up pretty hard for the last 15k miles and it is solid. I greased everything yesterday and jacked up the front to look for any play, none. The synergy stuff doesn't bend and flex and deflect like the factory parts did. I aligned it once, haven't needed to screw with it since. The synergy rod ends on the tie rod and drag link are 1 ton metal on metal ends, left hand thread so one spare fits all. The track bar uses and FK Heim joint on one end (easily replaceable) and a poly bushing (same thing) on the other.

The prices I posted are from the manufacturer web sites so they can generally be found for less.

AEV DualSport XT 2.5" Suspension $959
http://www.aev-conversions.com/shop/...nsion-2-5.html

AEV Geomemetry Correction Brackets $99
http://www.aev-conversions.com/shop/...ckets-frt.html

Synergy Chromoly Tie-Rod $325
http://www.synergymfg.com/Synergy-Je...d-p-16403.html

Syngery High Steer Drag Link (can be mounted normally in factory position) $200
http://www.synergymfg.com/Synergy-Je...k-p-16410.html

Synergy Adjustable Front Track Bar $200
http://www.synergymfg.com/Synergy-Je...r-p-16406.html

Synergy Front Track Bar and Sector Shaft Brace $200
http://www.synergymfg.com/Synergy-Je...t-p-30220.html

Synergy Lower Control Arm and Track Bar Hardware Kit $80
http://www.synergymfg.com/Synergy-Je...t-p-28601.html

Synergy Cam Bolt Eliminator Kit $15.00
http://www.synergymfg.com/Synergy-Je...t-p-24290.html

Stock Pitman Arm ????


Total $2078

I may be leaving some things out. You may need a different steering stabilizer and tie rod clamp now that the factory parts are gone? The 3.5" lift from AEV does come with an OME stabilizer which I've been happy with as well.

Anyway, just throwing out one option with everything put together for you. Definitely consider input from anyone else who gives it. I run all of this stuff with the AEV 3.5" lift (all bracket welded on the front axle) and love it. Here are a few of my setup...







Watch this video I took with the stock steering components on 35s. Notice the track bar actually bending and flexing, and the deflection in the bushing on the frame side. This is what started the terrible steering. Soon the tie rod and drag link did the same, and the cheapo ends got loose. You may be able to get decent handling on 33s but on 35s I'd really want to upgrade everything up front.




Ride height with a bunch of extra weight.
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Unread 07-26-2013, 12:52 PM   #24
brianjw
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And just to add, I personally wouldn't ream the knuckle and make your own drag link with leftover parts. That's just me. You only get to do that once and then you've got a bastardized setup until you replace the knuckle. My preference for running all the front end stuff from one company is that it should, in theory, all wear in a similar matter. And everything will match up. Spares are the same, etc.
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Unread 07-26-2013, 06:19 PM   #25
mrwhipple
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the synergy steering components that brianjw recommended is definitely a worth while upgrade for the front end, especially with the 35s.

maybe you might consider ATs instead of MTs, it will change the handling characteristics of the rig.

the duratracs, bfgs or mickey thompsons atz or atzp3 would all work well.
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Unread 07-29-2013, 11:10 AM   #26
chrisjsmith4
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I have AEV 4.5 in lift and 35 13 18 duratracs. Handles great on the road and off. Future upgrades to help beef things up will be ball joints, sleeves and gussets. (for insurance off road) The aev kits are complete in my opinion. On road handling is way better than I have experienced compared to my buddies RK suspension. Start with a aev 3.5. Comes complete and tested to work correctly vs frankenlift. A re gear to 4.56 will help with power (buddy has 4.56 and manual and will chirp the tires in second with 35's)

IF you ball joints start to get loose then upgrade.

IF you go down really bumpy roads often or do serious offroading then consider beefing up axle.
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Unread 07-29-2013, 07:25 PM   #27
dawgfan77
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thanks for the detailed replies and the time it took to post them, I really appreciate it. Brianjw, taking the time include links to the parts, awesome man
I'm trying to hash it all over and decide my best course of action. I'll be honest, the thought of dropping another $2000-3000 into a brand new vehicle doesn't really sit well with me.
While I completely respect the opinion of buying it all from one source, I'm not sure if I agree. I am new to jeeps for sure, but I'm not new to the off road scene. I have built quit a few steering setups over the years for much larger/heavier rigs; and the $$ I've wasted has shown me that if done properly, custom parts frequently out perform and out last shelf bought, mass produced items. I have no doubt that the kits you guys discussed are top notch, but the parts I mentioned weren't exactly what I'd call "leftover parts". I have a few spare sets of brand new MOOG Chevy 1-ton TRE's and steering joints, tube inserts, and 1 1/2" DOM in 1/4" wall. I haven't done a lot of research on the joints that these companies are advertising, but I did find that they have the same exact taper, and use the same "insert" that places like BallisticFabrication offer. If I had to guess, I'd say its the same stuff since these companies aren't building their own "metal on metal" TRE's. If I already have some of the parts, I'd be a fool not to use them right?

Again, I'm not trying to oppose anyone's advise, I really appreciate every post, I just felt I should clarify my intentions when I mentioned using some stuff I already have.
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Unread 07-29-2013, 07:31 PM   #28
dawgfan77
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisjsmith4 View Post
I have AEV 4.5 in lift and 35 13 18 duratracs. Handles great on the road and off. Future upgrades to help beef things up will be ball joints, sleeves and gussets. (for insurance off road) The aev kits are complete in my opinion. On road handling is way better than I have experienced compared to my buddies RK suspension. Start with a aev 3.5. Comes complete and tested to work correctly vs frankenlift. A re gear to 4.56 will help with power (buddy has 4.56 and manual and will chirp the tires in second with 35's)

IF you ball joints start to get loose then upgrade.

IF you go down really bumpy roads often or do serious offroading then consider beefing up axle.
I do love those Duratracs! And I do like the AEV kit. As far as sleeves and gussets, no need, this is a Mall Crawler except for occasional mild trails while camping. If/when it ever graduates to that point, new axles will be 1st on the list
4.56 is what I'm leaning towards also, but I want to go down to 33"s and I'm not sure if that will be a tad much or not....
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Unread 07-29-2013, 07:36 PM   #29
dawgfan77
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Brianjw, did you straight drill your knuckle and use the tapered insert, or just ream the knuckle for your DL flip? I don't know how I missed it, but I just watched your video like 10 times, great job!
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Unread 07-29-2013, 09:16 PM   #30
brianjw
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dawgfan77
Brianjw, did you straight drill your knuckle and use the tapered insert, or just ream the knuckle for your DL flip? I don't know how I missed it, but I just watched your video like 10 times, great job!
I drilled the knuckle and used the tapered insert from AEV. I later replaced the AEV drag link with the synergy part and just re-used the insert.
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