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Unread 05-20-2013, 09:55 AM   #1
orviston
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LIft Kit expectactions missed and advice needed

Just had a fabtech 3" installed. 35x12.5x17 M/T.

Had a Les Schwab dealer put the kit on.. They didn't get a good road test on it before I picked it up.


First impression.. I was not happy.. not fun to drive.. like a carnival ride. My assumptions were correct it had too much Toe In. Gave it back and they got it more tweaked in.. and ran it up to 37 PSI.. still a bit squirrelly .. way more than I would expect. Drives nothing near stock (didn't expect stock handling) but I know the limits of the rig.

I ran the PSI down to 33 and the handling gets worse.. not scarey.. but you need to drive it.. not relax.

QUESTION: Is this really what I should expect.. I am fine with going back in and telling them to take it off.. but I don't want my second choice to result in the same result. Do I put on a crawler.. would that help.. is there a suspension kit that is just fricken awesome.. or is this the norm.


The other thing I experienced on my particular road, which is mountainous and windwing and off camber where most people don't come up to. I can easily trigger the ECS system.. so got a bully dog for that.

GUS

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Unread 05-20-2013, 10:04 AM   #2
RockyClymer
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Did you get the budget or basic system...one uses springs the other spacers. None of them come with track bars which are needed at 3 inches to recenter axle. Also, sounds like they did not recenter steering wheel after lift. Fabtech is not one of my favorite lift kits...but that is just my 2 cents. IMO there are better and more complete kits out there when you do your research and read on this forum...
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Unread 05-20-2013, 10:05 AM   #3
starscream
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I don't know about Fabtech but something doesn't sound right. Lots of lifts will give as good a ride as stock or even better, as long as it's done right.
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Unread 05-20-2013, 10:09 AM   #4
HOKIES2010
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Rock Krawler, TeraFlex, AEV, Poly/Synergy, EVO make good kits that you can build on.
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Unread 05-20-2013, 10:15 AM   #5
orviston
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sorry for not throwing in the kit details

3" Basic System w/ Performance Shocks

stock springs becasue their dual spring was not ready.

They did go back and recenter the steering wheel before finishing the alignment.



I know I can read on here for hours lift kit info.. I am trying to get a sense of the ride change if any folks experience.. I hear .. no ride change or close.. mind you I drive the ***** out of my rid on road..and would like something solid.. I really didn't expect such a confused ride even from the basic kit.


I think LS knows what they are doing..and I guess this kit sucks..
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Unread 05-20-2013, 10:19 AM   #6
HOKIES2010
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A lot more goes into the alignment that will change the way your Jeep rides. Like RockyClymer said you need to have those axles centered and adj control arms would go along ways.

Does your Jeep feel flighty? I thought I had the same issue you have after my lift until I got the right psi and 4 wheel alignment done. Once the Jeep has been lifted and bigger wheels go on. Stop taking it to a normal shop to get the alignment done. The machines are used to get it within stock specs. You need an actual 4 wheel alignment done, this is usually not cheap.
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Unread 05-20-2013, 10:24 AM   #7
orviston
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I will check on the axles.. not sure If i should throw on control arms OR just drop this kit completely. UGH. Plan on calling fabtech with some questions.

the LS shop is a 4wheel drive center here in Hillsboro.. more than the basic shop, but I get your point.

Yes.. flighty would be a good description.. unpredictable.. I dropped the PSI from 37 to 33 and it got noticable worse.. seems like lip stick on a pig :-( but I would expect one setting would best.. but 37 is too high IMO
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Unread 05-20-2013, 10:29 AM   #8
HOKIES2010
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PSI for 35s

http://www.jeepforum.com/forum/f9/best-psi-35s-862468/
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Unread 05-20-2013, 11:01 AM   #9
222Doc
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that much lift the roll center will be high. if you movethe front track bar up then you need a high steer drag link. Doing that alone will help alot. unless it has adjustible front Ca's(cam bolts is the cheep way out). The alignment is just a toe setting that the lift did not change a thing. The toe you can set with a tape measure.

trouble with lifts is once you get over and at about 2". many thing start to change. over 2.25" inch of added drop will get into the Ypipe cross over, drive lines start to get in an angle they are not happy.

Dealer lifts tend to be alot of money and cheep on the list of thing thats should be done.

I would not put aev in the top tier. They springs are very good. The ride is great for the 3.5-4.5 range. but the kit is lacking in real control arms that will be needed at the height given. once you and you will need drive lines rear Ca's is a must. front the aev drop brackets are ok, but in the tough stuff will bend like a tree in the wind. (been ther done that, as have people i wheel with)

once you get over a BB lift it gets into the 1K per inch range, without labor, just parts.

For you I think it need to raise the front track bar and a flip drag link. This will give you a much better control at the wheel.
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Unread 05-20-2013, 11:09 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 222Doc View Post
that much lift the roll center will be high. if you movethe front track bar up then you need a high steer drag link. Doing that alone will help alot. unless it has adjustible front Ca's(cam bolts is the cheep way out). The alignment is just a toe setting that the lift did not change a thing. The toe you can set with a tape measure.

trouble with lifts is once you get over and at about 2". many thing start to change. over 2.25" inch of added drop will get into the Ypipe cross over, drive lines start to get in an angle they are not happy.
Good deal, always learning

Quote:
Originally Posted by 222Doc View Post
I would not put aev in the top tier. They springs are very good. The ride is great for the 3.5-4.5 range. but the kit is lacking in real control arms that will be needed at the height given. once you and you will need drive lines rear Ca's is a must. front the aev drop brackets are ok, but in the tough stuff will bend like a tree in the wind. (been ther done that, as have people i wheel with)

once you get over a BB lift it gets into the 1K per inch range, without labor, just parts.

For you I think it need to raise the front track bar and a flip drag link. This will give you a much better control at the wheel.
Definitely not an AEV fan but plenty of happy owners here. And not knowing what he is planning on doing with the Jeep didn't help lol.
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Unread 05-20-2013, 11:20 AM   #11
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I have never been a big fan of Fabtech stuff on Jeeps. It has never really impressed me. Judging by what you are saying that you are feeling and what is in the kit I would check to make sure the axles are center like already said. I would also have them recheck that the steering wheel is properly center. I mean unless you are driving the Jeep so hard on the twisties that stability control does really need to kick in. In which case it's a Jeep not a sports car!
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Unread 05-20-2013, 12:05 PM   #12
LVCapo
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I didn't see anything, but how much actual lift did you get? Most kits are .5" to 1" more than advertised.

Edit: I just looked at that kit at Fabtech. Nothing to address the front track bar or control arms at all. If it took you over 3" you need to address those as well as the front driveshaft/exhaust pipe (spacer) and the evap canister (search for Teraflex video on relocation). I'd have a hard time recommending that kit for. jK.
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Unread 05-20-2013, 12:14 PM   #13
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Back to tire pressure. Drop the pressure to 28psi.. I run 26-27 in 35" Pitbull Rockers and they wear perfect. Even 32 psi is too high for a JK on 35s especially if the tires are E rated...
Next step is put stock tires on for a couple days and see how that feels..
A lift that high should have at the very least a rear trackbar relocation bracket.
Extended swaybar links would also be in a complete kit.
Harsh springs and/or shocks designed to carry heavy bumpers and winch will cause it to be bouncy..
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Unread 05-20-2013, 12:16 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JTPhoto View Post
Back to tire pressure. Drop the pressure to 28psi.. I run 26-27 in 35" Pitbull Rockers and they wear perfect. Even 32 psi is too high for a JK on 35s especially if the tires are E rated...
Next step is put stock tires on for a couple days and see how that feels..
A lift that high should have at the very least a rear trackbar relocation bracket.
Extended swaybar links would also be in a complete kit.
Harsh springs and/or shocks designed to carry heavy bumpers and winch will cause it to be bouncy..
On the Fabtech site the kit has new sway bar links for the front and a rear track bar relocation bracket.
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Unread 05-20-2013, 12:38 PM   #15
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Yes I see that.. That is an interesting approach to a kit, but not a fan of steel spring spacers.
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