Originally Posted by csm41
Let's compare apples to apples here. I am comparing the RK stock mod to the AEV 2.5 lift. Both use factory control arms. Not a fan of RK arms myself. That said, if I ever upgrade control arms, they will be Currie like I have on my TJ. Arguably the best controls arms out there. AEV doesn't supply a front track bar. They (AEV) told me the 2.5 lift doesn't need the TB; that the difference was negligible. I disagree. I have installed many lifts on CJ's, YJ's, TJ's and now a JK and I can tell you that if you want a centered front axle after a lift, you need a front adjustable TB. The RK rear TB mount bolts in AND is welded to the axle housing. What was that you said about strength? AEV may get the nod for roll center, but I would have to ride in a similar rig with the AEV lift to confirm that. The AEV 2.5 lift comes with Bilsteins, the RK lift recommends them. The cost for either lift is about the same after you buy a set of Bilstein shocks like I did. I am not saying that the RK lift is better than the AEV, but I certainly disagree that the AEV lift is better. I can only tell you that my RK stock mod with Bilsteins rides and handles great on road even with the 35" tires I put on it. All of this may be a moot point since both you and spider are lauding the merits of the AEV 3.5 lift. I always prefer a lower COG when I wheel, so I try to lift as low as I can in order to clear the tire size I want to run.
Seems like you're awful defensive about this for some reason...? We are just discussing.
I have my complaints about the AEV lifts as well. Mine started with the AEV 3.5 and a lot has been added and changed for my use. The OP said he is looking at a small lift that will handle well, and later giving the jeep to his daughter. You don't think progressive springs and tuned shocks would handle better on the road? And improved roll center? The 3.5" lift that spyder mentioned includes a front track bar bracket. That centers the axle. Also I notice that you say that the aev lift certainly isn't better, but you haven't ridden in or driven one?
My comment about rear track bar brackets also clearly said "other BOLT ON track bar brackets that I'VE seen". If the rock krawler gets welded on, well that doesn't really apply does it? However I could weld the whole aev bracket on the and it would be stronger yet, huh? But you don't have to.
I'm not real knowledgable on the RK stuff myself. But I thought when I looked before at the 2.5 stock mod it also doesn't come with bump stops, brake lines or brackets, shocks, etc. A person has to mix and match and piece it together.
So the AEV 2.5 comes with progressive springs all around (not just the front), tuned (not generic) 5100s, rear track bar and bracket with improved roll center (yes even the 2.5 has a taller track bar tower and reworked track bar), bump stops that are appropriately sized for the shocks, brake line brackets. Seems like it could be appropriate based on the little we heard from the OP. It is enough to be complete. I would prefer it was an adjustable front track bar, but there are plenty of lifted rigs on the road without perfectly centered axles. I would also prefer either the geometry correction brackets or adjustable control arms.
Even if you got the 2.5 stock mod, added shocks, brake lines, bump stops, paid someone to weld the track bar bracket, you feel that the linear springs and generic matched shocks will perform better?