ZJ Coil Spring Compressor. Have you used them? Which brand and style is best and safe - JeepForum.com
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post #1 of 21 Old 05-14-2021, 05:26 PM Thread Starter
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ZJ Coil Spring Compressor. Have you used them? Which brand and style is best and safe

Good afternoon Jeep ZJ community,

Many spring compressors exist, and are for sale in stores and on online stores.

They range in price and type from as little as 17 dollars, and on into the hundreds. Some sales sheets state they are for MCPHERSON strut springs primarily. Others say they that their brand is multi-use for cars and light trucks. Others state their brand can do everything from passenger cars to 1 ton pickup trucks. So, whT is smoke and mirrors and where does the truth lie? Is there a middle ground compressor of the almighty spring that will get the job doen for the ZJ, WJ or other Jeep owner?

From what I can find, most are made overseas from the look of them and their brand names.

My personal exoerience has been that getting a spring compressed can be be a bit confusing, in terms of brand, type and price. Above all is safety, in my opinion.

I guess then, some questions need to be asked and Im putting them out here for a discussion to occur where common sense prevails. Hopefully, the outcome can be useful for those wading in the waters of the lift and suspension market pool.

So, if a Jeep owner is going to tackle a DIY spring lift kit install or a budget boost puck style lift, most will need some type of spring compressor, right? I mean from a budget diy standpoint, as far as ratchet straps, go, they are unsafe even very dangerous, right?

What do you all think? What experiences do you have with these spring compressors? Have you ever had one dislodge or come loose? What happened? Was any property damaged? Were you or anyone hurt or worse, by these popular screw type or screw and pin type hook type or other coil spring compressors?

Is their a go-to brand that pros recommend that are affordable and will last? Is there a budget brand that is safe and usable for a Grand Cherokees front and rear springs for a weekend warrior DIY type?

Would you or HAVE YOU personally ever used these and if so, what brand or type and cost? Please post your experiences and use below.

Have you rented them and have you had a successful and safe outcome?

My experience with Big box auto parts stores tool rental programs have been a mixed bag of both ok, some good and a few bad experiences with worn parts, missing parts and at times a few trips back and forth just to get a tool that worked properly?

Please list your experiences, suggestions, comments regarding coil spring compressor tools. Thanks

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Last edited by 95-ZJ; 05-14-2021 at 05:47 PM. Reason: Fixed several type-o's
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post #2 of 21 Old 05-14-2021, 06:51 PM
BeardyHat
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I installed OME heavy duty springs on my ZJ not too long ago, ditching my OEM springs. All I did was jack the car up until the axles drooped and was able to remove the old springs fairly easily like that.

Getting the new lift springs in, I used a lever to push the axle down on whatever side I was working and slide the new springs in. Pretty easy and no spring compressor needed.

That said, if I was going to buy one, I'd probably spend more money than not. Why trust your life to cheap tools for something that could easily kill you if it fails?

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post #3 of 21 Old 05-14-2021, 07:11 PM Thread Starter
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Beardyhat,

Thanks for the thoughtful repsonse and "OME how to" spring install info. I agree on the "spend more rather than spend less" advice.

Any suggestions on the offerings on the ehaay or the amezoone, Lets say for instance, if you were to get a set for a ZJ and were doing a 3" inch BB puck lift?

Side note: I personally had a nice set of Matco compressors about 20 years ago give or take but, let a so-called friend borrow them and they never again were seen or heard from. Such is life....

Any more specific suggestions on brand, type, etc. Would be appreciated...thx

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post #4 of 21 Old 05-14-2021, 07:35 PM
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No suggestions there, sorry. Don't have any experience with them at all.

That said, if I was doing a BB, I'd do it the same as I've already done and just remove the springs entirely and get the pucks in place, then reinstall the springs using a long lever. Probably would be very simple with a friend to lever down or finagle the springs into place.

You could likely even disconnect a control arm and get the axle to move down even further.

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post #5 of 21 Old 05-14-2021, 08:45 PM
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Use these if you have to. If they look like crap don't rent them and go to another parts store and rent some nicer looking ones.img_1587.jpg


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post #6 of 21 Old 05-14-2021, 08:50 PM
yjsaabman
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I did my 2" BB lift with no compressor and no real issues. One key to achieving enough room to remove/install things is to loosen the control arm mounting bolts to allow the axles to move more freely. This also helps maintain bushing life because you can then re-torque everything at the new ride height once the weight of the vehicle is on the suspension.

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post #7 of 21 Old 05-14-2021, 09:34 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by PolkaPower View Post
Use these if you have to. If they look like crap don't rent them and go to another parts store and rent some nicer looking ones.Attachment 3986397


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Great advice PP.

Just took the plunge and pulled the trigger for amaazzonian's best seller at 29 bucks. They look exactly like the model above that you recommended PolkaPower and come with a storage case. The advice to rent a better model and cherry pick the parts stores for the best of the best is not an option as the ZJ is apart and my only vehicle. I had planned to do as others have suggested and Ive done in the past which was to manhandle it out 9f and into the spring perch but I have to face the fact that Im not 30 anymore andI dont have a buddy to help. Its me alone so, in case I dont have the strength to MacGyver the springs in or out, I wanted the best affordable backup option. Thanks for replying

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post #8 of 21 Old 05-14-2021, 09:39 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yjsaabman View Post
I did my 2" BB lift with no compressor and no real issues. One key to achieving enough room to remove/install things is to loosen the control arm mounting bolts to allow the axles to move more freely. This also helps maintain bushing life because you can then re-torque everything at the new ride height once the weight of the vehicle is on the suspension.

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Great advice. Thanks for responding. All the suggestions you made are hard won mechanical knowledge, only earned by making all the wrong moves in order to find the right ones. The tip on the bushing life extension by retorquing to spec is a great reminder also.

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post #9 of 21 Old 05-14-2021, 11:03 PM
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Are you installing a budget boost?


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post #10 of 21 Old 05-15-2021, 12:32 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PolkaPower View Post
Are you installing a budget boost?


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In a word Polka Power, YES. I was going to stay STOCK and go back to all Mopar or OEM parts but I still wanted a little more suspension travel and ride height, so, was kicking the proverbial suspension lift can around, and Ive made up my mind to go with a Supreme Suspension 3 Inch Budget Boost as well as installing the Transfer Case Drop Kit with 4 Aluminum Spacers and GRADE 8 bolts.

REASON for doing this - I have on hand a nice set of 4 JK Sahara series ALUMINUM STAR paterned WHEELS (7.5" wide X 18" O.D. with 6.75 " backspacing) and 4 255/70R18 Bridgestone Dueller A/T tires that are sitting here collecting dust that were a gift,(as in free to me ). I also, just got 4- 1.5" Red anodized spacer/adapters from Rough Country.

Still piecing together ALL the other ADDITIONAL parts that MOST LIFT companies, manufacturers or distributors dont tell you about needing, until after you buy the lift. Lol

I have done the leg work and found out the TRUE COST when doing any lift over 2 inches, SUCH AS i.e. the front and rear adjustable track bars, new adjustable control arms, longer sway bar links and drop brackets, along with all new bushings, spring isolators, longer shocks, money for a 4 wheel alignment, and etc. By the endo of it all, this budget boost isnt turning out to be quite so budget, after all.

Its coming along but, rushing it without it getting properly set up correctly is asking for wear and tear on other suspension and steering, driveline and u joint angles being wonky and I believe thatm even with a 3 inch lift and some planning, all can be mostly avoided by being patient and methodical.

But its getting there. Btw, thank you for asking.

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Last edited by 95-ZJ; 05-18-2021 at 11:41 PM.
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post #11 of 21 Old 05-15-2021, 12:36 AM
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Just jack up the axle to compress the spring on whatever side your working on and slip on the compressors and then lower the axle and slide the spring off. Put on the BB and install reverse of removal.


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post #12 of 21 Old 05-15-2021, 12:53 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PolkaPower View Post
Just jack up the axle to compress the spring on whatever side your working on and slip on the compressors and then lower the axle and slide the spring off. Put on the BB and install reverse of removal.


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Good advice. Thank you. That saves me having to hand crank the coil compressors down manually and will save time .

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post #13 of 21 Old 05-15-2021, 08:59 AM
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These work good for cheap. You need to sort of plan out where the compressors will ride on the coils to make it easiest concerning obstructions and accessing the compressor screws. Hard to explain, but not difficult.

https://smile.amazon.com/gp/product/...?ie=UTF8&psc=1
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post #14 of 21 Old 05-15-2021, 09:38 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HighLonesome View Post
These work good for cheap. You need to sort of plan out where the compressors will ride on the coils to make it easiest concerning obstructions and accessing the compressor screws. Hard to explain, but not difficult.

https://smile.amazon.com/gp/product/...?ie=UTF8&psc=1
The spring compressors you linked to

ABN 11.5in Strut Spring Compressor Tool Set of 2 (Pair) Macpherson Spring Compression, 13/16in Socket 1/2in Drive

These are exactly the price, type, brand I ordered. I cant pay someone for the help, in terms of time vs. Hourly that these can offer and they look to offer less physical hassle for the benefit they provide.

Have you personally used these?

Do you know if they will fit over the coil spring of a ZJ? Will the little safety pins clip over the coils or is the coil to large?

Let me know. Thanks for your input

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post #15 of 21 Old 05-15-2021, 09:59 AM
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One thing to watch out for with the style above (two outside clamps) is that they can both slide to one side and the spring will end up curved around them. It's a pain and a little dangerous to resolve.
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