Up’s, and Down’s of lifting a WK. - JeepForum.com
 
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post #1 of 6 Old 07-17-2021, 08:02 AM Thread Starter
Dumbviking
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Up’s, and Down’s of lifting a WK.

A year ago I purchased my 08 Laredo North Edition 3.0 CRD( a former gf owned one, and the fuel economy was attractive as a daily driver), and from the beginning lifting it 3” was planned. Knowing full well from forums, and other sources that to do so would require careful considerations of methods. I am no stranger to lifted Jeeps, but my experience was with straight axle rigs( both leaf spring, and coils). If experience has taught me anything though there is no easy way to lift any of them, and have them perform like stock or better than stock. Every inch of lift comes with compromise, and challenges.
I had used Bilstiens on previous wranglers, and was impressed with quality/performance I received. So the height adjustable struts, and shocks were ordered( stock ones where done anyway). JBA lifted UCA’s where also ordered, and installed. Of course the usual suspects showed up, and offered challenges. But the lower strut bolt was no match for a skilled torch operator lol. Since the rear suspension is in every way identical to Wranglers spacer lifts are effective, and budget wise a sensible choice. If you are asking why I didn’t ad OME HD springs at this time it is because this lifting process was only the beginning of a journey to a goal of a Overlanding Rig, but budget wise things like armor, and such would be done over time. So through out first stage stock springs remain, and 3” lift problems addressed.
Drive line reliability is paramount, and likewise basic preventive maintenance where addressed to provide reliability. All fluid services, and minor leaks fixed. Front CV shafts replaced( Cardone), Rear drive shaft( Built at local spicer dealer), and a Tom Woods front shaft( local spicer dealer wouldn’t build one as spicer apparently doesn’t make yokes to fit t-case, or diff). With these upgrades I was confident in moving forward with lift, and work progressed. I also upgraded to Creative Steel diff bushings( daily driver set) at this time.
Challenges, and problems? First challenge was front ride height. With Bilstiens set at average 2” lift, and stock springs I end up at 2.25” Driver side, and 2.5” pass side. Alignment was difficult, but managed to get reasonably close factory alignment settings. At this stage I added a set of used 255/75-17” BFG KM’s, 1.5” G2 wheel spacers, performed pinch weld modification, and only had minor tire rubbing at front inside inner fender( no big deal). Winter set in, and drove as it was for next 4 months. No issues at all, but the uneven front ride height bugged me lol, and I was still not at goal of 3” lift. To be honest my springs had 400,000 Km’s on them, so during winter I ordered fr/r AC Delco factory replacement springs to relieve spring sag. Little did I realize just how much those old springs had sagged. Since the removal of lower strut bolt did minor damage to bushing, and a lower ball joint boot had given up I replaced both lower control arms( Mevotech TTX)at same time as springs. Well now this minor updating offered a new challenge, though installed according to labeled driverside spring I now had 3.5” DS, and 3.75” pas side of lift. Both cv shafts, and tie rod angles where severe, alignment specs could not be obtained, and my brand new Firestone XT’s (255/75-17”) would not survive long if left like that. Severe clunking as struts topped out, severe bump steer, and clunking of steering rack. Not good at all!
The only option was to lower front ride height. Two options, lower Bilstiens to middle notch on strut, and still have uneven R/L ride height? Or pull the trigger on a set of JeePerf Bilstiens coil over conversions. Glad I went with the coil over conversions as this let me set lift at 3” on both sides, and get an alignment that no longer scrubbed front tires, and allowed full suspension movement that in every way rides, steers, and handles like stock( actually better).
What have I learned during this part of my project? Going into it I knew there is no easy way to lift a WK, and have it perform like stock. At every upgrade it provides another challenge, but with attention to details it can be done. Careful considerations of parts required, and expectations of results. I replaced every nut, and bolt involved( genuine Mopar parts). Cheap? Nope! But results speak volumes?
Now I am moving into the next phase of build. So far rear seat has been deleted to provide level sleeping area, and without seat this provides amazing storage options. Spare parts, Tools, recovery equipment, and since these are all heavy low center of gravity to this load. Armor I will be fabricating Alum Skid plates, and already have installed attachment points to make skid plates that are completely void of bends to fit factory undercarriage points. Skid pans will be truly flat from front cross member, to transfer case when complete. If any member can provide me with info on how to share photos from my iPad, or iPhone I would greatly appreciate it lol( bit of a computer dunce lol). Cheers.

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post #2 of 6 Old 07-17-2021, 03:04 PM
Vertisce21
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It's all up when you lift a WK. You don't lower a WK so...no downs.
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post #3 of 6 Old 07-18-2021, 04:55 PM Thread Starter
Dumbviking
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Lol like your sense of humor. Funny thing is by having to lower to 3” of lift I got the Jeep I wanted when starting this build. Over this coming winter I will be adding armor, front bumper, rear skid/tire carrier, and as such then replace stock springs with OME/Dobinson HD springs. The 5100’s I currently run will be due for replacement then also, so I will continue to Just Empty Every Pocket, and keep grinning like village idiot as the project evolves. Cheers!
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post #4 of 6 Old 07-21-2021, 11:03 PM
Vertisce21
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Sounds like that's all "up" in my opinion! Armor is the next big project on my list. Rock sliders, engine plate, t-case plate, trans plate. I like that the gas tank already has a plate. Already has a pretty hefty ding in it too. I need to take it down, pound that out and repaint it real good though.
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post #5 of 6 Old 07-22-2021, 07:51 AM
badgerwithhands
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There is a metal plate that holds up the fuel tank and a skid that goes under that. If there are two, then you have the fuel tank skid.

07 WK Overland CRD, cargo LEDs, OME HD, MOPAR skids, rack,
future mods: tires, lights, CB, skids,
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post #6 of 6 Old 07-22-2021, 12:32 PM
Vertisce21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by badgerwithhands View Post
There is a metal plate that holds up the fuel tank and a skid that goes under that. If there are two, then you have the fuel tank skid.
Well...that sucks. Had to get under there to check and I apparently don't have the skid. Two metal straps holding up a metal tub which is holding the tank in place. It looks like it's a skid and offers some protection at least but...it's not. So, add that little item to the cost list.

While I was under there I noted that my muffler is all sorts of beat to crap and my rear drive shaft is missing the rear clamp over the boot and the boot itself is shredded. Gonna have to address that one soon.
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