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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
She has an affinity for her WK but wants to use it a bit more aggressively out in the desert so we decided to build it up a bit. It has plenty of power with the 5.7 in there but it was seriously lacking in the suspension department. She had a spacer lift and wheel spacers to give it the look but limited travel, especially in droop, it leaves something to be desired. So I decided to go ahead and get started on the front suspension. I got the design nearly done and I will be building this over the next 3-4 weeks. It is +2" per side so longer axles are also in order. Looking forward to no needing wheel spacers on the front anymore and really looking forward to the extra travel. I will be using Fox 2.5 race coilovers in the front and fabricating all the suspension components from 4130 chromoly.



Once I get this done I will move onto the rear suspension to see what we want to do there. Wish me luck. :grin2:
 

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Looks really good! I have a question on about using heim joints on the clevis bolts. Since the suspension travels up and down and the lower control arm can't articulate, not sure a heim adds any benefit. Also, aren't heim joints (johnny joints) known for requiring maintenance often and becoming noisy as they age?

Are you keeping the spindle height stock or dropping it to create the lift?

Also, how does the lower ball joint get in and out of the spindle? It looks like it might be difficult to get the lower ball joint threads into the spindle with it being encapsulated like that.

Still, very awesome to see someone finally doing custom arms for the WK!! Anxious to see how this turns out!
 

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Going with +2 on width per side will add lift in and of itself, nevermind the fact that with longer arms reducing the critical angles he can lift even higher without needing to drop the diff and lower arms a'la superlift.

I'd imagine you'll just stick with the stock knuckles, right? Or are you going all out and fabricating new ones?

Very cool to see real engineering and fab work go into this platform
 
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Looks really good! I have a question on about using heim joints on the clevis bolts. Since the suspension travels up and down and the lower control arm can't articulate, not sure a heim adds any benefit. Also, aren't heim joints (johnny joints) known for requiring maintenance often and becoming noisy as they age?

Are you keeping the spindle height stock or dropping it to create the lift?

Also, how does the lower ball joint get in and out of the spindle? It looks like it might be difficult to get the lower ball joint threads into the spindle with it being encapsulated like that.

Still, very awesome to see someone finally doing custom arms for the WK!! Anxious to see how this turns out!
Thanks. I am anxious to get it done too. Will be fun to build.

Regarding the clevis connection. The LCA pivot axis is not parallel to the strut tower face actually. It's about 3 degrees different. The longer the stroke, the worse the bind. The factory deals with this by using a narrow bushing with little resistance to that load. I could reuse that bushing in a fabricated arm but I would rather match the freely articulating uniball that is used in the upper end of the shock. The cost is not much different I get away from a sloppy rubber connection point. Heim joints and johnny joints are a little different from each other but yes they can squeak but quality joints like FK's are far less likely to have squeaking issues. I have been using heim's and uniballs for years in many vehicles and it doesn't concern me at all. It is the strongest and most freely articulating joint you can use. A bit overkill? Perhaps, but it is the best performance solution for the money in my opinion. Acquiring the 4130 tubing and machining it to the metric bushing ID plus the bushing would cost about the same and would not be as strong or an upgrade in anyway.

Some lift (around 2"-3" adjustable) will be naturally present with the longer arms.

The lower ball joint goes in and out of the upright identical to the factory unit. It is still the factory upright. Just a different ball joint than the factory unit. It fits, I already have em.

I am sure to encounter some problems though. There is always something.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
As you go to that design you'll need all the linkage parts also. Why not go 6" with travel?
I don't have any interest in lifting it more than 3" or so. It's already a top heavy pig. Lifting it that high is hurting offroad performance more than it's helping it IMO.

Excuse my ignorance, but why not just get some king coilovers and JBA UCA ?
Because I am going wider and I am looking for more travel and width without sacrificing my scrub radius which gets killed when you put a wheel spacer or a low backspaced wheel. The KPI gets thrown way off and puts much higher loads on the rack.

Going with +2 on width per side will add lift in and of itself, nevermind the fact that with longer arms reducing the critical angles he can lift even higher without needing to drop the diff and lower arms a'la superlift.

I'd imagine you'll just stick with the stock knuckles, right? Or are you going all out and fabricating new ones?

Very cool to see real engineering and fab work go into this platform
You got the idea. Yes I will use the stock uprights. The factory aluminum units are quite nice actually. Lightweight and they appear to be pretty strong IMO. The upper end could be a little more beefy and it would be nice to have a double shear mount for the tie-rod but I think it will be just fine as is. Has anyone here broke one yet? I was considering gusseting the upper portion and double shearing the tie-rod but I am not sure it is necessary yet.

Or if I get bored later I will build some fabricated uprights for it as well. :)
 

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You should send Christian an email. Here is his website. I collaboration of a couple great minds into the WK suspension would do wonders for us. He had a thread about a Pro-Lite build, but he hasn't been active on the forum for some time now. I haven't had a need to email him, but I've heard he is pretty decent at responding to emails. He also does work on the CRDs. He had envisions a cantilever suspension for the rear to give more travel and he has done some work on the front, but I will admit I haven't seen or heard much about either in a while.

Here is his thread as well: http://www.jeepforum.com/forum/f67/cb-eng-pro-lite-build-2324081/
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Laser cut for the LCA's and shock tower adapters is done. I formed them on the press brake yesterday and fit most of the parts together. I am going to do a little bit of welding on them this evening and see how far I get. I have to sequence it just right to get all the internal ribbing welded properly before enclosing it so I am taking my time and being meticulous with it. The nature of this design makes most of this arm self jigging which is nice. The only jigging required will be when I weld on the bushing housing and pillow block pivot portions.



 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I got all the internal ribbing welded last night and tacked up the outer plates. I need to laser cut and form one last piece for the ball joint mount. I also made the UCA and LCA bushing tubes. Fox Factory 2.5 coilovers should be here today or tomorrow. Still need to sort out some details on the clevis adapter.




 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Cool job. ... What is the plan for the wheel flares?
Nothing initially. It has rubicon wheels on it with 1.5" spacers now. I want to go back to the stock Ronin wheels with a black powder coat so I can get the correct KPI back on the front suspension. She wants method wheels on it so if and when I do that I might need to figure something out because that will push the wheel out beyond aesthetically acceptable levels I believe because of the offsets they come in. I will pull the stock plastic bumper and build a more offroad capable piece that will aid in the appearance. I really don't want to get into building prerunner fenders for this thing but I will if I have to I guess. No one even makes anything in the way of flares from what I can tell. Pretty disappointing.:(
 

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Before on my wk with a 285 tires and a 2" lift the 31.6" tires pealed the rivets off the fender liner on the top when flexing. Currently the 31.6" tires, JK wheels, 1.5" spacers and modified super lift measure 25.5" front hub center to fender lip and 24.5" on the rear now clear. What I'm getting at (and I could be wrong) is at 2" out I think you'll need to stick near to the factory tire diameter due to the fender unless it is modified.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
What I'm getting at (and I could be wrong) is at 2" out I think you'll need to stick near to the factory tire diameter due to the fender unless it is modified.
I see what you are saying. Fortunately I am making the shock clevis adapter so I will be able to make slight adjustments to the full bump position by changing the dimensions of that component. That said, I fully anticipate some modifications to the inner wheel well area. After building your own suspension system, some wheel well mods seem like a drop in the bucket. I may not even run the inner wheel well being most of the use will be street and desert.
 

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She has an affinity for her WK but wants to use it a bit more aggressively out in the desert so we decided to build it up a bit. It has plenty of power with the 5.7 in there but it was seriously lacking in the suspension department. She had a spacer lift and wheel spacers to give it the look but limited travel, especially in droop, it leaves something to be desired. So I decided to go ahead and get started on the front suspension. I got the design nearly done and I will be building this over the next 3-4 weeks. It is +2" per side so longer axles are also in order. Looking forward to no needing wheel spacers on the front anymore and really looking forward to the extra travel. I will be using Fox 2.5 race coilovers in the front and fabricating all the suspension components from 4130 chromoly.



Once I get this done I will move onto the rear suspension to see what we want to do there. Wish me luck. :grin2:
How aggressively are we talking here? Are you going to have some awesome flying WK pics for us soon?
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
How aggressively are we talking here? Are you going to have some awesome flying WK pics for us soon?
A little air time is probably in order. It's not caged (yet:grin2:) so we've gotta be realistic.

Made a little more progress this weekend. Machined the shock/clevis adapters and started checking everything for clearance. So far so good. Next I have to add mount points for the sway bar on the LCA in case I decide to run it and also limit straps to protect the CV's at full droop. Steering needs lengthening as well. Gettin closer.




 
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