JKU Suspension dilemma

kootenay

Intergalacticsuperintendent
I am going to throw some pictures at you. The first one is stock size Rubicon tires with the trailer and Jeep loaded for a three week family camping trip around BC. It is lifted with the 2" rancho Sport lift.
6A82FADD-CCE6-4074-B410-44AA2B4F2F03 by kootenaycycle mountainworks, on Flickr
Second is the Jeep and trailer empty stock ride height with worn out tired shocks and springs
2A172076-68C7-407B-B258-4F0F73DA58D1 by kootenaycycle mountainworks, on Flickr
Third one is a side shot of the Jeep solo camping with the 2" lift and some worn out 33 inch tires.
F1AAF0A9-6BD6-472B-81F9-DD0A63805D46 by kootenaycycle mountainworks, on Flickr
 

dirtlimo

Observer
I'll sort of hijack my own thread: I see you have the short ARB in the back. How do you like it? does it serve you or are you wishing it was bigger and don't use it as much?
I do like it, I only really use it when cooking out back. It would be nice if it was wider, but it still helps.
 

wandererr

Adventurer
So I towed with the new springs and I sagged. I think they are softer then the stock rubi springs and even though they provide more lift, they don't do well with the trailer weight with cargo in the back.

This has me scratching my head: is my need for slightly stiffer springs at only 1.5 -2" that unusual? When I spoke with Dirk he said the OMEs would give me 3+ unloaded which is way too much for my needs. I'm wondering how many folks end up lifting their jeep cause they couldn't get what they wanted?

So yes, I'm looking at airbags now to deal with the trailer dilemma and I wish I had leaf springs in the back ;). Easier to deal with weights.
 

Dan Grec

Expedition Leader
Is my need for slightly stiffer springs at only 1.5 -2" that unusual? When I spoke with Dirk he said the OMEs would give me 3+ unloaded which is way too much for my needs. I'm wondering how many folks end up lifting their jeep cause they couldn't get what they wanted?
Yes, it is extremely unusual.
I've spoken to three (four?) major Jeep aftermarket suspension companies in recent months about designing and releasing such a product (i.e. minimal lift, BIG weight carrying capacity) - and all of them said there simply isn't a market for that and they're not interested.

The very vast majority of "Jeepers" want lift. And then they want more lift.

I would have thought OME would have a product to suit your needs, though of course any spring that can carry a ton of weight is going to ride horribly when unloaded - there will never be any way to get around that. (except, I suppose, softer springs and airbags, because those are essentially adjustable springs)

-Dan
 

wandererr

Adventurer
OME used to make (way back) for various vehicles (XJ, TJ and so on) nearly stock height springs that just worked better. They were not in the market of lifts as much as a better performing suspension. Seems that the times have changed...

Anyways looking at the air springs and the like now to augment. Happy with what the 1.5" TF give me.... Till I hookup the trailer. At that point it is as though i got the stock springs with a spacer..
 

Jupiter58

Member
Leaf springs easier? Ha!
The answer was there all along, get the height you want unloaded and add air bags. I can understand your hesitancy because there is a lot of that with wrangler folks. They change their lifts like underwear!
I won’t be rock crawling so likely will avoid a lift entirely if I can. Flat fenders and 35s and then I will see if I have sufficient articulation for my modest off-road needs. I don’t anticipate going over the rancho 2” sport with the adjustable 9000’s anyway. Minimum COG, great ride and adjustability.
If I tow something, airbags for sure.

Jealous of your URSA, that is the most awesome wrangler overland mod!!!!!!!!!


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rubicon91

Explorer
I have one too... and it's simply too small. If the rain is even slightly sideways you only get about a 1 foot street of "rain free" space running down the middle (which isn't where my tailgate mounted kitchen is)
With a side wall or two it would be better... but I think it's just too small. I've used mine maybe 20 times in 5 years.

-Dan
I love my rear awning but I have the wind breaks for the side and front that change the dynamic up totally and of course I have a barn door as well which of course you know ha Dan hope you are doing well.

OP I have the AEV 4.5 with the HC coils. As Dan said the 2.5 couldnt handle the weight. I actually put a 1 inch spacer in the rear for a bit but eventually I just went to the 4.5. They dont sag at all. I believe I am somewhere around 84 inches tall if I remember correctly. I just couldnt find anything in the 2.5 range that would help me with the sag. First pic was a few years ago when I had the 2.5 aev with a 1 inch spacer in the rear. I did go up about 3 inches in height unfortunately but I dont have any more issuesl. As others have said I would go air bags. At least give them a try before spending more money on other springs as bags are really inexpensive. Bottom pic is with the same wheels/tires but with the AEV 4.5 with HC springs so you can see the difference in the fender wells and the height difference.
 

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wandererr

Adventurer
So looks like the TF 1.5" are failing me... Packed the jeep for a weekend trip to Yosemite. No trailer just food and gear for the weekend and I'm sagged.... Not too happy..m gonna do measurements when I get home and might end up having to warranty return them and go with OME after all.
 
That's too bad...but I had a feeling. I'm not thrilled with mine either and I continue to struggle with just what to do next.
 

Jupiter58

Member
So looks like the TF 1.5" are failing me... Packed the jeep for a weekend trip to Yosemite. No trailer just food and gear for the weekend and I'm sagged.... Not too happy..m gonna do measurements when I get home and might end up having to warranty return them and go with OME after all.
Yikes! Looking forward to the resolution!


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wandererr

Adventurer
Yeah.... I have to say that while it is hard to "aim" suspension height due to variation in weight between vehicles there shouldn't be that many issues.... I tried the 2.5" ones out back which way overshot my target and the 1.5... let's just say that driving now back from Yosemite is feeling way squirrely
That's too bad...but I had a feeling. I'm not thrilled with mine either and I continue to struggle with just what to do next.
 

Lt Dan

Observer
You won't be disappointed in the airbags.

IMO, any one that uses their Jeep as a multipurpose vehicle (daily driver, overlanding) should consider airbags due simply to there adjustability for any given situation or load. Add adjustable shocks and you can tailor your driving experience for every load or lack there of.

Two cents
 

wandererr

Adventurer
You won't be disappointed in the airbags.

IMO, any one that uses their Jeep as a multipurpose vehicle (daily driver, overlanding) should consider airbags due simply to there adjustability for any given situation or load. Add adjustable shocks and you can tailor your driving experience for every load or lack there of.

Two cents
I can totally see using airbags to augment for towing and the like. Already started looking into the available options. Problem is that after the drive to Yosemite and back with just two people and camping gear I can tell that the 1.5" springs seem to be not up to par and the stock rubi springs were stiffer and more responsive.

They were progressively getting lower and lower and on the way back I was almost on the bump stops. This made the drive hard as with the rear collapsing the suspension on the front was getting unloaded and made the jeep handle progressively worse.
 
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