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Old 04-28-2017, 12:13 PM   #16
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Yup, plenty of meat left on those rear brakes. Clean, adjust, and be good to go!

Nice clean Xj!
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Old 04-28-2017, 12:15 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by mannydantyla View Post
From this angle the rear leaf looks like its got a little bit of inverted action going on. Just a heads up, i did an AAL to mine when they were like that, and they sagged in a month, and i ended up replacing them with IRO full leaf packs.
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Old 04-28-2017, 12:54 PM   #18
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I'd went back and fourth about AALs, but i personally think i'll go with a Crown Upcountry pack. If i want more lift down the road i'll get shackles.

However, thats not to say AAL i the worst option. Ive seen it done many a time.
Better than blocks!
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Old 04-28-2017, 02:21 PM   #19
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That leaf pack is shot. I didn't even notice it, good looking out Pinky. An AAL is a waste of money.
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Old 04-28-2017, 02:27 PM   #20
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From this angle the rear leaf looks like its got a little bit of inverted action going on. Just a heads up, i did an AAL to mine when they were like that, and they sagged in a month, and i ended up replacing them with IRO full leaf packs.
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I'd went back and fourth about AALs, but i personally think i'll go with a Crown Upcountry pack.!
How much lift does that give
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Old 04-28-2017, 02:48 PM   #21
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They are replacement leaf packs for the factory Upcountry package, so they are heavier duty and give 1-1.5 inches of lift. So they say.
They are like 79 bucks a pack on Amazon.

I myself would prefer to stay under 3" as to avoid the many issues that usually arise from a lift that high or higher. I singled out the "upcountry" route to keep as many stock parts as possible as well as keep as much driveability intact (Mine's my DD as well).

You could also make a 'bastard pack' from junkyard leaves, im not sure about Rusty's return policy.

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Old 04-28-2017, 03:49 PM   #22
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That's pretty good thinking there RegularGuy

What I might do is buy some new OEM leaf springs and add the leaf to them before installing. There's a factory not far away from me that makes them and I can just go there and pick them up to save quite a lot on shipping, I did that with my k10 pickup and it worked out great. They make u-bolts too, he made them for me when I arrived to pick up the springs, but I already have those. Generalspringkc.com is their website and they do list XJ leafs. $100 each or $120 each for heavy duty (says it's a higher weight capacity but doesn't say if it's taller)

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Old 05-02-2017, 12:27 PM   #23
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Default I did a thing

Starting installing the lift kit yesterday.

Started with the rear...



It started out smooth and all. The u-bolts came out easy. I had planned on cutting them but it was less effort just to un-bolt them.

Then I started removing the shocks.

Now, I think you guys know what problem I ran into, but I didn't know anything about it at the time so it was quite a shock (no pun intended). All four upper shock bolts broke off. The first thing I did was search this forum and learned right away that this is a very common problem and the solution is to hammer out the welded on nuts and use new nuts and bolts. I decided I'd deal with that later and remove the leaf springs next in order to make more room for hammering out the broken bolt/nuts.

I could not, for the life of me, remove the leaf spring bolts! I'm talking about the rear ones that connect the leaf to the shackle. And from what I read, the front bolts are even harder! I tried throwing money at it, went to Oreilly's and dropped $100 on tools. I tried torching them with MAP gas. I tried hammering many many times until my back couldn't handle any more (it still hurts).

So I gave up. I cheated. I went back to Oreilly's and got the dreaded aluminum lift blocks.



I'm running out of time to prepare my jeep for my Colorado trip which is in two weeks. I still have all the front suspension to do, steering reinforcement stuff, and then regular maintenance before a trip with a vehicle with over 246,000 miles. FYI I'm not planning on rock crawling, I just want bigger tires that can handle the rocky roads a lot better, and new shocks.

THIS IS ONLY TEMPORARY!!

Yes I know these lift blocks will hurt my leaf springs. I plan on removing them and installing new leaf springs. But that will have to wait.

Bonus: the lift blocks came with 2 degree wedges to help with driveshaft angles.

Still have to get the broken shock bolts out...

Last edited by mannydantyla; 05-03-2017 at 09:23 AM.
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Old 05-02-2017, 01:32 PM   #24
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Quote:
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Yes I know these lift blocks will hurt my leaf springs. I plan on removing them and installing new leaf springs. But that will have to wait.

Still have to get the broken shock bolts out...
An air hammer works great for removing those broken bolts. It can also be done with a long punch and hammer.
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Old 05-02-2017, 05:02 PM   #25
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It sure sucks when stuff doesn't go the way it's supposed to, huh?
FYI I do t think blocks are THE WORST way to lift... My brother test drove an XJ that had some sort of coil spring stretchers or something upfront? That was garbage.
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Old 05-02-2017, 05:17 PM   #26
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Yes, and it won't help my confidence when going over a rough trail either. I still think that will be the limiting factor on the Jeep though.
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Old 05-03-2017, 10:35 AM   #27
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I was only able to get one of the four broken bolts out with a punch and BFH. Actually I used the backside of a wood splitting maul/axe. After 20 minutes of this, back was in too much pain to continue.

If at first you don't succeed, go and buy $200 in air tools.



Zing! With the pressure up high enough (90psi is what I used) those broken bolts/nuts just flew right off.

Getting the new bolts in was actually the easiest part of the whole job. I used a magnetic tool and just dropped the bolts in through the little whole in the unibody frame.



About 15 seconds elapsed between taking that picture and this one:



Now I can install the shocks.

However, Rusty didn't install the bushing and bar pins and sleeves, I had to do that. My little bench vice was just barely large enough. Getting the bushings in was easy enough - I just

Damn you Rusty!!



I learned pretty quickly that I needed to round off the sharp corners of the bar pin before squeezing them into the bushings. And even with this, if they go in just slightly cockeyed, they will dig into the bushing and then you're SOL.



But aside from those minor issues, I was able to get the new shocks in and put the wheels back on.



Yay!

Now, onto the front which I hope will be a little easier. Though there's more to do: brakes, steering stabalizer, steering box spacer, and the sway bar link & disconnects. I also bought the heavy duty lower control arm mounts but I don't think I'll have the time to weld those in.

Last edited by mannydantyla; 05-03-2017 at 10:48 AM.
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Old 05-04-2017, 10:34 AM   #28
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T-10 days until we take off for Colorado.

I couldn't work on it at all yesterday as I had to work on the house I'm renovating (lolfml)

New tires were ordered on Amazon and are scheduled to arrive next Thursday. 31" x 10.5" x 15" Falcon Wildpeak ATW3s. Only $135 each and free shipping!
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Old 05-04-2017, 10:36 AM   #29
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I went through the enormous stack of receipts and tallied up everything:




Here's the most recent 4 major service receipts:






What's just as shocking as the number of times the radiator as been replaced (four) are the items that were never replaced! Shocks, starter, rear brake wheel cylinders, leaf springs... the entire suspension really.

I will need new leaf springs soon now that I put lift blocks on the rear (just temporary, don't have time to remove the leafs, I tried but the bolts are seized of course). I also replaced the shocks and the starter. So maybe I ought to replace those rear brake wheel cylinders. They're not leaking at all and when I did a brake check I thought the rear tires had skidded in the dirt but it was a little hard to tell. Maybe I'll check it again. The brakes feel a little crummy, but I have new front brake pads that will be installed before the trip.

I hope to get this Jeep to 300k miles! At 246k miles it's already driven further than the distance between the earth and the moon
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Old 05-05-2017, 11:09 AM   #30
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Definitely getting some driveshaft vibes. Still need to raise the front 2" so that might help a little, right?
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