S10 Springs "Bastard Pack"

Old 05-02-2008, 03:06 PM
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Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: East Springfield, MA - U.S.A.
Posts: 119
Year: 99
Model: Cherokee
Engine: 4.0
Default S10 Springs "Bastard Pack"

One day I was in the woods and came across a belly up, trashed S10 Blazer. So the next day I went back and removed the leaf springs. That's how the bastard pack project began on my 88 XJ. My XJ had hollow aluminum 2" lift blocks and the springs had some negative arch. Before I started, I measured 4" between flare and tire. After I measured close to 7". Minus the lift blocks and compensating for the spring sag, I'd say I got ~4.5" over stock. The best part is while I was removing the S10 springs, my buddy ripped out the cat. On our way home we scrapped the cat and got $55. So I got paid to take my free leaf springs!

There's a huge difference.
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These are the blocks that came off. I got the JEEP with them on it. The guy before me was driving with these, even the halfy.
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There are many different vehicles to get the springs from: Blazers, Dakotas, MJs, Suburbans, just to name a few. I used S10 Blazer leafs, probably mid 80's, couldn't tell because it was belly up. Basically any S10 p/u or Blazer will work good because they are spring under axle and XJ's are spring over. That's where the lift comes from. The pictures show what I got from just the springs no blocks. I will be adding lift shackles. Everyone's results are varied, depending on the leaf combination and condition of the donor leafs.

Loosen the lugs on the rear tires. Then the Jeep needs to be jacked up from the center of the diff, the higher the better. Once it is in the air, jack stands are placed at the frame rails, just in front of the leaf springs. Remove the tires and then unbolt the lower shock bolts. If the rear sway bar is still installed take it off and don't reinstall it. With the jack still lifting the rear (this will take pressure off the u-bolts), remove the u-bolts and spring plates. At this point the axle can be lowered using the jack (watch the brake line). The axle should drop right down away from the springs. Place a c-clamp on either side on the center pin and tighten. Either remove the nut or cut this pin off. Remove any leaf spring clamps. Loosen the c-clamps. All but the main leaf will drop down. The donor springs I used had a 3/8" center pin holes, while the XJ leafs are 5/16". The main XJ leaf has to be drilled to 3/8".
New 3/8" pins are required.
New U-bolts are needed, unless the originals are long enough and in good condition.





What you have to do is cut the eyes off the S10 springs.
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Seeing how XJ main leaf lined up with the top donor leaf. The S10 leaf is a lot thicker.
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This where you clean up rust or paint the leafs. I just wire wheeled everything and threw it together.
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Amount of lift depends on which leafs are used. I used all of them. They bolt right on to the main XJ leaf.
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I was able to reuse the spring clamps that were on the donor pack. I just bent them straight up and drilled them out and put a bolt going through the top (not pictured) so that if the leafs need to move a little up or down they are not restricted. After trimming the center pin, reverse the whole prodedure and put the Jeep back together.
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Of course when done you'll need an extended brake line and longer shocks. I had already replaced the short stock brake line with the longer YJ line. The previous owner says he installed 3-4" lift shocks and I installed homemade 1" BPE's, so I'm good. Also the e-brake cables need to be played around with. My original pack was very soft, so this new bastard pack feels lovely.

After a week or so, and periodically, retighten or check the u-bolts. Make sure that the center pin is tight as well. They will loosen a bit as the new pack settles.

This is a center pin from an '00 XJ with a 4.5" RE full leaf pack. It was never retightened, the ubolts were trashed too!
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I also did this to my 99 XJ. This is how it sat in the rear after mixing in some Blazer leafs. I didn't use the whole pack on this one. I used the XJ main, S10, XJ, S10, then XJ. I'm extremely happy with the ride characteristics. Some say that S10 leafs will give a very hard ride. I haven't had that problem!!!

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Here is the 88 with a 33 on it after a little bit of trimming. Plenty of room!
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Any questions, feel free to ask!

Last edited by Orangeamc13; 05-02-2008 at 03:25 PM.
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