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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've been thinking about the various lift setups and the pros and cons (not that I need one as my CJ5 came with 2½" spring lift; all I need for 33's). Anyway, spring lift isn't cheap and can lead to harsher ride, SOA is expensive and leads to axle wrap, body lift in anything but small amounts isn't a good idea, and shackle lift stresses the frame/spring mounts for not that much lift.

Why haven't I seen spring hanger lift? It'd be a fairly simple matter to make a bracket that mounts to the spring hangers with one bolt (where the hanger is welded to the frame) or spaces between the hanger and the frame (where it's bolted on), braces against and/or clamps to the frame, and so moves the stock spring eyes down the desired amount. With some simple parts, you'd retain the stock springs and their ride characteristics while increasing wheel travel..... most of the benefits of SOA without the disadvantages. 'Bout the only disadvantage I can see of this setup is increased vulnerability of the spring mounts over spring lift or SOA. It'd be simple to incorporate a shackle reversal into the concept, too..... all with no welding at all.

-Dana

"If you're not a liberal at 20, you have no heart.
If you are not a conservative when you're 30, you have no head."
-- Winston Churchill
 
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Lowering the spring hangers leaves both them and the ends of the spring hanging down in the way (arched spring ends are up higher, as are SOA springs). Guys who do shackle reverses sometimes complain that the front mounted shackles are like little bulldozer blades up front.
Moreover, you still have to incur the costs of fixing the steering, the brake lines, the driveshafts, etc. Moreover, if you lift it enough that you need a CV style u-joint, you'd have to cut and reweld the spring perches on the axle anyhow, to get the proper alignment w/ the transfer case.
Another problem is that, like you mentioned, lowered spring hangers, like longer shackles, would put great torsional strain on the frame. There would need to be some serious reinforcement before you could trust it, especially when exposed to the greater force that the springs could generate, once their travel is freed up and bigger tires are added. I'd imagine that you'd want to sandwich the frame with steel plate, and then bolt it on in several spots. And you'd still be putting a lot of force on the frame. The longer the "hanger-drop," the greater the leverage exerted upon already overstressed framerails.
The only other difficulty that I foresee is that stock springs wouldn't last long. When stock springs are used in SOA, and they are allowed to flex a great deal more than in stock position (especially when they are forced to negative arch) they wear out a lot more quickly...one SOA guy I know always has a few sets of Wrangler stock packs lying around for whenever he has to swap one in to replace a pack that has been mangled by reverse arching on a trail ride. Good arched springs shouldn't have the same degree of wear...simply because they don't negative arch (or only very rarely)...


Evolution of tools: stone, hammer, wrench, socket, impact, really big hammer, blue wrench.
 
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Well considering I have ramped 1250 with stock springs in a stock suspension configuration (except all the parts that are falling off/wwwthreads_images/icons/smile.gif), I am a all for using stock springs!

That's why I was planning to do a "spring hanger lift". I just never got around to it and then the Jeep got taken off the road for a while.

I know have a Suzuki Samurai that I'm going to use this lift on. I'll be doing the same lift to the CJ5 at some point, but the Zuk get's it first.

If it makes sense to you, go for it! I'm not interested in all the negativity I always get when ever I suggest this lift. Each to their own, not everyone is the same.

Yes the hanger will be lower than if you used an SOA or a spring lift. Big deal, it won't be any lower than stock, and it will be higher if you use larger tires. Stress smess! Build it right and don't go over say 2". Most of what that last post was talking about only refers to a YJ (maybe)........don't have to mess with the drivshafts, or steering for 2" of lift etc. The shackles only have to be 2" longer to get 2" of lift with the extended mounts, instead of the usual 4" longer.

If you can live with the few drawbacks........it's cheap and relatively easy. It will be real easy on the Zuk because the sides of the mounts are flat all the way up. I'm planning on using CJ springs on the Zuk which are a little longer and taller. I'll be building the mounts to give me between 1"-2" and also move the mounting holes to accomodate the longer springs. That combined with Hyper Shackles in the front, and a Pivot mounted 3/4 E should work quite well. Maybe I can get it to ramp as well as my Jeep/wwwthreads_images/icons/smile.gif.

Oh.......one more thing.......at anywhere from free to $100 a pair, I'm happy to wear out my stock springs every couple years, as long as I can keep ramping over a 1000./wwwthreads_images/icons/crazy.gif

jo-jo
'77 CJ5 Fozzy Locker
20 degree RTI 1250

'87 Samurai Stock (for now)
 

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jo-jo,
You really need to explain how you ramped 1250 on a ramp using stock springs in a stock suspension configuration. What degree ramp was it also? Your not using magic CJ springs are you? Did you buy your CJ springs from the same guy that sold Jack his beans in the age old tale? Im not saying it cant be done, its just that you only get so much travel up and down from your springs and starting from a stock position is gonna leave you just about where everyone else is with stock suspension, and they arent ramping 1250 unless its on a 10 deg ramp. I hear a lot of people talk about ramping 1000 plus, but whenever I get out on a run it usually comes down to very few rigs that actualy do it. Just curriouse.

Jeff
89 Wrangler
If at first you dont succeed, your replacement will try and try again.
 
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Hee hee.........congradulations for being the first person to come out and question my statement! I fully respect that!

In the past I have included (not always) a URL to my ramp page. You might find it kinda humerous, or if your a safety feak, it might anger you./wwwthreads_images/icons/smile.gif

Granted, my Jeep was (is) in poor shape, but it did teach me a few things. Even when the Jeep was in better condition, it was very close to the level of flexibility it is at now. I would say, even a few years ago it was ramping over 1000 (with most everything intact). Maybe not 1250, but still enough to make it possible for me to run trails and obsticles with open diffs, that a lot of people told me I wouldn't be able to do.

http://jojojeep.tripod.com/events99/rti_ramp99.htm

Since I wrote that page, I have noticed a small crack in the passenger side of the front crossmember, about 2-3" long. This undoubtably helped a tiny bit. I think that is the key with getting the most from any suspension, getting a little here and a little there, and it all adds up. I am lucky, because it didn't cost me anything. Just plain old wear and tear helped me create a very capable rig./wwwthreads_images/icons/smile.gif

BTW, that was a 20 degree ramp. This year we are using a 30 degree ramp at RC2000. I probably won't be ramping the Jeep, but we'll see how the Zuk does. I will try the Jeep on the 30 degree ramp when I get it running again. It will be sporting "stock" springs, "rubber bushings", slightly longer shackles, and new shocks (that don't limit travel)(thinking about a cantilever shock set-up for the Zuk, along with a swivel attached 3/4 elliptical rear, and a hyper shackle front)./wwwthreads_images/icons/crazy.gif

One thing that the Jeep taught me was to look for flex everywhere. First thing I did with the Zuk, was to remove the sway-bar. It didn't help much because the bumpstops held the axles back. Because the Jeep doesn't have rear bumpstops and it was never a problem "for me", I started looking more closely at the Samurai's bumpstops. I ended up removing "all" four, front and back, and haven't had any problems (or anything that "I" would consider a problem).

With the help of opening up the spring clamps and lossening the shackle bolts to 20ft.lbs (that where over torqued)(I check them after every run) the increase of flex was very generous.

http://bc4x4.com/island4x4/

jo-jo
'77 CJ5 Fozzy Locker
20 degree RTI 1250

'87 Samurai Stock (for now)
 

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jo-jo,
Very funny, I was hoping it was magic springs,because like you I am always looking for little tricks to improve my suspension. I was planning on getting some cows and seeing about trading for some of those magic springs, oh well I guess its back to the drawing board. I have been getting out and wheelin a lot lately with a freind who drives a Sami, hes entered in Top Truck Challenge, has very good suspension and is an impressive driver,picks his lines very well and knows what his rig can do. A few weeks back I went out with the Sami and about 10 other rigs, everyone was Hell Bent on opening a new trail through the rock garden at the end of a run they call Bronco Canyon, when we actually got there everyone took the escape route and wanted nothing to do with it,including a Toyota Land Cruiser also entered in Top Truck that ramps 1200 plus on a 30 deg. Jake and I went into the rock garden alone and both suffered some pretty good damage. My YJ: bent front drive shaft, broken front axle shaft, dented door, punctured steering stabilizer,puntured 35" swamper,bent bead lock wheel, All this happened on one poor line choice"Brutal" I needed to winch out of the hole I slid into, but finished the run under my own power in 3 WD, with no other incidents. The Sami busted a driver side main leaf spring with no military wrap and needed to be welded before he also came through fine.
I am running angled shocks in the rear,an SOA set up and numerouse other mods and am very happy with the current results, but I destroy a set of rear leafs about every 3 or 4 months, in fact they are starting to get very weak now. When they are right at the verge of replacement is when they ramp the best, but they dont work as well on the trail. I have ramped 1000 plus on a 30 deg. Ive attached a picture of the YJ entering the Rock Garden you can see the monstrouse Toyota staying behind in the background.

Jeff
89 Wrangler
If at first you dont succeed, your replacement will try and try again.
 

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jo-jo,
I almost forgot here is a picture of how Im field changing my tires now that Ive started Power Training again. Its allowed me to lighten up the vehicle by disposing of my High Lift jack.


Jeff
89 Wrangler
If at first you dont succeed, your replacement will try and try again.
 

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I have the Spring hanger lift. I cut off the hangers and put 1.25" spacers under there and welded it all back on. Then I built some beefy shackles that were 1.5" longer than stock (since they are on a bit of an angle). This raised the whole mess 1.25" without messing up the caster, driveline angles, etc.

I have 2" Skyjacker Softride Springs, and the front fenders are "flat-fendered" and the rear wheelwells are trimmed a little in the back. This allows me to run 33's with no problem. I prefer this combination rather than the more arched 4" springs, although if I had to do it over, I probably would just do that and skip all the WORK!!

But I do like my Jeep to be a tight little package - I still run narrow track axles too. We do alot of running around in the woods in Virginia, and the smaller overall Jeep really helps. I will admit, however, that the lower spring mounts in the center of the Jeep are a little "catchy" now and get hung up. A future mod is to weld some little ramps on there ...

Chuck Hadley
 

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I did this when I swapped a solid axle into my IFS Toyota. If you have ever looked at a solid axle Toyota front end, the front hanger is close to the frame, and the shackle hangers are actually holes in the frame.

With mine, I built a drop front crossmember for the front solid eye mount that moved the spring mount down about 3" as well as using a shackle hanger under the frame and only a 1" longer than stock shackle. This basically gets me about 3.5" of lift built into the frame, and I inly run a 1.5" lift spring for the rest to clear 35x16 boggers.

And to appease CJDave /wwwthreads_images/icons/wink.gif, here is the drawing of the front crossmember:


And here is the actual thing installed:



I built a complete crossmember so that there would be no strength problems with it flexing the frame too much.

Anyway, you would think with that big thing hanging down, it would get in the way, right? Well, I dropped the eye about 3", but I moved the axle forward 2", that, with the fact that I went from a 33" tire to a 35" tire, means the approach angle is still slightly better than before... But it sure doesn't look that way.

Personally, I like to use flat springs - not heavily arched ones. Arched ones will sag, and they will not hold up to extreme cycling like an already flat spring will.

Anyway, to get back to the point - I would prefer to use lowered spring mounts instead of heavily arched springs /wwwthreads_images/icons/smile.gif

<a href="http://www.tennessee4x4.com/toyota">
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Well, like I said, I don't plan on hanger lift for my current rig, I don't need it..... but the discussion is interesting, and I'm just surprised that nobody offers it as a kit. Only for small amounts (<3"), certainly..... any more than that and you're going to be spending plenty for the other related mods anyway.

-Dana

Clothes make the man. Naked men have little or no influence on society.

 

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I understand what you are saying, and I designed something like that for the rear of my Toyota so that you could bolt it to the stock hanger and "lower" the solid eye of the spring 2". This used with a 2" over stock shackle would get you a 2" lift with stock springs - and be a pretty economical way to go as well...

<a href="http://www.tennessee4x4.com/toyota">
 
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