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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I was off-roading with some friends this weekend and I finally got to see a Jeep with a Old Man Emu suspension. I have heard lots of great things about the kit and seen some great pics of what the suspension can do and the thing rides like a dream, but....it has TONS of body roll. You could literally take the jeep and rock it from side to side and completely compress the springs just by rocking it!!!

So I got to thinking that I would prefer having a little stiffer suspension that something that incredibly soft(Of course I have the stiffest with Pro Comp). What does everyone else think, have any of you seen where someone had too much flex?? I did read the article in one of the mags recently about the flex issue but I wanted some real world opinions.

absolutjeep
http://members.tripod.com/iluvjeeps
 
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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Try National springs. They are a little stiffer than OME but have a great on road ride. I am a suzuki owner so I dont know alot about aftermarket springs for Jeeps,so correct me if I am wrong.

 
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
The National setups that I have seen use a bunch of thinner leaves rather than a few thick ones. This is the way to go for control
and articulation.

Brad (from the 4 Wheeling center of the universe, 4 corners USA)
 

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Some valid points raised in the replies, but I think this still skirts the original problem.

No matter how many leaves you use, or how thin - a by-product (so to speak) of soft springs that flex well is body roll.

If you make the spring soft enough to compress when 4 wheeling, you have also made the spring soft enough to compress in many other situations both on & off road.

I have seen quite a few vehicles that could ramp over 1500 on a 20 degree ramp make it no further off road than my Toy that ramps just under 1000.

As a personal rule, I want to get my Toy to ramp just over 1000 on a 20 degree ramp. From what I have seen, anything more is just wasted flex - and usually wasted money in tweaking as well.

I also like to keep one end of the vehicle stiffer and with less flex than the other. What this does is lets me always know how each will react. For example, right now my rear springs do not flex all that well, but the front maxes out my 9012's on droop & compression - and could do more. What the stiffer rear springs do that when on an obstacle I know the truck will basically stay with the action of the rear, more than the front. Knowing this, I can adjust where I place the rear tires to keep the body at the angle I want.

If both front & rear suspenions were as soft & flexy as the front is now, I would always be guessing which end had the least force on it, and which end the body would stay alligned with at that moment.

This may not make sense, but ask anyone with a Hummer and they can agree. The Hummer may not have lots of travel, but the suspension allows the driver to always know how the body will react at any moment - and this is part of why they are difficult to roll.

Hope this helps, or stirs up some other responses/wwwthreads_images/icons/wink.gif

David
Davids 4x4 Page
 

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Dam,,,,, and all this time I thought it was because the Hummer was wider than most 4x4's are long!!!!!!! But that still doesn't keep them from rolling.

GP'n

 
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Okay, interesting statements David. Now why are you going to a custom, high flex rear suspension then? Not that I disagree with anything you wrote. I know many owners of rockbuggies here in AZ that have 1/4 ellipt rear suspensions, etc. They can ramp over 1000 on a 23 degree ramp and many of them can get over 1000 on a 27 degree. What I notice is that these vehicles have an awesome amount of flex but don't do any better on most obstacles than I do. My truck only ramps a 776 on a 23 degree ramp but the wheelbase seems to more than make up for it.

For instance, on most trails my friends and I run, my friends' highly modified Cj7s and Cj5s and Tjs that ramp 1300 or so on the same 23* ramp actually lift tires more than my 104.5" wheelbase Toy that ramps a measly 776. Is wheelbase the only reason? There hasn't been anywhere they could go that I couldn't b/c of a flex problem. In fact, the body roll some of them get is bad enough they can't complete a section of trail b/c the body/cage is leaning into the opposing rock wall and they just can't physically clear the obstacle.

Now, having said all that, I'd still like to get more flex. (It really makes your pictures look cool/wwwthreads_images/icons/cool.gif). But I think there IS a definite point of diminishing returns here. I don't know where that point is, but for each vehicle, there is this point. Another thing to really ponder is how much MORE OFTEN my friends' Cjs and Tj would lift tires were it not for the massive amount of flex they now have? In that case, I'd have to say all their hard work and modification has really paid off.

I don't pretend to have any answers here; just some observations from what I've witnessed.
Sean
 
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Sean you basically stated exactly what I wanted to know.....what is the point of diminishing returns??

Example....OK so I have a stiff suspension and I lift a tire, who cares if I have lockers right?? I mean don't get me wrong flex and keeping the tires on the ground is nice and I hope to achieve that when I go SOA in the next month, BUT some of the crazy suspensions I see just gets me wondering........any more opinions??

absolutjeep
http://members.tripod.com/iluvjeeps
 

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Well, actually I keep flip-flopping on whether to do the rear suspension or not.

I came up with a way to lock the suspension in place when either articulating or on the street. The device I came up with would only work with the V link rear, but could actually be used similar to a sway bar in the rear.

Anyway, the custom rear suspension would honestly be more of a "neat" factor than anything else.

The reasons I gave is exactly why I haven't done that suspension yet in the rear - I am finding that the way it is now is more predictable - something that seems to mean more & more to me.../wwwthreads_images/icons/smile.gif

David
Davids 4x4 Page
 
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Could the body roll be controlled with adjustable shocks, ie. RS9000's, and an anti-sway bar? I've been considering OME springs too because my wife can't take the off road pounding of some of the stiffer suspensions. I once had a 2.5" Rancho kit, with RS 5000's, and it rode somewhat like the proverbial lumber wagon.

 
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Yeah you can control the body roll with track bars, sway bars, and GOOD shocks. I would definitely go with Rancho 9000's....The vehicle I saw with the lift didn't have track bars, so I am sure they would stiffen things up a bit.

absolutjeep
http://members.tripod.com/iluvjeeps
 
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Gentlemen-
That is what anti-sway/anti-roll bars are for - to control body roll. They have no other purpose. Tried to rock a 'Vette or Porche lately? They ride smoother than any Jeep ever did and that means "soft" suspension. But they don't roll. Well, maybe a little. Say about as much as a slot car. My '94 YJ with SOA and no track bars and disconnected anti-sway bar handles terribly. Compared to a '65 Galaxie even. Smooth ride compared with a lifted CJ. A lot smoother than any stock CJ5 ever produced. But not compared to an Acura. But it does articulate and it does go where 99.99% of the vehicles ever produced can never go.
We all need to keep in mind that all engineering is a compromise and this subject is a prime example of just that.
I am glad to hear what some observant person had to say about the OME that's for sure.
JMTCW
sln

 
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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Absolut,
How was that Jeep set up for shocks and anti-sway bar? And has anyone else had the same/similar experiences with OME as Absolut? I'm wondering how the OME performs on CJ7's. I want a soft suspension but one that is safe at highway speeds. Is National better?

 
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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
i feel that the point of diminishing return is twofold:

a. the point at which the suspension provides the articulation necessary to keep the tires planted to the ground with enough pressure (weight applied to the tire to maintain traction). this is where massive amounts of articulation do not always the way to go. if the tire is not pressed to the ground, it is of not tractive value. in fact you may be taking weight away from a tire that has enough traction to pull you through a situation.

b. you. if you dont feel comfortable with the tradeoffs that increased articulation, dont do them. most of the people and vehicles you see performing those amazing displays are flex most likely started out pretty pitiful in comparison. they were built over the course of several years, usually a little at a time. this gave the operator a chance to get used to the setup slowly. a lot of these vehicles are not driven much on the street either so handling is less of an issue for them.

this is just the tip of the iceberg, but hopefully a start.

dan

/wwwthreads_images/icons/smile.giflet it snow/wwwthreads_images/icons/smile.gif
 
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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
BlackJack,
I think you got it...good points

edward,
I am not knocking the OME suspension I think it is fabulous, I would love to have a Jeep that is that soft riding. The rig that the suspension was on did very well(the NV4500, rear D44 detroit'd didn't hurt any) I was just stating for my personal preference.....actually let me explain a little more....

I am going SOA and I am using 2 1/2" lift springs. I was going to give the OME a try because of all the great things that I have heard about them but after seeing them I feel that those springs SOA would just be way too soft. I drive my Jeep daily and after the SOA it won't have track bars. But I think for anyone going spring under the OME with a 1-2" body lift and 33's is a GREAT setup. You can control the body roll(as stated before in the corvette example) with track bars and other such things

absolutjeep
http://members.tripod.com/iluvjeeps
 
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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Thanks Absolut, I'm glad you posted your thoughts. I know that you were not knocking the OME, just posting your honest observations. I want to stay SUA and was looking at an OME 2.5 lift with RS9000's, to provide a nice ride for my better half. She has a muscle tissue disorder and cannot handle the "jarring" of my old Rancho 2.5 with RS5000's, and the Warn Black Diamond is just too expensive. Not ready to place an order yet, not 'til next summer.

 
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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
I was just wondering if you have shackle reversed your jeep yet. FST makes a great kit that drastically improves ride and handling. If you used this kit with a nice soft shock you could probably stand the wait for your Warn kit a little easier. Or then again you also put Beards in your Jeep and then it can ride like a tank and you won't know it. Happy Jeepin
Travis

 

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My older brother and his wife run OME 2.5's with YJ springs and SUA setups. He runs a '79 CJ-5 and hers is a '76 CJ-5. Hers is awesome, it sits tall, isn't too spongy, and rides nice. It doesn't sway much in the corners and seems decent. She bought the RS9000's and uses them to control the sway, effectively. He bought the same lift, but he's running a T-18/D300, a winch up front, and a ton of crap (oh, I meant necessities) in the bed. He bought longer RS 9000's because his wifes' limit the articulation. His lift sags like a pregnant cow. He is always bottoming out the shocks, inverting shackles, and hitting the bump stops. Sure, it flexes well, but it's also like riding a greased beach ball down a ski slope, even with the shocks cranked up. It's true he could have gotten a "bad" lift, but he doesn't think so. He doesn't want to give the lift up because it flexes well, personally I'd return it.

This post has 2 main points.
1) RS9000's may control your sway, but only to a point. If you're going to rely on them exclusively, be prepared for disappointment. They work on my Scrambler, but the springs also do some of the work.
2) Know what you're going to do with the lift. I purposely bought the HD Skyjacker front and tapered rear for my Scrambler. At the time it was a lightweight and didn't flex, but is gaining weight every year. Consequently the springs "soften" with each pound added. Hard tops, excess baggage (no, not passengers, CARGO/wwwthreads_images/icons/smile.gif), heavy trannies, transfers, engines, axles, and winches should all be taken into consideration when looking for a lift, even a SOA.

I hope this helps and isn't too far off base.

JEEPN
'97 TJ Sport
'81 CJ-8 Scrambled!
'71 Commando SC-1
'51 CJ-3A
'47 CJ-2A
 
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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Hey Dude,
If you have the funds, go with OME with RS9000 shocks.

I have the setup I metioned with a 1" body lift. You would not believe how my 93 YJ articulates off road, and the smooth ride on road.

You are right by saying these springs are soft but those RS9000 gives you the freedom of making them as stiff as if you're riding on a board.

By the way, I'm sure you knew this already, but just in case you over looked this... No matter which springs you go with, your articulation will be the same no matter what, unless you disconnect those swaybar links.

Anyways, from experience, OME are the softest springs out there. You don't even need to reverse your shackles to feel the improvements.

By the way, when you reverse the shackles, you increase your chances of roll over.

Good luck.

If you can't find the road to success, get a JEEP!!!
 
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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
What!?! Someone please explain how a shackle reversal INCREASES your chance of rollover??
Sean

 
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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
O.K. Mossimo-
Educate us. How does going to reversed shackles increase the chances of a rollover?
slln

 
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