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Old 01-11-2014, 09:38 AM   #1
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Recommended Adjustable Control Arm Lengths

Hi everyone,

A couple weeks ago, I had the Teraflex 3" kit with all 8 Flexarms installed on my 2010 JK 2dr Sport. This week I noticed a really bad rubbing a squeaking noise coming from the front end whenever I would go over any kind of bump. like anything larger than pebble would cause a pretty obnoxious noise. So, I got under it last night and found that the sway bar on the front right side is rubbing right up against the coil spring. I checked my trackbar adjustment and the body is centered on the axle. Then I started measuring the front lower control arms to see how long they are. The passenger side one is about 23 1/2" eye to eye. And the driver side one is slightly shorter at 23 1/4". I know that sometimes an alignment will be set like this to compensate for the crown in the road. But, this seems to be slightly long to me, especially since the spring is up against the sway bar. And, I intend to adjust everything equally on both sides. I'm all about symmetry.

My question is: Does anyone have recommended lengths for all 8 arms on 2dr with a 3" lift. I know they will have to be fine tuned from there. But I need a good starting point to work from.

Any help would be appreciated.

Thanks.

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Old 01-11-2014, 09:49 AM   #2
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Are you saying in the rear or the front. I have a TF 3 inch but a'2013. Mine was rubbing in the rear. I had to rotate the spring around 180 degrees. It would be helpful to see a picture.

The length of the arms is to center the wheel and make sure your pinion angle is ok.

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Old 01-11-2014, 10:02 AM   #3
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Here's a pic. Its the front passenger side.

I do know what the control arm lengths are for. My question is does anyone have length recommendations? Because, I plan on shortening the front lowers to alleviate the rubbing and I would like a frame of reference to start at.

Right now I'm thinking that setting both front lowers to 23" eye to eye would be a good starting point. But I'm still looking at what I should set the uppers to, in order to preserve my pinion angle.

I'm not having any problems in the rear. But I'd still appreciate recommendations for those as well. I'd like to check those as well and make sure they're all set correctly.

Thanks.
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Old 01-11-2014, 10:40 AM   #4
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There's a write up somewhere on here that discusses setting the arms lengths. Don't recall the specifics.

I agree a good start would be to shorten enough to get rid of the rubbing while you figure out the rest.
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Old 01-11-2014, 10:41 AM   #5
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Due to factory variations in control arm mounting locations, there is no set length and each jeep is different. The important thing for lower length is that your bumpstops align and axle is square to body. The uppers are to set the pinion angle.

I have a 2-1/2" MC lift and I can measure them if you want but I don't think it will really help you. Let me know.
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Old 01-11-2014, 11:01 AM   #6
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I have a 3" lift and my lower front TF controls arms matches yours exactly. 23 1/2 on the passenger side and 23 1/4 on the drivers. Maybe your uppers are more the problem? Here is the space I have between the springs and swaybar links.

I should mention that I have the Artec armor kit so the links are relocated slightly. The links were moved up but not anymore forward than the stock location.
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Old 01-11-2014, 11:07 AM   #7
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Yeah that's a whole lot of space. Is yours a 2dr?

I called the shop that did the install and they said to bring it by this afternoon. I'm going to have them check the alignment and readjust everything. If that doesn't work, then I'll do some further research and go from there.
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Old 01-11-2014, 11:11 AM   #8
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Mine is a 4 door. I talked with TF when I installed my control arms and they recommended the same length as a starting point for a 2.5 lift and a 3" lift.
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Old 01-11-2014, 11:16 AM   #9
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Yeah, I shot an email to Teraflex last night. I haven't heard anything back from them yet. I'm assuming that there's a difference in the 2dr and 4dr lengths and that would explain why you have more space between the spring and sway bar than I do. I could be wrong though. I've never measured control arms on a 4dr.
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Old 01-11-2014, 11:22 AM   #10
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I found the install instruction that came with the arms. Hopefully this helps.
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Old 01-11-2014, 11:28 AM   #11
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That's awesome. Thank you. Although I do wonder why they didn't give measurements for a 2dr with a 4" lift. odd.
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Old 01-11-2014, 11:35 AM   #12
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I thought that was strange also

I am not sure if TF is open on Saturday especially right now since they are building a new facility.
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Old 01-11-2014, 01:15 PM   #13
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As I look at that instruction sheet more and more, it raises another question in my head. If they "highly recommend" using the factory front upper, and rear lower control arms on a 2dr with 3" lift, why do they even sell the 3" kit with all 8 flexarms? I've measured my front uppers and they're sitting at 19 1/2" eye to eye, with only about enough room to bring them down to 19" even. If the factory spec is 18 3/4", then I can't get the teraflex uppers that short. Maybe I just need to pick up the 4" springs and figure out what the correct measurements will be for that.
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Old 01-11-2014, 02:03 PM   #14
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Let us know what the shop says
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Old 01-11-2014, 04:33 PM   #15
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Took it in and all they did was shorten up the passenger front lower control arm to make it the same as the driver side. To be fair, I still have a Teraflex rear trackbar that's on backorder. They said they plan on doing a full alignment once that comes in and will do a complete adjustment of all the control arms at that time. We'll see.
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Old 01-11-2014, 05:38 PM   #16
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It will be interesting to hear what the end result is so keep us updated.
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Old 01-11-2014, 05:42 PM   #17
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will do.
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Old 01-11-2014, 06:08 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 14Sport View Post
Due to factory variations in control arm mounting locations, there is no set length and each jeep is different. The important thing for lower length is that your bumpstops align and axle is square to body. The uppers are to set the pinion angle. I have a 2-1/2" MC lift and I can measure them if you want but I don't think it will really help you. Let me know.
This ^
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Old 01-11-2014, 06:11 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Matthew_JK View Post
As I look at that instruction sheet more and more, it raises another question in my head. If they "highly recommend" using the factory front upper, and rear lower control arms on a 2dr with 3" lift, why do they even sell the 3" kit with all 8 flexarms? I've measured my front uppers and they're sitting at 19 1/2" eye to eye, with only about enough room to bring them down to 19" even. If the factory spec is 18 3/4", then I can't get the teraflex uppers that short. Maybe I just need to pick up the 4" springs and figure out what the correct measurements will be for that.

RK sells a 1.5 with all 8 Having all 8 let's you fine tune and center the tires in the wells. Lowers set wheelbase and uppers set pinion and caster angle. There are two thoughts on setting the lowers different lengths. Don't get longer coils. What is your caster angle up front and pinion in the rear ?

Sometimes manufactures will offer different size arms. I always thought the TF uppers adjusted less then stock.
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Old 01-11-2014, 08:05 PM   #20
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Honestly, I'm not sure what the current caster and pinion angles are. I didn't get a printout of the alignment specs when the suspension was installed. They claim to have set the control arm lengths to teraflex's recommended specs. So, I'm starting to feel like that's all they did and called it a day. I don't have the tools and gauges I would need to check those angles myself, which is something I should probably look into.

As of right now. The shop still owes me a rear trackbar and a final alignment since the suspension seems to have settled a bit, after driving it for a few weeks. I'll give them a shot at redemption, since it's not rubbing right now and it's already paid for. I plan on asking them for all those angles and what they have the control arms set at, at that time. I figure if I know all those specs, I should have a good starting point if I need to pick up some gauges and make some adjustments myself.

I'm sure there will be some reading and learning involved. But that's half the fun, I think.
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Old 01-11-2014, 08:18 PM   #21
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Please find a shop that's competent or do it yourself.
At least once a week I get a PM where a shop jacked install.
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Old 01-11-2014, 11:37 PM   #22
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Interesting that the driver side and pass side are two different lengths.
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Old 01-12-2014, 12:06 AM   #23
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Quote:
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Interesting that the driver side and pass side are two different lengths.
I don't know why this is. I understand the road crown theory but 1/4 is way too much. How would you force 1/4" on a solid axle ?

Anyways ... There already seems to be cross caster built into the axle. I've never seen dead even caster side to side on a Jk with stock arms.
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Old 01-12-2014, 08:19 AM   #24
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You can check front end alignment with a iphone and tape measure to get very close, there is a good write up on project-jk. Check pinion angle off front flange on carrier and caster on top of knuckle. My front lowers are 23 1/2, uppers 19 1/2. Caster is between 4 and 4.5 and pinion is between 1.5 to 2.

The front springs sit in notches in the axle. Driver is in the back side, passenger is in front. This effects the way they sit/bow. You may have to reseat that spring and can use a rubber mallet to help; just take the weight off that wheel.

Mine is closer to the sway bar link on the passenger side so last week at the local Texas JK meet up I checked all the rigs. There were many that touched on the passenger side, all kinds of different brands. All the driver sides looked good, so I think the spring seat is a quirk we have to work around.
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Old 01-12-2014, 10:33 AM   #25
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I don't know why this is. I understand the road crown theory but 1/4 is way too much. How would you force 1/4" on a solid axle ? Anyways ... There already seems to be cross caster built into the axle. I've never seen dead even caster side to side on a Jk with stock arms.
You are right. The measurements I gave yesterday were wrong since there is only an 1/8 difference side to side.

Here are the actual numbers

4 door with 3" lift and 35's

TF front lower control arms
23 1/2 on the passenger side
23 3/8 on the driver side
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Old 01-12-2014, 10:36 AM   #26
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Harbor freight sells a magnetic angle tool that works great and cost less than $10.
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Old 01-14-2014, 05:32 AM   #27
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You are right. The measurements I gave yesterday were wrong since there is only an 1/8 difference side to side. Here are the actual numbers 4 door with 3" lift and 35's TF front lower control arms 23 1/2 on the passenger side 23 3/8 on the driver side
That looks better

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