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Old 11-06-2010, 09:14 PM   #1
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3" lift - Can 2" bump stops be avoided?

I've been looking into getting a 3" BDS lift and have been reading up on track bars and bump stops. From what I've read if you stick with the stock track bar (may need to move it a little), rubbing on the front diff can be avoided entirely for a lift of this height. However the question remains of whether or not the shocks will bottom out. I don't understand why you'd want to purposely limit the up travel of a 3" lift down by 2", could careful selection of different shocks from this BDS kit eliminate this issue?

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Old 11-06-2010, 10:53 PM   #2
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This is a good article on the subject:
tj front adjustable track bars for 0-3.5", does yours hit or fit? - JeepForum.com

Theres two basic problems here:
1. Shocks - In front, anything over 13.5" collapsed length shocks will require bumpstop extensions. So 15.5" would require 2" bumpstop extensions. 14.5" would require 1" extensions. If you don't the shocks will bottom out.

2. Track bar vs diff cover - Every aftermarket track bar will hit the diff cover. The best clearance version is the Currie TJS or TJJ. They will clear with 2" bumpstop extensions, but you can make 1.5" work with stock length lowers (15.75") and you don't mind rubbing paint off. The track bar will hit the stock diff cover, but just barely...only enough to rub the paint off. Every aftermarket diff cover would require more bumptop extensions - except the Barnett. The greatest clearance diff cover is the stock one, or the Barnett (Currie sells it).

I run 1-3/8" bumpstop, with a custom track bar & a SOLID diff cover. I have roughly 5" of uptravel. Anyway, it clears with some work. I had to grind half the face off the SOLID, and weld it closed with a piece of plate. You can see the rub mark directly in front of the diff cover on the tie-rod where the track bar hits it....just enough to rub paint. Notice this is a V8 ZJ tie-rod, so it actually sits offset lower than stock. Any less bumpstop, or with a straight tie-rod and I'd bend stuff.



Also keep in mind, without a 1" BL, you will need 2" bumpstop extensions to clear 33s. With a 1" BL you can do 1" bumpstop extensions...so you can gain some uptravel there. What you really need to know is the collapsed length of the BDS front and rear shocks. Bumpstop accordingly and go from there.

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Old 11-07-2010, 01:25 AM   #3
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^ Well said.
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Old 11-07-2010, 08:14 AM   #4
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its also worth noting the only way you'll know if the clearances work is to pull the springs out and set the spring pad on the bumpstop cup. thats full suspension compression - both bumpstops bottoming out - testing flex doesn't help. anyone that says they don't have any problems with XX track bar and YY lift, and doesn't need any bumpstops is plain wrong.

here's my Jeep flexed out. looks awesome right?

^That drivers side tire is nowhere close to stuffed, and the track bar is resting on the diff cover, with 1/2 the weight of the vehicle on it...not cool.

here's my old JKS track bar hitting the Riddler diff cover with a loss of ~3" of uptravel right there.


^^Needed 3" bumpstops to avoid this.

when someone says their junk clears "fine" or they have "no problems"...have them show you a picture of the Jeep sitting on the bumpstops.

here's an example:


notice there is no springs, and the bumpstop cup is still 2" off the bumpstop pad, but the track bar mount is hitting the diff cover in the background. if you don't check the clearances with no springs, you simply won't know if your setup works or not.

So what about using the stock TB?
Aside from your axle being off center, the negative about using the stock TB is three fold:
1. redrilling the mount isn't a very good idea...its not too strong. you'd want to weld some reinforcement to the bracket.
2. the track bar is pretty much straight at the axle end, that means it can bind on the bracket...which can cause bad things to happen.
3. with most lift shocks, the frame end will bind long before full droop is reached.

But, all of the above on the stock track bar can be resolved with a shop press. the stock track bar is solid, so you can bend the bar to clear the bracket and keep the frame side alignment. then hack it in half along the straight long center section, sleeve it, center the axle, and weld it.
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Old 11-07-2010, 09:10 PM   #5
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Thanks for that information. I actually started this thread because of that thread you linked to haha. I'll need to find the time and read all 40 something pages. The BDS shocks are 14.81/14.67 collapsed and 24.9/22.95 extended (front/rear respetively). I'm assuming that will put me a little over 1" just so the shocks don't bottom out. The sway bar and tire fiasco will be another thing. I pose the question now, should I just go and get a lift and figure out bump stops later as you showed above or go for 2" to start and work from there? I have a ton more reading to do to and I've seen threads about relocating the shocks to gain more uptravel and reduce bump stop lengths.
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Old 11-07-2010, 10:15 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MikalCarbine View Post
Thanks for that information. I actually started this thread because of that thread you linked to haha. I'll need to find the time and read all 40 something pages. The BDS shocks are 14.81/14.67 collapsed and 24.9/22.95 extended (front/rear respetively). I'm assuming that will put me a little over 1" just so the shocks don't bottom out. The sway bar and tire fiasco will be another thing. I pose the question now, should I just go and get a lift and figure out bump stops later as you showed above or go for 2" to start and work from there? I have a ton more reading to do to and I've seen threads about relocating the shocks to gain more uptravel and reduce bump stop lengths.
You'll need 1.5" for the front based on those shocks alone. Rears usually end up being 1" more than the front...generally speaking.

I'd suggest buying the lift and a set of Rubicon Express 2" front and rear bumpstop extensions. Then test your suspension like I showed. You can use a vice and a hacksaw to cut them down to whatever you need. Another cheap bumpstop option is the Performance Accessories BL pucks...you can get them in 1", 2" and 3"...put a fat fender washer over the top and you're set.
Performance Accessories 1" BIG BLOCK?
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Old 11-08-2010, 04:07 PM   #7
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I've been looking into shock relocation brackets. I still have more research to do but Nth Degree, Currie (hear these don't gain uptravel really) and some others come to mind. I am also interested in outboarding my shocks if I can find someone local who I can trust and knows how to weld. Seems like a sweet setup for a LCG rig

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