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Old 05-02-2008, 09:11 AM   #1
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Long arm kit comparisons

Hey guys, I spoke with Scout the other day about his lift and got some great feedback. I am about to purchase a long arm lift to replace my 4" short arm and I would like to hear from everyone. Any experiences you have had will be helpful. Thanks

I am seriously looking at the RK (Rock Krawler) 5.5" or 7.0" long arm kit. The others I am considering are FT (Full Traction) 6" and possibly the RE (Rubicon Express) 5.5". I am shooting for 36" tires and have several questions about which kit would work best for me. My TJ is not a daily driver but I do use it for on road fun in the summer as well as medium-hardcore off road use.

1. Joints? I'm not very educated on the different joints used in these kits (johnny joints, rubber bushings, rebuildable, greasable). It is important to me that the lift not sweak, rattle and put off noise after a year or so. So what joints are the best?


2. Front arm? I have read about radius arms vs. the other ones. Can anyone explain the difference, pros and cons?

3. Opinions and experience? Anyone have any of these kits? How has it held up? Any problems?

Thanks for sharing your experience and helping me make an informed decision.

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Old 05-02-2008, 10:31 AM   #2
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i plan on getting the RE longarm upgrade.. the one i want with a tri-link rear is $2,200

the upgrade alone without the tri-link rear is 1800 i believe.. its fully bolt on which is a plus..

you pretty much keep your current suspension.. the only thing that doesnt come with the kit is a set up front upper control arms.. which comes with the RE shortarm lift.. im just going to get either a set of jks or rockkrawler ones.. i believe the RE ones are a little pricey.. and i know jks stuff is top notch.. but the rockkrawlers are more in my price range

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Old 05-02-2008, 01:47 PM   #3
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well i thought some of the others would have chimed in by now...anyway there are at least 3 people on this forum running the RK lift that seem to really like it.
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Old 05-02-2008, 01:55 PM   #4
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I have the RK 5.5 xfactor long arm on my daily driver jeep. I wheel every weekend and drive it every day to and from work (its my only vehicle at the moment). Very reliable as a daily driver and it kicks ass in the rocks. I've had it installed since October 07. I use and abuse it pretty good and it drives great on the road still.

The RK can be installed as a bolt in kit... but I'd highly recommend welding it for strength and no worries of stuff loosening. Plus youd want the weld in rear cradle instead of the bolt on cradle anyway.

I can't compare the joints with other kits cuz I've only had the RK. But I've not had any trouble with the joints or the misalignment spacers cracking or breaking or anything like that.

RK doesnt use radius arms. Instead it has two front lower links and just 1 drivers side upper link. THe passanger side doesn't have a front upper link to the axle. With this setup it flexes like you wouldn't believe.

Fuunny story... was wheeling with some friends awhile ago and after a particularly tough obsticle a bunch of people were looking down under my jeep saying I broke off my upper control arm! It was funny to listen as they were telling me the jeep was "broken real bad". But of course it wasn't really broken... there just wasn't an upper passanger front control arm like they were used to seeing.

I saved the picture also attaching a couple other photos showing off the flex. It almost flexes too good sometimes and if you don't limit the flex with special shocks that have internal bump stops or with limiting straps then you'll loose coils. Thats the only "negative" I can think of other than having to pay a shop to install it because of the welding involved.
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Old 05-02-2008, 04:41 PM   #5
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Yeah, I'm runnin RK also and love it. I beat the hell out of it on the regular and it's held up like a champ.

As far as a down side of radius arms. To me it's that you only have 1 attachment point to the frame. Even with RK's front 3 link arms you still have 3 actual attachments at the frame. I also think that Radius arm setup bind up the front end when you are wheelin. I know a lot of people run them, but I've also seen RE arms break from over stress due to what I stated above.

I dig the joints that RK is running now. They are plenty beefy and need no grease. They are also quiet unlike most cartridge joints I've ran including RE's. The RK1 heims or johnny joints are the only other ones I'd run.
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Old 05-04-2008, 07:55 PM   #6
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Great input guys, thanks for sharing. I keep trying to find someone who will say something bad about RK and I can't. I keep leaning toward this lift and will probably go with it. I'll let ya know when I get it going.
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Old 05-05-2008, 12:26 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by branty View Post
Great input guys, thanks for sharing. I keep trying to find someone who will say something bad about RK and I can't. I keep leaning toward this lift and will probably go with it. I'll let ya know when I get it going.
With the current owner and engineering behind their setups no you'll be hard pressed to find negatives about them. Yes there are some threads on Pirate and Jeep Forum from the past that creep up every once in awhile, but those issues are long gone with the previous owners and Jeremy has done everything he can to get all of those old and defective parts off the market place. The boys on Pirate are complaining because they think you should be able to take a suspension system out of the box and install it on a buggy with 42's and have it work just as well as it would on a jeep.

Are there other suspension systems that work well? Yes. TnT is making some nice products and Clayton has always been a good name in well built jeep setups as well. I just dont personally like anything that has a radius arms setup in it. I've ran it and broken more parts because of it than I have with RK's setup and harding wheelin since.
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Old 05-05-2008, 05:10 PM   #8
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Anyone have a full traction long arm system? they say that the system is completely bolt on which would be nice, but can anyone confirm this? i hope it doesn't seem like i am hijacking this thread, i'm just curious
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Old 05-07-2008, 11:35 AM   #9
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Warpman, according to the research I did you are correct, FT does make a completely bolt on system. You can see the write up on 4x4xplor.com. RK has done away with their bolt on rear truss and now only offers the weld in, which I would perfer anyway.

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