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Old 04-18-2013, 04:29 PM   #1
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Metalcloak 3.5" lift - first impressions

During my research for a better balance between up and down travel, I took a closer look at Metalcloak's 3.5" springs. What really caught my attention was the unsprung length, because after I out boarded my rear with Bilstein 14" travel shocks, I had a problem dropping my rear springs on the trail.

For a little bit background, I started off with an OME 2.5" kit, then later out boarded the rear and installed a .75" spacer in the front and a 1.25" spacer in the back. At the time, I was going for low center of gravity, but quickly realized that I lacked ground clearance and the necessary up travel navigate trails in my area. I frequently bottomed out the suspension, was thrown off camber due to a lack of uptrave and drug everything under the Jeep across rocks trying to keep up with my friends with "bigger" builds than I have.

From a numbers standpoint, the OME system provided the following statistics:
Rocker rail height - 23" front / 25" rear
Frame - 20"
TC pan - 18.5"
Front travel - 3.5" up / 6.5" down
Rear travel - 4.5" up / 3.5" down (weight limited)
Bump stop - 3.5" front / 4" rear

With the Metalcloak 3.5" of shock, I was expecting to have about the same ride height in the back with about 3/4" more in the front. The system probably has not fully settled yet, but I am very happy with the results. Keep in mind, I have a very light Jeep; e.g., suspension seat, no rear bench, extensive use of aluminum, etc.

Rocker rail height - 24.5" front / 25.25" rear
Frame - 21.25"
TC pan - 20"
Front travel - 5.5" up / 4.5" down (shock limited)
Rear travel - 6" up / 8" down
Bump stop - 2.75" front / 3.5" rear

Needless to say, I am pleased with these results. Two more inches of up travel in the front and an inch and a half more in the rear with substantially more useable down travel as well. As I mentioned in the beginning, the unsprung length caught my eye, as the Metalcloak springs offer 22.5" open fronts and a whopping 19" in the rear. This is compared to the 19.5" fronts and 11.25" rear OME's.

I was able to go for a quick ride last night after setting up my caster and pinion and did not notice much difference in the ride quality, but after a quick test stretch in my driveway, I can tell that I have a lot more useable stretch with these coils.

My next two weekends are already booked, so I will not have a chance to test them out on the trails until the first week in May, but I will be sure to provide an update.





The OME's were at full bump here prior to the swap.




You can see that the shock is limiting my front down travel and have lots of down travel to go when I get around to upgrading shocks. To put it into perspective, I was able to spin my front OME spring in this same spot.



Here is a full stuff picture in the garage when I was setting up the bump stops


Lot's of down travel to go in the rear as well. I was able to easily remove my OME rear springs in this position.



Still have a lot of rear up travel left as well.
20130418_143431_zps08005066.jpg Photo by john_sblendorio | Photobucket

To Will and Matson, thank you for answering all of my questions.

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Old 04-18-2013, 04:45 PM   #2
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May not relate to the post, but holy s**t your Jeep is beautiful
Love the metalcloaks, sweet how their color matched, and the rigid industries light bar really compliments the Jeep
You sir have a sexy Jeep

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Old 04-18-2013, 10:02 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by SteelBlue44 View Post
May not relate to the post, but holy s**t your Jeep is beautiful
Love the metalcloaks, sweet how their color matched, and the rigid industries light bar really compliments the Jeep
You sir have a sexy Jeep
Thank you. Now I have to work on the business end. I have a custom mid arm planned in the near future.
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Old 04-18-2013, 10:31 PM   #4
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WOW, I absolutely love this Jeep... Damn
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Old 04-25-2013, 02:02 PM   #5
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So how do you like Metalcloaks springs overall? How do they compare to the top notch springs such as OME and Currie? Hmmm im stuck between deciding for my next suspension. I want to run 35s, and have arched metalcloak fenders as well. I dont want my Jeep to sit too high with a 4" currie lift, and a 1" BL.
This post really got me thinking about these springs, they seem pretty legit.
Do you have a shot of your Jeep at ride height. i figure mine would sit about the same, just adding a 1" BL.
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Old 04-25-2013, 02:35 PM   #6
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Nice rig, what shock are you running ?
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Old 04-26-2013, 11:45 AM   #7
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If you overland or carry a lot of weight, you may want to consider OME, because they offer many different spring rates for a TJ. I haven't had a chance to wheel since changing from my OME's, but I'm sure the MC's will outperform the OME's because I have a lot more up travel and usable down travel. The ride quality is about the same. I originally had OME shocks and switched to Bilsteins before the spring change and there wasn't any noticeable ride quality difference with any of the combinations, but everyone's setup and goals are different. My rig is super light and I want max travel. I have short body 7100's on the way, along with a body lift and intent on relocating my front upper shock mounts. If all goes as planned, I will be close to 7" up/down in the front and rear.
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Old 04-26-2013, 12:18 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by DANGItsVictor View Post
WOW, I absolutely love this Jeep... Damn

I second that!
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Old 04-26-2013, 02:18 PM   #9
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This makes me wish I would have went with MC springs instead of Currie
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Old 04-26-2013, 04:06 PM   #10
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Love the color! Is that spray bed liner? If you want to improve your ride quality, check out their Duroflex joints.
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Old 04-27-2013, 11:20 AM   #11
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Yes, it's a metallic tan spray-in from bedliner.com. I have Duroflex joints ordered for a custom mid arm system that I am building this spring.
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Old 05-26-2013, 12:20 PM   #12
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I have Duroflex joints ordered for a custom mid arm system that I am building this spring.
Please excuse my ignorance, but what exactly is a "mid arm system"?? Just wondering because I follow your threads pretty closely and have never heard of this before. Sorry
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Old 05-26-2013, 01:31 PM   #13
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Please excuse my ignorance, but what exactly is a "mid arm system"?? Just wondering because I follow your threads pretty closely and have never heard of this before. Sorry
A mid arm is some where between a short arm and long arm set up. You couldn't get any more general with the terms though, it's all extremely relative.
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Old 05-26-2013, 01:56 PM   #14
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But MetalCloaks 3.5" is a short arm. If you were going to go through the trouble to weld new arm mounts why would you restrict yourself to an inbetween length?

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