Poor handling after fitting lift - Jeep Wrangler Forum
Jeep Wrangler Forum

Go Back   Jeep Wrangler Forum > TJ Jeep Wrangler Forum > TJ General Discussion Forum

Join Wrangler Forum Today


Reply
 
Thread Tools

Please support our sponsors and let them know you heard about them on WranglerForum.com
Old 09-30-2013, 12:06 AM   #1
Jeeper
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Whitby, Wellington, NZ
Posts: 70
Poor handling after fitting lift

I have fitted MC 3.5" lift which is more like 4" as my TJ has no extra add ons. Having fitted the lift the handling is wild, it feels like I have rear wheel steering. Is this normal and you just learn to live with it or have I done something very wrong?

NZ-Freebird is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 09-30-2013, 01:24 AM   #2
Jeeper
 
OhSixTJ's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 1,074
Quote:
Originally Posted by NZ-Freebird View Post
I have fitted MC 3.5" lift which is more like 4" as my TJ has no extra add ons. Having fitted the lift the handling is wild, it feels like I have rear wheel steering. Is this normal and you just learn to live with it or have I done something very wrong?
Your alignment is off now. That should be next on your list of things to do. There's a do-it-yourself write-up on here somewhere.

OhSixTJ is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 09-30-2013, 05:37 AM   #3
Jeeper
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 786
I have a 2"BB AND 1.25"BL. With just that little bit my toe in was off by an inch. It is amazing how much that will change the handling and th issues it will create.

Unless your lift included adjustable control arms all that can be adjusted is the toe-in. So long as you have a jack, jack stands, a socket set, and a small pipe wrench. You can do it in your driveway in 10-20 min. You will also need a bit of angle (preferably aluminum) and a couple clamps.

There are numerous write-ups on here so I won't replicate them here. Search for them or send me a pm and I'll run you through the process.
Iceman is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 09-30-2013, 06:01 AM   #4
Jeeper
 
HSL 4X4's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: Jacksonville FL
Posts: 228
I had the same issue and after adjusting the toe in problem things were back to normal. You definitely want to align your tires so you don't mess up your tires
HSL 4X4 is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 09-30-2013, 06:33 AM   #5
Jeeper
 
Gold Miner's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: way up thar
Posts: 488
This method of alignment works well for me and is easy:
Basic Jeep Front End Alignment
__________________
'01 Sahara, Original Owner
BDS, OME, Metalcloak,
JKS Disco, Rough Trail, Kargo Master,.... bla bla bla, never done
Ghost Creek Mine, Owner ... Mitchell/Yooper Placer Mine, Owner
Only thing we have to fear is, fear itself....................................... and bears
Gold Miner is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 09-30-2013, 07:25 AM   #6
Jeeper
 
UnlimitedLJ04's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 7,062
in addition to the references of toe listed above, you need to properly set axle position front and rear. That means full bump checks, pinion angle alignment, and caster adjustment. the squirrely driving characteristics are a result of bad caster and toe problems.
__________________
Suggested Tech Readings
UnlimitedLJ04 is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 09-30-2013, 12:32 PM   #7
Jeeper
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Whitby, Wellington, NZ
Posts: 70
Thanks guys, sorry I should have mentioned I have set the toe and castor angles but it still feels like it has active rear wheel steering. I'm not sure what else to do.
NZ-Freebird is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 09-30-2013, 12:49 PM   #8
Jeeper
 
PStov98TJ's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Long Beach, Mississippi
Posts: 2,008
Have you gotten under there and looked for broken brackets or bolts that have fallen out?
__________________
OME suspension, some JKS stuff, 33x12.50 Goodyear MTR's w/Kevlar, 15x8 Pacer wheels, thedirtworx rear tire carrier
PStov98TJ is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 09-30-2013, 01:10 PM   #9
Jeeper
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Whitby, Wellington, NZ
Posts: 70
Yes everything looks in good shape could it be that I don't have enough weight on it ?

I don't have any add-on big bumpers winch etc
NZ-Freebird is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 09-30-2013, 01:38 PM   #10
Jeeper
 
PStov98TJ's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Long Beach, Mississippi
Posts: 2,008
What exactly came with the lift you bought?
__________________
OME suspension, some JKS stuff, 33x12.50 Goodyear MTR's w/Kevlar, 15x8 Pacer wheels, thedirtworx rear tire carrier
PStov98TJ is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 09-30-2013, 01:40 PM   #11
Jeeper
 
UnlimitedLJ04's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 7,062
Quote:
Originally Posted by NZ-Freebird View Post
Thanks guys, sorry I should have mentioned I have set the toe and castor angles but it still feels like it has active rear wheel steering. I'm not sure what else to do.
set them to what and how?
__________________
Suggested Tech Readings
UnlimitedLJ04 is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 09-30-2013, 01:49 PM   #12
Jeeper
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Whitby, Wellington, NZ
Posts: 70
It's a full MC 3.5" lift which is more like 4" due to the lack of extras and no back seat, 1/16" toe-in and 5.5 deg castor I have also dropped the front and rear track bars by 2.5" along with a dropped pitman arm.
NZ-Freebird is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 09-30-2013, 01:55 PM   #13
Jeeper
 
UnlimitedLJ04's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 7,062
Quote:
Originally Posted by NZ-Freebird View Post
It's a full MC 3.5" lift which is more like 4" due to the lack of extras and no back seat, 1/16" toe-in and 5.5 deg castor I have also dropped the front and rear track bars by 2.5" along with a dropped pitman arm.
How exactly did you measure caster?

and how exactly did you drop the track bars...and more importantly, why?! post pics.

it's guaranteed the dropped pitman arm and track bar mounts are the biggest contributor to problems here.
__________________
Suggested Tech Readings
UnlimitedLJ04 is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 09-30-2013, 02:05 PM   #14
Jeeper
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Whitby, Wellington, NZ
Posts: 70
Quote:
Originally Posted by UnlimitedLJ04 View Post
How exactly did you measure caster?

and how exactly did you drop the track bars...and more importantly, why?! post pics.

it's guaranteed the dropped pitman arm and track bar mounts are the biggest contributor to problems here.
Thanks fo the help I'm away from home for a few days but I'll post when I get back. The rear is a drop bracket by OME and the front is a well braced bracket from an Australian company. As for why, due to the angle of the track bars the axles were moving sideway every time the suspension moved. I think it is slightly better with the trak bars dropped than it was before but its still pretty bad.
NZ-Freebird is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 09-30-2013, 02:11 PM   #15
NJO
Jeeper
 
NJO's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 1,388
Quote:
Originally Posted by NZ-Freebird View Post
Thanks fo the help I'm away from home for a few days but I'll post when I get back. The rear is a drop bracket by OME and the front is a well braced bracket from an Australian company. As for why, due to the angle of the track bars the axles were moving sideway every time the suspension moved. I think it is slightly better with the trak bars dropped than it was before but its still pretty bad.
So your using a stock REAR trackbar with an OME TB relocation bracket correct? That TB relocation bracket is designed for about 2-2.5" of lift. But at 4" its probably not going to be as effective. If your using MC's rear TB with no relocation bracket that rear "bumpsteer" you feel would be even worse.

Also you did check your thrust angles correct? Or at least measured the F to R wheelbase from hub to hub?
NJO is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 09-30-2013, 02:37 PM   #16
Jeeper
 
PStov98TJ's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Long Beach, Mississippi
Posts: 2,008
What is included in a "full MC kit"? Not trying to challenge you but do you know what came in the kit? It would help if you posted a link to which one you bought. They have many sets of parts that range widely in what's included, from just springs and shocks to the full on suspension overhaul with 8 CA's, 2 trackbars, sway bar links, etc.

And definitely post up some pics. The trackbars shouldn't have been dropped at all. If anything you want to raise the mounting points in the rear and keep the angle of front track bar as close as possible to the angle of the drag link.
__________________
OME suspension, some JKS stuff, 33x12.50 Goodyear MTR's w/Kevlar, 15x8 Pacer wheels, thedirtworx rear tire carrier
PStov98TJ is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 09-30-2013, 02:40 PM   #17
Jeeper
 
UnlimitedLJ04's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 7,062
Quote:
Originally Posted by NZ-Freebird View Post
Thanks fo the help I'm away from home for a few days but I'll post when I get back. The rear is a drop bracket by OME and the front is a well braced bracket from an Australian company. As for why, due to the angle of the track bars the axles were moving sideway every time the suspension moved. I think it is slightly better with the trak bars dropped than it was before but its still pretty bad.
in front, you do NOT want to drop the track bar...ever. you also don't want to use a drop pitman arm. none of that is necessary, it's not advised, and is most assuredly a big part of your steering problems. you use an adjustable front track bar to center the axle, and keep the stock pitman arm.

in the rear, the OME bracket is designed for ~2.5" of lift. it's also straight, so it can't be used with a CV driveshaft, which you should have installed with 4" of lift. what you need is the CV type bracket, with the CV driveshaft, an adjustable rear track bar and to properly set the axle position.

you also need to push both front and rear axles to full bump...that means removing the springs and jounce bumper. you do this to determine the proper amount of bumpstop extension to avoid major clearance issues, shock damage or body damage.
__________________
Suggested Tech Readings
UnlimitedLJ04 is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 10-06-2013, 01:52 PM   #18
Jeeper
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Whitby, Wellington, NZ
Posts: 70
Quote:
Originally Posted by UnlimitedLJ04 View Post
in front, you do NOT want to drop the track bar...ever. you also don't want to use a drop pitman arm. none of that is necessary, it's not advised, and is most assuredly a big part of your steering problems. you use an adjustable front track bar to center the axle, and keep the stock pitman arm.

in the rear, the OME bracket is designed for ~2.5" of lift. it's also straight, so it can't be used with a CV driveshaft, which you should have installed with 4" of lift. what you need is the CV type bracket, with the CV driveshaft, an adjustable rear track bar and to properly set the axle position.

you also need to push both front and rear axles to full bump...that means removing the springs and jounce bumper. you do this to determine the proper amount of bumpstop extension to avoid major clearance issues, shock damage or body damage.
Thanks UnlimitedLJ04 I have read this advice a few times now but can't get my head around it, how can returning the track bar to a more horizontal position be a bad thing. Iím pretty sure it has improved the handling but Iím still not happy and what I think Iím getting now is when I turn the suspension on the outside of the turn compresses and the suspension on the inside of the turn extends. This then effectively lengthens the wheel base on the outside and shortens it on the inside causing the axles to steer a bit like a skateboard but the opposite way round. Any thoughts on this theory?
NZ-Freebird is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 10-06-2013, 03:31 PM   #19
AOR
Sponsoring Vendor

WF Supporting Member
 
AOR's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Mount Aukum, CA - El Dorado County about 55 mins from the Rubicon Trail
Posts: 2,293
Quote:
Originally Posted by NZ-Freebird View Post
Thanks UnlimitedLJ04 I have read this advice a few times now but can't get my head around it, how can returning the track bar to a more horizontal position be a bad thing. I’m pretty sure it has improved the handling but I’m still not happy and what I think I’m getting now is when I turn the suspension on the outside of the turn compresses and the suspension on the inside of the turn extends. This then effectively lengthens the wheel base on the outside and shortens it on the inside causing the axles to steer a bit like a skateboard but the opposite way round. Any thoughts on this theory?
The control arms will locate the axles and your wheelbase should not be lengthening or shortening at all. EDIT: I see your point. However, this is a normal vehicle thing, is it not? Every vehicle does this. I do not think this has anything to do with your issue.
__________________
Allen's Offroad - 530-620-1100
Email me at: sales@allensoffroad.com



Be careful what you wish for. It will come true!
Never miss a good chance to shut up! - Will Rogers
AOR is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 10-06-2013, 03:43 PM   #20
Jeeper
 
UnlimitedLJ04's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 7,062
Quote:
Originally Posted by NZ-Freebird View Post
Thanks UnlimitedLJ04 I have read this advice a few times now but can't get my head around it, how can returning the track bar to a more horizontal position be a bad thing.
drop brackets frequently hit the tie-rod without craploads of bumpstop extensions. what's better - good steering or a damaged tie-rod? besides, if you understand how steering geometry works, you'll see how you don't want to drop anything anyway.

Quote:
Originally Posted by NZ-Freebird View Post
I’m pretty sure it has improved the handling
no, it introduced a whole new set of problems.

Quote:
Originally Posted by NZ-Freebird View Post
but I’m still not happy and what I think I’m getting now is when I turn the suspension on the outside of the turn compresses and the suspension on the inside of the turn extends. This then effectively lengthens the wheel base on the outside and shortens it on the inside causing the axles to steer a bit like a skateboard but the opposite way round. Any thoughts on this theory? [/FONT][/COLOR]
this makes no sense whatsoever.

again - install a stock pitman arm and a good track bar like a Currie TJS model from Savvy Off-Road.

Then set caster with adjustable front lower control arms. In both front and rear set axle position AT FULL BUMP. Do another alignment. Then re-evaluate. I bet your Jeep drives a whole lot better.
__________________
Suggested Tech Readings
UnlimitedLJ04 is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 10-06-2013, 06:04 PM   #21
Jeeper
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Whitby, Wellington, NZ
Posts: 70
Quote:
Originally Posted by UnlimitedLJ04 View Post
this makes no sense whatsoever.
Really?
When the suspension compresses the control arms move towards the horizontal both front and rear effectively lengthening the wheelbase and like wise when the suspension extends the control arms move towards the vertical effectively shortening the wheelbase. Therefore when a jeep leans due to cornering the outside wheelbase lengthens and the inside wheelbase shortens. Is this not the case?
NZ-Freebird is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 10-06-2013, 06:46 PM   #22
NJO
Jeeper
 
NJO's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 1,388
Quote:
Originally Posted by NZ-Freebird View Post

Really?
When the suspension compresses the control arms move towards the horizontal both front and rear effectively lengthening the wheelbase and like wise when the suspension extends the control arms move towards the vertical effectively shortening the wheelbase. Therefore when a jeep leans due to cornering the outside wheelbase lengthens and the inside wheelbase shortens. Is this not the case?
On the front steering issue.....if you use a drop pitman arm you need to use a dropped track bar bracket of the same amount of drop to keep adverse steering anomalies out. The problem with doing this is that now you can run into major clearance issues on the tj due to all the components being on top of one another.

As for the control arms.....on stock short arms they work best from a design standpoint in terms of wheelbase variances from up/down travel when they are as close to flat/parallel to the ground as they come from the factory stock......which is why i think lifts on SA's should be no more than 2-2.5" . Over that and custom/long arms are a better solution for many reasons including the ones tou mentioned.
NJO is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 10-06-2013, 07:00 PM   #23
Jeeper
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Whitby, Wellington, NZ
Posts: 70
Thanks NJO that is what I have done, dropped pitman arm and dropped track bar bracket, and I believe it has improved things.

I think what might not be helping is that the MC lift is suspose to be 3.5" and its over 4" because I'm not carrying much weight, no back seat no big bumppers no winch etc.
NZ-Freebird is offline   Quote Quick Reply
Old 10-06-2013, 07:15 PM   #24
I like Jeeps...

WF Supporting Member
 
jeepwayoflife's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: California
Posts: 3,025
Quote:
Originally Posted by NZ-Freebird View Post

I think what might not be helping is that the MC lift is suspose to be 3.5" and its over 4" because I'm not carrying much weight, no back seat no big bumppers no winch etc.
What's not helping, as mentioned by unlimited, are the dropped front track bar and extended pitman arm. Get a track bar meant for your lift, get your steering back to stock (for now) or one like Currie, remove the front track bar extension bracket, and do a full alignment.

It doesnt matter how high your jeep is lifted, it should never have the problems you are describing. There's a reason no major companies sell dropped brackets for the front track bar or suggest extended pitman arms for jeeps.

I have stock steering on my jeep with the same control arm joints as you and a 3.5-4" lift and my jeep rides and corners great. Couldn't be happier

__________________
--------------------------------------------------------
jeepwayoflife is online now   Quote Quick Reply
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the Jeep Wrangler Forum forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
User Name:
If you do not want to register, fill this field only and the name will be used as user name for your post.
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Password:
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:

Log-in

Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.



Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off



logo carid shop wrangler parts carid fender flares custom wheels store avs deflectors at carid
» Rates
Get low rates on auto insurance in Canada!

» Network Links
»Jeep Parts
» Featured Product

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 02:50 AM.



Jeepģ, Wrangler, Liberty, Wagoneer, Cherokee, and Grand Cherokee are copyrighted and trademarked to Chrysler Motors LLC.
Wranglerforum.com is not in any way associated with the Chrysler Motors LLC