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asouza 10-26-2012 11:42 AM

99 TJ riding very stiff
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Could use some advice on how to soften my ride. Just bought a 99 Sport TJ. Dana 44's front and rear. Rubicon 4.5 short arm lift. Aggressive 35" Goodyear MT/R. Heavy Front & Rear bumpers with full Spare adding weight. I've owned a stock 97 TJ for 15 years and was a joy to ride on and off road..before it was stolen. The replacement is painful, both on and off. I probably ride 80% highway & 20 Trail, so I want it as comfortable for the road as possible. Tires are inflated to 28lbs. I've detached the front sway bar which has helped a lot. I've been told by a friend that softer tires will help, maybe new shocks. Another guy has told me that I need to research my spring rates as the single best way to soften the ride. I'm sure it's a combination of all, but I have a very limited budget and can't afford to attack all combinations as blind trouble shooting. Looking for the one or two things that will make the biggest impact, and anyone that can help educate me on springs would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

Jerry Bransford 10-26-2012 11:50 AM

Two things cause a TJ to ride too stiffly... the wrong shocks and/or excessive tire pressure. First, 28 psi is a tad excessive, 24-26 psi is more appropriate for that size of tire in a Load Range C. If it's a Load Range D or E, both of which have much stiffer constructions than is required to support a vehicle with the weight of a Wrangler, it may require even less pressure.

What shocks are installed? Some shocks are just the wrong choice for a Wrangler. Some of the shocks that are often installed that are simply too stiff for a Wrangler include the Rancho R5000, ProComp ES3000, and Skyjacker Nitro.

asouza 10-26-2012 12:08 PM

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Jerry, Thanks. Not sure what shocks they are but here's a picture if it helps. I was told they were Rubicon. Aside from which shocks are not great for the Wrangler, do you have recommendations for good ones?

Slater451 10-26-2012 12:12 PM

I may be wrong but it looks to me that the shock is upside down. That would side and incredible stiff ride

Jerry Bransford 10-26-2012 12:12 PM

That looks like RE's twin-tube which I meant to include in the above list of shocks that ride too stiffly. OME Nitrocharger, Bilstein 5100 (the version specially valved for the Wrangler), and the Rancho R9000xl are good riding better quality shocks, the Skyjacker Hydro is a better riding lower cost shock.

Jeep_guy3 10-26-2012 12:14 PM

A lot of guys run either the rancho rs9000 or the bilstein 5100. I've heard old man emu makes a really good shock too.

Personally I went with bilsteins, they improved my ride by 100%. I don't have experience with any of the others but I do know the rancho 9000s are fully adjustable...

Jerry Bransford 10-26-2012 12:15 PM


Originally Posted by Slater451 (Post 2928743)
I may be wrong but it looks to me that the shock is upside down. That would side and incredible stiff ride

Some shocks perform well either direction, many of mine were like that. The shock in that pic was designed to mounted in that direction due to the fact its stem-end is at the top which is the only way it could have been mounted in his TJ. In the front, the shock needs a stem-end at the top and a bar-pin at the bottom.

Dextreme 10-26-2012 12:48 PM

Nice TJ... it definitely worthy of some Bilstein 5100, OME, or RS9000xl as mentioned!!!!

asouza 10-26-2012 01:04 PM

Thanks all.

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