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Old 05-08-2019, 04:30 PM
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I think I made my choice, but...

Hi, all.


I'm going to post it just so I don't kick myself later...

3.5" X Factor Rock Crawler Fox shocks and NO external resv and W/Fox Stabilizer.. >$2500

vs.

4" Mopar w/ Fox External resv shocks.. and Fox stabilizer $2200

What do you all think? It's going to be one of these, but which?

Thanks,

Jeff B.



Disclaimer: I've decided on the X Factor. Unless, I'm missing something...

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Old 05-08-2019, 07:41 PM   #2
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The RK lift....unless you're gonna run 40's you don't need more than 3.5".....hope you have some fundage set aside for front end parts unless you already did that....what size tires are you going to?

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Old 05-08-2019, 08:08 PM
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Starting the build with 35's. Eventually will graduate to 37's. I'd never go larger than 37's.

It's a hard rock so until I go full time 4wheel drive, most front end parts should be good. I have my eye on an Adams front drive shaft it the stock splits, spits or chucks.
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Old 05-08-2019, 08:26 PM   #4
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I don't know anything about either lift. But, for $2500 I'd be getting a Metalcloak Gamechanger (2.5 or 3.5) lift, 8f it were my scratch.

Good luck in whatever you choose. Can't wait to see it.
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Old 05-08-2019, 08:32 PM   #5
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I think I made my choice, but...

I have the RK X-Factor 3.5Ē and have no complaints or issues. Ran it as a 2.5Ē for two years with 35s, then last October I changed the springs and rear shocks to go to 3.5Ē and 37s. RK is one of the top tier lifts and from experience their CS is excellent.

You probably realize you will need wheel spacers or new wheels for 35s, and exhaust spacer or new front driveshaft. New brake lines and might as well replace the front calipers as well, going to need that with 35s and definitely with 37s. 37s will lead you to a PSC XD steering box or hydro-assist, and a regear. If you are set on 37s I would plan for a new front axle. Hope you have your wallet open for business.
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Old 05-08-2019, 08:55 PM
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I have the RK X-Factor 3.5” and have no complaints or issues. Ran it as a 2.5” for two years with 35s, then last October I changed the springs and rear shocks to go to 3.5” and 37s. RK is one of the top tier lifts and from experience their CS is excellent.

You probably realize you will need wheel spacers or new wheels for 35s, and exhaust spacer or new front driveshaft. New brake lines and might as well replace the front calipers as well, going to need that with 35s and definitely with 37s. 37s will lead you to a PSC XD steering box or hydro-assist, and a regear. If you are set on 37s I would plan for a new front axle. Hope you have your wallet open for business.

Sorry if I didn't make it clear.. The new build is a Hard Rock. Shes got a beefed up front end and big brake added from the factory. Though I did consider something nicer for looks.. I have new shoes coming XD 137's 17". Spacers shouldn't be needed at first and will modify the wells when it is.. Brakelines come with the XFactor kit. In the past ive pulled a steering box out of a larger truck (not jeep) and fit it.. I need to research the JKU to see whats adaptable. 4.88's will escort the new wheels. LOL! I was just asking about the lift. Phase one will be posted with a complete parts list once the order is made (hopefully tomorrow).
BTW- I ran most of this by [email protected] bunch of great guys over there and I think im making a quality decision.
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Old 05-08-2019, 09:43 PM   #7
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I think I made my choice, but...

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Originally Posted by FLEX B View Post
BTW- I ran most of this by [email protected] bunch of great guys over there and I think im making a quality decision.

No worries, my apologies for all the extra info. I donít know anything about the Hard Rock, I was running a PR44 with Teraflex calipers when I had 35s.

Iíve talked with RK several times and they always are helpful and easy to get ahold of. I have been running the X-Factor with Fox Resis for about 4 years and pretty pleased with the setup. Lots of people like the MC stuff, just wasnít on my radar 4 years ago.
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Old 05-08-2019, 11:08 PM   #8
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3.5" RK lift you're going to want 37's. It's going to look funny. Go with a 2.5" spring like Leadnut and swap to 3.5" once you go 37's.
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Old 05-09-2019, 05:19 AM
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Originally Posted by n3tfury View Post
3.5" RK lift you're going to want 37's. It's going to look funny. Go with a 2.5" spring like Leadnut and swap to 3.5" once you go 37's.

I wish someone could give me more of an explanation of why not to go with a 3.5 on this particular rig. Anyone have before and after photos with no lift, 2.5 lift and 3.5 lift (3.5 lift being the most important)?


At the recent Jeep event in SW Florida I was paying close attention to the rigs with 5-6" lifts and running 37's. The ratio would be more exaggerated with that set up and IMO looked amazing. Now some of them were running spacers. However, the Hard Rock runs HD Dana 44's, which run slightly wider from hub to hub. That combined with the proper back spacing... I guess we will see. Please, I'm not a know it all.. if anyone can give me a side by side I would greatly appreciate it..


Thanks, Jeff B.
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Old 05-09-2019, 05:46 AM   #10
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Sorry if I didn't make it clear.. The new build is a Hard Rock. Shes got a beefed up front end and big brake added from the factory. Though I did consider something nicer for looks.. I have new shoes coming XD 137's 17". Spacers shouldn't be needed at first and will modify the wells when it is.. Brakelines come with the XFactor kit. In the past ive pulled a steering box out of a larger truck (not jeep) and fit it.. I need to research the JKU to see whats adaptable. 4.88's will escort the new wheels. LOL! I was just asking about the lift. Phase one will be posted with a complete parts list once the order is made (hopefully tomorrow).
BTW- I ran most of this by [email protected] bunch of great guys over there and I think im making a quality decision.
The hard rock has the same brakes and front end parts as any jk and same front axle as any Rubicon sans the recon edition. I did find RK very helpful until warranty work was needed and then not quite so much. Some have had better luck others not so might just depend on the issue.
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Old 05-09-2019, 05:52 AM   #11
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I think somebody might have fluffed your pillow as to the "hard rock"....the front axle is slightly beefier than a standard older Rubi but all the front end components are the same...so in that aspect "hard rock" counts for nothing....you can put whatever size lift you want but experience shows a 2.5" lift for 35" tires and a 3.5" lift for 37's... they're built like that so your Jeep isn't top heavy and cog is better....that's why they are recommending 2.5 while you're doing 35's then when you wanna jump to 37's you can swap to 3.5 springs for proper clearance and looks....are you going to drag link flip? Are you going to raise the track bar? If you go 37's you'll want c gussets on your axle....you'll need ball joints sooner than later....I like the fact you are picking a lift with adjustable control arms so you can adjust pinion angles....there's more to it than just "I have a hard rock" so I can bolt whatever to it and go.....
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Old 05-09-2019, 06:28 AM   #12
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x3 the hardrock is an cosmetic option package on the rubicon. If you are planning to run 37s, I would skip the 35' and just do the proper build for 37's, no sense in spending money twice.
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Old 05-09-2019, 06:36 AM   #13
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3.5 Rock Crawler is what I would choose.
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Old 05-09-2019, 06:54 AM   #14
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The X factor is a nice lift and you should be happy with your decision. I will suggest you at least take a look at the Metalcloak Gamechanger. I personally have installed them both at my shop on multiple vehicles and though they are both good quality and work very well off road the MC lift is a much better driving lift on road. Their duroflex joint is extremely good at isolating small bumps and square edge impacts just like factory components are designed to where the RK stuff transfers a lot of those jolts into the Jeep and can feel a little harsh. Every time I drive an MC lift I am very impressed by its on road manners even with their standard Rocksport edition. One thing to mention is I live well up into the rust belt here in Mass. The RK powdercoating has not been known to stand up to the winters up here and after just 1 year their control arms have been rusty messes with peeling powdercoating that look 10 years old.

But anyways... my thoughts on a 3.5” lift with 35s is if you have uncut stock fenders and a true 35” tire (not a 315) then it will look great. If you have cut fenders or aftermarket flat fenders then the tire is going to look very small with a lot of open wheelwell. A 37 would be much more desirable at that lift height. This is all subjective of course so to each their own.
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Old 05-09-2019, 08:05 AM   #15
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One thing to mention is I live well up into the rust belt here in Mass. The RK powdercoating has not been known to stand up to the winters up here and after just 1 year their control arms have been rusty messes with peeling powdercoating that look 10 years old.
Is this recent information on the RK powercoating or old information? I did hear that many years back they had an issue with powercoating and switched vendors. Mine has been 100% rust free after 4 years, but I live in Arizona. My guess is that the MA problem also has something to due with all the unknown chemicals the state government puts on the roads for snow.

In any event, if this is a concern, I would call RK and ask them about it. Have you had a conversation with RK about it? I really see a lot of false information on the forums and think in all fairness we should get the RK side of the story.
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Old 05-09-2019, 09:57 AM   #16
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If you are dead set on one of those two lifts I would go with the RK lift. But I would suggest you consider going with the 2.5" version and upgrading to the 3.5" version if you end up running tires that need the extra inch or so. But if you like lots off air between your tires and fenders go with the 3.5" lift. I can't see it from my house.
Also, you might want to consider a lift, either 2.5" or 3.5", from Metal Cloak or AEV. If you do go with the RK lift be sure to keep those joints greased.
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Old 05-09-2019, 10:08 AM   #17
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If you are planning to run 37s, I would skip the 35' and just do the proper build for 37's, no sense in spending money twice.
I wish I had followed that advice when building my JKU! I would have saved lots of time and money. I thought I would be happy with 35's for a while, but within 6 months I moved up to 37's.
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Old 05-09-2019, 10:34 AM
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All good info (sort of)..

You'll have to excuse me, I used the "front end" term loosely. And I should have been more specific when speaking about my JKURHR and the way I bought it as it was ordered from the factory by the previous owner and other variations that can be ordered . For the haters "don't care" is as politically correct as I get... Anyone that thinks the Hard Rock moniker is a cosmetic destination, either doesn't know what it rolls off the floor with (not to mention what can be special ordered) or is a hater (don't care) of something that comes slightly more different/capable (ie. 4:1 ect..) than its stock Rubicon predecessor. I'm a built not bought, keep that yuppie bs for those that don't know the difference. I have a lot to learn about this jeep and jeeps in general, but its not my first rodeo.

That all being said, I appreciate the info.. Some re-work will be necessary when I go from 35 to 37's (wasted money at that time,yes. Now, an immediate lower budget) the major mods for 37's (and off-roading full time are more than I'm willing to do... now.

LOL @ the fluff.. Very accurate statement. Which is exactly what i'm trying to work through.. Some of it is easy to dismiss with previous knowledge, current owners, master techs and spec sheets. Other things are simply turning bolts, breaking down and building back up.. I like a lot of fender space (and this one came with painted fenders which will remain intacted until I go full time 37's). My last jeep (TJ) had a 4" lift and 31 inch tires. I could drive over a 3 foot tallish concrete block without scratching the front bumper (but i scraped the rear coming off the same size block). I'd like this one to be capable of not scraping either end.

The game changer is appropriately named.. it just doesn't fit my design. It's one of those things that i have to pick "left or right". If I do it right i'll have a third option, "Straight ahead". AEV is a fundamentally strong product overall... I didn't consider their lift over RK, but will be using a few of their products for other things that I haven't posted yet. I'll post phase one order today - tomorrow once I get off the phone with J Cruz @ Morris4x4. He da man.

The one comment that did speed bump me is the powder coat peal.. I'm in Florida and shouldn't ever have to deal with that so I can't give it as much value as someone in my home back yard (Northeast). BUT an excellent point.. Leadnut and I don't have to consider the same conditions you obviously do..

Thanks everyone seems like if I stay on track, it might not be everyones favorite, but no ones Achilles heal.. thats what this was about for me.

I appreciate the brotherhood.

Jeff B.
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Old 05-09-2019, 10:47 AM   #19
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All good info (sort of)..

You'll have to excuse me, I used the "front end" term loosely. And I should have been more specific when speaking about my JKURHR and the way I bought it as it was ordered from the factory by the previous owner and other variations that can be ordered . For the haters "don't care" is as politically correct as I get... Anyone that thinks the Hard Rock moniker is a cosmetic destination, either doesn't know what it rolls off the floor with (not to mention what can be special ordered) or is a hater (don't care) of something that comes slightly more different/capable (ie. 4:1 ect..) than its stock Rubicon predecessor. I'm a built not bought, keep that yuppie bs for those that don't know the difference. I have a lot to learn about this jeep and jeeps in general, but its not my first rodeo.

That all being said, I appreciate the info.. Some re-work will be necessary when I go from 35 to 37's (wasted money at that time,yes. Now, an immediate lower budget) the major mods for 37's (and off-roading full time are more than I'm willing to do... now.

LOL @ the fluff.. Very accurate statement. Which is exactly what i'm trying to work through.. Some of it is easy to dismiss with previous knowledge, current owners, master techs and spec sheets. Other things are simply turning bolts, breaking down and building back up.. I like a lot of fender space (and this one came with painted fenders which will remain intacted until I go full time 37's). My last jeep (TJ) had a 4" lift and 31 inch tires. I could drive over a 3 foot tallish concrete block without scratching the front bumper (but i scraped the rear coming off the same size block). I'd like this one to be capable of not scraping either end.

The game changer is appropriately named.. it just doesn't fit my design. It's one of those things that i have to pick "left or right". If I do it right i'll have a third option, "Straight ahead". AEV is a fundamentally strong product overall... I didn't consider their lift over RK, but will be using a few of their products for other things that I haven't posted yet. I'll post phase one order today - tomorrow once I get off the phone with J Cruz @ Morris4x4. He da man.

The one comment that did speed bump me is the powder coat peal.. I'm in Florida and shouldn't ever have to deal with that so I can't give it as much value as someone in my home back yard (Northeast). BUT an excellent point.. Leadnut and I don't have to consider the same conditions you obviously do..

Thanks everyone seems like if I stay on track, it might not be everyones favorite, but no ones Achilles heal.. thats what this was about for me.

I appreciate the brotherhood.

Jeff B.
That is not correct. all Rubicons come from the factory with the same 4.1 t/c and all standard transmissions come with 4.10 gears and all autos can be ordered with 4.10's. The only rubicon version that has a beefed up axle ie the j8 front axle is the recon. I have had 3 RK lifts (1.5.2.5 and 3.5) and never again.
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Old 05-09-2019, 11:06 AM   #20
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As jadmt said, the Hard Rock has the same D44 as the other Rubicons. It could have either 3.73 gears or 4.10 gears unless it is a manual in which case it has 4.10 gears. And it has the same electric locker that the Rubicon had. You could not order from the factory anything more for it as far as the front end.
The Recon did have an upgraded front end, but even that is not really a massive upgrade over the normal D44. The Hard Rock had the same suspension and axles as the Rubicon.
What springs does it have? JK / JKUs have a range of springs depending on what options or what the guy felt like installing on the line. You had no say over this when ordering the Jeep.

The big difference between a Metal Cloak lift and a RK lift is not the premise or design of the lift so much as it is a difference in the springs, shocks, and style of joints used. The MC lifts use what I think is a better joint design in their arms and track bars. I have also heard much better feedback on their springs. And the Fox Shocks are OK but there are much better shocks out there. A Metal Cloak 2.5" lift with TF Falcon 3.2 shocks, that would be a nice combo....
But it is your Jeep.
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Old 05-09-2019, 11:09 AM
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[QUOTE=jadmt;34324415]That is not correct. all Rubicons come from the

Thank you for the education.. I stand corrected. I didn't realize all the rubicons come with that trans-case. I would have mentioned other options like the stock electronic swaybar disconnect (which most don't like). My point is I got more for a used rubicon price.

Sincerely,

Jeff B.
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Old 05-09-2019, 11:13 AM   #22
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@FLEX B , I forgot to mention. Earlier model Jeeps tended to sit lower from the factory, with a different suspension design. Taller lifts were much more common with older Jeeps. The JK / JKU doesn't need as much lift to be as capable or more capable than the older versions.
You can lift one 4" or more, but most don't. You might want to look at lifted JK / JKUs (depending on which you now have) to get an idea of how they look lifted. A 3.5" lift on a JKU is a lot more lift than 3.5" of lift on an older Jeep.
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Old 05-09-2019, 11:24 AM
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[QUOTE=GuzziMoto;34324475] @flex _B, I forgot

@Guzzi - (Disclaimer:until I get under there myself ) I'm told that some rubis have stiffer/higher profile springs and that mine is one of them.. "If I want a 4" look, even if I loose the slightly higher profile, then with a 3.5" it will pop up to a 3.5-4". So when I add the AEV tire swing carrier/spare, stinger and winch on the front with other adds, it will settle back down 3.5"???
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Previous: 2000 TJ *Bish* lost 4k after rollover/ 2001 XJ (parts Jeep and sold it for more then purchased) / 1997 TJ - Sold for more than I had in it /1994 YJ - kept it for 3 months - not my thing - broke even / 1987 XJ - bought it, fixed it and sold for more than I had in it / 1963 CJ - 1st Jeep - sold it for more than I had in it...
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Old 05-09-2019, 11:32 AM   #24
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Iíll tell you tomorrow what the difference is between the X-factor 3.5 and game changer 3.5. Had the X on my 17, installing the GC on my 18


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Old 05-09-2019, 12:03 PM   #25
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[quote=FLEX B;34324495]
Quote:
Originally Posted by GuzziMoto View Post
@flex _B, I forgot

@Guzzi - (Disclaimer:until I get under there myself ) I'm told that some rubis have stiffer/higher profile springs and that mine is one of them.. "If I want a 4" look, even if I loose the slightly higher profile, then with a 3.5" it will pop up to a 3.5-4". So when I add the AEV tire swing carrier/spare, stinger and winch on the front with other adds, it will settle back down 3.5"???
Almost all Jeeps have the same basic range of springs. There are a couple special editions, like the Recon, that run taller springs. But the rest, including the Hard Rock, have one of basically four different spring sets (four for the JK, four for the JKU). Each set is slightly shorter or taller than the others. None are majorly taller than the others. You can read the tag on the springs to see which spring set you have. For a JKU a tall set would be either 18 / 59 or 19 / 60. Mine came with 18 / 59 springs. It is not a Hard Rock, it is a Back Country.
The Rubicon shocks are a little longer than the other shocks, but the difference is minor.
Most lifts will give you more lift than advertised, including lifts from RK and MC. This is because they don't want someone whining about how their 2.5" lift only gave them 2.4" of lift. For the same reason that Jeeps come with a range of springs from the factory any given lift that is a spring lift will give different amounts of lift depending on the original weight of the Jeep. Plus, you have to consider what weight the customer may have added. Therefore, most lift companies are pretty conservative about their advertised lift amounts. Most will under promise and over deliver. Unless you are really heavy, and a HD rear tire carrier, metal front bumper, and winch, aren't really what I would call "really heavy". Start adding skids, rear bumper, roof rack, power side steps, now you are getting heavy.
Anyway, most 3.5" lifts will likely net you closer to 4" of actual lift. Most 2.5" of lift will net you closer to 3" or more of lift and should be plenty for 35" tires. If you want to go to 37's, you should know that 37's are a whole new can of worms and take more money to do right by a large factor. Most of it is in upgrades to the front axle.
And we haven't even opened up the can of worms that is gearing for these bigger tires.
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Old 05-09-2019, 12:37 PM
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[QUOTE=GuzziMoto;34324581][quote=FLEX B;34324495]

You Just answered everyone of my questions..

Part of the complete order is RockSlider power steps (I'm keeping my rails for heavy offroad). I'll eventually go 37's full time, but not until im ready for the complete modification of upgrades. And before its new tires touch the ground it's getting 4.88. I'm making the order now.. Thanks for the helpful advice.

To have a brother, you need to be a brother...

Jeff B.
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Old 05-09-2019, 11:22 PM   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Leadnut View Post
Is this recent information on the RK powercoating or old information? I did hear that many years back they had an issue with powercoating and switched vendors. Mine has been 100% rust free after 4 years, but I live in Arizona. My guess is that the MA problem also has something to due with all the unknown chemicals the state government puts on the roads for snow.

In any event, if this is a concern, I would call RK and ask them about it. Have you had a conversation with RK about it? I really see a lot of false information on the forums and think in all fairness we should get the RK side of the story.

This has been fairly recent. Iíve only installed an RK kit summer of 2016 then a couple in late 2017. All club members of mine. They could have done something since.
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Old 05-09-2019, 11:41 PM   #28
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2014 JKU Willys 6-spd, RK X-Factor 3.5", Fox Resis, KM3 37s, PR60s, Eaton e-lockers, 5.13, Atlas II 3.8, and another $10K in miscellaneous parts.
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Old 05-10-2019, 07:55 AM
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The decision made; I will go to 37's when I'm ready to trim the body in front of the rear wheel, modify the wheel wells(front) and bulk up the "entire" front end and add armor ect... Until then I'll enjoy the birds eye view of my 3.5 adjustable and build-able lift as I look down on the 35's that will evolve into 37's.

First order (multiple vendors):
3.5 X Factor lift kit
4 Fox 2.0 Performance series shocks
1 Fox 2.0 Stabilizer
2 AEV Differential covers
2 PIAA Horns (low freq)
7" USB for IPhone
1 Touch up paint pen (Granite)
XD 137 FMJ Wheels
2 NHL Official hockey pucks
A slew of stainless steal bolts,washers and fluid
4.88 Spicer (US) gears front and back with complete pack(my auto came w/3.73's)
Ceramic tint for front glass

Starting the build next weekend and will immediately make the next order based on what I find while up on the lift.

Thank you everyone for your input.

Jeff B.
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Old 05-11-2019, 02:48 PM
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How did it turn out?

Quote:
Originally Posted by loud0g40oz View Post
Iíll tell you tomorrow what the difference is between the X-factor 3.5 and game changer 3.5. Had the X on my 17, installing the GC on my 18


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Looking forward to the update and some side by sides


Jeff B.
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