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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello all, new to posting in the forums and the joy of being a jeep owner for the past 6 months. About 1 month ago I installed a rancho 2" sport lift on my 4 door. With stock wheels/tires the ride was absolutely incredible- better than factory. However, when I finally got my 33x12.5 Nitto tires (@40 psi) and wheels with 4.5" of backspacing I started having some issues. Describing them to my friend who has been my guide through all of this, he said it was 'flighty' steering as a result of the lift. He recommended a drag link flip kit as the most likely solution. I haven't had any death wobble, turning issues, or issues when hitting bumps, it just feels like I need to constantly be steering and adjusting even on long gentle bends. It usually kicks in on the highway at about 50 mph and I'd say its at its worst on the highway when I get to areas that the road is somewhat 'washboarded'- not in the gravel road sense but when you look into the distance you can see all the slight ups and downs from the years of wear. In researching the problem it seems there are many possibilities and even more possible solutions involving purchasing parts. I'm hoping someone can offer some tips of how to check the various possibilities and narrow it down. In my efforts to be ready for the trails this summer the finances are a bit tight to deal with this problem especially if I don't know 100%.

I had a wheel alignment done when I changed the tires/wheels as well as checked the steering. Only the front driver side wheel needed adjustment. Everything other than the lift and an LOD shorty bumper (~80 lbs if I remember correctly) is still stock as of now. I already plan on loosening the control arms and bouncing the Jeep around before torqueing them. This seemed to be a common recommendation and is also free so will be doing that Saturday. My one question about this would be does it matter if the vehicle is on the ground when I loosen them or do I need to jack it up then lower it after loosening them? Also the one issue I noticed with the drag link flip is that most of the kits required at least a 3" lift or 3" bumpstops... I already have the 2" bumpstops that came with the Rancho kit and there's only 2" of space in the coil- so adding an inch would leave only 1" of space. Is this even ok? I've also noticed that the boots on the front shocks seem to be squished a bit but I'm only comparing this to when freshly installed and assume that some settling is to be expected.
I sadly don't have the measurements in front of me from before and after the kit. It doesn't help to keep all the packing orders and installation instructions for stuff in a binder when you forget it at the office.
And I don't know if it helps or even matters, but I also have a squeaking noise that seems to come from the rear end when going over gentle road imperfections. But once I hit 25 mph it stops, and it does not happen when I hit a real bump. It seems to be more when the suspension is rolls over the road and absorbing the impact gently.

Apologies if this is an abundance of information but I didn't want to leave anything out that could wind up being the key to solving the issue. The only other modifications I was planning that I could imagine may somehow effect any of this would be JKS disconnects, or due to their weight- LOD sliders (weight?) and 3 Evo skids plus the bumper skid. But this is all sitting in my basement still waiting for the time... and tools my dad took to camp with him.
 

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I think you probably narrowed it down when you said that it drove fine until the new tires. Here's my thoughts in order of priority:

1. The new tires are wider and follow the road more than the stock tires. Don't know how to help you here other than maybe someone can suggest changes to your toe?
2. The new tires were at 40psi? Are they c, d, or e rated tires? I keep my e rated at just under 30 psi
3. The new tires make your existing issues more pronounced...did your lift come with adjustable arms or drop brackets?

Finally, apart from the above, what "adjustment" did they make to your front drivers side corner when you had it aligned? I am a little nervous as to why they'd do something that'd only affect one corner and curious as to what they did...
 

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Oh also you don't want to Jack it up when loosening or tightening control arm bolts. The point is to have them not bound up at ride height (aka on the ground).

Also people usually don't need to flip the drag link at 2" of lift.
 

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All good points!
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks for the input. I knew the ride would change with the tires, so maybe it's just a matter of getting used to it and letting it feel normal.

No the kit did not come with any bracketa to drop the arms or new arms. And 2" was what I went with to avoid everything that comes with going higher plus the fact its my everyday vehicle. The tires are E, and I'd been considering lowering the psi but hadn't looked into it with enough detail yet to decide.
 

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I'd start with the tire pressure and then adjust from there. I'm running my 35x12.50 Nitto Ridge Grapplers at 30psi and the ride is great. A chalk test will aid in finding the proper pressure for you. Search it on YouTube.

Sent from my SM-G935P using Tapatalk
 

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I’d definitely try a lower PSI on the tires and see if it helps. I have my E tires at 30-32 PSI but going lower isn’t an issue either.


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'Flighty' is often the word used to describe a camber issue. It will make the front seem very light, like the back end is overweight. Geometry correction brackets, or adjustable control arms, are the only way to make significant adjustments to camber.

A high tire pressure might give you a bulged centre... which will act a lot more like a bike tire in trying to find grooves.

And... did the kit actually net out at 2 inches? Many kits seem to give up to an inch more than advertised...
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
It was near 3" so yeah an inch more than advertised. I will try the tires and loosening of bolts first because it'd be the simplest and cheapest solution. The bike tire description does sound a bit like what is going on and I feel like would explain why it seems more to do with road surface than actual speed. I can't really say that it feels light in the front and heavy in the rear but I'll pay a bit closer attention.
 

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what did you do for castor correction? the "flighty" steering is usually caused by a wide tire following the grooves in the road, and from too little castor after lifting. i was experiencing the same thing, until i got a set of drop brackets for the front control arms. my steering is nice and steady now with 37" tires. although they do still tend to follow the grooves a bit, i only have to correct for the angle of the road now, instead of every little bump. one of the best $100 i have spent on my jku.
 
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