Rubicon Suspension on 2-door Sport

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Does the increased caster result in any bad repercussions...increased tire wear, etc?





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Does the increased caster result in any bad repercussions...increased tire wear, etc?
Only if you go too far, the pinion angle can get excessive resulting in driveshaft issues. No worries if you stay in the 6 to 6.5 degree range, many also go quite a bit more, but that would be with adjustable control arms, not the fixed-length ones in this thread.
 

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I installed my Rubi takeoff shocks and springs today, along with the new Mopar lower control arms, on my JLU Sport.

I did this in my home garage, I'm not very well equipped for suspension work. Like previous posters, it took me about 4 hours for the springs and shocks. Breaking loose the various big fasteners without impact tools was a challenge. I did buy a new jack and new jack stands for working on the Jeep, and I have an older small jack that was handy for working on the front.

The front inner fenders are flexible and will pull out of the way easily for access to the upper shock bolts. Everything else is pretty well accessible. I removed the screw from each of the 4 brake line brackets and didn't have any binding when lowering the axles. If you use a jack under the front axle third member, you only get one side of the jeep up in the air. I used my small jack with some wood blocks to jack up the other side.

Changing the lower control arms added another 2 hours. It was really difficult to break those loose. I used a large breaker bar and a piece of cheater pipe. My scrawny Craftsman 1/2" socket withstood the torque. You have to flex the sides up and down different amounts until the holes line up to put the LCA bolts back in. My 21mm socket fit the bolts and a 15/16" wrench fit the nuts. I managed to get 150 ft-lb on these fasteners when I put it back and that was not easy.

My rear springs were 1" longer but gave me 2" of lift. I got 1.5" of lift in the front.

BTW the stock Sport springs were 86/86 front and 87/88 rear. The Rubi takeoffs werw 60/61 and 91/92. For some reason both before and after I ended up with the right rear 1/2" lower than the left rear, the fronts are the same side to side.
 
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I installed my Rubi takeoff shocks and springs today, along with the new Mopar lower control arms, on my JLU Sport.

I did this in my home garage, I'm not very well equipped for suspension work. Like previous posters, it took me about 4 hours for the springs and shocks. Breaking loose the various big fasteners without impact tools was a challenge. I did buy a new jack and new jack stands for working on the Jeep, and I have an older small jack that was handy for working on the front.

The front inner fenders are flexible and will pull out of the way easily for access to the upper shock bolts. Everything else is pretty well accessible. I removed the screw from each of the 4 brake line brackets and didn't have any binding when lowering the axles. If you use a jack under the front axle third member, you only get one side of the jeep up in the air. I used my small jack with some wood blocks to jack up the other side.

Changing the lower control arms added another 2 hours. It was really difficult to break those loose. I used a large breaker bar and a piece of cheater pipe. My scrawny Craftsman 1/2" socket withstood the torque. You have to flex the sides up and down different amounts until the holes line up to put the LCA bolts back in. My 21mm socket fit the bolts and a 15/16" wrench fit the nuts. I managed to get 150 ft-lb on these fasteners when I put it back and that was not easy.

My rear springs were 1" longer but gave me 2" of lift. I got 1.5" of lift in the front.

BTW the stock Sport springs were 86/86 front and 87/88 rear. The Rubi takeoffs werw 60/61 and 91/92. For some reason both before and after I ended up with the right rear 1/2" lower than the left rear, the fronts are the same side to side.
I ended up purchasing a Metabo HPT Cordless Impact Wrench (Model #WR36DBQ4M) from Lowes (775 ft-lbs of tightening torque, 1,218 ft-lbs of nut busting torque) for my Rubi lift project and it made life so much easier. I now have no fears tackling most jobs with the JL.
 

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Got great info on these links
https://www.jlwranglerforums.com/fo...uspension-on-my-jl-sport-s.19356/#post-470484
https://www.jlwranglerforums.com/fo...evel-kit-on-jl-sport.13250/page-3#post-432923
https://www.jlwranglerforums.com/forum/threads/rubicon-springs-on-sahara.10715/page-2#post-308407
And all torque values for suspension fasteners here~
https://www.jlwranglerforums.com/fo...for-jeep-jl-wrangler.17791/page-2#post-518105

First off, big shout out to @MD1 for the parts, best transaction ever! The parts were off a 4dr w/ Hard top & tow pkg which results in about a 1.5-2" lift.`
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All you need are 2 jackstands, low profile jack, but an extra jackstand and floor jack makes it easier. 18mm wrench & socket, 10mm wrench, 8mm wrench and an impact gun will save some time too.

If you don't plan to add steel bumper & winch there's no need for any leveling spacers in front, but if you do plan on that then a .75" front spacer will keep your Jeep level w/ that added weight, so be sure to plan ahead as you don't really want to have a do-over.

There is a downside because you will lower your caster as you raise your Jeep, this will result in tires more prone to wander off center, I hate low caster so I WILL be adding Mopar LCAs from the 2" Mopar lift (part# 68322798AA) to regain the stock caster as my steering was spot-on prior to the lift.
I took a very basic caster baseline measurement w/ a cheap angle/level, it's not for an exact reading but a general range as that's all I need. I put the magnet against the lower flat edge to the inside of the drivers side lower ball joint.
The before which is in the 6 degree range

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And the after which drops about 2 degrees (I know it's hard to tell, but there IS a difference lol)
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Swap took about 4 hours, would probably only take 2 if you've done it before but took some trial & error for jackstand placement & spring removal. Did the rear first, jacked up from the rear differential to get tires about 4" off the ground. If you use the E-brake so you can get rear lug nuts loose be SURE to release it after removing tires since the brake lines are pretty tight when axle is lowered.

Place jackstands on the frame rails, this took a bit of effort to find a placement I wasn't leery of. I try to use the rubber stand pads when possible but the frame on the drivers side is just wide enough to fit between the stand prongs. On the passenger side the gas tank is tight against the frame so I had to place the stand along the rail, and use the pad as shown to get a level seat for the stand, a bit ghetto I know, but worked fine. :(
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Lower axle a bit to ease tension on shocks and links. If your set came w/ end links just store them away for when you get many miles on them and can put fresh ones in. The Rubicon and Sport use the same end links front & rear as well as the same lower control arms.
Remove only the lower bolt on each side end link (18mm for ALL suspension bolts in this project).
Remove the plastic inner fender covers w/ 8mm socket (3 screws), these are located at the top shock mount and need to be removed to get to that bolt.
Remove upper shock bolt, if you have an impact that will save time & effort, this one from Harbor Freight is a beast, will remove crank pulley bolts without a problem :) If you do use an impact there you have to get a long extension and run it in that space between bumper & fender.
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Remove lower shock bolt
You can then lower axle to remove the springs, I did passenger first (these are the slightly taller springs front & rear, and also have a larger spring part#).

BE SURE TO INSTALL THE TALLER OF THE TWO SPRINGS ON THE PASSENGER SIDE!

BE SURE TO KEEP AN EYE ON THE E-BRAKE LINES, they are well padded but could get too tight if you go too low w/ the axle drop. I went just low enough to get the springs out but not to the point of stretching the lines, but it's a close call there, you may want to remove the brake line retainers if you are worried about that.

Just lower the axle enough so you can get the spring out, nothing more. BE SURE to get that rubber tab in the top mount pad back into that hole in the top, it's hard to keep the pad set when trying to install spring and get it jacked snug so you may want to try some double sided tape (like that heavy duty 3m auto tape) to keep pad in place while you're doing this, but I just juggled through it lol.
Once you get spring in place if you have another jackstand or spare jack (even that spare Jeep scissor jack could work here) you can put light pressure on the axle under the new spring to keep it snug.

Lower axle again and remove drivers rear spring, it's harder to get out since the exhaust is there, I have the Dynomax muffler delete so it may be even harder if you have the muffler intact but ???
This was the hardest spring for me to get back in since those brake lines were a concern, but with a breaker bar I just pried the spring over the lower pad mount once it was in to get it finally seated.
Raise axle to line up w/ lower end link bolt holes, install & torque them to spec.
Install upper shock bolt but don't fully torque yet, then I used my extra floor jack to compress the bottom of the shock so it was simple to insert into the lower shock mount, you can then use a long screwdriver to pry the shock a few mm into that mount hole. Then torque upper then lower shock bolts to spec. My Rubicon set didn't come w/ bumpstops but if yours did, compare the new ones w/ your old ones, if the new ones are longer (not sure if they are???) be sure to install if they are :)

Install tires (and if you're old like me these $8 Harbor Freight dollys kick ass), just wheel the tire over to the Jeep, lower/raise the jack to align the holes and press wheel on, no lifting! At 100lbs per that's a big back saver :)
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Be sure to torque lug nuts to 130ft.lbs!

Now for the front, many have had issues using the small jackstands, I WAS able to do this using the standard 3ton Harbor Freight sets. Keep in mind when using these you will be lowering the axle almost to the ground so having a low profile jack is best when going this route. I raised Jeep w/ the tires about 5" off the ground, I raised it at the front differential so you get more lift on the drivers side, in order to get the passenger side high enough I used the other floor jack under the front lower control arm mount (at the axle tube) to get the lift even. You could also use some wood under your single jack to get more lift but this is at your own risk!
Once you get the wheels removed (you should loosen them a bit first on the ground if you don't have an impact gun) you then place your jackstands on the frame, I used the rubber stand pads and placed them where the crossmember attaches to the frame, I just feel better when there's something else for the jackstand to bite to.
IMG_0245.JPG


The bracket on the frame that secures the brake lines needs to be removed on both sides (10mm), pull the bracket out so lines are free.

Lower the axle to relieve end link tension, remove only the lower bolt on both end links, you might have to adjust the jack(s) to get the bolt out without binding.

Remove lower shock bolts.

If you are using an impact for upper shock bolt, you can use a long extension, seat your socket on the bolt head and raise the fender liner up, it's a bit of a stretch, but the time you save is worth it. If you go w/ just a ratchet or breaker bar you pull that fender liner out as far as you can to get the ratchet behind it, remove both shocks.
The only other line that gets pretty tight is on the passenger side, it's a taped group of wires that runs from the inner fender area to the axle, mine didn't get tight to the point of concern but just keep an eye there and remove the retainer if it gets worrisome for you.

I did the passenger side first, had to lower axle so the brake rotor was about an inch off the ground to get spring swapped. The upper rubber mount stays in place much better here than in back, but again, there's rubber spikes that need to be inserted in the mount holes so be sure they're in place. if yours came w/ the bumpstops be sure to change them out prior to spring install if they are longer.
BE SURE TO INSTALL THE TALLER OF THE TWO SPRINGS ON THE PASSENGER SIDE!
On the lower rubber mount BE SURE the end of the spring is against that rubber edge/lip. I cheated and used a spring compressor, but you should have no problem prying it in like I did w/ that rear drivers spring. I didn't use a spring compressor on the drivers side FWIW.
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Do the same spring swap for the drivers side, lift up enough to align end link holes, torque end link bolts to spec.

Install upper shock bolts snug but not torqued yet, install lower shock bolts, torque to spec, then torque upper shock bolts to spec.

Install brake line brackets back to frame

Install wheels and snug down, final torque when back on ground.

Raise Jeep enough to remove jackstands, lower Jeep to ground, final wheel torque to 130ft lbs, and enjoy!

Before & after pics (pics not on the same day in case you notice some differences), Tires are 295/70/17 about 33.5" tall, front stock rake doesn't seem to be there now, very level front to back. Jeep drives just about like before except for the lower caster, steering will be back to stock after those LCAs are installed next week, will post a follow up on that. Cheers, and if you made it though this novel, congrats :)

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Thanks for the awesome tutorial here. It's been really useful during my planning. I had a question, when you are putting it back together, why did you reconnect the end links before the shocks? It seems that it would be easier to attach the shocks and then raise the axle to reattach the end links. This reflects the way you disassembled it.
I'm about to do this same upgrade this week so I'm running through it in my head first.
Thanks again!
R
 
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blnewt

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Thanks for the awesome tutorial here. It's been really useful during my planning. I had a question, when you are putting it back together, why did you reconnect the end links before the shocks? It seems that it would be easier to attach the shocks and then raise the axle to reattach the end links. This reflects the way you disassembled it.
I'm about to do this same upgrade this week so I'm running through it in my head first.
Thanks again!
R
It's been a while since I did this, I believe I may have seen a DIY video and that was the sequence that was followed. It wasn't hard to go in that order, but it could very well be a bit easier if you didn't have to compress the shock(s) to mount them up. Also it may be easier to do one side of the axle lifted allowing for more articulation on the down side to get the spring in, again, it wasn't too hard but that might make it a bit easier.
 

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why did you reconnect the end links before the shocks
It doesn't matter at all which you do first but you should have the axle moved up to approximately where the shocks would line up to be attached so you aren't moving the sway bar too far out of its way. When you are lined up like this then attach whichever one first that you want to.

Today almost all shocks are gas charged so it takes effort to compress them, in this case much more for the Rubi shocks than the stock Sport S shocks. Putting in the new shocks you want to move the axle up/down with the jack to the point where the shock holes line up without having to compress the shock. When you are at this point it is easy to line up the swaybar end link because there is no load on it. This is assuming you are moving the axle up/down the same amount on both sides. If one side is higher than the other it will be harder to attach the sway bar because you will have to twist it and its job is to basically resist this type of twist.

I had the axle hanging there, removed the springs, put in the new springs, and raised the axle with the jack to the point where the springs were seated on both sides and the rubber bushings couldn't move out of place. Then I raised the jack up to the point where the shocks would align and started putting things back together.
 

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It doesn't matter at all which you do first but you should have the axle moved up to approximately where the shocks would line up to be attached so you aren't moving the sway bar too far out of its way. When you are lined up like this then attach whichever one first that you want to.

Today almost all shocks are gas charged so it takes effort to compress them, in this case much more for the Rubi shocks than the stock Sport S shocks. Putting in the new shocks you want to move the axle up/down with the jack to the point where the shock holes line up without having to compress the shock. When you are at this point it is easy to line up the swaybar end link because there is no load on it. This is assuming you are moving the axle up/down the same amount on both sides. If one side is higher than the other it will be harder to attach the sway bar because you will have to twist it and its job is to basically resist this type of twist.

I had the axle hanging there, removed the springs, put in the new springs, and raised the axle with the jack to the point where the springs were seated on both sides and the rubber bushings couldn't move out of place. Then I raised the jack up to the point where the shocks would align and started putting things back together.
So if I'm understanding correctly, I think I could actually wait to reconnect the end links until I lower the vehicle back to the ground? I'm still in two minds whether to raise both of the rears at once or not. I suspect the additional clearance I will get by flexing one side up will speed things up. So I think if I disconnect the end links while both wheels are on the ground, then raise one side, remove the wheel, remove the shock then the spring, it might be easier.
Thoughts?
As I mentioned, right now this is all theoretical so I'd appreciate insight from anyone who's been through the install already!
 
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blnewt

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So if I'm understanding correctly, I think I could actually wait to reconnect the end links until I lower the vehicle back to the ground? I'm still in two minds whether to raise both of the rears at once or not. I suspect the additional clearance I will get by flexing one side up will speed things up. So I think if I disconnect the end links while both wheels are on the ground, then raise one side, remove the wheel, remove the shock then the spring, it might be easier.
Thoughts?
As I mentioned, right now this is all theoretical so I'd appreciate insight from anyone who's been through the install already!
You can certainly put the end links on last, they're easy to remove and install on level ground, and the tapered bolt end makes it easy to thread them on.
 

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So if I'm understanding correctly, I think I could actually wait to reconnect the end links until I lower the vehicle back to the ground?
The sway bar moves pretty freely, just a little bit of friction in its bushings. The problem is that both sides of the car need to be at a similar level, whatever that is, so that both sides will line up at the same time. If one of the wheels is higher/lower than the other, the swaybar will be loaded and hard to align. Shocks are harder to line up because being gas filled they are like little springs.

If you are changing springs, then you are moving the axle up and down quite a bit. Just be sure that as you are moving the axle up and attaching shocks and things, that the end links didn't get put in the wrong place behind something. I raised up one side of my axle, put the shock on, put the lower bolt in the shock, and then found that the end link was blocked behind the shock. I took the shock bolt back out, move the end link in the right spot, put the shock bolt back in.
 

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@blnewt @txj2go Thanks for your input, I'm almost ready to take the plunge with this install. I'll let you know how it goes!
 

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Tonight I finally swapped out my Sahara stock LCAs for the Mopar 2” lift kit LCAs. I had added a Rubi takeoff suspension about a year and a half ago but was getting the shimmy above 60mph. Thanks for this write up, hopefully this will help solve the problem because that was a battle! Just me with a can of PB Blast, a Jack and Jack stands, a breaker bar, several sockets and a torque wrench... never thought that would take 4 hours of my life away... 140 ft/lbs is no joke!!! I’ve done a few things here and there but this was the toughest job yet, needless to say I’m going to invest in a decent impact gun next.
 

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Tons of great info in this thread! It inspired me to give this a shot. I'm hoping for some insight/opinions on my planned set-up.

I bought a Rubicon take off suspension from a forum member here who listed the spring numbers incorrectly. I originally was expecting 91AA, 92AA, 61AD and 62AD springs...

I ended up with 90AA, 91AA, 60AD, 61AD springs. Pretty disappointed because I was hoping to get 1.5" to 2" lift without having to use spacers. I don't think that will happen with the lower spring numbers I received and the weight of my Jeep with add-ons.

I have a 2020 Unlimited Sport S with the 2.0 engine and a hardtop. I have installed metal bumpers front and rear with a winch on the front. Tires are about 33" Goodyear Wrangler Duratrac 285/70r17's. I don't want the front to be higher than the back. I'd rather err on the side of caution and have a slight rake.

I measured the fender gap from top center of each tire to fender edge with my current suspension. This was with a half tank of gas.
-Driver Rear 4.5"
-Pass Rear 4.5"
-Driver front 4.5"
-Pass front 4.0"

It seems like I sit pretty level right now but I don't know what will happen with these new springs.

With all this in mind...

1. With no spacers how much of a lift do you think I might achieve?

2. Do you think I should install spacers front and back? If so what size?

3. Install spacers just in the front? If so what size?

4. Should I skip the spacers altogether and see where I land? I don't want to have to do this install twice, hoping to get it right the first time.

Thanks in advanced for any input!
 
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Tons of great info in this thread! It inspired me to give this a shot. I'm hoping for some insight/opinions on my planned set-up.

I bought a Rubicon take off suspension from a forum member here who listed the spring numbers incorrectly. I originally was expecting 91AA, 92AA, 61AD and 62AD springs...

I ended up with 90AA, 91AA, 60AD, 61AD springs. Pretty disappointed because I was hoping to get 1.5" to 2" lift without having to use spacers. I don't think that will happen with the lower spring numbers I received and the weight of my Jeep with add-ons.

I have a 2020 Unlimited Sport S with the 2.0 engine and a hardtop. I have installed metal bumpers front and rear with a winch on the front. Tires are about 33" Goodyear Wrangler Duratrac 285/70r17's. I don't want the front to be higher than the back. I'd rather err on the side of caution and have a slight rake.

I measured the fender gap from top center of each tire to fender edge with my current suspension. This was with a half tank of gas.
-Driver Rear 4.5"
-Pass Rear 4.5"
-Driver front 4.5"
-Pass front 4.0"

It seems like I sit pretty level right now but I don't know what will happen with these new springs.

With all this in mind...

1. With no spacers how much of a lift do you think I might achieve?

2. Do you think I should install spacers front and back? If so what size?

3. Install spacers just in the front? If so what size?

4. Should I skip the spacers altogether and see where I land? I don't want to have to do this install twice, hoping to get it right the first time.

Thanks in advanced for any input!
I'd expect pretty decent lift from that set, all your springs are the same as mine except you have a 60 instead of my 59 (and a 4door). I would expect about a 1.5" to 1.75" lift if you were stock. With your steel upgrades and the winch I would expect a 1/4" drop in back and a 1/2" drop in front. I think I would go with a 3/4" spacer in front and see how you like it. If you need a bit more in back you could add a 1/2" in back at a later date. That's what I'd do :)
 

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