Could it be the springs?

TJScott

TJ Enthusiast
Feb 4, 2017
283
Palmdale, CA, United States
I have an 03 Sport. It has a 4” lift and 1” body lift and new Ranchos all the way around. I’ve noticed that if I go over a bump, rock or dip with any exuberance I bottom out. I first noticed it when I had passengers in the back. Light people really. It was a mild trail and I remember it bottoming out. Today on the way back to work going over an easy drainage dip in the road a little faster than normal it seemed to bottom out. Are the springs just worn out? Easy way to tell? If I had to replace them, do all four at once? I don’t want the back higher than the front. Running 33’s with a 33 spare and tire carrier bumper on back.


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Jerry Bransford

TJ Guru
Supporting Member
Nov 9, 2015
9,982
Escondido California
My bet is the shock absorber length is too long and it's the shock that is bottoming out. Rancho's sizes tend to run long so it's not hard to install too tall of a shock. I told Rancho's guy verbally how tall my lift was on the phone and he assured me he'd send the right length RS9000xl shocks. The ended up being too long. They sent me the correct shorter shocks and told me to keep the first set which I donated to my Friends of Calico group for a raffle several months ago.

That's a true story. :)

Rancho Group Photo cropped.jpg
Raffle Winner.jpg
 

bobthetj03

vibrajeep
Supporting Member
Ride of the Month Winner
Feb 3, 2017
8,076
NorCal
Measure the spring. 8" rear is stock. Anything over that is lift height. Don't include the upper rubber insolator, but if it also has coil spacers include those in the height measurement. Also, check to see if you have added bumpstop extension. That will limit your up travel.
 

jjvw

April 2019 Ride of the Month Winner
Supporting Member
Feb 17, 2018
5,387
Colorado, USA
My first thought is that the shocks are too long and the bump stops are too short.
 
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TJScott

TJScott

TJ Enthusiast
Feb 4, 2017
283
Palmdale, CA, United States
I had the shocks replaced by a 4 wheel shop. In fact he told me what lift I had and what size it was, I’m 3rd owner. He ordered and replaced the shocks for me. Yes, I know, I’m lazy. I recall the first time I noticed it bottom out with people in the back was with my old shocks installed. Not saying it still couldn’t be the length. But, hopefully he got it right. I bet the winner of those shocks was happy to get them. Duh, the Jeep is in the parking lot. Here are a couple pics of the passenger side rear. Sometimes you guys see stuff I haven’t even thought of.
df1ef5a0855a6fb64cb55b7e16930a04.jpg
5074802c2c189c1acd7c5f4bb9c4ebd0.jpg
ab5f922379ebada5e8aa0edc1b8d2e57.jpg



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TJScott

TJScott

TJ Enthusiast
Feb 4, 2017
283
Palmdale, CA, United States
I can do the zip tie.
I’m not sure where the measurements are being taken from. Axle pad has to be the bump in the center of the spring at the bottom. The other part, not sure what’s meant. The bump stop has to be the rubber part sticking down. Is my knowledge showing? Ugh. Sorry.


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jjvw

April 2019 Ride of the Month Winner
Supporting Member
Feb 17, 2018
5,387
Colorado, USA
The cup is the thing that holds the squishy yellow bumper. The distance between the cup and pad is what defines the up travel. If the exposed shock shaft is shorter than that space, then there is a problem.
 

Bird

TJ Enthusiast
Supporting Member
Jan 6, 2017
944
VA, United States
In my experience, springs don't fatigue evenly, mine didn't.

My Jeep sat noticeably uneven so I replaced the springs and Jeep sprung back to life.

Those shocks don't look like the highly recommended 5000X.
 
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TJScott

TJScott

TJ Enthusiast
Feb 4, 2017
283
Palmdale, CA, United States
So the part of rubber sticking down, does that compress? I measure from the axle bump to the cup as in the photo and that is 6.25”. I measure the shock travel (chrome exposed shaft) at 3.5”. I’ve seen enough Sesame Street to tell me this doesn’t look right. Is there too little shock travel? And as was stated it’s a shock issue? Not sure how I would deal with it, I’m sure his warranty is over with.


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TJScott

TJScott

TJ Enthusiast
Feb 4, 2017
283
Palmdale, CA, United States
In my experience, springs don't fatigue evenly, mine didn't.

My Jeep sat noticeably uneven so I replaced the springs and Jeep sprung back to life.

Those shocks don't look like the highly recommended 5000X.
They should be the correct ones. It was what I asked for when ordering.


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jjvw

April 2019 Ride of the Month Winner
Supporting Member
Feb 17, 2018
5,387
Colorado, USA
So the part of rubber sticking down, does that compress? I measure from the axle bump to the cup as in the photo and that is 6.25”. I measure the shock travel (chrome exposed shaft) at 3.5”. I’ve seen enough Sesame Street to tell me this doesn’t look right. Is there too little shock travel? And as was stated it’s a shock issue? Not sure how I would deal with it, I’m sure his warranty is over with.


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The foam jounces do compress all the way into the cup.
4298a1ba7489c2f2860176d274729eb2.jpg


This is my front, but the idea is the same.
a77521e2371e24bb145b81de7e4b5264.jpg


Unfortunately, both your shocks are too long and the bump stops are too short. The answer is somewhere in the middle.

What is your tire size? Lift height? Is there a body lift?
 
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TJScott

TJScott

TJ Enthusiast
Feb 4, 2017
283
Palmdale, CA, United States
Yes to all. 33” tires, 1” BL and 4” Procomp lift. The old shocks I don’t recall how much travel they had so I can’t compare. But the rear broke the upper mount, so I had all of them replaced since I didn’t know anything about them.


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jjvw

April 2019 Ride of the Month Winner
Supporting Member
Feb 17, 2018
5,387
Colorado, USA
The broken rear upper mount happened because those shocks were also too long. That problem hasn't changed.
 
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TJScott

TJScott

TJ Enthusiast
Feb 4, 2017
283
Palmdale, CA, United States
When you say the shocks are too long. It’s the body of the shock we are talking about. The exposed chrome piston needs to be sticking out more. Just trying to get the right visual in my head.


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jjvw

April 2019 Ride of the Month Winner
Supporting Member
Feb 17, 2018
5,387
Colorado, USA
The shock is reaching full compression before the bump stop limits the suspension up travel. When that happens, the shock pounds in it's mounts until something breaks.

If you look at my picture above, the bump stops have been extended (the puck below the cup) so that they make contact just before the shock reaches full compression.
 

jjvw

April 2019 Ride of the Month Winner
Supporting Member
Feb 17, 2018
5,387
Colorado, USA
With your 3.5" of exposed shaft, there is also less travel than stock. It should be at least 4" if not more.

Your's has too little up travel and too much down travel from the normal ride height. The goal is to even that out.