Jeep Lift Build Questions

grawls2008

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Good Morning all,

Been following the group for a while, finally pulled the trigger and joined. I am planning on lifting the Jeep in the near future, just have to wait for the COVID-19 scare to pass before I start dropping money. I have two different thoughts on how I want my build to go.

My current set-up is a 2005 Jeep Wrangler on 31" street tires, 3.73 gears, Dana 44 rear, Dana 30 front. My goal right now is mild off roading, and playing in the woods. This Jeep is a DD for me and I am not trying to go sink the Jeep but I also want it to be capable off road. I use the DD loosely because I work in law enforcement and have a patrol car I drive home, and a second "family car" which is the primary vehicle. So while the Jeep is a DD, I have had the Jeep 3 years and only put 9,500 miles on it in that time. My current goal is to run the Milestar Patagonia 33x12.50R15. In the distant future I may decide to go to a 35, but for the time being I am planning on sticking with 33s.

I am trying to balance budget friendly lift with quality lift.

One build I planned out was:

Zone 4" Suspension Lift, upgrade to Rubicon Express Adjustable front and rear track bars, JKS Quicker Disconnects Sway Bar Disconnects, Rough Country X-Flex Adjustable Control Arm Kit.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0021FT1NE/?tag=wranglerorg-20
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00B2AEG9I/?tag=wranglerorg-20
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B006GJL74M/?tag=wranglerorg-20
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B005TTZ6EM/?tag=wranglerorg-20
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B006GJL7S8/?tag=wranglerorg-20

This build will cost approximately $1,850. This does not include a SYE, which I am looking at the Adams Driveshaft SYE Kit ($450ish)

The other build I had in mind was:

Metal Cloak Short Arm Long Travel 3.5" Kit with Ranch RS5000X shocks

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0196367EE/?tag=wranglerorg-20

Since I am at $1,850 (plus $450 for SYE kit), just go ahead and bite the bullet to go with the MetalCloak 3.5" short arm long travel kit. This is a much more complete kit, and I do not think I need to "build" or "upgrade" the kit like I would the Zone kit. If this is the option I go with it will run me about $2,159 with no shocks. The RockSport shocks you can upgrade the MetalCloak kit with are currently backordered until January, so I was thinking Rancho RS5000X ($220) There is also a $99 upgrade option on the MetalCloak kit to upgrade the control arms from a "Steel- Single Adjustable" to either a "Aluminum- Double Adjustable Arm Set" or a "Aluminum- Double Adjustable- Steel Lower". I want to do the Double Adjustable Control Arms- just don't know which one. So the total MetalCloak build will cost $2,500ish.

Obviously you get what you pay for (more money=better), but is it worth the $650 to upgrade to the Metalcloak lift kit. I can run the "built" Zone kit with a SYE for the same price at the MetalCloack lift (without a SYE). Also, if I do decide to go with the MetalCloak lift kit-- can I run the 3.5" without a SYE for a while?


Sorry for the long post guys. Hopefully every is enjoying their Jeeps while in quarantine. If anyone has other build suggestions or ideas, I would appreciate it. Thanks for the read!


GR
 

Vasq

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I actually have the metalcloak 3.5" + Rancho rs5000x shocks.
- the Rancho shocks are great, good choice there
- as far as double adjustable arms, they will benefit you most for only the upper arms.
- in my opinion, i think this kit would be too tall to run without a sye. But i didn't try it, so i can't say for sure.
- personally (and i know of a few others) i think there are still a few things that will need to be "upgraded" in the metal cloak kit. Like you, I wanted to be one and done, but I've found the front track bar wears fast (at the frame). And to be honest the rest of my quibbles are mostly due to the MC lift + Tummy Tuck, which you won't be dealing with.

Its a good kit, and i would probably say it's better than the Zone lift. The only thing i wish i had done differently would have been to piece together a lift myself instead of going with a "kit". I'm currently looking at replacing my springs and selling the MC one's because they don't work as nicely with the combination of other things i have going on.
 

Cornbread

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If you're considering the Zone at all, you probably should take a look at the 4.25" combo lift. Many run it including myself and for the price it's hard to beat. It is perfect with 33's and I'm running it on 35's. It does well on our local parks. Being in Florida you probably won't be doing any rock crawling, so my personal vote is for saving some dough with the Zone combo lift and use the extra money toward a regear/brakes/tie rod upgrade/etc.
 
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grawls2008

grawls2008

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Obviously the Currie lift kits are considered the top of the line. I am not 100% sure where the MetalCloak kits fall in that order. I imagine it is close to the top though. So this is where I am at then:

Currie Lift- $2,411 (includes shipping) Metal Cloak Lift- $2,258 (including the upgraded control arms- Plus Shipping)

So I am better off going with the Currie lift, add the Adam's Drive Shaft SYE ($450), XJ Tie Rod Upgrade ( $88- according to the XJ Conversion Thread), Rancho Shocks ($220), the brakes will have to be done at a later time. My wife is about to kill me already. But Currie $3,169 (includes shipping) for 4" or MetalCloak for $3,016 (plus shipping) for 3.5"..... Well then... Just got to convince the wife at this point.
 
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L J

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Irun

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I also run a MC short arm. I'll second what Vasq said. After running the MC springs on a TJ, they were extremely stiff. I went through a couple different shocks, but couldn't get the ride right. Ultimately the MC springs were swapped for a new set of 3" set of Nth degree springs I've been hording. The MC springs do however work much better on an LJ, which is what I currently have on it.

The other problem area with the MC lift is the front track bar. MC uses a Heim joint, which I had to replace with only 10K on it. Their customer service was great in sending out a free replacement part, but if I were doing it again I'd likely get a JKS or spend the money on a Currie. In terms of the MC control arms, they've served faithfully for almost seven (7) years with zero failures or issues.

I haven't yet owned a Currie or Savvy lift, but these are highly proven and regarded. If I were buying a SA kit again, I'd pick the double adjustable aluminum arm Savvy or a Currie kit. Both give you the advantage of adding a Antirock sway bar. You should also be considering your ultimate goal, because you can pick either a 3" or 4" spring. Yes, the Currie, Savvy and MC lifts are pricey. MC is less regarded here, but do still make some quality products.

All that said, even though you're in FL, with zero rocks, the on road manners of a quality kit will make itself apparent very quickly. Many settle for a cheaper lift first, only to be disappointed. If you can afford it, skip the multiple lift syndrome and do it right up front. Personally, I'm on my third lift, which will also be replaced, and wished I would have found this site early on. It would have saved me lots of money and time!
 
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grawls2008

grawls2008

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So next question is..... Can I get away for about 5-6 weeks without the SYE. Lets say I go to the Currie lift-- Can I make it 5-6 weeks without the SYE without causing damage?
 

ErikOffroad

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So I have the zone 4.25 combo lift with jks track bars and Currie adjustable control arms.
This gets the job done quite well for a little less money. Currie stuff is good and if u want to drop all the money at once it’s a nice way to go.
I did my build over time piecing it all together. I definitely like the zone kit.
I have all the suspension travel that u would get with the Currie lift with there control arms now under my Jeep.
The pros to doing it my way is it’s cheaper and parts can be purchased over time. The cons are everything under my Jeep isn’t Currie.
That isn’t a huge deal to me.
Also with some of the money I saved I managed to do a sye, driveshaft, tt, and dump a ton of cash into the axles for a regear and lockers.
I would start by wheeling ur Jeep and figuring out what u actually need.
There’s tons of ways to build a Jeep and plenty of different parts available for any budget.
 
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ErikOffroad

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So next question is..... Can I get away for about 5-6 weeks without the SYE. Lets say I go to the Currie lift-- Can I make it 5-6 weeks without the SYE without causing damage?
It’s going to vibrate like crazy. U may be able to drop the transfer case skid plate with longer bolts and washers and adjust the control arms to dial in some of the vibes out
 

Chris

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While I don't have any experience with Metalcloak products personally, I've done enough research to know that I'd never run any of their stuff personally. Do their lifts work for most? Yes, they do, and I don't think many will complain either. However, I am a pretty diehard Currie / Savvy guy, so if I was to recommend anything to you, it would be a Savvy / Currie 4" lift.

Of course that's going to be more expensive than most of the other options (you get what you pay for though), so you ultimately have to decide how you're going to use it.

If you plan to drive it almost exclusively on-road, then I would tell you to get a Zone lift and not worry about it. If you plan on taking it off-road a lot and want something that is going to outlast the vehicle (or the time you own it), I suggest a Savvy / Currie lift. You'll pay more of course, but it's as the saying goes, "buy once, cry once".
 

Irun

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So next question is..... Can I get away for about 5-6 weeks without the SYE. Lets say I go to the Currie lift-- Can I make it 5-6 weeks without the SYE without causing damage?
Lots of people run 3" lifts without SYE. If you can adjust the pinion angle enough to reduce/eliminate vibrations, and the driveshaft length is sufficient, there shouldn't be a reason you can't run it that way for a short time. You can also lower the skid plate, temporarily, with washers and longer bolts. If it's a 4" lift, this can make it more difficult.
 

U8MYDZT

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So next question is..... Can I get away for about 5-6 weeks without the SYE. Lets say I go to the Currie lift-- Can I make it 5-6 weeks without the SYE without causing damage?
You could run some transfer case spacers. It doesn't eliminate driveline vibes, but it will keep your U-joints for exploding until you get a SYE
 

dbbd1

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I would look at the DPG kits. Just don't get his body lift, which is JKS and not a solid spacer. He is very helpful. A 2.5 will allow for 33's comfortably. Yes, you might need the SYE and eventually, re-gearing. But, that can a few weeks and months, respectively.
 

bobthetj03

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Piece it together. Do a MML/BL now. That will help with the DS angles and vibes. You can further drop the t-case skid temporarily if you can't dial them out. Run 3" springs to keep it a bit lower, which also will help with the vibes. 3" of lift with the 1" BL will work nicely with 33's. JKS for the track bars, BDS, Procomp, or OME for the springs, or Currie. Rancho RS5000X shocks FTW. When you're ready for 35's, just swap the springs to 4" springs, beef up the brakes, ZJ steering, and done. The 2-3" Rancho shocks will work fine for both lift heights. They run long, just add the appropriate bump stops while you're on 33's. Savvy or MC arms are top shelf. Double adjustables for the uppers and single adjustables for the lowers get the job done and saves some fun coupons. JKS disco's and longer rear sway bar links, trim the rear spring perches to clear the shocks. Don't get shock relocation brackets. At some point you'll want to think about a re-gear. My 2 cents.
 
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someguysjeep

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after recently pulling both JJ's and the MC joints apart. the MC is not the worst joint you could spend your $ on, but it's the same cost as the better JJ, IMO.

MC springs (that top stack of coils) are more than you need for up to 4+", and they are stiff...........but not a bad choice for a heavy rig.
the down fall is if your trying to max up travel in the ass end. the rear MC goes to bind about 2' b4 a Currie spring does. but this may or may not matter in your case based on travel range.

good joints, good springs, good shocks, and the rest you can piece together.

install the SYE and new suspension together even if you need to sit on it for a month or 2, until you get all the parts. unless parking it for an extended period while building is an option. but doing it all 2x is a lot of work.
 
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grawls2008

grawls2008

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ErikOffroad

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That’s pretty complete. Only issue that may happen is when u do the sye and driveshaft you need to rotate the rear axle quite a bit. This causes the track bar relocation bracket to hit the gas tank. So u may need one of these
Other option is to modify it like this

FA04ACDD-3158-4555-9949-0249DBE9D66A.jpeg

Other issue is those are rancho 9000 shocks. I think u want 5000
 

ErikOffroad

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U can get raybestos brake lines for the front from a yj. The factory replacements are 17 bucks a piece and there longer.
Just go on rock auto.com look up a 95 wrangler and get those brake lines.
Don’t need anything for the rear axle. Will have to extend the vent hose though