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Old January 23rd, 2008, 09:41
jdbwrx jdbwrx is offline
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Need some shock help...long explanation

OK, try to summarize here. I would like to get some new shocks for my XJ, part due to want, part now due to necessity. There are a lot of factors in this equation, so let me try and get across what I am working with:

History: I have been running Skyjacker hydros and would like to step up to something nicer, and a bit firmer to accomodate the extra weight the Jeep has aquired, and help give a slightly more planted and less bouncy/squishy ride. Price is an object. I would like to get 4 shocks for $300 or less.

Set up: 4.5" of lift, heavier rig now with exo cage, custom front and rear bumpers (tire carrier), winch, and lots of tools in cargo area.

-Front shock area: I just added bar pin elminators on the lower, and the shock conversion on the upper to go to a loop set up instead of the post.
-Rear shock area: I just cut and moved my axle side shock mounts up two inches, and added the JKS cross over shock mount at the top.

With all that in mind, the real questions:

1) Which brand/model: I have been looking at the Rubicon Express shocks, and debating between the twin tube and monotube. Also kicking around OME, Bilsteins, and Rancho's.

2) Lengths: I know the best way would be to flex the thing out and measure, but due to gonzo amounts of snow up here, having a hard time finding a good place to do it. I don't have a forklift and am not ready to highlift the thing and then try and crawl around measuring things. So, I was hoping I could reason it out.

Here are my existing shock lengths (compressed/open)
Front: 14.54/24.75
Rear: 14.82/24.84

I was using some of RE numbers for figuring. Here is what I am considering and the rationale behind each:

Front: 13.5/22.5 (RE twin tube) or 14.87/23.87 (RE Mono)
By adding the BPE's and the shock conversion, I have shortened up the at rest length by about 2". I don't know if I should get a shock then that is about 2" shorter than my exisitng, or stick with existing numbers, bumpstop accordingly, and I then should have more droop.

Rear: 14.5/24.5 or slightly longer 16.2/26.7
The point of adding the cross over shock mount was to be able to raise the lower shock mounts and still be able to run a similar length shock, or maybe even a little longer if I use the inner most upper mounting point. So my question on the rear is, should I run the same length, or get something a bit longer?

I hope this isn't too much of a cluster, and is understandable.

Help on this issue would be greatly appreciated.
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Old January 23rd, 2008, 11:22
Rod Knee's Avatar
Rod Knee Rod Knee is offline
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Re: Need some shock help...long explanation

I'm by no means an expert but I have been researching the forum over the same issues and just put on my new OME's a week ago. A couple of posters that responded to me pointed out that its better to err on the side of giving up too much droop rather than too much compression, which makes sense. You get the best traction on compression and you also keep lower center of gravity. So I'd suggest the shorter shock which might also entail less bumpstop modification.

I have to say my OME's are no smoother than my old shocks which had been on my XJ for a couple eons. I was expecting the smooth gliding ride that I get on the Chev Silverado that I ride for work.
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