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  #1  
Old January 10th, 2005, 12:21
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IdeaMan IdeaMan is offline
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How do I tell if my leaf springs are sagging?

Ok, I've been lightly off-roading my stock height Cherokee a couple of times now. It's obvious I need at least a couple more inches so I'm thinking about a small lift. I've read that shackles, blocks, and especially add-a-leafs will just make my stock springs worse if they're already bad. I don't know how to tell though. What am I looking for? 1997 Cherokee with 150k miles... 97% have been highway miles though.

How do I tell if my leaf springs are sagging?
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Old January 10th, 2005, 12:37
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Re: How do I tell if my leaf springs are sagging?

A full-length add-a-leaf strengthens the leaf pack and gives height.
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Old January 10th, 2005, 13:38
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Re: How do I tell if my leaf springs are sagging?

Quote:
Originally Posted by jeeper821
is the rear sitting lower then the front????
With recovery gear and tools in the back, the back sits a little lower than the front. Unloaded, it's even. Now loaded or not, there's a lot less space between the top of the tire and the fender flare in the rear then the front, but I think all XJ's are like that.
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Old January 10th, 2005, 14:17
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Re: How do I tell if my leaf springs are sagging?

Take a tape measure and see what the distance is from the center of the wheel hub straight up to the bottom edge of the rear fender flare (with a full gas tank, and no gear/passengers). If that distance is less than 17" then your rear end is sagging. The front should be 17.5" or so.

Before you start messing around with AAL/block/shackle temporary solutions, consider very strongly how high you want it to be and just do it right the first time with new rear springs at the lift height that you will be happy with.

Have Fun
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Old January 10th, 2005, 14:50
RCP Phx RCP Phx is offline
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Re: How do I tell if my leaf springs are sagging?

Stock springs tend to be pretty flat(static position),more important is to look for any "S-ing" at the front and rear of the pack!
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Old January 10th, 2005, 17:24
kmagnuss_2000 kmagnuss_2000 is offline
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Re: How do I tell if my leaf springs are sagging?

Quote:
Originally Posted by RCP Phx
Stock springs tend to be pretty flat(static position),more important is to look for any "S-ing" at the front and rear of the pack!
Agreed. Especially look for the bend on the main leaf right above where the second leaf ends.
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  #7  
Old January 11th, 2005, 10:31
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Re: How do I tell if my leaf springs are sagging?

Quote:
Originally Posted by RKBA
If that distance is less than 17" then your rear end is sagging. The front should be 17.5" or so.
Front is 17.5 and the rear is 16.5 with spare in the back and a half a tank of gas. Nothing else inside the vehicle.

I also notice maybe a slight bend in the opposite direction at the front end of the main leaf. I guess this is the "S" bend I'm looking for.

Soooo, guess I need a whole leaf pack rather than shackles or AAL, right?
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  #8  
Old January 11th, 2005, 10:38
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Re: How do I tell if my leaf springs are sagging?

yeah aal are tolerable but i have em now and i just bought full packs for my RE 3.5 because they still give a choppy ride. The front rolls over smooth but on bumps the back has a higher spring rate and is really springy. Just look around for a used pack or make your own with another set of stock cherokee leafs. You can do that home brew mod and get about an inch or two of lift on top of a better riding pack. And a shackle on top of an already saggin pack will make it sag so fast and ull prob end up riding on the fenders in no time.
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Old January 11th, 2005, 11:09
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Re: How do I tell if my leaf springs are sagging?

Quote:
Originally Posted by IdeaMan
I also notice maybe a slight bend in the opposite direction at the front end of the main leaf. I guess this is the "S" bend I'm looking for.

Soooo, guess I need a whole leaf pack rather than shackles or AAL, right?
Not necessarily. Jack up the rear on one side by the body and see if the S-bend goes away when the main leaf isn't loaded. If the bend goes away, the main leaf is tired, but not bent, and would be a good candidate for a home-brew AAL. Espedcially considering the problems some folks have encountered trying to get old leaf packs out, if you don't NEED new packs for a lot of lift, the do-it-yourself AAL is a good solution. I did it on an '88 that was sitting at abouth where you are. I used springs (main leaves) from a high mileage 88 or 89 and I netted 3/4" higher than stock (about 1-1/4" total, gross lift).

Somebody did a good write-up on this a couple of months ago.
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  #10  
Old January 11th, 2005, 16:38
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RKBA RKBA is offline
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Re: How do I tell if my leaf springs are sagging?

If you want to stay at or near stock height, you could buy these UpCountry springs from Tenafly Chrysler Jeep or your local Jeep dealer:

52002392AB
$94.17 EA
Rear suspension - Suspension components - Leaf spring
LEAF SPRING, XJ Series, Heavy Duty - LEAF SPRING TYPE 2000 - 2001

They will probably make your XJ sit at about 18" hub to flare, and will take longer to sag. It's not as cheap of a solution as the home-brew AAL of course, but I like the idea of new leafs myself.

Good Luck
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  #11  
Old January 11th, 2005, 17:14
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Re: How do I tell if my leaf springs are sagging?

Well I'd actually like a little lift. I'd like as much lift as I can get and as big of tires as I can get WITHOUT having to re-gear or mess with SYE/driveline/transfer case drop/vibration issues. So from everything I've read I guess that's 2 inches. Maybe 3?
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  #12  
Old January 11th, 2005, 17:46
RCP Phx RCP Phx is offline
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Re: How do I tell if my leaf springs are sagging?

Every Jeep is different but my 2000 didnt even like 3".It meant the best of everything to get it all back right!
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