can you identify this lift?

idealrides

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I bought a used 2003 Liberty which came with what looks like a 2.5" OTT lift... and I'm having a noise problem with it that might be ball joint contact...

The front end suspension makes a loud banging sound in many situations such as hitting a speed bump over 5 mph, and it happens very frequently off-road, the faster you're driving the louder it gets.

Does this sound like the ball joint contact problem with the OTT lift? And if I need to get a new lift what do you guys recommend?

front:

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rear:
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KJ04

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Re: identify this lift

idealrides,
Yes, sounds like B.J. contact.
Since I have never seen a kit that uses what appears to be a 1" + aluminum spacer in a position between the spring and the strut plate, and also what appears to be a Clevis lift at the bottom of the strut, I can only assume someone fabed this in order to save money.

Rusty's Spring Lift Kit seems to be the best bang for your buck at the present time. All J's Frankin-lift if you're hard core off-road.

Have someone jack up the front of your Jeep slowly and view the position of the upper A-arm ball joint and spring area as it raises to see if it starts making contact with the spring before the tire is off the ground.

If your front axle angle is angled upward more severe than this pic of a Rusty's spring lift with a 3/8" Clevis, you may be able to correct the problem by by loosening the Clevis bolt, and letting the strut settle between where it's at, to it's resting place in the Clevis. Post back after you check out these things.
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idealrides

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I took the following pictures with the car jacked up so the tires are just off the ground. It appears there is no balljoint contact, and even the bump stops have no sign of contact.... nobody has any idea what the problem is.

So far I've had two mechanics check it out and they both said everything looks fine, but the sound the car still makes isn't fine with me. To top it off, the salesman says the sound is perfectly normal with all lifted trucks, he keeps saying if you want a quiet smooth ride, you need a factory suspension. ](*,)

I don't even know how much lift I'm getting out of this setup, but it seems the only thing I can do now is just get some proper springs... any ideas?


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KJ04

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idealrides,
Please tell me that the last picture of the axle shaft is with the Jeep jacked up! If it is on the ground, the lift is to high and your CV joints are binding.

If it is jacked up, take a pic of it on the ground, level from the front to compare with the pic I posted. If it is about the same the only other thing I can think of is that the top strut plate nuts under the battery and the air box may have loosened up and is causing the noise. I beleive the torque is 80 ft. lbs.

Thanks,
Nick
 

SRotblat

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KJ04 told him to jack up the KJ and take a few picts, and from the looks of it he did just that.....
 

idealrides

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yep, as i wrote in the post the car was jacked up with the tires off the ground for all those pix. so today i adjusted the strut down in to the clevis enough that the clevis was making 100% clamping contact, in case that was wobbling around causing the banging sound. Didn't make any difference.

Also the CV is almost horizontal at rest so that can't be the problem.

So I guess the next step is to check the plate nuts... any other ideas?
 

idealrides

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I have a new hypothesis. The spring spacers up front are made out of what looks like billet aluminum. I think these spacers are banging against the strut plates up top whenever either front strut extends rapidly. So my proposed solution is to get some OME springs to replace the front spacers. Does that sound right?
 

KJ04

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Yeah, since there is the metal to metal contact.

The Rusty's lift springs will give you a little more lift up front than the OME.
I think they go for $120.00 a pair. If you have above 30,000 miles on it, might be a good idea to replace the struts also.
 

idealrides

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just to give you guys an update on my KJ... I replaced the front aluminum spacers with rusty's 2" springs, and the noise problem is still there. ](*,) now the mechanic at the dealer says the problem is the front shocks are too short, so now I'm waiting on a pair of rusty's 2" lift struts. i thought it was the rear shocks that would be too short according to various websites but we'll see...
 

idealrides

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changed out the front struts... problem is STILL there. this is getting really annoying.

the sound only occurs when either or both of the front wheels extend rapidly. Changed the springs and struts. And there's nothing contacting the spring (i.e. upper ball joint) What else could it be? Maybe a worn arm bushing?
 

JeepJunky33

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Hey,
It looks like a Revtech 2.5" lift kit. I am not a fan of them but that's what it looks like. You planning on changing it?
-Seth
 

idealrides

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Junky, I've basically changed the front suspension already and the problem is still there. Took out the RevTek spacers and factory coils and replaced them with Rocky's 2.5" extended coils, then I upgraded to Rocky's 2" extended front shocks, and recently I also changed both the front transaxle mounts at the recommendation of another mechanic. Problem is still there!

So basically the Revtech lift kit was not the problem. Next I'm going to try swapping out the wheels/tires back to a normal size to see if the sound gets significantly quieter. If that makes no difference I may just take out the lift completely... unless someone has a better idea?
 
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