Front Shock Removal

Discussion in 'KJ General Discussion' started by 2003KJ, Mar 9, 2009.

  1. 2003KJ

    2003KJ Member

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    Ok, so the time has come for new shocks all around on the Jeep. I'm tired of the 50 year old Buick like ride i'm getting from the Jeep (excessive bouncing after hitting bumps, every bushing sounds like it came off that 50 year old Buick too). I'll be picking up some new shocks tomorrow and tackling this job come the weekend probably. I nearly had a stroke when I got a price on the front shocks ($70ish a piece, with my discount)...and these are for slightly upgraded OEM replacements from Napa.

    When I asked why the hell it cost so much, my buddy told me it's because the spring has to come off. I went ahead and told him to set them aside for me, and I went outside to look at the Jeep. Sure enough, the spring does have to come off. From reading the FSM, it looks like half the front end has to be disconnected twice (once per side) to get the shock off.

    Does anybody have any short cuts that saved them some time? First time messing with the suspension in the 6 years i've had this Jeep, other than the dealer installing new LBJ's.

    On another note, I'm all about Jeeps and i've had great luck with this one...but it's crap like this freakin design that almost make me want to look elsewhere when it comes time to trade it in.
     
  2. JeepJeepster

    JeepJeepster Full Access Member

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    Its a typical coil over setup. Nothing special about it really so dont think its a bad design on Jeeps part or something.

    Its pretty simple really. Ive broken the front suspension down and had it back together in under an hour before. There are tons of threads on this, its just like putting a lift on it except youre replacing the stock stock......with stock stuff....

    Look around on lost for write-ups on installing a lift kit. There is actually a good write-up here on Jeepkj too..

    Not really any short cuts. The hardest part is compressing the spring to get the top bolt off the coil over so you can get the shock out. This can also be very dangerous if you dont know what youre doing or use a cheap spring compressor. Personally I take the coil overs out and take them to a shop to compress and replace the springs and shocks. Much easier and its dirt cheap since a buddy does it for me.
     
  3. 2003KJ

    2003KJ Member

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    Hmmm....i've always cheated and just dropped the front suspension down low enough when removing coil springs...never needed a spring compressor.
     
  4. tjkj2002

    tjkj2002 Full Access Member

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    Look at the Frankinlift install,you are doing the exact same thing but you must disassemble the shock/coil assembly and then reassemble which is where the spring compressors come into play.

    For all the work involved might as well upgrade your sagging coiuls also and just spring for new OME coils also,you'll be very happy with the end result.
     
  5. Marlon_JB2

    Marlon_JB2 Kombat Edition Jeep

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    There is no way to replace the front shocks on the KJ without compressing and disassembly of the strut.

    However from what I've seen of other designs... the KJ's design is easy as pie. I've taken it apart many times (KJ... and soon WK)... it ain't that hard.

    No reason to trade it. However transmission, EGR, and emotional problems are a different story. :D
     
  6. 2003KJ

    2003KJ Member

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    Yeah the coils are sagging a good bit...which surprises me...the suspension isn't really that old.

    Don't have the cash at the moment for new coils, so looks like it's just shocks for the time being.

    And figures it would get cold this weekend....should of done it this past weekend when it was in the 80's.
     
  7. tjkj2002

    tjkj2002 Full Access Member

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    If you give RockLizard a call and ask about a set of OEM coils he has lying around you may be able to get a fantastic deal(so cheap I can't advertise the price:D) for a set with about 12,000miles on them from a '07 KJ.
     
  8. JeepJeepster

    JeepJeepster Full Access Member

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    I looked around for a compressor and for some reason no one in my area had one small enough to fit between the thick coils. Got tired of running around so I said heck with it. I enjoy doing everything myself but didnt want to wait for one to ship and such.
     
  9. Corwyyn

    Corwyyn Full Access Member

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    Yeah that's the main issue - finding a slip-in spring compressor that will fit in the front springs. I think it would just be easier to take the struts down to a shop that has the proper tools and have them do the swap (of course I have my original front coils laying around from when I installed my lift so I could get away with doing that ;) ).
     
  10. yellocoyote

    yellocoyote Administrator

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    I rented one from the local Advanced Auto - it's a manual spring compressor. Lots of time and muscle needed, and probably not the safest thing, but it did the trick. Not much else you can do for late in the day on a Sunday. :rolleyes:

    Looks something like this:

    [​IMG]
     
  11. yellocoyote

    yellocoyote Administrator

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    When I go OME later this year, I think I'm just going to take the shocks/coils to a shop and have them assemble them for me. Was a pain to do it myself.
     
    Last edited: Mar 11, 2009