How to reinstall shock strut with lift kit

Ikster

New Member
Joined
Nov 9, 2008
Messages
8
Reaction score
0
Location
Yelm WA
I removed the shock struts on my 2005 Liberty Limited 4wd in order to replace the shock absorbers. It has a 2" lift kit installed. I was able to find a shop that could disassemble the units, install new shocks and put it back together. However, now I can't get the things installed in the car as the I can't hook up the clevis arm. Do I need to rent a spring compressor or? Where can I rent or borrow a tool that would work?
 

Bill Sidhipong

New Member
Joined
May 21, 2022
Messages
3
Reaction score
0
If they put the assembly back together, it should slip right into the strut fork. Maybe attach some pictures so we can see where the difficulty is?
 

duderz7

Full Access Member
Joined
Jan 20, 2016
Messages
958
Reaction score
523
Location
Weiser, ID
Mount top 4 nuts/studs loosely, this will help ease alignment of clevis
 

tommudd

Moderator
Staff member
Moderator
Joined
Jul 14, 2005
Messages
22,052
Reaction score
3,211
Location
Southeastern Ohio
Mount top loosely
Then with ratchet strap on each leg of the clevis pull it in
Spacer lift I assume
 

mercdudecbr600

Full Access Member
Joined
Oct 3, 2018
Messages
250
Reaction score
65
I was shown a neat trick with the clevis: using a ball joint separator and the clevis bolt half-way threaded in, pinch half of the clevis and half the bolt head. It will easily open up the joint and allow easy installation.
 

duderz7

Full Access Member
Joined
Jan 20, 2016
Messages
958
Reaction score
523
Location
Weiser, ID
I was shown a neat trick with the clevis: using a ball joint separator and the clevis bolt half-way threaded in, pinch half of the clevis and half the bolt head. It will easily open up the joint and allow easy installation.
Not a bad idea, just be careful, these things aren't meant to be flexible and have been known to break under such stress.
 

tommudd

Moderator
Staff member
Moderator
Joined
Jul 14, 2005
Messages
22,052
Reaction score
3,211
Location
Southeastern Ohio
I was shown a neat trick with the clevis: using a ball joint separator and the clevis bolt half-way threaded in, pinch half of the clevis and half the bolt head. It will easily open up the joint and allow easy installation.
Neat trick ??? LOL
That is why I have a stock pile of them to help so called friends out when they try things like that
Have known of about 16-18 folks who tried similar and broke theirs
Much easier ways of doing it
 

Offroad Bob

OffroadBob
Joined
May 26, 2021
Messages
77
Reaction score
40
Location
Chattanooga, Tn
Back when I had a 2.5 inch spacer lift on the front of my 02 Liberty Sport it was really hard to remove the struts without some sort of assistance. Then when re-installing them it was like trying to shoehorn the stuts back in place. Even leaving the top mounting bolts very loose, it was nearly impossible to get the clevis back in place. We used to loosen the lower control arms and then you could get more room by turning the cam bolts and moving the lower arms back and down. But of course that will foul up your alignment unless you scribe the cam bolts position precisely. I tried using a ratchet strap but I could not get it positioned to where I could compress the springs enough to help. So instead of messing up the front end alignment, I went to Harbor Freight and got a pair of their external spring compressors. The hooks were too thick to slip through the coil springs as is, BUT, if you have access to a bench grinder you can take off just enough material on the top of hooks to allow them to slip between the coils. I didn't have to grind much material off for them to slip in between the coils. You don't have to compress it much to make removal and installation much, much easier. I put one compressor on each side of the strut and pulled each one down maybe an inch. It was not in danger of flying off or breaking as there was not that much tension on the tool or spring because I didnt compress it very much. It really saved me a lot of time and cussing and made it much easier to remove or install the struts. Also by doing it that way I did not have to get the front end re-aligned. I think the compressor kit at Harbor Freight was about $35-$40.00.. Cheaper than an alingment and you can re-use it next time you need to get the struts out !

Bob
 

tommudd

Moderator
Staff member
Moderator
Joined
Jul 14, 2005
Messages
22,052
Reaction score
3,211
Location
Southeastern Ohio
ALL YOU HAVE TO DO IS USE A PAIR OF RATCHET STRAPS
connect one end to the other side, and the ends towards the clevis you hook and pull each side into place
No hassle, no loosening the LCAs , nothing like that
and no head killer spring compressors needed either
and I hate the word strut when we have coilover shocks LOL
 

klc

“It flies like a truck.”
KJ Supporting Member
Joined
Jan 14, 2022
Messages
343
Reaction score
468
Location
PNW
I removed the shock struts on my 2005 Liberty Limited 4wd in order to replace the shock absorbers. It has a 2" lift kit installed. I was able to find a shop that could disassemble the units, install new shocks and put it back together. However, now I can't get the things installed in the car as the I can't hook up the clevis arm. Do I need to rent a spring compressor or? Where can I rent or borrow a tool that would work?
What part of the clevis can you not hook up? Is it attached to shock assembly?
 

tommudd

Moderator
Staff member
Moderator
Joined
Jul 14, 2005
Messages
22,052
Reaction score
3,211
Location
Southeastern Ohio
Put the coilover and the clevis together , with bolts started on one side above in engine bay
THEN hooking to the bottom on each leg just above the bolt hole start pulling them in
very simple and effective , pull one side a little bit , then other side etc

trying to think where else you would even think of putting them LOL
But junk spacer lifts are the very worst
But I have used same trick with OME 790s and " extras " and worked like a charm
 

Offroad Bob

OffroadBob
Joined
May 26, 2021
Messages
77
Reaction score
40
Location
Chattanooga, Tn
Dang tommudd, sometimes you have to get creative, especially if on a budget. I didn't think I'd get a frown for my reply We didn't remove enough material off the fingers of the compressor to weaken them, maybe a 32nd of an inch at most is all it took. Seriously, it made the job much easier and faster.
 
  • Like
Reactions: JRB

tommudd

Moderator
Staff member
Moderator
Joined
Jul 14, 2005
Messages
22,052
Reaction score
3,211
Location
Southeastern Ohio
Dang tommudd, sometimes you have to get creative, especially if on a budget. I didn't think I'd get a frown for my reply We didn't remove enough material off the fingers of the compressor to weaken them, maybe a 32nd of an inch at most is all it took. Seriously, it made the job much easier and faster.
Its just I would never try to use them even on weak stock KJ springs
Plus I saw a set that were more or less like yours , just a bit taken off, then slipped partially off and then I was called to straigt
hten it all out
Even suggesting and thinking some newbie thinking they should try that scares me
 

duderz7

Full Access Member
Joined
Jan 20, 2016
Messages
958
Reaction score
523
Location
Weiser, ID
Can't remember the exact procedure as it's been a while, but I've had mine in and out a couple times with no straps involved. For sure the sway bar was disconnected, perhaps the upper ball joint too, along with everything else besides the cam bolts loose. Oh and I wouldn't worry too much about messing up alignment since anytime you change suspension you should get one. But there's obviously more than one way to get the job done, what one considers difficult might seem easier to someone else. I go for work smarter not harder, but I can't claim to always be successful at it.
 

mercdudecbr600

Full Access Member
Joined
Oct 3, 2018
Messages
250
Reaction score
65
Not a bad idea, just be careful, these things aren't meant to be flexible and have been known to break under such stress.
I've done it this way at least 6x's by now. It works like a charm and makes the whole assembly process soooooo easy. Its' basically the equivalent of a knuckle separator tool but works oppositely. Do what you guys want, but it's super easy, only spreads the clevis by an extra 1/8" (and HOLDS it) and has almost no tension on it.
 

tommudd

Moderator
Staff member
Moderator
Joined
Jul 14, 2005
Messages
22,052
Reaction score
3,211
Location
Southeastern Ohio
Can't remember the exact procedure as it's been a while, but I've had mine in and out a couple times with no straps involved. For sure the sway bar was disconnected, perhaps the upper ball joint too, along with everything else besides the cam bolts loose. Oh and I wouldn't worry too much about messing up alignment since anytime you change suspension you should get one. But there's obviously more than one way to get the job done, what one considers difficult might seem easier to someone else. I go for work smarter not harder, but I can't claim to always be successful at it.
For a regular say 927 setup no straps are needed
For any cheapo spacer lift or say 790s with extras they are needed and make it so easy when they slide in like butter
But then Ive only done a few so what do I know
 

Latest posts

Members online

Top