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88-99 cheap front 4" lift UPDATE pics new bumper ect.

Discussion in '1992-Present Chevy & GMC models' started by original balzer, May 5, 2007.

  1. original balzer

    original balzer 1/2 ton status

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    my ball joints was bad on my 97 AND i wanted more space betwen the frame and the ground. lifts for IFS trucks are spendy. so i looked into it trying to find a cheap way to get more lift. well skyjacker has a 2" lift for these trucks for about $500 but i wanted more than that. so i consulted my friend at big o tires store here locally. he said the new keyways for the torsion bars are about $50..hmmm that gives about an inch they use them to level IFS chevys. so a quick call to skyjacker i got the run down on their 2" lift
    witch consisted of rear add-a-leafs front upper a-arms and some brackets to lower your diff and shock mounts. well i dont need all that crap so i ordered just the upper a-arms they clear the droop bumpstops an additional 1" for $250. then my friend says hey why dont we put the ball joints under the a-arms instead of on top and see what that does....suprize suprize that gives 2" of free lift......well aside from a handfull of grade 8 bolts and nuts while they was at it i told them to put some new shocks on it and they found some bad tie rod ends so my total front 4" lift was $766+$250 for the upper a-arms. BUT keep in mind thats labor and 4 new ball joints 2 tie rod ends shocks key-ways and front end alignment. my total was $1016 for the front but i had the work done and had alot of new parts so it could be done alot cheaper. just thought id pass this on to you guys.

    by the way i didnt drop the front diff and have flexed it as hard as i can and i dont get any cv bind at all so all is good on the CV angles im betting if you do the work and dont have to replace all the stuff i did you could lift the front 4" and the back 3" for under 1000 bucks and it would sit level and no front drop brackets to give you greif on alignments every 3 months

    balzer
     
    Last edited: Sep 26, 2007
  2. mudman20

    mudman20 1/2 ton status

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    funny

    friend just bought a brand new 6" lift with rear springs from ntwonline.com for 975
     
  3. original balzer

    original balzer 1/2 ton status

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    true cheap lifts are available. but like my old 1990 had a chaep 6" lift and it needed an alignment every 3 months. everything moved around in the diff drop brackets no matter how tight the bolts were. now throw in some labor and an alignment to your buddies lift and see where his total comes in. not to mention replacing worn parts ext. my 4" lift everything is in its factory location not to mention a guy could do this lift in a few hours and theres no cutting involved. dont get me wrong i hope your buddy all the best but i have been down the cheap lift road before and know the drawbacks.

    balzer
     
  4. sled_dog

    sled_dog 1 ton status

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    Umm, there is no reason in the world that puting the upper balljoints underneath of the control arm should do anything but push the control arm up. The upper balljoint is a follower joint, its not loaded, that just makes no sense. Not to mention you just screwed with the entire front suspension geometry by relocating the balljoint from its intended location(not that those IFS lifts aren't a nightmare when it comes to that anyway). Everything is not in its factory location if you placed the balljoints there. Noticed any bumpsteer yet?

    Everyone says NOT to use the different clocked keys on the 88-98 rigs because it puts too much twist on the tbars. Ride like a washboard? My 95 bounced down the road after I just leveled it 1" with the tbar adjustment. Betting it doesn't flex worth a damn really, except for the rear.


    Not trying to be a dick, always for cool little things, but yours sounds like its just going to be the same old nightmare all said and done.
     
  5. original balzer

    original balzer 1/2 ton status

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    I figure id update this for you guys. As of today the lift has 3800 miles on it(yes i drive alot). And so far theres not a single problem. It does ride rougher but not harsh. I felt it was too soft stock (body roll, boat like motion on the road). The measured lift was 4.5" i wrote 4" because i figured it would settle a bit but it hasnt its still at 4.5" higher than it was stock.

    ***Sled dog, i need to clear this up for you as well as the others. The superlift a-arms are only 1/4" thick where the ball joint goes through (stock is alot thicker). Going down through the arm from the top the stud bound up on the hole. Mounting it to the bottom of the arm freed it up to get 2" more out of the travel. That i dont belive had any affect on the geometry, as it is an uneven a-arm system anyway.***

    It dont flex very well, BUT what IFS chevy does? Factory specs i have seen say 3.5" wheel travel stock. I measure about 4.25" on mine.

    Another note. One of my good friends has a 96 with the torsions cranked, his rides like a tank. But recently he changed from rancho 5000's to bilstiens (not sure what number ?4100?) and it made a noticable differnce. So later i may try differnt shocks (I would like a shock hoop and rez. shocks) and see if the ride improves. But i must say i dont mind the ride as is.

    The 4wd is still not functioning, so i havent wheeled it to speak of. I have blasted down some dirt roads at speeds faster than i should, it handles well but needs better rear shocks for sure.

    To sum it up. I am VERY happy with the results. I have not noticed any negitive effects, unless you want the carlike ride they have stock. The alignment is still good, and no pulling or funkyness whatso ever.

    Balzer
     

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