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Stock or 2in Lift Suspension Suggestions

Wes Harden

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I hear ya I am in a new place to, Wife wants whole house painted and I have a new garage to set up and organize, a whole long list of Burb tasks. A trailer of shop equip and whatnot to unload...... just doesn't seem to end.
 

bigjimmy82

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I had a set of Tuff country EZ ride springs on my '70 Chevy which has slightly shorter length front springs from your '89. It was horrible!! When I finally spent the money for custom springs from ORD, it was a huge difference. There is no way to describe it, you would have to experience it! The improvement was amazing!

I have had 33's on a stock '90 Jimmy without issues, so I would go for a 2" lift from ORD. It should also help with the driveshaft angle by dropping down some.
This was stock springs with 33's, 15x8 wheels.

View attachment 368292
 

green55

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Is this a concerning amount of wiggle room at the front mount for the front spring? Other side is flush with mount (shown in 1 photo), it left this much space on the none-flush side (shown in other photo). Not torqued down, just pushed the bolt through. I figure torquing may pull it together

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imiceman44

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Is this a concerning amount of wiggle room at the front mount for the front spring? Other side is flush with mount (shown in 1 photo), it left this much space on the none-flush side (shown in other photo). Not torqued down, just pushed the bolt through. I figure torquing may pull it together

View attachment 395791

View attachment 395792
I usually put a washer in to take the slack and then tighten.
I like to keep the sides of the mount parallel
 

Wes Harden

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yeah it looks a little short, put a flat washer in there. Don't squish the front spring mount, by over tightening to take up the slack. FYI torque the nut side to 50 ft pd.
 

green55

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Another newb question. U-bolts look like they aren't hugging the axle like I feel like they should.

Measured the axle circumference -- 9.5in. According to some geometry, that means the axle diameter is 3in.

U-bolts I'm using are these from ORD: https://www.offroaddesign.com/u-bolt-kit-for-gm-1-2-3-4-ton-front-axles.html. Of course I ordered without measuring, but reading the description, sounds like they should be the right ones. 3 count of 3in and 1 count of 3-3/8in.

I haven't torqued them down in the photo, just hand tight. I've read that u-bolts stretch when torqued, so maybe in that stretching process is when they really get tight? Kinda hard to get a good pic, but you can see the empty space between the bolt & the axle. Bottom of the bolt is touching though. Just want to make sure everything looks good to y'all.

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sweetk30

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You be fine . Crank them down they will snug up a bit . I also wack them with a 3-4lb hammer to help square up and snug up as i am drawing them up .
 

green55

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Cool, just needed that peace of mind. I'd of felt like an idiot if I noticed the gap, didn't ask, and it was wrong.

Well got all the bolts in, just need to buy a couple nuts they didn't have in stock at the store I went to. Then torque 'em down and I'll be 25% done. Hopefully I've asked all my questions going through this corner so I stop bugging y'all with the rest lol.

I think the passenger front will be easy assuming nothings rusted in, except for the upper hanger bolt, which will hit the exhaust if I try to take it out. Will probably just not replace that one since the bushings seem fine.
 

green55

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Also -- I'm not planning on using thread locker/loc-tite on any bolts. Didn't look like anything I took off had it and I don't see any mention of it in the service manual, so I assume that's fine?

And for torquing, suspension should be under load for spring bolts, but u-bolts can be tightened without it under load?
 

Big Ray

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With stock wheels, there should be no reason you rub with 33x10.5 tire size up front, ever. I don't believe I've ever heard of anyone having an issue running them on stock wheels. Granted, it's not a huge sample size, its not nearly as common as 33x12.5. I don't 4 wheel this thing hard, but it goes off-road, so under more than just street driving, they won't rub.

You "gain" almost 3/4" (.7) of clearance running the 10.5. I suspect the minor rubbing most have with the 12.5's doesn't require trimming of greater than .25". Believe the clearance issue is at the rear of the wheelwell opening?

I have a stock 86 burb with 33x12.50 BFG AT's. Factory rally wheels.

The springs are slam worn out. It might rub if I hit a driveway incline a bit fast at full lock.

Not bad for a 35 year old truck imo. And the wheelwells look "full".
 

6872xtc

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Also -- I'm not planning on using thread locker/loc-tite on any bolts. Didn't look like anything I took off had it and I don't see any mention of it in the service manual, so I assume that's fine?

And for torquing, suspension should be under load for spring bolts, but u-bolts can be tightened without it under load?
Yes, correct.
 

Wes Harden

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I don't know that there is any preferred way. I usually get them a bit more than hand tight put the tires on and set it on the ground, or body stands if a car, and torque the bolts.
I also do it in 3 steps, 50-60 ft pd, 90 ft pd, then 120-125 ft pd, for 5/8" u bolts. Be sure to tighten them equal. couple turns move to the next until you reach the current torque target.
No loctite is needed. Be sure to re-torque after 50-100 miles then again at 500 miles and check them every so often.
 

nitro_rat

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Ride quality will be noticeably improved if you ditch the sway bar. If you feel like you must keep it go with squishy rubber bushes instead of poly. I run 80+ in my Suburban with 2" Tuff Country HD's (6.2 Diesel + winch) and there is no loss of stability at that height with the sway bar tossed. In fact it increases handling by decreasing understeer...
 

green55

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Ride quality will be noticeably improved if you ditch the sway bar. If you feel like you must keep it go with squishy rubber bushes instead of poly.
That's interesting. I replaced the sway bar bushings with poly within the last year. May have to give removing it or switching bushings depending on how it rides after all this.

Speaking of how it rides...front is done! Finished the other day, but sounded scary when running. I assumed it was because of broken o2 sensor, so waited to take it for a spin til I replaced that. Got that done this morning before work, sounded good when running again and took it around the block to see how it felt.

It was MUCH smoother, even with only the front done. The vibrations coming from the transfer case seemed to be lessened or totally gone based on the short drive. I'm talking about that nice vibration that seems to come from right where the driver's seat belt mounts to the floor. Also, the newer vibration that I've been getting between 25-35 for the last couple months also seemed reduced. Felt smoother on smooth road, better over bumps, etc.

Overall, if I get the same kind of improvements after doing the back, I'll be stoked. The rear springs are supposed to be delivered today and those are the last parts I need, other than hardware which I'll buy as I take off the old hardware so I know what I need.

An obligatory "progress pic" -- driveway is slanted from front to rear, so even though it looks level, the front is at least a couple inches lower than the back.

IMG_8819.jpg
 

nitro_rat

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Zone Offroad makes a sway bar link that will soften the ride if you're not comfortable ditching the bar. BDS makes the same thing but more money. ORD's disconnects also do the same thing but are even more $$$ and most guys never disconnect them anyway...

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