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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
OK the flame suit is on <IMG SRC="smilies/thefinger.gif" border="0">

I am trying to figure out what route to go with my suspension. Here in the east I have come to the conclusion that 50/50 flex seems to work the best. What I mean is the front and rear flex almost identically.
I am by no means bashing 1/4 elliptic or similar designs I just feel that where I wheel a vehicle needs to stay as level as possible.
I am not looking for extreme flex but equal flex. Suspensions that allow on end or the other to do say 80% of the articulating appear to be somewhat unstable in very offcamber situations. I may be wrong(pleas insert corrections here).
I am looking for forced traction in every possible way.
I know i am kinda rambling but its early and im not awake yet. Does anyone have any suggestions for a good 50/50 design. Most SOA application I have seen wheel in person flex way better in the front.I have an idea in mind and it has been discussed here before but I will keep it to myself for now because I want to make it work where others have failed <IMG SRC="smilies/biggrin.gif" border="0">
Sorry I ramble i am kinda bored and have too many thoughts running through my head.
 

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Why are you so afraid of being flamed? <IMG SRC="smilies/confused.gif" border="0"> I think that you asked a legitimate question.

SOAs usually flex more up front (despite using the same springs at all corners) because of the extra weight in the front of the vehicle and the fact that Wrangler frames are narrower in the front than in the rear. You could limit the flex of the front (if you really wanted to <IMG SRC="smilies/rolleyes.gif" border="0"> ) with firmer springs or bumpstops, or you could add flex to the rear with longer and/or softer springs. I think that this is the simplest solution to your problem.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks Dirty, i am just used to being flamed for everything no matter how legit the ? is. Its cool I just always prepare myself. I totally agree with workign out the rear flex problem and running the front with as much flex as it will give within reason. <IMG SRC="smilies/biggrin.gif" border="0">
 

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The front probably flexes more due to the weight on it.

I prefer more like a 60/40 setup with more flex in the front.

With a 50/50 setup, you never know where the vehicle will go. It may lean with the front axle, it may lean with the rear axle.

With more flex on one end, you know it will tend to lean with the same axle most of the time. I find that I really appreaciate the predictability of knowing my truck will tend to stay with the rear axle. So when the front drops a tire off a ledge, I know the truck will tend to stay level because the rear axle is more level.

As far as your setup - just how extreme would you go? That will really dictate whan suggestions peopel would offer as far as suspension.
 

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Very legitamate question and one I thought a lot about and have been building around all year.

last year I had SUA with revolvers (now THAT should bring out some flames!) and a front shackle reversal. What I noticed was that the front was doing almost all the flexing. It wasn't until the front was almost flexed out completely that the rear would start flexing.

This was caused by the relatively stiff rate of the rear springs, which are stiff in the rear (despite all the weight on the front) in a typical SUA setup to eliminate axle wrap (I guess).... anyway, point is the rear springs were so stiff that they would not flex much on their own, and the stiffness caused them to twist off center so much that the revolvers bound up and could not 'unhinge'.

What this did in a real world situations is that I could traverse obstacles with the front wheels and then end up in rear end flex idiosyncracy land, usually exhibited by wheel stands (front wheel(s) off the ground). Say for instance I was traversing a crack at a 45 degree angle. I would get the front in and out of it because the front would be able to twist its way through. As soon as the first rear wheel went in, it would not 'droop' signifgantly (due to insufficient flex) and therefore the opposite corner front wheel would end up in the air (after it had maxed out its flex).

I came to the conclusion that this could be controlled more readily with a suspension that was better balanced. So I swapped to SOA, shackle reversed, no revolvers. What happens now when I last tested it (rear SOA done, front not) was that the rear wheel will now droop into the crack, causing the vehicle to stay more level and not do a wheel stand.

I have not been able to test it with the front SOA because they've banned all woods travel till we get some rain (since I installed the front SOA), but I suspect that it will be even better because the lack of uncontrolled droop in the front will force more flex out of the rear, levelling the rig out even more..... this is my theory anyway, hope it works out in practise.

So basically I agree that more even, controlled flex should result in fewer situations where one corner or end is doing a wheel stand because the intent of leveling out the flex is to keep the rig more level as it traverses obstacles. I do like the other posters point about a slight bias to the front so you can predict which way it is going to go.

I am hoping to achieve this by being SOA both ends with the same spring packs. The fact that the front carries more weight is naturally going to cause more flex to happen there, until I can test it out I am not sure yet if I am going to try to compensate somehow and get the rear flexing more than it is now. I can tell you I already like this setup WAY WAY better than the way it was last year.

Hope this helps and I didn't ramble too much.

[ 09-05-2001: Message edited by: ChadLloyd ]
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks for the comments everyone. I dont want to go totally wild with wheel travel. SOA with 2.5" lift springs. I wheel with a guy running a similar setup and it flexes just enuff but not equally enuff for my desires. his is more 70/30. But he does have an 8274 up front. I am aiming for max stability by getting 50/50.
60/40 is predictable I agree. I have considered even running SUA front and SOA rear with a soft spring in the rear and a higher spring rate in front to compensate for winch weight. I have seen SUA front get substantial flex. I know a SOA rear will flex great.
Here is what I am considering
Front-MORE SRS with waggy springs and buggy leaf(maybe buggy) and a full length add-a-leaf (8leaf pack)SUA
Rear-Stock YJ pack with maybe with an addaleaf. SOA
Still cant figure out how to balance ride height. Full traction has a new SRS 2"lift.

This is just one thought, another is to run SOA with heavy spring rate in front to control droop and a nice flat soft spring in the rear. I have even considered swapping to coils in the rear and SOA with soft leafs in the front. This Balanced flex is going to be difficult to acheive I may aim for the 60/40. More ramblings....I know <IMG SRC="smilies/biggrin.gif" border="0">
 

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I've got mine pretty balanced...pretty close to 50-50, tho the front does flex better.

The most accurate test of "equal" flex is on a berm....getting opposite corners on top and the other two hanging....if the truck remain level then you are balanced.

LOTS of thin leaves will help balance things more and make it easier to balance. I run a 9 leaf spring pack in front and 8 leaves in the rear....the rear is only slightly stiffer. I may add another leaf to the front (or remove one from the rear - less likely) to see if that helps balance things more.

RTI (like that matters much) is over 1100 on a 23 degree...this is a far cry from where it will max flex at tho.

Careful getting one end too soft....mine is not too bad, but could be a tad stiffer in front...sidehills get a bit unnerving at times!
 

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Originally posted by jherdman:
<STRONG>Thanks for the comments everyone. I dont want to go totally wild with wheel travel. SOA with 2.5" lift springs. I wheel with a guy running a similar setup and it flexes just enuff but not equally enuff for my desires. his is more 70/30. But he does have an 8274 up front. I am aiming for max stability by getting 50/50.
60/40 is predictable I agree. I have considered even running SUA front and SOA rear with a soft spring in the rear and a higher spring rate in front to compensate for winch weight. I have seen SUA front get substantial flex. I know a SOA rear will flex great.
Here is what I am considering
Front-MORE SRS with waggy springs and buggy leaf(maybe buggy) and a full length add-a-leaf (8leaf pack)SUA
Rear-Stock YJ pack with maybe with an addaleaf. SOA
Still cant figure out how to balance ride height. Full traction has a new SRS 2"lift.

This is just one thought, another is to run SOA with heavy spring rate in front to control droop and a nice flat soft spring in the rear. I have even considered swapping to coils in the rear and SOA with soft leafs in the front. This Balanced flex is going to be difficult to acheive I may aim for the 60/40. More ramblings....I know <IMG SRC="smilies/biggrin.gif" border="0"></STRONG>
you talk about balance and predictable then mention a buggy spring... this is just a form of uncontrolled travel that is gonna go against your cause. i don't understand why you are so against SOA/SOA front and rear can both flex really well as long as spring rates go along with the weight they carry and nothing else is limiting travel. One of the main resons I see rigs with spring overs getting more flex out of the front is because its easier to mount long travel shock mounts to the front end. I would just go with a longer softer spring in the rear like wagoneers and a good YJ pack in the front. Mix and match leaves until its balanced as you want.

I would be more concerned about balanced rates of travel instead of amounts. It seems just matching amoutns is only going add to stability in maxxed out situations
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Squirel master, the buggy spring was just a thought, I was just throwing out suggestions. I will not run a buggy in the front for the reason you mentioned, lack of controlled travel.
Im not by any means against SOA/SOA. Its a tried & true setup that performs great on all types of trails. I was just exploring some options. I am aiming at keeping as low of CG as possible. Low CG and less rig weight with more ground clearance and good approach & departure angles. Dont laugh I have come to learn that App & Dep angles are important on the trail, especially on ledges and large rocks <IMG SRC="smilies/wink.gif" border="0">

Woody- the instability on sidehills is defiantely an issue here in WV. I have a CJ flop just because his spring rates were too soft. He was on a sidehill and the Jeep just leaned and basically pulled itself over. Kinda like a slinky effect. I dont care If I flop on an obstacle or doing somethign stupid but just driving along and the Heep flopping would just be time wasted.

I agree with the berm comment also its a great way to check many aspects of the vehicle like flex equality as well as weight distribution.
 

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Just for reference, the setup you talk about (SUA front with some sorta flex aid, SOA rear) is exactly what I had for about 6 weeks the last time I was able to wheel. SOA rear, SUA front with revolvers and shackle reversal.

At that time I did no 'testing' to see if it was flexing evenly because I knew I was going SOA front (I knew this as soon as I saw how nice and controlled the SOA rear was), but my seat-of-the-pants feeling is that the flex was VERY close to even. I suspect that with SOA front but no revolvers (still SRS) that I will have a SLIGHTLY greater front bias.

The trade off in 'ratio', if it turns out there is one, to me would be worth it for the greater control with the SOA versus revolvered SUA - but that's just my 2c.

As with all things to do with my rig, as long as its fairly close I'm usually happy - or as my friend says "come on, man, it ain't the fawkin space shuttle!".

Chad
 

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A friend of mine has a 95YJ and we have spent a lot of time trying to get the same thing accomplished with his. I believe that the tendency for more front articulation comes from the fact that the springs are closer together, not really the weight difference. He has a 4banger, and AX15, so his rear is actually heavier than the front, and the thing still won't flex. DON"T buy revolvers, they suckass...

IF I WERE YOU(which i am not) I would buy Rubicon express's reverse-eyed SOA springs for the front, and either 2.5" or 4" Superlift springs for the rear, depending on how much weight you will be running in the rear(spare tire carrier,bumper,cage etc.) Then pull the bottom 2 leaves out of the Superlift springs, so that they sag to equal the height of the front. This will result in a RTI of around 1200 on a 20deg. and be fairly balanced.

Good Luck!!
 

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Originally posted by elf_cruiser:
<STRONG>I would buy Rubicon express's reverse-eyed SOA springs for the front, Good Luck!!</STRONG>
Off topic I know - but WHY?

Reverse eye means more arch for the same lift a standard eye setup has... I just don;t see what the benefit is <IMG SRC="smilies/confused.gif" border="0">
 

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I think it also depends on the rig you drive. In a jeep I would want equal flex because of the short wheel base, weight distribution and driver placement. In a pickup truck I would prefer lots of rear flex (1/4 eliptic or coilovers) becasue the rear end is so light. The front carries most of the weight so in the rear I want as much flex to get the rear wheels down to traction as possible. It all depends on your truck, but on a jeep I would want balanced flex.
 

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Originally posted by DeeAreEmm:
<STRONG>Off topic I know - but WHY?

Reverse eye means more arch for the same lift a standard eye setup has... I just don;t see what the benefit is <IMG SRC="smilies/confused.gif" border="0"></STRONG>

I think he suggested it cause RE's will allow alittle more arch - offsetting the ease of flex do to the narrower spring location!


My input on this subject is be careful in making the rear to soft!
I think the rear should be about 15% stiffer so when climbing the rear doesn't "Jack" (like you see so many coil setups) and lift the front tire!

I think a medium flexer (only thing I can relate it to is RTI - of aroun 1000 - 1200)is the best setup for all around capability. If all you do is crawl boulder washes all day, then make er flex to the moon!

[ 09-05-2001: Message edited by: Moab Austin ]
 

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Off topic I know - but WHY?

Reverse eye means more arch for the same lift a standard eye setup has... I just don;t see what the benefit is
These springs last a lot longer than stock ones because of that arch. Neg. arching a spring will wear it out quickly, and these do not neg. arch at full compression. They still have good travel, for being relatively stiff. Also, as Moab said, they force the rear to flex more because they are stiffer than Superlifts with leaves removed.

Laters--
 

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One idea I have been playing with is to attach torque tubes to both the front and rear axle housings so that they point towards each other and then connect them with a centre differential (say a small front diff out of an IFS rig). The torque tubes would connect to the centre diff where the axles would normally attach. This would then force the axles to articulate in the opposite directions through the normal side gear opporation of the diff. If the front flexed with a clockwise rotation then the rear would have to flex with a anticlockwise rotation and presto guaranteed 50/50 flex. The other benefit is that if you ran soft springs then the torque tubes/centre diff setup would stop the rig from leaning on side slopes cause the centre diff would not allow the two torque tubes to rotate in the same direction so that the axles could never lean in the same direction. In fact if you got real tricky you could put some sort of ram and crank on the input to the centre diff you could manually make the rig lean from side to side which is also handy on side slopes. It would be like a poor man's hydraulic setup.

There is one sort of situation where this setup will not help you and if you ran really soft springs with mega travel you could still flop on your side but I think the mod would be still worth while.

Anyway I have never seen this done and this is just my mindless ramblings. <IMG SRC="smilies/smile.gif" border="0">
 

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Right now mine is about 45/55 and I think it works pretty good. I'd like to get a little more out of the front so it is 50/50. That's just my personal preference.

No matter what suspension you choose you should at the very least make sure that it is stable and predictable. There's lots of weirdness going on out there to try and get every last little bit on the ramp but that doesn't make it stable on the trail.
 

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I think to get a true 50/50 design you'd have to also have a 50/50 weight balance. And then the unpredictability would definately be a factor. Plus the weight balance would be impossible to maintain. I think a certain other person <IMG SRC="smilies/rolleyes.gif" border="0"> had a good point with the predictability. I think the remark about the buggy springs was a little off base (not you David). Being that they're still a spring, they're still exhibiting down force, unlike a double shackle which is free falling. And as far as the torque tube/differential set up, that's kind of what they do on the sniper, only it's with links. I personally feel that you do what you can to keep the wheels on the ground, and not be too soft (slinky) then make up the rest with lockers, gears, skill, and luck.

[ 09-07-2001: Message edited by: BrianR ]
 
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