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Discussion Starter #1
I have a 98TJ with front Dana 30, 4.0L, NP-231 & AX-15 5 speed. I’ve got my upper and lower RE short arms installed from the 4.5" short arm kit. I bought Old Man Emu (OME) long travel (LT) shocks instead of the DT3000’s. I’m not using the transfercase lowering “pucks”.

Anyway, I disconnected the front driveshaft from the front axle before I replaced the control arms. Now that I have everything bolted up (upper & lower control arms & LT shocks), I tried to connect the front drive shaft. I ran into 2 problems.

1. With the front axle at full droop, the driveshaft is hitting the factory skid plate such that I can not connect the u-joint to the axle yoke. That is, if the front drive shaft were connected to the front axle with the vehicle weight on the axle & the axle was then let to go to full droop, the driveshaft would contact the skid plate first & then the weight of the axle (still about 1” of droop is left) would bend the driveshaft.


2. I was thinking that maybe the shocks were too long (RE Customer Service says they should be o.k.). I jacked up the axle until the front driveshaft was just a hair above the skidplate. I tried to install the front drive shaft (thinking maybe I could use some suspension limiting straps). I couldn’t install the front drive shaft because I couldn’t compress the driveshaft it enough to get the u-joint in the yoke. If it were connected & the axle were let to droop, it seems like the driveshaft would be “over compressed” (and then it would hit my skid plate & bend the shaft.

Has anyone had similar problems?

Any comments would be appreciated.

I may mess with the front cam bolts (to get more distance between the axle and the t-case), but I have them set where they were from the factory (p.s. I have the upper control arms set per the RE instructions at ¼ - 3/8” longer than stock)

I also may clearance the skid plate with a bf hammer, but that doesn't cure my overcompression of the drive shaft. That is, at full droop, I can't compress the front drive shaft by hand to install it in the axle yoke. It's close (1/4 - 1/2"), but I can't compress it enough by hand.

:confused:
 

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I had to cut the skid plate for clearance around the driveshaft, and lengthen both the lower and upper control arms as far forward as I could before anything hit during flex.
 

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Good call on cutting the skidplate. I could lengthen the upper CA's, but the short arm kit came with fixed lower CA's. Lengthening only the uppers would probably screw up my pinion angle. I may mess with the cam bolts.

I called Rubicon Express & talked with one of their people. The dude treated me like I'm 4 years old (I'm actually 5), said he never heard of this problem before & said my TJ must really be out of whack.
 

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I run the long arm kit but I have heard of this issue with some of the other kits.. Most folks just trim the skid man.. Aint nuthin wrong with your TJ.
 
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