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Discussion Starter #1
I've got 150k miles on my Jeep LJ Rubicon and all the control arms/sway bars/track bars/etc. are still stock, bushings included. I put some Bilstein shocks on about 10k miles ago and just put on some OME coils which netted me about 2" of lift. I'm now getting some minor death wobble (only right around 55 mph) and i'm assuming its from wore out bushings and the taller coils are making it stand out more.

So, for my question, can I start piecing together control arms, track bar, etc (front axle first then rear) which will work with the 2" coils now but also be compatible with longer coils later or would I need to buy a kit and do them all at once?

I'm not wanting to drop a bunch of money at once so I was hoping to upgrade them as I go. If so, are johnny joints still the best or would they be overkill for a weekend wheeling rig (which my Jeep is still my daily driver for now)?

Rob
 

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You can piece it together, buying adjustable lowers (or uppers) will allow you to adjust caster and/or driveshaft angle. as for the joints I really like the duroflex from metalcloack
Here is a link for just the lowers:
https://metalcloak.com/duroflex-control-arms-tj-lj-xj-lower-front-rear.html


Or the full kit, (buy once, cry once)
https://metalcloak.com/jeep-tj-lj-wrangler-parts-accessories/tj-wrangler-suspension/duroflex-control-arms-tj-lj-full-set.html


There are other good brands out there for example Currie.
 

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Upgrade your suspension as you can afford it. You won't regret it.
There is no such thing as minor Death Wobble. You either have DW or Not. By definition it is a uncontrollable violent shaking of the steering wheel that usually starts randomly after striking a bump or crack in the pavement. The only way to stop the shaking is to slow down substantially. If you have ever experienced it you have probably soiled your underpants.
If you have this do not drive your Jeep until it is repaired. DW in Jeeps is mostly caused by the track bar. Either worn or loose. Get under your Jeep with someone moving the steering back and forth and look for play in either track bar end. DW can be caused by other things, if you cannot find the cure get it into a alignment shop for a inspect.
If you have a shake or wobble with a certain speed then the first thing to look at is tires. Then u-joints, tie rod ends etc.
Your new coils will change the caster angle on your front end. The best way to adjust this is with control arms. I bought Rancho ones for my JK. I would've bought Metal Cloak but north of the border we get a bad deal on exchange. I like this type of joint because I wanted the quietest ones I could.
Someone here with Jonny Joints can chime in about noise or vibration?
 

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I ran savvys aluminum double adjustable control arms on my jeep when it had stock suspension because I had a tummy tuck. They have Johnny joints on both ends and I've never had problems with noise or anything like they. They were a little stiffer than the stock one when I first put them on but never really noticed it. I also ran an AntiRock swaybar with a stock suspension without issues.

I gained flex with the adjustable control arms because of the design of that joint, hem joints would do the same.

For the steering components you might want to look at the ZJ upgrade option. The currie system is designed for 4in of lift due to how thick the components. With only a 2in lift you might run into interference issues with the front diff. I had that problem with the JKS and Currie front trackbars and ended up getting a metal cloak front track bar cause it has a bend in it to help with clearance with the front diff cover.
 

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Johnny joints are a preferred choice when upgrading the suspension (in my opinion) but if you are on a tight budget and you are just doing forest service type trails you can go the traditional bushing route for control arms. With 150k miles on your suspension, you are going to have worn parts - you should really replace everything in the front - track bar, control arms, probably the tie rod and drag link bushings are shot, etc., etc. Probably should replace the ball joints as well on the steering knuckles.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks for the tips everyone. I'll start looking at control arm brands and see what I like. I've been meaning to look into the ZJ steering upgrade, so maybe i'll try that first.

As for the minor death wobble, it's what I would call a heavy shake/wobble in the steering wheel at 55 mph. It doesn't happen all the time which is strange, but it is easily controllable still.
 

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As for the minor death wobble, it's what I would call a heavy shake/wobble in the steering wheel at 55 mph. It doesn't happen all the time which is strange, but it is easily controllable still.

You don't feel death wobble in the steering wheel only, it shakes the entire vehicle like it was in a blender. and is not easily controllable, as rlenglish pointed out usually you have to slow down considerable for it to stop.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I can see the front hood shaking as well which is why I think it's minor death wobble. All the characturistics but also controllable (but I have been driving Jeeps from CJ's to TJ's for the past almost 20 years so controllable might be subjective).

Rob
 

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Someone here with Jonny Joints can chime in about noise or vibration?
Internet myth. I mean, yeah, I'm sure they transmit a bit more NVH than Clevite bushings. But to sort it out amongst all the native NVH in a lifted TJ is like picking pepper out of fly dung.

- DAA
 

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I am looking at control arms too. I really like Savvy, but I just saw Rancho has a spring sale rebate going on right now. You can get about $150 back on a set of control arms. So with the rebate, you can get into the Rancho arms with the D2 (DDB style) bushing for about $720. That makes the Rancho arms about $500+/- cheaper than Savvy. I'm hoping to find some info from guys running the D2 bushing. Not much out there.
 

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I am looking at control arms too. I really like Savvy, but I just saw Rancho has a spring sale rebate going on right now. You can get about $150 back on a set of control arms. So with the rebate, you can get into the Rancho arms with the D2 (DDB style) bushing for about $720. That makes the Rancho arms about $500+/- cheaper than Savvy. I'm hoping to find some info from guys running the D2 bushing. Not much out there.
I don't know anything about the D2 bushing or how it performs. I looked at it and it looks like a poly JJ style bushing. I am sure they'd be better than stock but looking at the design I think actual JJs or heim joint would have more flex.
 

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I don't know anything about the D2 bushing or how it performs. I looked at it and it looks like a poly JJ style bushing. I am sure they'd be better than stock but looking at the design I think actual JJs or heim joint would have more flex.

As far as I can tell the D2 is pretty much the same thing as the Synergy DDB. (Both are quite different than the Metalcloak Duroflex.) I don't think anyone knows how they will perform or stand up in the long run. They are too new to the market. So they are a bit of a gamble. But when they are $500 cheaper than the Savvy arms, I think they are worth considering. Especially if you are mostly highway driving and light wheeling. That is why I wanted to mention them.



I have no experience with them, so I can't speak about their quality or anything else. But when it comes to bang for the buck, I think they need to be considered. Especially with the current rebate.



From my perspective, I see Rancho as a mass market retailer of mid-level equipment. I think they are better than Rough Country but not as good as Currie. So I am making the assumption that their control arms and the D2 bushing will fall somewhere within that spectrum. Does that sound reasonable to others.
 

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I think that's a reasonable evaluation. I also feel Rancho is mid level product.
As with anything you have to pay a disproportionate amount of money to move up a level or two.
 

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......From my perspective, I see Rancho as a mass market retailer of mid-level equipment. I think they are better than Rough Country but not as good as Currie. So I am making the assumption that their control arms and the D2 bushing will fall somewhere within that spectrum. Does that sound reasonable to others.
That is my opinion as well.
 

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I lifted my LJ about 65,000 miles ago and always had just a little wobble between 40-50 mph. Every now and then the wobble would get really bad. Those times I’d tighten the trac bar and the bad wobble would go away. I recently replaced all 4 ball joints and the minor wobble went away. The lowers probably were bad when it had 20,000 miles on it. Just FYI
 

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Core off-road is another consideration. Life time if you break it we replace it. They come with options and are upgradeable.
 

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"Minor" death wobble is not normally death wobble but possibly bump steer.

Bump-steer is where your Panhard and drag link are out of parallel, of too disproportionate length, or both. What happens is the axle moves from the bump and the sweep of the arms move to different lateral distances so the wheels get turned to the right or left.



Bump steer:
https://www.quadratec.com/jeep_knowledgebase/article-68.htm


Death wobble:
https://jalopnik.com/jeep-death-wobble-is-so-violent-it-will-make-you-crap-y-1795053642


With death wobble, you need to be wearing your brown pants. If you didn't or almost didn't soil yourself, it was not death wobble.

As far as control arms go, when I got my Rancho lift kit, it came with the -=beefiest=- lower control arms I'd ever seen. Along with the hardest bushings around. Nothing, and I mean nothing looks like it could make them flex. If anything would give, it would be the brackets on the frame or the axle. A frame costs about 4 grand. An unpopulated bare D44 front axle costs just under grand. A Crown sheet metal control arm kit costs $120.00. So I didn't install them. If I do get upgraded control arms, they will probably be Currie Johnny Joints, which I am confident will not rip the brackets off of the frame or axle, but at $1,200.00, I need to save my pennies.
 

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At least it's buy once, cry once with the JJ's. Mine have 100,000 miles on them, tons of off road use, still tight and quiet. Did finally rebuild the rear uppers not too long ago, cheap and easy and should be good for another 100,000.

- DAA
 
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