Suspension advice

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SLO Rob

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Recently purchased a 2000 4Runner with 160k in great shape. I'd like to start with the suspension as it sags some. (Not too bad) if I got just coils or just shocks, not both at the same time, what's the..wisest choice? It's not bouncy, but soft. right now a full kit isn't an option, but piece by piece is fine. Ideally, a 2.5 lift that can take some weight in the back. Any  insight?
 

UKCRD

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For shocks, take a look at the Elka adjustable gas shocks. Not cheap but VERY good. I have them on my JK and I can set them for whatever kind of ride I need.
 

SLO Rob

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@Duncan...Thanks for this. Seems everyone says OME or Bilsteins on all the sites, but I knew there had to be more out there. And I do want adjustable... I appreciate it!
 

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Robert, I got to hear about them from Teraflex when I installed one of their short arm kits with track bar on my JK. The Elkas were their go to shock so I thought I'd get them installed at the same time. The difference in ride on and off road is amazing. If need be I can throw the Jeep into corners I wouldn't have dared with the stock shocks.

I think Teraflex now use Fox shocks, which look to be pretty much the same:

https://teraflex.com/shop_items/528ffa7fead962f416e72e8b
 
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UKCRD

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You're welcome Robert. The Teraflex kits are well respected in the Jeep communities and many of the overlanders use the short arm kit and rock crawlers use their long arm kit. Well worth the investment if you can stretch to it.
 

udoxx

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When choosing a lift you want to get something that rides as well on road as off road and usually to get that benefit you should purchase coils and shocks that work well together, so keep that in mind.  Also, if you are really concerned with a suspension upgrade or kit that can handle weight seriously consider OME that is why most people recommend it.  When you start adding equipment, bumpers and protection you begin to approach that GVWR and that is determined by brakes, suspension, frame, engine.  If you can cheat a little by installing a suspension that can handle the additional weight that may be your best way to go.  I currently have an HD OME kit on my Commander and opted for OME because the springs are rated to handle 90-200 additional pounds.  If I had stayed with spacers and stock coils my Jeep would have sagged, bottomed out and swayed as I drove around turns and off road obstacles.  Also, think about the max tire size you are going to actually stick with because usually that is the number one reason why a suspension lift is needed.  If you are thinking about getting a taller suspension to counter the sagging that may not be a good idea.  You may gain the clearance but with the coil being loaded constantly it may fatigue and fail quicker than a spring designed with a heavy or higher load spring rate.  I had to experiment with two different spring weights up front before I settled on HD coils up front.  I found it to be comfortable yet floaty when cruising at highway speeds now it is firm and compliant and still comfortable.
 

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Great advice! Much appreciated. 90 to 200 sounds about right. I'm not interested in lift more than 2.5 so maybe that could be a good set up as well.
 

iamout

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Hi Robert. I have a  2.5" OME heavy lift. I have ARB front bumper, Custom Rear Bumper (tire swingout, fuel can basket. 3 cans), extra battery, and sleeping platform. An soon a safari roof rack. and I love it! Take a look at my build thread to have an idea the way my 97 LC looks like. Good luck

Frisly
 
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SLO Rob

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Thanks Fris...I'll have to think more about what kind of weight I'm looking at..
 

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The Overland Bound Rig is using the Old Man Emu 2.5" lift with 1" spacers on the back. Very nice ride on the road and handles quite a bit of weight when loaded down.

[button color="orange" size="big" link="http://www.sleeoffroad.com/products/80_suspension_ome.htm" target="blank" ]Old Man Emu[/button]
 
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expeditionnorth

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Yes I say new coils as needed & also 2nd the Blistein shocks

I've always more concerned about a low center of gravity than worrying about high a rig can go

on the trails you'll really appreciate it

nice looking rig
 

SLO Rob

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Thanks guys. I really do appreciate the insight. I don't plan to go too high at all, but want a better ride with weight in the back, so all this is great advice.
 

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@michael @mike @duncan

So what was recommended to me by a 4Runner only mechanic in my area was just to get an additional leaf spring in the back...it should give about 2" of lift and help with 150-200 lbs I'm told. It would have some rake, but even when loaded, which is important for me. Anyone have experience with this method?

Thanks again!
 

SLO Rob

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@duncan it makes sense, but to me it seems coil replacement first off is a better route. This weekend I'm putting it up in the air to replace ball joints that look ancient and ready to die. Then I'll be able to see the coils and shocks to see the real situation, so we will see!
 

SLO Rob

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I do, udoxx. They hadn't seen my setup. Right now, it looks like coils is the way to go as I'm also doing ball joints and a new radiator in the very near future.
 

udoxx

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@Robert yes, what they recommend is an idea from pick up trucks used to tow trailers.  Yes, coils rated to handle the additional weight whittle be best.  But like @Michael coils and a spacer will work also.