My Overland Project, the RME JKU

Naylor

New member
How are the 9550's holding up? I almost bought a set to replace my blown bilsteins, since I also ordered the Outback coils.
 

Greg@RME

Adventurer
How are the 9550's holding up? I almost bought a set to replace my blown bilsteins, since I also ordered the Outback coils.
They're doing great, I've actually been very impressed with the affordable 9550 shocks! I had thought about upgrading to remote reservoir Fox shocks, but I don't think the gain is worth the cost after all the offroading I've done with the 9550's. We've had the Jeep loaded up with camping gear, food, fuel and water... bombing down sandy washes in Baja for hours on end and the shocks didn't seem to mind, the 9550 shocks and Outback springs made for a comfortable and compliant ride at speed.
 

Hickey

Dirt Diggler
Go to bed!

I was also impressed with how well your Jeep rode when I hitched a ride to the top of the monument. I would definitely consider the 9550's after experiencing the ride, and knowing what you've put your rig through.
 

Greg@RME

Adventurer
Go to bed!

I was also impressed with how well your Jeep rode when I hitched a ride to the top of the monument. I would definitely consider the 9550's after experiencing the ride, and knowing what you've put your rig through.
:sombrero:


I knew I should have just thrown a set in my cart when I bought the springs. Haha
I'm sure they'd be happy to make a 2nd order! ;)


Great video.
Thanks!
 

Greg@RME

Adventurer
Well, it's time to step up my game and the JKU's suspension! I recently ordered a TeraFlex Alpine Long Arm upgrade for my Jeep, very excited about the idea of having maintenance-free rubber bushings and the change to long arms. I've had a Jeep on long arms in the past and once you've had a long arm Jeep, you won't want to go back to short arms. I'm really looking forward to the control arms working smoother and the axles moving easier, on road and off. I will be installing the long arm upgrade mid-November, I have a trip planned in early Nov and one in late Nov.... hoping I can get it all done in between! I'll have to drop the gas tank, cut and grind off most of the frame control arm mounts, then weld on the new, beefier Teraflex control arm mounts... it's going to be a lot of work! I'll post pics of the progress, once under way!







 

homeguy

Observer
I just got the Alpine arms and I love them. Changed them from RK arms


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
 

Greg@RME

Adventurer
I really wish they would offer a bolt on long arm setup. Maryland sucks for frame mods
Oh, that does suck! No weld-on control arm mounts then? Bolt-on long arms would be hard to engineer, IMO.


I just got the Alpine arms and I love them. Changed them from RK arms
I have been running a full set of 8 stock-length Teraflex Monster Arms with the modular ends and I've been very happy with them. I have heard nothing but good from the folks running the Alpine Arms, really looking forward to the long arm version!
 

Greg@RME

Adventurer
Very nice! :victory:
I'm a huge fan of minimizing maintenance and NVH. :beer:
Same here, these bushings should last a LONG time without any issues. My Modular Ends have been reliable and trouble-free, but I do make sure they get grease every 3,000 miles or so!
 

Greg@RME

Adventurer
So I wrapped up the TeraFlex Alpine Long Arm upgrade over the weekend, it was a pretty big project and I wanted to take my time and make sure it was done right. First thing I did was read the directions, then watch the awesome install videos that the folks at TeraFlex have made. I decided to do one end at a time, starting with the rear. After dropping the rear driveshaft and gas tank (had about 2 gallons left in it, used my motorcycle jack to drop it), then covering up all the open fuel lines fittings, out came the torch. I cut off the factory frame brackets and started the grinding. That was probably the biggest part of the job, time consuming but I didn't want leftover bits on the frame so I took my time and did the best I could. Soon enough the frame was cleaned up and I started welding on the new rear frame brackets. There are some places that you have to work hard to get a good weld, patience is a very valuable attribute here! I hit the bare metal with some paint, let it dry and then started positioning the upper and lower rear long arms! It was a great feeling to get the rear all buttoned up!














I decided to upgrade my bent and abused transmission crossmember with a Barnes 4WD crossmember. The stock stamped sheetmetal crossmember was actually coming apart at the seams, so the upgraded was well justified! The Barnes 4WD crossmember is very beefy with 3/16" steel and the sides overlap for 3/8" thickness and fully welded... it should last a long time! I also feel better with this addition, since the front lower control arms tie into the crossmember.









I moved on to the front long arm install, moving brake lines and wiring harnesses out of the way and put the torch to work. The factory lower control arm brackets were a PITA to torch off, it took a lot of careful work and then a LOT of grinding. Eventually the frame was all cleaned up and I started welding again, the drivers-side bracket wasn't easy to fully weld, the exhaust is right in the way at the top of the bracket. I ended up spacing the exhaust away from the frame to get the mig welder in there. Finally it was all welded up, sprayed it down with paint and started bolting up the front long arms! I did the uppers first, then worked on the lowers... I made a rookie mistake here, I got excited to wrap it up and put my lowers on backwards. They need to go on the opposite sides... :( I was going to fix this today, but decided to go for a trail test instead. ;) I'll fix them tomorrow.



See.... backwards... oops!







Since I had the JKU up on jackstands, I decided to get some other unrelated maintenance and upgrades done. First thing was changing the oil in the transfer-case, 2.2 quarts of Valvoline ATF4+ full synthetic. Then I swapped out my leaking rear diff cover (it got abused on the Rubicon this Spring) to a TeraFlex cover and a Lube Locker gasket, filling it with fresh Valvoline full synthetic gear oil. I took a picture of 2 of the lower bolts on the stock diff cover, they looked like they'd had a hard life! :laughing:












After getting it back on the ground, I tightened up all the control arm bolts (per TeraFlex instructions) and admired the changes!





Then it was time for a trail test....
 
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