Posted On: 2012-05-31
Installing a Skyjacker Suspensions 4″ Lift on Jeep TJ
With our Skyjacker lift picked out, it was time to build. The great thing about this Skyjacker lift is that it’s pretty straight forward, a perfect lift for the average DIY type:
Front End Disassembly:
The great thing about this Skyjacker lift kit is that it’s pretty straightforward. It doesn’t require any cutting or welding to fit, which is perfect for someone like me who has never installed a kit on a Jeep before. So with the TJ on the lift and a jackstand beneath the front differential, we began to disassemble the front end suspension.
We first removed the factory shocks, and sway bar links; then disconnected the drag link and track bar to relieve tension on the factory coils. The lower control arms were removed one at a time so that the entire front end would not drop out.
Front End Assembly:
The coil and bump stops were the first pieces to be installed, next was the passenger side lower control arm. One of the great things about this kit is that the lower control arms are adjustable which allows a perfect fit for your Jeep. Be sure to grease the zerk fittings before installation though. Lubrication can be difficult once the arms are installed. You may also want to consider purchasing angled zerk fittings for the control arms. Also, take note that you’ll have to find a way to secure your brake lines – we used zip ties, but various methods will work.
It was now time to throw in Skyjacker’s Hydro shocks. These shocks have a reputation for being softer than their Nitro counterparts, which is perfect for a daily driver. The sway bar links were next, and thankfully Skyjacker designed their links to disconnect easily. Simply pull four retainer pins and disconnect the sway bar to gain a full range of motion.
All that was left on the front end was the pitman arm, which requires a pitman arm puller. With this last piece installed it was now time to move to the rear end.
Rear End Disassembly:
Similarly to the front, we placed the jackstand under the differential, and began to remove the shocks, coils, and sway bar links. The track bar came off next so that we could install the Skyjacker track bar relocation bracket. This required us to drill one hole to reinforce the bracket to the frame. We used some aluminum cutting fluid to help keep the drill hole as clean as possible. With that out of the way we were free to remove the lower control arms.
Rear End Assembly:
We left the rear track bar loose to gain play in the suspension for installing the springs and control arms. The coils went in first, followed by the control arms. We mounted the control arms from the bottom, and then pushed them up in to place. With the control arms in place, all that was left were the shocks and sway bar links, then the rear was done.
Transfercase Drop Down Bracket:
The final touch, and perhaps the most important – was the transfercase drop down. Like I mentioned at the beginning of this post, this transfercase drop down eliminates the need to install a Slip Yoke Eliminator. Essentially the Skyjacker kit includes a spacer that lowers the whole assembly.
This Skyjacker 4″ lift kit is a perfect kit for anyone looking for a great mid-level suspension lift that won’t dent the checkbook. It can be installed at home, preferably with some helping hands, and be on the road within a couple of days. The only thing that we had to add to the lift was an aftermarket front track bar since the kit didn’t include a drop down bracket.
We also noticed that we were unable to place the Jeep in to 4-Low. It was discovered that the linkage was colliding with a bolt from the transfercase drop down bracket. The fix was to replace the bolt with a flat head hex.
In a nutshell, Skyjacker has produced a rugged, functional, and cost effective kit for the Jeep Wrangler TJ – but did it withstand the tortures of Moab? More to follow…