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Installing a 3-Inch Suspension Lift (Write-Up + Photos) #124884
02/03/03 10:15 AM
02/03/03 10:15 AM
Smiley  Offline OP
Trail Leader
Joined: Dec 2001
Posts: 5,911
Back in BFE, WV
OK, here goes…

My 1997 Rodeo’s altitude adjustment began with a careful inventory of all of the parts involved, followed by a thorough reading and re-reading of the instructions. (Like many, I often don’t bother to read the instructions, but considering what was on the line… in this case I made an exception.)

I have to say that the instructions leave quite a bit to be desired. --- I am far more of a ‘picture oriented’ type person, so the complete lack of visual representations did little to ease my mind.

This is where having a mechanical genius for a friend makes a big difference. (Thanks again Joe!) --- Now before you go thinking that I’m mechanically inept… I should tell you that I’m no slouch when it comes to understanding the basic nature of how most things work… HOWEVER, I have absolutely no doubt that if I’d tried this project alone, I’d still be sitting out there working on it, and looking at the instructions as though I were a chimpanzee who's trying to calculate algorithms with a slide rule.

And to Joe’s credit, he somehow endured all of my pesky, worrisome, old-lady-esque questions… “Ummm… Are you sure that the blah-blah-blah won’t end-up yadda-yadda-yadda?”

Once we began, I was relieved to find that the whole project was surprisingly straightforward, and nowhere near as intimidating as I had allowed myself to believe. --- Frankly, the hardest part was safely and securely getting the rear end high enough off of the ground to get started working on it… Once that was done, everything else seemed to move along quite smoothly. (Well… ALMOST! --- More on that later.)

--- After getting the rear end up in the air, with the frame rails sitting upon the jack stands (located just forward of the leaf spring hangers), we jacked the differential up, in order to relieve the weight of the axle off of the springs.

--- With the jack compressing the axle, and another set of jack stands under it to hold everything in place, it was time to remove the shock stud bolts…

<img src="http://home.sunlitsurf.com/~e-zoozoo/3Lift1.JPG" alt=" - " />
^^^ This was some very messy work&#8230; Given the prior three-weeks of below-freezing temperatures, washing it first was pretty much out of the question.

--- Then the U-bolts, U-bolt plate&#8230;

<img src="http://home.sunlitsurf.com/~e-zoozoo/3Lift2.JPG" alt=" - " />

--- And the lower shackle bolt&#8230;

<img src="http://home.sunlitsurf.com/~e-zoozoo/3Lift3.JPG" alt=" - " />

--- Then the forward, stationary leaf spring hanger&#8230;

<img src="http://home.sunlitsurf.com/~e-zoozoo/3Lift4.JPG" alt=" - " />
^^^ Joe&#8217;s photographic online debut! --- Almost a &#8216;Where&#8217;s Waldo?&#8217; thing, huh?

--- With the spring off, a vise served us well in preventing the spring tension from becoming an issue. --- The instructions called for a large C-clamp.

(Behind the scenes: In-between what you see in these two photos, we found it easier to use a C-clam to compress the leaves while installing the new, longer center pin.)

<img src="http://home.sunlitsurf.com/~e-zoozoo/3Lift5.JPG" alt=" - " />

--- And BTW, don&#8217;t forget to put some grease between those leaves!

--- With the Add-A-Leaf in place, it was back to the vise. --- A hacksaw took care of the extra center pin length. (That extra length is there for a reason&#8230; It makes it much easier to get everything back together again.)

<img src="http://home.sunlitsurf.com/~e-zoozoo/3Lift6.JPG" alt=" - " />

--- This side was ready to go back on!

<img src="http://home.sunlitsurf.com/~e-zoozoo/3Lift7.JPG" alt=" - " />

--- Nothing to it&#8230; right?

<img src="http://home.sunlitsurf.com/~e-zoozoo/3Lift8.JPG" alt=" - " />

--- It was at this moment that we ran into the first little snag. --- I purchased these Add-A-Leafs from TrooperMark (Thanks Mark!), who in-turn had gotten them from Matt at Indy4x . --- Mark bought them for his `88 Trooper, and while the leaves will fit on any leaf-sprung Isuzu, I think the center pins might be different for Troopers, BECAUSE&#8230;

[CONTINUED]

<small>[ February 03, 2003, 09:31 AM: Message edited by: early_cave_drawings ]</small>


Six Isuzus, so far... still have three of them.
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Re: Installing a 3-Inch Suspension Lift (Write-Up + Photos) #124885
02/03/03 10:18 AM
02/03/03 10:18 AM
Smiley  Offline OP
Trail Leader
Joined: Dec 2001
Posts: 5,911
Back in BFE, WV
&#8230;Between the two different sets of pins that came with the Add-A-Leafs, NEITHER OF THEM FIT INTO THE AXLE&#8217;S PERCH HOLE!

<img src="http://home.sunlitsurf.com/~e-zoozoo/3Lift9.JPG" alt=" - " />

--- Sooooooooo&#8230;

<img src="http://home.sunlitsurf.com/~e-zoozoo/3Lift10.JPG" alt=" - " />

--- After drilling-out the hole with a half-inch bit, and waggling it around a little to make the hole slightly bigger than a half-inch, the head of the center pin finally slipped through and into the hole. --- Once that was done, everything fit together perfectly.

(Not shown: Those beefy &#8216;OYO&#8217; home-brewed lift-shackles were replaced with New Shackles from Matt, in order to perfectly match the 18mm openings in the New Poly Bushings!)

--- Next up was the Brake-Line &#8216;T&#8217; Extension&#8230;

<img src="http://home.sunlitsurf.com/~e-zoozoo/3Lift11.JPG" alt=" - " />

--- AKA: &#8216;Little Snag #2&#8217;&#8230;

<img src="http://home.sunlitsurf.com/~e-zoozoo/3Lift12.JPG" alt=" - " />

--- One of the holes had to be drilled-out in order to accommodate the OEM bolt that attaches the brake T to the axle. --- Once this was done, I soon discovered that it still wouldn&#8217;t fit on there properly, because there&#8217;s a little tab on the axle mounting point that prevented the extension from slipping into place. --- No big deal though&#8230; A few seconds with the grinding wheel (to round that end of the extension) and it fit perfectly&#8230;

NOTE: If I had been paying a bit more attention, I would have noticed that one of the holes on the extension is offset to one side&#8230; And if we had drilled-out THAT HOLE INSTEAD, the grinding/rounding-off would have, in all likelihood, been completely unnecessary.

<img src="http://home.sunlitsurf.com/~e-zoozoo/3Lift13.JPG" alt=" - " />
^^^ Due to me being on a Creepy-Crawler at the time, this view is up-side-down.

--- This next photo is of the 2nd spring, shown just before being remounted&#8230; Note the C-clamp that was used to keep everything compressed while the new center pin was installed. (I&#8217;ve skipped the vise views&#8230; The steps were identical to what&#8217;s shown above. --- And yes, we had to drill-out the other perch hole too.)

<img src="http://home.sunlitsurf.com/~e-zoozoo/3Lift14.JPG" alt=" - " />

--- After the rear suspension was all back together again, we moved our attentions forward&#8230; to the Torsion Bars. --- Here&#8217;s a shot for everyone who&#8217;s ever asked where the T-Bar &#8216;Crank&#8217; adjustment is done. (And yes, by all means, please feel free to repost/link this photo in any of those inevitable future &#8220;Where&#8217;s my T-bar adjuster?&#8221; threads.) (:-P)

<img src="http://home.sunlitsurf.com/~e-zoozoo/3Lift15.JPG" alt=" - " />

--- And last but not least&#8230; The final results&#8230;

<img src="http://home.sunlitsurf.com/~e-zoozoo/3Lift16.jpg" alt=" - " />

As you can see, the 2.5-inches of T-bar lift is obvious enough. (I wanted to keep it raked to the front just a bit for handling purposes&#8230; Which, by the way, now ROCKS!)

ALSO: Noting the little red lines, you can see that the vehicles are not perfectly aligned, side-by-side&#8230; This slightly forces the perspective in favor of the Passport, and makes it appear as though it&#8217;s somewhat taller than it actually is.
______________________________________________________________

Well, there you have it&#8230; That&#8217;s my book report. (;-P)

--- Next up on the old &#8216;To Do&#8217; list is that One-Piece Drive Shaft (Hopefully to be installed on Wednesday.) *Pray-pray-pray!!!*

--- And after that comes the 3-Inch Body Lift, Low Profile Droop Snubbers, and the Ball Joint Flip. (So, unless I get booted off of here for using too much of The Wire&#8217;s web space, you can eventually expect to see a similar photo-journalistic report on this latter group of projects. - LOL)
______________________________________________________________

OK, OK&#8230; That&#8217;s it&#8230; HONEST! --- Stick a fork in me&#8230; I&#8217;m done!

Cheers!
Smiley (:-D)

<small>[ February 03, 2003, 04:26 AM: Message edited by: early_cave_drawings ]</small>


Six Isuzus, so far... still have three of them.
Re: Installing a 3-Inch Suspension Lift (Write-Up + Photos) #124886
02/03/03 12:43 PM
02/03/03 12:43 PM
A
Anonymous
Unregistered

Smiley, thanks tons! I too have a '97 Rodeo S and hope to do this very project next month. It sounds like our mechanical abilities are similar and this makes me feel much more comfortable doing it at home. I look forward to more of your "photo-journalistic reports" in the future.

Great reading!
Thanks,
Chris

Re: Installing a 3-Inch Suspension Lift (Write-Up + Photos) #124887
02/03/03 04:17 PM
02/03/03 04:17 PM
Smiley  Offline OP
Trail Leader
Joined: Dec 2001
Posts: 5,911
Back in BFE, WV
Thank you very much, Chris!

Brother, you have no idea how worthwhile you&#8217;ve just made all of that late-night typing & link-hunting seem to me. <img border="0" title="" alt="[Big Grin]" src="images/icons/grin.gif" />

...You say 'Another Rodeo's going up'? --- <img border="0" title="" alt="[Cool]" src="images/icons/cool.gif" /> Yeah Man! <img border="0" title="" alt="[Cool]" src="images/icons/cool.gif" />

I wish you only the very best of luck on your upcoming lift project.
--- You'll have to show it off to all of us when you come to Uwharrie, in April! <img border="0" title="" alt="[Wink]" src="images/icons/wink.gif" />

Cheers!
Smiley <img border="0" title="" alt="[Big Grin]" src="images/icons/grin.gif" />


Six Isuzus, so far... still have three of them.
Re: Installing a 3-Inch Suspension Lift (Write-Up + Photos) #124888
02/04/03 01:28 AM
02/04/03 01:28 AM
A
Anonymous
Unregistered

I don't believe it's the years BUT the pin its self! I got matts add-a-leave had the same problem some quick thinking with a grinder on the edges and IT FIT!!! Same problem whan putting lift blocks in bro in laws xj lift kit. just champher the edged a little and it fits (or just drill the holes works to ) <img border="0" title="" alt="[Eek!]" src="images/icons/shocked.gif" />
on second look i see use a breaker bar WITH a breaker bar!! III BROKE TWO craftsman 1/2in ratchets (returned both no problems) than bought a breaker bar and it worked DID i say i had a 4ft breaker bar on the ratchets BEFOR they exploded

<small>[ February 03, 2003, 07:35 PM: Message edited by: 33boggers ]</small>

Re: Installing a 3-Inch Suspension Lift (Write-Up + Photos) #124889
02/08/03 03:24 PM
02/08/03 03:24 PM
FIEND  Offline
Rock Warrior
Joined: Oct 2001
Posts: 779
15 miles from nowhere ,Indiana
Same deal with the pin here Smiley.I got my lift on last summer and we stressed bad about it.I even went so far to call Matt on a Saturday and left a message about it.Y'know he called back..lol. <img border="0" alt="[Pirate]" title="" src="graemlins/bppirate.gif" />


I got your Jeep thing and now it burns when I pee!

http://www.mwior.com/ The "Official" web page for an "Official" MWIOR!!

Re: Installing a 3-Inch Suspension Lift (Write-Up + Photos) #124890
02/08/03 05:51 PM
02/08/03 05:51 PM
A
Anonymous
Unregistered

Smiley very nice write-up and the pics are great. Would you like to sell your old shackles? Let me know. <img border="0" alt="[Alien]" title="" src="graemlins/alien.gif" />

Re: Installing a 3-Inch Suspension Lift (Write-Up + Photos) #124891
02/09/03 03:38 AM
02/09/03 03:38 AM
Bigpoppax2  Offline
Roll Me Over
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 2,529
Bluefield, Virginia
I am the one with the shackles <img border="0" alt="[Satan]" title="" src="graemlins/satan.gif" /> Smiley said I had most of the work in them building them and putting them on. Then I put his new ones on along with the add-a-leafs. He gave them back to me. E-mail me @ bigpoppax2@yahoo.com I'll definately sell them as I'm coil sprung. <img border="0" title="" alt="[Big Grin]" src="images/icons/grin.gif" />

Don't wanna ruffle any moderators feathers. <img border="0" alt="[Shiner]" title="" src="graemlins/shiner.gif" />


A gun in the hand is better than a cop on the phone.

98 Passport 33's, Supercharged, Calmini Bumper, rockbars, diff drops, Teralows, 4.77's, Aussie and ARB lockers, Safari snorkel, Optima red top.
Re: Installing a 3-Inch Suspension Lift (Write-Up + Photos) #124892
03/09/03 07:23 PM
03/09/03 07:23 PM
A
Anonymous
Unregistered

Smiley, thanks for the write up. I've been waiting a long time to find information on how to slap a lift on my '97 Rodeo. But I still have a couple questions.

- Was your '97 stock, before you put that lift on?

- What size tires and rims did you put on after the lift?

- And by your article, I'm assuming that there were no modifications needed to be done to the drive shaft and diff gears. Am I right?

I appreciate all the info. It will save me alot of money from trial and error in the future, when I attempt the same project. You da man!!

- "4 bye" for now

Re: Installing a 3-Inch Suspension Lift (Write-Up + Photos) #124893
03/09/03 09:42 PM
03/09/03 09:42 PM
Bigpoppax2  Offline
Roll Me Over
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 2,529
Bluefield, Virginia
Was it stock before the lift: yes and no. He had 3" longer shackles, Rancho 9000's, aftermarket wheels.

But we took the homebrewed shackles off and put Matts lift shackles on, and then put an add a leaf in.

He was running 245/75/16's before the lift and he hasn't changed yet. We still have the 3" body to put on, and then his plans include 235/85/16's.


A gun in the hand is better than a cop on the phone.

98 Passport 33's, Supercharged, Calmini Bumper, rockbars, diff drops, Teralows, 4.77's, Aussie and ARB lockers, Safari snorkel, Optima red top.
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