FRANKENLIFT
for the Jeep Liberty KJ



Frequently Asked Questions about the All J Products' Frankenlift....and a lot of other useful information about lifting a KJ.

 

A few things to keep in mind about lifting KJ's. When you swap out the front struts with a complete new replacement unit, it no longer becomes "lowered" or "prelowered" KJ. The stock springs are what decides that. Once the stock strut assembly is in the trash, you ARE ALL at the same starting point.

KJ's ALL VARY in the ride height department. Some have saggy springs, some have stiffer springs. This is why you get KJ's sitting at all different ride heights from the factory. If you add a Daystar or other spacer lift, you are dependent on the condition of the factory springs. We have had KJ's come into the shop with such soft springs that they got over 4" of lift when lifted with a new front strut set. They didn't really get 4", they are just 2.5" over stock, and they were sagging 1.5" below stock. And that 2.5" over stock is about the most mysterious actual measurement I have ever seen.

Example: Frankenlift. It is called a 2.5" lift. That's pretty close to what it measures. If you get a little less or a little more, that would depend on where your stock KJ sat stock. From the factory, there are about 15 different factory front KJ springs to choose from. They are all ordered by VIN. Confusing to say the least. All J has a pretty good handle on which springs will stiffen up the KJ and which ones are too soft. But in the long run, if you are going to lift the KJ compare yours to another stock KJ to see where you sit. If your KJ is up where it should be, than a spacer lift will work for you. A cheaper way to go. If your KJ is a low rider from saggy springs, and sits way low, or bottoms out a lot stock, then don't do a spacer lift, go for the full spring lift.

Good information for measuring your actual lift after installation of the Frankenlift:

1) DO NOT measure from the hub to the fender flare OR from the ground to the fender flare. The fender flares are not symmetrical and you will NOT get an accurate measurement this way. (BTW this is a common mistake!)

2) DO measure from the pinch weld. Measure from the front of the pinch weld and then measure from the rear of the pinch weld. The measurements should match or be VERY close.

3) If you have Boulder Bars, or another company's bars, installed on your KJ, measure from the bar to the ground. (We obviously won't guarantee another company's rails will be straight from front to back, but we will are confident that our KJ Boulder Bars will give you an accurate measurement.)

Also note:
KJs usually come from the factory a little higher in the rear. Once we lift a KJ with a Frankenlift, we get the KJ to be even front-to-rear (using the measuring guide above). Otherwise if you go too high in the rear, you will overtax the rear "wishbone" ball joint.


Now that you're Frankenlifted, decide on your tire size. Some of the spring lifts don't give the full 2.5" so you may not be able to run as large of a tire.

I hope this helps you with some basic info. The biggest headache I get is all the "pre-lowered" and "lowered" calls. The only difference is the springs, and when you do the lift right, those are gone anyways. I have my opinion on the best lifts to use depending on your needs.

Another thing, if you are opening the front struts up to add ANY lift, change out the factory struts and throw in some upgraded struts. Your KJ will love you for it. Go with either the Rancho or the Old Man Emu (OME) struts.

And for reference, we have lifted over 200 KJ's in the last 2 years at the All J Products shop. We have a pretty good handle on what works for a KJ. Also we have lifted KJ's with over 100,000 miles on them, in and out on a regular basis for testing and research. I would venture to say that All J Products has lifted more KJ's than anyone else in the country - probably even all other shops put together!

Also on tires: 245x75r16 tires fit the best out of all the sizes on a lifted KJ. And about 50% of those KJs NEED to pound out the pinch weld behind the front tires. It depends on your type of wheeling. It also depends on the actual tire diameter.

YES! You can run 265's on a KJ, but make sure whatever lift you pick is at the max height. Also plan on trimming about 50% of your inner front fender wells, the air dam, and the pinchweld behind the tires. This will leave the washer bottle exposed, so some undercoating or a sheet metal shield over it works okay. When we trim out the front, we undercoat the areas trimmed to preserve the life of the KJ. Removing the plastic inner fenders completely also works, but may not be enough protection in snow county, or where the roads are salted.

And then on most lifted KJ's the tires will rub the front sway bar at full steering lock. Fact of life! No fix for this yet by anyone. The only exception would be different offset rims, but that can lead to other issues. Rubicon wheels work well to solve this in most cases.

I hope this helps you with the basics you will need to know to lift your KJ correctly.

CRD Liberty lifting info: At this time we are only recommending the OME790 Front H/D Springs for a CRD Spring lift - the CRD needs these particular OME790 springs to handle the weight of the CRD. No other aftermarket springs available in the US are heavy enough to do the job properly.

A WORD ABOUT OTHER LIFT KITS:

We frequently get phone calls, messages, and emails from unfortunate KJ owners who have purchased lift kits from other companies who offer a lesser quality KJ lift kit because it costs less (you get what you pay for). These unfortunate KJ owners all ask us the same type of questions:

(1) "Can All J Products fix my <instert other lift kit name here> that just destroyed my struts in one week/one month?"

(2) "Can I buy only some parts of the Frankenlift to fix my <insert other lift kit name here>?"

(3) "I live in Canada and I just bought another KJ lift kit from another company; I made a mistake buying this kit and now it's too expensive to ship back to the other company. Can I get some of the parts from the Frankenlift and mix them with some parts from the other kit so I don't have to buy all new parts?

The answer all of these questions is the same: You need to buy the Frankenlift; we no longer will take the responsibility to FIX other companys' problem lift kits.

The text below is an excerpt from an actual email received (and responded to) on 4/11/06. This email is from a real KJ owner and it represents a vast majority of all questions we receive from KJ owners who have purchased other lift kits from other companies. All J Products DOES NOT make a habit of talking negatively toward competing companies; however, since we are constantly responding to these types of calls and emails, we need to be proactive and not reactive for these KJ owners. And, hopefully it will save yet another KJ owner from buying a kit that will likely need to be replaced anyway.

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Excerpt from Customer's Email:

"Hi There,

  I'm thinking of buying your Frankenlift for my Liberty to replace the Rocky Road OTT kit that blew my struts out in 1 week and has been clunking ever since I put it on. "

*****************************************************************************************************************

Our response:

We're sorry about your <insert name of other lift kit here>. We get a lot of emails and calls about this very same issue.

(CUSTOMER'S NAME), we also WILL NOT fix the <insert other lift kit name here> -- they use inferior parts (even though they'll tell you they don't).  We design the Frankenlift to work as a UNIT and all of the components are designed to work together as a UNIT.  If you want the Frankenlift to fix your KJ, we can certainly sell you the entire kit, but we no longer will sell bits and pieces of the kit to patch up other companys' kits.

Here's the deal for the Frankenlift: The front will need to settle after putting the lift on -- that means the KJ needs to be taken over dips, speed bumps, and off-roaded on a bumpy, rutted trail.  It is a Heavy Duty off-road lift kit that was designed to be used off-road.   So it needs to settle over the course of a couple of months while you drive it (faster than usual - but don't go crazy) over dips, speed bumps and taking it off-roading.

That said, another thing you should know is that many people aren't correctly measuring their Frankenlifts after it's installed.  Some KJs are sagging 2" to start with.  So before the lift is put on, the Jeep is actually 2" lower than it should be at stock levels.  So when they put the Frankenlift on, to their amazement they think they just got a 4.5" lift!  Of course they didn't.  The Frankenlift just lifted the sagging KJ 2" up back to stock level and then from stock they got the 2.5" of actual LIFT.  It's not a magical 4.5" lift; it's just a matter of adding to a negative number.  ;)
 
Also, to accurately measure the front-to-back height you need to measure from the ground to the pinch weld that is right behind the front tire and again from the ground to the pinch weld just in front of the rear tire.  Most people are incorrectly measuring to the fender flare.  This will give an inaccurate measurement because Jeep designed the two fenders at different heights.  Some KJs also come from the factory with the rear sitting high.  The rear will always look (visually) as though it is a different height than the front - it's just the way Jeep designed the vehicle.  This is why it needs to be measured from the ground to the pinch weld and not to the fender flares.  The following is from a thread from the LOSTKJS.com forum:
 
This seemed like a good place to post this -- it's just informational since we get calls asking how to measure from time-to-time.

1) DO NOT measure from the hub to the fender flare OR from the ground to the fender flare. The fender flares are not symmetrical and you will NOT get an accurate measurement this way. (BTW this is a common mistake!)

2) DO measure from the pinch weld. Measure from the front of the pinch weld and then measure from the rear of the pinch weld. The measurements should match or be VERY close.

3) If you have Boulder Bars, or another company's bars, installed on your KJ, measure from the bar to the ground. (We obviously won't guarantee another company's rails will be straight from front to back, but we will are confident that our KJ Boulder Bars will give you an accurate measurement.)

Also note:
KJs usually come from the factory a little higher in the rear. Once we lift a KJ with a Frankenlift, we get the KJ to be even front-to-rear (using the measuring guide above). Otherwise if you go too high in the rear, you will overtax the rear "wishbone" ball joint.

 
I hope this information helps you and wasn't too lengthy to read -- I know it was a lot of info to digest.
 
Let me know if you have any additional questions that we can answer for you.
 
Thanks!!
Heather
All J Products
909-866-4800
 

 



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