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Alignment Opinions

7340 Views 38 Replies 9 Participants Last post by  Wardens Worry !
Hey all!
I bought a 2015 Wrangler Unlimited Sport with what I think is a 4" teraflex lift with control arm drop brackets, TF HD tie rod, HD track bar, falcon adjustable steering stabilizer, Teraflex HD balljoints. New tires (285/65R18) and I have tried psi from 26-37. The issue I have is incredibly flighty/wandering steering. If I am driving I can be thrown into the next lane. I need a ton of micro corrections to stay in my lane. Going on the highway is extremely sketchy. Does my alignment look ok or is there any area that looks like it can contribute to my issues? Any comments or questions are welcome!

I believe this is the lift kit that was installed before I purchased:

Would dropping to a 3" lift help out?
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Thank you!
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I was looking into the drag link flip as well. I wish I would have known when I got the HD tire rods and drag link from teraflex. But I will know soon. My Redhead steering gear box came in last night so I will be replacing the steering box today.
So if you have the Teraflex heavy duty steering kit with the adjustable rod ends; your are in luck! The axle side rod end on the draglink can be flipped. It took me 10 minutes on a 10-ton shop press. Remove c-clip and press out and reverse it. Mark the clocking of the cartridge, I believe the rod end travel is limited by a slot to minimize flop. Make sure you re-install with the same range of movement. That what I did with my steering linkage because the whole non-flip version was way cheaper when I purchased it compared to now. You will just need to drill the knuckle and add a tapered sleeve. It you want Teraflex High steer knuckles I have a set I got from Amazon that was going to be used on another vehicle but I changed my mind. I would sell them for $375 plus shipping but shipping may be expensive.

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I have read your post about the DL flip for lifts as little as 2.5"
Does this look like it would need a flip and the track bar bracket? View attachment 368290
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Mine at 3.5". I did add a bend to my draglink for additional frame clearance.
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Is raised track bar/draglink flip needed on your Jeep? Absolutely NOT!!

I wanted it; I have worked very hard to retain "near stock" or better driving/handling characteristics. My first Jeep was back in 1989 and it was a MJ that eventually had 35s. As I have become older I value NVH and on road manners as much as off road capabilities. I think outside the box and have had to do some things to make my mods work that most people can't justify.

When I was at 2.5" lift I had the high caster Tera44 housing, draglink flip, 6" raised rear track bar, front control arm drop brackets, and other "unnecessary" mods. All these mods done at 2.5" lift was with the idea that I was going to be upgrading to 3.5" lift and 37s in the future. However, they worked very well and I stayed at 2.5" lift and 37s for a while before I decide I wanted more up travel to allow for more aggressive driving and trails. I have been very happy with the results and I didn't mind the extra labor/mods needed to make them work at such a low lift height based on traditional JK advice. I haven't notched the front frame yet to provide for extra clearance for the raised track bar yet. I have rarely had any frame contact between the components and that only happens at very slow speeds where I'm dropping off a rock ledge. I haven't had any contact on frame during street or spirited dirt road driving; I don't jump my Jeep so the frame notch hasn't been a priority yet. I have cycled my suspension with the coil springs removed to make sure I have sufficient clearance for my usage. I use SumoSpring bumpstops and they work very well for my situation without needing hydraulic bump stops. It has taken a while for me to dial them in to allow the up travel I want while still providing a smooth transition to my compressed suspension under my driving conditions. Metalcloak also offers a more economical bump stop that is way better than OEM bumpstops but not quite as good as the SumoSpring bumpstops.

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The track bar will hit frame first when wheels are straight while the draglink will hit the frame first if passenger side is stuffed and wheels are turned (this hasn't occurred for me on the trail yet).
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Hm, that makes sense. I got the steering gear in and it marginally helped. Could it be my caster? I have been seeing a lot of things saying you need more caster for lifted vehicles. I have the 4" teraflex but with 33"s. I don't know why the previous owner went a 4" for 33s but whatever. Right now I have 4.4 degrees and my steering wheel does not return to center. I am a little at the end of my rope with this Jeep. I don't expect it to ride like a car but I still feel it is unsafe. I have the JKS drop bracket set for the 3" lift. I think I am going to try to drop it down one more hole to the 4" lift and see if there is any improvement.
Yes you want more caster; as much as you can get without creating front driveshaft vibrations. That will be somewhere in the 5.5 degree range. I have had anywhere from 6.5-8 degrees of caster in my various configurations with the Tera44 high caster housing. Once I install my 8 lug conversion with locking hubs I am going to go back up towards the 8 degrees of caster. You should definitely use the JKS hole for 4" lift if you don't get any front driveshaft vibrations.

If you don't have a raised rear track bar; that is something you should investigate. It won't change your steering feel but it does help improve handling. Most kits are 4" raised above stock, with a few at 5", and a discontinued Metalcloak was at 6" and so is the Teraflex weld on bracket listed for Dana 60s (It will fit stock rear axle with minor grinding.) Make sure you get a quality rear track bar bracket that mounts in multiple locations as you get higher above the factory location; as more leverage is applied to the axle side bracket/mount. Also make sure the track bar can go to stock or shorter length particularly if you bracket raises the location higher than the amount of lift on the rear of the Jeep. I don't know about the 4-door JKs but the 2-door JKs had a rear crossmember that could contact the 6" brackets if you didn't have enough rear bumpstops or grind a half-circle clearance into upper frame crossmember.

This is more clearance than needed on the rear crossmember for a 6" raised track bar on a 2-door but I try to have extra safety margin incase of a failure or unforeseen circumstances. The bumpstop in the picture is a reasonably price Metalcloak bumpstop before I switched it out for the SumoSpring bumpstops.
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