Toyota FJ Cruiser Forum banner

1 - 20 of 26 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
722 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hi folks, this might be discussed before but I couldn't find an answer in previous threads. So I decided to bring up a new discussion and want to hear your opinion.

To my understanding, extended travel coilovers like the ICONs are around 0.5" longer when fully extended than regular travel ones. I read they achieve this by replacing the internal bump stop in the top of the shock body. The wheel travel will be around 7/8" more with stock control arms.

If this is how ET coilovers work. Downtravel wise, wouldn't it be equivalent to putting a 0.5" thin spacer ontop of a regular travel CO (e.g. ICON stage 1, Toytec, etc.)? Given that I run aftermarket UCAs, and decrease the preload to maintain 2.5" overall lift. The only risk using the thin spacer I see is when bottoming out, the piston might take the hit instead of the frame mount bump stop. Yet I doubt a regular CO doesn't have that 0.5" marginal uptravel. If we don't encounter the uptravel problem, do we get the same extended travel using an regular CO?

Thanks for your feedback!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
722 Posts
Discussion Starter #2
Talked to Wheelers offroad and they told me this is correct. They recommended me to stay below 0.5" spacer on top of coilover as usually regular coilovers have around 0.5" marginal uptravel above LCA hitting bumpstop. If want to be safe, I can get a bumpstop spacer.

So doing a thin spacer, I would get extended travel and have a slightly nicer ride as I will decrease preload to maintain original ride height. I'll go with 3/8" poly spacers they offer.

Just wonder why I didn't see many people doing this? Maybe don't want to spend on an aftermarket UCAs? Please tell me if you see something wrong with this setup before I do it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,354 Posts
The only other strut I know would have the extended length with a 0.5 spacer on top of the coilover would be the 5100 strut for the 07-09 FJ's, other struts may not droop further down like its the case for most standard travel COs. Extended travel COs have the extra length needed already so there is no need for the spacer.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
13,453 Posts
Your really not gaining anything, all you are doing is relocating your total travel down 3/8".
What you gain in 'further drop' you loose in up...it cancels each other out.

By adding the spacer, dialing down the preload you are still pushing down and placing your CV at a greater angle than stock?

Why so obsessed with down travel #'s?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
722 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
The only other strut I know would have the extended length with a 0.5 spacer on top of the coilover would be the 5100 strut for the 07-09 FJ's, other struts may not droop further down like its the case for most standard travel COs. Extended travel COs have the extra length needed already so there is no need for the spacer.
I see. Maybe people who care about this all went with extended travel COs in the first place. Others don't care too much so save the hassle.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
722 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
Your really not gaining anything, all you are doing is relocating your total travel down 3/8".
What you gain in 'further drop' you loose in up...it cancels each other out.

By adding the spacer, dialing down the preload you are still pushing down and placing your CV at a greater angle than stock?

Why so obsessed with down travel #'s?
I want to get a little more as I currently only have around 1.5" wheel down travel. I top out my shocks so easily that it makes a clunk noise quite often on trails or even speed bumps (my lift is 2.5" so I didn't crank it up too much).

I think I will gain close to 1 inch or so WHEEL down travel and no loss of up travel. As up travel is limited by the frame mount bump stop, not the shock. When the front is bottomed out, the frame mount bump stop hits the LCA before the shock piston hit the bottom of the shock body. This prevents the shock from buckling like this

So in regular travel COs, the piston has 0.5" or more up travel that is not used. By relocating my total SHOCK travel down 3/8", I will also start using part of the 0.5" shock up travel that wasn't being used before, hence no loss in up travel. That's why I want to be safe on how thick I want to make the spacer as I might make my shock taking the hit instead of the bump stop.

My CV angle at ride height will be higher than stock as it is lifted. But it's the same as with just the Toytec (no spacer). When at full droop, the angle will be higher than that with just the Toytec, but will be similar to one with ICON extended CO.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
6,390 Posts
park the FJ and never ever go near it again!

listen to mikey!

it`s give and take until you understand that concept park the rig so you or anyone else doesnt get hurt in the process.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
722 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
park the FJ and never ever go near it again!

listen to mikey!

it`s give and take until you understand that concept park the rig so you or anyone else doesnt get hurt in the process.
I try to understand how it actually works so please be patient if I'm making stupid statements:smile

So what do you think will happen if I did what I proposed to do? Or which part in my above statement is false? I talked with the guys at Wheelers in detail today and they confirmed what I try to do is correct. Again, not trying to argue but just want to learn. Suspension modding is our common interest so please help me out.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,354 Posts
I want to get a little more as I currently only have around 1.5" wheel down travel. I top out my shocks so easily that it makes a clunk noise quite often on trails or even speed bumps (my lift is 2.5" so I didn't crank it up too much).


I think I will gain close to 1 inch or so WHEEL down travel and no loss of up travel. As up travel is limited by the frame mount bump stop, not the shock. When the front is bottomed out, the frame mount bump stop hits the LCA before the shock piston hit the bottom of the shock body. This prevents the shock from buckling like this


So in regular travel COs, the piston has 0.5" or more up travel that is not used. By relocating my total SHOCK travel down 3/8", I will also start using part of the 0.5" shock up travel that wasn't being used before, hence no loss in up travel. That's why I want to be safe on how thick I want to make the spacer as I might make my shock taking the hit instead of the bump stop.



My CV angle at ride height will be higher than stock as it is lifted. But it's the same as with just the Toytec (no spacer). When at full droop, the angle will be higher than that with just the Toytec, but will be similar to one with ICON extended CO.
You're still extending the mount point down, your compression value is not changing, so your max compression now happens .5" sooner.



Sent from AutoGuide.com Free App
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
4,434 Posts
"Clunk" on your 3" lift on down travel?

Is your UCA hitting you CO or is your CO extending to the stop?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
722 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
You're still extending the mount point down, your compression value is not changing, so your max compression now happens .5" sooner.



Sent from AutoGuide.com Free App
Your statement is true if the shock being the limiting factor, but it's not the case. Like I said earlier, up travel is not limited by the shock, it's limited by LCA hitting the frame mount bump stop. That buckling in pic will happen if shock taking the compression.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
11,115 Posts
G'Day,
I am a little confused what you are trying to achieve here.
Firstly I am no expert in suspensions, so I maybe misunderstanding your desire to achieve greater down travel, and how to achieve it.
Firstly, you have cranked your CO's way down to achieve 2.5" of lift, even if they can handle 3" of lift you are almost maxed out. From my limited understanding this is going to limited your down travel to start with. If you reduce your lift, wouldn't you gain extra down travel ?
The CO has a finite range of travel, you cannot extend the length of travel of the CO. The shaft will only allow x inches of free travel. Placing a spacer under the bumpstop or the top of the CO will not change how far the CO can extend. It may change the height of the vehicle, and the height of your suspension in total, but either way the length of the CO shaft is what determines its travel.
If you want to change the up or down travel within these parameters that is all you can do. If the CO shaft allows 8 inches of travel in total, you can tweak how much up or down travel it can go, eg 6 inch up, 2 inches down ...etc.... but you can't make it go 6 inches up and 3 inches down. It doesn't work like that.
so if you want more down travel, then you must sacrifice up travel to achieve it.
A spacer won't do this, as I understand it, anyway.

so if you desire more down travel dial back your lift to gain more down travel ...type thing.
Or install a LT CO.
The other challenge as I see it, is that with an IFS vehicle, you are not going to gain much if anything in the front, the geometry of the vehicle ( with or without sway bars ) is already limited.
This could be why you can't find much info about it, its just not done.

Like I said to start with, i am no expert, but there are plenty of threads on here that go into major depth and discussion about LT .... and whats possible and whats not possible.

Not trying to be cruel or anything, but it sounds like you want a standard CO to become an ET CO, simply by adding a spacer, trying to take a short cut to gain something that isn't there.
I can understand your desire for more down travel, but this comes at a price and is big $$ when done properly and fully, and a standard CO just is not meant to be used as an ET/LT CO.

All of the above might be wrong, and backwards, and upside down.... if so sorry for confusing the issue.

More research into how LT setups work ...will answer your questions..

Cheers
Baz
:blueblob:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
722 Posts
Discussion Starter #15
G'day,
If you have not seen this thread, it might help,

http://www.fjcruiserforums.com/forums/metal-tech/141154-whats-deal-long-travel-rear-suspension.html

It may help answer some of your questions, but its a long read....

cheers
Baz
:blueblob:
Hi Baz,

Thank you very much for your post. An LT setup is definitely on my future mod list. Still need to save up for that lol. I am still learning how all these work so I appreciate you take the time and explain these to me.

I agree with all you said except for "CO shaft determine the total travel". The shock only limits down travel. Up travel is limited by the rock hard bump stop that touches the LCA at max compression. If the shock is the limiting factor for up travel, all the compression force will exert on that thin shaft and skinny shock mount, causing one of them to buckle. Therefore all coilovers shocks have around 0.5" marginal up travel to prevent this. To demonstrate what I'm trying to say, I drew 2 rough sketches.



If I stack too high a spacer, the piston would bottom out before LCA kisses the bump stop, so that's why I stated my concern about this risk. But after talking to guys at Wheelers offroad, they told me as long as I stay below half inch I should be fine.

I know I'm playing at the edge here and probably won't make a whole world of difference. But it should help a little and it's 17 dollars spacers so why not.

Please don't lose faith on me if what I showed in the picture is totally wrong. I try to learn this bone clear. Please point out if I made a mistake and with the sketches it should be easier to put the message across.

Thanks again!
Kai
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
11,115 Posts
G'Day Kai,
Mate, its not about loosing faith, its about what potential damage you can do to your rig, costing you more $$.
$17 dollars sounds like a cheap an easy fix, but long term the potential is that you may tear your upper shock mounts out .... and thats major $$, or destroy your current set up, causing you to have to spend again.
The reason that you have not seen it done before is probably because there is no benefit, only risk. It may work out fine and without issue, so you could be on a winner.
But if experts like LT at Metal Tech, Jason at DO, and all the other guys that know suspensions inside out ( and the manufacturers themselves - King, Icon, Fox, SAW, Radflo, Toytec ..etc ...) have not done it already ..then its a pretty good assumption that the benefit is zero.

Working with the constraints of the Toyota geometry and design, these guys and Companies and been able to create better systems and setups, that work with the original principal built by Toyota. Not saying you have not come up with a new idea. But there are good reasons why no one has done it before.

Recently folks down under started having problems with after market bumps stops that gave a better / softer hit when you bottom out your suspension. The problem was the new bumpstop was softer and compressed more than the harder compound used by Yota. Result was shocks being driven thru the top of the shock mount, cracked towers, exploding shocks ...etc ..... the solution is to put a spacer between the bumpstop and the bumpstop mount, so it hits earlier - protecting the shock ... this has no real parallel to what you are asking, but it points out the challenge when you change something. Who would have thought a $50 bumpstop would cause so much difference and destruction.

There is only one way to find out if what you are suggesting works.... try it.... if it works great, if it doesn't lets hope its not fatal .... even doing this may not increase down travel, I don't believe it will personally, but don't let that stop you.....

I can see how you can put a spacer at the top, but how do you propose to put a spacer into the bottom ? from the picture you have to disassemble the whole shock and I am not sure how you can insert a disc into the shock body - that is what it looks like you are trying to do on the picture. I'd be guessing there is much more too shock building and design than your picture indicates, and putting a spacer at the bottom of the shock isn't really feasible, even for the manufacturer ....

Separately ... I would not be talking to a third party about if it will work, talk to Toytec first, or LT at MT. They would know more that the blokes at Wheelers off road, especially about FJ's. I am only guessing Wheelers off road are a general off road supplier/installer...probably experts with Jeeps ( no not bashing jeeps ) just saying first hand knowledge is paramount here - with an IFS / FJ set up, are Wheelers IFS/FJ pro's ?
LT is .... so are Toytec.

So, glad to offer my two cents, but as I said at the beginning I am not a expert, seek out the experts ..... before spending your dosh ( even $17 ) unless you feel lucky .....

A phone call to Toytec, or LT, etc .... could save you a lot of time and $$, down the track.

Cheers
Baz
:blueblob:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
722 Posts
Discussion Starter #17
G'Day Kai,
...
Cheers
Baz
:blueblob:
Hi Baz,

I think you have the better reasoning than I do. I talked to Toytec today. They said what I proposed is theoretically correct, but just bringing too much risk so not worth the benefit it brings. As the additional "dead" up travel is too small and I might exceed it.

The "spacers" at the bottom you said in my sketch are not spacers. Sorry I wasn't being clear. There's only one 3/8" red spacer ontop of the CO. The 0.5" and 1/8" I marked in red at the bottom are the "dead" up travel I was talking about. But leaving only around 1/8" of "dead" travel is too risky and not worth the travel gained. The amount of "dead" travel is designed to save my shock and should not be played like what I proposed.

So thanks to your input, I won't run the risk bottoming out my shock to gain some more travel. And thanks for bringing up the superbump stop, as I was planning to get those too. As the threads I read before people all concerned it being too long and rob their up travel. But now it seems it is actually too short when fully compressed.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,237 Posts
Just to throw my 2 cents in.

I was looking into adding a 1/4 spacer on my current 5100 setup. The mechanics at Slee Offroad (a Toyota offroad specialist) flat out refused to install them, claiming they would cause all of the issues previously mentioned in the thread.

Based on my reading the only proper way to achieve an extended travel setup is to purchase a shock specifically designed for that purpose.

I would also recommend giving Toytec a call. They are very experienced with Toyota IFS setups and happy to answer questions.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
11,115 Posts
Hi Baz,

I think you have the better reasoning than I do. I talked to Toytec today. They said what I proposed is theoretically correct, but just bringing too much risk so not worth the benefit it brings. As the additional "dead" up travel is too small and I might exceed it.

The "spacers" at the bottom you said in my sketch are not spacers. Sorry I wasn't being clear. There's only one 3/8" red spacer ontop of the CO. The 0.5" and 1/8" I marked in red at the bottom are the "dead" up travel I was talking about. But leaving only around 1/8" of "dead" travel is too risky and not worth the travel gained. The amount of "dead" travel is designed to save my shock and should not be played like what I proposed.

So thanks to your input, I won't run the risk bottoming out my shock to gain some more travel. And thanks for bringing up the superbump stop, as I was planning to get those too. As the threads I read before people all concerned it being too long and rob their up travel. But now it seems it is actually too short when fully compressed.
G'day Mate,
Glad to offer my bit and hopefully help you from making a potential bad decision.
Save your pennies and get a sweet LT setup..... one day....
but I bet you will still want more down travel... :rofl::rofl:
Cheers
Baz
:blueblob:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
722 Posts
Discussion Starter #20
Just to throw my 2 cents in.

I was looking into adding a 1/4 spacer on my current 5100 setup. The mechanics at Slee Offroad (a Toyota offroad specialist) flat out refused to install them, claiming they would cause all of the issues previously mentioned in the thread.

Based on my reading the only proper way to achieve an extended travel setup is to purchase a shock specifically designed for that purpose.

I would also recommend giving Toytec a call. They are very experienced with Toyota IFS setups and happy to answer questions.
Yeah, Toytec also said this is too risky. I think the dead travel is not part of the spec so they cannot guarantee how much dead up travel is in one particular setup. One might be able to get away with it and gain some travel, but if failed, it's gonna cost a lot.
 
1 - 20 of 26 Posts
Top