Rough Country 4"/6" kit install tips.

Discussion in 'Stock Suspension + Bolt On Kits' started by bluex, Nov 3, 2012.

  1. bluex

    bluex Mall Crawlin' MOFO!!!

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    Thought I would make a thread for tips/tricks on installing the Rough Country 4”/6” lift kit. I looked around everywhere for something like this and didn’t see one anywhere. The kit comes with really good instructions but there are some things that can be done better or need to be done different. Read the instructions completely a few times before starting and make sure you have all the tools and parts you need before starting. Give yourself plenty of time to do this, I personally think the 6-8 hr install time is a joke. If your doing this alone or with occasional help, plan on it taking an entire weekend.

    First soak everything with a penetrating oil of your choice very well starting about a week ahead of install time. Make sure you get the T-bars at the a-arm and keys done and soak them good. I like to use kroil, it’s the best I’ve seen and used, you can get it here: http://www.kanolabs.com/penLub.html

    I will go through the issues I had in the instructions now, like I said they are very good and I won’t go through every step just the ones I had an issue with.

    Step 30 cutting the bump stop bracket off. Have quite a few saw all blades for this step. I kept bending them because they would hit the a-arm mount and went through about 5 just on this step. Use the upper a-arm drop bracket to make sure you cut/ground enough out so it sits flat.

    Step 36 installing the torsion bar cross member. Check your cross member before doing this step. Mine only had a hole big enough to get a punch in it to knock the bars forward. I’ve spoken with a few other members and there cross members had a hole large enough to slide the entire bar through from the back. Mine didn’t work like that and when I got to step 74 I couldn’t get them in without dropping the cross member again. So leave it out unless you can put the bars through from the back.

    Step 50 says to install the CV axle assembly back onto the diff. I could not get the axle back into the knuckle with it already bolted to the diff. I would move this step to 52 and move 51 to 50 and 52 to 51. I put the knuckle on and torqued the ball joints then turned the knuckle installed the CV axle into the knuckle and then onto the diff. That was the easiest way for me. It’s also impossible to get a torque wrench on the upper ball joint nut with the axle already in the knuckle.

    Step 58 put the bolts with the threads/nuts facing the outside of the truck. If you don’t they will cover the holes for the skid plate. If you look at photo 44 you will see that. I’m sure they had to flip theirs also.

    Step 69 I recommend installing braided stainless lines here rather than modifying the factory hard line. This is mainly personal preference and weather you want to spend the extra $100 or not. I feel it’s worth it with the age most of the trucks are getting on them and the risk of kinking/breaking your factory hard line. The brakes have to bled either way so in my opinion you should step up to a superior line both front and rear, which I did along with new 1 ton calipers up front.

    Step 74 Installing the Torsion bars. Clean all the crud off the bar ends, inside the pocket on the a-arm and in the keys. Use grease to help them slide through; I used the same stuff I grease my front end with. I had to put them through the a-arm as far as they would go, install the torsion bar cross member and then index them correctly and slid them back into the keys. With everything really clean and greased it was no problem for me but my truck doesn’t have a lot of rust either.

    This is a good time to replace all the wear items in the front end. I did upper/lower ball joints, inner/outer tie rods, pitman, idler and bracket, sway bar bushings and end links. When I pulled the steering box it was a mess so I replaced it as well. This will add another 8-10 hrs worth of work to the install. I had about 5-6 hrs in ball joints alone. All total I have at least 30 hrs on my install but I had some issues that held me up as well. I did about 85-90% of this install alone. It is a lot of work but the lift rides great and I have better angles than stock with just the 4”. Just give yourself plenty of time for the install and possibly have a backup vehicle in case you run into problems like I did.

    I hope this helps some others out cause I know there is a lot of talk around here about people wanting this lift. If anyone else has any other tips or anything I left out please add them here. I will be glad to answer any questions anyone has as well.
     
  2. bluex

    bluex Mall Crawlin' MOFO!!!

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    Ball joint replacement

    Uppers.

    Heres how I did mine. On the underside of the a-arm the rivets are flat. If you clean the gunk off you can see some marks on them with one right in the center. Use that mark to center punch it and drill all the way through with a 4 mm drill bit. Then flip the arm over and grind the rivets down and knock the ball joint off the arm. This will leave some of the rivet sticking out. Go ahead and grind that off flush with the arm. Flip it back over and drill the remainder of the rivet out with a 8 mm drill bit. If there is a small bit left in the hole after this step it should come out fairly easy with a punch and hammer. Follow the instructions that come with your new ball joints to install them.

    I know a lot of people just air hammer the rivets out but mine wouldnt budge them and this was the best/easiest way for me. Took maybe and hour per side max if I remember correctly. No I was not trying to use a harbor freight air hammer to do this, I have a pretty beefy Ingersol Rand I was using.

    Lowers - Pressed

    I did mine just like this guy.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T2dL6vWOXBQ

    Just be careful to keep the bottom adapter on the step in the lower arm. Dont worry so much about where the screw is pressing on the old ball joint, keep that adapter square on the arm. When installing I also did like the video with one exception. My Moog lowers were taller where the grease zerk goes than the joints he used. I had to use an adapter from the 4x4 set on the top to get them fully seated. Otherwise I didnt need the 4x4 adapter set at all. I also had to constatly loosen and reposition the C part of the press to move the pressure around and keep the joint going in straight.

    Hope this helps someone as well!
     
  3. RyanR

    RyanR BAD REPUTATION

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    Good write up bro... bookmarking for future reference
     
  4. ChrisAU

    ChrisAU War Damn Eagle

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    I would amend this a say to use an angle grinder with a cutting wheel. We made quick work of mine that way.

    A general tip would be to NOT put threadlocker on until you are close to having the nuts to where you want them, then squeeze some between the nut and where it will sit when tight. This is especially important for the rear u-bolts. You absolutely will not get those suckers tightened all the way down even with a super deep socket before you have to cut the ends of the bolts. We used a portable bandsaw to hack off the ends of mine about 2-3" to allow a deep socket to finish the job.

    Get a can of liquid wrench, and use it often.

    Drop the spare tire to get better access to the rear shock that mounts close to it.

    As P2 said, definitely install the diff and knuckles before attaching the CV's. We didn't even read the directions at that part, its common sense.

    Also, tighten the new skid plate bolts before attaching the track bars are whatever they are that run from the diff to the tb cross member, you can still get to the bolts for them before doing that but it is a PITA.

    Bring a big bag of 4 letter words. And pray to god you have pressed in lowers like P2 did. Mine were riveted, and were designed by satan.
     
    Teryaki537 likes this.
  5. chiefmorton

    chiefmorton OBS Enthusiast

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    Very nice write-up and great information! I have the 4" lift on my wish list for the future so I'll be book marking this thread I'm sure it will come in handy when the time comes.
     
  6. bluex

    bluex Mall Crawlin' MOFO!!!

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    I just remembered today that I had one issue on the rear and forgot to add it in here.

    My drivers side e-brake cable was run to the inside of the leaf spring and then into the drum for some reason. It pulled the rear forward when I tired to install the block on that side and was under a lot of tension. I pulled it loose from inside the drum (PIA in itself, might be easier to take the other end loose) and moved it to the outside of the leaf spring so that it was not under so much tension and that was also the only way the axle was going to go back into place.

    IDK of someone routed mine incorrectly at one point or if they came that way factory but either way it had to be moved. I can put up a picture later if this is confusing anyone.

    ----EDIT----Adding steering stabilizer install issues for kit number 87371.20----This stabilizer is ONLY for the 4"/6" RCX kits----

    I installed the steering stabilizer today (1/17/14) and ran into a few issues on my truck. This could be a year model thing like I ran into with the kit install.

    First the instructions for the stabilizer show that the bolts for it are both facing with the nuts towards the rear of the truck. I had installed my bolts for the drop crossmember with the nuts towards the front of the truck. Now I thought that it specified that orientation in the instructions but I don't see it now. I must have done it for steering link clearance. I had to completely remove that bolt to install the bracket. The main issue I had was part of the factory lower control arm pocket was in the way and wouldn't allow the bracket to fit properly. These pictures are of the drivers side but the part in the circle was what was in the way.

    IMG_20140117_131720_837_zps4436ab06.jpg

    IMG_20140117_131506_294_zps3748d395.jpg

    I had to grind that flat about an inch wide so the bracket would fit between the stock bolt and the bolt now holding the LCA.

    IMG_20140117_131526_670_zps95c5c5ce.jpg

    IMG_20140117_131548_331_zps0b83ac62.jpg

    The washers go behind the bracket so it fits flat. Make sure you get the taper direction correct on the factory washers on the top bolt. Here it is installed, bad picture but it was the best I could do. :rofl: Don't mind the sticker, I bought it slightly used...

    IMG_20140117_131637_413_zps9a2485c4.jpg
     
    Last edited: Jan 17, 2014
  7. chevyman0191

    chevyman0191 OBS till I die

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    good write up Paul..why didnt u right it up a year ago :lol:
     
  8. bluex

    bluex Mall Crawlin' MOFO!!!

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    Because a year ago I never would have thought I would have a lifted truck :rofl:

    As a matter of fact I would have called you :crazy: if you would have told me it would happen.

    I drove the wifes burb today an thought I was in a lowrider :lol:
     
  9. chevyman0191

    chevyman0191 OBS till I die

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    haha :word: i figured it would happen u could resist haha

    as for feeling liike a low rider i hear ya my moms suv my dads stock truck feel like lil road toys when i drive them but in my truck beside other vehicles u feel king of the road :lol:
     
  10. 98slv

    98slv I'm Awesome

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    If you have a helper then it is unnecessary to seperate the control arms, ball joints, and cv shafts. Couldn't find a picture but I removed the t-bars, removed the bolts from the upper and lower control arms, along with unbolting the CVs at the axle, tie rod ends, and removed the brake calipers. then you and your helper can grab hold of the entire assembly (upper and lower control amrs, spindles, and brake rotors) and set them on the ground out of the way. It is a bit of a task, but it will save your ball joint boots and prevent you from destoying a good joint by molesting them with a pickle fork.
     

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