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is a SOA worth it

Discussion in '40- & 55-Series Tech' started by scubajohn, Feb 24, 2004.

  1. scubajohn

    scubajohn

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    Well is the soa worth it if you do very little wheeling ? And when you do get to go off road its not very dificult trails ?

    Or would I be just as happy with a 2-4" spring lift to fit some bigger meats :)

    I also do quite a bit of freeway driving and the fj40 is basicly stock for the moment.
     
  2. Romer

    Romer fatherofdaughterofromer Moderator

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    John,
    Looks like your hokked. Got your new cruiser and now starting to think about the next modification.

    I had the same delima as you. There are those on this board (like Woody) who went with a lift and later on went SOA. Woody is into rockclimbing and is currently doing other mods to enhave is performance (I didn't say Viagra). PM Woody, he is a good one to talk to.

    There are others who are happy with the lift.

    Key things to consider. If you are mechanical and can do your own welding and like to dig in and modify your vehicle. Then an SOA may be for you. If you a going to be on the trails a lot taking the extreme trails or rocks, then an SOA may be for you.

    If you are just looking for a nice rig you can take on the easy to moderate trails, a lift should be fine. I put a lift on myself w/o help and it took about 4 days. With the lessons I learned doing it, I could probably do it in a day and a half. Was hard, frustrating, verything had a problem, but now that I am done, I'm glad I did it.

    Couple of other things to consider; an SOA will give you about 6 inches of lift. A Lift Kit will give you either 2 or 4, or even more with extended shackles.

    I was told Highway driving between a lift kit and SOA are equivelant.

    Unless you do the work yourself, an SOA will be more expensive, but those that have it swear by it. They say the ride is much better.

    I picked the Lift because I wanted to do the work myself, only do moderate (lvl 3) trails, thought 6 inches was too much lift, and oh yeah, I am CHEAP. Read that as selected best value for my situation.

    Hopefully, those with SOAs will set the record straight if I misspoke. I know if you do the SOA yourself, it can be cheaper.

    Now you have to pick a avitar and little saying for your motto.

    Good Luck!

    Ken
     
  3. Cruiserdrew

    Cruiserdrew SILVER Star

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    John-That's an easy one. Don't do it. The use you describe could be done in a stock 40. I've done the Rubicon a bunch of times in my 40 and I'm spring under with a 4 inch lift. A SOA will be so high, that you'll have to think about every corner you take, not to mention the safety issues in a daily driver. Now if your needs change-like big, big rocks than a SOA is very nice and gives good flex. To show you that I am not anti-SOA, I plan to spring over my 60 for Rubicon use-nice with the longer wheel base. You will be shocked with the abilities of a basically stock 40.
     
  4. 73fj

    73fj Tho at sumbitch in ayer!

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    i did my own soa for almost nothing,but im an accomplished welder and a good mechanic,the labour to pay someone could bankrupt a small country,especially if they f##k it up and have to rd there work.im happy with my soa,we are a fairly aggress ive bunch and go big.i think if your more stylin than hardcore go with the spring lift,if you wanna go 38" tires plus and break stuff,go soa.just my 2 cents ;)
     
  5. scubajohn

    scubajohn

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    I work in a family owned metal fab shop :) so cutting welding and making brakets is my daily buisness heheh. I actualy do the layout work and run the metal cuting and forming equipment. I am only a bit intimidated with the cutting and turning of the axles. I have never been a shade tree mech. Err well I did start with info from the WEB damn internet :). by lowering and adding n20 to my 1999 Camaro SS 6spd. and A few other goodies like sloted rotors and that easy bolt on stuff. . Also did a few minor bolt ons to my 2001 lightning.

    I have my eye on a fj55 front axle with disk brakes that I am going to pick up on Friday :) so when I get it and get a look at what needs cutting and turning.I may just do it.

    One question does come to mind do you have to cut and turn both axles or only the rear ? I have more reading to do.

    For my near plans I think lift springs will keep me happy for a few years. Other than the 350 :) the f1 just is not going to cut it for long heheh.

    Thanks for the tips and keep them coming
     
  6. dylan

    dylan

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    get a small spring lift 2 to 4". but keep your stock springs just in case :D
     
  7. Mad Chemist

    Mad Chemist

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    The question I have is in regards to the amount of flex you get (droop and stuff). Putting aside the obvious increase in clearance, is the articulation between the two similar? I'm not planning on running anything bigger than 35's, which can be managed with just a straight 4" lift and a little trimming? Is it worth putting in custom shock hoops/towers on a SUA for longer shocks?
     
  8. Isotel

    Isotel

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    Chemist, from what i hear, if you want flex, go spring over, lift springs do not flex any better then a stock truck, and you know that stock dosent flex at all!..

    Scuba, If you work in a machine shop then i think you should definatly go with the Spring over just because it will be a chance to put your skill to your rig.. and trust me you will always want to go biger, better, farther, faster.. you will probably end up doing it soon enughf, do it right the first time!.. ui am just finishing mine up and it came out great, did the cut and turn myself and i am a Very novice metal worker.... i had somone elce do the welding..

    another thing on the cut and turn, this is the first truck i have had and first lift i have ever done, so i think for you the cut and turn will be Cake.. all i had was a grider with cutofwheels and a small propane torch..
     
  9. LT

    LT

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    I've been running the SUA set up for about a year and a half and come this march 21st i'm going to be sprung over. There are plenty of people that drive with a SOA 40. If you keep the full packs on than the body roll tends to be less. I'm also going to soft top to drop some weight and finally get rid of my leaky hard top. You may think you are only going to do mediocre trails and then you'll get the bug :flipoff2:

    Oh yes my Cruiser is my DD/weekend warrior.

    Travis
     
  10. theferg

    theferg

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    [quote author=scubajohn link=board=1;threadid=12037;start=msg110013#msg110013 date=1077685474]
    One question does come to mind do you have to cut and turn both axles or only the rear ? I have more reading to do.
    [/quote]

    You only cut and turn on the FRONT axle. Essentially you cut the knuckle free (though I hesitate to use the word free because you don't actually cut it all the way off) from the axle tube and while keeping the knuckles at their same angle, you rotate the axle tube so that the pinion points at the t-case and then you usually rotate the knuckles back just a bit more for some castor correction. The main reasons for doing it is so that you can get better driveline angles and better steering angles. If you just rotated the pinion upwards on the front axle, your steering would get FUBARed. The rear don't need it 'cause there's no steering to get messed up if you rotate the axle at all.

    Yes, you might want to do some more reading on it. Have you read the Complete Overview of SOA. Definitely a good one. And there's plenty more to read in the Tech Section

    -Ferg-