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ZJ UpCountry Front Coil Spring Swap

These spring are from the Grand Cherokee with the V8 engine/Up Country Package

Part Number: Front - 5208 8363 spring with code "GN"

By: Paul Fraser
Installation Date: December, 2001

In the spring of 2001 I decided to lift my rig. Looking back I should have waited and saved up for a proper 3" kit but I was too anxious so I decided to 'piece' together a kit. I had already replaced my stock rear leaf packs about 6 months after I bought my Jeep, with a set of UpCountry spring packs. The stock ones were really sagged out. I decided to put in a set of Rubicon Express full length 3" AAL's on my XJ along with a set of 2" TeraFlex coil spacers to the front stock springs. The rear looked great, but the front was a little too droopy. I wanted to level the truck out and make the front relatively even with the back, and at the same time do this as inexpensively as possible. After a few weeks of researching and talking with people, I decided to get a set of ZJ(V8)UpCountry front coil springs. I was told you can get anywhere from 1.5-2" of lift, I figured that with my TeraFlex spacer would level everything out.

Below is a pic of my stock springs

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When I got the springs, they were black, but I figured I would "spice" them up a bit and make them match my Skyjacker shock boots. If you wanted to do something like this, I used Tremclad Fire Red, 2 cans, 4 coats. I lightly sanded the springs, then put 2 coats on and let them dry for a full 24 hours, then 2 more coats each, then 2 more days to dry.

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As you can see by the above photo the ZJ springs are a bit taller and the coils are a tad thicker than my stock XJ ones. This is to support the weight of the ZJ and the bigger V8 engine. Getting the old ones out was pretty easy, mind you when you have spring compressors and air tools, it makes for less work.

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Below is the finished product after the new Springs are installed. All that was left was to put the tires back on and get my Jeep on the ground to re-adjust the height of my JKS disco's. All in all this project took about 3 hours to complete.

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Final Analysis: After everything was all done, I ended up with the results I wanted, giving me a nice level 3" lift.

Here are my center of wheel to bottom of fender flare measurements;

- Rear 20.55" (Stock was 17.00")
- Front 20.50" (Stock was 17.45")

I then went for a 'test drive'. On the highway I hit speeds ranging from 80-120Kmh, and it felt very good, tight and smooth. I actually liked the ride better than my old springs, my old ones felt softer. These are a bit firmer than my stock springs, but I expected that. Personally I think it turned out great and reccommend it for anyone who doesn't want a monster lift, but needs new springs. I use my XJ as a daily driver so a 'big' lift is just out of the question for me right now, but I have a nice level 3" lift which is what I was after, and it was easy on the wallet.

If you have any questions on any of the above please feel free to email me I would be more than happy to answer what I can.

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