4WD and Sport Utility Magazine (4WDSU) built their own project Samurai. This was the first time in almost a decade. Much has changed since their previous Samurai project, including suspensions. For their new vehicle, they chose the very best leaf spring suspension on the market, the Rocky Road JPEater kit with Old Man Emu springs for their project vehicle (along with many other Rocky Road goodies) where they used Toyota axles.
Click on the picture to the right for a quick look at the cover page to the article.
The caption in the article says it all.... "How to Build a Kick-Ass Samurai". Need we say more??? The one single kit they chose above all others on the planet was the Rocky Road system. This is because these guys know what works, see what works on the trail, and understand the solid engineering in our Wrangler conversion system. Sure, there are a couple other Wrangler conversion systems on the market... chose one of those and you are choosing inferior engineering and quality. It won't handle as well as the JPEater and won't install as easily. Read on for more details and to pick up your own JPEAter system for your Samurai..
Going BIG and going FLEXY are two things we love to do around here at Rocky Road. One of the best riding and flexiest ways to get there is by swapping out to a completely new suspension. If you've had thoughts of giving your rig a complete revamp with new springs and all, the Wrangler spring swap kit might be just the thing for you.
Fred Swanson's Wrangler sprung Zuk flexing it up on a 23* ramp.
Why Wrangler springs on a Samurai?
Because the longer and softer the spring, the more flex and better ride you get. In 1995, Rocky Road (then Summit Off-road), designed and installed the first-ever Samuray YJ
spring conversion system for the Samurai. At that time it was a weldon only setup. Due to the popular demand of the YJ springs, and in the spirit of our original ground-breaking creation, we have now designed the ultimate bolton Wrangler spring conversion system.
If you're looking for some excellent bolt-on articulation for your vehicle, this cannot be beat. YJ springs are substantially longer than Samurai springs which provide for a ton more suspension flex than standard length springs. With the JP-Eater® kit, your rear springs are about 6" longer than stock; your new front springs are close to 9" longer than stock!!! The spring rate of YJ springs is also surprisingly plush which means you get a super comfortable ride in SPOA configuration. Our test vehicle pulled a 30" front articulation mark off our RTI ramp, and the rear goes even higher. Unheard of for a leaf spring suspension on such a short wheelbase vehicle!
The JP-Eater® kit works in spring under configuration if you only want a couple inches of lift, but the big flex of a YJ spring system. Or you can combine this kit with our SPOA lift kit and you're sitting easy on top of a set of 33" tires with stock YJ springs. Wrangler springs like the Old Man Emus, and you're sitting easy on top of 35-36" tires. Stock Wrangler springs are also usually a dime a dozen at shops that do lift installations or on Ebay; a great place to pick them up super cheap. Wrangler owners discard their stock springs without thought, a treasure for us Samurai owners!
John D shows how great the system can look on his 1986 LWB (Long Wheelbase) Samurai. What you can't see is the Camaro 2.8ltr MPFI coupled to the 700R4 which is stuffed under the hood. Click on the picture for a peek at that custom setup.
Wrangler springs are 2.5" wide (stock Samurai is 2" wide) which makes them more resistant to spring wrap. The kit comes with spring hanger mounts for the fixed end of the springs. These special spring mounts reposition the end of the spring to make up for the extreme length of the YJ springs. The kit also comes with shackles which adapt the shackle end of your suspension to fit the wider YJ springs. Spring plates and new Ubolts are also included and necessary due to the extra width of the Jeep springs.
Our system is by far the most stable on the market since it doesn't do any funky/fancy/fad shackle setups. Front and rear kits are also available separately.
This is the finest Wrangler Spring Conversion for the Samurai front on the market and is not like anything else being offered for the Samurai. The JP-Eater kit is the final step in the evolutionary process for YJ spring swap systems.
In the past we have carried Wrangler conversion kits with all sorts of hocus pocus shackle reverse and Missing Links, we stopped carrying them because of safety issues. While the perception might be for greater flex with these systems, the fact is that any articulation gains are next to nothing, but the trade-off in stability for highway driving is huge. We created the whole Missing Link phenomenon in 1995 before any other shop had seen anything of the sort. With more years of experience on the dual shackle system than any other offroad company on the planet, we determined that using Missing Links with the softness, length, and flex of the Wrangler springs was dangerous on the highway or even on the trail at speeds over 30mph. Not a risk we would put our family in, or yours. As a result, we do not recommend nor sell Missing Links or shackle reversals with Wrangler springs. For the safety of our customers, we have eliminated these systems for a true high articulation system, safe, and without all the foo-foo. Your life is not worth an extra inch of flex from a Missing Link shackle, avoid them with the Wrangler springs at all cost.
The JP-Eater® Kit includes the following items and features:
Front and rear super-flex DOG-BONE shackles and hardware. The dog-bone shape provide more clearance for flex and an awesome look!
HD spring plates. We build our spring plates for people who will be keeping their springs under the axles, or for those who have the springs on top of the axles. Make sure and specify your current setup at your time of order to receive the correct kit.
Heavy Duty longer 1/2" Ubolts, nuts, & washers. These are required. Competitor's kits that don't carry these are not giving you all the required components for your spring conversion.
Front castor and pinion angles are unchanged with this spring conversion.
2.5" of additional lift by using stock YJ springs.
Used in spring over applications, JP-Eater lift height with stock springs will give about 7.5" of total lift... perfect for 32-33" tires.
Rear spring hanger brackets, hardware. These are the mounting points for the fronts of your rear springs. All bolton... no welding.
Front spring hanger brackets, hardware. These are the mounting points for the rear of your front springs. All bolton... no welding.
Slight wheelbase extension on the front and rear axles for better tire clearance and increased stability.
Front frame extensions, bushings, and hardware. Our bracketry extends both sides of the framerails for strong multi-point mounting.
Bumper mounting brackets and shim plates to fit ANY style bumper on the aftermarket! The ONLY Wrangler conversion system on the market with this feature. Other kits offer no full frame extension which limits the bumpers you can choose from for your Samurai. Our kit works with all bumpers.
Triangulated mounting strength for our front frame extensions thru use of the original shackle hangers on frame. We use a super-strong 5/8" bolt and steel sleeve design. Best and strongest mounting system on the market for Wrangler spring conversions.
Stock exhaust or any aftermarket exhaust can be retained with use of our upper rear shock mount (included in SPOA combo kit). Our exclusive DOG BONE shackles also give clearance for the stock tailpipe out the rear of the vehicle. Other kits... you are on your own.
Rocky Road's lifetime warranty. All Rocky Road manufactured steel components from our JPEater Samurai YJ conversion kit are guaranteed to last longer than you own your vehicle. No other shop offers this level of warranty... either because they can't, or because they don't believe in their product's strength enough to stand by such a warranty.
Click on picture for larger view.
This kit was engineered by actual 4wheeling fanatics with clearance, approach angles, and strength firmly in mind. These aren't just brackets that remount your old springs, or move the rear springs up front. Think about it, going from a stock 37" spring, to a full 46" long Wrangler Spring on your Samurai, and not losing your approach angle. Our kit also extends your wheelbase without going overboard.
Be clear on a couple other points too. Other kits on the market that use Missing Link or Double Shackle setups create instability in the front axle on the highway. Those kits may be subject to removal per DOT regulations. Double shackle kits on the front axle may not be street legal in all locations for one simple reason... SAFETY. Simply put, double shackles on the front axle are not recommended for highway use and unsafe in emergency situation. Avoid kits that come with these systems.
The JP-Eater system is truly engineered for simplicity. Our kit is also 100% bolt-on. A super simple installation for even the newest Suzuki enthusiast.
But perhaps best of all (and much to the chagrin of our competitors), the Rocky Road JP-Eater® kit offers all these superior features for a price tag at close to $100 less than our competitors and they don't even include new Ubolts which are absolutely necessary! If you look at our competitors prices on the YJ/SPOA combo kit, we're a couple hundred dollars less!!! We don't want to make them cry..... but it just might happen.
For the ULTIMATE in extreme suspensions, we have introduced the 4WD&SU (4WD & Sport Utility Magazine) kit which includes OME springs and the Old Man Emu poly bushing kits just as the magazine's project vehicle.
The OME springs provide an additional 3" of lift over the standard JPEater setup. This kit is not for everyone, but is a great system for those who want to GO LARGE! Be advised, if the OME system is used in SPOA form, you should plan on custom CV driveshafts. This much lift will be too tall for standard Ujoint driveshafts.
|JPEater Wrangler kits||Select kit/options||Click to add to cart|
Deluxe SPOA and JP-Eater® combo system.
In a nutshell, this system includes everything in our JPEater kit and our SPOA kit combined for a full integrated system.
**Deluxe combo system includes: Complete front and rear JP-Eater® conversion system as listed and explained above, Ubolts, Deluxe EZ-Weld wraparound spring pads, front & rear driveshaft extensions, 3 extended length brake lines, Front & Rear upper long travel shock mounts, Front & rear lower long travel shock mounts, HYDRO shocks, Over-The-Top (stage 1) steering system.
***4WDSU Extreme kit contains all of the above, along with Wrangler OME springs and poly bushings. Perfect for 35-36" tires! Be advised, this kit will require custom CV driveshafts. It is too tall for standard ujoint driveshafts. This kit will fit tires approx 36" in size.
|SPOA / JPEater Combination systems||Select kit/options||Click to cart|
Click on pics for larger view.
Up and down.... Tom Gorman's Samurai flexing it up on our 30* ramp. 33" of flex with fully inflated 33" tires ain't bad at all!!! Plus, notice the ARB Bull Bar works with our JPEater kit. This is THE ONLY wrangler system on the planet that allows any and all aftermarket bumpers to be run as a result of our special frame/bumper extension system!
Click on the pics for a KING SIZE view!