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Old 04-18-2012, 07:23 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default new samurai owner needs adivce

I'm am going to buy a 88 samurai tin top tomorrow. It's all stock and I want to lift it, add larger tires and increase the 1.3's power. First up OS lifting, I've been looking at rocky road and they have a 5 or 6" spoa lift kit. These are good kits, correct? Should I get the 5" kit? I want to fit 31" tires. For tires I want the cheapest but still good, 31's for mud and similar terrain. And for power, I don't want to swap the engine but if i do the parts for the 1.3 work for the 1.6. What are the most effective upgrades u can do? Headers, card, intake? The I don't want to spend a tin of money on the samurai and it will be a daily driver in the winter. Thanks for the help.
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Old 04-19-2012, 12:01 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I prefer the sky manufacturing deluxe kit offed by Lowrainge offroad.
It is a much more complete kit.
No one offers a complete SPOA Kit for the Zuke. And I mean No One.
You will still need a high steer kit, and a track bar kit.
As to the lack of power from the 1300:
Re gear the T - case, / carb conversion, /exhaust, / cam.
Sorry for the brief answers. I don't have a lot of time thismorning....Boxcar...
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Old 04-19-2012, 03:03 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Ok, thanks, Im changing my needs though. I want it to be good on trails and maybe a little mud, but in the winter it needs to be my daily driver. Im only going to off road every once in a while. also I want to spend less. The samurai was $1500 and I don't want to spend any more than $1000 on it, that's for tires, lift and some power. for the lift I want the cheapest possible but one that's not terrible (bad handling on road and bad travel/ off road capabilities), and maybe only like 3-4" lift. and with tires ill try to find some used 29"s or 30"s. last is power, what is the cheapest and most effective way to boost the power?
Sorry about changing what I need.
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Old 04-19-2012, 04:16 PM   #4 (permalink)
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You may struggle to find a 3-4" lift that suits you, because an SPOA will lift you more than that, so your only options at that point are longer shackles (1" of lift realistically being the max) and/or spring packs (all new lift springs or add-a-leafs).

Either way you'll make your car less flexy and harsher riding. That means less comfy on and off road, and slightly less capable offroad.

If you're careful and make some of your own parts (spring saddles, for example) you can easily get SPOA and 31's for under $1000, but that is only possible if you're good at making parts, welding etc.

Mercedes steering arms for the high-steer kit, and a custom fabbed track bar. I did the whole lot for about 100 (which I guess is about $150) including a set of 31" BFG Mud Terrain T/A's second hand. I did pay 200 ($300?) for my 8J deep dish dihatsu rims though, which have loads of backspacing. I've paid 30 for a set of 8.5J alloys recently, so I *could* have done the whole thing for about 130 if I hadn't gone to town over the rims.

I've recently spent about 450 on new tyres though - a set of Kaiman Malatesa's for offroading, and a set of BFG Long Trail T/A radials for road driving (hence the alloys). So I think you can see that I'm still within your budget, and I've got SPOA, 3 full sets of tyres, 2 sets of rims...

Budget carefully, make parts (or make good friends with someone who can) and I'd wager you can do the whole thing, with BRAND NEW tyres, for $600 easy. Then spend the rest on a 410 transfer case to get more oomph, and perhaps a 1.6 litre engine from a Vitara (Tracker?) for the power you seek. I know you said you don't want to swap the engine, but it's actually easier to do a swap than mod a 1.3 to make similar power (imo). It's *almost* a straight swap.

Last edited by MudBarf; 04-19-2012 at 04:19 PM.
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Old 04-19-2012, 05:35 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default lifting a Samurai...

I would be wary of a SPOA that's more than 4.5" if you are only going with 31" tires.

I have a Breeze Industries 4.5" lift with 30" BFG AT/KOs and have room to grow.

There is an article at Ack's FAQ called "the 6" rule" that you might want to read. Here is the link: Ack's FAQ The Six Inch Rule

Watch out with "bolt-on" SPOAs! RRO sells them (or used to). They tend to fail either by being crushed by hard offroading or bent from axle torqueing. Welded pads always work best.

I hope that this helps!
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Old 04-19-2012, 06:50 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I'm gonna be selling my 91 SPOAD FI 1.3 liter Soft top with a Hard Top installed. With a bunch of new parts for $3200 without tires if your in the BC Canada area.
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Old 04-20-2012, 09:40 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Mudbarf is correct.
Unless your a fabricator $1000 is going to be real tight.
We make most of our parts in house. You have to realize that I also have a HUGE investment in equipment. And 30 plus years in the business.
Assuming you have a welder
The Lowrainge deluxe kit:

Kit will give you about 4 1/2" of lift and is weld on.
Standard kit includes:
-Sky HD Self-Aligning Spring Over Axle Pads
-Sky Upper Front Shock Hoops
-Sky Upper Rear Shock Mount
-Sky Front and Lower Shock Mounts
-Two 3/4" Drive Shaft Spacers (specify year)
-Coated Stainless Steel Braided Brake Lines
-Four DT 3000 Series Shocks
All This at $499

If you price this out separately you will find that this is a pretty good deal...

Mercedes Steering arms can be had for $50 - $100 at the wrecking yard.
(good luck finding them)
The alternative high steer kits start at around $300

The Track bar :

The Spidertrax Anti-Wrap Kit is designed to completely eliminate the effects of rear axle wrap, making s-kinked springs history. In addition, adding the Spidertrax Anti-Wrap Kit increases effective traction! The unique design of this kit places the lower link mount on the underside of the rear axle. The dynamics of this setup not only properly eliminates axle wrap but allows for proper motion of the suspension without binding.
What sets this design aside from the rest? Ladder-bar designs can cause severe suspension bind and can even twist the axle housing. Top axle mounted traction bar designs can actually induce axle wrap and also cause increased squatting under acceleration. The Spidertrax Anti-Wrap Kits simple and effective design make it an ideal modification for any Samurai SPOA suspension.
$139

This will leave you $262

Used tires and wheels will save you some $$$$$ Try Craig's list.

Trust me, this is just about as cheap as your going to get for a somewhat properly lifted Samurai.
If your going to go all bolt on (I don't recommend it) add about 50% to these prices.

DON"T LEAVE ANY OF THESE PARTS OUT. No matter where you source them from. THIS IS A RECIPE FOR THE BARE MINIMUM 4.5" lift.

You will now be able to clear 31" tires with some miner front bumper mods.
BUT you wont have the power to tern them efectively...
You will need to re gear and power up for that. Add another $1000 minimum...

This is not an inexpensive habit.
If your a capable fabricator you can cut this budget by about 1/3rd.
But unless you can cut gears, build shocks, braid your own brake lines and grind cams. You are still going to be way over $1000.....

If all you want is a Zuke to drive in the snow and some light wheeling.
Leave it stock..... With a good set of snow tires.
It may not look as cool but it is a more than capable rig in stock foremat.....

The hard reality is that if you try to cut corners on a build you will end up with a rig that drives like a blind man without a cane. And is unsafe for you and others on the road and trail.
.....Boxcar...

Last edited by Boxcar; 04-20-2012 at 09:49 AM.
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Old 04-20-2012, 09:56 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Yes I did realize $1000 would be hard just for suspension and tires. but is possible to do it right with that much money. I have a friend that can weld on the perches but not make the parts. So that lift you listed probably will be the one I will go with. For the steering arm cant I but a drop putnam arm or Zlink?
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Old 04-20-2012, 10:34 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Boxcar View Post
DON"T LEAVE ANY OF THESE PARTS OUT. No matter where you source them from. THIS IS A RECIPE FOR THE BARE MINIMUM 4.5" lift.
I stopped short of reccomending a bambar, but I'm planning on making one for mine soon. I have roughly a 5" lift from my SPOA because I have a 413, not a sammy - so one of the saddles sits partially on the front diff housing, meaning I can't get away with anything less than 5" (and had to make my own saddles, you can't buy ones that fit off-the-shelf in the UK).

My bambar is going to take the form of a triangulated upper link similar to the one on the back axle of a Vitara/Tracker, though - because I plan on converting to coils eventually.

But I do think more people would benefit from a bambar, especially if they've got a heavy right foot.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Boxcar View Post
You will now be able to clear 31" tires with some miner front bumper mods.
BUT you wont have the power to tern them efectively...
You will need to re gear and power up for that. Add another $1000 minimum...
I nearly disagreed with that, because I've got a 1.3 and it does ok with 31's - but then I remembered that I've upgraded to a side-draught SU carb, and that *does* give more oomph...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Boxcar View Post
This is not an inexpensive habit.
If your a capable fabricator you can cut this budget by about 1/3rd.
But unless you can cut gears, build shocks, braid your own brake lines and grind cams. You are still going to be way over $1000.....
I don't know how much 1.6 blocks go for over stateside, but I'd have thought that a swap to the G16 block would be cheaper and result in better torque low down, which would make the car more driveable.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Boxcar View Post
If all you want is a Zuke to drive in the snow and some light wheeling.
Leave it stock..... With a good set of snow tires.
It may not look as cool but it is a more than capable rig in stock foremat.....

The hard reality is that if you try to cut corners on a build you will end up with a rig that drives like a blind man without a cane. And is unsafe for you and others on the road and trail.
.....Boxcar...
Check out this bad boy:



I say that is a good looking truck! A bone stock SJ with the arch seams peened over flat (so they don't shred your tyres) and you can get suprisingly large tyres on them...

And they're damned good offroad. Maybe not up to a challenge truck, but if you want something that will keep up with a challenge truck...

...Save up and buy a challenge truck!
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Old 04-20-2012, 11:37 AM   #10 (permalink)
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A drop pitman arm will defiantly help but won't solve the bump steer problem.
In conjunction with a crossover kit (half of a high steer) It will.
The 1.6 conversion won't come in under $1000....
I get the same # s from a well built 1300. with better economy.
The " Bam Bar" limits articulation. And is over kill on a lief sprung Samurai.
Unless we are going to start talking V8 conversions.
.......Boxcar...
PS: Cool Zuke,
Here is one of mine,



Last edited by Boxcar; 04-20-2012 at 11:48 AM.
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