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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
So this will be my first real post about something I've done to my truck.
I recently completed extending my driveway, pouring a little under 4.5 pallets worth of concrete with my father-in-law. I mention this because I went and got 5 pallets of concrete with my Fronty... not all at once of course, and off loaded by hand all 280 sixty pound bags. All this effort to make a place to park this beast.

I had been doing research and after my head quit spinning from all the information and opinions that exist in here I decided to break down and go for an integrated system. I bought the OME medium duty based on feedback about the ride with HD kits, how much height is actually gained, and many other reasons. I also purchased SPC UCAs although I have no spacer installed, I do have future intentions of armor.

The actual installation took 2 days for to complete with around 80% of the work being done solo. The rear went on first without issue. It is important NOT to let the axle hang by the brake lines for obvious reasons, which is the main complication I could see in the rear installation. The time consuming part was drilling out the U-bolt plates to accommodate larger U-bolts. It would have helped to have newer (sharper) bits but that alone ate 3 hours of my day.

On to the front:
There is a great amount of first hand experience that I read prior to going into this which describe problems encountered and as detailed as they are you just do not know how you will handle the issues until you're there. The driver side rear UCA bolt is definitely not a cake walk. I ended up separating the steering to get it out vice cutting the bolt as I do not have all that much in the way of cutting tools. The only other part that sticks out as truly uncooperative was assembling the coil over. If you end up taking the pieces (cheating out by not ordering them assembled at the purchase) somewhere there is a great thread I believe in one of the Xterra forums that show many views, including "exploded" views and finished product views. I used this information to get mine assembled by a shop ensuring they had the end result which worked out well in my case as everything lined up without issue.

Improvements:
If you do not upgrade your rear bumpstop: I reinstalled the OEM after hollowing out the center a little, which ended up without a flush bumpstop plate. This resulted in the U-bolt nuts seeming loose after a short settling time and a couple trips.
In all the information out there, I could not find anyone commenting on the setting of the SPC UCA. The instructions for it have recommendations for settings and after reviewing the alignment sticky I couldn't find something that matched my current setup. Most of that sticky retains the use of stock UCAs. If anybody out there has input on that I am open to advise. With that said: My alignment is within factory OEM specifications with around one degree positive camber being the outlier (but in spec).

Let me know your input on any settings, first-hand experiences, recommendations, and tire sizes to try to fit on this truck. Currently still running stock tires. This is a daily driver (my only vehicle now) and will remain so. Daily commute is around 80 miles and off-roading will become more frequent with growing confidence that I will be able to get out of the trail and go to work the next day.

Pictures of the truck are in my profile albums. My first trip off roading completely stock shortly after I bought it. The other album contains pictures from today.
 

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I also used Setting D on my SPC UCAs. With a 1.5" spacer, I had to grind away a good chunk of the spring bucket to avoid contact at full-droop. To be specific, the location of contact would've been on the inner side of the ball-joint; this would've very quickly destroyed the ball joint.

No bucket contact at all for you at full-droop? That's nice, as it saved you about an hour of grinding work (both sides).
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
No contact for me but I also do not have the spacer either. I have read your build thread Pathung, and was a little worry about the rear brake lines as I have left them clipped in the stock location. I may do a little testing in the near future before my next trip off road. Have you had any other issues with your setup?
 

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I have had no issues with my setup. FYI, the truck will ride better with weight in the bed or up front (e.g., carrying a winch bumper).

Regarding the brake lines, I do have extended brake lines all around; if you're going to keep your stock rears, I'd suggest unclipping them from the brackets, and taping over the brackets so that the lines don't fall back in (as they're wont to do)... iirc, the rear lines didn't have that much play after the lift, even out of the brackets.
 

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The actual installation took 2 days for to complete with around 80% of the work being done solo. The rear went on first without issue. It is important NOT to let the axle hang by the brake lines for obvious reasons, which is the main complication I could see in the rear installation. The time consuming part was drilling out the U-bolt plates to accommodate larger U-bolts. It would have helped to have newer (sharper) bits but that alone ate 3 hours of my day.
What size bit did you need to drill out the U-bolt plates? I have a new set, but I think the largest one is 1/2". I seem to remember reading somewhere that a 9/16" was needed. If that's the case, I should run to the hardware store before I start wrenching.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 · (Edited)
Yes, the 1/2" bit fits the holes in stock form so 9/16" may be large enough, I ended up trying a couple of bits at my Dad's house. I got U-bolts with my lift so if you have the same (at least same size) I believe are half inch themselves then the next size bit would probably clear the threads on the bolts. The washers are large enough to use something slightly larger but I wouldn't take away much more metal from that plate - in case you wanted to restore to stock and sell (blasphemy).
 

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I don't know if they changed the size of the U-bolts between our purchases, but I didn't need to ream out the plates, thank goodness! I was dreading that step after all of our other struggles yesterday.
 
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