To lift or not to lift - Kawasaki Teryx Forum
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post #1 of 39 (permalink) Old 04-20-2020, 04:34 AM Thread Starter
 
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To lift or not to lift

Hey guys...relatively new here. Possibly interested in lifting my 2018 Camo 2 seater but the more I read, the more options I see. I'm looking for 2 or 3 inches more clearance for rocks and trail riding here in N.E. PA. Read conflicting articles about changing the suspension geometry and ruining my components. Looking for the safest bang for my buck. Brackets, A-arms, bigger tires, wheel spacers to accommodate bigger tires in the rear? Expensive portals? I have no experience in lifts but I am mechanically able. Also, I don't want a stiff, bone jarring ride with any modification. When I got this a couple weeks ago, I softened the damping adjustments by 8 clicks and took my tire pressure to just under factory suggested. I guess I lowered my machine even more by doing this. Without causing a storm of controversy, any positive advice would be appreciated.
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post #2 of 39 (permalink) Old 04-20-2020, 09:59 AM
 
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I think that the typical 2" lift helps out a lot under a lot trailriding or mud conditions. That is a lot of extra clearance on these machines, and then combine that a little larger tire the difference is even greater. Initially I installed the Highlifter kit (brackets on the arms) with the stock tires and did not notice any significant changes in ride quality or handling. I did notice a difference on the trail when compared to my friends Viking.....when I was stock he regularly went through ruts that I would get hung up on. After the lift it was the other way around. I then went from the stock 26" to 28" tires. Current iteration is high clearance and offset a-arms front and rear, and Bandit shocks that allow about 2" of lift over stock, along with 30" tires.

For a basic lift today I would probably go with the Brute Performance kit as it is advertised to help the ride a little (it was not available when I original installed the Highlifter kit several years ago).

For reliability.......sure, it does put the CV axles at more of an angle which promotes wear and puts some more stress on them, but it doesn't seem excessive. After 1,200 miles I have broken 1 front axle running heavy Intimidators on beadlocks and now 30's. I also have the diff lock speed limiter bypass so there has been a lot of full throttle and high wheel speed wheeling over rocks and up hills.
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post #3 of 39 (permalink) Old 04-20-2020, 03:46 PM
 
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A 2” bracket lift won’t and doesn’t put any extra strain on your axles or bearings. Sure it lifts your teryex but it’s so small of a difference on the axles and bearings. I run the perfix 2 inch kit . The only way you are going to brake a axle with a 2” lift is from driver error or bigger tires DEFINITELY not from a 2” lift lol . But what a difference in the trail compared to stock height night and day. And it didn’t change my ride .
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post #4 of 39 (permalink) Old 04-21-2020, 01:25 AM Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for the input guys. Probably gonna look into 28 in. tires and a 2 in. lift. A little more clearance would be great on the rocky trails around here.
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post #5 of 39 (permalink) Old 04-21-2020, 09:24 AM
 
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A 2Ē bracket lift wonít and doesnít put any extra strain on your axles or bearings. Sure it lifts your teryex but itís so small of a difference on the axles and bearings. I run the perfix 2 inch kit . The only way you are going to brake a axle with a 2Ē lift is from driver error or bigger tires DEFINITELY not from a 2Ē lift lol . But what a difference in the trail compared to stock height night and day. And it didnít change my ride .
Just to clarify, a lift does cause more wear and stress on the axles. This is because it increases the operating angle of the CV joints. This causes more up and down movement of the joint as the tires rotate which causes wear, and the higher angle puts more stress on them. Just about any dealer or the Kawasaki factory service rep will tell you the same thing when it comes to warranty. I broke a front axle and thought I would call the dealer just to see if I could get a new one under warranty. The first question he asked was if it had a lift, and when he called the factory service tech to ask about it that was the first thing they asked and then proceeded to try to give me a long lecture about it (which I was well aware of before this....).

With that said I don't think it's a big deal. Adding more stress and wear is different than saying the axles will explode and kill a bus full of nuns with a lift installed. I would still recommend doing this......I just want to make sure people understand they do increase the chances of killing an axle.
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post #6 of 39 (permalink) Old 04-21-2020, 01:02 PM Thread Starter
 
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Thanks again for the advice. Looked up Brute Performance today but they were out of stock. Thinking this over, I feel for now I should just ride the stock setup as the Teryx isn't even broken in yet and under warranty for 3 years. I know...this may not stop me from installing a lift in a couple of months but time will tell. The experience and knowledge base on this forum is very valuable.
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post #7 of 39 (permalink) Old 04-21-2020, 07:27 PM
 
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I have a 2016 T2 with the 2" Brute lift and 28" tires. I'm at 2600 miles so far (only about 1200 miles on the lift) and so far zero negative effects. The only "parts" I have had to replace to date was the battery and the upper a-arm bushings on the front. Extremely reliable for me and has never failed to get me back to camp at the end of the day.

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post #8 of 39 (permalink) Old 04-22-2020, 12:51 AM Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for the reply. I am going back and forth here deciding on a possible lift. Brute Performance will get back to me when the Teryx 2" lift is available. Your experience with the lift shows it can stand up to miles of use.
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post #9 of 39 (permalink) Old 04-22-2020, 06:09 AM Thread Starter
 
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Ok. Gonna chance the warranty and go ahead with the Brute Performance lift kit. They were in touch with me this morning and availability might be next week. Will do this first and then most likely upgrading to a 28 in. tire next. With no experience in this lift and tire area, I am curious as to why folks are upgrading from the stock 12 in. wheel to the 14 in. when 28 inches is 28 inches. What am I missing? Do the 14's have an advantage over the 12 in. wheel?
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post #10 of 39 (permalink) Old 04-22-2020, 06:13 AM Thread Starter
 
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I blame this decision to go ahead with the lift on 6.2Blazer. Common sense approach with possible geometric compromises weighed out. 😁
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post #11 of 39 (permalink) Old 04-22-2020, 07:28 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Coalcracker View Post
I blame this decision to go ahead with the lift on 6.2Blazer. Common sense approach with possible geometric compromises weighed out. 😁
Glad I could help
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post #12 of 39 (permalink) Old 04-22-2020, 07:31 AM
 
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Iíve ran the brute lift for about 1000 miles or so. It does make it ride better but nothing like aftermarket shocks would. I had an axle warrantied at my dealer with the brute lift on my machine. They never questioned it. Depends on your dealer.


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post #13 of 39 (permalink) Old 04-22-2020, 12:09 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Coalcracker View Post
Ok. Gonna chance the warranty and go ahead with the Brute Performance lift kit. They were in touch with me this morning and availability might be next week. Will do this first and then most likely upgrading to a 28 in. tire next. With no experience in this lift and tire area, I am curious as to why folks are upgrading from the stock 12 in. wheel to the 14 in. when 28 inches is 28 inches. What am I missing? Do the 14's have an advantage over the 12 in. wheel?
I believe this is because most riders that go bigger, want the same size tire all around so they typically get new wheels that can be easily rotated front to rear to spare. In this case, most aftermarket wheel offerings are going to be 14" diameter. Also, I believe the tire selection for 28" tires is better in 14" vs. 12"

Not saying you can't get what you want in 12", just that the most common one's are 14".

Oh, one more thing I forgot. 28 inches isn't always 28 inches when it comes to tires. This is a myth. You have to look at marked size and compare to actual size.

2016 T2, 2011 Brute Force, 2008 Vulcan 1500
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post #14 of 39 (permalink) Old 04-22-2020, 12:21 PM Thread Starter
 
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Ahh...peeling back the layers of tires, wheels and lifts. I now see the benefits of 14 in. wheels. Rotation and a spare makes sense. Thanks again.
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post #15 of 39 (permalink) Old 04-23-2020, 09:30 AM
 
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As mentioned above there seems to a lot bigger selection of tires available for 14" rims. If you go to one of the big websites, such as KJ Motorsports, that has a good filter function for tires you will see this. If you filter for a 28" tires for a 12" rims it comes up with a total of 12 different tires. Change it to 28" tires for 14" rims and it gives you 76 different tires to choose from.

I run 30" Crawler XG's on 14" rims that work great in the rocks and on trails down in Tennessee around Windrock and Brimstone, but they are horrible in the mucky clay that is common closer to home. Thought about getting another set of 30" mud tires to mount on my stock 12" rims but there is hardly anything available in a 30" tire size for that rim size.
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post #16 of 39 (permalink) Old 04-25-2020, 05:27 AM
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If I had to do it over again, I would go with high clearance, off-set a arms, no lift and run 30's which is my current tire/wheel combo.

The lift is a cheap way put, but in my opinion, it makes for a stiffer ride and you loose stability due to the obvious CoG change but also with the geometry change, as the a arms and wheels are pulled inward.

2015 super black Teryx 4 Kawasaki roof
2008 green Teryx LE 14" grey Moto Elixer wheels wrapped in Moto MTC tires - sold!
2001 red Kawasaki Bayou - sold!
2013 green Honda Rancher ES 4x4 custom sound system, 12" light bar, rear rack bag
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post #17 of 39 (permalink) Old 04-25-2020, 05:41 AM Thread Starter
 
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Another option to consider. I will research these A arm variations and price it out with the 30 in. tires and rims. Thanks for your input.
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post #18 of 39 (permalink) Old 04-25-2020, 07:32 AM
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Yea, really consider the arched arms. My current set up, 2.5" bracket lift and 30" tires is tipsy feeling. That's even with a slight offset wheel and 1" wheel spacers.

This is just my opinion, some may think that way is stable...just depends on your own personal "pucker factor".

2015 super black Teryx 4 Kawasaki roof
2008 green Teryx LE 14" grey Moto Elixer wheels wrapped in Moto MTC tires - sold!
2001 red Kawasaki Bayou - sold!
2013 green Honda Rancher ES 4x4 custom sound system, 12" light bar, rear rack bag
1973 Chevrolet K5 Blazer 33" all terrains, 19 year work in progress!
1992 red Manco Machines 4 wheeler 5 HP Briggs and Stratton engine with cvt, 2 wheel drive, no suspension - sold!
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post #19 of 39 (permalink) Old 04-25-2020, 10:02 AM
 
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Originally Posted by cody454 View Post
If I had to do it over again, I would go with high clearance, off-set a arms, no lift and run 30's which is my current tire/wheel combo.

The lift is a cheap way put, but in my opinion, it makes for a stiffer ride and you loose stability due to the obvious CoG change but also with the geometry change, as the a arms and wheels are pulled inward.
Can these aftermarket off set arms be run with OE wheels and no spacers? How much (if any) does it change the track width of the vehicle?
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post #20 of 39 (permalink) Old 04-26-2020, 05:54 AM
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I believe you can still run factory wheels. They will not affect your factory track width. They do however, lengthen your wheel base, which allows you to run taller tires without a lift.

2015 super black Teryx 4 Kawasaki roof
2008 green Teryx LE 14" grey Moto Elixer wheels wrapped in Moto MTC tires - sold!
2001 red Kawasaki Bayou - sold!
2013 green Honda Rancher ES 4x4 custom sound system, 12" light bar, rear rack bag
1973 Chevrolet K5 Blazer 33" all terrains, 19 year work in progress!
1992 red Manco Machines 4 wheeler 5 HP Briggs and Stratton engine with cvt, 2 wheel drive, no suspension - sold!
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post #21 of 39 (permalink) Old 04-27-2020, 09:34 AM
 
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If I had to choose between either the offset a-arms or lift, I would go with the offset arms. The arms actually allow more tire clearance by themselves as compared to a lift. On the other hand I will say that a 2" lift gives a good bit more clearance on the trails. If you look at costs the a-arms are going to cost at least 3-4 times as much. The route I went are the offset a-arms front and rear paired with a set of Bandit long travel shocks (provide 2" of lift), but that is a big chunk of cash.

Just a few clarifications on the standard offset and high clearance a-arms based on comments I hear all of the time:
- SuperATV or Highlifter offset a-arms do not provide any lift by themselves. You have to install a lift kit on top of them. Highlifter does come with the necessary parts that allows you to choose between stock height or lifted.
- The a-arms listed above do not change the suspension travel by themselves.
- The a-arms listed above do not widen the vehicle any.
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post #22 of 39 (permalink) Old 04-28-2020, 08:10 AM
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Here's a link to another thread that may help with your decision. I know a ton of guys that have a specific tire size they want to run, and this thread contains pretty much all the different suspension setups you can use to get your desired tire size.

What's the biggest tire I can run...
https://www.teryxforums.net/super-at...i-can-run.html
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post #23 of 39 (permalink) Old 04-29-2020, 09:47 AM
 
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Originally Posted by 6.2Blazer View Post
Just to clarify, a lift does cause more wear and stress on the axles. This is because it increases the operating angle of the CV joints. This causes more up and down movement of the joint as the tires rotate which causes wear, and the higher angle puts more stress on them. Just about any dealer or the Kawasaki factory service rep will tell you the same thing when it comes to warranty. I broke a front axle and thought I would call the dealer just to see if I could get a new one under warranty. The first question he asked was if it had a lift, and when he called the factory service tech to ask about it that was the first thing they asked and then proceeded to try to give me a long lecture about it (which I was well aware of before this....).

With that said I don't think it's a big deal. Adding more stress and wear is different than saying the axles will explode and kill a bus full of nuns with a lift installed. I would still recommend doing this......I just want to make sure people understand they do increase the chances of killing an axle.
I had my dealer install a 2" lift kit on my 2019 T4 and before I did I asked him if that would affect the warranty. He told me no. Sure wish I had of got it in writing now. Going to check my emails as I did correspond with him about it.

One additional benefit for me with a 2" lift kit. My door would hit on the side rail of my trailer once loaded on and now it doesn't.
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post #24 of 39 (permalink) Old 04-29-2020, 09:52 AM
 
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Not all kits allow you to use factory set up. My dealer installed a Super ATV kit and he had to install 1.5" wheel spacers on the rear wheels. Here's the link to show the installation requirements. https://www.superatv.com/kawasaki-teryx-2-lift-kit
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Last edited by Blenky; 04-29-2020 at 09:58 AM.
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post #25 of 39 (permalink) Old 04-29-2020, 06:18 PM
 
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I like the idea of rear arms to correct the crazy amount of camber my machine has.
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