Suspension Upgrade Help - Page 2 - Second Generation Nissan Xterra Forums (2005+)
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post #11 of 17 (permalink) Old 08-13-2018, 06:56 AM
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Originally Posted by woodsrider View Post
Messe46, I had the exact same issue. Same year and model too. My rear sagged a half inch more than yours at 30k miles. I mainly use the X to haul my family to the mountains for skiing and mountain biking and the rear bottoming was getting dangerous, let alone annoying. Sliders would have made it unbearable.

I prefer stiff suspension. My DD is a Subaru WRX. So after exhaustive research, I went with Radflo 2.5 coilovers with 600# Eibach springs for the front and Alcan Spring custom leafs (2-1/2" lift plus 500#) for the rear with Radflo 2.0 remote reservoir shocks. I only installed it yesterday so I don't have a full review yet. But it lifted me 2-3/4" front and rear. I do have a mild driveline vibration at 30mph even though I installed a 3 degree axle shim. The ride is much better, but significantly stiffer. I will be adding White Knuckle sliders in a few days so I'll see what that does for the ride quality and height.

Hopefully I won't need it, but I expect a fight if I need drivetrain warranty work. Bottom line is the truck was broken before and Nissan called it normal. So either I fix it or I would have had to replace the truck. Fixing it is a lot cheaper than a new truck. Plus I really like this truck. No one makes a manual shift SUV anymore. Its the last of its kind.
I have the same setup but with 650lb coils on the front since I have a Shrock plate bumper and Warn 10k winch to install as soon as I get the chance to do it. I'm really pleased with this setup for the 2-3" lift range.

If you are not wanting that much lift, I think the OME is a good choice as well. I would recommend getting the heavier coils and leaf packs from the get go. The lower value stuff seems to do ok if you only do light car camping solo but if you are hauling many people or a lot of gear, the heavy stuff will last longer IMHO and provide a better ride and load control. I had OME heavy load leaves on the rear of my Cherokee and I had great luck from them.

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post #12 of 17 (permalink) Old 08-13-2018, 07:43 AM
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I have the same setup but with 650lb coils on the front since I have a Shrock plate bumper and Warn 10k winch to install as soon as I get the chance to do it. I'm really pleased with this setup for the 2-3" lift range.

If you are not wanting that much lift, I think the OME is a good choice as well. I would recommend getting the heavier coils and leaf packs from the get go. The lower value stuff seems to do ok if you only do light car camping solo but if you are hauling many people or a lot of gear, the heavy stuff will last longer IMHO and provide a better ride and load control. I had OME heavy load leaves on the rear of my Cherokee and I had great luck from them.
OME is a good solid plug and play choice... I have the OME light duty and I love it. I went with the light duty because I don't have or plan to add armor... and 90% of my driving is just myself or maybe my two young children... just go fishing... camping... snowboarding. Once or twice a year I'll have a car full of people and gear but it's light snowboarding gear... never really "fully loaded" down with heavy gear.

A few important (I think) notes about OME... it's not a soft ride... it's a little stiff and harsh...but i like that... it handles great and I have a ton of confidence driving it... where as the worn factory suspension scared the crap out of me... I was scared going around any turn above 30 mph...some people that ride in my Xterra though have mentioned it's a rough ride especially in the back...

It won't level your truck... at least it didn't mine... whether that's an issue for you... that's for you to decide...but mine pretty much still had factory rake after it was installed... just a note there...

I didn't need shims... I even asked Chuck at OK4wd when I was ordering the kit and he said that I shouldn't need them... he's never had anyone by one of those kits for the Xterra and come back and complain about the vibration and have to have shims installed... even though he knows its a real thing... he's never heard it from one of his customers and OME stuff is designed to work with factory everything.. so in theory you shouldn't need shims with a complete OME kit...

If your honestly never going to want more than 2 inches of lift on your truck then OME is a great... great choice... BUT... don't be like me.. now I want more lift on my vehicle and will be adding UCA's and spacers... had I thought it through a little better I would have went a different route... now just to level my truck I've got to spend some more cash and time to get it where I want it to be...

Please don't take this as trying to talk you out of OME.. just some points I think you should know as I've had mine on for about 6 months and 5k miles and I absolutely love it and would highly recommend it... just my thoughts for prospective OME buyers...

PS... OME has I think a 2 year warranty on all their parts.. which is a huge plus in my book !!!
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Last edited by morrisjw2; 08-13-2018 at 08:29 AM.
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post #13 of 17 (permalink) Old 08-13-2018, 08:42 AM
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Originally Posted by woodsrider View Post
Messe46, I had the exact same issue. Same year and model too. My rear sagged a half inch more than yours at 30k miles. I mainly use the X to haul my family to the mountains for skiing and mountain biking and the rear bottoming was getting dangerous, let alone annoying. Sliders would have made it unbearable.

I prefer stiff suspension. My DD is a Subaru WRX. So after exhaustive research, I went with Radflo 2.5 coilovers with 600# Eibach springs for the front and Alcan Spring custom leafs (2-1/2" lift plus 500#) for the rear with Radflo 2.0 remote reservoir shocks. I only installed it yesterday so I don't have a full review yet. But it lifted me 2-3/4" front and rear. I do have a mild driveline vibration at 30mph even though I installed a 3 degree axle shim. The ride is much better, but significantly stiffer. I will be adding White Knuckle sliders in a few days so I'll see what that does for the ride quality and height.

Hopefully I won't need it, but I expect a fight if I need drivetrain warranty work. Bottom line is the truck was broken before and Nissan called it normal. So either I fix it or I would have had to replace the truck. Fixing it is a lot cheaper than a new truck. Plus I really like this truck. No one makes a manual shift SUV anymore. Its the last of its kind.
Your shim could be your issue. Alcan supposedly builds their leafs so you won't need shims. A lot of people have a tough go trying to diagnose the vibration/shim issue after getting Alcans. The 1 degree per lift rule may not apply the same way to the Alcan setup.

However, some vibrations go away after a bit of time. The lower speed vibrations I had went away after a couple months. The 70mph-ish one remains and I don't think anything short of changing the drifeshaft to a double cardan will make a difference.

I would try loading your Xterra with a few hundred pounds of gear and see if the vibrations change. If they do you know it is a driveline angle issue, if not you can assume something else is off.


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post #14 of 17 (permalink) Old 08-13-2018, 08:46 AM
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Your shim could be your issue. Alcan supposedly builds their leafs so you won't need shims. A lot of people have a tough go trying to diagnose the vibration/shim issue after getting Alcans. The 1 degree per lift rule may not apply the same way to the Alcan setup.

However, some vibrations go away after a bit of time. The lower speed vibrations I had went away after a couple months. The 70mph-ish one remains and I don't think anything short of changing the drifeshaft to a double cardan will make a difference.

I would try loading your Xterra with a few hundred pounds of gear and see if the vibrations change. If they do you know it is a driveline angle issue, if not you can assume something else is off.
With the 2.5" 500lb Alcans on mine, I get vibrations when I'm completely empty (no gear at all). However I carry around 50lb of tools and straps with me all the time and with those in a tote behind the back seat, I don't get any vibrations without shims.

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post #15 of 17 (permalink) Old 08-13-2018, 10:13 AM
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Originally Posted by PhullD View Post
Your shim could be your issue. Alcan supposedly builds their leafs so you won't need shims. A lot of people have a tough go trying to diagnose the vibration/shim issue after getting Alcans. The 1 degree per lift rule may not apply the same way to the Alcan setup.

However, some vibrations go away after a bit of time. The lower speed vibrations I had went away after a couple months. The 70mph-ish one remains and I don't think anything short of changing the drifeshaft to a double cardan will make a difference.

I would try loading your Xterra with a few hundred pounds of gear and see if the vibrations change. If they do you know it is a driveline angle issue, if not you can assume something else is off.
With the 2.5" 500lb Alcans on mine, I get vibrations when I'm completely empty (no gear at all). However I carry around 50lb of tools and straps with me all the time and with those in a tote behind the back seat, I don't get any vibrations without shims.
I went back and forth on whether to install the shims or not. It is definitely a driveline vibration. But it is so minor. I haven’t had it up to 70 yet. It is more pronounced on heavy acceleration, which would indicate the pinion could be lowered. I may try pulling the shims out to see if it changes. It’s easy enough to do. I would prefer to run without them to keep more lube on the pinion bearing and less on the axle seals.
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post #16 of 17 (permalink) Old 08-13-2018, 01:41 PM
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Originally Posted by woodsrider View Post
I went back and forth on whether to install the shims or not. It is definitely a driveline vibration. But it is so minor. I haven’t had it up to 70 yet. It is more pronounced on heavy acceleration, which would indicate the pinion could be lowered. I may try pulling the shims out to see if it changes. It’s easy enough to do. I would prefer to run without them to keep more lube on the pinion bearing and less on the axle seals.
First thing to try is add 200lbs or whatever the break in weight calls for. I know with Alcans you are supposed to do some sort of procedure to get them to settle right according to your specs.


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post #17 of 17 (permalink) Old 08-15-2018, 06:18 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by woodsrider View Post
Messe46, I had the exact same issue. Same year and model too. My rear sagged a half inch more than yours at 30k miles. I mainly use the X to haul my family to the mountains for skiing and mountain biking and the rear bottoming was getting dangerous, let alone annoying. Sliders would have made it unbearable.

I prefer stiff suspension. My DD is a Subaru WRX. So after exhaustive research, I went with Radflo 2.5 coilovers with 600# Eibach springs for the front and Alcan Spring custom leafs (2-1/2" lift plus 500#) for the rear with Radflo 2.0 remote reservoir shocks. I only installed it yesterday so I don't have a full review yet. But it lifted me 2-3/4" front and rear. I do have a mild driveline vibration at 30mph even though I installed a 3 degree axle shim. The ride is much better, but significantly stiffer. I will be adding White Knuckle sliders in a few days so I'll see what that does for the ride quality and height.

Hopefully I won't need it, but I expect a fight if I need drivetrain warranty work. Bottom line is the truck was broken before and Nissan called it normal. So either I fix it or I would have had to replace the truck. Fixing it is a lot cheaper than a new truck. Plus I really like this truck. No one makes a manual shift SUV anymore. Its the last of its kind.
I'm in the same boat as far gear hauling (minus the family). I use to have a lowered '03 3series as my DD and that thing handle on rails... deinitely miss that car some days.

I would have like to go with radio or fox performance series but was out of my budget. I ended up placing th order yesterday for the Nisstec Ultimate lift kit (5100 based coilovers) with AAL and 500lb up front. Stock up from, according to Nisstec, is aproximately 480lbs +-.

NissTec Ultimate Lift Kit (Fits '05+ Xterra) - Nisstec Lifts: Nissan Lift Kits: XTerra Lift Kits, Frontier Lift Kits, Titan Lift Kits, Nissan Truck Lift Kits

If I do some serious body armor, then I'll upgrade springs to 600-650lbs and heavier rear leafs. I might end up adding Timbrens but I'll see how it rides first (easy enough down the line to add).

Cheers guys for all the help!
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