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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
This is a write-up of how to install the Ironman Nitro Gas 2" Suspension Lift Kit. The intention for this resource is for anyone thinking about doing an install like this the first time, and now knowing the things I know, how I would have done it to save myself some time and a little bit of money. As a basis, Ry the Car Guy's Youtube tutorial is very good, but is missing a few details that would have been helpful. Watch the video first, then read the below.

Tools:
  • Dead blow
  • Pry bar
  • Mechanics Socket & Ratchet Set (Metric & SAE)
  • Metric Combination Wrench Set
  • Electric Drill
  • 1/2” Impact Wrench (*)
  • Metric Impact Socket Set that goes up to 22mm 1/2” (*)
  • Pipe Wrench
  • 2 x 6” C-Clamps
  • 2 x 5” C-Clamps
  • Step Bit
  • Anti-seize
  • Suspension Grease
  • 3 Ton Jack Stands (pair)
  • 6 Ton Jack Stands (pair)
  • 3 Ton Floor Jack
  • 1/2” Torque Wrench - 10-150 Ft/lb - 13.6-203.5 Nm
  • 3/8” Torque Wrench - 10-80 Ft/lb - 13.6-108.5 Nm
  • 1/2” Breaker Bar 18 inch
  • 1/2” Breaker Bar 25 inch
  • PB Blaster / Gasoila Free All
  • Harbor Freight Angle Grinder w/ 4.5" Cutting Discs
Parts:
  • Assembled Front Struts
  • Rear Shocks
  • Rear Leafs, 4 U Bolts, Bushings
  • Angle Shims - Rubicon Express RE1464
  • SPC 87520 Cam Bolts
(A) Prep
  • A few days working on the X, spray all bolts that will need to be removed with PB Blaster or Gasoila Free All.
(B) Front Suspension Removal
  1. With Floor Jack, jack each side on the frame right behind the wheel and slide a 6 ton jack stands in
  2. Loosen Lug Nuts on Front Wheels w/ Torque Wrench and Remove Wheels. If you don't have a Torque Wrench, loosen the lug nuts before you jack up the X.
  3. Undo sway bar link (17mm bolt) - Dead Blow, Breaker Bar, Combination Wrench on both sides
  4. Undo 3 x 14mm bolts on top of strut - Deep Socket needed for one in rear
  5. 19mm bolt - 25" Breaker bar, Combination Wrench - don’t back out completely yet
  6. Jack underneath lower arm, unscrew nuts at the top
  7. Coax slowly by lowering tension, removing lower bolt, and removing strut
(C) Front Suspension Install
  1. Take assembled strut, point nub on top of strut towards inside of car, slide top mount in and loosely spin three nuts
  2. Push lower mount down and align hole, slide bolt in and dead blow in
  3. Put nut on loosely
  4. Tighten top 14mm nuts down to 22 ft-lbs
  5. Tighten bottom 19mm bolt to 150 ft-lbs
Repeat B & C for the other side to finish LEFT and RIGHT Front Struts

(D) Cam Bolt Install

Now that you have your struts installed, you can do the cam bolts. I made the mistake of trying to switch out the cam bolts BEFORE I installed the struts. That will make things difficult and not allowing the struts to go in seasily, so wait until you have your struts in. Cam Bolts should eventually look like in this document to be a rough alignment, Brutal Alignment.
  1. Loosen Cam Bolt and Nut; remove the nut but don't take out the Cam Bolt (Use Torque Wrench or Breaker Bar)
  2. Dead Blow the new SPC Cam Bolt in so it slides in right as the old one comes out. Luckily for me, the Cam Bolts were installed reversed, so that's all I needed to do. If you need to reverse the orientation, just do it again with another SPC Cam Bolt vs. the SPC Cam Bolt currently in.
  3. Repeat for all 4 Cam Bolts, after aligning with the above document, wait until vehicle is on ground, but remember to torque to 100 ft-lbs.
(D) Finish Front Suspension
  1. Re-Install Sway bar (both sides) 62 ft-lbs
  2. Put Wheels back on both sides
  3. Re-jack both sides up and remove the jack stands, then lower to rest
  4. Torque Lug Nuts to 100 ft-lbs
(E) Rear Suspension Removal
  1. Remove spare tire
  2. Floor jack to lift both sides up right in front of the rear wheels on the frames, slide 6 ton jack stands in
  3. Floor jack to put right under the pumpkin of the axle as a stop, if space, put 3 ton jack stands on both sides of the axle for extra support
  4. Breaker bar, 18mm socket, pull u bolts out x 4
  5. Undo the front of the leaf pack bolt and nut, leave bolt in; 19mm bolt and 22mm nut - breaker bar + adjustable wrench
  6. Undo the rear of the leaf pack’s bolt and leave the bolt in; 2 x 17 mm nuts - remove the shackle plate wiggle it out with pry bar
  7. Remove the front bolt and slowly lower to ground
  8. Finagle rear end of pack off by moving the shackle off
  9. Remove rear shock by removing the bottom rear shock bolt first (19mm both sides), 17mm on top
(F) Rear Suspension Install
  1. Remove all stickers and packaging on new leaf spring pack
  2. Drill 7/16" hole into RE1464 axle shims with step bit and lubricating oil
  3. Drill 9/16" holes in the stock u bolt plates with step bit and lubricating oil
  4. Grease shackle and bushings
  5. Install bushings, slide shackle into leaf spring, then slide top into frame
  6. Push plate on and put nuts on finger tight
  7. Put front bolt and nut on finger tight
  8. Clamp leaf pack with at least 3, if not 4 C-Clamps as we are going to install the axle shim now.
  9. Undo the nut on the bottom of the leaf pack center pin (14 mm socket & Pipe Wrench)
  10. If needed, jack the pumpkin up higher so there is enough clearance to take out the center pin.
  11. Lower axle slowly onto guide pin without breaking any brake or electronic lines. If you have trouble aligning the center pin, you can sometimes put your foot against the brake and pull or push the axle forward or backwards. You can also use your floor jack to move the leaf pack up and down.
  12. Install U Bolts and plates - make sure they are vertical and be careful not to widen them out - 92 ft-lbs in a diagonal pattern - measure and make sure all u bolts are within 3 mm of each other sticking out. You'll need to use a 22mm socket as the Ironman U-Bolts use bigger nuts.
  13. Top shock mount grease, then slide rear shock in the bottom, then into top, and put bolts and nuts back in finger tighten top then botto
  14. Repeat on other side
(G) Finish Rear Suspension Install
  1. Raise axle a little to get the wheels and tires on on if needed as now you have a lifted rear that is closer to the ground.
  2. Lower everything to ground
  3. Torque Lug Nuts to 100 ft-lbs
  4. Torque all the spec as pictured below; note that the shackles for Ironman have their own torque specs and have larger bolt sizes than 17mm and those are the only things that is different, link to document here.
    137746
  5. Remount Spare
(H) Post-Install
  • At some point, trim the U-Bolts after 500 miles or so. I believe you can do these while on the truck, but I just took them out and re-put them in as I was playing with shims. You will need the angle grinder, and use a piece of wood and the C-Clamps to hold it down if not doing on the truck.
  • Double check torques all around after some time.
  • Get an alignment for the front wheels, give the alignment tech the Brutal Alignment document printed out..
  • Measuring your pinion angle: Measure the angle of your driveshaft and then the angle of your differential. You can do the driveshaft very easily by putting a phone with a Measuring Level App against the driveshaft. You can do the differential easily if you have a steel L bracket. Push the bracket against two of the nuts on the back of the differential cover so that the bottom of the L is on the same direction as the driveshaft, then put your phone there. Without shims, I had about a 2 degree difference. With 2 degree shim, a 0 degree difference.
Notes:
  • An 1/2" Impact Wrench is not required, but greatly speeds everything up as you can remove and install tires very quickly. 420 ft-lbs of nut-busting torque was not enough to remove the 19mm bolts for the front struts, but was good for everything else. A 25" breaker bar was much better than an 18" breaker bar in removing some very stubborn bolts.
  • Using the Brutal Alignment method got me 95% of the way there. Taking it into Firestone, only a little need to be adjusted. What was odd was that the alignment tech said that SPC 87520 was just good enough, but would be better if I had an extra degree of adjustment. I thought this was odd as SPC 87520 seems to be what is used by everyone when doing lift kits.
  • Ry the Car Guy lifts the X on all four points, I like splitting the install in half into front and rear.
I'm still a newbie to all this, but hopefully this helped someone!
 

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  • Using the Brutal Alignment method got me 95% of the way there. Taking it into Firestone, only a little need to be adjusted. What was odd was that the alignment tech said that SPC 87520 was just good enough, but would be better if I had an extra degree of adjustment. I thought this was odd as SPC 87520 seems to be what is used by everyone when doing lift kits.
Nice writeup !

Those cam bolts offer about as much adjustment as you can get from the LCA mounts. If you need more you'll need adjustable UCAs like the SPC UCAs.
 
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