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Forum Home > Modifications > Need some advice.

Chancho
Limited Member
Posts: 116

I have a 1997 TJ 2.5L which is stock at the moment.  Currently, I do not have a top for my rig but I think I'll survive with a bikini top and a wind jammer.  I would like to go with 33's and need to know if I'm headed in the right direction.

 

1.) I'm looking at the Rubicon Express 2" Budget Boost. I would also like to add a 1" Body Lift for a total of 3". I want to go as high as possible without altering the driveline angles too terribly much. I would prefer not to mess with SYE/CV.  Any suggestions?

 

2.) I know that RE makes a good 2" budget boost but I'm not too sure which manufacturer to go with on the 1" body lift. Any suggestions?

 

3.) Are sway bar disconnects absolutely necessary when wheeling?

 

4.) When I lift my rig, will I need to replace the coil springs?

 

5.) Are the shocks that come with the Rubicon Express 2" compatible when an additional 1" body lift is installed on the rig?

 

6.) Regearing is way too expensive for me at this point in time.  Is it absolutely necessary that I regear with 33's?

 

Thanks for any feedback that you all can provide.

 

James Nixon

December 9, 2010 at 1:14 PM Flag Quote & Reply

vbtj
Limited Member
Posts: 521

Here are my answers for yea

1-- That is the cheapest and easiest way for sure.

2-Any one for the body lift is fine just make sure the address the fan shroud on the radiator.

3-No but they are nice

4-THe budget boost will have spacer for your stock springs.

5-Shocks and body lift have nothing to do with one another so your good.

6-No but you ain't gonna win no races thats for sure.

--

Rock Solid Fabworks    479-414-1246

Specializing in one-off fabrication with in house CNC plasma cutting.

December 9, 2010 at 1:24 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Chancho
Limited Member
Posts: 116

Thanks Justin!!  

December 9, 2010 at 1:59 PM Flag Quote & Reply

arveetek
Member
Posts: 948

We have essentially the same vehicle, so here's my opinions:


Don't spend a lot of money on a budget boost.  All budget boosts are made up of coil spring spacers.  The only differences in the kits are if shocks are included or not.  So if one kit has shocks, and another kit has shocks, they shouldn't be priced much differently.  Just buy the cheapest budget boost kit you can find.  If it doesn't come with shocks, just buy some separately.


Myself, I would spend a little more money and get an actual spring lift.  Rough Country makes a really nice 2.5" coil spring kit, that replaces all 4 stock coils with new coils.  It's a great lift for the money.  Spend just a few dollars more, and you get the 3.25" kit which includes the 2.5" springs as well as .75" spacers.  The only thing I didn't like about the kit was the performance 2.2 shocks.  They were a bit stiff for my taste.  I sold them and replaced them with Skyjacker Hydro shocks.  I've heard that Rough Country has redesigned the shocks for a softer ride now, though.


I actually left the rear spacers out and just lifted the front 3.25" and the rear 2.5".  To me, this makes the Jeep sit perfectly level, especially with the hardtop and spare tire on.  On a topless Jeep, if you lift the rear the same, it really seems to have a lot of rake.


With my 2.5" rear lift, I have no SYE and no driveline vibrations.


If you go with this RC kit, you'll get extended sway bar links front and rear, and then you can make your own homemade disconnects like I did.  I used these instructions:


http://www.4x4xplor.com/homediscos.html


These work great, and allow a lot of extra flex, keeping the tires planted on the ground, which is a big plus when you don't have lockers.


As for gearing, it really depends on where and how much you drive.  The 4 cylinder really lacks power on the freeway, and where I live, I have to drive 10 to 20 miles at highway speeds to get wherever I am going.  It's hard enough to maintain highway speeds with the stock 4.10 gears and 31" tires I currently have.  I, too, want to go to 33's, but I'll have to re-gear or swap engines to make that happen.


However, if you live in/near town and don't spend much time on the freeway or at highway speeds, you can probably get away without a re-gear for right now.


Casey


--

95 Chevy Tahoe 2 door, 6.5L turbodiesel, 285/75R16 Kenda Klever M/T's on Toyota steelies, some other goodies.  Overlanding Fun

December 9, 2010 at 4:19 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Chancho
Limited Member
Posts: 116

Great advice Casey.  Is it important to do the body lift also in order to gain more clearance?  I think your setup sounds like the way to go.  I'll do some pricing research and see what I can come up with.

December 9, 2010 at 5:08 PM Flag Quote & Reply

arveetek
Member
Posts: 948

Chancho at December 9, 2010 at 5:08 PM

Great advice Casey.  Is it important to do the body lift also in order to gain more clearance?  I think your setup sounds like the way to go.  I'll do some pricing research and see what I can come up with.

I'm not a fan of body lifts.  I think they look kind of funny, leaving a gap between the body and frame.  I would cut fenders for more clearance, if needed, before doing a body lift.  Body lifts are good, though, if you plan on doing a "tummy tuck" where you raise the engine, transmission, and transfer case, leaving less stuff hanging down below the frame.


I'm a big believer in high clearance fenders up front, and cut out fender openings in the back.  That way you can stuff the maximum size tire with the lowest possible center of gravity.  But the RC 3.25" is supposed to clear 33's without much rubbing on stock bodies.  I have tons of clearance with my 31's right now.


Casey


--

95 Chevy Tahoe 2 door, 6.5L turbodiesel, 285/75R16 Kenda Klever M/T's on Toyota steelies, some other goodies.  Overlanding Fun

December 9, 2010 at 9:27 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Chancho
Limited Member
Posts: 116

RC 3.25" it is.  Thanks for all of the help Casey. 

 

On another note, I was trying to decide whether to purchase new 15X8 black steelies and run 33x12.50's but I think I might have found an alternative.  I have OEM 15X7 alloys that I can paint black and then run 33x10.50's.  I've read some really good reviews from guys running the 33x10.50's on a 2.5L rig.

 

Thanks again for the advice!! 

December 10, 2010 at 10:45 AM Flag Quote & Reply

arveetek
Member
Posts: 948

33 x 10.50 tires on stock wheels should work fine, with minimal rubbing when turned lock to lock.  I think that would be a good fit for your rig.


Casey


--

95 Chevy Tahoe 2 door, 6.5L turbodiesel, 285/75R16 Kenda Klever M/T's on Toyota steelies, some other goodies.  Overlanding Fun

December 10, 2010 at 1:32 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Chancho
Limited Member
Posts: 116

I was thinking of installing some wheel spacers to eliminate rubbing all together.

December 10, 2010 at 3:57 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Green Hornet
Member
Posts: 185

Keep in mind that spacers are great but don't always eliminate the rubbing completely.

--

Green Hornet

December 11, 2010 at 1:28 AM Flag Quote & Reply

arveetek
Member
Posts: 948

Chancho at December 10, 2010 at 3:57 PM

I was thinking of installing some wheel spacers to eliminate rubbing all together.

That would work too, but good quality spacers are almost as expensive as aftermarket steel wheels...


You can buy some pretty cheap spacers, but I'd be leary of trusting them to hold my wheels on!  :D


Casey


December 11, 2010 at 10:14 AM Flag Quote & Reply

Chancho
Limited Member
Posts: 116

That doesn't sound good. :/  The Cragar Soft 8's are the least expensive steel wheels that I've been able to find.  I found 5 15X8's with 4" back space for $260 shipped.  It'll take a bit longer to get my rig outfitted but I guess I should go with the steel wheels.  I could always sell my stock alloy 15x7's.  Do people even want those anymore?

December 11, 2010 at 11:31 AM Flag Quote & Reply

arveetek
Member
Posts: 948

Yeah, you can sell the stock wheels on Craigslist for a hundred bucks or so.  Going with the Soft 8's is good, because then you could run the 33 x 12.50 size, which is much more common.


The Spidertrax spacers are best, but they're $99 a pair, so that's not much less than new wheels...


But, running the 33 x 10.50 tires should work just fine with no spacers, so you could still go that route without having to purchase wheels or spacers, and save a little money.

--

95 Chevy Tahoe 2 door, 6.5L turbodiesel, 285/75R16 Kenda Klever M/T's on Toyota steelies, some other goodies.  Overlanding Fun

December 11, 2010 at 2:00 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Chancho
Limited Member
Posts: 116

5 alloy wheels with tires for 100 bucks?  For some reason, I imagined that they would be worth more than that.  I think I'll order the Soft 8's.  I'll have a lot more choices when it comes to 33x12.50's than I will with 33x10.50's.  Is 4" of back space sufficient to mount 33x12.50's?

December 11, 2010 at 2:39 PM Flag Quote & Reply

arveetek
Member
Posts: 948

There are a lot of people selling stock Jeep wheels, so it's an issue of supply and demand!

--

95 Chevy Tahoe 2 door, 6.5L turbodiesel, 285/75R16 Kenda Klever M/T's on Toyota steelies, some other goodies.  Overlanding Fun

December 11, 2010 at 3:43 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Chancho
Limited Member
Posts: 116

Just ordered 5 of the 15X8 Soft 8's.  :D

December 11, 2010 at 4:37 PM Flag Quote & Reply

arjeepin
Limited Member
Posts: 83

Going back to the body lift thing... if you get really twisted up and flex too much the longer bolts required for a body lift will break under the stress. 

--

1990 YJ........arjeepin on rockwells

December 12, 2010 at 8:55 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Chancho
Limited Member
Posts: 116

Good point Paul.  I'll just steer clear of the body lifts then.

December 12, 2010 at 9:55 PM Flag Quote & Reply

SuperD
Limited Member
Posts: 186

JKS makes the best body lifts, paired with their motor mount lift you will have no radiator or shifter issues, had one on mine for 3 years now

December 15, 2010 at 4:17 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Chancho
Limited Member
Posts: 116

Appreciate the feedback David and welcome to the club.

December 15, 2010 at 8:16 PM Flag Quote & Reply

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