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Unread 09-13-2005, 05:38 PM   #1
ROLNOVR
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I'm new with a bunch of ?'s

I finally got my Jeep a couple weeks ago after dreaming about one for over a year. It's a '97 TJ and I love it.

But right now, it's strickly stock. And I want to change that. However, I will not be doing any extreme offroading. I will be doing some, though. I would like to add a lift and some bigger tires, however my budget is somewhat limited. I've been reading a lot of stuff about it and needless to say, I'm very confused.

So my questions are:

1. What kind of lift should I get? I've read things about a budget boost, a body lift and a suspension lift. Which is the best for the car and for me as a driver? And where's the best place to purchase these things?

2. I've read that the biggest tire I can fit on my TJ are 31"s. That's all good great grand and wonderful, however, if I do get some sort of lift, will the tires look stupid because they're smaller?

3. If I get new tires, will I also have to get new rims? I've been to a couple tire places (i.e., Mr. Tire, NTB. I learned that hard way that they don't know diddly squat). Which rims are the best deal (translation: cheapest) and where can I get them?

4. I love having my doors off but the lack of mirrors are killing me (and the threat of getting pulled over for no mirror on my driver side). Are the brackets that use that factory mirror worth it?

Hopefully someone can help a Jeep newbie out. I love this thing to death and now I want to make it mine.

Oh, and I absolutely love the Jeep wave!

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Unread 09-13-2005, 05:44 PM   #2
mkauffman
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Well I started just like that about a year ago. Right now, I'm not that much farther along, which is a disappointment. I went with the 31's, put them on stock rims and they work fine. A friend of mine has 31's with a budget boost, it looks great and I hope to do that soon. I bought a mirror that goes right into the hinge for the door, it was something like $30. The thing shakes like crazy and is decently worthless, but it does keep my jeep legal, so its all that I ask for.

So really, 31's are a good start, you don't need new rims at all (unless you just don't like yours), and the mirrors are cheap.

Hope that wrangler turns to all taht you hope for.

Matt
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Unread 09-13-2005, 06:00 PM   #3
otisdog
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Well the cheapest easiest way to lift is to do a budget boost - something like the Rubicon Express. It consists of spacers that go on top of your springs and comes with longer shocks - about 2" of lift. Great for 31" tires. If you add a 1" body lift you can fit 33's.
If you stick with tires that are 10.50 wide you can get away with your stock wheels. If you go wider than that you need wheel spacers or wheels with less backspacing [ ones that push the tire out farther]
Jim
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Unread 09-13-2005, 06:02 PM   #4
XTC Jpr13
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i jsut recently went through most of this too... here are some options:

1. i would go with a bb lift to start, they are cheap and get the job done. If your jeep is a 4 cyl, you could look for a set of springs from a stock rubicon, and that will give you almost another inch of lift.

2 & 3. THe 31" will look ok, but 32" will look even better. With 32" tires you might want new wheels with better backspacing. check out these WHEELS


4. you could also get mirror movers, that move the mirror mount from the door to the windshield hinges, that way you dont have to mess with mirrors when you take the doors off.

any more question feel free to ask and ill do my best to help ya out!
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Unread 09-13-2005, 06:06 PM   #5
RowdyMoose
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Quote:
Originally Posted by otisdog
Well the cheapest easiest way to lift is to do a budget boost - something like the Rubicon Express. It consists of spacers that go on top of your springs and comes with longer shocks - about 2" of lift. Great for 31" tires. If you add a 1" body lift you can fit 33's.
If you stick with tires that are 10.50 wide you can get away with your stock wheels. If you go wider than that you need wheel spacers or wheels with less backspacing [ ones that push the tire out farther]
Jim
If you want, email me (or do a search) and you can see what a TJ with a BB (budget boost) lift looks like with 31's. I loved that setup on my last TJ, but I sold it. Now I'm going with a 4.5" lift which is MUCH more expensive and will require a LOT more work to put it in, but it's a great way to learn about your Jeep! I loved the BB with 31's and that Jeep was my DD (daily driver).

As far as cheap wheels, I just got some Black Steel Cragar's that were 15x8 and were less than $40 a piece from Summit Racing. If you are getting tires as well, they can mount and balance them before they are shipped (for an additional $10 apiece--which still beats any local shop).

Any other questions just look around, everyone here is pretty friendly (unlike some other forums that I've noticed who are pretty unforgiving to newb's. PM me for any additional questions or for pics of the 2"BB lift with 31's.

Russ
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Unread 09-13-2005, 06:29 PM   #6
Radix
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I gotta admit, I started with a stock TJ about a year ago, and currently I've got 31s (on the stock Grizzly rims) with a 2" Rubicon Express budget boost and I'm quite pleased. The lift was only a couple hundred bucks, including new shocks, compared to between several hundred to over a thousand for most of the "real" suspension lifts. Looks awesome, hasn't affected the drivability of the Jeep, and has satisfied my urge to mod...for now.

I've got a few pictures over at http://www.optera.net/gallery/mhotj/ which are moderately illustrative of 31s on stock suspension and 31s with a 2" BB - the difference is subtle from a distance, but when you get up right next to it, or if you need to do any work under it...it's quite noticable.

Cheers!
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Unread 09-13-2005, 06:48 PM   #7
hvac59
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Dollar for dollar , the adustable coil over spacer (JKS or Fabtec) is a good investment.That is , if you don't want to try to sell or discard(store forever) "grown out of parts" This whole concept will allow for approx. 2.5" lift with the option of custom selecting a set of 2 or 3 inch springs later while maintaining the ability to level out your ride with varying loads. Weather left to right or front to back it can all be done ! Now and later... A 1.25 JKS body lift is another good add , again dollar for dollar , you won't get in to extending brake line / tank filler hoses and the like. Be sure to consider a 1" motor mount lift with a transfer/transmission mount in uerathane to add options later and reduce the possibilities of any vibes(also removes the need for radiator lift brackets) Gives a nice feel to the power plant and reduces shifter wobble when experiancing harsh road/trail conditions The set-up just described will give almost 4" lift unloaded and at least 3" mildley loaded.(wich most of us are anyway, and 33x10.5's will fit nicely without any rubbing/tire protruding from flares/spare fitting on factory mount issues/regearing requirements. This is my opinion the most economically effective "STARTING POINT" in wich if you choose to stay will not be a bad place anyyway. Here comes the flames,,,,,,,,,,,,Don't let anyone try to imply a dose of vanity and tell you that 10.5's are less than masculine as this appears to be just that in itself. As most experianced wheelers will tell you that 35x12.5's are the most uneconomical tire size in regards to mods required to complete the job and do it the right way......... If one was to do a cost vs. effect analysis on tire sizing it would go from approx. $1600 to fit 33x10.5s to $5000 to fit 35x12.5's and then to $5500 to fit 37x12.5s(or 38's). This is including the cost of the tires also.So my advice is , if 33x10.5s wont do ya go for 38's and a long arm set up (don't forget to regear, only if you don't have a dana 35 in the rear,in such a case throw out another 12 hundred for a 44 or 8.8) This may seem a lot to digest so do a few searches to dispell my theory,and have a good time,it's all good

HVAC59
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Unread 09-13-2005, 06:53 PM   #8
RowdyMoose
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Oh yeah...I had completely forgot about the ACOS (Adjustable coil spacers). This is basically s budget boost lift on steroids. It uses the same concept as the budget boost in that it goes over stock springs to give you up to 2.5" of lift, but it's great in the fact that it is adjustable if one side is sitting higher, or if you put a lot of weight on the front or rear you can "dial it in" to suit your likings.

I used to have a front grill from a 78 Ford that I chopped down and mounted an old 8K lb winch to and added a BUNCH of weight to the front. I could have used these back then. In the end, I ended up just going with a larger coil spacer in the front.

-RM
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Unread 09-13-2005, 07:01 PM   #9
ROLNOVR
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This is great. You guys have really giving me a lot of direction. I was getting very overwhelmed there....

Now, where's the best place to buy this stuff? Most reliable and such?
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Unread 09-13-2005, 07:14 PM   #10
hvac59
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Now that's almost a taboo question ,BUT, if you were to price check 4wd.com or Qudratec.com you could get a good feel for fair pricing. Don't be afraid to shop around and be sure to ask the supply houses to "price match"...........Also,interco.com and B.F.Goodrich have decent 10.5 selections !
HVAC59
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Unread 09-13-2005, 07:24 PM   #11
RowdyMoose
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ROLNOVR
This is great. You guys have really giving me a lot of direction. I was getting very overwhelmed there....

Now, where's the best place to buy this stuff? Most reliable and such?
I like to buy a lot of my stuff (the stuff that he carries) from Jay at www.*******.com. He has several things listed on his site, but he can also get other things that aren't shown, so don't be afraid to email him any questions.

I recently ordered some of my lift components from DC at www.dc4wd.com. He's very helpful and has GREAT prices, but that is just my opinion. I always shop around before buying my parts.
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Unread 09-14-2005, 02:45 PM   #12
XTC Jpr13
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check your private messages!
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Unread 09-14-2005, 02:59 PM   #13
03jeeper78
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I'd start at redrock4x4, northridge4x4, ok4wd, and raingler. You'll get a pretty good feel for pricing on those web sites. From what I've heard, dc4wd is good, but they don't have any pricing on their web site that I know of.
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Unread 09-14-2005, 03:04 PM   #14
RowdyMoose
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 03jeeper78
From what I've heard, dc4wd is good, but they don't have any pricing on their web site that I know of.
That's true. DC4WD does not put pricing on their website (which initially is frustrating) but he does offer really good pricing on most items. He is also on this forum, so check out the vendor section, and pm him or just call and leave a msg. He's usually pretty quick about getting back to you.

And no he is not paying me anything, I've just spend about $2K with him in the last month and those were pretty good deals that I got. He helped me out in pricing, so I figured I'd do some "word of mouth" advertising for him.

RM
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