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OurTJ 03-20-2013 07:51 AM

Lift vs. Wheel Spacers Question
My sons and I are starting a 97 TJ project. It is 100% stock, low-ish miles, and has some rust issues. We will do the interior in Herculiner, paint the exterior, and de-rust the underside.

The stock steelies on it are very heavily rusted and the tires are worn-out. So, I bought some larger (not huge) TJ stock alloy wheels and tires from craigslist. At the max turn limits, the new wheels rub the suspension on the front. I probably should have done some backspacing research but didn't. I'll solve this with either a lift or spacers.

Every fastner/bolt on this thing has been a real challenge despite PB blaster, elbow grease and a torch. While fun and good learning for the boys, 10 minute projects turn into hour long battles. I am considering not doing a lift as we are not going off road with it.

Will 1.5" wheel spacers change regular road driving handling?
Am I being overly concerned about rust issues with doing a suspension lift?
We are looking at a 3 inch lift with a transfercase drop. We have the tools and capabilities to do it if it was not rusted.

Thanks for the advice.

Ironhead 03-20-2013 07:57 AM

how big are the tires? what rims? You may be able to add a washer to your steering stops and solve the problem in ten minutes :peaking:

I feel your pain with the rust and frozen bolts. its just something to work through. soak in PB blaster everyday for a week before a project. and a torch is a great way to loosen up bolts

TheBoogieman 03-20-2013 08:01 AM

It should handle better with wheel spacers because of the wider stance.If it only rubs at full turn,you can add a couple washers to the steering stops instead of buying spacers.I just put some RC spacers on my XJ and had them on my 03' TJ.

OurTJ 03-20-2013 08:05 AM

The tires are 31x10.5 R15s. So not that big vs. the 215 75 R15s I took off.

I like the ten minute solution on the steering stops since it is just barely touching, I'll look into that.

And just since we are new at this, by torch I mean my little propane torch. When guys say put a torch to it, are they talking about something else?

OurTJ 03-20-2013 08:08 AM

Thanks for the link. Will just regular old hardware store washers be fine or is there some special type?

TheBoogieman 03-20-2013 08:15 AM


Originally Posted by OurTJ (Post 15162942)
Thanks for the link. Will just regular old hardware store washers be fine or is there some special type?

Plain old washers.:thumbsup:

Ironhead 03-20-2013 08:19 AM

yep, the standard blue propane torch. doesnt get too hot to do a lot of damage, but hot enough to loosen up frozen bolts and soften up thread locker in the few places the factory put it

The time now is 07:24 AM.

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