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Unread 03-20-2013, 08:51 AM   #1
OurTJ
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1997 TJ Wrangler 
 
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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.

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Unread 03-20-2013, 08:57 AM   #2
Ironhead
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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

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
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Unread 03-20-2013, 09:01 AM   #3
TheBoogieman
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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.


http://www.stu-offroad.com/steering/...teerstop-1.htm
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When I had 3.07s I would draft behind birds as an attempt to do the speed limit.
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Unread 03-20-2013, 09:05 AM   #4
OurTJ
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Ironhead,
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?
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Unread 03-20-2013, 09:08 AM   #5
OurTJ
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Boogieman,
Thanks for the link. Will just regular old hardware store washers be fine or is there some special type?
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Unread 03-20-2013, 09:15 AM   #6
TheBoogieman
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OurTJ View Post
Boogieman,
Thanks for the link. Will just regular old hardware store washers be fine or is there some special type?
Plain old washers.
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Quote:
When I had 3.07s I would draft behind birds as an attempt to do the speed limit.
---------------------------------
2000' WJ Limited 4.7L-V8/D44/Quadra-Drive
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Unread 03-20-2013, 09:19 AM   #7
Ironhead
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2003 TJ Wrangler 
 
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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
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lifts , rust , spacers

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