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Unread 03-10-2013, 05:32 PM   #16
JTPhoto
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2008 JK Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: South Gillies Ontario
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BjBk11
Yes once again, a newbie asking about a lift kit. Before I lose half of you and click away, all I am asking for is a simple answer.

I have spent countless hours reading about lifting, tires, gear ratios, etc.

And basically from what I have gathered is no one gives a direct answer regarding driveshaft issues and moderate lift heights.

Obviously, anything over 4" is gonna destroy a stock wrangler with out some serious investments in the undercarriage and driveline.

However, the 2"-3.5" range is sort of a grey area on the these forums.

So who wants to bite and give me their honest opinion.

I hate the idea of using "pucks" and maintaining the same suspension components. If thats the route you recommend I'd rather just fit a smaller tire and do some trimming and use wheelspacers.

I also hate the thought of putting a lift on only to cause major problems down the road.

So lets hear it, what do I need to create the best daily driver, won't destroy my driveshaft, and prevent other issues such as axle allignments, DW, etc.

I know a lot of you are gonna give me the because its a Daily Driver, but I have yet to find a thread that is tailored to creating the best daily driver and doing it the RIGHT WAY. If there is such a thread and I haven't found it, please forward me there.

I have a 2011 2dr 6 spd manual 3.21s

Will be re-gearing.

Interested in 33s-35s.
Just go with a complete Rock Krawler 2.5" kit then.

I'll be totally honest with you and my experience. We have 3 Jeeps.. 2 are lifted one is stock.
You say you don't want to keep stock components, why? There is certainly nothing wrong with factory parts. We have 130,000 on all stock components on the unlimited, 65,000 on one 2dr and 80,000 on the other 2dr.
The easiest and probably longest lasting lift that maintains the factory ride (as much as you don't like the idea) is a "complete" spacer lift like the TeraFlex. Ideal for a 90% DD in stock trim. Add heavy bumpers and you'll want some heavier spring.
If you want to start changing out control arms and such that's a whole other ball game, money and time wise, but certainly not required.

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^^Jeff^^
2008 Black and Khaki Sahara Unlimited. Auto, Tow pkg, Dual Tops, MyGig, Trax-Lok rear diff. 3.5" Rock Krawler fr springs, rear TeraFlex 2.5 BB, 35x12.50x17 Pitbull Rockers on Blackrock Viper Alloys, Flex-o-lite trans cooler, Mr Grille billet grille inserts, AEV Prem Bumper ETC.. AND a Locked and Lifted Honda Foreman for when the trails get real tight
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Unread 03-11-2013, 05:25 AM   #17
Wavedatya
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JTPhoto

Just go with a complete Rock Krawler 2.5" kit then.

I'll be totally honest with you and my experience. We have 3 Jeeps.. 2 are lifted one is stock.
You say you don't want to keep stock components, why? There is certainly nothing wrong with factory parts. We have 130,000 on all stock components on the unlimited, 65,000 on one 2dr and 80,000 on the other 2dr.
The easiest and probably longest lasting lift that maintains the factory ride (as much as you don't like the idea) is a "complete" spacer lift like the TeraFlex. Ideal for a 90% DD in stock trim. Add heavy bumpers and you'll want some heavier spring.
If you want to start changing out control arms and such that's a whole other ball game, money and time wise, but certainly not required.
Good info!

JTPhoto. I'm in love with your profile pic jeep. I know I've told you before but man that's a spicy meatball! Beautiful machine

Sorry for the HJ
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Unread 03-11-2013, 07:02 AM   #18
JTPhoto
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wavedatya

Good info!

JTPhoto. I'm in love with your profile pic jeep. I know I've told you before but man that's a spicy meatball! Beautiful machine

Sorry for the HJ
Thanks Wavedatya.
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2008 Black and Khaki Sahara Unlimited. Auto, Tow pkg, Dual Tops, MyGig, Trax-Lok rear diff. 3.5" Rock Krawler fr springs, rear TeraFlex 2.5 BB, 35x12.50x17 Pitbull Rockers on Blackrock Viper Alloys, Flex-o-lite trans cooler, Mr Grille billet grille inserts, AEV Prem Bumper ETC.. AND a Locked and Lifted Honda Foreman for when the trails get real tight
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Unread 03-11-2013, 03:00 PM   #19
BjBk11
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So here's an update:

Looks like I will be going with the following:

BDS 3" Lift Kit w/ all available options added
- Front/rear, upper/lower adj. control arms
- Front/rear adj. track bars
- Upgraded shocks to Fox 2.0s
- Steering Stabilizer
Kit Total is $2,300

Now here is the curveball:
The other option is the AEV Dualsport RS with Bilstein Shocks which goes for $1,675
That includes the Procal, however AEV uses brackets instead of control arms.

Anybody care to comment on pros/cons of each kit?

I hear the AEV kits drive like your on a cloud, but everybody always gives the thumbs down to brackets which is why I am more interested in BDS.

The difference in price between the 2 kits is almost the price of 2 tires so its certainly worth getting some input on the difference between the two.

On to Tires/Wheels
I like the all black look for wheels, currently thinking Pro Comp 7031 16x8 & 4.5" Backspace
Unsure if I like the chrome "beadlocks" around the edge so may opt for the 7032s instead.

Going with Goodyear MT/R w/ Kevlar

33s vs 35s? I am on the fence, now that I have learned about the issues with lifting, details are now emerging about the possible issues with 35s and not having enough axle strength/things getting bent.

Any of you guys running a 3" lift with 33s? Everybody on hear says they regret not going to a bigger tire size...

For now I am going to just start with tires and the lift, thats all the bank can handle this month.

I will have to deal with my 3.21s and the bigger tires for 2-4 weeks till I can pay for the new gears. Anybody care to tell me this would be a big no-no? Should I just bite the bullet and do it all at once?

I'll leave you guys with that for now. Getting closer to finalizing the build!
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Unread 03-11-2013, 03:56 PM   #20
JTPhoto
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3.5" lift front, factory D30 all original, 35" Pitbull Rockers (most likely the heaviest 35" tire available) no issues.

Don't forget to add front and rear driveshafts if you're gonna put in adjustable control arms.

IMHO 3" is really overkill for 33" tires.

As for the lifts, BDS makes a killer lift for trucks, not so for Jeep. Go with the AEV, it's more designed for overland which is more what you want.
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^^Jeff^^
2008 Black and Khaki Sahara Unlimited. Auto, Tow pkg, Dual Tops, MyGig, Trax-Lok rear diff. 3.5" Rock Krawler fr springs, rear TeraFlex 2.5 BB, 35x12.50x17 Pitbull Rockers on Blackrock Viper Alloys, Flex-o-lite trans cooler, Mr Grille billet grille inserts, AEV Prem Bumper ETC.. AND a Locked and Lifted Honda Foreman for when the trails get real tight
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Unread 03-11-2013, 04:22 PM   #21
paul84043
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The two lift kits you have narrowed yourself down to are night and day. Aev is considered to be more of a comprehensive suspension "system", the BDS looks like a very complete lift kit that should increase your clearance, strength, and articulation dramatically. (and start the ball rolling on the rest of the parts you're going to have to replace now)
Yeah, you will hear people talk about brackets vs control arms, but whether or not either is right or wrong depends completely on your application. If you want stock geometry and ride quality, AEV goes to great lengths to maintain that integrity.
Both will require front and rear drive shaft replacements in a relatively short perioud of time in a 2 door.
33's with either lift will look ridiculously small.
You will absolutely need to regear with the 2011 and 3:21's at some point. Especially with ANY larger tires.

I went with the Rock Krawler 2.5" max travel and 35's and have not looked back.
The RK parts make the factory parts look like worthless crap.
I also did the Fox 2.0 shocks and have loved the ride they give.
Your original post is kind of interesting...I know where you're coming from, but you're buying a Lego set and asking us what the best thing to build with it is.
The short answer is that there is no short answer. It's like asking what the best color is. You're never going to get a consensus...
You've put in the time and homework and it sounds like you're slowly putting the pieces together for yourself. That's just how it goes in this world...
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Unread 03-11-2013, 04:44 PM   #22
neverhide34
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No one has mentioned the 2'" OME lift. It comes complete for a 2 inch lift and the reported ride quality is nothing short of excellent. If you will lift and regear, might as well go with 35's. You will be much happier.
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Unread 03-11-2013, 04:50 PM   #23
BjBk11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by paul84043 View Post
The two lift kits you have narrowed yourself down to are night and day. Aev is considered to be more of a comprehensive suspension "system", the BDS looks like a very complete lift kit that should increase your clearance, strength, and articulation dramatically. (and start the ball rolling on the rest of the parts you're going to have to replace now)
Yeah, you will hear people talk about brackets vs control arms, but whether or not either is right or wrong depends completely on your application. If you want stock geometry and ride quality, AEV goes to great lengths to maintain that integrity.
Both will require front and rear drive shaft replacements in a relatively short perioud of time in a 2 door.
33's with either lift will look ridiculously small.
You will absolutely need to regear with the 2011 and 3:21's at some point. Especially with ANY larger tires.

I went with the Rock Krawler 2.5" max travel and 35's and have not looked back.
The RK parts make the factory parts look like worthless crap.
I also did the Fox 2.0 shocks and have loved the ride they give.
Your original post is kind of interesting...I know where you're coming from, but you're buying a Lego set and asking us what the best thing to build with it is.
The short answer is that there is no short answer. It's like asking what the best color is. You're never going to get a consensus...
You've put in the time and homework and it sounds like you're slowly putting the pieces together for yourself. That's just how it goes in this world...
Great response. I am trying to remain level headed and not jump into an area I shouldn't be. So phase 1 looks to be the lift and tires and phase 2 looks like not only new gears but driveshafts as well. You say night and day regarding the 2 lifts. Are you saying night and day because of the difference in parts or the difference in quality?

This is sort of a page turner for me because I have decided that a lift is def. the route I want to take. It seems like the next page is going to be the driveshaft issue, which was the meaning behind my original post.

My rig will be seeing camp roads and very minor offloading at best. It will be my DD and will see plenty of blacktop. So r u guys saying that driveshafts deteriorate very quickly due to hardcore off roading or will my daily 5 mile commute be enough to see problems.

If I do the gears that will be close to $2000, what should I expect for new driveshafts?

Thanks for ur help guys. Learned a ton in the past month.
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Unread 03-11-2013, 05:06 PM   #24
JTPhoto
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BjBk11

Great response. I am trying to remain level headed and not jump into an area I shouldn't be. So phase 1 looks to be the lift and tires and phase 2 looks like not only new gears but driveshafts as well. You say night and day regarding the 2 lifts. Are you saying night and day because of the difference in parts or the difference in quality?

This is sort of a page turner for me because I have decided that a lift is def. the route I want to take. It seems like the next page is going to be the driveshaft issue, which was the meaning behind my original post.

My rig will be seeing camp roads and very minor offloading at best. It will be my DD and will see plenty of blacktop. So r u guys saying that driveshafts deteriorate very quickly due to hardcore off roading or will my daily 5 mile commute be enough to see problems.

If I do the gears that will be close to $2000, what should I expect for new driveshafts?

Thanks for ur help guys. Learned a ton in the past month.
Driveshafts deteriorate due to the combination of height and the use of adjustable control arms. The use of adjustable control arms is to recenter the wheels in the wheel wells by pushes the rear diff back and the front diff forward. This in turn increases the distance from transfer case to differentials.
There is a reason AEV uses stock control arms.
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^^Jeff^^
2008 Black and Khaki Sahara Unlimited. Auto, Tow pkg, Dual Tops, MyGig, Trax-Lok rear diff. 3.5" Rock Krawler fr springs, rear TeraFlex 2.5 BB, 35x12.50x17 Pitbull Rockers on Blackrock Viper Alloys, Flex-o-lite trans cooler, Mr Grille billet grille inserts, AEV Prem Bumper ETC.. AND a Locked and Lifted Honda Foreman for when the trails get real tight
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Unread 03-11-2013, 05:08 PM   #25
john304
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BjBk11 View Post
This is sort of a page turner for me because I have decided that a lift is def. the route I want to take. It seems like the next page is going to be the driveshaft issue, which was the meaning behind my original post.

My rig will be seeing camp roads and very minor offloading at best. It will be my DD and will see plenty of blacktop. So r u guys saying that driveshafts deteriorate very quickly due to hardcore off roading or will my daily 5 mile commute be enough to see problems.

If I do the gears that will be close to $2000, what should I expect for new driveshafts?

Thanks for ur help guys. Learned a ton in the past month.
Since it's a 2-door the driveshaft(s) may begin to wear down eventually. I talked with a representative from Zone Offroad before getting my 4" lift from them and discussed with him my off-roading style and that mine is a DD and also hit on the rumors I've heard with drive shafts and he said I would be fine without replacing them. I think it's the level of off-roading you do that puts stress on the DS. With that being said, just to be safe my next $$$ mod will be Tatton driveshafts. I think I read on another forum of some guy putting roughly 30,000mi on his stock ones after a lift before he had to replace the DS.

Hopefully you don't have the issue I'm having with steering stabilizers. My Wrangler has been eating them since I installed my lift. 4th one in 2yrs.
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Unread 03-11-2013, 06:06 PM   #26
paul84043
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EDIT...

I forgot that you have a 2011. This makes the front driveline issue not nearly as critical as on the 2012+ pentastars.

Just lay it all out and the order kind of dictates itself. You can't put on the larger tires until it's lifted. Regear can fall in there at any time. You're typically looking $1400 to $2000 for gears depending on your area. It seems like some people really get gouged regionally, while others claim as low as $1200.
You can probably land a set of 4:10's someome is taking out pretty cheap and shave off $300. (I've been thinking 4:56 or 4:88's)
Driveshafts, I believe the consensus is that Tom Woods are top shelf. I went with teraflex ($400 each) but TW was not making a shaft for the 2012 yet...teraflex has a few issues that they're still working out. Mainly that you have to drop the shaft every 5000 miles or so and grease the CV joint. The U-joints they use are Spicers and are maintenance free.
It's not hard, just a pain that it has to be done at all or your carden will seize up.
You also don't HAVE to do the drivelines immediately depending on how much lift you go with. Under normal street driving conditions, you're not going to contact the rubber boot and the exhaust crossover, you just start the clock ticking on the boot coming out of the transfer case wearing out due to the increased angle. They WILL fail at some point though. The higher the lift, the sooner the failure. I'm still running my stock rear and will most likely never need to replace it, but I have an unlimited. Since Wranglers' axles are being driven by the tire rotation constantly, there's really to escaping it on the front end unless you want to put in (un)locking hubs.
Your usage that you mention sounds very similar to mine and I really question whether or not you need a 3" plus lift. I realize that in the "truck" world that's small, but in the Wrangler world, since you're already starting with more clearance than pretty much any other vehicle.. 3" is a lot.
My 2.5" picked up the front 4.5" and the back 2". From what I hear the 3.5" AEV's will get you about 5" in front and 3" in back, and you can expect a bit of settling in of the springs. RK claims to pre stress them to minimize settling. They usually net more in the front to both act as a leveling kit, and to accomodate accessories such as a bumper and a heavy winch.
The AEV kits are aimed more towards the expedition crowd (American Expedition Vehicles) as a frequency tuned system that maintains your control arms and trackbars in as close to OEM architecture as possible even though there are members here that have AEV lifts and have absolutely pounded the crap out of them and they keep right on working. Similar to a budget prerunner kit I guess..
The BDS looks to be a more standard lift with all the classic parts. The adjustable arms are nice since you can adjust your axle positions and pinion angle slightly and account for some of the OEM geometry loss, though you will not reclaim it all. Higher lift = more angle on the connecting parts from the frame to the axles resulting in more component wear and a harsher ride as the suspension articulates. Most people that do a 3.5" and smaller lift(mid arm) don't worry about upper control arms yet...the lowers give you the adjustment you need initially. Also, rear trackbar relocation bracket is more common and a replacement front trackbar.
Those two items (Uppers and rear trackbar) alone might save you about $800 right there....
This hobby is not cheap and you really need to plan your attack to keep from spending a ton of cash that you didn't need to, or from heading off in the wrong direction.
Don't let a shop push more lift off on you than you really need. Also consider the heights of the people that are going to be getting in the Jeep on a regular basis. Many, many threads about "how do I get my wife in my lifted Jeep....she wants a divorce"..
Hit up your local Jeep club and see them for yourself.
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Unread 03-11-2013, 06:09 PM   #27
paul84043
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Quote:
Originally Posted by john304 View Post
Since it's a 2-door the driveshaft(s) may begin to wear down eventually. I talked with a representative from Zone Offroad before getting my 4" lift from them and discussed with him my off-roading style and that mine is a DD and also hit on the rumors I've heard with drive shafts and he said I would be fine without replacing them. I think it's the level of off-roading you do that puts stress on the DS. With that being said, just to be safe my next $$$ mod will be Tatton driveshafts. I think I read on another forum of some guy putting roughly 30,000mi on his stock ones after a lift before he had to replace the DS.

Hopefully you don't have the issue I'm having with steering stabilizers. My Wrangler has been eating them since I installed my lift. 4th one in 2yrs.
^^^^ Excellent data. In the grand scheme of things, drivelines are not too expensive.

If you're eating stabilizers...something is wrong. You should go through everything and try to figure it out before you have a near deathwobble experience. (track bar mounting hole wallowed out?)
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Unread 03-11-2013, 07:00 PM   #28
4wdjeepguy
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Just go with the Northridge OME long travel kit and call it a day. It's better than any RockKrawler or Teraflex kit..
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Unread 03-11-2013, 10:29 PM   #29
john304
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Quote:
Originally Posted by paul84043 View Post
If you're eating stabilizers...something is wrong. You should go through everything and try to figure it out before you have a near deathwobble experience. (track bar mounting hole wallowed out?)
Well, maybe I exaggerated a little on the fact that they're being "eaten" lol. The first was ripped off on a rock, the 2nd one was just worn out, and this 3rd one I discovered yesterday was just dangling off and I have no clue how or when it happened.
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Unread 03-12-2013, 09:46 AM   #30
BjBk11
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It's kind of funny how this whole build has progressed and how quickly you realize the amount of jeeps out there that must have some serious issues going on.

I started out by meeting with my mechanic who does work on our Trucks to pick his brain on the issues with lifts, tires, etc.

"Just build a Rubicon, that way you know its proven by the factory it will work" he said.

I decided I want more than a stock Rubicon. (not bashing the Rubi, I'm fully aware of its capabilities stock)

So then I decided on 33s and doing some trimming and use backspacing.

"Nope, 33s aren't big enough, go with 35s, you'll regret the 33s" A common post found across the site, I definitely agree.

"if you go with 35s, a re-gear is a must." So now I added in a re-gear to the mix. CHA CHING CHA CHING $$$$

Now onto the lift,

You want 3"?

...."You'll need Adj. Front Track Bars
Don't forget the Control Arms
You'll probably also need the upper CAs also!
A steering stabilizer is a must with 35s
The driveshaft will def. need to be replaced with a 3" lift."....

Its comical how you start out wanting to stay simple and just achieve a more agressive look spending under $2000 and now I'm looking at a full build, out the door over $5000.

So let's recap what I will definitely be needing for this build:

35s = 4.56 or 4.88 re gear

Lift Kit = 3" BDS *To Do it Correctly I need:
-Upper/Lower CAs
-Adj. Front Track Bar, just a bracket for the rear?
-Steering Stabilizer
-AEV Pro Cal
-New Driveshafts

So, if I do all that, should I be good to go for a while or is there another mod that will be poking its head out in the near future? It just seems like if you do A + B you must do C. Well is there a D or have I hit the threshold of not needing much else to do this the right way?

Its only money right??? Most of you guys running between $5,000-$10,000 on mods?

Side note, I'm in no way bashing anyone on here, my goal is to just make sure I know the types of worms that are going to come out of the can when I do this lol
Thanks guys
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