new mods for the old girl - JeepForum.com
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post #1 of 16 Old 08-12-2019, 02:31 PM Thread Starter
happel
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new mods for the old girl

hey all

as i was falling into the abyss of youtube last night, i stumbled across some overland jeeping videos. always something ive wanted to do. i texted my wife in passing saying we should get a wrangler and go overland camping. what surprised me was i didnt get the normal eye roll in response - instead some legitimate interest. Now, as we have three young kids, actually trading in the GC for a wrangler was out of the question - so i pressed on how serious she was about modifying her precious baby hauler - told her it would be taller, louder, and not ride as smooth - and her response - "i want to make it badass" - so i'm going to start buying s*** before she changes her mind.

so here we are. i would like to put some tasteful effective mods that will make it capable off-road and retain some on-road manners. its a 15 laredo e - i forget which package, but i did intentionally upgrade to get a real transfer case for low range. local terrain is mountains - rocks and roots - snow in the winter - not a ton of sand or mud, but to be fair i haven't ventured very far.

here is what i was thinking to start:

RRO 2.5" lift

265/70 r18 - either cooper at3 or the local les schwab special. I don't necessarily want to get into a tire debate - i know schwab tires are overpriced - but they are the only decent local tire place and they treat me well. Having said that, I would still listen to other recommendations for good all terrains - good road manners and mildly capable offroad.

XD Monster II 18" - 35mm offset. again, wheels very subjective. i want to fit a 32-33" tire but not have it sticking way out.

for some goofy reason the jeep didnt come with skidplates. so RRO has a 3 piece set - would take other recommendations on these. rock rails also on the list.

i consider this kind of a base starting point - down the road i can start looking at racks, winch, lighting ect.

let me know what you guys think.

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post #2 of 16 Old 08-12-2019, 02:50 PM
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Hurry before she sees how much all this costs..........

2017 Trailhawk
Active Safety - Luxury group - Blind spot detection
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post #3 of 16 Old 08-12-2019, 02:55 PM Thread Starter
happel
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Hurry before she sees how much all this costs..........
shes good with it within reason. told her minimum a grand not including tires (which we needed anyways) or wheels. i asked her, did you want to get wheels too, don't technically need them up front, fully expecting a "no"...wrong again. inevitably there will be a small sticker shock as the little stuff starts adding up, but i was honest upfront, this stuff ain't cheap. not one of those guys that tries to swindle everything under the radar.
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post #4 of 16 Old 08-12-2019, 06:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by happel View Post

so here we are. i would like to put some tasteful effective mods that will make it capable off-road and retain some on-road manners. its a 15 laredo e - i forget which package, but i did intentionally upgrade to get a real transfer case for low range. local terrain is mountains - rocks and roots - snow in the winter - not a ton of sand or mud, but to be fair i haven't ventured very far.

here is what i was thinking to start:

RRO 2.5" lift

265/70 r18 - either cooper at3 or the local les schwab special. ...

XD Monster II 18" - 35mm offset. again, wheels very subjective. i want to fit a 32-33" tire but not have it sticking way out.

for some goofy reason the jeep didnt come with skidplates. so RRO has a 3 piece set - would take other recommendations on these. rock rails also on the list.

i consider this kind of a base starting point - down the road i can start looking at racks, winch, lighting ect.

let me know what you guys think.
There is useful information in the tire fitment, tire discussion, and modification sticky threads. 33s are probably out of the question for a daily driver, you'll want to stay at the lower end of 32s. That wheel offset should be OK. A spring lift kit, like OMEs works a lot better than the spacer lift, you'll be much happier with it on the road and trail.

There are a few overlanders here that I'm sure that will drop in with roof rack and tent suggestions. In the mean time you may want to search the forum for "overlander"

You can get skid plates and rock rails from the MOPAR accessory catalog. Or others from sources listed in the products sticky, but if it was my dollar, I'd not bother with the RR stuff.

Whatever hits the fan is not evenly distributed
Current: 2011 Grand Cherokee Overland V8, 2009 Liberty Rocky Mt V6
Previous: 2000 Grand Cherokee Laredo I6, 1979 CJ7 I6 Quadratrac
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post #5 of 16 Old 08-12-2019, 10:11 PM Thread Starter
happel
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ColdCase View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by happel View Post

so here we are. i would like to put some tasteful effective mods that will make it capable off-road and retain some on-road manners. its a 15 laredo e - i forget which package, but i did intentionally upgrade to get a real transfer case for low range. local terrain is mountains - rocks and roots - snow in the winter - not a ton of sand or mud, but to be fair i haven't ventured very far.

here is what i was thinking to start:

RRO 2.5" lift

265/70 r18 - either cooper at3 or the local les schwab special. ...

XD Monster II 18" - 35mm offset. again, wheels very subjective. i want to fit a 32-33" tire but not have it sticking way out.

for some goofy reason the jeep didnt come with skidplates. so RRO has a 3 piece set - would take other recommendations on these. rock rails also on the list.

i consider this kind of a base starting point - down the road i can start looking at racks, winch, lighting ect.

let me know what you guys think.
There is useful information in the tire fitment, tire discussion, and modification sticky threads. 33s are probably out of the question for a daily driver, you'll want to stay at the lower end of 32s. That wheel offset should be OK. A spring lift kit, like OMEs works a lot better than the spacer lift, you'll be much happier with it on the road and trail.

There are a few overlanders here that I'm sure that will drop in with roof rack and tent suggestions. In the mean time you may want to search the forum for "overlander"

You can get skid plates and rock rails from the MOPAR accessory catalog. Or others from sources listed in the products sticky, but if it was my dollar, I'd not bother with the RR stuff.
I'll do more research on underbody protection. Everything is listed from what I had found when I bought it four years ago, and at that point it didn't have much aftermarket support.

Les schwab has an equivalently sized lift, installed for $550. I need to ask more about it, I've got to think it's also just spacers. Rro claims their kit doesn't affect ride quality, but I know we can't take that at face value.
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post #6 of 16 Old 08-12-2019, 10:37 PM
ColdCase
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Spacers generally don't effect ride quality, roll perhaps, but do affect articulation/suspension travel. A spring kit can take advantage of all the wheel travel, i.e. there is more spring to soak up obstacles. You will be much happier with a spring kit, several here ripped out their spacers for spring kits and never looked back.

Whatever hits the fan is not evenly distributed
Current: 2011 Grand Cherokee Overland V8, 2009 Liberty Rocky Mt V6
Previous: 2000 Grand Cherokee Laredo I6, 1979 CJ7 I6 Quadratrac
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post #7 of 16 Old 08-13-2019, 08:53 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by ColdCase View Post
Spacers generally don't effect ride quality, roll perhaps, but do affect articulation/suspension travel. A spring kit can take advantage of all the wheel travel, i.e. there is more spring to soak up obstacles. You will be much happier with a spring kit, several here ripped out their spacers for spring kits and never looked back.
Ah OK. This is my first dive into lifts of any kind. It looks like that kit is also significantly more money, but I understand you get what you pay for.
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post #8 of 16 Old 08-13-2019, 05:23 PM
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Just something to think about...

Take the money youíre going to throw away on the Jeep (it wonít add any value when you sell it) and invest it!

If you have kids set up an investment fund for them. If not, set up a retirement fund for yourselves.

That couple thousand dollars invested now will be worth many thousands more down the road whereas any investments made in your Jeep is just money thrown down the drain.

I know itís not as much fun, but certainly more beneficial down the road.
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post #9 of 16 Old 08-13-2019, 07:16 PM Thread Starter
happel
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Originally Posted by 2008OverlandCRD View Post
Just something to think about...

Take the money you’re going to throw away on the Jeep (it won’t add any value when you sell it) and invest it!

If you have kids set up an investment fund for them. If not, set up a retirement fund for yourselves.

That couple thousand dollars invested now will be worth many thousands more down the road whereas any investments made in your Jeep is just money thrown down the drain.

I know it’s not as much fun, but certainly more beneficial down the road.
I appreciate the input, and frankly this is the last place I would expect sound financial advice. However, my wife and I have pinched pennies since the kids were born (we are 28 and 26, kids are 7, 7 and 2). We live debt free and within our means, and contribute a fair amount to retirement. So I feel good about this splurge. Its certainly not a regular thing, none of our vehicles have ever been modified as much as I've wanted to over the years.
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post #10 of 16 Old 08-13-2019, 07:31 PM
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Jeeps are not a great investment, for sure. If I would have invested every dime spent on 4-wheeling the last 27 years, or so, I perhaps now could pay cash for a tricked out 2020 Jeep Gladiator Rubicon, an off-road trailer, all the gear, and a year or two of non-stop overlanding.

But, alas, I would have missed out on tens of thousands of miles of 4x4 travel and backcountry enjoyment for those nearly 3 decades!
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Bob N. 2011 Grand Cherokee Overland 5.7L, 1999 Cherokee XJ 4.0L (off-road enhanced)
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post #11 of 16 Old 08-13-2019, 08:00 PM
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Investment? not in a finical aspect. But the adventures is what its all about and well worth every penny. The whole "overland" things is glamping. We camp out of a jeep wrangler and Cjs since the 70s. roof tents are kinda the joke of real off road. adds way to much weight were you do not want it. Just get a good TENT, cost less and no one falls off the top of your jeep at night. fact is you vehical will do much of what you want as it is excepting tires. get the camping gear you need. basic off road stuff. GO>>>>>>>>>>>>>> its about where you go not what your in really.

Now as you get more experience off road and driver skill is being held back, then upgrade the jeep. Unless you do HARD trails and fact is you dont see these at those trails anyway and your wife would be in the piss me off zone when it gets dented up. since its her "girl". Would be like me taking the wifes 4x4 Excusion that is way built up to hard trails she would shoot me.............we have the wrangler for LONG off road harder trails , like the one we are heading to in about three weeks Dusy Ershem 33 miles and its a 5 day off road adventure.

I know to many people that build and spend and build and spend and dont ever go anywhere. OR they feel if its not the badest thing on the trail they cant go too. overkill at a cost that they never do those classic Bucket list trails. they always say when i get 35s then its 40s still waiting.....JUST go for god sake. Its just camping out a jeep off road...kids always love it no matter what you have they dont care . its more about the family thing

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post #12 of 16 Old 08-13-2019, 09:44 PM Thread Starter
happel
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Originally Posted by 222Doc View Post
Investment? not in a finical aspect. But the adventures is what its all about and well worth every penny. The whole "overland" things is glamping. We camp out of a jeep wrangler and Cjs since the 70s. roof tents are kinda the joke of real off road. adds way to much weight were you do not want it. Just get a good TENT, cost less and no one falls off the top of your jeep at night. fact is you vehical will do much of what you want as it is excepting tires. get the camping gear you need. basic off road stuff. GO>>>>>>>>>>>>>> its about where you go not what your in really.

Now as you get more experience off road and driver skill is being held back, then upgrade the jeep. Unless you do HARD trails and fact is you dont see these at those trails anyway and your wife would be in the piss me off zone when it gets dented up. since its her "girl". Would be like me taking the wifes 4x4 Excusion that is way built up to hard trails she would shoot me.............we have the wrangler for LONG off road harder trails , like the one we are heading to in about three weeks Dusy Ershem 33 miles and its a 5 day off road adventure.

I know to many people that build and spend and build and spend and dont ever go anywhere. OR they feel if its not the badest thing on the trail they cant go too. overkill at a cost that they never do those classic Bucket list trails. they always say when i get 35s then its 40s still waiting.....JUST go for god sake. Its just camping out a jeep off road...kids always love it no matter what you have they dont care . its more about the family thing
Yep... Basically looking to get out more. We needed tires anyways... Currently running bald blizzaks in August. Just going up a size. Need underbody protection because I've already caused damage on trails I shouldn't have been on. All the "extra" stuff... If we end up really getting into it, maybe. Just the necessity for now. The wheels weren't necessary, sure... But if the wife wants them, who the hell am i to say no... And never was I under the impression that this was some kind of financial investment. Investing in my family, sure, because I'm effing tired of sitting around watching TV.
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post #13 of 16 Old 08-14-2019, 11:40 AM
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It doesn't have to be lifted much... level the front, add mopar skid plates, rails if you want it and add a quality wheel spacer and you'll be able to put in wrangler take offs which come up about to ~32in. You should be able to go places. This is our 2012 Laredo with All Weather Group.

As you get more into it then add the lift.
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post #14 of 16 Old 08-14-2019, 06:53 PM Thread Starter
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It doesn't have to be lifted much... level the front, add mopar skid plates, rails if you want it and add a quality wheel spacer and you'll be able to put in wrangler take offs which come up about to ~32in. You should be able to go places. This is our 2012 Laredo with All Weather Group.

As you get more into it then add the lift.
Pretty much what we've decided except the spacers. We'll have to see what kind of tire we are able to fit.
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post #15 of 16 Old 08-14-2019, 07:14 PM Thread Starter
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What is considered a complete set of skid plates? Rro shows three, other places there seems to be 5.
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