So, I've been bitten by the lift/tire bug. Now, I've at least resigned myself to not replace the tires/wheels on my '11 JKU Rubi until I wear the stock BFGs out (or they prove dangerous in MN snow). And yes, I know the purpose of a lift is to run bigger tires, that's the plan eventually, for now I just like the looks. In the meantime, I've been doing a lot of reading and am working on my plan to get there.
In the end, my end goal is the TF 2.5" Coil Lift w/ Shock adapters and 35" tires. To run the 35" tire and have a spare, from what I've read, I should probably get a new bumper and tire carrier. So, now my plan has to include:
- Lift Kit
- Rear bumper/tire carrier
One of my questions has to do with the trackbars and/or brackets. I'm not really a fan of drilling holes in my Jeep and I've heard the bracket/template/hole can be problematic... So, my question, would it be better to just install TF adjustable trackbars (front and rear)? Or should I install both, adjustable trackbars and the bracket to allow me to both center and correct the geometry? Or, just follow the instructions and the stock trackbar will be fine?
Anyway, assuming I do replace the trackbars, would it be a workable plan to plan the upgrades in four stages, or should I just save my pennies and do it all at once (which would be when the tires wear out)? My thinking on staging would be:
- Stage 1: Install adjustable trackbars (adjust to stock lengths)
- Stage 2: Install Coil Lift Kit
- Stage 3: Install Rear bumper/tire carrier
- Stage 4: New wheels/tires
Some of those could be swapped around too, all that I can see that is important is to install trackbars before lift, and bumper before tires.
If it's useful to help answer my questions, I don't envision myself ever doing "mudding," maybe a few times a year going to an ORV park for mild technical stuff, and many times a year doing trail riding or off-road exploring. Given that I'm in MN, winter conditions are guaranteed. But, the majority of my miles will be pavement miles... I also have the 6spd with tow package.
PS I've read that no matter what running bigger tires will adversely affect gas mileage. Is that true even for the 6-speed if I don't regear? My thinking is, starting and stopping, I'll be revving higher and therefore using more fuel. But cruising on the highway I'll be at a lower RPM most of the time, so wouldn't that equate to less fuel? Or will the injectors have to compensate for the lower RPMs for the larger amount of power necessary to move more rubber down the road.