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Old 02-20-2011, 06:44 PM   #1
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Body lift vs suspension lift?

so ive had my jeep since last may and just joined the forum because my friends all drive tuner cars and are useless when i ask them jeep questions haha. ill be on here almost everyday now so any help would be greatly appreciated!

i obviously know the difference between a body lift and suspension lift, as well as the price difference, but i wanted to ask jeep people what are the positives and negatives of each as far as ride quality, pricing, and whatever.

also, with NO lift, is it possible to fit 33's onto the stock suspension without wheel rub? or would i need to lift?

thanks!

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Old 02-20-2011, 06:55 PM   #2
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First off, welcome to the forum! If you want to run 33s you will need more than a body lift unless you go with a very tall one which pretty much nobody will recommend. Don't do more than 1.25" BL. To fit 33s I suggest getting a 2 1/2" suspension lift, such as the one offered by OME (Old Man Emu) and a 1.25" body lift from JKS. With that height SL you will not need to add a SYE (slip yoke eliminator) and CV drive shaft. You will want to go with about a 4" BS wheel such as a soft 8 though to push your tires out a little to avoid rubbing.

If I was you I would go with one of these two package deals:

Rokmen - Old Man Emu - OME - Jeep TJ Suspension

Good luck!

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Old 02-20-2011, 07:22 PM   #3
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First off, welcome to the forum! If you want to run 33s you will need more than a body lift unless you go with a very tall one which pretty much nobody will recommend. Don't do more than 1.25" BL. To fit 33s I suggest getting a 2 1/2" suspension lift, such as the one offered by OME (Old Man Emu) and a 1.25" body lift from JKS. With that height SL you will not need to add a SYE (slip yoke eliminator) and CV drive shaft. You will want to go with about a 4" BS wheel such as a soft 8 though to push your tires out a little to avoid rubbing.

If I was you I would go with one of these two package deals:

Rokmen - Old Man Emu - OME - Jeep TJ Suspension

Good luck!
i dont wanna go TOO high. and im really a noob, i dont understand all the abbreviations yet: whats a "4 inch BS wheel" and a soft 8?

and im not necessarily set on 33's, i was just throwing that out there. i'd rather just buy a suspension lift and buy a smaller wheel (than a 33) than have to get a body lift as well. or is it necessary to body lift when you suspension lift?

sorry if these are easy or stupid questions hahaha.
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Old 02-20-2011, 07:27 PM   #4
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Old 02-20-2011, 07:41 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by mgflyers24 View Post
i dont wanna go TOO high. and im really a noob, i dont understand all the abbreviations yet: whats a "4 inch BS wheel" and a soft 8?

and im not necessarily set on 33's, i was just throwing that out there. i'd rather just buy a suspension lift and buy a smaller wheel (than a 33) than have to get a body lift as well. or is it necessary to body lift when you suspension lift?

sorry if these are easy or stupid questions hahaha.
BS stands for backspacing on the wheel. The soft 8 is I believe the actual wheel name. Made by crager or something. Basically I think its a wagon wheel. People do body lifts and small suspension lifts to keep from being to expsive. When you go 4 inches on a suspension lift it is highly recommended you do a slip yoke eliminator kit and CV style driveshaft. These can cost a lot compared to a mild suspension lift and a small body lift.
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Old 02-20-2011, 07:43 PM   #6
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Forgot to mention also that either way is made to put bigger tires which is what actually gives you ground clearance. it does not matter if you have a 20 inch lift and 33 inch tires compared to a 4 inch with 33 inch tires the chunk on the axles is still the same height off the ground. So it really just comes down to cost.
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Old 02-20-2011, 07:53 PM   #7
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Forgot to mention also that either way is made to put bigger tires which is what actually gives you ground clearance. it does not matter if you have a 20 inch lift and 33 inch tires compared to a 4 inch with 33 inch tires the chunk on the axles is still the same height off the ground. So it really just comes down to cost.
thanks a lot, thats the answer i was looking for. now my question is what if i wanted to do a smaller lift? like only 2 or 2.5 inches? would that be able to accommodate a 31-33 inch wheel?
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Old 02-20-2011, 07:55 PM   #8
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Ive read that alot of people arent fans of a big body lift, my jeep has a 3" body lift with 33's. If your not into serious off roading and just want a badass daily driver, i dont see the big deal in a tall bl.
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Old 02-20-2011, 07:55 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by mgflyers24 View Post
i dont wanna go TOO high. and im really a noob, i dont understand all the abbreviations yet: whats a "4 inch BS wheel" and a soft 8?

and im not necessarily set on 33's, i was just throwing that out there. i'd rather just buy a suspension lift and buy a smaller wheel (than a 33) than have to get a body lift as well. or is it necessary to body lift when you suspension lift?

sorry if these are easy or stupid questions hahaha.
You do not need to get a body lift (BL) with a suspension lift (SL). But if you want 33" tall tires you will need at least 3" but preferably about 4" of lift. It can be all suspension or combined suspension and body lift, as I suggested before with the OME kit. BS means back space. That refers to the depth of the wheel which causes the tire/wheel to sit further from the suspension. Your stock wheel is probably about 5 1/2" BS, which keeps your tire tucked under your fender flares close to the suspension. A lower BS amount, such as 4" will push the tires out further adding clearance while turning. A Soft 8 is just an inexpensive type of steel wheel, usually black, that a lot of Jeepers use that has about 4" of BS. If you decide you would be happy with a 31" tall tire, you could put that on with no lift, but it will only be good for street use. If you off road it you will rub when you flex. Best/cheapest way to go with 31" tires would be either a 1" -1.25" BL or a 2" spacer lift, also know as a budget boost (BB). A spacer lift is just poly puck spacers on top of your stock springs which add 2" of lift. There are also tons of choices for 2" SL also which will give you longer springs among other things.

I suggest that before you do anything you decide what you want to do with the Jeep, and then how big a tire you want to run. Once you get to 33" you will eventually want to re-gear your axles to accommodate the loss of power you will get. If you think you are mainly keeping it on the street and some occasional mild trail use consider just going to 31s and one of the above suggestions, or keep the suspension, tires and height stock and put the money into some armor to protect vitals and some aggressive all terrain tires like the Goodyear DuraTracs and maybe a winch.

But remember, once you start modifying, it never ends. One thing always leads to another. And it usually ain't cheap.
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Old 02-20-2011, 08:17 PM   #10
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For reference 1 inch of BL means 1 in more of tire. but 1 inch of suspension doesnt equal 1 inch of tire. as in you need 3-4 suspension to go from 31 to 33s.

you can also look into tube fenders to help with clearance. a good setup for 33s is 2.5 or more with a 1.25 BL. keeps everything clean, is functional and looks good.


Im not disagreeing with gus, but you can run 31s and go offroad. you will rub fenders but, It doesnt damage them unless your running something really agressive. also because many 31s run less than an actual 31 inches, it works. but you would want at least a 1 in bl if you did a good bit of offraoding. He gave you so great advice
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Old 02-20-2011, 08:44 PM   #11
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yeah i really appreciate the feedback guys, thanks a lot. next question is should i just get bigger springs or invest in a long arm kit? obviously the springs is the cheaper option. where i go offroading isn't very challenging- i already have no problem navigating it in my stock wrangler. i just wanna lift her up for a little more clearance. and i cant lie, i want her to look badass as well.. call me naive or something i dont care hahaha

its also amazing because ive been a member of this forum for approximately 6 hours and already made more progress in what i want to do to my jeep and how to do it than in the 10 months that i've owned her haha. again, i really appreciate all the feedback.

this is just a random example of what i was looking at on quadratec- TeraFlex - 97-06 Jeep Wrangler TJ Suspension Systems & Lift Kits - Quadratec
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Old 02-20-2011, 08:50 PM   #12
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Dont do a long arm yet... just saying get a small lift that will fit your needs for now, and learn some more and what you need to do. if your gettin a long arm, your gona probably get 35s im guessing? no other reason to go that big unless its just for clearance... wlel anyways even with 33s there is alot more to do, and alot more price in a long arm... getting bigger springs is not good. you need springs AND shocks. get a complete lift kit.

Yea, this forum is a great source of knowledge and community, thats for sure. welcome btw.

if your not super hardcore then long arm would be a waste.
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Old 02-20-2011, 09:16 PM   #13
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Dont do a long arm yet... just saying get a small lift that will fit your needs for now, and learn some more and what you need to do. if your gettin a long arm, your gona probably get 35s im guessing? no other reason to go that big unless its just for clearance... wlel anyways even with 33s there is alot more to do, and alot more price in a long arm... getting bigger springs is not good. you need springs AND shocks. get a complete lift kit.

Yea, this forum is a great source of knowledge and community, thats for sure. welcome btw.

if your not super hardcore then long arm would be a waste.
so if i wanted to run say 33's, you would recommend just getting a set of 4 inch lift springs? or should i do a 2 inch lift spring and 2 inch BL?

edit: if so, what brand of lift spring/kit would you recommend?
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Old 02-20-2011, 10:15 PM   #14
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I'm relatively new to this as well, but I think it will all come down to what you want your jeep for or to do. I've been been doing the same thing you have, scouring these forums for the perfect set up. My jeep will have to be a daily driver for a few years so fuel mileage and driving comfort are still important so I decided to stick with 31s with no lift. (When they get here in a few days, I may have to adjust the steering stops to prevent the minimal rubbing I may experience. From what I understand a sub $2 undertaking.) Still a very capable vehicle for camping, light trails, maybe some rougher stuff on occasion just for fun. I would love to run 33's and be able invest in all the sexy gear to accomodate them because it would look pretty awesome, but driving 50 miles everyday for work will get pretty expensive. Just a long winded example. Best advise I've read on here is to join a club, go wheelin a few times, then determine what you "need".
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Old 02-20-2011, 10:36 PM   #15
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http://www.quadratec.com/products/16117_108.htm

i think i may just get these, and run 32's. its not like im dead set on 33's. it seems like once you get to 33's it gets pricey.

and whats the cheapest way to get wheels/tires?

thoughts?
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Old 02-20-2011, 10:52 PM   #16
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i had 2" coil spacers for the longest time, 1st thing you need to do is figure out what it is you want to do with your jeep. i run a 4" coil suspension and i love it, in a year or to im upgrading to genrights elite coilover suspension!!! ballin! haha but im a crawler out in the vegas mts. theres no sense in doin things twice or over and over..... i suggest start out with a 1.25 body lift. then in the future you can add in a suspension lift.
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Old 02-20-2011, 10:59 PM   #17
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Old 02-20-2011, 11:20 PM   #18
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What is your price range? That will determine of you get a very nice kit like the OME or a decent kit from Rough Country like I did. Another thing to thing about is the gear ratio you have in your axles. If you go up in tire size and don't change the gearing, you definitely lose some low end power. How much depends on your ratio. If you have a TJ (1998-2006) then you will have 3.08, 3.55, 3.73, or 4.11 if you have a rubicon. Crawl under your jeep and read the metal tag on one of your axles and let us know. Generally the higher the number the better. I have 3.73 gearing and went to 33's and with the 5 speed manual its manageable. However I want to regear to 4.56 when I can. Another thing to think about is your tire carrier. Your stock tire carrier won't be able to hold that heavier tire for very long without more support. I'm saving for a new one now and am running spareless at the moment. Anyways here is my 04 Sport with a Rough Country 2.5" suspension lift and Rough Country 1.25" body lift on 33's. I just got it done last week :P



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Old 02-21-2011, 12:42 AM   #19
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Ive been running 4" suspension for several years now with 33's. I have no problem with rubbing or steering related issues. Just make sure you get a good front end alignment. The only drawback was having to regear. I had 3.07 gears and ended up regearing to 4.56. Kinda pricey but the new gears were well worth the money. I can use 5th gear again! Good luck!
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Old 02-21-2011, 05:26 AM   #20
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Old 02-21-2011, 09:39 AM   #21
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Ive been running 4" suspension for several years now with 33's. I have no problem with rubbing or steering related issues. Just make sure you get a good front end alignment. The only drawback was having to regear. I had 3.07 gears and ended up regearing to 4.56. Kinda pricey but the new gears were well worth the money. I can use 5th gear again! Good luck!
by any chance would you know how large of a tire i can run before id need to regear?
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Old 02-21-2011, 04:17 PM   #22
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Skyjacker Standard 2" Spacer Lift Kit with Hydro Shocks for 97-06 Jeep® Wrangler TJ & Unlimited - Quadratec

i think im gonna do this^ the questions is which is the better shock the nitro or the hydro? they sell the same kit for 289 but with the nitro shocks instead of the hydros...

if i understand correctly im installing the new shocks and putting the spacer in, which should give me enough lift to fit 32's (it says it can accomodate 32x11.5 with this package in its description)

and what's the simplest way to buy new wheels/tires?
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Old 02-21-2011, 05:02 PM   #23
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Skyjacker Standard 2" Spacer Lift Kit with Hydro Shocks for 97-06 Jeep® Wrangler TJ & Unlimited - Quadratec

i think im gonna do this^ the questions is which is the better shock the nitro or the hydro? they sell the same kit for 289 but with the nitro shocks instead of the hydros...

if i understand correctly im installing the new shocks and putting the spacer in, which should give me enough lift to fit 32's (it says it can accomodate 32x11.5 with this package in its description)

and what's the simplest way to buy new wheels/tires?
If you get that kit, go with the Hydro shocks for sure. The Nitros have a bad reputation for riding very rough.

As for tires and wheels, in a 32x11.50 your selection is somewhat limited. The BFG All terrain comes in that size and is a great all around tire for street and mild off road use. I ran those for two years in that size on my Jeep and loved them. Great in snow and rain. The Goodyear MTR also comes in that size and is a more aggressive tread. A more aggressive tread will cut into your gas mileage so keep that in mind. Check with your local tire dealer or shop online.

Wheels are personal preference and come either steel or alloy aluminum. Alloy is lighter = slightly better mileage, but more expensive. A good steel wheel is the ProComp Rock Crawler Soft 8 or the Crager Soft 8 rangeing from about $45 to $60 per wheel. Here is a pic of my RockCrawler Soft 8s on 33x12.50 Mickey Thomson MTZs If you have a 4WP store near you they sell them or again...shop online.

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Old 02-21-2011, 05:11 PM   #24
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I see from your Jeep profile that you have the 5 speed and I-6. That's good. If you have 3.73 gears now then you are okay with 32s although 4.10 would be better. But you will want at least 3.73 with 32s. Check to see what you have by the tag on the rear differential.
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Old 02-21-2011, 06:03 PM   #25
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I see from your Jeep profile that you have the 5 speed and I-6. That's good. If you have 3.73 gears now then you are okay with 32s although 4.10 would be better. But you will want at least 3.73 with 32s. Check to see what you have by the tag on the rear differential.
im pretty sure i have 3.73 gearing , i just crawled underneath. is it on the differential on a little plate (tag?) between 2 bolts?
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Old 02-21-2011, 06:22 PM   #26
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Old 02-21-2011, 09:15 PM   #27
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i definitely have 3.73's then. woo! so im going with this:

Skyjacker Standard 2" Spacer Lift Kit with Hydro Shocks for 97-06 Jeep® Wrangler TJ & Unlimited - Quadratec

and some 15 inch soft 8's, 32 inch BFG A/T's

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