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Old 01-30-2014, 06:53 PM   #1
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Lift kit questions for the seasoned jeeper!

Finally got my first jeep 97' TJ and after tune up and new thermostat it's time to make it my own!! Aside from great body condition I have plans to fix minor rust and stop all other rust from persisting as best I could I am planning an budgeting mods. My question is with the two inch body lift and 31x10.50's that came on it I am looking into a 2 inch suspension lift and 33x12.50's. My questions are do I need to look at total lift or just suspension to know whether I need SYE and to change gearing, how will this affect my power it's a 2.5L, what types of things do I need to pay special attention to when deciding on lifts it is a DD. Trying to learn as much as I can about my new found passion. I appreciate any knowledge and advice!

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Old 01-30-2014, 07:18 PM   #2
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Whether you need an SYE is based in suspension lift. Hearing is based on tire size.

You will not need an sye with 2" of suspension lift. Your rig will be a gutless pig unless you regear.

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Old 01-30-2014, 07:25 PM   #3
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I'm in no rush to get anywhere haha. As far as regearing is that just differentials or transmission and transfer case involved as well. I wanna have everything I need when I install it, I'm not one to cut corners and run the risk of damaging my machine.
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Old 01-30-2014, 07:29 PM   #4
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I'm in no rush to get anywhere haha. As far as regearing is that just differentials or transmission and transfer case involved as well. I wanna have everything I need when I install it, I'm not one to cut corners and run the risk of damaging my machine.
Just the front and rear axles. You will need to pay a shop to regear. Expect to pay $1200-$1500.
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Old 01-30-2014, 07:43 PM   #5
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How does one choose the gearing? As far as Dana's and 3.10 or 3.73 it's pretty mind boggling to know which is which and the applications? Btw thanks for the info already provided!
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Old 01-30-2014, 07:57 PM   #6
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Whether you need an SYE is based in suspension lift. Hearing is based on tire size.
I know when I went to 33" mud tires my hearing went bad...
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Old 01-30-2014, 08:38 PM   #7
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What's that I can't hear ya??
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Old 01-30-2014, 11:01 PM   #8
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Re gearing is totally based on what tire size your Jeep came with vs what tire size you intend to run. I assume your jeep probably originally came with tires that were about 29 inches in diameter and you want to go to 33's. That would mean if your axles are currently 3.73, you would want to go to at least 4.10's, better at 4.56's to maintain close to the overall stock drive train gearing ratio. If your axles are 3.10's you would only need to upgrade to 3.73s to keep the stock drive train gearing. There are lots of on-line calculators like this one that can help you decide what to do:
Gear Calculator: Use Our Gear Calculator for Proper Gear Ratios

If I were in your shoes, I'd try it stock for a while and if it really bothers you, then regear and err on the lower gearing side (higher numerical number). It's expensive to do as you will also need a new carrier on at least one axle if you have to upgrade to 4.10's or higher, (both axles if you end up needing 4.56's) and if you ever want to add a locker, that would be the time to do it.

There may still be a tag on your differential that tells you what gears are currently in there. If not, it's pretty easy to figure it out.
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Old 01-31-2014, 12:09 AM   #9
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Re gearing is totally based on what tire size your Jeep came with vs what tire size you intend to run. I assume your jeep probably originally came with tires that were about 29 inches in diameter and you want to go to 33's. That would mean if your axles are currently 3.73, you would want to go to at least 4.10's, better at 4.56's to maintain close to the overall stock drive train gearing ratio. If your axles are 3.10's you would only need to upgrade to 3.73s to keep the stock drive train gearing. There are lots of on-line calculators like this one that can help you decide what to do: Gear Calculator: Use Our Gear Calculator for Proper Gear Ratios If I were in your shoes, I'd try it stock for a while and if it really bothers you, then regear and err on the lower gearing side (higher numerical number). It's expensive to do as you will also need a new carrier on at least one axle if you have to upgrade to 4.10's or higher, (both axles if you end up needing 4.56's) and if you ever want to add a locker, that would be the time to do it. There may still be a tag on your differential that tells you what gears are currently in there. If not, it's pretty easy to figure it out.
So if you don't have the tag anymore, how would one find out what gears are in the diffs?
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Old 01-31-2014, 12:16 AM   #10
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So if you don't have the tag anymore, how would one find out what gears are in the diffs?
http://www.jeepforum.com/forum/f9/fa...-ratio-615380/
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Old 01-31-2014, 04:48 AM   #11
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Re gearing is totally based on what tire size your Jeep came with vs what tire size you intend to run. I assume your jeep probably originally came with tires that were about 29 inches in diameter and you want to go to 33's. That would mean if your axles are currently 3.73, you would want to go to at least 4.10's, better at 4.56's to maintain close to the overall stock drive train gearing ratio. If your axles are 3.10's you would only need to upgrade to 3.73s to keep the stock drive train gearing. There are lots of on-line calculators like this one that can help you decide what to do: Gear Calculator: Use Our Gear Calculator for Proper Gear Ratios If I were in your shoes, I'd try it stock for a while and if it really bothers you, then regear and err on the lower gearing side (higher numerical number). It's expensive to do as you will also need a new carrier on at least one axle if you have to upgrade to 4.10's or higher, (both axles if you end up needing 4.56's) and if you ever want to add a locker, that would be the time to do it. There may still be a tag on your differential that tells you what gears are currently in there. If not, it's pretty easy to figure it out.

Wow that's awesome thanks so much!! Being it's a 2.5L I have been told many times it will be gutless but with 33's and a regear I don't think it will be that noticeable. I have been wrong before though...
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Old 01-31-2014, 05:59 AM   #12
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I'm running 33x12.50s on my 98 with two and a half inch suspension lift and 4.10 gears with a 2.5 and I don't have any power issues except for on the highway. Mpg took a little bit of a hit but not too bad
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Old 01-31-2014, 07:41 AM   #13
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The easiest way to tell what gear ratio you have is to jack up and secure the rear of the vehicle. Make sure it won't fall on you, or roll onto you with the vehicle in nuetral, so the drive shaft and rear wheels can spin, and that both rear tires are off the ground. Chock the front tires.

Mark a chalk line on both rear tires and on the driveshaft. Spin BOTH TIRES in the same direction and count the driveshaft turns. As the link says, if you get just over 3 turns of the driveshaft for one rotate of both tires you have 3.07, if you get closer to 3 3/34 rotations of the driveshaft, you have 3.73.
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Old 01-31-2014, 09:38 AM   #14
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I'm running 33x12.50s on my 98 with two and a half inch suspension lift and 4.10 gears with a 2.5 and I don't have any power issues except for on the highway. Mpg took a little bit of a hit but not too bad
I'm getting 17.8 mpg right now with the 31's and I feel like it he gears haven't been changed just from the way it drives. Anything else you have noticed with the 2.5 L
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Old 01-31-2014, 09:57 AM   #15
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Wow that's awesome thanks so much!! Being it's a 2.5L I have been told many times it will be gutless but with 33's and a regear I don't think it will be that noticeable. I have been wrong before though...
Which transmission do you have? The recommended gear ratio for the 2.5L and 5 speed on 33" tires is 4.88. btw, I noticed a locker mentioned in one of the earlier post. Do not lock a Dana 35 axle without upgrading it...it isn't strong enough.
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Old 01-31-2014, 11:18 AM   #16
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Which transmission do you have? The recommended gear ratio for the 2.5L and 5 speed on 33" tires is 4.88. btw, I noticed a locker mentioned in one of the earlier post. Do not lock a Dana 35 axle without upgrading it...it isn't strong enough.
Not sure of the transmission would there be a tag on the tranny?
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Old 01-31-2014, 12:22 PM   #17
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Or do you mean manual vs. Automatic. If that's the case than it's a 5 speed manual.
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Old 01-31-2014, 12:51 PM   #18
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Or do you mean manual vs. Automatic. If that's the case than it's a 5 speed manual.
Yes I meant auto or manual. 4.88 would be the appropriate gear ratio for 33" tires on your Jeep. If it hasn't been regeared before, there should be a tag on the differential that says the gear ratio. You can tell which axle you have by the shape of the housing here's a pic of the differential tag for a 3.73, and pictures of the different housings. Another way to tell what your rear differential is, if it has a rubber fill plug in it, it's a Dana 35, if it has a metal screw in plug, it's a Dana 44.
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Old 02-01-2014, 01:40 AM   #19
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Yes I meant auto or manual. 4.88 would be the appropriate gear ratio for 33" tires on your Jeep. If it hasn't been regeared before, there should be a tag on the differential that says the gear ratio. You can tell which axle you have by the shape of the housing here's a pic of the differential tag for a 3.73, and pictures of the different housings. Another way to tell what your rear differential is, if it has a rubber fill plug in it, it's a Dana 35, if it has a metal screw in plug, it's a Dana 44.
I should have looked last night as my wheel cylinder went bad and I was changing new brakes for her all around, but I will have to look for that now! Not that I mind pulling her in the garage to tinker :-) Thanks this is by far one of the best and most informative forums/ communities I've ever been on!!

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