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GETN4LO 05-13-2013 09:26 AM

To Lift or Not to Lift
JK Owners...after purchasing my new 10A Rubicon Unlimited, getting a lift seems natural in order to continue to improve its capability. Being that it is also my daily driver, I wanted to minimize the lift impacts while at the same time needing the clearance for 35s knowing I WILL be going out onto the trails here in Arizona. So, I have asked everyone I know about how lifts (suspension and/or body) impact the ride (freeway, city, trail) and the resilience of the equipment (drive shaft, joints, breaks, etc.)
The advice offered included "It looks great", "it will never be the same", and "in about 10K miles, you will need to replace many components". My concern was about the future expense associated with replacing some many other pieces while at the same time hindering it's use for highway driving as a daily driver. So, extending the same question to those out there who have done lifts, what was your experience (good and bad please). Here was the advice I received for the different options available.

3.5" Lift (short arm) - even though it will support 35" tires without rubbing, the lifespan of other components in joints and drive shaft will be shortened significantly, leading to more overall part replacement costs in the future.

2.5" Lift and a 1" Body Lift - still support 35s but minimizes the impact to the drive shaft and joints.

2.5" Lift - still support 35s, but will clearly rub unless I change out stock fenders. This will be the least impact on the drive shaft/joints long term and should not require any extensive short-term (less than 50K miles) repair costs. It will also maintain some stability on the high way.

Leave stock - still a quite capable machine, can't put 35s on however.

Your shared advice and shared experiences are greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance.:thumb:

WatchThis! 05-13-2013 09:40 AM

I don't get it. You just payed close to 40k for something that you want to lift and you are possibly leting a few hundred bucks worth of drive shafts hold you back on geting the lift you want?

If things are that tight my friend I suggest you leave it stock. If they are not that tight lift it howevet you want (just don't get the cheapest lift you can get your hands on) and buy a set of drive shafts since you plan on wheeling it. Or you can allways roll the dice and run the stock ones till they give out on you.

mckey73 05-13-2013 09:44 AM

Another option.

GETN4LO 05-13-2013 09:48 AM

It isn't the money for the lift, it is the fact that it would end up being a significant amount of replacements. 2K for a lift and another $1,500 for tires....big deal. However, the advice I got was that near-term future (10k-15k miles) replacements would be another 8K-10K to "do it right" and now clearly voiding the warranty on many components on what is a new vehicle. Hence the reason why I posed this question, asked for experiences of if that advice was right. Does that help clarify the question?

hooper 05-13-2013 09:54 AM

I put a 2.5" TF coil lift on my 2013 JKR and didnt have any rubbing. I did use the bumpstops provided in my lift kit. I have Pro Comp wheels with 4.5"BS and 315-70-17 tires. I dis later add flat fender, but I didnt have rubbing issues with stock fenders. My Rubi does very well offroad. I installed Evo ProTek skids so I am not to worried crawling over rocks.

BeanieAZ 05-13-2013 09:57 AM

Are you planning on adding any weight (IE new bumpers or a winch) to your Jeep?

msubrave 05-13-2013 09:57 AM

Flat fenders. Done.

Maybe add a BB.

WatchThis! 05-13-2013 09:58 AM

What are these folks saying you have to replace in 10/15k? And do these people you are talking to even own a JK much less a jeep?

The drive shafts are really the only isue. Or courses you can always regear if you choose/need to depending on what type of trails you run.

Now if you start acting stupid on the trails you can put yourself in a spot where you have to spend a lot of coin on repairs/upgrades. (Don't ask me how I know) but lets be honest not many folks are willing to wheel a newer jeep that hard.

xcoaste 05-13-2013 10:15 AM

A good 2.5 inch lift is pretty popular around here. I haven't lifted my JK yet, but have done a few TJ lifts. From my experience with those don't cheap out on parts, do it right the first time, and budget for a regear. If you feel like you don't need it after the fact, great, but plan $1200 just in case.

Another option is to wheel it stock for a bit and see what you can't do with it and go from there.

GETN4LO 05-13-2013 10:23 AM


Originally Posted by BeanieAZ (Post 3750373)
Are you planning on adding any weight (IE new bumpers or a winch) to your Jeep?

Great question. No for me (as the 10A has a steel bumper stock), but a friend of mine did put on some new steel bumpers from his standard on the Rubicon and it did lower his front end almost an inch!. For those reading this thread with traditional Rubicons, it will make a difference.

jcrawler93 05-13-2013 10:54 AM

My advice is the 2.5 kits.. would be my best option if I was in your place. The lift kits aren't expensive and it's pretty easy and fast to install with the right tools. You wont be worrying for driveshaft issues minimizing the $500-1000 cost you where planning to do. You can even save $ for add ons and install it yourself. Teraflex, Zone, Rough Country, Rubicon Express, OME all make great kits.

ahsumtoy 05-13-2013 11:02 AM

Why not get a 2 - 2.5 lift and put on 33's. Just a thought.

ShaunWV 05-13-2013 11:16 AM


Originally Posted by ahsumtoy (Post 3750546)
Why not get a 2 - 2.5 lift and put on 33's. Just a thought.

That's what I did...and now I want 35's. :whistling:

MTH 05-13-2013 11:32 AM

No body lifts. Don't do it.

suicideking 05-13-2013 11:35 AM


Originally Posted by ShaunWV (Post 3750578)
That's what I did...and now I want 35's. :whistling:

Yup, same here. Got 33's before lifting. Then got the RK 2.5" lift, didn't like the 33's. Got 35" GY MTR 9 months later, then didn't like the lift height. Replaced the 2.5" RK springs with 4" Evo springs.

So yeah, figure out what you want first, then do it. Otherwise you pay for everything twice LIKE I DID...

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