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Old 01-11-2018, 12:19 PM
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Have dealer or indie shop install Jeep factory lift?

Looking to buy my first Jeep this year, a JL Rubi. Have specific build I want, so will order rather than buy off of lot. Based on past recommendations here, will ask Hollywood, Fields, and Koons for quotes on my build. (So, yes, willing to travel from S.FL.)

Will order with 35's, which JL Rubi can take stock, at least for on-road. For off-road, 35's need a 2" lift. If I were buying a JK, I would get a Rock Krawler 2.5" lift and have Karnage install it. But Rock Krawler and TeraFlex don't make lifts for the JL. Jeep's factory OEM supplier/partner Mopar is the only game in town, the only one that makes lifts for the JL.

So my question is: In terms of both a) labor cost of installation, and b) experience and competence installing lifts, would I be better off having the dealer from whom I buy the Rubi (e.g. Hollywood, Fields, Koons, etc.) install the Jeep/Mopar 2" lift, or buy the Mopar lift from, say, Morris in Pompano, and have either Brandons or Karnage install it?

Thanks for any advice on this.

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Old 01-12-2018, 01:14 AM   #2
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If you are still a few months out from your order or purchase, Rock Krawler and Teraflex are probably working on lifts for the JL's and will most like be finished in the very near future.

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Old 01-12-2018, 08:23 AM
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Thanks, yes, am flexible on timing. Probably not going to be able to make it to Colorado this summer, timing on everything with the build might be a bit tight for that, so aiming for summer of 2019. Would like to get build done this year. The Mopar JL 2" lift won't be available 'til March and apparently can't be ordered 'til then.

Had seen some (possibly uninformed) speculation on other boards about aftermarket lifts for JL being a year or two out. But if Rock Krawler and TeraFlex can have JL lifts ready this year, at least by fall, it would be worth waiting for, especially RK. Nice thing is that I can buy the JL Rubi with 35's from the dealer and run it stock on-road, without a lift, as long as I don't take it off-road, and then just wait for the aftermarket lift availability. If not available by fall, or next winter at the very latest, I could then put the Mopar 2" lift on it.

Another issue is color choice & availability. Have heard that some additional color choices (that I might like better than these initial ones) might be available later in the model year. Not sure how long I want to hold out for that. Would like to place my order by this summer.
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Old 01-12-2018, 09:46 AM   #4
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I would be willing to bet that every lift and suspension company in business to serve the JK Jeep market has a JL Jeep in their shop. Or two. While it takes time to engineer and test the "good" products, they know the first to market has an opportunity you won't get again. Some of these companies will have had a JL in the shop before the public could buy them!

If I had a cushion on time, especially since you want 35's and it seems they bolt right on and are good for at least highway use, I would wait to see what products come out and which seem to work best.
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Old 01-12-2018, 10:18 AM
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I see that some of the aftermarket companies have posted on some of the forums about taking delivery of their first JL's in just the last several days, specifically ACE Engineering (9 days ago) and Extreme Terrain (yesterday). Haven't heard anything yet from Rock Krawler or TeraFlex. But, yes, would guess that they too likely have recently taken delivery of their first JL's. (Guess they're in stealth mode right now.)

Thanks, good advice, yes, seems clearer to me now that that's the best way to go, especially since I do have the luxury of time -- order the JL Rubi this spring with 35's, run it on-road only, wait to see how the aftermarket lifts develop by late this year, then make a decision and pull the trigger on that by this time next year.
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Old 01-12-2018, 10:30 AM   #6
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I see that some of the aftermarket companies have posted on some of the forums about taking delivery of their first JL's in just the last several days, specifically ACE Engineering (9 days ago) and Extreme Terrain (yesterday). Haven't heard anything yet from Rock Krawler or TeraFlex. But, yes, would guess that they too likely have recently taken delivery of their first JL's. (Guess they're in stealth mode right now.)

Thanks, good advice, yes, seems clearer to me now that that's the best way to go, especially since I do have the luxury of time -- order the JL Rubi this spring with 35's, run it on-road only, wait to see how the aftermarket lifts develop by late this year, then make a decision and pull the trigger on that by this time next year.
TeraFlex is posting about their new JL. though, they aren't posting anything they're doing to it. just showing it off. i would wait a good 6 months to a year for aftermarket to get some options out, and some feedback on those options. don't be in a rush to modify the jeep. you can do plenty with the stock 33s it comes on.
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Old 01-12-2018, 11:55 AM
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Thanks, good to know that TeraFlex is posting about their new JL. Hadn't seen that; will look for it. Not surprised that TeraFlex is posting; they're better at marketing/communications than Rock Krawler. Love that guy Dennis. Great videos he does; learned a lot from watching them.

One (I think fairly compelling) reason for me to order and buy the JL Rubi with 35's right off the bat from the dealer is to save some money on tires, specifically $1,260 (5 x $252), rather than order them with 33's and then have to toss the 33's 6-12 months later (or sell them used, at a greatly reduced price), with plenty of life left on them, to upgrade to 35's with a 2-2.5" lift. Better to buy the JL with the 35's on it, since that's what I ultimately want, and since the JL Rubi can run 35's stock, unmodified (other than recalibration of speedometer/odometer), at least for on-road use.

Good advice about not being in a rush to modify. As mentioned, I could wait as long as a year on the lift, and still make my timetable for Colorado summer of 2019.

But I also need to think about and consider your statement about being able to do plenty with the stock 33's. I hadn't thought about that and had just assumed that I will need 35's. But that was based on what I've read about the JK Rubicon for my particular off-road application. Though I hope to do some limited, light 4-wheeling here in FL, my primary off-road mission will be mountain Jeep trails in Colorado, to reach upper trailheads, ... so trails like Montezuma Basin, Baldwin Gulch, Yankee Boy Basin, Nellie Creek, Clohesy Lake, N. Halfmoon Creek, etc. My understanding from what I've read (never been there before, have been mountain/glacier climbing off and on for 47 years in other places around the country and world where I didn't need a 4WD to get to trailheads) is that these particular mountain Jeep trails (the ones mentioned above) are typically done with modified Rubicons running 35's and 2.5-3.5" lifts. But that has been the JK. From what I've recently read about the new JL, I gather that Jeep has lifted the JL Rubicon's stock height a couple inches above that of the JK Rubicon's stock height. So I just don't know whether now an unmodified JL Rubicon on stock 33's could possibly make it up those particular trails (where a JK Rubicon needed to be modified with a lift and bigger tires).

If the aftermarket JL lift development and market feedback has not sufficiently gelled and shaken out by a year from now, I guess I could always put the Mopar JL 2" lift on it a year from now, or by spring 2019 at the very latest (to meet my Colorado summer 2019 timetable), and then consider the possibility of an upgrade to a RK or TF lift at some later time in the future. The Mopar JL 2" lift seems to be fairly reasonably priced, at $1,495. But the reality will likely be that once I put the Mopar lift on it, as long as the Mopar lift is getting the job done for me on the mountain Jeep trails that I'm climbing, I'll probably just leave it at that and not go back and revisit the lift decision.
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Old 01-16-2018, 03:17 PM   #8
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some of those trails may require a lift or 35/37" tires, but while you're getting to know your new JL, the 33s or 35s a rubi come with are plenty. another thing to consider, as you mentioned the JL is a bit taller, so you might not need the lift or bigger tires, but you might want to consider some heavier duty skids for the rockies...

all food for thought, and none of this needs to be done over night. you're better off learning what you like and dislike here in florida, then building off of that (and what type of wheeling you want to do in the future).
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Old 01-17-2018, 09:13 AM
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Great advice, thanks!
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Old 01-24-2018, 06:58 PM   #10
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RubiTrux say they have a Custom JL
Coming Soon
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Old 01-25-2018, 10:37 AM
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Interesting. I see that on RubiTrux' website. With their custom JL build "coming soon", I presume they will be using the Mopar lift. That's the only one that RubiTrux shows on its webpage of JL lifts, and it's the only JL lift presently available and on the market.

(From TeraFlex' most recent video, it looks like they may have a working prototype/first iteration within the next several months, in their initial development of a JL lift. Basically, Mopar has a 2-3 year head-start on everyone else, having worked with Jeep on the development of the JL over the last few years.)

Once RubiTrux has completed their custom JL build and given it a workout, I'd be interested in their evaluation of the Mopar lift. I'm starting to see on the JL forums that a few of the early JL buyers are going to go ahead and put the Mopar lift on theirs. So maybe we'll start getting some market feedback on the Mopar JL lift by late spring/early summer.
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Old 01-25-2018, 12:26 PM   #12
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Interesting. I see that on RubiTrux' website. With their custom JL build "coming soon", I presume they will be using the Mopar lift. That's the only one that RubiTrux shows on its webpage of JL lifts, and it's the only JL lift presently available and on the market.

(From TeraFlex' most recent video, it looks like they may have a working prototype/first iteration within the next several months, in their initial development of a JL lift. Basically, Mopar has a 2-3 year head-start on everyone else, having worked with Jeep on the development of the JL over the last few years.)

Once RubiTrux has completed their custom JL build and given it a workout, I'd be interested in their evaluation of the Mopar lift. I'm starting to see on the JL forums that a few of the early JL buyers are going to go ahead and put the Mopar lift on theirs. So maybe we'll start getting some market feedback on the Mopar JL lift by late spring/early summer.
We are getting ahead with Mopar adding products that are not even released yet. Right now the only lift available with information is this Mopar one so that is what we have. Also, Mopar has a ton of factory parts for the JL we have seen and those are scheduled to start going on the site next week (hopefully), there is not much info out on this stuff so we put up what we can and wait. Being only a 2" lift to run 37s on a stock Rubi I assume other manufacturers will be fairly quick to market (TeraFlex has said a few times they would rather test and be happy with their kit than be first to market, AEV will take even longer, I bet RK gets something out pretty quick). Most aftermarket companies are saying EJS-ish for a release time on their lifts. We have had a Rubi JL ordered since first day of possible order and are waiting for it impatiently. The JK Mopar 2" was not a terrible lift, I personally hate the design and way the JK Mopar 4" handles. Time will tell.
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Old 01-25-2018, 02:56 PM
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Thanks for the insider insight on expected timetables for JL lifts from TF, AEV, and RK. Thanks also for your expert feedback/insight on how the Mopar JK 2" and 4" lifts performed. That's very helpful.

From the Mopar 2018 JL & JK parts catalog that I downloaded from wranglerjlforum.com a while back, I notice the following two things:

1) While Mopar had (and has) both 2" and 4" lift kits for the JK, they only have a 2" lift kit for the JL, no 4" JL lift kit. Probably a good thing, from what you said about Mopar's 4" JK lift.

2) Mopar's 2" JK lift has a front drive shaft replacement but no control arms, whereas Mopar's 2" JL lift doesn't have a front drive shaft replacement but does have front lower control arm replacements. So the JL's geometry must be a bit different from the JK's; as a rank newb, out of my depth here, I'm guessing JL is likely better designed for moderate lifting.

I will only do a 2" lift on my planned JL 2-door Rubi MT purchase later this year; definitely would not want to go 4", just too much change in geometry and on-road stability issues. Only need 2" to swap out stock 33's for 35's, and really only need the extra 2" lift for off-road, since the JL Rubi will run 35's just fine for on-road use. So I'm guessing that the Mopar 2" JL lift should likely be adequate and do fine (for moderate rock crawling) given what you said about Mopar's 2" JK lift.

As someone else pointed out earlier in this thread, the JL Rubi should have quite capable rock crawling ability as is, on its stock 33's and no lift. That is certainly evidenced and can be seen from the many online videos of Jeep's formal JL introduction press/media event out in Tucson back in December, with stock JL Rubis on 33's (driven by invited automotive journalists and vloggers) doing some pretty serious rock crawling.

Nevertheless, I would like to swap from 33's up to 35's, and add 2" of suspension lift, to give me a little extra insurance, margin, and clearance, especially given my total lack of off-road 4WD experience. Nice thing about Colorado high-elevation mountain Jeep trails is that they're graded on a rating system, from 0 to 6, in order of difficulty, (with 0 being paved roads). So I can start out gently, starting with grade 1 and 2 trails, and then slowly, gradually work my way up, step by step, driving/climbing trails at each grade/rating until I get enough experience and feel comfortable to move up to the next level.

Also interested in getting up into the mountains in your neck of the woods there in western NC. But I think most, if not all, of the roads to trailheads I'm interested in are paved. Would especially like to get up and do some hiking in the Roan Highlands. I believe Roaring Creek Road is paved all the way up to the Yellow Mountain Gap trailhead. Some time ago I read about a vandalism problem at Carvers Gap, with cars left there being occasionally vandalised. Haven't heard anything about any such vandalism problems up at the top of Roaring Creek Road, so hopefully that's a better access point for the Roan Highlands.

Would also love to do some 4-wheeling up there in WNC High Country, if there is any.

Looking forward to following your custom JL build. Love what you've done on your custom JK builds!

Thanks again for your expert insight!
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Old 01-25-2018, 03:10 PM   #14
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Thanks for the insider insight on expected timetables for JL lifts from TF, AEV, and RK. Thanks also for your expert feedback/insight on how the Mopar JK 2" and 4" lifts performed. That's very helpful.

From the Mopar 2018 JL & JK parts catalog that I downloaded from wranglerjlforum.com a while back, I notice the following two things:

1) While Mopar had (and has) both 2" and 4" lift kits for the JK, they only have a 2" lift kit for the JL, no 4" JL lift kit. Probably a good thing, from what you said about Mopar's 4" JK lift.

2) Mopar's 2" JK lift has a front drive shaft replacement but no control arms, whereas Mopar's 2" JL lift doesn't have a front drive shaft replacement but does have front lower control arm replacements. So the JL's geometry must be a bit different from the JK's; as a rank newb, out of my depth here, I'm guessing JL is likely better designed for moderate lifting.

I will only do a 2" lift on my planned JL 2-door Rubi MT purchase later this year; definitely would not want to go 4", just too much change in geometry and on-road stability issues. Only need 2" to swap out stock 33's for 35's, and really only need the extra 2" lift for off-road, since the JL Rubi will run 35's just fine for on-road use. So I'm guessing that the Mopar 2" JL lift should likely be adequate and do fine (for moderate rock crawling) given what you said about Mopar's 2" JK lift.

As someone else pointed out earlier in this thread, the JL Rubi should have quite capable rock crawling ability as is, on its stock 33's and no lift. That is certainly evidenced and can be seen from the many online videos of Jeep's formal JL introduction press/media event out in Tucson back in December, with stock JL Rubis on 33's (driven by invited automotive journalists and vloggers) doing some pretty serious rock crawling.

Nevertheless, I would like to swap from 33's up to 35's, and add 2" of suspension lift, to give me a little extra insurance, margin, and clearance, especially given my total lack of off-road 4WD experience. Nice thing about Colorado high-elevation mountain Jeep trails is that they're graded on a rating system, from 0 to 6, in order of difficulty, (with 0 being paved roads). So I can start out gently, starting with grade 1 and 2 trails, and then slowly, gradually work my way up, step by step, driving/climbing trails at each grade/rating until I get enough experience and feel comfortable to move up to the next level.

Also interested in getting up into the mountains in your neck of the woods there in western NC. But I think most, if not all, of the roads to trailheads I'm interested in are paved. Would especially like to get up and do some hiking in the Roan Highlands. I believe Roaring Creek Road is paved all the way up to the Yellow Mountain Gap trailhead. Some time ago I read about a vandalism problem at Carvers Gap, with cars left there being occasionally vandalised. Haven't heard anything about any such vandalism problems up at the top of Roaring Creek Road, so hopefully that's a better access point for the Roan Highlands.

Would also love to do some 4-wheeling up there in WNC High Country, if there is any.

Looking forward to following your custom JL build. Love what you've done on your custom JK builds!

Thanks again for your expert insight!
Thanks! It's a lot of speculation right now honestly. The driveshaft was not needed with that 2" JK kit and think they just did it to be different, but geometry correction can be a recommendation on that JK 2" lift so the lower control arms on the JL kit are a nice add. Not sure. Nonetheless, time will tell on all this. Let me know if you are ever in the area! If you want to just do 35s and you have a Rubi, I would just consider a small spacer lift since word is you can bolt on 35s out of the box. Dynatrac put their JL on 42" tires on 4" of lift with Rubi JL fenders... so doubt Mopar will offer a 4" for the JL. Who knows though.
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Old 01-25-2018, 04:51 PM
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> “If you want to just do 35s and you have a Rubi, I would just consider a small spacer lift since word is you can bolt on 35s out of the box.”

Hhhmmm ... Another thread (which, btw, you yourself chimed in on today), in another forum, over on the JL Wrangler General Discussion Forum, has got me wondering about that. More specifically, one of the many Wrangler aftermarket suspension lift manufacturers, Rancho, reported just this afternoon, in the thread entitled “Mopar 2-inch JL lift”, that they now have their prototype 2” lift installed on a JL Rubicon, with 35” tires, that they just picked up and drove 2,000 miles across country. If my understanding is correct, it sounds like their initial prototype 2” JL lift is what you just suggested – basically, just a small spacer lift, together with upgraded shocks and coils, no control arms or other brackets. But ... BUT ... they report that they drove it up the Moab Rim this morning, and the “35-inch tires got STUFFED into the flares”, even with the 2” spacer lift. As a rank noob, I’m still learning and trying to figure out all the Wrangler lingo and terminology, but I gather that means that the tires rubbed and dug into the fenders. So, Rancho concludes that for serious off-road rock crawling, a JL Rubi on 35’s should ideally have a lift a bit taller than 2”, or aftermarket flares.

Interesting early feedback. I wonder if Mopar’s 2” JL lift (with front lower control arms) would do better than Rancho’s initial prototype JL 2” spacer lift, and not dig into the fenders as Rancho’s apparently does, on a JL Rubi on 35’s going up the Moab Rim?

Unless the very few (like only two) Florida dealers (one in South Florida and the other in Central Florida) previously recommended here on this forum can at least get close enough to matching Koons in VA 5% below invoice pricing such that the difference is within travel expenses for the 1,000-mile trip each way, flight up and drive back, looks like I’ll probably be making that pilgrimage up to Vienna, VA, like so many others. (Know the area well, grew up in MD, just outside DC, and all of my family is still there.)

It seems like some of these aftermarket converters and lift manufacturers are doing the same, ordering and picking up their JLs at Koons. ... e.g. Rancho’s reference, in their post today, about just having driven their new JL 2,000 miles across country. And I noticed in TeraFlex’s most recent video that Denis said he just drove TF’s new JL 2,000 across country from VA to Utah. (Must have likewise bought it at Koons; what other Jeep dealer in VA would he have bought from but Koons?) With all the threads in the JL forums about new engine break-in, I wonder if Denis took backroads for the first 300 miles of that 2,000-mile cross country trip, or if he just drove it on the interstates the whole way?

Anyway, if I end up going the Koons route, late summer/early fall may be my timetable, in which case it would fit nicely with prime hiking/mountain climbing season in WNC High Country. So I may just stop by there in Boone and have you install a 2” lift for me (and any other aftermarket parts I may add to my wish list between now and then). Or who knows, if what Rancho has reported today is true and bears out with further experience and market feedback, maybe by then the best advice will be that a 2.5” or 3” lift is needed for serious rock crawling on a JL Rubi running 35’s.

I gather October is not too late to catch some backporch bluegrass in Todd or Vale Crucis, something I’ve long heard about and been wanting to do.

Yup, you and the earlier poster here in this thread are right about needing to wait several months to see how this all develops and shakes out.

Thanks!
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Old 01-26-2018, 07:47 AM   #16
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> “If you want to just do 35s and you have a Rubi, I would just consider a small spacer lift since word is you can bolt on 35s out of the box.”

Hhhmmm ... Another thread (which, btw, you yourself chimed in on today), in another forum, over on the JL Wrangler General Discussion Forum, has got me wondering about that. More specifically, one of the many Wrangler aftermarket suspension lift manufacturers, Rancho, reported just this afternoon, in the thread entitled “Mopar 2-inch JL lift”, that they now have their prototype 2” lift installed on a JL Rubicon, with 35” tires, that they just picked up and drove 2,000 miles across country. If my understanding is correct, it sounds like their initial prototype 2” JL lift is what you just suggested – basically, just a small spacer lift, together with upgraded shocks and coils, no control arms or other brackets. But ... BUT ... they report that they drove it up the Moab Rim this morning, and the “35-inch tires got STUFFED into the flares”, even with the 2” spacer lift. As a rank noob, I’m still learning and trying to figure out all the Wrangler lingo and terminology, but I gather that means that the tires rubbed and dug into the fenders. So, Rancho concludes that for serious off-road rock crawling, a JL Rubi on 35’s should ideally have a lift a bit taller than 2”, or aftermarket flares.

Interesting early feedback. I wonder if Mopar’s 2” JL lift (with front lower control arms) would do better than Rancho’s initial prototype JL 2” spacer lift, and not dig into the fenders as Rancho’s apparently does, on a JL Rubi on 35’s going up the Moab Rim?

Unless the very few (like only two) Florida dealers (one in South Florida and the other in Central Florida) previously recommended here on this forum can at least get close enough to matching Koons in VA 5% below invoice pricing such that the difference is within travel expenses for the 1,000-mile trip each way, flight up and drive back, looks like I’ll probably be making that pilgrimage up to Vienna, VA, like so many others. (Know the area well, grew up in MD, just outside DC, and all of my family is still there.)

It seems like some of these aftermarket converters and lift manufacturers are doing the same, ordering and picking up their JLs at Koons. ... e.g. Rancho’s reference, in their post today, about just having driven their new JL 2,000 miles across country. And I noticed in TeraFlex’s most recent video that Denis said he just drove TF’s new JL 2,000 across country from VA to Utah. (Must have likewise bought it at Koons; what other Jeep dealer in VA would he have bought from but Koons?) With all the threads in the JL forums about new engine break-in, I wonder if Denis took backroads for the first 300 miles of that 2,000-mile cross country trip, or if he just drove it on the interstates the whole way?

Anyway, if I end up going the Koons route, late summer/early fall may be my timetable, in which case it would fit nicely with prime hiking/mountain climbing season in WNC High Country. So I may just stop by there in Boone and have you install a 2” lift for me (and any other aftermarket parts I may add to my wish list between now and then). Or who knows, if what Rancho has reported today is true and bears out with further experience and market feedback, maybe by then the best advice will be that a 2.5” or 3” lift is needed for serious rock crawling on a JL Rubi running 35’s.

I gather October is not too late to catch some backporch bluegrass in Todd or Vale Crucis, something I’ve long heard about and been wanting to do.

Yup, you and the earlier poster here in this thread are right about needing to wait several months to see how this all develops and shakes out.

Thanks!
Yeah I noticed Rancho in that, odd since I posted that 2" stuffing 37s with almost no trimming needed. When I buy one I will be putting on 2" or 2.5" springs and running 37s for sure.
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Old 01-26-2018, 04:42 PM   #17
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Ben from Rubitrux is great to deal with. Was working with him on my 2017 JKUHR. Decided to wait for the JL and will order everything from him then. Personally, I'm going to wait for AEV. Currently have it on my 2015 JKUHR and love it.
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Old 01-26-2018, 04:46 PM   #18
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Saaster,

Check out Lakeland CDJ. We got our 2017 JKUHR for 5% below invoice last year.
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Old 01-27-2018, 10:54 AM
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Thanks for the recommendation on RubiTrux and also AEV. I started my Jeep research a couple years ago (as part of a longer term plan to shift from the Alps to Colorado 14ers, 2017 being my last summer climbing in the Alps) and had done some reading (again, a couple years ago) in various forums (mountain climbing forums, I think they were) on suspension lifts and bigger tires, which I will likely need, or at least would have probably needed on a JK Rubi, to get up the more challenging high-elevation CO mountain Jeep trails to upper trailheads, and had narrowed down my lift choice to between TeraFlex and Rock Krawler. What I kinda gleaned from my research was that TeraFlex seems to be better all-around, including especially on-road handling, but that Rock Krawler may be, or seems to be, the best for serious, hard-core (as the name suggests) rock crawling. (Of course, all highly subjective and debatable, and hotly debated, with each having their avid adherents and supporters.) So I’ve been leaning towards RK. But I recall also reading good things about AEV. So will have to take another look and consider AEV.

Thanks also for the recommendation on Lakeland CDJ. Could you give me the name and contact info/email address of a good salesman to work with there?

While I’m at it, I think I’ll also post a couple separate threads to ask for sales contact info at Fields Jeep in Sanford and Hollywood Jeep down here in South Florida.
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Old 01-27-2018, 11:07 AM   #20
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