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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So im a brand new Jeep owner, with a lovely Commando Green 2013 Unlimited Sport in my driveway. Im looking for side guards / steps with about a $300 budget.

I was clicking through quadratech, and found a set that I thought looked nice.
Smittybilt 76643 - Smittybilt SRC Rocker Guards in Textured Black for 07-13 Jeep® Wrangler JK 2 Door - Quadratec
Then I looked at the manufactuer, and said "Awww.. Smittybuilt" and then moved on.

I realized a few clicks later, that I have never OWNED anything from Smittybuilt, and that all of the forum talk of "Shittybuilt" and other derogatives have completely biased my opinion. To the point that I thought.. well Ill never buy THAT brand.

Im not sure thats healthy.

So am i a fool for letting others color my opionion, or a fool for feeling like I have to try a product instead of heeding the warnings of others?

Doug

In the mean time, for $300.
Rampage Products 80" Streamline Step Bar for 07-12 Jeep® Wrangler Unlimited JK 4 Door - Quadratec
looks pretty nice.
 

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Those Rampage bars look pretty good for the money, as for Smittybuilt I'm sure they have pretty good products overall but somewhere down the line they made a few shitty products and earned that rep.
 

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Smitty is chinese. I always buy ACE stuff cause it's made in the U.S. by "the little guy".
 

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I bought the ACE rails and they mount perfectly, look great, and the price is very reasonable (PM me if you want details on where I ordered). I also bought a Smitty XRC MOD front bumper, mainly for looks but also because the price was reasonable. I'm not one to "go with the flow" when a few people bash a certain manufacturer, nor am I one to avoid buying foreign products mainly because it's impossible to avoid it. Before the flaming starts, I'm a war vet, son of a war vet, grandson of a war vet on both sides, and member of American Legion and VFW. I'm as patriotic as anyone so save the comments.

I ordered the bull bar and the long end caps. The pre-drilled holes in the bull bar to mount on the top bumper were off from the holes in the top of the bumper itself. Two of the four on each end were off, and on each side the pre-threaded holes were off by more than 1/2". I drilled it out and made it work, but for the price you would expect the parts to fit.

The long end caps are still on back order and will be for at least another month, so no input on that.

Otherwise, the quality seems to be pretty good, but the mix & match system seems to have a few kinks in it. My opinion is that if you like the look of the product and the price is reasonable for what you are ordering, give it a shot. If you're not willing to take the risk then do yourself a favor and look at the ACE rails.
 

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I have those Smittybuilt rails. I like them a lot. Be warned, they would not bolt on without me having to break out the angle grinder first. You get what you pay for.
 

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I have no problems with smittybilt. Yes they have a bad Rep, but my oversized tire carrier went on with no problems and works perfectly fine. I feel as if it is kinda unfair to smittybilt sometimes where people complain and compare them to another more expensive product. I frequently see posts where people say "my smittybilt product was horrible compared to my (Lod, psc, evo,aev, etc) product. Well yeah, you paid about 40% less for it. That said, quality control is not as good as some other companies thus there is a higher chance you may have a defective problem. You get what you pay for. There are plenty of people very happy with their smittybilt rails, one of my buddies has them and loves them. That said, if you are gonna be doing a lot of off roaring don't cheap out on rock rails, they take a lot of hits. I have rugged ridge rails and although they function just fine, I plan on upgrading now that I've joined a club and wheel pretty hard once a month.
 

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I bought Smittybilt bumpers front and rear and sliders with rock rails over two years ago before I knew Smittybilt had such a bad reputation. I don't remember having any installation problems. I feel that they are not the best product out there but for the cost and if you can overlook the little flaws here and there, They are a good purchase. Other than scratches that I've put on, they still look pretty good. If I rock crawled I don't think I would buy theses rock rails.
 

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So im a brand new Jeep owner, with a lovely Commando Green 2013 Unlimited Sport in my driveway. Im looking for side guards / steps with about a $300 budget.
come on South Carolina! no pics of the CG sport in the driveway, in your profile?! such a nice color... almost as nice as black ;)

side steps aren't always the best choice for wheeling [can get hung up] but are worth every momentary sacrifice when it comes to aiding entry/exit.. shielding from road debris and door dings, and IMO look good too! [like mounted rockets!]

they might be made in china buy children -who knows... but i'm running Mopar [tube steps] the work fine and are likely more affordable. check out my profile for pics
 

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The bumpers and other hard metal goods that smittybuilt makes are good since you can't really go wrong with a bumper or guards unless they don't use thick enough metal
 

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I haven't heard many good things about smittybilt, but I will say that Rampage has some of the best customer service I have ever encountered.
 

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Another satisfied ACE customer here, I don't think you'll do better quality wise and the value is just an added benefit :thumb:
 

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AEV! because it come stander on the COD MW3 Jeeps, Yes it cost more but it fits and clean looking. NO HARD EDGES.

I could go on and on...

Stop.
Lol, I have the opposite mentality. I don't like AEV bumpers now because they are on the COD MW3. They aren't that original now. AEV is great quality, but you pay for it at over $1,000 for the front bumper, and it is rather difficult to install.
 

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I'm a big fan of my ACE rockers, and they're certainly within your budget. I highly recommend them for all of the reasons others have already mentioned...
 

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Another committed ACE fan here. I thought I was going to get the Smittys but then read some of the threads here and decided ACE was the way to go. Rock rails came and I couldn't be happier--they're freaking solid and they fit perfectly. Plus it's a small shop in Michigan using all US steel. Will definitely go with them when I'm ready to do the bumpers. And as other people have pointed out, Jason at krawloff-road.com is the man to work with for all your ACE needs (and probably anything else).
 

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I have those Smittybuilt rails. I like them a lot. Be warned, they would not bolt on without me having to break out the angle grinder first. You get what you pay for.
I had the Smittys too and they were difficult to fit. But once on there, they kept me upright when I tipped and kept my rockers off the rocks. They worked and that's what's important.
Some Smitty stuff is US-build, btw. They source from everywhere. Them and Rugged Ridge.


 
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