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Discussion Starter #1
OK, I'm just getting started. Phase 0 was ordering the vehicle and getting it in, I'm calling phase 1 the addition of a 3.5" lift, and new wheels and tires. I had phase 1 done at the dealer.

I posted this in the waiting room, but just to have all the info in one place here, I'll start with my first glimpse when it came in. The dealer uses a former Chrysler/Plymouth dealer facility for reconditioning used cars for resale, as well as special project work such as Jeep builds.



I took these two photos looking through the dirty windows, it was closed for the day when I stopped by.


They let me in the next day to go in and see it. I had debated between Tank and Orange Sunset, but I like the orange, I'm happy with my decision.


The hardrock edition has a red outline on the Rubicon decal, it works well with orange.
 

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Discussion Starter #2
Phase 1

The next step was to add the lift. wheels, and tires. I wanted to get this done from the beginning, otherwise I may never get it done! (Had that problem on a Chevy ZR2 I had, never got it modified.)

Went with a 3.5" JKS lift, Method "Standard" wheels, and 35x12.5" Nitto Trail Grapplers.

They put the lift on first. Looks a little funny with stock wheels.





One of the things I liked about the brighter color was the exterior color shows up on the inside.
 

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Delivery

Picked it up today. They had it all prepped and sitting out front on the rock ramp.



Really like the Method Racing Standard wheels.






One concern I had was whether or not it would clear my garage door. I had measured one they had in the showroom which had the top off, and figured I might have a 1.5" gap. But it turns out I have around 3". Handy data point for a 3.5" lift w 35" tires and 7' garage door!


The dealer (Button Dodge, Kokomo IN) said it was the best/baddest looking Jeep modification they have done. I was certainly happy with the results, and the dealer was very good to work with. The service manager would text me and keep me informed of what was going on etc. It seems most dealers I've dealt with don't do that level of service.
 

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I thought that pic looked like Kokomo. If you want nice bumpers and sliders, look at LOD off-road. They are located in Benton county. Great product and nice shop.
 

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Not sure if it's too early to ask yet but how do you like the JKS lift? I'm looking for 3" -3.5" lifts and I haven't heard much about the JKS. Just being curious.

Also, love the orange. If I could do it over again that'd be the color of choice for me :thumb:
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Not sure if it's too early to ask yet but how do you like the JKS lift? I'm looking for 3" -3.5" lifts and I haven't heard much about the JKS. Just being curious.

Also, love the orange. If I could do it over again that'd be the color of choice for me :thumb:
Thanks guys for the comments, it sure has been fun.

It's too early to say about JKS really. I've never driven a Jeep with any other lift, so I have no comparative experience and still less than 100 miles on this. One of the guys at the dealership is very experienced with Jeeps, has had many himself, his wife also, and leads groups on off-road expeditions. He really likes them best, so I'm going on the advice of someone I consider experienced and trustworthy. One very nice aspect is that they have an arrangement where you still have a 5 year/100,000 mile powertrain warranty intact, usually a lift kit voids that.

I love the orange too. During my lengthy going back and forth between colors and options (I guess I'll call it phase -1 to fit my theme) I had also considered Tank and Hydro Blue. The first car I ever had, which I inherited from my parents, was a '69 Dodge Dart in that same blue. I love the brightness of it and the metallic fleck in the paint, best blue vehicle paint out there IMHO. The Tank was also nice, and I've seen some great photos on this website, but I felt like it was "dark"- from any distance away I think Tank, black, dark grey, dark blue etc. all become the same color. They look good close up for sure. Behind my house there is a day lily farm and you can spot a bright orange flower from 600' away no problem. Plus, where I'm at in my life right now, I don't want to blend into the background, I've marginalized myself too much and let people run over me. So in the process of reinventing myself I thought I should just be bold and do the orange! It's vibrant without being obnoxious. Plus my school colors were orange and black :)
 

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That's one way to start off with a bang! Very niiiice! Good wheel choice! Sometimes I wish I went with a JKU... I need the room! Keep up the good work!
 

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Great looking HR! I will stay tuned to see what's next...
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I need to update this build thread with some of the mods that have been completed in 2015, what I was calling "phase 1" mods I did myself after the phase 0 dealer-installed mods done when the Jeep was purchased.

I'll add in photos, I know when I was thinking about various choices it was great to have pictures.

What was done:

1. Rugged Ridge mesh grill insert. The guy I sold my wheels to had done this on his and recommended it since it looks nice but also helps protect the radiator from rocks that might get thrown up into the grill- it's pretty vulnerable in stock form.



2. Mopar door sills. A neighbor with a Jeep recommended the sills to protect the edge. They were inexpensive and easy to install.



3. Mopar mat for the back. The design matches the other floor mats, protects the carpet, looks awesome.



4. Bushwhacker flares. Takes the rig to a whole 'nother level! Installing the first one made me use some bad words, but in the end I got all 4 on without any gaps :)



5. Red Rock 1.5" wheel spacers. With the 3.5" JKS lift, they needed to move out. Also happens to make the Jeep look just right.



6. Quadratec LED stealth headlights. You can see these also in the above photo. In real-world daily life, this is probably the best upgrade one can do on a Jeep! The lighting is very even, which is an important quality not often mentioned. Your eye doesn't have to adapt and compensate for hot spots.

7. Quadratec hitch. I have a small trailer I use to tow my motorcycle to the track.

 

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Nice JK!!! I own a SO JK too, is the nicest color in my opinion...how is the rear tire carrier holding up? And also what about the ride of the JKS lift?

Thanks!
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Nice JK!!! I own a SO JK too, is the nicest color in my opinion...how is the rear tire carrier holding up? And also what about the ride of the JKS lift?
Thanks!
The stock rear tire carrier seems fine, I'm careful when opening and closing the back gate.

The ride of the JKS seems pretty good to me although I don't have any real comparative experience.
 
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