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to cut or to lift, that is the question...

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Joined: 21 Jul 2005
Location: Baton Rouge, LA

PostPosted: Thu Jul 21, 2005 7:05 am    Post subject: to cut or to lift, that is the question... Reply with quote

This is my first post, so please bear with me on this one.

So I have and XJ, circa 1994, and she has been with me since that golden year. Now, she is only a 2wd, but has not gotten stuck yet, though lite mudding and some towing has been it's major occupation. In celebration of her 11th year, the Xj got a new paint job and with a reduction in off roading and much more time spent carting bicycles and towing on the interstate (small sailboats/catamarans), I ditched the stock 15" steel rims and 30" mudders for a more practical setup.

Well practical is not the best term, but I wanted a quieter ride, better gas mileage and to up the pimp factor a bit. After some searching, I purchased a set of 18" rims from a Nissan Murano, which look really cool on the Jeep, despite the the more sublte AT look.. There were some drum brake/wheel spacing issues that my local truck/wheel shop is in the process of correcting (I hope).

Here is my situation to which I seek advice from the wise old XJers. The tires are 235/65 R18, and they stick out about 2" past the body panels. I never got around to putting the fender flares back on after the painting, so this was a pretty quick observation. The issue that this brings up is that there is not much/any room for the wheel to move. I cannot make the tires hit the body by jumping on the bumper (195lb me), but a quick shot across an intersection gave me some audible tire rub. The rear springs were replaced a few years back with stiffer versions and there are Rancho RSX shocks on each wheel if it matters.

Though I do not go rock crawling or do any "real off roading" my XJ does it's fair share of Urban Crawling during Football season and Mardi Gras, so I do need a little room to breathe.

So, if anyone happens to have any thoughts on wether I should trim the body and move the flares or go with a lift, I am up for suggestions. I know that 2wd Jeeps are like annoying little kids, but this baby has been through a lot and will keep rolling until it dies.

I am leaning towards some body trim and re-installing the factory flares with some modification, if... that is enough.


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Joined: 26 Mar 2004
Location: Stormtroopin....

PostPosted: Thu Jul 21, 2005 1:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

With 18" wheels, I don't think lifting it is going to look good. You're better of trimming out the fenders and smoothing it out that way. If you lift it the rims will probably stick out like a sore thumb. What tires are you using on those?

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