I've been thinking about starting this particular thread for a while now. I've been building and wheeling on 33's thinking I didn't really need more (and I'm still not convinced I do). However, my original goal of running 3 inches of lift and making it ride nice and be daily driver friendly is not working out so well. While it does drive down the road OK, I know it can be better. Shock selection for a 3" lift is absolutely terrible...My wife thought I had joined the shock of the month club for a while, I was experimenting with so many.
I decided to swallow my pride, admit my sins and make a call to the master. Not that I'm bringing my Jeep to California to be built...I really enjoy the building part of jeeping. However, I needed some help figuring out my plan and why I wasn't getting the results I was after. We had a nice chat. He asked me some questions about what I really wanted to do with the jeep, why I was stuck on 33's, and why was I being so stubborn, in general.
The what I want to do part of the equation is I want to get out west. Rubicon, Moab, Western Slope of Colorado, The PNW is beautiful, Maybe even some desert wheeling. I see all the pictures get posted and it makes me jealous. So, even though I live on flat land, I'm building to go out west and not have to worry about my equipment. Realistically, I can see myself taking a couple weeks off at a time, once a year and doing one thing...like the rubicon, or Moab, etc. I absolutely do not want my shit to break while I'm on vacation. So it has to be built right, with high quality parts. I realize mechanical things fail, especially when wrenched on by an amatuer like me. But, I'm going to do everything in my power to tip the scales in my favor.
The tire size thing...I can do everything in Michigan with 33's...natural obstacles, anyway. Obviously, with an excavator, cement truck and end loader, you can build some pretty extreme stuff in the parks. Honestly, @Irun's 31 build wouldn't struggle in Michigan with anything. Plus, my wife is very short (like 5'1" on a good day). She complains already about climbing into the jeep. I finally just had to decide that in order to get the jeep I wanted for the experiences I wanted , I needed to go bigger...short wife or no. I'll get her a stirrup or something if it gets too bad. She can still climb in and out. There isn't any guarantee that she will come do some of these trips with me either. I enjoy tent camping, she needs a hot shower and her hair dryer every morning.
Finally my stubbornness. This was definitely a ME problem. I feel like I built my rig pretty well...but it wasn't performing how I wanted it to. Instead of getting pouty and selling it, or just living with it, I decided to do something about it. @toximus gave some advice early in his build thread about building your dream. I took a little bit for me to realize what my dream was. I sat down and started writing things down that I wanted. Also did some hard limitations (like not chopping the body up, not wanting to get into axle swaps, etc) and some serious budget calculation. That brings us to my "rebuild"
First before I start laying out my new build I should let everyone in internet land know where we're starting from. Here is my build thread to this point:
In case you don't want to go through that whole thing:
Wheels and Tires
AEV Pintlers (JK spec with 1.25" thk adapters)
BGF KM2 in 285/70R17
Suspension and Steering
Rancho 3.5" springs (which net 4" of lift on my rig)
SkyJacker BlackMax Shocks
JKS Front Trackbar
ZJ Tie Rod
JKS Rear Trackbar with custom relocation bracket
Currie Short Arms.
Cibie H4 Headlight conversion w/ Relays
Kicker 43CSC54 Speakers x4 with Pods in dash
Custom Paracord Grab Handles
Uniden 510XL CB
Custom Dome Light override
Full LED lights
Kenwood KMM-BT322U headunit w/ SiriusXM
Kicker CompRT 6.75" Sub
Soundstream PN5.640D Picasso Nano amp
Savvy 1.25" body lift
M.O.R.E. Bombproof 1" MML
Savvy gas tank Skid
Motobuilt stubby with Custom Additions
Smittybilt X20Comp 9500 lb winch w/ Synthetic Line and TRE Safety Thimble II
Barnes Rear bumper plate with LOTS of custom additions
JCR Crusader Rock Sliders that I've fixed to mount properly, a'la Savvy sliders
UCF Aluminum Extra Clearance Tranny Skid
Savvy Engine Skid
Teraflex CB Antenna Mount w/ 4' Firestik
Motobilt License Tag relocation to Spare
Rear Frame Chop to eliminate the gap between the cross-member and tub
The nice thing is that MOST of what I have will stick around. I don't have to buy too many parts twice...Still...this project is gonna be expensive.