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Do you ever regret going too big on your TJ build?

GASnBRASS

TJ Enthusiast
Joined
Apr 6, 2017
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419
Location
Minnesota
Seems like everyone's TJ gradually gets bigger and bigger as they build it, but I'm wondering if it reaches a point where the lift and tires become so big that it becomes too easy or boring on trails, or too much headache overall? I even see some people reverting back to a smaller rig. I'd like to see where you think the best balance is between a rig that is capable yet still challenging to drive, and what kind of wheeling you do most.
 

JMT

The Jeep Guy
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Feb 27, 2017
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33's. Every kind of wheeling except mud bogging. There are times I want 32's (because it's all I need) and there are times I want 35's (because I could definitely use more). 🤣

There are times I regret having 33's, just because it's a DD and a bit of a pain to get in and out of. But not enough to drop to 32's.
 

DrDmoney

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Jan 29, 2019
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El Dorado County NORCAL
Sold the take offs when they were new 19 years ago, been on 35’s ever since. I have been eyeballing 37’s a lot lately. Some people modify for the wrong reason and end up regretting changing what used to work perfectly fine for them into something they won’t need or use. That lack of return on investment and the compromises that sometimes go with it usually makes them an ex-TJ owner.
 

Steel City 06

TJ Addict
Joined
Mar 12, 2019
Messages
1,523
Location
Pittsburgh, PA
When I was first starting, I saw a few posts that recommend that I go to the final tire size first, and then worry about the rest of it. So I went straight to 35 inch tires, as that was the largest I could reasonably do.

I've had a few hiccups along the way, and am far from my goal. But I still agree with the logic.

For example, I want to airbag my Jeep to adjust to changing load conditions. (I haven't decided whether to go with a simple system like the Air Lift 1000 bags or a full on air suspension like the Airock.) If I had started with that on a stock Jeep, every time I changed the lift height or tires or body lift or shocks, I would have to readjust the bumpstops, shock length, air bag size, etc. But being at the final tire size makes it all permanent. No temporary measures. No swapping airbags. And all of the effort spent tuning it goes into the final product.

I am far from done. I'm probably currently much more capable than a stock Rubicon. But I do not regret going to 35s, as everything I do goes to improve it.

Driving 70 mph on 35s for the first time was a 2 hand affair. Now that I have it somewhat tuned, driving 80 is a one handed affair. Eventually, I hope to get to the point where 80 mph becomes a one finger affair, and I can comfortably push it to 90 to pass if necessary.

So no, I do not regret going to 35s. The key is to avoid the "gradual" aspect. Bite the bullet and start where you want to be. Then make it work.
 

tworley

OlllllllO
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May 23, 2018
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Morrison, CO
It's not often but sometimes I do wish I would have stuck with 33s. The times I've needed 35s though I have enjoyed it and was glad I had them
 

jodomcfrodo

TJ Addict
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Feb 24, 2016
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1,722
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Evanston, IL, United States
I never regretted 33’s a day when I lived in Wyoming. No traffic and fairly easy driving.

I regret 35’s every single time I drive around Chicago. I’m sure I would be fine outside of a city.

On the road, it really depends on the road conditions you face. The increased body roll and dive makes constant corners and red lights irritating, especially since I only get the jeep off-road a few times a year.
 

jazngab

TJ apprentice
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Aug 23, 2018
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Montgomery County, PA, USA
I think a 2” lift with 32s is perfect. Of course I had that when I first bought the Jeep and then had 31s and then 33s😖. 31s was nice and simple and extremely capable but I think I got bored with it in a year. Now I’m in the 33” rabbit hole but I will be content after the motor mount lift is in and UCF skid and dare I say “I’m done”?
 
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rasband

J.ust E.xplore E.very P.lace
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Sep 11, 2018
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1,510
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Highlands Ranch, CO
I really love my 33s, but do wish for more travel sometimes. I’ll probably wait on the added height until mine becomes a trailer queen or I have a different daily.
 
OP
GASnBRASS

GASnBRASS

TJ Enthusiast
Joined
Apr 6, 2017
Messages
419
Location
Minnesota
I'm guilty of the gradual tire increment. Thought 30" AT's were good, then 31" MT's and it worked fine. Swapped in 33's for a nudge in ground clearance and admittedly for looks to fill out the wheel well. Regeared my axles and currently sorting out high fenders and a mild boost to clear the 33's.

In hind sight I should have just kept it at 31" (I don't need much) but too late/too much $$ now to downsize. But it'll look great and perform well once I'm done, capable but very streetable on 33's.
 
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jazngab

TJ apprentice
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Aug 23, 2018
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Montgomery County, PA, USA
I'm guilty of the gradual tire increment. Thought 30" AT's were good, then 31" MT's and it worked fine. Swapped in 33's for a nudge in ground clearance and admittedly for looks to fill out the wheel well. Regeared my axles and currently sorting out high fenders and a mild boost to clear the 33's.

In hind sight I should have just kept it at 31" (I don't need much) but too late/too much $$ now to downsize. But it'll look great and perform well once I'm done, capable but very streetable on 33's.
Same here. But 33s look so much better lol
 

Irun

Member
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Joined
Oct 31, 2019
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90
Location
Virginia
Running 31's on a 2" lift gave me the most bang for the buck, and some of the best wheeling. I regret 33's.
This is so true on a daily driver. I went back to 31" tires this Summer and got back the original light and nimble feeling I fell in love with on the Tj. I also wheeled it and had a blast sharpening my "line" skills that the 35" tires took from me.
 

gg1

TJ Enthusiast
Joined
Feb 3, 2018
Messages
879
Location
Pittsburgh, PA, United States
I think my TJ looks great with 33's, but I honestly should have taken it back to stock. My TJ is in great shape with very low miles and we need some stock ones around that are clean. I might do it at a later date. I am tall and just get in like it is nothing, but passengers have a tough time.