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The ultimate setup for 33 inch tires?

Jesse Marquez

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Okay guys, forget about money for a minute. If you had to set up a TJ for daily driving and getting through respectable trails on 33s, what would you do? 0-2 inch lift with highline fenders? 3-4 inch lift with stock fenders? Any body lift? 10.5 or 12.5 wide tires ? Just curious what you guys think is the best setup is for that fine line of drivability and capability.
 

Chris

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The more up-travel you have, the better. For that reason I would do a 4" suspension lift and a 1" body lift. Pair that with some outboard shocks and you could fit some extremely nice Fox shocks tuned by @pcoplin that would have much more up-travel than the stock setup.

This would not only make for a great off-roading experience, but even better on-road driving, as the extra up-travel and tuned shocks will make for an incredible difference.
 
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89grand

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Well, I like a stock body and fenders, and hate body lifts, so I'd say 4" suspension because of those things. 12.5" tires are 50:1 more common than 10.5's, so I'd choose that width. With the 4" suspension, you'll probably also want an SYE at the very least, whereas a smaller lift and body lift may not need it, but it's worth it to me for appearance reasons if nothing else.
 
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Jesse Marquez

Jesse Marquez

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The more up-travel you have, the better. For that reason I would do a 4" suspension lift and a 1" body lift. Pair that with some outboard shocks and you could fit some extremely nice Fox shocks tuned by @pcoplin that would have much more up-travel than the stock setup.

This would not only make for a great off-roading experience, but even better on-road driving, as the extra up-travel and tuned shocks will make for an incredible difference.
Thanks for the reply! Do you think there would be much difference in drivability of a TJ with a 4 inch SL and and TJ with a 1 inch SL with highlines that aloud for 3 more inches of up travel over stock ?
 

JMT

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My build, of course!

For 33's I'd aim for 4" of overall lift. Assuming a Savvy 1.25" BL, you're looking for a spring that gives you in the 2.75-3" range. These are not a dime a dozen. So, you end up looking at JKS 3" or OME 2.5 with a bigger spacer. Then you have the need for a MML to go along with the BL and prepare the way for a TT later, which would be an ultimate for a Jeep on 33's. The JKS front adjustable trackbar, an ORO swaylock, a rear extended sway bar links, rear adjustable trackbar. A wheel with ~4" BS. 33x12.5 or 10.5, your choice. A re-gear to proper gear ratio for your transmission/engine/ tire size. A front and rear selectable locker. Savvy UnderArmor, full tuck, Tom Wood DC DS, Currie rear upper and lower CA's. LOL! It gets expensive.
 
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AndyG

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My 03 Rubicon is by no means the TJ to define anything , but I have 12.5" x 33" tires on 15" beadlocks , a 4" lift , a 5 speed manual with 4:56 gears.

I can get in it and drive from Huntsville to anywhere, anytime and have travelled all over the south with it . You can drive 65-75 with one finger. It does great on the interstate.

I wheel in Alabama and Tennessee , and the only thing that holds me back is my own apprehension,lack of skill and strong tendency to not be beat it to pieces. ...and my wife screaming and bailing out .

The key for what you are describing , in my opinion, is

- a tire that works in both terrains well enough, and that varies around the country. Narrow width has advantages ,lighter , and in some cases they bite better and typically steer better ,but wide tires have a big foot print and look good .

- proper clearance for the trails you travel

-proper articulation without anything rubbing

- proper gearing for the tire size.

- a good ,solid front end ,Rancho 5000x shocks or simar well tuned shocks , and perfectly balanced tires.

All these , regardless of lift and size, are what gets it done. There are many ways to get there.

I know I'm being general ,but I have driven a lot of Jeeps , with a lot of set ups , and I favor good manners and performance over appearance ,and I love the way a lifted TJ looks ...if it works right .
 

Chris

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Thanks for the reply! Do you think there would be much difference in drivability of a TJ with a 4 inch SL and and TJ with a 1 inch SL with highlines that aloud for 3 more inches of up travel over stock ?
Absolutely. The TJ with 4" of suspension lift would allow for longer shocks with more up-travel. 1" of lift with highlines would give you lots of room for the wheel / tire to take advantage of, but without the longer shocks (and lift) of the 4" suspension lift, you wouldn't really be able to take advantage of the highlines.

Given the choice, the 4" suspension lift would be the better starting route to take, especially if you outboard the shocks at the same time.
 

Brianj5600

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A lot of this depends on your definition of "respectable trails" is. I don't see why going to 33s vs 35s would be much, if any, more expensive or even different. There is a little give and take on clearance vs uptravel, but I don't see a big advantage for either.

My jeep had 35s on it when I got it and left that alone. I have no complaints with handling or ride with the 35s up to 86 mph limited by ECM. I could have gone with 33s and gained an inch of uptravel, but would have given up an inch at the differentials and belly skid. Rutted out trails are very common around me and extra diff clearance is a plus.
 

mattcogdell

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Jul 9, 2018
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TN
A lot of this depends on your definition of "respectable trails" is. I don't see why going to 33s vs 35s would be much, if any, more expensive or even different. There is a little give and take on clearance vs uptravel, but I don't see a big advantage for either.

My jeep had 35s on it when I got it and left that alone. I have no complaints with handling or ride with the 35s up to 86 mph limited by ECM. I could have gone with 33s and gained an inch of uptravel, but would have given up an inch at the differentials and belly skid. Rutted out trails are very common around me and extra diff clearance is a plus.
Brian, where in TN are you?
 

afitzray97

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Aug 5, 2019
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TN
Ultimate and the fine line but you don’t mention the trails you’re going to? Buy a rubicon, zone combo lift, sye if you get vibes, the 33’s you think are super cool cause they have bone treads on super cool 15” rims. Air down and impress your friends.
 

Goatman

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Apr 23, 2019
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Upstate NY
Ultimate and the fine line but you don’t mention the trails you’re going to? Buy a rubicon, zone combo lift, sye if you get vibes, the 33’s you think are super cool cause they have bone treads on super cool 15” rims. Air down and impress your friends.
Rubicons have the 241 transfer with no slip yoke to eliminate. Other than that I have to agree. With the 6 speed the stock 4.10 gears still great. If you are rock bashing on the West coast then gears might be a bit high, but on the East coast with more mud and tighter trails you'd be set.
 

jjvw

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There isn't much left to do on mine that would get more out of 33s. And there are certain areas that would do better with 35s.
 

Bofa-Deez

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Jul 19, 2019
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Deauville, LA
Rubicons have the 241 transfer with no slip yoke to eliminate. Other than that I have to agree. With the 6 speed the stock 4.10 gears still great. If you are rock bashing on the West coast then gears might be a bit high, but on the East coast with more mud and tighter trails you'd be set.
I'm perfectly happy with the gearing of my Rubicon 6 speed with 4.10s and 33s. I have 3" suspension lift and 1.25" body lift. I haven't hit any challenging trails yet, but it routinely sees 70+mph and handles extremely well with one finger on the wheel (although I use 2 hands at interstate speed 😁)
 
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Vasq

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Everett, WA
I assembled my parts list around 33's, I ended up with 3.5" suspension, 1" BL, super short SYE, high clearance skid, 1" MML. Soon as my old lift sells, I'll be re-gearing to 4.88

TA-DA!
 
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rmercado

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Oct 11, 2019
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Austin, TX
I setup our TJ with 0.5" body lift (to install gas tank armor), tummy tuck, 3.5" lift, high clearance fenders, and really good control arms for articulation... having lockers and good lines, we've been up all trails/rocks that our friends on 35/37's have been through... but there are limitations on how big the ledges and rocks can be.
 
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tworley

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4" short arm lift, hard 1.25"body lift, relocated shock mounts, properly tuned shocks, tummy tuck, sye/dc shaft, lockers, proper gearing, and light as possible
 
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