Why you want a body lift

PNW_LJ

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Many often repeat that a body lift is the best bang for your buck mod you can do to your TJ/LJ. It's also one of the few mods that once installed, can stay with the rig throughout it's lifetime without change.

I wholeheartedly agree with these statements, and I wanted to round up a list of all the pros/cons of installing a ~1" body lift on your TJ/LJ:

What is a body lift?
A body lift is nothing simply a spacer that goes on top of your existing body mounts, and raises your tub. Your frame, engine, trans, axles will all remain as they were. Pictured below is a stock body mount bushing (Photo 1), as compared to one with a body lift spacer on top (Photo 2).


ry-1.25-body-lift-kit-on-your-1997-2006-wrangler-2.png


What type of body lift do I want?
The primary thing to look for is that the body lift pucks be made out of a solid material. Body lifts made of polyurethane (*cough* JKS *cough*), will not hold their height. They WILL squish, not a matter of if, but when. This is bad because: you lose the main purpose of a body lift, it can damage your tub, and it makes it impossible to properly torque down the body mount bolts.

The best options out there for a body lift right now are Savvy (1.25" aluminum) and Black Magic brakes (1.25" acetal). These kits will come with everything you need and will last you for the lifetime of your rig. Currie is also a solid option, but at a significant price premium and being only 1", I'm not sure why one would go this route.


What are the pros/cons of a body lift?

Pros:

  • Room for larger tires with less COG and driveline changes than the equivalent size suspension lift
  • Proper tummy tuck
  • Gas tank skid tuck
  • Room for certain suspension mods (such as Savvy midarm which requires a body lift to get proper link separation)
  • Easier to install a MML to alleviate driveline angles
  • Tucks up fenders and body mounted sliders
  • Inexpensive and easy install

Cons:
  • Many dislike the aesthetics of a body lift, mainly the gap it creates between the tub and frame mounted bumpers/steps. I think this is vastly overblown, and can be fixed.
  • May require an upgraded transfer case shifter.
  • May lead to you purchasing more performance-enhancing mods down the road, so install one at your own risk.

I think that about covers it. Let me know if I missed or misstated anything.
 
Last edited:
I like your writeup, and the gap a 1" to 1.25" body lift creates is negligible, few would notice it. I would not install a taller body lift like 2" or 3" on a TJ, it just causes too many installation hurdles.

Thanks Jerry. I would agree. The only situations where I see a taller body lift being useful is on a show vehicle, or rigs with independent front suspension that can't easily install a tall suspension lift.
 
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Many often repeated that a body lift is the best bang for your buck mod you can do to your TJ/LJ. It's also one of the few mods that once installed, can stay with the rig throughout it's lifetime without change.

I wholeheartedly agree with these statements, and I wanted to round up a list of all the pros/cons of installing a ~1" body lift on your TJ/LJ:

Pros:
  • Room for larger tires with less COG and driveline changes than the equivalent size suspension lift
  • Proper tummy tuck
  • Gas tank skid tuck
  • Room for certain suspension mods (such as Savvy midarm which requires a body lift to get proper link separation)
  • Easier to install a MML to alleviate driveline angles
  • Tucks up fenders and body mounted sliders
  • Inexpensive and easy install

Cons:
  • Many dislike the aesthetics of a body lift, mainly the gap it creates between the tub and frame mounted bumpers/steps. I think this is vastly overblown, and can be fixed.
  • May require an upgraded transfer case shifter. This is a uniquely TJ/LJ problem, but has a cheap solution.
  • May lead to you purchasing more performance-enhancing mods down the road, so install one at your own risk.

I think that about covers it. Let me know if I missed or misstated any of them.

Maybe add the different types of materials used for BL's and the pros / cons

Polyurethane -
Pros: cheaper
Cons: have been reports of them losing shape over time

Aluminum -
Pros: Fixes all the cons of Polyurethane
Cons: Makes your wallet a bit lighter (people like lighter jeeps so this may be a pro 🤣 )
 
Maybe add the different types of materials used for BL's and the pros / cons

Polyurethane -
Pros: cheaper
Cons: have been reports of them losing shape over time

Aluminum -
Pros: Fixes all the cons of Polyurethane
Cons: Makes your wallet a bit lighter (people like lighter jeeps so this may be a pro 🤣 )

Can add acetal/delrin as a material too with the new black magic body lift option now.
 
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Maybe add the different types of materials used for BL's and the pros / cons

Polyurethane -
Pros: cheaper
Cons: have been reports of them losing shape over time

Aluminum -
Pros: Fixes all the cons of Polyurethane
Cons: Makes your wallet a bit lighter (people like lighter jeeps so this may be a pro 🤣 )

Can add acetal/delrin as a material too with the new black magic body lift option now.

Just updated!
 
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I'd add that it isn't a unique problem to TJ/LJ needing a different t-case shifter. My Nissan pickup had to be modified after installing a body lift.
 
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I'd add that it isn't a unique problem to TJ/LJ needing a different t-case shifter. My Nissan pickup had to be modified after installing a body lift.

Oh interesting. I had no issues with my shifters running a 1.75" body lift on my Montero, which is why I mentioned it.
 
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Oh interesting. I had no issues with my shifters running a 1.75" body lift on my Montero, which is why I mentioned it.

When I first installed the body lift, I never did anything to the t case shifter beyond adjusting it. I ran it that way for 5-6 years before the Savvy cable shifter went in.