New 2013 FJ Cruiser Suspension Lift Kit Q's (1 Viewer)

Joined
Oct 21, 2020
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San Diego, CA
Hi everyone,

Just bought my first FJ cruiser. Very excited and an off road novice.

I've been reading a bit on suspension lift kits and feeling overwhelmed with some basic needs and equipment differences.

I had initially set on an OME 3" medium suspension lift kit with a set of BF Goodrich 33" ATs to start me off for some entry level off roading.

Was recently told that this OME kit won't give me enough of a lift for the 33"s and was recommended an ICON 3.5" suspension lift kit instead.

I'm looking at the ICON stages and the price differences aren't too bad.

So I'm looking to understand the differences between stage 1, stage 2 and stage 3.

I have the money to afford the upgraded stage but won't be doing any major off roading to start and will be mainly street driving.

So with a budget of $4-6k for parts and installation, which combination of ICON 3.5" suspension lift kit and BF Goodrich 33" ATs would be an optimal purchase?

Thanks in advance for your insights and knowledge.
 
Joined
Jun 30, 2013
Messages
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I suggest you start off-roading and see what the stock truck can do. You may find a lift and noisy tires aren't needed to get you where you want to go. And, if you think 33's are great - you already have 32's on the rig from the factory. And the guy in the truck ahead of you at that swamp rut was digging holes with his 35's or 37's ... so your 33's will just get you stuck anyway.
 
Joined
Mar 14, 2014
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Columbus, Ohio
 
The OME kit will be plenty for the 33's. Dont worry there.

You will want new Upper Control Arms so that you can get a bunch of extra caster, which will ensure the tire clears the body mounts and gives better driveability....so factor that into your budget.

Also think about future plans. If you are going to go right out and buy bumpers and/or a winch right after you will want the springs sized accordingly. If that is a never, or even years off, dont plan for it now. No sense in riding around on Heavy springs hating life for much time.
 

BMThiker

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Find yourself a friendly offroad club in your area that can show you the ropes. Driving technique is half of the battle, upgrades are the other half. If you don't have any foundation in technique, then you're just going to get yourself in more trouble with upgrades to the truck. Understand what the traction control does for you and how to use them, I'm assuming you have A-Trac and a rear locker from the factory.
 
Joined
Aug 17, 2020
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FWIW, I did a supposed 3" OME lift, installed the "correct" upper control arms, a bumper with winch (probably dropped it by 3/4 to an inch) and 33" tires but still had to do the body mount chop (BMC) because of rub at full turn going through dips on the road. While I would have preferred not to BMC, it wasn't a big deal.

Folks on other forums suggest that if you go over 3" it is wise to do a front differential drop as well (to put less stress on CV axles). Speaking of CV axles, if the ones on your truck have over 100,000 miles, get ready for the boots to start leaking grease and need repair/replacement after the lift, especially if you do not do a diff drop.

If you are going to take it to a shop, tell them what you want and let them source as well as install it all, get ready to spend your whole budget (or more) if you insist on "premium" products. If you can do some of the work yourself or find a reputable/reasonable shop that will install parts you source, a bunch of money can be saved by shopping around the internet for quality, lesser hyped products.
 
Joined
Oct 21, 2020
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San Diego, CA
Thanks for the input guys. I was just learning today about replacing the upper control arms and the CV joints in the axle since the lift will put extra stress on them. So it's very reassuring to read that here. I'll be replacing those along with the suspension/lift and tires.

I have the budget to let a shop source and install. I'm not opposed to shopping around online for cheaper parts since the shop I'm considering will price match, and labor is a $25 difference per hour if I bring in my own parts. I may end up just replacing the upper control arms myself to start learning some basics.



Being such a novice though I have no clue what is a comparable product to OME or ICON that will be cheaper.

I'm hearing different things about an OME 3" not being possible to manage 33" ATs, and a 3.5" lift being needed for 33" ATs. So I'm inclined to go with an ICON kit if it will give me more bang for my buck and not give me any issues with wheel well rubbing.

Side note, I understand the logic behind off roading it as it is, and why to delay the lift and larger tires, learning my vehicle, what it's capable of, etc. But I've waited a long time to buy this thing and it's one of those situations where you want what you want. I like the lifted look, never had it, don't care what issues it will bring me. I'm fine with the gas guzzling and a medium suspension kit will do just fine I think. Don't plan on any heavy towing and I probably won't install a heavy duty front bumper and wench for some time.
 

BMThiker

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Moderate lift, tires, sliders will get you far. Keep your tires on the rocks and learn the ropes from others.
 
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Skids and sliders need to move up the list. The lift you have and decent tires will get you a long way off road. Pay attention to the line and don't just expect to skinny pedal through everything. UCA's can be down the list unless you can not get an alignment. I would say go find somebody with skills or a club and go ride off road.
 
Joined
Aug 17, 2020
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LA (Lower Alabama)
As the suspension stuff (UCAs, struts, alignments) is interconnected, doing it all at one time makes sense (and if the shop is working on an hourly basis instead of book time, should save labor). Similar with CV axles ... a good bit of the job involves suspension components.

As it relates to off-roading, I will second Whiskerz. Couldn't imagine going without skids and sliders no matter how deliberate I drive.
 

Firemedic831

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Nov 24, 2017
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Oregon
Since you are in San Diego i would suggest you stop by Dirt King and see what they say . They offer a excellent set up . Radflo is also somewhat local to you and they make a excellent product .
 

Firemedic831

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Also i have a friend that lives in San Diego With a FJ that has Icon I may be able to put you in touch with him and you could see or may even be able to go for a ride to feel how it is
 

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