Planning a lift

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Mar 18, 2016
I have a 2009 GX with almost 180k miles and it is all stock. My mechanic indicated that it needs new rear shocks, front struts, front lower control arms and front sway bar links. I had been planning for a while to lift my GX and now would be a good time to do it and later on I plan to add front and rear ARB bumpers. I'm also inclined to do a rear coil conversion as well. I don't do any off-roading I've been really inspired by the all the builds that I've seen over the years on all GX forums. In particular , I have decided to make my GX just like the member "Mee Mia" and I'm going to try to post the picture of her build for reference. I think she mentioned that she has 3" lift with Toytec suspesion, ARB bumpers front and rear, and Method wheels.

My question is, with a lift, what othr parts need to be replaced? Based on my reading, the upper control arms need to be aftermarket so they can provide extra flex. Here is a list of things I have planned:
1. Lift kit - with shocks, struts, springs and coils. I'm thinking Toytec or Dobinson or Icon. I'll be doing mostly highway driving so I would prefer a smooth/soft ride.
2. Conversion kit - I'm still undecided even after reading a lot of post. I really don't want a "rake" effect so if you have any suggestions, please share.
3. Upper control arms - either JBA or SPC or Dobinson or Total Chaos - I think they all about the same, so maybe will see what's the best value. Do I need extra flex or something if I'm doing a 3" lift? Shoudl I replace front and rear?
4. Rear lower control arms - are stocks OK with the lift or should I consider aftermarket? Should I replace the fronts too?
5. Front sway bar links - are stocks OK with the lift?

Should I consider replacing anything else because of the lift or just because of normal wear and tear at 180k miles?

Also, do you think a 3" lift is worth it with extra stress it might cause on wheel bearings or anything else? Would a 2" lift be a better alternative and might give a similar look that I'm going for?

If I plan to get a front and rear bumper, is there anything specific I need to consider about the lift kit because of the extra weight it adds on? I don't plan to add bumpers for another year or so. And I REALLY want a nice leveled stance with no rake.

The pictures below show what I want my build to look like eventually:


Guys I can REALLY use your help and expert advice :confused:
I've spent a lot of time reading forums over the years and specially about the lift that I had been planning for my ride - but now that it is time for me to get started I'm confused. I just want the end result to be like the one shown in the picture and I think I got bits and pieces to put it all together. But I don't want to make a mistake where I end up getting parts where in the end my GX looks wacky (rake effect) and I can't fit in a large/wide tire without rubbing - so that's why its important that I get the right conversion kit, coils, UCA, LCA, sway bars or anything else that you think needs to go down there. At 180k should I also replace the ball joints while I'm at it or it can wait until i experience issues?

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