Time to Upgrade- Lift and Tire Size Choices (35 v 37's)?

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Joined
Oct 26, 2005
Threads
57
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1,161
Location
Farmington, NM
Hello,


I'm in the next phase of my build for the 80. I'm currently running J's up front with 863's in the back with a 10mm spacer.. I've got a set of ½ used 305 MTR's that were close to 33” when new. I've been running this way for about 2-3 years. I've got full armor, winch, dual batteries, fridge, and factory auxiliary gas tank. I'm measuring 22.5” front and 23” rear from center of hub, with bend over tire, to flare. I still have flares.


My wheeling is comprised of the usual camping trips, Southwestern Colorado, Moab (Behind the Rocks, Golden Spike type stuff), and my home wheeling spot is Chokecherry Canyon in Farmington, NM. Most of my time is spent in 4 to 4+ terrain. I've got places that are 5's but stay out of them for now. I need to spend time hiking them first. Currently, I rarely get denied. Most stuff that I have difficulty, or get hung up on are really big ledges or tough breakover angles. I typically can drag and grind myself up most things. Obviously, this is the limitation of the 80's long wheelbase and my relatively low lift.


I consider myself a pretty good driver and consistently run with more capable rigs and can lead them. I'd like to not drag so much and control my weight a little better. I don't care that much about road ride (Moab is a far trip, for me, at only 3.5 hours), but I want great offroad performance. I don't think I'm looking to increase the difficulty of trails (we'll see), but looking to run them all a little easier. This is not my DD.


So, I'm looking at these two options:


Slee 4” lift with 35's
FOR 3.5” with 37's.


Both of these offer about the same lift. I think I'll feel too huge with the Slee and 37's.


For my aggressive, but smooth, with kids in the truck style of wheeling (I've somehow avoided body damage), what looks to be the better option for me?


TR
 
35s will work great with your current set up.:hmm: For the wheeling that you are describing, the jump from 33s to 35s will be a big improvement.:cool:

The other options you are considering certainly have merit, but they are a big increase in cost.:meh: I have Js all around and just bought my 3rd set of 35s. I'll be in Moab for the 6th time next week. It's working for me:cheers:

You obviously are buying tires. Unless you really want 37s, I would say buy the 35s and then decide if you need to make additional changes.
 
Last edited:
BrotherRob,

I've thought about just adding the 35's. I feel like my J's have compressed, I think they were taller when I first put them on. I've wheeled at Moab with your brother and I remember you guys run pretty light.

I have thought about just adding the 35's and playing it from there.

TR
 
I would bolt the tires you want on and see what you think, how they work. 315's will be easy, bump stop spacer in the rear. 37's slightly more of a challenge, a small nip on the rear edge of the rear flares, will not be able to run mudflaps, rear bump stop spacers and possibly small front bump stop spacer.

I'm slightly taller, J's and front spacer and adding the 37's wasn't much of a challenge. In my experience the biggest help is selecting relatively narrow tires, wide 37's will have more problems with wheel well, fender edge, etc, clearance.
4-28-2008_4.jpg
 
with the bigger 37s you might want to think about regearing. lighter 315 like bfg, goodyear etc, not so much unless you're heavily armored. with a set of true 35s like intercos or a heavy & wide 315 toyo...regear would definitely help. id go either FOR w/ 35s or slees with 37s. if you move up to 17s, you'll have more options for 'true' 35s...


for simplicitys sake, id just throw on a set of trxus 35s and go from there...your current setup is more than adequate for it.
 
Your wheeling sounds a lot like mine. You don't need 37's. But you will absolutely love them - 35 to 37 is a bigger change than 33 to 35 in terms of finally getting enough rubber under an 80.

37's don't just "fit" like 35's, but they are close. If you are willing to do the tuning, there is no compelling reason to avoid 37's.

You will want the same gearset ratio for either tire - if you really like 4.88's for 35's that's the ratio you'll want for 37's. Same is true for 37's. Tire weight is typically within 5% for the same tire in 35" and 37". There is no material change in road handling.

As for Slee vs. FOR - I'd choose based on desired suspension characteristics and choose tire size independently (you could run either size on either lift).

The net here for me is simple: on any given 4 to 4+ trail I would rather have 37's over 35's hands down, every day. I can wheel slower and smoother with 37's in virtually all conditions. Onroad you wouldn't know the difference in a blindfold test, including chosen gear ratio.

Plus you'll finally be happy that your tires actually look big enough for your rig :hillbilly:
 
I can wheel slower and smoother with 37's in virtually all conditions.

BS, you can't possibly wheel any slower:hillbilly::eek:. I'm never following you again.:flipoff2::steer:
 
another stay with the lift and go to 35's. I went from 305's to 315's also. Same lift and about the same armor.
 
Just as an aside, I believe you will get more lift out of the Slee 4 than the FOR. I have neither, however, so what do I know
 
Thanks for the replies, guys.

I agree, first step is to decide on the tire size. I was aware that 37's would require a more narrow tire. I see the Coopers Tool uses and the Trxus Nay uses. I assume both of those fit into the narrow 12.5" wide category? I was planning on doing the trxus mt's since I live at 6000ft and am 1-2 hours away from the mountains of Colorado. I do go out in the snow.

I'm glad Tools chimed in with a picture, I forgot whether he had flares or not. Most 37" tire threads I see are all on flareless rigs. Looks like it wont be that hard to sqeeze the 37's in. I'm game for some inner flare cutting and bumpstop adjustments. If that's it then I'm game for the 37's.

Besides gearing, anything I'm missing to fit the 37's? I need to see if a local shop will allow me to try on some shoes.

Nobody has ever said I wheel slow...but I bet I could go slower with bigger tires!:steer:

TR
 
Thanks for the replies, guys.

I agree, first step is to decide on the tire size. I was aware that 37's would require a more narrow tire. I see the Coopers Tool uses and the Trxus Nay uses. I assume both of those fit into the narrow 12.5" wide category? I was planning on doing the trxus mt's since I live at 6000ft and am 1-2 hours away from the mountains of Colorado. I do go out in the snow.

I'm glad Tools chimed in with a picture, I forgot whether he had flares or not. Most 37" tire threads I see are all on flareless rigs. Looks like it wont be that hard to sqeeze the 37's in. I'm game for some inner flare cutting and bumpstop adjustments. If that's it then I'm game for the 37's.

Besides gearing, anything I'm missing to fit the 37's? I need to see if a local shop will allow me to try on some shoes.

Nobody has ever said I wheel slow...but I bet I could go slower with bigger tires!:steer:

TR


Trxus are very narrow from a tread width perspective, something like 9.2". But they are normal width from a section width perspective.

That's why they are such killer winter tires - you get narrow tread contact with a lot of siping without losing big outer lugs when aired down for the deeper stuff. But I digress.

I really can't recommend the Trxus because they are a 37.3" tire on a 16" rim and you are going to get more rubbing than you want without some degree of trimming. If you want this tire, I think you need to go with 17" Sequoia rims like Tools and then space them out 1" so you are about 1/2" less backspace than stock. This should keep you off the inner wheel wells without pushing the tire too far out.

I have stock rims with 1" spacers, and my tires barely clear the lip and that is without flares. Tool's 37" STT's are a smaller tire than the trxus and may be worth considering in that regard if you really want 37's but really don't want to trim if you need to.

Pics tell the story:
37" Tire Full Stuff.jpg
37" Trxus Close Clearance Front.jpg
 

Now this is really making me pause for a moment...Of all the people I know, I'm shocked to hear that Onur's answer is 35's. :hmm:

Onur, tell me more of your thought process behind the 35 answer. Price, availability, driveline risks?

My wife says that if I don't go 37's the meathead in me will never live it down. I think she doesn't want me talking about it all over again in a few years.:bang:

The other part that has me torn, is I would love to have a buggy in the 5-10 year plan. I don't want to push the cruiser too far just trying to fend off my buggy bug. I want to do what is right and still stay reasonably in the confines of the large family wagon that I wheel.

G
 
Nay,

Thanks for the pics to drive the point home. I've searched Nay and 37's before and get loads of great info.

Looks like I might get the best of both worlds with the trxus mt 35's. A true 35, and the offroad capabilities I'm looking for. Definitely the easier route.

Lucky for me, anything will be a step up from where I'm at now. Truth be told, I haven't even switched to the long Emu shocks.

Hopefully, my current configuration proves to people you can wheel the snot out of an 80. By making better changes it just makes it easier or your getting crazier.

TR
 
IMO, the long shocks are a must have. The extra down travel is a big help.:hmm:
 
You should get rid of everything you have now and send it to me. I don't really care what you replace it with as long as I get your current stuff. I'll even let you pay the shipping.
 
My wife says that if I don't go 37's the meathead in me will never live it down. I think she doesn't want me talking about it all over again in a few years.:bang:

Your wife is right. I used to spend all of this time looking at tires and what I really wanted. Now I don't. 39's are not in the picture for a true multi-purpose family rig.

You'll note that the people who have 35's recommend 35's, and the people who have 37's recommend 37's. Everybody who had 37's used to have 35's :grinpimp:.

The 35" Trxus is an awesome tire - you won't go wrong. It is the smart choice. 37's are the "grin" choice.

:steer:
 
For tire fit, spring brand/rate is irrelevant, it's about fitting the tire in the well, in the full range of the suspension travel. On our rigs the compression is set by the bump stop and droop by the shock length, so that combined with wheel backspace/width/spacer are the important points for fitting big tires.

With relatively short shocks it's easier, longer shocks allow more droop, axle/tire angle. The tires need to fit between the outside of the wells when compressed straight up. I'm a little surprised mine have never hit, it's very close, but even side to side. With flex the wheel angles over, wanting to rub the inner fender well/frame. Mine, with L's and 1.5" shock mount spacers, has room on the inside. The margin for error is very close with 37's and attempting to maximize travel.

Getting 17" rims was because of finding a set of tires that were 17", it has turned out to be a lucky break. The combo of width, backspace and 1.25" spacer put the tire center line in the 5/8"-3/4" range out from stock, this isn't easily achievable with stock rims. If I were to do it again, would go with 1" spacers on this combo, leaving a little more room on the outside. Also tire selection and price is better in 17".

Another point is panhards, on the rigs with longer ones, adjusted to center the axle at ride height, tend to rub inside on one side and outside on the other. The ones that I have played with we ended up adjusting them close to stock to get good tire fit and maximum travel.

I have never run 315's, but my experience, going from 33's to 37's it's overall easier in the rig. It's true that a larger tire will add loads, but they also climb steps easier, don't fall in as many holes, drag the bottom of the rig much less, etc. If you drive it like it's stolen, it would be easier to break it, but if driven within it's capability it struggles much less than with the 33's. It also rides better, more comfortable on the trail.
 
One more thing to think about....are you limited by garage or parking deck?
 

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