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Thread: Expsnsive Lesson learned - don't off-road with JLR wheels and Tires Reply to Thread
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  Topic Review (Newest First)
05-23-2019 07:59 PM
sbsyncro Thanks guys. I think Im going to go with new wheels if I can find something I like in the right offset/backspace for <$200 ea.

Now my dilemma is 33s or 35s... (see my other thread for that debate).

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05-23-2019 07:46 PM
katswuy If you end up needing a wheel, contact the tire/wheel sellers in Moab. They have lots of stock Rubicon wheels and will sell them cheap. We got a '16 JKU wheel from one of them for $25 back in February when a friend bent one of his on a sharp ledge. If you go to spacers be sure to get hub and wheel centric ones. Most tire shops refuse to work on rigs with less than excellent quality spacers.
05-21-2019 01:58 PM
Mouse Came across this ad today and immediately thought of your jeep:
05-21-2019 10:07 AM
johncanfield Yup - wheel spacers or adjust the steering stops. I ordered my Trailready beadlock wheels with 3.5" backspacing , the minimum available. Even then I'll rub the AntiRock arms in certain situations.
05-20-2019 03:27 PM
Blue Baby Sound I posted this on Wrangler Forum too.

Lifted Jeeps need less backspace, that's why those that run factory wheels use spacers. About 4.5" BS is recommended for wheels/tires up to 35" and 12.5" wide, to keep from rubbing on the end links. (The rear will rub too.) I believe the JL wheel is 6 1/8" BS, so you'll need 1.5" or 1.75" spacers.

We lifted a buddies wife's Jeep 2.5" the other day with factory wheels, the rear links rubbed the wheel immediately. Luckily I had a set of spacers in the garage, but we also could have removed the rear links as a temporary solution.

Sorry to hear of your trouble.
05-20-2019 01:33 PM
sbsyncro Based on a similar thread I have going on Wranglerforum, I've discovered that the root cause may have been improper installation of the sway bar links by the previous owner.

They appear to be the Rock Krawler adjustable sway bar links (P/N RK05185) and according to their installation instructions, the bolt is shown installed from the outboard side with the exposed threads facing in away from the wheel. In addition there is a spacer that pushes these threads even closer to making contact with the tires.

However, mine have the retaining bolts inserted from the inboard side and protruding towards the wheels on both the upper and lower connections for the front AND the rear

My guess is that this problem actually had less (if anything) to do with the wheel/tire combination and more to do with these sway bar links and their installation.

My first question is why these spacers are needed - I don't see them included with any of the other sway bar links offered for lifted JKs... In addition, most others show the retaining bolt as a "captive" piece of the assembly, and thus are flush on one side, rather than having a protruding bolt face (or in m case, threads, due to the backwards installation).
05-20-2019 11:32 AM
Expsnsive Lesson learned - don't off-road with JLR wheels and Tires

Thanks guys. Sounds like a bit of trial and error is in order.

Now I need to order 2 replacement tires and see if the beat-up spare wheel can be cleaned up with some filing/sand paper and used or if I need to buy a new wheel to use as a spare. (And if so whether to just get a cheap steelie in the same dimension as OEM wheel or make it the first of the new wheel with proper offset & BS to clear the suspension.)

I do wonder about reversing that protruding upper sway bar link bolt so that the sharp edge is inboard rather than out...

I sure wish I knew what suspension kit was on here so I could just contact the mfr for recommendation on wheel dimensions.

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05-20-2019 10:55 AM
Originally Posted by rlenglish View Post
...Find something to drive one wheel onto so the axle is stuffed onto the bump stop. Insect and repeat for all four corners....
This is important advice!

I lift up each corner with my tractor bucket and inspect, 4x4 shops usually use a fork lift to get the tires stuffed. If you don't have access to either, drive a tire up a large rock (large means tall enough to fully stuff the tires. Do both sides.


You trail test it. If all is good on obstacles that fully cycle the suspension, you are trail ready.
05-20-2019 12:38 AM
rlenglish Cycle the suspension. Lift the vehicle by the frame and inspect for clearance front and rear. Turn the wheel lock to lock. Inspect for contact. Jk's are known for rubbing the sway bar on the rear also.
Find something to drive one wheel onto so the axle is stuffed onto the bump stop. Insect and repeat for all four corners.
You don't have to remove the shocks because this is what limits down travel. And you can just hit your front disconnect switch. The rear sway bar isn't strong enough to limit travel.
05-19-2019 10:33 PM
Originally Posted by sbsyncro View Post
To "cycle" the suspension, I'm assuming this would require putting it on a lift, removing the shocks, and then disconnecting the sway bar links?

With regard to the wheels - I've run both spacers with OEM wheels and aftermarket wheels on previous lifted vehicles, and would prefer new wheels with proper offset/backspacing but not sure I want to spend the $$ right now. Plus it would take me WAY too much research to decide which ones I like... Not to mention my wife would look at me like I'm crazy saying "Don't you ALREADY have 10 wheels and tires for this thing??!
so no spacers no new wheels ... then the answer is don't go offroad where you have a full stuff left turn...

So I believe the JL wheels have more backspacing because the axles are wider than the JK, so pushes the tires towards frame and suspension. So something to correct that in the form of an adapter/spacer is appropriate. It might look better too with the tires closer to the flare edges rather than tucked back like they look now.

I would also look into shortening the sway bar bolt. grinding that threaded excess off, or removing it and reversing it so the threaded tire ripper is facing the frame if there's room. Swaybars can move laterally quite a bit in the bushngs, so stops to keep is centered is an idea.
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