Lift Kits body or suspension

Discussion in 'Trucks and Trailers' started by STUMP JUMPER, Jan 22, 2001.


    STUMP JUMPER LawnSite Member
    Messages: 18

    Which lift kit would you prefer to put on a 1987 full size GMC jimmy. I have thought about suspension because of the look but do not want the blocks for the rear. Then on the other hand have thought about a body lift because of the so called ease of instalation.

    What do you have to consider in making a choice and what all would have to be done to install a body lift I have only done suspension lifts.

  2. mike reeh

    mike reeh LawnSite Member
    Messages: 229

    personally i despise the look of body lifts, unless its a slight body lift to compliment huge suspension lift.

    imo there is no decision to make, its suspension lift. it will cost more but its worth it if you plan to use the truck off road.. im assuming 4wd

    however i too am interested in what changes are made with a body lift, never installed one. i always wondered about tranny linkage, steering column, etc.
    mike reeh
  3. Power mad

    Power mad LawnSite Member
    Messages: 72

    Hey S/J
    I Have a 2" lift using more springs. But I need a bit more lift so I can mount 33" tires, without using the plasma cutter. I am going to install a 2" body lift and use a trick I saw In a 4x4 mag. The mount studs had a valve spring between the frame and nut , which was a castle nut. This allows the body to flex with out ripping up the floors.
  4. Spence

    Spence LawnSite Member
    Messages: 62

    I would suggest the suspension lift. Looks a whole lot better. Also the suspension lift is easier to install.I installed a suspension lift on my pickup by myself. Never installed a body lift, but I heard it was tough. Suspension is a little higher in price, but a lot better in my opinion.
  5. 4x4k20

    4x4k20 LawnSite Member
    from ga
    Messages: 148

    i would go with a susp. lift body lifts look funny the gaps you see between the frame and body and bumpers. you can buy a 4-inch lift with shocks for about 400 also you can buy them where they come with new rear srings so you wont need blocks cost around 750

    UNCLE BOB LawnSite Member
    Messages: 99

    Go with the susp.lift the benifits far outweigh the body lift.both require some mod.'s
  7. badtoy76

    badtoy76 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 26

    I agree. The suspension lift is the better of the two as it will give you more offroad capabilities. As far as the body lift goes, you will need a longer lower radiator hose, your fan shroud will have to be modified, and the hose for your gas tank filler will need to be longer. Now, the steering column. You can drill out the nylon "plugs" in the shaft where the two pieces come together and no the column won't come apart.Hope this helps.
  8. 75

    75 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 992

    One factor to be considered is the amount of lift you are after. On my truck (1975 GMC C-35 2wd, 350/T400) a 2" lift was no problem with regard to steering shaft length (drilled out the 2 plugs as badtoy76 stated) and the transmission linkage was just long enough to work without modification. No problems up front with the fan shroud or rad hoses either. Anything more than 2" and things will start to get complicated in a hurry. And as several of the posts have stated, high body lifts give you that "on stilts" look too. High suspension lifts also open up a can of worms in the areas of steering geometry and driveshaft angles. If you're building a tall truck, your best plan might be to combine both styles of lift to keep everything balanced. Up front, the cost and amount of work will be greater but the end result will justify it.

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