Ideal Belly Clearance? - JKowners.com : Jeep Wrangler JK Forum
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post #1 of 33 Old 07-24-2019, 11:57 AM Thread Starter
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Ideal Belly Clearance?

I know this is a loaded question and there isnt one right answer but what are everyone's thoughts on ideal belly clearance on a 4 door JK?

(Just trying to spur up some discussion I guess)


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post #2 of 33 Old 07-24-2019, 03:11 PM
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<holds fingers up one thumb-width apart> "six inches"




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post #3 of 33 Old 07-24-2019, 05:58 PM
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Depends on the terrain. Sometimes less is more, but I had mine tucked up with about an inch for air flow and dents.

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post #4 of 33 Old 07-24-2019, 06:00 PM
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Ideally, there would be no belly to clear.

Are you talking about the measurement from level ground to the trans crossmember that works best, or doing a tummy tuck or something? I'd think tummy tuck would be the best way to improve belly clearance. Bigger tires without additional suspension lift would be second. Suspension lift involves the most tradeoff with CG, making the rig worse for other situations.

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post #5 of 33 Old 07-24-2019, 07:49 PM
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twenty inches

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post #6 of 33 Old 07-25-2019, 06:45 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by rockystock View Post
Ideally, there would be no belly to clear.

Are you talking about the measurement from level ground to the trans crossmember that works best, or doing a tummy tuck or something? I'd think tummy tuck would be the best way to improve belly clearance. Bigger tires without additional suspension lift would be second. Suspension lift involves the most tradeoff with CG, making the rig worse for other situations.

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I was just measuring to the bottom of the frame rail roughly between the doors to get a quick measurement but I understand the trans cross member hangs a bit lower than that. I dont think a belly tuck is in my cards right now but get ready for coilovers and just pondering where to set her at.


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twenty inches
Is that where you are at? I am roughly at that now at the frame so a little lower with all the stuff hanging down. I was thinking of putting the frame at ~23 which should roughly equate to your 20


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post #7 of 33 Old 07-25-2019, 09:48 AM
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I know this is a loaded question and there isnt one right answer but what are everyone's thoughts on ideal belly clearance on a 4 door JK?

(Just trying to spur up some discussion I guess)
As long as you can see your dick when you look down, you should be OK.
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y’aller quenchin' with beer
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post #8 of 33 Old 07-25-2019, 10:17 AM
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From perusing all the builds on Pirate, they seem to all fall around 18"-22" at the lowest point, which on the TJ/LJ's is the big ol cradle that hangs down. I do think the design of the earlier models has the belly hanging lower, compared to the frame rails, than a JK does.

My pile of shit at ride height sits at 24" to the bottom of the frame rails. Nothing hangs below the frame rails, except about .50"-.75" of the front and rear lower link mounts. So for the most part it's a true flat bottom.
That's on 45" tires. 40" tires would put the belly at 21.5".

Wheelbase and axle width are going to play a big part in where you want to end up at the belly. Wheelbase will require more belly and axle width will allow more belly without loosing stability.

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post #9 of 33 Old 07-25-2019, 10:45 AM Thread Starter
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what if I only see my dick when I look ,but nothing else ?
I've probably fallen into my own pants again,...dammit


I did post this in modified...Come on Super Admin

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Originally Posted by gt1guy View Post
From perusing all the builds on Pirate, they seem to all fall around 18"-22" at the lowest point, which on the TJ/LJ's is the big ol cradle that hangs down. I do think the design of the earlier models has the belly hanging lower, compared to the frame rails, than a JK does.

My pile of shit at ride height sits at 24" to the bottom of the frame rails. Nothing hangs below the frame rails, except about .50"-.75" of the front and rear lower link mounts. So for the most part it's a true flat bottom.
That's on 45" tires. 40" tires would put the belly at 21.5".

Wheelbase and axle width are going to play a big part in where you want to end up at the belly. Wheelbase will require more belly and axle width will allow more belly without loosing stability.
Im on UD60s so ~68.x width. Going to have 42" MTRs on 4" BS Walkers.

Wheelbase is still up for modification. Rear axle is currently ~1" back from stock and might move another 1" or so. Front is going to be "interesting" to say the least.


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post #10 of 33 Old 07-25-2019, 12:33 PM
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I took low road in improper location ; apologies , @ALASHA
( not excusable butfwiw, I'm trapped w my in-laws in a house this week ; I may be "off" my game ...)



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post #11 of 33 Old 07-25-2019, 06:39 PM
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I was just trowing out a number LOL. I had to measure what mine was. Its 23" at the frame and 21" at the sub frame I built.
I would say to have more height at the belly than the center of the axle, this way you are not likely to get turtled on a rock since your axle made it past it. It would also be dictated by your link geometry, most notably the separation of the frame side mounts, and you shock set up. I have never really seen a hard number for a belly height.

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post #12 of 33 Old 07-25-2019, 08:36 PM
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I did post this in modified...Come on Super Admin



Im on UD60s so ~68.x width. Going to have 42" MTRs on 4" BS Walkers.

Wheelbase is still up for modification. Rear axle is currently ~1" back from stock and might move another 1" or so. Front is going to be "interesting" to say the least.

I stretched the front 5" to get the double triangulated links to fit. The rear is pushed back ~1.5". So that puts me at 122.5"wb. Axles are 73". Belly height is going to be my friend I think. Being wide, I don't think I'll be any more tippy than stock width and 3"-4" lower.

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Front is going to be "interesting" to say the least.
Do tell. I went down that road once. Still trying to find my way out.

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post #13 of 33 Old 07-26-2019, 07:06 AM Thread Starter
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Do tell. I went down that road once. Still trying to find my way out.
Honestly not sure yet. I have a lot of requirements that are going to make this difficult to say the least. The plan is 42" MTRs plus 14" Coilovers (mounted at angles) with 6" of shaft showing. Jeep is going to be around 3.5" of lift

Im sticking with a box and hydro assist so 5" front stretch is not in the cards.

I know that just about all front fender sheet metal is going on a healthy diet.

The frame is already notched behind the tire and I think clearance is good there.

Up front the forward most body mount is going to get relocated to the top of the frame. Nemesis did this on Avenger's Jeep and it looks good so going to copy that basically.

No clue what we are going to do with all the shit in the engine bay. I dont think Ill have the up travel if it stays put.

We were talking about modifying the frame similar to Poison Spyder's Crispy but not as radical for up travel. If we do that, Im wondering if we should stretch the frame ~1" and use one of my JL hoods to account for the difference. The thinking behind this is I think at full stuff and turn it will get into the headlights etc currently.

I know Dirtman might jump in and say all this is crazy. I agree it is but its doable. Just a matter of shifting the 10 pounds of shit in the 5 pound bag to different parts of the bag


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post #14 of 33 Old 07-26-2019, 11:57 AM
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Honestly not sure yet. I have a lot of requirements that are going to make this difficult to say the least. The plan is 42" MTRs plus 14" Coilovers (mounted at angles) with 6" of shaft showing. Jeep is going to be around 3.5" of lift

Im sticking with a box and hydro assist so 5" front stretch is not in the cards.

I know that just about all front fender sheet metal is going on a healthy diet.

The frame is already notched behind the tire and I think clearance is good there.

Up front the forward most body mount is going to get relocated to the top of the frame. Nemesis did this on Avenger's Jeep and it looks good so going to copy that basically.

No clue what we are going to do with all the shit in the engine bay. I dont think Ill have the up travel if it stays put.

We were talking about modifying the frame similar to Poison Spyder's Crispy but not as radical for up travel. If we do that, Im wondering if we should stretch the frame ~1" and use one of my JL hoods to account for the difference. The thinking behind this is I think at full stuff and turn it will get into the headlights etc currently.

I know Dirtman might jump in and say all this is crazy. I agree it is but its doable. Just a matter of shifting the 10 pounds of shit in the 5 pound bag to different parts of the bag

Oh ya, you turned down the same road I did. I see lots of similarities.

I'm right at 3.25"-3.5" lift too. 16" coilovers and 7" of shaft showing at ride height. My bypass's (longer of the two) just stick through the hood.

I also spent a lot of time staring at the build picks from Crispy. I ended up moving the new front frame rails in about a frame width and raised them until they touched the core support mount. Making that section out of 2"x3" also gained a couple more inches of clearance to the bottom of the frame. That bought me almost a full frame height of room.

Anything you can do to get the grill forward will be a good thing.

I went right past doing that Nemesis mod and just planed to attach everything to the engine cage. Depending on how high you end up getting in one wheel full stuff and full lock, the factory cage things that the fenders and core support attach to are probably going away anyway.

I had to narrow my hood/grill a total of 10" but that was "mostly" due to the stretch. At your width, I'd bet you're still going to be all up in the grill.


And yes, it does suck to have to admit to Dirtman that he's right. It's like admitting you have a drug problem............then getting high.

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post #15 of 33 Old 07-26-2019, 12:14 PM Thread Starter
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Oh ya, you turned down the same road I did. I see lots of similarities.
At some point we all lose our minds right


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I'm right at 3.25"-3.5" lift too. 16" coilovers and 7" of shaft showing at ride height. My bypass's (longer of the two) just stick through the hood.
Fourplyn and I go wheeling and I really started paying attention to the crazyness he did once I started going down this path. Im almost regretting 14" and thinking I should have done 16". He is at something stupid like 16" or 19" belly clearance with 16" coilovers with 8" up so he Jeep is actually lowered

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I also spent a lot of time staring at the build picks from Crispy. I ended up moving the new front frame rails in about a frame width and raised them until they touched the core support mount. Making that section out of 2"x3" also gained a couple more inches of clearance to the bottom of the frame. That bought me almost a full frame height of room.
I started reviewing Crispy and I was like damn this was impressive the first time I saw it but now I really appreciate it.

I dont think I can raise the frame like that. It would raise the steering box and then I have some steep angles to deal with.

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Anything you can do to get the grill forward will be a good thing.
I do think it would be cool to run my JL hood even if it probably only nets me an inch.

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Depending on how high you end up getting in one wheel full stuff and full lock, the factory cage things that the fenders and core support attach to are probably going away anyway.
I figure we would end up at least cutting the bottom of the 2 supports. Who knows might end up doing a full engine cage like you. Im concerned with where everything that is mounted to those supports is going to go. Computers, battery, fuse box etc... All that crap is most likely occupying space that those 42s are going want to get into.

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And yes, it does suck to have to admit to Dirtman that he's right. It's like admitting you have a drug problem............then getting high.
I knew it was going to be difficult so I wouldnt say I was saying he was wrong...


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post #16 of 33 Old 07-26-2019, 06:21 PM
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I moved my steering box up 2.5" and I think 4" forward. Notched the frame on each side and installed a shorter radiator. 18" travel shocks with 7" up limited to 9" down travel. Shocks are thru the hood. With my 40x13.5 tires on a 72" WMS axle and 4.5" bs wheels I almost hit the head lights at full stuff, full lock. I have about 1" above the fenders to the hood
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post #17 of 33 Old 07-27-2019, 10:43 AM
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Dirtman, I assume you stretched the front 4" when you moved the steering box?

Now that I'm thinking about it. I believe a big part of the reason I'm getting so far into my headlights when stuffed/turn is that my C's are set at 12* caster. At full lock, that turns into camber and would kick the top of the tire in....a lot.


I looked up Fourplyn's build. Only a few pics left, but that's impressive. I'd love to see it in person. I can't fathom how it works. What does the rear look like?
At my ride height, with 6" up in the rear, the top of my axle sticks up through the floor about 3". A few inches lower and a couple inches more up travel seems like the whole housing would be through the floor.

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post #18 of 33 Old 07-27-2019, 10:50 AM
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Yes, I move the front axle forward and trimmed the frame rails for better approach angles. My caster should be around 6 degrees, but I have never had it on an alignment machine to verify. Are you asking about my rear set up? My bridge come right up to the bottom of the tub with 7" of up travel.

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post #19 of 33 Old 07-27-2019, 11:10 AM
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No, sorry, I was talking about the rear of Fourplyn's build.

@ALASHA had said:
Quote:
He is at something stupid like 16" or 19" belly clearance with 16" coilovers with 8" up so he Jeep is actually lowered

That's impressive. I was curious as to how he pulled that off in the rear.


That front looks pretty cool. Unfortunately, the thread died and most of the pics are gone.


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post #20 of 33 Old 07-27-2019, 11:14 AM
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I don't know his build and don't have facebook. I checked instagram but he must not be on there. I don't know how you could lower the jeep and run that big a tire with that much up travel unless he runs it like in the jkowners photo. No hood fenders or grill. I am not sure how much lift I have from stock but I am 78" to the top of the windshield with air in my 40's

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post #21 of 33 Old 07-27-2019, 02:15 PM
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I don't know his build and don't have facebook. I checked instagram but he must not be on there. I don't know how you could lower the jeep and run that big a tire with that much up travel unless he runs it like in the jkowners photo. No hood fenders or grill. I am not sure how much lift I have from stock but I am 78" to the top of the windshield with air in my 40's
This is how he runs it. Pinched in the front and rear something fierce.






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post #22 of 33 Old 07-27-2019, 02:23 PM
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Yep, like I said. No fenders, hood cut out and grill narrowed. He also removed the factory frame sections behind the fenders. I bet that thing slings the mud.

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post #23 of 33 Old 07-27-2019, 02:25 PM
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looks like he also narrowed the front frame and the entire rear section. Damn nice work.
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post #24 of 33 Old 07-28-2019, 11:47 AM
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That's really impressive. Way deeper into it then I was willing to go.

One question though. Where is his radiator? Doesn't look like enough room up front, in the rear maybe?

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post #25 of 33 Old 07-28-2019, 01:06 PM
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I bet his hood was less work.
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