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need help

lee boy

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I've recently purchased a disco and want to use it for off-roading.

It's all new to me so could anyone please tell me what the best tyre size is if I get a 3" lift kit without having to chop into the bodywork?? any other suggestions are more than welcome

cheers lee

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I've recently purchased a disco and want to use it for off-roading.

It's all new to me so could anyone please tell me what the best tyre size is if I get a 3" lift kit without having to chop into the bodywork?? any other suggestions are more than welcome

cheers lee

Hi, this is a tough question and I'll let you know for starters there is no one single correct answer just lots of opinioins. :rolleyes:

I guess there are a few important things to know:

-how much money do you want to spend

-what type off of roading are you looking at doing

-what type of Discovery (I or II) if I is it 3 or 5 door

-do you want to compete in ALRC events

A stock Discovery is actually a very capable off road machine.

Also remember the more off road ability you gain from the suspension usually results in less on road stability.

A 3" lift may be more problematic than it's worth as you'll probably get driveline vibrations so custom props and caster corrected radius arms will be a must, this will ramp up the cost. But again it all depends what you want to use the vehicle for.

A lift will evidently look good, allow bigger tyres and raise the ground clearance, but it will also affect stability on side slopes.

More suspension droop equals more articulation which means you can keep more of the wheels on the ground more of the time, this will get you over more taxing terrain easier.

Longer shocks and/or different upper shock mounts will give more droop, the lift will generally come from the springs.

The way I see it you have 3 main setups:

1. You have gained more shock travel (shocks and/or mounts). This means you need a longer spring to fit between the upper and lower spring perches. A longer spring will need to be softer so it can still compress, this will still offer a lift and be nice and controllable. However on road it might be too soft.

2. Slightly longer springs which are physically retained top and bottom, this means under articualtion the spring will be strectched but remain in contact. This applies high forces on the spring seats and could arguably be damaging to the springs (depending on how far you stretch them) but it will allow you to run a shorter and better rate spring than the above setup so should offer more control and better on road handling.

3. Dislocation setups, these use standard length springs or similar, if they are a heavier rate they'lll still offer a lift. But should be capable of offering the best on road ride/handling (not all setups will, but the ability is there). Essentially as the wheel drops the spring will become loose and fall out of its upper seat, the dislocation cone will stop it falling to the side and then relocate the spring on the seat once under compression again. Some setups have the relocation cone at the bottom of the spring instead.

All the setups are proven, all have their pros and cons and all have their followers and haters.

In the UK the dislocation system seem to be popular where as in America and Australia the retained setup seems to be more favoured.

Now you could either buy a complete system off the shelf or use components and design your own.

Check out places like:

-Cheviot 4x4


-Scorpion Racing


-Devon 4x4

-Paddock Spares

-QT Services

-Gwynn Lewis 4x4

-White Peak

As for tyres, well this is an even bigger debate. Essentailly a lift will allow you fit bigger wheels in the arches but under full articulation they will still probably foul the body work.

On a Discovery I you'll need to trim the the front bumper corners or remove them and probably trim the rear section of the rear wheel arch or else it will foul the wheel under articulation.

Trimming the arches and adding wheel arch flares is the easiest option.

Here is my Discovery, I currently run Simex Jungle Trekker 33.11.50R15's on 15x8 steel rims. The tyres measure in at 34.0" inflated diameter, I'm also on stock ride height with just HD springs and shock, with evidently trimmed arches. Off road it's fine with no rubbing on any exterior body work.



If you don't want to go as big then a 235 is quite common, often a 235/85R15 or a 265/75R15 I also have a set of 31.10.50R15 which fitted quite good before I trimmed the arches, but the front bumper corners had to go.

As for the type of tyre, well that depends on money and use. A really agressive off road tyre won't be great on the road. Alternativly an all terrain will only get you so far off road.

Personally I'd seriously consider having two sets of tyres, a general use more roafd biased and a serious off road set. If you only have one set then evidently there will be a compromise somewhere.

Hope this helps get the ball rolling.......

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To answer your tyre question, 235/70 will fit without hassle, maybe a bit bigger (I know they fit RR but not sure if Discos are better or worse).

What makes you go straight for a 3" lift? As said above it gets expensive as you need to extend brake lines, propshafts, correct caster, etc. etc., and a lot of lift kits achieve lift by losing flex, which IMHO is rather pointless. Things like dropping the shock mounts, packing/spacers under springs or fitting very hard springs are all "cheats" that give lift but at best don't improve flex and can often make it worse.

Some (many) of the most capable trucks around are running standard ride height or very close to it. Nige's 90 is a prime example of a very well thought out setup using a lot more standard components than you may expect.

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cheers mate that is a great help. i think i will only go 1 inch lift then. i have a five door disco, 300 tdi. i am looking at getting machos 30/9.50 r15. as i dont use the disco every day just for fun :P

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