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We bought a 2012 Trail Teams 18 months ago but have yet to modify it for offroading. Wheeler Pass in southern Nevada is typical of the terrain we're interested in exploring. Looking for advice on lifting (if necessary, then how and how high), and what the stock clearance is now as unmodified. The stock side pipe guards clear about 16" from the ground, but the back half of the skid plate underneath only clears about 10" (running on BF Goodrich TA tires and TRD wheels). Also wondering how "forgiving" the skid plate is. And could use suggestions for a practical brush guard (not just for show) and fog lights. Thanks everyone.
 

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I'm thinking you could do that trail with a stock 4WD FJ. Depends on your driver experience. The trail is rated a 3/10 on the trails offroad site. Good tires would be the first thing, size dependent on if you want to lift. Almost everybody goes with a 2-3" lift. Most of which are adjustable. Your BFG's are pretty good.

I would say mildly lift it and put 33's/285's tires on, that way you can always do some harder trails in the future and get by without skids and sliders for now. But it wouldn't hurt to try it stock either. If it gets too tough you can turn around.
 

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A little lift and a set of sliders will go a long way...
 

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Put a quiet and light mud tire like Geolandar MT G003 in stock size and see it do wonders on rock and mud and yet you can use it as your daily drivers. Otherwise its a competent vehicle off the shelf and as for the skid plates, they are quite sturdy unless you plan to do some serious trails and in that case, thats not your only worries.
 

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Wheeler pass is a piece of cake. Back in the day we did that trail often with the southern nevada landcruiser club. I did it with my tundra a few years ago :) I just picked up an FJ cruiser and its a lot easier than lugging the tundra down the trail. My FJ has stock suspension with 285 75R 16 patagonia tiresand I have no problems with wheeler pass :)
 

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I was counseled to upgrade the rear lower control arms to MetalTech.
They seem to be the lowest item hanging down and one of the weakest links.
The MetalTechs are substantially thicker and stronger.
I added skids on the bottom just because I was adding the control arms.

The other items are recovery items (and a shovel) to help get you home.

Pat
 
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