Front at full
Good Things, Bad Things, and 35s
To avoid these sounds on the trail, we tested what the tires came in contact with. One thing you should think about before preparing your rig for the rigors of larger tires is its extreme articulation. After trimming, you'll need to clear the inside of the wheelwells of any tire-unfriendly components. In the front, the brake-line brackets need to be relocated close to the shock, and the body seams that like to mince the meats can be carefully coerced flat away from the outside of the wheelwell. If you see too much flex in the rear, you can run a larger bumpstop. Keep in mind that inevitably you'll have to legalize the project by attaching flares if you plan on any street driving, so check your state regulations.
Overall, here are the improvements and compromises we've had to come to terms with:
Rear at full stuff
Advantages: 1 inch of ground clearance. Larger-diameter tires will fit in larger-diameter spaces. With the right wheel backspacing the 35s won't rub on control arms while under general off-road steering conditions, except when close to steering lock on both sides.
Compromises: Fender clearance issues. Larger cost for tires. Component wear (especially on brakes and steering). Less uptravel (you'll sacrifice 1-2 inches depending on your particular suspension system). No going back to stock.
This is the part of the story where we have to tell you that after trimming the fenders, testing suspension cycle, moving brake lines, cutting the front bumper, and receiving more advice from people who have already done it, we wanted to try something a little more detailed. This is a little more time consuming, but hopefully worth it.
We hear that the best way to finish off the front fender is to stretch the wheelwell opening and wrap the edge around a back support. The back support will function not only as a structure to strengthen the front fender, but it will also be used to coerce the metal into a neatly folded edge. You'll definitely need a gentle hand, welding finesse, more body tools, and some technical bodywork expertise. Or a trip to the body shop.
At the rear, have a body expert trim at the quarter-panel's seam, then relocate the wheelwell inner up, then weld and seal the body panel to the wheelwell. Primer and paint to make it look like new.
Out of Pocket: Around $800-$1,000