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Discussion Starter #1
Have had a long love of going off the beaten path and exploring where gravel roads lead , built and help build many rigs over the years but hoping this rig is here for a long while
Username: - smileyshaun

Xterra's Nickname: silver fox

Make:Nissan
Year:2011
Model:xterra
Trim:pro 4x
Color:Silver

Mods:
1.5” lift PRG
a bit of trimming and reshaping of the fender liners
315/75r16 dick Cepek trail country exp
Mb wheels
Comments:

Photos:
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Discussion Starter #2
I bought this with the intention of not doing much to it and for once in my life not go crazy modifying , so I search for quite a while and care across this little gem with only 105k on the clock . It needed a clutch bad so after a bit of haggling with the dealer we came to a price I was happy with and took it home
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Discussion Starter #3
Took it out for a couple little exploring trips and it quickly came apparent that the suspension was just done and the tires where horrible , I was really trying to push out doing any upgrades till after the new year but things don’t always work out as you plan
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Now I know the normal recipe for 35s on a xterra is a titan swap and body lift but that doesn’t really fit my needs so I’m taking a different approach. A little lift and a lot of trimming .
Seeing that this rig comes with 32s on it , 33s fit with just a little melt mod in my mind I couldn’t see squeezing 35s on it being that hard and needing a ton of lift . Most of the time the biggest problem comes from the width of the tire , the wider the tire gets the further you need to push the tire out to clear the frame and the further it pushes it out past the fenders increasing the turning radius . After a bit of research I found that there where four 315/75r16 that where skinny but only two that where also lighter .
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Having ran the Dick Cepek extreme country’s on a previous vehicle I was hoping the trail country would better suit my needs as a DD backroad exploring tire .
 

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Great story, is there more coming?
Is the spare a 35? Does it fit without a hitch or somehow?
Any tire rubbing on sharp turns?
 

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Discussion Starter #7
When trying to figure out if a larger tire is gonna fit and where exactly it’s going to fit it really helps to go to the manufacture specs because as in the chart I wrote up in my last post not all tires are the same width in the same size category.Comparing the 35 I selected to the stock tires You can see that the clearances are not as drastic as most people make it seem now if I had gone with a 1250 wide tire I would have a lot more clearance thing to do
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Now to really get a visual here is comparing a 285/75r16 to the 35s I selected , You can see the width wise the difference is marginal and we’re only talking 1 inch more clearance needed.
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Great info here, thanks for posting, and looking forward to more info.
We all think about bigger tires but for various reasons delay, get wrong tires... so seeing some research info helps!

I had very mild tires for offroad (which were great on the road), 265 75 R16 Goodyear Adventure, and several sets one after another. They were acceptable. Then I switched to same sized BFGoodrich K02 and what a difference in 6 inches of snow, I didn't need 4 wheel drive now when before I knew I did. Going from C to E rating was a concern, but the tires have been great!

So your preference for 305/35 is lighter and thinner, like 6lb lighter and 0.4 inch thinner - Dick Cepek vs K02. As opposed to road/off-road performance? Wouldn't 285/33 give you similar numbers and giving you more choice of tires? Dick Cepek might be the most expensive on your list? I think some people pick them because of their reputation off road?

Adding rear tire carrier will put demand on your rear suspension, hopefully you accounted for that in your recent suspension work?

35 should fit into a bumper without a hitch, I don't mean stock bumper, I mean custom built bumper which doesn't have a hitch -- it's a handicap not to have a hitch but there are people who never use one. Rear tire carriers look cool of course!
 

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Discussion Starter #10 (Edited)
Great info here, thanks for posting, and looking forward to more info.
We all think about bigger tires but for various reasons delay, get wrong tires... so seeing some research info helps!

I had very mild tires for offroad (which were great on the road), 265 75 R16 Goodyear Adventure, and several sets one after another. They were acceptable. Then I switched to same sized BFGoodrich K02 and what a difference in 6 inches of snow, I didn't need 4 wheel drive now when before I knew I did. Going from C to E rating was a concern, but the tires have been great!

So your preference for 305/35 is lighter and thinner, like 6lb lighter and 0.4 inch thinner - Dick Cepek vs K02. As opposed to road/off-road performance? Wouldn't 285/33 give you similar numbers and giving you more choice of tires? Dick Cepek might be the most expensive on your list? I think some people pick them because of their reputation off road?

Adding rear tire carrier will put demand on your rear suspension, hopefully you accounted for that in your recent suspension work?

35 should fit into a bumper without a hitch, I don't mean stock bumper, I mean custom built bumper which doesn't have a hitch -- it's a handicap not to have a hitch but there are people who never use one. Rear tire carriers look cool of course!
bfg actually tend to be the most expensive AT tires on the market and personally I’ve had more issues with their tires than any other manufacturers. Dick CPeck is made by Cooper and I have never owned a bad side of Cooper tires I think their quality as far as superior to other makers on the market. And I have ran the dick Cepek extreme countries on another rig and the traction with them was fantastic along with being surprisingly quiet for his aggressive as the tires they were , I need the hitch for towing , I actually truly hate having theSpare tire under the vehicle
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I was going to wait on getting tires but I came across a great deal at 4 wheel parts . and lucked out stopping by a local little tire shop to have 1 tire mounted up On my spare for test fitting he happened to have a set of 8” wide wheels with a +25 offset for 200$ and mounted the tires for free ( not balanced but that will come later
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.... score
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Discussion Starter #12
First tire fitment
Thankfully all my pre-measuring and calculating got the tires to fit inside the wheel wells rate at the edge of the fender now it’s gonna take some cutting and trimming to allow for turning but my overall goal is to keep the tires inside the wheel wells as much as possible it’s nice having a forklift at work to check for clearance.
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Now that I had some base measurements to go off of it was time to get to making some final decisions on where to cut . On the top I needed to take off 2” and in the back about 1.5”, getting the front part of the fender to look right is proving difficult but will look better down the road when I build a front bumper . The easiest way to check for tire fitment is to unhook the sway bar and pull out the strut , that way you can cycle the suspension and turn the tires easily .
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Discussion Starter #15
Stretching the liner out is a slow process, probably took a good hour of heating and slowly Stretching and then letting it sit for another hour to completely cool . Still had a couple more spots to stretch and flatten but it was looking good to me at this point
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Discussion Starter #16
For offender reinforcements I drilled a series of holes in the fender well the flat bar to the inside of it with another piece to act as a tab that I could drill a hole through and use the factory style plastic tab holders,
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If I wasn’t in such a hurry because I was trying to get it done Thanksgiving morning I would have noticed that there is as nice lip that follows the contour of the inner fender so on the drivers side I ended up welding some angle iron inside the fender to attach the liner to . I ran out of materials but my future plans is to connect the pieces together with more angle iron almost agains the fender and using some canopy tape or other stuff foam tape to act as a reinforcement for the fender without having to mess up the paint from the outside. The passenger fender was already messed up from the previous owner so I will probably just replace it and repeat the process from the driver side.
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Test fit #2
Still have some light rubbing in the back of the fender but that will be addressed once I pick up some more of those plastic retainer clips . But other than that the front works perfect .
the rear will require a little creativity , I may have to move the axle forward a 1/2 inch, run a wheel spacer and do a little reshaping to the frame to keep the tires off the frame .
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Discussion Starter #18
Test run #1
Fiancé had a wine pickup out in the Columbia river gorge so after doing some tasting we headed up into the hills to try the new tires out . The snow was that wonderful frozen over crunchy snow that sucks to drive on so hard to give a real test of the tires but I never felt out of control . Did well until I drove into a 4 foot snow drift after that I aired down from 18 to 12 and they worked a lot better , next snow trip I will probably drop to 10 psi .
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thankfully a SAS yoda came by and broke trail for a couple miles so we didn’t have to turn around and travel 15 miles back . So far I’m very happy with the set up my gas mileage has dropped to about 16 but I was expecting with going with 35’s.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
awesome, Love the tires! I always just assumed the cepek's were uber expensive.

I might have to go bigger on the next set of tires! hows it feel on the road? sluggish?
I’ve lost a little power but it will still climb over mount hood in 5th with minimal throttle input. A big part of my choice on the Dick Cepek tires was weight tires and wheels together is 84 lbs so almost the same weight as a lot of 33s on steel wheels .
 
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