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Terrain in my area is rather marshy muddy, Soft dirt....

I don't need an extra 100+ lbs of steel under my truck, but there are guys here which shouldn't buy anything less.

Even when i drive to North GA,It's unlikely I will encounter a rock which I cannot drive over with plenty of clearance.
 
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"Is a Small Lift worth it for "Mild" Off-roading?"

No.

Keeping the suspension and the rest of the vehicle in tip-top shape is definitely worth it.

I use 4-season Michelin LTX Defenders tires and go places in the stock height X that would cause many to vomit, urinate and defecate in fear.

The real key is the stuff between your ears and that takes time and experience to form.

I would suggest going easy in the beginning. Spend lots of time getting out of the vehicle and carefully observe the trail before going forward. Team up with another 4X4 driver if possible.

Deep puddles on an unfamiliar road or trail? Wade through them before attempting.

If in a forested area, bring a collapsible cross-cut saw, a come along and a towing strap. Axes are less useful (and can be dangerous in the wrong hands).

I would counsel strongly against bringing a chain saw. I have worked in the bush and have been on hand for lots of accidents with power saws including a really nasty one that still gives me the shivers just thinking about it. Yes, 20 to 40 stitches will give you macho street cred but do you really want to go that route?
 

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wheel it first, then decide.
this N50 platform seems to hand a little low.
Both my xterra and old tacoma had 2" of lift and 285/75/16s.
the tacoma had almost 4" more of ground clearance. Not really a complaint, just noticed me dragging the belly a lot more often when i didn't before.
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Discussion Starter · #24 ·
I'm don't intend to hit anything on the bottom at all. The "mild" off-roading I do involves easy trails, and having my spotter go look if things look at all "close". And if it looks "close", I tend to back up and turn around. For me, I'm thinking of a bit of extra height could be a bit of extra security that I can EASILY make it down the trail without the bottom bits coming close. I'm not looking at beefy skids or sliders because I don't intend to do trails that get me that close to grinding. Of course, sh*t happens... but I'm seasoned enough that it doesn't happen that often. ;-)

This whole discussion has greatly helped me think things through:
The closest bit to the ground, the differential, doesn't get any higher without substantially larger tires. And substantially larger tires require more than a simple lift.
I've got about 9" clearance to the diff now with my Geolander AT G015 275/70-16 (spec diameter 31.2 in). To get another inch I'd need a 33+" tire, and I hear that's a really tight fit.

I'm thinking I'll leave things as they are for a while, at least until I wear out these tires.
Then maybe I'll max out the tires and do the melt mod... and maybe consider the small small lift. Sounds like the AllDogs Offroad people have some good stuff.
 

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Sounds like you should be fine to get out there and give it a shot. If nothing else you'll find out if you really need anything more. My X has surprised me with what it was able to do and get me out of in stock form when I've made mistakes, think steep off camber climb, one wheel hanging in the air and another with limited traction.
 
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I'm don't intend to hit anything on the bottom at all. The "mild" off-roading I do involves easy trails, and having my spotter go look if things look at all "close". And if it looks "close", I tend to back up and turn around. For me, I'm thinking of a bit of extra height could be a bit of extra security that I can EASILY make it down the trail without the bottom bits coming close. I'm not looking at beefy skids or sliders because I don't intend to do trails that get me that close to grinding. Of course, sh*t happens... but I'm seasoned enough that it doesn't happen that often. ;-)

This whole discussion has greatly helped me think things through:
The closest bit to the ground, the differential, doesn't get any higher without substantially larger tires. And substantially larger tires require more than a simple lift.
I've got about 9" clearance to the diff now with my Geolander AT G015 275/70-16 (spec diameter 31.2 in). To get another inch I'd need a 33+" tire, and I hear that's a really tight fit.

I'm thinking I'll leave things as they are for a while, at least until I wear out these tires.
Then maybe I'll max out the tires and do the melt mod... and maybe consider the small small lift. Sounds like the AllDogs Offroad people have some good stuff.
Yup I agree with your thinking. I have drug various vehicles over obstacles (not by choice) and usually have not sustained any damage because I did so VERY slowly. Speed when hitting an obstacle is what really does damage. And while the xterra factory skid plates don't hold a candle to the aftermarket ones, they are much better than nothing.
 

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Can you walk under the rear gate without bonking your head? If so, leave it. If not, lift that thing. It's really nice to clear that now, but there were other, better reasons in my case.

Sounds like you can leave it alone for a while but I think you'd benefit a lot from an upgrade. I put higher rate arb springs in the back and bilstein 5100 all around and it really improved my handling with and without weight. It'd really help with that bike on the back. It's a harsh setup in some situations but it's not worse than the factory ride really, plus I chose to make it worse to get height, which I do use in my case. It minimized my roll which is really nice on the highway, in the mountains, and REALLY helps in the sand. There are less rough riding shocks around but you get the idea. Better load carrying with the springs and choose the ride you want with the shocks.

So I think you don't need a lift but what would help you comes with a good looking 1.5-2" of lift.
 

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Can you walk under the rear gate without bonking your head? If so, leave it. If not, lift that thing. It's really nice to clear that now, but there were other, better reasons in my case.
Or you could spend $22 for a set of Maxpow Tailgate struts from Amazon.com
The only upgrade to my Xterra S 4x4's ground clearance is 265/75-16 tires and at 6'2" the Maxpow struts allow me to walk under the rear gate
 

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Or you could spend $22 for a set of Maxpow Tailgate struts from Amazon.com
The only upgrade to my Xterra S 4x4's ground clearance is 265/75-16 tires and at 6'2" the Maxpow struts allow me to walk under the rear gate
What? Son of a. What I said was a joke but that's great. I'm 5'9 with the boots on and 3.5" lift I still brush hair sometimes. Same mounting points?
 
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