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  Home > Jeep TJ - LJ • 1997-2006 > TJ/LJ Front Fender Armor >

  TJ DeFender XC (High-Line) - 3" Tapered Flares (Steel)
TJ DeFender XC - 3" Tapered Flares (Steel)

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MSRP: $636.90
Spyder Direct: $579.00
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TJ DeFender XC with 3in Taper Flare

Poison Spyder's DeFender™ XC's provide e Xtreme Clearance for big tires without having to install a tall lift, maintaining a Low Center of Gravity (LCOG) and the performance benefits that come along with it. Like our standard DeFenders™, the XC's are constructed entirely of CNC laser cut, brake-formed 3/16" plate steel or aluminum for strength and style that old school tube fenders just can't match.

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Product Description

Massive Tire Clearance
Standard DeFender™ provide much better tire clearance than stock or some competitors' tube fenders, but DeFender™ XC's provide eXtreme Clearance!. Like with the standard DeFenders™, the back of the wheel opening is approximately 2½" further back compared to typical tube fenders, and about 4" further back than the stock Jeep flares. But the wheel opening on the XC's is 3" higher than standard DeFenders, providing Massive Tire Clearance with minimal lift! While there are specific considerations to address with any particular Jeep, in most cases you should be able to run 37" tires with no suspension lift, and 40's with just couple inches of lift! See the FAQ section below for a more detailed discussion of tire clearance.

Solid Plate, "Tubeless" Construction
Poison Spyder raises the bar for Jeep fender armor—DeFenders™ are the next evolutionary step beyond "tube fenders". DeFenders™ are fabricated entirely from 3/16" plate, either heavy duty P&O steel or lightweight 6061-T6 aluminum. CNC laser cutting and precision brake-forming yield a stronger, more functional, better-looking fender than the tired, out-dated tube fender design. Only one competitor manufactures a fender that's anything like the DeFender™>—fabricated entirely of plate with no tubing—but their design leaves a vertical edge of the metal pointed downward, right at the tire. The DeFender™ has an extra "return", or lip along the underside of the fender, which provides better protection from cutting into a fully stuffed tire, while also lending extra strength to the outer edge of the fender, where it is most likely to come in contact with rocks, canyon walls, trees, etc.

DeFenders™ vs. "tube fenders"
DeFenders™ are not "tube fenders"—they're better! Much of the Jeep armor industry was built upon Poison Spyder's original Tube Fender design, which has been borrowed, copied, and in some cases even improved upon, by many of our competitors. But now the state of the art in Jeep fender armor takes a giant leap forward with the DeFender™ product line. Rather than tube, the outer edges of the DeFender™ are brake-formed into a rugged 3-sided rub rail. Most "tube fenders" use a piece of .120" thick (just under 1/8") tubing as the outer edge rub rail, with 1/8" thick sheetmetal top plates. Compare that to the 3/16" (.188") thick material of the DeFender™ which is carried throughout its structure, from the outer rub rail surface to the top plates to the mounting structure. The DeFender™ is not only much stronger than a tube fender, it looks much better as well, with smooth flat surfaces that blend better with your Jeep's exterior appearance.

DeFender™ XC Inner Fenders
DeFender™ XC Inner Fenders are easy to install and look great. They provide splash protection to the engine compartment as well as a place to mount under-hood accessories. Each inner fender is a 3-piece bolt-together assembly, made of CNC laser cut aluminum sheet. Please note that no accessory mounting holes or brackets are provided, as each installation is left to the discretion of the installer to decide where to mount components. Most stock inner fender-mounted components can be re-mounted to the DeFender™ XC Inner Fenders by simply drilling a hole and/or fabricating a simple bracket. Unfortunately, we have not yet found an elegant solution for retaining the stock air box, so an aftermarket air intake or open air filter element (such as a K&N conical filter) is recommended. It may be possible to retain and re-use the stock inner fenders, for those who wish to do so and save some money. That's why the Inner Fender kit is sold separately. However we do not provide instructions for retaining the stock inner fenders—it would be up to the installer to figure out how best to do that.

3" Tapered Flare
The DeFender™ XC with 3" Tapered Flare was designed for maximum performance in several aspects. First, it provides the same splash protection of our regular 3" flare, keeping mud and debris from splashing up onto the side of the Jeep. But rather than having a straight side, the edge of the flare tapers inward toward the front of the Jeep, in a line parallel to the tapered edge of the hood. In this manner it tapers from 3" at the back, to about the same width as our "Zero Flare" at the front, providing the same great clearance for articulating tires and tight trails that our Zero Flare provides. DeFender™ XC's are also available in Zero Flare and Negative Flare versions.

Side Port For Easy Access
Access ports in the side of the DeFender™ make it easy to access the area between the wheel well and the firewall during installation. After installation, these holes are covered with included solid fill plates or with the optional "Spyder" Side Inserts or Full Length Side Plates discussed below.

DeFender™ XC "Spyder" Side Inserts
To add a little extra Spyder flare to your install, opt for the DeFender™ XC "Spyder" Side Inserts, which are CNC laser cut from 1/8" aluminum plate. The Spyder logo cut-out acts as an air vent to promote airflow through the engine bay. The Side Inserts are designed to bolt to the inside surface of the DeFender™, using the supplied stainless steel button head hardware. The Spyder inserts may also be used with the included solid inserts by stacking the solid plate behind the Spyder plate—paint the solid plate a contrasting color to make the spyder "pop"!. DeFender™ XC "Spyder" Side Inserts are sold separately.

DeFender™ XC Full Length Side Plates
For those who want more substantial armor protection, the DeFender™ XC Full Length Side Plates extend from the fender flare rearward to the door opening, and from the top of the Rocker Knockers™ up to the hood line. These Full Length Side Plates also provide extra bracing for the DeFender™ against frontal impacts, helping to prevent buckling of the weaker, stock tub sheetmetal just rearward of the armored fender. DeFender™ Full Length Side Plates are CNC laser cut from 3/16" 6061-T6 aluminum plate. Bolt holes are countersunk so that the supplied flat head stainless steel hardware lies flush with the plate's surface. The forward edge is cut to fit the enlarged wheel opening of Poison Spyder DeFenders™, while the lower edge is is cut to nest against Poison Spyder Rocker Knockers™ or Ricochet Rockers™ (NOTE: the angle of the forward edge of the Full Length Side Plates may not precisely align with the forward edge of older versions of Rocker Knockers™ and Ricochet Rockers™—newer, DeFender™-specific Rocker Knockers™ or Ricochet Rockers™ are designed to match the angle of this forward edge more closely). DeFender™ XC Full Length Side Plates are sold separately

Steel or Aluminum?
DeFenders™ are available in either heavy duty P&O steel plate or light weight 6061-T6 aluminum plate (both 3/16" thick). We recommend steel for those Jeeps whose fenders are frequently in contact with the rocks. For those looking to save weight but are willing to drive with more finesse (not using the DeFenders™ as a battering ram), the aluminum DeFenders™ may be just the ticket.

TJ Battery Lift Bracket
All TJ/LJ versions of the DeFenders™ come with a custom bracket for lifting the stock battery tray higher, to provide the extra clearance necessary for the DeFender's™larger wheel opening. This bracket is CNC laser cut brake-formed and fixture-welded for an easy, clean installation.

Installation Notes
THIS IS NOT A SIMPLE BOLT-ON PART! Installing DeFender™ XC's or any highline fender set is a major undertaking, requiring mechanical skills and tools. Because of this we DO NOT recommend this installaiton for novice mechanics or those who have to have a written, detailed procedure for every contingency that may come up. So you know what you are getting in to, here are a few notes on the installation process. Please be aware that installation of the DeFender™ XC's REQUIRES cutting the bottom 3" off either side of your hood. We plan to offer our own fiberglass "XC" hood at some point in the future, to be a companion product to work with the DeFender™ XC's (as of this writing there is no estimated date of availability for it). Cutting the stock hood is done along the existing horizontal ridge in the side of the hood, so careful cutting will provide good results and a "factory" appearance. The stock hood latches may be retained, or the installer may wish to use hood pins instead. If retaining the stock hood latches, simply drill the mounting holes on the hood higher up. You will also need to drill holes in the DeFender™ XC to mount the lower part of the hood latch. We left these holes out of the XC version so that installers could opt for different hood latching methods without leaving un-used holes. Likewise, we also left the 3/4" LED marker lamp hole out, as many Jeeps running the XC's will not be subject to DOT regulations, so it is up to the installer's discretion to drill the 3/4" hole in the front corner to mount an LED marker lamp, if that is desired. Note that it is also up to the installer to figure out how to mount or re-mount any under-hood accessories. Most items will mount by simply drilling a hole and using the OE bracket or mounting screw. Other components may require more ingenuity to mount. Chief among these will be the stock air box, for which we have not yet devised an elegant solution for its mounting. Keep in mind that installing these or any brand of "highline" fenders can be a big job, entailing major surgery on your Jeep. Because of this, it is assumed that the installer will have above average installation, fabrication and problem solving skills, and can work through any specific issues without the need of detailed, step-by-step instructions for every little aspect of the install.

This product ships as bare steel—it will need to be painted or powder coated prior to final installation. We do not offer a powder coat option for this item.

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Image Galleries

Here is our entire collection of images for this product. We're constantly adding more photos so check back often if you don't see a shot with a specific angle or installation you are looking for. Do you own this item already? We'd love to have your photos to add to our collection. Just send the hi-res images via email to sales@poisonspyder.com.

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Features & Benefits

At Poison Spyder we strive to build superior features into every aspect of each product we make. Every feature has a reason for being included in the design. Here are a list of the most important of these features, along with an explanation of the benefits of each. Consider these important factors when shopping for products, and compare the competition to Poison Spyder's features and benefits!

Feature Benefit
Extreme Clearance Huge wheel opening to accomodate huge tires with little or no lift.
Fabricated entirely from 3/16" plate The Defender™ is the next evolutionary step beyond "tube fenders". CNC laser cutting and precision brake-forming yield a stronger, more functional, better-looking design than the tired, out-dated tube fender.
Beefy 3/16" plate in the most vulnerable "rub" points Old school tube fenders are constructed with tubing at the outermost edge, where the fender meets the rocks in hard-core wheeling. While PSC's former Tube Fenders were made of DOM tubing, most are made with weaker HREW tubing—and all are only .120" wall thickness, or just under 1/8". Like the entire assembly, the outer edges of the DeFender™ are made of 3/16" (.188") thick material, providing a much stronger defense against rocks and trail hazards.
"Return" on underside of fender in wheel opening Only one competitor manufactures a fender that's anything like the Defender™—fabricated entirely of plate with no tubing—but their design leaves a vertical edge of the metal pointed downward, right at the tire. The Defender™ has an extra "return", or lip along the underside of the fender, which provides better protection from cutting into a fully stuffed tire, while also lending extra strength to the outer edge of the fender, where it is most likely to come in contact with rocks, canyon walls, trees, etc.
Easy access for installation Access holes in the side of the Defender™ make it easy to access the area between the wheel well and the firewall during installation. After installation, these holes are filled with the bolt-in fill plates or covered with the optional Side Armor plates.
Optional Side Armor The optional Side Armor pieces bolt to the back cover of the Defender™ and extend rearward to the door opening, across the body seam between the fender and the firewall. As they are designed to fit snugly with Poison Spyder's Rocker Knockers™, they extend body armor protection up the side of the Jeep. They also help to distribute the shock loads that may accur from frontal impacts to the Defender™, which might otherwise buckle the tub sheetmetal.
"Negative Flare" version For extreme clearance on hard core rock crawlers, the Defender&trde; is available with a "negative flare", meaning that it extends from the Jeep's body less than the stock fender. The outer edge of the Negative Flare version tapers inward, staying within just a few inches of the hood line.
Fully integrated Flares (3" Tapered Flare version only) Rather than a separate, bolt-on piece that cost hundreds of dollars more, Defenders™ XC's are available with fully integrated 3" Tapered Flares. These aren't just an added-on piece—each Defender™ XC is built from the ground up as a continuous, one-piece fender with integrated flare.
Optional inner fenders For those who either do not have or do not want to cut up their stock fenders, the DeFender™ XC Inner Fender kit provides a great looking, eXtreme Clearance inner fender that matches the syle and build quality of the DeFenders™. The kit is optional so that those who do wish to modify and re-use their stock inner fenders (or run without an inner fender) may still do so.
Steel or Aluminum DeFender™ XC's are available in either heavy duty steel or light weight aluminum (both 3/16" thick). We recommend steel for those Jeeps whose fenders are frequently in contact with the rocks. For those needing a great looking, light weight fender that's strong but not as hard core as the steel ones, aluminum is a great alternative.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Got a question about this product? We've tried to cover the most frequently asked ones below. You may also want to check our Master FAQ Page for more general questions about Poison Spyder, our products, ordering and shipping. Don't see an answer to your question? Ask our sales department by email at sales@poisonspyder.com, and we'll get back to you as soon as possible with the information you need.

Q: How big of a tire can I run with X" of suspension lift?

A: There are many factors that all come in to play when trying to determine how large of a tire you can run. For instance, for any given amount of static tire clearance, you can run an incrementally larger tire by simply adjusting your bump stops lower. You would loose some up-travel (and therefore overall travel), but this would be a compromise you would make in order to run an even larger tire than normal. Likewise, clearance at the back of the wheel opening will ultimately limit how sharp your tires may turn without rubbing at the back, and this may also be compensated for by simply adjusting the stops on the steering knuckles. Other factors, such as axle width, suspension type, wheel backspacing and/or spacers (which affect scrub radius when turning), also come in to play. So, as you can imagine, there are a lot of variables to take in to account when trying to make a claim of how large of a tire one can run with the DeFender™ XC's and any given amount of suspension lift. But in very general terms, you should be able to run a 37" tire with a stock TJ suspension. For each inch of lift, you can add 2" of tire diameter (for example, adding a 1" lift should put you in the ballpark of being able to run 39" tires). But keep in mind these are generalities, and not guarantees. You still may need to make some adjustments to bump stops, steering stops, etc.

Q: Can I re-use my stock inner fenders? (Or do I have to buy the DeFender™ Inner Fenders?)

A: It is not necessary to purchase the DeFender™ XC Inner Fenders. We offer them as a convenience, and as a solution for those who would like to maintain the use of an inner fender structure and either do not have stock ones or want something that matches the clean lines of the DeFender. If you wish to retain the use of your stock inner fenders, this may be done with some careful cutting. We do not provide instructions for this, however for anyone handy with tools and working on Jeeps, it shouldn't be too hard to figure out what to cut away and what to leave of your stock inner fenders. Retaining the stock inner fenders may make it simpler to mount some of the under-hood accessories that were originally mounted to the inner fender. On the other hand, you may wish to run no inner fender at all, which is great for heat dissipation and easy access to the engine compartment through the wheel well. In this case all accessories that were mounted to the stock inner fenders would of course need to be relocated, and perhaps some brackets fabricated.

Q: Can I use my stock hood with the DeFender™ XC's?

A: Yes you may re-use your stock TJ hood with the DeFender™ XC's, simply by cutting off the bottom 3" along each side of the hood. Poison Spyder plans to introduce a fiberglass hood to go with the DeFender™ XC's at a later date, until then customers must cut their stock hood.

Q: How easy is the installation? Is it a complete bolt-on kit?

A: Installing DeFender™ XC's or any "highline" fender kit is a major undertaking, as you are performing some significant alterations to your Jeep. If using our Inner Fender Kit and an aftermarket highline hood, the install may be done without technically cutting anything, however it will still require some creativity in re-mounting all of the under-hood accessories. While Poison Spyder does provide a bracket for lifting the battery tray, solving your biggest problem, you will still need to figure out your own solution to mounting other under-hood components that had been attached to the stock fenders. The next biggest hurdle will be mounting the stock air box, or switching to a compact aftermarket air filter. Please thoroughly read the notes in the product description above regarding installation, and do not attempt this project if you are not capable of moderate problem solving and mechanical ingenuity.

Q: How do I choose between steel and aluminum?

A: It depends on how you use your Jeep, what kind of wheeling you do, and which product you're considering. For armor used on Jeeps that get wheeled hard in extreme rock terrain, we prefer steel because it is simply more durable, less susceptible to bending or gouging, and will distribute impact loads over wider areas better. But the trade-off is that steel is of course heavier. There are some who prefer a lighter rig even in hard core terrain, opting to use aluminum but accepting the greater risk of damage in order to gain the performance of a lighter rig. For these folks, if their driving style is more finessed and patient, aluminum might be the better choice. For vehicles being used primarily on the street, and light trail duty, the aluminum products might be the better choice solely for the weight savings.

Q: Can I order it powder coated?

A: At this time we are not offering powder coat for this product. If we are able to devise suitable packaging which will adequately protect the powder coat finish during transit, we may add a powder coat option in the future.

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Average Customer Review: 5 of 5 Total Reviews: 1 Write a review.

  1 of 1 people found the following review helpful:
 
What quality and attn to detail, wow! July 17, 2013
Reviewer: ron mcdaniel from baton rouge, LA United States  
I absolutely love these fenders and liners.  I ran tube fenders prior to this from another vendor, great quality but got tired of the tubes rusting, seams not holding up and always worried about durability.  I ordered the XC's with hopes they may be decently strong.  Was I surprised.  The outer fender, the XC, was beefier than my entire tube fender with it's own inner!  These things are built to be hammered on, they are quite honestly a work of art.  I installed them with a friend in about 2.5hrs time.  You do have to be creative in where you put components, and ever rig is different.  I found great locations for all my goodies, even running the ext resevoir from PSC is easy with these/inners.  I cut my hood and had the edge rewelded to the bottom, seam sealed the edge after welding back to the supports, it's stronger than it was previously and fits great.  Mine is the Silver LJ in the photos.  Get u some of these!!  They are serious.

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