Author Topic: College Kid's TJ with 4 Pissed off Squirrels  (Read 15942 times)

Offline woolyworm

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Re: College Kid's TJ with 4 Pissed off Squirrels
« Reply #16 on: January 05, 2015, 04:55:32 PM »
Cool!  I'm knee deep in wiring on mine as well after my headlight issue at the chili crawl!


Wooly
75CJ7, 72 AMC 304, T18, 45:1 crawl, chromo axles, warn hubs, 3" Black Diamond, 1/4" belly skid, front locker, other goodies, sweat ...

Offline yamaha225

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Re: College Kid's TJ with 4 Pissed off Squirrels
« Reply #15 on: January 04, 2015, 07:53:52 PM »
I've been working on the Jeep some while i'm off for Christmas. I got the in cab winch control installed. Of course that involved totally re engineering the auxiliary switch situation on my dash. I had two switches where the winch control went so I had to find a home for those. I figured while I was in there I might as well make a few extra switch spots so in the future it would be easier to add switches.

Anyways here is the winch control install.

As usual I didn't take as many pics as I should have. The kit is extremely complete and well put together. It is comprised of the switch panel and the wiring loom. I bought the wiring kit which was kind of pricey but I would do it again simply because I didn't have to go buy anything. The wiring kit has a nice loomed length of wires to go from the switch to the winch.



First order of business was cutting the hole for the switch. The dremel made short work of this.



Mounted



Then I had to open up the solenoid box to tap in with the wiring loom. There were three wires to connect. One for the In, One for the Out, and a Ground. Pretty simple to figure out which was which with the stock controller and a test light. Then I finished up the wiring and tidyed it up. Works awesome.

Then I needed to figure out what to do with the switches I had to move. I decided to make a custom panel to go on the upper left hand area of the dash board. I'll post pics of that soon. Forgot to take them. I also need to do exhaust stuff and put a power steering pump on it this week. Bumper is painted and drying tonight and then that can go on!
'97 TJ, 4 really angry squirrels under the hood, AX-5, 31 MT/R-K's, 44:1 crawl ratio, 8000 Smittybilt X2O winch, Sanden OBA, 2.5 inch RC spring lift, Custom Fab Rear bumper, Ford 8.8 Rear Axle with 4.10's and Trac Lok Limit Slip, Dana 30 Front Axle with 4.10's and a Aussie Locker, Metalcloak Rear Upper Control Arms and Trackbar

Offline TJKDave

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Re: College Kid's TJ with 4 Pissed off Squirrels
« Reply #14 on: December 27, 2014, 02:17:56 PM »
Lol.  It sure wasn't mine.   Mine keeps getting more smashed all the time.   It was indeed Motorman.  I was envious.
99% of your JK questions answered here thanks to  JLC08JK on JeepForum for this information:

http://www.jeepforum.com/forum/f96/jeep-jk-frequently-asked-questions-will-rub-links-popular-threads-1074059/

Offline Cain

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Re: College Kid's TJ with 4 Pissed off Squirrels
« Reply #13 on: December 27, 2014, 01:54:42 PM »
Had it out on Studmill when a bunch of us went shooting and another section of exhaust took a dump so I'm looking at solutions for that.

I remember seeing someone's bumper that looked JUST like yours... but the exhaust peeked out through a boxed-in space in the bumper... so the tip was always protected by a piece of 3/16th steel.
I wanna say it was MotorMan and TJK Dave

Offline yamaha225

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Re: College Kid's TJ with 4 Pissed off Squirrels
« Reply #12 on: December 27, 2014, 12:41:20 PM »
Ya that thought crossed my mind. In reality though my exhaust is really well protected as is and I've never hit it. I cut off the tailpipe where it curved down and it has been great. The problem I'm having is purely one of rust and worn out ness. I've patched the system more than once and it keeps breaking. At this point I'm ready to just start over. Probably gonna do the muffler and tailpipe. Might put a new cat on but then again I might not. Don't tell anyone though lol
'97 TJ, 4 really angry squirrels under the hood, AX-5, 31 MT/R-K's, 44:1 crawl ratio, 8000 Smittybilt X2O winch, Sanden OBA, 2.5 inch RC spring lift, Custom Fab Rear bumper, Ford 8.8 Rear Axle with 4.10's and Trac Lok Limit Slip, Dana 30 Front Axle with 4.10's and a Aussie Locker, Metalcloak Rear Upper Control Arms and Trackbar

Offline Lucifer

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Re: College Kid's TJ with 4 Pissed off Squirrels
« Reply #11 on: December 27, 2014, 12:30:56 PM »
Had it out on Studmill when a bunch of us went shooting and another section of exhaust took a dump so I'm looking at solutions for that.

I remember seeing someone's bumper that looked JUST like yours... but the exhaust peeked out through a boxed-in space in the bumper... so the tip was always protected by a piece of 3/16th steel.
Don't know what that sound is?  Keep driving. She'll let you know in a minute if it's going to be an issue...

Offline yamaha225

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Re: College Kid's TJ with 4 Pissed off Squirrels
« Reply #10 on: December 27, 2014, 09:28:03 AM »
Yep the savvy skid uses all the stock mounting points. It's also really thick along where it hooks to the rear crossmember so it adds some strength to that. What sold me is that it's aluminum so it won't rust, it only weighs 4 pounds more than the stock skid (weight always a concern with the 4 popper), it's way stronger than you would think for aluminum (hardcore rock crawl guys run then), and it's an American company. It also came with all new hardware including stainless steel straps. So far it has been awesome. I came down on it at schoodic hard enough to jar my teeth and had a hard time finding where I hit it. Only left a scratch. I don't have pics of the frame repair on me (in mass for Christmas) but I'll snap a few when I get home and post them. I used the premade frame sections from Autorust and can't say enough good about them either. Awesome product that really speeds up the repair. I also did the rear most section of frame when I had the tank out and that I fabbed myself.
'97 TJ, 4 really angry squirrels under the hood, AX-5, 31 MT/R-K's, 44:1 crawl ratio, 8000 Smittybilt X2O winch, Sanden OBA, 2.5 inch RC spring lift, Custom Fab Rear bumper, Ford 8.8 Rear Axle with 4.10's and Trac Lok Limit Slip, Dana 30 Front Axle with 4.10's and a Aussie Locker, Metalcloak Rear Upper Control Arms and Trackbar

Offline Cain

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Re: College Kid's TJ with 4 Pissed off Squirrels
« Reply #9 on: December 27, 2014, 08:40:19 AM »
I actually have a Savvy Gas tank skid Cain. I put it on this fall. The old one was really rusty and thin and barely holding on. I think I mentioned it in that first post. It's a 3/16 aluminum skid and survived the test of schoodic really well. I banged the stock one once and that was enough for me. That thing was crap
My tank skid was rusted pretty bad also so i pulled it and made one from 1/4" steel, I used the mounting tabs from the stock one to make remounting easier, do you have pics of how you fixed the rear C/A mounts?I plated mine with 3/16 then beefed up the mounts

Offline yamaha225

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Re: College Kid's TJ with 4 Pissed off Squirrels
« Reply #8 on: December 27, 2014, 08:22:52 AM »
I actually have a Savvy Gas tank skid Cain. I put it on this fall. The old one was really rusty and thin and barely holding on. I think I mentioned it in that first post. It's a 3/16 aluminum skid and survived the test of schoodic really well. I banged the stock one once and that was enough for me. That thing was crap
'97 TJ, 4 really angry squirrels under the hood, AX-5, 31 MT/R-K's, 44:1 crawl ratio, 8000 Smittybilt X2O winch, Sanden OBA, 2.5 inch RC spring lift, Custom Fab Rear bumper, Ford 8.8 Rear Axle with 4.10's and Trac Lok Limit Slip, Dana 30 Front Axle with 4.10's and a Aussie Locker, Metalcloak Rear Upper Control Arms and Trackbar

Offline Cain

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Re: College Kid's TJ with 4 Pissed off Squirrels
« Reply #7 on: December 27, 2014, 08:13:43 AM »
Looks good, while your working on the back beef up your gas tank skid, I have set mine down on many rocks and bent the tabs  it was a pita to get it off to fix.

Offline yamaha225

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Re: College Kid's TJ with 4 Pissed off Squirrels
« Reply #6 on: December 26, 2014, 04:39:19 PM »
Updated that last post with pics!
'97 TJ, 4 really angry squirrels under the hood, AX-5, 31 MT/R-K's, 44:1 crawl ratio, 8000 Smittybilt X2O winch, Sanden OBA, 2.5 inch RC spring lift, Custom Fab Rear bumper, Ford 8.8 Rear Axle with 4.10's and Trac Lok Limit Slip, Dana 30 Front Axle with 4.10's and a Aussie Locker, Metalcloak Rear Upper Control Arms and Trackbar

Offline yamaha225

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Re: College Kid's TJ with 4 Pissed off Squirrels
« Reply #5 on: December 26, 2014, 02:29:07 PM »
I definitely have the bug Bill! The latest with the jeep is this.

Had it out on Studmill when a bunch of us went shooting and another section of exhaust took a dump so I'm looking at solutions for that. Thinking I want to just start over and do it right.

Before I left for Christmas I got quite a bit done on my rear bumper. Got the mounting figured out. Not completed but the concept is figured out and sound.

I had to clamp it up there to see what it looked like. Pretty stoked with how it came out, and pretty happy with how close it is to the CAD model I made

In CAD

In Real Life


Also got a JB conversions SYE, an ARB winch cable dampener, and an in cab winch control kit. Excited to get back and install some of that.

SYE


Winch Dampener


In Cab Winch Control

Also designing a front bumper in CAD. So you will be seeing all of that, as well as the new 8.8, in a future episode of college kid jeeping. Super excited for 2015!

Here is the preliminary model of the front bumper. Not done yet but getting there
« Last Edit: December 26, 2014, 04:38:48 PM by yamaha225 »
'97 TJ, 4 really angry squirrels under the hood, AX-5, 31 MT/R-K's, 44:1 crawl ratio, 8000 Smittybilt X2O winch, Sanden OBA, 2.5 inch RC spring lift, Custom Fab Rear bumper, Ford 8.8 Rear Axle with 4.10's and Trac Lok Limit Slip, Dana 30 Front Axle with 4.10's and a Aussie Locker, Metalcloak Rear Upper Control Arms and Trackbar

Offline Lucifer

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Re: College Kid's TJ with 4 Pissed off Squirrels
« Reply #4 on: December 26, 2014, 10:47:34 AM »
AWESOME build thread.

Totally subscribed to this.

I see SOOOO much of my own experiences with Jeeping in your build thread.  Not identical things, but the levels of advancement.

Just the way you dabbled... then a little more.  Oh the top... wipers AND defrost? hells yes... then tires.  Oh such a perfect mistake, though you initially would have gotten some of the best snow-off-road tires.... but ah, the perfect mistake and the MTR's are mounted.

Then the "so I bought a sheet of steel and set about..."  awesome! 

It's like watching the progression of a life-consuming virus.  first he's got mild symptoms.  Now it's full blown "look at how I'm rebuilding this axle to mod my custom rig".

You've got the bug, dude.

So stoked for the 2015 season.
Don't know what that sound is?  Keep driving. She'll let you know in a minute if it's going to be an issue...

Offline woolyworm

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Re: College Kid's TJ with 4 Pissed off Squirrels
« Reply #3 on: December 20, 2014, 09:32:58 PM »
Nice!


Wooly
75CJ7, 72 AMC 304, T18, 45:1 crawl, chromo axles, warn hubs, 3" Black Diamond, 1/4" belly skid, front locker, other goodies, sweat ...

Offline yamaha225

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Re: College Kid's TJ with 4 Pissed off Squirrels
« Reply #2 on: December 20, 2014, 07:29:24 PM »
Played with the old girl a bit in the woods today and started working on expanding the trails. Getting excited for what we can do out there. Then started really buckling down on my 8.8 build. Got the rest of the brake components off. Pulled the dust shields and caliper brackets. Got that stuff painted then cut off the leaf perches and swaybar mounts. Overall pretty productive afternoon

[attachment deleted by admin]
'97 TJ, 4 really angry squirrels under the hood, AX-5, 31 MT/R-K's, 44:1 crawl ratio, 8000 Smittybilt X2O winch, Sanden OBA, 2.5 inch RC spring lift, Custom Fab Rear bumper, Ford 8.8 Rear Axle with 4.10's and Trac Lok Limit Slip, Dana 30 Front Axle with 4.10's and a Aussie Locker, Metalcloak Rear Upper Control Arms and Trackbar

Offline yamaha225

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College Kid's TJ with 4 Pissed off Squirrels
« Reply #1 on: November 13, 2014, 07:25:17 PM »
So I've been in the group for a few months now and I figured I should start a build thread. I thought I could catch the other members up with what I've done to it so far as well as provide myself a timeline for the future to look back on. This will certainly be the first of many jeeps to come. I have plans in my head for a CJ2A, LJ, and a FC with a 6bt as the tow rig.

Anyways about the current jeep. When I got my license Mom gave me her Honda Accord to drive. It had like 240,000 miles on it and was well worn. Great car, got awesome gas mileage and is crazy reliable. I drove it for the first year after I got my license and beat the crap out of it. As any of the men know boys aren't easy on vehicles right after they get their license. I took it through mud on dirt roads in the spring, got it stuck more than once, beat on it in the snow, drove it faster than I should have, and did more than one burnout. It took it all in stride and gave me zero issues. (Keep in mind it's a 5 speed and has the original clutch). Anyways it just wasn't what I wanted to drive but Mom said if I wanted a jeep I had to buy it myself. So I saved and saved some more. I almost bought a YJ but it needed some stuff so I decided to keep looking. (The honda is still going, mom and I share it, with 285,000 on it)

The end of the summer before my high school year of college I found my TJ. It was out in Fairfield and was owned by a guy who drove it back and forth to work. It had 106,000 on it with the 4 cyl 5 speed. I took it for a ride and it drove great, everything worked as it should. I did look for rust but not as carefully as I should have as we will see later on in the saga.

This is one of the first pictures I have of it, may have been the first time I had it topless



So I started driving the crap out of it. Topless and doorless as much as possible. Once it started to get cold I realized I didn't want to run the softtop all winter. Everyone who doesn't have a jeep thinks this is because softtops are cold. I've never had a problem with being cold but I wanted the hardtop for two reasons. First durability, I was worried about punching a hole in the softtop halfway through the winter. Second, the rear wiper and defrost. I think those two things are the best part of it. Being able to see out the rear window is great.

So I found one on craigslist at a local used car lot and went to pick it up. Luckily the Jeep originally came with a hardtop so all the wiring was there. (The previous owner kept it for his new jeep).

Next, I started figuring out what I thought was surface rust on the frame went a little deeper. I started poking around and didn't like what I saw. Back then I didn't know how to weld or fabricate yet so I had a relative who is an autobody guy "fix" it. In hindsight having that done was the worst thing I could have done. It was cheap though and got me through the winter. This was the outside of the frame after the "patch"



It got me through the winter but by the middle of the next summer when I needed another sticker I knew it wouldn't pass and I didn't want it to. This is why.



If you look close you'll see there wasn't a whole lot holding the upper control arm on. So I knew I needed to fix it.

I knew I didn't want anyone but me working on it again. I really didn't like what was done to "fix" the rust. So I bit the bullet and bought the full center frame section for each side from Autorust. Anyone who isn't familiar with them should look them up. It's an awesome product and makes fixing rust a lot easier. The section I bought goes from behind the front lower control arm back a little past the rear upper control arm. Basically you cut the lower half of the frame rail out and slide the piece on, then weld the top. My boss offered to let me do it at his shop on the lift so I took a week and worked on it after work. I cut and prepped everything and he welded it up.

Unfortunately as I was working from 7-5 and then working on the jeep from 5-11 for a week I only have one picture of it on the lift but you get the idea.



I also changed the u-joints in the front axle while it was there. They were absolutely shot.

Next, I started college. I knew I would need tires soon and decided to get them once I was at school. Sam's club had some good deals so I figured I could have them do it once I was nearby. I was originally planning on going with Goodyear Wrangler Duratracs but they were out of stock when I went to buy them so I said what the heck and bought (4) 31x10.50-15 Goodyear Wrangler MTR/K's. I absolutely love the tires so far. I currently have around 10,000 miles on them and they are wearing great.

Here is a pic right after I got them put on before I lifted it.



I then proceeded to have a blast with it at college

For Christmas that year I got a Smittybilt X2O which is the waterproof version of the XRC-8. That was one of the better mods I've done. So nice to not worry as much about getting stuck.

Also over that winter I replaced the front fenders. I had a friend with a Jeep in Connecticut who was putting metalcloaks on his Jeep and had rust free fenders to sell. I bought those from him and painted them with Rustoleum Truck bedliner and put them on.

Here are the old ones



Here are the new ones before paint



Here are the new ones after paint



As you can see the old ones were a little rusty

Also during that winter I put on a rough country 2.5 inch spring lift. I normally like to go with at least middle of the road parts not budget ones but for $300 I figured I couldn't go wrong. So far I've been happy with it.

Here is the required post lift flex picture



That gets us to this summer. Now I knew I would need to do some body work to get a sticker so I bought a half a sheet of 16 ga steel and went to town with my new Lincoln 140. I removed the rollbar and patched under the feet behind the front seats. I then bought the torque boxes from Quadratec that include the rear two middle body mounts and welded those in. Finally I put a small patch in the rearmost section of frame. I also dropped the gastank and ditched the super rusty stock shield for a super beefy aluminum Savvy GTS. I beat on the savvy skid pretty hard at Schoodic the other day and it only scuffed it. While the tank was out I did the 20 gallon tank mod. My jeep had the "15 gallon" tank however they are really the same tank. Jeep just decided to extend the vent and fill tubes about 6 inches on the 15 gallon to make the 20 gallon an option. So all you have to do if you have the 15 is pull the fuel pump, reach in, and cut the two tubes off so they are around 1 inch long and boom 20 gallon tank.

This brings us about to current time. I think the best thing I did for the Jeep was join the club. I'm having a blast and learning loads. For now I will leave you with some wheeling pictures.

My first ride with the club to PDK helping to right Bill's Jeep after the flop. Great way to break in the new guy!



Getting spotted over some rocks on top of Schoodic by Bill while Henry watches



Here she is playing in the snow the other day off of Studmill



Finally here she is all shined up after the Schoodic run



It has been a blast getting her this far and I have learned loads. I can't wait to see where the club and jeeps take me next.

Current future plans for this jeep are installing the Ford Explorer 8.8 with disk brakes, 4.10's, and limit slip in the rear that I have in my garage.
After that I want an ARB or OX for the front axle.

« Last Edit: November 13, 2014, 08:00:09 PM by yamaha225 »
'97 TJ, 4 really angry squirrels under the hood, AX-5, 31 MT/R-K's, 44:1 crawl ratio, 8000 Smittybilt X2O winch, Sanden OBA, 2.5 inch RC spring lift, Custom Fab Rear bumper, Ford 8.8 Rear Axle with 4.10's and Trac Lok Limit Slip, Dana 30 Front Axle with 4.10's and a Aussie Locker, Metalcloak Rear Upper Control Arms and Trackbar