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Old 08-12-2012, 08:15 PM   #71 (permalink)
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Thanks for the kind words MC. Can't wait to finish it
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Old 08-13-2012, 07:55 PM   #72 (permalink)
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Noticed one of my valve stems was almost torn completely off so I ordered some metal ones. Went by the shop after work and swapped out one set of tires for another to keep it mobile and taking the cool ones in to work tomorrow to have the stems changed out. After that I'm gonna do something similar to this for protection on the trail.

Just a short piece of pipe welded down so they don't get knocked off.
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Old 08-16-2012, 12:02 AM   #73 (permalink)
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Got my tires sorted out but that's the least of my worries. After installing the transfer case last night I realized that the driveshaft angle is way too extreme. The case also hits the crossmember we built a while back. We made it before the case was installed so meh. Here's a shot of the mods.

And with it installed.


The case was hitting in a few spots so the offending metal was removed and the crossmember was rebraced.

I also have started welding on my own. Never done it before but after a few practice beads on some scrap I think I have the hang of it.

I have a pic of the T-case in the jeep but am too tired to email it. Basically I can turn the rear axle up to meet the driveshaft which is retarded and gay or I can scoot the axle back and do the coil spring conversion. I chose the coil spring conversion.

The plan is to cut off the frame in front of the rear shckle and rebuild it with 4X2 rectangular tubing. To make this job easier the tub had to come off. We ordered the tubing and it should be here in 3-4 days. Hopefully sooner.

Couple shots after the body was removed...




While I am trying to get my rig back together my friend and I are trying to get his Blazer sorted out as well. The plan is to make the labor day trip together because of his wifes work schedule.

We're at 2.5 weeks out and counting. We'll need some luck to make the deadline but I am confident that we can get both vehicles knocked out and be hitting the rocks here shortly
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Old 08-21-2012, 01:12 AM   #74 (permalink)
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We spent the weekend working on the Blazer and got back to the jeep this evening. I'll post a more thorough update tomorrow but the frame rail tubing is in and the jeep will never be the same. No going back now
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Old 08-22-2012, 11:07 PM   #75 (permalink)
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In the above picture you can see how much dirt came out of the framerail so I wanted to pressure wash it out to prevent rust. Here we are a few minutes before dragging it outside.


Too bad it jumped off the chain we had it hooked to on the skid steer and crashed to the ground. The only damage was to the crossmember we built but we had a good laugh about it.

After straightening the crossmember we started cutting up the tubing we'd got for the new framerails. This was Monday night I think.

My buddy said he would weld them up for the next evening but I was surprised by a pic the next afternoon that made my day.

He spent about four hours squaring this all up, welding it, and grinding it smooth. He's a hell of a fabricator and this build wouldn't be where it's at without his help. Here's another shot of it from a different angle.

Makes me wish we'd have just built an entire frame. With about $200 for materials you could have a much better looking and stronger frame. This will be the foundation for my next one.
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Old 08-22-2012, 11:22 PM   #76 (permalink)
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Apparently photobucket is having some problems here in the last few days. Makes sense since I couldn't even log on there yesterday. Hopefully the pics show up soon.

In the meantime, I was given the name of a speed shop in a neighboring town that builds dirt track cars. They build everything for them including control arms which is what I was interested in. Tonight I went to the shop and mocked up where the axle tubes will be and measured up how long the arms will end up. I will be calling them tomorrow and am going to have them build the arms for my four link. It'll look sorta like this.

Except on the ends of my arms I'll have heim joints like these.

I don't have a left hand thread tap so I'm gonna order them longer than I need and have them do left hand thread on four of the ends and leave the rest alone. I'll figure the exact length and tap them for the right hand thread myself. You need both thread types for adjustment.

I'll also need a truss on the top of the axle to mount the upper arms. The center section of most axles is cast iron which can be hard to weld so you just build a bridge from one axle tube to the other so you can weld on steel. Sorta like this but my truss will be round tubing and I'm going to run my lower arms to the center crossmember to triangulate the suspension.



When you triangulate the four link it helps avoid the axle from shifting side to side and creating a rear steering effect similar to floorboarding a front wheel drive and it steering you into traffic or the curb

That's all I got for now. Hopefully my arms are done tomorrow and I can get back to it Friday heavily. I'm running out of time and it'll be a miracle if it get's done. Thanks for reading
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Old 08-26-2012, 10:44 PM   #77 (permalink)
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Well the dirt track speedshop couldn't get big enough tubing to make my arms The biggest they could find was 1.75 inch and it was 17 bucks a foot so I told them not to worry about it. There's a place called Rusty's offroad that makes arms for $189 a pair with bigger tubing and better joints on the ends. They take about a week to make them once you give them the measurements so I'm gonna go that route. Unfortunately I won't be able to make the trip next weekend.

Maybe it's a blessing in disguise because I've learned alot more about how to build a well performing four link in the mean time. It's alot more complicated than I thought.

I'm still going to try and finish the jeep as soon as possible though so after spending yesterday helping my friend sort out his steering and brakes it was back to the jeep today.

Here's the spring seats for the rear coils.

They were cut off a solid round block of steel and turned down on the lathe to size. The small one goes on the top of the axle and the big one goes over the bottom coil and a bolt threads through into the bottom one.

You can't see the small seat in this pic but it's under there.

Here we are leveling the seat on the axle before welding.

And here's a shot looking down through the coil. I really like this pic for some reason.

This is the upper spring seat bucket. It will be welded to the lowest part of the frame rail on the inside with a bolt running up through it. We'll probably use a similar mount type as we used on the lowers.

And here's the pieces that will be used as the axle truss. The upper control will mount on top of this once it's welded onto the axle.


I know it doesn't look like much progress but there was a ton of measuring, leveling, torching, grinding, and welding for this to happen. Tomorrow I hope to have the truss done and the control arm mount locations figured out and then it's on to ordering the arms Thanks for reading.
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Old 08-27-2012, 10:18 PM   #78 (permalink)
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I had pretty much given up last night on getting finished for this weekend but my buddy thinks we still have enough time

So I called the Rustys place to see how long in fact we'd be looking on getting the arms done once they had the lengths. Luckily for me, they only have one other custom job going on right now and there's no rush on it. They said they can build the arms tomorrow and ship them Wednesday 2nd day air to me for 80 bucks.

I went to the shop right after work and we got to figuring out the lengths. You don't want your upper arms to be less than %70 or more than %80 the length of your lowers. Mine measured out at %75 so I'm good to go with no compromises

Just got a couple pics. Forgot to take some after the gussets were welded on to the upper spring perches but maybe tomorrow.

And another angle. You can see the truss on the top of the axle I was talking about earlier. I went ahead with the square tubing since I don't have a bender for the round tube I wanted to use It should be fine either way.

Once all the welding on the crossmember is done and all the control arm mounts are on we'll set the tub down and start to piece it back together and hope everything is alright once the arms show up. They are one of the most important pieces on this and they'll be one of the last things we'll get
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Old 09-12-2012, 01:15 AM   #79 (permalink)
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Well, as anyone following this thread can guess, I was unable to finish the Jeep in time for the trip. On the Thursday before the holiday we got the body back on and started reassembly but when it came time to put the steering linkage back together the pitman arm had too much of a drop. The only other pitman I had was a different type of spline so I called it off. Basically, even if I'd had the steering and the rear suspension done it would have still been an overnight race to finish it so I bowed out. Makes me wish I hadn't spent $130 bucks on two day freight on the control arms After I threw in the towel we worked on my buddies rig and shored up a few things.

Initially I wasn't even going to go but he said "hell, just drive your Suburban down there. If it breaks we'll just go back down there and trailer it home." So that's what I did

The 'burb is a 1987 3/4 ton with an injected 350 and 3.73 gears. It rides way rough and is plenty ugly but it ran like a top on the way down, was much more adept offroad than I thought it would be, and drove the whole way home with no problem other than the rear brakes making a little noise(got some mud in the shoes I think). I never even had to put it in low range, couldn't believe how well it did.

Pic of the burb.


Within a day I had our hosts shooting Yukon Jack and had a great time. Both couples had a couple somewhat built Jeeps and we did more trails than anything but it was a blast. I had my dog, his best friend, and my buddies other dog who hates the other two in the back of the burb through all the trails. I've never seen them happier.

Only bad thing was my phone died and I couldn't get any pics I also slept in a camper for the first time. Air conditioning ain't all that bad come to find out. There was a burn ban on anyways so sleeping outside wouldn't have been the same.

So after spending a three day weekend camping and wheeling we took a week off from turning wrenches. We were both sorta burned out by the last month and caught up with family and friends for a while. First time we made it back to the shop was last Sunday and we didn't do much.

My phone had been screwing up so I wasn't taking pics but I've got the steering gear mounted in another spot, got a new pitman that will work, and rerouted the steering lines(not shown in these pics).

and the linkage hooked back up

Here's the front end of the arms I had built. The other end is a fixed bushing.


When we went to set the body on I just cut the metal out of the way. It will be a straight cut back from the top of the wheel opening to the back on the final cut. Here's how the Jeep looked the Thursday before the holiday.


I managed to burn up the sawzall on the passenger side and torched the far side. It was ugly and I'm not gonna show that pic

Tonight I torched off the old shitty truss, grinding the axle smooth again(bout 45 minutes of grinding), made a new and much better truss, welded it on, and began remeasuring for the control arms. Gonna make the brackets for them in the next couple days. Put the column back in, added length to the steering shaft so it'd reach the gear, and took off the taillights, they'll be replaced by smooth mount ones.

Lenghty post that's short on pics but since my phone is working again I'll post up some more in the next few days. As always, thanks for reading
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Old 09-13-2012, 12:00 AM   #80 (permalink)
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Got to the shop a little after 6:00 this evening and began making the mounting tabs for the control arms. The metal that we used was actually solid plate that was cut off a train repair car my buddy got somewhere. He torched out a big square of it, cut it into 2 inch strips and then 3.5 inch long sections if I remember right.

I should have got a pic of this but he trimmed them to the exact width with a cutter I don't recall the name of on the bridgeport and then I used a router type bit to make a uniform, rounded edge on one end.

Rounding the edges took about 2 hours since you can't take much off and each pass takes a few minutes. After this was done I went about drilling the holes in the tabs.

This was taking a while too until I started drilling through more than one at a time. After drilling I tossed the tabs into a metal can and put them in the hot tank to remove the paint.

While I was drilling my buddy welded the steering gear bracket to the frame. I didn't get a picture of this but will later. When I put the winch plate back on I'll drill some holes that I can put bolts through to secure the gear from the topside as well. Should be stronger than factory.

Here's a picture of the new truss. It looks a thousand times better and will be much stronger too.
Not the best pic

The piece hanging off the side was used to center the upper arms in relation to the frame. The CJ Jeeps have an offset rear axle so something had to be done. If you look close you can see the red V on top of the truss that is actually the center point.

Not sure if I'll work on it tomorrow or not but there are a few odds and ends pieces I need to locate in the meantime. I broke both of the brake lines going into the master cylinder while trying to install the steering column, a copper line kit for the oil sending unit, and 1/2 inch fine thread bolts to mount the control arms. I need to figure out something on the gauges, start thinking about getting a sander so I can start on preparing the body for a fresh white coat of paint, and I want to put something else on the side of the hood besides Renegade. Maybe YukonJake if I can find somewhere that can make it

Just rambling now....Thanks for reading and I'll post more when I have something
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