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Thread: The OT thread V1

  1. #3841
    Insider
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    Uh yes please post your Jeep info

    Assuming the RS vs. R decision was predicated on everyday livability
    "So you've done this before?"
    "Oh, hell no. But I think it's gonna work."

  2. #3842
    Insider imped4now's Avatar
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    Unfortunately, due to the time period I was doing all of this (2009-2015), I used Photobucket. I have a few hundred pictures on there but the site is so incredibly slow that it would probably take me 4 hours just to post up what I want to post up. I'll work on it....I wish I could just do a mass upload of all of my PB pictures to another host but it doesn't look like that's possible either. Apologies for the crappy phone I had back then, as well. Pictures got better with time. So, here are just a couple:

    Back when I was working on fab'ing up a rear frame to support the new axle location (approx. 8" further back), coil springs and shocks. That was the first version of my rear 4 link suspension.


    Working on a few things here:
    1) The "highline" front fenders that raise the hood line up 3" - that means the hood must be cut down. This is how you stay low to maintain a nice center of gravity while giving the tires more room. Do it right and you'll have a low Jeep on big tires with 10-12" of suspension travel. Tall Jeeps (and vehicles in general) suck - the suspension behavior goes out the window once link angles get too steep, steering goes to hell thanks to steep angles, handling is poor, and many other things I won't delve into. If you're going to build an offroad vehicle *properly*, height is not the answer. Most Jeep owners don't understand this.

    2) The 6061 rocker panels and rear corner armor are installed here - the slider (contact) portion of the rocker guards are chromoly and are obviously separate from the aluminum base. Due to the extended wheelbase, I purchased the rocker guards in LJ (TJ Unlimited) length and the corners in uncut form so that I could create my own wheel wells once I had everything where I wanted it. Properly designed, supported and fastened aluminum armor like this protects the tub while being much, much lighter than its steel counterparts. Weight reduction (or adding as little as possible) was a big part of this build.

    3) I was doing some cage work at this time, as well as still working on the rear frame design.



    Wheel wells cut, rocker guards cut down to proper length, front fenders cleaned up


    Probably the fifth revision of trying to figure out what to do with the rear of the frame and "bumper." I had a lightbulb moment and this happened. I stuck with it.


    Rear frame mostly done. You can see the rear sway bar arm and link. I messed around with arm length and bar stiffness once getting it back on the road. The sway bar mounts I made were really slick as well. I'll see if I can find a picture. There are also a couple of slick crossmembers spanning the width and frame tie-ins that I don't have pictures of. It was robust and not any heavier than it needed to be.


    After almost 8 months of working, this was the first time I sat it down on all 4s to check ride height and other things:


    It was still on little axles (turds polished to the max) - but the frame and basis for the suspension was in place. Next up, axles to handle those tires....
    OlllllllO

  3. #3843
    Insider imped4now's Avatar
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    I wheeled the above Jeep (with so many details left out) for a couple years before I decided to undertake another 3 month build on these axles. These are JK Rubicon Dana 44 (front HP) axles that were involved in a fire that I managed to pick up for $600, considerably less than they normally go for. And all I needed was the housings. I didn't need the factory electronic locking diffs with 4.10 gears, shafts, knuckles, brackets, nothing. I tore them down to bare housings, cut the brackets off, and even cut the tubes off the front. The plan for the axles was - 35 spline shafts and ARB locking diffs front and rear, 5.38 gears and simple, reliable bracketry. I had also planned the steering out for two years and wanted to make it the crown jewel. FYI, JK axles are 5" wider so it allowed me to open up a bunch of space since the previous axles were really, really tight and I had to run 3" of backspacing to get the tires out of the suspension. With these axles, I was able to run 4.5" of backspacing (much better for ball joint and unit bearing life, not to mention steering quality) while still being 2" wider overall. Bueno.

    I got to the rear first since it's the easiest. I drew up a truss from 1/2" steel plate, cut it out and bent it up. Coil/bump stop mounts tacked on, along with the upper and lower link mounts and voila. The link mount placement and link angle/length determines suspension behavior. I did a couple revisions to the rear vs the previous axle by lowering the upper link mounts about an inch and the lowers by a hair. I wanted a little more squat than I had previously, as the rear was so neutral that it sometimes had a tendency to bounce when loaded up when attempting to climb a steep rock wall. A little squat on flat ground (by reducing rear vertical separation) generally yields improved climbing ability. If you can line up to a steep wall, floor it and get no bounce (either the tires spin or hook up, but either way no bounce) then you've nailed it. This nailed it. I've got some Excel graphs and drawings of the suspension numbers somewhere.


    The front housing - factory JK axles have 2.5" tubes and only 6* of separation between the caster and pinion axes. With my flat belly, my transfer case is pushed up considerably and requires the pinion to be tilted up at about 5*, leaving me at a very undesirable 1* of positive caster which just won't cut it. I wanted to knock out a couple birds with one stone here so I cut the tubes off and performed the following work - 3" DOM tubes while maintaining the factory tubes to wind up with 1/2" wall thickness. Additionally, it freed up the outer C's (knuckles) so that I could set them however I please. I increased the DOS to 11* so that I could have my pinion AND caster angles where I wanted them.










    Axle tacked up, ball joints pressed, Reid knuckles installed, inner C gussets tacked on, pitman arm modified (taper size and bend profile), and drag link roughed in:


    Track bar frame-side mount took a lot of work to get where I wanted it:


    Track bar axle side mount is where most people go wrong - they mount it off the tube and consequently are forced to run a much longer drag link. In an ideal world, the drag link and track bar are the exact same lengths and run parallel with each other so that as the axle moves vertically, those two links scribe identical arcs. I was not willing to compromise and took a different approach. This DOM tube is the track bar mount and I set it inside the inner C gusset. Getting this positioning right took more work than I care to detail.


    But the results were steering porn - the drag link and track bar are within 0.1* at ride height and 1/8" in length. It's ideal.


    Everything on the front burned in. This was the heaviest axle I've ever picked up. If you're going to add weight then down low is a good place to do it.


    Front frame notch to allow the drag link and track bar to tuck into. I wanted 6" of up travel and wasn't willing to compromise on that.


    Yummy:


    About done:


    Dat ass:


    Gassing up the cell:


    A great stance - other things not mentioned are I built a set of aluminum control arms with RH/LH threaded ends for nice, easy adjustment while bolted up, the stainless steel tub rails (and sandwich plates on the inside of the tub) at the top of the rear corners that create a very strong, rigid surface to rub/slam against trees/rocks. A bent tub was not something I wanted. The flat belly with standalone crossmember and 3/8" aluminum skid plate, 20 gallon aluminum fuel cell behind the PRP seats.....and I'm missing plenty of other stuff.


    The last time I gassed it up before selling it:



    The last time wheeling it while showing my buddy the ropes in his stock JK:




    Last edited by imped4now; 06-03-2019 at 02:55 PM.
    OlllllllO

  4. #3844
    Insider Pump Scout's Avatar
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    Apr 2012
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    Wisconsin Rapids, WI, USA
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    I don't think we've had a JL in yet... maybe I'll have to pop over to one of the Jeep dealers and snag a test drive.

    Actually, I think one of the kids that works at the one a town over (incidentally, the one I worked at for like 8 days) came over and test drove a Mustang. Maybe with the intention of buying one eventually, maybe poking around for a different job. Heck, that's somewhat how I wound up where I am.

  5. #3845
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    really great stuff, imped
    "So you've done this before?"
    "Oh, hell no. But I think it's gonna work."

  6. #3846
    Insider imped4now's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lurker27 View Post
    really great stuff, imped
    Thanks.

    I miss her but the guy had followed the build for years, knew the Jeep inside and out, and gave me an offer I couldn't refuse. He's having fun with it down in KY now. I built it as the "anti-trailer queen", something that could be driven comfortably (relatively) wherever you wanted, *reliably* wheeled all day/week, and driven home again *reliably*. I did just that between IN, MI, TN and KY, but always dreamed of really putting it to the test in Colorado. I never got the chance to do that so I hope he does.
    OlllllllO

  7. #3847
    gotta love that the GTE-AM winning and best finishing GTE-Pro Ford GTs are DQed for technical violations at le mans.

    fucking good riddance to a cheating car, a cheating team, and an insult to sports car racing fans.

    should have banned them from the start in 2016, with there stupid sandbagging stunt. left like they came in ... cheating.
    Last edited by cockerpunk; Yesterday at 04:49 PM.
    social conservatism: the mortal fear that someone, somewhere, might be having fun.

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