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Old 10-03-2012, 12:14 PM   #31
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Uuuhhhhh so what happened to this build??
Still working. Installing a OME 2.5" lift. I need more free time.

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Old 10-03-2012, 12:35 PM   #32
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Keep us posted, I'm VERY interested in doing this later down the road after I finally buy a Jeep. I was looking at buying an LJ but couldn't drop that much cash so this really caught my eye.
Are there really any downsides to doing this? I know that you're cutting and then welding the frame together but will that weaken the frame? That's really my only worry...

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Old 10-03-2012, 03:38 PM   #33
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Keep us posted, I'm VERY interested in doing this later down the road after I finally buy a Jeep. I was looking at buying an LJ but couldn't drop that much cash so this really caught my eye.
Are there really any downsides to doing this? I know that you're cutting and then welding the frame together but will that weaken the frame? That's really my only worry...
I think the frame is much stronger than stock as I have it. So far, the challenge is putting it together withing an acceptable tolerance. You see how I have the back corner off by 1/2". The more I think about, the more I am inclined to live with this and hope that when everything is bolted together, it will line up like it is supposed to.

What is keeping me from finishing this project (besides the lack of free time) is all the other extra stuff I want to do that just happens to be easier when half of the tub is off. Stuff like a new transmission crossmember, SYE, relocating coils, custom rear trackbar bracket, exhaust and cat upgrades, new control arms, etc. This will be a whole new vehicle when I am done with it.
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Old 11-24-2012, 11:40 AM   #34
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still great fabrication man it will be nice when its done!
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Old 12-29-2012, 11:59 PM   #35
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I have been out for a while, so I am overdue for some updates.

While I was waiting on parts for my upgraded suspension/drivetrain set up, I took the opportunity to mock up the floor sheet metal section out of cardboard. It will be a single 15” long piece spanning the width of the tub.



Using the cardboard mockup as a template, I proceeded to cut out the floor section from 18 gauge sheet metal. Note that I added some fold tabs to be spot welded during assembly later on.

I have had it in storage for so long that some surface rust has set in. I spent a good amount of time cleaning that out with a rust treatment agent.



Once the part had been sufficiently cleaned, I took it outside and sprayed it with some self etching primer to protect it from any more rusting.

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Old 12-30-2012, 12:07 AM   #36
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At this point, the parts I needed to proceed had arrived:
- Savvy aluminum rear upper and lower control arms
- Savvy low profile underarmor aluminum skid plate
- JB SYE kit
- AEV low profile transmission mount kit

I have also installed a 2.5” Old Man Emu coil springs and shock absorbers to the front wheels. I have not done the rear axle as I first want to get my SYE/CV drive shaft combo in while in the tummy tucked location, then I can finally dial in the rear pinion angle with the rear adjustable upper control arms.



I am fabricating my own custom transmission crossmember from some 3/16” thick, 1” x 2” rectangular tube. It will mate up to the Savvy aluminum skid plate allowing for easy maintenance access when the skid plate is removed. Motor vibration will be taken out by the AEV isolator pads tied to the crossmember. I have a basic idea for how all this will work but I need to move things around so that I can produce a proper cardboard mockup.

I chose not to go with the Savvy crossmember as I wanted to weld the bolt tabs to the interior faces of my frame. Also, I think can come up with something that will fit my particular setup better than the Savvy design. The design of the Savvy aluminum skid plate on the other hand is just perfect and I would be hard pressed to try and fab something like that on my own. Hats off to them!



Among the space saving modifications I am making is the replacement of the original, rusty factory cat. You can see it next to the aftermarket replacement on the following picture. Note the lower profile of the aftermarket cat. Every little bit of space is going to count.

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Old 12-30-2012, 12:12 AM   #37
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Old 01-03-2013, 11:34 PM   #38
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Haha! I just can't let things be. Hopefully I can stop messing with my Jeep long enough to drive it.
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Old 01-15-2013, 03:53 PM   #39
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keep the updates coming
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Old 01-15-2013, 05:30 PM   #40
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keep the updates coming
I am working on the new crossmember to go with the Savvy skid plate. But you are right, I need to get off my arse and post some updates.
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Old 01-15-2013, 05:52 PM   #41
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And pics!
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Old 02-12-2013, 12:07 PM   #42
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Very nice job! I currently have an LJ and was looking to add a few inches to mine! I know it's an LJ its already long enough! However I have 4 kids that love to go wheeling with me and would love to have a custom Jeep. I was thinking of picking up and extra tub and adding another set of doors! Who knows. I did have one question that I have not see so far and that is what about stretching or extending the soft top, I always wondered about that. Also For my application or idea would it be better just to extend my body aft of the rear wheels? So to jack your thread! And I have subscribed.
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Old 02-14-2013, 09:26 AM   #43
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Very cool build! Jealous!!
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Old 03-08-2013, 06:23 PM   #44
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Chop,

Where did you get that aftermarket CAT and down pipe?
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Old 04-30-2013, 10:17 PM   #45
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Very cool! Been wanting to do something like this to my YJ
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Old 05-05-2013, 10:24 PM   #46
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Good job so far! I turned my CJ-5 into a 6 last year. Stretches are very time consuming projects and it is VERY difficult to get everything lined back up and straight after you cut the frame and the tub. I commend you for attempting the project with the tub still on the frame. With my first attempt I ended up with the rear right corner being a half inch higher than the other four corners. I thought I could live with it, but it eventually drove me nuts and I pulled the whole jeep apart and rebuilt the frame a second time to fix it.

Good job and keep us updated with progress!
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Old 05-09-2013, 06:21 PM   #47
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Chop,

Where did you get that aftermarket CAT and down pipe?
Sorry for the late reply. Been really busy at work.

I got mine from Quadratec, it is the Magnaflow cat:

Magnaflow 23227 - MAGNAFLOW Performance 49 State Direct Fit Catalytic Converter for 97-99 Jeep® Wrangler TJ with 4.0L Engine - Quadratec

Be warned, that the flange holes near the header were spaced farther out than the factory flange holes. I had to drill them out to make it fit. I also reused the factory gasket.
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Old 05-25-2013, 03:20 PM   #48
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Have a few questions for you Chop110. Do you think it would of been easier to cut the tub in a straight line just a little further back than where you did? Maybe just in the beginning of the wheel wells and then bolt on body armor could be used so the arch in the wheel well wouldn't have to be fabricated? I hope I'm explaining what I have in my mind correctly. I'm going through the "in my mind" stage right now and I want to have a my ideas ready. I have been looking at an LJ at my local dealer but like you I don't know if I can't justify taking such a loss on my jeep and paying such a price for a 10 year old LJ. Thanks for any insight you or anyone else might have.
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Old 07-30-2013, 09:48 PM   #49
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Well, I guess I am way overdue for an update...

Before I can finish the body work, I need to completely rehaul my drive train. I am currently working on a custom crossmember to go with my Savvy aluminum skid. For vibration isolation, I have chosen to go with AEV's excellent transmission isolation kit from their tummy tucker. The folks at AEV were nice enough to sell it to me by itself.



The isolation kit sits on a 1/4" thick plate which will be welded to a 1" deep by 3" wide box crossmember angled to match skid slopes.







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Old 07-30-2013, 09:48 PM   #50
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Time for painting...



Next is the fabrication of the connection padeyes which will be welded to the interiors of the frame. By previously fitting the skid and interior connection rails underneath the Jeep, I was able to mark the crossmember location on the aluminum skid plate. The passenger side bracket will be welded on the rail while everything sits on a welding table as shown.





The 3/16" plate may be on the thin side when it comes bolt tear out stresses, so I am welding on some additional reinforcement plates on the outside faces.



The driver's side will be fitted and welded in place, while under the Jeep. This is necessary to make sure the bolt holes align.

More to come!
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Old 07-30-2013, 09:55 PM   #51
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Have a few questions for you Chop110. Do you think it would of been easier to cut the tub in a straight line just a little further back than where you did? Maybe just in the beginning of the wheel wells and then bolt on body armor could be used so the arch in the wheel well wouldn't have to be fabricated? I hope I'm explaining what I have in my mind correctly. I'm going through the "in my mind" stage right now and I want to have a my ideas ready. I have been looking at an LJ at my local dealer but like you I don't know if I can't justify taking such a loss on my jeep and paying such a price for a 10 year old LJ. Thanks for any insight you or anyone else might have.
There are many ways to skin a cat, so they say. The two guys on these forums who inspired me to do my own TJ-6 both used body armor panels.
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Old 08-12-2013, 03:10 PM   #52
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Very interested to see this completed...
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Old 09-01-2013, 06:45 PM   #53
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I am overdue for updates, so here we go…

In the interim, I have installed my fabricated custom crossmember to go with the Savvy aluminum skid.



With the skid plate on...



If you are interested, a complete build and design description of the crossmember can be found here (Yes, I know I botched the thread title):

My custom 42RE crossmember for the Savvy skid - JeepForum.com
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Old 09-01-2013, 11:17 PM   #54
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I am chomping at the bit to get back to the actual TJ-6 body stretch, but several things must happen before then...

... Such as axle work! While I was busy with the crossmember, a long awaited component finally arrived. G2 really knows how to put together a Dana44:




I will be outboarding the shocks and shifting back the upper spring perches/buckets. I used a grinder and a dremel with a cut wheel to remove them from the rear frame arches.



Whacked off upper coil buckets. Need some serious cleaning...

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Old 09-03-2013, 09:24 AM   #55
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Amazing work!!!!
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Old 09-03-2013, 09:30 AM   #56
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Very nice work!
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Old 11-02-2013, 04:55 PM   #57
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More progress!

Upper coil perches relocated! Bump stops really line up better.



I also took some time to reverse the rear calipers to make more room for the outboarded lower shock mounts.
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Old 11-02-2013, 04:56 PM   #58
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And now comes a little work with Admiral Trackbar (It's a track! ...bar)

I wanted an adjustable rear track bar with an angled relocation bracket for the different pinion angle of my SYE equipped axle. I also wanted a johnny joint at the axle end of the track bar. However, I did not want to pay +$300 for a Currie setup, which woul have been my next choice. I chose to modify my existing rear track bar as follows:

Welded two halves of a 1/8" thick tube as a sleeve on the factory track bar. I also welded the halves longitudinally along the edges, not just the ends. Ground everything smooth...



Welded 1/4" thick tube sleeve over the new 1/8" material so that a 1 1/4" diameter welded bung would fit in the bigger tube as shown below. Note the setup was sized for a johhny joint.



Finished product next to the original. Painting is next.



Johnny joint = $50
Welded bung = $35
Misc steel tubing = $30
Total comes out to $115. Saved myself around $200. Yay me.
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Old 11-02-2013, 04:58 PM   #59
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I fabricated my trackbar mount from scrap 2 x 3 x 3/16" tube I had from my crossmember build...



Here is the bracket welded in place with the track bar attached, ready for clearance testing.


At full bump, the top of the track barely touches the frame crossmember. It should be noted that I have 4" of bumpstops for my rear coils.



If I had an acetalyne torch, I would have heated the rod so I could have bended it a little and thus to improve clearance (Like Unlimited04 did on his setup... incidentally, I got the idea from him). This will be ok for now, I suppose.

Check out the reversed brake calipers courtesy of Mr. Blaine's kit.
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Old 11-11-2013, 06:16 PM   #60
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Nice build...definitely inspired me to chop mine in half!

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