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Old 08-19-2010, 02:09 PM   #1
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Something Different

Hello from Wisconsin!

I've been lurking on this site for a long time, and finally have something to contribute.

Thanks to everyone for offering useful advice on keeping our rigs running and looking good.

Here's our story on our "different" Jeep and how it got to be the way it is today.

When I met my fiance, she had a 97 TJ sitting next to the garage with a bad transmission. Being a previous Jeep owner, it was nice to see a Jeep, but to have it rotting away and not be used during these Wisconsin winters was a bummer.

In late 2008 my fiance had the transmission rebuilt and it was road ready. We had a mechanically solid TJ with a sad looking body.

It was time to "freshen" things up a bit. What started as some simple body work and a paint job and some minor modifications snowballed into something never done to a Jeep. Needless to say, the results were better than ever expected, and we have a roadworthy Jeep that definitely turns heads.

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Old 08-19-2010, 02:12 PM   #2
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Welcome.. pic's of the something different jeep.

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Old 08-19-2010, 02:13 PM   #3
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Welcome, post up some pics of your Jeep, we love pics.
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Old 08-19-2010, 03:23 PM   #4
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Trail seasoned! lol Welcome to the forum.
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Old 08-19-2010, 03:39 PM   #5
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As you can see, occasional trail riding and Wisconsin winters left our TJ in rough shape.

We knocked out the rust and shaved back to clean metal and welded in filler metal.













bro you got my wheels
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Old 08-19-2010, 03:40 PM   #6
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Can't wait to see the finished pics!


and Welcome!
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Old 08-19-2010, 03:49 PM   #7
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As you can see, occasional trail riding and Wisconsin winters left our TJ in rough shape.

We knocked out the rust and shaved back to clean metal and welded in filler metal.














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Old 08-19-2010, 04:00 PM   #8
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This is where things started getting strange

Once we had the holes filled and sanded, the project took a strange turn.

An idea was born after a lot of staring and head scratching.




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Old 08-20-2010, 08:29 AM   #9
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Moving Forward

So we had an idea. We started with cardboard templates and chalk. We sketched out ideas and even turned to the toy store for ideas. We were going to turn the Jeep into a dinosaur.

As strange as it sounded, the idea was solid. The lines were there. It could work.






Our Mascot Dino
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Old 08-20-2010, 08:35 AM   #10
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Leaps & Bounds

It was the dead of winter with little else to do. Cabin fever had set in and the only refuge was my father in-laws heated garage. It got to the point where we were looking forward to continuing work on the Jeep.

Our small steps turned into leaps and bounds and the shape was finally becoming clear.




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Old 08-20-2010, 08:38 AM   #11
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so wait.. its not going to be the stay puff marshmellow man?
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Old 08-20-2010, 08:51 AM   #12
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that is pretty wicked. Does it have a tail?

I think some teeth on the side would also look bad ass.
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Old 08-20-2010, 09:08 AM   #13
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Interior

While the exterior was coming together nicely, we needed to do something with the interior as well.

The stock Jeep carpeting was moldy from a leak in a previous soft top. It actually deteriorated as we pulled it out. It was much easier to suck the carpet out with a shop vac than trying to get the garbage men to take it away.

The floor boards looked great, and the tub was solid, but we needed something to go with the theme.

It had to be rugged, weather resistant, and easy to work with.

It hit me like a bolt of lightening.

ASTROTURF!

In addition to the Astroturf, we managed to get the KC's on the light bar wired up to aircraft toggle switches, 6x9 speakers with a 200 watt amp on a trunk speaker bar (also covered in Astroturf), and a big bone for Dino on the "Oh SH!T" bar.







Dino approves...
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Old 08-20-2010, 10:53 AM   #14
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Meanwhile on the outside...

The custom bent and welded sheet metal work was done. The interior was coming together.

We were getting closer, but there was a new deadline. We had to get the Jeepasaurus on the road by May 1. It was mid February and winter still wasn't letting up. Thankfully we had the Jeep to keep us going.

We coated the sheet metal in a thin coat of Bondo to allow molding and shaping. We were going for a more organic look, so the blocky industrial metal look wasn't going to cut it.





About 20 hours of sanding later and a little primer...











Now it's time to think about paint.
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Old 08-20-2010, 11:04 AM   #15
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That is awesome! Nice job.
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Old 08-20-2010, 11:09 AM   #16
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pretty cool. and I thought my jeep had rust..wow
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Old 08-20-2010, 11:40 AM   #17
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The End is Near

Wanting to stay true to Mopar, we wanted to pick a color that was a little more agressive but still from the Mopar lineup.

It doesn't seem like Mopar has a lot of paint colors appropriate for a Dinosaur TJ that isn't common place. There's the forest green. BLAH! There's rescue green metallic. NOPE! A color never before seen on a Jeep.

Neither of them really pop out at you. We were hoping for something a little more "IN YOUR FACE."

Then, there's the Barracuda. And Dodge is putting a Metallic Barracuda green on some of the newer Challengers.

But how would it look?


Not too shabby.









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Old 08-20-2010, 01:08 PM   #18
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that is pretty wicked. Does it have a tail?

I think some teeth on the side would also look bad ass.
We were trying to figure out a tail, but the local authorities may have a problem with it. The thought was to do something with the spare tire mount that could be removed for storage and highway travel.

The final product does have teeth on the sides, and the teeth on the front are sheet metal. I get bit every time I pop the hood.
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Old 08-20-2010, 01:11 PM   #19
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This jeep is AWESOME.
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Old 08-20-2010, 01:20 PM   #20
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Hello back from WI!!! Where are you located? Anywhere close to Milwaukee? If so, some friends of mine are prolly going wheeling this weekend. PM me!!

As for the Jeep, I can't wait to get off my work comp and see these pics!
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Old 08-20-2010, 01:26 PM   #21
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Next Up

With things progressing at a real good rate, we decided to name the Jeep. It was unanimously voted that it would be the Jeepasaurus.

We had a printer make some decals that were just like really big bumper stickers. We played around with a few designs, but settled on the one above.

Not sure if Spielberg has any problems with this. We do have a backup plan just in case.


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Old 08-20-2010, 01:34 PM   #22
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I think you should make the tail curled upward and when you have a stupid tailgater not leaving you alone, just have the tail uncoil right onto their car. The authorities might have a problem with that but I think it would be worth it just to try it once.

To make it even more intimidating(it already is but for that extra little bit) make the pupils glow in the dark. It will freak out people so much at night.

Now I am sure that you guys are going to change the current horn in the jeep to a tremendous roar.(at least I hope so)

These are just some ideas that popped into my head as I was looking at your dinojeep
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Old 08-20-2010, 01:42 PM   #23
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More

Just when you thought all the taping sanding and painting was done. It was time to do the mouth. The metal teeth on the front just wouldn't be enough.

First we covered and taped off the majority of the Jeep. We outlined the area that would be painted red and covered the immediate areas around that.

We also shot the eyeballs with high gloss yellow. More on that to come.









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Old 08-20-2010, 01:56 PM   #24
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I think you should make the tail curled upward and when you have a stupid tailgater not leaving you alone, just have the tail uncoil right onto their car. The authorities might have a problem with that but I think it would be worth it just to try it once.

To make it even more intimidating(it already is but for that extra little bit) make the pupils glow in the dark. It will freak out people so much at night.

Now I am sure that you guys are going to change the current horn in the jeep to a tremendous roar.(at least I hope so)

These are just some ideas that popped into my head as I was looking at your dinojeep
We played around with a few ideas with the tail, but nothing seemed right. We even considered kite fabric with a small fan blowing to keep it straight.

We do have the eyes lit up now with 2 sets of yellow LED strip lights inside the top of each eye lid. The effect is incredible at night. I'll get those pictures posted soon.

As for the roars, we got those too. We're currently using the in-dash CD player with 12 sound effects in a loop, but I've been thinking about an embedded MP3 controller with a single button to push to play the effects through twin PA horns or waterproof boat speakers mounted in the engine compartment pointed back towards the front wheel wells.

The work is never done.
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Old 08-20-2010, 02:05 PM   #25
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Still Going

We weren't happy with the front fender flares being red, so we shot them with high gloss black. It was also time to make sure the Jeepasaurus didn't look geriatric and give him some side teeth.

My father-in-law taped each tooth freehand and painted them a high gloss white to match the high gloss red under them. I can't even imagine the patience and time it took him to do this. As you can see, the results were spectacular.



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Old 08-20-2010, 02:23 PM   #26
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Details

We wanted to do something to accent the mouth, nose and eye details, but couldn't figure out how to approach this.

None of us knew how to air brush, and I attempted and failed miserably.

My father-in-law decided it was time someone knew how to airbrush, so he took some classes and upgraded his equipment.

We also gave our front teeth a blast of the same high gloss white we made painted the side teeth with and painted and mounted the headlight rings.

We also got the pupil taped and painted along with the side portion of the eye.



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Old 08-20-2010, 04:40 PM   #27
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that is so cool!!!!

i really like what you have done with it, definitely unique.

are you gona lift it and kinda make it look like a big t-rex?
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Old 08-20-2010, 10:56 PM   #28
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I showed my grandson this frame by frame explaining what you were doing,when we got to where the front is all taped off for paint he laughs and says that won't ever stay on!!!LOL.Kept going and watched his eyes bug out when we got to the final shot.Now he wants me to do that to mine.When you get this completed,I'm saving a picture to my computer,he wants a pic of it for his bedroom!
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Old 08-20-2010, 11:06 PM   #29
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Awesome work bud, Keep it up.
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Old 08-20-2010, 11:15 PM   #30
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I'm fairly sure that's the coolest thing I've seen in my entire life...

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