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Old 03-09-2012, 05:12 PM   #31
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Speachless!!! Awesome, awesome work!!! Have fun on your trip!!!


-Danielle

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Old 03-09-2012, 05:28 PM   #32
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Suddenly my budget boost install doesnt seem so hard, think ill try to do it myself and save the shop install fees......awsome skills bro...good job....mad skills just mad.

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Old 03-09-2012, 05:34 PM   #33
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Something tells me you won't be on here that much seeking advice!!

Excellent work!
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Old 03-09-2012, 09:14 PM   #34
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Originally Posted by Arsonman View Post
Good god man, here I sit thinking if I could put on the bumpers myself.

Well done sir, well done.

Now to plan a road trip to Northern Utah.
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Originally Posted by jeepydg14 View Post
Speachless!!! Awesome, awesome work!!! Have fun on your trip!!!


-Danielle
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Originally Posted by vecter11 View Post
Suddenly my budget boost install doesnt seem so hard, think ill try to do it myself and save the shop install fees......awsome skills bro...good job....mad skills just mad.
Thank you all for your compliments.


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Something tells me you won't be on here that much seeking advice!!

Excellent work!
Not necessarily, I am always willing to learn and I definately don't know everything that I want to know. I have been wrenching for 20+ years and it seems that the more I learn the more questions I have that are unanswered. I am always wanting to improve upon my skills as well as share anything I can with others.

I was actually on that "other" JK forum for a short time and really enjoyed it. My wife and I met some great people and got together with some locals and went wheeling a couple of times, however, for some reason they closed my account telling me that it was because I wrench for a living and it was in violation of their forum rules.

Oh well, I am having a great time here and hope to actually meet some forum members out on the trails some time.

Thanks for the warm welcome to the forum and remember when wheeling to keep the shiny side up.

Mike.
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Old 03-10-2012, 08:31 PM   #35
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Thank you all for your compliments.




Not necessarily, I am always willing to learn and I definately don't know everything that I want to know. I have been wrenching for 20+ years and it seems that the more I learn the more questions I have that are unanswered. I am always wanting to improve upon my skills as well as share anything I can with others.

I was actually on that "other" JK forum for a short time and really enjoyed it. My wife and I met some great people and got together with some locals and went wheeling a couple of times, however, for some reason they closed my account telling me that it was because I wrench for a living and it was in violation of their forum rules.

Oh well, I am having a great time here and hope to actually meet some forum members out on the trails some time.

Thanks for the warm welcome to the forum and remember when wheeling to keep the shiny side up.

Mike.
LMAO, sure wouldn't want a knowledgeable, creative, proven mechanic who is willing to take the time to show others how to make their own Jeeps more safe & capable on & off road, posting info & pictures on a forum.
That is prescisely why this Forum Rocks! Glad to have you a board. Look forward to learning from you & perhaps wheeling with you. We're in Western Co.

Thanks again for posting your handywork. BTW your welds are beautiful. I thought I did a pretty good job on my sleeves & gussets, lol. Your Jeep is not only capable and fun to look at, but simply SEXY!!! Great Job.
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Old 03-11-2012, 12:50 AM   #36
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Thank you all for your compliments.




Not necessarily, I am always willing to learn and I definately don't know everything that I want to know. I have been wrenching for 20+ years and it seems that the more I learn the more questions I have that are unanswered. I am always wanting to improve upon my skills as well as share anything I can with others.

I was actually on that "other" JK forum for a short time and really enjoyed it. My wife and I met some great people and got together with some locals and went wheeling a couple of times, however, for some reason they closed my account telling me that it was because I wrench for a living and it was in violation of their forum rules.

Oh well, I am having a great time here and hope to actually meet some forum members out on the trails some time.

Thanks for the warm welcome to the forum and remember when wheeling to keep the shiny side up.

Mike.
What a shame, you obviously have a lot of knowledge to share!!
Their loss!

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Old 03-11-2012, 01:02 AM   #37
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LMAO, sure wouldn't want a knowledgeable, creative, proven mechanic who is willing to take the time to show others how to make their own Jeeps more safe & capable on & off road, posting info & pictures on a forum.
That is prescisely why this Forum Rocks! Glad to have you a board. Job.
X2!!
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Old 03-11-2012, 05:32 AM   #38
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Hey, Mike; You have a great build going there!! I have been around long enough to realize that most "talent" comes from lots of practice!! Obviously; this ain't your first rodeo!! Keep up the good work.
Thanks for sharing.
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Old 03-13-2012, 06:14 PM   #39
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Thanks everyone. I am actually really liking this forum and hope to meet many of you at some point.

Like I mentioned, I definately don't know everything but anytime I can help I will be glad to.

We will actually be in Ouray, CO in August doing some wheeling for a few days.

Mike.
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Old 03-13-2012, 10:18 PM   #40
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Thanks everyone. I am actually really liking this forum and hope to meet many of you at some point.

Like I mentioned, I definately don't know everything but anytime I can help I will be glad to.

We will actually be in Ouray, CO in August doing some wheeling for a few days.

Mike.
Engineer pass is on our to do list this summer. We live here & my Wife has never been over Red Mtn. Pass.
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Old 03-13-2012, 10:22 PM   #41
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Great write up and picture of your build!
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Old 03-18-2012, 01:40 PM   #42
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Engineer pass is on our to do list this summer. We live here & my Wife has never been over Red Mtn. Pass.
Just out of curiosity what are some of the other popular trails in the Ouray/SW Colorado area. We will be there for a week and I would like to hit a few of them. I hear they are not as extreme as the Moab style wheeling but I would like to hit some just for the beautiful scenery if nothing else. That whole are is just breathtakingly beautiful.

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Great write up and picture of your build!
Thank you.

Mike.
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Old 03-18-2012, 01:51 PM   #43
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I made a slight alteration last week before we left for Monument Valley/Moab. I sold my 4" coils and installed 3" coils all the way around. The 4" lift looked a little high with only running 35" BFG's which only measure 33.75" and I wanted to keep my center of gravity as low as possible. After wheeling it for a week I have no regrets about loosing an inch of lift. It did fantastic in Moab.

I finally got up the nerve to do Hell's Revenge and it did awesome. I did not have the balls to try the hot tubs, Escalator or Hell's Gate but it made short work of the Tipover Challenge obstacle. We were with three other vehicles and after very short time I was not taking the easiest line as I was quickly getting a feel for the Jeep and it's capabilities. I was looking for some of the steeper ascents and larger steps than some of the other vehicles were taking. I only locked the axles on two spots (one being Tipover Challenge) other than that it performed flawlessly without having to lock the axles.

I can honestly say I hit my mark on my "Dream Jeep" of wanting it to wheel great in the extreme stuff yet cruise back to town/camp at 70 MPH after hitting a trail and looking just as good on the road as in the backcountry.

Although Hell's Revenge turned out to not be quite as bad as I thought it would be we were the only ones out of the four vehicles that didn't have a scratch on their rig. The other drivers were a little more "aggressive" of drivers as I so they inherently accrued some damage due to their driving style. We took it easy and kept our speed down and came out without a scratch.

Mike.
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Old 03-18-2012, 02:21 PM   #44
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Here are a few pictures from our Monument Valley and Moab trip this past week.

This is all hooked up the the Jeep behind the coach ready to pull out last Saturday morning.


Here is the next morning as the sun was coming up in our campground at Monument Valley.


These next two pictures I just thought were cool pictures of Monument Valley.

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Old 03-18-2012, 02:40 PM   #45
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Now on to Moab.

I am not a fan of mud. We thought we would take a leisurely day trip and pack a sandwich lunch and do an easy trail with my in-laws in the Jeep with us. We took the Onion Creek trail which is rated as an easy. It is very scenic with 22 river crossings, just about six inches deep and four or five feet wide. It was a beautiful day and then we thought rather than turn around we could continue on with Thompsom Valley trail which was rated at "moderate". We have done this in the summer and it is a very nice drive, however, there was still a lot of snow on top which I had not planned on. We were pushing through anywhere from 6" to 18" of snow with mud underneath. I was not having fun at this point so we turned around and went back the way we came in.

Here is a picture of what the Jeep looked like just as we were coming back onto Onion Creek. As soon as we got back to camp and dropped off my Mother and Father in-laws we went and hurried and washed the mud off before it dried. What a PITA to get off. My trailing arms were about 3" in diameter and the tires were rubbing against the mud. My fenders were 2" thick with mud. I will never get it that muddy again. My wife said she had never seen any of our vehicles ever that bad in 23 years of marriage and I told her you will never see it again.
It took me $20.00 worth of quarters and a change of clothes from crawling around under it to get it clean again.


Here is a picture of just at the first turn after the gate/fence at the entrance to Hell's Revenge the following day.


Descending a grade dropping down to Hell's Gate obstacle. I did not do the obstacle but watched one of the members of our group do it. He ended up smashing his passenger side door sill.


Climbing up the main trail but one of the steeper steps. The main trail went just to the right of this obstacle.


Poser shot.


This obstacle was probably the steepest one that I climbed that day. Their was an alternate around this but I wanted to try it. I actually squared up with this rock and locked my axles. Just as the front wheels crested the top I did get a little tire spin but it pulled the Jeep right up and over it.
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Old 03-19-2012, 09:33 PM   #46
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Just out of curiosity what are some of the other popular trails in the Ouray/SW Colorado area. We will be there for a week and I would like to hit a few of them. I hear they are not as extreme as the Moab style wheeling but I would like to hit some just for the beautiful scenery if nothing else. That whole are is just breathtakingly beautiful.
Mike.
Best place to look is here"
TrailDamage.com - Engineer Pass

Great Moab pics. Nice Motorhome too. Glad the Jeep exceeded your expectations. I figured it would wheel as good as it looks.
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Old 03-20-2012, 06:59 AM   #47
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Best place to look is here"
TrailDamage.com - Engineer Pass

Great Moab pics. Nice Motorhome too. Glad the Jeep exceeded your expectations. I figured it would wheel as good as it looks.
Thanks, I will check that out. My wife just ordered Charles A. Wells' book on Colorado 4WD trails so I am anxiously awaiting that as well.

Mike.
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Old 03-28-2012, 07:11 PM   #48
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I got one word for your ability: DUUUUUDE!! Awesome build. I think we found the real "Mr Goodwrench"!
Impressive rig Amigo.
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Old 03-28-2012, 08:10 PM   #49
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I got one word for your ability: DUUUUUDE!! Awesome build. I think we found the real "Mr Goodwrench"!
Impressive rig Amigo.
Thank you.

I have been really happy with the way my Jeep has turned out.

I was commenting to my wife on Sunday morning when we took the Jeep to breakfast that I have been very fortunate to have some nice vehicles over the years even though they were all older vehicles. Some of my past vehicles have been a 1940 Chev Coupe street rod (which was actually featured in Street Rodder magazine Jan 1997 issue) and a 1971 Chevelle that was featured in Popular Hot rodding 1999 as well as some daily drivers that were custom. I had a 1984 Chevrolet shortbed that was lifted 6" with 36" tires and a big block 396 bored to 402 with a TH400 transmission. I had that truck just out of high school and when my wife and I were first married.

After we bought our home in 1991 we needed something more "family" oriented for a truck to tow our older snowmobiles and ATVs. I bought a 1986 Chevrolet 3/4 ton Suburban and bought a wrecked 1991 Chevrolet 3/4 ton with a fuel injected 454. I built up the 454 and put a TH400 behind it with a couple inches of lift. I also completely gutted the interior and every body panel off of it for a repaint. I added a Warn 12k pound winch and a full floating 14-bolt corporate rear axle. It was a great daily driver/weekend hauler to get our toys to their riding spots. We did all of this on a very tight budget due to all of our expenses being a young family and not making a ton of money as a mechanic at my full-time job.

After 23 years of marriage now and having some of the priorities taken care of such as mortgage gone and no vehicle payments so we can put our son through college (something I never had an opportunity to do) it is nice to be able to have some nicer/newer toys.

I don't mean to sound like I am bragging as I have merely been very blessed with the ability and great desire to work and continually improve upon my skills and abilities. I have also had a great desire to try to change some of the negative stigma that goes along with being a mechanic. I don't have grease up to my armpits all day long and all of my vehicles actually run as well as the fact that I don't have multiple vehicles sitting around my yard (sorry for that last one I couldn't resist). I have had a great job that has allowed me to learn much along the way and provide for my family.

Even after all those vehicles, I am having more fun with this Jeep than any of my past rides.

Mike.

Here are a couple of pictures of my old Suburban.






Here is also another little project that my son and I threw together when he got his driver's license about five years ago. We had a pretty tight budget at the time and threw this together in about two months and had so much fun with it we kept it for a couple of years before selling it.

It was a theft recovery that was hit in the front along with the engine/transmission and interior stolen. I splurged a little on the tires/wheels and built up a pretty badass engine/transmission but the lowering kit I built and the paint I had leftover from another project.

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Old 03-28-2012, 09:48 PM   #50
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You got some talent Brother!
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Old 03-29-2012, 08:45 AM   #51
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You got some talent Brother!
Thanks.

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Old 04-01-2012, 04:57 PM   #52
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I was wondering if I could install a set of Quadratec floor mats myself. Now I am truly humbled!
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Old 04-01-2012, 10:09 PM   #53
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Mechanics like you are hard to find. I should know I was a tech for 16 years. I worked on every vehicle like my daughter was driving it. I have seen a lot of so called techs over the years that I would not let work on my bike. I know why we have a bad wrap because there is a lot of shops out there that rip people off. Its good to see someone who takes pride in there work and isn't afraid to spend the extra money to make it right. I am the the same way. I would rather over repair my vehicle then be stranded on the side of the road. Keep up the good work. I love your jeep
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Old 04-02-2012, 07:19 AM   #54
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I was wondering if I could install a set of Quadratec floor mats myself. Now I am truly humbled!
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Mechanics like you are hard to find. I should know I was a tech for 16 years. I worked on every vehicle like my daughter was driving it. I have seen a lot of so called techs over the years that I would not let work on my bike. I know why we have a bad wrap because there is a lot of shops out there that rip people off. Its good to see someone who takes pride in there work and isn't afraid to spend the extra money to make it right. I am the the same way. I would rather over repair my vehicle then be stranded on the side of the road. Keep up the good work. I love your jeep
Thanks guys.

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Old 04-17-2012, 09:09 AM   #55
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I ordered my Trektop NX a couple of days ago and was told they are on backorder. I knew I should have ordered it a few weeks ago when I called to check on availability, they had plenty in stock then.

I am going to try to start on my rear bumper tonight when I get home.

Last week I tracked down a small rattle that I had. It was coming from my "D" rings on my front bumper. I took a piece of 1" heater hose and cut two pieces 1/4" each and put on either side of the recovery point on the bumper so it holds the "D" ring stable. I can still move the "D" ring but it will not rattle when going down the road.

Mike.
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Old 04-17-2012, 05:56 PM   #56
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Hey Mike, I have a 2011 JKUR Auto on 35s and have my 5.38s on order. What are you taching at 70MPH? My math for my Pro Comp Xstream all Terrains is around 2500. Does that sound about right?
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Old 04-18-2012, 07:00 AM   #57
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Hey Mike, I have a 2011 JKUR Auto on 35s and have my 5.38s on order. What are you taching at 70MPH? My math for my Pro Comp Xstream all Terrains is around 2500. Does that sound about right?
Yes. My RPMs are ~2550 @ 70 MPH. Perfect, it doesn't hunt between direct and O/D and gets decent fuel economy at that RPM. There are only a few small grades around here on the interstate that kick the O/D off and back into third but other than that it was the best mod that I have done so far.

You will enjoy driving it again.

Mike.
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Old 04-18-2012, 07:07 AM   #58
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Last night I started on my rear bumper/tire carrier. I didn't get too far as I only removed the OEM bumper and tailgate tire carrier along with cleaned up the undercarriage and frame from my little mudding incident in Moab last month.

I would have gotten more done but the neighbor brough his lawnmower over that he couldn't get running so I spend about an hour and a half cleaning the carburetor, adjusting the coil air gap and welding a broken bracket that he cobbed together, then bead blasted and painted the bracket prior to installation.

Anyway I was able to get the holes drilled in the frame rails and the main mounting brackets fabricated. I hope to be able to get some bending and forming done on the center section of the bumper tonight.

Mike.
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Old 04-18-2012, 08:18 AM   #59
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Yes. My RPMs are ~2550 @ 70 MPH. Perfect, it doesn't hunt between direct and O/D and gets decent fuel economy at that RPM. There are only a few small grades around here on the interstate that kick the O/D off and back into third but other than that it was the best mod that I have done so far.

You will enjoy driving it again.

Mike.
Thanks Mike!
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Old 04-20-2012, 08:55 AM   #60
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Well I finally got caught up on other work in the shop so I could start on my rear bumper/tire carrier last night. I actually got quite a bit done, I hope to finish it up this weekend so it can go off to powder coating the first of next week.

Here is where I started, the rear tire removed from the OEM tire carrier. I thought it would be better to address this BEFORE I have tailgate spot weld issues.



Frame mounting brackets.


Rear most piece cut and tacked in place. I am using 3/16" P&O plate.


Cutting the outer top sections. I am old school, no CNC plasma or water jet, just my old tried and trued vertical bandsaw.


Top outer sections cut and deburred.


Middle section cut and bent.


Back welded on and ready to be tacked in place.


One of my welds on the center section.

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