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Old 07-21-2014, 05:12 PM   #1
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My Granite Unlimited

Hi all. I figure it's time to go ahead and make a thread here since I'm 90% done with my Jeep.

First, I want to personally thank everyone on here for taking the time to answer people's (sometimes dumb) questions and for sharing your knowledge. I know some of you I've seen answer the same (sometimes dumb) questions multiple times. This has been a great forum. Expensive, but educational.

So here's how my story goes... (yawn)... Last summer I went to the Ford dealership to buy an F150 and left with a used 2012 Sahara 2dr. I always liked Jeeps, but never took the time to drive one. I thought I would finally just drive one and get it out of my system because it was a) too small, b) too bouncy, c) too ___. Long story short, I fell in love and bought it (despite a, b, and c above). Of course, I had already done my research and knew that it was priced right and I haggled a bit further. Then I discovered this forum. Then I got bit by the bug. Then I figured out that my Sahara had 3:21 gears, and it was black, and it was a 2dr... all things that would drive me to get rid of it sooner than later. So 7 months into ownership, I decided to try to trade it in on something I'd feel more comfortable sinking some money into... a Granite Unlimited with 3:73 or 4:10. I struck a deal back in February on a 2014 Unlimited Rubicon, with the intent to mod it over the course of 2 or 3 years.

I had my spreadsheet "done" and my build was geared towards a more aggressive look (and capability) without sacrificing the ride "quality". If I was going to spend money, it should be better, right? I separated my spreadsheet into stages - 1 was lift, shocks, wheels, tires, and all that goes with that. Stage 2 was a soft top, tube doors, spiderwebshade, etc... Stage 3 was all the little miscellaneous b.s. As it turned out, the thing snowballed and one thing led to another. Next thing you know, I was close to "done" - all that was left was the wheels & tires. I sold my motorcycle and decided to j.e.e.p. Go big or go home, right? Uuugh. So my 2 or 3 year project was done in 5 months.

Anyway, I guess I'll just list my mods here, and make notes next to each. I'll try to put them in the order they were done. OH - I did want to point out that everything was done by myself! Kinda cool, I think. I learned alot along the way.

• MORE Dead Pedal - Had it from my 2012. Nice.
• OEM Soft Top - Craigslist find. Was spoiled with the dual top group on my 2012.
• 2.5 Teraflex Budget Boost with Rancho RS9000 Shocks - There were a few reasons I went this route, and I'm SO glad I did, for all the reasons scattered throughout this forum.
• Rancho Geometry Correction Brackets - I installed these a week or so after the lift, and it helped get my highway "on-center" feel back.
• ACE Rock Rails - I ordered these thinking I'd need them to step up into the Jeep. I don't. But shorter people do, and they're nice to stand on when I'm washing it or jacking around with that spiderwebshade.
• Grab Bars - Welcome Distributing GRABARS. These are way cool.
• Quadratec Tow Package - self explanatory.
• Spiderwebshade - This is nice when the sun is really hot, but? I dunno - it just seems like there could be a slightly better design made with the same material.
• Body Armor Trail Doors - These are awesome. I'm trying to figure out a way to make the netting fit a little better though. If you actually look, the net isn't a great fit. If you don't look, they're awesome! I'm thinking about making some diamond plate (black) inserts this winter. Oh, and I added those Rugged Ridge thumbscrew mirrors as well. I built a rack to hold my stock doors, but need to re-design since I'm switching back & forth every few days.
• Door Pin Guides - Those are very helpful when putting the OEM doors back on.
• Procomp 7069 & Duratrac 315/70-17 - The wheels, because they aren't shinier than the tires, and the tires because of ride quality and weight. This combo is only 12lbs heaver than the stock Rubicon wheel & tire combo (83lbs vs 71lbs for those counting). The acceleration really isn't an issue, nor the braking or handling - but all were affected. I have about 1500 miles on the tires so far and yes, they actually are quieter than the stock Rubicon tires. Yeah, I know... 37's and a 4.5 lift would look cooler.
• Superchips FlashCal - It does what it's supposed to. I don't run any TPMS at all, so the Jeep icon showing 0psi at each of the 4 corners comes on at startup, but it goes (and stays) away as soon as I hit the button for temp, compass, menu, etc.
• Cut rock rails - again, self explanatory (though maybe overkill).
• Teraflex Spare Tire Hinge - no adjustable carrier part needed for MY setup. It's not cheap, but it's awesome... and much cheaper than bumpers.
• Soft Top Boot - First, I tried Smittybuilt and returned it immediately. The Rugged Ridge one fits much better, but is still tight enough that the framework won't lay down completely.
• Grade 8 Bolt Kit - I was surprised how my track bar bushings were showing wear allready at 5000 miles. Glad I did this, if not just for peace of mind.
• EVO Gussets - Again, peace of mind really. Between this and the spare carrier, I don't cringe when I hit a pothole or expansion joint on the highway. Plus I learned how to weld (again). I used a rental unit from Home Depot and it worked great aside from popping the circuit breaker every so often. A friend of mine was helpful with this project.

And that's where I'm at. A few things for fun, a few things for looks, and a few things for functionality all in an effort to retain driveability and keep it somewhat light. Now, I just need to get it off road! I'm going to try to plan a trip to Colorado next spring/summer.

There's a few things on my list yet, that are in question. Adjustable track bars, steering stabilizer, and floor liners. Other things I want someday are bumpers and lights - but I don't need 'em. Yet.

Oh, I could go on and on with my "someday" list, but for now I'm just going to enjoy it and try to allow my checkbook to recover.

I know, too many words, not enough pics... so let me give this a whirl...
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Old 07-22-2014, 12:08 AM   #2
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Looks good! Congratulations on the build!

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2014 JKU FE - 'Celticon' - Hydro Blue Pearl - Auto - 3.73 - Premium Soft Top - TeraFlex 2.5" Lift w/Rancho 9000xl Shocks - 15" MBTKO/33" DuraTracs - TeraFlex Monster Trackbar/Adjustable LCAs - ACE Rock Sliders/Cargo Basket - Rampage Recovery Bumper - Crown Stainless Brake Lines - MORE Dead Pedal - Polk DB651/6501
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Old 07-22-2014, 01:08 AM   #3
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Nice looking Jeep!!!
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Old 07-22-2014, 07:56 PM   #4
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Looks good.
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Old 07-27-2014, 08:34 AM   #5
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thats a nice rig. not over done but very capable.. I like it.
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Old 07-27-2014, 08:59 AM   #6
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Nice build! Very clean looking.
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2014 JKU Rubi X, Billet Silver, auto trans, leather, tow package, color matched top and fenders, 430N Nav, remote start. XRC8 Winch, Max 3 Winch Plate and Bull Bar

Previous: 2011 JKU, Nav, U-connect, Auto, Dual Tops, Yukon 4.88s, 3.25" Rusty's Advance Lift, 35" Nitto Trail Grapplers, 18x9 Pro Comp 7031 w/ 5" BS, Rugged Ridge XDH front bumper, Smitty Built XRC8 Comp Winch...
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Old 08-17-2014, 01:40 AM   #7
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nice build!

Any particular reason you went with a BB vs a coil lift?
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Old 08-17-2014, 09:30 AM   #8
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Great look, I always loved this color!!!
Did you had the 3th brake light with your Teraflex tire carrier? I just asking, because I would like to order it too, but I never seen anywhere how is fitted, if you have some pics, it would be great. ;-)
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Old 08-17-2014, 09:43 AM   #9
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Well done for sure... Very clean & classy look, and a little from the dark side vibe going on. Perfectly done.
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Old 08-17-2014, 09:55 AM   #10
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Jeep looks great and even enjoyed your personal jeep story.
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Old 08-17-2014, 02:34 PM   #11
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Subscribed! I'm liking the direction this build is heading. I've also chosen 315/70r17 duratracs - I can't wait for them to arrive!
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Old 08-17-2014, 03:26 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by MoarAlpha View Post
nice build!

Any particular reason you went with a BB vs a coil lift?
Thanks all! I went with a budget boost for a couple of reasons. 1) I didn't anticipate buying tires as soon as I did and I didn't want it to bee too tall (with the stock tires) in the meantime. 2) I was happy with the stock springs and wasn't sure about aftermarket springs as far as how they would ride. 3) Cost. 4) The budget boost would allow me to fit the tires I wanted, and if I ever added weight or needed more flex ability then I could simply swap out springs.

That's the way it sits now... I could simply add springs with no need to do anything further with shocks, etc. But in the meantime, I have no need for taller/stiffer springs.
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Old 08-17-2014, 03:28 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by LazJK View Post
Great look, I always loved this color!!!
Did you had the 3th brake light with your Teraflex tire carrier? I just asking, because I would like to order it too, but I never seen anywhere how is fitted, if you have some pics, it would be great. ;-)
Thanks! The 3rd brake light is stock - no modification needed. The Teraflex is the hinge part only - NOT the adjustable carrier. I'm using the entire stock carrier (the part that bolts to the stock tailgate) but the hinge is WAY more solid!
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Old 08-17-2014, 03:33 PM   #14
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Subscribed! I'm liking the direction this build is heading. I've also chosen 315/70r17 duratracs - I can't wait for them to arrive!
Well, lemme tell ya... this build is pretty much done. No, really... it is. Actually, I anticipate something of a stereo upgrade this fall, but that's about it. The only thing really left on my list is maybe some bumpers and lights - but again, that's not out of necessity and just for looks so I don't anticipate it anytime soon (if at all). Plus, if I do that it may add weight thereby potentially causing me to buy springs as well and I'm really trying to avoid that if I can. Enjoy your tires - you'll love 'em! I found the "sweet spot" for my weight to be around 28 lbs +/-.
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Old 08-17-2014, 06:49 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by JK LOL View Post
Thanks! The 3rd brake light is stock - no modification needed. The Teraflex is the hinge part only - NOT the adjustable carrier. I'm using the entire stock carrier (the part that bolts to the stock tailgate) but the hinge is WAY more solid!
Oh, good to know it!!! I though it was necessary to buy the Teraflex tire carrier with the parts where you bolt the wheel on...?! Because we can't see you can screw the stock tire carrier under the Teraflex tire carrier... This why it would be great if you have taken some pics without the wheel... ;-)
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Old 08-17-2014, 10:51 PM   #16
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IS this Granite Crystal? That will be my next color!
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Old 08-17-2014, 11:54 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by JK LOL View Post
Well, lemme tell ya... this build is pretty much done. No, really... it is. Actually, I anticipate something of a stereo upgrade this fall, but that's about it. The only thing really left on my list is maybe some bumpers and lights - but again, that's not out of necessity and just for looks so I don't anticipate it anytime soon (if at all). Plus, if I do that it may add weight thereby potentially causing me to buy springs as well and I'm really trying to avoid that if I can. Enjoy your tires - you'll love 'em! I found the "sweet spot" for my weight to be around 28 lbs +/-.
Thanks for the PSI magic #, I've heard 28 lbs before from others too! I will chalk test them once they get installed and report back in my build thread.
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Old 08-17-2014, 11:58 PM   #18
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IS this Granite Crystal? That will be my next color!
Best hurry. This color is discontinued for 2015
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Old 08-25-2014, 04:30 PM   #19
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Thanks all! I went with a budget boost for a couple of reasons. 1) I didn't anticipate buying tires as soon as I did and I didn't want it to bee too tall (with the stock tires) in the meantime. 2) I was happy with the stock springs and wasn't sure about aftermarket springs as far as how they would ride. 3) Cost. 4) The budget boost would allow me to fit the tires I wanted, and if I ever added weight or needed more flex ability then I could simply swap out springs. That's the way it sits now... I could simply add springs with no need to do anything further with shocks, etc. But in the meantime, I have no need for taller/stiffer springs.
Thanks for the reply. Can you please help me understand why you decided to go with the rancho shocks vs the stock shocks w/ adaptors? I am currently researching my lift choices and I remember you saying in your original post that you decided to do the TF BB with Rancho shocks for a specific reason. Can you please tell me or send me some links as to why this exact combo? Thanks!
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Old 08-25-2014, 05:57 PM   #20
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Looks great, really like the color. I have the same experience liking the duratracs and also using the TF hinged carrier only.
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Old 08-25-2014, 09:57 PM   #21
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Thanks for the reply. Can you please help me understand why you decided to go with the rancho shocks vs the stock shocks w/ adaptors? I am currently researching my lift choices and I remember you saying in your original post that you decided to do the TF BB with Rancho shocks for a specific reason. Can you please tell me or send me some links as to why this exact combo? Thanks!
I went with the RS9000's based on the fact that everyoneoves them. That, and if I ever go with springs, I already have the shocks done. I didn't put springs on it yet because I thought I'd be running on stock tires longer. Plus, I was concerned about a change in ride quality (for the worse).
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Old 08-25-2014, 09:59 PM   #22
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I switched out my speakers, and added a remote start. Amplifier and head unit soon to come.

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