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deucestudios 03-27-2012 08:14 AM

Pond Scum
'98 TJ Wrangler
2.5L, 5 speed
This is probably going to be about 2 years of work. I'm not in any hurry to finish, there's no race deadline, no bottomless wallet, and this is my first real venture into suspension fabrication.
It's my 3rd Jeep, following an '87 YJ, and a '96 XJ.

I got this from a guy that said it didn't run. He lied. I haven't even changed the oil yet, pulled the plugs, spun the motor, new battery, fired right up.
The top had leaked for years, the center console was brimming with water.
It was neglected for a while, and had stuff growing in it.
The floors had that layer of green stuff, hence the name.
Plus, the name swamp thing has probably been used a million times over, and with a 2.5, its not badass enough for that.

Here's the day I got it:
If you notice, I had the rear 60 before the Jeep. Priorities.
Wheres waldo.

New seats:

Built a bumper:

Re-built the bumper as a winch bumper.

Got some wheels and tires with tread on, a different top, junkyard cowl panel & wiper motor/assembly, and inspection stickers.

Then I got this thing I was asking you guys about a month or so back.
Thing is, it already had this truss tube thing welded on, and had link & coilover mounts.
Did some cost weighing, and by the time I bought coils, shocks, some steel or coil bucket or whatever, I was well on my way to coilovers, so I'll probably just do that.

deucestudios 03-27-2012 08:14 AM

Started assembling the rear truss. Jigsaw. 3/8" plate. Yaaay.

I have incredibly small hands.

wire feed with the dreaded 035 flux core. :eek:

This is a Dana 60-ISU
3.54 ΔF2UA CD
They come out of 90s E350 vans. 3.5" tube, 1.5" ID spindles, 30 spline shafts, but room for 35s.
The early ones have drums, I gotta find a later one and get a pair of calipers yet.
There was some ABS stuff I had to cut off and plug too. And the pinions not really centered. well to be honest neither is the truss by a 1/2" :doh:

Stripped & primered the front.
I weighed stuff as it came off. This is just over 200lbs lighter.
Short side shaft, hub, rotor, caliper, and spindle = 87lbs.
Burned up a few wire wheels, got a little crazy and even rock hammered the bad rust scale off.

I've yet to buy a 7/8" allen key. Been twisting up case harded 9/16" coupling nuts with a 3/4" drive 7/8" impact socket & 6' breaker bar.
1 down, 1 to go. This one the knuckle rattled on, and so I changed it. The other one I'm not sure needs replaced, but it's kinda a personal thing at this point to get it out of there.

Its not bent my phone does wierd things sometimes.

deucestudios 03-27-2012 08:15 AM

saved for later.

deucestudios 03-29-2012 10:14 AM

I typed out reply 3 but missed the edit window then lost it all.
So heres todays version. I popped my thumb with a sledgehammer beating the hub out of the rotor. I should have set it up on blocks first, but I was holding the rotor, and caught my thumb between the handle of the sledge and the rotor.
I won't post the pics of the impromptu amputation, the xray gives a good enough idea.
Only posting this cause I wasn't being smart.
Don't get me wrong I had gloves & steel toes on, but usin a 10 pound hammer without putting your work in a block or jig is just stupid.
I mean, I was p!&&ed cause I didn't hit it with the head, the angle of the rotor jammed me up on the handle, but still, unexcuseable.

Doing this, like a %$#&%#@%.
It's been about 3 weeks, so it's healing up now. The severed section looks like it's going to take.

So I'm stockpiling parts for the next month or so. 2x2 1/4" wall.

cleaning & painting, & U joint/shaft assembly

painting is easy enough.

got the 3" lift blocks in and made them into twice as many 1.5"ers.
Case & point.
This is not a brilliant way to make a body lift. But I clamped everything and had my hands no where near there. It only takes a split second for things to go bad, a minute more prep for safety can save you months of working like a moron with 1 working thumb.
And that's all I'll say about that.

So that brings me up to current. Where I'm at.
hittin the junkyard tomorrow. Hopefully grabbing some rear caliper backing plates & such.
I'm looking forward like 2 months until the 30/35 come out...

Ibuildembig 03-29-2012 10:19 AM

For future reference, the easiest way to get the kinpins out is use a 9/16" lugnut and a torch....they come right out everytime :)

deucestudios 04-10-2012 12:50 PM


Originally Posted by Ibuildembig (Post 2196174)
For future reference, the easiest way to get the kinpins out is use a 9/16" lugnut and a torch....they come right out everytime :)

That's what coaxed the passenger side out. But, I was twisting up lug nuts on the other side and I don't have a rosebud...

Not much of an update. Just wanted to show off the old man's pretty pink 3' pipe wrench cause I got the other side out finally...

200lbs at 7' = 1400ft-lbs right?

Ibuildembig 04-10-2012 12:56 PM

Man I've never twisted a lughnut off....I just used a regular No2 cutting tip last time instead of a least you got it off

deucestudios 04-11-2012 08:31 AM

Yea man, front axle teardown is done, a nice corner to turn, well aside from gearing. Now I just gotta send Partsmike my next paycheck and start putting it back together.
So this was gonna be a low tech tools build.
But my buddy's work just got a Cincinati CL-5 laser so I sent him a CAD file and now I got mounting brackets for my junkyard Ford 2 pot calipers on the D60-ISU.
coulda made these with the jigsaw though... what...

edit. this was a test piece just for mockup that already had a cut through it.

JeeperJake 04-13-2012 09:32 PM

Nice project detail, thanks. What color is the thumb now?

aelwero 04-13-2012 11:49 PM

1/4 plate with a 035 flux core is impressive. 2 inches an hour or so?
and the jigsaw is just awesome. I've been told I have a lot of patience, but I don't think I have THAT much ;)

sucks about the thumb, hope it grows back.

deucestudios 04-16-2012 10:34 AM

jigsawing that plate was a good way to get loaded. pause for some guiness every inch or so...
and the thumb is healing nicely. LINK The nail is jacked up, not sure what it's really even connected to, but the meat is all alive so that's all that matters.
the welder is 100% duty, so it's really not bad. I am getting a used lincoln ac225 though, so I can really get a good burn on some of the thicker stuff. But I gotta learn stick first.

Gave the hubs to a buddy of mine to turn down a bit. So that more wheel options will fit. Gonna try to run H1s, even though most say it's not really worth it. We'll see.

Ibuildembig 04-16-2012 10:36 AM

Now I am cornfused lol.....turn the hubs down why? An H1 will fit over that no problem, but it will hit the knuckle down by the tierod.

deucestudios 04-16-2012 10:42 AM


Originally Posted by Ibuildembig (Post 2264754)
Now I am cornfused lol.....turn the hubs down why? An H1 will fit over that no problem, but it will hit the knuckle down by the tierod.

The center hole on the H1 bead locks doesn't fit my Ford hubs. I dunno...

The steering arm of the knuckle definitely has to go. Which is counter productive. But at least I get to build high steer.

edit: SRW front hubs, and D60-ISU rear hubs.

deucestudios 04-25-2012 09:34 AM

Got these back last night. Hopefully I get a chance to throw some things together tonight and check clearances.

(again, not using my weekend warrior tools. had a buddy do this for me)

deucestudios 04-26-2012 07:35 AM

the rear 72" from the wheel outside - outside. my XJ is 68, 69ish.
need more parts before I figure out the front...

deucestudios 04-30-2012 01:36 PM


Originally Posted by deucestudios (Post 2301016)
Got these back last night. Hopefully I get a chance to throw some things together tonight and check clearances.

(again, not using my weekend warrior tools. had a buddy do this for me)

The discerning eye will look at this pic and say "your rotors don't press fit anymore" and be right. They don't.
1 step forward.
2 steps back.

Ibuildembig 04-30-2012 01:50 PM

Huh? The only thing that presses are the studs though the rotor and into the hub

deucestudios 05-01-2012 10:29 AM

Ok its not a press fit but that thing sure is in there. With what I have now, there's play between the two.
Now you got me thinking though that I tested it with the wrong studs.
I guess the question is, would the studs center the rotor to the hub? If the knurl depth or whatever is right I guess it would...
That would be nice.

Ibuildembig 05-01-2012 11:13 AM

Exactly! The hub doesnt center anything, its the studs that position the rotor.

edit, hold on a are you doing the rear? slip rotor over hub or rotor behind hub?

deucestudios 05-01-2012 11:41 AM

Doing the opposite for the rear, just slipping the rotor over the hub.
The rear studs from my early 90s drum 60-ISU have a little neck where the drum seated that seems to work good enough with the later 90s disc setup.
Thanks for the help man.

Ibuildembig 05-01-2012 11:46 AM

ok cool, I have done rears both ways....but with a bolt on bracket for the caliper it can be a pain

deucestudios 06-19-2012 12:34 PM


My combination bad weather driver, weekend warrior '96 Cherokee "blue" has rusted itself to oblivion. What was cosmetic is now structural.
My good weather driver's maintenance needs are getting crazy. I expected a 12 year old M5 to have expensive maintenance, but not what I had.
I traded in my 2000 M5 on a 2011 5.7L Overland with the tow package, and retired old blue from active duty.
This also meant switching some parts from the XJ over onto the Wrangler.
I sold the 32s TJ had to buy an 8 lug setup, but ended up mounting the other set off the XJ.
Tough enough for me to keep it all straight.
So here's the cliffs notes:


R.I.P. (rusting into pieces) in my side yard. (that grassy part we rednecks use as "driveway")
You served me well old friend...

New Jeep, with 7200lb tow rating, hint hint, the wife keeps wanting to "borrow" it. Pound sand babe.

Which brings us back on topic, and up to speed with where my time has gone...

The TJ has been pretty fun as-is.
The 60s are tucked behind my shed for now. I got a few more parts in, but with "only" 2 cars now, I'm gonna focus on simple/driveability stuff. Belly up skid, CB radio, new cage, paint some parts.
As I sell parts off the blue one, I'll be picking things up for this.
"builder's corner" might not take interest in this part, since it'll be mostly bolt ons for a little while here.
But, I'm still focused on the same end result, just going after different parts for the short term.

Currently making room for a real cage, gonna do a simplified dash then too.

2010JK 06-19-2012 02:14 PM

Cool build.

BeaverJeeper 06-19-2012 02:31 PM

13 Attachment(s)
very cool! can't wait to see the cage!

deucestudios 07-22-2012 08:22 AM

got my other little helper out to mock up the cage with me.
This is the S&W front half conversion if anyones wondering, pretty set where it's gonna go, now I need both kids to take a 7 hour nap one day so I can really do work, yea, right.
I've got a few pieces of 3/4" pipe, and the HF kinker, gonna add some handles & gussets to their setup.
Also, should be receiving a large chunk of aluminum from UCF any day now.
The tons aren't going anywhere, just a slight change in priorities.

MarkinOhio 07-22-2012 08:54 AM

Nice build so far

deucestudios 08-01-2012 11:44 AM

lame 1.5" body lift update, hey, a step in the right direction. baby steps.

deucestudios 08-13-2012 02:48 PM

Cage is done for now.

Tub is lined.

Axles still in hibernation...

deucestudios 08-14-2012 03:09 PM

Looks like I missed this in the updates:

UCF ultra high clearance aluminum:

Dumb ass got polyurethane instead of rubber.
Don't ever buy poly motor mounts. I dunno what I was thinking, I've hated poly for years.

ALASKA99TJ 08-16-2012 02:48 AM

im kinda doing the same thing except my parts sit in the back of my ford, the tow pig. but hey i got a HD trans for it and now it will do its job, as soon as the jeep is ready to do it's job.

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