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GrnTJ 04-14-2008 11:45 PM

GrnTJ's heavy duty daily driver (build thread)
After purchasing my TJ just under a year ago I thought I was set for a while. It had a 4" lift and 33" mud terrains and a manual trans, only 68K on the odometer. We all know how that goes. Needless to say I have plans for a pretty large build up now. I am a firm believer in the saying real Jeeps are built not bought so I always felt a little weird about not having built the TJ myself. But after Im done I will have no problem saying it it a creation direct from my own mind. The aim here is to build a reliable daily driver that is also able to handle more than the average weekend warrior. I am also taking a few measures to try and compensate for possible gas mileage losses but I'll talk about that later. Enough talk, here is an overview of what will be done when this build is complete:

-Full float dana 60 rear axle w/ Precision Gear Power-Lok, disc brakes, and truss with 4-link mounts
-High pinion dana 44 front w/ Warn lockouts, welded spider gears(lincoln locker), and knuckle over steering
-A homemade long arm suspension w/ my old 4" coils (3-link front and a triangulated 4-link rear)
-16.5x8 old crappy white wagon wheels sanded down and painted up with a nice new coat of black paint (8 lug obvisiouly)
-36" tires (unsure of what kind right now although the D60 came with a set of decent ground hawgs that measure out to 36" tall even though they say 38.5)
-Homemade flat belly skid
-2" bl and 1" mml
-hack n' tap sye
-shortened stock Ford Bronco drive shafts
-rear bench seat removed and a low back bucket seat mounted on the passenger side
-gas tank relocated inside behind driver seat
-custom bracket/box on driver side next to bucket seat to hold x2 10" subs in box/amp and all off road equipment
-scuba tank converted to on board air mounted behind rear bucket seat
-homemade rear swing out bumper (using an old cherokee hub as the pivot mechanism)
-black neoprene seat covers
-center console removed and custom one built(or 20mm ammo box in its place)
-Ford Taurus electric fan conversion
-black dash assembly swaped in place of the crappy spice color

There is a lot to get done and I know its not going to happen over night but I promise I will constantly keep it updated with everything that happens. My aim is to have all of the above listed stuff done by mid to late July, deffinatley done before August (WF meet and greet). I know that Im going to probably be adding and doing other little things here and there but those are the solid foundations for my plans. Now onto some pictures because I knwo everyone loves pics!

This is the day after I got it...had to shine er' up and get the poser shots!

Of course it wasnt long before I went out and got it dirty, it is a jeep after all!

GrnTJ 04-14-2008 11:47 PM

Since I have had it I have done very little but wheel it and dd it. But here is the first big purchase and a major step in the new direction Im takeing. Picked up an entire truck for $200 (old Bronco/F250 thing, was missing some stuff of course)

Dana 60 w/ Power-Lok, not sure of the gear ratio yet though (you can also see the size of those tires, unforunatley the guy I bought it from had some crappy 30" roller tires with no tread at all on the front axle. So I may buy two more ground hawgs and 2 more wagon wheels to have a full set)
Heres a good look at the gears/power-lok...look great!:punk:
Then we broke out the torch and the real fun began!

GrnTJ 04-14-2008 11:48 PM

Pops helped out too (it was cold, not that you could tell by the way Im dressed:flipoff:)
Theres the front axle, as you can see, the front tires/rims were crap
My other helper. He had his camo on so he could blend in with the project, can you find him?:D
Finishing up as the sun sets

GrnTJ 04-14-2008 11:48 PM

Heres some of the other random crap we got with the truck. Believe it or not, that motor turned over by hand and it has been sitting outside for 20+ years!:eek:Dont really understand but it was pretty cool
Back seat out and rear bumper off, ready to be wroked on
Took my buddys 35's to get an idea of how 36's might fit (Im still gonna add a 2"bl so I should be stellar)
And one last pic of me and my lady for good measure
Overall I want to build this entire thing for about $2000. I think I can easily stay in budget if Im smart. The axles came cheap, actually made money off that because I scraped the rest of the truck and made more than the $200 I spent for it. This very well may be even cheaper than that when all said and done but only time will tell. Stay tuned guys, I have a lot ahead of me!

Sorry about all the pics.

cherokee980 04-15-2008 06:33 AM

Keep the pics coming!! Trust me, I will be on you constantly about posting MORE know how you guys did me during my build!! Good luck with it, and keep us posted!!!

nater344 04-15-2008 07:08 AM

I agree, keep the pics coming. I'm anxious to see how this thing turns out. Good luck.

jeeperman 04-15-2008 08:47 AM

Great start to the project. I see you waited until it got cold again to start the work.. Very nice:rofl:. Couldn't have done it when it was 70 degrees, that's too easy! I will be watching closely the progress on this, should be a great rig when you are "finished".:punk:

GrnTJ 04-15-2008 09:30 AM

Haha, never finished I suppose but this is the next phase if you will. I will keep the pics comming if you guys keep me encouraged. I just got the axles last weekend though so I couldnt work on them any time before. Plus I have 2 more weeks of classes then Im done. So I will start working and progress should be pretty fast.

Triple88a 04-15-2008 09:40 AM

That motor that turned by hand. I assume the compression is dead otherwise it will be quite tough.

GrnTJ 04-15-2008 09:50 AM

Perphaps, but you could hear noise of the pistons pushing the air out of the exhaust manifold as if there was still some compression. It was amazing to em that this was possible but all the water was just sitting in the valley pan and it was still clean as can be in there. I may pull it apart just to see.

Triple88a 04-15-2008 10:14 AM

hehe :) Isnt it fun to take stuff apart to see whats inside :D?

i do it all the time

Smeghead 04-15-2008 10:49 AM

If all else fails, at least your girlfriend is hot :D

GrnTJ 04-15-2008 11:16 AM


Originally Posted by Smeghead (Post 218755)
If all else fails, at least your girlfriend is hot :D

Haha, I'll take that as a compliment. I think shes hot, otherwise we wouldnt have been dating for over 4 years:eek:lol. She puts up with the Jeep and she even drives one herself, so shes a keeper for sure.

GrnTJ 04-15-2008 11:20 AM

By the way, anyone ever hear of or know anyone whos got experience with the Precision Gears Power-Lok? At first when I pulled thecover on the 60 I thought it had a Detroit locker but then Irealized thats not what it was. But I had never seen the device before so I searched online to try and fine somehting that looked similar and found thats what it is. I guess its like a super heavy duty limited slip. Supposed to be twice as strong as a standard D60 open carrier (not sure why Id really need that!) and get 75% better traction that an open carrier. I was gonna put a limited slip in the rear anyway so this deff. saved me some money. But the thing is I cant find anyone whos owned one. I just want to know how they perform off road. So if you have any kind of idea let me know!

4.0l sahara 04-15-2008 12:26 PM

the more pics the better.

GrnTJ 04-15-2008 12:42 PM

I agree. Thats why I will take plenty but I wont be able to work again for a week and a half cause of school. Im going to rebuild that Power-Lok with a new clutch pack because I read up about how you can put it back together to be way more "aggressive". Should work almost like a locker by the time Im finished.

Need opinions though. The deal is those ground hawgs have about 75% tread on them and they are good tires from what I hear. The only problem is they have some minor dry rot. Its not that bad and they certainyl hold air well. Its not really enough to be cause for concern. But this truck only had these tires/wheels on the rear so Id have to hunt for another set of white wagon wheels and 2 more 38.5" ground hawgs. I could probably pick them up cheap if I looked around. So what do you guys think? Im really not sure how well they wear on the road but I cant imagine too well. So what would you do? As of right now Im leaning toward keeping them and finding at least 2 more (maybe a 3rd for a spare). It would certainly be cheaper that way.

4.0l sahara 04-15-2008 02:16 PM

If the side walls have dry rot then I would think when you air them down the cracks would really open up?:rolleyes:

tazmann910 04-15-2008 02:22 PM

all I have to say is DAMN!!!!!

GrnTJ 04-15-2008 02:29 PM


Originally Posted by 4.0l sahara (Post 218823)
If the side walls have dry rot then I would think when you air them down the cracks would really open up?:rolleyes:

See, thats what I was thinking but the dry rot is luckly only inbetween the lugs. I think I amy try them out just because it would be super cheap and then if it is really bad I can always get some different tires.
By the way, nice reaction taz, lol:wavey:

tazmann910 04-15-2008 02:44 PM

I do what I can, ...:rolleyes:

2much 04-15-2008 03:37 PM

thats a hell of a build man, good luck.
the dry rot on the tires would concern me too, but save that till close to the end, and if it looks like your gonna have a little extra left in your budget go ahead and spring for some nice tires. just my .02

GrnTJ 04-15-2008 04:39 PM

I agree completley. But since Im pulling all my old stuff off for this other stuff that means I will have a lot to sell also. My D30 and 35 with 4.88 gears and heavy duty diff covers, my 33" Pro Comp mud terrains on 15x8 black rims, most of my lift, etc. I have been looking at rear disc brake conversion for my 60 and I found a kit fro $300 shipped. Then I'll have all brand new rear brakes + they'll be discs. A new clutch pack for the power-lock is $40. Im building all my own brackets so it looks like $350 to rebuild the rear and have it ready to bolt in. The front will just needs freshened up brakes and possibly new ball joints so maybe about $250 there. I think new tires are a good possibility but Im kinda likeing the look of those hawgs, lol.

4.0l sahara 04-15-2008 04:51 PM

I would do the ball joint while your at it. also is your jeep a 5spd? Just woundering.:)

1BLKJP 04-15-2008 04:57 PM

Great lookin project Grn, should be fun for you to get it all together. What are you going to do in the front for the driver side upper? I only ask because if you haven't seen them TnT Customs makes great trusses that will integrate all of the upper mounts you'd need for you TJ. I've seen a couple of them here in AZ and for what they cost and the time they save with not having to build all of the mounts I think they are well worth it.

I'd say those tires will be fine for you for awhile. Especially if you are trying to stay on a budget and you already have 2 8 lug wheels with tires on them.

ArizonaJeeper 04-15-2008 05:15 PM

very nice build Grn. You got one helluva deal on those axels from under that truck. You essentially gained 2 axels+ some cash :rolleyes:... i wish

GrnTJ 04-15-2008 05:19 PM

sahara- I planned on doing the ball joints simply because they are older and new ones will do nothing but give me piece of mind at the very least. So they will most likely get replaced. Also, yes, I have a 5spd but I was thinking of doing a nv4500 swap in the future. We'll see how the rest of the drivetrain holds up first before I get into that project though.

BLK-Thanks. I have been trying to figure out what I would do for the upper mounts, I couldnt decide if I wanted to build that set up myself or not since Im already building the D60 truss. That sounds like a better solution though, Im deff. gonna check that out. Thanks for pointing me to that. Yea, we'll see about the tires. I want to keep them because it would be way easier/cheaper plus they just look sweet. Even if I say Im gonna get new tires, the reality is I wont. I know I'll end up keeping these and getting 2 more.

GrnTJ 04-16-2008 08:59 AM

I decided to ditch my front axle and look for one out of a 78'-79' F-150/F-250 instead.

GrnTJ 04-25-2008 08:01 AM

Well, I tore and old land rover buck seat out of a truck we had sittin here and bolted it in the back behind the passenger side. Came out pretty sweet. Perfect room to the left for my subs too. I will post pictures tonight. The seat is electric too which it pretty sweet. One question though, anyone know how to get the dang seat belt to unlock. I took it off a long time ago because I thought Id never put a seat in the back and now they are reeled in most of the way and they wont let go!

GrnTJ 04-27-2008 09:26 AM

So I was a little slow to getting these pics up but here they are, sorry for the delay.

Rover seat mounted in the rear, its a 3 seater now:
Just enough room to fit the subs:
This is the rig that I picked up to pull my axles from, it was a piece:
Front axle was a pain to get out:
I thought D60's had 30 or 35 spline shafts, these were 16 spline?:
Got all the brackets cut off and ground down and drums off, ready to be built up:
Lastly, just an idea of what is kinda gonna look like when Im done:

tobycat1 04-27-2008 12:06 PM

Nice project man!

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