Scorpicon's Bolt-On Build Thread
Hey Everyone! Finally got around to making my build thread for the 2013 Dune JKU Rubicon, named Scorpicon, that I ordered and received two months ago.
This will be a SLOW build, but I will lay out my plan in phases below, that I hope and plan to get me on 40's and 1-tons by the end(within 2 years). I attempted to do this build last year, and shortly after I began to purchase parts I determined I wanted to perform the build on a 2013 JKUR. The determining factor was the new(2012+) 3.6L, rather than my 2007 JKU Sahara with the slug of a 3.8L. And while doing so, I determined a Rubicon would be a better choice for the sway bar, transfer case, lockers, 4.10 stock option gears, etc. This, combined with traveling a lot for work put a temporary hold on my build, but I am now back on track.
Again, this will be a somewhat slow build due to funds, and access to a garage and tools, but the plan remains the same. So bare with me and give me ANY advice you may be able to give in the product and parts I am looking to purchase! Items in red are already purchased items.
•Drag link flip
•Adjustible Track Bar - JKS Gen-II Bar
•1350 F&R Drive Shaft
•Adjustable Front Lower Control Arms - Rock Krawler High Clearance Arms
•Skid system - EVO MFG Full ProTek Skid System
•Flat fender flares - Stock Fender Cut
•4 door Sliders - LOD Signiture Series Sliders
•Bolt on Coilover system - EVO MFG Front and Rear
•Winch Mount Stubby Bumper - EVO MFG 1/4 pounder with Stinger
•Speedometer recalibration/Tuner - AEV Procal
•High lift jack
•CB Radio, antenna, and wiring
•35”x17” MT tires - Nitto Mud Grappler 35x12.50r17
•Rear Tire carrier (with or w/o bumper) - OR-Fab Jerry Can Carrier
•Wheel Spacers - 1.5" Spidertrax
•Inner C-gussets - EVO MFG C2 Gussets
•Bolt-on Long Arm bracketry and control arms
•Electrical wiring system with dash or a-pillar rocker switches
•Hydraulic Assist Steering
•Onboard Air System
•LED Off Road Lighting
•9.5-12K Winch - Warn 9.5ti
•Cat Back Exhaust - DynoMax Evolution Competition Series Exhaust
•1 ton axles with 5.13's, 8 on 6.5 lug, ARB, full float rear
•Beadlock 17” 8on6.5 wheels - ATX Slabs
•40” x 17” tires
•Power steering cooler
•4 point Racing Seats
This is a copy and past from my last build thread. Some of it has changed, but much remains the same. I am being a little more realistic this time in the timeframe that I'll be able to perform this build. It'll be over 1-2 years(hopefully no more) rather than a couple of months like planned/desired before.
The purpose of this thread is to have fun. I will use it to keep the build on track and to hold myself accountable for the build. I also hope it serves as a source of information to other people that are new to Building Big!
Just like many other threads, my continued posts will be pics and info of the build. I will post complications encountered, and solutions to those snags, in as much detail as possible. Please feel free to chime in with recommendations, possible complications I should prepare for! Thanks for reading guys!
So when I purchased my JK, I knew I couldn’t wait to get it topless, go for a cruise on the weekends, and every other spare chance I got. I imagined taking it down in the creek beds and hill sides of my Southern Ohio home town. I have been around fairly stock jeeps my entire life. The majority of add-ons I have helped with were slightly larger than stock MT tires and VERY mild bolt on lifts. These jeeps were a great time and capable of taking me many of the places I wanted to go. Theeeeeeeeen came my JK.
My original plans were to build it like all the old jeeps I’ve always been in and around. Keep it near stock, place a little bit of money in suspension upgrades, go with 33”-35” tires, and install a mild lift. I then found online forums. They sucked me in with numbers, specs, and possibilities. I read and watching people with these insane (in my mind at the time) lift systems that were capable of running 37”, 40”, and even 42” tires. I couldn’t quit reading of the changes they made to accommodate these upgrades.
Then came all the horror stories and failures from improperly building their rig for the functions they wanted it to perform. Many of these failures were due to shotty aftermarket kits and parts that were built for looks and not function. Many were from going too big on a budget and breaking parts (i.e. Axle tubes or inner knuckles) they could have saved by taking their time and “building it backwards”.
Building it Backwards
As I continued to read I realized that to properly build my rig, I needed to consider the next part “upstream”. Larger tires place stress on the knuckles and axle tubes. They often require an upgrade in gearing to make up for the loss in torque and fuel economy. A lift system (that is lacking proper components) will misalign the track bars, drive shafts, draglink, etc.
Then you will have to think of all the future added weight. Add a sport cage, heavy bumpers, winch, roof rack, heavy full sized spare tire, etc. and you will place added strain on these components that weren't designed for extreme use.
My original thoughts of 33”-35” tires went quickly to 37’s. I started to think out the build and my mind began flirtting with the possibility of 40’s. I know myself all too well, and that I will later regret not building it capable of handling bigger. I also know that I hate to spend money twice! I then made my mind up to build it for the magic number 40!
Building it Bolt-on
I looked at the required components to make an extremely reliable rig and the numbers started to add up. I knew I wanted a Long Arm lift and began noticing that there were MANY good lift systems. Some were bolt-on and some were weld on…..(disclaimer--> I know how to wrench but when it comes to welding and electrical work, my skills are TREMENDOUSLY sub-par. So for anything weld on I would require a professional’s assistance)
I next began contacting shops and quickly realized the labor cost involved in installing the weld on lift kits would range up to and even over $2,500. That’s sometimes more than the cost of the lift itself!!! I could buy my front and rear bumpers with a winch for $2,500!!! Then you factor in other components and you quickly see the cost of install adding up.
This has driven me to research my build for a year. I want to build the best rig I can, while taking all the money saved from installation and reinvesting it into upgraded, more capable, parts.
I have messaged the forum moderators and requested access to perform write-ups and will be giving in-depth photo's and instructions/tips for install of all the products I have listed as well as some youtube video's covering it. For those hard-core wheelers into a ton of fabrication work, it wont be too exciting for you For those who cant weld or that dont want the cost associated with hiring a shop to do your install to limit you from a MIGHTY capable rig, then this is just for you!(but mostly for me :) )
Got the exact same rig (well when stock :whistling:) so looking forward to seeing how it looks. Still in the planning, debating, and second guessing stages on mine:rofl:
Awesome, sounds exactly like my jeep! well except for the model, the mods, the color etc.
I'll be following this
So while debating low COG and flat fenders I began to look at aftermarket flares. Well they are costly and I am cheap so to the cutting I went. I've seen quite a few fenders trimmed, but really liked this layout. So I taped off one side how i wanted the lines to look.
I then took measurements to be able to replicate on the other side
And then the cutting began. I started with a pneumatic saw from Harbor freight
But that was taking too long so I upgraded to a 3" cut off tool and that blew through the material!
After cutting the inner fender liners to line up to the fender-well
I then secured the liner to the fender-well with a zip tie
And this is the final product. I am debating on weather stripping/molding to give it a finished look
Also picked up a AEV Procal from a guy who never used it.
With 35's and shift points all off, I was getting ~12MPG. After Procal I was getting this(after 70 miles of mixed highway and town but mostly interstate)
Installed my stinger yesterday in a few spare minutes i had while packing for my move.
Also Painted my fender-wells black
Hey Stizzy. Looks good. It doesn't look like the rake is too bad with no lift and a bumper and winch. I'm going to follow this path also. What are your plans for rear bumper. I like the EVO D rings and none.
Those fenders turned out really clean, nice job.
Also it was funny... When I saw your first cutting tool I thought "Wow how cute, what a neat little cutting tool". Well, apparently it was too neat and too little because it did nothing for you lol.
Whats up Strizzy? Looking good! Just joined up over here not long ago. :thumb:
I'm about to pull the trigger on the Enforcer and 37" Nittos.
So two weeks ago I moved my JK from Orange Co to San Fran to start my next contract.
This is a pic of my Sterling Tow Master Tow Bar base plate/mount on my EVO 1/4 Pounder front bumper. No signs of any stress from the move/tow. Im very happy with how stout this bumper is!
Installed the 2013 compatible Procal. Honestly couldn't tell a difference in shift points or "feel" while driving but did it ever help my MPG!!! Finally disabling the TPMS was nice as well!
Also Picked up a 20" spot/flood combo LED light bar as well as two 2x2 pillar mount spots. Just need to figure out my mounting solution for them.
So trying to get a feel for the size and mounting of the 20" LEDs. I may look for a piece of thick steel bent a few times to bolt to the bumper if there isnt a reasonably priced bracket available.
Also installed a 1.75" front spacer to help compensate for the factory rake, bumper/stinger and winch weight as well as the extra rise from running no spare or rear carrier right now. It was dark when I finished the install so no pics until the morning but It looks like I still have a slight rake. I have a 3/4" rear spacer that I thought I would use in combo, but may not even need it. :eek:
You done any wheeling with the 35's and flat fenders? Thinking I may go this route, do the rims and tires before the lift, but I know as soon as the new rubber is on I'm gonna want to take it out and play!
nothing too serious. Mostly just mud hills and wooded trails back home(Ohio) I just got to the san fran area and hope to meet some folks here to go wheel with soon. I know there are supposed to be some good trails about 2 hours from here near Sonora. I have a trip with 10 rigs planned for early August on the Rubicon. Im hoping to have my coilovers on before that trip though
So here she is, in daylight, after installing Front 1.75" spacers only.
There's still a slight rake, but I think mounting the rear carrier and spare will level it. If it then sags too much under that weight, I will then install the rear 3/4" spacers to then raise it to be more level.
I have had a few questions about the swaybar relocation. I am terrible at descriptions so I used my crappy paint skills to help me. If you see in the pic below the #1 tab(original mounting location) on of the swaybar housing is thin. Its sole purpose is to attach as the anchor point of the housing to keep it from spinning freely. The #2 spot is a hole that has a bolt in it from the factory and holds the housing together. The reason you will need to drill this hole is because #1 hole bolt that you will now be inserting into the #2 hole has a short threaded section and the body of the bolt(In the circle) is larger. The larger bolt body will stop you from being able to thread it completely into the swaybar housing. By reaming the #2 hole by 1/2" this will allow you to thread the bolt in far enough to slip the un-threaded section in far enough to also secure the 2 parts of the housing together. (I hope this all makes sense)
Good job on the fender cutting, it you plan on finishing them off with some door trim, you'll need to round out the corners. I tried using that same Harbor Freight pneumatic saw and this is where it ended up...
Another tip if you want to address the big gap left after you trim the liners
Heat the edge up with a hot air gun and prop a hammer along the edges. Slowly curving the plastic back.
You'll eventually get most of it flipped back and covering the hole. It won't look pretty but its better than the holes and protects hoses and wires from the elements
I didn't have to do any modifying of the sway bar motor when I relocated mine. It was a simple unbolt, spin around, insert new bolt.
Are you reusing the bolt? That may be why. I bought the Metalcloak bolt and spacer kit to do mine.
I dont think I left enough plastic to do your molding tip. But thats a great tip that ill pass on :thumb:
DIY JK Vacuum Relocation
So when I initially did my EVO 1/4 pounder front bumper, I very temporarily rigged up the vacuum canister. All JK's from 2012+ will require this if you are installing the EVO or some other high clearance front bumpers. I later, after seeing the prices of relocation kits between 60 and 120 bucks, decided to fab up something cheap! Here was my solution.
Total Parts list from Ace Hardware
2- 1.25" x 2" angled truss clips @ $0.79 each
2- 3/8" fender washers @ $0.25 each
1- 3/8" Hex bolt @ $0.45
1- 3/8" nut @ $0.12
2- 3/8" lock washers @ $0.20
1- bag of #24 1.25" bolts and nuts @ $1.18 (only used 2)
Total Cost = $4.23
First I measured and marked (2) 1.25"x2" angled truss clips for drilling and bending
Drilled a 3/8 hole in the clip for mounting a hex-bolt through
I used the preexisting frame hole to mount it. This is the hole just below the front body mount. On both sides I used a 3/8" fender washer and lock washer as well as the 3/8" bolt and nut
I then used a table vice to clamp and bend the second truss clip to clear the winch in the front, then to bend up and over the mount for the old swaybar guard/lower air dam mount. I bent this tightly as to "clamp down" and secure itself on install. I had to use a hammer to tap it down onto the frame bracket.
Once the two brackets were installed I mounted the Vacuum to the tabs using size #24 1.25" bolts and nuts. Trust me, you will want to do this before you install your winch. The tolerances are a complete PITA and you have to be a contortionist to place the nuts in the screws.
This is the front mount
The back mount
Sorry the pics are not the best, I did it with the bumper already installed and it's very tight in there for a camera.
Bestop Trektop NX Diamond Series
My girlfriend did some great recon on me to get the best anniversary gift I could imagine! She knows I spend more time tinkering with my Jeep and reading on forums than anything else, and she’s always sitting beside me as I am reading my pm's from people and responding to questions on my threads. Well in her brilliantness she created a fake screenname on one of the forums, sent me a pm acting like a noob saying “he” really liked my build and was wanting my advice on soft tops. I sent a lengthy reply covering 5 that I liked and disliked from what I have seen/owned/played with. I ended that with the fact that I was looking to purchase a Bestop Trektop NX Diamond Series and would be putting up a little review and write-up when I do…well what showed up at my door yesterday…you guessed it!
So I got my Jeep naked for the first time by removing the hard top
The first step to installing this is to install the door surrounds. These are simple enough and install in pre-existing holes in the rear tub of the Jeep. Start from the rear door surround first, making sure that the seals are not being “bunched up” and that the surround sits perfectly into the seals.
After the rear is in place you will install one of the long bolts into the rear secure hole.
Next is the front door surround. Same as before, make sure the seals are not being bunched and install the very front long bolt
Last step in installing the door surrounds is the pivot bar bracket the mounts where the front and rear surround secures together. You will notice the bracket is molded and fits perfectly into place if you have it on the right side. Once in place use the remaining small screw to finish the door surrounds
Next you will unzip the rear cage covers to access the factory bolts. You will use these bolts as the rear bracket mounting points and they require a 13mm wrench for removal.
You will line the upper front bolt bracket up and with a utility knife make a small cut just enough that the bracket slides through. IT WILL NOT FIT INTO THE DOOR CHANNELS! I spent 20 minutes flipping and switching the brackets thinking they were supposed to fit securely into the door surrounds.
You will do the same with the smaller rear bracket on the lower cage bolt.
Now you will take the two bows and install them into the door surround brackets. These are the two bows that says front and back WITH the black feet at the end. You will install these with the paper tape facing up and remove the tape after install. There is no residue left behind, the tape is stricktly protective.
Next you install the rear tailgate bar clips. If you start from the rear clip(inside the jeep) and press/roll it forward, they will just snap in.
Next you will need to install the pivot bars to the header. You will unscrew the material to allow access to the bar mounting holes
You then insert the bar with the clip pin on the inside of the top and align the pre-existing holes in the bar to the header.
I forgot to take the pictures, but you will grab the installed bars and flip the header over and install two more screws(just like pictured above) but in the back side of the header in the pre-existing holes.
You will then re-install the original fabric tabs with original screws.
Next you will install the foam seals provided. The youtube video and instructions were not too clear, but I believe this is how it should look.
It is now time to begin installing the top onto the Jeep. Take the fabric and place it on to the hood of your jeep. You will then install the pivot arms into the door surround bracket you installed in the beginning.
Now install the middle bow bar into the sleeve. Make sure it is centered and then install the c-clip provided in the kit to secure it into place.
Now lift the bar up and into the u-bracket that is in the header.
Next, flip the remaining material over your jeep to install the tensioner line/spring into the front hole. Before doing this you will want to flip the front portion of the top back to allow slack. The line will go under the screw, then over the header and under the bracket. This was a very tough install for me, and I don’t have fat fingers, so I used needle nose pliers for this step.
You will then slide the bow though the rear sleeve, then through the far back bracket. AFTER it is through and under all of this you will install the retaining clips that are already on the top to secure into place.
Next thread the supplied straps and clips into the buckle on the top. You will then insert the clip into the factory holes in your roof/B pillar cross section.
Now flip the front section of the top back down into place and ONLY attach the header clamps. DO NOT clamp them down all the way. Doing so will make your install a real PITA!
You will then insert the rear window first. Begin at the very end and you will hear a clicking sound. MAKE SURE YOU HEAR THE CLICK. You then slide the top down through the groove until it is centered into the channel .
Now you will install the sides. Begin with the top zippers above the doors. And ONLY zip the first 2 inches of the zipper to get them started. You will then do the rear window zippers 2 inches as well
After they are started, you will install the window sections around the door channels. Make sure they are completely rolled around the door surround and in the channel.
Next you install the lower rail tabs like an original soft top uses.(sorry no pic of this step. )
Lastly after all the door channels and tub seam channel tabs are secured you will slowly go around and zip the windows closed. Be sure to not force it or you can and will bust a seam!!! If you hit much resistance let the material sit and relax. Because it was getting late/dark and the material cooled off, I had to wait until the next morning to finish one of the zippers.
Nice build thread. The post above that was supposed to show the TF spacers from the side isn't showing?
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