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Old 10-09-2015, 01:07 PM   #33691
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4) a gsxr
NOT!!! Thats like trading down!!! Too many Squids ride gixers!!!!

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Old 10-09-2015, 09:30 PM   #33692
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I keep getting ready to move on in my current project and then something steps up and screams, "FIX ME, TOO!"

So I do, and another day of fair weather gets burned.

But I am slowly getting stuff done.

Yesterday I repainted the rear jounce bumper cups and today I installed them with some new bolts. They had been rusted in place with 2" plastic pucks courtesy of the PO. (Yes, he extended them from the top rather than the bottom. <sigh>) The bolts were so badly rusted that about half the threads were missing, and they were 2" too long. So Brown Santa brought me some nice, new ones that are stock length.

I also decided that the finish on both sway bars pretty much sucks. I am doing the rear end right now, so I cleaned up that setup. I soaked the super rusty (but still serviceable) four rear sway bar bracket bolts in white vinegar (full strength) for four hours. Every hour I pulled them and wire brushed them to death. After four hours the heavy rust was all gone and the threads are still very much intact except for the last two or three by the bolt head, and they don't engage anything because of the captured washers.

These captured washer bolts are always costly if you go Mopar, which I usually do when the fastener is unusual or specialized. So this saved me about $30 in parts and shipping.

I also did the hardware for the rear links as the Metalcloak kit does not replace these bits. The OEM bolt design is with a large shoulder that is a good bit larger than the threads. There is a long shoulder, then a big step down for these four bolts, and the PO's kit replaced them with some super cheap bolts with sleeves in the bushings to correct the thickness. The Metalcloak kit has just the rubber bushings, so I need the actual Mopar bolts, and of course, two of them have very specifically shaped flag nuts, too.

The four special bolts, with shipping, cost me about $30 on eBay. Being able to use the vinegar treatment on my current flag nuts saved me some money. They, too, were caked with hard, brown rust, and all of it is gone with no damage to the base metal. Some cleanup, self-etching primer (for bare steel) and some paint should keep them from re-rusting for a few years.

So I painted the rear sway bar, primed the sway bar brackets after two hours in the vinegar, and after four hours the hardware for the sway bar and the links are now rust-free. I chased the threads for everything to make sure they were clean.

Reassembly tomorrow.

I tried to use self-etching primer on my aluminum control arm hex tubes. Then some paint.

This was a no-go.

After 24 hours I went to apply some extra coats of paint. What was there pretty easily peeled off. Most of the primer, too. WTF???

I did not want to mess with it, so the four hex bars got scraped and polished back to how they had looked two days ago before I tried this failed experiment. I will look into painting aluminum at a later date. I did think about possibly bed-lining them, though. But I like the raw aluminum look, so probably not.

I cleaned up all the parts, set them to the correct starting length and remounted them to the rear of the jeep, finger tight until they are at ride height.

Tomorrow I will also finish the "el cheapo" axle painting cleanup by painting the pumpkin.

So after all that has been done I will get out the strut compressors again and mount the springs and bump stop extensions. Then the shocks.

After that I have to mount and bend my rear track bar relocation bracket. Someone at Metalcloak over bent an angle, so I will have to hammer down a tab to fit.

Then the track bar.

Getting closer.

[NOTE: The pic of the hardware was taken after three hours and two wire brushings. I was not happy and tossed them in for another hour. After the final brushing I was so pleased that I forgot to take another photo. These had been severely rusted, so that I had to extract them using a breaker bar for the entire run of the threads on every bolt. Glad this worked. It cost me about a dollar, took about four hours, and took minimal effort to get about 20 very badly rusted parts looking better than this. Not too shabby...]
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Old 10-09-2015, 09:50 PM   #33693
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Holton, that was too much to quote man. But holy crap! You must have some serious patience my friend. I would have gone Yosemite Sam after the first hour! I commend you on the work and progress you are accomplishing with your rig, Sir. Forum Hi-5!!!
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Old 10-09-2015, 11:32 PM   #33694
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Holton, that was too much to quote man. But holy crap! You must have some serious patience my friend. I would have gone Yosemite Sam after the first hour! I commend you on the work and progress you are accomplishing with your rig, Sir. Forum Hi-5!!!
Thanks, man. Got no kids. Fifty years old. This stuff is my "hobby" I guess. BAHAHAHA!!!

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Old 10-10-2015, 01:36 AM   #33695
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Thanks, man. Got no kids. Fifty years old. This stuff is my "hobby" I guess. BAHAHAHA!!!
I'm creeping up on 40 myself. Except I have 2 boys, 20 and 14, and 2 girls, 9 and 14 months. It's a miracle I still have my Jeeps at all. The brats steal every penny they can find from me! I actually told them I use a local bank, but I live in MA and my bank is a small credit union local only to Vacaville, CA! Yep, as far from their reach as possible. My oldest son can charm the panties off any teller, then I'd have no money to pay the bills.
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Old 10-10-2015, 10:55 AM   #33696
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I'm creeping up on 40 myself. Except I have 2 boys, 20 and 14, and 2 girls, 9 and 14 months. It's a miracle I still have my Jeeps at all. The brats steal every penny they can find from me! I actually told them I use a local bank, but I live in MA and my bank is a small credit union local only to Vacaville, CA! Yep, as far from their reach as possible. My oldest son can charm the panties off any teller, then I'd have no money to pay the bills.
omfg... HAHAHA!!!

Dude, that description of your boy is such an accurate picture of me at 20, just before I went into the Army!

Cheers!
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Old 10-10-2015, 08:44 PM   #33697
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New tailights

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Had no reverse lights from PO. These hopefully will fit the bill!
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Old 10-10-2015, 09:30 PM   #33698
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Finished up Installing my new Currie Correctlinc and driveway alignment. Pretty easy stall, just pay attention to the zerk fittings on the tie rod bar. I goofed initially and had to swap that around. Did a driveway alignment and attempted to grease the zerks. No luck their yet, but after reading tons of threads warning about forcing grease I'll just try again after a drive tomorrow.
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Old 10-10-2015, 09:52 PM   #33699
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Today I had pretty limited time, and I stopped after dark, so no pics. I suck, I know.

I hit the lower half of the D44 pumpkin with a wire wheel and discovered that, unlike the rest of the axle, the crap on the pumpkin is just filth. Most of the factory finish is very strongly intact. There we a lot of small chips with dark rust, but the wire wheel took the dark brown spots down to a shiny, medium brown. All the loose stuff came off.

Then I scrubbed down the bottom half of the pumpkin with Simple Green to wash off the remaining layers of grime and gear oil. (The pinion seal has a slow leak.)

Next I took one last swipe with the big wire wheel to the cover, which is in sad shape and will get replaced when I re-gear.

After that I washed everything down with mineral spirits. I hit the cleaned up sections with some Rust-Oleum Automotive Primer and let it dry all afternoon. I came back this evening and laid down more of the VHT Roll Bar and Chassis paint. It will probably burn off, unfortunately. Whatever. This only needs to look decent for less than a year.

Tomorrow I will lower the axle fully and hit the top of the pumpkin with the same process. I have two hours in the a.m. and then have to go to work and will do the process up through priming. I will be back home about two hours before sundown and can do the paint then.

Today I also re-chased the gunky, rusty threads in the D44's sway bar mount brackets and vacuumed out all that red-brown powder that looks so much like the soil in Georgia.

Turns out that the mounting brackets and the links all use M10x1.5 threads, so I was able to chase out the old flag nuts and the two regular nuts at that time. Then I held them with vise-grips and ran the four sway bar bracket bolts (with the captured washers) through one of the flag nuts until the last bit of trash in the threads was gone.

Tomorrow I will reinstall the rear sway bar and the end links.

So the D44 will be fully painted and set up in prep for the springs and shocks. I have Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday off this week, so I am thinking I will have this lift kit installed, parts-wise, on Monday. Then, when it is sitting at ride height I can finally tighten the control arm bolts and torque them up correctly. I can install the rear track bar and adjust the front one. I can also take down and clean up the front sway bar and install the Metalcloak discos. Wednesday sounds about right unless my three days off are actually OFF and no one needs me for anything.

Once all that is done I can start the SYE...

The pic is of one of my new Mopar bolts for the rear links with one from the PO's links. I like the stock ones better in this case, and the MC links fit them perfectly. And the PO's bolt is not stainless because it is a Grade 10.9 (like a metric version of Grade 8) and I think most SS bolts are similar to Grade 2. So that vinegar cleaned the rust right off these fasteners. (Some did not get this clean, however.)
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Old 10-10-2015, 10:27 PM   #33700
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New rear shocks.

Then decided to decorate for Halloween....


This might scare some kids
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Old 10-10-2015, 11:24 PM   #33701
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Before After Had no reverse lights from PO. These hopefully will fit the bill!
If that don't work amazons has little led lights that look like bolts kinda that work great and are just $5
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Old 10-11-2015, 05:14 AM   #33702
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New rear shocks.

Then decided to decorate for Halloween....


This might scare some kids
lol
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Old 10-11-2015, 09:08 AM   #33703
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Take my advice and rig up a mechanism (if you haven't already) that moves the door handle forward to a more comfortable location. Here's my temporary door handle relocator:




Trust me on this, your wrist will thank you. The door handle/hook is located in the back and you have to angle your wrist at an awkward position to open it. Once the door handles start corroding and become harder to open (they will, trust me) then it's even more stress on your wrist. I been opening this door with my left wrist for three years now and I have chronic wrist pain that's so bad that I cannot hold anything heavy.

I need surgery but going to live with it cuz I hate going under the knife.

I'll post a picture of what I make when I'm done modifying that design into something more
THAT is an idea that needs to be submitted to Bestop
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Old 10-11-2015, 01:24 PM   #33704
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Changed the oil for the first time since being the new owner. Easiest oil change I've ever done, hands down. Then installed the Hi-Lift hood mounts. Picked up the jack on CL for $20. I know they aren't the most useful things but for $20 I figured what the hell...

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Old 10-11-2015, 02:01 PM   #33705
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Nice find, GitMoe!

I just washed off my protective overcoat (some call it "mud") after getting a bath at the local ORV park yesterday. I love my overcoat, but didn't like the pointing and laughing from other vehicles since I added this latest layer.
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Old 10-11-2015, 02:23 PM   #33706
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Dana 44 painted. Tonight I will install the cleaned up sway bar. Coming along nicely, now...
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Old 10-11-2015, 05:30 PM   #33707
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Wheeled it... And won a new Jerry can!
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Old 10-11-2015, 07:23 PM   #33708
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After the last three weekends and yesterday, finally a day off without it raining to do some maintenance. Oil changed, lubed, tires rotated, cleaned the crud/corrosion off the battery terminals, washed and Aero303'd the top.

Side note, anyone have any tips for keeping the wheel key from locking to the lug nut? Usually after I break it free I have to use a pair of pliers or a tap from a BFH to loosen the key back off the nut. Tried a bit of grease before and used some baby powder today (seemed to work better) but it still isn't perfect. Wasn't sure if it could be the key/nut set I am using or if there is a tip I am missing.
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Old 10-11-2015, 10:00 PM   #33709
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Got my rockers on. Post pictures tomorrow.
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Old 10-11-2015, 10:24 PM   #33710
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Wheeled it... And won a new Jerry can!
How did you win it?
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Old 10-11-2015, 10:35 PM   #33711
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How did you win it?
Pure lucky really, didn't have to do anything to win it, they were just drawing numbers based off how many Jeeps were there and they drew my number.


Annoyed my sister (whose Jeep number was 105) Mine was 106 but what kind of brother would I be if I didn't annoy her :-)
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Old 10-11-2015, 11:44 PM   #33712
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Changed the oil for the first time since being the new owner. Easiest oil change I've ever done, hands down. Then installed the Hi-Lift hood mounts. Picked up the jack on CL for $20. I know they aren't the most useful things but for $20 I figured what the hell...
Well, useless for some, but one of the most versatile tools to have in your inventory for others. I've used mine several times on trails. For instance, when high centered on large rocks cuz it seems to be the quickest method. I've used it to pull fence posts and loaned it to my neighbor to pull a small tree stump. I actually just used it a couple of weeks ago to get the doors unstuck from my JKU so I could take her naked for a few days.
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Old 10-12-2015, 12:45 AM   #33713
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Installed the 36" Pro Comp Explorer light bar that I got for 1/2 price.

IMG_4403 by Reed Rothchild, on Flickr

IMG_4402 by Reed Rothchild, on Flickr

IMG_4400 by Reed Rothchild, on Flickr
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Old 10-12-2015, 12:59 AM   #33714
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Dana 44 painted. Tonight I will install the cleaned up sway bar. Coming along nicely, now...
Badass. Nice work. When are you replacing that tired exhaust? jk
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Old 10-12-2015, 09:46 AM   #33715
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This weekend I installed a new Blower Switch, new Blower Motor Resistor, fixed my vac leak, finished my PS hood louvre and just ordered a new BestTop SuperTop NX. Should be here Thursday or Friday whoop whoop
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Old 10-12-2015, 01:03 PM   #33716
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Badass. Nice work. When are you replacing that tired exhaust? jk
It still is quite sound, but looks like crapola. I will first try to cover it with the VHT Flame Proof stuff that is good up to 2000º - It has a lot of metal in the mix and looks very decent. I need to replace my two mini cats and probably the main cat, too. So a full system rebuild is on the horizon, though what I have on the rig now (or in piles in my living room, heh...) cost me more than I ever wanted to spend, so the replacement will be slow in coming. I want a new system, but paint is all I will get for some time.

And I agree with you, completely. All this new stuff, combined with all the fresh paint, make that perfectly sound exhaust look pretty raggedy. The engine block looks like garbage, too. One day that will be rebuilt, and in the process will be repainted, too.

I do not want a show vehicle. I want hard, glossy paint on everything because it is so much easier to keep clean than a matte finish. I do not go overboard on my cleaning most times. I normally only wash it like a regular car. But the nasty underside has been bugging me since I bought it. I seem to spend a lot of time down there, and the filth and damage passed on to me by the PO are things I look at and think, "Hey, while I am down here I can fix that up, no problem."

However, it is never that simple or easy or quick. I keep suckering myself into these side projects. I don't know why. Maybe I just want a really nice Jeep, even when I bash it up and break stuff. I want to crawl under and see *my* work, with no detail ignored or glossed over.

I am a bit of an idiot in this regard, heh, heh, heh...

If I did not have my JK to wheel this TJ would have been finished last year.
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Old 10-12-2015, 03:45 PM   #33717
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Not all of it was today. I have to work the 2 till midnight today so this is what I got done today. You can tell because it's by far the cleanest thing on it:

[IMG][/IMG]
Some of the other things I've done lately are the radiator skid plate:

[IMG][/IMG]

Steering box skid plate:
[IMG][/IMG]

And a Bestop underseat lock box:

[IMG][/IMG]
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Old 10-12-2015, 03:50 PM   #33718
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However, it is never that simple or easy or quick. I keep suckering myself into these side projects. I don't know why. Maybe I just want a really nice Jeep, even when I bash it up and break stuff. I want to crawl under and see *my* work, with no detail ignored or glossed over.
THIS! I completely understand.
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Old 10-12-2015, 05:02 PM   #33719
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Not all done today, but over the past week or so. Just got around to taking pics today.

-Removed and repainted the rock sliders and corner armor (both Rokmen). Also repaired some small rust spots that had formed on the tub under the sliders.

-Added TrailTail LED tail lights, bent the license plate around the tub, and illuminated it with LED bolts.

-Did the XJ steering upgrade (no pics) and replaced the drag link. Super easy, inexpensive, and well worth it.

-Trimmed about 2" off the rear fender flares and repainted those as well.

-Installed the CB (Uniden 520XL) and antenna (Firestik FS3) that I've had sitting around for awhile. Made the antenna mount myself with some angle steel and part of a Firestik hood mount. Still need to paint it.
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Old 10-12-2015, 05:40 PM   #33720
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Join Date: May 2014
Location: Redlands, Ca.
Posts: 916
Installed a Metalcloak rear bumper/ tire carrier!

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It's not a toy to me,,,it's a fricken piece of survival equipment !

It's not just a vehicle with big tires and a winch and fold down top and removable doors, that's what a jeep has, but what a jeep is..... is FREEDOM !

I take the long way home...
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