Making my Willy's longer (JKt build) - Jeep Wrangler Forum
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Old 09-15-2018, 12:30 AM
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Making my Willy's longer (JKt build)

I've wanted a Wrangler based pickup truck forever. I fell in love with the Gladiator concept in '05, but Jeep hasn't produced anything. I know they have a truck scheduled for production next year, but I want a regular cab almost "compact" truck. Something to replace my abused '90 MJ


Got to shopping on copart for a rear ended JK, and ended up with a '16 JK Willy's. Perfect starting point; 3.73 posi axle, 3.6 with 5 speed auto, just over 16k miles and a big dent in the rear.

Just after I got it home I contacted GR8TOPS and talked Matt into a "one off" recruite. It's based on the 4 door recruite top with the door opening pie cut, narrowed in the front, and built to match the windshield (no freedom panels)Click image for larger version

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Old 09-15-2018, 12:33 AM
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Late August I yanked the body off to stretch the wheelbase to around 122", cut the body off at the back of the recruite top and build a flatbed.
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Old 09-15-2018, 12:39 AM
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After getting it stripped down, did a little hacking. Extend the frame 26" making it 6" longer than a JKU with a 122" wheelbase.

Picked up a '05+ TJ tank from the local salvage yard to swap in behind the axle. Converted the rear axle and t-case to u-joint style.
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Old 09-15-2018, 12:41 AM
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Set the body back on for some approximation measurements added 15" extensions behind the axle, pulled it back apart and yanked the springs for checking clearances on the crossmember.

Pretty sure that is everything so far
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Old 09-15-2018, 07:33 AM   #5
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Awesome project, subscribed!!!


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Old 09-15-2018, 10:43 AM   #6
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Well, doesn’t this look interesting. I’m looking forward to your progress.
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Old 09-15-2018, 01:52 PM   #7
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Very interesting Thread!
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Old 09-16-2018, 11:26 PM   #8
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This could be awesome to followed.
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Old 09-19-2018, 12:52 PM
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Looks like I'm going to be taking a break from the truck, welder gave up.
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Old 09-19-2018, 09:00 PM
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Fuel pump basket is lowered 4.25". Sits nicely in the bottom of the TJ tank. Used 1/4" stainless rod, cut e-clip grooves on the lathe and used a stainless washer and e-clip to load the spring. The fuel line seems perfect, still have to extend the wires
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Old 09-20-2018, 07:39 AM   #11
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Wow cant wait to see this builds progress! Wish I had your skills!
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Old 09-23-2018, 06:08 PM   #12
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I was really scared when I clicked on this thread...... But this is pretty awesome.
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Old 09-24-2018, 02:21 PM   #13
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I was really scared when I clicked on this thread...... But this is pretty awesome.
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Old 10-22-2018, 10:33 PM
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Been working on the Jeep some.
UPS lost the capacitor for my welder (vendor shipped another out, hope to see it soon)
Nearly finished the chassis up with a friend's welder.

Rear frame extension is done, cross member is relocated and one added just behind the sway bar to hang the TJ fuel tank on.

Mid frame is nearly complete, added a cross member pretty close to the back of the shortened body. EVAP is now on the right side. Exhaust dumps just ahead of the axle on the left side, using the stock intermediate pipe, stock hangers and a muffler off of my LS YJ.

Called the salvage yard and they found me the tail of a 4-door JK to cut up for my cab corners. no tailgate, they want a fortune for a tailgate.

I need to drill a bunch of drain holes, paint, wire and plumb.
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Old 10-24-2018, 02:58 PM   #15
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Peeing my pants a little bit following this thread. I know the end result is going to be sick.
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Old 11-03-2018, 07:29 PM
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Pressure washed the frame and brushed everything bare with chassis saver from magnetic paint. Reviews seem pretty good on the stuff, disappointed to find out it isn't UV stable (needs top coated). Probably hit everything again in a few days.

The JKU rear quarters are stripped (interior, wiring, flares, ect) Salvage yard included the wire harness that runs down the top of the right frame rail, sadly the '07 harness has a lot less wires than my '16. I was hoping I could match all the factory colors in my extension, but it isn't looking good.

Fuel line stuff arrived this week. Plumbing plans are -6 pushlock adapter to -6 tube adapter, 3/8" tubing back to the TJ tank, back to -6, 2' or less braded to pushlock on fuel pump. I'll have enough extra 3/8" tubing for my EVAP plumbing. Also got some pfte coated wire for extending the stuff in the tank.

Capacitor for my welder finally arrived also, it is back working correctly.

Still hoping for an April completion date
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Old 11-10-2018, 01:28 PM
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Fuel pump is finished, in the tank and the tank is mounted

Extended the basket down 4.25" using 1/4" stainless rod, lengthened the fuel pump and fuel gauge wires with PTFE coated wire (correct size for pump, overkill for the gauge) and adhesive lined polyolefin heat shrink. Bent the pick up tube around to the front of the tank, stuffed it in and put the lock ring on.

I know that the gauge won't be very accurate, but empty will read as empty (much like my YJ with the 20gal tank mod and the stock sending unit)
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Old 11-15-2018, 08:47 PM
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Had an opportunity to work a couple hours tonight. Wheel speed and tpms wiring has been extended, next up is fuel pump/sender and tank pressure.

Studied and now I understand how EVAP works and what needs to be changed/ modified for the TJ tank.

Having some difficulty finding OE style zip ties for mounting the harness to the frame. Hate to try and explain what I want to the dealership, they were complete morons when I had problems with my pick up.

Maybe I'll have the body bolted on permanently by the end of the month
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Old 11-23-2018, 05:52 PM
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Frame harness is completely; everything is soldered, heat shrunk, completely wrapped in Tesa tape, covered in split loom and lightly wrapped in Tesa tape. It's about half mounted with fir tree push mount zip ties (like the factory use for wheel speed wires on the axe)

Fuel line needs mounted, steel line cut to length and the -6 put in to finish it out. Waiting for fancy double zip ties to tie the EVAP stuff to the fuel line. Cut the charcoal canister mounting bracket and raised the rear 1.5" level with the frame

Brake line mounting clips are still in transit but otherwise complete.
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Old 11-24-2018, 04:04 PM
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Set the body, all the remaining chassis work is behind it.
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Old 11-25-2018, 05:54 PM
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Hooked everything up under the hood. Trying to remember what electric fence my battery is on.
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Old 11-27-2018, 12:00 AM   #22
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Smile

Great project, love the attention to detail.
Now if it only had a diesel under the hood.
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Old 11-27-2018, 12:32 AM   #23
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I may have missed it, but what size bed are you going with?
Cool build
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Old 11-27-2018, 11:33 AM
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I was a fan of Diesel; emissions, prices and fuel cost cured me. Had a couple Cummins powered pick-ups, after going to a 6.4 I would have a hard time going back.

Flatbed should be something around 73"x78" give or take a couple inches. cab to axle is about 36" axle to end of frame is 45". Nearly the same as a ram with a longer short bed (6'4")
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Old 11-30-2018, 09:15 PM
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Finished the fuel plumbing, hooked everything up under the hood. Turned the key and the Jeep was pissed. "Hot oil" on the odometer, no radio, no HVAC fan, lots of dinging, and dash looks like Christmas

One of the TIPM plugs wasn't seated correctly.

Noticed the fuel gauge read 1/4 tank when it was bone dry, took a few (dozen) tries with creative bending but go it to show just barely high side of empty.

Dumped in 2 gal of gas and it fired up perfect. Maybe tomorrow I can fill the cooling system, bleed the brakes and evacuate/fill the a/c.

Brake line mounts arrived today. Set of Hella e-codes arrived earlier this week along with some dynamat.

Took the roof by my interior guy for his opinion on making a headliner, probably do something similar to a hothead. Neighbor is stopping by sometime this weekend, I can't remember exactly how the wheel speed wires were secured, and her '16 JKU is a great reference
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Old 12-01-2018, 03:27 PM
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Most of the air is out of the brakes. Ran across the scales just to see how far it is. 3580lbs with 2 gal of gas in the tank.
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Old 12-01-2018, 03:39 PM   #27
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What a project, thanks so much for documenting it! Great work.
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Old 12-03-2018, 10:38 PM
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Brake line mounts arrived and installed. Need to charge the a/c and flush the cooling system.
I had no idea about the hoat/oat battle, coolant appeared red/orange like hoat and I don't the history of the Jeep. Looked at our '16 feed truck (ram 6.4 same year and miles as Jeep and coolant has never been touched) and the oat in it is same color.
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Old 12-05-2018, 10:46 PM   #29
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Very cool thread!
Built Not Bought - My kind of project!
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Old 12-06-2018, 07:45 PM
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Tossed in a little dynamat while flushing the cooling system.
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