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This is my first TJ. It's gone through lots of changes. I do all my own work, so far....I've got other build threads around the site, i'll try to consolidate them. Besides upgrades, i think my most important is a projector retrofit. The past few days, i did some soundbar work. I have a Precision Power Phantom 900.4 4 channel amp. I got Infinity 462.9i 2 way components in the dash corners. I finally decided on Precision Power P.65c3 3 way component setup, One 6.5" woofer, a 3" mid and 1.75" tweet. I went with PPI for this setup. I usually do Orion, but i'm going back to my original loyalty to PPI because of their old art series. The P.65c3 has great tech. Tweets use Air motion transformer tech, which is more like an accordion than a cone moving in and out. Cone tech on mid and woofer is natural fiber. The crossovers are beefy and i like PPI's big stage sound. It fills the gap between highs and subs quite well. I was also looking at Rockford Fosgate T1652S, Kenwood XR-S17P, Alpine SPR-60C and Image Dynamics CTX65S. I play a lot of rock. From RATM, to Pantera to Disturbed and The Strokes. I listen to electronic like Digweed, Josh Wink, DJ Shadow and hip-hop like Tribe and People Under The Stairs. I also listen to bluegrass, which actually applies in a system that can do a decent job at accurately reproducing music.

The soundbar proved to be a challenge, as i didn't have any high speed cutting bits for the dremel. The woofer and mid needed to be spaced because they proved a touch too deep. I made wooden spacers out of whatever 1/2" i had lying around.

Review of the sound. Awesome. Powerful. Crisp. Not the thumpiest components, i'm sure the Rockfords would have done a better job in that dept...thats what the 10" sub will be for. I rocked it with the top down, and i got GREAT sound over road, wind and exhaust noise. With the top on it was even better. I couldn't give you a technical breakdown, but these are way better than Polk DB series that i once paid $200 for. Not even close comparison. I definitely have to gain-up the front channel to get a more even soundstage, but there's alot of great sound inside the jeep now. I did cut a little out with high pass on the amp, i set to about 60hz. Although the woofer can respond at 20hz, it's not much reproduction at volume, below 80hz. Some songs by Disturbed and Tool will really want to make the woofer distort at volume. Once i get the sub, i'll probably actively crossover the PPI stuff at 100hz. The passive crossover does a great job and has a midrange countour if you separate components and the tweeter was set to -3db which was plenty of volume as it's all right behind your head.


What was cut vs what had to be cut

This was 5/8 melamine, i eventually found the 1/2" and did a second run at the spacers. Might go to my friends and get on the scroll saw, but i'm happy with the install. Strong mounting was my goal, and it has been met.



Showing the spacers under the soundbar cover. Tweeter has a threaded body with a giant plastic nut.

Obviously had to drill and line-up. Kind of challenging, but all is secure.


I run Knu Konceptz 1/0 gauge wire directly to amp, fused for 150amps. I also use their Krystal RCA's, 4 channel x 3m. I've been using their products for 10 years now.
All is controlled by a Kenwood KDC-BT952HD. It's a great headunit with tons of features and DSP processing. Ultimately i wanted a Pioneer DEH-80PRS, but i got this for $80..couldn't pass it up. It's got time/distance processing and a great crossover with super sharp db slope.

Very near future upgrade is a 10" shallow mount sub. It's dependent on finishing my rear storage project for mounting, so i'm holding off for a few weeks, BUT..i've got it narrowed down to Kicker ComptRT, JL Audio TW1 or TW3 series. For the amp, it's either PPI P600.2 or 1000.1. I just have to decide on wiring, ohms, power that i want to go with. Also, i'm probably going to be getting a Durango 136amp alternator with proper wiring upgrades soon.
 

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Lighting upgrades

Installed some warm white LED's under dash (vampired off of courtesy light wiring), and installed in soundbar light spot. Got them at Fry's Electronics. I love their LED selection. You can get strands of 5 for $25. IP67 waterproof and many different colors. They have 3M tape, and also 2 mounting holes if you need them. The warm white came out awesome. Bright, yet easy on the eyes. Soundbar REALLY lights up the jeep, and under the dash has a very modern look.

Soundbar mounting.

View looking up under the dash



Gives a contrast between white, warm white and the incandescent under the hood
 

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Got JCR Crusader Mid width bumper, and adventure carrier in today. Mocked-up the bumper and tie-ins. Had to fish a bolt-washer-plate-thingy out of the bumper and the bolt that went through it. PO had an ingenious fabbed Class 1 hitch. It was cute. But time to make room for JCR gear. Now i got everything X 2, because my friend wanted the same stuff for his 98 TJ.

Pretty pleased with quality. Welds look consistent, although i'm not a welder so who knows. I'm sure powdercoater will let me know if they see inconsistencies.

Alas, there was some missing parts. Too bad cause i already went to powder coater for a look at styles and final quote. We got it today after ordering March 9th. JCR had some backup. With lead time from powder coater, looks like about 7 weeks until final mounting, probably 8 because JCR owes me some parts. Here's some pics though.

Down with brown?


Mock up with frame tie-ins...




Bolt and steel brace piece inside had to be removed. I figured it was cut just wide enough to fit in long frame hole near top of tire. I was right.

Tied around a nut and slid down to access

Then just tied wire around piece and pulled up and through. One side i had to untie a bit and spin 90...


2 x jcr bumpers..pretty


JCR's "Bombproof" Spindle and some hardware





 

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Mocked-up both tire carriers. Didnt grease bearings, or install latches. Just wanted to check for clearances. 100%. So tomorrow, everything gets dropped off at AZ Powdercoat. I'm waiting on 1 left side rotopax mount and 1 hi-lift mount that they didn't pack. Getting everything else started, as lead time is 12-14. All the crucial stuff will be done. Here's a list of what needs to get done. All x 2, for friends jeep:
Bumper (1 pcs)
Carrier Body (1 pcs)
Tire Mount (2 pcs)
Latch Back Stop (1 pcs)

They were nice enough to powdercoat frame tie-ins for free, for extra wait on lead time
 

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that's what it was the "bombproof" spindle. Next time you mock it up or install it take a shot of the whole rear bumper as I want to see how for the bumper sticks out to the sides. if they stick out as far as the milk jugs or not the far. I don't think I want a bumper behind my tires like the Milk jugs were
 

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that's what it was the "bombproof" spindle. Next time you mock it up or install it take a shot of the whole rear bumper as I want to see how for the bumper sticks out to the sides. if they stick out as far as the milk jugs or not the far. I don't think I want a bumper behind my tires like the Milk jugs were
Yep, bombporoof spindle. What makes it "bombproof" is probably that bottom half is supported on all sides (ie. bar stock in DOM tube). If you had bottom of spindle mate with 3/16" plate, it could easily bend the plate and sag over time, bolt head could get bent/loosen. No matter the size of the washer, that's ALOT of torque being applied by a lot of weight on one spot. Tight tolerances always help. Then of course 2 bearings share the initial torque. There's a lot of thought that went into this.

They have tub width and flare width rear bumpers to start your kit. I went Crusdaer, tub width, no overhang.


Spindle is lathed/CNC'd(?) bar stock. Bottom half fits snug into a piece of thick DOM tubing welded into bumper



Spindle then gets tightened on bottom with big 3/4" thread, 1 1/8 bolt head threaded bolt and thick washer wider than tubing. Bottom half has virtually no play side to side and perfectly fits in up to flange in middle. Instruction actually say you may have to scuff inside of tube to get any dirt off that might stop spindle bottom from going in. Tight tolerances.


Top half is machined to fit bearings perfectly, almost too much. To get one off after fitting i had to use penetrating oil!! There are matched bearing races pressed into DOM tube welded to carrier body, they get pressed up to a flange that you can see in pic

 

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Everything is now at powdercoater. Went with Flat Black Midnight Wrinkle. $110 per setup for all 8 pieces. Unreal pricing. AZ Powdercoat kicks ass. Super cool experience everytime i go to them. Should be ready very beginning of April. Can't wait.
 

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Ran main wiring for amps. Still have to build box for the sub, but just wanted to get the wiring done and tucked away as far back as console/behind seat. Can't really finish until rear storage project is done and i figure out amp placement, orientation, etc....I've never done a jeep install, so it's a work in progress..Also, ignore the interior wiring and ghetto red/black i have running to crossovers and 4 channel amp. I have 50 feet of 14 gauge ofc wire for speakers. Why so much? Custom 3 way speakers in soundbars = 6 runs to crossovers @ 4' each + 8' for each dash speaker. Crossovers needed some kind of mounting away from soundbar for many reasons. Anyway, wanted to power 2 amps, 1/0 gauge the whole way...Done, thanks to this nifty distro from Knukonceptz. Used Knukonceptz since my install days. It's their KonFused line of gear. Basically has a way to make disconnecting lines nearly impossible. I'm getting really quick at getting seats out and back in lol




Nice to get power to 2 amps. I'll be running computer case fans and both amps off a relay. Amps will be enclosed with venting to deter potential theft by novices.
 

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Yep, bombporoof spindle. What makes it "bombproof" is probably that bottom half is supported on all sides (ie. bar stock in DOM tube). If you had bottom of spindle mate with 3/16" plate, it could easily bend the plate and sag over time, bolt head could get bent/loosen. No matter the size of the washer, that's ALOT of torque being applied by a lot of weight on one spot. Tight tolerances always help. Then of course 2 bearings share the initial torque. There's a lot of thought that went into this. They have tub width and flare width rear bumpers to start your kit. I went Crusdaer, tub width, no overhang. Spindle is lathed/CNC'd(?) bar stock. Bottom half fits snug into a piece of thick DOM tubing welded into bumper Spindle then gets tightened on bottom with big 3/4" thread, 1 1/8 bolt head threaded bolt and thick washer wider than tubing. Bottom half has virtually no play side to side and perfectly fits in up to flange in middle. Instruction actually say you may have to scuff inside of tube to get any dirt off that might stop spindle bottom from going in. Tight tolerances. Top half is machined to fit bearings perfectly, almost too much. To get one off after fitting i had to use penetrating oil!! There are matched bearing races pressed into DOM tube welded to carrier body, they get pressed up to a flange that you can see in pic
how's the install mate? do they come powder coated or just plain like I'm your pic? really looking into a bumper now before I get caught without a spare on the road
 

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how's the install mate? do they come powder coated or just plain like I'm your pic? really looking into a bumper now before I get caught without a spare on the road
No on the powder coat, I got it done locally. Did flat black wrinkle, came out awesome. Just got one bumper installed with frame tie-ins. Had to clean some Powdercoat off vital areas, as their tape job wasn't perfect.

Also painted the back of a 3" x 3" piece of license plate (only sheet metal I had) to back the JCR logo scrolled into bumper. Custom shit!

Note for those with body lifts, there's a gap between bumper top and bottom of tub.





 

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No on the powder coat, I got it done locally. Did flat black wrinkle, came out awesome. Just got one bumper installed with frame tie-ins. Had to clean some Powdercoat off vital areas, as their tape job wasn't perfect. Also painted the back of a 3" x 3" piece of license plate (only sheet metal I had) to back the JCR logo scrolled into bumper. Custom shit! Note for those with body lifts, there's a gap between bumper top and bottom of tub.
ok so I'd need to get a quote on powder cost. looking good laggy! I've been doing alittle research since I'm laid up in bed sick. definitely a top contender, but alittle pricey. I can tell it's defiantly worth it
 

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ok so I'd need to get a quote on powder cost. looking good laggy! I've been doing alittle research since I'm laid up in bed sick. definitely a top contender, but alittle pricey. I can tell it's defiantly worth it
Thanks man.

Almost any good setup (bumper + carrier + frame tie ins) is gonna be over $1k. There's a lot of choices, just get the one that calls to you and don't be afraid to pay a little extra...
 

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Thanks man. Almost any good setup (bumper + carrier + frame tie ins) is gonna be over $1k. There's a lot of choices, just get the one that calls to you and don't be afraid to pay a little extra...
theirs a lot calling to me! it just takes times to narrow them down feature wise. Frame tie ins? I havnt looked into that yet. is that what people mean when they have to drop the gas tank skid and drill holes or something like that?
 

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theirs a lot calling to me! it just takes times to narrow them down feature wise. Frame tie ins? I havnt looked into that yet. is that what people mean when they have to drop the gas tank skid and drill holes or something like that?
no. frame tie-ins are 90 degree corner pieces that reinforce corners of frame by essentially stiffening the corner and adding tensile (pull apart) strength as well. Must have for towing and REALLY helps with recovery.
 

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Got around to installing Redhead Steering Gear. Bought Edelman lines. Figured good a time as ever to replace. At $35 for the set, it was a no-brainer. Started at 1:30pm. Was only 15 minutes late to work. Super easy job.



Always wondered about the diff types of ps o-rings


Ingenious idea to mate the gear to collar. One man job.


Screwed lines in before mounting. Way easier.
 

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