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Discussion Starter #22
Its been a busy week with the holiday and family in town, but that doesn't mean I haven't accomplished anything on the Jeep. I finished wiring up the switch pod, and it came out great. I haven't been able to complete the Bussmann box though... had to make another order to Waytek to get some things I forgot to buy with my last order :pcwhack:

I also applied some Rubicon decals from Pixeldecals since my AEV hood didn't come with them. Lastly, I painted my exhaust black with a high temp primer and paint. I didn't do this on my first Jeep, and after one Ohio winter the exhaust looked like crap. This should help prevent rust, and hide the huge silver can under the Jeep.

I finally have ordered everything for my lift kit. I'll be doing that, wheels/tires and hopefully bumpers by the end of June. I also have a camping trip coming up, going to be testing out the full size air mattress in the back of the Jeep idea. More updates soon.
 

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Discussion Starter #23
I just installed a folding tailgate table from Springtail Solutions. I needed a table for my upcoming camping trip as well as something to hold a few molle bags for gear. I had a similar table on my 2014 JK, but this one is much better quality, no drill and does not rattle at all. Springtail also makes some side storage compartments which go over the wheel wells. I'll be picking up a set of those and integrating them into my rear storage drawer solution. Given the limited storage space in the JKU, these are definitely must haves for any Jeep that will be used for overlanding or camping.
 

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Discussion Starter #24
Not really a build update, but I just got back from a trip to Acadia National Park and Bar Harbor, Maine. Got to drive across the sand bridge and take some neat photos.

Also, Discount Tire Direct has their annual Independence Day Sale starting up on Monday. I'm going to order my wheels/tires then. Other than that, I have everything for my lift except shocks. I ordered Teraflex's adjustable Fox shocks, which apparently are on a 30 day back order.

Finally, I finished up my Bussmann box installation, I'll post up some pics later today.
 

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Discussion Starter #25
This is my second Jeep where I used a Bussmann fuse/relay panel to power aftermarket accessories. On my last Jeep, I installed by bolting it to the floor under the glovebox. This had two issues. First, my passengers would kick the box sometimes and second it was kind of a pain to climb under there to change fuses or add accessories to the wiring harness.

For this Jeep I decided to mount the box under the hood. I have to give a lot of credit to Rogue26 on this forum for the idea. He has a thread where he sells these boxes prebuilt as well as a bracket (http://www.wranglerforum.com/f37/bussman-auxiliary-panel-1522825.html).

I didn't end up buying my box from him, but I'm an electrical engineer and have experience building power modules such as this. I ended up wiring the four of relays to three of the switches on my Rugged Ridge switch pod, and the fifth switch to an ignition triggered source (gonna run a CB radio off of that and I didn't want to fiddle with a switch for it). Here's how the relay's are triggered:

  1. Onboard Air Switch
  2. Front Aux Lights Switch
  3. Front Aux Lights Switch
  4. Backup Lights Switch
  5. Ingition ON (for CB)
I wired two relays for front lights off of one switch since 50" light bars use about 30 amps (the limit for one relay) and I still wanted some additional spots/driving lights. The pics show how I mounted the box under the hood on the driver's side. I ended up making a bracket out of aluminum to mount everything. I also have an 80 amp circuit breaker mounted on the passenger side right next to the battery. Overall I'm really happy with this setup, and I think (fingers crossed) the mounting location will leave me enough room to mount an ARB twin air compressor on top of the brake fluid reservoir.

Also, unrelated but I installed a Maximus-3 flashlight mount on the drivers side seat.
 

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Discussion Starter #27
Looking really good so far man. Props on the very clean wiring for that switch pod.

I love that firecracker red!
Thanks. I probably spent more time than needed on that project, but I'm happy with the result. Can't wait to get some accessories wired in, but lift and tires are my next big project.
 

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Discussion Starter #29 (Edited)
In preparation for Independence Day, I decided to plasti-dip my grill black and add a mesh gray-scale American flag to dress things up. I also added some black American flag decals to the cowl (not pictured).

I also trimmed the air dam so I can fit larger tires. Which is good because the first of my 315/70R17 Cooper STT Pros on Method Racing Fat Five wheels showed up today. My last Jeep had KMC Rockstar IIs, which ended up being a little too flashy for me so I decided to go with something less crazy. Discount Tire Direct didn't have a full set of five in one warehouse, so this one came to me from Ohio and the others are shipping from Texas and should be here next week. Now if only Teraflex would catch up with their back order of Fox shocks so I can install my lift so these tires will fit. :pcwhack:
 

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Discussion Starter #30
Been a while, I've been waiting on shocks (5 week backorder for Teraflex tuned Fox adjustable w/remote reservoirs). I should have those sometime this week, so I'm going to start a few small projects so I have everything ready for my lift. Tuesday/Wednesday I will be installing Poison Spyder Bombshell diff covers, extending my diff breather tubes, installing the Teraflex HD tire carrier w/AEV CHMSL, and prepping for my CB radio (Cobra 75 WX ST w/Cooltech install kit). More updates tomorrow.
 

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Discussion Starter #31
Been a while since I posted an updated, so I figured I'd upload a quick picture. I'll upload a more comprehensive set of pics later. Since last time I've installed all of my lift components, 35" Cooper STT Pros on 17" Method Fat Five wheels, Dynatrac ProGrip brakes (front and rear), TF spare tire carrier, extended breathers, CB radio and front window tint.
 

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Discussion Starter #33
Bedlined Grill

I took my grill off over the weekend to spray it with bedliner. I'm pretty happy with the result, but I'm not 100% on board with the color. I used tintable raptor liner which I tinted Black metallic. The result is a little more grey than I hoped for. I'll probably run this for a bit and see if it grows on me. If it doesn't, the grill will likely be for sale on here before thanksgiving. Also, does anyone want to buy two liters of tintable raptor liner?
 

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Discussion Starter #34
It's been a while since I posted, I've been pretty busy restoring my 1967 Firebird, so the Jeep went to the back burner for a while.

I just finished up a storage drawer for the back. My primary use (right now) is overland and camping, so having extra storage is always super helpful.

I've also changed my direction for the build plan. I had originally considered going AEV for the bumpers, but I just found out that I will be moving out to California this summer. I've decided that my primary use for the Jeep will probably stay the same, but I'm going to build it a little differently in case I want to tackle some of the harder stuff. With this in mind, I ordered a Crawler Conceptz shorty front bumper, and LOD's new destroyer rear bumper. I ordered everything in bare steel so I can take them to a local place to make sure the powder coat matches.

The front bumper came in last week, and I was a little annoyed to see that it was shipped with no packaging. I'm not sure if this is normal for bare steel bumpers, but there were a few deeper scratches in the steel from being dragged around. I hit those spots with my angle grinder, and everything is as good as new. I'm still waiting on the rear bumper, so I'll post another update once it gets here.
 

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Discussion Starter #35
I just got my front bumper installed. I had it powder coated in matte black by a local shop. I used the EVO vacuum pump relocation kit to move the vacuum pump to the sway bar mount. I'm currently saving up for a Warn Zeon to fill the empty space that is left in the bumper, but that will be a couple of months away.

I also have the LOD destroyer rear bumper ready to install, but I ran out of time this weekend with family stuff, so I'll get it installed next weekend.
 

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Discussion Starter #36
I had some free time tonight so I ended up getting the rear bumper installed earlier than I thought. It was pretty straight forward, took about an hour to get installed. I must say I am impressed with the quality of these LOD bumpers, everything fit perfectly with very little adjustment. Also, the bumper in theory will allow me to lower my spare tire by one notch on the Teraflex carrier to give me some of my rear windshield back. I'm still up in the air though, I am strongly considering going to 37s after I get flat flares installed, so I might just leave it where it is and see how I feel once I get the flares.

The Rigid Duallys in the bumper aren't hooked up yet. I just need to run one wire from my Bussmann box under the hood to the back to provide power (switches and everything else are already installed). I'll try to tackle that before the end of the week.
 

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Discussion Starter #37
I got my lights wired up this week. I spent a couple hours diagnosing what ended up being a bad ground, so I just ran a 10 gauge wire to the front grounding posts and everything works. The lights are really bright! All I have left to do is figure out how to tint them a little bit so they blend in and match my JW Speakers a little bit better. I was going to use Lamin-X, but it turns out that the diffused Rigid lights are textured (I thought the texture would be on the inside, but its on the outside). Not sure what I will do to remedy this, I'm not a fan of Nightshades spray on stuff so I'll have to shop around.

I also ordered a fridge and some materials to build my camping platforms. Everything should be here in about a week. I'll post an update once I get it all assembled.
 

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Discussion Starter #38
So a quick update. I just move to Cali, so I've been busy adding a few things to my Jeep to get it ready for some of the trails around here. I've done:

  • Tinted Backup Lights w/ Lamin-X
  • Warn Zeon 10s w/ Factor 55 hawse fairlead, Factor 55 Prolink, Warn Power Interrupt Kit (wired into my A-Pillar switch pod) and Warn winch rope cover
  • Dietech Mirror Relocation Brackets w/ Replacement Manual Mirrors
  • Spiderwebshade
  • Dometic CFX35 Fridge (wired into additional constant on 12V port in the back)
Some of these mods aren't pictured since I'm rolling naked right now. I've also got a couple more projects in the works, pending parts delivery and me finding time to do them:

  • Alpine I209-WRA Headunit and Backup Camera (I pre-ordered this in March, supposed to come out in April and am now being told that it might be here by early- to mid-July)
  • Bedlined Grill and American Flag Insert (try 2, the first insert I bought had too much white and gray, and the bedliner I used was more of a dark grey than black)
  • Bedlined Fender Flares (if I like the way the grill turns out)
  • Flagpole w/American Flag (for patriotic holidays, I'm going to tie this into some available bolt holes on my Teraflex Tire Carrier)
 

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Discussion Starter #39
Reviving my build thread after almost two years of minimal mods to the trusty JKUR. Here's a picture of it in its current state next to the 91 YJ that I picked up earlier this year.



First off, here's a quick status update on some of the mods I've had on the Jeep for a few years now:

  • Cooper STT Tires: My tires now have about 42,000 miles on them, with plenty of tread (probably 7-10k miles left). They were dead silent until about 40,000 miles, and now they are getting pretty noisy as most mud terrains do. They were a beast in the rocks in California, and have served me well for unimproved roads, snow and beach driving.
  • Alpine Radio: Still going strong, no issues. I love that Apple CarPlay updates give me new features to the radio without new hardware.
  • Raptor Liner Grill: This is one mod that is driving me nuts. I am on my third grill. Each time I painstakingly sand and prep the grill like crazy (absolutely no gloss left in the clear coat), apply the adhesion promotor and then 2-3 coats of the liner. Within 3-5 months, without fail, the bedliner has cracked and starts looking like garbage. I'm about to buy my 4th grill and have Line-X hit it for $200 with primer and a few coats of their premium liner, and hopefully be done with it for good.
  • AEV Heat Reduction Hood: Looks great, love the functionality. The only problem with it is I caught a couple of neighborhood kids climbing on my Jeep after I moved in, which result in some small, permanent dents on the hood from them sitting on it. :banghead: I might see if a pointless dent removal place can remove them, but for now I just try to ignore it.
  • Drawer System: The custom drawer system I built has served well, and has more space than I really could ever use. The original drawer I put in it ended up splitting (wood got too hot in California sun I think), so I rebuild that and have not had any issues since.
  • Lift: Everything has held up well, but I should probably have my Fox shocks rebuilt soon and I really need to correct the rear springs which are currently bowing due to the pinion angle change of the rear axle. I've also been dealing with Jeep lean, which is due to uncentered rear axle because my trackbar relocation bracket does not have holes in the correct position to perfectly center it.
  • Mechanical: Jeep is running like a champ, now has 45,000 miles on it. The only problems are 2 recalls that I have not had serviced yet (both for airbags), and recently my ABS light and traction control lights have turned on and stayed on for days at a time (likely bad wheel speed sensor). Also, my rear driveshaft is a little rattle-y and may have inadvertently been squished between a rock and the belly of the Jeep while I was stuck high-center off-road.... I'll be resolving all of these in the next couple of weeks.
Now that I've moved again (Florida), the top stays on pretty much year round due to afternoon rainstorms, and the Jeep has really become more of a family cruiser / weekend trip/expedition vehicle. Because of that, I really have no need to go with larger tires or to upgrade the suspension to be more rock crawler-y. Areas that I want to improve on are highway drivability (for the longer weekend trips), and suitability for expeditions and camping. With that in mind, here's my path forward:

  • Replacement Cooper STTs: gonna jump on some Black Friday sales, very happy with these tires
  • Rock Krawler Rear Adjustable Control Arms: To correct rear wheel centering under the wheel arches, and allow pinion angle adjustment for a new driveshaft.
  • Teraflex Adjustable Rear Trackbar: I already have a correction bracket, but for some reason the holes either shift the axle too far left or too far right. I'm going to finally fix this correctly and get that axle perfectly centered, which should help resolve the minor Jeep lean that I have right now.
  • Adams 1350 Extreme Duty Driveshafts: To handle more power and replace my factory shafts before they finally explode.
  • RhinoRack Backbone w/Pioneer Rack: I already have the backbone rack (bought a year ago, never installed), and the Pioneer Rack will give me plenty of storage for expeditions and camping. Expensive, but it is a quality setup that does not interfere with removing the top in case I ever want to do that during the summers here. Also very modular with many accessories available for tools/jerrycans/etc.
  • Edelbrock E-Force Supercharger: This is a big one, since the 35s I have been underwhelmed with the acceleration/power of the Jeep in general. When I was in Cali I just dealt with it because my driving was 95% city streets or rock crawling, and I was never going too fast anyway. A lot of people have suggested getting 4.88 gears to help with the acceleration, but that would just jack my crawl ratio up (4:1 transfer case), which is already pretty much useless in 1st/2nd gear since the ratio is so high. It would also negatively impact my highway driving with extremely high revs. I've juggled between forced induction and just ripping the 3.6L out and putting in a V8, but I think this will be the best route for my needs and current use for the Jeep.
    SlickRockGear Door Pockets: all of my net door pockets are sagging and unusable, these should do the trick for keeping my stuff in in place when I open/close the doors.
More updates soon....
 
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