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Thread: Its alive

  1. #1

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    Its alive

    It has been too long since I posted about my wrangler. I choose not to resurrect my old thread, mainly because reading what I originally wrote in 2007 hurts my head. Recap:

    In college I bought a 90 wrangler, 2.5, 5speed, 31s I think.



    Swapped to Waggy44/Rodeo44, 4.88s, SOA and 37s.



    Blew two head gaskets in the 4 cyl, ripped it out and started a vortec 5.7 swap. That was 2007.



    Since then:
    Graduated College
    worked in the oil field (WY)
    changed careers
    Met a girl
    Moved to CA
    Moved back to CO
    Married girl
    Had a daughter
    Bought house, sold house, and bought second house now

    That whole time it sat. Worst of all, it sat at my brother's house. So work on it was slow and never amounted to much. Most days, by the time I figured out where I left off, there wasn't a whole lot of day left.

    But, the wife wants it driving. We have room for it in the new house. And I have been tinkering after the kiddo goes to bed or before everyone wakes up on weekends.

    This week it started for the first time since 2007. Man, oh man.

    Current status:

    5.7 Vortec (L31)
    TH400 RMVB
    Ford NP205, clocked flat, twin sticked
    Flat Belly
    Waggy 44 front, Chevy 8 lug outers, tie rod behind axle
    14 Bolt rear, C&C, disc brakes, detroit
    Waggy springs front
    Dakota Springs rear
    108" WB
    RCI Fuel Cell, SS lines, E8248 Pump

    To do list (top of my head)
    Build tranny xmember
    Repair hole in floor from 205
    Mount seats
    Have exhaust built
    Mount shifters
    Wire rad fan - bmw dual temp switch setup
    Get inspected and pass emissions (hopefully)

    Pics coming
    Last edited by mines4x4; July 24th, 2015 at 10:14 AM.
    90 YJ - Vortec L31, TH400, NP205, hp44/14bolt, 108" on Leaf Springs. 40" MT2s on Raceline Beadlocks

  2. #2
    clemsonkrawler's Avatar
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    Congrats on the seeing the light at the end of the tunnel.
    Pimpin aint easy.

  3. #3

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    Still not sure if that light is daylight or a train. The next few weeks will decide.

    Some tech.... flat clocked Ford 205 requires cutting large hole in the floor. Now I must learn to patch said floor. I will dig up pictures tonight.

  4. #4
    Mouse29's Avatar
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    Hey, Would love to see how the rest of this turns out I'm kind of in a similar spot at the moment...

  5. #5
    ni0h's Avatar
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    Happy story. Congrats on the daughter.
    tummy-tucked 2005 LJ rubi softtop on 1"BL/MML(for TT),3.5" SA, 35x12.5-15.
    Loon 42
    Quote Originally Posted by Gags View Post
    I say some stupid sh!t here.

  6. #6

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    Some tech:

    Went with the RCI 2161a that most jeep folks run to keep things behind the backseat. Problem was, it sticks up past the fenderwells, so cut a hole in floor and recessed it.



    Picture doesnt show it great, but I will be able to make a flat lid over the tank. This is even more important since my kiddo will be riding in the back. Previously I would have left this open. Now the plan is to encase the fuel cell and add a locking lid.

    The fuel system goes fuel cell -> Coarse Pre-filter -> E8248 -> Factory GM filter -> Motor

    The lines are braided where there is flex and hardline along the framerails. The only exception is between the pump outlet and GM filter there is a small section of rubber fuel line as I couldn't find the proper fittings back when this started.



    This is an old picture but give you an idea. I will be building a skid for all the fuel components and the brake line is no longer a ragged mess like shown. You can see when I ultimately ended up adding some rubber fuel line.

    Flat NP205 - Used ORD input conversion on the 205 and an early 90s GM 4l80e trans adapter to mount. Had to redrill two holes in the face of the 205, notch the adapter for shift rails, and machine the input oil seal housing with countersunk bolts. No pics right now. Anyways, you end up with a hole like this.



    And frame rails like this. The picture shows the 205 installed, tucked completely above the frame rails. Front DS not yet installed.



    For mounts, the motor is on factory gm rubber sbc mounts and the transmission sits on a gm factory rubber mount in the middle. Hope to build the cross member this week which will be solid mounted to the frame. This give the 3 point configuration just like oem, which most people have success with. I originally had it solid at the trans adapter and bushings at the frame but didnt like that arrangement. Will snap pics when that happens.

  7. #7

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    Some more updates:

    It fires right up once a week. I just keep leak checking and topping off fluids.

    I had originally planned on a Volvo fan/relay with a bmw temp sensor that I found on a couple websites. After two temp sensors, I have abandoned that plan and am reinstalling a thermo clutch/fan and a factory shroud.

    While playing with the width and clearance for shocks and steering, I decided the Waggy 44 front with Chevy outers at 63" just wasn't wide enough. Worse yet, the C&C 14 bolt also didn't give me any good options for shock mounting in the rear. So... I sold the waggy front, and picked up a full width HP44 from an F250. It currently has no gears/shafts in it, since that isn't on the critical path for getting this thing inspected and back on the road. I am still on the fence about gear ratior anyways. 4.88 currently. The 14 bolt will get SRW hubs and new disc brake brackets from ruffstuff, so the rear is easy.

    Here is the front with 1.5"x.25 tie rod behind the axle and gm tie rods.



    Here is the cross member mentioned from above. Its a factory bushing inside some heavy wall channel. Flat plate mounts on the frame side.



    For motivation, order some new shoes. Procomp MT2, 40x13.5/17



    Taught my 3 y/o daughter how to install beadlocks.



    One installed so far. Raceline 231 Monsters - 17x8.5, 4.75 BS.



    Hope to get the steering welded and front axle back under to check for height with the new tires. The goal is to be able to drive it into the garage as-is. May not work in its current state so I have two options if it is too tall, depending on how much height I need to scrub.

    Go back spring under (not my favorite due to front axle) would drop about 6"
    French the hangers and go to shackle sliders to drop 2-3"

    Will post pics with it on all four tires once I get some other work done this weekend.
    Last edited by mines4x4; February 25th, 2016 at 10:04 AM.

  8. #8
    Can you go bigger on the garage? In a similar situation once, I started looking at the face of the garage; I realized that it would be pretty easy to move the header up a foot. Bought a bigger garage door and no more height problems.

    Also, might be better to stop the incrementalism in it's tracks and build a 60 for that front end now
    One ton CJ-7

  9. #9

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    I am contemplating the garage door raise, but we have some pretty slick decorative brick on the front that would need to be redone. It's still a possibility but those decisions involved the wife more than new spring mounts on the jeep.

    And yes, the front 44 is a sticking point for me. I am into it for $40 right now. I traded the waggy one and did enough bartering to get my wheels and tires bought. I found this one and figured it could be a place holder.

    I won't put gears or much work into it other than mounting shocks on it while I hash out the other issues.

    1. Widen rear via SRW hubs and new brake brackets.
    2. Finish mounting shifters
    3. Patch holes in floor
    4. Get exhaust built
    5. Pass inspection/emissions
    6. Mount rear shocks - need to see if I have enough room to outboard or not once tires are on

    I can do all of that with a front axle with no gears/shafts while I decide what to do. Part of me wants to build a 14B front. Part of me wants to built a 60. For now, I will get it rolling down the street and see what else needs addressed first.

    Quote Originally Posted by Sprnklrmn View Post
    Can you go bigger on the garage? In a similar situation once, I started looking at the face of the garage; I realized that it would be pretty easy to move the header up a foot. Bought a bigger garage door and no more height problems.

    Also, might be better to stop the incrementalism in it's tracks and build a 60 for that front end now

  10. #10

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    Some pics of it on all fours. Ignore the patriotic patchwork paint, that's on the list.




  11. #11

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    Well, wife and 3 year old didn't love the color scheme so decided to spruce it up for the maiden voyage around the block.




  12. #12

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    Loaded it up, and took it down to get the exhaust done last week.



    More awesome paint work. Rear exit



    Ran 2" primaries, two cats, 4 O2s, Y-Pipe to a 3" muffler I had already lying around









    Couple notes. Running older rams horns. Had to use the heat riser delete to get proper gaskets in place. Also need to built some heat shielding between the cats and trans and the passenger floorboard.

    All of it is above the frame rails still, so I will maintain the flat skid I have been trying for this whole time.

    Drives down the road great. Pretty quiet for what it is. I have a few odds and ends to connect and then going to schedule my appointment with Aircare for the inspection.

    Other huge win is that it fits through the garage door with no problem Hardtop may present an issue, but that's an issue for later.

    Needs for emissions:

    Rear O2, EGR, purge pigtails
    Mount purge canister
    Plumb purge canister

    Needs to drive around town:
    Patch holes in floor
    Redo Seatbelt mounts
    Figure out R in trans
    Swap rear hubs (C&C to SRW)
    Replumb rear brakes
    Bleed brakes
    Front shocks
    Rear shocks

    To 4x4:
    Install front gears
    Build front DS
    Order offset TREs
    Redo front TR
    Build skidplate

  13. #13

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    The other issue:

    TH400, RMVB (TCI if I remember right). Stock stall, Allison converter.

    This was built several years ago, and I am NO transmission person. Family friend did the work.

    All forward gears feel strong. Reverse was fine initially, now it slips really bad in reverse and simply wont go if its uphill or much resistance.

    Fluid level is fine.

    It loads the motor when in reverse.

    Linkage is hitting reverse fine.

    Have to really rev it to get anything in reverse and then super slow. Don't want to roast the trans. Some Google hits for the reverse servo pin too short. Is this something I can do with trans in the vehicle? How does one adjust this? I found some sketchy instruction without photos online on this one, no idea where to go next.

  14. #14
    Steven_Mc's Avatar
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    Sorry, I'm no help on the tranny questions, but the build looks great! I like the KISS approach. Whats the plan for the cage?

    You're going to likely want to wrap that exhaust or add some heat shielding unless you like being able to fry eggs on the floor pan during long trail rides.
    - Steven

  15. #15

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    Thanks. Figured throw it out there and see if anyone has an idea before I throw $$ at it.

    Cage - headed to Addicted for a full cage once everything is sorted.

    Floor - gonna do a double wall kinda patch combined with some header wrap. Will start there and see where we end up. It needs to be reasonable as my wife is copilot.

    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SGH-I337 using Tapatalk

  16. #16

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    I have my appointment tomorrow at the Emissions Technical Center. I will be driving to the one near 2nd and Federal from Bowles/C470 so wish me luck!

  17. #17
    Looks great! You'll be happy with Addicted for your cage, I am.

    QUOTE=mines4x4;2407536]Thanks. Figured throw it out there and see if anyone has an idea before I throw $$ at it.

    Cage - headed to Addicted for a full cage once everything is sorted.

    Floor - gonna do a double wall kinda patch combined with some header wrap. Will start there and see where we end up. It needs to be reasonable as my wife is copilot.

    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SGH-I337 using Tapatalk[/QUOTE]
    If it weren't for bad luck, I'd have none at all.

  18. #18

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    Emissions on hold. Was experiencing some trans issues so parked it to troubleshoot.

    Reverse still weak. Also started to whine after a hard 1-2 shift. Signs pointed to a short reverse servo pin and possibly loose filter.

    Got the pan dropped, vb out, reverse servo pulled. Ran out of time before I could check the travel on the pin. Maybe tonight.

    Next issue I need some help on.

    When the trans was put together years ago, we went with a TCI RMVB, no compression braking.

    http://www.tciauto.com/tc/th400-full...y-1965-uphtml/

    I noticed when driving, that it really acts strange when coming to a stop. After some Google, it appears this is a horrible VB for street use. While I want something good off-road, I do plan on cruising around in this thing and DDing over the summers. If this isn't the case, I will just stab it back in.

    One option, TCI now sells the TH400 RMVB WITH compression braking. TCI tech support claims this is a direct swap while in vehicle. The instructions lead me to believe otherwise, but this is new territory for me. The kit comes with new return springs, would I not need to remove the trans to install these? Is this kit garbage on the street?

    http://www.tciauto.com/tc/gm-th400-f...e-brakinghtml/

    Other option, I see a bunch of folks running the Transgo 400-1-2 and would maybe like to switch to that while this is apart. Unfortunately, it appears that RMVB install removed a bunch of items, so now I need to source some parts to reinstall.

    Quick read tells me I need to find:
    High Band
    High Gear piston and spring assembly
    2nd Gear Sealing Ring
    Center cushion seal High Clutch Drum
    OEM Pressure Regulator Spring
    Reverse Servo Assumulator Sealing Rings
    Remove check ball in accumulator drain
    Stock VB
    Vacuum Modulator? Needed with Transgo kit?

    Anyways, kind of at a loss. Used a family friend to build this before. He was an old hotrod guy, supposedly knew his shit. No longer available as a resource though.

    I don't like the coasting action. I am really fine with a full auto at this point, as I am more and more an old man. I have it apart for now.... Not really sure what to do here. Any thoughts from the crowd?

  19. #19

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    Rebuilt the th400 this weekend.

    Tore out the RMVB. Replaced with a much more stock Transgo 400-1-2. This will be a normal auto in D but will hold 1 & 2 like the manual VB.

    This was my first trans rebuild. Assisted while the original builder taught me some things. We noticed that the reverse/direct band was completely trashed. He said in 40 years he had never seen one that cooked. It was brand new when installed. He thinks the RMVB had some issue with enough pressure to apply the band properly and when I drove it off the trailer it just cooked the band. Either way, new band, all the clutches and steels looked great. Installed new VB, and hoping to reinstall this week.

    Need to hookup the vacuum on this one, order a new Winters gate, and going to plumb a new trans cooler with dedicated fan and all AN fittings. Reason here is the exhaust runs really close to the trans lines routing and I would rather braided line with an additional fire sleeve than rubber hose in that area.

    Once those are in, its back to trying to drive it. Looking like I might have a little time this week and next to work on it.

  20. #20

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    Good choice on the Winters shifter.

  21. #21

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    The other upside here is the emissions testing with the more normal VB. With the RMVB, I called and asked and didn't get a warm feeling that they would shift it. After speaking with an AirCare manager, he told me they just shift it per the year/make/model. And if it's auto, they put in drive and go. When I explained it must be manually shifted, he just told me they wouldn't do that.

    This way, D will act normal, so those 'specialists' will still be able to drive it. Maybe this was all a blessing in disguise.

    And I was already running the Winters with Jimmys4x4 cable kit and liked it a lot. A new gate is $12 for the regular pattern so not bad at all.

    Quote Originally Posted by CSP View Post
    Good choice on the Winters shifter.

  22. #22
    G-Rocc's Avatar
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    Love the paint job.

    You kind of dumb downed the build when we were talking. This is great. Can't wait to see this in person.
    Set Them Free Off Road www.stfoffroad.org

  23. #23

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    No offense intended by dumbing down. I have a habit of going into a bunch of detail when I talk about it and most people don't GAF, so I keep it simple.

    Oh, and a simple brake job became all new lines, MC, etc. but I am hoping to wrap that up this week maybe.

    Kudos to Speedway Motors, it was cheaper to order all my SS lines through them rather than making them myself this time and it was super cheap. Highly recommend.

  24. #24

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    I will attempt to bring this up to date: (Going to figure out how to repost old photos)

    Last summer we got it to Set Them Free. Kudos to Gianni and team for putting on a killer event. We will always go.

    I kept the front 44 for now, installed 4.88s, a Spartan locker, and a 1350 yoke on ran it. Front axle didn't give me any issues and front locker is so much fun

    Bills Englewood driveline made the front shaft, check out my other thread for how much I appreciate that guy and his family for helping out.

    Did the flex test trailer thing, which was pretty cool. I was impressed for how well it did on leaf springs.

    Ran Chinamans Saturday. Jeep did great for the beginning parts. Lots of sitting in traffic and it never got hot. The Batteries Plus X2 battery powered tunes all day while parked rocking out to my 20 year old speaker bar.

    Installed an amazon chicom switch panel for USB, 12volt gauge, and some easy switches. No issues here, but time will tell.

    Ran the Bluetooth dongle to DashCommand on my phone, mounted with a Mob Armor mount and my phone never fell and had full diagnostics all day, which was cool. If I had an LS motor I think I would skip mechanical gauges all together and just run a tablet for the dash. I have a small fortune in autometer now and its kind of a waste looking back.

    I lost the steering shaft bolt on one of the climbs. Somehow my wife my found in in the dirt while everyone helped get me back on the trail.

    Towards the end of the run I lost a high pressure steering line. Some guys in a Comanche with FlopShop logos all over came to my rescue. I guess I will carry spare fluids and do a better fastener check before trails.

    Once we got to camp, I realized all my ubolts were loose, beadlock bolts and lug nuts were loose. Everything on the jeep loosened up so we bailed on the second trail day. Lesson learned - BOLT CHECK.

    We donated my th400 winters shifter cable to a guy for Sunday to keep him wheeling. He ended up just buying me a new one which was pretty cool.

    We did a couple other little trips in 2017, but most of the time was spent chasing leaks and loose fasteners. The big hurdle was emissions which I failed over and over, which I will discuss in the next post.

    I will get some pictures added shortly.

  25. #25

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    Some random shots from STF2017

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