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  1. #81
    Are you going to seal your floor joints? (at some point, not immediately)
    Don't tell me violence doesn't solve anything.

    Look at Carthage.

  2. #82
    Quote Originally Posted by Willie G View Post
    Are you going to seal your floor joints? (at some point, not immediately)
    Yeah I suppose that's a good idea. Still reading a bit about seam sealer. Seems like i just primer and then slather it on underneath. Am I missing anything?

  3. #83
    Maybe top and bottom? Not sure either. If you have enough to do both, it's not something you'll use often.

  4. #84
    I did seam sealer when I tubbed the firewall/inner fender on my Tacoma for the 35s. Bought a tube of the 3m paint/primable stuff from Advance auto. laid it on both sides and pushed it into the welds with my finger. Primered and undercoated the outside, primered on the inside.

    Have had 0 signs of leaks
    break, fix, repeat

  5. #85
    Dave McDonald's Avatar
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    Been meaning to take the time to read through this. I'm glad I did. Nice project and excellent execution. I'm really jealous, as I think I hit the limit of my technical expertise bolting on a 4" lift on the ZJ that I put together rather than spending $$$$$$$ on a kit.

    After you're done if you see some freaking nutcase giving you a thumbs up on the highway from a ZJ, just wave - I'm harmless.
    Lunatic #15
    "A government big enough to give you a righteous buzz is also big enough to harsh your mellow." -Zapp
    Quando Omni Flunkus Moritati

  6. #86
    I've been distracted with other nonsense so haven't gotten much done. My birds are too big for the brooder so I've been hustling to get the coop done, I'm calling it the Ritz Cluckerton. Last weekend my mom asked me to fly her to PHX so that ate up a day and a half. Another friend also needed an inspection done on his airplane so I knocked that out this week too.

    I did get the last section of floor welded in and I cut out and fitted the sides of the tub. Today I welded in the passenger side and it turned out okay.


    It has a bit of a speed bend to it but I think I'll be able to massage it out. I left the bottom long because my neither of my brakes would touch 16 gauge so I have other plans to add a bit of strength to the lower edge, even though I'm hoping to cut it off for boat sides down the road. This thing is definitely intended to be more go than show, so a bit of homebuilt character doesn't bother me too much.

    I may also have a line on slightly bigger tires, so that will complicate life.

  7. #87
    vb's Avatar
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    Its gonna be nice

  8. #88
    It's been a busy few weeks but I think I'm back to focusing on this project.

    The skin that I welded in the other day had a pretty nice speed bend it it. I think half of it was in the sheet before I welded and I probably got a little hot welding it in place to add to the problem. I do a ton of aluminum sheet metal on airplanes, but this was a different challenge. If I was riveting, I'd be done by now.

    Bottom of the tub

    Floor level

    I cut out this strip of 22 gauge

    Put a bend in it with the brake.

    Marked it for holes to spot weld through.

    Drilled it

    And then spot welded it to the bottom of the new panel to give the edge some strength and straighten it out. It helped a bit, but there was still a curve.

    I made another angle to tie the floor in to the side of the tub out of 1" angle. I drilled it on one side to spot weld to the side. The floor was already drilled to weld from the top. I had a dozen clamps and straight square tubing holding everything straight while I welded but I didn't get any pics of it. Afterwards it looked like this.



    Outside is WAY better, plenty good to be covered up by corner armor.

    With all of that done, I moved on to the top edge. I pulled the top and marked out what I needed from the donor panel.

    Dad and I whittled it down to size and clamped it in place.

    It didn't fit worth a damn. The bends in it aren't parallel and the profile doesn't match the factory tub. I found a donor tub locally that the guy will let me cut some out of so I'm heading over there in a bit with my dad. I started tacking in the LH side piece in the mean time. Maybe I'll post that up later.

  9. #89
    Yesterday was a big day mentally. I started by spot welding an angle at the top of the big patch panel on both sides. This took out most of the speed bend which I believe was mostly from the slight curve in the metal prior to installation rather than excess heat from welding it in. Here's a pic of the angle in place.

    Once that straightened things out, I cut up the section of tub rail I bought that other day and fit it in to place. I was making good progress and the phone died so no pics in progress but here is the final result.

    Right side


    There are a few WOWs here and there and it definitely isn't Chip goose show quality, but when I cover up the sins with corner armor it is pretty good. The top rail is straight and should seal to the hard top well.

    I was so excited I had to try on the hard top.

    It feels YUGE back here now.

  10. #90
    F*N station wagon on 37's.

  11. #91
    Looking good!
    CJ/buggy,FI406,465,205,D60,14boltFF on beadlocked 39.50 swampers.See build.
    '70Jeepster, 225,T-14,D20,10bolt,12bolt on 34/9.50/15 Swampers

  12. #92
    vb's Avatar
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    Cannnaannnannn yoououuoou hrerererre annnnnnn eccooooooo innnnnnn thhhheeerrrrrr

  13. #93
    K2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Willie G View Post
    F*N station wagon on 37's.

    Needs 38s!
    95 ZJ, Lift, dents, and noise.

  14. #94
    Since I got the body about locked in as far as location, I could get back to where I left off with the suspension. I was using a bolt in rear Antirock from currie, but since there isn't much bolt it about this rig, I couldn't make it fit where Currie wanted it. My cage tie-ins were in the way and even if they weren't, the fuel filler line would have interfered. I would have preferred it behind the axle like it was designed to be, and it may end up there down the road, but for now I'm happy with this spot.

    The axle mounts for the sway bar links ended up on the outside of the LCA brackets. In stock form, this probably wouldn't be strong enough, but both the LCA bracket and the Link mount are 1/4", so I think they'll be okay.

    I was trying to reuse the upper shock mounts which were on the bottom of the cage tie-in plates.

    They worked well and allowed for 14" Bilsteins. The lower mounts are from Low Range Offroad and are super compact and have a replaceable stud if you ever break it. It was a balancing act getting them located. Too far inboard and the shock would hit the frame under droop conditions, too far out and the tire would rub when stuffed and the shock would hit the parking brake bracket. I think I found the 1/8" wide sweet spot where all problems are mitigated but we'll see. I have a Yukon Ultimate 88 kit which eliminates the C-clips and is basically bolt on big bearing 9" outers if I'm not mistaken. I had to flip the one bolt for the axle retainer so the head was outboard or it would have been trapped by the shock mount.

    Once all of that was fitted, I did one more mock up with everything installed. I bought a set of OME 2" heavy load springs. According to a lot of digging and research, I think these will give me around 4" of lift on my lighter rig. When installed now they give me around 5 3/4", but I don't have a fuel tank, bumper, spare tire, and rear seat installed, so I think they'll be close to where I want to be. If necessary I'll adjust with a spacer.

    It all fits well, so I pulled the axle and welded the shock mounts and sway bar link mounts in for good. I'll take the axle out to my shop for final assembly this week.

    Once that was done I decided to start fitting the cage.

    I'd read various things about this, but it dropped right and and looked pretty close right off the bat. My buddy Cam stopped by with his TJ, so I took some measurements and we think we got it pretty close. I was planning on cutting off the front feet and welding the main hoop on to a set of YJ builder feet, but with a little trimming, I think everything will line up and be just fine with the LJ feet. More details today as I hope to have this dialed in and done later.

  15. #95
    newracer's Avatar
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    Looking awesome!
    Have you ever seen a man eat so much fish?

  16. #96
    Today has been all about the LJ roll bar. I was expecting A LOT more fab to be required on this, but it damn near fell in to place.

    The first challenge was locating it. It is difficult to identify a datum from which to measure. After studying it for a bit I came up with this.

    This was very repeatable between fittings, and easy to get off of the jeep I had handy to copy. We set the string even with the lower edge of the hardtop and measured square to the roll bar tube and came up with 2 9/16" to 2 5/8". Anything within 1/16" on a jeep is success I've discovered. The roll bar is an anchor for the soft top so I wanted it to be close and I think this will get it there.

    I set the LJ bar in my tub and eyeballed it where it looked about right and then measured and it was damn near perfect. There are 2 pimples on the YJ tub where the body mount is underneath so I had to trim the LJ feet like this.

    Once I did this it fell in to place quite nicely. There was some seam seal down in the corners that I had to clean out and then it got even better. I worked up the nerve to start drilling and now it is bolted down like this.

    When I bolted it down there was a little gap between the floor and the foot on the forward bolt, so I slid a washer in there to take up the slack like this.

    That tightened it up nicely.

    The feet also covered up where the YJ front seat belts attached to the floor so I am planning on using the forward bolt holding the roll bar down. I installed a grade 8, 1/2" bolt fastened through a the floor, a doubler underneath, and the roll bar foot, so I think it will be plenty strong.

    The bolts going outboard in to the box section at the rear door post had poor access to the backside to install a nut. The lower hole in the following picture is original and I added the upper hole.

    Then I connected the dots like this.

    It's still tight, but I can get the hardware in place and get a wrench in there to tighten those 2 bolts.

    Once that was fastened down I moved on to the C pillar mounts. I trimmed off the inboard edge like I marked in the previous post. The outboard bolt hole was so close I just pushed it until I could get a bolt through it and fastened it down. The LJ bolt holes are 5" on center and the YJ is 4". I just tightened down the outboard bolt on both sides and match drilled the inboard holes from underneath. I put a bolt in the inboard side, installed the cage tie-ins underneath, and now it looks like this.

    Now that is anchored and I can weld the tie-ins to the frame, but that's probably tomorrow's project.

    I moved forward to the spreader bars. I attached them to the B-pillar hoop and then used the inboard hole on the spreader and the windshield and put a bolt in it.

    They seem happy but the measurements between the 2 sides seems so wonky that I think I measured something wrong. It looks awesome though.

    I'll have to do some digging or find a rig to measure so I can see how screwed up it it. In the mean time I moved on to the RH windshield hinge. The pin was seized when I started this project and when I folded down the windshield it bent the leaf of the hinge. I ordered new Kentrol hinges because I got suckered in by their youtube video. Dad stopped by today and we dug through a ton of seam seal underneath so I could get to the nuts in the tub. I cleaned up the outside with a wire brush and hit it with some primer and now I'm waiting for it to dry so I can install the new hinge.

  17. #97
    The axle is sitting in the back of my truck waiting to go to the hangar for reassembly, but I rolled a tire over to it tonight just to see...

  18. #98
    Looking great!! You have to be happy with how it is turning out!
    God Forgives, Rock's Don't
    1973 Bronco, 351 SEFI, Locked, discs, 35's ZF-5spd and Atlas 4spd. 235:1 Crawl Ratio

  19. #99
    I've been head down trying to power through this thing and making good progress, but not much in the way of pics.

    I took the axle out to the hangar last friday to install new pinion bearings and make sure the ring and pinion were still happy. I had to tweak the pinion preload a touch but it's dialed in now. everything else seemed happy so I bolted it together and brough it home.

    I spent the weekend doing all the boring stuff that I've been putting off. I seam sealed everything inside the tub and underneath. I'm sure this thing may rot away someday, but it won't be from the stretch. I primed and painted the inside of the tub and underneath. I'm not sure what I'm going to do on the outside yet. I think some savvy corner blanks may be in my future but not sure yet. I got the C-pillar cage tie-ins welded to the frame. I added a seat belt anchor for the back seat 10" ahead of the stock one since I'm assuming that's where I'll end up putting the seat. It looked like this before I spot welded it in place. I primed and painted it underneath as well.

    I finally extended all of the wires (8 of them) to the back of the tub. I need to finish routing them underneath, but inside is all good.

    I reinstalled my brake master and booster that were removed for other reasons not related to the stretch. I also adjusted the booster rod so it should take some slop out of the system for me.

    I repaired a crack under the passenger seat mount. They seem to be common on yj front seats and I'd done the drivers seat a few years ago.

    I primed and painted the rear axle and the last of the parts I needed to finish putting it together showed up today, so I finished assembling it. I wanted to know what it weighed so I could keep track of my unsprung weight for suspension tuning purposes so once it was together I put it on my scale.

    A fully dressed, trussed 8.8 weighs in a 287#.

    That has me pretty excited. One of the things that always turned me off of TJs and LJs was how much heavier they are than a YJ. I'm hopeful this thing will be a fair bit lighter than a comparable LJ.

    After I'd weighed the LCAs (18# each) and the torque arm (16#), I reinstalled the axle, hopefully for the last time. It is now sitting on the suspension with the jack stands relocated from the frame to under the axle! Pretty motivating to see it there.

    I'm hoping to get the new hard lines on the axle sorted tomorrow, route the wiring under the tub, and reinstall the fuel tank. I've got new soft lines for the calipers coming that were initially scheduled for delivery today and now I'm not sure I'll see them until wednesday. Maybe I'll get to the exhaust tomorrow too.

  20. #100
    Looks fantastic! As they say, 90% done, 90% to go.
    The good old days-

  21. #101
    The brake lines I was waiting for showed up, so I made some brackets to hold it all on the rear axle.

    I started with this

    Welded it to the front of the coil spring perch

    Welded a tab to the axle for the line coming down from the frame.

    And welded one to the LH upper spring bucket for the other end.

    I swear I took more pics of it all done, but now I can't find them. The brakes are all hooked up and my dad stopped by and helped me bleed them. All good to go.

    One thing that I'm not a fan of the is lines I bought are -3 AN, which is a 37 degree flare, while the standard automotive is a 45 degree flare. One end of both hard lines on the axle is 37, and the other is 45. That sucks if I need to do a repair in the field. Not sure I need to worry too much about it though.

    I also got the spreader bars temporarily mounted to the windshield. I'm not a fan of how it turned out, so I'm working on another solution but for now it's okay.

    I got to drive it around the block yesterday. No weird noises or rattles. I had to run off to work and totally forgot to take pics of it outside, but I'll probably get some tomorrow.

    Does anyone have a 92-95 YJ I could get a measurement off of? PM me if you do please.

  22. #102
    Today I wanted to get the back seat in. I think this is the last bit if work to do before I can put the interior back together.

    I measured 10" ahead of the stock location for the rear seat anchors and marked it on the fenderwells

    I had to lower them a bit compared to where they were in the stock location. I don't know why but the feet on the bottom wouldn't touch the floor otherwise, so I lowered them to make everything happy.

    I made a couple plates to weld in place to give the anchors a solid place to bolt to as well as to weld the nuts to so they could be removed from inside without needing to hold the nuts outside.

    I drilled out this pattern so I had a few good places to spot weld the plates to

    Then I burned them in

    I ground the welds smooth so the anchor could still sit flush against the fender well.

    I called my old buddy @YJ Dave I think was his screen name here, and he went out to his 92 YJ and measured for me so I could get the lap belt anchor for the rear seat shoulder harness in the proper location. The 91 and earlier YJ with the fastback style cage only had lap belts in the back seat, and outboard anchor is different than the family style cage shoulder harness type belts. The 92+ lap belt attaches to the fender well just aft of the seat anchor. I wanted to get this location close to where Jeep so everything would fit like I want and I assume there may have been a bit of thought put in to the relationship of the seat and the belt. Once I located where it would go, I basically repeated the process I used for the seat anchors.

    Drilled a hole for a bolt as well as holes for spot welds.



    Made some plates to bolt to...

    And welded them in place

    Tomorrow I'll squirt some primer and paint on both inside and out and then I'll put the interior back together.

    My buddy Cam stopped by to see my disaster and we decided we should throughly check the suspension out.

    Looks like a bit of room for 37's, maybe even 38s, but I'll get to that down the road a bit.

  23. #103
    Nice to that you used your time off wisely!

    Good work!

  24. #104
    Quote Originally Posted by YJLopes View Post
    Holy cow! Blast from the past. I remember meeting you up at Carnage Boulder a million years ago. Some of us have gotten older but haven't grown up yet.
    So true. Loved the video.
    Still rocking the old '94 YJ myself, 24 years and counting.

    And there is something unique about 48U, something to add to a log book.

  25. #105
    This is still so dope...
    Great job Lopes
    [SIZE=4]I don't even own a Jeep, oh wait I do and it is sick! [/SIZE]:P

  26. #106
    vb's Avatar
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    Did we stop this project?

  27. #107
    Quote Originally Posted by vb View Post
    Did we stop this project?
    No way Vernon, but I did have to be responsible and go fly a little.

    I've got around 200 miles on it. No weird noises or rattles or vibes.

    Today I installed my old flat skid.

    What I thought would be a quick install turned in to more work due to this interference.

    I marked it out and drilled the corners

    Then cut it out.

    I bolted it back in and everything fits

    Last week I called to make an appointment at Bud's muffler to fix the exhaust. The call was forwarded to Chuck at Discount Muffler. It turns out Bud retired. I've been taking exhaust work to Bud for 30+ yrs. Chuck took care of me though and set me up with this small glass pack sized muffler that is baffled so it doesn't sound too loud and suggested I dump the tailpipe in front of the right rear tire. I'm not 100% sure I like it yet. The routing is clean and I don't get fumes in the cab, but it is louder than I'd like.

    I reinstalled the Genright stretch rockers I had on before the stretch to cover up the rotten rocker panels and provide some protection until I boat side it. I reinstalled the rear flares as well. Everybody makes fun of these bestop flares. I can't say I love them but they don't bother me too much and the are wider to help out with the wider axles.

    I suspect they are just temporary until I get the corners I ordered and will probably end up with a tube flare, but they'll keep the windows a bit cleaner until then.

    Now the Jeep is 95% to where I want it for now so I thought I'd weigh it.

    I am pretty pleased with the weight. 4370# with 14ish gallons of gas. No corners but I ordered aluminum ones so hopefully they'll be 18-20# per side. No tools or recovery gear. Hardtop obviously, stock rear seat, and kid's ejection seats.

    I think I'm going to wheel it like this until fall/winter. My truss for the front shipped today, but I just want to enjoy the jeep this summer, so I think I'll be leaf sprung up front for a few more months. I think I'll get it on a trail this weekend so I can report back with some pics.
    Last edited by YJLopes; June 19th, 2020 at 07:49 PM.

  28. #108
    vb's Avatar
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  29. #109
    I've been driving this thing a bunch and have around 800 miles on it. We went to Buena Vista and ran Chinamans and Iron Chest as everything is working pretty good. It's a lot like a TJ now since it has a clunk in the rear suspension that I haven't found yet.

    I have a 4.6L stroker that I wanted to get more air to. I don't like K&N filters and I don't like pulling hot air from under the hood, so I came up with a different idea.

    This is at the downstream half of a 99-03 (I think) ford windstar air box. This pic is after I cut out an inch or 2.

    After that I stuffed the small end back in the big end and made this.

    I fastened it together with 3 self drilling screws and sealed the seam with RTV.

    This is the filter that goes in there. According to Wix, the original YJ filter flows 220 CFM and this one flows 300 CFM.

    Here is the sucking end of the air box. I trimmed off a bit to enlarge the opening. I plan to make it around 3.5" but I didn't have the goodies to do so in my shop, so that will wait for brown santa. For now it is up to just shy of 3". I used the orange duct (Scat hose) from my airplane supplied and ran it through the grill through the rectangular hole below the headlight so I could pull air from ahead of the radiator.

    I bought a couple of elbows from somewhere online (2.75"-3" and 3" to 4") and a 90 degree piece of mandrel bent exhaust pipe. I trimmed the 90 down a bit and welded a couple pieces of tubing on to the elbow for the evap system and the PCV and here it is.

    I hooked up my scanner and prior to the swap I saw intake temps around 185-190 with ambient temp of 84 at the end of a stretch of road that I use for road tests. After this mod, temps were 165-170 with an ambient temp of 90. It helped some but I learned how much IAT is influenced by engine load on the mighty straight 6. I think the next mod on this engine may be a heat shield between the header and the intake manifold.

  30. #110
    So, explain how you got to choosing a Windstar air box? It's not exactly known for performance pieces is it?

  31. #111
    Quote Originally Posted by Willie G View Post
    So, explain how you got to choosing a Windstar air box? It's not exactly known for performance pieces is it?
    Ease of fitting. Small packaging with good airflow. Do a bit of searching and you'll see I'm not creative. This box has been used in a ton of applications. The TJ crowd uses it a bunch on the pax side pointed aft to run a snorkel through the firewall and up on to the cowl.

  32. #112
    vb's Avatar
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    Nice nice nice.

    Im very sad you didnt invite me to buene

  33. #113
    Quote Originally Posted by vb View Post
    Nice nice nice.

    Im very sad you didnt invite me to buene
    You're right buddy, total dick move. I'm thinking about Wheeler or Holy Cross next week.

  34. #114
    What muffler you running by chance?
    As you know there isn't a lot of space to knock the noise down under there.

    Quote Originally Posted by YJLopes View Post

    Last week I called to make an appointment at Bud's muffler to fix the exhaust. The call was forwarded to Chuck at Discount Muffler. It turns out Bud retired. I've been taking exhaust work to Bud for 30+ yrs. Chuck took care of me though and set me up with this small glass pack sized muffler that is baffled so it doesn't sound too loud and suggested I dump the tailpipe in front of the right rear tire. I'm not 100% sure I like it yet. The routing is clean and I don't get fumes in the cab, but it is louder than I'd like.

  35. #115
    I had similar muffler restraints. I chose the Moroso Spiral Flow. It's still noisy on my 351W, but there aren't many options out there!

  36. #116
    I'm not sure what muffler it is. It is noisier than I'd like but I suspect that has more to do with where it dumps. I'm probably going to run it out the back like stock for noise AND fume reasons.

  37. #117
    Great job, thanks for such a detailed write-up.
    I am so envious.

  38. #118

  39. #119
    Any plans on a V8 swap?

  40. #120
    Quote Originally Posted by 1BGDOG View Post
    Any plans on a V8 swap?
    This is the 3rd stroker I've built. To be honest it is a bit disappointing. My trip to the Rubicon was the first time I have driven it below 5000' MSL. Once we got below that altitude it really pulls pretty good. I was more than happy down there. To be honest, it is more than adequate here in CO most of the time, but when it's 85-90 degrees and the AC is running, it starts to suck wind. I have ideas about an L33 aluminum LS swap, but I want to build the front suspension first. Maybe this winter I can knock that out.

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