2000 Cherokee Build
Well this is the build of my 2000 xj. My dad bought it new in 1999, and drove it daily til' 2009ish. After that it sat in the driveway and we would take it for a cruise occasionally to make sure it was running.
Fast forward to 2013, we decided it was time for her to go, in hopes of purchasing a cj or tj. The problem was that all the potential buyers were scared off when we told them it had 310,000 miles on it. So rather than selling it for pennies my dad gave me the keys. Since I already have a dd (04' STI :2thumbsup:), a trail rig is in order.
Here it is before I started working on it:
Here's the plan:
-Dana 44's (Waggy front, scout rear)
-Dana 300 t-case
-4.5-6.5" of lift
-36's, maybe 37's
-Hybrid cage (once I get a bender)
-Maybe a chop top if i'm feeling froggy
Got her in the shop and started dismantling
While I wait for my axles I started cutting up my fenders. The plan is to keep the COG lowish and still clear 36's. The jeep had a date with the cutting wheel.
Tacked in a piece of 18g sheet and started grinding it down.
Some seam sealer and a little mud
Primed and undercoated
Bed lined (the bottom part will be finished later, there is a support beam keeping the door closed)
Pulled my interior as I continue to wait for my 44's
Finally got these bad boys!
Well this is where I am as of now, and I will keep you guys updated as I continue to plug away. Peace :wave:
That's a damn nice trim job on the rear. Subbed for this one.
Awesome! Looks great Jake! Cant wait to see it move forward and make it to VT for some wheeling! The axles cleaned up nice! I cant believe how good of shape the body is in! There isnt even rust on the rear leafs! Are you going to reuse those making a hybrid pack or are you gonna get some lift springs? Pretty awesome garage you got there too.
When you planning on trying to have it done?
These are the XJ springs I used in the back of my cj. They are pretty soft and work awesome so far!
Im using those along with 1.5" Rubicon Express SOA springs in the front just so you have an idea of what you may need in coils to make it sit level if you wanted to use those. Granted thats with all my cage width. Here is the stance with that setup. They were just stupid cheap and work great so figured id throw them out there.
I have about the same shackle in the rear. 1.5 over stock. So then yeah, order up those bad boys, get some shackles (I got my shackles and everything else like that I can through summitracing.com but whatever your favorite place is will work), get the rear perches welded on and the rear done. Then do the front to match.
When you get the rear axle under it, perches set on, and ubolts on just snug everything up and get it centered. Usually measuring from the disk brake bracket to the perch on each side works best. Let the jeeps weight down on the tires so the springs sit where they are going to and get a jack ready to place under your pinion to adjust the angle. You need your front driveshaft AND the front output yoke from your np231. That will slide on the back of your dana 300. Once that is done you want to angle your rear pinion up to be pointing at your rear output yoke since you are running a double cardon shaft. Still dont weld it yet.
Now measure the distance from yoke to yoke and measure your driveshaft and see what has to be changed whether its shortening or lengthening. Cut your driveshaft in half and drive a piece of 1.75" tube in the driveshaft. Its a snug fit so it will be strait. Then slide the other half of the driveshaft on and place fit it under the jeep before you weld it back up. If you are shortening the shaft leave about 1/4 of an inch between the two half so you can see the tube bellow. Then weld from one half over the tube to the other half welding the driveshaft halfs to the tube and to eachother.
Once that is done, bolt the driveshaft in and adjust the rear pinion angle so its inline with the drivehshaft. Then measure left and right again so you are perfectly center and weld it all in! Odds are with that aw4 auto you probably wont need a double cardon front driveshaft so the yoke on the Dana 300 front output will be fine.
Once the jeep is sitting on all four tires so its at its final resing place its time for the TRACTION bar, not to be mistaken for TRACK bar. Take the shackle from the kit and find a place that the shackle can hang up under the jeep. Some ppl mount it right to their trany cross member. I built a seporate cross member for it out of tube. This traction bar kit is the way to go. Ruff Stuff will pretty much have everything you need for this swap and doing the front. You just have to specifiy which size tubing you'd like to use and what length tubing. 1.5" for the top should be fine or get the longest piece of 1.75 so then you have some left over to do your driveshaft. They have pics there too showing how the kit works.
This is the traction bar kit you want.
They also have shackles too if you want to just place 1 order through them.
This is probably worth getting for the rear axle, even tho you have perches to cut off and reuse. This way you have the new ubolts and plates.
This just might be another option instead of using ballistic fab brackets if what you need is in here.
When it comes to the front driveshaft, if you dont have something sufficient laying around then get ahold of Tattons driveshafts and give him the length you need. Nice HD extended slip driveshafts shipped for $150. Just tell him you have 1310 joints on each end and it length from yoke to yoke. I'm running one of these up front with the 12" slip for my shackle reversal but you will be fine with the regular 6 or 7" extended slip he does.
As for a bender check this guy out.
My buddy started with the JD2 but sold that and went to this. The die changes are simpler and it stands verticle so it doesnt take up so much room to bend tube. Just buy the bender and dies. 1.5 and 1.75 will do you. Then get a ram from Harbor Freight. Of if you want it all from the same place you can order it from them too. I think its a little cheaper from harbor freight thats all.
Good luck and keep the progress pics coming!! Just ask if you have any questions and I'll do what I can to help :cheers:
You're the man, thanks for this info. Seems like the best way for me to go is to just place one order through ruffstuff, because they do have the coil mount/link bracket that i was going to get through ballistic. And as for the traction bar ill probably just make up a crossmember like you said rather than tieing it in to my trans crossmember.
I do have a few questions :confused:, first, Im a little unclear about the np231 to d300 front yoke, could you elaborate on this a bit? And on the driveshaft lengthening, you are talking about using my front one in the rear correct? If thats the case should I just get another front driveshaft from the pick-n-pull and lengthen/shorten it to size for the front, im sure it would be cheaper that way.
That bender is sweet, but I just dont have the $$ to drop on it, so ill probably go the cheaper route. I may even put off the cage til' next summer so that i can focus on getting it rolling again. I have quite a bit on my plate already, maybe by then ill have the funds for the better one.
I have been working all week so the going has been a little slow. I did pick up my dana 300, and I'm about to order my clocking ring so I can at least get it bolted up and start making the floor cuts to accommodate its orientation, and then rebuild a floor panel around it.
Thanks for your help!
Very nice build so far. Pix of the suby please :)
Do you have any pics of the inside of the rear wheel well after trimming? I need to do the same to mine but I'm having a hard time wrapping my head around what exactly I'm gonna need to fill the gap or reweld the quarter panel/wheel well.
Ill start from the top!
The pieces of sheet sit flush with the inner cut edge and the cut fender edge, it was a little tough to get the angle right so i cut mine in 3 pieces and bent and welded them in, which you can kinda see here.
Thanks, that first picture helps a ton. I wasn't sure how big of a gap I was looking at filling. I'm at 2" (closer to 1.5") on 33s so it's definitely something I've been wanting to do.
Jake when you go to that pick and pull you should grab as many of those front driveshafts as you can find! If there's 6 xj's grab all 6 fronts. Usually they are like $20 a shaft. If you get a pile of them bargain with them if they want that much and say I'll give you $75 for the pile of them etc. Maybe a couple spare yokes too. Especially if you're running them front and rear you'll want a couple spares. Plus I'll buy 2 or 3 from you or we can just deduct it from whats left on the axles. Cause I am down to only one left so Id like a few more spares lol. Just twisted another front shaft this weekend. Looking good tho, keep the progress and pics coming!! Id love to come help.. maybe you should just have a shop up on Mt. Hunger! haha
Picked up some goodies today! These are 37x12.50 super swampers. They are well used but came with 17" american racing rims and were a sweet deal. Two of them are about 20-25% life, the other two are 10-15%. They will get me rolling while I save for some new rubber.
Also ordered up my clocking ring so I can mount up the transfer case and start cutting out a place for it.
I just need to order some suspension parts, perches, and figure out what Im gonna do about control arms. Im gonna try and get that stuff in the next week or two. I should be on track for my pre-august deadline. :wave:
Those don't look like 37s
Nice! Those have plenty of tread! Take the tire knife to em and you'll get this whole season out of them! I found another shaft so I have 2 spare rears now so I should be okay. I may grab 1 from you but still if you can get em cheap enough.. grab them cause you never know what you can use them for.
Take a look into weld on beadlock kits jake. Theres a ton of vendors on Pirate that does them really cheap..
Thats one of them.
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