Last update before going home.. I will be driving back home either Sunday night or Monday morning depending on what time I get off work and how I'm feeling. The red LEDs arrived at my house yesterday, so they will be installed in the dash as soon as I'm back. Other plans for this weekend contain: back flushing the heater core, installing a universal washer bottle in preparation for larger tires, retorquing all of the control arms, adjusting the track bar to get rid of my bumpsteer, and painting the radiator support black if it gets warm enough in the garage. Should be a productive week back at home! Now that I'm working more as well, I am starting to compile some extra money to buy new wheels with. Hopefully in a few months they'll be ordered!
Since I've been home, I got a couple of things done on Leeroy. I replaced the dash lights with red LEDs. They aren't as bright as I had hoped, but they do look good.
I also installed a new washer bottle. It's quite a bit smaller but at least it's out of the way. I used the same pumps, so it wasn't too hard.
I'll be paying for some JKS Quiker Disconnects today from another JF member! Those will be installed when I come back for spring break.
While underneath the jeep, I realized my drag link and track bar were nowhere near parallel. Saturday morning I'll lengthen that track bar a few inches and see if that will cure my DW. I'll report back when I get to Dubuque!
Well, I was supposed to go back to Dubuque tomorrow in the early morning, but after getting a flat tonight, that won't be happening. Is it bad that I'm almost hoping that firestone can't patch the tire so I can get some new rims and rubber?
I ended up having some extra time this morning, so I took a trip down to Complete Offroad here in Dubuque. They have a great showroom down there in a nice new building. The showroom contains two restored military Jeeps, a silver TJ on some 37s and a 2.5" OME lift, and a lot of ARB products. The silver TJ belongs to the owner, Rich and is definitely not just for the show room. The guy I talked to also said that they have a JK down at the King of Hammers race, so I'll be back there soon to check that thing out. Overall, its a nice shop with quality service so far.
How is your castor on your front axle, I noticed you just put lower control arms on. It might be out of spec. That can be the cause of death wobble. If you didn't have death wobble before the lift good chances its just out of adjustment.
My caster is off. I just don't know by how much. I didn't realize that could cause DW, but I do have both upper and lower adjustable control arms from IRO though. Maybe I'll have the 4x4 shop adjust them for me when I have them adjust my trackbar. I don't have any access to a jack or stands or even a garage for that matter out here at school.
Btw, after looking at your specs, your TJ sounds bad*ss.
I've been having some problems with power steering lately. Sometimes when I go to start the Jeep, I have no power steering until I start to turn the wheel back and forth. This happened again today and I went to check to hydraulic fan and it wasn't spinning at all. Is this the power steering pump? Any ideas? If its going to be too expensive, should I just convert to an electric fan?
Well, its been about three weeks since I've last updated. Nothing has changed except for a bit of money I've been saving up. I'll be traveling back to Chicago in about two weeks. Before then, I hope to clear up my bumpsteer issue once and for all. Or at least find the last bit of the problem. I'll be adjusting the steering box to tighten up the feel before I go. I'll also be checking out my ball joints to see if those are warn out. Those are really the only things left to zero in.
While I'm at home, I'll be upgrading a few parts. First, I'll finally be installing my JKS discos that have been sitting at home since January. I'm also going to mount my Garmin into my ash tray port. It will require a bit of trimming, but not too much. I hope to tie into my lighter port so that it will turn off when the Jeep turns off. I also want to finally get those extended bumpstops installed in the front in preparation for new wheels and tires. These may be coming sooner than I thought! Lastly, I plan on tearing out the wheel well liners, also in preparation for the new meats.
I did a lot of reading over the last few weeks on offroadpassport going throught TheKSmith's build. That thing is gorgeous! What an inspiration!
I was able to stop by Complete Offroad yesterday to have a few things looked at. The owner, Rich, even took it for a test drive with me twice after playing with a few things. We adjusted the sector shaft in the gear box and that tightened up the steering a little bit. We also moved my bent wheel to the back, but that didn't improve anything for me. The wheel bearings and ball joints both checked out without any slop. I still have a clunk coming from the front passenger side, a little bit of wandering, and a slight bump steer. I'll be taking it over to get a four wheel alignment on Thursday from a place that has dealt with lifted vehicles before and hopefully they can set me up right. Andy at Complete Offroad is gathering some prices on wheels and tires for me at the moment, so hopefully those will be on before summer! Lastly, it looks like I'll be joining my first offroad club. I hope to be joining the Mississippi Valley Jeep Club this month!
... I need another picture on here. Too many words, not enough Jeep. I'll be sure to get some with doing some work in about 10 days!
This morning Terry from Complete Offroad did a little work on the Jeep. First, he upgrade my LCA bolts to 9/16" to get rid of some lateral movement I had. This still didn't get rid of my clunk on the passenger side though! None the less, one less thing to worry about. The second and more important upgrade was welding to piece of metal to the axle trackbar bracket to make sure that hole is the perfect size and not wallowed out. I think it may have worked! the steering feels much tighter now and the bumpsteer is almost non-existent! The true test will be the ride back to Chicago this weekend, but I have high hopes. While back home, I'll be replacing my UCA bushings as well to tighten up the front end even more.
On another note, I was able to take some decent pictures before work yesterday on a dirt road I found. I've also included some pictures I took of the sunset here at work. I work at a ski hill here in Dubuque and this is one of the treats I get to see almost every night.
Today I'll be traveling back to Chicago. Hopefully Leeroy behaves on the way home. This will be the true test to see if my DW is gone. I kinda doubt it though. Unfortunately, I'm thinking I need new ball joints. We'll see after I install UCA bushings though. On a better note, I will hopefully be getting new tires by my spring break (mid April). I decided against the BFG A/T for some Duratracs. A lot more aggressive and lower in price. I've heard really good things about them. Updates and pictures will come after all of the work this weekend.
Both on the way home and on the way back, the Jeep performed very well. Only one case of DW each way and a couple shimmeys, but that's it! I was able to get up to 80mph on the highway with no problems, just had to watch for bumps on the backroads. I'm really hoping new ball joints kills the DW for good.
As usual, not everything got done that I had planned. Actually, almost none of what I planned got done. I only accomplished swapping the UCA bushings and those were a bear. I ended up limping to a shop to have them finish it after I battled them for 3 hrs. I decided against putting the discos on until I find the source of my clunk on the passenger side. It should be easy enough anyway. I also found out that my driver side bumpstop pad fell out at some point, so I will be picking one up at the JY soon. Most importantly, I got the go ahead on purchasing new wheels and tires. Those will be going on in less than a month when I go home!
I had this urge to do something for the Jeep today, so I fabbed up the swaybar holders that TheKSmith has in his build thread. I still need to have the ferrules clamped, but other than that, they look good!
Ordered Synergy ball joints from Kolak last night. Hopefully the final piece in curing my DW. If I'm not mistaken, these are these might be the originals still.. After 185k miles, I'm surprised they haven't fallen off yet! Hopefully they'll be here late this week!