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Unread 02-08-2011, 09:14 AM   #136
djflyy
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Thanks man!

So I did some quick boring drawings of how this will be made. This is with me under the impression that it will be able to be done from a solid piece of aluminum or the like. The measurements are done to 1:2 scale. They aren't exact, but they're close. I labeled everything, and showed where the bends will be in order to make this out of one single piece of sheeting. In other news, the switches I bought on eBay came, and are extremely disappointing... they're about the size of a dime. I wanted some beefy a$$ switches, so I'm returning them and heading to AutoZone/ Advanced Auto Parts/ Radio Shack to see some first hand. Might cost a little more but should be worth it. Photos of that later.

I was also wrapping my girlfriend's valentines day present yesterday (since it's gotta be mailed to Boston, factor in 4 days shipping time) and grabbed some posterboard from Target while I was getting wrapping paper. I'm going to use the posterboard to make demo cut outs to scale and practice folding them and making sure that my measurements are exact. Should work well!

Here's the layout.



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Cleaning this thing up is similar to a slightly abused pornstar throwing on a bunch of makeup to try to hide her eternal scars, but I think she doesn't look too bad
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Unread 02-08-2011, 07:02 PM   #137
djflyy
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AND SO THE PARTY CONTINUES!

New switches, courtesy of Radio Shack. (I tried Advanced Auto Parts but they wanted $8.99 for a freakin switch!) So I went to Radio Shack and sifted through an incredible selection of about 100 different switches, until I found the perfect kind. The problem with the previous ones were their size, and the connection type. These new ones are beastly large, and should make for a clean installation. Also they have pronged connection types, so they'll be easy to work with.

I also took some time this afternoon to cut out a piece of paper and fold it into shape, as I was bored. Worked pretty well, but I'm not entirely sure that aluminum will fold this easily... I also had a thought at Radio Shack that maybe a project/kit box would do well for the switch box? Just an idea... I might just stick to the aluminum!

Photos... the switch, which has a small red LED built into the top of the toggle, then the switch compared to the first ones, then my folded box - which I did using the stencil that's posted above.





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Cleaning this thing up is similar to a slightly abused pornstar throwing on a bunch of makeup to try to hide her eternal scars, but I think she doesn't look too bad
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Unread 02-09-2011, 01:37 PM   #138
95riograndeman
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Good idea on making a template out of cardboard. I did that when I wanted to make a holder for my Ipod but then realized how unrealistic that would be. Those switches look extremely beefy and should look really nice. If u can't bend the aluminum how you would like, you should then maybe go sheet metal and paint it black to match your interior. But I would first try the aluminum. Good Luck.
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Unread 02-10-2011, 08:51 PM   #139
djflyy
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So I haven't made mention yet of what I intend to use for the metal to make the panel... it's been a top secret piece of information, which I will now share with you...!

This may seem/look/actually be silly, but I thought this would be a great and cheap way to get some nice thick aluminum for the panel. It needs to be substantial enough to withstand the pressures of the switches being thrown up and down which takes a decent amount of effort, so thin aluminum won't work. Anyway, for $4 a piece, I got the two of these 16 gauge aluminum cookie pans at Target. I checked out what Home Depot had beforehand, but the size of what they offered simply wasn't enough. These pans are 11x17, which between the two of them will be enough to get the shapes I need.

Looking into it further, I think it will be easier and smarter to make each surface (front, sides, back) on their own, and then attach them. That will prevent trying to shape everything at once in one unit. Rivets will be my friends with this, and they will be riveted on the bottoms and sides of the box.

On another note, the parallel wiring of the switches, and CAT-5e wiring for the relay control has begun

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Cleaning this thing up is similar to a slightly abused pornstar throwing on a bunch of makeup to try to hide her eternal scars, but I think she doesn't look too bad
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Unread 02-11-2011, 09:43 AM   #140
95riograndeman
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That my friend is a very smart way to get what you wanted. Love the idea. May be a little hard to cuz though especially with all of the lips that look like they are a little stronger than the rest of the aluminum. This would also be a lot easier to bend too, so great thinking.
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Unread 02-11-2011, 03:49 PM   #141
djflyy
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 95riograndeman View Post
That my friend is a very smart way to get what you wanted. Love the idea. May be a little hard to cuz though especially with all of the lips that look like they are a little stronger than the rest of the aluminum. This would also be a lot easier to bend too, so great thinking.
Thanks! I figure a little work with a dremel and I can cut off the thick lip running around the top to get to the thinner middle section
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Cleaning this thing up is similar to a slightly abused pornstar throwing on a bunch of makeup to try to hide her eternal scars, but I think she doesn't look too bad
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Unread 02-14-2011, 03:44 PM   #142
djflyy
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Okay, strange and 180 degree update! I was talking with my dad this weekend (he flew down from Boston) and he brought an old Radio Shack project box that I had bought a few years ago with him, at my request. After talking a little more, I decided that the 8" x 6" x 3" box was going to be perfect to make the panel box out of. I used a Jig Saw to get it cut down to the 3.5" tall that I wanted, and kept the 8" and 3" dimensions. That will give me half an inch on each side, and a quarter inch between the front and back when it's in the tray of the dashboard.

I drilled out the holes with 3/8" bit, and installed the switches to check spacing. Then soldered the parallel wiring for power and ground, and e-taped the ends after crimping the connections. I want this to be solid as anything. After that, I pulled the switches back out and soldered the CAT-5e cable onto each switch. Part of me is hesitant that the thin wire (22+guage) will not hold up to bumps and everything, but there's a fair amount of solder on there so I hope it'll be okay.

I then drilled out the back of the box, and heat-shrunk the power/ground/CAT cable together to hold it nice and snug on the inside and through the port in the box. I left 10 feet of lead on power and ground, and 20 on CAT-5e so that there should be plenty to reach the battery, frame ground, and fuse/relay box that shall be built soon.

Looks pretty clean IMHO. It was a lot easier than cutting the aluminum, so now I've got 2 extra cookie trays

I'll post all the photos I took below.









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Cleaning this thing up is similar to a slightly abused pornstar throwing on a bunch of makeup to try to hide her eternal scars, but I think she doesn't look too bad
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Unread 02-14-2011, 03:46 PM   #143
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More photos of the box build:







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Cleaning this thing up is similar to a slightly abused pornstar throwing on a bunch of makeup to try to hide her eternal scars, but I think she doesn't look too bad
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Unread 02-14-2011, 09:12 PM   #144
Amills
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That is real clean! Nice work!
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Unread 02-15-2011, 05:56 AM   #145
95riograndeman
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Very well done. I think that box will look perfect in that little spot on your dash. I think you should cut out what each switch is and then maybe put mesh behind it which would look really cool. Can't wait to see it in your jeep and working.
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Unread 02-16-2011, 07:43 PM   #146
djflyy
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So I went to an awesome welding class with a few guys from the forum & Orlando Jeep Club tonight. It was my first time welding and I did pretty damn well if I may say so.

I had a chance to talk with a guy named Tom on the way out, and he's got an 05 Sport TJ. I tried to fit my switch box into his dash, but it was too deep, and wouldn't fit into the tray on the dash. HMMM! Our question is whether or not the 97-01 TJs are different from the 02-06 TJs with dashboard measurements. Anyone want to weigh in? 3.54 inches deep? Otherwise may have to build one with a smaller box..... ugh.

Any help would be great here guys.
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Cleaning this thing up is similar to a slightly abused pornstar throwing on a bunch of makeup to try to hide her eternal scars, but I think she doesn't look too bad
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Unread 02-25-2011, 10:23 PM   #147
djflyy
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I tell ya- might be fun to get a neglected CJ7 as a restoration project someday when I've got a barn/garage to work on it in.

Doh. I'm spending way too much time on this forum!

Jeep Updates soon.
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Cleaning this thing up is similar to a slightly abused pornstar throwing on a bunch of makeup to try to hide her eternal scars, but I think she doesn't look too bad
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Unread 02-26-2011, 01:17 PM   #148
djflyy
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Found a few pictures from over the last year that I never posted. I can't wait to get back to MA and drive her this summer. I miss that damn Jeep.

Just washed:





Girlfriend & TJ in July







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Quote:
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Cleaning this thing up is similar to a slightly abused pornstar throwing on a bunch of makeup to try to hide her eternal scars, but I think she doesn't look too bad
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Unread 02-26-2011, 01:28 PM   #149
djflyy
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More pictures, from over Christmas vacation back north.











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Quote:
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Cleaning this thing up is similar to a slightly abused pornstar throwing on a bunch of makeup to try to hide her eternal scars, but I think she doesn't look too bad
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Unread 02-26-2011, 01:30 PM   #150
djflyy
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It looks so weird without the winch on it in those last few pictures. Can't wait to get the XRC-8 back on her and fill up that front end again. I've also been thinking about throwing a pair of 100w spots on the stinger... is there such thing as too many lights? or am I crazy?
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Cleaning this thing up is similar to a slightly abused pornstar throwing on a bunch of makeup to try to hide her eternal scars, but I think she doesn't look too bad
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