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Arcticcat843 08-02-2008 10:00 AM

Project Tadpole build thread
well, i started a build thread on my local club forum a while back but i figure why not start one here...

It all started in 1996. my mom bought this jeep brand new. i was only 7 years old. When i started driving this is of course what i started learning in. So, it got to the point where i wanted a car. she knew it, i had no job and no way to get a car. I had been taking her to work then driving the jeep around all day (to school) then getting her at 5. So one day in 05 she said i didnt have to pick her up, my step dad was going to. so she gets home tht night and is driving a new grand cherokee. i guess she woke up that morning and desided to buy a new car? Either way i was happy because she said i could have the XJ. So of course a wanted to start he moding. this is the oldest picture i have of it. basicaly the first mods, Fog lights and a 1.5 inch BB.

So from then on i was hooked. But of course, still had no job lol. So i asked for everyone to chip in and buy me tires for my birthday. everyone threw in a little money and i had to add 200 bucks with it and ended up with tires. (31s) so i tryed my hardest to get them on with 1.5 inches of lift but it wasnt happending. So i barrowed the money from my grandma for a lift. These pics are 10 mins after we put the last lug on it:
needless to say i was very happy!!! So then i needed more stuff. So i barrowed more money for new lcas trac bar, and other random crap. lol

Arcticcat843 08-02-2008 10:09 AM

i also made a few things my self
Also went though some things that didnt help it offroad any aka underglow kit lol. BTW, blue under glow is SWEET but they dont last long under something that goes offroad.
Also tore off the side moding, fixed the caved in door and bedlined!
Somewhere in here i got a light bar

Then i wheeled it!

And wheeled it!

Arcticcat843 08-02-2008 10:12 AM

and wheeled some more!!!

I had a TON of fun and beat the hell out of it. also meant alot of good people from this forum. (polloloco, killas1 guy, westmijeeper, ect ect ect)

Then after flooding the interior several times i desided carpet was not for me:
also took care of a little rust

Arcticcat843 08-02-2008 10:24 AM
This made a huge difference, i think this is about when i stoped caring how it looked and drove and started careing about offroading it.

This is where stuff starts to happen. i graduated!! i started my first job the day after graduation! So then i stated buying stuff!

not the best use of money lol
winch and bumpers
then wheeled some more:

Arcticcat843 08-02-2008 10:25 AM

then im driving along one day and turn a corner, hear the tirs slip alittle in the loose gravle and BOOM there goes the trusty D35 lol
So, why just replace when you can upgrade:
8.8 built buy JCR offroad. all high clearnace mounts, aussie locker ect ect ect. stock gearing. also got a aussie for the D30 about the same time

Arcticcat843 08-02-2008 10:25 AM

more to come when i have some more time! at this point in the time line we are only up till about fall of 2007. There is still along ways to catch you up to the NOW. then a longer ways after that!!!

Arcticcat843 08-02-2008 01:36 PM

So...about this time i got sick of breaking stuff and not having a dd for a couple weeks so i bought a new truck:
very posibly the worst choice i have ever made
So now that i had a good DD i could do some real weeking. So i loaded up and trailered down to the GLxj winterfest in haspin acres:
Also a mistake. basicaly, i beat the bloody hell out of it there! and have ALOT of damage to prove it. it was in pretty good shape before i took it down there. I added a TON of scraches and dents down there. Plus i destroyed a front drive shaft, killed my rear shocks and smashed in my pass side unibody rail. So it was time for some real building. So i had blew several u joints in the D30 and i knew i wanted 35s and with my driving that wouldnt hold up long. So i started tearing it down and selling stuff i didnt need. So within a month it was looking like this
So i sold the tires, wheels, front axle, and most of the lift stuff.
So it sat like that until just last week when i started working on it again. I had slowly been gathering parts. I say slowly because this damn truck is sucking up every penny i have between the payments, insurnace and gas. So while it was sittin i did manage to gather a few parts:
Narrowed D44 front axle with a RE bracket kit already welded up
Set of 5.13 gears for a D44 and 8.8
Arb lockers for both axles
locker pump
hood vents
5.5 Re coils
set of very used 35x14.5 inch boggers
ect ect ect

so here is where we are at now. I had a local place install the gears in the 44. Then i took it over to JCR. They are going to build it for me. It will be done using ford knuckles with the 1 ton steering UTK. I really want to go highsteer but we are talking a extra 500 bucks and i just need to get it done. im sick of trying to save money. So they are going to get it so it is a roller for me. then im going to put it backj under my jeep, load it on a trailer and take it back to there shop so they can make me a custom JCR longarm kit :D

Deadline to having this drivable again is 8-23-08!!! sivler lake here i come. im going o wire up stuff tomrrow and get it ready. Ill take some pics of the other resent things i have added.

mg2000xj 08-02-2008 05:30 PM

Looks good, keep us posted

MB98XJ 08-02-2008 06:05 PM

Wow man. Awesome Jeep. This thread makes me wish I woulda kept my Cherokee. Now I have a Wrangler. Also, your grandma let you borrow money for like a 4" lift? Haha. Thats cool as hell. So what kind of lift do you have? I noticed it's Rusty's but is it AAL or full leafs? Also, how is the herculiner holding up? I heard it wears down after some time... Lucky your parents gave you a vehicle, I had to pay for mine.

But anyway, keep up the good work. Your jeep is nice!

black2door 08-02-2008 07:41 PM

Lookin good man, should've done what I did and gotten a peice of **** truck to fix up (see my build for more on that). No payments.

But really, you're Jeeps progressing faster than mine lol.

camjeep3 08-02-2008 08:05 PM

i always loved your jeep :2thumbsup:
oh and you will be getting it done for my birthday

Arcticcat843 08-02-2008 09:28 PM

The things you are about to see my shock you...if you have a weak stumick or heart problems turn away now!
so it has been sitting since winter fest. i havent driven it since about a week after that. I didnt realyl even wash it. Just sprayed it off. I guess the rust really set in. it isnt near as bad as it looks. Most of it is Mud. It is wierd when you wash it, it is like washing off rust lol. There was a little rust that formed but the more i wash it the more i find that it is just the red haspin mud. So it is making me feel a little better. The plan it to clean the axles up and everything (im goin to have them out anyways) and paint them. then go up to silver lake on the 23rd. the sand up there like sand blasts your undercrage. Then im going to bring it home, por 15 everything underneath and bedline it. Hopefully that will hold the rust off for a few more years.
So i dont know if you noticed but it is sitting in the woods. Wich is behind my grandpas barn. about 250 feet from the door So i wanted to move it down to the door so i could work on it easyer. So i went and got my other grandpa (who lives right across the street, handy huh? lol) and his tractor.
both grandpas in that pic lol. So it turns out that a 65 year old farmall isnt up to the task of lifting a jeep. About 15 seconds after that pic was taken hydro fluid started shooting out the side of it :( so i was forced to work on it where it sits until i get the front end back from JCR.
So first i washed it
Then hood vents (thanks lead not fallow!)
new tranny cooler (thanks for the write up jeepin jason!)

Arcticcat843 08-02-2008 09:30 PM

Tranny temp sensor
Still have yet to install these
Oh and the new (used tires)
That gets you up to thursday.

So here is what i did today, i went to auto zone and got a prestone coolent flush kit. Flushed the crap out of the cooling system. bolted everything back up fromt he tranny cooler install (front end was just sitting there) filled it up with tranny fluid and ran it to check for leaks. It leaked but i fixed it already. Also drilled a drain hole in my front bumper. Mud was all around the winch and stuff. I mis judged the hole location and drilled right thought he front of it :( kinda sucked! I also washed it agian! this time is puple power cleaner. and let me tell you, that stuff is awesome. it is looking MUCH better now!

Still todo before it goes to JCR for long arms :
Install guages
make and install a CD antena mount (3 foot firestick on the hood)
paint dash trim (it was gay blue)
paint the center cousel trim
make a fan override switch
do the power window with no key mod
clean interior
reinstall entire interior only thing that is in it rght now is the dash and driver seat
fill with coolent
change oil
wire lockers and mount and wire pump.
install rear wheel adapters
remove, sandlbast and paint the rock rails (ill reinstall them after JCR does there stuff with the unibody bracing)
sandblast and paint RE 5.5 inch coils
and of course buy wheels and mount the tires

That remind me help me pic some wheels!!!i kinda just want to cheap out and go with sme black stealys but i dont know It is SOOOO overdone. I really liked my DC1s but they were a pain to clean. But i have heard that they are coated now (mine werent) so i dont know. then there is the black DC-1s. either way they need to be 16x10 with a 5x5.5 bolt pattern

oh and one more thing....just in case you guys are wondering about the tadpole thing. A Long time ago when i first started to work on it my dad named it the tad pole. so right after i went to haspin he got me a windshield banner that says tadpole offroad. so that is going to be the last thing i install before the 23rd kinda like the final touch thing lol He will get a kick out of it.

Arcticcat843 08-02-2008 09:43 PM


Originally Posted by MB98XJ (Post 5527316)
Wow man. Awesome Jeep. This thread makes me wish I woulda kept my Cherokee. Now I have a Wrangler. Also, your grandma let you borrow money for like a 4" lift? Haha. Thats cool as hell. So what kind of lift do you have? I noticed it's Rusty's but is it AAL or full leafs? Also, how is the herculiner holding up? I heard it wears down after some time... Lucky your parents gave you a vehicle, I had to pay for mine.

But anyway, keep up the good work. Your jeep is nice!

Well, i started with a 1.5 inch teraflex kit (spacers and shackles) then bought a rustys 3 inch kit to go on top of it (full packs) Then added rustys Lcas, trac bar ect. Then my spring started to cut into the teraflex spacers up front so i replaced them with daystar spacers. Then i added the 8.8 Which bigger so that added a inch or so lift plus i used TNT UBEs with 1 inch lift added in. So when accounting for the rear sag i had around 5in the front and 4 in the back. (1.5 inch shackles, 3 inch leafs, 1 inch from axle and 1 inch fro UBE = 4 lol) yes the leafs sucked that much! I was not happy with one products i bought from rustys and will NEVER buy there products again. (lift saged after 4 months, trac bar broke, lca clunked like a SOB even after i replaced the bushings twice and got jam nuts, oh and there stocks sucked only part that wasnt bad was the coils and they are pretty hard to mess up) They make crappy lifts that dont hold up and are thiefs! (its my thread so i can bash them all i want right lol) I know some people have had good experiences and good for them but i didnt so i wont use them again.

As for the herculiner. The only part that is starting to wear down is the driver floor board. From my feet sliding back and forth. Might just be i didnt do a good job preping right there. Overall im VERY happy with it. fro the price it cant be beat (stop by the local rhino liner place and see why i say that lol) only place i dont like it is on the rockers. i liked the texture of the spray can stuff better on the outside. hercu is deff ALOT stronger and better for the floors but i will be redoing the doors with dupicolor stuff.

oh and yes my parents and grandparents are awesome!! to this day i still owe my grandma aobut half the money for the lift :rofl: i think she has forgot about it and im not reminding her lol

Arcticcat843 08-02-2008 09:52 PM


Originally Posted by black2door (Post 5527572)
Lookin good man, should've done what I did and gotten a peice of **** truck to fix up (see my build for more on that). No payments.

But really, you're Jeeps progressing faster than mine lol.

I want todo exactly that. If i could just get rid of my truck! i would sell it for 24 i paid 33 for it. Thats how bad it is. My grandpa has a house for sale and he said if it sells then he will buy it. So if that happends here is the plan. My dad has a 96 f250 with a powerstroke. bedsides is smashed in, and the front end is smashed up. He would probaly sell it to me for 4 grand. I could put another 2 into a front clip, new bedside and paint and have a SWEET tow rig, no payments, and ALOT less insurance. It woudl need a few comfort things for me to DD it but i wouldnt take much. all i have todo it get rid of my truck!!!

Oh and its funny you shoudl say something about your build. I was reading your this morning, that is what inspired me to make my own, thank you lol

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