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Unread 06-22-2007, 09:16 AM   #1
Scotch740
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Home Made Flat TC Skid Write Up (W/ pictures)

I picked up my 05 Unlimited in early May and had it on the trail within a month. I never really gave a though to the transfer case skid until it kept hanging up on the trail. Almost being an engineer (2 more years in school), I have no clue why Jeep engineers let this so nicknamed “shovel” hang down so low. I had to change it. This combined with wanting an engine skid that tied into the TC skid jump started my first project for the Jeep.

Extensive researching and Jeep Forum searching led me to the following information.
Most people who do a high clearance TC skid are already lifted. In this case you need the following to raise your drive line higher if you do not already have it.

SYE+CV drive shaft
Adjustable rear control arms
Body lift
Motor lift
High Clearance TC skid of your choice.
TC shifter relocation bracket

Being at stock height I felt I did not need the SYE+CV drive shaft or Adjustable rear control arms. I felt this way because I have an Unlimited and usually people can do a Budget boost or even a 3.5” lift with out needing these, and with no to minimal TC skid drop. I did need the following.

Body lift (JKS 1.25” BL)
Motor mount lift (Home Made)
33 Engineering Transmission Mount (1.5” lower profile over stock Trany mount)
Steel to make the skid.
Assorted bolts nuts and washers.

Drive train to tub, clearance:
Body lift +1.25”
33 Engineering Transmission mount +1.5”
Total gain in clearance 2.75”, this combined with the clearance of the stock jeep let me raise the drive train around 4”

My rear drive shaft angle was also a concern I felt I could raise the Transfer case 3” without having a SYE and CV Drive shaft. That is why I needed the 33 Engineering transmission mount. The fact I had also incorporated a motor mount lift messed up this thought process a little. Because I was lifting the TC more than the motor this increased my drive shaft angle more than my calculations led me to believe.

After installing the Body lift and Motor mount lift I jacked up the transmission, removed the stock skid and measured the holes. This was much easier than my previous attempts to measure with the skid in place. A little time on Auto CAD and I came up with this.


I plotted a full scale drawing and made a template to test fit it.


Next step was ordering a 24” X 48” X ¼” steel plate from a local metal fabricator. I then used my drawing and marked it on the plate. Fortunately I was able to sheer it at work and save about 25 cut off wheels and 3 hours of grinding. Using the template I drew as well as the stock skid for a reference I marked and drilled six ½” holes to mount the skid to the frame.

I had already measured my stock clearance at 9.75”

I mounted the new skid and measured my new clearance at 13.75”.


Gain in clearance 4” SWEET!!

I traced the 33 Engineering trany mount and drilled the holes. Bolted the skid on and got ready for a test drive.

Now when you do a body lift and motor mount lift they say to check fan to make sure its not making contact with the shroud. I did it then, but after raising the drive train it was contacting it pretty bad, found that out pretty fast too. It was late and the bars were open so no test drive that night. The next day I drilled new holes in the shroud and re mounted it to center the fan in the shroud. WHEW! That was easy…. NOT! That fan shroud is a pain to work on and I only got the upper 2 bolts in it. It is staying like that until future work is required or I come up with a right angle drill. So a test drive showed everything working great took it up to 50 on the back roads no vibes other than my exhaust pipe contacting my trailer hitch. 5 minuets with a grinder fixed that. I took off about 3/8” off the tip. Well I drove to work like this and discovered that under heavy acceleration from around 47-53 mph I had a drive line vibration. Fixed that by dropping the skid with 3 washers and only needed 2 when the final installation came around. Another problem was part of the transfer case was contacting the skid. I had already determined the transfer case mount was not level with the frame rails and fixed this by adding 2 washers between the drive’s side of the mount and the skid plate.
UPDATE EDIT: After wheeling I found while torquing the engine in reverse my TC was still hitting my skid. Today I made a 1/4" spacer plate to replace the washers and provide a little more lift. No further problems.

Just to note my Transfer Case linkage was way out of whack after the BMML and BL. After putting on the Flat TC skid it all works again, needs to be adjusted but should be fine. I might add a shifter linkage relocation bracket if I can’t get it adjusted properly.

My skid plate was also bowing slightly. Once again consulting Jeep Forum I decided to brace it with 1 X 1 X ¼” angle. Picked up 20 feet and a 12” X 40” X ¼” plate from a different local welding place. That plate is for the Engine skid.
Here is where the final bracing was located.


You can see at the front where the engine skid will be going, but that’s a later write up.

After welding on the bracing, sanding, grinding, and cleaning I primed and painted the skid. Fortunately the can of brush on primer was kicked over and I only had enough to do the topside of the skid. I say fortunately because it looked like ***, I should have just used spray primer on the whole thing.
And here it is painted.

Bottoms up


*** side


The 5 holes in the front are where I am bolting on my engine skid. The 4 holes in the middle are where the Transmission mount bolts on. I did not include these in the drawing because they will change a lot more than the other dimensions for other Jeeps.


Last edited by Scotch740; 07-04-2007 at 05:11 PM..
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Unread 06-22-2007, 09:17 AM   #2
Scotch740
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Final product on Jeep ready to drive (EDIT: and test on rocks ).






Now what does this monster weigh? I was surprised to find it weighed in at a low 67.8lbs. The stock skid weighed in at a lighter 41.2 lbs. So I added 26.6 lbs, not to bad

Edit: Cost, that’s right that is why I made this myself.
Metal $148
33 Eng mount W/ shipping, around $150
Paint $23 had the primer not been dumped over.
$20 for Grinding wheels and welding rods
Bolts less than $5
Total $346
This was for the TC skid as well as the Engine skid, which is primed waiting for paint. (Write Up Here)

I want to thank everyone who has posted answers, pictures and commented to all my posts and questions. Too many people have provided input to thank individuals but everyone on here has been a huge help.

EDIT: Check out my Engine Skid thread too.

Last edited by Scotch740; 06-29-2007 at 07:20 AM..
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Unread 06-22-2007, 09:21 AM   #3
GroundAssault
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Very awesome!!! Subscribing to this thread for sure
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cheap mods are like a drug dealer giving you your first few for free...they will only get you addicted and before you know it every paycheck goes into your new habit :rofl:
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Unread 06-22-2007, 10:48 AM   #4
VZEHLER
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Nice work man! Looks nice!

I do have to ask though... Did you brush the paint on the inside part of the skid?
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Unread 06-22-2007, 11:10 AM   #5
BLATMAN
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awesome work...
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Unread 06-22-2007, 11:27 AM   #6
Dogman
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Very nice. I hope to do the same in the future. I will using this as a guide. Thanks for taking time to post!

EDIT: Could you get a pic of the mounted skid from the rear? Curious to see how the TC sits on it.
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Unread 06-22-2007, 12:37 PM   #7
Scotch740
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VZEHLER
Nice work man! Looks nice!

I do have to ask though... Did you brush the paint on the inside part of the skid?
I brushed the primer on the top side of the skid but my can was kicked over. I really didn't like it and I didn't do a good brushing job so I sprayed over it. to try and coat the insides of the bracing I taped of the end, poured paint in them and rocked it back and forth and flipped it over. It was during that process the can got kicked over.
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Unread 06-22-2007, 12:40 PM   #8
Scotch740
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dogman
Very nice. I hope to do the same in the future. I will using this as a guide. Thanks for taking time to post!

EDIT: Could you get a pic of the mounted skid from the rear? Curious to see how the TC sits on it.
Here is a picture of the 33 Engineering mount.


I had to replace those bolts with flat heads. I will try to get a pic of it mounted but the bracing along with everything being crammed in there makes it difficult to shoot.
The links in my first post as well as the 33 Eng. link in my sig go to a thread I made kinda reviewing the mount.
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Unread 06-22-2007, 06:09 PM   #9
BlackWidow TJ
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Are there bushings between the mount and the skid or is it a solid setup? Looks great!
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Unread 06-22-2007, 06:54 PM   #10
Scotch740
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BlackWidow TJ
Are there bushings between the mount and the skid or is it a solid setup? Looks great!
There are rubber bushings between it. There is very little clearance between the mount and skid but there should be enough for any situation I plan to encounter. At least until this is more buggy than Jeep.
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Unread 06-22-2007, 07:42 PM   #11
safarimike
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good job, something i may consider once i get an sye.
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Unread 06-22-2007, 09:07 PM   #12
rmb2485
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What size plate did you use for that? It looks to be about 1/8" in the pics, which is way too thin in my opinion.
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Unread 06-22-2007, 09:25 PM   #13
raskull
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He says 1/4 in the post.

Looks good man.. How come you didn't use countersunk bolts?
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Unread 06-23-2007, 08:01 AM   #14
rmb2485
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scotch740
That plate sure looks like its about the same thickness as the body mount, which is much less than 1/4". If it were 1/4" I doubt there would have been issues with it flexing before the ribs were added too.
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Unread 06-23-2007, 08:17 AM   #15
Scotch740
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rmb2485
That plate sure looks like its about the same thickness as the body mount, which is much less than 1/4". If it were 1/4" I doubt there would have been issues with it flexing before the ribs were added too.
Your using a picture to differentiate between 1/8" of an inch which is really hard when the pictures is far from the two pieces your comparing.

The plate is 1/4" thick I was thinking about using 3/16" but it was cheaper for me to get 1/4" because that is what the first shop had on hand.
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