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Montaska 07-30-2013 05:43 PM

Montaska's Build!
Montaska's Zombie-Proof Build Thread
(or at least something to get me to, and have fun at, my cabin)
Last Page Updated 3/15/2015
(this is not an active build thread (sold the JK!)

I used to have a 2002 Jeep Grand Cherokee when I was stationed in Alaska with the Army. It was a great Jeep and made the trip from Fairbanks, AK down to Bozeman, MT without any issues. About 5 months after getting here, it started to die in traffic. I took it to the Stealership and they said the CEL code could be a multitude of things, and the only way for them to know for sure was for it to 'completely die' whatever that means. I needed a reliable vehicle to make the 4 hour commutes to my cabin, and the 6 hour commutes to my parents, so I cut my losses and traded it in for a 2006 Subaru Impreza 2.5i (aka 'Slowbaru'). Although the Impreza is an outstanding car for the snow and ice, it obviously lacks hauling capabilities and the ability to go over crappy terrain to get to good hiking spots. And thus, the 1997 ZJ was purchased. I probably paid a little more than I should for a vehicle with so many issues, but it was a project Jeep and I knew I'd be throwing money at it. Well, after I graduated college I decided I needed to sell the Subaru and the ZJ and I got my 2007 Wrangler JK! Wahoo!

I used to do some fairly basic bolt on stuff to my 2002 Mitsubishi Eclipse and 1972 Alfa Romeo while I was in high school, but I didn't really get into working on larger vehicles until I had the 'privilege' of riding around in this and wrenching on it for 5 years. Before I was Honorably Discharged, I took a three month class that taught me how to take the entire thing apart and put it back together, again:

This was a hell of a recovery, let me tell you...

Here she is in Mosul, Iraq (those guys wouldn't get out of the way for my picture! ha!):

Anyway.... So, I suppose this will be my new build thread :)

I know a few things about building vehicles and one of things I know is you NEVER PAY FOR PREMIUM. So, I got a 2007 Wrangler X.
Here is the picture of the day I bought the Wrangler:

Latest picture as of 1/30/2015:

Build Sheet From Jeep:

Completed (as of 1/30/15)

32.5" AT/S Tires
Some Kind o' Aftermarket Wheels (already on the JK and will replace them when I upgrade to 35" tires)
Kenwood HD w/SiriusXM Satellite Radio
Rockford Fosgate Front Speakers & Tweeters, RF Soundbar Speakers
KC HiLites
Relocated mirrors
Rough Country Front Bumper
BodyArmor 4x4 Rear Bumper
Tramp Stamp
2.5" Teraflex Spring & Shock Lift
AEV Control-Arm and Track-Bar Correction Brackets
Smittybuilt XRC Flares
DynoMax Evo Cat-Back Exhaust
Teraflex HD Steering Stabalizer

Projected For Summer 2015
5.13 Gears
37" Tires

MoonyJohn 07-30-2013 05:49 PM

1 Attachment(s)
Same steps I had, welcome! Youll be overwhelmed by all of the aftermarket support we have haha

awinski 07-30-2013 05:58 PM

Welcome to the bright side! Haha. If youre not familiar with the jk read around. If you are cant wait to see whaat gets dine to this bad boy!

BlkOpsRubi 07-30-2013 06:58 PM

Congrats and welcome to the JK world!

Montaska 07-30-2013 07:34 PM

Thanks for the warm welcome! I've always wanted a Wrangler, so I am pretty excited! The girlfriend and I took the front top off, rolled the windows down, and drove out of town - it was great! Even had somebody give me the Jeep wave!

So, fortunately after spending so much time replacing bad parts on my ZJ I am pretty good at knowing what to look for... bushings and everything look fine, but the exhaust is completely rusted! It's the only part that seems to be rusted. So, I think that it is a necessity to replace it :cheers2:. I am considering the MBRP Black Exhaust from Morris4x4. Does anybody have any other recommendations, or is this a pretty solid system?

As you can see in the pictures, the Jeep needs new tires, so that will probably be my next purchase. Going to try to fit some bigger tires in there, as well. Will probably do a 2.5" lift, eventually. Also, it has 65,000 miles so I will replace the shocks and spark plugs, too. Brakes seem fine.

awinski 07-30-2013 07:38 PM

Great to hear! Remember jk wheel wells are huge. You can fit 37s with trimming, and 35s stuffed without. Back spacing is the key as im sure you know. As for exhaust I have no clue

takeitsleazy 07-30-2013 07:41 PM

If I had a jeep soley to thrash, it would be a zj. Welcome to this side of the forum!

Montaska 07-30-2013 08:39 PM


Originally Posted by awinski (Post 15737579)
Great to hear! Remember jk wheel wells are huge. You can fit 37s with trimming, and 35s stuffed without. Back spacing is the key as im sure you know. As for exhaust I have no clue

Awesome, thanks!

aznjeep 07-30-2013 10:22 PM

Welcome to the JK world!

1222 07-31-2013 02:06 AM

Congrats on your JK purchase and the sky’s the limit to how you want to mod it.

ferninaz 07-31-2013 09:44 AM

I have the aFe Catback which is nice because it tucks the muffler under the drivers side instead of in the rear. Looks cleaner and more importantly it doesnt seem to get banged off of rocks as much. It took a couple of weeks for it to settle in and the sound is very good. Not to irritating.

KrawlOff-Road 07-31-2013 09:48 AM

Nice! Welcome to this side of the forum! If you have any questions, let us know!


Montaska 07-31-2013 07:09 PM


Montaska 08-05-2013 07:39 PM

Sold the ZJ today, was sad to see her go but now I have a reliable daily driver to build up! I took the top and doors off the JK and went out on this dirt road that I could see from town, and always wanted to see where it went. Since I only have two days until I move back to the ranch, I decided I should check it out!

It ended up going about 15 miles until it ended at a farm house. Was a dusty but fun ride!

I ordered the Rancho shocks and mirror relocation kit, so those should be waiting for me in the house I am moving back to.

Montaska 08-12-2013 09:11 PM

Haven't done anything too crazy, mostly just taking the Jeep out exploring and what-not. I put on the rear Rancho shocks, today, and the Rugged Ridge mirror relocation kit. Getting a wrench around the top shock nuts were driving me nuts, so I'll do them, tomorrow.

My new long-range lights and windshield mounting hardware will be here on Wed.

The time now is 05:10 AM.

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