Luuca's MJ Build - Page 4 - JeepForum.com
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post #46 of 123 Old 06-24-2019, 10:35 AM Thread Starter
Luuca
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chris_s View Post
Why not just buy a SWB Comanche to start off with?
Good question. In looking, I mostly saw Longbeds in my price range. I picked this complete but not running MJ for $600. I had the frame piece sitting for a few years, and I already have a 1991 4.0 XJ with AW4 running and driving as the donor.

Other than the break-over issues associated with a 119.5" wheelbase, I'm good with the the bobbed bed and am taking the break-over into account on the build with things like 35" tires and a flat belly.

I guess it would have saved us the work of bobbing the bed, but that's about all it would have really changed on the build. Long or short, the TJ frame was going in and 35s with a flat belly would be great for either option.

If you are complaining about us scrapping the V6 and uni-body frame section in the rear in terms of keeping the MJ as original as possible, I can't help you. This was never intended to be a restoration. It's basically a street legal trail rig comparable to a TJ with Lockers and a 241 TC. A rubi MJ.

After all, it's only metal.


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post #47 of 123 Old 06-24-2019, 10:43 AM Thread Starter
Luuca
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Quote:
Originally Posted by daddyjeep87 View Post
Sorry about your loss. Can it be revived with new brushes or is it done?. I have revived my old Ryobi 3 times with new brushes and it is starting to make that sound again when is it is going to need a new set again. My Black and Decker is on it's second set.

Glad your plan is coming together as planned. Do you plan on taking a little off the top of the frame to get the bed to sit right?

I'm with Boojo. Tom is indeed a sissy.

I am glad your grinding skills exceed your photoshop skills. I was going to do a quick PS job for you, but you look to have it handled.
the grinder was a HF special.. i'll get a new one..

We had considered sectioning the frame to get the bed to sit flush, but we are going to cut the bed and push the upper frame hoops into the bed space, then cover them with sheet metal. That way, we keep the integrity of the frame intact. The frame literally sits just inside the wheel well cover inside the bed. So our wheel well covers will have smaller wheel well covers next to them. Who cares... it's getting LineX'd anyways when we are done.

your Photo-Fu looks better than mine!!

We are toyong with a coule of ideas on the rear of the bed. We may be a little longer than imagined. Personally, it's function over form at this point. If I can get TJ departure angles with a cut.. we cut.

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post #48 of 123 Old 06-24-2019, 10:51 AM
chris_s
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Quote:
Originally Posted by daddyjeep87 View Post
.... But it is not a short wheel base Comanche. It has a stock long wheel base with a bobbed bed. Let's not forget that it is 4 linked with off the shelf custom possibilities that no Comanche had.
Then why not just bob a LWB? I just don't understand what's gained here instead of simply 4-linking the MJ rear frame...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Luuca View Post
Good question. In looking, I mostly saw Longbeds in my price range. I picked this complete but not running MJ for $600. I had the frame piece sitting for a few years, and I already have a 1991 4.0 XJ with AW4 running and driving as the donor.

Other than the break-over issues associated with a 119.5" wheelbase, I'm good with the the bobbed bed and am taking the break-over into account on the build with things like 35" tires and a flat belly.

I guess it would have saved us the work of bobbing the bed, but that's about all it would have really changed on the build. Long or short, the TJ frame was going in and 35s with a flat belly would be great for either option.

If you are complaining about us scrapping the V6 and uni-body frame section in the rear in terms of keeping the MJ as original as possible, I can't help you. This was never intended to be a restoration. It's basically a street legal trail rig comparable to a TJ with Lockers and a 241 TC. A rubi MJ.

After all, it's only metal.
Definitely a cool project, and not complaining about chopping up an '86 V6 LWB MJ (one of the least desirable combos). Just doesn't make a ton of sense to me. You could have kept the MJ rear frame and simply 4-linked it and bobbed the bed. Still going to follow the build--just trying to understand the decision a bit more.

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post #49 of 123 Old 06-24-2019, 11:23 AM Thread Starter
Luuca
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chris_s View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by daddyjeep87 View Post
.... But it is not a short wheel base Comanche. It has a stock long wheel base with a bobbed bed. Let's not forget that it is 4 linked with off the shelf custom possibilities that no Comanche had.
Then why not just bob a LWB? I just don't understand what's gained here instead of simply 4-linking the MJ rear frame...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Luuca View Post
Good question. In looking, I mostly saw Longbeds in my price range. I picked this complete but not running MJ for $600. I had the frame piece sitting for a few years, and I already have a 1991 4.0 XJ with AW4 running and driving as the donor.

Other than the break-over issues associated with a 119.5" wheelbase, I'm good with the the bobbed bed and am taking the break-over into account on the build with things like 35" tires and a flat belly.

I guess it would have saved us the work of bobbing the bed, but that's about all it would have really changed on the build. Long or short, the TJ frame was going in and 35s with a flat belly would be great for either option.

If you are complaining about us scrapping the V6 and uni-body frame section in the rear in terms of keeping the MJ as original as possible, I can't help you. This was never intended to be a restoration. It's basically a street legal trail rig comparable to a TJ with Lockers and a 241 TC. A rubi MJ.

After all, it's only metal.
Definitely a cool project, and not complaining about chopping up an '86 V6 LWB MJ (one of the least desirable combos). Just doesn't make a ton of sense to me. You could have kept the MJ rear frame and simply 4-linked it and bobbed the bed. Still going to follow the build--just trying to understand the decision a bit more.
On my phone so quick reply.

1. Unibody vs tube frame
2. Custom 4 link vs full aftermarket support.
3. Just Cause we had the parts already.
4. Just cause we could.

Sorry but hate responding on my phone.
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post #50 of 123 Old 06-24-2019, 05:34 PM
Boojo35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chris_s View Post
Then why not just bob a LWB? I just don't understand what's gained here instead of simply 4-linking the MJ rear frame...
I definitely get this build.

Here is an old MJ. Lets make something cool and different. Oh, lets make it a better off road vehicle while we are at it. Lets improve the departure angle in a big way. Hmmm. Here is a TJ frame. IIRC the front was not any good for some reason. Do not quote me on this though. So we got parts laying around that solve a lot of issues. We love to fabricate and build stuff. In fact, we do this daily rather than sit in front of the tube.

I agree with Luuca fully that by carefully grafting in the rear of a TJ you have full aftermarket support and choices of off the shelf suspension products for the rear suspension on this. 4 link one off suspensions can have a lot of quirks and headaches in getting the design and properties of it right. The rear suspension height of this in the end is an unknown after all accessories and things are added. 4 link suspensions have anti dive and anti squat characteristics just to name a couple. Probably not a thing just anybody can one off, especially the first time on an uncharted vehicle or build . Lots of R and D potential failures and money down the drain. So, the frankenjeep route seems to be the most cost effective and time effective way to get from point a to b in this situation and have a vehicle that performs well.

If I had that CNC plasma cutter in my shop..... Hmmm.... people would call me out all the time as to why I did this or that.... Because I could and it is different.... Nuff said.

Luuca definitely needs therapy... as do MOST hardcore Jeep guys. He gets his therapy daily by doing stuff like this. I have been fortunate to speak with him on the side and fully get that this is probably more of a passion and obsession for him than most people get. Those two things lead to blazing new trails.

More power to the build. It does not have to make sense..... but it really does.

I want a one of a kind Jeep build.... It is on my bucket list... Kinda hard to figure out what has not been done... This one has it nailed. Reason enough to do it. I read service manuals all day long. I like to freelance and not read instructions for a change. Write my own instuctions. It frees the soul.
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If you cannot fix it with a hammer then it has to be an electrical problem.
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post #51 of 123 Old 06-24-2019, 10:56 PM Thread Starter
Luuca
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Day 16

Stripping the engine bay out to get ready for the firewall cut to fit the 4.0.

1.jpg

Jeep Yoga to free up the brake master, throttle cable, clutch master pushrod.

3.jpg

All clear! but still dirty

2.jpg

Pressure washing

4.jpg

Checked for the usual cracks around the steering box and track bar..

20190624_195137.jpg

Found one!! Yay...

5.jpg

Cracked right under the motor mount. If I only knew a welder....

Tomorrow we will drop the front axles, track bar, track bar mount and weld/grind/fix that issue. Then drop in the D44 front and strip the interior bits.

More to come...

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post #52 of 123 Old 06-27-2019, 12:20 AM
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You should call this thing the T-manche!
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post #53 of 123 Old 06-27-2019, 07:58 AM Thread Starter
Luuca
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MetalMountainGoat View Post
You should call this thing the T-manche!
well, my name is Tim... so on more than one level that could work, but it'll have XJ parts as well...

logo.jpg
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post #54 of 123 Old 06-27-2019, 09:18 AM
DirectMatrix
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Tim,

This build is f*#$ing awesome, but we expect nothing less from you. Glad I happened to see the link in your sig.

I've got some serious tool/shop/skill envy going on. Pretty sweet what you have access to for playtime.

Wonderful job so far.
~DM
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post #55 of 123 Old 06-27-2019, 12:37 PM
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Agreed!

Stumbled across this by accident, so glad I did!

Hope you don't mind if I pull up a virtual stool in your shop corner...



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post #56 of 123 Old 06-28-2019, 11:10 PM Thread Starter
Luuca
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Day 17

Tonight we eviscerated the MJ of anything 1986-related in preparation of our huge independence weekend extravaganza of 1991 XJ surgical precision dismantle and reassembly into the MJ.

Tom marked up the bed for the relief cuts to allow the bed to sit level on the frame, put the bed on the lift, cut some metal.

While he did that, I installed a used, stock TJ rear track bar I got off CL locally.

We put the bed back on and it now sits level. The frame only needed s little help into the bed. We will clean that up later.

Bed relief cuts:

1.jpg

2.jpg

Once the bed was back on, Tom ran an errand and I started stripping out the interior..

3.jpg

4.jpg

And that's when the project went from Go Go Go to Find a New MJ...

5.jpg

The entire floor is rusted out. No possible way can we rebuild it...

6.jpg

Passenger side looks good tho...

7.jpg

Eventually got the dash, harness, and Heater/AC box out.

8.jpg

Continued next post..

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post #57 of 123 Old 06-28-2019, 11:21 PM Thread Starter
Luuca
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Day 17 continued.

Once we had the interior stripped, I set about to clean up the rusted floorboard on the driver's side.

Before:

12.jpg

iseerust_zps8242099a.jpg

After a few passes with the flap disk:

13.jpg

Most of the metal is solid. Going to cut and weld some patches in. The torquebox seems solid, so with the frame stiffeners, should be A-OK in the long run. Fix the holes, treat with rust converter, and paint.. move on.

Some random pics of the carnage...

9.jpg

10.jpg

11.jpg

More to come...
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post #58 of 123 Old 06-29-2019, 03:05 PM Thread Starter
Luuca
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Day 18

Rust repair day. Tom cut out the rusted floor pan and i shaped a piece of 16 gauge to fit.

1.jpg

2.jpg

Once the shape and curvature was right, Tom burned it in.

We got very lucky on the small rectangle piece. Tom literally picked up a scrap piece of 1/8" plate that was already cut and it literally fit perfectly without any trimming.

3.jpg

Tom welded them in, I hit them with a flap disk to smooth it out (it's not a show car and I will be running carpet so.. good enough.. and we sprayed it with some rust converter.

4.jpg

Also, we addressed the cracks - that's right when cleaning up for welding the crack we found on the track bar/motor mount we found a second crack. It ran between the two bolt holes.

5.jpg

Welded up and ground down..

6.jpg

Etch primer..

7.jpg

and now, for now, the rust and crack repairs are done. we can move on to installing the front D44 and prepping to swap in everything from the 91 XJ.

more to come...

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post #59 of 123 Old 07-06-2019, 10:46 AM Thread Starter
Luuca
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Wednesday night, 4 hours on July 4th that included a 6.1 earthquake with me under a 91 XJ up on jackstands, 7 hours on Friday, and just starting a " however long it takes to get the 91 out the door and the shop cleaned up for Monday" day.

Total thrash session surgically stripping the 1991 XJ for everything we will need. Total strip down with photo documentation.

Thrash session weeked.

More pics to come of the mess and of the firewall cut.
Attached Thumbnails
20190705_154239_1562431457450.jpg   20190704_122233_1562431512462.jpg  

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post #60 of 123 Old 07-06-2019, 05:25 PM Thread Starter
Luuca
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Days 19, 20, 21, 22

The mission over the long weekend was to strip out everything we may possibly need out of our 1991 4.0 XJ Auto and document/label/preserve everything for reinstallation into the 1986 MJ.

Wednesday night, I drove the donor XJ from my house to the shop and parked it. Thursday, we set about stipping and preseving the engine, computer engine harness, HVAC and related vacuum lines, Dash, Body harness, odds and ends.

Most of you have done this, so kinda boring work. That said, here are some pics of the 91 going to pieces..

Needed to document mounting locations for things the 86 never had, like cruise control..

1.jpg


2.jpg

Needed to preserve and remove the entire dash assembly..

And now for the interesting stuff. Tom and I decided that instead of simply trying to recreate the firewall out of sheet metal like others have done when converting a V6 Comanche into an I6 4.0, or using a BFH to bash enough room for the I6 to fit, we would cut from the donor, the exact firewall shape and holes we need. For those unfamiliar with the Pre 88 comanche 4.0 swap, the firewall on the pre-1988s needs to be cut and pushed into the cab to fit the I6.

3-before.jpg

and after the cut was made:

3-after.jpg

The radiator core support and ends are also different as the 1986 MJ had a center latch hood while the 1995 used the familiar side latches.

Instead of trying to modify the 1986 core support to "fit" the 1995 hood latches and radiator, we simply decided to cut the correct ends from the donor and graft them onto the 1986. In this way, we eliminate chasing fitment issues down the road by making one big change. Using known indexing points like the fender mounting holes and the support brace holes, along with the hood, we should be able to graft these ends in and recreate the 1991 XJ core support.

Plasma torch made quick work of the cuts.

5.jpg

4.jpg

Here's the 91 XJ after donating all the metal..

6.jpg

The 1986 MJ had a foot pedal E-Brake like the YJs of the era. We even grabbed the e-brake metal to graft in the hand pull e-brake from the 1991..

8-e-brake.jpg

In the pic below, you can see the difference in the 86 MJ core support side and the 91 XJ core support and hood latch we cut out.

9.jpg

We plan on also using the crossmember from the 91 up front due to the radiator and e-fan lower mounting points.

11.jpg

Even though it doesn't seem like much, remember we grabbed everything - fuel lines, brake lines, evap lines, body harness, front door window surround metal, black door handles off the 91.. It was a hell of a lot of work over the last 3 days.

Next we graft in the donated metal to make everything fit just like Jeep intended for 1991, and then we reinstall everything we took off the running 1991 XJ and make our 1986 MJ run again.

More to come.
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