Wildman's TJ from Then til Now - Page 48 - JeepForum.com
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post #706 of 734 Old 10-11-2021, 08:54 PM Thread Starter
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My batteries showed up and neither of them were broken.



Then it was back to working on the rear shocks.

I cut the towers down some to make them fit better and not have so much metal sticking outside the frame at the bottom.



I also cut a groove into the back so I can weld into the frame also.



Setting the towers back in for the LAST time I hope.



And I got the cut thru the tower to the frame correct.



The other side.





Needed to do some cleaning before anything else.



And of course I wasn't done yet. The shock bodies were hitting the bottom of the towers. So I'd marked where I needed to notch them.





But still DANG NAB tight and too close to the towers.





That was everything I got done yesterday.

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WILDMAN

Cle Elum, WA

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post #707 of 734 Old 10-11-2021, 09:07 PM Thread Starter
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After a lot of thinking and suggestions from people over on the Wrangler TJ forum it was decided I'd move the lower shock mounts father out on the axle.

Here is where they are sitting right now.





And then after a little time with the hot butter knife (plasma cutter)



Axle tubes all cleaned up.



I cut into the axle tube a little too much on this side so I'll have to weld that spot up when I pull the axle for final welding



My choices for new lower shock mounts were:

1) On the right are Ballistic Fab but these things are flipping HUGE and I'd worry they'd get hung up on rocks and other stuff.

2) On the left are Barnes 4WD and they are the better choice IMO.



Shock mounts all welded up.



Here is about where the lower mounts were before.



And about where I think I want to try for now.

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WILDMAN

Cle Elum, WA

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post #708 of 734 Old 10-12-2021, 05:19 PM
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It is mildly amusing to me that I grew up near your whereabouts and now I live in a different country, opposite side of the continent and you are using parts from a company just up the street from me (TMR). I've even spoke to Tim Rodgers once.

This TJ was bought and plated in WA before I bought it and shipped it here.

'02 TJ 4L 5spd
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post #709 of 734 Old 10-13-2021, 09:21 AM Thread Starter
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It is mildly amusing to me that I grew up near your whereabouts and now I live in a different country, opposite side of the continent and you are using parts from a company just up the street from me (TMR). I've even spoke to Tim Rodgers once.

This TJ was bought and plated in WA before I bought it and shipped it here.
I've been all around this country and in a few other countries to boot. TMR has been a great company to deal with and when I had issues with one order Tim took care of it ASAP. I really like all of their products that I've bought also.

WILDMAN

Cle Elum, WA

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post #710 of 734 Old 10-13-2021, 10:27 AM Thread Starter
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Worked on the lower shock mounts yesterday. For a project that I THOUGHT would take maybe a few hours it turned into an ALL day project.

I started off by making a mockup shock out of some PVC & heim joints so I'd get an idea how close the shock body was to the shock tower/frame.





And then on the other side I had a shock installed to check for clearance to frame. The lower shock mounts weren't installed yet so I could move them around.



Looking up from the bottom of the shock body towards the top.



Got the lower shock mounts welded on and then was flexing the suspension to check clearances. Passenger side was golden.



The tire was JUST close enough to run when each side tread went past the shock.



But as I went to flex the drivers side I found out there were a FEW problems.

1) As I was jacking up the drivers side at around the last 1-2" of up travel it hung up. After checking things I realized I hadn't installed the lower shock mount aligned properly so it was binding. Easy fix so to speak. Cut tack welds and reattach lower shock mount.

2) My rear axle isn't centered. Again an easy fix so to speak I just have to adjust the arms till I get it where I want it. Not hard just takes time to get it done RIGHT.

WILDMAN

Cle Elum, WA

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post #711 of 734 Old 10-14-2021, 06:41 AM
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Wildman's TJ from Then til Now

Cutting tacks is, well, why we tack. Nice work, Rick. It takes some patience, doesn’t it. When I did my suspension I was always moving things around several times to get clearances to work.
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post #712 of 734 Old 10-14-2021, 08:14 AM Thread Starter
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Cutting tacks is, well, why we tack. Nice work, Rick. It takes some patience, doesn’t it. When I did my suspension I was always moving things around several times to get clearances to work.
Every INCH seems to take another 5 hours. But I did figure out a little about why the rear axle is moving around. A weld on one side of the truss broke loose so it moves about 1/4-1/2". So once I pull it and fix that I'll get back to playing with the shocks.

WILDMAN

Cle Elum, WA

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post #713 of 734 Old 10-16-2021, 08:28 AM Thread Starter
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Yesterday started off just fine and I was doing as I'd planned and working on the truss. Once I got the rear axle out from under the Jeep I'd found out the truss was looser than I'd thought which was a good/bad thing. So since it was loose I decided to add an extension to the front of the truss like I'd been thinking of doing for a while. Granted once it's welded on these two bolts won't mean much of anything but I just will feel better. I'll bolt it down for now and then when I fully weld the truss on I'll spot weld the bolts also.
So to start I marked and drilled a small plate I had and then tapped the bolt holes in the top of the diff.



Hot Dang I got the holes in the correct spots...



But got to clearance one of the upper link mounts a little or that bolts isn't gunna turn.



Plate all welded up.



Then I drained the gear oil. Heck it's 10+ years old so I figured it was time and I wanted to change out the ARB fitting to their new style.



Then I painted the back side of the truss and the side brackets with weld thru primer.



All was GOOD or so I thought.....

WILDMAN

Cle Elum, WA

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post #714 of 734 Old 10-16-2021, 08:45 AM Thread Starter
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Well DAMN.....

Huston we have a problem...........


Ignorance is bliss so if I'd never opened this axle up who knows how long I might have ran it and never known anything was wrong. This just SUCKS and I mean it really SUCKS.

I'm looking at the ARB air line trying to figure out what was done here when I look towards the front of the diff at the pinion gear and my mouth hits the FLOOR.......





This is NOT good and I mean it really isn't good at all. Earlier today I was having a discussion about fuel cells and how to get all of it setup and now I'm trying to decide what I'm gunna do with this axle. This is now the 3rd R&P that I've had in this axle. I can honestly say I knew it was my fault when R&P #! broke as I was using a little too much skinny pedal.

Yep this ain't good and I need to win the lotto or rob a bank.





I'd always liked the idea of trying out one of these kits from Carl Jantz at Jantz Engineering and I guess now I'm going to get my chance. Carl makes a kit he calls the Jana 76 that sounds right up my alley.

http://www.jantz4x4.com//jantz.php?p=detail&pro=jana_76

The only question now is if I can reuse my ARB or if I'll have to get a new one. And if I do then I'll take this whole thing a little farther and get a full floating kit installed also since I'd have to be replacing my axle shafts.

Solid makes a kit where I can keep my 5 on 5.5 BP and still convert my axle to a full float.

https://solidaxle.com/collections/fu...nd-kit-for-d60

So looks like I'll be calling Carl on Monday at Jantz and see what he has to say.

WILDMAN

Cle Elum, WA

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post #715 of 734 Old 10-16-2021, 09:38 PM Thread Starter
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The rear axle being broke is a HUGE set back for me but it's not the end of the world.

So I will keep working on the Jeep and once my savings account recovers a little I'll get it fixed. I started my day working on the axle. Did the final on the shock mounts and welded the the spot where I'd cut a little deep into the axle tube with the plasma cutter when I was removing the old shock mounts.



I think I'm finally figuring out this new welder as my welds are starting to look better.





You can't even tell where that spot was.




Then I started on the rear shock towers. Did the final weld and also did the gussets for the towers.





The slot I'd cut to tie into the frame worked out great.



And somehow I managed to do the bottoms of the towers and didn't set myself on fire.



Both sides are done.

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WILDMAN

Cle Elum, WA

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post #716 of 734 Old 10-17-2021, 07:31 AM
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Welds are coming along nicely, Rick. Don’t fret too much on the diff. Walk away for a bit - it’s always easier to deal with things like that after the shock wears off.

But damn - that sucks.

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post #717 of 734 Old 10-17-2021, 08:46 PM Thread Starter
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I started off working on the transmission crossmember. The tubes needed to be welded and I had decided I'd add some supports to the side but not sure that they are needed.





Then I thought that since I was this far along I might as well go all the way. So I removed all body mount bolts except the two front ones. Then I jacked the body up so that I could get to the back side of shock towers.



Then welded the back of the shock towers & gussets.



I'd stuffed blocks of wood in between the frame and body just for some added safety.

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WILDMAN

Cle Elum, WA

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post #718 of 734 Old 10-18-2021, 07:09 AM
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You are really hittin’ it, Dude.
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post #719 of 734 Old 10-18-2021, 08:48 AM Thread Starter
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You are really hittin’ it, Dude.
I don't know that it was needed to weld the inside but since I was in a spot where it was fairly easy to raise it up I figured why not.

Going to pickup the driveshafts today and then I'll get started on the exhaust.

WILDMAN

Cle Elum, WA

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post #720 of 734 Old 10-19-2021, 08:00 AM Thread Starter
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Went and picked up my driveshafts yesterday. Dang Nag it was expensive but still cheaper than having new ones made.



And my order from RockJock Arrived.



So of course I had to install the front driveshaft... It was a sight I hadn't seen in a very long time.



Started flexing the suspension to check for clearance and I had suspected that I might be a little close to the front drivers side midarm mount.



So I clearanced it a little.



Next on my list is the exhaust system. It's all stainless steel and I HOPE to try Tig welding it but will see how it goes.
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WILDMAN

Cle Elum, WA

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