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What was I thinking?
2008 JKU
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6,243 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
It all started when my 1982 Ford F 350 became much less dependable than I could tolerate!
I had been contemplating buying a new vehicle for some time and had the choice narrowed to either a Wrangler Unlimited or a Mini Cooper :dunno:
The Ford decided to limp me into work an hour late and then get me only half way home! It was time.
October 3rd 2008 I started by looking at JK's on the dealer websites. I went to the Jeep site and built my perfect Jeep on paper then found the closest match at a local dealership. The salesman and I went to their storage lot and there it was :) "I'll take that one"!
Now, I had never driven a Wrangler before and the fact is that I never did until 3 days later when all of the paperwork was taken care of and the Jeep was mine :thumbsup:

For the next 10 months all I did was drive and love my new Jeep, then one day while trying to fix that old Ford I found this Ford truck forum. 10 minutes of searching followed by a quick trip to the parts store and the truck was running :thumbsup:
I then found the "Slant Six Forum" to learn more about my 64 Dodge Dart.
And last but far from least I found "JeepForum" :highfive:
After spending some time looking at all of the great builds and ideas I decided to start making my JK into something that suited my taste and requirements. The first problem with my Jeep is that it is 2wd :eek:
I really didn't think I needed 4wd :rolleyes:
After allot of research and contemplation this will be addressed later in my build! Until then this will become a very well built 2X4 :thumbsup:

I started by getting some wheel spacers and a 2 1/2" BB from Rough country.

I also added front and rear Currie track bars and made my own extended rear sway bar links out of the stock fronts while using the stock rears in the front.

These were extended using SS DOM tubing with plug welds.


Next came a set of Mickey Thompson Signature Series wheels and 35/12.5/17 MT/R with Kevlar tires :thumbsup:

With this tire set-up and the fact that the 2wd comes with the lighter spring rates I decided to change out the BB and get some O.M.E. Heavy coils!

I now have the 618 and 619 O.M.E. coils and they are perfect :thumbsup:

The current stack of boxes in the garage consists of Superior 35 spline rear axles, Superior 4.88 gears and install kits, Roughstuff rear axle truss, Evolution front "C" gussets and CA skids, Viair 20001 200psi OBA system, and a Superchips Flashpack on the way.

Here is how it sits now with the rack that I built.

:wavey:
 

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What was I thinking?
2008 JKU
Joined
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6,243 Posts
Discussion Starter · #2 ·
How it realy began!

February 4th 2006 was just another regular day.
Up at 7:30 am drinking by 9:00 am work around the house all day.
Around 4:00 p.m. I decided to make a run to get some stuff for the lawn. Half way to the Home Depot my truck decided to turn right while my brain was saying to turn left :eek:
I'm happy to say that 3 parked Toyotas were my only victims!
Close to $20k and a year of programs and court dates put that behind me. (But I was still a drunk)
August 1st 2007; Through the Grace of God and the support of my Family I admitted myself into a rehab program (Calvary Center, Phoenix AZ.):thumbsup:
I am now over 3 years sober and without this chain of events I would have absolutely nothing!

Now back to the fun stuff :tea:
 

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Very nice. Did you chose it to be 2wd when working it out on paper?
 

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Nice work.:thumbsup: I really like the roof rack. Did you do it yourself or have it built? Any pics of the construction?
:cheers2:
Im pretty sure I saw his build thread for the rack. Ill find it.

I cant find it. Im pretty sure he has a thread for it though
 

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Jim...great post and love that rack. Aren't you glad you didn't get the mini cooper...:teehee:
 

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Jim should sell his rack design to a quality company ....... it's easily the best rack I've seen yet............... :cheers:
 

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What was I thinking?
2008 JKU
Joined
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6,243 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Please re-visit page 2 for the real story! :rolleyes:

Thanks for the great feedback.
To answer your questions.
No; the original draft had 4wd but at the time I was thinking, mileage, city boy, never needed it before, Basically I just wasn't thinking!

A Mini Cooper would have been fun for about 1 week, then what :dunno:

More pic's of the rack to come tonight.
I am putting some serious thought into possible production and/or marketing to a company willing to build them.
I know nothing about marketing! If you have any ideas or contacts please let me know via PM. :tea:
 

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Please re-visit page 2 for the real story! :rolleyes:

Thanks for the great feedback.
To answer your questions.
No; the original draft had 4wd but at the time I was thinking, mileage, city boy, never needed it before, Basically I just wasn't thinking!

A Mini Cooper would have been fun for about 1 week, then what :dunno:

More pic's of the rack to come tonight.
I am putting some serious thought into possible production and/or marketing to a company willing to build them.
I know nothing about marketing! If you have any ideas or contacts please let me know via PM. :tea:
I used to have Minnies LOL ! First one had the hydrostatic suspention , then a Mini truck , then a Cooper S . Fun but just not to practicle . Lots of guys used to do club racing in them .........
If you had the time you could build your rack the way YOU would build it . Have you thought of a ball park price ? Could you out source some of the bending to an eletrical shop ? Maybe hire an aprentice to help you ........
I think you would find a serious interest in your rack ...... maybe in kit form or partial build ......
Will be watching for this .............. :thumbsup:
 

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What was I thinking?
2008 JKU
Joined
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6,243 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Rack Details

I started building this rack about 6 months after I bought the Jeep.
My perfectionism wouldn't allow this to be a simple project!
This final incarnation is the result of six fittings two cut-downs and literally hundreds of hours of design and fabrication.







The first part to make was the front mounts. 1/4" steel cut with a 4 1/2" grinder.


These were mounted using nylon spacers to protect the body and provide a water tight connection.


The next step was the rear mounts. I didn't want to drill the body so these go around the bumper and attach to the frame with the bumper mounts.
They will be changed in the future to mount on the bottom of the tub allowing for body lift and tub movement as a unit.


There are only six bolts that hold the rack together. All of them are recessed for a clean look.



And this is why I needed a rack!


The cross bars that I am using right now are temporary.
When I make the finished ones I will show you.
So what do you think?
 

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That, my friend, is a thing of beauty!!!!!!!!

I hope you can figure out a way to market them, I've been looking at various models and this is by far the best looking, cleanest design, and fully functional rack that I've seen....congrats Bro!

For the record, it looks like you spent hundreds of hours perfecting it, it's flawless..

Don't forget a 2 door model too.........lol

You could offer the rear mount that you currently have and a body mount for those that want them. Would it be feasible to apply for a design patent?
 

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One word for you....SPECTACULAR. Put me down for a 4-door version if you ever decide to mass produce. You can definitely see all the hard work and craftsmanship...WELL DONE!
 

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A+ with the sexy and functionality factor. I would buy one. You ought to design one for the two door and allow for easy removal of the hard/soft top. You have a real winner there. You could sell them at a reasonable price and stomp the comp. The fact that they are designed to a more modular fashion is smart for shipping purposes as well. Plus, a good chunk of your market is found right here. No loss of profit on advertising. Pics and a PM is all it takes.
 

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What was I thinking?
2008 JKU
Joined
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6,243 Posts
Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Muffler Relocation

I finally got around to installing and relocating the muffler.
I used this one that is like a glass-pack but it's not!



Before removing the pipe I marked the location of the 2 cross-members so I could center the muffler between them.


I then cut out a 19 1/2" section of pipe and clamped the muffler in place with these clamps that I got through Amazon.


The little yellow tool is for de-burring the inside of the pipe.
I used a little bit of high temp silicone in the joints to provide an extra layer of seal ability.
It sounds pretty good, though I haven't driven around yet.
I'll post some final pic's and a review tomorrow.
:tea:
 
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