Modification Journal (cont'd)
June 2007... now it gets serious...
So, May came and May went and NO HOUSING showed until early June! Thats right! The housing is in! Though this creates the first official set back in my "Project" to build my rig. The install date is June 16th! Also ordered 7" wide fender flares to keep my rig legal in NJ for tire coverage, assorted CO2 parts and manifold for the ARB hook up, and... 36" Tires on 16" wheels!! I ordered Interco's Super Swamper IROK's on black Cragar "D" window steel rims. My new wife (with a little guidance from a friend) also ordered me a 1.25" body spacer kit and Adjustable Coil Over Spacers (ACOS) for my birthday. You just can't argue that I have the best wife ever! She isn't so much into jeeping, but still goes out of her way to be selfless and makes me one happy Jeep addict. Happy Birthday to me! I hope my efforts to do the same for her succeed!
Also, I should know whether or not I will have enough for my winch by next Thursday! I listed some of my stuff from flying on e-Bay. I'll post pictures of the install when I get to it!
Well, the 16th came and went and still no install. UPS didn't deliver my Tires and Rims on Friday... they delivered them on MONDAY (today). UPS... You just earned the "Doc's Official Suck Factor Rating" of "Hoover". Eric will be bringing up his tow rig tomorrow to trailer my rig down for the mods. At this point I just want to get it done and I have things planned for the next 2 days, so I won't have time to help with the wrenching. I did however get the CO2 secondary regulator, dryer / filter, and manifold taped up and bolted in Saturday.
The secondary regulator is to ensure that even if I have the CO2 Tank regulator set to anything higher than 100 psi, the lockers and air seals won't get blown out. There is also a blow off valve on the manifold (seen above... mounted centered and vertical). Think of the setup as a safety net. The solenoids and diff lines will get installed when the axles get installed.
The tires are now mounted and balanced! Here are a few pics of them next to my current 33" Firestone Destination MTs.
More on the controller. I have to get 20 AWG wire for the control wiring for the Eaton Series 90K switches. The 18 AWG wire I acquired isn't fitting as planned. The wire is only carrying a max of a 2 A load to operate both Locker and Winch solenoids, so 20 AWG should work fine. I also ended up getting an electric Autometer Break Pressure gauge instead of the mechanical one I had bought originally. I figured it was best not to run hydraulic lines into the cab. I'll sell the un-used / open one on e-bay. I will post pictures after I get the controls put together.
33 Engineering Thumb throttle is in. Winch is due in tomorrow IF UPS DOESNT FUMBLE AGAIN! (Can ya tell I am not a satisfied UPS customer?) No word on the LoD Winch Plate. I ordered some Biltstein 5150 Shocks to compensate for the length added by the ACOS so I don't bottom out the shocks, and a Custom Hydraulic Cooler for the winch from Active Performance Cooling through ECM Performance. I also ordered miscellaneous air fittings from McMaster-Carr in order to install the ARB Solenoids and Crown HD Airlines to the CO2 Manifold. Install is still scheduled for June 30th.
I installed the new Crown Fender Flares on Monday. They went on nicely. Here is a before and after:
The Misch 4x4 "Big Boy" seat brackets were delivered Tuesday and were a pain in the butt to install and the hardware that came with them was NOT grade 8 hardware, so I snapped bolts just tightening the seat down. That didn't give me warm fuzzies in the event I am in a wreck of some sort. Need less to say, I went out and got grade 8 hardware and re-did the install the right way.
The winch showed up on time and weighs a hefty 110 lbs. The LoD Winch Plate should ship any day now from Indiana and will be around for a possible install next week.
I've been a soldering fool. I made a mock up of the control box and wired and tested everything. It worked! I am still missing a few components that should arrive next week. The winch plate has not shipped yet, nor have some the the components for the switches for the clutch override and winch direction. I made a mock up first to see where I could improve. I found a number of ways and I am now incorporating them into my final design. Here are a few pictures of the mock-up:
Ran the Electrical lines for the control box, and the air lines for the air manifold. I plumbed the solenoids to the manifold. That in itself was 3 days in the making. ARB is an Australian company, and hence uses British Pipe thread on their solenoids. I was looking to use NPT type of threading, but that wasn't going to work. I ended up getting the pipe fittings I needed from McMaster Carr. They carry EVERYTHING you need. So the -3 AN compression fittings are plumbed to the solenoids and running the lines should be a piece of cake.
Eric Picks up the rig tonight, which means that I might have a few hours to wire the solenoids tonight.
ITS GONE! Eric picked up the Hog last night! My plate for the control box should almost be done as well. To top it all off, I got notification that my Winch Plate Shipped yesterday and will be delivered on Monday to work. I took Monday and Tuesday off, and Wednesday I have off, so Thursday I should be able to get the winch installed. I might have to pick up the winch plate and try to install it Tuesday... we'll see.
Tonight I went down to ECM&P to help out with the start of the build. Basically we cleaned the shop and got it ready for the next morning when we would jump into the build. My Shocks showed up, and yours truly didn't order a few parts that I needed in order to put them in. Oh well, we had other parts that would suffice.
I hate shore traffic. It took twice as long to get to the shop than it would have normally. Today was filled with visits from a number of people that just dropped by the shop during the build. I worked on wiring the solenoids which turned into a rebuild of the CO2 Manifold since I plumbed the solenoids backwards to begin with. No big deal as the entire assembly needed to be relocated because of the air line lengths (or lack there of). Ray stopped by and lent a hand for nearly 6- 8 hours!Finally around 2 AM Sunday morning, the front was underneath, and Eric, Ray, and I called it a long day.
For me, Sunday is a day of rest. Work continued on the hog, but I wasn't there.
Monday I was without a ride. I had taken Monday and Tuesday off with the intention of wheeling and relaxing. I ended up just relaxing, as the Hog wasn't done. The D60 didn't come with spacers for the ring ad pinion setup, and a number of other small things. So, I sat around home, played Halo and watched Star Wars and Flight of the Intruder until the Wife got home, then I ran into work to pick up the Winch Mounting plate and switch parts. Since I was without a ride, the plate for my control box had to wait since I couldn't pick it up before 6pm.
Eric picked me up @ 8 AM and we headed down to work on the Hog. Today's Jobs were to get the 60 under the rear, and get it aligned. While Eric continued on the 60 setup, I installed the winch plate and winch on the front for weights and balance purposes for when the alignment came. I installed the new Biltstein 5150 shocks while the Transfer case was lifted and drive shaft was installed. We limped it over to the Firestone for alignment, then installed a spare t-case with a SYE and a Tom Woods Driveshaft for a temporary fix to the drive line vibration until the SYE for my t-case and custom driveshaft came in. The D60 housing did not come with a vent tube, and we didn't install one, so gear oil is leaking ever so slightly out of the tube seals. The new 36" tires also rub the lower control arms so a spacer kit is a must now. Partly I think it is a change in the back spacing in the new rims. The tires seem to be very close to the same width as the old ones, but the rims seem to be "off" backspacing wise. However, I was able to drive it home. It was good to be driving it again after having it torn apart.
Well, gear oil is still leaking from the tubes. it isn't major, but it is enough that I am not driving it home to PA this weekend as previously planned. I will drop it off @ Eric's Friday night, or he will trailer it down. I think that since the 60 isn't venting, the tube seals are the weak link when the heat causes the oil to expand and the housing to pressurize. But I am not the expert. I ordered Spider Trax wheel spacers since my new tires are rubbing due to their width and the back spacing of the new rims.
What a long strange trip it's been. Drove it to work this AM. It had rained last night to it was hard to tell how much it leaked overnight. Going to call Eric and make a game plan as to how to get the Hog to him this coming weekend. Pictures to come when I get to them. I am at work and I have 2 days worth of stuff piled up to get done today, so pictures are on my low priority list of things to get done. In the mean time, here is how it looks now:
Ordering my driveshafts today from Tom Woods. Should have the SYE / Skid / Shafts installed by the middle of August. My Wheel spacers came in and are installed. Tire rubbing problem solved.
Well I'm actually documenting August in late August, the 27th to be exact. There was a fair amount of stuff that has been done and a ton of personal stuff happened since my last entries in July. I changed jobs and a close family member is now in round 1 of a fight with cancer. That is enough to put some plans on hold to make time for family.
I will try to put the best guess at dates that things have been done. But here are some things that have been in the works for awhile.
I purchased a M101 CDN Military Surplus Trailer for camping and to give us the ability to transport stuff that doesn't fit in the back of a jeep. Pictures of that to come when I have time. Of course, you need a hitch to tow a trailer... so I got one integrated into a rear bumper with a spare tire carrier... from Rock Hard 4x4 Parts.
I installed the winch on the jeep with the mounting plate for weights and balance purpose during July's install of the axels.
First off, let me say that after the install issues I had... I am convinced that Milemarker is the only brand of winch that I will ever purchase if I ever purchase another winch. I choose a Mikemarker Hydraulic 75-52000C. I started the install process on the first, mounting the winch to the jeep. When this last Monday rolled around and I was ready to mount the hydraulic solenoid to the motor on the winch, I noticed that there were some o rings and hardware missing. So I sent a note in to Mikemarker via their website... and I got a response... and a speedy thorough one at that... followed up by a phone call from a customer service / warranty representative. I am nothing less than impressed with the level of service I have received from Milemarker. They sent me all the pieces I needed to do the install AT NO CHARGE TO ME and they arrived when they said they would!!! What more can you ask for!?!
Well I do have a few suggestions in the engineering of the winch. Mostly with the length of the included hydraulic lines, and the way the solenoid mounts to the motor. First the lines. I had custom hydraulic lines made for the install. The 2 lines that are included would work fine, but there was an excess of line to stuff somewhere. Second, the way the solenoid mounts to the motor is darn tricky. I ended up stacking a series of o-rings and washers and lowering the solenoid directly down on top of the motor... and praying that it all lined up perfectly as the first time I put it together and I thought it was perfect.... it leaked a day later.
So the first attempt at mounting the solenoid to the motor resulted in a leak. The second has since worked fine with continued prayer.
This winch pulls like a beast! I have a friend that has the 10K version, and high centered a Cherokee on a log. He anchored his jeep (with the winch) to his GMC dually, and the winch ended up pulling the jeep and the dually to the high centered Cherokee. So, make sure you have the means to anchor your vehicle when using one of these winches.
I visited Eric today @ East Coast Machine and Performance to finish off some of the remaining items on the Hog. The previous weekend we installed the front drive shaft that I have been waiting on from Tom Woods. I got to wheel it on the rock pile @ OK4WD during the New Jersey Jeep Association Trail Guide and Recovery training seminar last weekend.
Today we installed the 33 Engineering Skid Plate and new (shorter / higher) transmission mount, my new Tom Woods rear driveshaft, and cleaned up some misc. stuff we found. The 33 engineering skid and transmission mount raised the engine to the point where we had to trim / move the fan shroud, so a 1" motor mount is in the future for the hog. Also I had noticed some serious wobble in the steering when I would hit a big bump in the road between 30 - 45 mph. We found that the passenger side front lower control arm bolt on the axle side was loose and the skid that was welded on was cracked about 1 and 1/2" in from the open end of the skid. Tightening the bolt brought everything back into alignment and we will weld the skid back on in the next few weeks. We also trimmed the Winch Mounting plate to accommodate 2 10K lb. tow hooks and cleaned up a few spots where the powder coating was flaking away.
Here are some pictures of the hog on the rock pile @ OK4WD... Picture credits for this trip go to Allison of "NJJEEP.org"
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Page 2 - Complete List of Modifications
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Page 4 - Modification Journal: Jan - May 2007
Page 5 - Modification Journal: June - present 2007 - You are here!
Page 6 - CARNAGE!
Page 7 - Pine Barrens Run - Sept 3, 2007