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Old 01-08-2007, 09:21 AM   #1 (permalink)
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DJ Racing Jeepspeed 2 TJ Build

With only eight weeks to prepare, A long-time band of cohorts, the "Dust Junkies" have agreed to partner with the Jeepspeed Challenge and Clive Skilton, to build the first Jeepspeed Class 2 Jeep Wrangler TJ. The Dust Junkies team consists of three recreational rock crawlers, Scott Hartman, Mark Underwood, and Jeff Knoll. The Dust Junkies intend to compete in the Jeepspeed Challenge series kicking off at the historic Parker Blue Water 425, in Parker AZ Feb 2, 3, & 4th 2007.

After five years of tremendous growth, the Jeepspeed Challenge series will expand to include the Wrangler TJ, Unlimited LJ and the Grand Cherokee ZJ models. With over 75 drivers registered over the past two years, 45 race Cherokee’s built, and five million page hits per year on www.jeepspeed.com, there has been a huge showing of interest for this desert racing series. This popularity has brought about regular media impressions in print, most notably JP magazine's recent "10 day Jeepspeed" build, specialty television coverage like Xtreme TV’s “How to Build a Jeepspeed” mini-series and numerous interactive web relations. Jeepspeed is noticeably becoming the best value in entry-level racing that includes a vehicle even the average consumer in a healthy and active retail market can relate to.

This flagship of a growing market of entry-level racing will initially compete in the current Jeepspeed One class. This Class will be highly promoted as the next generation of Jeepspeed racing to an already overflowing aftermarket enthusiast group. The Wrangler TJ, with an almost infinite supply of used vehicles, has the potential to replace the VW bug as an affordable race vehicle to tackle the rough California, Nevada, and Baja Mexico’s extreme desert terrain. The most important aspect of this racing vehicle is that it is easily recognizable and appears to be obtainable by the average consumer. With so much progress made in the recent years to bring desert racing back into the spotlight, The Jeepspeed 2 class could not have happened at a better time.

Four weeks into an eight-week build schedule, the Dust Junkie Racing burns the midnight oil.

Having wrestled with the holiday season, family vacations and even the Baja 1000, Dust Junkie racing has had a build schedule that would make most first time race builders panic. Trying to build a spec class racecar in 8 weeks with the holiday right in the middle has been a challenge. DJR is showing tremendous progress in building the car and they are confident they will meet the February deadline. Testing will most likely be days before the race. DJR has partnered with some great industry leaders that will 'smooth the bumps' so to speak during the testing period.



The 1999 Wrangler TJ Sport served as a daily driver for DJR partner Mark Underwood's wife Jen and has made numerous trips across the United States. Mark and Jen have enjoyed offroading the TJ on some of the country's best locations before the TJ began a transformation into a Jeepspeed race vehicle.



DJR wasted no time after returning from the Baja 1000 in tearing the stock TJ apart.




The axles and suspension were removed to make way for DJR-built custom HP Dana 44 front axle stuffed with CTM products and DJR/CTM full floater ford 9" rear end. Jack Graef knows how to build strength into axles.



The off-the-shelf Rubicon Express LJ Tri-Link long arm kit was installed with little modification to the TJ and all stock lift kit components were kept in tact. The most notable modification was the stretching of the stock wheelbase to 103 inches. The nine inches of stretch is class legal, as long as the original frame and body are retained. DJR balanced the need to extend the wheelbase of the TJ with the strict Jeepspeed class rule of maintaining the stock appearance.




Dampening duties fall to the King 10" front and 14" (limited to 12" of travel) rear triple bypass shocks.
King hydraulic bump stops are mounted in the stock bump stop location by boring through the frame rail. The process took hours of cycling the suspension to assure that binding of the coils and bump stops are minimized. Again DJR worked with Jeepspeed to assure class conformity with Jeepspeed One. Locating the bump stops outside the coil buckets would have been far simpler, but retaining the stock location is important in adhering to Jeepspeed challenge rules.




The chassis is still very much a work in progress with DJR calling on long time friends and fellow Jeepspeed racers, Fat City Engineering, for a hand in finishing before the deadline. DJR will partner with Fat City Racing for pit support during the Parker 425. With DJR working with the Fat City race team at past races, their assistance is a seamless transition.

The roll cage is constructed of 1.75" 4130. At this time, we have yet to complete the rear tire carrier and front engine cage/bumper, but plan to complete them within the upcoming week.



For seats DJR went with long time friend, Premier Race Products or PRP. The all-new Drifter seat was the obvious choice to accommodate the various sizes of the DJR team members.



Next week we will complete all the wiring, fuel system, electronics, and roll cage. Look for more DJR racing info to follow.

If you are interested in joining the DJR race team, we are currently looking for dedicated enthusiasts who would like to assist DJR as pit crewmembers. To learn more about the Dust Junkies please visit our forum at http://rockbuggysupply.com/rbbs/index.php?board=13.0

If you are interested in marketing partnerships we also invite you to visit our forum or email
[email protected]

Dust Junkie racings current partners include,
Rock Buggy Supply, PRP Seats, CTM, King Shocks, Rubicon Express, Fat City, BF Goodrich Tires, Hesco, RVMD and Loose Nuts Enterprises. Visit them at: www.rockbuggysupply.com, www.prpseats.com, www.ctmracing.com, www.kingshocks.com, www.rubiconexpress.com, www.fatcityoffroadracing.com, www.bfgoodrichtires.com, www.hesco.us, www.loose-nuts-enterprises.com

To learn more about Jeepspeed challenge please visit http://www.jeepspeed.com/

For a complete list of 2007 Jeepspeed race dates please visit http://jeepspeed.net/smf/index.php?topic=220.0
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Old 01-08-2007, 11:06 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Great looking build, Im looking forward to seeing more jeeps in all dezert racing classes. It really is becoming cheaper to run the plentiful and stout jeeps rather than the VW that are disapearing and becoming collectables. Keep the pics coming.

Why not stack the tires up in the rear too bring more weight back? Seems logical. I know my YJ runs much better in the dezert with a heavy rear.
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Old 01-08-2007, 11:09 AM   #3 (permalink)
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....oh, one more thing, am I too late to get dibs on co-driving. See ya out at the races.
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Old 01-08-2007, 11:25 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Great looking build, Im looking forward to seeing more jeeps in all dezert racing classes. It really is becoming cheaper to run the plentiful and stout jeeps rather than the VW that are disapearing and becoming collectables. Keep the pics coming.

Why not stack the tires up in the rear too bring more weight back? Seems logical. I know my YJ runs much better in the dezert with a heavy rear.
First off thanks.

We didn't want too much overhang but wanted to keep them low as well. So we tried to find a happy balance.
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Old 01-08-2007, 01:18 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Any guesses as to what the finished weight will be? I'm just wondering if it's going to come in under 4000lbs so you don't have to make the jump to 2"x0.120" wall tubing. Also, is it going to be 2wd or are you going to run 4wd for all the races (I saw the info on the dana 44 front)?

The build looks awesome and I'm stoked to see someone building a TJ for Jeepspeed. I hope you start a trend! Good luck on your build.
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Old 01-08-2007, 01:27 PM   #6 (permalink)
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we are hoping for 3500 lbs..

So far the class is 4x4 only in the tj's.

The cheerokee can be 2x4
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Old 01-08-2007, 01:28 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Fingers crossed we will make weight. I figure the cherokees are making it so we should also. We will post up the weight when we get her done or at least a close number +- a few pounds.
I hope we start a trend also because The plan is for Jeepspeed to expand with a spec class just for Wrangler and its no fun to race with only a couple cars.
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Old 01-08-2007, 01:34 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Man that is sick, love the suspension layout looks real good and is very creative packaging !!
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Old 01-08-2007, 01:40 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Old 01-08-2007, 05:56 PM   #10 (permalink)
 
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I'm sure i can find this out if i looked, but do you have to run an off the shelf suspension setup or can you get by just keeping the stock configuration? I wouldn't see any advantage price or otherwise in doing this as long as the wb stays within limits. if that is the case I may be hopping on the bandwagon of this build as I have developed a love for desert racing, and don't want to part with my TJ. Thanks for the inspiration guys, build looks awesome.
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Old 01-08-2007, 06:13 PM   #11 (permalink)
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I'm sure i can find this out if i looked, but do you have to run an off the shelf suspension setup or can you get by just keeping the stock configuration? I wouldn't see any advantage price or otherwise in doing this as long as the wb stays within limits. if that is the case I may be hopping on the bandwagon of this build as I have developed a love for desert racing, and don't want to part with my TJ. Thanks for the inspiration guys, build looks awesome.

You can run stock94". Or up to 103.4 inch wb, Meaning bolt up a unlimited kit.

So they only let the Tj's put on a unlimited off the shelf kit. That is why the pic of the rear bucket is changed for the extra WB. But no custom suspensions. Or just run a unlimited tj.

This car is just a unlimited RUBICON EXPRESS KIT. bolt up and move rear buckets back. =103 WB
Rules do state that the rear frame has to stay if you streech it.



Hope to see you on the bandwagon..
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Old 01-09-2007, 06:18 AM   #12 (permalink)
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I'm sure i can find this out if i looked, but do you have to run an off the shelf suspension setup or can you get by just keeping the stock configuration?

The suspension system must be from an approved manufacture.
Check out www.jeepspeed.com for a rule book. The rules for JS2 are limited at this time so we are working off the JS 1 rule book and calling Jeepspeed for any items that do not cross over or that have not been covered. So far Jeepspeed has been very good to work with as far as the rules go and commen sense seems to prevail.

Glad you like the project and hope you will consider joining us racing Jeepspeed 2.
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Old 01-09-2007, 08:05 AM   #13 (permalink)
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So you don't have to stretch the frame and body to LJ dimensions?
"Short wheelbase models may be extended using identical chassis and body grade materials" is how it reads in the rules.
Looks good guys
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Old 01-09-2007, 08:16 AM   #14 (permalink)
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So you don't have to stretch the frame and body to LJ dimensions?
"Short wheelbase models may be extended using identical chassis and body grade materials" is how it reads in the rules.
Looks good guys
You are correct!!!

The body and frame can stay as is. So you can leave the WB at stock or stretch it like we did.
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Old 01-09-2007, 03:37 PM   #15 (permalink)
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more pics.
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Old 01-09-2007, 05:16 PM   #16 (permalink)
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more pics.
Should be some updates weds or thursday. We all have day jobs so its late nights and balls out weekends.
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Old 01-09-2007, 07:20 PM   #17 (permalink)
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I visited the car today to pick up the 9" center section, spool & gears then drop off some tube and flat metal. It is looking sick as hell. I am very encouraged with last weekend's progress and look forward to melting metal on it again this weekend.

I had to work last weekend, but Loose Nut Dan, Scott Parker, Jeff Knoll and Mark Underwood got a lot done. The Bumpers are cool as hell!
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Old 01-09-2007, 07:33 PM   #18 (permalink)
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The suspension system must be from an approved manufacture.
.
I read the rule book and for JS2 they actually list specific suspension companies. JS1 was just any company that had a kit avaliable to the public. Can a racer nominate or suggest a suspension company to JeepSpeed, or does a suspension company need to line JeepSpeeds pockets before they are "approved"?
:::cough:::Ivan Stuart and Protruck:::cough:::
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Old 01-09-2007, 07:48 PM   #19 (permalink)
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I read the rule book and for JS2 they actually list specific suspension companies. JS1 was just any company that had a kit avaliable to the public. Can a racer nominate or suggest a suspension company to JeepSpeed, or does a suspension company need to line JeepSpeeds pockets before they are "approved"?
:::cough:::Ivan Stuart and Protruck:::cough:::
The suspension rule is the same for 1 or js2. I asked about using a difffrent lift company than the list , all they said was to have the lift company give them a call.. 2 days latter i got a email they aproved the company...

I have no idea what it consistided of to Be aproved.
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Old 01-09-2007, 07:49 PM   #20 (permalink)
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I read the rule book and for JS2 they actually list specific suspension companies. JS1 was just any company that had a kit avaliable to the public. Can a racer nominate or suggest a suspension company to JeepSpeed, or does a suspension company need to line JeepSpeeds pockets before they are "approved"?
:::cough:::Ivan Stuart and Protruck:::cough:::
No, it's deffinatly not like Ivans. It is regulated so that any Joe Shmo can't build something custom, put a million dollar price tag on it and say "It's available to the public". They just want to see it, mabey put it on display at contingency, want to know how many have been sold ect. ect.
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Old 01-09-2007, 07:55 PM   #21 (permalink)
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I read the rule book and for JS2 they actually list specific suspension companies. JS1 was just any company that had a kit avaliable to the public. Can a racer nominate or suggest a suspension company to JeepSpeed, or does a suspension company need to line JeepSpeeds pockets before they are "approved"?
:::cough:::Ivan Stuart and Protruck:::cough:::
Protruk does come to mind with that rule, but its Ivan's game so play or don't play I guess?

I am not sure about the deal that is made with Jeepspeed but I do not believe its a lining of any pockets, Rock krawler suspension was not on the list before we started and it was a company that we where looking into for a kit. Not sure of the details but they are approved now as far as I know. In the end we went with Rubicon Express who was allready an aproved vendor. I would expect that JS1 will adapt that rule into the mix next year as suspension comes up in discussion about rules.

Again as in the past I would suggest you Email or call Jeepspeed, they are really easy to work with and have been fielding all kinds of questions from DJR this month and are happy to help.

Hope that helps some what. BTW Rock Krawler approval was quick so It must not be a hard thing to work out.
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Old 01-10-2007, 08:18 AM   #22 (permalink)
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We have the basic structure of the rear bumper/tire carrier in. Thanks to Fat City Ryan for his help in this design.




Here is the front face of the dash with the GPS mount.


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Old 01-10-2007, 08:55 AM   #23 (permalink)
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whats the width requirement for JS2, it looks alot wider than any JS1 that I have seen.
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Old 01-10-2007, 09:11 AM   #24 (permalink)
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whats the width requirement for JS2, it looks alot wider than any JS1 that I have seen.


.1.1.6 Maximum track width front and rear is 74.5 inches measured to the outside of the tires at the widest point

We are actually under by 2". The flairs are missing from the picture.
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Old 01-10-2007, 09:29 AM   #25 (permalink)
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The suspension rule is the same for 1 or js2. I asked about using a difffrent lift company than the list , all they said was to have the lift company give them a call.. 2 days latter i got a email they aproved the company...

I have no idea what it consistided of to Be aproved.
That is awesome!! I'm glad to hear they are taking that approach to the sport. I didn't mean to be a dick, but it just frustrates me when they only allow the vendors that line the "sponsor" the race series. I'm glad they are doing it to be fair and not for profit.
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