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Old 08-18-2016, 06:43 PM   #1 (permalink)
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01 XJ Classic on Super Duty axles

Well I'm going to start this build thread. I have had this jeep for a little over a year now. When I bought it it had an old school Sky Jacker Rock Ready kit. The typical HP30/8.8 combo with 4.56s and a Detroit. All rolling on 35 inch General Grabbers. It worked well but I knew I was living on borrowed time. The original plan was to buy a G2 Dana 44 and keep the Cherokee in the same form it was in. Then I found a descent deal on what was supposed to be a D60/Sterling out of an 02 F350. I talked to the guy and after the research we figured out it was a 50 and not a 60. So I scratched that idea but it got me thinking, searching and finding a ton of info. I ended up finding a D60 and a Sterling for 650 total. Not the deal of the century but I felt alright about. Especially since they were both basically complete.
This picture was from the day I got my 35s

A nice poser shot from the first time I wheeled it.

After going to IRO long arms

Basically were she is right now. I bought some link parts from ruff stuff. I believe I and going to run a 3 link in the front with the original spring for now. The rear I'm keeping leaf spring but I'm going to build a shock mount that can handle coil over or air shocks for future upgrades.
Gear plans are 5.38s
Tires plans are 40s
Eventually Hydro Assist

Also I'm selling the Bumper eventually, I won it in a raffle and hate it.


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Old 08-19-2016, 09:43 PM   #2 (permalink)
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01 XJ Classic on Super Duty axles


My junkyard Dana 60

My Craigslist Sterling (the finger came free)

I'm doing the spring flip for now. Mostly just get a longer wheelbase. I know it's not the best way but it will work for now. Tomorrow I'm going to start rear quarter mods.


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Old 08-20-2016, 10:02 AM   #3 (permalink)
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What are you doing for the front? I did a coil mount on the old spring perches. It sucked trying to fit the link mounts because of the v8.
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Old 08-20-2016, 10:07 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Sounds like a good build, any engine upgrades coming.
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Old 08-20-2016, 10:09 AM   #5 (permalink)
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What are you doing for the front? I did a coil mount on the old spring perches. It sucked trying to fit the link mounts because of the v8.


That's what I plan on doing. It amazes me that the spring width of an xj is almost identical to a F350.


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Old 08-20-2016, 10:13 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Sounds like a good build, any engine upgrades coming.


I'm keeping it stock as possible for now. I have a Mustang also and I plan on doing an LS swap on it when the Jeep is going again. When it's done I planing an LS in this also.


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Old 08-20-2016, 10:13 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Hey I was totally fine with it. I didn't even cut off the other sides spring perch and just welded on my ruffstuff pad over it

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Old 08-20-2016, 01:25 PM   #8 (permalink)
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I'm sitting here in the garage trying to decide about what to do with the fuel tank. I need the cargo room so I don't want a fuel cell. But I don't know if I want to cut the floor up to move the tank up. Here is where I am currently.


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Old 08-21-2016, 01:35 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Move the tank up so its flush with the bottom of the unibody rails and build a box over it so you can throw your gear in there and still be isolated from the tank.

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Old 08-21-2016, 04:41 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Things just got real at the Craig house!


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Old 08-21-2016, 05:55 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Where are you located?
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Old 08-21-2016, 05:56 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Where are you located?


Abilene Texas


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Old 08-22-2016, 08:07 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Abilene Texas


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balls, I was going to try and buy your axles and lift kit for my other cherokee/mall crawler.
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Old 08-25-2016, 09:18 PM   #14 (permalink)
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I have had this jeep for a little over a year now....When I bought it it had an old school Sky Jacker Rock Ready kit. The typical HP30/8.8 combo with 4.56s and a Detroit. All rolling on 35 inch General Grabbers. It worked well but I knew I was living on borrowed time.
Borrowed time? Do you bounce off of rocks?

35s and stock axles are fine. Shit. Bleepin jeep is (planning on)running stock XJ/TJ dana 44s with 39.5s

I am a fan of big axle swaps but beat on the thing a little before you give it the royal treatment
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Old 08-26-2016, 12:15 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Borrowed time? Do you bounce off of rocks?



35s and stock axles are fine. Shit. Bleepin jeep is (planning on)running stock XJ/TJ dana 44s with 39.5s



I am a fan of big axle swaps but beat on the thing a little before you give it the royal treatment


While I agree, a Dana 30 isn't junk I wanted a locker, it didn't have a truss yet so that's more money. So do I put $600ish into a Dana 30 or should I take the $600 and buy a set of tough axles with that money and sell my old stuff for $800 that is still in good shape? So far with my buying and selling of stuff I have about $100 into the entire axle swap. I will probably only have to spend out of pocket money on tires. I like the bleepingjeep build. I've been following him for years but I could not justify spending that much money on a Dana 44. He has almost as much money in his front axle as I will have in my entire build. Take all that and add in I have to drive 3ish hours to every wheeling spot near me. Do I make my XJ tough enough to make it home or do I chance it? Sure I could buy a trailer but that thousands of more dollars that I will have to spend. I did beat on my jeep several times. Once at Gulches in South Carolina I got into a situation were I had to go forward because there was a line behind me. But going forward meant bouncing it off the limiter trying to get over an off camber tree root/rock combo while it was raining on a pretty steep hill. A locker would have helped a ton. It was just my 3yo daughter and I. It would have sucked if I had blown an axle joint. Yes I can change a Dana 30 axle joint in about 30 minutes but do I want to?


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Old 08-26-2016, 01:34 AM   #16 (permalink)
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This is the reason I overbuild everything. I'm in the middle of doing my swap right now. Rear is mostly done. Getting Explorer leaf packs to work was interesting.
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Old 08-26-2016, 05:17 AM   #17 (permalink)
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Do I make my XJ tough enough to make it home or do I chance it? Sure I could buy a trailer but that thousands of more dollars that I will have to spend. I did beat on my jeep several times. Once at Gulches in South Carolina I got into a situation were I had to go forward because there was a line behind me. But going forward meant bouncing it off the limiter trying to get over an off camber tree root/rock combo while it was raining on a pretty steep hill. A locker would have helped a ton. It was just my 3yo daughter and I. It would have sucked if I had blown an axle joint. Yes I can change a Dana 30 axle joint in about 30 minutes but do I want to?
30 minutes of broken axle change sounds easier than a few months axle swap Lol.

Sounds like you got it all figured out chief
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Old 08-26-2016, 05:31 AM   #18 (permalink)
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30 minutes of broken axle change sounds easier than a few months axle swap Lol.



Sounds like you got it all figured out chief


While I appreciate your comments I have wanted to do this for a while. I can't justify blowing a thousand dollars on a Dana 30 when I could blow that on a Dana 60. I plan on running 40s. The end item of my jeep will be an LS powered full body xj buggy. Between my wife and I we have 3 cars so the Jeep being in the garage for a few months isn't a huge deal.This is my daily


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Old 08-27-2016, 11:18 AM   #19 (permalink)
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01 XJ Classic on Super Duty axles

Today's project is making the rear wheel wells match the wheelbase.
I started out just measuring things out and I determined that I wanted to add 8 inches to the wheel wells.
First thing I did was drill out a bunch of the spot welds connecting the inner to the outer.
Then I cut the outer out and removed 8 inches from the back side.
Then I cut the inside well out. I removed most the metal from the spot welds on the "frame" to floor out making sure not to effect the structure of the rear.
I will probably leave it in this strange for a while. At least till I get the rear suspension figured out.


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Old 08-27-2016, 11:48 AM   #20 (permalink)
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On the fuel tank dilemma, I actually considered ditching the stock tank and going to a boat style dual tank (or fuel cell, if you want) setup across the floor where the back seat normally is, since I'm not running a back seat. I figured that way I still would have a nice flat area in the back, but could still move the axle back and have decent fuel capacity. It obviously would have to be custom made, hence calling it a boat tank, because I'd just go to a boat shop and get them to do it out of aluminum.

In the end I just didn't move the axle that much, and just wiggled the tank back a bit. I took the easy way out.
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Old 08-27-2016, 11:52 AM   #21 (permalink)
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This will still be a family wheeler and driver so I'm trying to keep fuel out of the inside and keep as much cargo area as possible.


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Old 08-27-2016, 01:22 PM   #22 (permalink)
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This will still be a family wheeler and driver so I'm trying to keep fuel out of the inside and keep as much cargo area as possible.


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You might still be able to fit a TJ tank behind the axle, but it will be using all the available room, and you will probably have to use a heatgun to form the front of it to fit the shape of the axle.

Or build a funky shaped tank for behind the axle if the TJ one won't fit, but it will either hang down or not be very large at all.

Or cut the floor out where the seat is, put the seat back in, measure carboard up how you can redo the floor for maximum space under the rig, fabricate tank for that area? Again, going to be odd shaped/dual tank because of the driveshaft clearance issues.

Curious to see what you do either way, it's a pain on these things if you want to preserve interior space.
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Old 08-27-2016, 03:12 PM   #23 (permalink)
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The drivers side was more work.


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Old 08-28-2016, 04:26 PM   #24 (permalink)
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01 XJ Classic on Super Duty axles

Well I've got the floor all cut out for the fuel tank relocation. I'm going to try and just shorten and reuse the original straps. I've got one done and I think it will work alright.




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Old 09-06-2016, 06:53 AM   #25 (permalink)
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I took this weekend off and went to Ft Worth. I did work on my old shitty trailer I bought a couple months ago.
Someone tried to fix the rust caused by dirt sitting in the pocket between the angle iron and frame.
This is my first real welding with my new welder. I'm still a grinder. But I'll get better to were maybe I can call myself a welder.


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