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Discussion Starter #1
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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Discussion Starter #2 (Edited)

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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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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Discussion Starter #5
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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Discussion Starter #6
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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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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Discussion Starter #8
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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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? :shaking: 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 :D
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Borrowed time? :shaking: 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 :D


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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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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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 :flipoff2: Lol.

Sounds like you got it all figured out chief :homer:
 

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Discussion Starter #18
30 minutes of broken axle change sounds easier than a few months axle swap :flipoff2: Lol.



Sounds like you got it all figured out chief :homer:


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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Discussion Starter #19 (Edited)
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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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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