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Discussion Starter #421
So today I finished cleaning out the garage.
When I was done with that I went ahead and measured up my old cage and estimated out the amount of tube I will need and submitted a quote request to IMS thru their website for:
5 sticks of 1.75” .120 DOM
3 sticks of 1.25” .120 DOM
1 stick of 1.25” .156 DOM (for my rock slider steps/rub rails)
2 sticks of 1” .120 DOM
Got the quote back within 20 minutes and placed the order. Tube will be delivered to my door on Monday. I should also hopefully be receiving my order from Trick Tools with my notcher, positioning tools and a few other goodies Monday or Tuesday.

So that all done I installed the last rear wheel spacer on the Jeep. Then I sat down to do some rough sketches of my cage design ideas (and I do mean rough, I’m no artist)



Then I got the bender rolled into the shop and set up and I started playing around with it a little bit with some scrap tube I had floating around. Haven’t really played with it too much yet. Think I’m gonna do the rub rails first to get a feel for it before I start bending tube for the cage.



And lastly, FedEx showed up with the 4 door JKU cover I ordered from Quadratec. Looks like it will be a perfect fit once the cage is done.



So now I’m thinking I need to grab a 4 door JK windshield header piece and see what would be involved in fitting it to the YJ so I can use a JKU bikini top. Don’t suppose anyone here has tried to put a Jk top on their YJ before?
 

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A guy on Colorado4x4 just stretched his YJ to use an LJ top. He had to mod the windshield frame a little bit. I imagine it would require more mods as I believe the JKs are wider then the YJ.

Looking at your cage. I recommend running one tube that is the A pillar and C pillar in one. Gives a nice smooth top that doesn't catch on anything. The B pillar hoop creates a nice catch. I have been stuck on this before with my old CJ. After getting caught a few times. I made sure I changed it on my current ride.
 

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Discussion Starter #423
So this morning I woke up to a voicemail from the rep at IMS saying that one of the sizes I ordered is out of stock and would be delivered tomorrow. Naturally I assumed that meant the entire order would come tomorrow instead of today as scheduled.

Nope. IMS truck showed up with most of my DOM order this morning.



I didn’t have a chance to check thru it, but I think my 1.25” .120 wall is what was missing that will arrive tomorrow. Almost every stick is a 24’ and they barely fit in my garage.



My buddy is due to swing by tonight to return my 1” die set I loaned him a while back. My downside is I just checked the tracking on my Trick Tools order and that won’t arrive until Wednesday. That contains my tube notcher, hole saw kit, and tube positioners so I’m not sure how much I’m gonna be able to get done tomorrow without that stuff. Will probably start by making my template bends to get a feel for the bender and get it dialed in. Maybe start on the main B pillar hoop.
 

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Discussion Starter #424
So I started off today by getting to know my bender. I went ahead and found some scrap tube in all 3 sizes I will be working with and did a template bend in each size at 45* and 90*. First time bending tube so I wanted to play around a bit before I started in on the steel pile.



Then I went ahead and took some measurements and cut a chunk of 1.75” .120 DOM and measured out and marked for my B pillar bar.



It came out a little bit off plane. I tried to get it leveled out for the second bend but I guess I was off just a little bit, but it’s close enough I think I can tweak it when I go to weld it to the foot plates.

First test fit was too tall and I decided I didn’t like it straight up and down. So I cut it down by 4”s and added a 15* cut to the feet to rake it back a bit to kind of match up with the tilt of the windshield a little bit. Yes it is still maybe 2”s higher than the top of the windshield frame. I figured doing it this way would give me some extra head room and force the bikini top to a bit of a peak so rain water will sheet off instead of pooling. Also worth noting the seat is sitting on the floor right now. It will be higher when I make the seat mounts. Just had it in to figure out where the B pillar needed to sit.





Figured out the placement for the Motobilt foot plates and drilled the holes to bolt them down. There will be another plate below for the frame tie ins.



Unfortunately that is as far as I got today. Haven’t tacked it to the plates yet. My tube notcher isn’t arriving until Tomorrow and I really need that to do much of anything else.
 

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Discussion Starter #425
More roll cage fun today!

First thing I did today was a bit of a mod to my tube bender. The buddy I bought it from gave me a sheet he had written down with recorded lengths of ram throw for a given bend degree on a given size of tube. This means no need to use the stupid degree wheel. So I tacked a scrap piece of metal to one end of the ram Clevis and zip tied a tape measure to the ram body. Makes it super easy to hit my bends in one shot and completely repeatable.





Then I spent a little time dialing in and getting to know my new tube notcher.



That all taken care of I started by cutting my bottom B pillar cross bar, notching it up and tacking it in as well as tacking the B pillar to the base plates.





Then I grabbed some masking tape and did a quick mock up of what I have in mind for my B pillar and harness bars. I know an X is strongest, but I want to leave a good opening so the kids can get into the back seat between the front seats. Hence the V instead of an X. The short bars that go from the V to the B side bars will be for the front seat harnesses. They will not be angled when I actually cut them like they are on the tape. The bottom of the V will be hitting that bottom B pillar cross bar.

 

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Discussion Starter #426
Up next was the B to C bars. I have been losing sleep trying to decide how I was going to do these. Sure I could have just done a 90 and been simple, but of course I had to be fancy with it. So I decided on a 2 part bend down to the C plates. I went 25* on the first bend and 65* on the second for a total of 90*. I cut the first one a good 9”s too long but that was an easy fix. Second one came out perfect because I took notes of every step I did on the first one.









Next I went to bend up the mini half halo I wanted for the back section. This runs from the first bend on the spreaders out over the rear deck. Again I wasted a little tube here as the first one I bent came up about 8”s too short. All well. Hopefully I can use the tube somewhere else. Second one came out just about perfect.



With the mini halo tacked in I broke out more tape for more bar addition mock ups.











And that was as far as I made it before the heat got to me.

Good news is a 4 door JKU cover really is a perfect fit. Hoping I get as fortunate when I go to try to fit the safari bikini top I ordered.

 

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Discussion Starter #428
Got back on the roll cage today.

First order of business was to cut and notch the B pillar to windshield spreader bars. I’m using Motobilt windshield brackets at the windshield for these.

Once those were cut and tacked in it was time to tackle my next bending challenge. The A pillar down bars which require two bends on the same plane but in opposite directions which required a tube rotation. I started by doing a rough sketch of what the bar should look like, figuring out the degrees of the two bends, and taking measurements of the center of bend points. This is the method I have been using for all my bends so far.



With that done I carefully measured and bent the first bar. Pretty much nailed it perfectly.





Slight error that may bite me later. I realized too late I put the front foot plates a little too far in. Hoping I can just notch the fender support a touch to clear it for cage removal.



With the front bars in I decided to do a quick check of the 4 door JKU bikini top I ordered. To my pleasant surprise the JK windshield header is perfect. Contour matches the YJ windshield frame perfectly and all it should take to mount is welding a pair of tabs to the windshield spreader bar on the cage. U fortunately, the top itself is too short!! It only goes back to where the mini rear halo starts! So either I need to see if they make a longer one or I’m gonna have to get a top custom made.



Well after that I decided I should continue working front to back. So I moved on to the dash bar.



Followed by the top windshield cross bar. I still have to do the inverted V bars for the windshield between the two.



Then I knocked out the lower door bars that I will be somehow working my seat mounts off of.



Then finally I did the overhead front X bars.



Then I decided to get a little fancy and do a bit of a call back to the A to Z cage kit and I added a little half hoop between the front bars. My plan is to plate the top of this little section and mount a dome light up in the space between.



Still have a fair bit to do on this yet. Down side is I only have 1 full stick of 1.75” left that I haven’t cut into yet. Not sure I have enough for what I still plan to add in that size. May need to get another stick. I want to finish all the 1.75” stuff first then I will switch over to 1.25” for the seat mounts and what not.
 
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