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Discussion Starter #461
Nothing really picture worthy today. Spent some time fine tuning a few things today.

First I blew apart the fittings at the transmission cooler that were leaking to see what was going on. Both of the O rings on the AN adapters were crushed and it was leaking at the threads. Replaced the O rings and wrapped some Teflon tape and put it all back together.

Then I topped up the trans. Took 3 quarts!!! No way I lost that much from the leak. Only thing I can think of is the fluid didn’t pump into the cooler the first time I drove it but did this time. Would make sense too because the line leak wasn’t visible then either.

I also removed and reseated the steering wheel so it is actually the right side up with the wheels straight.

Last thing I did was pull the 5 year old optima Yellow top out and drop in a brand new one. The old one was still holding charge fine but for piece of mind I went ahead and replaced it.

And with that I am officially out of stuff to do until the new top (which I officially ordered and paid for today), the polycarbonate windshield, and my shocks come in.
 

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Discussion Starter #462
It a very productive day today.

I started by pulling one of the rear tires off and trying to put on one of the free dually wheels I picked up to get it smogged. Turns out they won’t work. The center bore is way too small to fit over the hubs on the 70. Also looks like the lug holes are too small.

Luckily I found a set of 4 rollers on American Racing wheels a local guy is selling for $200. Going to go snag them shortly.

Past that I figured out my brake locking issue. Turns out when I installed the master cylinder I extended the push rod too far. Screwed it all the way in and now it’s perfect. Also found the fluid leaks and took care of those.

After that, my new Patriot Edition 60” High Lift jack showed up. So I got the pins lubed up and installed it on the mounts.





And while I was outside working my Quadratec order showed up containing the goodies I spent my YJ of the month gift card on. A nice shiny red Factor 55 Ultra Hook with rope guard. I normally wouldn’t have bought this since I’ve always felt they want a bit too much money for them. But now that I’ve seen it and felt it, it actually is worth the price. Nice beefy, well designed piece of equipment.

 

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Discussion Starter #463
Well since the dually wheels didn’t work out I hit up Letgo and found a local guy selling a set of 4 33”ish bald ass all terrains on a set of 8 lug American Racing wheels for $150. I immediately ran over and snagged them.

So today I pulled the 40s off for the bald 33s and took her down the hill to get it smogged. Looks like a damn roller skate on these tiny little tires.







Oddly I found the steering was SUPER touchy on the smaller tires. The slightest bump to the steering wheel and it moved. I must’ve looked a little intoxicated on my way down the street. I didn’t find this to be an issue at all on the 40s. And it was only at road speed.

Anyway we got it on the dyno and ran it and I am glad to say it passed with flying colors. Drove it back home and swapped the 40s back on and stashed the rollers in my back storage area for next time.
 

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Discussion Starter #464
I decided not to put the cover back on because I realized I hadn’t taken any pics of my rock and zombie lights at night yet. So just for fun I took a couple of shots of my undercarriage lighting.

Actual white rock lights.



And the red led lighting.



This one I turned the parking lights on too.

 

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Discussion Starter #465
Well since I am officially out of stuff to do on the Jeep u til the last few parts come in, today I turned my attention to a few little mods for my trailer.

First project was relocating the spare tire from the side of the deck up to the side of the tongue. Main reason I did this is because I believe it would be in the way loading and unloading the Jeep now with how wide it is. Also because I mangled the old mount pretty good last time out and it was toast. Also got a nice new patriotic cover for it.

The other thing I did was mount a 25 watt so,air panel and charge controller to the top of my firewood/ trash storage bin in the deck. This will be the battery maintainer for the Jeep as it usually lives parked on the trailer. This way I don’t have to run a long battery tender extension cord from the garage down to the street. Used a standard battery tender cable to hook the charge controller to the Jeep battery though so I don’t have to change anything on the Jeep itself. I also cleaned out and organized my tongue box.





I also got a response from Tyler at Accutune today regarding when I can expect to see my shocks and I am not happy with the answer. Fox is so far behind in production because of COVID it’s not even funny. Apparently they are expecting to see 2 of the 4 shocks at the beginning of November and the other 2 sometime in December!!! I’m not very happy about this but there’s not much I can do. First trip is supposed to be the weekend of October 23rd. So I think I’m just going to get a set of cheap Skyjacker hydro shocks to run for the first two trips of the season so I can go wheel the damn thing.
 

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Discussion Starter #466
Well this is just bizarre. As I posted yesterday Accutune said I won’t be seeing my shocks for a while. So last night I hit Summit Racing and ordered a set of 4. Heap Skyjacker Hydro shocks so I can wheel this thing the first two trips until they were due to arrive.

Today as I went to go pick up my daughter from school I found a box from Accutune sitting in my courtyard. I opened it to find the 2 front shocks. Confused but pleased to say the least. Luckily Summit Racing is stupid easy with returns so I will have no trouble returning 2 of the Skyjackers. I am still curious how Tyler didn’t know the first two had shipped out, but as I understand it a few of their guys are still working from home.

 

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Discussion Starter #467
Well I went out for a bit this morning before it got too hot to get the front shocks installed. Started by burning in the new lower shock tabs I made to the axle as well as welding the Ruffstuff reservoir brackets to the side of my Motobilt front shock towers. It was about then that I realized I didn’t have anything to actually hold the reservoirs to the brackets with. So I ordered some stainless steel hose clamps from Amazon that will be here tomorrow. For now I just zip tied the cans to the brackets.

In a couple of these pictures you will see the original lower shock mounts sitting on top of the axle tube. After I took the pics I decided to go back and cut them off as it looked like the bottom of the shock can could potentially hit them on compression.









And the passenger side



Now I just need the rear shocks, the windshield, and the top.
 

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Discussion Starter #468
Small update today. I installed a new AC compressor for my OBA as my old one was screeching like a banshee so I figured it was about done.

After that I turned my attention to trail navigation. I couldn’t bring myself to buy the Garmin Overlander GPS unit. But I happen to have my old iPhone 6 still floating around. So I decided to use that. I downloaded a couple of Offroad navigation apps to it and worked up a mount for it.

A while back I picked up some aluminum roll cage clamps. Figured I would find a use for them. I had several Ram mount bases and arms floating around that I have acquired over the years. So I marked a pair of Ram mount base holes on the arm of the cage clamp and drilled and tapped them to 10-24. Used some 10-24 SS button head screws and attached the ram base to it. Bolted the assembly to the cage at the center of the dash. I will have the actual phone mount for this tomorrow.



 

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Discussion Starter #469
So today I finished up my low buck GPS unit. Ram X Mount came in as well as my armored lightning cable.

I am using my old iPhone 6 for this. Found it floating around in a drawer. I loaded it with Gaia GPS, a couple of other free Offroad GPS apps to try, the Dakota Digital app for tweaking my gauge cluster, the Jeep Badge of Honor app, and I even found a free inclinometer app to throw on it.







 

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Discussion Starter #470
Well my polycarbonate windshield finally showed up yesterday. So today I tackled my first windshield install. Didn’t quite go as smoothly or as well as I thought it would but I got it installed. Currently waiting for the urethane to cure so I can go back out with a razor blade and clean it up because it’s kind of a big mess at the moment. Also, no pictures installed until I get it cleaned up.



I will say the urethane was a bitch to work with. Super hard to get out of the caulk gun. I found heating the tube with a heat gun for a little bit helped it squeeze out better. That stuff got everywhere though.

Once the windshield was in I switched gears to install a LED light bar in the lower grille of my RV in preparation for the first trip of the season in 2 weeks as we will likely arrive in the desert after dark.



Finally I also got an email from Nauti Shades today letting me know that my top is just about finished and will ship express to me tomorrow. In addition, I am apparently getting a second back up top and a third unfinished wall hanger top free of charge. Apparently Nauti Shades just upgraded to a new printing machine at their facility and my top was the first one they ran on it. Because it was new they were testing the machines capabilities. The first 2 were ran at two different levels of high quality and the third was run on the speed setting which isn’t as high of an image quality (that is the unfinished one I am getting) pretty damn cool in my book.
 

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Discussion Starter #471
As promised here is a finished shot of the installed windshield after I cleaned up the mess of urethane.



I also got an email from the guys at Nauti Shades today to let me know my top(s) are on their way to me. I also sent Tyler at Accutune an email to see if there is any hope my rear shocks will make it before the end of next week and my first trip to the desert.
 

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Discussion Starter #472
Well my custom tops from #nautishades arrived today! Despite being 92* out I couldn’t wait to slap the top on. As I mentioned previously they actually sent me 2 finished tops because they got a new printer and they were seeing what it could do while printing my top. The top fits pretty much perfectly. The ridge in the center is from the overhead fans beneath it. I am thrilled with the look and overall quality of these tops. I highly recommend giving them a shout if you want or need a custom top made for your rig.









 

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Discussion Starter #473
Well, last wrenching day before the maiden voyage this coming weekend. Took care of a few final things.

Installed my new fancy 6 foot long LED buggy whip. This one is RGb with multiple colors, patterns, and flash modes.



Then since I haven’t heard anything from Tyler at Accutune I think it is sadly safe to assume I will not be seeing my rear Fox Remote reservoir shocks before the weekend. So I went ahead and slapped on a pair of $40 Skyjacker Hydro shocks on the rear so I can still go wheel the thing. I’ll swap them out when my Fox shocks finally arrive. Hopefully before the Veterans Day weekend run.





That said this beast is finally “finished” and ready to hit the trails. I am sure I will find something this weekend that needs to be tweaked or adjusted, but for all intents and purposes, the build is pretty much finally finished. So stay tuned and I will have a first wheel report and lots of pictures to share after this weekend.
 
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