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I apologize, it was justdhutch who I commented on this thread. He did it but didn’t have many pics.

GM had the same idea with the Chevy Silverado and the H3 with all that lowhanging crap so we should be able to snag some ideas off each other
Yup that's him, it's post 162 in his thread. No need for apologies, it's just cool seeing my name being mentioned in some threads. :grinpimp:

Definitely looking to see how yours turns out. Take lots of pics.
 

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Discussion Starter #322 (Edited)
I started yesterday and forgot to post pics last night.





about 3in of gain.

Scary cutting it back!



I free cut it but I will straighten it out...It's a pain in the ass. its Quadruple walled in some sections. the pic shows the first piece of sheetmetal bent back. for strength I plan to use 16 guage and bring all 4 sheets back together. then rest the slider 3in higher.
 

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Discussion Starter #323
bump for another update. The existing sliders needed work, they hung low, they were prone to bending and I couldn't fully weld them allowing moisture to get in between the frame and slider which would cause rust issues long term. I wanted to do something to get me more clearance and hopefully to stop bending them. So I took the leap to start cutting, I was kind of clueless since I haven't seen another H3 cut out the entire pinch seam so I took my time.


Down by the pinch seam it was triple or quad walled depending on the location which is truly amazing! Once I cut it all out I was left with a big mess and the potential for distortion of the metal since now its all independent of each other compared to before.



So I took 18 gauge sheetmetal and connected the body back together.



This pic is before it was finished but I spot welded all along the body from each wall to create a flat smooth bottom below the body. Then I used that expandable foam stuff to fill the holes and sound deaden along with sealant to seal the gap between the bottom and new sheetmetal to prevent water from intruding. You could feel the additional rigidity in the body after adding that sheetmetal. Before I did I was concerned about distortion. I shortly contemplated making the body and slider one, its popular in the XJ world, but I wanted to keep them isolated and not risk the cracking that could occur from the slider taking hits and forwarding that abuse to the body.

 

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Discussion Starter #324
Used 2x4 .25 wall rectangular tubing



I used a total of 7 legs. 4 are 1.5x3 .25 wall that then has triangulation with additional .25wall pieces (shown later) then 3 legs are 1.75 .120 wall DOM that tie the B pillar and A pillar of the cage to the frame.





Here's a pic of the triangulation



Ideally I would have liked more triangulation and to have it coming from the top but that would have netted less clearance gains, I felt it wasn't worth it and figured this was worth a shot.



Here's the slider almost done, just missing the 1.75in tube for the a pillar at this point.



Welded to the frame...with 4x4 3/16 plates to help spread the load...

I've never seen so much visible frame rail before cutting the pinch seam up 3in!



The B pillar isn't done yet on the slider mount. I still need to box it and run angle pieces to help transition the rocks going from flat slider to the stub that's out holding the B pillar. You can also see the B pillar is removable. Not ideal for strength but the end goal is to have an internal B pillar. We purposefully had the B pillar sucked as tight as possible to the body and because of that the back door opens about 75%. Fine for the trails but when loading things from the store it can be a pain so being able to take it off for street use is nice and eventually it will get an internal B for additional cage strength.



For reference these are the old sliders...They sat MUCH lower then before, the plastic crap covered up a lot of the low hanging pinch seam before.



Now the slider sits much higher...



So now its time to test it and see if my plan works and its stronger or if its a POS and fails...After the test drive on the road, not additional road noise or body slapping the slider was noticed which is great. Another thing to mention is that the A pillar was brought down lower so visibility is better then it ever has been with the cage. It was ok before but now its almost unnoticeable in terms of lost visibility compared to stock.

These were all improvements I wanted to make but didn't have time since it was a mad dash to get ready for UA 2017, then after that I kept wheeling and ended up moving so I am glad to finally get around to the improvements.
 

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Awesome man! That turned out really great, can't wait to see how it performs on the trails. I imagine cutting the old sliders off was the worst part of the whole ordeal...

Now you just need some boat side skins to protect those factory body mounts and keep from getting hung up on things.
 

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Also congratulations on being the returning reader this year! I had a hunch. I had a big hunch haha. It would have been cool to wheel with ya on this year's UA, but I'll take making the DD this year and keep applying.
 

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Congrats on going on the UA2018.
Living the dream, man :D
Hope you have tons of fun - and keep the Hummer in one piece.
Take care!
 

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Discussion Starter #329
Also congratulations on being the returning reader this year! I had a hunch. I had a big hunch haha. It would have been cool to wheel with ya on this year's UA, but I'll take making the DD this year and keep applying.
Congrats on going on the UA2018.
Living the dream, man :D
Hope you have tons of fun - and keep the Hummer in one piece.
Take care!
Congrats on returning reader for UA!

Stoked to see the H3 back.
Thanks guys! I will start copying and pasting the UA story from the hummer forum. It is dumbed down for them on tech so don't take it personally. :D
 

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Discussion Starter #330 (Edited)
PRECURSOR TO UA 2018

So here's an update! 2018 has been super busy!! With that said UA 2018 was on my mind since UA 2017 ended and I was honored enough to get to go back. With that said when I got the call I was told we were going to Maine. Damn! Alaska is closer then that! I pride myself in driving my H3 to and from the trail no matter the distance. With that said, a wedding I was going to attend was in mexico the day after UA. I was supposed to fly out Saturday out of CA with my fiance but I changed my flight to Sunday to fly out of Pennsylvania at 5am to get there hours before the wedding.



So that means...what do I do with the H3? My co driver didn't wanna drive 3000 miles home by himself with a rig we beat on all week without me incase of an issue, totally understandable and I would feel the same. I also would have loved to take the time to drive the hummer across the country but I only have so much vacation. My co driver picked up an ex state truck, 2000 GMC C3500 2WD tow pig, 454, 4l80e, 14 bolt a couple months before. What could go wrong towing the heaviest load that truck will probably ever see all the way across the country as its towing break in....according to the internet, EVERYTHING! "Gasser's can't tow!" We want real life facts...so we went ahead and did it.



So with that said it's time to get a trailer, it's always been a dream to drive the hummer across the US and one day it will happen, just not this time. We contemplated buying, renting, borrowing, etc. We needed a bumper pull and tried to borrow a few trailers but all of them weren't up to the capacity (dual axle 5 lug, 7500 gross so about 5k capacity) we thought about renting...that cost about a grand for 3 weeks of renting and if we have issues with it who knows how thats handled. Buying was out of the question, a used 8 lug dual axle trailer was 5k or more in CA. With a few weeks to go till UA, I stumbled across a very very rough bare trailer but it had solid bones. Dual 8 lug axles, a strong frame and the price was 1k. We could build that trailer to what the 5k ones are at in terms of quality for less than that! When were done I can sell it, keep it, etc. the options are endless.



 

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Discussion Starter #331
I was busy prepping the hummer, working, moving etc. and my co driver was in Japan. Luckily his dad stepped in and took over for trailer prep aka rebuild the whole damn thing! In return for using the trailer whenever he wants so I guess I will be keeping it now lol.

The owner of the trailer had multiple ones, this one he built and used it for 15-20 years towing all over the place then let it sit.









New tires, paint, deck, varnished the wood, got rid of the farm implement hitch and put on a pintle setup, breakaway switch, new side markers, all new wiring, brake lights, etc.





Now we need fenders, go over the wheel bearings, ramps and brakes.
 

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Discussion Starter #332
While all that is happening 350 miles south of me, hummer prep is happening when I had the time. Go over wheel bearings, check axles and make sure they are ready to rock, install rugged headsets/intercom, change fluids, get spares together...I brought a spare 3rd member for the rear axle, spare shafts front and rear, spare driveshafts f/r and a spare t case. Most of this stuff stayed in the truck during the trip but atleast it was less then 1000 miles away vs. 3000 miles away.

Sliders were the biggest project. Tired of bending them it was time to go pure beef, I wish I could have made them lighter and with the bracing maybe I could have but I didnt want to risk it because after 4 times of doing sliders I wanted to be done. I wanted clearance and triangulation so out comes the sawzall.

(I have pics/details of this a couple posts back)
 

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Discussion Starter #333
I didnt get a chance to straighten the steering wheel after I got made a new tie rod...last one got bent, but I am on the road! 350 miles down south to meet with the truck, trailer and co driver! I never thought I could cruise 75-80 with 40s, the SAS, V8 swap and no dash lights on!



It was hot as hell! 107 degrees driving south, I would say if I had the full doors on luxury would be the word to describe the drive...luxurious wasn't the word in that heat!



The rugged radios intercom system make it much better! Noise cancelling, bluetooth, you can talk to your co driver easily with half doors, talk to others on the radio and you can play music.

When talking on the phone no one knew or heard that I was driving 70 down the road with half doors on.
 

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Discussion Starter #334
I went over the bearings, for being old they were in good shape but I repacked them, I also wired in the trailer brakes while my buddy's dad slaved away at wiring the rest of it. I found out the trailer brakes were no good! The electronic piece on them went bad, luckily a local trailer shop had them. We did all the little odds and ends with wiring, brakes, etc.

The hummer on the trailer before we had to leave. (ignore the mismatched rim, that was the spare and we got the other matching rim mounted before we left)



The next day was father's day, I didn't hurry over there so my buddy could spend time with his dad and I could do the same. When I showed up he had his Grandpa, his dad and himself working away. I felt bad...but his dad was extending wires since they were a bit short and my buddy and his Grandpa were building drive over fenders.

The next day we left, the story on working on the trailer seems so miniscule but in all honestly it was kind of a blur. We were racing around trying to get things done with very little time.

So we left the next morning, what could go wrong!?! The trailer is completely untested, the trailer brakes were marginal at best (they had plenty of life left but seemed to be glazed over during inspection from grease or some crap) and we have a tow rig that has never towed before and according to the internet a 454 gasser will blow up and never make it all while getting 2mpg!



LET'S HIT THE ROAD!
 

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Discussion Starter #335
So we hit the road! Things started out just great. We gassed up the last time in CA while getting absolutely destroyed at $4+ a gallon. My buddy setup a poll on MPG, and weight. First tank of gas 8.2 MPG! That was my guess!!! I was stoked because everyone else was guessing much lower than that and my wallet didn't want to see it lower then 8.2!

When we hit NV we weighed everything. Total weight was 16,840 lbs truck/trailer/hummer/all out gear/full tank of gas and us in it.

After hitting vegas the trans was shifting weird. It wouldn't go in to OD and sometimes wouldn't shift out of a gear. Our diagnosis and gut feeling was 100% electrical since it never slipped. As roadkill fans we felt it was necessary to drop the pan in a parking lot, change the fluid, and throw every sensor we could at it. Both shift solenoids and an input speed sensor.



We got back to driving and the trans seemed happy again. We made it through the corner of AZ and into Utah. We stopped somewhere along the 70 late at night, found a dirt road and went to bed.



The next morning we packed up and hit the road...we noticed the trailer is following nicely behind us but when braking it seemed to want to drive through the truck even with the trailer brakes on full power. We decided it was time to install new trailer brakes. Only the rears had brakes and we knew they were marginal at best, instead of doing new pads we decided to install new ones on the front and leave the rears as is...When we hit Grand Junction, CO we found a shop that had trailer parts in stock! We wanted to do the install in Grand junction before we went down the vail pass. We didn't want to have weak trailer brakes going down one of the worst passes in the country.

We found an autozone parking lot and in roadkill fashion again got to work. It took hours after dealing with the wrong bearings, disconnecting the trailer getting new parts, installing the brakes, wiring the brakes etc.

We went up and down the vail pass that night and stayed west of Denver. Found another dirt road off the highway...as you can see now were behind. the red dot is where we wanted to be.



It was a beautiful the next morning.

 

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Discussion Starter #336
On the road again and now a little bit behind we knew we had a long day ahead of us. We also were in desperate need of a shower....It was my first time I took a truck shop shower but damn it was a nicer personal shower room and bathroom!





I'd recommend it for any camping traveler.

We got the sterling, Colorado and stopped again. The trans was acting weird...again still electrical related since it wasn't slipping. We stopped at a shop and had them do a full line flush since we figured we only got half the fluid out and even the guy admitted that the fluid looked great.

We took off and the issues were still present I did some more googling and found out a bad throttle position sensor could cause the trans to shift weird. We swapped that out and it seemed fixed!

We drove all day to make up time. At least the views were nice.



We made it to the eastern corner of Nebraska.



We found a dirt road, it was raining and almost got stuck...Here's a pic of us getting ready to hit the highway the next morning. It was wet!



With the problems behind us its Thursday...We need to be in Maine by Saturday.

We carried on all day long in the rain, and made it to the eastern edge of Ohio.



At this point were exhausted and found the nearest place to sleep which wasn't luxurious one bit...It rained, and we dealt with a noisy truck stop.



The rain finally stopped the next morning and we had multiple people tell us how crazy we are...so we continued!

Then the rain continued! We made it through West Virginia then into PA to stop at Fred William's parents farm to drop off the truck and trailer.

 

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Discussion Starter #337
So after getting to Fred's house, we unloaded the hummer and determined what we needed to bring and what we could leave at the trailer. I brought a lot of stuff. Spare 3rd member for the rear axle, a spare transfer case, spare driveshafts, spare axle shafts, etc. While we wouldn't bring it all I figured it would be a lot easier to get to the trailer via an uber or some form of transportation back to the farm or have Fred's parents overnight something 1000 miles away vs. 3000 miles away.

We left everything but the axle shafts.

Hummer unloaded and next to Fred's rental Nissan truck.



Then we hung out at Fred's parents for a little bit. They fed us and were super cool.

Then Fred's dad took us the back way out of the farm.



So even though we trailered we still had about 650 miles to Maine which was further then the drive to UA last year. Here we are about 200 miles in



It was cool to drive through New Jersey and see over the hudson NYC all lit up at night. Never thought I would be doing that in the Hummer!

We continued on and just so happened to be crashing in the same town as Fred, Cooper from Off road power products, Dirt head Dave and Steve from Cummins. We stopped and called at multiple hotels and had no luck. Fred and the crew found a hotel with a few rooms left so we grabbed a room at the hotel, got some sleep and were off the next morning after breakfast.

We drove for hours and hours in the pouring rain. Half doors and rain = no fun in the moment but something we will laugh about now that it's over.



We made it to UA 2018!!!! At this point between the drive to so cal and the drive to Maine we already had a little over 1,000 miles on the trip. It was so cool to get to see everyone again and meet new faces.
 

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Discussion Starter #338
So now it was time to get some sleep and hit the trail and get ready for Day 1 of UA 2018!!!

We drove up the road to rocky mountain terrain off road park in Carthage Maine. It wasn't raining but man was it soupy from the day before!!!

Let's hit the trail! (pic stolen from RMT off road parks facebook page...Check em out as they have a ton of pics!)



The same as last year, the first day is kind of nerve racking. We took off down the trail and you don't want to be the one having issues on day 1. As we get to the first obstacle one of the local guy's ZJ broken down. I had to squeeze the hummer through to continue as he would be there for a while, because of that I wasn't on the ideal line but I was able to get through.

Some pics of the hummer getting through the first obstacle.





As we continued up the trail we came to a gnarly hill! If the hill was dry it would have been tough and a good chunk would have winched, but with it wet it was extremely difficult, everyone winched except one of the crony's, Keith, in his blue buggy on 42s. While I was ahead of him I could hear the Hemi singing through the trees. He said it was one of those hills you gotta commit to and when you make it to the top your hands are shaking.

That trail took a good chunk of the day, after that we played on a few more trails



As the day winds down we get back to the main entrance, air up and enjoy burgers that the park graciously cooked up for us.
 

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Discussion Starter #339
Day 2!

Typically Day 2 is a road day after our first day of wheeling but that was not the case! We hit the road and soon after we stopped to air down and hit a local trail called Dragon's tail. It was a cool little place with tight trees. Out west I have learned that wheeling a club is nice but not mandatory. You can grab a couple buddies and go wheeling. Out in the northeast it seems that if your not in a club your opportunity to wheel in different places is limited. There is no public land...I guess since the northeast has been civilized since long before the west coast most of the land is owned by someone.

Over the past couple years I became bad at remembering to take pics, I guess wheeling has been too much fun to stop and take pics.

After dragons tail we took off to Mt. Washington. Here we are at the bottom.



A cool van!



The drive is easy, just pretty steep and narrow. It was very cool to see, it gets so windy up there the highest recorded wind was over 200 mph. They say its because there are no other mtns in the area to block the wind. Its flat all throughout the Midwest so the wind can carry for over a thousand miles and suddenly there is this tall mountain over 6k feet up with no smaller mtns around.

Going up...



Here we are at the top!





The wind gets so bad they actually chain the house down.



Setting up for our first camp night

 

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Discussion Starter #340
Day 3!

So after we packed up camp the next morning we took off to Jerhico State park in New Hampshire.

Just meeting and talking the North Wood Off road club was great. It really opened my eyes at how much time and effort they put in to get this place open. They had to do a TON of work just get to a couple trails open to 4x4's and they have to continually maintain it. If a ranger is having a bad day and decides to pick on something they have to fix it...Its the only public place to wheel in the state and hats off to them for dealing with the state politically, and doing the leg work. Right after we left they had to go in and do some trail repairs they were informed about a few days before.

In the parking lot I got to see a fellow 355 member.



We talked for a bit and discussed our rigs before we hit the trails





After we finished at the state park we took off and headed to a resort and they had some activities for us to do. Unfortunately my activity was different then the others.

When we stopped and parked I was being OCD and felt all the hubs and the driver rear was PIPING HOT! I assumed it was a sticking caliper....We quickly jacked it up, took off the wheel and removed the caliper, unfortunately the wheel still was struggling to spin so we took out the axle shaft and it didn't want to come out!

With some prying it came out and this is what we saw...







That is a 17 spline 1.5in diameter factory axle shaft from the 1950's!!! I talked to all the cronies, they have just about seen it all and they were all amazed. They attributed it to good ole craftsmanship from back in the day. That shaft would have broke if it was anything else. Swapped in a spare and off we went. What I love about these axles is the ease of working on them. If we knew it was a shaft we wouldn't have even had to take off the wheel with its full floating design. The factory 10 bolt would have been a nightmare to fix. For good measure we checked the other side (with the wheel on) and that had twisted splines!



The hub got so hot we noticed the seal burnt up and was slowly dripping oil. We were concerned about the bearings being burnt up but we were told its probably fine and sure enough the thing kept on moving along. I decided to just change the seal when I got home and will change the bearings for good measure if they look worn.

Next we took off to the Mountain mud run park...

It was cool driving through small towns to get there, we definitely made a scene as we drove through town square...everyone came out to watch.



We played at the mountain mud run park for a bit, they are an up and coming park and have a lot to offer and its more then just mud! they have big rocks to play on too!

We took off to camp and relaxed...
 
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