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  #31  
Old April 5th, 2015, 12:11
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Re: John's 98 Build Thread

Sometime along the way my battery cables finished falling apart, and somehow in that process my 90A alternator fried (extra resistance??). I decided that because I was only upgrading things and doing it the right way on this Jeep, I would be going to the 136A unit. The parts store took my warranted alternator as credit towards a rebuilt 136A. I did this whole thing by the hip, and I forgot how much grinding was involved. Four hours later I had an installed 136A alternator.


Yeah, its a tight fit...


I marked the material that had to go - pretty straight forward, right?




Look MA! It bolts together!


Bracket is all ground up!


Mocking it up for the ten thousandth time.


I had to 'touch up' the ears on the block. I don't remember seeing other people who did this having to get this aggressive...


Some corrosion control. I used enamel black after the primer, but forgot to take a picture.


I like how it turned out.

Last edited by xeroOTG; April 5th, 2015 at 12:53.
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  #32  
Old April 5th, 2015, 12:17
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Re: John's 98 Build Thread

I got a set of cables from 5-90, but to get me back on the road while I waited, I raided the cable section at the parts store. The hardest to find part was the military style terminals, which I got on Amazon, Pico 0810PT.


Here's what O'Reilly wires look like. I don't fancy the marine terminals.


You can see my ANL fuse there, I used a battery terminal bolt (the ones with a square head) and ground down the head till it fit.


Here is a nice picture of the military terminals. Much better. I did have to widen the opening in the lug from the winch's cables. They were 3/8" and the bolt in the terminal is bigger. I also cleaned up the amp wiring, by using some of that spiffy waterproof heatshrink to seal the fuse terminals to the cable. I really don't need that pulling apart cruising down the road!
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  #33  
Old April 5th, 2015, 12:33
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Re: John's 98 Build Thread

The u-pick-n-pull had a 2005 Liberty back in November with rear discs. $80 and a couple hours later I walked out with one mangled backing plate, one good backing plate, two calipers, to rotors, two caliper to hardline hoses off a ZJ, and an e-brake cable off a ZJ. I jumped on rock auto and got new e-brake shoes and hardware, pads, and a Dorman C660004 (F67Z2A635AA) e-brake cable. If you wanted to just grab that cable off something in the yard, look for a 1995 – 2002 Ford Explorer or a 1997- 2001 Mercury Mountaineer. I then bought 10 lug nuts for the front hubs on a 2000-2001 Jeep Cherokee (they are longer than the stock rears which become too short in this swap.


The passenger backing plate was all bent to hell from the junkyard, so I straightened it and re-riveted it to the cast section. I used black ceramic enamel on there to keep it nice and rust free.


I painted the calipers to match the backing plates


All the needed hardware, just chillin.


I decided to do this one afternoon after work. I started at around 4 PM and finished around 10 PM.


Press some longer studs in.


Axle comes out, backing plates simply unbolt.


I reused the Cherokee studs. I may go back if I ever need to do the bearings, but I found the part number for the studs and don't think they are still in production. Does anyone know if just plain old high grade bolts are acceptable?


This setup is so simple.




All done!


There's where drums belong, not on my Jeep!

All in I believe I’m under $250 but it’s hard to tell sometimes on these swaps. I found myself at the parts store probably three times.

Last edited by xeroOTG; April 5th, 2015 at 12:52.
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  #34  
Old April 5th, 2015, 12:44
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Re: John's 98 Build Thread

5-90’s cables came in last week, and I installed those. They are so much prettier than the parts store junk ones; I’ll be saving those for spares just in case.


These cables look so good and are very high quality. I highly recommend 5-90's work.

I have the compressor on the wrong side of the ANL fuse. Once I get some new terminal hoops Ill solder an extension onto that wire and hook it directly on the battery where it belongs. The compressor is protected by dual 40A maxi fuses.

Because I live in the city its rare I get up past 60 mph, and I recently figured out I had a driveshaft vibration at 70 MPH. Looks like when I did my rear shims I didn't get the pinion perfectly lined up, and the extra rotational speed of the driveshaft is now causing vibes. I am eyeballing a set of the JKS boomerang shackles to lift the rear pinion a couple degrees. If that doesn’t work, I suppose I will have to get the shaft balanced.

That being said, expect some shackles, possibly a new or re-balanced driveshaft, and some frame cladding in the next couple months. I also picked up a Odyssey PC1200 at the moonshiners swap meet for $25, so if I get around to picking up an isolator I may fab up a second battery tray for it.
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  #35  
Old April 25th, 2015, 12:53
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Re: John's 98 Build Thread

KJ Disc Update: I have a new KJ disc issue that the dealership refers to 'moaning' that is caused by rust scale that builds up on the rotors overnight. There were several TSBs over it throughout the warranty period on virtually all years of KJ, all came down to replacing the rotors, pads, and sometimes the calipers. Also the calipers seem to have a tendency to sticking on. I love the braking power of the KJ disc setup so I’ll stop moaning, but if you do this swap keep that info in mind. Oh, and the parking brake is crap.

In other news: For Christmas I got a Boostwerks Shift Linkage from my mother-in-law and a new shifter position indicator switch from my sister. With drama at work, moving, and my wife trying to finish her bachelors degree I totally forgot I had these sitting around. The instructions are really good, and adjusting is 90% of the work. Install started something like this:



After lots of drilling it looked like this when it was installed. Looks much better then factory! It reminds me a lot of the clutch linkage on my CJ5.





The detent was off on the shift handle, but the shift range was within my liking so I just ground the nub down with a dremel cutoff wheel.





Next on the list was vibes introduced by pinion angle issues that were exaggerated by regearing. I thought that maybe a set of lift shackles would rotate the pinion the degree or two I thought my pinion was off. All sorts of awesome things have been said about JKS’s OGS651 so I got a set from Amazon. Install was pretty straightforward, but I figured out I couldn’t grease the shackles with my grease gun once they were installed. I changed out the zerk fittings for some 45 degree zerks.







The next issue I had was the shackle bottoms out on one of the bumper bolts, so I pulled those and cut them down.



I got between ½” and ¾” of lift, so I adjusted my ACOS accordingly.



I can honestly say that the ride has improved, but the pinion vibration isn't gone. I still need a couple more degrees, so I’ll be getting a set of 6 degree shims sometime this summer.

Last edited by xeroOTG; April 25th, 2015 at 13:00.
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  #36  
Old April 25th, 2015, 13:37
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Re: John's 98 Build Thread

I picked up an Odyssey PC1200 at a swap meet for $25, and it fits perfectly between the radiator and the ARB compressor. All I needed was a tray, some wiring, and an isolator setup of some sort. I had a factory tray from the other side, so I cut it in half and bolted it to the drives side. I made a strap up that fits well out of scrap stock. For tie down bolts I straightened out a set of factory spare tiedown bolts and even used the wingnut for one side.



We all know that some sort of isolation is needed, and I looked at a few solutions. Most of what I had read stated that all of the cool kids these days are using an Automatic Charging Relay to isolate their batteries. This allows the ECU to still monitor the charge of the batteries and disconnects them when they aren’t charging so you don’t ruin them… at least that the theory. I started reading up on the Blue Sea SI-ACR and figured out that it only did up to 120A alternators (I just installed a 136A), so I was all in for a ML-ACR which will give me lots of room at a rating of 500A. The ML-ACR has a couple neat points, 1) its waterproof, 2) it’s got a manual override, 3) there’s a cool switch that allows you to operate it in the cab, and 4) its big enough that I can “jumpstart” myself if I’m dumb enough to leave my headlights on or something like that.



First things first I needed to fab up a mounting bracket. I got some sheet metal and ½” angle at the hardware store, along with some machine screws to mount the ACR with. Ignore my crappy cutting, I ran out of cutoff wheels halfway through this.







I painted the complete bracket in engine ceramic enamel to finish it up. I shifted part of the load (like the sub amp and the radios) to the second battery.



The switch is neat-o but I do not like the big bright red LEDs that are on when the solenoid is engaged. I’ll probably look for some sort of less-intrusive indicator.



Its getting a little cramped in the engine bay...


Last edited by xeroOTG; April 25th, 2015 at 13:44. Reason: Left out one picture
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  #37  
Old April 28th, 2015, 01:06
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John's 98 Build Thread

Everything looks really good. But your shackles are installed backwards. Thats the point of boomerang shackles if they are clearanced for a little extra travel without hitting the back of the box.
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  #38  
Old April 28th, 2015, 07:13
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Re: John's 98 Build Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by GordoSmasho View Post
Everything looks really good. But your shackles are installed backwards. Thats the point of boomerang shackles if they are clearanced for a little extra travel without hitting the back of the box.
Seriously?? Dang it! That explains a ton... Thanks!
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  #39  
Old May 1st, 2015, 02:23
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Re: John's 98 Build Thread

hey john! what yard do you go to?

Thanks

Jack
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  #40  
Old May 1st, 2015, 08:51
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Re: John's 98 Build Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mtb Jak View Post
hey john! what yard do you go to?

Thanks

Jack
Hey man, I usually go to pick-n-pull in lynnwood, but I've gone to Lake Stevens and Lakewood a couple times.
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  #41  
Old August 16th, 2015, 20:33
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Re: John's 98 Build Thread

This summer has been busy. Lots of wheeling and lots of work. Unfortunately I missed NW Fest due to work. There’s always next year.

1. Steering

My steering was starting to wander on the highway, and I wanted to upgrade. I know the stock setup is just a hop and a skip from failing when I need it the least. I went with a complete V8 ZJ tire rod set. It’s nice and beefy, and should hold up against 31’s. And I’ll be able to buy spares at AutoZone if I need to.







I understand that the RHD drag link can be used to do a complete knuckle flip (right and left), so that may happen yet. I’m intimidated by moving the drag link point up to match, but it would be nice to get the complete steering up under the front skid.

2. Gas tank skid

I decided that the bottom of my Jeep was in the way of rocks after seeing the bottom of a friend’s TJ, so I went and found a factory set of skids. I accidentally picked up a set off of an early XJ, so I had to modify the gas skid. It really wasn’t as bad as everyone would have you think, cut two welds, pound it out, and weld up the gap.

















3. Ball joints

While doing maintenance after a trip into the cascades, I noticed the front ball joints were a little sloppy. The stock Spicer ball joints seem to have survived 180k so I got another set off amazon, 706944x. Very nice machined quality! Pressed all four out and back in in about 2 hours.



4. Distributor

The dust on that same trip made my distributor start squealing. I tried lithium grease, but it didn’t help. I am not a fan of walking, so I got a Dorman reman off amazon. I kept the old one since there was no core, so maybe someday I’ll take it apart and fix it. For now it’s a trail spare.



5. Sway bar disconnect points

When I got my lift, I got the DPG swaybar disconnect cables, but the JKS disconnects came with some spiffy mounting points. I now had a front skid, so I could finally use those. Got them mounted!

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  #42  
Old August 16th, 2015, 20:36
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Re: John's 98 Build Thread

6. Tablet mount

I attempted to make a tablet mount for using BackCountry Navigator on the trail. It was alright… but I have decided that the XJ dash just doesn’t lend itself well to mounting accessories. Two trips after I built it I was ready to find a more permanent solution.





7. Front frame cladding

Since my jeep had a “questionable” past, before I owned it, and after it was stolen the front bumper mounting frame holes were torn. I was one hard winching away from losing my bumper on the trail, so I got a set of the Iron Rock Off-road front frame cladding. The quality is awesome. I want to center set and wish they made a rear set. It took about 6 hours a side. I finished them up with some POR15.







8. Pinched battery cable

I did a really crappy job of tying up the very nice 5-90 battery cables that I waited 6 months for, and the alternator lead got pinched between the engine and the battery tray. It took the alternator with it while winching an Xterra up Hawkins Mountain by Gallagher Head Lake. Good trip, but I had to use AAA to get home. Oops. Lesson learned, do a better job of wire management. When I did my motor mounts later on I discovered my driver’s side mount may have helped this failure happen. I didn’t take any pictures really, but I did get this.



9. Upper control arms

As part of the ball joint repair, I noticed the upper control arm axle side bushings were starting to split. I did the axle side uppers and after looking that the OEM arms, I decided there was no way I would put them back on. I picked up a set of EBay from Core 4x4 Fabrication. There seems to be a lot of negative speculation about these on , but seeing as how factory is folded sheet metal, these will be just fine. One thing to note, the front factory bolts are too short. I THINK they are 10x1.5M x85mm, I ended up with some grade 8 4” 3/8 zinc plated with crush nuts.





This is the upper mount bolt, yes I measured it wrong, BUT its long enough, whereas the stock lower is not:



10. Brown Dog Motor Mounts

My wife got some brown dog’s for her Jeep but decided hers looked new and it doesn’t spend any time off-road yet, so I put them on my Jeep. Of all of the things to spend money on, this is probably the second best upgrade after a lift. The way the vehicle drives is so entirely different! I highly recommend them. I only got one bad picture, but here it is for your viewing pleasure:



11. Brake line tear

I tore my brake line off 20 miles southwest of Cle Elum, going up a nice slimy rocky hill to recover a stuck 2.5l TJ. Of all the times I have broken something offroad this is right up there for the worst timing. I lost brakes in the middle of scaling the beast. Once I made it up I had to pinch the line off with vice grips and duct tape those to the control arm. I drove back to Ellensburg on Sunday once the sun came out and dried things out a bit, and got a C1500 front brake line. I like how it attaches, so I have a passenger side coming in the mail. I will carry the last braded one as a spare, I just don’t like how it drops down a good inch.



Earlier that day:



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  #43  
Old August 16th, 2015, 20:39
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Re: John's 98 Build Thread

12. Drivers door grip

Somewhere on the interwebs I saw a drivers side door handle, and I had an extra. So I mounted it. I don’t know what to think of it yet…


After some additional hole sizing (square hole), here’s the result.



13. Electric seats

I got a set of ZJ power leather seats a year ago for cheap, in good condition. I finally got around to getting them mounted. I didn’t have power rails, so I fabbed up some using 98 ZJ rails. It was a lot of work, but the seats are massively comfortable! I still need to hook up the heated seat portion… but its 90% done.



Not my best but it will do.



I ground the old mounts off, leaving this to weld to



Passenger frame was “simple”





The drivers frame took more creativity:





Final notes, the modified seats and frames sit a good 4 inches higher. Because I was able to carefully position the rails, the seats are well away from the B pillar that the factory rails have an issue with on these seats:

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  #44  
Old August 16th, 2015, 20:43
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Re: John's 98 Build Thread

14. Double din mod

My tablet mod left much to be desired, specifically it was impossible to use my radio if the tablet was mounted. I found the Chinese “huifei” line of head units and found one without a DVD player, yet has the quad core processor. I initially was looking at integrating my nexus 7 2014 into the dash, but this is massively easier. I took the plunge and cut my dash up. So far (week 1) I like it but I can’t seem to find matching agate dash paint. The Chinese head unit is better then what you can expect for $200, but it’s no $500 Kenwood.

I started by making sure I had enough depth – yep, I have like an extra 2” which is great because I would need a set of power filters, a power regulator for the USB hub I was going to be adding, and an RF amplifier. This was all needed because the electronics in these units are… poor.



I started with a Metra 95-3527 2004+ Pontiac Grand Prix fit kit. I copied this, but mine isn't as good. I floated the entire kit in JB weld, I used a full pint of JB weld between the front and the rear. I also used bondo to make everything presentable.







The black that I found looked terrible.





I bought a lifetime activated Sirius radio on EBay, it was less then renewing for a year. I also placed a power point, audio line, and usb port in there, as well as relocated my remote start disable switch. I like it.



Here it is as of today. I have got a webcam hooked up as a dash cam using DailyRoads Navigator.



NEXT: Rear bumper, center frame cladding, rear frame cladding, and probably rock rails all hopefully by this winter. I really want to keep this Jeep clean and for a long time.
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Last edited by xeroOTG; August 16th, 2015 at 20:49. Reason: Added a link to the fit kit and thread for credit
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  #45  
Old August 19th, 2015, 16:24
Sean112280 Sean112280 is offline
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Re: John's 98 Build Thread

looks good man!
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