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Thread: I bought a TJ

  1. #61
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
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    Fort Collins
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    1990 Jeep Wrangler (YJ)
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    Jim
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    Jim Williamson
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    Default Re: I bought a TJ



    From doing the RMS on mine and wanting to not use RTV on it - but then needing to take the oil pan off one or two more times to chase small leaks, I'd say both sides.

    I am very tempted to say - lay a bead on both sides ALL THE WAY AROUND. Your call if you'd take this "full bead" suggestion. Good for leak sealing - not so good for the next time the pan needs to be removed / cured RTV removal.

  2. The Following Member Says Thanks to Jim For This Post:

    Trevor? (December 21st, 2020)

  3. #62
    Join Date
    May 2019
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    Littleton, CO
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    Jeep TJ, Nissan Xterra, Ford E350
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    Default Re: I bought a TJ



    I was able to put in about 2.5 hours today and I'm probably halfway into it.

    My exhaust is all one piece from the manifold back. I figured I could swing it out of the way while I dropped the pan and that seemed to work...until I dropped a washer just right and it fell into the exhaust. It took about an hour to figure out how to wrestle that thing up and over the rear axle. It's going to be fun to put back in. Any opinions out there on where it makes the most sense to put in a slip-fit joint? Before or after the muffler?

    It appears that the dent in the pan was deep enough to contact the oil pump pickup. The little metal cover over the screen was dented and the tube looked to be bent slightly. It's been that way since I bought the Jeep in March. It looks like it could be an original pump so I went ahead and picked up a replacement from the parts store.

    When I had most of the bolts out of the pan, one bolt head fell off before I could even put a wrench on it. It appeared to be sheared off flush with the block. Seeing how it was one of the rear bolts I'm thinking it could have also been a result of the impact to the pan. I was able to drill it out and remove the remains without much trouble.

    I could sneak my finger up and check the slop in my timing chain. It moves just under 5/8ths, so I'll likely look into installing a new timing set this winter as well.

  4. #63
    Join Date
    May 2019
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    Jeep TJ, Nissan Xterra, Ford E350
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    Trevor?
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    Trevor
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    Default Re: I bought a TJ



    I was able to wrap up the RMS before christmas. So far I have not had any drips, but its probably only safe to say that I have slowed it down at this point. I'm guessing it may take a little time for oil to accumulate before it forms a drip. I am up about a 1/3qt in oil capacity though.

    On to the next project. I've been wanting to set this Jeep up for flat-towing so it would be easier to get my 5yo and maybe my 2yo out in it. With my intent to remain topless in the warmer months I think the wife and kids will be much happier during the 1-3 hour drives to and from trail-heads if I can keep them comfortable in a quieter, air-conditioned vehicle. That and it could allow for out-of-state trips where we could camp in the van and wheel in the jeep.

    When I bought the jeep, it came with towbar brackets on the front bumper. It's not clear what happened, but the drivers side bracket was pushed into the bumper and perforated it on the inner vertical edge. There is no other signs of damage in the front, and the frame shows no signs of being bent or twisted. I wonder if someone towing this managed to rear-end someone and the shock of transferred through the tow bar punched through the bumper. I'll never know for sure but I feel like I should make a more robust mount this time around.

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    Months ago I removed the brackets and cut off the ends outside of the frame rails to make a stubby bumper. The new mounting positions will be inboard a bit now and will line up with the frame rails more or less. Digging through my scrap pile I found two pieces of 4"x4"x1/4" wall steel angle each 8" long. The plan is to bolt through these and the bumper, as well as up and over to top if the bumper to tie into the two 1/2" bolts on the top of the frame rail on each side. You can see the edge of the damage from the first mount here as well, although I have tried to straighten it a bit with a hammer.

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    Drill some holes, grind some radii to make it look halfway decent and a little paint.  Here they are sandwiched between the bumper and the winch plate.

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    Now the winch plate appears to be a harbor-freight universal model. It came with the Jeep. I wasn't too pleased with how it curls up in-front of the recovery hooks and now with the towbar brackets its seems to obstruct those as well if I want to secure the bar vertically. There are plenty of other winch plates out there without this obstruction, but this one is here and I already have my grinders out...

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    I picked up a reese towbar on craigslist that was missing the brackets for $50. A couple of $2, 1/2" hitch receiver pins and there we have it.

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    I'm not sure if I want to find a way to secure this vertically when on the trail just plan to remove it and throw it in the tow vehicle. When swung up it contacts the winch contactor box so my initial plan to just strap it back is not really the best plan any longer. I'll have to think about that a bit more.

  5. The Following 2 Members Say Thanks to Trevor? For This Post:

    Paul (December 28th, 2020),Tom (December 27th, 2020)

  6. #64
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    Default Re: I bought a TJ



    that's great, I'm going to keep the angle iron idea in mind. I want to do the same thing and don't want to spend money on a new bumper just for that.

  7. #65
    Join Date
    May 2019
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    #2609
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    Littleton, CO
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    Jeep TJ, Nissan Xterra, Ford E350
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    Trevor?
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    Trevor
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    Default Re: I bought a TJ



    I managed to replace all of my control arm bushings. I think Trent was the one who warned me about the ones on the front axle. Those were a bear. I had to cut the front lowers off with a reciprocating saw which was less than pleasant but not unbearable.

    The next project was to create a skid plate to protect that new oil pan. I have a few of these plate left over from my van. They converted the standard bench seat bolt patterns into mounts for 3 captains chairs. They're only 1/8th inch thick, but the long bends should add some strength. I've opted to try and mimic the tereflex HD skid mounting method, two arms that reach up to unused boltholes on the engine block and the two lower bolts on the transmission. I'd prefer to make my mounts to the frame, and while it looks to be a clear shot to the motor mount bracket on the driver's side, the upper control arm on the passenger side is in the way of a straight mount. Some skids on the market get by this by reusing the frame-side lower control arm bolt on the passenger side, but my material is not that wide.

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    Here's one upside-down. I can remove and resuse some of those weld-nuts.

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    Here it is right-side-up. There's some old carpet adhesive that I can remove with a flapwheel.

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    To make the arms wrap up and around the engine, I made this little bending jig to use in my press.

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    Here is the passenger-side arm. They're 1/4 x 1-1/2 flatbar. There's a bit of edge-set to get around the exhaust. That took a pair of propane torches the shop press, and a BFH to get that bent. I need to get an oxy-acetylene setup and that would have been a lot easier.

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    Fast-forward a bit, and here's the plate. I made the arms go from the block to in-front of the exhaust. The tereflex plate goes the other way and snakes between the exhaust pipe and the oil pan. As my skid sits on top of the transfercase skid plate, the tereflex angle would make it impossible to install. This way you can hang the rear of the plate on the transfercase skid and pivot the front up into place. I added a few more pieces of flatbar to reinforce the plate laterally here.

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    Here's the bottom. I welded two more pieces of flatbar the long way to reinforce the plate some more.

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    Where the new plate meets the transfercase skid, I made my boltholes through the rib which should hopefully protect them a bit from getting too much rock-rash to get a socket on them again. I added a piece of angle cut down to make a bit of a ramp to ease the transition between plates and make this less likely to be a hang point.

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    And here is the finished plate installed. I had to jack up the front axle to get a halfway-decent angle for a picture.

    I took it for a test drive. As one might expect, the tie-in to the transfercase skid transmits some engine vibration into the frame and the body. I can feel it a little in the pedal and the floor with my feet, but its not too bad. I have some sheet rubber and an idea of how to try and isolate that junction a little bit. I think this will be decent in the short term but in the long term I would like to get the structure off of the engine block. On the passenger side, the angle of my mount ends up pointing it directly at the oil filter. If I take a big enough hit to shear off the bolt, that bar has less than an inch to travel before it punctures the oil filter.

    At the end of the day, this will probably get some more modifications, but it was fun and I learned some things. Those long arms move around a lot while finish welding, but toward the end I could start to make them move where I wanted them to move by ordering the welds strategically.... just a bit tho, I imagine there is a ton more to getting that down. I also think that the $150 or so that the tereflex skid goes for is a hell of a deal after trying to do it myself.

    The skid has to come back off for paint. I also have one of those oil drain valves I plan to install and I will drill a hole for a tube to use with that.

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