ExWrench's Oddball Mods + Sneaky Stretch - Page 8 - JKowners.com : Jeep Wrangler JK Forum
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post #176 of 185 Old 05-12-2019, 12:29 AM Thread Starter
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*cough* Wow - 11 months' worth of dust on my thread

Between a bit of scheduled house work and a few unscheduled emergencies, my garage saw near-zero fab. for 8.5 months

All that bullshit is over and I can catch up on life, so let's dial the wayback machine to a (pre-goat rodeo) time known as last summer

My oddball fender fookery worked great (please excuse the poser shot) - tires stuffed nicely and didn't rub:


For my B&M shifter + shift lever, I played around with a handful (no pun intended) of shift handle options.
Here's most of them:

I burned through ~20 bucks in hardware and little time to try a bunch of options.
Good learning experience, dirt-cheap prototyping, would do it all again.
It was also a Jeep project I could do while effectively garage-less.


By far, the most fun to drive with is 2nd from left above, giving me this Rat Fink - esque monster:


Only problem with that = it made reaching the HVAC controls a potentially unsafe shit show, so . . . fawk that one.

The winner of the eclectic handle contest was this one (the one with a knob in the lineup photo above):

Offset to the right to center the knob where it "should" be, and back a bit so I don't punch the dash while shifting.

WHEW!

I've been lagging on posting that ^^^ little bit of stuff for literally over half a year.
I'd bet nobody else was pissed about it, but I was (a little )

There's more, but I want to keep that all in 1 (15 image max. ) post, so this one's a mini-post, more or less.

let's use up that 15-image quota:

OK, with that done - on to some "subtle-ification" . . .

Last edited by ExWrench; 05-12-2019 at 08:58 AM. Reason: Added a peetchurr
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post #177 of 185 Old 05-12-2019, 01:26 AM Thread Starter
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Still not Fast, but now Less Furious

I've never been completely happy with the exhaust, so the wild-hair-up-ass genie finally gave me a shove.

To make room for a resonator (and because it's a bit thrashed) this 2.5 gallon Viair tank had to go:

You can also see where the exhaust ran right up to the rear track bar, then shot out at the least-shitty angle I could find.


Fun fact: if you land on an air tank and smash the bejeezus out of its mounting bracket, disassembly may be a pain in the 'taint.

I was this >< close to cutting shit apart wildly to pull that damned tank (I was so pissed )


OK, tank drama over, clear palette with the exception of the track bar cock-blocking my dreams of an over-axle exhaust:



So . . . Teraflex TB coming out, Metalcloak TB going in:



The Metalcloak TB only gained me ~1.5 inches, but that was enough to let the magic happen



With my new gold bling in place (will get painted next time I pull it out), I could start building my exhalation super highway:

Don't have a TIG, and didn't have the right gas mix (used 75/25), so I did lap joints instead of butt joints. Pipe stretcher is a handy tool
No worries about strength, but I coulda' made it purrrdy w/ TIG.
Oh well, fuck it - it's a Jeep exhaust, not a show car anything.


First mockup (and I drove it a couple days this way):

Holy crap - what a difference - at least 3dB reduction all around, and no more reverb down low nor raspy chit when I wind it out (often ).
Oh, also in the photo above: the guard for my air tank drain began life as a "military grade" aluminum toe cap in a Timberland safety shoe.


Finished it up this weekend. Welded on that straight hanger rod, and welded the tailpipe and 90 to the (Vibrant 1141) resonator.



Bent another 1/2" SS hanger rod and welded it to a gusset on the Synergy shock mount bar.



The hanger rod already on the recycled tailpipe, I captured in a cut-off and drilled-out piece from a leftover swaybar end link.

The bastardized end link is welded to a scrap bracket w/ anti-rotate tab welded on. Bolts to a single factory crossmember hole.
It's not very flexible compared to the (3) factory-style rubber isolators on my exhaust, but I don't anticipate it cracking or failing.


Most importantly: stuff the driver's side, and you won't smack the exhaust


It's not factory ninja-stealthy, but appreciably quieter and better sounding than a week ago.

Everything about the exhaust that pissed me off before, is gone - WIN!

PLEASE BUY AMERICAN SO I DON'T HAVE TO LEARN CHINESE
The 4th little pig made his house of reinforced concrete, with wolfskin rugs in every room

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Last edited by ExWrench; 05-12-2019 at 09:08 AM. Reason: Wording tuneup - better now :)
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post #178 of 185 Old 05-12-2019, 04:07 PM
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I dont want to crap up your thread with needless commentary, but a couple questions on your exhaust:

- Saw you mentioned you used MIG to burn the muffler and tube together. What kind of wire do you use?

- How did you connect your muffler / tube up to the existing exhaust? Clamp(s)?
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post #179 of 185 Old 05-12-2019, 05:27 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by snout View Post
I dont want to crap up your thread with needless commentary, but a couple questions on your exhaust:

- Saw you mentioned you used MIG to burn the muffler and tube together. What kind of wire do you use?

- How did you connect your muffler / tube up to the existing exhaust? Clamp(s)?
Dood, no worries - if it's on-topic or tech-related/ educational, crap away!

I have a little 2lb spool of .030" ER308L wire just for hacktastically hot-gluing my exhaust system


I bought it when I grafted a 50-Series Flowmaster in place of an MBRP loudasfawk fart can.


Clamps will not keep shit from rotating so the asymmetrical Flowmaster had to be hot glued to preserve clocking.


Reused the MBRP piping (good stuff) which has a clamped joint on the uphill run over the stock axle location.


I rerouted things near the apex of that "over-axle" hump and ended with a straight piece of 2.5" 304SS tube.


Needed to run close and parallel under that crossmember, then dive away from the body to make room for the resonator can.
That's also the longest I can make that section and still be able to remove it without disassembling non-exhaust stuff.


That butt joint (the only one) just got a straight stainless band clamp.


It's in a location where failure can't really cause harm. Also, I clocked the clamp up out of the way on final assembly.

From there back, it's a purchased mandrel 90, the Vibrant resonator, and a section of the MBRP exhaust's tailpipe I'd cut off when I did my rear stretch.



I had enough mandrel bends to make whatever tailpipe I would need:


. . . but accommodating something that was born for exactly that job seemed like the perfect ending.
I still have the MBRP exhaust system from end-to-end, I've just changed ~85% between the ends.
Also, using that tailpipe helps justify hanging onto a lot of the weird shit I save from project leftovers.

Hoarder?

Nope, not today

Today, genius

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Last edited by ExWrench; 05-13-2019 at 09:34 AM. Reason: oops --> un-oops (typo feext)
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post #180 of 185 Old 05-13-2019, 08:59 AM
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bAd ass update! definitely gave me some inspiration to deal with my exhaust so planning on some mods now. How is the sound after the mod? I dig the shifter linkage setup!


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post #181 of 185 Old 05-13-2019, 08:38 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by geberhard View Post
bAd ass update! definitely gave me some inspiration to deal with my exhaust so planning on some mods now.
Thanks Gui! I've been wanting to do this for a few years now.
It was horribly frustrating to do working on the ground, but worth it (especially now that I'm done).


Quote:
Originally Posted by geberhard View Post
How is the sound after the mod?
W a a a y better!

I didn't measure, but I believe it dropped off a solid 3+ decibels all around.
And that's not the best part - sound quality is much improved.

2 major annoyances that the resonator killed:

1) At lower RPM on deceleration or when lugging it, the exhaust had some reverb.

Wait - make that: REVURRRURRURRURURRRB

Related annoyance: heavy deceleration had too much . . .

. . . how you say . . .



"wharble-blurblurwharblur-blur-blar-blawwww"
. . . for my taste



2) When winding out all "3.8L of fury" (shifting above 5000 RPM),
the exhaust note had a ragged, raging, shitty sound component.

I think this exhaust note characteristic can best be described as a 3-way mixture of:

  • Riced-out Honda screaming through a ginormous chromed coffee can exhaust
  • Air ripping like you just kicked open the tank drain on a large air compressor
  • Cats fucking


If I were 16 again, I might find the extra rasp entertaining
. . . but I can't believe that noise could ever be considered "desirable".


All drone is gone, startup at 5am is guilt-free, and I can floor it without sounding like I'm trying to start shit.

Honestly, even just killing the "cats fucking" noise would've made it worth it

PLEASE BUY AMERICAN SO I DON'T HAVE TO LEARN CHINESE
The 4th little pig made his house of reinforced concrete, with wolfskin rugs in every room

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Last edited by ExWrench; 05-16-2019 at 12:25 PM.
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post #182 of 185 Old 06-13-2019, 01:46 AM Thread Starter
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Fixin' ta' show ya' groovy new chit the likes of which y'all never dun seed befor (mebbeh fer' a reason)

OK, this post will start out pretty normal and end up with something I haven't seen done, but would believe it has.
Chronological, but the "oddward" trend is fortunate . . .
. . . because my next post will have one-off chit I b'leeve I dun inventioneered



So my ass needed firming up . . .
I really loved how the Jeep drove with my last rear spring / spacer combo., but it was using the bump stops too damned much.
So, Teraflex 1854100 coils and 1" TF coil guide spacers coming out, Synergy 8064-20 coils and 1/2" TF coil guide spacers going in:


I've gotten used to the difference in feel, and the chassis is definitely better balanced spring-wise now.



Random: keeping my junk covered
This is the piece of 1/8" UHMW PE that keeps the sun off my synthetic winch rope. The dirty tab faces forward and slips under the top edge of the bumper.


The two "tan lines" in the photo above are from zip ties that secure the plastic flap to the top tie bar.




Say "no" to crack . . . eventually
Just above my thumb is a minor crack in my hard top.


The faint silver lines around it are where I used a silver Sharpie to remind me to fix it soon.
That was a few years ago


Picked, scuffed, sanded, cleaned, degreased, crack opened and filled with epoxy, and epoxy over inside and outside surfaces --> clamped & left dafook alone.
Light, almost dusty tack coat of SEM urethane bumper coater applied.


Followed up with a few semi-wet to wet coats, feathering out to blend into the surrounding areas.
No "after" photo because I did a decent job so the photo doesn't show anything. Boring is good.



Holy crap, has it been 4 years already? Time to paint de roof . . . again
Clear coat bought me an extra year, but the clear was completely shithoused.
The white underneath was OK but borderline. Old on right, (obviously):


Prep. was easy - mask, spray Windex, clean aggressively with red Scotch Brite, wipe with microfiber towel, done!


This time around, I went with gloss white Rustoleum enamel, brushed on. Didn't add hardener or thinner, but really happy with the results.



That same old deck of cards was still my best tooling to mask the gasket.



Quote:
Originally Posted by You (you impatient fahhrrkin' bastage)
Yeah, but none of that is all that weird.
You said this was gonna' get weird.
I wanna' see weird.
Dance, monkey!
OK, fair enough. Let's start our descent into oddball stuff but let's ease into it - you can thank me later.
Here's something I'd never seen but it made a shitload of sense so I bet someone else has done it.


Paint a tad gnarfed? Maybe I'll just . . . tape over it
I found that years of Northern California rock dust had helped the taillights rub a gnarly witness line into the paint.


Decided to put down a layer of UHMW tape that I have rolls of in 3/4", 1", and 2" widths. 3/4" was the winner here:


Soon after, I pulled the LF fender flare to pull the steering shaft so I could de-click the slip splines with some open gear lube (nasty stuff, but it works great).
Upon ripping off the fender flare, I was greeted by this cheery scene:


I figured what I'd done out back was a good solution so: copy idea, --> paste:


That's the last of the "normal-ish" updates, so . . . fuggit, let's get weird.

Truly one-off mods are up next. Will post up soon-ish (when I have time).

PLEASE BUY AMERICAN SO I DON'T HAVE TO LEARN CHINESE
The 4th little pig made his house of reinforced concrete, with wolfskin rugs in every room

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Last edited by ExWrench; 06-14-2019 at 10:51 AM. Reason: Touching up info. now that I'm awake :-)
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post #183 of 185 Old 06-13-2019, 03:49 AM Thread Starter
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Because of my 4" rear stretch and fenders cut to clear 37s, the rear tires throw mud and rocks right at my rear corners. Boo.


Finally had time to pursue it, and 1/8" UHMW was again my material of choice.
Abrasion resistant and slippery, formable but rigid, not too spendy - I'm sold!
So I slapped a piece down and laid out a "not to exceed" outline with masking tape.




Cardboard template cut out, time to refine the shape with a Sharpie.



Finalized the cardboard template, traced onto UHMW with Sharpie, cut out w/ scrolling blade in cordless jigsaw.
Refined profile of 1st piece, inverted over material (for mirror image), scribed outline of 2nd piece, then cut out.


Ends of notches were drilled first to get clean end radii, then entire profiles were cut with jigsaw.
1/8" sheet UHMW wants to curl toward 1 side more than another - I put the side predisposed toward concavity "up".


Quick check to make sure my fastener holes will land in solid real estate on both parts:



I had zero interest in removing the tire swing and/or back bumper to drill this one hole:



So, I pieced together this Rube Goldberg contraption and went "full dental jacket" for 1 hole:


Had these extra bolts left over from a different "F.U. tweekers" project, and I liked 'em for this also:


5/16-18 x 3/4" stainless, #14 spanner drive, low profile button head.
Outer bolt is threaded into tapped hole in boxed bumper area, inner bolt drops into drilled hole with a nylock on the back side.


Leading edge of guard is zip tied to the tub for 3-point mounting and so it won't go a-flappin' in the breeze.

EDIT: also, the horizontal separation between the the bolts & zip tie allow for flex between body & frame.
The leading edge should just miss the tire, or have inconsequential amount of rub.




With a little persuasion and massaging, the tendency to curl upward was encouraged, to improve coverage and visual flow:




So, can the front be improved? Sure!:


This would be great as a splash guard, but also as a tree / rock magnet, wind resistance source, and fender ripper-offer.
So . . . no.


Well, what can I huck together out of 1/8" UHMW sheet?

Well . . . how about . . . THIS:


Two each 3/8" SS pin-center torx clamping the front UHMW guards between fender washers and the steel filler sheet atop the sliders.
Besides being a brutal 1/8" thick edge of shin-wrecking badness, they could look a bit more finished. So . . . bend the edge down.

By the way, I cut these pieces out oriented to curl downward, and I built on that tendency with flange vise grips:



After a bit more fiddle-fawking around, they look about like this:



So, "sorry" if I got you hoping for a donkey show via the hype in my last post -
This may not be "two-headed goat man" weird, but I thought it was pretty unique.
Next week I get to go test it, so we'll see if this new oddball crap does what it should.
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The 4th little pig made his house of reinforced concrete, with wolfskin rugs in every room

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Last edited by ExWrench; 06-14-2019 at 11:04 AM. Reason: Tuning up information - it was late when I posted it ;-)
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post #184 of 185 Old 06-13-2019, 05:37 AM
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You should take some time and properly set up your rear shock mounting locations so you can take advantage of the whole shock, not just 75% of it. I like all the little tweaks vs just buying and bolting stuff on.
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Some build info here:
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post #185 of 185 Old 06-13-2019, 07:59 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thedirtman View Post
You should take some time and properly set up your rear shock mounting locations so you can take advantage of the whole shock, not just 75% of it.
I agree completely, I believe I have a solid plan for it, and time has been the only thing lacking.

Beginning last July, I had 9 months of house issues that deprived me of the garage. Between no garage and spending almost every weekend working on house stuff, the Jeep didn't get much attention.
(but enough of my little pity party, let's talk Jeep shit )

So, I definitely can't decrease rear bump stop height with my current setup:

.

Last year I changed out the rear shocks to a slightly shorter compressed length (the clean one):

The only droop I gave up was what I call "bullshit droop" (because unsprung) so no regrets about the shorter shocks. With the shorter dampers, I was making room to relocate the rear lower shock mounts rearward a couple inches to get them more vertical without moving them down any, hoping to leave about 1/4" of chrome showing when stuffed.

Ever since I did the rear stretch, I've been wanting to set the rear shocks more vertical to increase the effective damping rate. Now with the shorter rear shocks (installed for almost a year now ) I can finally do it. Unless life throws another time-sucking shitstorm at me like it did last summer, fall and winter, I should get it done this year (fingers crossed).



Quote:
Originally Posted by thedirtman View Post
I like all the little tweaks vs just buying and bolting stuff on.
Me too (obviously ) and thank you!

PLEASE BUY AMERICAN SO I DON'T HAVE TO LEARN CHINESE
The 4th little pig made his house of reinforced concrete, with wolfskin rugs in every room

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Last edited by ExWrench; 06-13-2019 at 12:13 PM.
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