Bty34 TJ build

Put the rear axle under the Jeep and located the lower shock mounts. The new axle is 61.75" wide, or a little over 1" wider than stock. My old wheels were 8" wide, 3.5" backspacing. New wheels are 9" wide, 4.5" backspacing. Net of all this is the tires move out 1/8" per side from the previous setup. It'll work fine for the 35s, but a 64" width would have been better.

I set the shocks for 1" of compression on the Currie bumpstops at full bump and 1/2" of compression when articulated.

For now I'm going to leave the rear antirock mounts for later. I put it in front of the axle a few years back. Under full articulation the tire gets close enough to the tub that there isn't room for the arm. Once the Jeeps drivable I'll move it behind the axle.

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Started working on the Atlas. Based on Blaine's recommendation elsewhere I countersunk the last two fasteners on the bottom cover. They are through holes, so I put a set screw in each holes to keep shavings out of the case. Tried doing it with a hand drill at first, but the countersink didn't stay centered nicely. Switched over to the drill press and they came out nicer.

Test fit the case a couple of times, here is where I ended up for clocking. Hammered the tub a little on the driver's side and around the breather fitting. Transmission is close to the same location it was with the 231 and Savvy UA, 1/2-3/4" above the bott of the frame.

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Crossmember is in place, just needs to be pulled and fully welded. Cut the ends off the Gladiator control arm and slid a length of 1.5" tube in the middle, welded to half a stock transmission mount. Ordered some 3/16" tabs from Barnes 4wd for mounting I'm debating about making the skid flat and using spacers at the frame rails to also accommodate the nutserts.

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Finished welding the crossmember and got it back installed. Round tube would have given a little more clearance, but I had the square laying around. If I was doing it again I would probably go with smaller bushings. The one end of the Gladiator control arm is 3" OD.

Crossmember ended up 1/2" below the bottom of the frame. The bottom corner of the Atlas is 5/8" below the bottom of the frame. I'm debating about putting 3/4" flat spacers on the frame and keeping the skid flat.

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Mounted the Savvy skid out of curiosity. It's 3/8" lower than normal due to contact near the edges. There is quite a bit of clearance in the center. Should be close enough to use as a template for the new skid.

Took a 1310 rear shaft I had left over and mixed it with a 1350 shaft to make a temporary rear shaft. I'll probably keep this as a trail spare and order a new one from Tom Woods when I'm all done.

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Shifted to mocking up the front axle. Started with cutting off the stock frame side trac bar mount, which was a blast.

Then slid the axle under to see how it looked at full bump. This is 1" past initial contact with the standard Currie bumpstops and 2" forward from normal. The pinion yoke / driveshaft does make contact with the exhaust, but I think I can alleviate that with reworking the exhaust. The axle is 65" wide, but the pinion offset is 2" closer to center than a standard TJ. In the previous jeep they had added bumpstops and ran a two piece front shaft. I'd like to avoid both if I can.

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Reworked the coil buckets that were on the axle. Cut off the stock shock mounts and then slid the mounts back 2" to help the new trac bar pass I'm front of them. Also added a nut for the bumpstops while they were off. Long carbide blade in the sawzall worked pretty well for moving the buckets.

Mocked up a new mount for the upper control arm mount. Set the caster at 6° and tacked it in place.

Ordered a set of Currie knuckles. I was going to send the knuckles I have out to Weaver for machining, but with shipping and a setup fee, the cost was pretty close.

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The rear axle is setup with 99-04 Ford full float ends. The calipers hang pretty low, but that will have to wait for a later project. For now I'm thinking it will help some to rotate the brake hoses while I'm redoing the hard lines. Welded a bolt to the axle tube for mounting the stock brake line that normally uses the breather.

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Made some spacers for the belly skid using B00mb00m's modeling clay method in https://wranglertjforum.com/threads...on-cross-member-and-transfer-case-skid.34524/

Also got a flat piece of 3/8" aluminum for the actual skid. I'm planning to reuse the Savvy engine skid that I already have.

Currie knuckles arrived, so I pulled the old knuckles off and the started getting the new ones ready. Used a similar method to Toximus for drilling the upper steering arm. Drilled a 1/4" hole down the center of a 5/8 x 2" bolt and then cut a taper on the underside of the head to help it center in the hole. Them used it as a guide for drilling the upper arm. Went pretty smooth and the bolts slid in by hand after, so I'll call it a success.


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Put the shifters on the Atlas. Pretty tight to the tub but I'm able to hit all the positions with minimal pressure on the levers. Added a couple extra nutserts around the stock opening and made a plate to close it down to the size of the supplied boot.

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Moved back to the front end. Mounted the Currie knuckles, slid the shafts back in, greased the CTMs while I was there and put the lockouts back on. Tacked the tie rod together and set the toe. I'm using the old tie rod from the inverted T steering that came in the axle for a mockup tie rod. The trac bar is a piece of 1" emt until I get things cycled.

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Little more work on the steering. Notched the frame for the trac bar and drag link Dented the diff cover some and ground the steering stops to make full use of an 8" ram rather than make a spacer to limit it.

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New lower shock mounts up front. On the hp30 I used tabs off the lower control arm mount. This time around I dug out the old Poly lower mounts and then extended them 1" due to the relocated spring perches. I'll probably move the lower perches back another 1/2" to center up better with the upper bumpstops.

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Cut down some 1/2" bolts to use as makeshift transfer punches for the skid plate holes. Cut down the Savvy engine skid to match the new transfercase skid which is a little longer.. Since the transfercase skid is flat, I just used a piece of angle for the brace on the back edge.

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New driveshafts from Tom Woods came in the end of the week. Decided against the boot on the front die to how close it gets to the exhaust. Got them installed to double check everything I had done with my temporary arrangement.

Redid a little of the exhaust for better driveshaft clearance. When the passenger side is fully stuffed, it gets within 1/8". It's going to put me about 5/8" off center at ride height. I don't know if the axle was built to use off the shelf shafts, but the pinion offset is 2" closer to center than a TJ axle.

Drilled the blank pitman arm from parts Mike and reamed it for the GM tie rod end. Ended up at 5 3/8 " to match the mockup I was using.

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Sweet build, Dude. Missed it prior to today, but looking forward to following.
 
Thanks. It's taken longer than I was hoping for, but it's getting close to back on the road.

Pulled the front axle to take care of some things. Added a dimple to the diff cover for the trac bar at full bump. Added mini skids to the lower control arm mounts and finalized the ram assist mount.

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Redrilled the factory spare tire holder and welded in some M14 studs for the 8x170 wheels. Ordered a cheap spare wheel and got a tire mounted up.

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