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Modoc Guy builds a jeep


Modoc Guy

Jack of all trades, master of none
Supporting Member
Joined
Mar 22, 2020
Messages
1,506
Location
Canby, Northern California
Hi all! 😸 Some of you know me from my posts, and some of the NorCal guy know me cuz we've met. And now that the formalities are out of the way, I'm finally gonna start a build thread. ('bout damn time!)

And I've spent a little over a year on the forum askin all kinds of noob questions tryin to learn enough to do what I want without having to un-do it later. That being said, let's get started!

So, I bought this Jeep. I'd sold my '86 K5 Blazer, but still wanted/needed another 4X4, and I thought a Jeep would be fun. Yeah, it's hella fun, I didn't realize expensive too! But that's cool. A man's gotta have a hobby, right?

This is how it sat when I brought it home.
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It had a few good things on it, like the wheels. and outside of the PO installed long arm kit, lift, and Teraflex dual rate sway bar was pretty unmolested. I've been considering junking the long arm, but that story's for another time.

So, I spent most of my time and money cleaning, servicing, and repairing all the little things that I thought it needed. You know, oil change, tune up. It desperately needed brakes, so I put a Power Stop Z36 towing brake kit in it, and that helped a lot.

I changed o2 sensors, and it had a misfire code (ha ha) so I spent a lot of time figuring that out. Fixed the stock radio-CD player, cuz that's what I liked. And just generally cleaned it and added little goodies here and there.

First real addition I did was take the spare off the tailgate, and add a swing out spare/bumper combo. I like it, but it's hella heavy. And I got a plan to skeletonize it when I get finished with what I'm doing now. Another story for later.
 
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Modoc Guy

Modoc Guy

Jack of all trades, master of none
Supporting Member
Joined
Mar 22, 2020
Messages
1,506
Location
Canby, Northern California
So here’s the bumper...
24804644-56E0-43AE-BA71-502437F681C9.jpeg

I know some of you don’t like Smittybilt, but it’s been working perfectly and rattle free since I installed it.

So then I had an opportunity to go wheel a little with the NorCal guys, and that made me get on the stick and install my CB radio.

That was a great day trip. I didn’t know where we were going, but here’s where we ended up.
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Man, was I stoked about that. I had a great day, learned a lot, met a bunch of really nice people and really had the 4X4 fire lit that day.

One of the things I’m glad I had, was my second real addition to the Jeep, a Warn M8000.
B675C72E-7D63-4CE0-9AF7-DA6E40C7C5BB.jpeg

There it is, along with a stock bumper and factory fog lights that I changed to from the rock crawler the Jeep had.
I’ve always really liked that look!

So after my little wheeling day trip, I decided I definitely needed to get the drivetrain upgraded. I liked my 33’s, but 3:73 gearing and no lockers weren’t cutting it. I watched the guys with lockers and gears easily going places I struggled to get through.

So after researching all the different ways I could go, and comparing all the costs, this I what I’ve decided.

I knew I wanted to go with 4:10’s for gears. I’m happy on 33’s, and with a 32RH transmission, those gears would work well, so that was set.
I located a complete 2004 Rubicon Dana 44 with disk brakes, air pumps, e-brake cables, the whole thing. That made the changeover in the rear super simple! And with the Dutchman alloy axles I already had, that completed the rear upgrade.
382D6B76-F07F-4F77-A888-6622ECD6CDA6.jpeg

So the rear was confirmed.

Then, after looking around for a DIY HP30, I settled on finding a shop that could setup an HP30 for me and save me some hassle running around trying to locate and figure all that out myself.

I found and contacted ECGS, told them what I wanted, and they located a non-disconnect HP30, built it and shipped it to me.
So now I’ve got an HP30, with an ARB 30 spline air locker, with 4:10’s and Yukon 4340 30 spline inners and 27 spline outers with 1350 u joints.

And to complete the front and rear combo, I got ahold of Mr Blaine and got all new disks and calipers for the Dana 44, and a 15” big brake kit for the front HP30.

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Here’s all my brake stuff after UPS came by. Also got an ARB single air pump to run the front lockers with.

I’ll mount the ARB pump under the brake booster, as soon as I remove the last part of the ABS system. It had been defeated and partially removed by the PO when I bought the Jeep. I’ll also have to change the proportioning valve when I yank the ABS pump, so to complete that upgrade, I’ve got a new valve, and all new stainless brake lines set to go in.
 
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Modoc Guy

Modoc Guy

Jack of all trades, master of none
Supporting Member
Joined
Mar 22, 2020
Messages
1,506
Location
Canby, Northern California
So now I’ve started prepping all my parts and assemblies for install.
First, I pulled out the Dana 44, pulled out the stock axles, and striped off all the brake hardware and cleaned and prepped it all for paint.
3E341529-781A-448D-B5AF-ADF683A7337E.jpeg


So I cleaned and refurbished the disk brake mounting brackets and shields, painted and reassembled them.
I also threw the new HP30 up next to the Dana 44 for a matching paint job and install prep.

Here they are all shiny and black!
C5FA8985-FA0A-4FBB-8F44-176D90DDC814.jpeg


So now I have enough stuff to get going and install this stuff, so here I go. First, let’s get the drum brake Dana 44 out.
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Bumper, spare, and both rear wheels off.
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Put ‘em in a pile, then start on the axle.
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Start tearing it apart
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Yank out a few more bolts.....
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And it’s out!

Then I’ll need to pull out the Dutchman axles, they’re going into the Rubi Dana 44.
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Now I’ll put the stock Rubi axles in the drum brake Dana 44, I’ll be getting rid of it and the LP30 when I’m through.
E442F6AA-3E7E-48F2-98AA-0B7B1D530297.jpeg
 
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Modoc Guy

Modoc Guy

Jack of all trades, master of none
Supporting Member
Joined
Mar 22, 2020
Messages
1,506
Location
Canby, Northern California
Now it’s time to get going putting the Rubicon Dana 44 in!

Damn brake fluid just wouldn’t stop leaking out, even after I crimped the line.
38FC9684-CA94-4C95-8D6A-08D87B94BD07.jpeg

No worries, new stainless lines are coming!

Time to put that pup in.
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Wiggle it around, line it up, throw some bolts in it.
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Connect all the CA’s, sway bar, track bar, shocks and stuff.
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Then I’ll get the brake mounting brackets and brake lines ready so I can install the axles.
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Press the bearings.
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So now I’ll pop the axles in.
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And get going on the e-brakes, disks and calipers.
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Once I had all the hardware on, I put the new brake lines on, axle vent, and adjusted the parking brake shoes.
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I played with putting the parking brake cables in, but I didn’t like how they were routed. I’m gonna post a request for anyone with a Rubicon to post photos of how theirs looks to compare.

Only other issue I had was I didn’t realize I needed a conversion u joint to go from my 1310 driveline to the Rubi Dana 44 1330 yoke. But it’s ordered and on it’s way.

So, the only thing left was stick the wheels back on.
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Admire my work......
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And start on the front axle!
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And tomorrow, the saga continues.....
 
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Modoc Guy

Modoc Guy

Jack of all trades, master of none
Supporting Member
Joined
Mar 22, 2020
Messages
1,506
Location
Canby, Northern California
So, today we start tearing out the LP30
7B75DE4D-AB16-4746-B1A5-6DD4A574FC02.jpeg

I needed the axle hardware and brake shields, so I yanked that stuff off while unbolting CA’s, steering and brakes.

It was fun getting those axle nuts off! I don’t have a 36mm socket, but I do have a 1 7/16” socket and a 3/4” drive pneumatic impact gun! It makes short work of those axle nuts. 😸

So, many nuts and bolts later...
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Viola! It’s out. So now it time to stick the HP30 in there.
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Drag it over, shove it under the Jeep, wiggle it around a bit and start throwing bolts in CA’s and....
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Now it’s starting to look like something!
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Ran out of parts for today, so this is done for the day.
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So next I need to install the axles, knuckles, unit bearings and all the new Black Magic brake hardware. Then finish bolting up the steering.

And @Apparition, I’ve got the HP30 in enough to know the driveshaft length will be just fine. Though I am gonna pull it out and take it to the driveline shop for rebuilding. U joints looked like the original ones and were too worn for my taste.

The rear DC driveshaft’s u joints are like new, so I’ll run them no problem! Except for the conversion u joint, which will be here Tuesday.
 
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Modoc Guy

Modoc Guy

Jack of all trades, master of none
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Joined
Mar 22, 2020
Messages
1,506
Location
Canby, Northern California
So, back on the job this morning.
Started on the short axle side and it went together pretty easy. Up till I tried to put the brake shield on.
Damn, pulled it apart and cut it here...
5396444E-76A0-4016-9AD8-F0AEDAF6FEA0.jpeg

And here....
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Threw it back together for a check-fit...
7FC8A879-F87C-4478-A66C-1F99F692168A.jpeg

And everything was perfect. So it was just a matter of torquing everything down and moving to the next side.

No check-fit on this side, just assemble and torque as ya go.
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I was happy it was so easy to stab the axle in on the long side. So much easier than doing my kid’s Dodge Diesel’s front axles!
In comparison, the Jeep’s like working on a go cart! 🤣

So now I’m playing with routing the rubber brake lines. I bought the Dorman extended ones supposedly recommended by Mr Blaine.
Nice quality part, but I think I’ll have to modify the block end at the banjo bolt to get the line in a good position.
I’ll post some pictures of what I figure out for that.

Then it’s back to the E-brake cables to finish the routing, hook up, and adjustment of those.

Then it’s off to the auto parts store to buy a 36mm socket to torque the front axle nuts.

Wonder if I’m ever gonna stop buying stuff for this thing! 🤣

More pictures and stuff to come......
 
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Modoc Guy

Modoc Guy

Jack of all trades, master of none
Supporting Member
Joined
Mar 22, 2020
Messages
1,506
Location
Canby, Northern California
Spent the morning torquing control arm bolts. Wow, that’s a j-o-b! The 55lb bolts, no sweat. But the 130lb bolts, up underneath the Jeep with not much leverage, they were a bitch!
But, they’re done! 😸

Then I got after the E-brake cables. After stealing the brackets off my old cables, I got the new ones routed, hooked up, and adjusted.
One more thing done.

Now it’s on to the front brake hoses. The banjos on the Dorman extended hoses are square, so I had to do a little modification.
653709C5-0325-437E-ABC8-1C3380F4259E.jpeg

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Went after that corner with the grinder and....
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When I was finished, I touched up the bare metal with a little silver paint, now I’m good to go!

I’ll load the brake pads in tomorrow, and mount a tire so I can confirm the brake hose angle.
Then I get to torque those axle nuts!

But, before I can do that, I gotta go get a socket. Now it’s off to the auto parts store. 😸
 
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Modoc Guy

Modoc Guy

Jack of all trades, master of none
Supporting Member
Joined
Mar 22, 2020
Messages
1,506
Location
Canby, Northern California
Nice work! Axle swaps out on the stone driveway, doesn’t get any better 👍🏼
Yeah, well ya gotta work with what ya got. It’s a little tough on the knees and elbows at times, but I’m a tough old bastard.
Or a cheap one, otherwise I might pay someone else to do this shit!

Hell no, I’m definitely a cheap bastard! 🤣 I ain’t paying somebody to do what I can do, and do a better job of it too!
 
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Modoc Guy

Modoc Guy

Jack of all trades, master of none
Supporting Member
Joined
Mar 22, 2020
Messages
1,506
Location
Canby, Northern California
OK! Got the axle nuts torqued and keepers in place.
Caliper frames bolted and torqued, brake pads installed, and brake hoses too.

Pulled the old calipers to finish letting all the old brake fluid drain out.
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Gonna start pulling out all the old brake lines and proportioning valve tomorrow. And then I can get the master cylinder moved so I can get to that ABS pump.

Once I get it out, I can mount the ARB compressor. I’ll do the compressor and brake system at the same time because the master cylinder blocks the area where the compressor will mount.

The last thing I did today was pull the front driveshaft out. That’s a PITA! Those dinky assed bolts are a bitch to get to. You’d think the Mopar engineers could have come up with a easier to service design!

683AA8C4-155A-4152-943E-03CA7818275D.jpeg


And now that it’s out, I may have to rebuild it myself. I called Driveline Service in Klamath Falls and they don’t use Spicer u joints! They said they use Spicers “sister” company’s brand. I’m not familiar with them, and will only use Spicer period!

So that may slow things down a little. Gonna see if I can find another place close that can handle the job. I always like to have driveshafts re-balanced after they’ve been serviced.
Less problems doing it that way.

Edit: The shop told me the "sister" company was NEAPCO.
 
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