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SoCal Chapter The SoCal Chapter covers Southern California and Arizona. Please post local topics here.

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  #1  
Old March 9th, 2019, 23:13
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Unibody stiffeners

Hey guys. I'm new to the site and excited to get started. I recently purchased a 97 xj sport with a Chrysler 8.25 rear. This will be my first rig I've built from almost ground up. I know the unibody is a very touchy part for our xjs and before I pull the trigger on a suspension kit (which I'm about a month away from doing) I want to also get recommendations on shops that won't charge an arm and a leg to weld on stiffeners. I want to get it done right, but also would like to jump into gears and the lift here soon too, so money is a big Factor. I'd do it myself but it's way out of my skill set. Thanks very much guys, I'm sure I'll have more questions or need more opinions throughout this awesome journey.
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  #2  
Old March 10th, 2019, 08:29
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Re: Unibody stiffeners

Contact Avery (cracker). He does good work, much more reasonable than any shop and he's knows how to make things stiff!

Also....consider choosing your lift first....some lifts can be affected by the stiffened, especially long arm and mid arm stuff.
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  #3  
Old March 10th, 2019, 08:51
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Re: Unibody stiffeners

Haha. Thanks John. That was going to be my next thread honestly, lifts. I have been doing research for a while now. And there are so many kits, and then there's the piece one together option. My family is jeepers, and while one side of the family says go drop brackets with short arms due to ease of install, expense and on road off road driveability, the other half says I'll want to go long arm eventually and there's no sense in dipping my toes if I'm gonna end up jumping in anyways. Lol. Plus there's thought that long arm is a better ride. So long story short, I've been hung up on the 4.5-5.5 short arm flex kit from RE and the 5.5 long arm kit from RE. Then I hear great things about the almost bolt on IROK off-road 3 link front and 4 link rear. And last night came across a kit with DPG, a hybrid short or long arm 5.5 with RE and OME components. So I'm all over the place. Haha. Any opinions on direction there? I am semi limited because I'm a beginning welder, which holds me back. This is going to be my weekend rig from camping to moderate wheeling and all in between. A project for my boy and I. Thanks for the advice ahead of time.
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  #4  
Old March 10th, 2019, 10:09
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Re: Unibody stiffeners

Talk to Avery he can definitely point you in the right direction. I had short arms with RE drop brackets and Avery convinced me to swap over to long arms. He had me buy the Stinky Fab racing long arm brackets and he built the rest. Mine honestly drives better on the hwy after i had him build my 3 link setup. He also welded up my mid stiffeners and is supposed to install the fronts soon.
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  #5  
Old March 10th, 2019, 22:37
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Re: Unibody stiffeners

Thanks for the recommendation. How do I get in contact or look up a member on this site? Haha.
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  #6  
Old March 11th, 2019, 08:00
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Re: Unibody stiffeners

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Originally Posted by Scummy916 View Post
Thanks for the recommendation. How do I get in contact or look up a member on this site? Haha.
I just messaged him. He'll contact you shortly.
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  #7  
Old March 11th, 2019, 09:25
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Re: Unibody stiffeners

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Originally Posted by Scummy916 View Post
. . . the other half says I'll want to go long arm eventually and there's no sense in dipping my toes if I'm gonna end up jumping in anyways.
I bought a short-arm lift kit and was very happy with it . . . for about a week. Then I went three-link long-arm and realized I should have just gone that way at the start. But I didn’t know better and, unlike you, I didn’t ask the right questions.

Avery did my frame plating and built my three-link system. He does great work.
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  #8  
Old March 11th, 2019, 09:42
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Re: Unibody stiffeners

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Originally Posted by Nimrod View Post
I bought a short-arm lift kit and was very happy with it . . . for about a week. Then I went three-link long-arm and realized I should have just gone that way at the start. But I didn’t know better and, unlike you, I didn’t ask the right questions.

Avery did my frame plating and built my three-link system. He does great work.
the only problem is that if you listen to him you're going to end up with a full blown buggie on tons and 42's lmao.
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  #9  
Old March 11th, 2019, 16:38
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Re: Unibody stiffeners

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the only problem is that if you listen to him you're going to end up with a full blown buggie on tons and 42's lmao.
I dont see a problem?
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  #10  
Old March 11th, 2019, 18:48
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Re: Unibody stiffeners

I will probably want to start a little smaller so the boy and I can take it fishing and camping a few times...but I would be open to, over the course of a couple years, making it into a crawling machine!! So I see no problem either! haha. I am cutting my fenders and the blocky, bulky bumpers this week. I'm gonna start looking for gears for the 8.25 and a new front soon.
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  #11  
Old March 11th, 2019, 19:26
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Re: Unibody stiffeners

I don't need bigger axles, I said. I'm just taking it easy, I said. I'll never break that 8 1/4, I said. Well, just in case, let's upgrade it a little. One Dana 60 later, I'm done. Don't need anything else.


I don't need bigger axles, I said. I'm just taking it easy, I said. I'll never break that Dana 30, I said. Well, just in case, let's upgrade it a little. One RockJock 60, hydro assist and long arm later, I'm done.


I don't need anything else, I said. I'm just taking it easy, I said. I'll never need a roll bar, I said. Well, just in case, let's upgrade it a little. One full hybrid cage, tied into frame, sliders, bumper, I'm done.


I'm beginning to see a pattern.



And yes, I'd recommend cracker as well. Does great work, and barely has an opinion of anything at all.


David Bricker / SYR
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  #12  
Old March 11th, 2019, 19:31
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Re: Unibody stiffeners

Barely.

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  #13  
Old March 11th, 2019, 19:53
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Re: Unibody stiffeners

Quote:
Originally Posted by Scummy916 View Post
I will probably want to start a little smaller so the boy and I can take it fishing and camping a few times...but I would be open to, over the course of a couple years, making it into a crawling machine!!
Whatever you decide to do, I hope you’ll join us in Big Bear for SoCal Fest. Even stock, you’ll have a good time.
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  #14  
Old March 12th, 2019, 08:22
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Re: Unibody stiffeners

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Originally Posted by JohnX View Post
I dont see a problem?
My bank account does When i first met him I had him weld on perches on my d44. He convinced me to get full case lockers, truss, to get rid of my long arm lift that i had just installed and much more lmao. Now we're talking swapping axles.
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  #15  
Old March 12th, 2019, 08:24
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Re: Unibody stiffeners

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Originally Posted by David_Bricker View Post

And yes, I'd recommend cracker as well. Does great work, and barely has an opinion of anything at all.


David Bricker / SYR
lmao
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