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  #1  
Old November 18th, 2013, 23:44
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The 4500 MJ Build

I've been following the King of the Hammers race since the very first official race in 2008. I've watched it evolve from a small race amongst some rock crawlers, to it's current form of Ultra4 Racing. Ultra4 consist of a few different classes of rigs (stock, modified, and unlimited).

Some of you may be familiar with the Team "Stock Class" XJ that took first place in it's class this year.

Well after a few friends of mine made the trek down to KOH this year, they came back with KOH Fever. That's when the ball began to roll on building a car to compete in the modified class series.

It just so happened that Winton had a semi-pristine 1987 Jeep Comanche sitting next to his shop that he purchased new off the show room floor.




I swung by the shop to help with the dismantling.


The stock 2.5L and 4 speed just weren't going to cut it, so out with the old.


By days end we had a pretty good pile of parts started.


Summer was busy for all of us so I wasn't able to get over as much as I would have liked. Fast forward to a few weeks ago, and progress was going full steam ahead.

The decision was made to perform the uni-body delete mod, temporarily.


With the cab off the frame, the frame was then plated inside, out, underneath, and on the top. The frame is upside down in this picture.


Don and I managed to get the windshield out in one piece, and continued to work on the cab cutting out the door flange.


Flipped the freshly plated frame over, and set the mock up block into place. We're going with a mid engine placement to keep the weight low and centered. There's a good two feet between the front of the motor, and the factory cross member.
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Old November 18th, 2013, 23:51
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Re: The 4500 MJ Build

Powertrain in position. A custom transmission crossmember and mount were made. Notice all the holes going through the frame. These were done not only because they look awesome, but they tie both sides of the frame together.


Cab was put back on, and it became a uni-body again. We'll pull it off one more time to prime everything before it gets welded back on.


Started mocking up the axle housings into place.


Rear suspension is going to be a breeze compared to the front.


Winton stacking dimes.


Whole nutha' level.


Boatsides.


Checking out seat height positions. With what once seemed like a massive empty cab, is now filling up quick.


Life's tough in the shop sometimes.


There's a ton of work left to do before King of the Hammers in February. I'll be helping out as much as I can, so I'll try and keep the updates coming.
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Old November 19th, 2013, 06:26
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Re: The 4500 MJ Build

This should be pretty cool when its done. I followed another KOH MJ build on CC, its neat to see the transformation.
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  #4  
Old November 19th, 2013, 06:33
BoringDave BoringDave is offline
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The 4500 MJ Build

That shop is badazz! I need to work on my shop more then in my shop.

Jeeps cool to.
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  #5  
Old November 19th, 2013, 07:00
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Re: The 4500 MJ Build

Currie axles, atlas case.. Looks like you're starting with the best.. I'm gonna watch this one closely
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  #6  
Old November 19th, 2013, 11:41
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The 4500 MJ Build

Man this is really cool!! That's something I want to do, is build a rig frame up. So I take it this is where you were playing with tube work?
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  #7  
Old November 19th, 2013, 15:35
josefxj97 josefxj97 is offline
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Re: The 4500 MJ Build

subscribed!
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  #8  
Old November 19th, 2013, 16:08
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Re: The 4500 MJ Build

Been waiting for pics of this to pop up SOMEWHERE. Winton and I have discussed this a bunch. Looks great!
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Old November 19th, 2013, 17:01
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Re: The 4500 MJ Build

Wow, very badass MJ build. I've never seen someone cutting a cab or body off to plate every side of a uniframe before, but I have wondered if it would be possible. I'm guessing it wouldn't really be a viable option for an XJ...

Can you share details on the drivetrain, suspension, etc?
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  #10  
Old November 19th, 2013, 20:59
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Re: The 4500 MJ Build

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mnkyboy View Post
I followed another KOH MJ build on CC, its neat to see the transformation.
Was skimming through that build the other day. A few of the guys on our team saw that rig in action at one of the races this year. It's definitely cool to see XJ/MJ based racers out there.
Quote:
Originally Posted by bmikes View Post
Man this is really cool!! That's something I want to do, is build a rig frame up. So I take it this is where you were playing with tube work?
Correct.

I've never taken part in something like this, so I'm looking forward to seeing how it all comes together. It's going to be a busy next few months.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Avanteone View Post
Been waiting for pics of this to pop up SOMEWHERE. Winton and I have discussed this a bunch. Looks great!
We defintely have some out-of-box thinkers working on the build. Should be a pretty cool build, and hopefully a competitive car when all said and done.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Red91Laredo View Post
Wow, very badass MJ build. I've never seen someone cutting a cab or body off to plate every side of a uniframe before, but I have wondered if it would be possible. I'm guessing it wouldn't really be a viable option for an XJ...

Can you share details on the drivetrain, suspension, etc?
For this application, uni-body delete mod was a good choice. Drastic at first, but it allowed us to plate the frame, and will allow us to work on the drive-train/suspension without the cab in the way. The motor mounts and front link mounts are going to be tight.

For your average rec wheeler build, I don't see what you would gain from it.

Drive-train / Suspension:
87 Comanche
6.0L, TH400, Atlas 3.0, Currie 9's
Four Link Front and Rear, ADS Coilover's
37's on 17" Beadlocks
Jungle Gym
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  #11  
Old November 23rd, 2013, 21:12
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Re: The 4500 MJ Build

A few of us got another full day in on the build today. Progress is steadily coming along.

Project for the day was getting the cab all polished up. Pulling it off for the final time.


When in doubt, burn it out.


Joey had the paitence to weld up all the seams and gaps.


Back inside the shop, Winton worked on machining the C's for the front axle build.


Custom jig for aiding in setup of the C's.


Joey and I plugged away at the cab all afternoon. It's basically ready for paint after a quick sand. After it's a unibody again we'll get to work on the floors, tunnel, dash, etc.
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Old November 24th, 2013, 16:06
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The 4500 MJ Build

Looks good! Can you give any more information about why you were machining the C's?
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  #13  
Old November 24th, 2013, 20:57
BoringDave BoringDave is offline
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The 4500 MJ Build

Don't quote me, but I think they can be purchased for universal use. Then the purchaser machines them or has them machined to the tube outside diameter they require.
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  #14  
Old November 26th, 2013, 20:51
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Re: The 4500 MJ Build

Quote:
Originally Posted by bmikes View Post
Looks good! Can you give any more information about why you were machining the C's?
Dave's got the right idea. Basically these C's came from Solid, and the housings from Currie. There was a few thousandths difference in ID/OD so they were machined down.


Commitment.


C's were installed, pinion angle set, and castor set. You can see how the threaded rod was used to pull the C's into place for setup.




While Winton dialed in the front axle, Joey and Don worked on the cab some more getting it ready for paint.




Meanwhile, Ted plugged away at the dash. Gotta keep a little MJ in it.


I unfortunately won't be able to get back out there until next week. I'm sure the guys will continue to make progress though.
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  #15  
Old November 26th, 2013, 21:35
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Re: The 4500 MJ Build

I was out there for an hour today working on sanding on the cab. I can't wait to see this thing complete its going to be sweet.
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